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The Community Website for Walmer, near Deal, Kent
 

 
Local News Archive: July to December 2005
 
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DOVER COUNCIL HOLIDAY TIMES

The main council offices at Whitfield will be closed from 5pm (cash office 4.30pm) on Friday, 23 December to 9am on Tuesday, 3 January. There is an emergency line over this period on 01304 821199.

The Dover, Deal and Sandwich area offices will close at 4.30pm on Friday, 23 December, and reopen at 9am on Tuesday 3, January.

All refuse and recycling collection days are "as normal" except:
Refuse: Monday 26th December (no collection - next collection Monday, 2 January 2006).
Black Box Recycling: Monday, 26 December (no collection - next collection Monday, 9 January 2006).
Green Waste Recycling: No collections Monday, 26 December 2005 to Friday, 6 January 2006. Collections restart Monday, 9 January.

Deal Pier opening times vary over the holiday period and the Pier will be closed all day on 25 and 26 December and 1 January 2006.

For full details, see the Dover District Council website.   (December 19, 2005)

 

SPORTS CENTRE HOLIDAY TIMES

If you are thinking of a trip to one of the local leisure centres run by Vista Leisure for Dover District Council over the holidays, you could find these details of opening time helpful....

CHRISTMAS WEEK: Closed from 12 noon on Saturday 24 December - Tuesday 27 December inclusive. Open normal times on Wednesday 28, Thursday 29 and Friday 30 December; and between 8am-6pm on Saturday 31 December.

NEW YEAR: Closed Sunday 1 January and Monday 2 January. Reopening at normal times on Tuesday 3 January.

ADDITIONALLY: The Sports Halls will be closed for floor maintenance. At Tides in Deal: Monday 19 December - Wednesday 28 December. At Dover Leisure Centre: Wednesday 21 December - Wednesday 28 December. (December 15, 2005)

 

A BETTER "FORUM"

The WalmerWeb "Forum" bulletin board has moved to new web servers. This means it should be a bit faster to use, more reliable and free from irritating adverts.

For visitors to the local Walmer website it provides a quick way to raise and discuss local issues, advertise "sales and wants", promote local events or seek local advice and information. What's more, it's free to use and messages appear on-line within seconds of you posting them. For more information, CLICK HERE. (December 13, 2005)

 

VISTA LEISURE SEEKS TRUSTEES

Vista Leisure - the charitable trust which runs the local Tides Leisure Centre and Walmer Paddling Pool - is looking for people willing to join its board of voluntary trustees. The "not for profit" company has around 180 employees and is also responsible for Dover Leisure Centre and the district-wide children's playscheme. A separate trading subsidiary, Consult Vista Ltd, provides leisure consultancy and catering services.

The trustees normally hold eight meetings a year, attend special events and have informal contact with the staff. Over the next three years, Vista has ambitious plans to expand the company and its services. Those who agree to serve as trustees will play an important part in this. Applications from people with expertise in such areas as human resources, finance, law, marketing or general management will be especially welcome, although Vista says this is not essential.

For an information pack and application form please either call xxxx xxxxxx , e-mail by or write to Kevin Fordham, Chief Executive, Vista Leisure, The Limes Business Centre, 6 Broad Street, Deal, Kent CT14 6ER. (December 13, 2005)

 
CROSS CHANNEL HELP FOR AFRICA
French and UK Rotarians on Deal seafront FLAGGING UP A SUCCESS: (from left to right) South Foreland Rotary PRO Gerry Costa and president David Benton and Calais Risban Rotary president Francis Casteleyn and Jean Claude Cossart celebrate their successful international weekend with a Tricolor and Union Flag at Deal seafront. Rotarian "waiters" for international meal.
 
FUNDRAISING MEAL: Calais Risban and South Foreland Rotarians serve their guests at St Margaret’s village hall.

Rotary clubs on both sides of the Channel raised over £1,150 for African aid during an international weekend on 19 and 20 November.

Members of South Foreland and Calais Risban groups joined forces to help Operation Sunshine S.O.S. Africa, an East Kent registered charity whose main aim is to "feed the hungry and clothe the naked". So far this year, the charity has sent five containers of clothing and other items to needy parts of Africa. Much of the weekend's fundraising centred on a dinner dance at St Margaret’s village hall where the Ladies of St Margaret’s cooked the meal and Rotary members acted as table waiters and a Sunday lunch party hosted by a South Foreland Rotarian from Deal. (November 24, 2005)

 

FREE PRE-CHRISTMAS PARKING

Dover District Council is allowing free parking for shoppers in its Deal carparks from 10am on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, December 15, 16 and 17. (November 24, 2005)

 

CHANCE TO INSPECT LATEST BARRACKS PLANS

Walmer Parish Council is providing an opportunity for residents to see revised plans by developers for the remaining site on the former Royal Marines Barracks off Canada Road. The new proposals will be on show at the Parish Council office, 10 Victoria Road, Deal on Tuesday, 29 November (9.30am-2pm and 6.30pm-8.30pm) and Wednesday, 30 November (9.30am-2pm). Any comments on the new scheme will then need to be submitted to the parish council and Dover District Council planners without delay.     (November 24, 2005)

 
"SPRING CLEAN" FOR AVIATORS' MEMORIAL

Local residents are helping Walmer Parish Council to clean up, replant and repaint the memorial to the airmen who flew from the old Walmer aerodrome - now Hawkshill Freedown - during the First World War.

Keen to lavish a bit of care and attention in time for this year's Remembrance Day, the volunteers seen here are (from left to right) Chris Harbridge, Diana and Mel Mishkin, Gerry Costa and Keith Playforth. Chris, Gerry and Keith are all members of the South Foreland Rotary Club.  (November 7, 2005)

Clean-up for aviators' memorial (photo: Gerry Costa)
 

POLICE FORCE MERGER?

The public is being invited to comment on Government proposals for a national restructuring of police forces in England and Wales. It is considered that smaller forces should combine to create "more effective" authorities employing more than 4,000 police officers or 6,000 total staff. Currently, Kent Police has 3,630 officers and 2,508 support staff, possibly making it a "borderline" case.

Kent's Chief Constable Michael Fuller and members of the Police Authority believe that the size and strategic location of the county and the force's good performance, particularly in dealing with major crime, warrant it remaining a "stand-alone" organisation. They say building on existing collaboration with other forces is preferable to merger.

The Government's report can be downloaded at: http://inspectorates.homeoffice.gov.uk/hmic/docs/docs/closinggap.pdf and Kent Police's response can be seen on the Kent Police website. Comments on these can be e-mailed to Kent Police Authority at: yourviews@kent.pnn.police.uk.  (November 7, 2005)

 

NEW COUNCILLORS

Walmer has two new parish councillors. They are retired chartered land surveyor Mr Clive Grant and former local police sergeant Mrs Susan Le Chevalier. Mr Grant moved in to the area last year, having previously served as a member of Chevening Parish Council. Mrs Le Chevalier has lived in Walmer for seven years and is an active member of the Deal Parochial School's parent teacher association. They were formally co-opted to the parish council at its October meeting, following the resignations of Peter Faulkner and Les Alton.  (October 31, 2005)

 

DRILL FIELD FIREWORKS

Deal and Walmer Rugby Sports and Social Club (formerly Deal Wanderers) is holding a public fireworks display at the Drill Field (off Canada Road, Walmer) on Friday, 4 November from 6.30pm. Tickets are £2.50 in advance from a number of local shops or £3 on the night.  (October 31, 2005)

 

FREE GUIDE TO LOCAL SERVICES FOR ELDERLY

A free guide to services for older people and carers in the Deal, Dover and Sandwich areas has just been published. A 200-page booklet, "The Coastal Guide" offers helpful advice and contacts for a wide range of services including health, housing, sports and leisure activities, personal and home security, pensions and managing money, places of worship, transport, help around the home, residential and nursing care, recycling and consumerism.

Produced by the local NHS Primary Care Trust, Social Services, Dover District Council, the Citizens Advice Bureau, Kent Police and White Cliffs Housing Association, copies are available, free of charge, from a number of outlets including local doctors' surgeries. Alternatively, contact Hannah Price on 01304 222310 or Sue Carr on 01304 872322. Large print copies and CD ROM versions are also available.   

Footnote: WalmerWeb webmaster Harold Wyld picked up a copy and says: "It's crammed with information that older folk (including me!) really need to know about. Free as well - so it's probably this year's best bargain!"  (October 21, 2005)

 

DEAL'S BRADERIE PULLS THE CROWDS

Deal's annual Braderie on Sunday, 18 September, once again proved a popular event with locals and visitors. Stalls selling antiques, memorabilia, novelties and bric-a-brac lined the High Street. To see photos of the event, go to the Deal photo album. (September 20, 2005; modified October 21, 2005)

 

AUDITIONS FOR NEW PRODUCTION

East Kent Theatre Productions is inviting anyone with an interest in any aspect of the theatre - backstage, directing, front of house, as well as performers - to drop in to their next auditions. These will be held on October 29 and 30 at the Astor Theatre, Stanhope Road, Deal, any time between 12 noon and 4.30pm on either day.

The amateur theatrical group recently staged an acclaimed production of "The Crucible" in Deal and their coming production is "My Fair Lady" which will be performed in March/April 2006. Organiser Nathan Sewell says his group welcomes participation by all the East Kent community including older people, children and learning disabled. For more information, call Nathan on 01304 239998 or (mobile) 07745 499 760, or .    (October 18, 2005)

 
HELP FOR ASIAN EARTHQUAKE VICTIMS

South Foreland Rotary Club members are supporting the relief effort for victims of the East Asian earthquake. On the advice of Rotary International Britain and Ireland they are concentrating on helping to provide relief aid supplies in the form of Aquaboxes, Emergency boxes and Shelter boxes.

Just as the names suggest, the boxes offer a means of purifying water, essential supplies and temporary shelter. Four hundred aquaboxes have already gone to Pakistan and 400 shelter boxes to the effected area of Kashmir. And 300 filled emergency boxes are ready for despatch. Keeping up the flow of boxes now depends on public support.

South Foreland Rotary president Mr David Benton says his club is willing to process any donations people in the Dover District wish to make. Contact the club's International Committee Chairman Mr Gerry Costa on 0771 292 9524 or .    (October 13, 2005)

 

MOVES TO CATCH SPEEDING DRIVERS

Speeding motorists could be heading for trouble following a decision by Walmer Parish Council to buy into the recently launched "Speed Watch" scheme. Officially recognised and supported by Kent Police, the project involves setting up a mobile radar-operated speed warning sign at known trouble spots. The equipment is then manned by volunteers who pass details of offending motorists to the police for them to take further action. (September 29, 2005)

 

MEMORIAL ALDER FOR FIRST CHAIRMAN

The work of the late Mrs Doreen Beach, who encouraged the formation of Walmer Parish Council and became its first Chairman in 1996-1997, is being commemorated by a memorial tree at Marke Wood recreation ground. The tree is one of 12 memorial Alders planted by Dover Council. (September 29, 2005)

 

BID TO "MAKE IT LOCAL"

Concerns at declining local services and local jobs and the extra traffic and pollution caused by having to travel further for these have prompted Walmer parish councillors to endorse moves to introduce new "sustainable communities" legislation. At their September meeting, councillors agreed to back "Local Works", a national campaigning group behind the Sustainable Communities Bill, and ask local MP Gwyn Prosser to support it by signing an Early Day Motion to help speed it through Parliament.

The new Bill suggests a number of initiatives to support local economies, protect the environment and encourage more involvement in local democracy. It it becomes law, it would give local councils and local people a bigger say in promoting sustainability in their own area. The Bill also looks for stronger support from central government. (September 29, 2005)

 

REPORT GRAFITTI

Police community support officer Justin Marriott is compiling a list of grafitti in Walmer. Residents are being asked to let him have details of any they've noticed. Phone him on (mobile) 07969 584207. Folk who spot anyone in the act of "tagging" - the common term for what is, in effect, criminal damage - should phone the police on 01304 240055.    (September 28, 2005)

 

COUNCIL ACTS TO END TEENAGE NUISANCE

Walmer parish councillors have responded to a plea from householders in Harvey Avenue, Walmer, to close a toddlers' play area on the Drill Field, immediately behind their houses. The small enclosure with its seating and a picnic table had become a meeting place by rowdy teenagers and was not used by the mothers and toddlers it was provided for. Late night noise, litter and excessive swearing were proving very stressful. The Council said it was disappointed at the lack of concern for others by people using the site and agreed it should be removed.    (September 28, 2005)

 

CALL TO REMOVE TEEN SHELTER

Walmer Parish Council is looking into concerns about misuse of the Teen Shelter at Marke Wood recreation ground. Police community support officer Justin Marriott has suggested it should be removed. The matter will be discussed at the council's meeting on Wednesday, 5 October. (September 29, 2005)

 

SUPPORT FOR 40MPH SPEED LIMIT

Walmer Parish Council is to support residents on Kingsdown Road, Walmer, who want a uniform 40mph speed limit for the length of their road. Much of it is already 40mph, but the section between Hawkshill Road and Campbell's Garage is 60mph. With housing along one side, a recent increase in young families living there and no pavements, the residents are concerned for their safety and want Kent Highways to designate all the road to 40mph or less. Parish councillors also agreed that a proper footpath along the road would ensure better pedestrian safety.    (September 28, 2005)

 

NEW LOOK FOR PARISH COUNCIL WEBSITE

Walmer Parish Council's website has a new look. It is now linked to a network of websites for parish and town councils across Kent sponsored by Kent County Council. To take a look, go to: www.walmercouncil.co.uk.  (September 20, 2005)

 

CROWDS FLOCK TO VICTORY COMMEMORATION

Bright sunshine, music by the Railway Swing Band and displays of World War 2 memorabilia tempted hundreds of people to turn out at Walmer Green on Sunday, 4 September. Organised by Walmer Parish Council, the event celebrated the 60th anniversary of the end of the 1939-1945 conflicts. To see photos of the event, see the "events" photo album.     (September 6, 2005)

 

RESIDENTS DEMAND AN END TO TEENAGE NUISANCE

Householders in Harvey Avenue, Walmer, are pressing the parish council to close a toddlers' play area on the Drill Field, immediately behind their houses. They say that the small enclosure with its seating and a picnic table is being used as a meeting place by rowdy teenagers and never by the mothers and toddlers it was provided for. Noise, litter and excessive swearing - sometimes after midnight - are, say the residents, driving them out of their own gardens during the daytime and, some nights, keeping them awake. The problem is to be discussed by the parish council when it meets on Wednesday, 7 September.    (September 2, 2005)

 

CALL FOR UNIFORM SPEED LIMIT

Residents on Kingsdown Road, Walmer, want Walmer parish councillors to support them in a bid to introduce a uniform 40mph speed limit for the length of their road. Whilst much of the road has a 40mph limit, the section between Hawkshill Road and Campbell's Garage is 60mph. With housing along one side, a recent increase in young families living there and no pavements, the residents say they a concerned for their safety and want Kent Highways to designate all the road to 40mph or less. The matter is to be considered by the parish council when it meets on Wednesday, 7 September.    (September 2, 2005)

 

ANYONE LOST TWO COCKATIELS?

Walmer resident Mr Bill Howie says two cockatiels have been sighted in Hawkshill Road. One was in poor health and needed to be taken to a vet in Dover. On Wednesday, 31 August, the other bird was still loose, flying in the Hawkshill Road/ Walmer Castle area. Anyone needing more details can contact Mr Howie by e-mail by .    (September 2, 2005)

 
VISTA LEISURE SEEKS NEW TRUSTEES
 
vista leisure logo

Vista Leisure, the charitable trust which runs the local Tides Leisure Centre and Walmer Paddling Pool, is looking for people willing to "give something back to the community" by joining its board of voluntary trustees. The "not for profit" company has around 180 employees and is also responsible for Dover Leisure Centre and the district-wide children's playscheme. A separate trading subsidiary, Consult Vista Ltd, provides leisure consultancy and catering services.


The enterprise is governed by a volunteer Board of Trustees. They normally hold eight meetings a year, attend special events and have informal contact with the staff. Over the next three years, Vista has ambitious plans to improve services and expand the company. Those who agree to serve as Trustees will play an important part in this. Applications from people with expertise in such areas as human resources, finance, law, marketing or general management will be especially welcome, although Vista says this is not essential.

For an information pack and application form please either call xxxx xxxxxx , e-mail by or write to Kevin Fordham, Chief Executive, Vista Leisure, The Limes Business Centre, 6 Broad Street, Deal, Kent CT14 6ER. Closing date for receipt of completed applications is Friday, 30 September.  (August 26, 2005)

 
"OLD COMRADES" BAND SCORES A SUCCESS
  

The idea of bringing together 43 ex Royal Marines Band musicians who still live in Deal for an unrehearsed concert at the Deal Memorial Bandstand on Sunday, 21 August has proved a resounding success.

Organised by former warrant officer bandmaster Steve Misson from Walmer, their performance attracted an audience of around 2,500 people. Steve explained: "Finding the time and place to rehearse was difficult. So the obvious answer was to make this an extra special event by playing entirely without rehearsal, because, after all, we had all been well trained by the Royal Marines — for some, a long time ago!”

CLICK for larger picture of the Old Comrades Band (photo: Alexander Kent)

(Photo by: Alexander Kent)

Under the baton of former corps bandmaster Phil Hughes, the band - average age 62 years - delighted everyone with a complex programme culminating in the enormously difficult Festive Overture by Shostakovitch. Steve Misson says he's sure the Old Comrades Band will be back next year. He said: "No way can the Deal Memorial Bandstand Trust allow this band to dissolve into obscurity; it must surely become one of the most anticipated events in the Deal calendar to run alongside the annual visit of the Royal Marines Band."   (August 23, 2005)

 

ROYAL MARINES ANNUAL VISIT DRAWS 4,000

On Sunday, 7 August, the Royal Marines Band kept its pledge to return to Walmer and Deal for an annual concert. A crowd, estimated at 4,000 people, thronged Walmer Green to hear them play at the Memorial Bandstand.

The names of the 11 Royal Marines who died in the IRA bombing in 1989 were recalled during a re-dedication service, held as part of a memorable afternoon.  For photos of the event by Gerry Costa, see the "events" photo album.       (August 13, 2005)

 

COUNCIL'S NEW "GREEN" COLLECTION SERVICE

Parts of Walmer will be included in a new fortnightly collection scheme for green garden waste. Due to be launched on Monday, 15 August, the Dover Council initiative will be rolled out over the coming 12 months so that over 20,000 houses in Walmer, Deal and Sandwich are included. Householders' unwanted clippings and trimmings will be turned into valuable compost - rather than filling dwindling landfill sites. For fuller information, see www.dover.gov.uk/recycling or phone 01304 872428.   (August 13, 2005)

 

DEAL CARNIVAL

Photos by Gerry Costa of Deal Carnival on Thursday, 28 July 2005 can now be seen in the "events" photo album.

 
HOSEPIPE BAN

Walmer householders and businesses are included in a ban on unattended hosepipes and the use of sprinklers which came into force on Saturday, 30 July. Southern Water said it had been forced to introduce the water restrictions because of the drought conditions from the past dry winter and spring.

Inclusion of the Kent and Hastings supply areas in the hosepipe and sprinkler ban on 30 July followed measures already in place in the water company’s Sussex supply area. For details, see Southern Water's website.
(July 30, 2005 - updated August 13, 2005)

 

NEW WEBSITE TARGETS ROGUE TRADERS

Kevin Anderson of GetClued.com has drawn attention to his recently launched website aimed at helping people avoid rip-off tradesmen. It is a free service which allows people to write reviews of tradesmen they have hired and read about others. There's also useful advice on hiring and resolving disputes with businesses.

Kevin says the recently launched site now has over 1,000 registered members who have submitted reviews of hundreds of businesses. Users benefit by being able to find out from actual customers the service standards of tradesmen in their local area and the prices they charge.

To use the service, people need to register and submit some details of good or bad service they've experienced. To see the GetClued website, go to: www.getclued.com.   (July 20, 2005)

 

PLAN TO REMOVE LOCAL PHONE BOX

British Telecom is proposing the removal of the public payphone at Kelvedon Road, Walmer. The company says it is little used, probably as a result of a huge increase in mobile phone ownership. Before it can remove a public phone box, BT has to consult the public. Walmer Parish Council will be discussing BT's plan at its full meeting in the Sea Scout Hut, Marine Road on Wednesday, 13 July, starting at 7pm.

There is an opportunity at the beginning of the meeting for residents to express views on this or any other matters of local concern. Otherwise, any comments on the phone box removal need to refer to "payphone 01304 374580" and be submitted to BT Payphones, PP06A21, Delta Point, 35 Wellesley Road, Croydon CR9 2YZ by 6 September 2005 latest. (8 July 2005)

 

PUBLIC CAN HELP THWART TERRORISTS

Following the bombings in London on Thursday, 7 July, Kent Police have asked members of all Kent Neighbourhood Watch and County Eye schemes to keep an eye out for suspicious activity.

They say that, although there is no specific threat in relation to Kent, the police would be grateful if everyone remained vigilant. If folk see anything suspicious, they should contact local police or, where potentially life-threatening, dial 999. It helps to write down descriptions of people, their clothing, or vehicle details and registration numbers. Any detail, no matter how small, could help the police ascertain if the suspicious activity is legitimate, or whether further investigation is necessary.

There are concerns that a small number of people may use the bombings as an excuse to 'retaliate' against minority communities. People from different cultures or communities may feel very vulnerable at this time. Also offensive 'anti-Muslim' graffiti may appear. In these cases, people are urged to contact the local police station and ask to speak to the Community Liaison Officer.

Other useful contacts include:
Crimestoppers 0800 555 111, to report potential criminal activity without giving your name.
Police anti-terrorist branch 0800 789321, to report any potential terrorist matters or behaviour.   (19 July 2005)

 

HOLIDAY ACTIVITIES

Parents keen to keep their youngsters amused during the school holiday period may be interested in the programme of events being organised by the Vista Leisure arm of Dover Council. Activities include playschemes, special courses for sports and leisure pursuits and coach trips. Leaflets giving details are being distributed through local schools. For more information call Martyn Cassell at Vista Leisure on 01304 201145 or   (11 July 2005)

 

COUNCIL VACANCIES

Walmer Parish Council is looking for two local residents willing to serve as councillors. The first vacancy follows the resignation of long-serving councillor Les Alton. The second stems from the resignation of councillor Peter Faulkner due to poor health. An information pack, explaining what is involved, is available from the Parish Clerk on 01304 381506 or by . The closing date for applications is Friday, 19 August. (8 July 2005 - updated 30 July 2005)

 

END OF POLICE SURGERIES

The monthly "surgeries" to enable Walmer residents to meet with Walmer's Police Community Support Officer Justin Marriott have had so little use that the parish council has abandoned the idea. At their June meeting, councillors agreed that it would be better if people contacted Justin by phone. His mobile number is: 07969 584207. (8 July 2005)

 

CONCERNS OVER NORTH BARRACKS PLANS

Walmer parish councillors are unhappy with latest proposals for re-development at the North Barracks. Plans for the site include: 107 new homes, a doctor's surgery and pharmacy, two two-storey buildings, new roads and parking and re-routing a public right-of-way.

The parish councillors feel that there is too little provision for car parking, access onto Ardent Avenue would cause serious problems for road users, a proposed three-storey block would obscure views of significant features of the site and the former Concert Hall should be redeveloped as a meeting venue for the local community. Councillors concerns have been passed to Dover Council planners who are considering the developers' plans. (8 July 2005)

 

DESIGN STATEMENT IN SPOTLIGHT

Dover Council's cabinet, the district council's decision-making body, will be considering a vital planning document for Walmer on Monday, 18 July. They are being asked to agree that the Walmer Design Statement, a detailed look at the existing characteristics and environment of the parish and how they should be protected and enhanced, should receive a six-week public consultation period. Once the public's views have been considered, it is expected the final document will be used by Dover Council when deciding new developments in the parish.

The lengthy task of producing the Design Statement has been carried out by a working group set up by the parish council and involving a number of local residents. It is the first of this new type of planning guidance document to be created in the Dover district area. (8 July 2005)

 

GOING BATTY

Members of the Kent Bat Group and Walmer Parish Council are organising a Bat Walk around Hawkshill Freedown on Saturday, 9 July. Open to all members of the public, it provides an opportunity to learn about this little known or understood species. Meet at 8.30pm in the car park on Kingsdown Road opposite Walmer Castle entrance (NOT the car parking area, Liverpool Road as previousy published). Children need to be accompanied by an adult. The organisers advise bringing a torch and suitable clothing and footwear for countryside walking. Call 01304 381506 for more details. (1 July 2005)