Category Archives: News and updates

News and updates from the Molesey Residents’ Association.

22/10/2016 SURREY COUNTY COUNCIL PARKING REVIEW: EAST MOLESEY UPDATE

Surrey County Council (SCC) is responsible for local on-street parking controls, and is carrying out a comprehensive review of its town and village on-street parking controls on a rolling programme, looking at each community in turn.  As we reported earlier, SCC’s review of parking controls in Molesey began in April, and we encouraged residents who had concerns about difficulties caused by on-street parking in their roads to contribute their ideas and suggestions to the review.

Surrey County Council (SCC) is responsible for local on-street parking controls, and is carrying out a comprehensive review of its town and village on-street parking controls on a rolling programme, looking at each community in turn.  As we reported earlier, SCC’s review of parking controls in Molesey began in April, and we encouraged residents who had concerns about difficulties caused by on-street parking in their roads to contribute their ideas and suggestions to the review.

The objective of SCC’s review, and SCC’s overall parking strategy, is to achieve a balance by providing sufficient on-street parking provision, subject to controls or restrictions where these are appropriate. SCC also said that one of the key criteria would be if parking at a particular location made the situation more dangerous.

Latest Position

SCC Highways Officers have now completed their review of controls in Molesey. The exercise has taken over 6 months, and they have assessed all requests made by local residents objectively in line with the Council’s overall parking policies and strategy. A number of changes to the current restrictions have been recommended, and these will now be published for formal consultation with a view to introduction in around 6-9 months.

Outcome and Recommended Changes

Many residents submitted requests and suggestions to the review and will be interested in the outcome. Some of the main recommendations are summarised below, but if you want to look at the details:

SCC Report Moleseys and Dittons parking review

SCC Report Moleseys and Dittons parking review Annex

The recommendations include:

Hurst Road: Extension of the double yellow lines on the south side of the road, in order to reduce congestion and blockages on this main road; and the removal of some yellow lines on the north side, near the War Memorial, to provide some additional spaces.

Bridge Road shopping area: Extension of the current limited waiting periods to prevent all day parking on Saturdays; provision of some short stay (30 mins) parking spaces; and provision of some motorbike parking spaces.

Parking on corners: Additional restrictions to prevent dangerous parking on or near corners in a number of roads, including Arnison Road, St John’s Road, Vine Road and Manor Road.

Requests not adopted

The Highways Officers assessed all requests objectively against set criteria and policies, but concluded that a number should not be progressed. These include petitions from residents in a number of roads in East Molesey asking for a one hour “residents’ only” scheme to prevent commuter parking in roads close to Hampton Court Station (including Palace Road, Wolsey Road, Arnison Road and others) to free up on-street space for residents and shoppers.

The officers considered these requests carefully, but concluded that they should not be progressed for a number of reasons. These are detailed in the officers’ report, but the officers concluded in particular that:

  • the residents in these roads generally have significant off-street parking, and the Council’s policy is to introduce permit schemes only where this is not the case;
  • the Council’s overall strategy seeks to avoid introducing restrictions which cause displacement, and the officers concluded that this would cause considerable displacement into streets already under parking stress which do not have off-street parking facilities (such as Kent Road, Pemberton Road and Park Road).
  • as there are already limited waiting provisions in the Bridge Road area it is difficult to conceive that there is a need to create a large number of additional on-street space for shoppers; and the current arrangements also allow space for local workers, who may be on relatively low pay, to park and work in the local area.

Next Steps

The Council’s intention to introduce the changes recommended in the Highways Officers’ report will now be advertised, and is subject to formal consultation. Depending on the outcome of the consultation exercise, the recommended changes would then be introduced in around 6-9 months.

If you have any queries in the meantime, please contact Councillor Stuart Selleck (stuart.selleck@surreycc.gov.uk)

08/09/2016 Heathrow noise pollution over Molesey

Following my meeting with Dan Foster Special Projects Manager “NATS” National air traffic services at Heathrow.

Summary of the meeting.

  1. Heathrow have purchased 50 noise monitors which they want to place in the surrounding boroughs .Molesey being one of them. They are looking for secure open spaces in Molesey and the surrounding areas .This could be school Fields, Parks, large rear gardens, etc . The MRA need your help on this, if you know of any secure open places please forward to me at tpopham@elmbridge.gov.ukand I will pass them on to the Heathrow noise forum and NATS.
  2. I will be seeking talks though the MRA with the airlines that affect us in Molesey and making recommendations’ that they use different away points in the their take off corridors which is 3 Kilometers wide  and we can all share the burden in the mean time.

Cllr Tony Popham

 

06/09/2016 Lights on Hampton Court Bridge

All residents should be aware that the lights on the bridge are being upgraded.  Richmond Council have removed half and  installled temporary lights, in order to maintain visibility on the bridge at night.  The original lanterns are being refurbished. 

Surrey County Council will replace the other half of the lights as part of a second phase later in 2016. 

06/09/2016 Tesco’s Bags of Help grant scheme

Tesco’s Bags of Help grant scheme has made changes to its exciting new grant programme funded through the money raised from the 5p bag charge in Tesco stores in England, Wales and Scotland. The programme will now support local good causes and grants, and up to £5,000 will be available to support projects which will ‘promote community participation in the development and use of outdoor spaces’.

The types of project funded are very broad and you can find some examples on our website here. This could be delivering a community event in a local outdoor space, installing seating or play equipment in a school grounds or hospice to buying items such a football nets, balls and coaching sessions for a local community football club. We will also cover costs such as co-ordinators to manage volunteers, staff to lead nature walks, or training sessions, website development for publicity and promotion and workshops to inform about the environment.

As this is a rolling programme throughout the year, voting for projects will be happening continuously in Tesco stores. Three projects from each area will be shortlisted to go to the public vote each month. If your project gets the most votes across all stores in your region, you will win the grant amount you requested from us up to a maximum of £5,000. If your project is second, you will win up to £2,000 and if your project is third, you will win up to £1,000.

Apply NOW or find out more on www.groundwork.org.uk/tesco. For support or any queries contact your local Enabler on anke.thurm@groundwork.org.uk or by telephoning 01273 022320.

06/09/2016 Council Seeks Views on the Impact of Proposed Heathrow Expansion

Elmbridge Councillors are reviewing the impact of the proposed Heathrow expansion and are seeking the views of local residents.

The debate on the potential expansion of either Heathrow or Gatwick airports has been taking place for many years as Government ministers express concerns over noise and air pollution.

In the meantime, Elmbridge Councillors have been assessing the impact of the potential extension of Heathrow on the residents and businesses of the Borough.

In January 2016, the Council established a ‘Task and Finish’ group which has been considering the impact on Elmbridge of Heathrow’s potential expansion.  A ‘Task and Finish Group’ is part of the Council’s Overview and Scrutiny Committee. It is established for the purpose of conducting an in-depth review of any service, policy or issue that affects the Borough. The work recognises that there could be significant economic and service benefits for Elmbridge residents but these need to be weighed against the environmental impacts and the effectiveness of any mitigation measures and assurances about flight paths and hours of operation.

Chaired by Councillor Christine Elmer, the considerations of the Group have been focussed on areas such as noise, air quality, economy, housing, transport infrastructure and safety.

Commenting on the aim of the Task and Finish Group, Councillor Christine Elmer said; “We are very aware that the expansion of Heathrow is an emotive topic for the residents and businesses of Elmbridge and as a Group we are eager to consider in depth all aspects of this debate. As such we are analysing issues such as noise, air pollution, transport infrastructure and safety with experts in order to determine the implications for Elmbridge.”

In addition to hearing from experts from all aspects of the debate, the Heathrow Task and Finish Group would like to hear from local residents on whether they would like Heathrow airport to have an additional runway. The survey can be accessed on the Council’s website and closes at midnight 30 September 2016.

The Heathrow Task and Finish Group is expected to deliver its report by the Autumn.

21/08/2016 Drake’s Park Proposal – Meeting on 24th October 2016

Following consultation with both the East and North Area Planning Sub-Committee Chairmen, Councillor Mrs. Kapadia and Councillor Mrs. Sheldon, a joint meeting of these Area Planning Sub-Committees has been scheduled for Monday 24 October 2016 at 7.00 p.m. in the Council Chamber.

The Council is holding a joint East and North Area Planning Sub-Committee meeting to consider an application in respect of Drake Park. Colleagues in the Planning Services Team have indicated that given the scale of the proposals for this application and the fact that it falls within both the East and North Area Planning Sub-Committee localities, a separate joint meeting would be appropriate.

26/07/2016 Possible Sale of Land at Bishop Fox

We have been contacted by a number of local residents about the possible sale of the
green amenity land at the Bishop Fox estate in West Molesey, which have been
advertised for sale by auction on 27 July.
MRA Councillor Mike Axton has discussed this with senior Planning and Legal officers at
Elmbridge Council, and they have provided detailed advice about the implications.
Whilst they fully understand residents’ concerns about the uncertainty associated with
the possible sale of the land, they have confirmed that the potential for a new owner to
develop this land in any way, or in fact to do anything which alters its present amenity
use, is strictly limited by the planning rules that apply to it, as well as by title restrictions
and additional physical constraints (the pipelines which are believed to exist).
Under planning provisions, the land is designated as ‘open space’ within the definition of
the National Planning Policy Framework, and so paragraph 74 of that Framework would
apply, as would section DM20 in Elmbridge Council’s Development Management Plan.
These policies are specifically designed to protect areas of open space from
development and inappropriate use, and their impact on the land would not be affected
by any sale to a new owner. It is also understood that the Bishop Fox estate was laid out
in the current configuration as there is a major pipeline under the open space which
prevents building on it, although a purchaser’s survey would be needed to establish this.
But the title for the land implies that this is the case, as it contains a number of
covenants and restrictions affecting it. Most of these relate to rights/wayleaves for utility
companies in respect of pipes beneath the land and it follows that these parts of the land
cannot be built upon.
Concerns have also been raised about the ongoing maintenance of the land, including
the grass cutting arrangements. As you are probably aware, some time ago the owners
became unable to continue funding these arrangements, and ultimately Elmbridge
Council agreed to take over these maintenance functions, supported by some funding
from Surrey County Council. If a new owner were to buy the land they would also
assume the obligations associated with ownership, including the maintenance costs, and
this is something the Council would need to explore with any new owner. It is possible
that these obligations are reflected in the rather low expected sale price. It is to some
extent also difficult to understand why anyone would want to purchase the land given
these obligations.
Some residents have asked what would happen if travelers were to buy the land. This
would not alter the planning restrictions in any way. They would have no right to settle
there even if they owned the land. In such an eventuality the Council would use its
established protocols for dealing with unauthorised encampments and enforcing
removal.
Any decision to sell the land would be a matter for the current owner, and the Council
would not be able to intervene in what is essentially a private matter. But there are
certain provisions that a sale would need to comply with. The land is registered with the
Land Registry under title number SY650437. The registered proprietors are Michael
John Gaston and Walter Kenneth Goldsmith, the trustees of the Charity known as the
Public Open Spaces Charitable Trust. There is a restriction on the register which
prevents a disposition unless the instrument giving effect to the disposition contains a certificate complying with section 37(2) or, in the case of a charge, with section 39(2) of
the Charities Act 1993. The charitable objective of the Trust is to ‘hold various pieces of
land as a public open space to the intent that the same may at all times hereafter be
available to and be used by the public at large for the purpose of recreation’. The Trust
Deed (dated 25 October 1989 as amended by a Scheme dated 18 June 2013) would
therefore need to be reviewed to establish the basis upon which the Trust could sell the
land at auction.
Finally, some residents asked if it would be possible for the Council to purchase the
land. In view of the restrictions which would apply to any new owner they do not
consider that this would need to be considered, but they have confirmed that it would not
be a viable option in any case. The Council has in the past received numerous similar
requests from residents who are concerned about potential development of current open
spaces, and it would not be affordable or practicable for the Council to adopt a policy of
purchasing land in such circumstances.

26/07/2016 Heathrow update from Cllr. Tony Popham

It was agreed at the full council meeting on 20/07/16, that the leader would write to the Government on behalf of Elmbridge and Molesey residents based on my question to the leader. I have also asked that EBC rejoin LAANC “Local Authorities Aircraft Noise Council (which the Conservative administration stopped  some 4 – 5 years ago to save £400 a year membership). So short sighted, EBC are currently the only local authority around Heathrow not to be a member of LAANC
The question to the leader –
Aircraft noise has been increasing over Elmbridge and Molesey due to the lower flight paths the Aircraft are taking. Also they are landing and taking off before and after the cut times. Take off no earlier than 6am and no later than 11pm and landing no earlier than 4.30 am and no later than 11pm.These rules are being are being ignored by Heathrow. Will the council on the behalf of the Residents write to our MP and to the PM letting them know this practice has to stop?

Cllr Tony Popham