This is a final round-up of events and issues for 2018. I do not intend to publish a bulletin in December unless something really important crops up – and I am sure you will all be occupied on other matters!
The Newsletter was distributed to all the homes in the area and thank you to all those who were prompted to pay their subscriptions by online banking. Some of you have paid for 2019 and again thank you – they will be recorded for next year.
Thanks also go to our road stewards for distributing said Newsletter. We welcome Raul who is stepping into the shoes of Graham Evans as Road Steward for part of Longdown Lane North. Graham has been a Road Steward for more years than I care to remember and we are most grateful to him for supporting us in the past. We are still looking for someone to cover Hampton Grove and would welcome anyone who lives in that road to come forward.
12 Longdown Lane North – (18/01055/FUL) – amended plan to the previously refused application to build 4 bed detached house on land adjacent no. 12 Longdown Lane North, The access route has been revised with other changes but it is clear that the grounds on which the previous application was refused remain. We have objected to this. The area in which the house is proposed is much too tight for such a development and encroaches on the privacy of neighbouring properties and is totally out of character with the conservation area. Please go and voice your opinions on this. We are trying to get this called to committee.
86 Reigate Road – this is not good news! The planning application for two chalet bungalows was approved. From comments at our recent committee meeting, it would appear that the firm lodging the application knew what they needed to do to get planning permission while not contravening Policy DM16. The report from the planning officers will be published on our website should you wish to look at this. Basically, this states reasons why the application complies with DM16 on the grounds of garden land, impact on neighbours, vehicular access, mass and scale of development and trees, shrubs and wildlife habitats. This is a disappointing result.
Young Farmers Hut – (18/00850/FUL) – this is the application for the reconstruction/re-cladding of a former Young Farmers Club hut at North Looe to change of use from club hut to artist’s studio is awaiting a decision. We have objected but apparently due to GDPR regulations, our objections cannot be shown on the web site but having spoken to the Planning Department, they have confirmed it has been received. We are hoping for better results on this change of use on Green Belt land.
South Hatch Stables – ( 18/00308/FUL) – application for the demolition of the existing Racehorse Training Establishment (RTE) and the erection of a new RTE comprising of a main yard stable complex and facilities and enabling residential development comprising 47 apartments – again this is awaiting a decision and has in fact been referred for legal advice regarding funding. This is a much needed scheme but the number of apartments on Burgh Heath Road is being widely opposed.
Lower Mill Ewell – (18/00865/LBA) – application for demolition of existing office building and redevelopment to provide 53 extra-care apartments with associated facilities (within Class C2), including conversion and alteration of the Grade II Listed Mill House and Granary Buildings, with parking, access, landscaping and other associated works. (Listed Building Consent). Many objections have been lodged, including that from the Epsom Civic Society, relate to the height of the development which is greater than the existing building. This is apparently listed for the January Planning Committee meeting.
The Kings Arms pub in East Street – (18/00315/FUL) – unused for many months. Application to demolish the building and build a three storey block containing 16 flats with parking. Amended drawings were requested but none have yet been submitted.
Lidl – 65 London Road – (18/00573/FUL) – revised application for supermarket with reduced size and no houses on the old Organ & Dragon site. The same traffic issues are anticipated – there are many objections and it is understood that it is not supported by the Highways Department.
Langley Vale Memorial Woodland – creation of a permanent car park with facilities etc and erection of visitors’ centre and associated infrastructure in relation to Langley Vale Wood – this is under negotiation with related boroughs, namely Mole Valley and Reigate and Banstead.
Downs House Walton Road – this is an application for the racehorse training yard redevelopment under 18/00288/FUL. This may be listed for the January Planning Committee.
Mill Road – 18/00271/FUL – application for residential development comprising of 31 units with associated landscaping, parking and external works. New plan following the refusal of earlier applications but many objections including Epsom Civic Society. Listed for either January or February Planning Committees.
East Street – there is a good chance that something could be done about the parking outside the parade of shops by the Kiln Lane junction which is causing terrible traffic problems on East Street. It is hoped that this will be on the agenda for the local committee meeting in December. The cost of a layby here is anticipated in the region of £100,000 but there is also the option to simply join up the existing double yellow lines which would be most inexpensive. If this is raised at the committee meeting there could be a decision taken and the work planned for 2019. We will keep you posted on this.
South Street – the phasing of the traffic lights to ease the flow from the Dorking Road into Epsom has been done but there are still queues here. Some fine tuning is required.
Town Centre – the works on both the pavements and the highway restrictions continue. The pedestrian crossing over Ashley Road is closed whilst works are being undertaken for the new kerbs, ducting and paving. A temporary crossing point has been provided further along Ashley Road and the “Pedestrian Marshall” remains available to assist the visually impaired and less able road users to cross the road safely.
Traffic management is currently in place to protect the workforce and this is causing traffic disruption. BT was holding up finishing off at least part of the works as there have been traffic speed signal co-ordination issues which only they can deal with, and once BT has attended and the works are completed the traffic signals need to be monitored and adjusted, and then linked via the Urban Traffic Control system to ensure that the junctions operate as efficiently as possible.
The Surrey Highways web site advises that the work is being shut down on Friday week, 30 November, and will not start again until 7 January so that should give us a break over Christmas. They are aiming for a May completion. SCC are over budget on this work so Epsom & Ewell BC have had to chip in with £2.25 million to get all the work done, including the public realm works of the market place refurbishment. There is to be a press release about this.
The contribution from our Council is a positive commitment to the future of our town and will see the laying of new paving, wider and safer pedestrian areas, up to nineteen trees, new lighting and benches, way finder signs, and a performance area. The market area will also be the new home for the Evocation of Speed (horse) statue that previously stood in front of the Ebbisham Centre. The funds came from the CIL levy paid by developers when building in the area. Under central government rules CIL can only be used to help deliver infrastructure improvements such as Plan E.
Full details of the work are available at epsom-and-ewell-major-transport-schemes.
Yellow lines – the next consultation for yellow lines closes at the end of May 2019 so if you have any recommendations go to parking-controls-request-epsom-and-ewell-march-201/. Perhaps a double yellow opposite the Wallace Fields Infant School parking area would stop the almost double parking on drop off and pick up times.
Notes from our Surrey County Councillor
- David Hodge will be stepping down as Leader of SCC at the end of the month. New leader to be appointed at December’s county council meeting.
- SCC has embarked on a Transformation Programme which is likely to see major changes and cuts to services. SCC is therefore currently consulting on changes to services in five areas: Children’s Centres, concessionary fares on Surrey buses, Special Educational Needs and Disabilities, Libraries and Cultural Services and Community Recycling Centres. The Surrey County Council website has a link to all the consultations (consultations) and, where appropriate, more detail that supports the principles behind proposed changes.
These changes will affect most, if not all, residents in some way and responding to the consultations is important. The consultations close on Friday 4 January 2019
- Borough Council Car Park Charges are held for 18 months although annual permits will increase by 3%.
- In October, and as part of the Borough Council’s commitment to enforcement, the Borough Licensing team undertook a joint enforcement operation with Transport for London (TfL). During the evening’s unannounced operation, a large number of licenced vehicles were inspected. These included Uber cars which are licenced by TfL and which can operate within our borough if pre-booked. The vast majority of the licenced taxi drivers and their vehicles were fully compliant, meeting both national legislation and local operating requirements. However some action was taken including:
- one driver issued with penalty points for not wearing an identification badge • one vehicle was instructed to have a rear light checked.
- four vehicles reported for potential MOT failure • two drivers moved on as they had no reason to be in the area
The Borough Council is determined to ensure that residents and visitors using taxis and hire vehicles in Epsom and Ewell are in safe vehicles and driven by fully compliant drivers.
Reigate Road roundabout – we have been advised that the responsibility for the planted beds and the roundabout remain the responsibility of Nescot and the developers – Wilmot Dixon. As such we have been in contact with Nescot to request that the weeding is done and we understand that in fact Surrey Highways will not assume responsibility for this until this and other works have been done so we hope something will be done in the near future. Litter and unruly students, particularly in Ewell Village remains an unsolved issue.
Ewell West Station Bridge – the work on replacing the old railway bridge has started and could take 18 months to complete allowing, after commissioning, for demolition of the existing bridge. This work is to provide access for all and has been funded by the Government. In the meantime much of the car park has been taken over by equipment and there is no casual use – only season ticket holders will be able to use the car park. As part of the refurbishment plan our councillors are seeking a gate at the car park end of the platform which would have an Oyster reader.
As an aside SWT has set up a “SWT Customer and Communities Improvement Fund”. This is to support projects across the network that address an area of social need and benefit local communities – i.e. by promoting walking and cycling links. Traffic on SWT has doubled in the past 20 years and in January there will be some new rolling stock and the older rolling stock will start to be refurbished – some is 30 years old.
Epsom Hospital – there are plans to sell off the old nursing accommodation which is now an administration centre at Rowan House on the Woodcote side of the grounds for a housing development. Councillors will resist any attempt to use the funds raised for anything except Epsom Hospital itself. For a report on the long term future of Epsom Hospital go to the-long-term-future-of-epsom-and-st-helier-hospitals-2377.
Future 40 – a Council initiative to engage local people in developing a clear vision as to what they want the Borough to be like in the future, all the way to 2040 and beyond. Residents are invited to join in the discussion and share their views on the Borough’s long-term vision at www.future40.org. The aim is to create “a bright and positive future that works for everyone” for the next 20, 30 or 40 years. It’s important to have your say.
Prospective Councillors Event
You are invited to a Residents’ Association Event on Saturday 19th January 2019 from 10am to 2pm, with a complimentary buffet lunch, at Horton Golf Club, Hook Road, KT19 8QG
A unique meeting of RA Councillors and Committee Members of Epsom & Ewell Residents’ Associations
Key Speaker – Marianna Overton, Leader of the LGA Independent Group
Join us to ask questions and share problems, ideas and good practice with your colleagues in similar roles across the Residents’ Associations. Join break-out sessions on key topics ahead of the May 2019 Borough elections
Please RSVP by the 9th December to Brian Angus firstname.lastname@example.org Please include your name, ward and role.
This event is organised jointly by the Residents’ Association Group of Councillors and the Standing Committee of Residents’ Associations with the support from the LGA Independent Group
Roads, leaves and planting – it has been an extremely leafy autumn. Can we encourage everyone before they put up their amazing outdoor lights for the festive season to go and sweep up the area outside their properties and clear away any leaves from the kerbside which would end up clogging drains. It would make a real difference to the look of the area. The Council has brought the planting of beds and baskets in house to cut back on costs It is good news that we shall still see colourful planting throughout the borough.
Recycling – the feedback from residents is most positive and weekly recycling is very popular. Just to let you know that the recent news that China is not accepting plastic waste will not affect Epsom & Ewell as our waste goes to Vietnam! So keep recycling!!
Ewell Yule 2018 – Friday 7th December from 5pm.Many local businesses will stay open late and have their own ‘attractions’. Glyn Hall will host various stalls as well. Already booked for the occasion are four school choirs, Morris Men, Green Sword dancers, Phoenix Clogs and two fairground rides. Father Christmas is sure to make an appearance and the Mayor, Cllr Neil Dallen, will chair the panel that will judge the Best Dressed window display. Parking will be free in the two Ewell Village car parks for the evening.
Evening shopping at Mayfield Lavender Reigate Road
Epsom & Ewell Silver Band
Yes FREE parking in the run up to Christmas in Epsom
Free parking for Christmas!
Parking in the Council’s shoppers’ car parks in Epsom will be free in the three Sunday’s before Christmas – 9, 16 and 23 December in the Ashley Centre, Town Hall, Hope Lodge, Depot Road and Upper High Street car parks.
To support local traders and help residents with Christmas shopping, it will be free to park in Council run car parks in Epsom Town Centre on the above Sundays in December, at – The Ashley Centre, Town Hall, Hope Lodge, Depot Road and Upper High Street.
Web site – do visit this – www.ewelldownsra.org. I am sure some of you must have some local photos to put on this!
Facebook – our page is being well visited and “liked”. Do go and use this to display comments or pictures of the area.
Twitter – this is quite active with many followers of Ewelldownsra.
Finally – A HAPPY AND HEALTHY CHRISTMAS TO EVERYONE – from your Committee