Category Archives: News and updates

News and updates from the Molesey Residents’ Association.

24/08/2017 – Travellers on Walton Road Recreation Ground

The travellers who settled at Walton Road recreation ground moved away on 22 August – the day before the Council’s application for a removal order was due to be considered by the Magistrates Court. Unfortunately they have left a considerable mess behind them. We understand that they have moved just over Walton Bridge into the Spelthorne Council area.

Elmbridge Council will now take steps to replace the lock on the entry gate and barrier, to clear the rubbish, and to repair the damage to the grounds.

In the event of future problems at this or other sites the best course of action is for residents to alert the Council, or one of your local MRA Councillors, immediately, so that the necessary action can be instigated as soon as possible.

22/08/2017 – Waste Collection Services – Update

Following on from the horrendous problems local residents experienced over the first few months of the new waste services contract, Elmbridge Council has reported that the performance of the waste collection service in Elmbridge is now at a similar level to that experienced under the previous contract. That doesn’t mean that no collections are being missed, but any missed bins are generally now being picked up within one working day.

The Council recognises that there is still work to do to improve the level of service further, in line with contractual requirements and residents’ expectations, and the teams at Joint Waste Solutions and Amey are continuing to work to achieve that. Daily discussions are continuing to take place to identify issues and agree short, medium and long term actions in order to deliver sustainable improvements.

We are continuing to monitor progress closely, and in the meantime residents should continue to report any missed collections. This is best done using the Council’s online form or, if you do not have access to this, by telephone on 01372 474474.

21/08/2017 – Travellers on Walton Road Recreation Ground

We have received numerous enquiries from residents who are concerned about the unwelcome arrival of the travellers at Walton Road Recreation ground. MRA Councillors alerted senior officers at Elmbridge Borough Council on 16 August, the day the travellers arrived, and have been working closely with the officers to secure their eviction as soon as possible.

There have been a number of similar incursions throughout the Borough recently, and the Council must follow an established procedure for dealing with them. As a first step the Council’s Gypsy & Traveller Liaison Officer visited the site to carry out an assessment, as required under the legal protocol for dealing with unauthorised gypsy & traveller sites. and on 17 August the Council served the intruders with a Notice of direction to leave by the end of the day under the Criminal Justice and Public Order Act 1994.

As they did not leave in compliance with this Notice, the Council applied for a removal order from the Magistrates Court. The Council was granted the first available hearing for 23 August by Guildford Magistrates Court, and at this hearing the Court will consider the Council’s application for an order for the removal of the travellers and their vehicles.

Assuming this application is successful application, the travellers will be served with a removal order which will authorise the Council (and agents contracted on the Council’s behalf) to remove them from the land. A full clear up of the site will be scheduled for as soon as the site is secured.

Unfortunately the legal process takes a little time, but we hope the situation will be resolved soon.

Councillor Mike Axton

Molesey Residents Association

13/07/2017 – Further Plans for Development at Molesey Football Club

We have just been been advised that Rushmons Homes are planning to hold a public exhibition at Molesey Football Club on Friday 21st July and Saturday 22nd July to display their latest plans for further development at the club. The proposals will include:

·         Replacement clubhouse and football facilities.

·         Improved parking and landscaping.

·         Day nursery.

·         22 private apartments.

·         26 shared ownership apartments.

We would encourage all residents living nearby, or who have an interest, to look at the exhibition, and to make their views known.

The Exhibition is being held at Molesey Football Club at the following times:

Friday 21st July – 5pm-8pm

Saturday 22nd July – 10am-1pm

04/07/2017 – Update on Waste Collection issues

This is a statement by Elmbridge Council providing an update on the waste collection difficulties that have been occurring throughout the Borough. We will update residents as and when we have more news.

As may residents will be aware there have been major issues with waste collection in Elmbridge since Amey took on the waste disposal contract in June.  This is an update from Elmbridge Borough Council from late last week-

In general, the service is improving every day . The crews are becoming more familiar with their round sheets and their routes, they are achieving higher completion rates as a result of this. There continue to be issues with missed roads and missed individual collections and we are working with Amey to ensure their data is accurate and up-to-date.

On Saturday 1 July, there were 6 crews out in Elmbridge collecting from missed streets and individual misses. Their aim was to clear the backlog of missed collections of refuse, recycling and garden waste and the majority of food waste by end of day Saturday.

However, with regards to food waste some individual misses from Monday and Tuesday will be collected in the standard rounds this week.

All missed bin information will be tracked in a central database which Amey will be using in order to return to collect the bins. Currently it is not possible to give a target day for Amey to return, however, this will be provided during this week when EBC have the confidence Amey are able to commit to a more consistent service level for residents.

By way of an apology, EBC have been providing garden waste customers with a free extended month on their contract.

A message received from Rob Edmondson, the Managing Director of Amey:

“On behalf of Amey, I’d like to apologise for the inconvenience and frustration caused to Elmbridge residents due to issues with missed collections in the Borough. We are working closely with Joint Waste Solutions and Elmbridge Borough Council to address and resolve this situation as soon as possible. ​

Since starting the contract we have made a number of significant changes to the way waste services are delivered in Elmbridge. These changes, which were introduced at the beginning of June and include reorganised routes for refuse and recycling waste, as well as food and garden waste, take time to bed in.

We are confident the service will continue to improve as the new routes and ways of working become established. We are bringing in additional resources daily to back up our regular routes while they become established. This is a long-term relationship and we are committed to delivering a high-quality service to the residents of Elmbridge.”

 

03/07/2017 – SCC Recycling Centres Consultation

SCC is currently consulting on the future of the Community Recycling Centres.

Their website for comments is – Link .

The final date is 7th August 2017. There are some sensible as well as some controversial proposals, not least closing the sites for two days in the week.  The 5 proposals are –

1. Ending the free daily allowance of non-household waste

2. Closing CRCs on two weekdays so all sites are open for five days a week

3. Ensuring CRCs in Camberley and Farnham are only used by Surrey residents

4. Permanent closure of four smaller CRCs – Bagshot, Cranleigh, Warlingham and Dorking

5. Restricting users of vans, trailers and pick-ups to larger CRCs only

If people want a paper copy, please phone  03456-009-009.

We urge all residents to get involved with this consultation.

03/072017 – Removal of Trees in Nightingale Road

We have been contacted by a number of local residents who were concerned about what appeared to be the unnecessary removal of three trees in Nightingale Road. This was done without any consultation with or notification to either local residents or local Councillors.

We contacted Surrey County Council (SCC) officers about this, and they have now confirmed that these trees were felled on their specific instructions because, on a recent inspection, it was found that they were seriously diseased, to the extent that they could not be regarded as safe. The Council’s tree inspectors reported that the trees had Aerial Decay, bark wounds (with decay entry points), and that fungus was present on the trees’ branches, trunks and roots.

The residents would like the trees replaced, as they were an important part of the character of the road, but SCC have insisted that they have no funds within their budget to pay for replacement. MRA Councillors support the replacement of these trees, and are now investigating other possible funding sources, and we will keep the local residents informed of progress.

Councillor Mike Axton

Molesey Residents Association

12/05/2017 – Surrey Elections 4th May 2017

The Molesey Residents Association would like to thank all their supporters who turned out to vote on the 4th May.  It was a a mixed result for us with Ernest Mallett being re-elexted to represent Molesey West, and Peter Szanto for the Conservatives being elected for Molesey East / Esher. Full details of the results can be found below or on a pdf via this link:

 Election Results – 2017

LOCAL ELECTION RESULTS

MOLESEY EAST/ESHER (TURNOUT 40.1%)

COOPER,LIZ for ESHER/MOLESEY RESIDENTS: 1149

HARMOUR, LAURA for GREEN PARTY: 102

KELLY, RAYMOND for LABOUR: 159

MARSHALL, TREVOR for UKIP: 66

NAGLE, PAUL for LIBERAL DEMOCRAT: 318

SZANTO, PETER for LOCAL CONSERVATIVES: 2095 ELECTED

MOLESEY WEST (TURNOUT 34.7%)

AJJANE, JAMAL for LABOUR PARTY: 264

BAX, STEVE for LOCAL CONSERVATIVES: 1201

MALLETT, ERNEST for MOLESEY RESIDENTS:  1763 ELECTED

SPENCER-BOWDAGE, SARAH for GREEN: 142

STURGIS, ALASTAIR for LIBERAL DEMOCRAT: 194

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MOLESEY RESIDENTS  ASSOCIATION 

WOULD LIKE  TO  THANK  ALL  THOSE WHO SUPPORTED  THEIR  MRA CANDIDATES. 

20/03/2017 – Local Councillors Allowances

We have been contacted by some local residents about proposed increases in Councillors’ allowances following the coverage of this issue in a Newsletter circulated recently by the local Conservative party (which they call “The Molesey News”). This article was clearly politically motivated, however, and does not present a complete or balanced account. 

Local Councillors do not receive a wage or a salary as employees, but they do receive an allowance to help meet the costs of representing their communities. All local councils must pay their members a basic allowance, which is paid at the same level to all members of the Council. This is intended to cover their time commitments and incidental costs, and includes an amount to cover outgoings such as travel costs incurred when undertaking duties within the borough, subsistence, and a contribution towards land line telephone costs.

Local Councils are required to review the level of these allowances periodically. At Elmbridge Council the allowances have largely been frozen for many years, and the previous Conservative administration at the Council invited an Independent Remuneration Panel to review them. The independent Panel’s report analysed the issue in depth, and was circulated to all members of the Council. The Panel concluded that the basic allowance in Elmbridge was among the lowest in Surrey, and recommended a one off increase from £4395 to £4942. Although this would amount to a rise of 12% on a one off basis, however, it only represents an average increase of less than 2% a year over the period during which the allowances have been frozen. The Panel’s report is available online, and if you would like to read it I can let you know where you can find it.

The Panel’s recommendations, which would still leave the level of allowances at Elmbridge well below those payable by many other Councils in Surrey, did not appear to be unreasonable, and when the matter was considered at the meeting of the Elmbridge Cabinet on 16 November neither Tim Oliver, the leader of the Conservatives at the Council, nor any other Conservative members, expressed any disagreement or concerns about it, and it appeared that the recommendations had cross-party support.

The local Conservatives’ newsletter did not contain any reference to their party’s more usual approach to this issue. In 2007, the then Conservative leader at Elmbridge Council approved a very large increase of 42% in his own personal allowance along with a large increase in the amounts payable to his Cabinet colleagues. And in 2014 the Conservative controlled Surrey County Council chose to increase their leader’s allowances by almost 60%, so that he received £54,434 in allowances and expenses in the last financial year. This increase was so far above the level recommended by their Independent Remuneration Panel that its members chose to resign in protest. This received considerable coverage in the local papers at the time.

 More recently, in July 2016 the Conservative controlled Spelthorne Council (just across the River Thames from Elmbridge) went through the same exercise involving an Independent Remuneration Panel review of their Councillor Allowances. At Spelthorne, however, the Conservative administration chose to increase the basic allowance by an amount which actually exceeded the increase recommended by the Panel. The basic allowance at Spelthorne will now amount to £5785, which is considerably higher than that paid to Councillors carrying out similar duties in Elmbridge. 

 This background suggests that the approach the Conservatives have belatedly chosen to adopt at Elmbridge is motivated by local political considerations, rather than any point of principle.

 The Conservative newsletter also linked the proposed increase in Councillor allowances with increases in costs for services for the elderly. Again, the reality is somewhat different. The additional expenditure on Councillor allowances will be minimal in terms of the Council’s overall budget, and is offset by the decision taken by the current administration to reduce the number of Cabinet posts from ten to nine. The increase in the cost of meals and transport for the elderly had had to be increased primarily because the Conservative controlled Surrey County Council has chosen to withdraw over £300,000 of grants which they had previously agreed to provide to support these services. In spite of this, however, only a third of this amount has been passed on in terms of increased charges, because Elmbridge Council has been able to increase the Council’s own support for services for the elderly by £200,000.

Finally we would point out that, unlike other Councillors, the Molesey Residents Association requires its members to pay the cost of their election expenses out of their allowances. This means that those costs are paid by the Councillors personally, and not by the Association.

 We hope this has helped to explain the position.