Local News

Suspected Illegal Immigrants Found In Teynham Lorry

Suspected Illegal Immigrants Found In Teynham Lorry

Picture: Kent Police Swale

Kent Police have confirmed that they were called to "a report that people were believed to be in a lorry in London Road, Teynham" at 11.58am this morning (Thursday 17th August).

On attendance they discovered 10 suspected illegal immigrants in the back of a lorry at the Fowler Welch chilled fruit distribution depot.

The group has since been handed over to the UK Border Agency for processing by the Home Office.




It's A-Level Results Day For Sttingbourne's Students!

It's A-Level Results Day For Sttingbourne's Students!

All over Sittingbourne students are finding out whether or not they have acquired the A-level grades they need to take the next steps in their life's journey.

Below is a look at how each school performed:

Borden Grammar School for Boys

116 students sat exams at Borden Grammar school and 64% achieved A*-C.

One pupil at the school who stood-out was Craig Clark who achieved the best results ever achieved by a single pupil.

Westlands/SCC/Swale Skills Centre

Over 170 students sat their exams at Westlands School, Sittingbourne Community College and Swale Skills Centre. Between those students the overall A* to E pass rate was 99%.

Josie Pengelly of Swale Sixth Form obtained triple distinctions in dance and an A in English Literature which means she is off to university.  

I didn't obtain the grades I needed, so what next?


On today's 'In The Bourne' Demi Hamandishe spoke to Julie Newlan the Pro Vice Chancellor at the University of Hertfordshire who advised that students should remain positive and call their chosen university's clearing hotline. In addition students should visit the UCAS website which has a lot of information and guidance on clearing.


Demi also spoke to Harry Gooding from 'Arch Apprentices' on today's show, who informed listeners that university degrees are failing to prepare students for work and is a costly exercise. Harry went on to recommend that students should consider apprenticeships not as a second choice but one where you can still get qualifications, some even at degree level, along with great work experience and pay.

Harry finished with a final word of advice which was to "not put too much weight on your results, your career is a long game and the first day of it is yet to come. These results are the end of education but not the end of your career".



Three-Vehicle Crash Closes The A249

Three-Vehicle Crash Closes The A249

The A249 was closed for several hours earlier this afternoon (Wednesday 16th August) due to an accident involving two cars and a van on the Northbound (Sittingbourne/Sheppey) carriageway.

The accident happened shortly after 1.00pm and all emergency services attended the scene including the Kent Fire And Rescue Service (KFRS) who used hydrualic cutting gear on an overturned vehcile.

*** UPDATE *** Long delays still remain in the area on the A249, A2 and M2 - tune in to 'SFM Drivetime' for the latest.

Rail Fare Price Rise Announced Today

Rail Fare Price Rise Announced Today

Sittingbourne's commuters are set to be faced with a 3.6% hike for their train season tickets from January 2018.

The annual increase for regulated fares throughout the UK is based on the Retail Price Index (RPI) figure for July every year - the RPI is a measure of inflation published monthly by the Office for National Statistics - and July's was announced at 9:30am this morning as being 3.6%.

Some season ticket prices here in Kent are already amongst the highest in the country, particularly on the High Speed 1 service in to London St Pancras International, where passengers pay a premium for their journeys due the shorter journey times in to the capital.

Chief Executive of the Campaign for Better Transport, Stephen Joseph, told SFM News: "This rise is set to be the highest since 2013 and will be leaving many commuters struggling to meet the cost of their commute next year. We want the Government to bring in a fares freeze from January - it's frozen fuel duty for the last seven years and we think rail fares should be given the same treatment".

We will keep an eye on this story and report back on "In The Bourne" over the next few weeks.

Appeal After Orpington Man Dies In M2 Crash

Appeal After Orpington Man Dies In M2 Crash

Kent Police are appealing for witnesses to a serious collision on the London-bound carriageway of the M2 between junctions six and five near Faversham late last night (Monday 14th August).

The collision happened at 11.05pm and involved a silver coloured BMW 530.

The driver of the vehicle, a 27-year-old man from the Orpington area, was declared dead at the scene and a road closure was in place following the collision which was lifted at around 7am this morning (Tuesday 15th August).

Anyone who saw the collision and has not yet spoken to police, is asked to contact the Serious Collision Investigation Unit on 01622 798538 quoting reference: AH/AH/177/17.

Spate Of Thefts From Vehicles In Swale

Spate Of Thefts From Vehicles In Swale

Kent Police are investigating 11 reports of thefts from vehicles in Swale over the last few days.

Officers are investigating reports of theft after seven vehicles were reported to have been broken into overnight in various areas in Sittingbourne between Thursday 3rd and Friday 4th August and between Saturday 5th and Sunday 6th August four more reports of theft were made with vehicles targeted in Sittingbourne, Iwade and Kemsley.

One report was received where between 8pm on Saturday (5th August) and 10am on Sunday (6th August) a car parked on a driveway in Park Avenue, Sittingbourne, was targeted. The vehicle is believed to have been left unlocked and a purse stolen from inside.

Another vehicle was also targeted between 12.40pm and 2.20pm on Sunday (6th August) in Raspberry Hill Lane, Iwade, where a window was smashed and a bag containing a small quantity of cash was reported stolen.

Kent Police Inspector Gavin Wade of the Swale Community Safety Unit told SFM News: "we have received a number of reports recently where both secure and insecure vehicles have been targeted. Please do not rely on remote door locking devices as they sometimes fail, I would encourage drivers to physically check their vehicles before walking away and always ensure anything of value is removed from the car or kept out of sight."

As well as locking and alarming vehicles Kent Police are advising that you shoud:

- Remove any valuable or sentimental items;
- Secure items in your boots or take them out of the vehicle if it is left unattended;
- Park in a secure car park or well-lit location whenever possible;
- Wipe away SatNav suction marks, as sometimes these can entice a thief to break in.

Anyone with information about these recent thefts in Swale can call Kent Police's appeal line on 01795 419119 quoting crime reference XY/039287/17.

Or alternatively they can call Kent Crimestoppers, free (from any landline) and anonymously, on 0800 555 111.

Community Wardrobe Project 2017 Begins

Community Wardrobe Project 2017 Begins

Parents are being asked to donate unwanted items of school uniform, making it easier for local families on low incomes to get ready for the new school year.

Last year the project saw hundreds of items of school uniform donated. Following on from this success, local churches are once more working in partnership with the council, housing association Optivo, local voluntary groups and the Neighbourhood Furniture Store to redistribute school clothes that are no longer needed.

The Sittingbourne Community Wardrobe project will collect clothes from drop-off points in and around Sittingbourne. Volunteers will then set to work cleaning and ironing donations, ready for their new owners.

Reverend Lesley Jones, assistant curate at the Benefice of Milton Regis with Murston, Bapchild and Tonge, told "Demi on "In The Bourne" earlier today (Wednesday 2nd August): "We have had a great response and offers of help, it's good that people want to get involved and great for the community."

Cllr David Simmons, cabinet member for environment and rural affairs, told SFM News: "We are so pleased to be supporting this initiative again this year. As children outgrow their uniforms so quickly, this practical project is a simple way to reduce waste while giving something back to the local community."

If you have other unwanted textiles to recycle, you can put these out alongside your blue bin for kerbside collection. Just fill one carrier bag with your old textiles - including clothes, shoes, sheets, curtains and towels - tie it up and put it next to your blue bin on collection day.

For answers to all your recycling and refuse questions, you can visit Swale Borough Council's website: www.swale.gov.uk/bins-recycling

This year donations can be dropped off at:

• Swale Borough Council, Swale House, East Street, Sittingbourne (Mon-Fri, 9am-4.30pm)
• Bapchild Rectory, 25 School Lane, Bapchild, Sittingbourne (any time)
• Holy Trinity Church, Dover Street, Sittingbourne (Tues, Weds, Thurs, 12-2pm)
• Murston Community Hub, All Saints' Church, Church Road, Murston (Mon-Weds, 10am-12pm)
• Neighbourhood Furniture Store, Trinity Industrial Estate, Milton Regis (Mon-Fri, 9am-3pm)
• Optivo Community House, 66 Coldharbour Lane, Kemsley (please call 07525 680177)
• The Vicarage, Vicarage Road, Milton Regis, Sittingbourne (any time)

Please drop off your items by Thursday 10th August to make sure they can be distributed in time for the start of the new school year: after items are donated, they are sorted, washed, ironed and folded, ready to be collected and reused by local families.

If you'd like to help with cleaning and restoring donations, please call Rev. Lesley Jones on 07881 555580.

There are 3 opportunities to get involved:

• Friday 4th August, Optivo Community House, 10am-2pm
• Wednesday 9th August, Murston Community Hub, 10am-2pm
• Friday 11th August, Optivo Community House, 10am-2pm

The newly restored clothes will then be distributed at local events, taking place over five days.

Find your nearest collection event in the list below:

• Wednesday 16th August, Optivo Community House, 10am-2pm
• Friday 18th August, Murston Community Hub, 10am-2pm
• Monday 21st August, Net Church, 95 East Street, Sittingbourne, 10am-2pm
• Wednesday 23rd August, Holy Trinity Church, Green Porch Close, Milton Regis, 10am-2pm
• Friday 25th August, Neighbourhood Furniture Store, 10am-2pm

For more information and updates about the project, visit the Sittingbourne Community Wardrobe page on Facebook.

'Local Area Diarrhoea Cases' Close Pools

'Local Area Diarrhoea Cases' Close Pools

The swimming pools at The Swallows Leisure Centre are temporarily closed.

Swale Community Leisure Ltd, who manage The Swallows Leisure Centre, say the closure is "as a precautionary measure to allow for cleaning after a small number of reported diarrhoea cases in the local area. The pools will re-open once the cleaning has been completed and water quality tests conducted".

They have confirmed to the SFM News Team that the gym, workout studios, sports hall, café, soft play and children's activities all remain open and that they are running normally.

Swale Community Leisure are reminding all customers that babies or toddlers must wear a swim nappy in the pool and they are asking anyone who has had diarrhoea to refrain from swimming in any public pool until at least 14 days after the symptoms have cleared up.

Police Appeal After Serious Collision At Stockbury

Police Appeal After Serious Collision At Stockbury

Stock Picture

Kent Police are appealing for information following a collision near the Stockbury Roundabout at the weekend.

Officers were called to a report that a white Ford KA had overturned on the A249 in Stockbury Valley at 10.11am on Sunday (23rd July).

The South East Coast Ambulance Service, the Kent Air Ambulance and Kent Fire and Rescue Service were also deployed and a teenage girl was treated at the scene for a serious head injury before being taken to a London Hospital. 

A man in his 50s, who was travelling in the same car, was also treated at the scene.

Officers are investigating the circumstances of the collision and anyone with information is asked to call Kent Police on 01622 604100 quoting 23-0496.

Milton Road Closure

Milton Road Closure

A reminder that Milton Road will be closed between Eurolink Way and the A2 St Michael's Road from Monday (24th July) until Friday 25th August, to enable UK Power Networks to carry out high voltage cabling works to provide upgraded electricity supplies for the new retail outlets on the old Princes Street Depot site.

The section of Dover Street north of A2 St Michael's Road leading to Milton Road will also be closed. The alternative route is via A2 St Michael's Road, London Road, Key Street, Key Street Roundabout, A249 Iwade Bypass, Grovehurst Interchange, B2005 Swale Way, Castle Road and Eurolink Way.

Some delays are to be expected, especially at busier times, so it is recommended that motorists allow extra time for their journeys or consider using alternative routes during these works.

The works have been timed to be carried out during the school holidays, to reduce their impact on the area traffic flow.


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