Meetings are held at the old village hall on the second Tuesday of each month at 7.30pm.
The exhibition will be centered around the Biddenden village war memorial and the men listed as having fallen during the First World War.
The History Society - with the help of Keith Fazzani, regimental chaplin to the Buffs, Royal East Kent Regiment - has researched all twentynine of the men to try to find any relatives still in the village. There appears to be only six of the men with whom someone in the village still claims a close relationship.
Those six have been selected, and also the son of the school headmaster, for full in-depth research by a professional, whilst we have done as much research as possible on all of the others.
We have had a replica (full size) of the memorial made and it will be displayed in the village hall as a centrepiece item, complete with wreaths & crosses. There will also be many artifacts, uniforms, medals and many personal items by members of the village and surrounding area for the displays.
The “researched brochures” on our selected seven men will be presented to the families at the end of the exhibition at about 5pm on the Saturday.
There will also be the re-enactment group, “They Shall Not Be Forgotten”, from Maidstone in 1914-1916 West Kent Regimental uniform of the day, together with posters, and lots of other items for their display.
Also, as the ‘Old Hall’ was a VAD hospital from October 1914 until October 1916, having had 108 wounded men through during that time, we are having a re-enactment scene – operated by the children of the school, in nurses uniforms, and as patients and doctors.
The doctor and two of the nurses' families lost sons in the following two years. We have photo's of the doctor and nurses and most of their names…
The children will also be singing WWI songs at various times during the day.
Biddenden in Kent is a typical Wealden village with one of the prettiest main streets in the county.
The first recorded mention of the name is in a 10th century charter concerning a den, or swine pasture, in Bydyngden. Pottery of the Romano/British period has been found near the old railway line, north of the village.
Biddenden is rich in timber framed and brick buildings from the 1400s, and from Tudor and later periods, many of which were the result of wealth created when the broadcloth industry flourished in the Weald. The much-photographed houses along the south side of the High Street were built in the 1600s, when the cloth industry was in decline, possibly where cottages occupied by weavers once stood. Many of the houses on the north side of the street are of timber construction but were later given brick fronts. The West House restaurant is one of the oldest, though legend tells of a soldier returning from Agincourt in 1415 to set up the Red Lion public house.
The village is famous for the story of the Biddenden Maids, a story which rests on legend as well as on fact. Two sisters, whose true names and dates remain uncertain, are believed to have left about 20 acres of land to the church wardens so that the rent from farming it could pay for a dole of bread and cheese to be given at Easter to the most needy villagers. This charity was given High Court approval in 1656 and has continued its work ever since. The dole is now managed by the trustees of the Consolidated Charities and is given out on Easter Monday morning from the old workhouse on the Sissinghurst road.
All Saints Church was mainly built in the 1200s, though there was probably an earlier Saxon church here. After the decline in the cloth industry, the village continued its life as a busy agricultural community with a population which never fell below one thousand inhabitants, and was often nearer 1500. Today it is over 2,500. Several modern industries thrive: PK Produce and Biddenden Vineyards, and the Chart Hills Golf Club hosts international events on its 18-hole course.
The Biddenden Local History Society has published Biddenden in Pictures (on sale from the Post Office) and the Story of Biddenden (on sale from the church). Biddenden in Pictures is also available from YouByYou Books
*Text courtesy of Pru Stokes
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Council Tax Support - Review
Ashford Borough Council has to review its council tax support scheme that it introduced in April 2013. Council tax support has meant that some people have had to pay something towards their council tax for the first time.
Ashford Borough Site Submissions - Building Plots
COMMUNITY-LED PLAN 2013 - formal adoption was discussed by the recent BPC September 2013 meeting
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Ashford Borough CITIZENS ADVICE BUREAU Newsletter Spring 2013
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No Golf on the Gordon Jones Playing Field
A large number of golf balls have recently been found on the Gordon Jones Playing Field, tennis courts and bowling green. No golf or golf practice is allowed on the Gordon Jones Playing Field as it is an area heavily used by dog walkers and children. Golf presents serious health and safety issues because of the possibility of personal injury to others using the area. If you wish to practice or play golf, please visit either a local golf course or golf practice facility.
ATTENTION DOG OWNERS!
Red dog waste bins are provided around the Gordon Jones Playing Field and Millennium Field area. Most people make good use of these bins but a few do not. Please do not allow your dog to defecate in public areas without clearing up afterwards and disposing of it in the red bins provided. Bags are available, free of charge, from the Post Office.
Please note that if you do not pick up your dog waste, then you may find yourself picking up a fine instead.
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Localism Act received Royal Assent on 15 November 2011
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The initial 2005 Biddenden Plan revisited and updated for 2009 (click for details).
Updated 8 Jan 2013: Information about: who and what we are, what we spend and how we spend it, what our priorities are and how we are doing, how we make decisions, our policies and procedures, lists and registers, the services we offer, additional information. Model Publication Scheme 2013: