Parish Chairman’s notes

There will be no need for a Parish Council election on May 6th as there were only 8 nominations for the 9 seats on the Capel Parish Council.

Your parish councillors after that date will be Maggie Fenton, Suzi Rich, Charles Mackonochie, Ashley Saunders, Trevor Sawyer, Hugh Patterson and two new members, Sian Young and Ewan Mackenzie.

Our thanks go to Chris Parker (outgoing Chair of the Recreation Committee) and William Forster who are standing down, for their service to the community during their time on the council.

The new Chairman and the membership of the committees will be decided at the Annual Parish Council Meeting in mid-May. The new council will also want to co-opt a ninth member to fill the vacancy. If you are interested in serving your community as a parish councillor, please contact the clerk for details

On May 6th there will still be elections for Borough and County councillor, as well as Kent Police and Crime Commissioner. Polling stations will be as usual Capel Village Hall (polling numbers starting with ‘I’) or Arnold Cook Hall, Tudeley (polling numbers with ‘J’). Please wear a mask and bring your own pencil/pencil!

At the time of writing, we are not sure what form Parish Council meetings will take after May 6th when the permission to hold remote meetings expires and unhelpfully, has not been renewed by the government. Face to face meetings will be allowed after May 17th but have to be socially distanced which makes it difficult to accommodate the public. Until June 21st we will be trying to keep face to face meetings at a minimum and delegating many decisions to the Clerk working in co-operation with the Chairman and chairs of committees.

A reminder that the Regulation 19 consultation on the Tunbridge Wells Pre Submission Local Plan now underway will last to 4th June at 5pm. Capel Parish Council will continue to object to the plan as it affects this parish. We will be working closely with Save Capel, Capel Green Belt Protection Society, and other groups as we put forward our response.


For residents it is vital that if you made a comment at the previous stage, you do so again. Objections will then be looked at by a planning inspector at a public enquiry. We need to convince the Inspector that the plans put forward for Tudeley are unsustainable and that building on the Green Belt at East Capel is unnecessary – especially when both sites are vulnerable to flooding. The fact that there is a much more sustainable site at Castle Hill which the planners refused to consider adds strength to our argument.

Hugh Patterson