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BMRA Newsletter - February 2014

The planning applications for crematoria at Oak Tree Farm and Watercrofts Woods were scheduled to be determined at the Development Control Committee meeting of Sevenoaks District Council (SDC) on 30th January. Due to some very late new information and proposed legal agreements which SDC received on the afternoon of the meeting relating to both sites which made material changes to both applications, decisions were deferred to a future meeting as the officers had not had time to consider the details and implications.
The applicants for the first crematorium south of Orchard Barn have lodged an appeal against SDC’s decision with the Planning Inspectorate. This is being held by written representations.

PCSO Jenny Boyden has been appointed to cover Halstead, Knockholt and Badgers Mount. For non emergency enquiries, she can be contacted on the national number 101. This number recognises your location and transfers you to the local police office. Jenny will be holding a Surgery between 11.00 am and 12.00 noon on Thursday 6th March during the coffee morning.
The working group preparing for the new Badgers Mount Parish Council now has 10 members. They are: Councillor John Grint (Chairperson) (532809), Tracey McCartney (secretary), Gordon Plumb (Treasurer), our 3 existing SPC Councillors – Sue Wyatt, Noel Wills & Roy Blamey, Albert Thomas, John Ralston, Alistair Dunlop and Dave Woledge. The group can be contacted via the telephone number given for the Chairperson or by email to the email address given above.
The group will be holding regular meetings until the Order for the creation of the new Parish Council becomes final in early 2015. They are looking into the many aspects associated with the new Council in conjunction with Shoreham Parish Council.
Amongst items decided so far are that there should be five Councillors and that the Council area should not be divided into wards. Some minor adjustments have been suggested to the current parish boundaries. SDC have, however, advised that these cannot be implemented until after the new Council is in existence. For the time being the existing ward boundary will also be the new Council’s boundary.
There will be an update on progress at the BMRA AGM in May with a further information meeting for residents in early October 2014 when we hope to have Michael Fallon, MP, Roger Gough and an SDC representative to explain more about the new Parish Council. Residents will also have an opportunity to ask questions and discuss any points that they wish to with those present.
The mobile library continues to visit the Memorial Hall car park on alternate Thursdays between 10.45 and 11.20 am during the coffee mornings. Numbers using the library have declined in recent months, so if you like reading proper books rather than the modern electronic books, please make use of this service. If you want a particular book which is not carried on the van it can be ordered and will be brought as soon as it is available. The next visits are on 20th February, 6th and 20th March.
The weekly Thursday coffee mornings continue to be well attended, and numbers have increased over recent months. If you would like to come for a social chat with other residents, why not come along between 10.30 am and 12 noon. You don’t have to come at the start or stay until the end – just stay as long as you like!!
Those who attended the carols evening before Christmas thoroughly enjoyed their evening. Our thanks go to Crest Close resident, Jack Bennett for his musical accompaniment to the Carols. A small profit was made for BMRA funds.
Committee members will soon be calling to collect subscriptions for the current financial year. There will be no change to the fee payable - 2 per adult with a maximum of 4 payable per house.
The CAB now offers appointments at the Otford Heritage Centre in the High Street (opposite to the Car Park) every Tuesday between 10 am and 12 noon. For appointments please telephone 01732 440488 and ask for an appointment at this location. You can also drop in for advice during these times. This service will be available until the end of March on a trial basis and may be extended if demand is sufficient.
If you previously wrote into the above in mid 2011, you may have received notification that a consultation on the final draft of the Kent Minerals & Waste Local Plan 2013-30 is now open for comment. The consultation runs until Sunday, 16th March 2014.
The Minerals and Waste Local Plan will become the development management policy framework against which planning applications for minerals and waste related developments will be determined by the County Council. It includes the criteria for assessing the suitability of new minerals and waste sites and it provides an assessment of the need for additional minerals resources and waste management infrastructure in Kent during the period up to 2030.
The Badgers Mount Defence sub-committee has read through the documentation and made enquiries with KCC about the sites put forward. KCC have advised that there is no change to FM Conway site in relation to the Draft Kent Minerals and Waste Local Plan. The Site was not allocated as a Preferred Option in 2012 and this is unlikely to change when they continue with the Site Plans documents from 2015. We will continue to monitor this situation closely. In view of KCC’s comments we do not believe it is necessary for anyone to write in on this matter at the present time. If you wish you can view the above document at
We would advise that this website is no longer operational. Any future information will be posted on the main website (details above).

Recently FM Conway Ltd applied to SDC to carry out various remedial works to trees in the outer perimeter of their site which are covered by a Tree Preservation Order (TPO). No public comments are allowed on TPO applications but Shoreham Parish Council did submit comments on behalf of the Parish recommending that parts of the work should be reconsidered. Taking these comments into consideration some of the work was approved but some was refused. Details can be seen on the planning portal of the SDC website if you are interested. The FM Conway Ltd sub-committee will be monitoring this work when it is carried out.
Some residents claim that they did not receive the above with their last newsletter. This is therefore, reattached to this newsletter for future reference.
You will no doubt have noticed that the new pedestrian island has been installed on the Old London Road to assist those crossing this road.
The speed limit reduction has now been approved for the Orpington Bypass. It is hoped that this will be implemented in the near future.
FASTER BROADBAND UPDATE - Latest Broadband news here
It would appear that BT are ahead of schedule with their plans to introduce a faster broadband service for residents. They have indicated that they are intending to start installing the Badgers Mount fibre cabinet later this month although the actual broadband service will not be available for some time yet. BT has previously advised that this should be operational by the Autumn of 2014. We will keep you updated on progress.
This is normally sent out online twice each week and gives information on crimes, fire incidents and advice, results of court cases and much more. It includes links to the Community Safety Partnership newsletter too. This can also be accessed via the Badgers Mount website, details as above. You can register to receive your own copies of these for free and therefore, be kept up to date on local issues.



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