The first thing I have to report is the sad and sudden death of one of our Councillors – David Wood. David joined the Council in 1995 and from 1999 represented Nonsuch ward and held the office of Mayor in 2006 and 2007. He had served as Chair and Vice-chair on numerous committees and was much admired for his defence of the character of Nonsuch ward and the precious green belt. It was the latter cause on which he had been particularly helpful. His local knowledge stood him in good stead and he was always ready to respond to our calls of assistance. He will be greatly missed. We should like to pass our condolences to his family at this sad time. This will trigger a by-election and the date of this will be publicised when determined.
Warning – Burglaries in the Area – residents should be aware that just recently there have been two burglaries in the area, one on the Reigate Road and one in Ewell Downs Road. In both cases the police have attended – very quickly for the Reigate Road one – and it seems that gangs on mopeds from London and Croydon are targeting the area, breaking into the back of a house where no cars are visible at the front – ignoring a burglar alarm – , stealing what they can quickly then leaving on their mopeds, trying to snatch a phone off an unsuspecting walker as they go. Please be aware of this and protect your property as best you can. There was also a spate of burglaries in Longdown Lane North and Links Road earlier in the summer – so please be aware!
AGM held on Tuesday 10 April 2018 – this was well attended by residents. Daniel Elkeles gave an interesting and positive talk on Epsom and St Helier Hospitals. We look forward to the steps that are being taken to fulfil his positive predictions.
Following on from this there were lively discussions on local matters which included the funding of social care in Surrey, the state of the roads and the finances of the Association, particularly the costs involved in printing the bi-annual newsletter. The minutes will reflect these issues.
Higher Green – apart from the work currently taking place by Southern Gas Networks to carry out gas main connection works in Higher Green and Wallace Fields, we would advise you that plans to complete the work in Longdown Lane North are also planned. The order came into force on 23 July 2018 and is valid for 6 months but works expected to be carried out within one week. Any enquiries to SCC at Merrow Tel 0300 200 1003 Authorizing Office R Bolton.
In addition to this, included in the parking review are double yellow lines on Higher Green, Wallace Fields, Longdown Lane and Windmill Lane. We would draw your attention to the Higher Green entry under Drawing Pack 5. See following item for web page.
Parking review – The Epsom and Ewell parking review for 2018 has now gone live on the SCC website. Please find the attached link, if any of you or your residents have any questions please refer to this or the appropriate divisional member.
Comments must be received by 9th August.
Before the start of the summer holidays we contacted Nescot a) to chase up the request for an appointment with the Principal, Frances Rutter, and b) to ask for something to be done about the area of the new roundabout. We were totally unsuccessful in getting a reply from Ms Rutter herself and will have to follow this up in September. It does seem that the drugs issue has diminished somewhat and we have not had any further reports. This could be helped by the closing of the access gate to/from the path that runs from the Reigate Road to Ewell East station, at all times. Many resident commuters who regularly took a short cut across the college car park when accessing Ewell East station have also noticed this and are equally bemused. The view of some residents is that many of these routes and areas have been used for a couple of decades without challenge so are, by precedent, rights of way. This being still more the case when one considers that it is mainly the college’s near neighbour’s who are using such routes. We shall be taking this up with Ms Rutter.
On the subject of the roundabout, much effort was put into planting, both of genista on the animal husbandry side, and the incorrect planting of low growing shrubs on the residential side. Both of these areas have become totally overgrown and although the low growing shrub areas now sprout high growing wild flowers, the areas need to be properly maintained. We contacted the college to suggest that their horticultural students could be gainfully employed in weeding but have yet to hear back from them – or see any work being done! We shall get back to this in the autumn.
Having reported priority areas for litter clearance to the Council, we see that some work has been done. We understand that the incidence of hypodermic syringes in Alexander Park has been reported previously and taken up by the Council. None has been found recently.
Planning – a brief outline
12A Longdown Lane North – erection of 4 bed detached dwelling on land adjacent to 12 Longdown Lane North – application refused – we had objected to this.
Mandalina Café High Street Ewell – outside seating area and awning at the front of premises – awaiting decision. Change of use of approximately 9 sqm of existing pavement to provide external seating adjacent to existing cafe bar
1 Hook Rise South Surbiton – outline application for a total of 950 residential dwellings and other uses including a doctors’ surgery – no objections.
Ewell West Railway Station – application for prior approval under Part 18 of the Town and Country Planning (GPD) Order 2015 for the demolition of existing station footbridge and construction of new access for all station footbridge including lifts. The drawing below shows what the footbridge will look like from both sides. Network Rail are holding a drop-in for residents and passengers on THURSDAY 26th July between 4pm and 7pm at Bourne Hall.
Caballo Lounge, High Street Epsom – change of use of approximately 9sqm of existing pavement to provide external seating adjacent to existing cafe bar – application refused.
Kings Arms public house East Street – we understand an application has gone in to demolish this and build 16 apartments.
Road names for Sycamore Gardens (Phase 2) – these were somewhat curious: Ceres Crescent (Goddess of Agriculture); Block A to be known as Minerva House (Goddess of Wisdom) 12 Ceres Crescent Flats 1 – 9; Block B to be known as Aurora House (Goddess of Dawn) 14 Ceres Crescent Flats 1 – 24; Block C to be known as Fauna House (Goddess of Animals) 15 Ceres Crescent Flats 1 – 9; Block D to be known as Jupiter House (King of the Gods) 10 Ceres Crescent Flats 1 – 8; Block E to be known as Juno House (Queen of the Gods) 16 Ceres Crescent Flats 1 – 8.
There was a Roman dig on this area some time ago and this gave rise to the idea to name the site after Roman Gods. We could find no other historic connection.
Local Plan – the Government requirement for the building of 579 housing units each year is being strongly opposed. At this time we have no further news but understand that work on the opposition to this is in progress.
Plan E improvement works – The Playhouse junction was closed for resurfacing on the 16 July for five nights and this work should now be complete. It is understood that this work will be completed so that by the August bank holiday weekend two way traffic will be using South Street!
This is the report from Surrey Highways:
“Playhouse junction improvements – Phase G
We are changing the junction layout so that two-way working on South Street can start. This will provide an extra pedestrian crossing across Ashley Avenue and South Street to the Playhouse.
The south pavement is being widened and rebuilt.
Epsom and Ewell council have agreed to renew the pavement at the Playhouse entrance, and these works have started.
The large flowerbed island has been removed and new pedestrian crossing islands have been built.
Marquis Junction improvements – Phase E
The junction layout has been changed to allow for the right turn from West Street into South Street
The pedestrian crossing island has been removed
Work started on the Market Place pavements and kerbs to allow the right turning from West Street and for two way working in South Street”
East Street – there may be some action on the layby where parked cars cause traffic hold-ups close to the Kiln Lane right turn! A decision is expected in September so we will keep you posted.
Road Closure for cycling event – Prudential Ride London returns to Surrey for its sixth year this month. The fundraising event is now Europe’s most successful fundraising event, with over £53 million raised for charity since 2013. The event, taking place on Sunday, July 29, will lead to several roads in Surrey temporarily closing. Road closures start from 5:00 am. This allows time for barriers to be installed, safety checks to be carried out and allows for stewards and volunteers to get in place.
Roads will start to reopen once the last amateur ride has crossed Hampton Court Bridge.
Hospital – Daniel Elkeles advised members at the Council meeting last week “ On the issue of funding the announcement about capital we think will be in November as part of the budget, the first announcement was only about revenue funding. So all still in play”
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 – 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.
Parking and consideration for other residents – residents have reported that owners of commercial vehicles who are not “permitted” to park outside their properties are parking in other areas – namely Wallace Fields and Higher Green. Surely out of consideration to other residents who are greatly inconvenienced by large vans and who deserve better, changes should be made to current practices.
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 – www.crowdfunding.co.uk/epsomcommonday2018
Ewell Village Fair – the event on 14 July was well supported and raised £11,400 for the church upkeep and expenses.
Bourne Hall Library closure – the collection of performance material, currently held by Surrey Performing Arts Library at Denbies wine estate in Dorking, is being moved to Ewell Library. It will be housed there while NewSPAL, a newly formed charity develops its business plan to take on operational responsibility for the performing arts library service.
As a result of the above move Ewell Library will be closed from 5pm, 11 August to 9:30am, 11 September. We apologise for any inconvenience caused. Please note that you can return, borrow and renew books at any Surrey Library. Nearby libraries are Epsom, Ewell Court and Stoneleigh.
Being a Councillor for Ewell/Nonsuch Wards – this is now critical!
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
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.
Become a councillor – https://www.gov.uk/government/get-involved/take-part/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: email@example.com 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.
GDPR – (General Data Protection Regulation) – you have asked to receive our email bulletins/newsletters. If you are happy with the emails you receive from us, you don’t need to do or change anything. You can un-subscribe anytime via the link below in each email we send. We do not share your email addresses with any other person or organisation.
Subscriptions – thank you to all the residents who have paid their £3.00 by way of returning the green envelope to their road steward, by standing order or online banking. We are most grateful to you. Our printing costs for the newsletter rise ever higher so please if you have not yet done so, pop your contribution into your road steward soon!
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.