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DO YOU FIND IT SLOW? DO YOU LOSE CONNECTION?
Many people in the village are experiencing increasing slow Broadband which shuts down completely several times a day.
A villager contacted our MP Helen Grant, to ask for her help in getting some of the promised government money spent on improving our service. She was quick and thorough but was only able to come up with the promise that something will be done by the end of this year, but it will not improve the service much as we are a long way from Wateringbury exchange and they will not be putting a fibre optic connection all the way to our village.
Following this the villager had a call from BT saying that they were surprised that he had complained about the service and that they have no other complaints. We know that this is not strictly true as we know of others who have complained.
A letter to Helen Grant from Paul Carter (KCC) was forwarded, which pointed out we are in the last 5% to be upgraded and even then we will not get a really fast service.
BUT:- If you are frustrated by the speed and regular loss of connection, the Parish Council urge you to PLEASE COMPLAIN NOW. It would be especially helpful if those of you with businesses, or work from home would complain as this would seem to carry more weight.
BT Complaints No 0800 111 4567
I have been unable to find an Email address!
Would you also be kind enough to Email Helen Grant firstname.lastname@example.org
They will then know the scale of the problem.
Dog Walkers and Ramblers
We live a beautiful part of Kent, with many footpaths and Bridleways which are no longer necessary for people going about their daily business but are now a facility for leisure and pleasure.
Many of our paths go across cultivated fields, orchards and grazing. These farms are businesses and not country parks and we should act responsibly when using these rights of way. We should stick to the marked pathways and not wander off into the orchards or fields. If the path is not clearly marked, the footpath officer should be told and they will inspect and put in new signage if appropriate. It is often OK to let dogs of the lead, but when work is being done on the land, ploughing, spraying, harvesting etc dogs should be on a lead as to not interfere with the work.
When there is stock grazing, particularly sheep, dogs must be on a lead. Any upset to sheep can cause abortions. Sheep are very silly sensitive animals! This is why farmers have the right to shoot any dog worrying sheep.
Do pick up your dogs poo. A hay bale with dog poo in it is not pleasant.
A trackway on farm land is not necessarily a right of way. Check on an OS map before using them as a footpath. However landowners are often happy for them to be used, provided you ask permission.
KCC footpath officers email@example.com Telephone 0845 345 0210
Carry on walking and enjoying our beautiful countryside.
Another accident underlines the importance of Roy Plommer's initiative to reduce vehicle speeds on Lower Road...(click here to see the lead article in December Lifeline.) Roy and our MP Helen Grant will be presenting the petition to KCC Highways this coming Friday 9th Jan.
Do join Roy and Helen if you can! County Hall, Maidstone, ME14 1XQ at 11.45am this Friday. And can you help identify the car?
On the weekend before Christmas, a car left the road at the junction of Teston Lane and Lower Road and destroyed twenty yards of fence. There were no witnesses and nearby residents didn't hear anything. From the tyre marks on the bank on the opposite side of the road, it seems possible that two vehicles were involved or even that there were two separate accidents.
However from the wreckage left behind (see below), our friendly folks at Farleigh Forge Garage have identified the car as a Ford Focus. It lost a headlight and the radiator grill. The headlight was manufactured in June 2006 (see below, right).
Three days ago, a grey/silver Ford Focus missing a radiator grill was spotted on Lower Road, but no numberplate. Can you help? You can add a comment directly to this blog or email the editor!
The annual Christmas Tree Carol Service filled the church last night with light and sound, assisted by the WI Choir and five Christmas trees.
Felicity Field, started this tradition four years ago, was there in person to enjoy it.
The congregation ranged in age from 6 weeks to 90 years. The WI choir was in full voice after a busy week in which they have been performing or rehearsing almost every night. The new carpark came into its own and the usual congestion and frustration down Church Lane was greatly reduced!
With attendance figures nearing capacity, nearly 900 excited visitors attended the welcome and eagerly anticipated return of fireworks in the village. The West Farleigh Sports Club organised display certainly came back with a very pleasing bang.
Blessed by a dry, clear night, the display was clearly te best so far. The watchers oohed and aahed to a great variety of whooshy whizzy things, clouds and cascades of sparkles and, of course, satisfying bangs.
And all the cars got off the field successfully!
Entertainment before the display was provided by the brilliant, toe-tapping percussion of the East Farleigh Samba Band, stilt walkers and fire jugglers. The sale of quite delicious mulled cider was very brisk, as was the sale of specially baked cakes and LED miscellany for the children. The burger van was kept pretty busy too.
The very efficient Kerry French, backed by the stalwarts of the sports teams, took charge of the organisation on behalf of the sports club with loads of advice from Terry Ayres who happily passed the Roman Candle to her. Despite starting the preparations months ago and having to deal with dozens of people from H&S, police, the fire brigade, the council and myriad other very important officials, final permission didn't come until just two days before the event. "Phew!" said Kerry, "That was a close thing."
I asked her about next year and she said it was definitely a yes and she was going to start the paper trail straight away!
I have had many compliments about the evening and it is a pleasure to pass them on as well as my thanks on behalf of the village.
Click here to see some more pictures of the event.
THE GREAT THROMBOSI DUSTS OFF HIS KNIVES
AT ALL SAINTS
It has to be a first: a knife throwing act at a Harvest Supper. The Great Thrombosi and his lovely assistant entertained the diners at half time (giving some of them a chance to rest their grey cells after the exercise of Tim Hill's wonderful quiz).
In this shot, the great man has already popped - after a couple of false starts - the balloons on either side of his victims' face and is now ready to tackle the yellow balloon between the knees.
The audience, well fed and watered, sits on the edge of their seats. You could hear a pin drop or rather a kitchen knife. Will Peter, who has volunteered for this dangerous mission, survive with all limbs intact? Only the lady with the camera seems to think this is comedy.
Success! All balloons popped, the Great Thromosi poses after another triumph. Will another five years go by before his next show? We hope not!
Anyone who lives in Charlton Lane and drives will be aware of the problems caused by footballers and their supporters parking on Charlton Lane. This is especially a problem on match days (Saturdays). It's hard for cars to get up and down the lane. It can be impossible for the bus. I know that there was a bad incident just over a week ago ( Sat 27th September) when two cars from the opposing team were badly parked and the bus could not pass.
I'd like to apologise to all West Farleigh residents who have been affected by this. We do try to educate both our supporters and the opposing team to park off the road and to leave room, but in this case we failed. We have taken steps to improve communication and policing.
In the medium term, though, we have applied for planning permission for a carpark on the east side of Charlton Lane, directly opposite the changing rooms, and this has been granted. Unfortunately the permission included a restriction that the carpark could not be used after 4pm on a Saturday, which is one of our busiest times! This is very unhelpful and we are asking the Council to reconsider as a matter of urgency.
I will keep you all posted and please accept my assurance that we are working hard to prevent this kind of thing in the future,
West Farleigh Sports Club
After a short break, the family friendly local fireworks is ON again at West Farleigh!
This year it wll be on FRIDAY, 31st October and the organisers (the Sports Club) are planning something bigger and better than ever (fire-eaters, face painting, toffee apples, fish and chips, hot cider) as well as what has always been terrific pyrotechnics and bonfire.
There is a discount for early bird tickets. You can see the details and buy tickets on the Sports Club website.
The return of Teston Blues...
KCC have announced that Teston Lane will be closed for up to 2 weeks from Mon 25 Aug.
roadworks.org, the national roadworks website, has the job posted as High Impact, Delays likely and features a memo (see below) which says "Please supply Civils Gang to dig down and investigate damaged drainage system..."
We contacted KCC directly and got a prompt reply (thank you):
The planned works to be carried out within the closure are drainage works to investigate and repair the system in the road, once this is complete the road will be resurfaced.
So the good news is that the council are planning on tackling the drainage issue.
This section of road was closed for resurfacing only 3 years ago, and the surface deteriorated almost immediately.
Informed local observers blamed a lack of tar under the trees (more tar is required to hold chippings in place under trees) but the constant problem with water run-off has been evident for years (see picture below)
There used to be a pond in the second field on the left as you go down Teston Lane from Lower Road. This pond was filled in but perhaps the spring that fed it was not connected to a drain and has found its way to the river down the road?
Anyway, let's hope that KCC Highway Dept is successful in fixing the drainage, whatever the cause may be...and let's hope it really does take 2 weeks or less to do that!
PS. Congratulations to the landowner of the woodland at the junction with Lower Road who has finally had the brush cleared (see below) so that traffic coming up the hill has a clear view of traffic coming from Maidstone...but now we can see that the fence needs mending!
14 Aug 2014
It's been almost five weeks since Terry suffered serious injuries when he parted company with his ladder while trimming a hedge. He spent a painful time in hospital (see left) in a brace but never stopped smiling.
The latest news (see photo below) is that he is in good spirits and is making a good recovery back at home in Charlton Lane. The original timetable was to be back to work in six weeks but that may be optimistic.
Don't know what the hedges are thinking but the rest of us are wishing him well and hoping he will be back on his feet very, very soon.