Safety

Flood Alert

Upper River Stour

Flood alerts are also active for other areas of the Borough

Flooding is possible – be prepared

River levels are forecast to rise as a result of heavy rainfall overnight tonight. Flooding of roads and low lying land is expected from early tomorrow morning, Thursday 14th January 2021. We believe there is a possibility of flooding of low lying land and roads along the East Stour, Great Stour and tributaries around Ashford. Flooding of properties is not expected at this point. Prolonged rainfall is forecast over the next 24 hours. We are closely monitoring the situation and our incident response staff are prepared to respond if required. Please avoid using low lying footpaths near local watercourses and plan driving routes to avoid low lying roads near rivers which may be flooded. This message will be updated by 10am tomorrow morning, Thursday 14th January 2021, or as the situation changes.

This information was last updated at 7:06pm Wednesday 13 January 2021

Flood alert – Prepare

  • prepare a bag that includes medicines and insurance documents
  • check flood warnings

Monitor the river level feed from Gaugemap.co.uk on our River Levels page

What to do before, after and during a flood:

Environment Agency:
https://flood-warning-information.service.gov.uk/target-area/064WAF6UpStour

Flood Alert

Upper River Stour

Flooding is possible – be prepared

River levels have risen as a result of persistent rainfall. Flooding of roads and low lying land is expected from 09:45 today, 05/01/21. We expect flooding to affect low lying land and roads along the River Great Stour, particularly around Great Chart. Further light rainfall is forecast over the next 24 hours until tomorrow morning, 06/01/21. We expect river levels to continue to rise until tomorrow evening, 06/01/21. Our incident response staff are actively monitoring the situation and are prepared to respond if required. Please avoid using low lying footpaths near local watercourses. This message will be updated by 20:00 this evening on 05/01/21, or as the situation changes.

This information was last updated at 7:34am Tuesday 5 January 2021

Flood alert – Prepare

  • prepare a bag that includes medicines and insurance documents
  • check flood warnings

Monitor the river level feed from Gaugemap.co.uk on our River Levels page

What to do before, after and during a flood:

Environment Agency:
https://flood-warning-information.service.gov.uk/target-area/064WAF6UpStour

Flood warning

The area covered by flood alerts has been extended to include the whole of the Great Stour from Lenham to Ashford, the East Stour from Postling to Ashford, Aylesford Stream and the Great Stour from Ashford to Sturry.

The threat on Ruckinge Dyke and Whitewater Dyke has been raised to Flood Warning.

Warnings and alerts are in force elsewhere in the Borough of Ashford

Flood warning – Act

  • turn off gas, water and electricity
  • move things upstairs or to safety
  • move family, pets and car to safety

Flood alert – Prepare

  • prepare a bag that includes medicines and insurance documents
  • check flood warnings

https://flood-warning-information.service.gov.uk/warnings

Flood Alert Upper River Stour

Flooding is possible – be prepared

River levels have risen as a result of heavy rainfall. Flooding of roads and low lying land is expected to start around 08:00 today 27/12/2020. This is likely to take place in the following locations: River East Stour, the Aylesford stream and the River Great Stour. Further heavy rain will continue till around 09:00 before the weather will clear apart from a few scattered showers. Further rainfall is forecast late tonight and into Monday. We are closely monitoring the situation. Our incident response staff are patrolling catchments and clearing screens. The public are advised to keep clear of rivers and avoid driving in flood water as bow waves can cause property flooding. This message will be updated later this afternoon.

This information was last updated at 6:05am Sunday 27 December 2020

Flood alert – Prepare

  • prepare a bag that includes medicines and insurance documents
  • check flood warnings

Monitor the river level feed from Gaugemap.co.uk on our River Levels page

What to do before, after and during a flood:

Environment Agency:
https://flood-warning-information.service.gov.uk/target-area/064WAF6UpStour

KFRS customer promise consultation

Fire service personell

Kent Fire and Rescue Service (KFRS) are consulting on their Customer Promise

KFRS exist to help keep you safe whether at work, home or as you move around Kent and Medway. They deliver services for everyone working and living in our changing community. They aim to give people advice and support in order to reduce the risk of fire and other emergencies as they go about their daily lives. Of course, accidents still happen and they aim to provide an excellent emergency response when it is needed, meeting the needs of every individual involved.

The KFRS customer promise sets out what you are entitled to expect from them, and what they expect from our staff. It also outlines the standards that they have set in the key areas of service that they know are important to you. And because a statement is simply a statement, you will find quantifiable targets by which their performance can be measured in their action plans. Above all, it is their commitment to provide you with an assured level of service, giving you the peace of mind that they are working to help you stay safe in your home, at work and when you’re out and about in Kent and Medway.

There when you need them

  • Everyone in Kent has a right to expect an excellent response from Kent Fire and Rescue Service.
  • They will always seek to innovate so we can deliver a service that meets changing local needs.
  • To develop a better understanding of our customers’ needs so they can provide services that fit your needs and accessible advice to help you keep yourself, your home and your business safe.

Respect, fairness, compassion

  • KFRS recognise without bias the rights, needs and dignity of others in all our contact with you.
  • They will work to see things from our customers’ perspective and treat everyone with compassion, fairness and respect
  • They will ensure all people, but particularly those with a disability; lesbian, gay, bi-sexual and transgender people (LGBT); ethnic minority people; older people; and people from minority faiths, are aware of ther services, feel confident to access them and understand how they can be adapted to meet individual needs.

Working with you to deliver good value services

  • KFRS will seek your views and listen to your feedback to help them shape and deliver services.
  • They will continue to deliver the best service they can by setting targets and honestly reviewing performance to see where they can improve.
  • They will spend public money in a way that maximises community benefits.
  • They will take a common sense approach to our work with partners including police, ambulance and public health to save money, avoid waste and build safer, resilient communities.
  • They will continue to work in a way that minimises their impact on the environment.

To listen, learn, and resolve your problems

  • KFRS will make it easy for you to contact them. 
  • Staff will listen and deal with you in a professional, friendly way, avoiding jargon and taking responsibility to resolve your issue.
  • They will respect and protect your privacy and personal data. They maintain a secure network and servers to safeguard your data against malicious activity.
  • Despite best efforts they occasionally make mistakes. When things do go wrong, they want you to feel confident that they will listen and deal with your complaint quickly and learn lessons to improve their services.

Kent Fire and Rescue Service
https://www.kent.fire-uk.org/about-us/our-customer-promise/

Enjoy bonfires and barbecues responsibly

With many spending their extra time at home in the garden we remind you to be careful and considerate when lighting bonfires and barbecues.

Please consult your neighbours before lighting a bonfire or barbecue, essential workers may need to wash clothes more frequently and smoke can aggravate some medical conditions. Neighbours may also mistake bonfire smoke as being from a property or uncontrolled fire and call the fire brigade.

Rules regarding bonfires.

You must not burn general household waste, but may burn garden waste from your own garden if this is done without causing a nuisance to others.

If there is no alternative to having a bonfire, you must:

  • Ensure that smoke does not cause a nuisance to neighbours.
  • Ensure that the smoke does not affect highway safety

and you should:

  • Avoid burning in hot weather – when neighbours are more likely to need windows open
  • Notify neighbours that you will be having a fire
  • Ensure that the fire burns quickly, rather than be left to smoulder
  • Ensure that green waste has completely dried out prior to burning
  • Ensure that the fire is not left unattended, and have a means to extinguish a fire if necessary
  • Ensure that the wind direction will take any smoke away from neighbouring properties

Burning of commercial waste

In addition to the law of nuisance, it is an offence to burn commercial waste (including construction and demolition waste), and to produce dark smoke from industrial or trade premises. No bonfires should be lit on commercial premises, except for the burning of ‘green’ landscaping waste cut down at that property.

Fire service safety advice:

  • Remember to build your bonfire well clear of buildings, garden sheds, fences, hedges and overhanging branches.
  • Keep it to a manageable size and make sure it is evenly built so it collapses inwards as it burns.
  • Always have a bucket of water or hosepipe nearby in case of emergency. If the bonfire becomes out of control and catches foliage or property alight, call 999.
  • Be sure not to leave bonfires unattended and dampen them down fully once you’re done.

Those enjoying barbecues are also urged to do so safely, keeping cooking well away from fences, foliage and buildings even if there are no flames, because radiated heat alone can cause nearby plants or structures catch fire.  

Ashford Borough Council
https://www.ashford.gov.uk/the-environment/environmental-health/bonfires-and-wood-burners/bonfires/

Kent Fire and Rescue Service
https://www.kent.fire-uk.org/news/news-releases/april-2020/rise-in-bonfire-999-calls-linked-to-covid-19-isolation/

Council Tax 2020/21

The main precepting authorities for residents of the Borough have announced their proposed precepts for the year commencing 6 April 2020 as shown in the table below for a Band D property:

Authority19/20% Rise£ Rise20/21
KCC £1,299.42 3.99%£51.84 £1,351.26
ABC£162.503.08%£5.00£167.50
FRA£77.761.97%£1.53£79.29
PCC£193.155.18%£10.00£203.15
Total unparished £1,732.83 3.95%£68.37 £1,801.20

The total Council Tax for each property band is shown in the table below.

BandProportion Band D%
Band D
2019/202020/21Rise
pa
2019/20
pm
2020/21
pm
Rise
pm
A6/967% £1,155.22 £1,200.80 £45.58£115.52£120.08£4.56
B7/978% £1,347.76 £1,400.93 £53.18£134.78£140.09£5.32
C8/989% £1,540.29 £1,601.07 £60.77£154.03£160.11£6.08
D9/9100% £1,732.83 £1,801.20 £68.37£173.28£180.12£6.84
E11/9122% £2,117.90 £2,201.47 £83.56£211.79£220.15£8.36
F13/9144% £2,502.98 £2,601.73 £98.76£250.30£260.17£9.88
G15/9167% £2,888.05 £3,002.00 £113.95£288.81£300.20£11.40
H18/9200% £3,465.66 £3,602.40 £136.74£346.57£360.24£13.67

Some authorities have yet to vote on their budgets.

References:

KFRS Safety and Wellbeing Plan 2020

You have probably never spent much time considering how your fire and rescue service works to reduce the likelihood of an emergency happening to you. We hope this brief guide gives you a reassuring insight into the depth of the planning and work that goes on to help you stay safe. 

We need and want to tell you about what we think the issues are, and consult you on any proposals we want to make which change the service you receive. This plan is mostly to tell you how we do this, what we think about and what we then do with the information. It also covers some investments for the future we are making, and where we want to set the Council Tax for 2020/21. 

All fire services, by law, have to assess risks in their areas. In Kent and Medway we want to get the best possible understanding and assessment of public safety across Kent and Medway, and all the things that we think could reasonably predict happening that could cause injury or loss of property. This is best done with your help so we understand the issues which could make you more vulnerable, and the needs you have from us. We can then develop ways to help change behaviour to reduce harm, through our prevention work, or our emergency response service.

It’s all about you…

We focus on people and how their individual needs can best be served. For example:

  • People living with some forms of dementia, or physical or mental disabilities may be more vulnerable to fire and may need tailored support in the event of an emergency.
  • People may be at risk because of the nature of buildings in which they live.
  • People could be impacted by risks in their local area, such as grass fires, coastal flooding or similar risks within their community. 

We look at these alongside broader issues in society such as how populations change and how a warmer climate might affect fires. 

Bringing all these risks together we work out the blend of fire stations, firefighters and specialist equipment and teams that we need, in order to get to you as quickly as possible within the money we have available to us. We look at what work we can do to prevent fires and road traffic collisions by helping people change to safer behaviours, and also what we can do to make buildings safer.

The first part of this plan is a summary of the eight elements we bring together to understand how best to serve you. We are very happy to give you a more in-depth explanation should you wish by emailing information.officer@kent.fire-uk.org

Nick Chard, Chairman of Kent and Medway Fire and Rescue Authority

Flood Warning lifted

The Flood Warning affecting parts of South Ashford was lifted on Monday Morning and the Flood Alert for the Lower Stour was lifted thisMorning (Christmas Day) but the whole of the Upper Stour area remains at Flood Alert

Updated at 7:42pm Wednesday 25 December 2019

Upper River Stour

Flooding is possible – be prepared

River levels have fallen significantly throughout the Upper Stour catchment but some low lying land and roads may still be affected by flood water, particularly in the area around Great Chart. The Aldington and Hothfield flood storage areas are still impounding water from the recent heavy rainfall last week but water levels are falling steadily. The weather conditions are expected to remain dry overnight but further rainfall is forecast on Boxing Day, 26 December 2019 which is likely to cause further localised flooding of low lying land.   We are continuing to monitor the situation as the catchments remain very responsive to further rainfall.    This Flood Alert message will be updated tomorrow morning, 26 December 2019.

This information was last updated at 7:42pm Wednesday 25 December 2019

River levels are falling through the catchment. We are storing water at Aldington and Hothfield Flood Storage Reservoirs and they are emptying slowly. Today is forecast to be dry but the occasional shower cannot be ruled out. Weak frontal systems are forecast on Monday/Tuesday night with blustery showers embedded, a second system is forecast for Thursday. The current expectation is that these are not likely to be as disruptive as last weeks rainfall. We are monitoring conditions. Residents should remain vigilant as catchments are saturated.

This information was last updated at 12:33pm Monday 23 December 2019

South Ashford on the East Stour River, Aylesford Stream, Whytewater Dyke and Ruckinge Dyke

Last time in force: 8:57am Monday 23 December 2019

After a period of drier weather, river levels have fallen and the risk of flooding has now passed.

This information was last updated at 8:57am Monday 23 December 2019

Upper River Stour

Flooding is possible – be prepared

River levels are high following recent heavy rainfall. The weather forecast is for less rainfall over the next few days, which will allow river levels to reduce. The ground remains very wet, and river levels will rise again if there is further heavy rain. We continue to monitor the situation closely, This message will be updated in the morning on Monday 23/12/19, or as the situation changes.

This information was last updated at 7:05pm Sunday 22 December 2019