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Recent News For Maidstone

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  • Article: Mar 2, 2015

    A Maidstone council budget strategy for the coming year, including a 1.99% council tax increase, was finally approved by councillors after a long and often heated debate on Wednesday night (25th February).

    Maidstone Lib Dems succeeded in getting three common sense amendments agreed by the Conservative-led Council.

  • Litter
    Article: Mar 2, 2015

    North Ward Councillors Jenni Paterson and Tony Harwood, ably assisted by a good turnout of local residents, led a big community clean-up on a drizzly Saturday 28th February.

    The litter and fly-tipping blitz covered Sandling Lane, Sandling Park, The Chestnuts and Cuckoo Wood and the resultant haul included asbestos boards, tyres, bottles, cans and other detritus.

    It was clear that the unsightly strand-line of litter so disfiguring Sandling Lane had been thrown from vehicles. This point was not lost on Tony who stated: "It is clear that ever since Maidstone Council stopped enforcing against littering from cars that the problem has intensified. We now have a crazy situation in Maidstone whereby pedestrians are regularly fined while litter can be thrown from a vehicle with absolute impunity."

    An unpleasant feature of the Saturday clean-up was the danger for the volunteers from speeding traffic on Sandling Lane. The impact of such reckless driving was vividly underlined by the fact that no less than three foxes had been killed by cars on this one short stretch of Sandling Lane.

  • Cllr. Tony Harwood and Tommy Long at Springfield Mill
    Article: Mar 1, 2015

    Local Lib Dems are working alongside Maidstone residents and Maidstone Council's Principal Conservation Officer to achieve a comprehensive listing of the historic Springfield Mill complex by English Heritage.

    The original layout and architecture at the Mill remains almost completely intact and is a remarkable survival.

  • Tony
    Article: Mar 1, 2015

    Tucked away in a corner of the popular Shaw Close residential development at Penenden Heath is a 'pocket nature reserve' which supports a range of legally protected wildlife. The small but perfectly formed nature conservation area was delivered following a successful campaign by local Lib Dem Councillors in North and East Wards to safeguard a refuge for local wildlife when the Shaw Close development was given the go ahead by a Government planning inspector.

  • Cllr Clark and Cllr Mortimer River Medway Pathway alongside Bridge Mill Way Play Area
    Article: Feb 18, 2015

    T he green light has been given for the two major pathway projects in Tovil with financing secured by Liberal Democrat Kent County Councillor Brian Clark from KCC's Small Community Capital Project scheme. Further to these funds, Councillor Clark is contributing top up funding from his devolved budget to help deliver the two schemes.

  • CCTV on Tovil Bridge
    Article: Feb 3, 2015

    Local Lib Dem Councillors Brian Clark, Derek Mortimer and Ian Chittenden have been working with both KCC and MBC and have ensured that a new CCTV camera has been put in place adjacent to Tovil Bridge.

    This followed an increasing number of reports of anti-social behaviour and vandalism around that area and in nearby roads.

  • Dead fox
    Article: Feb 3, 2015

    The fate of this beautiful Red Fox, struck by a speeding car on Saturday evening in Andrew Broughton Way, underlines once again the dangers of inappropriate driver behaviour in and around the town centre.
    There have now been far too many pedestrian near misses, crashes, pets and wild animals killed in this Road and formerly quiet residential roads like Mote Avenue and Square Hill Road. "It is time for zero tolerance of speeding in central Maidstone" says High Street Ward Councillor Fran Wilson. Adding: "The latest victim of excessive speed in central Maidstone was a fox, next time it could be a child."

  • Article: Jan 24, 2015

    Local Liberal Democrats have consistently opposed the development of Fant Farm and argued that it should not be allocated for housing within the Conservative-led Council's Draft Local Plan.

    At the meeting of the Council's Planning, Transport and Development Overview and Scrutiny Committee on Tuesday 20TH January Liberal Democrat Councillor Clive English proposed and the Committee agreed to recommend to the Council's Cabinet that Fant Farm should not be allocated for housing due to the adverse impact on the countryside, particularly the Medway Valley, the loss of agricultural land, the encroachment into the countryside of Maidstone's urban boundary and serious traffic issues.

  • Article: Jan 24, 2015

    At a Business briefing organised by Town Centre Management Business Leaders condemned serious problems in the Town Centre resulting from the closure by the Conservatives of Town Centre Toilets. Several businesses complained about drug abuse, begging and shop doorways being used as toilets, and numerous examples of anti social behaviour.

  • Article: Jan 24, 2015

    These shocking images of litter-strewn verges on one short stretch of Pilgrim's Way at Boxley, in the Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, provide yet more evidence that Maidstone is losing the battle with the litter louts. These photographs were taken in the very week that Keep Britain Tidy published research indicating that streets with rubbish strewn across them could have between 2.7 and 11.8% wiped off the value of local homes.

  • Article: Jan 22, 2015

    Liberal Democrats are determined to get to grips with the poor air quality in many areas of Maidstone despite the lack of enthusiasm of the current Conservative Administration of the Borough Council.

    Councillor Clive English attended the meeting of the Council's Cabinet on 14th January and sucessfully spoke against themove by the Conservative Administrationto defer the consideration of air quality management policies. Councillor English argued in favour of tightening the proposed policy within the draft local plan to take account of the cummulative impact of development on air quality.

  • Accident
    Article: Jan 22, 2015

    Following another bad car accident in Lower Road, West Farleigh, local resident Roy Plommer, who is a member of West Farleigh Road Action Group organised, with others, a petition demanding urgent action to reduce speed along Lower Road and to reduce the risk of injury to local residents.

    The petition asking for speed limits along Lower Road to be reduced from 50mph down to 30mph was signed by more than 1000 local residents and was presented to Kent County Council's Cabinet Member for Environment and Transport at County Hall.

  • River Len
    Article: Jan 10, 2015

    Nestling amongst a brutal concrete and tarmac townscape of supermarket car parks, loading bays, tower blocks and a dual carriage-way fly-over in the heart of the County Town lays one of Kent's best kept wildlife secrets. The River Len Local Nature Reserve is small (just under 3 hectares), yet very well connected, linked to surrounding urban green space and back gardens, council allotments, the wooded embankment of the main London to Ashford railway line and Mote Park.

  • Article: Jan 9, 2015

    A woman's work in Maidstone has been recognised by the Queen.

    Dorothy Weedon received an MBE in the New Year's Honours List for her services to politics in the town.

    The Liberal Democrat campaigner has been a key local party figure since 1961, and was twice chairman of the local branch.

    Now vice-president, the 85-year-old of Bower Mount Road reckons she has delivered a leaflet or knocked on virtually every door in the constituency over five decades.

  • High Street Ward Environment
    Article: Jan 8, 2015

    Maidstone Council Lib Dem Group Leader Cllr Fran Wilson has expressed despair at the rapidly declining environmental quality across her High Street Ward. The photographs featured show just one small area of her ward, namely Blythe Road, Sunningdale Court and Square Hill Road, where litter and damaged street furniture is disfiguring a very pleasant residential neighbourhood.

  • Article: Jan 8, 2015

    Jasper was delighted to present the prizes at a recent dinner at Oakwood Park Grammar School to students who had left the school the previous year.

    The Lib Dem campaigner for Maidstone was guest of Kevin Moody, headmaster, for an "Evening of Achievement" that has become a tradition at the school. This sees staff wait on the students, many who were returning for the Festive season from university or jobs from far away. Jasper also made two awards to long-standing members of staff.

  • Article: Jan 7, 2015

    Ringlestone Residents' Association, assisted by local residents and North Ward Councillor Tony Harwood spent their Sunday afternoon creating a new flower bed and planting spring bulbs at the Chatham Road approach to Ringlestone in North Maidstone.

    Tony stated: "This is only the beginning, as it is the residents' association's aspiration to supplement and expand the extent of new planting." He added: Ringlestone is blessed with a great location in the picturesque Medway valley, and still retains much of its historic sylvan riverside setting. The new planting will enhance this local 'village' character and help our bees, butterflies and other beleaguered pollinators."

  • Article: Jan 7, 2015

    Commuters returning to work this week were met by Jasper Gerard and a team of campaigners concerned about a fresh increase in train fares from Maidstone to London.

    From the start of this week, local commuters have had to fork out £4,836 for annual season tickets. This makes it one of the most expensive commuter routes into London - despite being one of the slowest.

  • Tree stump deer carving
    Article: Jan 4, 2015

    An inspirational journey from car dumping ground and fly tipping hotspot to internationally protected nature reserve is being rapidly undone at Boxley Warren in the Kent Downs AONB.

    Local Lib Dems were key players in the campaign to rehabilitate this beautiful but fragile landscape which dominates Maidstone's northern skyline and supports increasingly rare wildlife including buzzard, dormouse, adder, tawny cockroach, wild licorice, stinking hellebore, fragrant orchid and ground-pine. But following a series of crashes at the junction of Lidsing/Boxley Road with the Pilgrim's Way the entrance gate has been totally destroyed opening up the site to a return of destructive criminal activity including fly tipping, burning-out and dumping of vehicles, thefts, intimidation of volunteers, destruction of stock-proof fencing and off-road activity by motorcycles and 4x4s.

  • Poison bait traps in Mote Park
    Article: Jan 4, 2015

    This shocking photograph shows a newly installed poison bait station installed close to the banks of the River Len outfall from the lake at Mote Park, within easy reach of curious children and pets. This is an unprecedented expansion of 'pest control' activity into the Park's natural environment. Indeed, the Park is designated a Kent Wildlife Trust 'Local Wildlife Site'