Monthly News

January 2022

Staffing Changes:

We are pleased to keep you up to date with the personnel news from your council.  From
1st January 2022, we will have a new Parish Clerk and Responsible Finance Officer (RFO), Adam Hardy, who will be undertaking the role for 20 hours a week.  We do have a suspicion that Adam will be well known to most of you already!  Currently he acts as Deputy Clerk on an ad hoc basis, working with our current Clerk/RFO, Trevor Thorpe.  From the same date, Trevor will also be working 20 hours a week as Deputy Clerk.  So, the good news is that there will be continuity; we will have 40 hours of clerking weekly which is approximately what we have now, and that there will continue to be two loyal, well established and well-known clerks working for our parish.  Further details will be announced later.  Cllr J Richardson – Chair of the Personnel Committee

Second Runway Proposal Gatwick Airport:

Rotherfield Parish Council have made the following response to the consultation of a second runway at Gatwick Airport:

“Given the climate change emergency and the promises made at COP26, Rotherfield Parish Council consider that the expansion of commercial air traffic at Gatwick Airport should not be permitted. Rotherfield Parish lies underneath the flight paths into and out of Gatwick Airport where the base of the London Terminal Maneouvering Area (LTMA) is only 2500 ft above sea level. The high point of land in the Parish is 663 ft above sea level, meaning that airliners can be as low as 1837 ft or one third of a mile above the high point.  As a consequence the Parish is particularly affected by noise and pollution from airliners”

Speeding on Catts Hill:

The Parish Council speed indication device (SID) was recently deployed next to the bus stop at the start of Catts Hill for nearly a month after complaints about speeding drivers. For those unfamiliar with the area, this is round the corner from the old railway bridge and Spout Hill and almost opposite Padfield Close.

Considering that this piece of road is in the 30mph zone and that it is surrounded with housing on both sides with no footpath from Padfield Close to the Cuckoo Line Stores, the results downloaded from SID between November 9th and December 4th are little short of shocking.

In that period 42,338 vehicles were timed and just over one-third were driving at a respectable speed of between 30 and 34mph.  About one-sixth were between 35 and 39mph, just under 2,000 were at 40-44mph, while more than 450 felt the need to drive at 45 to 59mph, in other words approaching twice the speed limit. Three motorists decided to chance their luck at 60-69mph and one rogue driver (believed to be a motorcyclist) was clocked at an incredible 73mph at 4.15pm on a Sunday afternoon.

Thankfully as it must have been near dark by then, there would have been no horses being ridden or exercised along that stretch of road but at that time of day there are often walkers and parents with buggies, toddlers and dogs ambling along on the way home. We do not need to spell out the consequences of what could happen if a heavy car roars round the corner at 60mph just as a family of five decide to cross the road.

Before we take matters further, we would ask drivers to have consideration for other road users and abide by the limit on this stretch of road. We can request Sussex Police to come and do a speed  check and in that case, rather than just seeing their speed flash up on Sid’s screen,  errant drivers will find themselves hit in the wallet with a stiff fine and several points put on their licence, which will then affect their insurance premiums.

So please think twice before belting down Station Road, round the Cuckoo Line Stores corner and then along Catts Hill. We would like all our local drivers and pedestrians to spend Christmas at home with their loved ones rather than in the A&E ward at Pembury Hospital. 

past Parish council magazine articles: