New 431 Bus from Sevenoaks to Orpington

Your webmaster attended a public meeting at Knockholt this evening, chaired by Cllr Nick Chard of Kent County Council. Phil Lightowler, KCC’s Head of Public Transport, explained that Arriva as a private company had decided to withdraw the 402 service between Dunton Green and Bromley from 24 July. Austin Blackburn, MD of Go-Coach, announced his new 431 service from Sevenoaks to Orpington. It is accepted by all that this is a poor replacement for the hourly 402 service.

Buses for Orpington will depart from Pratts Bottom at 1002, 1202, 1402 and 1602. The return buses will leave Orpington at 1030, 1230 and 1430. The 431 bus will operate only on weekdays. Holders of free bus passes can travel before 9.30 by paying £1. Passengers for Bromley will need to change at Green Street Green or Orpington High Street.Additional buses run on school days. See below for full timetable.

Letter from Jo Johnson 14.6.2017

Letter from Arriva 10.5.2017

431 Bus Timetable

Sign the Biggin Hill RAF Chapel Petition

Following the Council’s decision to adopt the plans for Biggin Hill Museum and the Chapel, which many think are most unsuitable, Dave Evans, Rita Radford (Downe RA) and others have started a 38 Degrees Petition to protect the Chapel. Twenty signatures are needed to get started.  Please help by signing the petition and spreading to others via email/ social media using this link

PLEASE NOTE: To make your opinion count you must sign the petition. Comments made on this site are welcome but will not affect the petition .

Halstead Open Gardens, Sun 11 June, 10.30-5

Beautiful gardens to explore, Art exhibition, Plant sale, Village flowerpot sculptures

Cream teas/barbeque/refreshments, Children’s play area & bouncy castle

Live piano jazz, Grand prize draw

Tickets: £6 in advance, £8 on the day, Free entry for under 16’s (must be accompanied by an adult), available locally from: Hancocks village shop, the Cock Inn, the Rose & Crown, the Village Ironing Shop, Halstead Community Primary School, the Three Horseshoes, Knockholt. Also available by emailing

Arriva 402 Bus Service, public meeting 22 June, 7pm

Following the announcement that the 402 will terminate at Dunton Green from July 24th, and a much reduced 431 timetable introduced, a public meeting has been arranged. KCC’s Senior Transportation Officer, Philip Lightowler and Austin Blackburn, MD of Go Coach will be there to explain the decisions made and answer any questions. The meeting will be at Knockholt Village hall on Thursday June 22nd at 7pm. All welcome.
Freda England, Clerk to Knockholt Parish Council

Biggin Hill Chapel “Hustings” 30 May

A few weeks ago some proposed changes to Biggin Hill Chapel were passed by the Council. Some people are continuing to object to these proposals and a group has been formed, ‘Biggin Hill Chapel Action Group’. They had a first meeting two weeks ago, which was well attended. The second meeting is on 30 May 7.30 pm at the Biggin Hill WI hall, Lebanon Gardens, Biggin Hill and because all the candidates have been invited it technically has become a ‘hustings’

Arriva axes 402 bus service before consultation ends

Your Webmaster has just received this email from Arriva (my emphases):

Arriva Bus Southern Counties has recently undertaken a major network review in order to improve resource allocation and punctuality across the entire network. As part of this review, patronage was assessed to ensure that resources and services are being scheduled on a demand led basis. The result of this activity has secured both improved punctuality and customer satisfaction in several areas.

Arriva has been operating the 402 service between Tunbridge Wells and Bromley via Sevenoaks for many years. The service was previously reviewed back in 2011 and was deemed to be below viable patronage levels at this time, however Arriva agreed to delay any cuts to the service and explore the calls for service demand, which were expressed during the consultation process. Sadly 6 years on, the service remains under-utilised between Bromley and Dunton Green, and the Sevenoaks Weald loop, and as a result is unfortunately not commercially viable; these parts of the route will cease to operate from Sunday 23rd July, 2017. Arriva will retain and operate the 402 service between Sevenoaks and Tunbridge Wells.

Arriva will continue to consult closely with Kent County Council, as the council may decide to review whether the service meets their criteria for support as a socially necessary service.

PLEASE RESPOND TO ARRIVA before the statutory consultation ends on Friday 19 May 2017 by clicking here! You might also wish to write to your MP and local councillor.

Pratts Bottom Fete, Sat 20 May

Come and join the fun at our traditional village fete. The day starts at 11.30 with a procession from Broke Farm Recreation Ground to the Village Green, where the May Queen will be crowned. Then all the traditional fun things to watch or do like Punch and Judy, Orpington Gymnasts, Country Dancing, Fun Dog Show, Tug of War and Grand Raffle. The best dressed house in the village will get an award!

PLEASE NOTE: As the police won’t allow one-way traffic, Rushmore Hill residents are asked to keep their cars off the road from 6 am to 4 pm on Fete Day.