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A Blast From the Past 1923
"Urgent plea to rebuild Kingsferry Bridge"

November: Ambitious plans to rebuild the Kingsferry Bridge, which was damaged in an accident some months ago, is receiving massive support in the neighbourhood, especially from those whose livelihood depends on good communication by river, road or rail.

For some months now, a motor boat ferry across the Swale has been in operation but it is far from satisfactory' especially when the ferry men strike.

This occurred last week and meant a complete suspension of the Sittingbourne to Sheppey rail service.

It is suggested that the new bridge should be built to the east of the existing one which would be demolished. This would involve the building of a new road and railway track, the former running directly into Queenborough, while the latter would rejoin the old line at Kingsferry and be approximately six miles in length.

With this plan trains would continue through Sittingbourne to the Isle of Sheppey and not be compelled to reverse as is the case now.The traders on the mainland side of the Swale are urging the removal of the obstruction caused by the present bridge to the navigation in the waterway.


Mr Miller, secretary to Mr Edward Lloyd, owner of Sittingbourne Paper Mills, employing about 1,600 men, said the total tonnage carried by water was 450,000 tons per annum and there would be no difficulty for boats of 10,000 tons cargo reaching Ridham Docks if the new bridge were built on modern lines. A large part of their raw material, he said, came from Canada. It was just not possible to use small boats for the Atlantic trade.


People from Sheppey have made it clear that they want a free bridge. By an Act of Parliament there has been a toll on the old Kingsferry Bridge for 50 years and the revenue from this tax was exceeding more than £1,000 a year.
With talks continuing the railway company responsible for the damaged bridge is currently carrying out repairs, but with great difficulty.

January 27th: The National Socialist party began its first public congress in Munich, a city where the Party enjoys great support. Its leader, a former corporal in the army is Herr Adolf Hitler. He is calling for a repeal of the Treaty of Versailles which most Germans consider too harsh.
Kent and Sussex Farmers Ltd have obtained from Lord Sackville, the ancient market rights in the centre of Sevenoaks. They are now looking for a more suitable site for a cattle market than the town centre which is a busy shopping area.
March 2nd: The second reading of the Matrimonial Clauses Bill, passed in the Commons today, gives more equality to the sexes by allowing a wife to petition for divorce for a husband's adultery. At the moment only the reverse is possible.

March 9th: Vladimir Lenin, Soviet leader since the Bolsheviks seized power in Russia, is paralysed after a massive stroke which has deprived him also of the power of speech. In a recent letter Lenin criticised the Communist Party's General Secretary, Joseph Stalin who he says is too rude and should be removed from his post.
April 19th: A new report from the National Birthrate Commission says that sex education should be taught in schools and homes. The report also recommends a better diet, better recreation facilities and more sunshine, particularly for children who live in cities.
April: The racecourse at Tonbridge has been purchased from Mr William Abrey and converted into one of the finest sports grounds in south-east England.
April 28th: The FA Cup Final between Bolton Wanderers and West Ham United was played for the first time at Wembley today and there was almost a terrible disaster. More than 126,000 football fans were allowed in the stadium and another 75,000 scaled the inadequate walls to gain free admission to the terraces. The crowd spilled onto the playing
area and a policeman on a white horse patiently coaxed the fans off so that the game could continue. Bolton won 2-1.
May 15th: Another massive mine has been washed ashore at Ramsgate. The beach was cleared as soldiers defused the monster.
May 21st: The Prime Minister Andrew Bonar Law has resigned following the news that he has incurable cancer of the throat. As he made no recommendation to the King about a successor it was assumed that Lord Cur' on, the Foreign Secretary would take the job, but the Tories have chosen instead the Chancellor, Mr Stanley Baldwin.
July 13th: Lady Astor's Liquor Bill which bans the sale of alcohol to young people under the age of 18 has been passed in the Commons.
August 6th: American swimmer Henry Sullivan has swum the Channel from Dover to Cap Griz Nez in 28 hours.
August 21st: The dock strike has ended after seven weeks
September 10th: The Co-operative Stores at Sheerness have been destroyed by fire. Damage caused is in excess of £30,000 worth.
October 8th: Sir Edward Hulton has sold a number of his newspaper titles, including the Daily Sketch, the Evening Standard and the Daily Herald to the Lords Rothermere and Beaverbrook, for £6,000,000.
A cross has been erected on a road junction between Lympne and Hythe to mark the =io nal meeting place of the Bof the Cinque Ports. Shepway Cross erected earlier this year has now been opened by Lord Beauchamp, Lord Warden of the Cinque Ports. From this symbolic site most of the marsh villages can be seen, in good weather.

December 14th:
Almost 75,000 animals ,many in Kent farms ?have been slaughtered following the epidemic of foot and mouth disease.
December 17th: The Imperial Air Transport Company has been fbmed.(IATA)