How are you all? We do hope that you are well and dealing with the lightening up of the lockdown in an ordered way – the last thing we need is a second wave!
Here is an update on matters local to help:
Coronavirus – COVID -19
There is little change to the information given in the June Bulletin so I will not repeat these. Anyone who did not receive the Bulletin and wishes to look these up, please go to our website – www.ewelldownsra.org
Just to let you know there are currently 333 confirmed cases of Covid-19 in Epsom & Ewell compared to 765 in Reigate and Banstead, 999 in Sutton and 738 in Kingston, with 275 deaths over the two hospitals Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust. It is important to remember that Dr Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus, director general of the WHO, has warned that the pandemic has still not reached its peak and the virus is not under control “in most of the world”. It is therefore very important that we all continue to take great care and follow government guidelines.
This are some excerpts of the latest information on what you can and can’t do published by the Government:
1. Gatherings, public spaces, and activities
1.1 What can I do that I couldn’t do before?
The UK Government is continuing to ease restrictions in a manner that is safe, cautious and consistent with our plan.
This means that from 11 July:
you can participate in team and other grassroots sports where the sports’ governing body has issued guidance on how to do so safely
outdoor swimming pools and outdoor water parks can open
outdoor performances in front of a live audience and indoor rehearsals can take place in COVID-19 secure venues. Indoor rehearsals and indoor performances for broadcast should only happen where no audience is present
smaller-scale indoor performances can be piloted in COVID-19 Secure venues once approved by the government
From 13 July:
close contact services, such as nail bars, salons, tanning booths, spas, massage parlours, tattoo parlours and body piercing studios, can open. Only services that do not involve work in the highest risk zone – directly in front of the face – should be made available to clients, in line with government guidance.
And from 25 July:
sports facilities and venues, including such as indoor gyms, fitness and dance studios, indoor swimming pools and indoor water parks, will open – subject to evidence closer to the time
As was already the case, in terms of seeing friends and family, you can:
meet in groups of up to two households (anyone in your support bubble counts as one household) in any location – public or private, indoors or outdoors. You do not always have to meet with the same household – you can meet with different households at different times. However, it remains the case – even inside someone’s home – that you should socially distance from anyone not in your household or bubble. This change also does not affect the support you receive from your carers
continue to meet outdoors in groups of up to six people from different households, following social distancing guidelines
stay overnight away from your home with your own household or support bubble, or with members of one other household
It remains the case that you should not:
socialise indoors in groups of more than two households (anyone in your support bubble counts as one household) – this includes when dining out or going to the pub
socialise outdoors in a group of more than six people from different households; gatherings larger than six should only take place if everyone is from exclusively from two households or support bubbles
interact socially with anyone outside the group you are attending a place with, even if you see other people you know, for example, in a restaurant, community centre or place of worship
hold or attend celebrations (such as parties) where it is difficult to maintain social distancing
stay overnight away from your home with members of more than one other household (your support bubble counts as one household)
You should only be socialising in groups of up to two households indoors and outdoors or up to six people from different households outdoors.
It is against the law for gatherings of more than 30 people to take place in private homes (including gardens and other outdoor spaces). Businesses and venues following COVID-19 Secure guidelines can host larger groups provided they comply with the law. This can include weddings and funerals (which we advise should be limited to no more than 30 people), religious ceremonies and services, community activities and support groups. If attending a place or event that is following COVID-19 Secure guidelines, you should take care to limit your interactions with anyone outside of your group and you should continue to maintain social distancing from those that you do not live with. It is critical that you follow these guidelines to keep both yourself and others safe.
1.3 What businesses are reopening?
Many businesses and venues are now permitted to reopen and are expected to follow COVID-19 Secure guidelines. From 11 July and 13 July, further businesses will be permitted to open.
From 11 July:
outdoor swimming pools
outdoor water parks
From 13 July:
nail bars and salons
tanning booths and salons
spas, and beauty salons
body piercing services
This in addition to the businesses opened on 4 July:
hotels, hostels, bed and breakfast accommodation, holiday apartments or homes, cottages or bungalows, campsites, caravan parks or boarding houses
places of worship
restaurants, cafes, workplace canteens, bars, pubs that are self-contained and can be accessed from the outside
hair salons and barbers, including mobile businesses
theatres and concert halls
funfairs, theme parks, adventure parks and activities such as go-karting, laser tag and paintballing
outdoor gyms and playgrounds
museums and galleries
outdoor skating rinks
amusement arcades and other entertainment centres, such as snooker halls
indoor attractions at aquariums, zoos, safari parks, farms, wildlife centres and any place where animals are exhibited to the public as an attraction
indoor and outdoor areas of visitor attractions including, gardens, heritage sites, film studios and landmarks
1.25 Can I play sport outside?
From 11 July, you will be able to play team sport in any number if this is formally organised by a sports club or similar organisation and sports-governing body guidance has been issued. You should only be playing team sports where the relevant governing body has published guidance on how to do so safely. For example, the English Cricket Board has published guidance here. If you are playing one of these sports informally, such as in the park or a private garden, there must should be no more than 30 people involved (including participants, coaches, umpires, spectators). If you are playing one of these sports informally, such as in the park or a private garden, there must be no more than 30 people involved (including participants, coaches, umpires, spectators).
Team sports that do not have approved guidance should not be played. Instead, people should train together and take part in activities such as conditioning or fitness sessions in groups of no more than six people (outdoors) or two households (in any setting). You should socially distance from people you do not live with.
At all times, you should comply with COVID-19 Secure measures and limit social interaction outside of the sporting activity.
Go to https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-outbreak-faqs-what-you-can-and-cant-do for additional information.
Coronavirus – Community Recycling update
Your kerbside collections
All kerbside collections are running normally.
Current services at the tip
Surrey County Council’s Community Recycling Centre (the tip) at Blenheim Road is open from 8am – 4pm seven days a week. It will now accept most types of waste. Check before you go.
Please note due to social distancing arrangements there can be long traffic queues for the tip. We advise you only to go if it is essential.
Residents can take batteries, black bag waste, bulky waste, cardboard, gas bottles, green waste, hazardous waste, scrap metal, small electronics, white goods, and wood.
NO – CANNOT BE ACCEPTED
Chargeable waste (soil, rubble, plasterboard or tyres): this is due to payment-related operational issues
Textiles: this is due to the continued closure of Surrey County Council’s textile recycler. Weekly kerbside textiles collections
Asbestos: this is due to social distancing restrictions meaning that not all waste containers can yet be activated
Residents using a van, pick-up or trailer can use the sites again, but will still need a valid van permit, as usual. Hire vehicles must have vehicle hire documentation clearly displayed in the windscreen.
The number of people allowed on site at one time are limited and there are revised opening hours.
Residents should only use the CRCs if they absolutely need to, and must check for the latest information before they travel, as these arrangements are subject to change. Please see individual site information for further details.
For a full daily update on waste collections, please check this page regularly.
Unfortunately, the Revive re-use shops remain closed at this time and the sites do not have capacity to store items for re-use, so please hold onto these at home for the time-being, however see the article below for reference.
Something to think about in the future – Reselling unwanted items
Unearth tantalising treasure at a Revive shop
If you’re looking for something new for your home or garden or if you’re a keen up cycler, look no further than Surrey’s Revive shops. The shops resell unwanted items given to community recycling centres (CRCs) making them a treasure trove of truly fascinating, weird and wonderful items.
Located at CRCs in Woking, Witley, Redhill and Leatherhead, Revive shops take unwanted furniture, bikes, crockery, tools, garden furniture, CDs, DVDs, records, sports equipment and much, much more. They check all donations and, if suitable for re-use, resell them.
As well as reducing waste, Revive shops offset the running costs of CRCs, helping to maintain the service. Additionally ten per cent of the shops’ profits are donated to local charities voted for by shop users.
You can nominate your favourite charity by voting at any Revive shop. Every three months the charity with the most votes will receive the money.
Whether you have some house or garden items that could go to a better home or if you’re looking for something new or a project to work on, pay a visit to a Revive shop now. You never know what you might find.
For more information and for some great photos of items for sale follow Revive on Facebook.
All four Revive shops are open between 9am and 3.45pm, Monday to Sunday*. This is the address of the closest
Leatherhead – Randalls Road, Leatherhead, Surrey, KT22 0BA *closed on Fridays
Car Parks, Parks and Open Spaces
Parking charges: Car park charges in council owned car parks will recommence from Monday 15 June. Free parking will continue to be available to NHS staff, care workers and NHS volunteer responders involved in the Covid-19 response in pay and display car parks only. A key worker pass, which can be issued by your employer, will allow you to park for free when a permit is displayed within the vehicle.
Regular Thursday and Saturday trading on the Market Place will continue as normal with limited stall holders only. We are taking precautions including putting up barriers for customers to queue up in line with social distancing guidelines. We also expect all shoppers to follow government advice whist shopping for essentials.
For further information and frequently asked questions visit www.epsom-ewell.gov.uk/coronavirus
New test facility – There is now an additional test centre in Epsom, for those experiencing COVID-19 symptoms. It’s located in the Upper High Street car park. To book a test use this link. https://www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19/testing-and-tracing/ask-for-a-test-to-check-if-you-have-coronavirus/
For latest NHS UK advice see: www.nhs.uk/conditions/coronavirus-covid-19
For the latest SCC advice see: www.surreycc.gov.uk/coronavirus
For the latest UK government advice see: www.gov.uk/coronavirus
For the latest UK government coronavirus business support advice see: https://www.businesssupport.gov.uk/coronavirus-business-support/
Some random Covid articles!
Covid Care 19 Information Center
Are you popping out to support your local cafe reopening?
Full guidance here
Make sure to follow any guidance given to you and wash your hands when you get home.
You will also be asked to provide your name and phone number to help stop future outbreaks.
From Clive Woodbridge Facebook page
There are 8,000 curry houses in the UK, most of which are independent, family-run businesses. Throughout the last 3 months they have just about survived on their takeaway trade. Finally, these much loved restaurants can reopen their doors and once again greet customers with their uniquely warm welcome.
But many won’t last long unless their customers return. That is why I am delighted support the Kingfisher campaign urging the British public to “Keep Calm and Curry On!”
Nobody should put themselves at risk or do anything they feel is unsafe. But its good if you can to support a local business to help keep this wonderful British institution alive! And there is nothing better than a good British Curry!
Mayfield Lavender Farm
Wander through row after row of bright purple lavender at Mayfield Lavender Farm, a brilliant day out for all ages.
The farm, based in Banstead, is now welcoming visitors, with social distancing measures in place to keep everyone safe as the lockdown eases. Having been in lockdown since the end of March, many people are now looking for places to visit and make the most of what Surrey has on offer. If you are searching for something a bit different, then head to Mayfield’s 25-acre site and stroll along the paths of organic lavender.
The best time to see the lavender is from the first week of July until the middle of August. Due to frost damage in May, the lavender flowered slightly later this year.
The farm is in Carshalton Road, Banstead, SM7 3JA.
It is open every day from 9am to 6pm until the end of August. Last entry for cars is 5.45pm.
Entry is £4 per person and free for children 16 years and under. The entry ticket includes parking. The car park has limited capacity. Tractor rides are also available around the farm for £2 per person. Babes in arms are free. Tickets can be purchased from the shop or café. Rides generally begin at 10.30am and will run throughout the day, when there is demand.
Drive-in cinema coming to site near Guildford is latest Surrey movie night to be announced
Sunset Cinemas plans to set up in a field off the A3 between Ripley and West Clandon on Friday, July 31, making it the latest in a string of drive-in cinemas to be announced in and around Surrey. As well as outdoor cinemas in Redhill, Guildford and Hampton Court Palace there is one being set up at celebrity chef Aldo Zilli’s home in Bletchingley. And another will air films in Cranleigh. The latest announcement on the Ripley event states that The Lion King will be the first film to air on July 31 at 2pm followed by Jurassic Park on the same day at 5.30pm and Grease at 8.30pm.
further schedule of films is listed on the Sunset Cinemas website up to August 21 with screenings including:
Finding Nemo (August 1, 2.30pm)
Dirty Dancing (August 1, 5.30pm)
Four Weddings and a Funeral (August 1, 8.30pm)
Finding Dory (August 2, 3pm)
Ferris Bueller’s Day Off (August 2, 6pm)
The Rocky Horror Picture Show (August 2, 8.30pm)
Founder of Sunset Cinemas, Scott Horsfield, said: “We want to provide an experience of the absolute highest quality. Our screens are provided by the same company as Glastonbury and the sound systems are bluetooth speakers that go into the cars.
“My experience working in film means we understand the importance of providing film fanatics with the very best experience.”
Food can be ordered directly to your car or there will be a mini food market. The field is huge so social distancing should be easy to maintain and if you do want to walk around, there will be marked walkways that are wide enough to keep your distance, organisers say.
Staff will wear PPE and toilets will be spaced two metres apart.
The reopening of the town centre library in Epsom was very welcome in the town, according to Neil Dallen, a Town Ward councillor on Epsom and Ewell Borough Council. “It’s part of the town centre coming back to normal again,” he said. “It’s going to take months and months to get back to normal, but it’s another step in the right direction.”
They may be only allowing limited numbers in and not allowing the use of computers, printing or photocopying, but Cllr Dallen said libraries are an important influence to footfall in town centres, that have been much missed by their communities.
Epsom Market Place
Work in the Epsom Market Place is almost complete. Works were put on hold but have now re-commenced and the paving on the north side is well under way. The Market and local businesses are open as usual during these works.
Epsom Car Boot Sales
Hook Road Arena Car Boot Sale
Held:every Sunday. Runs From:March to November. Small vans £12, transit size £20, Luton size £30. Buyers 50p after 0830. Bank Holiday Monday car boot sales are massive. Huge free car parks, good food, toilets, bouncy castles, ice cream, security, lost child procedure. Fruit, bread, farm, plant and home made stalls. Very well run. Always check http://www.hookcarbootsale.com for dates and weather postponements (or call 07788132977). Seller Arrival: 7.00am Buyer Arrival:07.30am
Priest Hill Outdoor Car Boot Sale – Priest Hill, Banstead Road, East Ewell. Website www.surreycarbootsale.com.
Held:every Saturday. Runs From: May to August. Cars £10, small vans £15, large vans/Luton vans £20. Buyer fee £1 before 8:30, 50p after. Kids under 12 free. Seller Arrival:7.00am Buyer Arrival:7.00am
Coronavirus Planning Service Update
The Planning Service is continuing to receive Planning and Building Applications. We are providing the service of registering and processing applications so that our officers can continue to deliver our statutory services while working from home. Where necessary we have modified our processes to make this possible. You may wish to continue to progress your planning or building matter, make applications or seek pre-application advice. The majority of decisions are undertaken under delegated authority, and for those matters we are endeavouring to provide a business as usual service.
Meetings will be held virtually using video and audio conference technology and will be open to the press and public to attend as observers either online or by telephone. There is also continued provision for the public to contribute to the meeting in accordance with our scheme for public speaking.
Councillor Clive Woodbridge, Chair of the Planning Committee stated “The Government has been very clear that the planning process must continue. This will be a key element in the economic recovery and continued investment in our borough at the end of this Covid-19 crisis.
Details on how to log in or listen to the Planning Committee meeting on the telephone can be accessed on the front sheet of the committee agenda published elsewhere on this website – planning committee.
The next Planning Committee meeting will be held on Thursday 23 July at 7.30 pm. The item on the Agenda comprises the development at Woodcote Grove, Ashley Road, Epsom (19/00999/FUL) – see below.
Nescot parking for NHS staff at June planning committee meeting – The application to vary Condition 5 (parking on Site) of Planning Application to allow the temporary use of the car park by Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust staff was permitted subject to conditions.
Woodcote Grove, Ashley Road – (19/00999/FUL and 19/00998/LBA) Development of 98 apartments/dwellings, including conversion of the Grade II* Listed Woodcote Grove and Grade II Listed Stable Block, with parking, access, landscaping and other associated works, following the demolition of the existing reprographics centre and conference centre (Listed Building Consent).
London Road – old Organ and Dragon Inn site – A near decade planning saga at the site of a former pub next to the A24, which saw proposals collapse for a Lidl supermarket and KFC, could be coming to an end after blueprints emerged for a block of apartments to be built. The 65 London Road site in Ewell where the Organ and Dragon once stood, is the subject of a new building proposal, just off the A24 and Ewell Bypass.
Development company 65 London Road Ltd has opened up a public consultation for the proposed housing building works, which will provide 45 residential units, being between three and six storeys, forming an L-shape from a birds eye view. There will be 21 one-bed units, 15 two-bed units and nine three-bed units, with a percentage of affordable housing still to be confirmed.
It is being put up for an online consultation, giving those who live and work in the area the chance to say whether they approve of the scheme, and comment on individual aspects.
1 Higher Green – (19/00758/FUL) no news on the Construction Transport Management Plan, which is required “in order that the development should not prejudice highway safety, nor cause inconvenience to other highway users”. A letter to the developer has been drafted and is soon to be finalized.
North Looe Estate (170 Reigate Road) – (19/01593/FUL) proposed change of use of the land and buildings for a Dog Day-care centre. Still no news.
Guild Living at rear of Epsom Hospital – (19/01722/FUL)| demolition of redundant hospital buildings and redevelopment of the site to provide a new care community for older people arranged in two buildings. There are well over 600 objections including the Epsom Civic Society and reports continue to be filed but no decision yet.
7 Station Approach Stoneleigh – (19/00668/FUL) application for the demolition of existing buildings on site and erection of a part 6, part 7 storey building providing 23 residential flats with associated communal roof terrace, cycle and refuse stores. Despite amendments to the original plans, objections continue – there are now 1007! A decision has still not yet been made.
Development Site at 24-28 West Street Epsom – (19/01021/FUL) there is still no news on this application for the demolition of the existing building and construction of a new part 9, part 11 and part 13 storey building. There are over 400 objections to this including ones from Historic England and the Civic Society.
The Police Station and Ambulance Station sites in Church Street Epsom – (19/01589/FUL) the application for a retirement development in Epsom by McCarthy & Stone which will include a mix of 19 one bedroom and 41 two bedroom “Extra Care” Retirement Living with associated communal facilities, parking and landscaping following the demolition of the existing buildings is awaiting a decision. There are 140 comments and objections, including that from the Civic Society.
The Star 2 Cheam Road Ewell – No news on the let by Greenfields to find a suitable tenant for the commercial ground floor of the Star. The change of use to a Medical clinic has been approved.
The Lodge, West Street Ewell – (19/00015/FUL and 19/00801/FUL) the inspector has dismissed the appeal against refusal for the first application. The second application (19/01604/FUL) was refused by the Planning Committee. There is no news if that has been appealed also.
22-24 Dorking Road Epsom – (19/01365/FUL) Demolition of existing houses and erection of a part two, part three storey building with rooms in the roof and basement providing 20 flats. Basement parking for cars and cycles. Bins stores and associated hard and soft landscaping including new boundary walls and railings.
The Grumpy Mole, Chalk Lane – (20/00643/COU) Change of use from restaurant (Use Class A4) to single dwelling (Use Class C3). This application has been withdrawn!
Electoral Review – The Local Government Boundary Commission for England has notified the Council of its intention to carry out an electoral review of the Council. The review will consider the total number of councillors on the Council, and then review the numbers and boundaries of electoral divisions within the Council.
From our Surrey County Councillor – John Beckett
A vast majority of Surrey County councillors only found about these secret discussions from the press!! SCC Conservative leader, Cllr Oliver has been having secret meetings with conservative cabinet members and selective chief executives from other blue councils trying to sell his idea!!
We in Epsom and Ewell are proud of our independence and residents have put that faith in the RA for the last 80 years! The main political parties hate that and this is a way of abolishing your local identity. SCC have an appalling record of delivering locally and failing its residents with bad investments and poor budget and money decisions made by a cabinet run by a dozen selected individuals pushing their own agenda.
There is a real possibility that this serious attack on localism will be agreed by central government and we will need to call on residents to show their support for the borough council and its long and unique history of excellent service and value for money to its residents.
Your local RA’s and Cllrs will be looking into this travesty in more detail and reporting back to residents.
Although there is the threat of making Surrey a Unitary authority the Boundary Commission have asked for a review in Epsom and Ewell
The local Government. Commission for England is an independent body set up by Parliament. Statutorily required to review periodically the electoral arrangements of each provincial council in England. The last such review in E&E was carried out in 1997 and incorporated in 1998 reducing the number of elected Cllrs. From 39 to 38 and retaining to 13 electoral wards and changing some Ward boundaries. The intervening years have seen the development of the Hospital Cluster on the west side of the Borough impacting on elector numbers in 3 wards.
The average number of registered voters per councillor in EE at present is 1572 which is broadly in line with the Boundary Commission guidance. Most wards are within a reasonable tolerance of that figure, however four wards have a significant divergence. It seems likely therefore that a Boundary Commission review will focus on rectifying the imbalance in these four wards. Some suggestions could be to adjust the number of councillors in those Wards and or redraw boundary lines.
Other issues to consider include whether to maintain the current number of Cllrs. at 38. While there could be savings from a lower number, the likely increase in EE population over the next 10 year rather than reduction would suggest maintaining the present number otherwise we might have to increase again in a short space of time.
Wards are based on historic communities and are under pinned by RA groups linked to those geographies. A review should reflect those ties as much as possible. A cross party review board has been set up at the Council and more details will follow as a suggested way forward is discussed with relevant parties.
Priest Hill Nature Reserve – please note that barbecues are not permitted on this site. It is a beautiful area that we should all be able to enjoy, especially with the abundance of wild flowers and wildlife at the moment, so please take your littler home and do not run the risk of random fires destroying the area during the dry weather.
Watering trees – on the basis that lots of new trees are to be planted in the area, may we please ask that if one is close to your house and the weather is hot and sunny, that you take a watering can of water to keep the tree alive. This all helps enhance our surroundings and won’t be too onerous! Many thanks.
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. Go and use this to make comments or display pictures of the area.
Twitter – this is quite active with many followers of Ewelldownsra.
Shades of “Old”Epsom!