A recent Ofsted monitoring visit to Lynsted and Norton Primary has highlighted the school’s improvement plan is “fit for purpose” with “detailed plans to make further improvements with the support of Trust leaders”.

This was the first monitoring visit since the school’s full inspection during the pandemic in May 2021, when it was classed as ‘inadequate’. Since then the school has seen major changes and inspectors have highlighted its “shared commitment to improving the quality of education”. 

Since May last year the school has become part of Our Community Multi-Academy Trust, appointed a new Headteacher and made a number of changes to staff including new reception teacher, new Key Stage 2 teacher and changes to a small number of teaching assistants.

The Ofsted report states: “There is sufficient evidence to support leaders’ accurate evaluations of their impact. Leaders have detailed plans to make further improvements with the support of Trust leaders. The Interim Governing Board (IGB) includes knowledgeable professionals, who provide a range of skills to support the school. They have clearly defined roles and responsibilities and know the school well. They have appropriate approaches to monitoring the progress of the school and understand the work still to be done.”

Headteacher Catherine McLaughlin, who took on the role in September 2021, said: “We have made great strides forward in a short period of time, and our recovery from the pandemic has been tough but positive. We are under no illusion that there is much more to do, but we have a team that is working tirelessly to give our pupils the education they deserve.

“The monitoring inspection has been valuable and detailed, ensuring we remain focused on the road ahead. We have a Trust that is supporting our activity and providing high-level experience which will enable us to make further improvements in all areas quickly and effectively.”

The Ofsted report states: “The different layers of Trust support and monitoring have contributed to improvements across each area for improvement identified at the last section 5 inspection.”

During the inspection, Ofsted met with the Headteacher, subject leaders and pupils, and also with members of the Trust leadership team, Chair of the Trustees, the Chair of the IGB and the CEO.

The Medic Care GP practice in Teynham will be re-locating to the Memorial Hospital in Sittingbourne next month.  This means there will no longer be a doctor’s surgery in the entire Teynham & Lynsted ward.  

Lynsted with Kingsdown Parish Council has written to NHS bosses requesting urgent action to keep the practice in Teynham.  

You can read our letter HERE
Swale’s planning committee voted last night to refuse the application to build new houses on land East of Lynsted Lane.  This follows a vigorous campaign by the Parish Council against the proposals which attracted well over 200 letters of objection from local residents.

The Council chamber was packed on a hot and muggy evening with over 50 Lynsted householders in attendance to register their disapproval.  The debate raged for one and three quarter hours with strong arguments voiced on both sides.

Speeches from parish and ward councillors emphasised the highways and parking issues, the decline of shops and services in Teynham and the loss of amenity to those living in Lynsted Lane.  The housing would result in increased car use and carbon emissions in a location already designated as an Air Quality Management Area - contrary to Government guidelines that new developments should be designed to reduce pollution.

When it came to the vote, eleven councillors voted against the recommendation of planning officers - with just one in favour and four abstentions.

The meeting was then adjourned whilst officers drafted up the grounds for refusal, which were again approved by a huge margin.

A great result for local democracy, but it remains to be seen whether the developers will appeal against the decision.

You can read the three-minute formal presentations HERE

Swale Council’s planning committee will make a final decision this Thursday on the application to build a housing development on land to the East of Lynsted Lane, behind the F J Williams joinery yard.

Lynsted with Kingsdown Parish Council objects strongly to this application and over 200 letters of objection were submitted by local residents.   

The committee voted against the plans in March, but Swale’s head of planning “called in” the application for further consideration.  

It would make traffic congestion and air pollution in the narrow Lynsted Lane even worse.  Residents who currently park their cars outside their own homes would be forced to park further down the lane on a blind bend.  And pedestrian access would be through a busy joinery yard.

Residents are welcome to attend the meeting.  Details are as follows:  

Date:               Thursday 23 June.      7pm

Venue:            Swale House, East Street, Sittingbourne ME10 3HT

To view the proposed site, see this IMAGE

Access would be to the right of the photo.   

It’s been a particularly busy year for the Parish Council.  We’ve been fighting numerous proposals to build an excessive number of houses in our Parish, both via the Swale Local Plan and from developers.  But we’ve also been dealing with the day-to-day issues that affect the Parish, from tackling speeding traffic to restoring the village sign.
You can read the Chairman’s annual report  HERE

Sittingbourne News has today run an article which outlines the Parish Council's reaction to the Levelling Up and Regeneration Bill. We argue for greater clarity on housing targets and more specific protection of farmland and the countryside from excessive housing development.

You can read the article HERE

Details have been released of the event to celebrate the Platinum Jubilee at Lynsted Church on Friday 3 June from 2pm to 4pm. Entry is free. There will be a slide show, a screening of the official Coronation film plus teas, coffee & cake.  For full details SEE THE FLIER HERE

The May issue of the Lynsted with Kingsdown Parish Council newsletter has now been published.  Topics include the Lynsted Lane housing application, an update on the Swale Local Plan, proposed cancellation of bus services in the Parish and our planned celebrations for the Platinum Jubilee.  Read the latest newsletter HERE

Kent County Council are looking to axe local bus services.  The plans range from the withdrawal of some off-peak journeys to scrapping other routes in their entirety, including school run services.  These cuts will affect residents in Lynsted, Teynham, Bapchild, Newnham, Doddington and Conyer.  Tomorrow (Weds 20 April) is the last day to take part in the consultation if you want to express your views.  Given the climate emergency, KCC should be actively supporting increased use of public transport – not getting rid of it.  Read the objection letter from your Parish Council HERE