Langley Vale Bottom Farm – Public Briefing Langley Vale Village Hall, 7-9 pm 21st April 2022

On 22nd February 2021 Epsom and Ewell Borough Council (EEBC) Planning Committee refused the above planning application for the demolition of the existing farm buildings and the construction of 20 dwellings of which 8 would be affordable together with associated access, landscaping and parking. The main reason for refusal was that the proposed development would constitute inappropriate development in the Green Belt and was also in an unsustainable location outside the built-up area without good public transport links.

The applicant has now appealed the decision.

The details of the appeal and relevant documents can be found here on the EEBC website.

Additional information is available on the Planning Inspectorate website which is linked here

This appeal constitutes a precedent-setting challenge to the principle of development in Epsom and Ewell’s Green Belt as a whole and it is therefore important that those who share the view that such development should not be permitted make their views formally known to the Inspector.

Accordingly, Woodcote (Epsom) Residents Society (WERS) is holding a public briefing at the Langley Vale Village Hall from 7-9 pm on 21st April 2022.

The leaflet announcing the meeting and providing details of the issues and arguments and how to object to the Inspector here

Please share this information, come along on the 21st of April or email WERS for additional information or with any questions. It is an important time to get your voice heard.

Posted in News, Planning, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | Comments Off on Langley Vale Bottom Farm – Public Briefing Langley Vale Village Hall, 7-9 pm 21st April 2022

Annual General Meeting 2022 – 1st March 7:30 pm

The Annual General Meeting of the Woodcote (Epsom) Residents’ Society will take place on 1st March from 7:30 pm.

Location: St. Martins School – Main Hall

We also hope to provide a Zoom session to view the proceedings and to pose questions for residents who are unable to attend in person.

Email info@woodcoteepsomresidentssociety.org for the Zoom meeting details.

Agenda (draft)

  1. Apologies for absence
  2. Presentation by Sustainable Epsom and Citizens Advice Bureau ****
  3. Approval of Minutes of the AGM held on 3rd March 2021 *
  4. Approval and adoption of the accounts for the year ending 31st December 2021 **
  5. Election of the committee and Hon Auditor for 2022-23 ***
  6. Chairmans update
  7. Reports from your Residents’ Association Borough Councillors
    1. Liz Frost
    2. Bernice Froud
    3. Steven McCormick (Borough and County update)

* – The minutes are available on our website; paper copies will be available at the meeting

** – Copies of the accounts will be available at the meeting and on the website after the meeting.

*** – If you would like to receive more information about getting involved with WERS please contact any committee member.

**** – Change of speakers due to Mum For Lungs speakers being unavailable.

Posted in News | Tagged | Comments Off on Annual General Meeting 2022 – 1st March 7:30 pm

AGM 2021 – AGENDA

Woodcote (Epsom) Residents’ Society

(http://woodcoteepsomresidentssociety.org)

Please join us at our Annual General Meeting (AGM)

3rd March 2021 at 7.15pm for 7.30 p.m.

at Zoom Meeting

Email info@woodcoteepsomresidentssociety.org to be mailed the Zoom meeting details

AGENDA

  1. Apologies for absence
  2. Approval of Minutes of the AGM held on 3rd March 2020*
  3. Approval and adoption of the accounts for the year ending 31st December 2020**
  4. Election of the committee and Hon Auditor for 2021-22 ***
  5. Presentation by Fred Mowbray – Chairman
  6. Reports from your RA Borough Councillors
    1. Liz Frost
    1. Bernice Froud
    1. Steven McCormick
  7. Presentation of adopted RA candidate for Epsom Town & Downs Surrey County Council  – Steven McCormick
  8. Any other business

*    The minutes are available on our website; paper copies will be available at the meeting

**  Copies of the accounts will be available at the meeting, and on the website after the meeting

*** If you would like to stand for the committee please contact Steven McCormick (stevenjmccormick@yahoo.co.uk)

Posted in News | Comments Off on AGM 2021 – AGENDA

June 2022 Liz Frost, Borough Council update

In connection with preparing for our Local Plan, the Licensing and Planning Policy Committee has agreed on a draft Statement of Community Involvement (SCI) and the Local Plan Framework.  The SCI shows how local residents, businesses and other interested parties can get involved and have their views heard.  The Council is now consulting on this draft statement.  I would urge you to review and provide a comment on it, you have until 4th July to do so.  Please go to https://epsom-ewell.inconsult.uk/.  The Local Plan will shape the borough for many years to come, so being able to express your views is very important.  Further consultations on the local plan will be coming forward. 

The borough has strong links with the armed forces and will be celebrating Armed Forces Day ‘Fly the Flag’ on Monday 20th June.  This will take place in the Market Place at 11.30 when the Mayor will raise the Armed Forces Flag in support of our servicemen and women, past and present.

You may recall that the Planning Committee refused the application for the development of 20 properties on a site on Langley Bottom Farm and that the refusal has been appealed by the applicant.  Your Woodcote Councillors and the Woodcote (Epsom) Residents Society have all submitted objections.  The appeal is scheduled to be held on 6th July.

We appear to have been beset by temporary road closures/traffic signals over recent months.  You can find the latest position by looking at the Surrey County Council interactive map at https://surreycc.gov.uk/roads-and-transport/roads-and-maintenance/roadworks.  This is showing the temporary traffic lights in Ashley Road and a significant number of roads where there are possible temporary lights over the rest of this month and next for planned utility company works.

We are planning a routine meeting with the local police to discuss Woodcote Ward issues.  If there are any matters you’d like raised, please let me know by the end of June.

Both the Borough and County Councils have online reporting systems.  If you want to let them know about things that need to be fixed, e.g., fly-tipping (Borough), go to www.epsom-ewell.gov.uk and click on ‘! Report it’; or faulty street lights (County), go to www.surreycc.gov.uk and see the ‘Report’ options.

It has been good to see the Jubilee celebrations that have taken place in the Borough and hope you have enjoyed some of these and others too.  These started with the opening of the Derby Hall of Fame in the Market Place on 1st June.  These roundels mark some of the most notable names in our horse racing history, and together with The Evocation of Speed and Emily Davison bench statue capture some of the borough’s racing heritage. The opening of the Hall of Fame, with charity stalls, was followed by entertainment at the opening of the Jubilee and Derby Festival.  The focus of events then moved to the Downs and the lighting of the Beacon – we were fortunate with the weather and a large crowd was able to watch the lighting ceremony and try to spot the other beacons across the region.  The reports we have of the Derby Festival from the Racecourse are favourable and it was good to see the event back in full after the pandemic.  From a local perspective, it was particularly pleasing that Laura Mongan, who trains in Woodcote Ward, had a success, with Bowman winning the ‘Cazoo Derby Festival Handicap’ race on Ladies’ Day.

I have your details because you are a resident who has contacted me in the past.  If you would prefer not to receive information and updates from me in the future, please let me know and I will remove you from my contact list.

Posted in Councillor Updates, News | Comments Off on June 2022 Liz Frost, Borough Council update

Draft Statement of Community Involvement 2022

The ‘statement of community involvement’ (SCI) sets out how planning services intend to involve the local community in planning issues, including:

  • who will be consulted
  • when involvement should take place
  • which methods will be used.

Its purpose is to ensure active and continuous community participation in the planning process, whilst also making sure that the best decisions are made.

As part of the development of the new Local Plan Epsom & Ewell Borough Council is currently consulting on a draft Statement of Community Involvement 2022.

Please follow the link below and provide your comments and feedback.

https://epsom-ewell.inconsult.uk/SCI2022/consultationHome

Posted in Borough Election, Planning, Surveys | Comments Off on Draft Statement of Community Involvement 2022

Emergency traffic works – Woodcote Road

Thames Water (TWU) is dealing with a boundary box exchange outside the Old Well House, Woodcote Road, Epsom. 

The traffic management (TM) advised is two-way signals.  The works have started and are currently permitted until the 8th of March.  

Posted in News, Roads | Comments Off on Emergency traffic works – Woodcote Road

Councillor update – Liz Frost – February 2022

Storm damage 

Epsom & Ewell appears to have suffered less in the recent storms than in some areas.  Work on fallen or unsafe trees was prioritised according to where they were and public safety issues.  We have, unfortunately, lost some of our larger trees in Rosebery Park, including one near the Ashley Road town entrance.  The duck house also broke its mooring.

Platinum Jubilee

There has been a long history of the borough taking part in marking significant Royal events by lighting a beacon.  In the past temporary beacons have been used.  However to mark the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee, Go Epsom (Epsom’s Business Improvement District (BID)) has proposed funding a permanent beacon to be erected near the View Point car park.  This was approved in principle by the Downs Conservators and Epsom BID have applied for planning permission for it.  The beacon lighting ceremony on 2nd June will be organised by the Borough Council, in conjunction with the Jockey Club and Go Epsom.

Planning matters

There have continued to be delays to processing planning applications.  Several factors are involved, including a much increased number of applications and changes to officers.  I have been keeping a log of applications validated and chasing up longstanding ones where there appears to have been no progress.  We now have a new head of planning and other positions in the department are being filled so we hope to notice an improvement in clearing the backlog of applications. 

Appeals updates

  • Epsom Hospital multi-storey car park – an appeal against the Council’s refusal for permission for the 6 storey car park has been lodged by the hospital trust. The application was heard by the Planning Committee, who refused it against the Officer recommendation.
  • Langley Bottom Farm – an appeal has been lodged against the Council’s refusal for the demolition of the current farm buildings and the construction of 20 homes.  The Planning Committee had agreed the Officer recommendation to refuse the application.
  • Garages behind 35 Ebbisham Road – an appeal is under way against the Council’s refusal for permission to demolish 2 blocks of garages and erect 4 x 2 bedroom homes.  This is being undertaken by written representation.
  • 22-24 Dorking Road  – the appeal against the refusal to grant planning permission for 20 flats on the corner of Dorking Road and Whitehorse Drive was dismissed.  The developer may submit another application, but hopefully something on a smaller scale and with greater provision for off-street parking.
  • 64 South Street – the appeal against the refusal of permission for a change of use from business to housing and the construction of 6 x 2 bedroom houses was dismissed.

Council tax

The impact of the pandemic on the council’s finances is likely to continue for several years.  Income is reduced because there has been reduced use of our car parks, venues etc. although the situation is gradually improving.  Our costs continue to be higher than previously, e.g. there are more people who need support because they are homeless, or in danger of becoming so.  Although some government funding has been provided to ease the situation, it does not cover the shortfall.  The Council is aiming to produce further savings in the coming year and looking at opportunities to increase income so that we can improve our financial position.

It was agreed to increase the EEBC element of the Council tax by 2.38%.  This is equivalent to £4.95 per year for a band D property.  A balanced budget is planned, with no services cut.  The SCC and Surrey Police Authority precepts are being increased by 4.99% and 3.50% respectively.

Langley Vale Wood

We have had an update on the car park works.  Although this work is not in Woodcote Ward, the road works may impact your travel.  Work along Headley Road is planned to start on 14th March and could last until 8th April.  Some road closures are expected.  Work includes widening the road, improving visibility and adding road markings.  The Woodland Trust anticipate all the car park works to be completed by mid-May.

I have your details because you are a resident who has contacted me in the past.  If you would prefer not to receive information and updates from me in the future, please let me know and I will remove you from my contact list.

Liz Frost           February 2022

Posted in Councillor Updates | Comments Off on Councillor update – Liz Frost – February 2022

Storms Dudley and Eunice

Below is an update received from UK Power Networks.

As you may be aware, UK Power Networks manages the local power lines and substations which distribute electricity to over 8.3m homes and businesses across London, the South East and the East of England.

Storm Dudley will arrive tomorrow and is forecast to have a minimal impact on our network. However, Storm Eunice is expected to arrive on Friday the 18th and is expected to bring stronger winds and unsettled weather.

Our electricity network is built to be resilient but strong winds and heavy rain can bring down branches and trees, damaging overhead power lines. Where this happens we work to restore power as quickly and safely as possible.

We have organised for additional staff in our contact centre and more engineers on the ground, particularly for Storm Eunice, to be available to help customers whose electricity supply might be affected by the predicted weather.

Both you and your residents will be able to find regular updates and information about individual power cuts on our website www.ukpowernetworks.co.uk . We will also be posting general updates on @UKPowerNetworks .

Anyone experiencing a power cut should:

  • Visit www.ukpowernetworks.co.uk/powercut and type in their postcode to view our live power cut map, with details of individual power cuts
  • Call 105 free of charge to speak to our customer service team, report a power cut or damage to the electricity network
  • Tweet @UKPowerNetworks to report a power cut or to receive updates
  • Visit www.ukpowernetworks.co.uk for the latest updates

We advise people to stay clear of power lines and report damaged power lines immediately by calling 105 free from either a landline or a mobile phone. If they see electricity lines that are down or causing significant risk to the public they should call 999.

We provide extra help to customers on our Priority Service Register during a power cut.  Households with older or disabled people, those with children under five, or where someone uses medical or mobility equipment that requires electricity, as well as other reasons, can join the register.  You can find out more information about our Priority Service on our website: ukpowernetworks.co.uk/priority .

If you would like to share information with your constituents about preparing for the storm or registering for the Priority Service Register, you might like to share the following on Twitter or to your local Facebook pages:

As a result of #StormEunice, heavy rain and high winds are due to arrive on Fri 18th Feb. @UKPowerNetworks has extra field engineers and call centre staff on hand to support any customers affected. Call 105 to report a powercut or visit www.ukpowernetworks.co.uk/powercut #ukpnnews

Do you, or someone you know, need extra support during a power cut? @UKPowerNetworks provides free services to customers in vulnerable circumstances during a power cut. Visit ukpowernetworks.co.uk/priority for more information. #StormEunice #ukpnnews

Posted in News | Comments Off on Storms Dudley and Eunice

Queen’s Baton Relay
The Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games has launched a search to find 2,022 Batonbearers for the Birmingham 2022 Queen’s Baton Relay in England.

The Queen’s Baton Relay is a Games tradition that builds anticipation for the forthcoming Games by celebrating, connecting, and exciting communities across the Commonwealth and shining a light on untold stories and unsung local heroes from the places it visits.

The closing date is 14 February 2022.

The criteria for a Batonbearer in England is someone who meets one or more of the following:

  • Always willing to take on a challenge and has a unique and inspiring story.
  • Has made a meaningful contribution to sport, education, the arts, culture, or charity.
  • Is a figure of inspiration that positively challenges others to achieve their best.
  • Has taken on a challenge or cause and made a positive impact within their community.

You can now nominate a Batonbearer for the Birmingham 2022 Queen’s Baton Relay.

Simply describe how they are a figure of inspiration and how they take on challenges in the community.

To nominate, visit: http://www.birmingham2022.com/queens-baton-relay/batonbearer-nominations/

Entries close on 14 February 2022.

Posted in News | Comments Off on Queen’s Baton Relay
The Birmingham 2022 Commonwealth Games has launched a search to find 2,022 Batonbearers for the Birmingham 2022 Queen’s Baton Relay in England.

Councillor update – January 2022 – Steven McCormick

Councillor update (County) – Steven McCormick for January 2022

SCC resident queries and casework progressed.

SCC full council held remotely.  I was unable to attend due to work commitments; apologies sent.

Regular weekly meetings of the independent group are held each Friday at 2 pm remotely via MS Teams. 

Resource and Select committee meeting held to review and scrutinize several items.  I was asked to query the SAP to Unit4 project that is running behind and required an extra £3.2m at the December cabinet meeting. 

Attended numerous committee and member update meetings, chair-vice-chair meetings, and budget meetings at EEBC over the month.

Epsom & Ewell Silver Band (EESB) to be booked for Alex Rec. and Rosebery Park for summer 2022.  Update:  EESB has been contacted for a list of dates they can make. 

Chalk Pit item was due to be heard in January and preparation meetings with residents were held.  Item ultimately was deferred by SCC legal the evening before the Planning meeting.  

Five speakers plus the two divisional members can speak.  John Beckett and I had prepared to speak against the item in support of residents. 

Borough updates:

The planning committee, Epsom and Walton Downs Consultative, Epsom and Walton Downs Conservators, Strategy & Resources (observer).

The planning committee’s most recent meeting in January discussed several items ultimately running out of time to hear all agenda items with 107-111 East Street being deferred to the next meeting in February.

Epsom & Walton Downs Consultative held its first meeting for over two years.  Very well attended and useful updates shared.

Epsom & Walton Downs Conservators met, and the Platinum Jubilee Beacon was an item discussed which was approved.  Other items covered the budget. 

Budget preparation work has been progressing throughout with numerous sessions to discuss and refine figures for the upcoming year. 

Posted in Councillor Updates, News | Tagged , , , | Comments Off on Councillor update – January 2022 – Steven McCormick

Sign up for Star Count 2022 between 26 February – 6 March 2022

Star-filled skies are one of the most magical sights our countryside has to offer. We want to reconnect people across the country with the wonder of a truly dark sky.

https://takeaction.cpre.org.uk/page/95329/data/1?ea.tracking.id=campaigns-update-enews
Photo by Nathan Anderson on Unsplash

Our research shows that light pollution is leaving fewer stars than ever visible to the naked eye, and we need your help to track how light levels are changing.

⭐ Become a ‘citizen scientist’ and take part in our Star Count, a cosmic census to map light pollution.

Head over to CPRE’s website and sign up for Star Count 2022.

https://takeaction.cpre.org.uk/page/95329/data/1?ea.tracking.id=campaigns-update-enews

Posted in Climate Change, News | Tagged , , , | Comments Off on Sign up for Star Count 2022 between 26 February – 6 March 2022