Saturday, 28th April at 7:30 pm, Goudhurst Village Hall (Balcombes Hill, Goudhurst) Tickets: £15.00, includes two-course dinner and bar, compete in teams of eight. Contact: Andrea Kirkby 01580 211037
The views from the top of the tower of St Mary’s Church in Goudhurst (right) are far-reaching on a clear day. A vast area of the Kentish Weald can be seen. Visitors are escorted to the top via a set of fairly steep steps.
St Mary’s Church however needs more volunteers, aged 18-75 to help cover each weekend afternoon from 2.30- 5.30pm until the end of September. If you have an afternoon free to sit with a friend in the church and welcome visitors, please contact Andy Freeman 01580 211140
On 27th May, Finchcocks will be hosting a concert in collaboration with John Broadwood and Sons, with all profits being donated to Help Musicians UK.
It celebrates the bicentenary of the delivery of one of Broadwood’s finest pianos to Beethoven.
Finchcocks has three Broadwood pianos in its collection that are used for weekend piano course. One of them bears a remarkable similarity to the one that was sent to Beethoven in 1817.
In 1817 Thomas Broadwood, knowing Beethoven to be an admirer of his pianos, took particular care to create an instrument that would impress the most famous composer of the era. He invited five highly-acclaimed London-based musicians to help design the instrument. It took almost a year to make and was dispatched from London on 27th December, 1817.
Paul Roberts, an internationally-acclaimed concert pianist, will be performing pieces by Beethoven in the first half of the concert. In the second half, Paul, who is a leading authority on the music of Debussy, will be playing selected works to mark the centenary of Debussy’s death.
The concert will take place in the newly-renovated vaulted brick cellars in Finchcocks on Sunday 27th May at 7:30 PM.
Booking & Info
Kilndown has a new restaurant, with the opening of The Small Holding, situated on the one-acre site of the former Globe & Rainbow, Ranters Lane, Kilndown (TN17 2SG, 01892 890105).
Owner Will Devlin says “Our ethos is to try and use as much locally-grown and in-season produce as possible and we believe the best way to do that is to grow as much as we can on our own acre of land. Eventually we hope to serve food that has been wholly grown on our land, but this will take some time. We also intend to have pigs, chickens and ducks on the farm.”
Small Holding Instagram
Follow Parish Council activities in detail and check progress of planning applications.
The minutes from Goudhurst Parish Council’s March meeting have now been published.
Council News March
FINCHCOCKS, Goudhurst has been renovated, re-opened and now offers piano courses with accommodation.
Finchcocks was bought in 2016 by Neil and Harriet Nichols, with the intention of using it both as a family home and finding a way to continue the music at Finchcocks. Following the renovation of the Coach House and the Old Dairy, Finchcocks can accommodate up to eight visitors at a time through a series of regular residential piano courses, aimed at all ability ranges. David Hall (FRCO, MA Cantab) has been appointed Musical Director with Dr Alastair Laurence (Chairman of John Broadwood and Sons Ltd) assisting with the selection and maintenance of the instruments.
Roger Coombs, (below) who died in 2011, and was instrumental in setting up this website, lived in the village from 1964 until his death.
The text he wrote for the homepage has remained virtually unchanged since 1999.
During the last years of his life he was engrossed in writing fiction and finished two books. He attempted to get them published, without success.
After his death, Caroline Tebbutt, Roger’s daughter, resolved to get them published and now THE PILGRIM’S TALE by Roger Coombs is available from the website lulu.com. Caroline hopes it will also be soon be available at Amazon’s Bookstore.
The Pilgrim’s Tale, set in France, tells of a treasure hunt by a group of friends on the trail of a long-lost religious relic.
Roger’s daughter writes:
“It is a really good yarn and anybody who knew Roger will recognise many of his traits and interests which all find their way into the book. I have spent quite a while getting it ready for publishing and in doing so have read it many times. It still bears re-reading even though I practically know it off by heart. I hope that it may be a tangible reminder of Roger to his friends.
South-East Water will begin a 22-week, £131,000 improvement to water mains on 23rd October with a scheme for two new sections of main along Goudhurst Road, Marden. The aim is to increase capacity and maintain water pressure. Temporary traffic lights will be installed on the B2079 Goudhurst to Marden road. There is likely to be some interruption of supplies in Goudhurst as the new 596-metre and 50-metre sections of main are connected.
Internet provider TalkTalk has taken advantage of Local Loop Unbundling (LLU) in Goudhurst village’s telephone exchange and is now offering faster connections over ADSL2. Prices start at £21.50/month for a 2-year contract (speeds up to 19 Mbps), with unlimited downloads, in the central area of the village. (Lower speeds will be achieved away from the centre).
TalkTalk’s package compares favourably with independent provider CallFlow’s cheapest offering of speeds up to 30 Mbps for £39.99/month (18-month contract) and downloads limited to 40GB/month.
It is unclear whether other Internet providers (ISPs) will follow TalkTalk’s lead, but it looks likely. Some BT Internet customers received a message last week about an exchange upgrade. If other ISPs start installing their own equipment as TalkTalk has done, it will be good news for residents of the parish. It will be possible to achieve faster internet speeds whilst retaining discounts from bundled products such as TV and mobile phone, at a lower overall cost.
The results of the residents’ questionnaire conducted earlier this year in support of the Neighbourhood Development Plan have now been published.
“We are seeking passengers’ views on reducing stops at lesser-used stations to improve journey times between key destinations. We are not proposing to stop services to or from any station.
The Department for Transport has launched a public consultation to seek passenger views on their priorities for the next South Eastern franchise. Responses received will be used to inform the development of the specification for the next operator, due to take over the franchise in December 2018.
“Question 12 of the public consultation document seeks views about whether passengers would support reducing journey times to key destinations in Kent and East Sussex by reducing stops at less well used intermediate stations to create hourly fast services. An example is provided below to illustrate how the concept could operate in practice, if passengers supported it.
“Some longer-distance services have very long journey times in relation to the length of the route, such as between London and Hastings. Services from Charing Cross to Hastings, for example, take approximately 1hr 40mins to cover 62 miles, an average speed of less than 38 miles per hour.
“If service to certain intermediate stops were reduced, hourly fast services could be created between key destinations, offering faster journey times. All intermediate stations would continue to be served by at least an hourly service. Whilst we would be delivering faster journeys, the Department for Transport recognises that this has the potential to inconvenience passengers that currently use those intermediate stations. Any changes would therefore only be made if passengers overall benefitted, and travellers from lesser-used stations were not unduly disadvantaged.
“The public consultation has ended on 30 June 2017, after which the Department for Transport will carefully analyse each response. The conclusions will be published in the autumn in a stakeholder briefing document published alongside the Invitation to Tender (ITT).”
Department for Transport
A Neighbourhood Development Plan is being created by a group of volunteers. Once a plan is adopted, it will mean that planning decisions for Goudhurst, Kilndown and Curtisden Green will have to be made in accordance with the neighbourhood plan (and other parts of the development plan) unless material considerations indicate otherwise.
There is pressure both from central and local government for an increased number of homes to be built in all parts of the country, even in those which have permitted little development in the past.
Formulating a plan will create a framework for future development that meets the wishes of parishioners.
A Neighbourhood Development Plan is planning document created by a parish or town council or a neighbourhood forum, which sets out vision for the neighbourhood area, and contains policies for the development and use of land in the area. Neighbourhood plans must be subjected to an independent examination to confirm that they meet legal requirements, and then to a local referendum. If approved by a majority vote of the local community, the neighbourhood plan will then form part of the statutory development plan.
Luck, coincidence and diligent research combined to replace the headstone on the war grave of a Goudhurst man, George Baker, one hundred years after he died during the Battle of the Somme.
In 2007, the late Bob Brown, then chairman of Goudhurst’s Local History Society, discovered that George Baker’s headstone showed his name as Barer. At his instigation, the Commonwealth War Graves Commission (CWGC) re-engraved the name, but the result was far from satisfactory, with a K being imposed over the R.
On a visit to the Somme last September, local historian Roger Joye was surprised to find a wreath of poppies on the grave even though he and his wife, fellow historian Gill Joye, had found no direct descendants, despite extensive searching.
A few days later, the exact centenary of George Baker’s death was commemorated at the war memorial in Goudhurst. It was attended by George Jessel DL, High Sheriff of Kent. When told of the mystery and the state of the headstone, he offered to contact the CWGC to see what could be done to improve the engraving.
On that same centenary day, 28th September 2016, members of George Baker’s family made an unrelated visit to the grave at Méaulte, France. They planted a wooden cross bearing just their Christian names. In October, the CWGC wrote to George Jessel to say they had installed a brand new headstone and enclosed a photograph. By coincidence, the family’s cross was included, with legible names.
Gill set about tracing the names, constructing a family tree descending from George’s sister, Mary. Contact was then made with the family. It was then learned that the wreath Roger had seen had been laid by George Baker’s 14 year-old great-great-niece, Miriam Small, during a school visit in July 2016.
In March this year, to commemorate the renewal of George Baker’s headstone, Goudhurst & Kilndown Local History Society, the Goudhurst branch of the Royal British Legion and Great War Battlefields of Goudhurst arranged for a group of local people to attend a ceremony at the Cemetery at Méaulte.
Poppy wreaths were laid on George’s grave (pictured) and the Last Post was sounded.
British Legion Goudhurst
Following a recent resignation, there is now a vacancy to be filled on the Parish Council for the Goudhurst parish ward. If you would like to know more about being a Parish Councillor please contact the Clerk, Anthony Farnfield on 01580 212552 or
NOW ON SALE in Goudhurst Newsagent, High Street, Goudhurst.
There are over 40 miles of public rights of way (including footpaths, bridleways and permissive paths) within the parish of Goudhurst.
The Goudhurst Walkers’ map shows the paths (with their local reference number) to help you plan your route.
If you have any comments or encounter any problems with the local footpaths please contact Cllr David Boniface on 01580 211430 or the Clerk to the Parish Council, Anthony Farnfield 01580 212552
Goudhurst Recorded Music Society has changed its name to Goudhurst & Kilndown Recorded Music Society
An annual subscription now costs £20 (£18 if by standing order due on 1 August). Guests are charged £5 per meeting.
8 meetings are held in the Church Rooms (sometimes Cranbrook School) from September to May, with an additional Summer Serenade evening.
Chairman: Quentin Rappoport; Honorary Secretary Clare Benfield: 01580 211517
COMMEMORATING THE FALLEN OF THE GREAT WAR
Short ceremonies held at the war memorials in Goudhurst and Kilndown on the hundredth anniversaries of the deaths of 69 parishioners who served in the First World War.
A dedicated page has been created by historian Peter Rolington detailing the local men and women who died in the First World War, with their centenary dates.
A new and improved patient transport service from G4S was launched across Kent and Medway on 1 July 2016.
From 1 July, the bookings line number changed to 0800 096 0211. (Open 24 hours a day, seven days a week)
The patient transport service provides free transport for people whose medical condition means they cannot get to or from their place of care (a hospital, hospice or clinic) in any other way. Eligible patients can book transport to get them to and from outpatient and inpatient appointments. The criteria for eligibility for patient transport services has not changed.
For further information about the patient transport service in Kent and Medway, including a leaflet, poster and feedback form, visit www.km-pts.co.uk
Kent, Surrey & Sussex Air Ambulance is appealing for local groups, clubs, societies and other organisations to book a talk about the life-saving work of the charity as it takes delivery of a new helicopter.
The air ambulance has launched a new presentation including information about how the helicopters are tasked, the aircraft, types of missions, the crew, blood transfusions and night flying.
If you would like to book a talk, please call Fundraising Support Assistant Lucy Waterson on 01622 833 833.
If your answer is “yes”, then volunteering as a Countryside Access Warden may be ideal for you. Wardens carry out simple tasks on Public Rights of Way such as clearing overgrown vegetation and improving waymarking so people can use footpaths, bridleways and byways easily.
Kent County Council are looking for volunteers to become Countryside Access Wardens in Goudhurst, Kilndown and Curtisden Green. You need to be over 18, fit enough to carry out light physical duties and able to spare at least a couple of hours every month at times convenient to you.
Knowledge of Public Rights of Way is not necessary as free training and equipment will be provided, a basic knowledge of map reading and regular access to a computer would be useful.
For more information and to apply to become a Countryside Access Warden for your local area please contact Anthony Farnfield, Clerk to Goudhurst Parish Council. Call 01580 212552
Sir Roy Strong, historian and former Director of the National Portrait Gallery and the V&A, accompanied BBC Radio Four’s Justin Webb to record a radio interview in Goudhurst.
Sir Roy chose Goudhurst to represent the heart of the English countryside in his book published on national identity, titled Visions Of England. The BBC produced an audio slideshow of the interview, which can be found at:
The Citizens Advice Bureau Bus will no longer be visiting central Goudhurst on Tuesdays. Alternative arrangements are being made. For advice telephone 01892 533 880.
The British Legion in Goudhurst has its own dedicated page
Goudhurst Village Pre-school is open for 2 – 5 year olds in Goudhurst, Kilndown and Curtisden Green.
All 3 to 5 year olds are eligible for 15 hours’ free Early Years educational funding.
Sessions are from 9 a.m. to 3.30 p.m Monday to Friday (except Wednesdays, to 12 p.m.)
£4.50 per hour (£13.50 per session), with an optional £3 lunch club until 1 p.m.
A minimum of two sessions per child, per week, are required.
For further information please contact Jo Galloway on 01580 212777 (session times only)
07896 890370 (out-of-hours)
There are over 40 miles of public rights of way in Goudhurst parish, but the local footpaths need to be kept clear of overgrown hedges and brambles, and wobbly stiles and marker posts need to be repaired.
Roger Coles has, for many years, organised volunteers to walk the paths to report on their condition so that the Parish Council can arrange the necessary maintenance work, sometimes in conjunction with Kent County Council. The volunteers are known as Hon Footpaths Officers and they have made an large contribution to raising and maintaining the standards of the local paths. However, some of the volunteers have now retired and replacements are needed. If you would like to become involved, even on a very occasional basis, please contact Cllr David Boniface on 01580 211430 or the Clerk to the Parish Council, Anthony Farnfield 01580 212552
“Police and Community Together” (PACT)
POLICE COMMUNITY SUPPORT OFFICER: PCSO Dave Jenkins: mobile 07969 584279. Dial 101 for non-emergencies.
CONTACT KENT POLICE: :
For all non-urgent incidents or enquiries, call 101
If a crime is in progress or life is in danger, call 999
If you are deaf or speech impaired, text ‘Police’ and your message to 60066
For news, advice or details of your neighbourhood officer, visit www.kent.police.uk
NEIGHBOURHOOD WATCH CO-ORDINATOR Peter Rolington 01580 212920
See if your home is in an area at risk from flooding
Visit the Environment Agency’s search service. Just enter your postcode and it will show you a map showing flood risk in your area.
Environment Agency Website
The Help the Aged HandyVan service is a unique home security service, where trained HandyVan fitters visit your home and install equipment such as door chains and viewers, window locks and smoke detectors.
A fleet of 35 HandyVans are based around Britain and deliver a free service to those who meet the following criteria:
1. Applicants must be over 60 years of age.
2. Applicants do not pay income tax (excluding tax on personal pensions).
3. Applicant’s disposable savings/assets do not exceed £16,000 (Not including the value of their home).
Everyone is vulnerable to burglary, and the HandyVan service enables people to feel safer in their homes. Prevention is always the key to a safe, secure home and HandyVan fitters will work to help you ensure that your home is free from the risk of burglary.
If you would benefit from the HandyVan service, or you know someone who would, then please call the team on 01255 473 999 or
Parish Council news page
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