Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Press Photograph

Many thanks to the group of local residents who turned out at very short notice for the Kent Messenger photograph at the gates of Somerfield.

If you would like to join the Campaign Group to help fight Barratt's Building proposals - please contact Dave Smith on 01622 715487 or John Balcombe on 01622 718175.

If you haven't yet signed the petition, you can do so on-line by clicking HERE.

The KM Group are already covering the opposition to the plans on their website (click HERE). Please write or email the Editor with your views on the proposed development. Send your letters to: The Editor, Kent Messenger, 6 & 7 Middle Row, Maidstone, Kent, ME14 1TG. Email: .

Friday, November 24, 2006

Feedback from PUBLIC MEETING

John Balcombe and Dave Smith would like to thank the 120+ residents of Aylesford who attended the Public Meeting on Thursday 23rd November to express their views about the proposed development by Barratt at the Somerfield Depot site on Station Road.

The main points arising from the meeting are summarised below:

*Congestion and road safety
*Lack of medical facilities
*Over-crowding of local schools
*Increased noise and pollution
*Threat of flooding due to changes to the flood plain
*Problems with the water pumping unit at Sedley Close
*Unattractive building design / not appropriate for Aylesford Village
*High density and poor quality of housing
*Lack of youth facilities
*Insufficient provision of parking spaces

Aaron Hill, a Planning Officer from TMBC, explained the legal position regarding planning permission and explained many of the rules governing such developments were now laid down by the South East Regional Assembly and the Department of the Deputy Prime Minister. However, all the above points were valid concerns which would be considered by the planning authority.

It was stated that guidelines on density INDICATED BETWEEN 30 - 50 UNITS PER HECTARE. However, it was confirmed that the upper limit could be increased in certain circumstances (for example, if the proposed development was located within a "sustainable community" with good access to public transport, shopping and community facilities etc.)

NB: Barratt's proposals for 450+ units are equal to 150 per hectare. 3 times the recommended maximum.

Ms Cariaga, representing Barratt Kent, tried to answer the points raised by residents. She said the final design had yet to be agreed. She explained that the height of the proposed development was partly due to the ground floor being used for car parking with the flats built above (due to threats of flooding). The issue of land contamination also needed to be addressed. It was also confirmed that Barratt Kent have not yet purchased the land and that an official planning application has yet to be lodged with TMBC.

Aaron Hill confirmed that if / when a planning application is officially received local residents would be notified of the proposal. He encouraged residents to write in with their views and to attend the planning meeting where they would each be allocated a 3 minute slot to address the committee about their concerns.

Aylesford Conservatives will continue to campaign against the present proposals from Barratt Kent and will do all we can to support residents in their opposition to this scheme.

The next stage will be to form a non-political Resident's Action Committee to co-ordinate the campaign. Details of this will be published in the next edition of our regular community newsletter "IN TOUCH" which will be delivered to every home over the next 2 weeks. If you would like to join this committee and help with the campaign please phone Dave Smith on 01622 715487 or John Balcombe on 01622 718175.

If you have not yet signed the petition please contact either Dave or John on the above numbers. Alternatively, you can now sign the petition on-line by following this link:
Click HERE to sign the petition on-line.

Friday, November 17, 2006

Who should be Chatham & Aylesford's next Member of Parliament ?

The Conservative Party is changing - and one of those changes is in the way we select our candidates.

Until now, our candidates, (like those from other parties), were interviewed and selected by party members. We realise, however, that a future MP needs the support of the wider community. That is why we have changed the way we are doing things.

On Thursday 30th November you are invited to attend a meeting that will select the Conservative candidate for the next General Election here in Chatham & Aylesford Constituency. The meeting will start at 7pm at Lordswood Leisure Centre, North Dane Way, Chatham, ME5 8YE. For map click HERE.

The story so far:
Hundreds of approved candidates have been notified that we are looking for a candidate to fight the General Election. Those interested have submitted their CV's and a shortlist of 11 has been compiled. Over the next two weeks a series of interviews will whittle these initial 11 applicants down to a shortlist of 3.

The Final Meeting:
On Thursday 30th November the final 3 candidates will present themselves to a public meeting. Each of the candidates will make a short presentation and will be professionally interviewed by an impartial moderator. Members of the audience will have an opportunity to ask questions if they wish.

The Vote:
Following the interviews a vote (by secret ballot) will be taken. The winning candidate needs 50%+ of the vote to win. If none of the candidates poll 50%+ on the first vote, the third placed candidate will be eliminated and another vote will be held. The winner of the second ballot will be selected as the Conservative Party candidate to fight the next General Election.

Who Can Participate?:
You do not need to be a member of the Conservative Party to attend the meeting and vote. In fact, you don't even have to be a committed Conservative. A Member of Parliament represents the entire constituency regardless of politics and we therefore wish to include the views of as many people as possible in the selection process.

To qualify to attend the meeting and cast a vote you must by 18 years of age or over and be on the Electoral Register for the Chatham & Aylesford Constituency under the new boundaries.

You Must Also Register:
If you wish to attend the meeting you must register by 23rd November. To do so, simply send an email to The title of the email should be "REGISTRATION" and you need to include the name, address and telephone number of each person that would like to attend.

Alternatively, you can register by post. Send the names and addresses of those people wishing to attend the meeting to:

Chatham & Aylesford Conservative Association
Freepost MA 487
91 High Street
West Malling
ME19 6NA
Further details about the meeting will be sent to all registered attendees on or about 24th November.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Barratt's Building proposals - PUBLIC MEETING


The Somerfield Depot, Station Road

Aylesford Conservative Action Team are holding a


Thursday 23rd November
Aylesford Village Community Centre
Forstal Road, Aylesford.

Starting at 7.30pm

Aylesford Conservatives have called this meeting to allow local resident’s the opportunity to express their views on the scale of the planned development.

A representative from Barratt Kent will answer your questions.

A Borough Planning Officer will explain the planning guidelines and legal position regarding the development.

It would assist with the planning of this meeting if we knew approximately how many people are likely to attend. If you have access to email, and are planning to come, please let us know by emailing:

Printed and promoted by A Kennedy on behalf of Aylesford Conservatives all at 200 Canterbury Street, Gillingham, Kent.