top of page

Welcome to Issue 5

This issue's big investigation concerns the colossal solar power plant planned for the Graveney marshes. In particular, we've looked closely at the battery technology likely to be at the heart of the scheme. What we've found makes disturbing reading. A lithium ion battery installation of unprecedented size, so close to towns and villages represents a human and environmental tragedy waiting to happen.

No human activity is without risk. It is part of life. But risk must be managed intelligently and sometimes the dangers are so great and the possible outcomes so horrific that a gamble is just not worth taking.

Please, don't take our word for it. Whether you object to the solar scheme, support it, or just don't know much about it, we urge everyone to do their own research. Our story includes links to source material, online articles and other resources.

With the stakes for Faversham and those living nearby as high as they are, this issue is simply too important to ignore.

With stories about environmental catastrophe, sewage discharges, scams and the imminent demise of Faversham's Crown Post Office, Issue Five was shaping up to be a bleak read.

So we have Faversham's first-ever Pride Parade to thank for bringing a bit of fun and colour to the issue. We've come a long way as a town since last year, when Tory councillors quibbled over whether it was appropriate even to fly the Pride flag.

As a town, we're fortunate to have so much happening all year round. You name it, we've got an event dedicated to it, from dogs to literature, from food to classic motors. We've got a hat festival, a chilli festival, a fringe festival and a nautical festival and many more, all thanks to organisers generously giving their time, energy and enthusiasm.

For a small town, Faversham boasts more festivals than you can shake a stick at. We're blessed with fests. In fact we'd still have a stick-shaking festival had HopFest organisers not invited many of Kent's Morris dancers to folk off a few years ago.

The Hop Festival remains the biggest of the year – and also the most divisive. Some love it, other leave town all weekend to avoid it. Of course your personal experience of the HopFest depends very much on which street you live in, how much you've imbibed and the time of day or night. What begins innocently as a convivial afternoon of alfresco refreshment can easily take on a zombie movie flavour by evening, with festivities swiftly degenerating into a full-blown Hieronymus Bosch triptych as the night stumbles on.

How do you feel about it? Good, bad or indifferent, we would like to hear your views. And your questions. Is there anything you'd like to know about its history, organisation, finances, costs and benefits to the town? Please drop us a line and we'll endeavour to find answers.

We're sometimes accused of banging on about the same old suspects and boring our loyal readers is the last thing we'd want to do (apart from Morris dancing, perhaps). So we tried to make this a Cosgrove-free issue. We really did. But then one of our sharp-eyed Twitter-scanning correspondents spotted an item we felt obliged to share (On The Square) and all good intentions went out of the window.

Back by popular demand in this issue is Whately Watch, our occasional feature documenting the doings of our local MP Helen Whately. Summer is traditionally a quiet time for Members of Parliament but Helen has been quite busy, especially on the publicity front, prompting cynics to wonder if a General Election could be in the offing.

Meanwhile, here at the Eye, we'll continue to do our bit for local democracy. With our national political scene beginning to resemble a moody 1970s Bolivian coup d'état, local democracy might soon be the only kind we have left.

Enjoy the issue.


bottom of page