Re: Shepway vote through 39% council tax increase

Contributed by editor on Feb 26, 2004 - 02:22 AM


Dear Ed
What a load of cobblers!  You can't keep o­n blaming previous administrations for current problems and raises in council tax.

The promise of reducing the council tax is o­ne the LibDems have well and truly broken.
Can't say I'm surprised though as I wouldn't believe a LibDem leaflet even if it was presented by Charles Kennedy himself.

Although Peter and Chris might be nice people (can't comment o­n the third councillor as I haven't seen sight nor sound of him) I feel that Hawkinge has been severely let down by this. 

What have we got to show for past increases or are we going to get for this huge price increase?

Does anyone fancy setting up a protest group?


Shepway vote through 39% council tax increase

Contributed by editor on Feb 26, 2004 - 12:35 AM


Shepway's Liberal Democrat Council last night voted to increase the District Council rate for Council Tax to 39%.

This is possibly the highest rate set throughout the country this year.

They blame the rise o­n the size of the grant from central government and the legacy left by the previous Tory administration.

It is thought this will force the intervention of the Government who look likely to "cap" the authority.

Overall in Shepway, an average band D property will pay £1,247 in 2004/5 compared with £1,120 in 2003/4.

200 arrests in burglary crackdown

Contributed by editor on Feb 25, 2004 - 03:19 PM


More than 200 arrests have been made in Kent in what the county's new police chief constable called an "excellent" first week of a clampdown o­n burglary.

Police said 213 suspected offenders had been detained in Operation Castle with 84 burglary and related charges.

Chief Constable Michael Fuller said: "If you commit a burglary in Kent, then you can expect to go to jail."

P & O cut jobs

Contributed by editor on Feb 25, 2004 - 02:32 PM

<FONT face=Arial color=black size=4>P & O CUT JOBS

Ferry firm P&O have today sent out redundancy notices to about 500 ferry workers based in Dover.

After three months of negotiations a formal agreement was made with the Rail and Maritime Transport Union o­n which jobs would be cut. There will be 16 possible compulsory redundancies out of 472 jobs.
The cuts have been blamed o­n a downturn in tourism

The company has said it wants to cut costs by removing o­ne of its its Pride of Burgundy ferry from passenger service and plans to introduce cheap no-frills night services.

An employment centre has been set up in Dover to help the redundant workers find alternative employment.

Tragedy prompts new beach signs

Contributed by editor on Feb 25, 2004 - 08:29 AM

<FONT face=Arial color=black size=4>TRAGEDY PROMPTS NEW BEACH SIGNS

Signs are being placed o­n foreshore notice boards along Shepway’s coastline to warn of possible dangers of using beaches at night or in times of bad visibility.

The request for new signs was made to Shepway Council by the Kent and Essex Sea Fisheries Committee in the wake of the tragedy in Morecambe Bay where more than 20 people lost their lives.

Richard Stanford-Beale, Shepway Council’s Street Scene Manager, said that although Shepway’s coastline was not subjected to fast-running tides, there were hazards that beach users needed to be warned about and general precautions that needed to be observed.

"The signs will advise people to check tide times and weather forecasts and not to venture o­nto the foreshore at night or at times of imminent fog or bad visibility.

"People who do need to use the foreshore at times of low visibility or at night will be advised to let someone o­n shore know of their intentions and estimated time of departure and arrival back o­n shore.

"Our signs will also make people aware that some of our beaches have mud patches that can be hazardous.

"We are o­nly too pleased to work in co-operation with the Kent and Essex Sea Fisheries Committee to make sure people stay as safe as possible o­n our beaches".

Signs should be in place before the start of the Easter holiday.

Our Tigger is missing

Contributed by admin on Feb 24, 2004 - 12:02 PM


Local cat owner Anna is offering a reward for the return of the family pet after he went missing o­n Valentine's Day.<IMG height=340 hspace=10 src="" width=220 align=left vspace=10 border=0>

"Tigger has gone walkabout before, but he has now been missing for 10 days", said Anna.

"He went missing from the Alkham and Hawkinge area and has been spotted locally o­n a couple of occasions.

"He is my kids best friend".

If you can help, please ring Anna 01303 892270

Council tax rise could be under 8%

Contributed by admin on Feb 24, 2004 - 11:33 AM


Dover residents look likely to face a rise of just under 8% in their council tax bills in the next financial year.

After initially predicting an increase of 17.2%, which was then changed to just over 11%, the authority has again revised it's increase.

The new figure follows an agreement that the government would help cover the costs of extra council duties such as pub and nightclub licensing.

At a meeting o­n Monday, the council cabinet agreed to recommend the figure to the full council next week.

Dial 0709 020 and it will cost £50 a minute

Contributed by admin on Feb 24, 2004 - 09:57 AM

<FONT face=Arial color=black size=4>DIAL 0790 020 AND IT WILL COST £50 A MINUTE

<FONT face=Arial><FONT size=2><FONT color=black>PC Ian Foster the Rural Project Officer warns of the following mobile phone scam.

A missed call will show o­n your mobile phone. The number is 0709 020 3840.

The last four numbers may vary, but the first four numbers will remain the same.

If you call this number back, you will be charged £50.00 a minute.

People have complained about their phone bills, o­nce they have realised the cost of the call, but apparently this is completely legal. So beware, do not call back numbers beginning with 0709 unless you are sure of then caller

High hopes of Blue Flag

Contributed by webmaster on Feb 23, 2004 - 12:02 PM


Dymchurch beach is in line for a major accolade.

As well as securing a Seaside Award from EnCams for another year, it could soon be flying
the acclaimed Blue Flag for the high standards of cleanliness and beach management.

Shepway Council’s Blue Flag application has been approved by a British jury and will now be forwarded to Denmark for consideration by an international jury in April.

If successful, the Blue Flag will be able to fly alongside EnCams’ blue and yellow flag in time for the summer season.

The awards will be publicly announced just before Easter.

To be eligible for a Blue Flag, the beach must meet certain criteria including high standards of water quality, beach cleanliness, information and education, first aid facilities and beach managers in the summer.

Tom Gibbs, Chairman of Dymchurch Parish Council, said he was delighted with Dymchurch’s success - both for securing a Seaside Award for another year and for being good enough to be considered for the prestigious Blue Flag.

"It proves that the time and effort put in by all those involved in making this village what it is has been worthwhile."

Littlestone beach has also secured recognition and will be flying the EnCams Seaside Award flag for rural beaches for another year.

Cllr Carol Crees, Cabinet member for environmental wellbeing, also welcomed Encams’ letter.

"This is a fine accolade for our local beaches and a great boost ahead of the busy summer season."

Although Hythe has been awarded a Seaside Award flag in the past, it was not entered this year because of the major sea defence work due to be carried out along the coast between Hythe and Folkestone Harbour.

Folkestone Camera Club meeting 16 February 2004

Contributed by webmaster on Feb 23, 2004 - 08:43 AM

On Monday 16th  February  we had a welcome return of Dr. Peter Brandham, Botanist from Kew Gardens, retired.

Peter has been a regular visitor to our club for many years now, always giving us a superb evening by being a brilliant speaker and photographer.  This time he presented a slide show entitled ’Toyota to Tanzania’, showing us the conditions he travels in, to find rare species of plants, many of these being euphorbias’ o­n this particular trip. The second half was an exciting adventure in sound where he had recorded all the familiar sounds to correspond with the slides.   Peter hopefully will visit us   again next year with another of his slide shows, as we know we are always in for a treat.

On 1st March we shall be seeing our 4th Slide Competition of the season and the following week will be an illustrated talk by Mr Keith Evans FRPS DPAGB entitled ‘Northern Light - a Norwegian Saga’, which will be a very interesting evening with stunning photography.

Saturday 28th February is the Kent County Photographic Society Ross Cup Competition to be held in Bromley College of Further & Higher Education, - hosted by Bromley Camera Club.  This is where all Kent Camera Clubs compete against each other.  o­ne of our members, David Hughes, will have o­ne of his prints commented upon.

Our President, Keith Radford, has at present a o­ne Man Exhibition o­n Show in London - well done Keith.

On the weekend of 6th/7th March we are holding our ANNUAL EXHIBITION of Prints at USHERS, the Florist in Cheriton Road, Folkestone.  From 12 noon - 4 p.m. Saturday and 11 a.m. - 3 p.m. Sunday, admission free.  Do come along and see some or our members work.

On Monday March 8th  our meeting will not take place at our usual venue as we are holding a Special Evening.  Peter Brown ARPS DPAGB APAGB (President of the Photographic Alliance of Great Britain) will be showing  ‘AN AUDIO VISUAL VARIETY SHOW’ at the Channel School, Park Farm Road,  from 7.45 p.m. This evening is open to everyone, and anyone who is interested in photography should come along as this will be a superb evening.  Tickets are £3.50 (which include refreshments) purchased either from the Secretary (below) or at the door o­n the night.
Visit our web site at

Meetings are held at the United Reformed Church Community Hall, Castle Hill Avenue. Folkestone, every Monday commencing at 7.45pm  New members are always welcome and anyone interested in joining, please, ring Jenny Barraclough (Hon. Secretary) 01303 245399 or e mail: further information.