In former times, when Kent was administered through areas known as lathes, Sutton-at-Hone was a half-lathe. It covered an area well in excess of Dartford Borough as it is today.

The half-lathe embraced a number of towns and villages including Dartford and, of course, Sutton-at-Hone itself and Hawley.

1894 saw the formation of the Parish Council of Sutton-at-Hone under the Local Government Act of that year. At that time the Council’s area included Sutton-at-Hone, Hawley, Swanley Junction, Swanley Village, Hextable and Crockenhill.

In 1955 many parish boundaries were changed dramatically and the Parish was reduced to just Sutton-at-Hone and Hawley. In the late 1970s the parish was renamed Sutton-at-Hone and Hawley Parish Council to reflect its specific administration area.

There are 9 seats on the Council – 6 representing Sutton-at-Hone and 3 for Hawley. Council meetings are held on the third Thursday of every month, except August, at 7.30pm in the parish rooms at 53 Main Road, Sutton-at-Hone DA4 9HQ. These meetings are open to the public to witness proceedings. A slot at the end of the meetings is given to any questions from the public.

This council has many responsibilities. It owns and maintains the burial ground at St John the Baptist church and administers all burials and interments. Additionally it owns and maintains two large recreation grounds and pavilions – one at Parsonage Lane, Sutton-at-Hone and the other at Hawley Pavilion, opposite the Papermakers Arms. We also own and maintain some other smaller leisure areas, including the Orchard-Main Road Sutton-at-Hone (opposite The Greyhound), the grassed area between Balmoral Road & Barfield and Jubilee Field (between Balmoral Road and the primary school field). This has some play equipment and a small wildlife site adjacent. Additionally we have a large wildlife area at Burnthouse Lane, Hawley. We also own 2 allotment sites in Sutton-at-Hone (Chapelfields & Parsonage Lane).

We also own and maintain 95 street lights, mainly off the main A225. There are 13 miles of Public Rights of way (PROW) within this parish and whilst these are the responsibility of Kent County Council, we do try and oversee their condition.

Along with all this we also own the 4 bus shelters in the parish and the parish office at 53 Main Road, Sutton-at-Hone.

‘If only all parish councils were like ours’