End of March 2021 Bulletin

LRA Bulletin for the end of March 2021

Dear Member(s),

1. I am sure you will all be delighted to know that I had a truly excellent response to the request I made in early March for people to write in with their personal evaluation of the 7 Local Green spaces in Leatherhead.    Although it was not specifically asked for, I am sure it can have done no harm for our Councillors to hear (again) that we do not want these and one or two other sites developed and that we have not “forgotten” about them.    Unfortunately, we are unlikely to hear the result of our lobbying until July.

2. And now another item which I think will become more desirable, if not essential, as the years go by and more housing is squeezed in at the expense of our existing trees.    The company known as CGI , who occupy offices on Springfield Drive, have offered to provide, completely free of charge, a number of native trees for us (Residents of Leatherhead) to plant or have planted wherever we like, providing, of course, that their siting does not cause  a nuisance.    This, sadly, is the case with trees planted on verges as all manner of lines (telephone, electricity, computer) are located just below the surface.   I was thinking more of some spots in the 7 Local Green Spaces and on some of our school grounds. It might also be possible to put some in gardens belonging to flats, albeit they would have to be visible by the Public and  hence of benefit to the Community .    I do have the list of offered trees, but I would like to hear from some of you about where you think additional trees would look nice.   CGI offered to help with the planting, but would also expect some of us to lend a hand.

3. As I think we all know, litter has become a major problem since the start of Covid-19.    I find it difficult to believe that those dashing outside to run or walk in order to avoid putting on weight are those very same who take out cans of calorie-rich drink and bars of chocolate!   I put the blame firmly on waste bins that get too full, open topped rubbish lorries (not the Suez ones) and general sloth on the part of a minority !   One of our members has told me that he had spent three hours clearing a small patch at the end of his road!   We have had Litter Picks twice this year, but I am looking forward to the ones where we can all meet  to collect rubbish together – such a satisfactory sight – and where we finish with tea and biscuits and a chat.      Perhaps we should be grateful that none of our parks has been used for a huge and rowdy public gathering!

4. As seems to be generally well known, our revised  draft Local Plan , will be revealed in July.     We have to hope that the heaviest of the burden,  proposed in the previous draft and falling on Poors Allotments and the adjoining land (550 dwellings),  and the Red House Gardens (450) , can be substantially mitigated.    Also, according to outline documents recently made public, Bull Hill, (the road between Kingston Road, and Leret Way) remains intact and there are no plans for shops in the Red House  Gardens.   While comments on the new draft will be sought, these will merely be forwarded to the Inspector along with the Draft.    Alterations to the Draft will only be made if they are based on a legal flaw in the Draft, or are the result of the Traffic Survey.

5. At a recent meeting I attended with MV, we were told that the Council has plenty of CIL money but has not yet decided how to spend it!    (C.I.L = Community Infrastructure Levy paid by developers and intended for use by the Council to improve the quality of life around the new houses etc.)

6. A Boundary review for MV is being considered.    This would be likely to impact on the number of Councillors representing us and could result in the dead “Purdah” period only occurring every fourth year instead of yearly as at present.

7. The window boxes outside the NatWest are definitely past their prime and were not helped by that section of the pavement being closed off.     I am prepared to collect them and return them, but urgently need someone to do the job of replenishing them with something bright and cheerful.    Planting expenses are, of course, re-payable.

8. A member has complained to me about the unpredictability of some cyclists using the Swan Centre and, I would add, the High Street, too.   They seem to ride in both directions and, unfortunately, are not audible.    I did spot one notice saying that cycling in the Swan Centre was not allowed, but it was not very visible and no one enforces it.    If anyone else has a problem like this, do contact the Centre Manager, Mr. Richard Keele, or write to me.     However, I shall take a week or more to see how many people write to me before passing on any complaints.

9. Finally, and it seems a long way ahead at the moment, I am trying to collect articles for a proper Newsletter to come out in about August or September.    If you have any little story, funny or sad,  about Leatherhead (with a picture if possible), do let me have it  so it can be stored away until about July when we will start the drafting process .

10. In case you have forgotten, subscription renewals were due on 1st January (for all 1 year members and those 3 year members whose membership expired at the end of 2020)    You can pay online via our website http://www.leatherheadresidents.org.uk   Look under “Membership.”        (1yr. = £2.50;  3 yr. = £6)

Meanwhile, I wish you all a Happy Easter and hope that it wont be quite as cold as the forecasters are predicting!

With very best wishes,

Caroline Brown, (Chairman )


Edmund Tylney 20% Discount offer

Attached to the Summer Newsletter, members will have found the special offer of 10% discount from 27th July until 12th August and various business listed.  I am pleased to inform members that Gregory Giles, the new manager of the the Edmund Tylney (the Wetherspoon's pub on the High Street), has emailed the chair of our Publicity & Membership Subcommittee the following:

I am not sure what was previously agreed by the departing manager of our business but as the new manager I would like to offer all Leatherhead Residents' Association members 20% discount on all food bills excluding those deals which already include a free drink as part of their promotion.

 As responsible retailers we are unable to offer targeted discounts on drinks purchases. The 20% discount on food is available to all your members with immediate effect on production of appropriate identification of membership to our staff and will continue until you or I request otherwise. This will extend to any single member who has up to three non-member guests in their party, so family and friends of our local association are not excluded!

Surrey Reuse Network furniture reuse campaign

Surrey County Council will be launching the Surrey Reuse Network furniture reuse campaign next week which aims to increase the amount of furniture and white goods that are reused, aiming to divert 2,000 tonnes going into landfill.

The Surrey Reuse Network offers a wide range of good quality items at affordable prices. Made up of a group of six charities, the network aims to find new homes for donated furniture and kitchen appliances, as well as offering training and employment opportunities and helping local families in need. Buying reusable furniture and kitchen appliances is great value, good for the environment and hidden treasures may be found.

Visit www.surreyreusenetwork.org.uk to see what sort of information Surrey Reuse Network are communicating.

Cherkley Court: we listened to everyone & excluded no one.

On page 23 of the Leatherhead Advertiser of the 22nd December there is a short articled titled “Access Denied” which claims to give “clarification.” Sadly, it does not clarify things but rather adds further misinformation in what we are very concerned had become a ‘war of words’ which may be having a divisive effect on the community. I make the following points:

1. No one was denied access to the LRA meeting on the 3rd of December, which was was an open Committee meeting. Anyone, whether a member of the LRA or not, could attend as an observer.

2. The Longshot proposals had been favourably reported at some length at LRA meetings in the July and September, as the minutes show. Also the Summer edition of our Newsletter contained an article largely supportive of these proposals; the Autumn Newsletter also contained reports on the proposals. All minutes and Newsletter are available online:

3. It should also be pointed out that all Committee members had attended at least one of the impressive and professional presentations given by Longshot’s representatives at Cherkley Court.

4. Therefore, it was felt that the offer from one of Longshot’s representative to give yet another presentation at the 3rd of December meeting was superfluous and, in view of the intention to keep the meeting short, it was politely declined. But there was no exclusion on anyone’s attending the meeting. Indeed, some future presentation may be made, and this will be discussed at the January meeting of BLeAF (Chairmen of the Bookham, Leatherhead, Ashtead and Fetcham Residents’ Associations).

5. After Longshot had formally submitted its application to MVDC, our Planning Subcommittee met and spent some considerable time pouring over the lengthy documentation submitted in support of the application. The Subcommittee produced a report, which had been available on line since 27th November, and this report was presented to the 3rd of December meeting.

6. At the 3rd December meeting, one of our own LRA members was allowed to give a ten minute presentation on behalf of the Cherkley Campaign. This was a very modest ‘balance’ to the extensive pro-Longshot representations the Committee has been receiving over the past six months.

7. The vote that took place was made after having received several reports and presentations made on behalf of Longshot, a report on the actual submission made by our Planning Subcommittee, and a ten minute presentation on behalf of the Cherkley Campaign. It should also be pointed out that the vote was by secret ballot, i.e. each member was voting individually without influence of fellow members.

Improvements to Leatherhead Community Recycling Centre and Waste Transfer Station

I am writing to let you know that improvements to Leatherhead Community Recycling Centre and Waste Transfer Station are due to begin in January 2012. The site will close on 9 January and the work will take around eight months. The nearest alternative community recycling centres are at Blenheim Road, Epsom, KT19 9DL and Ranmore Road, Dorking, RH4 1TL. The nearest waste transfer station is also at Blenheim Road. Both sites are around seven miles away from the Leatherhead waste facility. The site is being redeveloped to provide Leatherhead residents with a modern, accessible and user-friendly facility. The improvements will include:

· Improved parking and road layout to help site users to move around the site more easily and help to reduce queuing;
· Separate entrances for the public and site service vehicles to help reduce congestion at the site entrance;
· Drop off area for garden waste carried in trailers.

Other alterations planned also include:

· Redevelopment of the waste transfer station to include a fully enclosed building for household waste from borough councils;
· Improved traffic management with the complete separation of neighbouring Grundon and Thames Water vehicle access, as currently they pass through the site.

Yours sincerely,

Beverly Sheridan,
Project Manager
SITA Surrey


The Letherhead Institute at the top of the High Street was built in 1892 and given to the people of Leatherhead by local benefactor Abraham Dixon of Cherkley Court. Next year sees the commemoration of 120 years providing educational, social and recreational facilities within this beautiful Victorian building.

Amazingly the Institute had already been there for 5 years when Queen Victoria celebrated her Diamond Jubilee and it will be bedecked again next year to mark the Diamond Jubilee of our own Queen Elizabeth II.

The festivities on 19 May will include an invitation for all the Leatherhead Community to come and see what’s inside the building; a special feature will be an exhibition including pictures and artefacts from 1897 – Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee Year.

Do you have any Victorian memorabilia or photographs which you would be prepared to lend for the exhibition? We’d be delighted to hear from you at LCA2 AT btconnect DOT com or please write to:

The Administrator
Leatherhead Community Association
The Institute 67 High Street
Leatherhead KT22 8AH

Watch out, watch out –  Mrs Wu is about!

I’ve just got back from holiday and find I have a letter from a Mrs. Grace Wu, who describes herself as a private investment banker. She tells me that somone with my surname instructed her to lodge $21 Million in some Chinese bank to be used for an investment in some business or other; and these funds were invested and have increased in value.

Several years later the Bank reported to her that the funds remained untouched and when she investigated further it turned out that the investor had only gone and got himself killed in a hiking accident in mainland China. Not only that – he died intestate and now Mrs. Wu wants to do a deal with me so that she and I can share these unclaimed million of dollars!!

Wahoooo!! I’m in the money – I’m in the money!!

Well, no, not exactly. She tells me that to save her getting into trouble all of this must remain confidential and I mustn’t tell anyone about it – not even you who are reading this.

But I am telling you this because it is a scam. If you get such a letter, do NOT reply to it! Once she (if, indeed, it is a she at all) has your bank details you will be cleaned out of all the money in your bank account.

A quick look on the Internet will soon reveal many people with "the same surname" as you, and you and you have also invested $21 Million in some Chinese bank and died intestate, having died in a hiking accident in Mainland China (obviously a dangerous place to go hiking!).

The sad thing about these scam letters (and emails) is that these criminals work on the numbers game – if they send out enough of this drivel there will always be some gullible soul out there that will be taken in and will lose their hard earned cash to these vermin. Don’t let it be you – and please warn your friends about this.

Tickets for Zig-Zag

Dear All

This is to let you know that Mole Valley District Council has been allocated 460 tickets for residents to watch the London-Surrey Cycle Classic from the coveted zig-zag area on Box Hill. We will be allocating a small number to Headley Court and the rest will be available for residents to apply for through a competition.

The competition goes live tomorrow at approximately 12 noon (possibly slightly earlier). It will be online at www.mole-valley.gov.uk and hard copy forms will be available at the Leatherhead HelpShop and Pippbrook reception. Terms and Conditions apply. The closing date is 12 noon on 27 July, after which time winners will be picked from all correct entries, where Terms and Conditions have been agreed to and contact details supplied.

Please encourage your residents to apply, as long as they are willing to commit to coming and recognise that it is a long walk from the station or a car park to the zig-zag area!

Kind regards


Louise Bircher
Customer Service and Communications Manager
Mole Valley District Council
Tel: 01306 879155

Mole Valley District Council – Shaping Your Community

On 13th December 2010 the Government announced its Localism Bill. This was the first stage in an important process which over the next few years will see the structure of the planning system being ‘radically’ reformed.

How the Localism Bill and the changes in the planning system impact on the preparation of the Mole Valley Local Development Framework (LDF) is an extremely important issue for the Council and its communities. The Council has therefore prepared a Discussion Paper outlining a number of key issues that need to be considered.

The Council is seeking views on this Paper from Friday 4th March until Friday 8th April 2011.  The Discussion Paper and Comments Form can be downloaded from www.molevalley.gov.uk/index.cfm?articleid=11716

Also there will be a longer article on Localism by our Chairman in the LRA Spring Newsletter. Please read it.

Future “Transition” events

The following were to be included in our Spring Newsletter; unfortunately it has been delayed by two weeks, so while there’s still time ….

Wednesday, March 16th: Transition Bookham meeting

7.30pm to 9.30pm at St Nicolas Church’s Pastoral Centre.
A talk on "Gardening for Bees" with a honey bee keeper speaker from Epsom.

Saturday 19th March: Compost Works Open Day

2.00pm – 5.30pm at 8 The Drive, Fetcham, KT22 9EN. Admission free. For more information visit www.compostworks.org.uk/news.htm

Hopefully, the Newsletter will be out in time for the next announcement, but just in case ….

Saturday 26th & Sunday 27th March: Surrey Eco-house event

Action Surrey, an organisation set up by Woking Borough Council, is organising this event to inspire the public and homeowners to learn about energy saving measures and renewable technology from those who have already been there and done it.
Viewing a Surrey Green Home is free but booking is strictly required. Please visit www.actionsurrey.org/surreygreenhomes to find out more and book free tickets