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Hawkinge Community Centre may not go ahead...............14 February 2002

Contributed by localrags on Oct 22, 2002 - 03:06 PM

There are grave doubts whether the new Community Centre will ever be built.

Parish Council Chairman John Heasman has said that if it is not started by the middle of March 2002 rising costs may make it too expensive to build.

Already the plans have been amended and the first floor of the building will not be included in the initial build. It will however be possible to incorporate the first floor at a later stage.

The delays to the building have been going on since last year. It was due to be completed by December 2001 and even it were started in March, the completed Community Centre would not be ready until the end of the year at the earliest.

Meanwhile Etchinghill villagers are to get a new village hall after The National Lottery Community Fund has approved a donation of £142,000 towards the cost.


By pass plans called in by Government ..............13 February 2002

Contributed by localrags on Oct 22, 2002 - 02:59 PM

The Hawkinge by pass may never be built even though much of the infrastructure associated with the road is in place.

The original plans for a road between the M20 and M2(A2) identified in the 1990 local plan and the Hawkinge development brief were outside the settlement boundary.

The Secretary of State has now called for a Public Inquiry. Hawkinge has increased its size fivefold in the period since the by pass was included in the 1990 local plan.

Parish Council Chairman John Heasman said: "This is a devastating blow. I don't think the people know how much traffic flow will escalate in the area. "I would like to see the Village returned to it's former glory before the motor car. "The Parish Council will be speaking at the Public Inquiry to put it's views forward to support the by pass." It is viewed as essential to the Hawkinge community and Shepway in general, not only to alleviate traffic congestion, but to provide social infrastructure and economic development opportunities.

Leader of Shepway Council, Cllr Rory Love, said of the decision: "It is disappointing that the Government has again chosen to delay this important project, but we see this inquiry as an opportunity to speak up for the local residents and to put the case for an end to the traffic menace in the village centre."


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