Higham Parish Council

Special Announcements, News and Events

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Lower Thames Crossing
A Handy Guide to the LTC Consultation questions
Pavilion Project - An Update
Gravesham Borough Council - Consultation on Services
Gardens for Pleasure 2018 - Winners Announced
Higham Library News & Events
  Village Shrub Areas
  Defibrilator Training Report
  Report Fly-Tipping
Councillor & Community Warden Drop-In
Board Game Club
Cllr Harold Craske - Personal Statement 
Litter Picking
Volunteer Support Warden Scheme
Country Eye

Love Higham - A Plan for the Village plus Gravesham Local Plan

Faster Broadband
  Volunteer Drivers Needed
Youth Club
Highcliffe Medical Practice
  Kent Police Seek Community Volunteers
  Phone Scam
Thames Estuary Partnership
Parish Allotments
Garden Bonfires
Overgrown Vegetation


Higham Community Pavilion Project - An Update

Firstly, thanks to everyone who supported recent events which have raised money for the Pavilion Project.  The
Fun and Relax Evening in October made £110 profit and the 5th November Firework Display collected £1506.

Read this Pavilion Project update, November 2018. [PDF file]

Thank you poster for the assistance during recent snow

Village shrub areas poster

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Gravesham Borough Council -- Your Views Wanted

Gravesham Borough Council (GBC) is consulting residents on their next Corporate Plan for the 2019-23 period.

By consulting with residents, community groups and local partners, GBC will be able to prioritise council services to meet community need and expectation.

Do you live in Gravesham?

If you answered yes then we’d love to hear from you. Whether it is cleaning the streets or affordable housing, community safety or a thriving town centre, this is your borough and we want you to tell us what matters to you.

By taking part in the consultation you will also be offered the opportunity to enter in to our prize draw to win £100 of high street vouchers. (Terms and Conditions apply)

We value every bit of feedback from our residents so whether it’s good or bad we want to know. Please help us to set our priorities for the future in Gravesham.

All responses received by 24 January 2019 will be taken into consideration as Gravesham Borough Council start the process of planning their future services.

Have your say -- click here
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Higham Library News

Library CLOSED from Saturday 15th December for new carpet laying.
Reopens on Thursday 20th December 2018.

Library Extra
It is now possible to access Higham Library when it's not staffed! Wow!

Outside the usual staffed 'opening' hours, using a Library Extra registered Kent Library Card and your personal PIN, you can enter Higham Library from 7am until 9pm, Monday to Saturday. This is ideal for customers who find it difficult to get to the library during its opening hours, to pick up a reservation or return a book for example, but it also provides an opportunity for quiet study and email catch-up, using the public computers for an hour, or WiFi.

Anyone interested can join the library (with proof of address and DOB) or get their existing library card registered. You just need to sign acceptance of the Terms & Conditions and receive a short induction. You'd have to pop in during the staffed hours to do this though! The staffed hours are still Mondays/Wednesdays/Fridays 9am - 1pm, Tuesdays/Thursdays 2 - 5.30pm, and Saturdays 10am - 2pm.

Knit & Natter  -- Knitting and crochet every Tuesday 6-8pm for beginners and old hands!! (Library Extra card needed)

Books & Beverage -- Book club meeting 2.30-4pm on the 3rd Tuesday of the month discussing books by a chosen author for the month. Refreshments served by Paul, the Community Warden!

Talk Time  -- Meet up and chat, with refreshments and quiz, every Wednesday 10-11.30am.

Higham Library Book Club -- Book club meeting 6.45-9pm on the 1st Thursday of the month discussing the chosen book of the month. Very informal. (Library Extra card needed)

Higham Quilters -- Quilting group meeting on the 2nd and 4th Thursdays of the month, 7-9pm. (Library Extra card needed)

Community Warden Surgery  -- Last Thursday of the month 2.30-4pm. Raise any issues with KCC Community Warden, Paul Hassell, and a local Parish Councillor. Free refreshments provided!

Baby Rhyme Time  -- Every Friday during school term time, 9.30-10.30am, followed by parents/carers coffee and chat.

Reading Champion  -- Every Saturday, 10.15-11.15am, a young volunteer reads with children.

Games Club  -- Every Saturday from 10.30am, games and crafts for children (volunteer needed).
Home Library Service (HLS)  -- If you are someone (or you know of someone) who would like to borrow a book (standard or large print) or audio disc (spoken word) but you're unable to get to the library, we have a volunteer who can visit you fortnightly with books for your enjoyment. There is no charge for this service and you have an extended loan period.
Chess  -- Why not pop in with a friend to play a game of chess, using our lovely, donated chess set. If you fancy setting up a Chess Club, even better!

Coming Soon!  -- Higham Village History Group now has its archive materials stored at the library and a volunteer will be available once a month to help customers with their local history enquiries. Dates/times to be confirmed.


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Gardens for Pleasure 2018 - Winners Announced

Gardens for Pleasure 2018 winning garden
Anne and Robin Miles, garden pictured above, are the 2018 overall winners.


This is an annual competition organised by HIGHAM PARISH COUNCIL and judged on our behalf by horticultural officers from GRAVESHAM BOROUGH COUNCIL. There are no entry forms for parishioners to complete as every front garden in the village is considered when the judges tour the Parish looking for gardens that give the passer-by the most visual pleasure. In reaching a final decision the judges award points for colour, choice of plants and cultivation, and the overall design of the garden.
Prizewinners will receive their awards at a Parish Council meeting on Monday 26th November.
Read more details...

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Report Illegal Fly-Tipping

Unwanted rubbish, dumped builders rubble, old furniture, discarded sacks -- these items spoil our lovely village and countryside.  If you see flytipping, please report it directly to Gravesham Borough Council:-

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Garden Bonfires

Please be considerate if you light a bonfire - the smoke can cause problems, especially for people with health problems.

During hot, dry periods, lighting a bonfire can be hazardous.

There are alternatives to a bonfire - for example:

•   Composting garden waste
•   Reusing or Recycling items

If you do light a bonfire, and, indeed if you’re "firing up" your Barbecue, please consider your neighbours and give them some warning before you start.

There are no specific by-laws prohibiting bonfires or specifying times you can light a bonfire.

More information about Smoke and Bonfires can be found here.

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Overgrown Vegetation - Advice from KCC Highways to local Residents and Landowners

Every year throughout the spring and summer KCC Highways & Transportation receive numerous complaints regarding trees, hedges and other vegetation, which overhang the highway from private property. This matter can pose a number of problems for people trying to use the footways, especially if they are trying to pass with buggies, wheel chairs and scooters. It would be greatly appreciated if you could ensure that any trees and hedges that are bordering the Highway are maintained and cut back to your boundary which would greatly benefit all Highway users. This will help us all keep the highway safe and prevent the need for KCC Highways & Transportation writing to you requesting that you cut back your vegetation.

So that you are aware of our requirements, please refer to the text below.

If the boundary of your property borders the footway, then please be aware that:

•   The full width of the footway/pavement must be available for use by pedestrians.
•   As well, there must be a minimum height clearance over the footway/pavement of 2.1 metres / 7 feet for any vegetation.

If the boundary of your property borders the carriageway, then please be aware that:

•   If you have vegetation that overhangs into the road, there must be a minimum height clearance of 5 metres / 16 feet, to accommodate buses and HGV’s that may use the road.
•   If your property is rural, then vegetation should be 0.45 metres / 1’6” feet behind the edge of the road and all signs need to be kept clear of foliage for at least 20 metres.

Also, I would ask that you pay special attention to your trees, hedges and vegetation if your property is on or near a junction, and/or inside bend of the road, to maintain maximum visibility for road users.  Read more information and advice.

Highway Steward
Kent County Council Highways & Transportation

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Personal Statement by Cllr Harold Craske

I have been a loyal member of the Gravesham Conservative Association for over 40 years, a former member of KCC, a Borough Councillor for 11 years, Deputy Mayor and then Mayor in 2017-18.
Recently I attended an interview with the Association's Local Government Committee for selection of candidates for next years local elections. I was told that my interview was to "check you understand the role and responsibilities, have the time available and the people skills required to be a councillor".

The following day I was surprised and extremely distressed to learn that I had not been "approved" as a future candidate by this panel of just 5 people. Of these, the 3 who disapproved my status will not give any reason whatsoever for their decision. I do not understand how I have failed in their eyes and neither can any of my constituents in Higham, many fellow Councillors from all parties, local organisations and charities and not least the general public. By refusing to give a reason for their decision the 3 committee members have cast a slur on my character. It could almost be called slander by silence. Their silence is against natural justice and human rights.

I had thought of resigning in protest and causing a by-election but this would be expensive to the council tax payers in the Borough and I am not prepared to put them to this expense. Instead I have decided to remain a Councillor and sit as an Independent Conservative. I will continue to serve my residents and the Borough as a whole, continuing my proud record of achievement.


Cllr Harold Craske

August 2018.


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Councillor & Community Warden Drop-In Neighbourhood Surgery
December 2018 poster
If you have any comments, ideas or concerns about your village and local surroundings?  Then come to a Drop-In Surgery on the last Thursday monthly between 2.30pm and 4pm in Higham Library.


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Volunteer Support Warden Scheme

Calling all passionate community-driven people for an exciting new volunteer role.

Kent County Council is introducing a new volunteer role working alongside existing Kent Community Wardens. As a Volunteer Support Warden you’ll make a difference to residents and create resilient neighbourhoods. The role will be challenging at times but rewarding and you’ll be improving the well-being of the residents in your local area.

For more information and to find out which areas this role is being launched visit www.kent.gov.uk/communitywardens.


Report on a Previous Village Litter Pick

Another successful Litter Pick last Sunday, 2nd October 2016. A BIG thank you to our 13 volunteers who collected 20 bags of rubbish, plus a hub cap, 2 balls, a red pole, 20 glass bottles and several other strange objects from School Lane, Church Street and some surrounding roads, hedges and grass verges plus the Recreation Ground.

There is no doubt there is less litter around the village and thanks are also due to anyone who picks up litter in their area on a regular basis - that makes a huge difference.
Just need to find a way of reducing the number of people who drop litter - any ideas out there - legal methods only!!
Watch this space for the details of the next session - if you would like to become a volunteer just message the Parish Clerk or email sue3906@gmail.com and we'll add you to the list.

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Dates for Higham Parish Council Meetings in 2018


15th January

26th February

16th April
21st May(Annual Parish Council Meeting and Parish Council Meeting)

2nd July

10th September

15th October

19th November (Budget and Finance only)

26th November (Christmas Meeting with the Mayor of Gravesham).

The Annual Parish Assembly will be held on Thursday, 12th April 2018.

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Country Eye -- Helping Keep the Rural Community in Kent Safe

Country Eye has been built to help Kent residents, farmers and countryside users receive rural information and to report information quickly and efficiently. The mobile phone app allows users to record and share information on crime, suspicious behaviour and damage in their home community or whilst out and about. 

The Country Eye app is now available to download for free on iPhone and Android.

Visit www.countryeye.co.uk.

Kent Police's Rural Task Force teams help our rural communities with advice and proactive patrols. Make sure your property is secure. Isolated buildings, farms, machinery and livestock are all targets for criminals.  Kent Police's Rural Team
North Division (covering Swale, Medway, Dartford & Gravesham) can be contacted directly on 07528 989 095.

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Love Higham - A Village Plan

From all the comments gathered at the Love Higham Day, it is obvious that you would all like a safe, healthy, clean and tidy village. The rural environment is important to you as is the community spirit. Most of you love living in the village and its sustainability is the key to the future. 

Village Plan Draft

The first draft of the Plan is here!!

HIGHAM VILLAGE PLAN 2018-2028 YOUR VILLAGE – ITS FUTURE can be downloaded here


Paper copies are available in the Library.

To find out more about Love Higham and to chip in with your ideas, please email, text or phone.
       Email: information@lovehigham.co.uk or Phone: 07480 518493 www.lovehigham.co.uk


A Love Higham day was held on Saturday 4th February 2017. See some photographs...

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Restart a Heart Day bannerHigham's Defibrillator

During October 2018 Higham residents were able to learn about the Defibrillator equipment that has been installed in the village by Higham Parish Council. Awareness sessions were organised to demonstrate the Defibrillator and people were invited to “have a go” using the training equipment.

These sessions were part of the Restart a Heart campaign - a designated yearly day of action with the aim to teach vital life-saving cardiopulmonary resuscitation (CPR) skills to as many people as possible – go to www.resus.org.uk for more details.

Sessions were held earlier in the year when the equipment was first installed on the Recreation Ground in School Lane and so far around 200 people have been shown how to use the Defibrillator.
Residents Queuing to take part in the Defibrillator session at Higham Library

(above) Residents Queuing to take part in the Defibrillator session at Higham Library

Although the village equipment is located in the middle of the village and is accessible 24/7, the Parish Council is keen to see additional Defibrillators available in other locations. When someone suffers cardiac arrest, every minute without CPR and defibrillation reduces their chance of survival by at least 7 – 10%.

Although Higham is a village with a large older population, Defibrillators help save the lives of people of all ages – 12 -15 young people die from heart related causes each week.

Having equipment in easily accessible locations in local communities helps to save lives – there are 30,000 out of hospital cardiac arrests in the UK every year. Chances of survival increase significantly with early access to CPR and Defibrillation.

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Faster Broadband in Higham?

Are you interested in faster broadband speeds in our village?  Read more...

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Volunteer Transport Service Urgently needs Drivers

If you are a car owner, enjoy driving and have time to spare, your keys can unlock lives!

The Volunteer Centre needs local Drivers to take people who are unable to use public transport due to age, frailty, illness, or disability to and from their vital medical appointments. All that is necessary is a clean, valid driving licence, a vehicle in good condition and MOT’d.  Our Clients pay you 45p per mile to cover your expenses. This could not only make a difference to our clients’ lives and wellbeing, but your own.

Please contact us on: 01322 272476 or email volunteer@nwkvolunteers.org.uk

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Higham Youth Club

Youth Club Reopens 10th January 2018

** Important -- read this Statement from Higham Parish Council about the previous Club and the Pavilion Project. **[11th June 2017]

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Highcliffe Medical Practice

Our local GP surgery has a web site ( www.highcliffemedicalpractice.nhs.uk/ ) to provide patients with useful information about the services available.  In addition they are also looking to recruit younger local resident to join our patient participation group.  Please contact:

Kevin Creasey
Practice Manager
Highcliffe Medical Practice
Higham Surgery
Hermitage Road
Rochester, Kent

Tel: 01474 823841
Fax: 01474 824155

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Unwanted Mail

By registering with the Mail Preference Service you can reduce the amount of personally addressed junk mail received.
You can register by writing to:

The Mailing Preference Service
DMA House
70 Margaret Street

or calling 0845 703 4599 or logging on to: www.mpsonline.org.uk

Unwanted Telephone calls

You can reduce phone calls from companies offering to sell goods or services by registering your telephone number with the Telephone Preference Service.

Write to:

The Telephone Preference Service
DMA House
70 Margaret Street

or call 0845 070 0707 or logging into www.tpsonline.org.uk

Silent Callguard Service

If you receive a phone call and when you pick up the receiver there is nobody speaking, you may be receiving calls generated by automatic dialling equipment that dial more numbers than there are operators to take the calls.

You can reduce these calls by registering with the Silent Callgard Service on 0844 3722 325.

Telephone "Yes" Scam Alert

Information from Swale area shows how a simple phone scam can catch people out.  Read more and how to avoid being scammed.

Parcel Scam Alert

Kent Police Neighbourhood Watch are aware of a warning Royal Mail have put out. They have advised that there is currently a scam happening due to Christmas fast approaching.

A Card is posted through your door from a company called PDS (Parcel Delivery Service) suggesting that they were unable to deliver a parcel and that you need to contact them on 09066 611911 (a premium rate number).

If you call the number and you start to hear a recorded message you will already have been billed for £315 for the phone call.

If you do receive a card with these details then contact Royal Mail Fraud.

Royal Mail's website has very helpful details in relation to Scam mail.  Please make all family and friends aware that there may be many other scams similar to this. If you are ordering online and getting deliveries, confirm who your item will be delivered by/to.

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101 is the Police Non-Emergency Number

101 is the national non-emergency number to contact Police in your area. Residents in the Kent policing area should call 101 to contact their local officer, make an enquiry and to report non-urgent crimes.

Examples when to use 101 are:

Each call will never cost more than 15p. Callers will be put through to Force Control Room in Kent and not a national call centre.

As always, dial 999 in an emergency when life is in danger or a crime is in progress.

¬ ¬ ¬ ¬ ¬ ¬ ¬ ¬ ¬ ¬ ¬ ¬

Kent Police logoCommunity Policing Volunteers


Kent Police are looking for volunteers to play a new role in community policing. Could this be you?

See this website for more information.

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HiARA - Higham Active Retirement Association

For the time being, the Parish Council is providing website space to host the HiARA website.  There is lots of news, information and details of HiARA's activity programme plus dates for outings.  Visit the web site.

HiARA News -- see the December 2018 edition (views in new browser windows with any PDF viewer).

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HiARA logo graphic


image of Thames Estuary Partnership logo
Thames Estuary Partnership

The Thames Estuary Partnership (TEP) is a forum for local authorities, national agencies, industry, voluntary bodies and local communities to work together for the good of the Thames Estuary. The Partnership is a charity which co-ordinates projects and holds events and workshops to provide information and to gather feedback. 

The threat of climate change and increased flood risk is an ever present feature of the Estuary, yet many local people are not aware that plans are already being developed to help those responsible to adapt to these threats.  More detailed information can be found on the TEP website, www.thamesweb.com

Viewable Thames Estuary & North Kent flood risk map - click here.   format, needs image of Adobe Reader logo.

Environment Agency flooding risk & advice - click here.

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Parish Allotments

Allotments are small plots of land set aside for local people to rent and grow plants, vegetables, fruit, etc. Allotment size can vary or be divided up to provide variety of produce for your own requirements.  Click here to go to the informative BBC allotment web page.

Last season the Parish Allotments showed an increase in the number of plots rented for cultivation. This was most encouraging and the Parish Council decided to undertake a survey of the condition of all the plots. Some plots are now available for rent and cultivation. Annual fee is currently £25.00 per annum.

Water stand-pipes are within reach of all the allotments, so if you are interested in finding out more, please contact the Higham Parish Clerk on 01474 822642 or email enquiries@higham-kent-pc.gov.uk.


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Contact us by email: enquiries@higham-kent-pc.gov.uk

Please do browse through our pages for more information...


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 Higham location map

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 Parish Council Meetings

 Annual Parish Newsletter

 Local Higham links page

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18 December 2018

Web site design and creation by

Clive Stanley Associates 01474 822676

Revision date

Copyright © 2004 - 2018 Higham Parish Council