AGMs for the Village Hall Trustees and the Residents Association will both be held in the village hall on Wednesday 22nd May 2019. 7.30 for 8pm
THE MODEL RAILWAY SOCIETY (ODMRS) INVITE YOU TO A Tour De France-By Train, Friday 22 February 7.30 to 10 pm in the Village Hall Yet again we welcome to Pratts Bottom Michael Bunn, a speaker much appreciated by both society members and residents. On this occasion his presentation will be a photographic railway journey visiting historic cities and ports; crossing beautiful country-side through the mountains and by the sea. You will travel by diesel, electric and steam trains on narrow and standard gauge lines. Just sit back, relax and enjoy the trip. Light refreshments will be available
ALL WELCOME- FREE ADMISSION
You only have until Sunday, 3rd February to voice your thoughts on Sevenoaks District Council’s local plan that includes developments that will have major impacts on Knockholt, Halstead and Pratts Bottom.
On Sunday 2nd December at 4.30 the village got together on the Village Green to celebrate the start of Advent. The May Queen Florence Baker-White had the responsibility of lighting the tree. We all sang carols around the tree while the children helped to decorate it. We then made our way into the hall for some refreshments provided by the Fete Committee which included mulled wine and mince pies before the carol singing commenced again. We all participated in the finale for a raucous rendition of The 12 Days of Christmas. All donations went to St Christophers and icare.
The Bulls Head pub helped us carry on the festivities with a heart warming stew and a classic Christmas quiz with their proceeds going to the Air Ambulance
Sunday 30th September was a true milestone day for the model railway society. After some years of creative, craft and technical endeavor the society’s largest and latest layout was assembled for its first comprehensive test in the village hall. So what is so special about the layout? For a start it is large, very large (30’ x 12’), over two thirds the length of the hall and about half its width. The model trains that will run on it are ‘OO’ gauge, 4mm to the foot scale , that is the same size as the models in a Hornby train set however, the important difference is that the models will all be to a very accurate fine scale standard and run on many yards of precision scale hand-built trackwork including the electrical conductor rail seen on our local mainline. In places the layout has 14 tracks and also accomodates complex pointwork to enable trains to be switched from one track to another. And just to complete an already complicated project the whole layout digitally controlled with train on track detection and fully working colour light signals, just like the real thing. Everything came together and worked well during the test. There is still alot of development work to be done to complete the scenic aspects. Some of the buildings will be CAD drawn by club members and produced on their home laser cutters and 3D printers. We will also be computerising two of the four lines so hands free running of trains can take place as operator cover during lunch breaks at exhibitions. So when will you be able to see it running? Unfortunately, not until some time in 2020, but you can follow progress on the club’s Facebook page and website, but in the meantime you can look forward to visiting our next exhibition in the village hall during the second weekend in January 2019. We look forward to meeting you.
MARTIN COOMBS – Project Coordinator
The first Sunday in October saw the latest edition of the autumn model rail show in the Village Hall. This show specialises in large scale model railways – G Scale – and there were three layouts on hand to entertain the visitors.
There was a very pleasing turnout with around 85 people attending and this included a good proportion of families and children. In addition to enjoying the trains in action, refreshments were on hand throughout the day from bacon rolls in the morning to tea and cake in the afternoon.
The day provided a good opportunity to get some ideas for possible home layouts, whether in the garden or indoors and for those who wanted to go a bit further, the sales stand did a healthy trade.
This autumn show has become something of a regular fixture at the Hall and already planning has started for 2019. Watch the website for further details
Read the next edition of the Village Newsletter for Autumn 2018. Including meeting your Ward Councillor Angela Page and an update on Broke Hill.
Demonstration at Knockholt Station by the Save The Green Belt Group
The demo has now been rescheduled for Saturday 10 November at 1pm.
In the meantime you can go online and sign an e-petition about the lack of consultation and the way SDC have conducted the draft local plan.
Type in Sevenoaks District Council ePetitions. This will take you to the Petitions page. Click on ePetitions received, scroll down and you are looking for the title
SDC to explain its failure to supply information.
The press and TV are very interested. Sevenoaks Chronicle have an article about the march in its 1 November edition; view it online
Please come in costume if you can
E.S Nesbitt, wrote the ‘Railway Children’ while living in Halstead. The railway and near train disaster, featured prominently in the much loved story, happened on this very stretch of railway. In his story, disaster was averted by Roberta removing her petticoat and waving it. We intend to wave everything we can get our hands on to avert the tragedy of the loss of our GREEN BELT.
The Save the Green Belt group will be demonstrating at Knockholt Station against the proposed development of 1,958 dwellings, 800 of which would be on GREEN BELT LAND right opposite the station. The Victorian lord of the manor objected to the railways encroaching on his land. Knockholt Station is in Halstead and this is where the developers are threatening to build the vast development. Knockholt is a tiny station, a holt really, very similar to the station in Nesbitt’s time, with a very restricted service and capacity – just another reason to consider seriously the effects of a large increase in the number of commuters using the station and facilities of the village.
Halstead already has an agreed 450 house development at the out of use Fort Halstead with a proposal for a further 300. The countryside in and around the village is used by youth groups, horse riders, cyclists, walkers and lovers of the countryside. This will all change if we allow the urban sprawl from the London suburbs to take over our irreplaceable GREEN BELT.
From: Jean Peel, Secretary. HALSTEAD GREEN BELT FUTURE GROUP
Contact: 07841 768636, e: email@example.com