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New Parish Councillor – Joe Pearce

We are pleased to report that a new councillor has been appointed to fill one of the current vacancies.  We would like to welcome Joe Pearce to the Parish Council.  Joe is a member of the Planning & Highways Committee.

Joe moved to Pembury from south London a year and a half ago and lives in the village with his wife and 2 young children.

Cllr Joe Pearce

Pembury Library Remains Closed

KCC acts to tackle financial impact of Covid pandemic – Press Release from KCC

Kent County Council has had to take some difficult decisions in order to balance its budget as it tackles the impact of Covid on its finances.

The pandemic has resulted in extra costs this year totalling £96.3million. Although much of this has been offset by central government grants and underspends on activities that could not go ahead as planned, the council still needed to take action to save £12.8 million over the remainder of the current financial year to balance its budget.

Many services are now being delivered from more than 100 Covid-secure re-opened buildings across the county. However, to ensure the council continues to ensure financial resilience for the rest of the financial year, the remaining unopened buildings will stay closed for the coming months.

Among those services affected are Libraries, Registrations and Archives, Children’s Centres and Community Learning Services.

Although ideally the council would like to reopen all its buildings, it has made the difficult decision that those libraries, children’s centres and community learning buildings not yet reopened will remain closed this year, to avoid the considerable costs in making them Covid secure.

At the full county council meeting, members discussed proposed amendments to the Revenue Budget 2020-21, which highlighted how the council had been able to reflect the additional Covid-19 related budget pressures, additional spending, and loss of income. They also considered the undeliverable savings and reviewed the government grants and underspends within services that have arisen from lockdown.

Peter Oakford, KCC’s Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Finance, said: “Across the authority we are working hard to ensure our vital services continue to be delivered.

“For now, we must focus on reassessing our delivery priorities, ensuring the continuity of our services and finding ways to ensure we offer flexibility in our support to residents and our communities.

“As far as libraries, children’s centres and community learning services are concerned, our decision was not an easy one. We know that these are popular service and residents may be disappointed by our decision, as will those staff who will not be able to work at their usual building.

“In common with all councils across the country we are facing huge uncertainty and are working hard to understand what the impact of Covid-19 will be on our budget for next year.

“Work is under way to develop our financial strategy to make sure we remain financially resilient and continue to provide those services that are vital to our residents and communities.”

Community Grants – Deadline Extended!

Grants poster

We have a total of £1,000 available, so why not apply today!!

We have created a new grant fund to help community groups or not for profit organisations in Pembury for their one-off projects.  We have £1,000 to share to get local projects off the ground!

To apply:

Please complete an application form and return to the Parish Council.

Eligibility:

You  must be a community group or not for profit organisation.

Your project will be of benefit to the parish of Pembury or its residents.

Please see our Grants Awarding Policy for full details.

Deadline:

The deadline has been extended and all applications should be received by Friday 9 October 2020.

Contact us:

Email: clerk@pemburyparishcouncil.gov.uk

Post: The Parish Office, Lower Green Recreation Ground, Lower Green Road, Pembury, Kent TN2 4DZ

Councillor Vacancies

poster for councillor vacancy

We currently have vacancies for 2 new parish councillors.  Do you have some time to spare?  Do you want to get involved in the future of the Pembury?

Eligibility

To be eligible to join the parish council you must:

  • be a British, Irish or European citizen
  • be over 18
  • be an elector of Pembury
  • have lived in the parish of Pembury, or within 3 miles of it, for the last 12 months or have your principle place of work in the parish
  • not be under a bankruptcy order
  • not have received a conviction leading to a sentence of imprisonment for more than 3 months without the option of a fine.

Information

The Good Councillors Guide has lots of information about what it means to be a Parish Councillor.

Our Parish

Each Parish Council is very different and reflects the community which it serves.  Pembury Parish Council has responsibility for:

  • managing Lower Green Recreation Ground and its facilities:
    • Children’s playgrounds
    • Multi use games area
    • Outdoor gym
    • football pitches
    • tennis courts
  • open space management of Woodside Playing Fields and pitches
  • the village green
  • the Old Coach Road
  • Pembury Burial Ground
  • Events including annual Fireworks display, Picnic on the Green, Remembrance Day service, Christmas Carols on the Green
  • Pembury Village News – a quarterly newsletter delivered to all homes in the village
  • Christmas Lights
  • Floral displays
  • Allotments in Henwood Green Road
  • Streetlights in Belfield Road, Henwood Green Road
  • commenting on all planning applications in the parish
  • lobbying other agencies to support residents
  • signposting residents to other council services

We employ a Clerk and Deputy Clerk to manage the day to day administrative work of the Council and have a team of Grounds Maintenance staff maintaining our open spaces and sports facilities.

Questions?

If you want to find out more and speak to either a member of staff or another councillor, why not get in touch and we will call you to answer your questions and chat about the role.  In the first instance please email the Clerk, Helen Munro, on clerk@pemburyparishcouncil.gov.uk.

To apply

Please complete an application form and send to the Parish Office either by email to clerk@pemburyparishcouncil.gov.uk or post to:

The Parish Office
Lower Green Recreation Ground
Lower Green Road
Pembury
Kent TN2 4DZ

Next Steps

You will be invited to have an informal chat with the Chair and Vice Chair of the Council.  Normally this is done face to face but during the current restrictions, this can be arranged virtually.

A formal interview will then be arranged with the rest of the Council at a Council meeting.  Our Council meetings are currently being held virtually via Zoom.  Meetings are on the first Monday of each month starting at 7:15pm.

More Kent libraries to re-open

Good news! More Kent libraries are set to reopen over the course of week starting 24 August 2020. These will be the first libraries to also offer a socially distanced book browsing service for customers so they can select books from the shelves.

Cranbrook and Showfields will reopen on Tuesday 25 August.  Southborough library will be opening for browsing on Monday 7 September, and will continue to offer the Select and Collect service.

Additional safety measures in each library will include hand sanitizer stations, one-way circulation routes through the building, use of the self-service machines, and face coverings being mandatory (unless exempt).

The first 12 libraries that opened across Kent in July which included Southborough Library, will continue to offer a Select and Collect service for the time being, with browsing likely to be introduced in the coming weeks.

In September, we will also be relaunching the mobile library service and plan to open further libraries across Kent.  Call 03000 41 31 31, check our website www.kent.gov.uk/libs or @TunbridgewellsLibraries on Facebook for updates.

Full Overnight Closure of A21 – 1 to 11 September – 8pm to 6am

Highways England have informed us they will be carrying out ground investigations to the A21 carriageway between Riccards Lane and Marley Lane, to establish ground conditions for a proposed resurfacing scheme.  In order to carry out these works as efficiently and safely as possible, work will be carried out under full closures of the A21 between Riccards Lane and Marley Lane, between the hours of 8pm to 6am.

Full Carriageway Closure of A21

A21 closed between Riccards Lane and Marley Lane 1 September 2020 – 11 September 2020

Monday to Friday only 8pm – 6am

A clearly signed diversions will be in place during all closures utilising local routes, suitable for all types of vehicles when full closures of the carriageway are in place.

South Diversion route:

A21 heading south: traffic wishing to travel along the A21, will be diverted at Johns Cross Roundbout to follow the A2100 through to Baldslow, where traffic can re-join the A21

North Diversion route:

A21traffic wishing to travel north will be directed from Baldslow to follow the A2100 to re-join the A21 at Johns Cross Roundabout.

Residents living within the closure between Riccards Lane and Marley please wait at the hard closure points, where you will be escorted to your property. Residents wishing to leave their property whilst the closure is in place, please call our NCC (0845 6122 888) who will contact site to send an escort to your property. Please be advised there may be a short wait for the escort vehicle.