Archive for the ‘New Ash Green Centre’ Category
At yesterday’s Cabinet meeting of Sevenoaks District Council a report was presented outlining the recent attempts by the Council to secure essential work on the village centre in New Ash Green. An Environmental Visual Audit of the area in March revealed a number of issues that need attention and these are being pursued with the relevant people. Already the blocked drains have been cleared and some repairs have been carried out but more are still awaited. It was reported that a meeting will be held in may between the Council’s Regeneration Adviser and the landowner, together with the architect who has been engaged by the landowner – this will be to discuss the landowners’ future intentions for the centre. A report on this meeting will be prepared for all residents if there is any firm information to pass on.
The Town Team, chaired by Councillor Cameron Clark, is continuing to work with Sevenoaks District Council to put pressure on the landowners of New Ash Green village centre to make improvements and to bring forward regeneration plans.
Meanwhile, to support the centre the Town Team is hoping to organise further events that will bring more people in and use the businesses in the centre.
The results for yesterday’s elections for Sevenoaks District Council were declared at about 7:00pm this evening.
Mary Bainbridge (Labour) 715
Cameron Clark (Conservative) 1,775 ELECTED
Claire Pearsall (Conservative) 1,586 ELECTED
Alan Pett (Conservative) 1,630 ELECTED
Mark Skelton (Green) 646
Norah Skelton (Green) 602
Alan, Claire and Cameron would like to thank all those who voted for us. We stress however that we are elected to represent everyone in the Ash and New Ash Green ward so we will be pleased to hear from anyone who thinks we can help to deal with issues that relate to Sevenoaks District Council. Please do not hesitate to contact us.
County Councillor David Brazier opened the new Big Lottery Funded kitchen at New Ash Green Youth and Community Centre on Saturday 6 September. David cut the tape and unveiled a plaque to celebrate the refurbishment into which he had contributed some of his own member’s grant funding. The kitchen will be used by local organisations including Age Concern and the Thursday lunch club for older people run by Ash-cum-Ridley Parish Council.
On Monday 2 September, 22 New Ash Green residents gathered in the village hall to hear Steve Plater explain how the Sevenoaks District Seniors Action Forum had obtained funding for our defibrillator. He demonstrated how it is used and gave others the chance to have a go (on a dummy!). Not a great number of people but hopefully they will spread the word that we are up and running.
All are welcome to come to New Ash Green Village Hall on Tuesday 2 September at 7:00pm for a demonstration of how to use our new Public Access Defibrillator. Steve Plater of St John Ambulance and Sevenoaks District Seniors Action Forum will lead a ‘hands-on’ session to help people to understand to benefits of the equipment.
Thanks to the initiative of Sevenoaks District Seniors Action Forum, money from the Big Lottery Fund, co-operation from New Ash Green Village Association and my drill and screwdriver, New Ash Green now has a Public Access Defibrillator (PAD) in the centre of the village.
I installed it this week outside the entrance to the Village Association office in Centre Road where it is available 24/7 for use on anyone who suffers a cardiac arrest.
The Post Office is consulting on a plan to change New Ash Green Post Office into a ‘local’ branch.
Conservative councillors for Ash and New Ash Green have been active in the Town Team that is trying to breathe new life into New Ash Green’s shopping centre.
The Team also includes officers from Sevenoaks Council and representatives from the shops, Village Association, Parish Council and other interested people.
Initial ideas include improving the planting within the centre (but also thinning some of the overgrown wooded areas immediately outside it), replacing or renovating some of the worn-out street furniture and renewing the outdated and tired signs to encourage more people to stop off in the centre. We would also like to introduce some more events in the centre, like the successful fun days that were held last summer, to encourage people to visit and support the traders.
We need to secure the long-term future of the shopping centre as a vital resource for New Ash Green and the surrounding area. The shopkeepers themselves have a key role to play and so do the landowners within and around the centre. The Team hopes to be a catalyst to bring them together to work towards achieving a centre that will be a real asset to the area. In the long term we still hope for a full regeneration of the centre but meanwhile we cannot let it degenerate further as we need a vibrant centre to be the core of any regeneration project.
That depends on people supporting our present traders and being willing to work with us and them to build up a solid base of support. If you help us to do that, the Town Team will work with the landlords and traders to achieve some real improvements.
Councils remain under heavy Government pressure to make more savings in their expenditure and it is only right that every possibility to reduce costs is considered. Sevenoaks District Council is no exception and will have to find further savings in its next budget. One area of discretionary expenditure that is being examined at present is the CCTV coverage across the District, including the cameras in New Ash Green shopping centre. At the meeting of the Council’s Scrutiny Committee last night, Councillor Mrs Purves (the LibDem member for Sevenoaks Eastern) proposed that the entire system should be scrapped to save nearly a quarter of a million pounds annually unless those who want the service are willing to pay for it.
The Council will be reviewing its CCTV operation as it must keep all its discretionary spending under review but we need to consider the implications for New Ash Green. Is there a will in this village to keep the CCTV? Can we afford to pay for it ourselves? Indeed, if we want to keep it but it is discontinued elsewhere, would it be a viable operation that could be maintained cost-effectively for one small area?