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Ed­i­tor Robert Bar­man 01233 623232 rbar­man@thek­m­group.co.uk News ed­i­tor Alas­tair Irvine 01233 623232 airvine@the km­group.co.uk Sport ex­presss­port@thek­m­group.co.uk Text: Text EX­PRESS fol­lowed by your mes­sage to 87474. Please in­clude your name and post­code. Mes­sages must not be more than 160 char­ac­ters and will be charged only at your stan­dard net­work rate. Please visit ken­ton­line.co.uk/terms for tex­ting terms. Ad­ver­tis­ing Tel 01233 623232 Fax 01233 626545 Ad­ver­tise­ment man­ager Sue Hunt­ley, 01233 895819, shunt­ley@thek­m­group.co.uk Clas­si­fied ad­ver­tis­ing Tel 01233 623232. News­pa­per sales (in­clud­ing de­liv­ery, dis­tri­bu­tion, com­pe­ti­tions, reader of­fers and sub­scrip­tions): Of­fice hours, an­swer­phone there­after: 0800 525450 Head of­fice: Med­way House, Gins­bury Close, Thomas Lon­g­ley Road, Med­way, City Es­tate, Strood, Rochester ME2 4DU. Tel 01622 717880, Fax 01622 710937. Com­plaints: Any com­plaint about any as­pect of this news­pa­per should be made to the ed­i­tor, Robert Bar­man, 01233 623232 rbar­man@thek­m­group.co.uk Cus­tomer Ser­vices (for ad­ver­tis­ing queries): email cus­tom­erser­vices@ thek­m­group.co.uk 0800 0855810

Iwas pleased to hear that full fund­ing has been se­cured for one of our most crit­i­cal pri­or­ity re­gen­er­a­tion projects. The full £10.5m has now been se­cured for the Ash­ford In­ter­na­tional Sta­tion sig­nalling up­grade, fol­low­ing the gov­ern­ment’s Growth Deal an­nounce­ment made last week.

An­drew Percy MP, Min­is­ter at the Depart­ment for Com­mu­ni­ties and Lo­cal Gov­ern­ment, an­nounced a gov­ern­ment al­lo­ca­tion of £102m for cap­i­tal projects for the South East.

The al­lo­ca­tion of £4.8m for our Ash­ford In­ter­na­tional Rail Project, means that the to­tal project fund­ing (£10.5m) has now been se­cured. Ash­ford is ar­guably one of the most con­nected places in the UK, with di­rect links to ma­jor Euro­pean cities as well as only be­ing 38 min­utes from Lon­don by High Speed 1.

Up­grad­ing the sig­nalling, which is due to be de­liv­ered by spring 2018, will mean that the next gen­er­a­tion of Eurostar trains, and any fu­ture Euro­pean rail op­er­a­tors, can con­tinue to stop at the Ash­ford In­ter­na­tional Sta­tion.

Last Fri­day I was de­lighted to open Gal­lagher’s multi-mil­lion pound ready mix con­crete and floor screeds plant at the for­mer derelict Rim­mel fac­tory site at Cobbs Wood In­dus­trial Es­tate, now re­named Carl­ton Busi­ness Park.

Nick Yan­dle, chief ex­ec­u­tive of Gal­lagher Group, said: “When it comes to cre­at­ing the new homes, leisure, re­tail op­por­tu­ni­ties and com­mer­cial devel­op­ment that Kent needs, Ash­ford is lead­ing the way.”

At the same time last Fri­day, Ash­ford in con­junc­tion with KCC, were open­ing the new One You health shop in Park Mall. Ash­ford has joined forces with KCC Pub­lic Health and the Kent Com­mu­nity Health NHS Foun­da­tion Trust to open One You.

The new health shop is part of Pub­lic Health Eng­land’s na­tional cam­paign which en­cour­ages peo­ple to quit smok­ing, lose weight and be more ac­tive. There is a ‘booth of truth’ in­stalled in the shop, where peo­ple can find out their true weight and to­tal body fat in pri­vate, and then re­ceive on-the-spot ad­vice on healthy weight for adults and chil­dren.

One You of­fers a friendly and wel­com­ing en­vi­ron­ment where peo­ple are en­cour­aged to pop in, ask ques­tions and take ad­van­tage of the free health ser­vices on of­fer.

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