10 May 2021

Result of the 2021 election for Kent Police and Crime Commissioner
 
Matthew Scott (Con) has retained the post of Kent Police and Crime Commisioner with 56% of the votes. The turnout was 31.8%. There was no need to consider the second round votes, as Matthew Scott secured over 50% of the first round votes.

In 2016, Matthew Scott won with 33% of the first round votes, 54% of the second round votes. The turnout was 21%.
 
The full 2021 results are available here.




7 May 2021

Result of the 2021 election for KCC Ashford Rural West division
 

Charlie Simkins (Con) has retained Ashford Rural West Division 65% of the votes. The turnout was 33%.
 
In 2017, Charlie Simkins won the seat for the Conservatives with 63% of the votes; turnout was 31%

In 2013, Charlie Simkins won the seat for the Conservatives with 44% of the votes; turnout was 28%
 
In 2009, Richard King won the seat for the Conservatives with 65% of the votes; turnout was 41%.
 
In 2005, Richard King won the seat for the Conservatives with 55% of the votes; turnout was 68%.
 
The full results for Ashford Rural West 2021 are available here.

To see the 2021 results for all divisions in Kent, click here.
 
Results for the previous four elections for Ashford Rural West division are available from the following links:
2017
2013
2009
2005




7 May 2021

Footpath AW134 re-opens

FootpathAW134, which has been closed between Sandyhurst Lane and Kingsland Lane for safety repairs for the past 3 weeks, has now re-opened (although it is still shown as closed on the KCC PROW map).

Westwell Parish Council (WPC) has received the following message from KCC’s PROW team:

Following confirmation from the landowner that the work to restore the paths surface was complete an officer inspected and has assessed the work as satisfactory, therefore the issue has been closed on our system.
If you have concerns over the nature of repairs to the drain please direct these to the landowner or the Land Drainage Team as per your previous contact.

WPC has accordingly written to the KCC drainage officer.


6 May 2021

Planning permission refused for extensions at Hillyfield, 352 Sandyhurst Lane

Planning permission was refused on 5 May 2021 for an extension to the existing garage to include new dormer windows and first floor, and replacement single storey rear extensions at Hillyfield, 352 Sandyhurst Lane. The reasons for refusal were given as follows:

The proposal is contrary to policies SP1 and SP6 of the Ashford Local Plan 2030,
Supplementary Planning Guidance Note 9 and Central Government guidance contained in the National Planning Policy Framework and would therefore be contrary to interests of acknowledged planning importance for the following reason:
1) The proposed extension to the existing garage by virtue of its forward siting, size,
scale, mass and bulk would result in an overdevelopment of the building that would
appear bulky, overly-dominant and incongruous in the street scene, detrimental to the character and appearance of the existing dwelling and the surrounding area.


Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 21/00441/AS).




6 May 2021

Planning permission refused for extensions/2 storey dwelling
at The Nook, 388 Sandyhurst Lane

Planning permission was refused on 5 May 2021 for a first floor roof extension to create a two storey dwelling; new front porch and single storey side extension to provide a garage at The Nook, 388 Sandyhurst Lane. The reasons for refusal were given as follows:

The proposal is contrary to policies SP6 and HOU8 of the Ashford Local Plan 2030 and Central Government guidance contained in the National Planning Policy Framework and would therefore be contrary to interests of acknowledged planning importance for the following reasons:
1. The proposed development, by virtue of its overall height, the fully-glazed atrium extension, awkward roof form and side extension up to the side boundary would appear as an overly-prominent and bulky addition to the property that would be out of keeping with the character of the Sandyhurst Lane street scene.
2. The proposed Juliet balconies on the upper floor of the rear elevation would cause actual and perceived overlooking to the rear gardens of 390 and 386 Sandyhurst Lane, resulting in a loss of privacy to the occupiers of this property.

Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 21/00458/AS).


27 April 2021

Appeal lodged for Elvey Cottage, Kingsland Lane

Further to our news item of 12 February 2021, an appeal has now been received by Ashford Borough Council against the decision to refuse retrospective planning permission for amendment to the design and the size of the garage/home office at Elvey Cottage, Kingsland Lane. The appeal is by written representation, but no appeal documents have yet been published.



23 April 2021

Further update on closure of footpath AW134

Further to our emails of 16 & 19 April (below), Westwell Parish Council has now written to Kent County Council stressing the importance of ensuring that repairs to the holes and collapsed drain beside the footpath AW134 include proper drainage management. Their message includes:

“We are aware that the drainage maintenance is the responsibility of the landowner Eastwell Park Estate, R L Goodman. However, Goodman has proved repeatedly unresponsive to previous communication from WPC. This means that on a regular basis local residents must take it upon themselves to clear the drains to prevent damage to their properties. There has been serious flood damage in the past particularly in 2015 at a cost of £30,000. This is an ongoing problem. Could KCC please formally contact Goodman and advise them of their obligation.”

KCC have sent the message both to their Public Rights of Way (PROW) team and their Land Drainage team. The PROW team has confirmed that they have placed an emergency closure on footpath AW134 due to the damage caused by the collapsed land drain, initially for 21 days but that this may need extending to allow the landowner time to arrange suitable repairs. They are due to contact the landowner today for an update and will bring the concerns re flooding to their attention.


23 April 2021

Planning permission granted for extension at Mole Hill, 250 Sandyhurst Lane

Planning permission was granted on 22 April 2021 for the removal of canopy area to the side and outbuilding; erection of part two storey/part single storey side extension at Mole Hill, 250 Sandyhurst Lane. Full details are available here (search for application number 21/00507/AS).


20 April 2021

Operation Brock ending

Operation Brock is to end this coming weekend and the M20 will be returned to normal operation between junctions 8 and 9.
The announcement by Highways England includes:

We’re de-activating the Brock contraflow – which includes the moveable barrier between junctions 8 (for Maidstone) and 9 (at Ashford) – on Saturday 24 April. The moveable barrier will remain along the side of the M20 for when the contraflow is needed again to help with any future cross-channel disruption.
Once the contraflow has been deactivated the M20 will return to three full width lanes at the national speed limit in both directions.
The work to remove the barrier will be done under a full closure of the coastbound M20 from junctions 7 to 9 and on the London-bound side from junctions 9 to 8. It will start at 8pm on Saturday 24 April and go through to 8am on Sunday 25 April. Work will resume overnight from 8pm on Sunday 25 April until 6am on Monday morning 26 April.


19 April 2021

Update on footpath closure

Further to our news item of 16 April (below) we have now spoken to Kent County Council. They have confirmed that the “potential danger to the public” is because of the numerous deep holes/collapsed land drain alongside the footpath. The owner of the was instructed on Friday (16 April) to make the footpath safe.

We have emphasised the importance of preserving and enhancing the land drainage and asked that the land owners should not simply fill in the holes without addressing future drainage and that there are already potential flooding issues to some of the properties in Sandyhurst Lane opposite the footpath.

The closure is now shown on the KCC Public Rights of Way map



16 April 2021

Footpath closed

Footpath AW134 has been closed as an emergency, for an initial period of 21 days, for the part which runs from Sandyhurst Lane (in the vicinity of numbers 178/180) to Kingsland Lane (a distance of 840 metres).

The reason for the closure is given as “potential danger to the public”. The closure is not currently shown on the KCC Public Rights of Way map here.



14 April 2021

Elections on 6 May 2021

Elections will be held on 6 May 2021, between 7.00 am and 10.00 pm, for KCC Councillors and for the Kent Police and Crime Commissioner.

KCC election:
All the SLRA area falls into the Ashford Rural West Division, for which there are five candidates:

Adrian John Gee-Turner (Liberal Democrats)
Hilary Jones (The Green Party)
Andrew Richard Lewin (Libertarian Party)
Charlie Simkins (The Conservative Party)
Norma Smyth (Labour Party)

The official Statement of Persons Nominated may be viewed here.

Kent Police and Crime Commissioner election:
There are three candidates:

Graham David Colley (Liberal Democrats)
Lola Oyewusi (Labour and Co-operative Party)
Matthew Richard Scott (The Conservative Party)

The official Statement of Persons Nominated may be viewed here.




8 April 2021

Progress with Boughton Aluph & Eastwell Neighbourhood Plan

The Boughton Aluph & Eastwell Parishes Neighbourhood Plan has made a positive step towards its eventual adoption – the independent examiner has reported that the plan (with recommended amendments) meets the conditions to be able to go forward to a referendum.

Key highlights of the Plan which the Inspector has approved include:
- designation of 7 Local Green Spaces (out of the original 8)
- protection of 13 views (including 6 in the vicinity of Sandyhurst Lane and/or Lenacre Street)
- identification of individual character areas and buildings of note 
- identification of Eastwell Farmlands as valued landscape where the landscape character should be retained (with particular consequences for Lenacre Hall Farm)  
- protection for pubs and community buildings

Changes which the Inspector has called for include:
- some rewording of the policy on Eureka Park (Policy BAE NP5) to make it more closely align with the Ashford Local Plan
- Sandyacres Sports & Social Centre NOT to be designated as a Local Green Space, as this would conflict with the Ashford Local Plan. The Sandyacres site will, however, be protected by its status as a sports and recreational hub in the Ashford Local Plan.

Now the Independent Examiner has issued his report, Ashford Borough Council will consider the report and advise whether the plan can be put to a parish referendum. If it has the backing of residents, it will be adopted by Ashford Borough Council as one of the legal documents which must be used to determine planning applications in Boughton Aluph & Eastwell parishes.

For full details see the Newsletter issued by Boughton Aluph & Eastwell Parish here, the Report of the Independent Inspector here and a briefing note from BA&E Parish Council on the Sandyacres issue mentioned above here.


26 March 2021

Kent Spring Marathon

We have received notice that the PodPlus Kent Spring Marathon & Half Marathon will be taking place in our area on Sunday 11 April 2021. Although this event had been planned to be held in Charing, there has been a last-minute change of venue and it will now be based at Sandyacres.

The route for participants is to turn right out of Sandyacres, along Sandyhurst Lane to Westwell Lane (the one opposite the Golf Course), along Kingsland Lane towards Westwell. It will then run along Pilgrims Way towards Charing before returning to Westwell and Kingsland Lane, then along Lenacre Street and returning down Sandyhurst Lane to Sandyacres.

There will be no road closures and, because the races are being run under “Covid Safety Protocols”, there is no mass start. Participants will have “starting slots” in waves of 12 runners starting every 3 minutes between 8.00 am and 10.00 am. Full details are on the organiser’s website here.

The organisers have asked us to be aware that “there will be runners on the road between the above times and we may ask traffic to stop briefly for 30 seconds when runners exit Sandyacres.”



26 March 2021

Planning permission sought for demolition (retrospective) and erection of replacement dwelling at Two Chimneys, 28 Sandyhurst Lane

A planning application has been made for the demolition of the existing dwelling (retrospective) and erection of a replacement dwelling at Two Chimneys, 28 Sandyhurst Lane. The closing date for comments is 18 April 2021. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 21/00431/AS).


25 March 2021

Planning permission sought for extensions at Rivendell, Westwell Lane

A planning application has been made for the construction of a two storey side extension including dormer, and single storey rear extension at Rivendell, Westwell Lane. The closing date for comments is 17 April 2021. Full details are available here (search for application number 21/00513/AS).





23 March 2021


Planning permission sought for extension at Mole Hill, 250 Sandyhurst Lane

A planning application has been made for the removal of canopy area to the side and outbuilding; erection of part two storey/part single storey side extension at Molehill, 250 Sandyhurst Lane. The closing date for comments is 15 April 2021. Full details are available here (search for application number 21/00507/AS).



16 March 2021

Planning permission sought for extensions at Hillyfield, 352 Sandyhurst Lane

A planning application has been made for an extension to the existing garage to include new dormer windows and first floor, and replacement single storey rear extensions at Hillyfield, 352 Sandyhurst Lane. The closing date for comments is 8 April 2021. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 21/00441/AS).



16 March 2021

Planning permission sought for extensions/2 storey dwelling at The Nook, 388 Sandyhurst Lane

A planning application has been made for a first floor roof extension to create a two storey dwelling; new front porch and single storey side extension to provide a garage at The Nook, 388 Sandyhurst Lane. The closing date for comments is 8 April 2021. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 21/00458/AS).



16 March 2021

Alleged further breach of planning permission at 28 Sandyhurst Lane

Further to our report of 12 March 2021 (below), we understand that the original planning enforcement case has been closed, but that a further allegation, that work has continued, has now been made by a complainant to Ashford Borough Council. A new planning enforcement case has been opened, reference number CO/21/00049.



13 March 2021

Refused: Discharge of Condition 6 (parking arrangements) for planning permission for Downsway, 35 Sandyhurst Lane

Permission was refused on 12 March 2021 for the discharge of condition 6 (provision, surfacing and drainage of parking and turning area) of the planning permission granted for a single storey outbuilding at Downsway, 35 Sandyhurst Lane. The proposal for 7 parking spaces was "considered excessive, and additionally fails to accord with the requirements of the condition which sought clarity about the provision of turning space." Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 18/01466/CONA/AS).


12 March 2021

Breach of planning permission at 28 Sandyhurst Lane

Further to our news item of 8 February (below), Ashford Borough Council has written to a complainant confirming that a breach of planning permission has occurred at Two Chimneys, 28 Sandyhurst Lane. The letter includes:

"I have carefully considered the matter and although the demolition of the dwellinghouse known as Two Chimneys has occurred without prior planning permission a breach of planning has occurred. In this instance, I have sought a retrospective planning application to regularise the demolition of the property. As I understand all further works have ceased."

"The developer has been made aware a full planning application is required for the erection of a new dwelling at this address and all works stop until such time a planning application is approved. If works begin on a new dwelling without the prior permission from the Local Planning Authority a further breach of planning will occur."




10 March 2021


Planning permission granted for extension at Acacia Lodge, 402 Sandyhurst Lane

Planning permission was granted on 9 March 2021 for a single storey rear extension at Acacia Lodge, 402 Sandyhurst Lane. Full details are available here (search for application number 21/00078/AS).



6 March 2021

Bus services: Full service from 8 March. Bus passes not valid before 9.30 am.

Stagecoach have issued the following statement:

Our bus services in Kent and East Sussex will step up to 100% from Monday 8 March. Full pre-COVID school day timetables will be restored on most routes. We're pleased to finally be able to return to normal service and we welcome the support from Kent County Council and East Sussex County Council that has enabled this to happen.

If you travel to and from school, please check out our schools information web page for the latest news.

Despite this increase in service levels, it's vital that if you need to make a bus journey, you follow the government rules. Face coverings must be worn (unless you are medically exempt) and windows on most bus types should be left in the open position to allow the flow of fresh air. Capacity is limited to help with social distancing and you should be mindful to keep a safe distance from others (unless travelling with someone from your household bubble).

Also from 8 March, Kent County Council and East Sussex County Council have confirmed that

concessionary travel passes will no longer be accepted for travel before 09:30am.




23 February 2021

Planning permission sought for extensions at 172 Sandyhurst Lane

A planning application has been made for two storey side/front/rear extensions and alterations to elevations at 172 Sandyhurst Lane. The closing date for comments is 18 March 2021. Full details are available here (search for application number 21/00261/AS).


23 February 2021

Discharge of Condition 6 (parking arrangements) for planning permission for Downsway, 35 Sandyhurst Lane

Details have been submitted for the discharge of condition 6 (provision, surfacing and drainage of parking and turning area) of the planning permission granted for a single storey outbuilding at Downsway, 35 Sandyhurst Lane. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 18/01466/CONA/AS).


19 February 2021

SLRA AGM 2021: Details announced

The SLRA will hold its Annual General Meeting at 7.00 pm on Wednesday 17 March 2021. The meeting will be held online using Zoom.

The meeting will be our first AGM for two years as we had to cancel the 2020 event at short notice, due to the Covid pandemic. It is open to existing members and potential new members and, in addition to the brief formal meeting, will include opportunities for contributions "from the floor" and a guest speaker on an interesting topic. Please see our flyer here for the main details; further information on participation will follow nearer the date.

If you wish to make a contribution in the “From the Floor” session, please notify the question/contribution in advance to info@sandyhurst.co.uk. You will then be invited to speak by the Chair at the appropriate time. (Unfortunately, technology issues mean that we cannot hold our usual “Open Forum” this year).

The AGM will include the election of the committee. We are always looking for new committee members, so please let us know (info@sandyhurst.co.uk) if you would be interested in standing or if you have a nomination.

The AGM is a great opportunity to participate in the local community and is normally attended by local councillors. Please note the date in your diary!



16 February 2021


Planning permission granted for extension at Mole Hill, 250 Sandyhurst Lane

Planning permission was granted on 15 February 2021 for an extension to existing garage/carport to create a workshop at Molehill, 250 Sandyhurst Lane. Full details are available here (search for application number 20/01811/AS).



12 February 2021

Retrospective planning permission refused for Elvey Cottage, Kingsland Lane

Retrospective planning was today refused for amendment to the design and the size of the garage/home office approved under planning permission 17/00319/AS to include a residential annexe at Elvey Cottage, Kingsland Lane. The Decision Notice

includes a note as follows:

"The applicant is advised that enforcement action has been recommended given the retrospective nature of the planning application. The Council’s position is that the building should be returned to the original design approved application ref. 17/00319/AS."

Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 20/01680/AS).




12 February 2021

Bin collections

Ashford Borough Council has posted the following message. In essence, it says that if waste collections are not made today, the bins are to be taken in and will not be collected, in our area, until Thursday 25 February. At that time, residents will be allowed to leave a further two bags of waste beside the bin.

Recycling will take place as normal next week
.

Bin Update

Our crews have worked extremely hard this week to continue to collect bins despite the adverse weather conditions. Here’s what you need to know about collections in the upcoming weeks:

- If your bin has not been collected by the end of today, please remove it from your boundary as it will now be collected on the next refuse week which takes place the w/c 22nd February. We know this means lots of you will have excess waste so residents whose bins we have been unable to access this week will be permitted to leave two bags of side waste next to their bin on the next refuse collection week.
- Recycling collections will take place as normal next week.
- We are aware of the areas that have been missed so please don’t make a missed bin report to us at this time.

Finally, we thank you for your patience during what has been a tricky week – the crews really appreciate your words and support.




9 February 2021


Planning permission granted for extensions at Elden, 61 Sandyhurst Lane

Planning permission was granted on 8 February 2021 for a first floor extension to form a house (from a bungalow) and a side extension to replace the existing conservatory at Elden, 61 Sandyhurst Lane. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 20/01760/AS).



8 February 2021

Possible planning breach under investigation

Further to our news item of 6 February (below), the SLRA has now raised direct with Ashford Borough Council (ABC) our members’ concerns about a possible breach of planning permission at 28 Sandyhurst Lane. The SLRA letter may be viewed here. Several members have also made individual submissions.

ABC has advised us that there is a current investigation into this matter, case reference CO/21/00021, for which the case officer is Miss Sophie Oliver.

We shall advise members as and when further information is received.



6 February 2021

SLRA raises planning concerns

The SLRA has raised concerns about a possible breach of the planning permission granted for extensions at Two Chimneys, 28 Sandyhurst Lane. A letter has been sent to Westwell Parish Council, which was a statutory consultee for the application. The letter may be viewed here.


2 February 2021

Planning permission granted for extensions at 398 Sandyhurst Lane

Planning permission was granted on 1 February 2021 for a single storey rear extension, two storey link extension between house and detached garage, first floor extension over garage and loft conversion at 398 Sandyhurst Lane. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 20/01723/AS).

2 February 2021

Westwell Parish Council seeks new Clerk

The following announcement has been made by Westwell Parish Council:

Westwell is a semi-rural parish, situated at the foot of the North Downs, with the Pilgrims Way passing close by. The Parish Council is both forward-looking and takes an active role in parish life. The QEII playing field and play area are run by the Hall Committee, the Hall also being in the remit of the Parish Council, working with members of Parish organisations.

A vacancy will be arising on 1st April 2021 following the impending retirement of the present Clerk, Mrs Susan Wood, on 30th June 2021. The successful candidate will be working alongside Mrs Wood during this period.

The Clerk to Westwell Parish Council is also the Proper Officer and Responsible Financial Officer. The position is for 10 hours per week, mainly home-based. Salary is commensurate with experience within the SJC Scale for Local Government Employees.

For a copy of the present Clerk’s Job Description please email: susanwood@uwclub.net

Ideally, the applicant will have a good knowledge and understanding of local government and a good standard of education.

The duties include:
   - Arranging & attending all Parish Council meetings and the Annual Parish Meeting;
   - Preparation of Agendas and Minutes;
   - Dealing with all financial matters including the production of financial statements for the Annual
     Audit;
   - Submitting VAT Returns;
   - Dealing with Parish Council Insurance Policies;
   - Ensuring Planning Applications are dealt with and comments submitted to Ashford Borough Council
     within deadlines;
   - Maintaining the Parish Council website/social media;

Applicants will need to have good IT skills and have access to broadband.
The successful candidate will be expected to either possess the Certificate in Local Council Administration (CiLCA) or be willing to work towards gaining this.

Interested applicants should send a brief CV and set out reasons for applying in a covering letter to the Clerk to Westwell Parish Council, Mrs S Wood, by email (preferred)

or by post to:
14 Sandyhurst Lane
Ashford
TN25 4NS
The closing date for applications is Monday 1st March 2021, with interviews by Zoom on Saturday 6th March 2021



31 January 2021

Hothfield Post Office closed for 5 days

Hothfield Post Office will be closed until Friday, re-opening on Saturday 6 February. The owner, Jayesh Patel, has issued the following statement:

We are going to have to close the Post office till Friday. This is to comply with the advice from the NHS tracking. I was exposed to someone who tested positive for Covid-19. We will reopen on Saturday all being well.



26 January 2021

A20 to be closed overnight for up to 3 nights

The A20 will be closed overnight for up to 3 nights for resurfacing between the Orchard Heights roundabout and the junction with Watery Lane, starting tonight. This means that there will be no access to/from Sandyhurst Lane at the A20 end between 10 pm and 6.00 am. The official closure notice may be viewed here.


16 January 2021


Planning permission sought for extension at Acacia Lodge, 402 Sandyhurst Lane

A planning application has been made for a single storey rear extension at Acacia Lodge, 402 Sandyhurst Lane. The closing date for comments is 8 February 2021. Full details are available here (search for application number 21/00078/AS).



15 January 2021

Planning permission granted for extensions at 136 Sandyhurst Lane

Planning permission was granted on 14 January 2021 for a hip to gable extension with one rear dormer and two front dormer windows, and a rear extension at 136 Sandyhurst Lane. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 20/01639/AS).



12 January 2021

Planning permission granted for extension at Rudgwick, Westwell Lane

Planning permission was granted on 11 January 2021 for a rear single storey extension at Rudgwick, Westwell Lane. Full details may be viewed here (search for application number 20/01625/AS).



7 January 2021


Planning permission sought for extension at Mole Hill, 250 Sandyhurst Lane

A planning application has been made for an extension to existing garage/carport to create a workshop at Molehill, 250 Sandyhurst Lane. The closing date for comments is 30 January 2021. Full details are available here (search for application number 20/01811/AS).



5 January 2021

Message from Charing Surgery

Please see the following message from Charing Surgery to Parish Councils with residents who attend Charing, Hamstreet, Woodchurch or Tenterden (Ivy Court) Surgeries:

Charing Surgery is currently acting as the vaccination centre for the Primary Care Network consisting of these four surgeries. Nearly 1,000 patients over 80 had their first dose of the Pfizer vaccine on December 18th or 19th. They were given appointments for the second dose on January 8th and 9th.  In view of the debate over whether the priority should now be to give more people the first dose of a vaccine, the surgeries wish to reassure those patients that they should still attend for their second dose as planned. While they are sending text messages where they have mobile phone numbers for people concerned they do not have numbers for everyone.

An additional 280 people will get their first vaccine on January 10th (since now six doses can be extracted per vial rather than five) – these and subsequent patients will wait up to 12 weeks for their second dose.

Also there are around 2,660 people over 80 who attend one of the four surgeries – more than double those so far vaccinated. So people over 80 who have not yet been called should not be concerned as they will be called as soon as more supplies become available.

The surgery expects to get the first batch of the Oxford vaccine towards the end of this week and this will be used for Care Homes across the primary care network. They do not yet know when they will get further batches but hope it will not be long before they are getting regular supplies.



Sandyhurst Lane
Residents Association

Protecting the rural character of Sandyhurst Lane and the adjoining area


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