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Rochester South and Horsted ward:
Councillors' Activities

All these activities/events were attended by one or more of the three Rochester South & Horsted Councillors: Nick Brice, Ron Hewett, and John Ward (who took most of the photos so doesn't actually appear in many!). More recently, Sylvia Griffin joined us as replacement for Ron.

Clicking on any small image in the sections below will display the full-size version, and there is a slide show of medium-sized versions of some of the photos below-right.

Here is a list of what are admittedly only a tiny fraction of our activities that are illustrated below:

Find more photos like this on Strood Conservatives

Rochester Airport

Airport closure protestDERAC Chairman interview
Protest at the threat to close Rochester Airport, outside Corn Exchange:
November 1999
The Chairman of the local Residents Association being interviewed by Meridian Television
21st May 2000
John and Nick at Airport DERAC Chairman interview
Cllrs Nick Brice (left) and John Ward at Rochester Airport
November 2006
Cllrs Nick Brice and John Ward with a few of the Airport's many supporters
November 2006

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Mid-Kent College at Horsted

The proposed move of Mid-Kent College from its Horsted and City Way campuses to the Lower Lines in Brompton meant that the college management needed to sell the existing sites for as much money as they could. This meant obtaining outline planning consent for predominantly housing developments, which puts up their value enormously.

Local residents near the Horsted site were not happy with either the original or amended proposals, which we brought to them at two public meetings—both expertly chaired by Cllr Ron Hewett—one of which was televised:
Packed public meetingJohn interviewed on television
Packed public meeting on the Davis Estate
24th August 2004
Cllr John Ward being interviewed on TV
24th August 2004

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Visit to recycling facility

This, believe it or not, was our mode of transport when visiting a recycling site we at Medway Council use for certain materials: an organic farm!
Luddesdown Organic Farm, Luddesdown, near Cobham, 10th July 2000

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Drainage Board

The Lower Medway Internal Drainage Board makes an annual inspection, and John was part of the inpection party in 2000 and 2001:
Inspection in 2000Inspection in 2001
Mocketts Pumping Station part-constructed, inspected on 4th September 2000Channel Tunnel Rail Link (CTRL) tunnel entrance near Blue Bell Hill on the day it was being handed over, 3rd September 2001

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Cliffe Airport Threat

Street Stall

The local Conservatives had a stall in the High Streets of Strood, Rochester, Chatham, Gillingham and Rainham. We were giving out posters, stickers, leaflets and newsletters, and inviting passers-by to sign our petition, which got over 3,000 signatures altogether that day. I was one of those staffing the Chatham stall, admittedly looking a bit old in this picture!
Saturday 28th September 2002

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Blythswood Care

This was Blythswood's fortieth anniversary, and at the time their Kent establishment was in our ward (at Laker Road) so naturally at least one of us would be present at their celebration, with the then Mayor of Medway at guest of honour. As Blythswood has close associations with my church, the Salvation Army, it was appropriate for me to be our ward representative at this event, and here I am, tucked in just behind and to the side of the Mayor:

Blythswood Care

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PDSA Open Day

When both the Mayor and Deputy Mayor are otherwise engaged, and someone is needed to represent the community at an event, whom do they call? Yes, I was the one on this occasion, back in June 2004! It was apparently because of my known affinity with animals of all types (and no, I don't mean my political opponents!) that I was asked to open the PDSA's Open Day and judge one of the dog contest heats (Best Puppy).

Well, here I am in the thick of it, enjoying every moment (if the truth were to be told!) despite all the canine hairs I had to remove from my clothing afterwards...

Best Puppy winner

Another Best Puppy contender

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Admiral's Downriver Patrol


Something we all three do most years, supporting the Mayor of Medway in his/her rôle as Admiral of the stretch of the River Medway that passes through (and some way beyond) the Medway Unitary Authority's area. Here I am pretending to be a Captain(!)

River Admiral's Patrol

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Shirley Avenue Roundabout

The overgrown bush in the middle of the Shirley Avenue roundabout had been planned for severe pruning for some time, but this never happened. Finally, after some careful negotiation, the bush was first cut down then completely removed and replaced by five silver birch saplings. These will grow into spectacluar smallish trees that will not impede drivers' sight-lines (as did the bush!) but will add to the feel of the area at all times of the year. The site will be maintained, and an initial two-year maintenance contract is in place.

Roundabout with bushRoundabout minus bushRoundabout with trees
Roundabout with bushRoundabout minus bushRoundabout with new trees

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Computer Club talk

Digi-TV launch event I am occasionally asked to attend all kinds of events, especially in the Information Technology (IT) arena—for example representing (along with Neil Davies, the then Director of Medway Council's Corporate Services) Medway Council at the launch of the Kent-wide Digi-TV system that has been led by our Council:

Most unexpectedly, though, was a request to give a talk to a London computer club on the use of IT within my Council. This was in June 2007, and resulted from a diary-style column I had by then been writing for an international computer magazine for a year and a half or so. Perhaps most interestingly, one of the regular club members I met that evening was a staunch left-winger, yet we got on very well, even walking and chatting together on the way back to the railway station afterward...

Computer Club talk

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Other Activities

We are always out and about, looking around the ward in general, and checking on work that has been arranged. Here are just a few examples that were captured in action:

Telephone booth in Wyles RoadLeafleting in Berkeley CloseTrip hazard in Beresford Avenue
Telephone booth in Wyles RoadLeafleting in Berkeley Close, Warren WoodTrip hazard on footpath in Beresford Avenue
Junction proposal, Maidstone RoadNew road surface, City WayNew road surface, Snodhurst Ave
Junction proposal, Maidstone RoadNew road surface, City WayNew road surface, Snodhurst Avenue

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