Recruitment Assistant Clerk

The historic Parish of Goudhurst has a vacancy for an Assistant Clerk to the Parish Council, based in Goudhurst.

Hours: Initially the role is for 15 hours per week plus 4 hours a month to attend evening meetings (one or two a month). There is scope to expand the role and take on additional duties for the right candidate.

Salary: SCP 12 to 20 depending on experience (£24,496 to £28,371 FTE)

Reporting to: The Clerk to the Parish Council

Applications are invited for an enthusiastic and self-motivated person to fill the role of Assistant Clerk to Goudhurst Parish Council. This is a varied and exciting position suiting an applicant with a desire to learn and develop.

The successful candidate will be expected to assist the Clerk with duties to include:

  • To arrange, publicise, and attend Council Meetings including preparation of agendas, report writing and preparing minutes for approval.
  • To attend to administrative tasks including receiving and dealing with correspondence.
  • To assist with updating and formatting the Parish Council website and social media channels.
  • To assist with the writing of the Parish e-newsletter and articles for other publications as requested.
  • To coordinate and progress projects, including detailed research, and reporting to the Clerk and the Council.
  • To assist with the organisation of events including applying for road closures and drafting risk assessments for approval by the Clerk.

A high degree of computer literacy and excellent communication skills are essential. Local Government experience is desirable but not essential as full support and training in all
aspects of the job will be offered. The successful candidate will be expected to work towards achieving the Introduction to Local Council Administration (ILCA) qualification.

A job description and person specification can be found on our website: To learn more about the role please email To apply, please send a cv and covering

To apply, please send a cv and covering letter to reach the Clerk, Mrs Claire Reed at, by the closing date: 5:00pm Monday 18th September 2023.

Removing barriers to access in the High Weald AONB Landowner Offer

This opportunity is aimed at landowners who have public rights of way and stiles on their land and would be interested in improving accessibility. With support from the Government’s Access for All programme the High Weald Partnership is working with the public rights of way team of Kent County Council to supply and deliver FREE, galvanized metal pedestrian gates to landowners to replace existing stiles. More information can be found at:

Changes to bus services to Tunbridge Wells during the Pembury Road closure (A264)

The Pembury Road will be closed from 24 July until 01 September 2023 for gas mains replacement. During the closure, Bus services 6 from Maidstone (Arriva) and 297 from Tenterden (Hams Travel) will terminate at Tunbridge Wells Hospital so customers will need to change buses at the Hospital to reach the town centre.

The 6 will run a normal timetable between Maidstone and Tunbridge Wells Hospital via Pembury, but please note that Hams Travel service 297 between Tenterden and the Hospital will run to a revised timetable to connect with the shuttles.

Arriva service 277 will continue to run via its normal route and timetable so if for any reason the shuttle is delayed the 277 (every half-hour) will provide an alternative between the Hospital and Tunbridge Wells town centre.

Sunday service 6 (which normally runs between Tunbridge Wells Rail Station and the Hospital in the early mornings and evenings only) will continue to do so via a diverted route.

Fed up with pot-holes!

<> <>How to report problems on the road or pavement
Problems such as; street light faults potholes drainage traffic signal faults overgrown vegetation (including hedges and grass). can be reported quickly and easily to Kent Highways via their online reporting tool <>.
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Have you got a new neighbour?

Welcome Booklet – Have you got a new neighbour?

The Parish Council is delighted to support an initiative by some local residents who thought that it would be a good idea to put together a Welcome Booklet to give to people who move into Goudhurst, so that they feel part of the local community. It has details of health services, education, local shops, local societies etc. Also in the bag will be a leaflet with details of refuse collections, the church booklet and a gift of chocolate. This has kindly been provided by Goupie. (Goupie hand-make uniquely textured vegan friendly chocolate confectionery to an old family recipe in Goudhurst, Kent.)
If you have a new neighbour please contact one of the team below who will provide you with a bag to take round or they can deliver direct to your new neighbour if you prefer.
Chris 07952 545472; Linda 07485 727656; Sue 07905 791627

Goudhurst ‘Plan Bee’

Goudhurst’s Plan Bee Geoff is a Goudhurst Parish Councillor and has set up a community working party to work closely with the council to guide policy to see how we can best preserve our beautiful countryside for wildlife. Here’s his first monthly blog:
Why are we doing this? The 2022 Kent Wildlife Trust and Buglife report showed Kent’s flying insects have declined by 72% in only 17 years. Pollinators are vital for producing the food we eat and the very existence of the Kent countryside, our gardens and green spaces we love. Remember driving in the summer only a few years ago and how the car windscreen and numberplate would be splattered with loads of bugs and how few there are now. The fall in insect numbers is linked to the decline in other species for example our iconic swifts which we’re so lucky to have in the village. We’ve seen very few swifts this year due to the adverse weather and the fall in insects which they feed on is a worry.
What are pollinators? Pollinators are so-called because they carry the reproductive pollen grains from flower to flower, enabling the fertilisation for seeds, nuts and fruit. Through pollination, new generations of plants grow in turn supporting wild habitats and other wildlife. Without pollination, most wild and cultivated plants, from trees to strawberries, could not reproduce.
According to the conservation group Buglife, every third mouth of our food depends on insect pollinators. They are central to Kent’s fruit farms – 40% of the county’s agriculture. They serve crops like oil seed rape, clovers and other nitrogen fixing plants, important for livestock grazing and wild flowers. They add to the diversity of plant species, habitats and wildlife in Kent as well as its natural beauty, making Kent a better place to live, to enjoy and to visit. Losing our pollinators would be a major ecological and economic disaster.
Many insect groups are excellent pollinators. The best known of them are bees, including bumblebees, solitary bees and the honeybee. But other wild insects are equally vital for pollination including wasps, hoverfies, moths and butterfies. Even some beetles, mosquitoes and ants have a pollinating role. Many plants have evolved to offer nectar to attract insects. Whilst insects are feeding on a flower’s nectar or collecting pollen to feed to their young, pollen grains stick to the insects’ bodies and transfer to the reproductive organs of the next flower they visit.
What can we do? A great starting point is to support Kent’s Plan Bee Pollinator Action Plan developed by Kent County Council to take the lead and encourage local communities to improve the food sources and general habitat for pollinators in Kent to reverse their continuing decline.

Goudhurst has started some projects already. The working group is already planning on how we can manage our green spaces better for pollinators, here’s what we’ve been doing over the last month: We’re taking advice from Caring For God’s Acre about how we can increase biodiversity and wild flowers in our churchyards. In No Mow May the bank along Back Lane was not cut and it’s been lovely to see wildflowers such as Alkanet popping up. We undertook a survey of the Victorian Cemetery and found over 30 species including Sticky Mouse Ear, Purple Toadflax and Goat Willow. How wonderful it would be to see more of these! We’ve approached High Weald AONB – part of Sussex Lund – and the Bumblebee Conservation Trust to help us with ideas for the Lower Glebe Field. Amongst some of the things we’re considering are creating a wildflower meadow, planting fruit-trees and laying a native hedge. It’s a wonderful open space with spectacular views and we want to make it even better for our wildlife. We’re also looking at how we can further enhance our village pond for wildlife. All these ideas will be brought to council for consideration. The council has stopped using weedkiller. Most of the widely used chemicals are broad spectrum, meaning they affect more than just the intended target pest, disease or weed. If you’re a bee nesting or feeding you’re likely to get a potentially harmful dose, like it or not. There’s also evidence of damage to soils and water, and the organisms that depend on them. The knock-on effect of this though is that it’s more labour intensive to control the few areas that the council does need to keep neat and tidy, for example the ashes plots on the burial ground, which are now being hand-weeded. Volunteers will always be needed to help with this, please do get in touch if you’d like to help. We can all help our pollinators and wildlife, here’s what we can do at home in June whether you have a window box or a garden. Avoid insect-toxic sprays in your own garden and opt for sustainable alternatives and try organic gardening including companion planting. Plant buddleias now for flowers July-September. Long blooming perennials such as Achillea, Hyssop, Echinacea are great for pollinators and what’s great is they come up every year! Avoid using slug pellets as these are fatal to other creatures who eat them, including hedgehogs. Instead use sharp sand, beer traps, copper tape as slug deterrents.
Do get in touch if you’d like to be involved! My ‘Wild About Goudhurst & Kilndown’ Working Party is on WhatsApp, do let me know if you’d like to join and volunteer to help with the various projects and support the parish council.
I’ve also set up a community group ‘Wild About Goudhurst, Kilndown and Lamberhurst’ on Facebook, it’s a page celebrating the wildlife around the villages and how we can all help preserve them.
For the bees Geoff Mason <>
Sources: Kent’s Plan Bee pollinator action plan – Kent County Council <,and%20environment%20and%…> Insects populations are dying out. Here’s why they don’t have to | BBC Science Focus Magazine <> Effects of pesticides on our wildlife | Policy and insight ( <> High Weald Swifts <> Dave Goulson, Professor of Biology and Author of ‘Silent Earth, Averting the Insect Apocalypse’

Make a Change – Become a Councillor!

Goudhurst Parish Council currently has a vacancy for a Parish Councillor. If you are passionate about your community and want to help #MakeAChange, stand for election as a councillor! We need people from all backgrounds and experiences who reflect their community to put themselves forward for election and #MakeAChange.

Watch the NALC video – Make a Change

Your local (parish and town) council has overall responsibility for the wellbeing of your local community. Their work falls into three main categories:
• Delivery of services
• Improve quality of life for residents
• Give communities a democratic voice

Local councils run numerous services, depending on the size of the council.

Many you will see day-to-day, but some are less known. These include
introducing solar panels, setting up dementia-friendly groups, organising community buses, creating neighbourhood plans, implementing suitable housing, establishing youth projects, managing allotments and open spaces, maintaining footpaths, public seating and litter bins.

As a local councillor you can become a voice for your community and make real change. Local councillors are the champions of their community who invest time in local projects and issues to the benefit of residents and the neighbourhood.
Local councillor responsibilities fall into three main categories:
• Decision-making
• Monitoring
• Getting involved locally

Local councillors attend to local needs of residents, local groups and
businesses, make decisions on local services, collaborate with district and borough councils to adhere to local needs, and progress vital projects to invest in the future of the community.

To stand for election or co-option to a local council you must be:
• A UK or Commonwealth citizen; or be a citizen of the Republic of Ireland; or be a citizen of another Member State of the European Union
• At least 18 years old
• An elector of the local council; or in the past 12 months occupied land or other premises in the area the local council serves (as owner or tenant); or work in the area local council serves (as your principal or only place of work); or live within three miles of the local council boundary

Please call the Clerk, Mrs Claire Reed on 01580 212552 or email for more information.

New Electoral Arrangements for Tunbridge Wells Borough Council Elections

The Local Government Boundary Commission for England (LGBCE) has published its final recommendations on the new electoral arrangements for Tunbridge Wells Borough Council.

The LGBCE final recommendations were published on 16 May 2023.

Summary of final recommendations

From May 2024:

  • the number of councillors should decrease from 48 to 39
  • the number of wards should decrease from 20 to 14
  • Goudhurst and Kilndown will be in the same ward of Goudhurst, Lamberhurst and Horsmonden.
  • There will be three borough councillors representing Goudhurst Parish in the new ward.

More information (external Link)

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