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Tuesday, 31 May 2016

JUST AN OBSERVATION

Cast your minds back to the Highways England exhibitions and the grey suited man, Mr. Paul Harwood telling us that the world's biggest lorry park is the only solution to operation stack. Over and over again, the idea was offered to Mr. Harwood that smaller, more manageable lorry parks would be the answer to temporary parking, allied with 'smart' signage. Over and over again, Mr. Harwood said 'it couldn't be done'.

 

Our Association pointed out at the time that HATRIS could be adopted to manage smaller lorry parks. Mr. Harwood still insisted that 'It couldn't be done',

 

As Highways England's high level representative, you would have thought that Mr. Harwood would have, at least been 'au fait' with the NTIS. – This is what it does:

 

 

National Traffic Information Service (NTIS)[edit]

Network Information Services (NIS), a Mouchel and Thales joint venture, operates the National Traffic Information Service on behalf of Highways England. NTIS is the information hub of England' strategic road network.[20]

The £57 million service is based at Quinton, Birmingham and is responsible for providing accurate, historical, real-time and predictive traffic and incident information to businesses, the travelling public and Highways England's operations.[20] It collects real-time traffic information from over 10,000 fixed sites on the motorway and all-purpose trunk road network from MIDAS and Traffic Monitoring Unit (TMU) electronic loops in the road surface and automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) cameras at the roadside. Additionally it uses anonymous floating vehicle traffic data (FVD) from vehicles to supplement the fixed traffic monitoring sites.[citation needed] NTIS also has access to nearly 2,000 CCTV cameras,[21] 300 weather stations, 4,600 roadside electronic signs, 16,000 roadside electronic matrix signals and incident data from over 250 operational partners including the police and local authorities.[22]

It then processes this data to create useful intelligence for operational decision making and dissemination of current and predictive information to the public using the 4,600 roadside variable-message signs,[23] the Highways England website[24] (including a mobile version), social media channels such as Twitter and the telephone-based Highways England customer contact centre[25] as well as distributing information to the media and business through a number of data feeds[21][26] These feeds are widely used by organisations such as the BBC and local newspaper websites for their own traffic information. Services such as Google maps and sat-nav operators also make use of Highways England's data for their traffic information.

 

And this is what 'HATRIS' does (as stated by Capita group):

 

Since 2005 our transport technology team has worked on Highways England's Traffic Information System (HATRIS) which is used to monitor and report on vehicle journey times on the motorway and trunk road network. The system enables Highways England and the Department for Transport to identify trends and to design new schemes based on solid evidence of traffic flows.

We are also involved in developing and managing other important high tech schemes used widely in the UK's transport infrastructure, including:

·                            Active traffic management

·                            Managed motorway systems

·                            Road user charging and tolling systems

·                            Tunnel control and monitoring

·                            Real time passenger information

·                            Technology enforcement systems

·                            Traffic monitoring and control systems.

We have also recently been appointed by Highways England to provide a new asset management system and associated consultancy services for its road maintenance teams. The Streamlined Data Services (SDS) Lite system we're delivering will enable highways maintenance teams to manage their highway technology estate, provide tailored reporting on asset performance, and use their own devices to manage highways maintenance projects by the roadside, increasing efficiency and accuracy of the process.

We think that Mr. Harwood of HIGHWAYS ENGLAND was very economical with the facts.

And do we think that our (so called) representatives really care?


S&DRA.


Monday, 30 May 2016

LORRY PARK UPDATE.

Dear Residents,

For those of you who are not on Facebook or have had a news 'blackout' for the past week, here we have the very latest news:

Whilst residents wait for a decision to be made on the Lorry Park, we were surprised to learn of a statement issued by Balfour Beatty on the 26th May 2016.:

Balfour Beatty has been awarded an up to GBP130m contract by Highways England for the construction of a proposed lorry area near the M20. 
The contract will cover the development of the proposals during the Early Contractor Involvement (ECI) phase of the project and will also cover the construction of the lorry area subject to a decision to proceed from Government. 
The contract is valued at up to GBP130 million and will be a key part of the overall GBP250 million lorry area, announced by Chancellor George Osborne in autumn 2015.
Balfour Beatty will utilise its technological expertise across the project including the latest Building Information Modelling to define the most efficient approach to design and the construction programme, avoid programme and utility clashes, improve the works sequence and optimise the design of the structures whilst reducing time on site and cost and enhancing safety. 
Group chief executive Leo Quinn said: "Balfour Beatty's expertise in major infrastructure projects and long standing relationship with Highways England will be crucial for the safe and successful delivery of this project. The M20 lorry area will provide much needed relief to Kent's road networks while supporting local economic growth and development." At peak construction, the project could employ up to 150 construction workers and is anticipated to be partially open by the summer of 2017. 

In the Sellindge Village News, June 2016, Susan Carey KCC/Shepway Councillor,  made the following statement:

'Finally, it looks like we will have to wait until after the EU referendum on 23rd June before we hear which site Highways England are recommending to the Secretary of State for the lorry holding area. There are strict rules about what can and can't be announced by all levels of government during an election campaign and civil servants often advise caution to their ministers/council leaders to avoid lengthy and expensive wrangles in court about whether an announcement influenced the election one way or another'.

We think that those strict rules that Ms Carey alluded to in her statement have been compromised. True, the statement hasn't been issued by government, but as a nominated contractor employed by Highways England, an agency of central government, there would have been a duty of care and responsibility to government and residents in issuing this statement before an election and thereby influencing the election outcome.

We will be taking this up with our legal team.


S&DRA.

Friday, 27 May 2016

FIGHTING FUND APPEAL.

Dear Residents,

As our campaigns gather pace, our Association will be in need of further funding. We have always relied on support from our local communities to fund associated costs of fighting developers and local councils who seem intent on ruining our way of village life.
We are now asking our residents and local companies to help us with the production of banners, posters and leaflets to fight the Garden Town (Bonkersville) scheme that would see our area obliterated beyond belief.
There will be helpers on Demonstration Day, 4th June, who will be walking among you with buckets to collect your loose change and more, but if you would like to give direct to our account, any amount would be gratefully received.

Our bank details:  SELLINDGE & DISTRICT RESIDENTS ASSOCIATION sort code: 40-21-15.  Account number: 51564102.

Please email us at sellindgeresidents@gmail.com if you decide to donate just to confirm payment has been made.

Thank you all for your support - Your generosity is most appreciated.


S&DRA.

Thursday, 26 May 2016

HOT OFF THE WIRES 26TH MAY 2016

 

BBY wins contract for M20 lorry area

StockMarketWire.com

Balfour Beatty has been awarded an up to GBP130m contract by Highways England for the construction of a proposed lorry area near the M20. 

The contract will cover the development of the proposals during the Early Contractor Involvement (ECI) phase of the project and will also cover the construction of the lorry area subject to a decision to proceed from Government. 

The contract is valued at up to GBP130 million and will be a key part of the overall GBP250 million lorry area, announced by Chancellor George Osborne in autumn 2015.

Balfour Beatty will utilise its technological expertise across the project including the latest Building Information Modelling to define the most efficient approach to design and the construction programme, avoid programme and utility clashes, improve the works sequence and optimise the design of the structures whilst reducing time on site and cost and enhancing safety. 

Group chief executive Leo Quinn said: "Balfour Beatty's expertise in major infrastructure projects and long standing relationship with Highways England will be crucial for the safe and successful delivery of this project. The M20 lorry area will provide much needed relief to Kent's road networks while supporting local economic growth and development." At peak construction, the project could employ up to 150 construction workers and is anticipated to be partially open by the summer of 2017. 



Story provided by StockMarketWire.com

Monday, 23 May 2016

PLEASE SIGN THIS PETITION

Dear Residents,

Please click on the link to sign the 38 degrees petition to stop a hideous town being built within our village communities in and around Sellindge and Lympne.




Many thanks,


S&DRA

Sunday, 22 May 2016

CPRE BACKING LOCAL RESIDENTS

Shepway's Otterpool Park – huge intrusion on landscape and villages

Posted 16th May 16filed under EnvironmentHousing numbersPlanning

Shepway District Council (SDC) has announced plans for a "Garden Town" which would engulf Westenhanger, Newingreen, most of Lympne and some of Sellindge, together with up to 700 hectares (1730 acres) of countryside, bordering on the Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

Somehow, the council expects local residents to support this while the leader, Cllr David Monk, answers his critics with words like "It is not green space. Most of the time it's brown, it's mud, brown mud. It's cockalooloo land. It is agricultural fields. You can't say we can't build on fields. It hardly affects anyone." (quoted in Folkestone Herald 12/5/16).

Sheep in fields at Otterpool

Everything in this view, as far as the windmill (white tower), would be urbanised, photo by Graham Horner

CPRE fought hard to halt the urbanisation of this area through the examination of Shepway District's Local Plan and the inspector agreed with us, throwing out proposals for just 400 houses on the Folkestone Racecourse site.  Now up to 12,000 houses are contemplated in the same area.  Shepway seem intent on filling up all land which is not AONB or on the Marsh with housing or allowing it to be concreted over for lorry parks.

Hilary Newport said "The garden city/village principles have merit, but CPRE believes that housing delivery should focus on putting effort into the regeneration of those brownfield sites that blight urban areas and communities. This site, by contrast, is in open countryside, near villages that are already struggling under the pressure of overdevelopment, and would be a huge intrusion on the landscape – indeed the Kent Downs Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (a nationally important designation, equivalent in importance to a National Park) surrounds this area on three sides: walkers and riders on the North Downs Way national trail to the north would have their views across open landscape blighted."

Otterpool Park 4 Otterpool Park 2

 



Thursday, 19 May 2016

D DAY
The Demonstration Day has been set for the 4th June at 2pm.

If you're not already making placards and banners, start NOW.

If you are appalled at the way our local representatives have treated us over the Lorry Park and Bonkersville (Garden Town) this is the time to act.  

This is a demonstration against a Lorry park that will be totally ineffective and 12,000 houses that our area doesn't need or want.

We will be marching in two groups –  Destination: Airport CafĂ©. From Newingreen and Sellindge Village Hall.

Let's not forget that all villages will become part of an urban sprawl including Stanford, Westenhanger, Lympne, Court at Street, Newingreen, Sellindge. Even if your village isn't within the footprint you will be affected with additional traffic, people, crime, pollution, pressure on services etc etc.

Bring your drums, banners and fancy dress if you like. Media coverage will be in place so make your banners with a twinge of humour.

Our message to Collins, Monk, Hollingsbee, Carey and Co will be clear.
REPRESENT YOUR CONSTITUENTS OR PUSH OFF.

Further details will follow. Keep watching this space.

S&DRA.

Wednesday, 18 May 2016

TELL DCLG WHAT YOU THINK OF 12000 HOUSES AROUND LYMPNE AND SELLINDGE

We are sure that The Department of Communities and Local Government (DCLG) would like to hear what you think of OTTERPOOL PARK GARDEN TOWN (Bonkersville) These are the people who will decide whether or not our area is suited to a new town between our villages.

The criteria states that it shouldn't be an extension of existing settlements- (It clearly is) and that local people should be supportive of the scheme (No one we have met is supportive of this scheme) Moreover, it also states that it should address local housing needs. Where are the 12,000 local people to fill the properties?

We think that Shepway District Council will be telling DCLG all is rosy in the Garden of England and any kind of new settlement would be most welcomed by all.

This is our chance to tell DCLG what we really think of any proposed new town being foist upon us before misinformation by others is tossed into the arena.

As time is of the essence we would urge you all to write to:

The Department of Communities and Local Government.
Fry Building,
2, Marsham Street,
London SW1 4DF.

Tel: 030 3444 0000.

Electronically please go to http://forms.communities.gov.uk/

Our so called representatives are ALL backing this scheme - Hollingsbee, Carey, Collins, Monk, Stewart, Lewis, Priest. 

We are fighting this development along with the names above. 

PLEASE DON'T LEAVE IT TO OTHERS. WE MUST ALL DO OUR UTMOST TO DEFEAT THIS MONSTROUS SCHEME.


S&DRA



Tuesday, 17 May 2016

TOWN PLANNING MEETING

Dear Residents,

Apparently there is an opportunity to view the so called 'Garden' Town (Bonkersville) plan next Tuesday, 24th May at Sellindge Village Hall as stated by Linda Hedley, Parish Clerk, in an email to a local resident. We have checked on the Parish Council website but there is no mention of it. But just to be quite clear, we have copied and pasted Linda's reply. No mention of time was stated but I would guess that 7.30 would be a good time to arrive .If we hear anything different we'll let you know.

Here it be:

Hello xxxxxxx
We have started a file with everyone's comments that we will be taking with us to the meeting.
Yours have already been added
However at the Annual Parish Meeting, we will be having a map of the village laid out for comments on this and other concerns so do come along.
the meeting is on 24th May
regards
Linda

Linda Hedley Fellow ILCM
Clerk to Sellindge Parish Council
Chairman Kent Branch SLCC
SE Mentor & Employment Support Office
01303 813271

This is your chance to let your Parish Council know how you feel about living next to 12,000 (twelve thousand) houses and in turn your Parish Council will convey that message to Shepway District Council on June 7th.
We will let you know how they get on the very next day.

S&DRA.


Thursday, 12 May 2016

12,000 homes - BONKERSVILLE

On the 6th May Shepway District Council was forced to announce that they were mindful of building a new Town between our villages. It would be called Otterpool Park Garden Town. We prefer to call it BONKERSVILLE.

For the time being this is what you need to know about Bonkersville and what is likely to happen in the next few weeks......

Just for the moment try to set aside all the  conspiracy theories and stories of double dealing politicos and council executives.  All of that stuff can be played with later.

What is happening now is sponsored by Central Government.  It comes from the Treasury and the DCLG. (Department for Communities and Local Government).  It's dressed up as a 'solution' to the housing crisis.

In March 2016 a document was published by DCLG titled "Locally-Led Garden Villages, Towns and Cities."  

This document gives all the key background to what is happening, what is being 'offered' and what the rules are that local authorities bidding to have a slice of this cake have to do.  One thing they're supposed to demonstrate as part of their submissions is a degree of"community support".

On 8 June 2016 the Cabinet of Shepway District Council is due to discuss whatever submission document has been assembled by then, intending to approve its submission to government.

The day before, Parish Town Councils will be given a preview of the 'plan' at a meeting in the Civic Centre: They will be expected to give local opinion and support to the proposal.

Some Parish Councils will be talking to parishioners to glean local views on this so that they can represent the wider view.  

Just in case yours isn't one of those do make sure to write to them, or email them letting them know as clearly as possible your support or opposition to it, so that they can properly represent local opinion.

The information available to judge this is published on Shepway's website, and there is some excellent coverage and editorial comment in the Ashford Herald, and the Folkestone Herald in particular. Please buy or borrow a copy.

It is really important to realise that the chance to make your thoughts known is NOW. Please write or email (to be on record) to your Parish Council and Jenny Hollingsbee DO NOT DELAY - THIS IS EXTREMELY IMPORTANT. 

Without local support the rules say that government funding should not be so readily forthcoming.

Of course we know that there will be cheating and bending of the rules, but how we might deal with that comes later.


Should you wish to contact us for further information please email: sellindgeresidents@gmail.com


For now just make sure you let your Parish Council, and your District Councillors, know exactly what you think about it all.



S&DRA






Friday, 6 May 2016

12,000 NEW HOMES ON CHAMPNEY LAND.

Mr. Monk, Leader of Shepway District Council and his band of cronies have just announced that up to 12,000 new homes could be built on the newly acquired (5.23 million pounds) land purchased less than 6 months ago by SDC. That's right; the land that was going to be farmed by local farmers as an income stream for the Council as clearly stated by Mr. Monk and Jenny Hollingsbee. Absolutely no mention was made that consideration of a new town of up to 12,000 homes would be proposed at a future date.

Far be it from S&DRA to accuse these trusted Councillors of being economical with the truth; we'll leave that for others to decide. And what of Damian Collins, our most trusted and caring member of parliament; what is his role in all of this. Surely he must have known being from the same stable as Monk & Co. We always thought that playing ones cards tightly to ones chest wouldn't be an option where a policy of transparency and regard for constituents to be a priority.

So, a name has already been decided for the new town: OTTERPOOL PARK. We assume that would be OTTERPOOL PARK GARDEN TOWN. But ask yourselves, how would it sit alongside OTTERPOOL PARK RUBBISH TIP or OTTERPOOL PARK POWER STATION or OTTERPOOL WIND FARM or even OTTERPOOL TRUCK PARK VIEW. 

If you're angry, you have every right to be. Our area is being dumped upon from a very great height. No matter how much spin our Councillors put on all of these developments, there is no escaping the fact that residents views are being totally ignored.

Watch this space for further information.


S&DRA.










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