Hartley Matters

A Newsletter from the Friends of Hartley Countryside

Issue 1 - July 2000.

Editorial:

Welcome to the first newsletter from the Friends of Hartley Countryside. We hope to publish the newsletter at least once every 3 months and it will be available, free of charge, from Hartley Library and local shops. If you would like to raise issues of concern or contribute to the newsletter, we can be contacted via The Secretary, Romney Cottage, Stack Lane, Hartley.

The aim of the newsletter is to keep residents up-to-date with the activities of the "Friends", forthcoming events, and matters relating to the open spaces in Hartley.

Who said this? (answer overleaf)

"This conversion of the landscape for an organised formal sport would transform its character into a tidy, suburbanised character severely undermining the present rural character which is essential to this part of the setting of New Ash Green".

Millennium Fete:

Our stall(s) at the fete raised 559.84 for the Scouts. We would like to thank all the people, shops and companies that made donations to us for the fete and also the hard work that was put in by all the members in making it such a success.

We would also like to thank everyone who visited the stall(s) and hope that you all enjoyed the experience.

Rectory Meadow:

We have recently learned that there will be a public meeting to discuss the plans for Rectory Meadow. This was outlined at the recent Parish Council Meeting on Friday 16th June and the meeting will take place in All Saints Church Hall Ash Road - time and date to be fixed.

Garden of Remembrance:

You may have heard on Radio Kent about the Garden of Remembrance at All Saints Church. Apparently, after resurrecting an ancient By-law, Hartley Parish Council have decided that people are not allowed to put flowers in the Garden of Remembrance. So, if you have been wondering where your flowers are going, the parish council are removing them. At the parish council meeting (June) they have decided that if you want to be buried in the Garden of Remembrance then you will have to complete and sign forms agreeing, amongst other things, not to put flowers on the grave.

Northfield:

As most people are now aware, the Northfield Management Committee has applied for a grant from Sevenoaks District Council to facilitate the building of three junior football pitches on Northfield.

At the meeting of the Community Services Committee on 6 June, the decision on this grant was once again deferred.

Should Sevenoaks Council eventually decide not to give this grant, this will save the council taxpayers 14,000. Both Ash-cum-Ridley and Hartley Parish Councils have pledged 7,000 to the Northfield Management Committee, 5,000 each towards the grant and a further 2,000 each towards the first year's maintenance of the football pitches.

The Friends of Hartley Countryside are opposed to the provision of football pitches on Northfield on the grounds that they are not needed at this point in time.

At the time of writing, there are 12 junior football teams playing in New Ash Green and Hartley.

There are also 12 junior football pitches available for them to play on in the immediate locality. The group also feel strongly that as Northfield is good grade agricultural land, it should not be destroyed without good reason.

They maintain that this land is very valuable and should provide well thought out facilities, in keeping with the rural environment, for the benefit of all, with the consensus of the whole community.

Fly Tipping:

If you attended the fete you will already know that one of our members managed to catch, after much research and many telephone calls, the people who have been fly tipping in Hartley. We have received letters of apology from the fly tippers and also a cheque for 30, which will be donated by the "Friends" to a good environmental cause (still to be decided).

Sewer - Church Road:

You may have seen the pictures in the local papers recently showing one of our local farmers standing ankle deep (he was wearing wellies!) in sewerage at Hartley Bottom. This is the result of a continually leaking sewer in Church Road at the top of Hartley Hill. Environmental Health at SDC has at last agreed to investigate this matter and we shall watch developments with interest. This is a matter that concerns all residents as the Mid Kent Water pumping station is in Hartley Bottom, which is also a water catchment area, so if something is not done you could all be sharing it one day.

Friends' Website.

Have you visited our Website yet? As well as information on the local countryside, you will find links to many other websites of local interest. Even the latest parish council minutes are there!

Answer to "Who said this?"

The New Ash Green Village Association when they objected to the Bovis plans for sports facilities on Northfield.

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