Ewell Downs News Bulletin – Apr 2018

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This is primarily to remind everyone about the AGM which is taking place on Tuesday of this coming week. You will have received the printed AGM Notice with the latest news by hand.

AGM Tuesday 10 April 2018 – this will take place at 7.30 pm at Wallace Fields Junior School in Dorling Drive. The doors open at 7.10 and wine and soft drinks will be served beforehand. The back gate of the school on the pathway between The Green and Wallace Fields will be open for pedestrians and the school car park will also be open for parking. In view of the importance of the issue of the future of Epsom Hospital, our speaker will be Daniel Elkeles, the CEO of Epsom & St Helier NHS Trust.

Do come along and join us – we would be delighted to welcome you.

Nescot

There is no further news to report at the moment – we have sent a reminder to Ms Rutter and have been told that this has been drawn to the attention of her PA. We hope she will be in touch soon.

Litter

We have been in touch with the Council to ask for three specific areas to be cleared:

  • The bridle-way from the Reigate Road to Ewell East Station where drug use items as well as litter can be found

  • The stretch of College Road from the Longdown Lane North/South traffic lights up to the Reigate Road

  • The corner area of the shrubbery to the left of the Martial Arts Hut in Alexandra Recreational Ground where used hypodermic syringes are regularly found.

We await action!

Road names for Sycamore Gardens (Phase 2) – the proposed names for the second phase of building on the former Nescot site will be published at the AGM on Tuesday.

Council Tax 2018/19 – a reminder! SCC proportion of Council tax demand rises by 5.99%, the Police by 5.34% and E&E by 2.98%. The overall average rise being 5.583%.

This means that of every £100 paid in Council Tax the Borough Council will receive just £10.46 next year whereas for the 17/18 current year the amount was £10.73 proving the point that Surrey and the Police requirements are increasing at a higher rate than the more moderate Borough Council. More details will be included in the AGM Notice.

Local Plan – we are hoping to be updated on this at the AGM.

For those of you who were not aware – the results of the public consultation are published on www.epsom-ewell.gov.uk/localplan under “Summary of Consultation responses”. A few of the results are:

Should we rely on urban intensification using high densities? There were 504 responses to this question – 31% stated YES and 69% stated NO.

Should we review our Green Belt boundaries in order to help meet our long-term housing needs? There were 505 responses-22% (109) stated YES and 78% NO.

Are there any areas that should be added to the Green Belt? There were 106 responses identifying areas that they believed should be added to the Green Belt – see report for further details.

Would you be willing to use extensive areas of the Green Belt? There were 509 responses – 6% stated YES and 94% NO.

Would you be willing accommodate the needs of other areas outside of the Borough? – 498 responses to this question – 15% stated YES and 85% NO.

Would you support a balanced approach where much of our need is met within the urban area but some is allocated to land currently within the Green Belt? With 507 responses 50.1% stated YES and 44.1% NO.

Where should higher density or taller buildings go? Of the 818 responses received 353 favoured town centres and 313 by train stations.

In answer to the question –do you have an alternative suggestion to significantly boost housing and meet our housing need? The main replies were listed in our March bulletin which can be viewed on our website www.ewelldownsra.org

:

Plan E improvement works –work has started on the improvement to the Marquis and Playhouse junctions. Some night work will take place for the first 2 weeks of this phase. Work will take place between the hours of 20:00 and 06:00. All local businesses and residents affected by this will receive leaflets with further details.

Works at both these junctions are programmed to last until the summer. It is expected that these phases will commence shortly. Please note that some traffic disruption during these phases is expected. Please allow more time to your journeys when travelling through the town centre.

Roundabout on Reigate Road – we have sent an email to the facilities manager at Nescot about the state of the planted area close to the new roundabout on the Reigate Road. We have pointed out that the temporary fence is still there; that high growing shrubs should have been planted – not low growing ones! – and that it needs weeding! We shall wait to see what happens!

East Street – this is the report from our councillor following the local committee meeting in March –

At the Local Committee held this week the report of the Highway Manager (Nick Healey) contained reference to the work headed Capital Programme 2018/19 at East Street junction with Kiln Lane which comprises a new pedestrian crossing on the northern arm of junction plus new parking layby near Chuters Grove.

The column headed “progress” was much as reported to several meetings before such as “delayed due to complexity of traffic management”  “Awaiting cost estimates” but it did add “Hoping to construct in Summer 2018”.

I spoke to this item and commented that this scheme had appeared in reports for years now with seemingly no progress and something must be done about the traffic blockage on the A24 into Epsom compounded by the queuing right hand turn lane into Kiln Lane; if nothing is going to be done then put a double yellow line where the gap is.

Nick Healey’s response was somewhat more progressive than formerly,  in that –

The problem with this scheme is of the logistics of doing the work while the traffic flows.  In an ideal world we would like to shut Kiln Lane – but that’s not possible   –   It is likely that the work will be undertaken in August when Kiln Lane would become a contraflow (presumably one direction then being worked on) and Chuters Grove follows on subject to costing

County Councillor for the division Bernie Muir then spoke saying that she was 100% behind me in getting this scheme undertaken.

That’s the update.  Let’s hope it transpires.”

Pothole reporting – Are you aware that pot holes can be reported to Surrey CC? Go to report-it-online. When a pot hole has been reported there is a case for compensation for anyone whose vehicle is later damaged by that pot hole. This web site can also be used to report a problem with pavements, street lighting and many other things.

Community Recycling Centres in Surrey – we would remind residents that the Blenheim Road site is now closed to the public on Tuesdays and Wednesdays. This gets very busy on Thursdays when the Leatherhead tip is closed!

Hessle Grove Allotments – is anyone interested in putting their name on a list for an allotment at Hessle Grove off Epsom Road? If so, please contact us and we will pass the message on.

Change of Borough Police Inspector – with the departure of Jackie Elkins as the Surrey Police Borough Inspector, we have now been advised that Inspector Joe Easterbrook has been appointed to the role, with effect from Sunday 25 March.

LOCAL MATTERS AND EVENTS

Epsom Common Day 2018 Sunday 29 July – Epsom will be steeped in local history as this year marks the 400th anniversary of Epsom Well with the discovery of ‘Epsom Salts’ site back in 1618. This gave Epsom its first claim to fame as a Spa town during the 17th & 18th centuries. There will be the Epsom Common Heritage Roadshow, stalls, guided walks, raffle, Christ Church history walk, local crafts, saw mill display, farm animals and Epsom Common Club facilities available, BBQ and much more.

There is a crowd funding page to raise funds to make the day special – for details go to – Epsom Common Day 2018

A Night at the Races – Age Concern

Friday 27th April 2018 – Bar opens @ 7pm – First race @ 7.45pm

Night_Races

BOOK YOUR TICKETS HERE: http://bit.ly/2EMB3kU HOW MUCH? £10 per person that includes a platter to share on your table. WHERE? St Barnabas Church, Temple Road.

Being a Councillor for Ewell/Nonsuch Wards

Have you ever considered becoming a Borough Councillor?

Councillors are elected to the Borough council to represent their local community, so they must either live or work in the Borough. Becoming a Councillor is both a rewarding and privileged form of public service. You will be able to make a difference to the quality of other people’s daily lives and prospects.

Being an effective Councillor requires both commitment and hard work. Councillors must balance the needs and interests of residents, the requirements of national and international laws and the Council.

These will all make legitimate demands on a Councillor’s time, so before committing yourself, you may want to speak to current or past Councillors. You should then discuss it with your family and friends to make sure they understand what you are taking on. You will need their support as you’ll have to spend some of your spare time on Council business.

As a first step, why not find out more about the roles and responsibilities in ‘What is expected of a councillor?’

What is expected of a councillor?

The councillor’s role and responsibilities include:

  • representing the ward for which they are elected

  • decision-making

  • developing and reviewing council policy

  • regulatory, quasi-judicial and statutory duties

  • community leadership and engagement.

Being a Councillor will involve meeting with residents and dealing with correspondence and phone calls from constituents. When dealing with casework or council business you may need to meet with council staff. Most Council meetings take place during the evenings, but some meetings with Council officers and residents may need to take place during the working day.

Council meetings are normally held six times a year, with Committee meetings about four times. As a new councillor, you are likely to be on one or more committee and may also have the opportunity to be appointed to outside bodies. Don’t worry if you don’t have any experience in this area: once elected, you will be able to attend an induction course and will receive on-going support.

Could I be a councillor?

The easy answer is, “almost definitely”.   As long as you are:

  • British or a citizen of the Commonwealth or European Union

  • At least 18 years old

  • Registered to vote in the area or have lived, worked or owned property there for at least 12 months before an election

You can’t be a councillor if you:

  • Work for the council for which you want to be a councillor, or for another local authority in a political restricted post (these are generally the higher paid posts)

  • Are the subject of a bankruptcy restrictions order or interim order

  • Have been sentenced to prison for three months or more (including suspended sentences) during the 5 years before election day

  • Have been convicted of a corrupt or illegal practice by an election court

If you are in any doubt about whether you are eligible to stand as a councillor, you should contact the borough council for advice.

Please see the link – Become a Councillor

Priest Hill – the Surrey Wildlife Estate Team now manage the site through a centralised team. Surveyors, Practical Task Leaders, Liaison Officers, an Administrator and Estate Manager work to deliver the various objectives of the site management.

If you have an enquiry about any of their sites please feel free to contact the estates team on: countryside@surreywt.org.uk or 01483 910087 and they can direct your question to the appropriate member of staff.

Epsom Laughter Yoga Club – This takes place at Alexandra Park Epsom (between Bowling green & Children’s playground) – 3rd Sunday of every month at 9am – unless heavy rain. Session will typically last about 50 mins.  Please wear comfortable clothing and bring either a yoga mat or a picnic blanket as we may sit/lie down –Sun 15th Apr 2018. FREE taster sessions offered. Visit www.epsomlaughterclub.co.uk for  more information.

Nextdoor Ewell Downs – this is a free private social network for your neighbourhood community. Nextdoor is a good way to stay informed about what’s going on in your neighbourhood. There is one for Ewell Downs and there are several members in this area for whom it has proved a useful method of communication.

Keeping in touch – this bulletin is distributed to all those who have provided email addresses. I hope everyone finds this flow of information useful and thank those who have commented in an appreciative way. Please pass this information on to any resident who may find it useful and ask them to let us have their email address so we can keep them in the loop.

Web site – do visit this – www.ewelldownsra.org. This shows all our previous bulletins and other information.

Facebook – our page is being well visited and “liked”. Do go and use this to put comments or pictures of the area on.

Twitter – this is quite active with many followers of Ewelldownsra.

Comments and news reports

– please use this as a two-way instrument and let us know if there is anything you wish to report or comment on

Sky

 

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The 83rd Annual General Meeting

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NOTICE
The Eighty Third Annual General Meeting will be held at :-

WALLACE FIELDS JUNIOR SCHOOL in the HALL
7.30pm on Tuesday 10 April 2018
GUEST SPEAKER – Daniel Elkeles
CEO Epsom & St Helier University Hospital NHS Trust

AGENDA
1. Apologies for absence
2. Minutes of the Eighty Second AGM held on 7 March 2017
3. Statement of Accounts
4. Report from the Committee
5. Election of Officers, Committee and Examiner of Accounts
6. Councillors’ Forum
7. Any Other Business

The Officers and Committee look forward to seeing you at the Annual General
Meeting and we hope you will take this opportunity to meet your neighbours,
committee members and councillors informally. Refreshments will be provided
from 7.10pm.

SUBSCRIPTIONS
The membership subscription of £3.00 per household is now due. It will be
a great help if you would kindly pass your subscription, in the envelope
provided, to your Road Representative, pay on line, or complete the
standing order which is included with this Notice. (See Treasurer’s Report
for further information). (The foregoing does not apply to residents in St James’
Avenue whose Association makes a bulk payment).

Please click on the below for full details of the AGM, including reports and local news.

AEDR AGM Notice 10 April 2018a

 

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Ewell Downs News Bulletin – Mar 2018

Ewell Downs

Before the AGM Notice comes round to you next month, here are a few updates and reminders of events to keep you abreast of local matters.

AGM 10 April 2018 – as advised in the January bulletin, this will take place at 7.30 pm (drinks beforehand) at Wallace Fields Junior School in Dorling Drive.  In view of the importance of the issue of the future of Epsom Hospital, our speaker will be Daniel Elkeles, the CEO of Epsom & St Helier NHS Trust.  It would be a good idea to have some specific topics that we would like to raise with Daniel.  Please get in touch with these so we can direct the presentation to suit our needs. Do come along and join us – we would be delighted to welcome you.

Nescot

There is no further news to report at the moment – we are seeking a meeting with Ms Rutter and hope to advise of the result of this in our next bulletin.

One matter that concerns us is the amount of litter on the pathway to Ewell East Station which continues to increase.  Ewell Village residents are planning a litter clean up and the details are shown on the flyer below.  They ask for any litter “hot spots” to be identified and we shall pass on the message about the pathway so that this may be included in the clear-up.

Heroes

Mayfield Lavender plans approved – the planning application for the erection of a replacement shop, extension to car park, extension to outside plant sales area and use of part of an existing glasshouse for a tearoom/lecture room at the site on the Reigate Road was approved at the Planning Committee meeting in January. We look forward to sitting in the sun, surrounded by lavender, drinking coffee and tea with home made cakes!

Applications for flats in Ewell Village – the application for the change of the now closed RAM Security (27 High Street) from office use to residential use with rear extension at first and second floor to provide six self-contained flats and
associated development was approved.

In addition the planning application for  the erection of first floor and second floor infill extension to provide 4 x 2 bedroom residential flats, including partial demolition of the existing ground floor structure on 4/5 Market Parade was also approved.

Co-op – Ewell Village – the application to change the shop front signage to a much more stylish logo was also approved.  This can be seen on the Planning Application web under ref: 17/01187/ADV.

Mandalina – 74 High Street Ewell – the old Ewell Bakery has been transformed into a new café and is well worth a visit.

N.B. – Residents should note that from 17 January 2018, all planning application fees will increase by 20% in line with national regulations.

Road names for Sycamore Gardens (Phase 2) – the proposed names for the second phase of building on the former Nescot site will be published in the AGM Notice due out next month.

Council Tax 2018/19 – SCC proportion of Council tax demand rises by 5.99%, the Police by 5.34% and E&E by 2.98%.  The overall average rise being 5.583%.

This means that of every £100 paid in Council Tax the Borough Council will receive just £10.46 next year whereas for the 17/18 current year the amount was £10.73 proving the point that Surrey and the Police requirements are increasing at a higher rate than the more moderate Borough Council. More details will be included in the AGM Notice.

Local Plan – the results of the public consultation are published on Local Plan under “Summary of Consultation responses”.  A few of the results are:

Should we rely on urban intensification using high densities? There were 504 responses to this question – 31% stated YES and 69% stated NO. 

Should we review our Green Belt boundaries in order to help meet our long-term housing needs? There were 505 responses-22% (109) stated YES and 78% NO. 

Are there any areas that should be added to the Green Belt? There were 106 responses identifying areas that they believed should be added to the Green Belt – see report for further details.

Would you be willing to use extensive areas of the Green Belt? There were 509 responses – 6% stated YES and 94% NO.

Would you be willing accommodate the needs of other areas outside of the Borough? – 498 responses to this question – 15% stated YES and 85% NO.

Would you support a balanced approach where much of our need is met within the urban area but some is allocated to land currently within the Green Belt? With 507 responses 50.1% stated YES and 44.1% NO.  

Where should higher density or taller buildings go? Of the 818 responses received 353 favoured town centres and 313 by train stations.

In answer to the question -do you have an alternative suggestion to significantly boost housing and meet our housing need? The main replies listed:

Truly affordable or social housing meeting local needs; additional housing should prioritise local people in real housing need; additional housing only to meet local needs; any new housing should be truly affordable and meet local need; majority of new housing on any scale should be affordable; the emphasis should be on affordable housing.

Countering this the comments were – no loss of Green Belt or park land; no loss of Green Belt which is performing its proper function; Green Belt preservation should be a priority otherwise the character and identity of the area will be destroyed; building on the Green Belt would undoubtedly be the thin edge of the wedge and would lead to extreme environmental damage; oppose any use of Green Belt as once it’s gone it’s gone for all future generations.

Suggestions for areas where housing can be provided included – properly evaluate brownfield sites first; empty office blocks that can be converted into housing; free up empty properties; interrogate disused and under used sites. There were suggestions for more efficient/intensive space utilisation/backland/downsizing.

On the subject of development strain on supporting infrastructure – the comments were – the amount of homes being asked for is not realistic, our transport links, schools and hospitals are already stretched to the max; need to consider provision of other services, such as hospitals, schools, transport; Epsom roads are absolutely full to bursting… GP surgeries are overrun with patients and schools are over-subscribed.

In addition to supporting denser housing near town centre/rail stations, the comments included – look to other/more suitable areas across UK; action should be taken to address the unsustainable population growth in the South East when other areas of the country are shrinking; promote the idea of building a new town with the appropriate infrastructure somewhere accessible some 50 miles north of greater London; giving areas other than London and the South East a boost. There were also concerns with Government policy.

Several sites were proposed for redevelopment and these are shown on the web.  The overall result was that 73% of respondents favoured a balanced approach.

We hope to learn more about what happens next at our AGM.

Plan E improvement works –the footway paving on the eastern side of South Street has now been completed. This pavement is now fully open. Lane closures and temporary footways have now been set up on the western side of South Street. Works on this side of the road will include paving of the footway, removing and reinstating kerbs and work to traffic signals. The new loading bay on South Street is not yet in use. This will fully open once the works on the western side of South Street have been completed.

Once they have completed the footway work on South Street, they will move onto the next phases of the scheme. These phases will include the improvement to the Marquis and Playhouse junctions. It is expected that these phases will commence shortly. Please note that some traffic disruption during these phases is expected. Please allow more time to your journeys when travelling through the town centre.

East Street – still no progress on the road alterations!  We understand that due to financial constraints the Kiln Lane Link has been shelved.

Litter clearance on East Street – A huge litter-pick in Epsom’s East Street has been carried-out by the World Mission Society Church of God. More than 100 bags of litter were collected by 40 volunteers last Sunday, February 11. Allegedly, 320kg of litter was collected during the day – equivalent to the weight of a large Bengal Tiger.

Alexander Holmes, a member of the Church of God, said: “As we belong to Epsom we really want it to have a clean and beautiful image. “We chose East Street as it is the main entrance from central London and the first impression people get of Epsom.

Well done everyone who participated – an example to all of us to make sure that the area outside our home is clear of litter – a small step but an important one!

166 Bus route – We are delighted to announce that bus route 166 will be retained without amendment for the next 5 years, thanks to an agreement between Surrey County Council (SCC) and Transport for London.

Parking Restrictions – Do you have a suggestion for a new on-street parking restriction in Epsom and Ewell for consideration in the next parking review? Please let SCC know by the end of February. The Local Committee will consider proposals on 19 June.

Here is the link – Parking Proposal

Parking

Pothole reporting – Are you aware that pot holes can be reported to Surrey CC?  Go to Report It Online. When a pot hole has been reported there is a case for compensation for anyone whose vehicle is later damaged by that pot hole.  This web site can also be used to report a problem with pavements, street lighting and many other things.

Community Recycling Centres in Surrey – the collection of recyclable waste over Christmas proved very successful.  Despite notices being attached to all bins advising that the grey ones would not be collected for one week, many calls were made to the Council “why wasn’t my bin collected today?” Really!!

We would remind residents that the Blenheim Road site is now closed to the public on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

Epsom Post Office – there is good news! After months of uncertainty, the Post Office has now secured a permanent location for the office. It has now opened in a new card and gift shop at 59, High Street. We wish the new team all the best for the new shop and Post Office and hope this will secure its long term future.

Hessle Grove Allotments – is anyone interested in putting their name on a list for an allotment at Hessle Grove off Epsom Road?  If so, please contact us and we will pass the message on.

LOCAL MATTERS AND EVENTS

Herald of Spring – this is on Saturday 10 March at Bourne Hall, Ewell from 9.30 am until 5 pm. This year’s theme is Mother Nature – learn about local green and natural organisations, local open spaces, see the flower displays and buy locally produced honey.

Priest Hill – the Surrey Wildlife Estate Team now manage the site through a centralised team. Surveyors, Practical Task Leaders, Liaison Officers, an Administrator and Estate Manager work to deliver the various objectives of the site management.

If you have an enquiry about any of their sites please feel free to contact the estates team on: countryside@surreywt.org.uk or 01483 910087 and they can direct your question to the appropriate member of staff.

Epsom Laughter Club – Laughter Yoga is a unique exercise routine which combines unconditional laughter with yogic breathing.  Visit www.epsomlaughterclub.co.uk for more information.

FREE taster sessions offered at Alexandra Park, Epsom (between Bowling green & Children’s playground) – 3rd Sunday of every month at 9am – unless heavy rain. Session will typically last about 50 mins.  Please wear comfortable clothing and bring either a yoga mat or a picnic blanket as we may sit/lie down -Sun 18th Mar 2018 and Sun 15th Apr 2018

Warning re burglaries – there have been several attempted and one actual burglary in the immediate area over the last month.  Please make sure you take every precaution to prevent this happening to you.  Most of these have taken place in the afternoon.

Nextdoor Ewell Downs – this is a free private social network for your neighbourhood community. Nextdoor is a good way to stay informed about what’s going on in your neighbourhood. There is one for Ewell Downs and there are several members in this area for whom it has proved a useful method of communication.

Keeping in touch – this bulletin is distributed to all those who have provided email addresses. I hope everyone finds this flow of information useful and thank those who have commented in an appreciative way. Please pass this information on to any resident who may find it useful and ask them to let us have their email address so we can keep them in the loop.

Web site – do visit this – www.ewelldownsra.org. This shows all our previous bulletins and other information.

Facebook – our page is being well visited and “liked”. Do go and use this to put comments or pictures of the area on.

Twitter – this is quite active with many followers of Ewelldownsra.

Comments and news reports – please use this as a two-way instrument and let us know if there is anything you wish to report or comment on

Spring

 

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Parking on Grass Verges?

 

Surrey County Council Local Committee have just launched a poll on our local Twitter feed asking whether residents would support a ban on pavement parking in the Borough and indeed across Surrey in the same way as is currently possible in London.  Here is the link to the Tweet

Vote on Parking on Grass Verges!

The poll will be open for 7 days.  If any of you have social media accounts and feel able to share this with residents or can ask them to vote it would be much appreciated so that we can collect as many views as possible.

 

 

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Ewell Downs News Bulletin – Jan 2018

First of all may we wish you a Very Happy New Year!

Here is a round-up of what has been happening and some news on events to come since our last bulletin.

AGM 10 April 2018 – this has now been fixed to take place at 7.30 pm (drinks beforehand) at Wallace Fields Junior School in Dorling Drive. We are hoping for the same excellent turnout that we saw last year!

Drug Dealing close to Nescot

Following reports publicised in earlier bulletins – several of our Councillors met with Frances Rutter, the Chief Executive and Principal of Nescot, before the Christmas holidays. It would appear that Nescot is very aware of our concerns and some action is being taken. We are following this meeting up with a letter requesting a meeting on behalf of the residents and this will be sent to Ms Rutter in the near future.

Just to keep you informed, we understand that:

  • Any students found with drugs on their persons are expelled – this is not a funding issue. This is a simple process. There are nine introductory sessions with all new students informing them of what they must and must not do.

  • A new agreement will apply to the student intake from September 2018 referencing random drug testing.

  • Security has been taken in-house leading to greater control but this is restricted to the boundaries of the college in line with insurance directives.

  • The college has liaised with Ewell East station and has a good relationship with them.

  • Both uniformed and plain clothes police have patrolled the area and inform the college when they do.

Our priority is to have a meeting with Ms Rutter as soon as possible and we will advise you further when we have details.

We have sent an email to the developers of Sycamore Gardens telling them of the drug dealing in case they too wish to take the matter further.

Aldi application on the Old Dairy site – their appeal against refusal of the application has been dismissed. There is an option to come back with a revised planning application but no news on this at the present time.

Lidl – as expected, permission has been granted for the development on Upper High Street.

Reigate Road Traffic Islands – Roman Way – to correct an earlier report, we now understand that there will not be a compulsory “no right turn” out of the development. This was something that we had pressed for but is not something that Surrey County Council deem necessary.

Applications for flats in Ewell Village – there are two planning applications currently being considered for new flats in the High Street. Both relate to the first and second floors: one on 4/5 Market Parade, the site of the present Post Office, application No.17/00932/FUL – four 2-bed flats and the other at 27 High Street the site of the now closed RAM Security application No.17/01025/FUL – six 1-bed flats.

In both applications, as with the recently approved “Star” site, there is insufficient designated parking. The Borough’s “Parking Standards for Residential Development Supplementary Planning Document”, effective from December 2015, requires developers to comply with these standards. The Council has the power to waive this in exceptional circumstances.

Local Plan – as you will be aware the online consultation closed in November. The results are published on www.epsom-ewell.gov.uk/localplan under “Summary of Consultation responses”. Basically, the problem is that currently 181 units per year are built in Epsom and Ewell. Central Government has instructed local authorities to “significantly” increase the number of units they need to build and, in Epsom & Ewell’s case, they want 579 new homes per year. The demand identified as part of the strategic housing market assessment for Epsom and Ewell is 418 units per year for 15 years.

Originally the land assessment exercise recognised that 3,000 could be built on identified land excluding Green Belt, woodland, SSI etc., but over 15 years that’s 3000 units short. However Central Government then published proposals under a white paper that to fix “our broken housing market”, they are proposing we rip up our strategic assessment and use their new process.

This does not work well for Epsom and Ewell as we have recently built comparatively large numbers of units and the relative value of properties against the national wage doesn’t help either. The local plan must be completed or” predatory developers” could use the lack of a plan to land grab sites that would not be usually available for development.

The Council/Councillors now have to prepare a report making their case for a reduction in the target given. This is ongoing.

Plan E improvement works – following the Christmas break, works recommenced in South Street on Monday 8 January 2018 as planned. There will be similar lane closures in place to the ones before Christmas. The site compound has now been put back in place in the Market Place. There will be a short term, temporary lane closure on the High Street. This is to allow for materials to be safely delivered to the site compound.

The bus stand on Ashley Avenue has been fully open since Tuesday 9 January. There have been some changes to bus stops and services. Please check the bus timetables webpage for details.

The next step is to lay kerbs along South Street. Once this has been completed there will be alterations to the Marquis and Playhouse junctions. These phases are expected to commence in February.

East Street – still no progress on the road alterations! We understand that due to financial constraints the Kiln Lane Link has been shelved.

Fly tipping – successful prosecution against a man from Mitcham after fly tipping on Epsom Common with a £2,000 fine and driving ban.

166 Bus route – some of you will be aware that there is a question mark over the future of the 166 bus from Banstead to Epsom Hospital. The bus is specified by Transport for London and we understand that there has been contact with both Surrey and the Transport Commissioner to try to secure the future of the route. Its future is in doubt because it crosses the London boundary. Efforts are being made to try to sort this out so that the route continues for the future.

Pothole reporting – Are you aware that pot holes can be reported to Surrey CC? Go to https://www.surreycc.gov.uk/do-it-online/report-it-online. When a pot hole has been reported there is a case for compensation for anyone whose vehicle is later damaged by that pot hole. This web site can also be used to report a problem with pavements, street lighting and many other things.

Community Recycling Centres in Surrey – the collection of recyclable waste over Christmas proved very successful. Despite notices being attached to all bins advising that the grey ones would not be collected for one week, many calls were made to the Council “why wasn’t my bin collected today?” Really!!

We would remind residents that the Blenheim Road site is now closed to the public on Tuesdays and Wednesdays.

Epsom Post Office – there is good news! After months of uncertainty, the Post Office has now secured a permanent location for the office. It has now opened in a new card and gift shop at 59, High Street. We wish the new team all the best for the new shop and Post Office and hope this will secure its long term future.

Hessle Grove Allotments – is anyone interested in putting their name on a list for an allotment at Hessle Grove off Epsom Road? If so, please contact us and we will pass the message on.

LOCAL MATTERS AND EVENTS

Herald of Spring – this is on Saturday 10 March at Bourne Hall, Ewell from 9.30 am until 5 pm. This year’s theme is Mother Nature – learn about local green and natural organisations, local open spaces, see the flower displays and buy locally produced honey.

WW2 A Children’s War – at Bourne Hall on February 14 – for children – be prepared with gas mask training and air raid drill, then put out a fire bomb – one of the hundreds that were dropped on Epsom at a time when there were only three fire engines. Learn to play fag cards like wartime children, discover the size of your sweet ration, try a paper puzzle and write a postcard home after being evacuated

Chinese New Year in London 2018 – celebrate the Year of the Dog in London, with the biggest Chinese New Year celebrations outside Asia. Every year, hundreds of thousands of people descend on the West End to enjoy a colourful parade, free stage performances and traditional Chinese food, and to wish each other “Xin Nian Kuai Le” (Happy New Year in Mandarin) or “San Nin Faai Lok” (in Cantonese).

The London celebrations are taking place on 18th February, which is the Sunday following the date of the Chinese New Year (16 February).

Age Concern – the popular night – “Comedy at the College is being held at Epsom College on Friday 16th February – see flyer

Mayor’s Charity Meal – see flyer below

Epsom Methodist Book Fair – the 2018 Fair will take place on Thursday 15th and Friday 16th February (from 10am to 8pm) and Saturday 17th February (10am-4pm).  The dealers’ preview will be on Wednesday 15th February (6pm to 9pm). They will be running the Book Fair for the seventeenth successive year over Spring Half Term 2018 from Thursday to Saturday inclusive and are open for donations of books from Wednesday 7th to Sunday 11th February.

Priest Hill – the Surrey Wildlife Estate Team now manage the site through a centralised team. Surveyors, Practical Task Leaders, Liaison Officers, an Administrator and Estate Manager work to deliver the various objectives of the site management.

If you have an enquiry about any of their sites please feel free to contact the estates team on: countryside@surreywt.org.uk or 01483 910087 and they can direct your question to the appropriate member of staff.

Epsom Laughter Club – Laughter Yoga is a unique exercise routine which combines unconditional laughter with yogic breathing.  It is a fact that the body cannot differentiate between fake and real laughter.  You can get the full health benefits, whether laughter is real or simulated.  Laughter Yoga was started and developed by Dr Madan Kataria in India in 1995 and is now practiced in over 73 countries.  Visit www.epsomlaughterclub.co.uk for more information.

FREE taster sessions offered at Alexandra Park, Epsom (between Bowling green & Children’s playground) – 3rd Sunday of every month at 9am – unless heavy rain. Session will typically last about 50 mins.  Please wear comfortable clothing and bring either a yoga mat or a picnic blanket as we may sit/lie down.

  • Sun 21st Jan 2018

  • Sun 18th Feb 2018

  • Sun 18th Mar 2018

  • Sun 15th Apr 2018

Warning re burglaries – there have been several attempted and one actual burglary in the immediate area over the last month. Please make sure you take every precaution to prevent this happening to you. Most of these have taken place in the afternoon.

Nextdoor Ewell Downs – this is a free private social network for your neighbourhood community. Nextdoor is a good way to stay informed about what’s going on in your neighbourhood—whether it’s finding a last-minute babysitter, planning a local event, or sharing safety tips. There is one for Ewell Downs and although we would hesitate to recommend this site, there are several members in this area and it has proved a useful method of communication.

Keeping in touch – this bulletin is distributed to all those who have provided email addresses. The return of email addresses on the subscription envelopes has increased numbers dramatically! I hope everyone finds this flow of information useful and thank those who have commented in an appreciative way. Please pass this information on to any resident who may find it useful and ask them to let us have their email address so we can keep them in the loop.

Web site – do visit this – www.ewelldownsra.org. This shows all our previous bulletins and other information.

Facebook – our page is being well visited and “liked”. Do go and use this to put comments or pictures of the area on.

Twitter – this is quite active with many followers of Ewelldownsra.

Comments and news reports – please use this as a two-way instrument and let us know if there is anything you wish to report or comment on.

 

 

 

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Ewell Downs News – Special Update

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Following a committee meeting last night, this is a special bulletin to advise you of a few important items:

Drug Dealing close to Nescot

There is a great deal of concern over this matter which was published in our last Bulletin.  This item was fully discussed and it was agreed that we should proceed as follows:

  • The councillors have a meeting with Jackie Elkins, the police Inspector for Epsom & Ewell North on Thursday of next week.  They will be bringing this up for action as a matter of importance.  Should this attempt not achieve any results they have confirmed that they will go higher up the police chain.
  • The Association is sending a letter to Frances Rutter, the CEO at Nescot, pointing out, among other things, the safeguarding policies in relation to the students under their care and asking

a) what action has been taken to protect them and

b) what action is proposed?

  • We shall be in touch with the developers of Sycamore Gardens as very soon they will be opening the pedestrian entrance opposite the area where the dealing is taking place.
  • We will keep you informed of any progress in this matter – we are determined to get some action, so please come forward with any ideas you may have to help.

Street Lighting – a result!

Following pressure, particularly from our Surrey County Councillors, John Beckett and Eber Kington, the street lighting will now stay on until 1 am and then it will go off until 5 am.  This is something that many of you have contacted us about and we are pleased to say that this will take effect from Thursday night.  There may be a few lights that have yet to be tweaked but everything should be in line by Sunday night. They are requesting that on New Year’s Eve the lights remain on all night so that revellers can get home safely.

Assault involving Nescot students

Can you assist local officers investigating an assault in East Ewell?

Police were made aware of an incident involving NESCOT students which occurred on Thursday, 16 November 2017, in an alleyway between NESCOT and Ewell East Rail Station. It appears that this incident took place before 3pm however the exact time is unknown.

Video was captured of the incident which showed the victims being assaulted by a male who slapped the two males to the face and body with an object, whilst shouting and threatening them. It is believed the video has come from an unidentified third party and the footage does not identify the victims.

If you have any information about the incident or are aware of who the victims might be please contact Surrey Police on 101 or report online at Surrey Police Contact quoting reference number 45170129390.

Finally – super news

The little tri-coloured Sheltie missing from a garden in Longdown Lane North has been found in a garden in Walton on the Hill and is now safely back with its owners.  Thank you everyone who has been looking out for him.  Such a relief for all

Web site – do visit this – www.ewelldownsra.org. This shows all our previous bulletins and other information.

Facebook – our page is being well visited and “liked”. Do go and use this to put comments or pictures of the area on.

Twitter – this is quite active with many followers of ewelldownsra.

HappyDog

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Ewell Downs News Bulletin – Nov 2017

 

 

 

 

AEDR_Logo_Mid

You will soon all be receiving your newsletter from your Road Reps so I will not use this bulletin to repeat any of the information but there is one matter that has been brought to our attention that needs to be publicised so that anyone who has suggestions to make can come forward.

Drug Dealing close to Nescot

Several residents living on St Normans Way, just the other side of the Sycamore Gardens development have been in touch.

They have reported some very disturbing news that drug dealing is blatantly taking place along the pathway which leads from Ewell East railway station to Nescot College.  One of the residents taking an active role has photographic evidence and contacted Nescot to be told that this has been an on-going concern which seems to have escalated this year. The normal timings are at lunchtime between 12: 15 and 13:15. The resident met personally with Carol Martin, the vice principal, and had assurances that she will seek to address the problem. However her reply, following the meeting, was as follows:

“We have expelled so many students this term if we do more we are at risk of losing funding.

When approached about the rubbish build up and possibly helping clear up mess in the community, one staff member commented “it would be a fine thing, we can’t even get them to clean up on campus let alone outside”

When a security guard was approached he insisted he had no jurisdiction outside college property;

Regarding sniffer dogs they are unavailable due to cost”

Not only are they doing drugs but they have also vandalised the fence, of another resident with graffiti and a photo of this is attached.

Whether they are Nescot students or not it is quite evident by firstly their name badges around their necks with Nescot student emblazoned on them, then the fact that it is Mon-Fri 11:30 -13:20 when the incidents happen, which coincides with their break. It does not occur at weekend or generally outside those times.  The police have been informed on many occasions but have taken no action.

News of what has been happening has been publicised to all other Resident Associations and at a meeting of the Ewell Residents their County Councillor offered an alarming analysis – a summary of which follows:

“To recover its recent significant investment, and because of its excellent reputation, Nescot is substantially expanding its student numbers.  It is now taking students from far beyond the local catchment area including from right across London.  Many of these students have grown up in the very-different London environment of behaviour and crime including violence, drug-taking, graffiti, litter and other criminal and anti-social behaviour.  In the classroom now a disagreement can quickly develop into books being thrown around which is behaviour Nescot has to challenge.  Nescot says it has no responsibility for its students’ behaviour outside its fences.  The location of drug dens is well-known to students and when I reported this to senior local Police Officers but nothing appears to have been done about it, despite a meeting with the Police and Crime Commissioner”

Generally, throughout the Ewell area, there seems to be little or no police presence despite reports of crimes comprising thefts, road traffic incidents, graffiti and drug taking and, to add to the catalogue, a female member of staff at the co-op nearest to Ewell West railway station, was forced to hand over £2,000 of takings at knife-point.

This is concerning for a number of reasons; firstly there are many young school children that walk along there and could be intimidated, secondly many of these drug takers are subsequently going back to college and operating machinery or dealing with the general public, thirdly due to the numbers of students it suggests there is possibly some drug dealing going in order for them to source it. If all residents could be vigilant and record and report all incidents to the police and/or the college we shall seek to eradicate this scourge on our community.

All of our local councillors have been involved and are coming forward with some very encouraging suggestions on how to take this forward and we are grateful to them.  One councillor has visited the site and photographed the offensive graffiti. He will arrange for this to be cleaned off when all this has been sorted out – as requested by the resident whose fence it is – and others are raising the matter with both their contacts at Nescot and the police.  We hope that their interventions will result in some positive action.

Another option that Nescot could consider is to close the side entrances to the college after admittance hours in the morning. This would make the area a little less local for the students in the time limits of their breaks. You could say this would push the problem elsewhere but the area towards the front of the college is not as private and convenient for dealing and openly taking drugs. It would at least be worth experimenting with.

We shall also be liaising with our contact at the Sycamore Gardens development site for their support as they will soon open the pedestrian entrance which is close on the opposite side and are sure that they do not want this despoliation close to their development.

The daily incidents of drug dealing on our doorstep paints an alarming picture and we would be interested in your thoughts and suggestions on what can be done.

The atrocious mess and graffiti on a resident’s fence is shown below.

Fence.png

Keeping in touch – this bulletin is distributed to all those who have provided email addresses.  The return of email addresses on the subscription envelopes has increased numbers dramatically! I hope everyone finds this flow of information useful and thank those who have commented in an appreciative way. Please pass this information on to any resident who may find it useful and ask them to let us have their email address so we can keep them in the loop.

Web site – do visit this – www.ewelldownsra.org. This shows all our previous bulletins and other information.

Facebook – our page is being well visited and “liked”. Do go and use this to put comments or pictures of the area on.

Twitter – this is quite active with many followers of Ewelldownsra.

Comments and news reports – please use this as a two-way instrument and let us know if there is anything you wish to report or comment on.

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