Parish Clerk: Alison Swannick, 18 Lime Trees, Staplehurst TN12 0SS - Email: Tel: 07783 223450

Parish News

Cheeselands Improvement Questionnaire

Your Parish Council would like to invite your support to improve the Cheeselands Field. This community green space is in the heart of the village yet close to the countryside. It could become part of the network of footpaths around the village.


10 December 2019: The mast is now in the process of going "live" and many of you should have noticed an improvement in O2 and Vodafone reception.

The reparation work to the playing field has had to be delayed due to the heavy rain as the clay is absolutely waterlogged and vehicles could not be taken onto the field without further damaging the ground. It will be put right as soon as the ground dries up or there is a cold snap. The parish council is keeping the contractors updated as to the condition of the playing field, so please bear with us. It hasnít been forgotten about.

Village Green Junction Consultation. N.B. Oct 30 Updated Maps

There are now various options to consider for the changes to the Village Green Junction, Option 1, Option 2 and variations on Option 2. Drawings for the three are shown here and these can be seen at the consultations being held on: (online survey not yet available)

Friday 22 November 2019 - 7.00 pm - 9.00 pm in the Old Village Hall
Saturday 23 November 2019 - 9.30 am - 12.30 pm in the Old Village Hall

Plan: Option 1

Plan: Option 2

Maintenance and upgrade of infrastructure at Ashford Station

Engineering work is being carried out at Ashford International station from Thursday 26 December to Sunday 29 December 2019 and on other dates.

This work is part of a £1.25 billion investment to improve journeys for passengers on the Kent network. The work will involve replacing track, improving drainage, upgrades to points and other works which will improve journeys for passengers travelling on this part of the Kent network. Please plan ahead and check your journey via our journey planner, National Rail, or the Southeastern On Track app.

Highspeed and Eurostar services will not call at Ashford during this work.

This work means that Highspeed, Eurostar and International services will not call at Ashford while it is being undertaken.

There's never an ideal time to disrupt your journey but by working with Network Rail we can minimise the disruption. The dates chosen to undertake the work will allow Network Rail to complete more work in a shorter time period, while minimising disruption by completing this work on weekends and during holidays - when far fewer people are commuting to work. Full list of dates when Highspeed and Eurostar will not call at Ashford

  • Saturday 23 - Sunday 24 November 2019
  • Wednesday 25 - Sunday 29 December 2019
  • Saturday 4 - Sunday 5 January 2020
  • Saturday 11 - Sunday 12 January 2020
  • Sunday 19 January 2020.
  • Mainline services will continue to operate as normal from Ashford

    Passengers who would normally travel to London St Pancras via Ashford should use mainline services, which will take around 45 minutes longer than the usual Highspeed trains. Journeys can be re-planned on the Southeastern website and National Rail Enquiries, with more information on the planned work also available on the Southeastern website. Replacement buses also available

    Replacement buses will run between Ashford International and Ebbsfleet International (estimated journey time of around 1 hour), and Ashford International and Canterbury West (estimated journey time of around 40 minutes) Compensation available for Highspeed ticket holders

    Highspeed season ticket holders travelling via Ashford International on Friday 27 December can claim for a refund of the Highspeed premium portion of their ticket on Southeastern's website from that date.

    Protection of Livestock

    "Worrying" livestock is a crime under the Dogs (Protection of Livestock) Act 1953.

    Biddenden Post Office Consultation decision

    News about Biddenden's post office.

    Parish and community council elections in England and Wales

    Biddenden Election Agents

    Biddenden Parish Uncontested

    Biddenden Parish


    Local Councils; what do they do?

    Village Confines 2019

    In October 2018, Ashford Borough Council (ABC) wrote to the Parish Council to advise that it would be commencing an exercise to identify "village confines" across the borough. Please examine the proposed changes in the attached PDF.

    Junction Reconfiguration High St Biddenden

    Kent County Council (KCC) put forward a proposal to make alterations to the existing road layout and install a T-junction which included changing a section of Tenterden Road from carriageway into an extension of the existing green.

    The Ashford app - Download it now!

    If you've ever been out in the borough and spotted something that needs tidying up, you can now easily and conveniently report this via the Your Ashford app using your mobile device.

    It also does far more. Download now from Google play (Android) or the App Store (iPhone).

    Ashford Local Plan 2030 - Changes

    The proposed Main Modifications to the Ashford Local Plan 2030 as well as the Sustainability Appraisal Addendum will be available for public consultation from the 13th September until 5pm on the 26th October 2018.

    We have posted you copies of the consultation documents. If you wish to view the documents or any of the accompanying background documents online, they are available on our consultation portal where you can also upload any comments.

    Applications to the Community Project Fund

    Applications are invited from village organisations to the Parish Council's Community Project Fund before 31st October

    Report a Crime Online

    Rather quicker than calling 101 why not report a crime onine?

    Volunteer Support Warden

    Would you like to be a volunteer support warden? Find out what it's about. Your parish needs you.

    Housing Development Updates

    Development Update 31 Oct 2017

    Business Rate Relief Consultation

    Pay business rates in Biddenden? This might be helpful.

    Ashford Borough Council Draft Local Plan

    February 2018: Ashford Borough Council - Ashford Local Plan Examination

    Local Plan 2030 - Main Changes

    Ashford Borough Council is currently consulting on a number of "Main Changes" to the draft Local Plan for the borough, which sets out the land that needs to be provided in the borough to accommodate new homes and jobs up to 2030. The consultation runs from 7th July to 31st August 2017. The changes include new and amended housing site allocations.

    You can also visit

    Planning Objection - App No: 17/00258/AS

    Full information in respect of the proposed Biddenden development to ensure that parishioners can make an informed choice.

    Simon Cole, Planning Policy Manager at Ashford Borough Council, said that Ashford Borough Council would need full information from the BPC by **mid December (12/12/16: We understand that this date has been extended slightly) . If this deadline were not met then there would be no community benefit linked to a section 106 agreement for this development:

    The Biddenden questionnaire results

    Planning News (continued)

    Latest planning & development news Issue 30 // October 2O16

    Latest planning & development news Issue 29 // April 2O16

    The Prince's Trust Team programme is returning

    There may be parishioners who are 16-25 years old, not doing anything at the moment (i.e. not in education, employment or training), who want to gain confidence and change their life. This programme may be for them. After the stress of GCSEs, this could be their next step.

    They may have just graduated but not sure what the next step is, they could use Team to get clarity. There could be a number of scenarios. Get in touch.


    There are loads of opportunities to find out more..

    • Why not pop in to our team room @ head office (The Old Court, Tufton Street, Ashford) on a Friday for a chat?
    • You could call me (Adam, Team Leader) on 07971551742
    • You could even email me at

    Power Cut?

    Just call 105 to find out what's happening even if you don't know who supplies your power!

    UK Power Networks' Priority Services Register

    Learn more: A "Priority Services Register" to identify vulnerable people quickly in the event of a power cut.

    Local Boundary Commission Consultation

    You may already be aware of this but the Local Boundary Commission is undertaking a consultation on the ward boundaries within the Ashford borough. The purpose of the Commission's work is to make recommendations about our ward boundaries so that each elected representative at a borough level represents around the same number of voters and the specific interests and identities of local communities within those wards. It has stated that it will need to re-draw ward boundaries across Ashford to achieve this aim and is asking for feedback on its findings.

    More details are available via the following link:

    The Ashford Local Plan

    Proposals for the Ashford Area Local plan

    The Ashford Local Plan - Biddenden specific detail

    Ashford Local Plan: Information about North Street Biddenden and Priory Wood proposed sites

    Biddenden's meeting to discuss the proposed sites is on the 26th June 15.30 - 19.00hrs at the Biddenden Village Hall

    New Email & Internet Scams

    There are some dangerous new email and computer scams of which you should be aware. Here is some information to watch out for from the National Fraud Intelligence Bureau

    The ransome demand email

    The "Good Citizen Award" scam

    Bogus websites selling cheap electrical goods

    NEW: Consumer Rights Act 2015

    The Consumer Rights Act came into force on 1st October 2015. The law is now clearer and easier to understand, meaning that consumers can buy and businesses can sell with confidence..

    Watch Out! A new parcel delivery scam!

    Don't get caught out. Don't hand over your credit card details for re-delivery.

    Kent Police has produced a helpful leaflet on.

    "Shutting the Gate on Rural Crime"

    Rural News 138

    Essential Information on Funding for all local groups

    Kent Parish News

    Information about Kent parishes

    Rogue traders spotted in the Maidstone area

    Watch out for men offering to fix your driveway!

    Report a pot hole

    Bad pot hole in the road? Report it to the Highways Dept. on their online map.

    Council Tax Support - Review

    Ashford Borough Council has to review its council tax support scheme that it introduced in April 2013. Council tax support has meant that some people have had to pay something towards their council tax for the first time.

    Ashford Borough Site Submissions - Building Plots

    Letter from Ashford Borough Council - Simon Cole

    Site Submissions Biddenden 1

    Site Submissions Biddenden 2

    Biddenden Housing Needs Survey - June 2012


    COMMUNITY-LED PLAN 2013 - formal adoption was discussed by the recent BPC September 2013 meeting

    Visit the Kent Police website

    Kent Police to see the locations, dates and times for when the Police Contact points are in or near your area. Some locations, dates and times have recently been changed so please have a look for up-to-date details.

    Rural News

    Essential information on funding, training, events and much more for local councils, community halls and other groups!

    Rural Local Needs Housing Guidance Notes

    Information for the Council, Parish Councils/Parish Meetings, Housing Associations and Applicants

    Free Loft and Cavity Wall Insulation

    Click for further information.

    News in Kent April 2014

    Parish News for March.

    Hedges on Roads and Paths

    Spring time Hedges and Borders - Your obligations

    Ashford Borough CITIZENS ADVICE BUREAU Newsletter Spring 2013

    Benefits are changing

    Universal Credits

    Not got a bank account? You'll need one!

    Welfare reform is coming - are you prepared?

    Information from Ashford Borough Council

    Council Tax Benefit

    the changes...

    Advice Services Transition Fund

    The Big Lottery Fund and the Cabinet Office have launched a new £65 million grants programme; the Advice Services Transition Fund.

    Grants of between £50,000 and £350,000 are available for local not-for-profit providers of advice services to continue to give vital help to people and communities in the areas of welfare benefits, debt, housing and employment.

    Non-emergency Police phone number 101

    Call 101: The new non-emergency Police phone number

    Chalara dieback of Ash (Chalara fraxinea)

    For further information in respect of reporting cases of Ash Dieback disease please visit the Forestry Commission's website here.

    Informatiion specific to Kent in respect to Ash Dieback disease.

    Information about Bonfires

    Planning a bonfire? Find out more here.

    Rogue Telephone Calls purporting to be from the CAB

    Trading Standards Alert: members of the public are being telephoned by someone pretending to be from CAB and offering debt advice. Citizens Advice never call a member of the public without them having first contacted the CAB and giving permission for a call back.

    Members of the public are reminded that they should never give personal details, banking information or other data to anyone who cold calls them. They are also reminded that the Citizens Advice Bureau do not charge a fee for the advice they give.

    Di Sandy
    Ashford Borough Citizens Advice Bureau

    No Golf on the Gordon Jones Playing Field

    A large number of golf balls have recently been found on the Gordon Jones Playing Field, tennis courts and bowling green. No golf or golf practice is allowed on the Gordon Jones Playing Field as it is an area heavily used by dog walkers and children. Golf presents serious health and safety issues because of the possibility of personal injury to others using the area. If you wish to practice or play golf, please visit either a local golf course or golf practice facility.


    Red dog waste bins are provided around the Gordon Jones Playing Field and Millennium Field area. Most people make good use of these bins but a few do not. Please do not allow your dog to defecate in public areas without clearing up afterwards and disposing of it in the red bins provided. Bags are available, free of charge, from the Post Office.

    Please note that if you do not pick up your dog waste, then you may find yourself picking up a fine instead.

    Localism Act received Royal Assent on 15 November 2011

    This is a key piece of legislation which gives greater recognition and more power to local councils.

    A plain English guide to the Localism Act.


    Any Freedom of Information requests for the BPC should now utilize this new form: Click here for further information...

    A matter concerning Biddenden village?