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Agenda and minutes

Venue: Riverside Lounge, Angel Centre, Tonbridge

Contact: Committee Services  Email: committee.services@tmbc.gov.uk

No. Item

TF 19/18

Minutes pdf icon PDF 158 KB

To confirm as a correct record the Minutes of the meeting of Tonbridge Forum held on 2 July 2019


RESOLVED: That the Minutes of the meeting held on 2 July 2019 be approved as a correct record and signed by the Chairman.

TF 19/19

Update on any action identified in the last Minutes


There were no updates or actions identified that were not covered elsewhere on the agenda.

TF 19/20

Gas Replacement Works in Tonbridge

Representatives from SGN invited to attend and participate.  This is subject to confirmation.


Representatives from Scotia Gas Networks (SGN) explained that it was necessary to replace the main gas pipe at one end of the High Street (opposite Tonbridge School) to avoid the risk of failure and leakage.   There was concern that increased demand for gas during the winter months would increase this risk and it was indicated that a planned work programme would be better than an emergency response, which would cause significant disruption.


The Forum expressed disappointment at the poor communication, lack of consultation and the insufficient notice of these proposed works.  It was noted that work was originally scheduled for today (Monday 9 September) and this had been delayed in response to the significant concerns raised by the Borough and County Councils.


There were also significant concerns raised related to the proposed diversion route which would have implications for traffic flow and be difficult for buses to navigate. 


Following in-depth discussion the Borough and County Councils’ preference was for the replacement works to be programmed for early 2020, subject to improved consultation with key stakeholders (Borough and County Councils, all bus operators and local schools), the preparation of a risk assessment and the submission of a detailed traffic management plan setting out diversion routes.

TF 19/21

Tonbridge and Malling Services Update


The Chairman (in his role as Leader of the Borough Council) presented an update on the new waste services provision, due to start on 30 September, the installation of a replacement bridge at the Swimming Pool (planned for September), events and activities in and around Tonbridge, preparations for Fairtrade Tonbridge renewal and discussions with the Regional Asset Portfolio Manager of the Arch Company related to Railway Approach.


Particular reference was made to the Borough Council’s declaration and recognition of global climate change and biodiversity emergencies and the aspiration for Tonbridge and Malling to be carbon neutral by 2030. Services and operations would be reviewed to ensure that policies supported climate change mitigation.  A draft Climate Change Strategy would be out for consultation in May 2020 and everyone was encouraged to contribute suggestions. 


It was reported that leaflets outlining the waste service arrangements and collection days would be posted to all residents shortly. Take up of the garden waste collection service was over 42% and was the highest in Kent for a similar service.  In addition, a number of recycling/bring bank sites were being retained although these would be reduced following the full introduction of the new services.  Details were set out in the report of the Director of Street Scene, Leisure and Technical Services considered by the Street Scene and Environment Services Advisory Board on 3 September. 


In response to a question from the Society of Friends, it was confirmed that tea bags broke down sufficiently to be put into food waste bins. 


TF 19/22

Kent Police Update pdf icon PDF 73 KB

Representatives from Kent Police to advise of recent initiatives, operations and activity.


Kent Police were unable to attend the meeting due to operational pressures and their apologies were recorded.  In the absence of a representative from Kent Police the report of Inspector Kerry Rothwell, circulated at the meeting, was noted.   A copy of the report would be attached to the Minutes.

TF 19/23

Kent County Council Services Update

Representatives from Kent County Council to provide an update on recent initiatives, consultations and other matters of interest.


The County Councillor for Tonbridge (Michael Payne) provided details of a number of County initiatives and consultations.  The headline messages of relevance to Tonbridge included the County Council’s commitment of £250,000 to focus on initiatives to tackle fly tipping and the continuing investment into libraries, especially the refurbishment of Tonbridge library.


A number of issues were raised related to the High Street including the impact of the pedestrian crossing and roundabouts on the flow of traffic, the extension of the 20 mph speed limit, replacement of the trees and the appearance of the footpath near the Castle bus stop.  In response, County Councillor Payne advised that the County Council were aware of these issues and mitigation measures would be progressed as soon as possible.


Other issues raised included landscaping at the Botany, in front of St Stephens Church, potential signage advising No HGVs to be erected in areas around the town and Arriva not using the new bus stops.  All of these points were noted and would be passed to the relevant organisation for awareness.

TF 19/24

Forthcoming Events

Tonbridge Rotary to publicise forthcoming events for October – December:


-        Half Marathon

-        Christmas Festival


Tonbridge Rotary provided details of events that would be held between October – December 2019:


-                  Half Marathon


This would take place on 6 October starting at 1000 hours in Brook Street.  There would be a road closure in place until about 1400 hours.   Volunteers to act as race marshals were invited.


The Chairman indicated that he would be running in support of the Mayors Charity (CRY).


-                  Christmas Festival – Sunday 24 November


Tonbridge High Street would be closed between 1030 – 2030 hours from Vale Road to Bordyke.  There would be a variety of stalls and entertainment would be provided on a stage near the river.  The fireworks display would start later than previous years at 1900 hours due to an extended programme of entertainment. 


-        Social Activities in Tonbridge for Older People


The Chairman referred to the social activities financed by Tonbridge and Malling Seniors (TAMS) for 2019.  Members were invited to recommend events and/or activities for older people for inclusion in a promotional leaflet for 2020.   Tonbridge Town Team offered to promote events sponsored by TAMS in their regular What’s On magazine.