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 Summer 2000 Newsletter

Once again, welcome to the new families that have moved into this area - in particular, our new Postmaster Brian Butler and his wife, Pauline. The Post Office is a very important centre of our community so please use it when you can - we don't want to lose it!! The Residents Association's major objectives remain unchanged although we are updating the Constitution. They continue to be to protect the environment and the way of life of local people. All residents are welcome to join for a small annual subscription.

The next Annual General Meeting is to be held at THE MEMORIAL HALL AT 8.15 P.M. ON THURSDAY, 18TH MAY 2000. Please support the Association and attend this Meeting. 
This year has been a very active one for your Committee, investigating the many concerns and issues raised by residents as follows :

PLANNING - 

A major concern to all as clearly illustrated by the 80+ residents who attended our recent 'Special Meeting'. In this current Committee year we have written in excess of 20 letters expressing residents concerns for the changing nature of Badgers Mount and have met with Area Planning Officers to explain our concerns.

SEVENOAKS DISTRICT COUNCIL - 

Once again, we have sought and obtained both support and advice from our District Councillors who are now, more than ever, aware of our existence and concerns.

LOCAL M.P MICHAEL FALLON - 

With the current Government's plans for new homes etc. in the South East we have made him aware of our concerns for the Green Belt and In-filling at Badgers Mount and, in principle, he will support us wherever he can.

MAKING BADGERS MOUNT A SAFER PLACE TO LIVE -

It remains each resident's responsibility to ensure he is not causing a nuisance to his neighbour albeit domestic dog fouling, excessive noise or overhanging hedges - all very anti-social and not really community spirited. 

However, it is even more important that local businesses should consider neighbouring residents and display a professional responsibility towards maintaining the appearance of the area within which it operates. Regrettably, despite discussions with one such business and their Brand Principals we have yet to secure a satisfactory conclusion to this matter which leaves their responsibility to the residents of Badgers Mount with a serious question mark. We shall continue to discuss this situation with the Brand Principal and trust that their concern for brand imagery will prevail and the current eyesore will eventually be presented in a more pleasing form to the benefit of all, including such local business.

Sadly, fly tipping is reoccurring in the area (mainly of old rubber tyres). Please, please report anything suspicious and get the vehicle registration number etc.

SHOREHAM PARISH COUNCIL -

The Ward of Badgers Mount forms part of the Shoreham Parish and is one of 29 Parishes in the Sevenoaks District Council. The other Wards in the Parish being East Hill, Shoreham, Twitton and Well Hill. 

Currently the Parish Council consists of 9 elected or co-opted members plus the Parish Clerk - although there are currently two vacancies.

The Council Chairperson is Jean Lothian from Shoreham Village, the Parish Clerk is George Jamieson and the three Badgers Mount representatives are:
Pauline Banks (01959.534612),
Len Cottle (01959.534304) and
Wally Wightwick (01959.534287). 

All of the Council Members are unpaid apart from the Clerk who, in theory, works part time but in practice devotes many more hours.

The Council generally meets at 7.45 p.m. on the first and third Wednesday of each month (apart from August) at the Shoreham Village Hall and all Parishioners are very welcome to attend these Meetings. Part of the Meeting is given over to an open session when Parishioners can comment on the meeting agenda items or raise any other topic.

An important aspect to help improve communications throughout the Parish has been the introduction of the Shoreham Post News Bulletin. This free 4 sided bulletin is issued near the end of each month, copies for Badgers Mount residents are available from the Post Office in Old London Road. To assist in maintaining close liaison with the Badgers Mount Resident Association Committee Members do have their copies delivered. The full Parish Council Members contact points and responsibilities are given in each bulletin.


The subjects covered by the Parish Council are wide and varied. Topics of particular interest to Badgers Mount residents include planning developments, particularly in-filling, speed limit reduction on Old London Road and the proposed Biggin Hill and Brands Hatch developments. Recently there has been considerable nationwide interest concerning whether the name of Private T. Highgate, shot for desertion in WWI should be included on the Shoreham War Memorial.


The effectiveness of the Parish Council to maintain and improve our environment and lifestyle within the Parish is considerably helped by the Parishioners taking an active interest in Parish Council matters and giving support. Apathy can only promote deterioration of the Badgers Mount area.


SPEED LIMIT ON OLD LONDON ROAD -

Sevenoaks District Council is proposing to introduce a 40 mph speed limit along the Length of Old London Road and Watercroft Road. 


These roads are currently covered by a 50 mph speed limit. It is proposed to implement a scheme of revisions to the road markings along Old London Road hopefully, within the next two or three months. This scheme comprises of a reduction in the width of the running lanes on the carriageway through the use of advisory cycle lanes and a central hatched reservation.


It is anticipated that it will contribute to a reduction in speed to levels more appropriate to a 40 mph speed limit and will improve on safety in general.

BUS SERVICE -

The Association wrote to Arriva, the Bus Company operating the 402 route through Badgers Mount on the hour with regard to making the Post Office stop compulsory and not request. However, a spokesman for the Company and indicated that this cannot be considered due to the length of the 402 route (Tunbridge Wells to Bromley North) and the extra delay that this would cause alongside traffic queues and roadworks! They have, however, asked drivers to slow down whilst passing the Bus Shelter so that any elderly resident sitting in there has a chance to stop the Bus. 

Following complaint by the Association the Bus Stop at the roundabout has also had it's sign replaced - three years after vandals pulled it up and left it on the grass verge.

HISTORY OF BADGERS MOUNT AND PROPOSED VILLAGE SIGN -

It is hoped to produce a history of Badgers Mount by the end of the year. 

A great deal of work has already been done collecting information, interviewing people who have memories etc, researching Parish Council Minutes, Ordnance Survey maps and past issues of the Sevenoaks Chronicle. It is fascinating but time consuming work and Margaret Tutt is grateful to all those who have helped so far and those who have produced various items for scrutiny.

If any reader has pertinent documents, photographs, memories or information that they would like to share please contact Margaret on 534404 and she will be delighted to call and see you at an agreed time. Margaret still has yet to discover how Badgers Mount came to be so named but Maps are slowly enabling her to trace when the name was first used.

The Planning Application for the proposed Village Sign to commemorate the Millennium is currently in hand and hopefully the Sign will be ready for erection very shortly - watch the space outside the Post Office!!

ENTERTAINMENT - 

Continuing with the theme of the Millennium it has been decided that the Residents Association should host a Children's Party on the 23rd September 2000. Full details of the arrangements for the Party and tickets will be available at the end of June. The party is for the children and grandchildren of all residents.

Following the excellent success of the Adult party in January the Association has arranged another New Year celebration for January 14th 2001. Tickets for this and full details will be sent out in December.


Margaret Tutt would like to remind residents that the Halstead Millennium celebration still have tickets available. Prices are 6.00 per adult and 3.00 per child. Please contact Margaret on 534404 if you would like to book tickets or have further details.


SEVENOAKS CHRONICLE COLUMN - 

The Association is currently in the process of trying to resurrect the Badgers Mount column in the Sevenoaks Chronicle each week. If anyone has any news, forthcoming events or information that they would like published please pass this on to your Street Representative for inclusion - we need your help to get this started.

ASSOCIATION FINANCIAL MATTERS -

The expenditure this year has been somewhat 
higher than in recent years due to the increased number of Newsletters that have been distributed, correspondence and meetings held. We have also incurred some costs towards Millennium projects. Thus, there will be a proposal to the Annual General Meeting to increase the annual subscription to 1.00 per person with a maximum payable of 2.00 per household. This is the first change since 1984 and we believe that it still gives members very good value for money.

WATER SUPPLY BILLS - 

Those who examined their recent Thames Water Bills carefully will have noted that there is now a Standing Charge item. A note on the back of the bill states that you may be entitled to a refund of this if your surface water (rainwater from your gutters etc.) does NOT discharge into the main sewer e.g., if you have soakaways. Remember, if you don't ask you won't get a refund!

Last, but by no means least, if any resident feels that they would like to join the Association Committee at the forthcoming Annual General Meeting but does not know how to go about this please telephone our Chairman, Trevor Simmons on 532931 or our Secretary, Tracey McCartney on 53447l for further details. You will be made extremely welcome!!


WE LOOK FORWARD TO SEEING YOU AT THE ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING ON THURSDAY, 18TH MAY 2000.

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