Hextable Parish Council
 
 

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CORONAVIRUS UPDATE FROM THE CHAIRMAN OF HEXTABLE PARISH COUNCIL

COVID-19 and its Impact 

 

Over the past few weeks, the UK has seen our whole way of life change due to the threat of the Coronavirus.  We are all affected by this and are having to do things differently.  Along with every organisation, we have to ensure we do everything to reduce the transmission of the virus.

 

The scale of this pandemic has led to a number of changes in law to the way local government works, amongst other areas of UK law, to ensure we do our part. 

 

Council Meetings & Committees

For the first time in history, councils are now permitted by law, to hold on-line meetings – using technology to achieve this.  Sevenoaks District Council held its first full council meeting using the Zoom Software – where all officers and members could hold the meeting, debate and take decisions from their own home.  This was streamed live via U-Tube.

HPC has tested this software, and we will be reviewing meeting requirements.  It is likely we will start using this system for our committees initially.  We await further government advice for further decisions on this.

 

Annual Parish Meeting & Annual Meeting of the Council

The new law has removed the statutory requirement for local councils to hold Annual Parish/Town meetings, and Annual Council Meetings (where members are appointed annually) for 2020.  Hextable Parish Council has taken the decision, alongside our colleagues at District, to not hold both the annual meetings in 2020.  Therefore, this means that the current civic year will now effectively be a two-year period.  Chair, Deputy Chair and all appointed committee members will remain in place until May 2021

 

Annual Return – The change to the law has relaxed the annual reporting deadline for local councils to file the annual financial return for the civic year 2019/20.  Our Annual Return is required to be submitted by September 2020. 

 

Keeping our Village Tidy

We continue to cut the grass in our open spaces, and empty bins as all councils are doing - to maintain our space available for daily exercise.   As the vast majority of us have been at home, it is probably worth mentioning that there has been a huge additional pressure on waste generation from household in a number of areas:

·         Domestic waste and recycling – The district council is dealing with the equivalent waste generation that is see in the Christmas week.  All this is being managed by the same team, who have been working flat out to keep up with our weekly collections. 

·         Household Waste – The waste creation by households has been added to by many people using the time at home to clear rooms etc.   We understand the implications of the current closure in the household tips at present and how this is adding additional pressure to the weekly refuse collections.  We are working to push for the re-opening of the household tips. 

·         Fly-tipping - Fly-tipping has increased, but it is worth remembering that the penalties do remain in force.  Householders also have a Duty of Care to check

that anyone they use to take away and dispose of their domestic waste is registered with the EA as a Waste Carrier. This includes persons advertising ‘Tip Runs / Waste Removal services’ on social media. Householders could be prosecuted for failing to comply with their Duty of Care if they fail to take reasonable measures to ensure their domestic waste is not handled by an unauthorised waste carrier. The unlawful deposit of trade waste at a HWRC could also be investigated under the Fraud Act 2006 if required.

To report fly-tipping, this is the link https://www.gov.uk/report-flytipping

·         Bottle banks – As with the additional household waste, so too we have seen a huge increase in the number of bottles being taken to the bottle banks as you would imagine.  With the closure of restaurants and pubs, people are quite simply getting through more bottles!  Please be patient with the SDC team that continue to do the weekly collections – there is a finite resource for this.

·         Garden Waste Sacks - We have a reducing stock of brown sacks, and these are in much greater demand than ever before.  Availability of these is dependent on stocks being made available from Sevenoaks, and we are having to limit numbers – but this too is obviously affected by the current crisis. Please contact the Clerk during the normal hours to see if we have stocks to help you  

·         Dog Waste – We have seen in certain areas cases of discarded used dog bags.  Hextable Parish Council have several dog bins around the village – which we are responsible for emptying regularly.  For those residents that use these responsibly – thank you.

 

Sevenoaks District Council – Local Volunteer Scheme

Sevenoaks District Council has implemented a huge support network for our vulnerable residents across the district.  SDC started on day one of this pandemic in setting up (from scratch) a support scheme - where volunteers were registered with the council and provided with ID lanyards so they can be recognised by those in need. 

The help ranges from daily welfare calls from officers to arranging deliveries of food parcels to the most vulnerable people.  SDC has been working with the likes of private companies to deliver this service.  

Officers at the District Council, like many other employees in the UK are adapting to a change in the way of working - either doing their regular work differently or doing a completely different role temporarily.  In both cases, the officers have been doing this from home remotely. 

On top of the herculean response to the pandemic, the council continues to work on providing all the other statutory services, such as planning applications and weekly refuse collections. 

 

Local Volunteers in Hextable

Every week I hold a video call with Rev Johnny Douglas (Our SDC Community Champion) to check in on the work of our local volunteers in Hextable.  On behalf of all our residents, and in particular those reliant on the support, I would like to personally thank all the volunteers who have been directly supporting our immediate community. 

 

Darren Kitchener

Chairman Hextable Parish Council – 27th April 2020

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CORONAVIRUS UPDATE FROM THE PARISH COUNCIL

 

Dear Resident,

 

Coronavirus Update

 

I would like to give you an update on how the current Coronavirus situation is affecting the Parish Council, and what we are currently doing during this difficult time.  

 

You will understand that the current national emergency, the like we haven’t seen probably since the war, is affecting us all.  We are dealing with a situation that none of us have experienced before, and like many organisations, the Parish Council has had to make some changes in response.  

 

We are following government advice that has been provided to local government, including some changes enacted by new emergency legislation, that has been recently been passed.  We all have to play our part in reducing the spread of the virus, so there are things that we are changing to achieve this.  

 

The Parish Clerk and I have reviewed our arrangements and to ensure that we minimise contact and follow the government  maintain social distancing measures we have taken the following action.   

 

Firstly, the parish office is now closed to the public, but the administration of the council is continuing as normal, such as enquiries about bookings etc.  The Clerk can be contacted by e-mail at info@hextableparishcouncil.com. There is also now a mobile telephone which can be used to contact the Clerk, during normal office hours, 07487 224728

 

Councils have been given an extension to the period that year end accounts are presented to the auditors and we are working on these now.  

 

We are also looking at how we might manage decision making in the coming weeks at full council and our committees - to minimise unnecessary contact.  All councils are looking at alternative ways using technology to deal with this under new powers for local government under emergency legislation.  

 

As the chairman of the audit and finance committee over the past 12 years, I am pleased that the Parish Council has built up a strong level of reserves as this situation develops over the coming weeks. 

 

It is most likely that our Annual Parish Meeting (planned in April) and the Annual General Meeting of the Council (in May) will be delayed to later in the year.  This has yet to be decided, but we will publicise the dates of these meetings as soon as the decision is made.   

 

No decision has been made as yet regarding the 2020 Senior Trips, but this is likely to be another area likely to be affected.  

 

Our other regular work of the council, such as litter picking is being altered to meet our new obligations, but we are continuing to work to keep the village looking tidy, and providing safe open spaces for residents to get their daily exercise - in line with government recommendation.

 

We will therefore be continuing the grass cutting of all council-owned green space in the village (as this can be done without risk of contact with others) but with a reduced amount of grass cutting on some of the highways verges.  

 

HPC litter bins, including dog bins, will continue to be emptied, and we are on hand to respond to any specific maintenance issue.  

 

I am proud that the Parish Council was one of the earliest to offer to assist the Sevenoaks District Council volunteer scheme, that has been set up to help the most vulnerable people across the district with the delivery of food and medical supplies.  We have offered the services of our grounds staff and the parish van if it is required, to support the local District Council assistance effort on behalf of the UK government.  

 

Finally,  if you need to contact us to report an issue or to ask a question, you can do so by contacting one of the councillors (see details on this website and in the latest HPC newsletter) or using one of the methods below:

 

Info@hextableparishcouncil.com

chairman@hextableparishcouncil.com

Tel: 07496 818558 (chairman)

 

Darren Kitchener

Chairman, Hextable Parish Council

 

 

Covid 19 - Scam Prevention Advice
April 14,2019

 

Scammers and criminals are already looking for opportunities to scam people as a result of the Coronavirus / COVID-19 pandemic. Happily, there are many more stories of kindness and generosity but we want to make people aware of the scams as they emerge – which they seem to be on a daily basis.

There have been reports received by Kent Police of people door-knocking and claiming to be from the Health Authority.

 

What happens:

  • The criminal knocks on your door.
  • They claim to be from the Health Authority.
  • They offer to do COVID-19 testing on residents.
  • There are also reports of the criminal offering to take the residents temperature.

THIS IS A SCAM!

 

What to do: 

  • Do not let them in.
  • Do not allow them to take any money or details from you.
  • Report to Kent Police on 101.
  • If you ask them to leave and they don't, contact the police on 999.

Please warn vulnerable family members, friends and neighbours.

 

Report
There has been a report of an elderly Kent resident who lost money when they gave their bank card to someone who offered to do some shopping for them. They received one of these cards through their door and an individual offered to help, however, they actually stole money from the resident and were not seen again.

 

Payment
Don’t ever give your bank or card details to anyone, even if you think you know them very well.  You could either agree to pay in cash after they have delivered the shopping or pay them online if you have the facility to do so. Or maybe you could agree another method of payment - but never give your bank or card details. 

 

Contacts
If you are self-isolating, you could contact one of these organisations for help and support:
 
Age UK  0800 678 1602
Asthma UK  0300 222 5800
BHF 0300 330 3311
Diabetes UK  0345 123 2399
Mind  0300 123 3393
Scope  0808 800 3333
The Silver Line 0800 470 8090

For advice and to report issues to KCC Trading Standards contact
Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 0808 223 1133
Consumer Advice scams action line  on 0808 250 5050
Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm.

 

Please check out the latest messages and advice from Neighbourhood watch in response to Covid 19 here: https://www.ourwatch.org.uk/news/NW_national-news/covid-19

 


Covid 19 - Volunteer Registration and Resident Call for Assistance Scheme
March 23,2019

Sevenoaks District Council have been working to establish a volunteer register scheme for those wishing to volunteer and the means for residents to log or call in with a request for practical assistance.

 

This is now live on the SDC website:

 

Volunteers can register online via https://myaccount.sevenoaks.gov.uk/community-help/   Any volunteer registering will receive a Community Volunteer lanyard with an unique identification number on.  These can either be collected from the Council’s Reception (whilst it remains open) or posted/delivered.  The resident being assisted can, if they wish, telephone the Council’s Contact Centre to check the identification of the volunteer.

 

Residents can telephone or complete an online form to request practical assistance.  This request will be sent through to the listed Volunteer lead for the Parish/Town.   We have been pulling together a list of lead volunteers and volunteers but do have some gaps in the areas listed below. If you know of anyone volunteering in this area and/or are able to fill in any of these gaps please do get in touch.

 

  • Farningham
  • Knockholt
  • Brasted
  • Sundridge
  • Chevening
  • Hextable
  • Leigh
  • Westerham
  • Crockam Hill

 

If you and your volunteers would like to register and receive a numbered Community Voluntary lanyard please do so either online by completing online form https://myaccount.sevenoaks.gov.uk/community-help/  or by calling the Council’s Contact Centre on 01732 227000.

 

Should you have any questions or feedback please do contact our Communities Team at communities@sevenoaks.gov.uk

 


Advice Service Update from Citizens Advice in North and West Kent

March 23,2019

 

 

 


 

Neighbourhood Watch - Covid 19 Advice
March 23,2019

Covid 19 Scam Prevention Advice

Scammers and criminals are already looking for opportunities to scam people as a result of the Coronavirus / COVID-19 pandemic. Happily, there are many more stories of kindness and generosity but we want to make people aware of the scams as they emerge – which they seem to be on a daily basis.

There have been reports received by Kent Police of people door-knocking and claiming to be from the Health Authority.

 

What happens:

  • The criminal knocks on your door.
  • They claim to be from the Health Authority.
  • They offer to do COVID-19 testing on residents.
  • There are also reports of the criminal offering to take the residents temperature.

THIS IS A SCAM!

 

What to do: 

  • Do not let them in.
  • Do not allow them to take any money or details from you.
  • Report to Kent Police on 101.
  • If you ask them to leave and they don't, contact the police on 999.

Please warn vulnerable family members, friends and neighbours.

 

Report
There has been a report of an elderly Kent resident who lost money when they gave their bank card to someone who offered to do some shopping for them. They received one of these cards through their door and an individual offered to help, however, they actually stole money from the resident and were not seen again.

 

Payment
Don’t ever give your bank or card details to anyone, even if you think you know them very well.  You could either agree to pay in cash after they have delivered the shopping or pay them online if you have the facility to do so. Or maybe you could agree another method of payment - but never give your bank or card details. 

 

Contacts
If you are self-isolating, you could contact one of these organisations for help and support:
 
Age UK  0800 678 1602
Asthma UK  0300 222 5800
BHF 0300 330 3311
Diabetes UK  0345 123 2399
Mind  0300 123 3393
Scope  0808 800 3333
The Silver Line 0800 470 8090

For advice and to report issues to KCC Trading Standards contact
Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 0808 223 1133
Consumer Advice scams action line  on 0808 250 5050
Monday to Friday from 9am to 5pm.

 

 

 


 

Council vows not to withdraw Local Plan

Jan 09,2020

 

In the latest response to the Planning Inspector, Sevenoaks District Council has vowed not to withdraw its draft Local Plan, despite continued pressure to do so.

The Council’s Strategic Planning Manager, James Gleave, confirms in the response dated 3 January that the Council will not voluntarily withdraw its Local Plan from examination and continues to disagree with the conclusions made by the Planning Inspector.

The Government appointed Planning Inspector, Karen Baker, wrote again to the Council on 13 December 2019 urging it to withdraw the Local Plan from examination. She repeating her belief that the Council has not carried out its duty to co-operate with neighbouring councils to find sites for new homes that cannot be delivered due to constraints such as the Green Belt. The Inspector believes the Council had not done enough to address the ‘unmet housing need’ despite the proposals achieving almost 90% of the Government’s housing target.

Mr Gleave goes on to say while the Planning Inspector highlights the Council’s perceived failings, she does not provide a clear understanding of what constructive engagement with neighbours should be. She fails to take the pragmatic approach expected in the legislation and ignores significant evidence, much of it from the Council’s neighbours and independent experts.

The Inspector had all the evidence and documentation for almost six months before the examination and asked 523 questions. Of these, just of six covered the duty to co-operate. The very first day of the examination covered the duty to co-operate and this included neighbouring councils giving evidence on Sevenoaks’ behalf. This demonstrated engagement had taken place throughout the process, including a meeting hosted by the Government’s own Planning Advisory Service.

Cllr Julia Thornton, the Council’s Cabinet Member for Development and Conservation, says: “In an area that is 93% Green Belt, much of it within Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, we have worked with residents, communities, developers and other groups to put forward a plan that delivers much needed housing and infrastructure, such as medical centres, transport and schools. It continues to protect our very special environment and the rural nature of the District. The plan would meet almost 90% of the Government’s housing need figure for the District. This is a significant achievement considering the constraints.

“Despite our neighbouring councils confirming we had done all we could to meet the duty to co-operate, we are disappointed the Planning Inspector’s conclusions fail to take into account the clear evidence we and our neighbours have provided. Clearly, every council is at different stages of their own Local Plan and despite keeping our neighbours informed at every turn, we could not expect them to delay their own plans based on what may be possible rather than was likely according to the evidence.

“We are obviously very disappointed the Planning Inspector has refused to meet with us and will not to accept any further correspondence about the matter.”

Cllr Peter Fleming, Leader of the Council, adds: “I will be writing to the Secretary of State on this matter and urgently asking him to intervene. It appears something is very wrong with the system if a council with its communities works hard for four years to produce an evidence-based plan that delivers housing, jobs and infrastructure investment, whilst protecting the environment, only to be halted by a single individual. We will not be withdrawing our Local Plan and the Inspector will produce her report in due course. We will then take the strongest action open to us.”

 

You can view the Council’s latest letter and other correspondence at www.sevenoaks.gov.uk/localplannews.

 


 

DECLARATION OF RESULT OF POLL

 

SEVENOAKS DISTRICT COUNCIL

 

Election of a Member of Parliament for

 

Sevenoaks

on Thursday 12 December 2019

 

I, Dr Pav Ramewal, being the Acting Returning Officer at the above election, do hereby give notice that the number of votes recorded for each Candidate at the said election is as follows:

 

Name of

Description

Number of

Candidate

(if any)

Votes*

FINCH, Sean Edward

Libertarian Party

295

FURSE, Paulette Rosetta

Independent

695

MCCAULEY, Seamus William John

Labour Party

6,946

TROTT, Laura

The Conservative Party Candidate

Elected

30,932

WHARTON, Paul Francis

The Green Party

1,974

WILLIS, Gareth James Gregson

Liberal Democrats

10,114

* If elected the word 'Elected' appears against the number of votes.

 

 

The number of ballot papers rejected was as follows:

Number of

ballot papers

A

want of an official mark

0

B

voting for more Candidates than voter was entitled to

26

C

writing or mark by which voter could be identified

0

D

being unmarked or wholly void for uncertainty

218

E

rejected in part

0

Total

244

 

Vacant Seats: 1 Electorate: 71757 Ballot Papers Issued: 51,200 Turnout: 71.35%

 

And I do hereby declare that Laura Trott is duly elected.

 

 

Dr Pav Ramewal

Acting Returning Officer

 

Dated Friday 13 December 2019 Acting Returning Officer

 

Download a PDF of the results here.

 


 

GP services at Joydens Wood Medical Centre, Elmdene Surgery, Bean Surgery and Bennett Way Surgery
Dec 04,2019

You may be aware that following inspections on 19th and 20th November 2019 by the independent regulator of healthcare services, Care Quality Commission (CQC), the surgeries listed above are unable to provide clinical services at present.

This is because CQC found that these surgeries were not providing an acceptable level of service to patients and not meeting the required national standards.

This action has been taken to protect patients’ safety and welfare and work is currently being undertaken to ensure that the surgeries can meet the required standards of patient care as soon as possible.

In line with the usual protocols, DGS Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) has been working with NHS England and NHS Improvement as well as the CQC to ensure that alternative arrangements have been made for all registered patients so that they can continue to access care and services from other local GP practices.

Our aim is to ensure continuity of care for patients and minimum disruption. If they need to see a GP, alternative arrangements have been made to ensure access to GP care by calling their usual surgery as usual.

From Monday 2nd December 2019 patients registered at Elmdene, Bean and Bennett Way Surgeries are being offered appointments at Bennett Way Surgery with GPs who usually work at Temple Hill Group.

Similarly, patients registered with Joydens Wood Medical Centre can attend appointments at Cedars Surgery, Swanley, and these can be booked by staff at Joydens Wood Medical Centre. Although patients are entitled to register with another practice within their catchment area, there is no need to do so.

 

There is a patient helpline - 03000 424969 - and dedicated email address - dgsccg.helpline@nhs.net - to respond to individual queries. The helpline is available 9am to 5pm Monday to Friday.

There has been some media interest in this issue which is being handled by DGS CCG and the CQC.  We will keep you informed of any further developments.

 

For the latest information, please check the CCG’s website at www.dartfordgraveshamswanleyccg.nhs.uk.

 

Paula Wilkins
Chief Nurse

Medway, DGS, Swale and West Kent Clinical Commissioning Groups

 


 

IMAGO: Christmas Volunteering.
Nov 24,2019

 


 

Council concerned after Local Plan hearings are cancelled

Oct 23,2019

Sevenoaks District Council has expressed serious concerns after the Planning Inspectorate unexpectedly cancelled the next round of Local Plan hearings.

Despite having all the Local Plan evidence 169 days earlier, the Government Appointed Inspector, Karen Baker, wrote to the Council on 15 October, about its ‘Duty to Co-operate’ with neighbouring councils to find sites for new homes. She said: “My main concern relates to the lack of constructive engagement with neighbouring authorities to resolve the issue of unmet housing need.”

Evidence submitted to the Inspector, however, clearly demonstrates the Council had worked closely with its eight neighbouring councils since 2015 when it began the new Plan. It also worked with another nearby council, which does not share a border the District, even though it did not have to.

In April, the Council met with the Government’s Planning Advisory Service to discuss its neighbours’ ability to assist with unmet housing need. The meeting confirmed neighbouring authorities could not help. Before submitting the Plan, the Council also sought the opinion of a QC and industry experts, including former senior Planning Inspectors, who also advised the Council’s approach was sound.

In light of her concerns, the Planning Inspector has cancelled the remaining examination hearings planned for November. At this stage, she has not provided detailed reasons for her decision.

The Council has written to the Planning Inspector asking her to explain the reasons behind her decision while expressing concerns about the impartiality of the examination process.

Sevenoaks District Council’s Local Plan is the first to be assessed under a new planning framework and is likely to impact on following Local Plans across the country. The Plan is based on evidence, including major consultations with local people and the availability of land.

Cllr Peter Fleming, Leader of Sevenoaks District Council, says: “It is clear to me the way this has been handled calls into question the integrity of the whole plan making system in this country.

“The inspector had our submission for six months and asked over 500 questions. What’s more, the draft plan was independently verified and found sound by three external parties including the Government’s own Planning Advisory Service.

“Had there been a fundamental problem, I would have expected the examination not to have gone ahead from the start.

“As a Council we decided early on that we would follow an evidence-led approach, not prejudging any site and going where our plan making policy and the evidence took us.

“To call into question an evidence-led approach comes to the root of our concerns with the actions of the Inspector. If we are not to follow the evidence to make our Plan then the Government may just as well dictate how many homes an area should have and then pick sites, we need to put an end to the thinly veiled charade that local plans are in any way locally led.

“But the most damning comment has to be left for the Inspector’s approach to publish her brief note before allowing the Council to either see her full reasoning or have a chance to respond. This suggests her mind is far from open and she and her masters have made their minds up.

“Sevenoaks District Council will stand up for its residents and the District’s environment against what we believe is a huge abuse of the process by the Planning Inspectorate and the Government department responsible. We will not allow them to run roughshod over the huge weight of evidence we have amassed, community views we have collated and the few powers we have left as a planning authority.”

Cllr Julia Thornton, the Council’s Cabinet Member for Development and Conservation adds:

“For the past four years, we have worked closely and met regularly with neighbouring councils and beyond as part of our Duty to Cooperate. However, they were unable to help meet our District’s housing need. Independent planning experts and the Government’s own Planning Advisory Service confirmed they could not help.

“The Inspector’s decision to cancel the examination will be a huge disappointment to the thousands of residents who took part in our consultations, helping to shape our new Local Plan. We received more than 235,000 comments and residents told us loud and clear, they wanted us to continue to protect the District while providing new homes and infrastructure for the future. Taking the Local Plan off the table puts at risk the new infrastructure, including the schools, medical and leisure facilities, we really need.

“We are pleased the Inspector has not reached a final conclusion on this matter and we will work hard and fast to find a positive and pragmatic way forward.”

 


 

Hextable Motor Show July 18th 2020
Sept 29,2019

Official Exhibitor/Trader enquiry line for Hextable Motor Show & Family Fun Day 07818 727644

 


 

National Highways & Transport Network - Public Satisfaction Surveys
Sept 15,2019

This year, for the second year, Kent County Council is taking part in the NHT Public Satisfaction Survey on highways and transport services. Whilst the main survey is being carried out by Ipsos MORI, who will be sending forms to a representative sample of households, we have also opted to take part in six web-based surveys on specific issues:

  • Highway maintenance 
  • Accessibility
  • Walking and cycling
  • Public transport 
  • Road safety
  • Tackling congestion 

These surveys are publicly available online, and may be accessed via our website using this link:

https://kccconsultations.inconsult.uk/consult.ti/Nationaltransportsurvey2019_20/consultationHome

The greater the take-up of the surveys, the more useful they will be in helping us to understand the priorities and concerns of people who live or work in Kent, so please feel welcome to complete any of the surveys which interest you. If you have any issues or concerns then please feel free to contact us.

 


 

Hextable Motor Show July 18th 2020
Sept 08,2019

"Hextable Parish council together with Hextable Hub, the village residents association, are organising a Motor Show and Village Fun Day at Hextable Park Emersons Avenue Hextable BR8 7WS on 18th July 2020.

We are looking for stall holders to trade at the Show, selling Handbags/leather goods, plants, car related goods, jewellery, this is not an exhaustive list so if you would like a stall at the show and it is selling goods not listed you can contact us on Hextable Motor Show Facebook page messenger".

 


 

Kent Highways Forward Works Programme
Sept 08,2019

Kent Highways have produced their full Years One and Two (2019/20-2020/21) Forward Works Programme.

The programme is available for public viewing on the website: https://www.kent.gov.uk/__data/assets/pdf_file/0011/94574/Highways-planned-works-programme.pdf.

They are currently working on our Year Three to Five (2021/22-2023/24) Forward Works Programme, and plan to publish this later this year.

 


 

Swanley Mental Health Crisis
July 23,2019

 


 

Planning Inspector approves Swanley Centre redevelopment
July 23,2019

The Government’s Planning Inspectorate has granted planning permission for the partial redevelopment of Swanley Centre on appeal after the original application was refused.

Applicant and Swanley Centre owners, U+I, applied to Sevenoaks District Council for planning permission to replace the existing centre with seven tower blocks ranging from three to 11 stories high providing 303 new homes and 4,318 square metres of commercial and retail space.

The Council’s Development Control Committee refused the application on 16 November 2017. U+I subsequently appealed against the Council’s decision and the planning appeal was heard at a public inquiry from 4 to 7 June 2019.

The Planning Inspectorate’s decision was announced yesterday, Tuesday 16 July 2019, and is subject to conditions and a legal agreement.

Cllr Julia Thornton, the Council’s Cabinet Member for Development and Conservation, says: “Our Development Control Committee refused this application as it had serious concerns about the impact on neighbours and the wider town. But, the final decision was made hundreds of miles away from Swanley by the Bristol-based Planning Inspectorate.”

 


 

Upgrading Gas Network in Main Road from Monday 1 July for Approx Six Weeks
June 13,2019

 


 

Local Plan Information
April 23,2019

Submitted Local Plan & the Impact on Hextable 

The Parish Council is pleased that the submitted version of the Local Plan (which has now been sent by Sevenoaks District Council for assessment by the National Planning Inspectorate) contains none of the Green Belt sites, that had been put forward during the initial Call for Sites initiative have been include.  Getting the plan right, that meets the needs of the development quota in the district, whilst maintaining our important Green Belt land in and around the village is vital - as the final plan will determine Planning Policy for the next 15 – 20 years.  This has only been achieved by consulting carefully and listening to residents, the Parish Council and our local District and Parish Councillors as consultees.

The submissions and the consultation periods are both now closed and there is nothing else that can be done until the plan has been reviewed by the Planning Inspectorate.  The examination of the submitted plan is believed to be completed over the coming months.  When it has been examined and found to be sound, this will form  the future planning framework for Development in our district.  The link below is to a short video which explains the process and in particular, the role of the Planning Inspectorate in the.   

Planning Inspectorate Video - Information on Local Plan

https://youtu.be/fiPau5w_J30

The Local Plan addresses the Government’s requirement to provide up to 14,000 new homes within the plan period in the district.  During summer 2018, there was a long consultation exercise, and as a result, the comments from this process have been considered and used, alongside further technical information, to produce the final draft of the Local Plan called the 'Proposed Submission Version of the Local Plan'.

Along with some other smaller sites, the significant development for Hextable includes 190 units on the former Oasis (Hextable School) site.  As we have reported regularly, one of the important considerations regarding this site is the retention of the Howard Venue, as a strategic and well-used community building and in particular, the Parish Council has made representation to include the provision of adequate parking that will help make this a sustainable facility.

When this document has been reviewed and approved by the National Planning Inspectorate, it will determine what sites can be developed over the coming 20+ years, and will form the planning guidance that will govern all future applications in and around Hextable.  The sites included are:

  • HO106 College Road Nurseries, College Road, Hextable 9 BF 
  • HO212 Egerton Nursery, Egerton Avenue, Hextable 19 BF 
  • HO225 Oasis Academy, Egerton Avenue, Hextable 127 BF
  • HO58 Land west of College Cottages (Saunders), College Road, 16 BF
  • O224 Former Furness School, Rowhill Road, Hextable 124 UC (Urban Confines)

Interactive Local Plan Map 

The link below, provides a useful way to view the sites above – by zooming in to the map, and clicking on each site:

https://maps.sevenoaks.gov.uk/crowdsource-polling-master/index.html?appid=af73a66186e540abb2cf0918f37a13e1

 


 

Egerton Nursery – Enforcement Action

On Wednesday 24th April, Sevenoaks District Council Enforcement team, together with Kent Police, carried out a raid on the former Egerton Nursery site and have started to take action on several breeches there. 

The Parish Council was informed formally on Friday 26th April by the Enforcement Officer that action has been taken as a result of recent concerns raised by the Parish Council to the planning department, and from the residents during the recent consultation.

 


 

Hextable Parish Council - Future of the Parish Complex

It is well known that the parish council has been considering options for the future of the Parish Complex.  The developed site, off Dawson Drive contains four buildings that the parish own, each with different uses and merits.     

The parish council has a duty to ensure that the best use is made of the assets we own, and to consider how the community can benefit from the facilities we have, whilst minimising the financial burden on the tax payer.  

Our recent consultation with residents on some initial ideas for the future of the site, formed the very early stages of this consideration.  The feedback from this exercise will give us some valuable indication as to what the council may decide to do in the future.  The Parish Complex site, and all the council-owned facilities, belong collectively to the community, but the Parish Council manage these on behalf of our residents.  It is therefore essential that we use the feedback to help us in our future decisions.  

It is important to us to ensure that in considering what ever we may do on the Complex site, is of maximum benefit for as many of our residents and user groups as we can, and that there is alternative provision in the community to provide for any users of the existing facilities who may be displaced.  Part of our ambition to improve, and provide sustainable facilities includes the reinvestment of any funds received in the replacement of a permanent pavilion in the park for the many youngsters that use the current dilapidated building.  

The independent research company managing the feedback are working through the responses, and are are on programme to publish their report to be made available for members to review at full council in November, before we make this report available to residents.  

At the last meeting of the council, we resolved to ask our independent research company to compile the report (to be brought to the next council meeting) and for it to be provided to the new elected members of the council in May 2019 when options can be decided, this will be brought back to council in Spring 2020.  This is now available to view on the Parish Complex - Your Views page of this website.