Category Archives: Cranleigh

Cranleigh Society Meet ups

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Cranleigh Society would like to invite you to socialise with us perhaps once a month to chat comfortably over the issues that concern you.

We are now 4 years old and have morphed from working incredibly hard to fight all the planning applications when needed.

We are working to make sure Cranleigh voices are heard by the Councillors and the three Council’s Officers and Important bodies; such as Thames Water, the Environment Agency, Members of Parliament and insurance companies and their governing body.

We write, email, speak and meet up with all sorts, raising the awareness of problems where we can. BUT! It is your input that helps us make sure we’re raising the issues that matter.

In order to make a regular meet up work, we’d like to gauge an idea of when, where and what times work best for the majority.

For example: the second Monday in the month at the Three Horseshoes pub, from 6.30pm including supper?

Please give us a little feedback of what might work best by commenting on this post or emailing us directly. We’re keen to get this starting from November if possible.

 

 

 

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Your opportunity to question Waverley

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The next meeting between Cranleigh Civic Society and Waverley will take place on Monday 29th October at 3pm.

Is there something you would like us to raise on your behalf? Please let us know ASAP, either by responding to this post or emailing membership@cranleighsociety.org. We can then write to ask for a response on that day.

Many groups and individuals have concerns about how our elected Councillors and our paid for Council Officers make decisions on our behalf and spend the money they collect.

Some of the Questions we are pursuing:

  • What is the current rate of Borough Recycling to act a a base for comparison with future achievement ?
  • What are  proposals to improve communication to the Community ?
  • Can there be an Annual Presentation by the Council Leader – in say December – to all Resident/Community/Commercial Groups on the Council’s Objectives for the following Fiscal, with planned Expenditure /Rates ?
  • Please can CCS be included in the monthly report to the Parish Council on : Section 106 Funds unspent, Proposals for spending Section 106 Funds.
  • When the Cranleigh Neighbourhood Plan is finally approved, can the CCS be informed of the 25% of the CIL that will be available to the Neighbourhood Plan Committee to decide on ?
  • When will the Sewerage Plant be expanded to cope with the new houses in Cranleigh ?
  • What can be done to deal with the serious environmental problem of the Sewerage Plant discharge into Cranleigh Waters, especially when the hot weather has meant the flow is dry ?
  • When will the Waverley Infrastructure Delivery Schedule be updated, since there are so many information gaps ?

Questions on Planning, etc.

  • What is the genuine need for meetings between Developers and Councillors, and Developers and Officers?
  • Is Development in Waverley  transparent and understandable?
  • Could Pre- planning Appliations meetings be minuted, and published on the web where possible?
  • Can the Status of Planning Applications be updated promptly on the Planning web, so we can be informed promptly of decisions?
  • What is the proposed timetable for developing/replacing the Cranleigh Leisure Centre?
  • Are there any proposals to merge Councils in Surrey to achieve savings, as there are in many other Counties ?
  • Since the proposal to install an all-weather pitch at Cranleigh School is for a private commercial school, can these Section 106 funds be diverted to install an all-weather pitch on Cranleigh football fields ?

If you think there is anything we’ve missed, please take this opportunity to let us know and we will report on Waverley’s reply.

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MP ANNE MILTON – FLOOD FORUM (12/10/18)

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MP Anne Milton will conduct the next Flood Forum meeting on 12th October 2018 10.30 to 11.30 in the Band Room – the public are welcome to come and raise issues.

If you can’t attend please let us know your questions by commenting on this post or alternative email us your questions and we will send them on to Anne in advance.

Who will be there?  Anne invites representatives from many public bodies including Surrey County Council (highways) Waverley Borough Council (Planning) Environment Agency (statutory advisory body) Thames Water (drinking water and sewage disposal).

It may feel strange to consider the problems of flooding after the unprecedented dryness of this year.. However, flash floods caused by heavy downpours are a really possibility. Furthermore if we get a period of sustained heavy rainfall there be flooding as usual.

You are invited to the meeting, and also to arrive early for informal chats and coffee provided by Cranleigh Civic Society.

In addition, if you would like to join us afterwards at the Three Horse Shoes, please do!  We are planning to have a bite to eat and continue with our friendly conversations.  We look forward to seeing many of you.

RSVP or send questions to: membership@cranleighsociety.org

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CVHT – Where are our hospital beds?

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Cranleigh Village Hospital Trust (CVHT) invite us to Cranleigh Baptist Church to hear from their contracted partner firms HC-One on 11 OCTOBER 2018 at  3 till 8pm.

The proposals are for the following planning permissions:

2 new buildings and parking on “The Paddock” field of Snoxhall Fields.

One is a Care Home with hospital beds and the other is a block of flats or bedsits, hopefully to be taken up by staff of the Care Home and hospital beds.

RSVP via membership@cranleighsociety.org and we hope to see you there!!

Further information can be found here:

 

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REMEMBERING ONE HUNDRED YEARS AGO

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CRANLEIGH CENTENARY GARDEN

MESSAGE FROM CRANLEIGH PARISH COUNCIL 

The final touches are being made to Cranleigh’s Centenary Garden in Snoxhall Fields over the next couple of months, with the installation of the poppy sculpture.

We are planning on an opening ceremony at 11.00 am on Saturday 10th November. There’s too much going on the next day to fit it in on the Sunday. Please aim to arrive from 10:30am.

It will probably last 30 minutes and Robert Napier the Deputy Lord Lieutenant of Surrey has kindly agreed to do the honours.

It has been very gratifying over the months bringing this lovely garden to life seeing the pleasure it is bringing to the residents of this village. I don’t think I’m exaggerating to say this community endeavour is helping to bring people together.

If you can make it we’d love to see you there.

On Sunday 11th after the lighting of the beacon by the parish council offices, plans are to have the garden floodlit for the evening and by then the scouts and guides and other younger members of the communities will have made 415 paper plate poppies – each with a name of one of our fallen – all hanging in the garden.

Dates for diary and useful links:

Opening ceremony of Centenary Garden: 11am Saturday 10th November (arrive from 10:30 -11)

How to find the Centenary Garden: The site backs onto Hitherwood, opposite the children’s play park on Snoxhall Fields. It can be accessed from the Co-op/Leisure Centre car park and by the footpaths from Hitherwood and from beside the Cottage hospital. View a map here.

Click here to read more about the Centenary Garden.

 

 

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Local plan? Affordable housing? Waverley meeting

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Cranleigh Society met with Waverley Borough Council councillors and officers. Many topics were covered, which we continue to share openly with you here as well as action points that may make improvement or provide further information:

HOUSING QUESTIONS 

We asked about low cost and affordable housing and part of the answers included that WBC cannot MAKE developers build low cost and affordable housing!  But, they have a bit more say if they have a working “LOCAL PLAN“.

ACTION

It is suggested that Cranleigh Society and ALL LOCALS  lobby their MP Anne Milton about this.

When asked why developers sometimes say they cannot offer 30% affordable housing, the reply is that “It is a viability issue. Where viability is capable of being a planning consideration, Waverley appoint an independent viability consultant to test the evidence.”  so that’s clearly a difficult question then.

We asked, what is the definition of Affordable Housing? Waverley’s officer explained that the National Planning Policy Framework contains the definition of Affordable housing.  So, we obtained the definition from the Government’s website, see below:-

Social rented, affordable rented and intermediate housing, provided to eligible households whose needs are not met by the market. Eligibility is determined with regard to local incomes and local house prices. Affordable housing should include provisions to remain at an affordable price for future eligible households or for the subsidy to be recycled for alternative affordable housing provision.

Social rented housing is owned by local authorities and private registered providers (as defined in section 80 of the Housing and Regeneration Act 2008), for which guideline target rents are determined through the national rent regime. It may also be owned by other persons and provided under equivalent rental arrangements to the above, as agreed with the local authority or with the Homes and Communities Agency.

Affordable rented housing is let by local authorities or private registered providers of social housing to households who are eligible for social rented housing. Affordable Rent is subject to rent controls that require a rent of no more than 80% of the local market rent (including service charges, where applicable).

Intermediate housing is homes for sale and rent provided at a cost above social rent, but below market levels subject to the criteria in the Affordable Housing definition above. These can include shared equity (shared ownership and equity loans), other low cost homes for sale and intermediate rent, but not affordable rented housing.

Homes that do not meet the above definition of affordable housing, such as “low cost market” housing, may not be considered as affordable housing for planning purposes.”

Waverley’s Local Plan includes the required percentage, 30% of affordable housing on schemes above a certain size. The tenure split is informed by advice from our Housing Enabling Team. A contract with a registered provider, as negotiated through a section 106 agreement, is effected in liaison with Waverley’s housing team.

ACTION

In answer to the question about the provision of starter homes, this could be incorporated into a future Neighbourhood Plan.

DEVELOPERS AND THEIR AGREEMENTS WITH WAVERLEY

Cranleigh Society asked what the council is doing about ensuring that planning permission requirements are complied with. In the past the officers have pointed out that they struggle to oversee everything and rely on the public’s help.

WBC has recently appointed a new officer called a Section 106 Enforcement Officer. Although the role is part-time,  this should help.

ACTION

However, we the public still very much need to bring information to WBC.  So, please keep your observations up and report.

Thank you for your continued support.

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Productive meeting with Waverley leaders

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Cranleigh Society representatives met with Waverley council leaders – Councillors and officers –  for the second time on behalf of Cranleigh’s residents.

We pursued many of your worries and were given the councillors’ and officers’ replies.  Due to the number of topics covered there will be more than one post on this website.

n.b. Waverley Borough Council employs Officers to carry out the Strategic plans of the Senior Officers plus our Councillors. Many plans take years, even decades to be carried forward by which time we the public are sometimes somewhat surprised!

WORKING TOGETHER

CCS asked the Council to make an annual presentation to all residents groups (e.g. in December) to explain current Objectives for the next Fiscal year with stated expenditure plans. 

In reply, WBC asks that all the residents’ groups contact each other and work together as well as working with our local Cranleigh Parish Councillors.

We pressed for a more active role, along with our councillors, in the early stages of thinking.

The council says that they are doing a total review regarding improving information to all residents.  They will re-activate email Newsletters on the website.  (You can search many newsletters at  https://www.waverley.gov.uk/site/)

DRINKING WATER PIPES

CCS asked WBC to challenge Thames Water. We believe all the old asbestos cement pipes (as much as 29% of our pipes)  should be replaced urgently.   They burst very often and are made of fibres that might cause health problems in the future.

WBC officer replied that he had an extensive conversation with Thames Water recently and in such circumstances they undertake a risk assessment process. Thames Water will prioritise in the areas where the system is failing but works are aligned to their budget.

WBC stated that they had sought legal advice that confirmed that WBC was complying with its legal responsibilities. The Parish Council’s recent letter to the Secretary of State was welcomed.

ACTION – Cranleigh Civic Society and members could lobby their MP Anne Milton on this issue. 

WBC’s position is that whilst there is no evidence that deteriorating water mains pipes cause harm WBC cannot “require” TW to act.  BUT WBC agree that the disruption caused by so many bursts plus all the new housing is very inefficient.

CRANLEIGH RESIDENTS SUFFERED FROM NO WATER RECENTLY DURING A LONG HOT DROUGHT

WBC officer provided an update: Recently, demand outstripped supply. An electric pump that fed the reservoir failed and Thames Water supplied tankers to top up the reservoir. (n.b. Thames Water’s contract as a provider is with the government and not WBC. OFWAT is the regulator in England and Wales.)

WBC help where they can and have responsibility only for knowing and ensuring that the water is safe to drink.

Meanwhile in Cranleigh a pipe burst, and  TW did supply bottled water, eventually. However they weren’t able to co-ordinate with the community affected well.

ACTIONS – CCS & Cranleigh Parish Council need to help put a plan in place to help residents.    WBC Officer to contact TW and suggest they develop their own database of vulnerable people in the area.

Also Residents can contact Thames Water   https://www.thameswater.co.uk/Help-and-Advice/Customer-Commitment/Priority-services   

SEWERAGE ISSUES

CCS asked WBC about the capacity of the sewerage works and the problems with the treated outflow into Cranleigh Water; our sometimes dry  “river”  which is said to be too high in phosphates

CCS asked: why has planning permissions been granted when the water and sewerage issues have not been resolved?

CCS said that there was yet to be a full discussion with regard to the sewage treatment and we have a copy of a letter  written in both 2017 and 2018 to which there has been no response.

CCS asked whether the permit issued in 2009 was still in use?  CCS believes that there could be a contravention of the Water Common Framework Directive if Thames Water’s actions and inactions knowingly led to a “class reduction” in river water quality status.

WBC have told us they will meet with TW soon to discuss, and therefore were unable to provide us with comment on the above at this stage.

CRANLEIGH LEISURE CENTRE

Waverley have an outside expert consultants’ report (2017) advising on the best way to improve and maintain all the leisure centres in Waverley.  Their remit  includes pleasing the public and making a profit for the partner.  A recommendation is that Cranleigh Leisure Centre will benefit from a rebuild; CCS is aware that the “plant” the pool, the roof and the air conditioning are all past their replace by dates.  How, when, where and at what cost has yet to be decided.  The amount of money from current Section 106 receipts has been decided and Cranleigh will benefit.

We have been informed there will be a consultation “soon”.

ACTIONS   look out for consultation and engage with the process.

That’s the end of our first set of topics, please feel free to comment. The next instalment will be shared here soon.

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Nominate Your Best Neighbour Of 2018

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Neighbourhood Watch and their sponsor Co-op Insurance has just launched a nationwide search to find and celebrate some of the best and most considerate neighbours of 2018!

We thought it would be nice to share the positive side of life here in Cranleigh so we’re sharing their message here:

Neighbourhood Watch are urging people to nominate the most deserving good neighbours and there is also an opportunity to put forward your ‘Hero Next Door’ for a true act of heroism.
Neighbourhood Watch and Co-op Insurance are working together on these exciting awards and anyone can nominate their good neighbours today!

We’re talking about the local heroes in your street and community whose acts of kindness and neighbourliness really set them apart.

We want to recognise the people who are making such a vital contribution to community life and encourage others to follow in their footsteps.

You don’t need to be a Neighbourhood Watch member to nominate and the person you nominate doesn’t need to be a member either.


Click here to join inbefore nominations close on September 5 – and you’ll be taken to the nomination form where you can share your stories of great neighbourly activities and acts of kindness.

You can also share the link to the nominations page by cutting and pasting it from below.

https://joinin.coop.co.uk/opportunities/159

So nominate your good neighbours today!

To read more about the awards  click here.

With best wishes,

Neighbourhood Watch

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Civic Society Strengthens Cranleigh Plan

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The Cranleigh Civic Society has responded to the Draft Cranleigh Neighbourhood Plan by proposing a number of additions to strengthen the Plan:

1. The Policies MUST be strengthened to ensure they can be enforced on Developers: “developers should be encouraged to ….” is far too weak. Developers MUST be held to firm policies, otherwise they will try and evade them.

2. The Plan must have policies on Roads and Infrastructure. This is the greatest threat from building 1,700+ houses in Cranleigh. Since the A281 goes through Cranleigh Parish, it is vital to state that the A281 and other access roads to Cranleigh should be subject to a major study to determine how traffic congestion – as a result of the increased housing development in Cranleigh and Dunsfold – can be relieved. There should be a clear policy on how Cranleigh will pressure Surrey County Council and Waverley Council to improve Infrastructure and Roads.

3. There must be clear policies on the building of the Care Home, and the move or expansion of the Leisure Centre, since these are the major expansion of facilities for Cranleigh. The Plan must support the building of the Care Home, to include staff accommodation, BUT priority must be given to Cranleigh residents since a large proportion of the funding has been donated by Cranleigh residents.

4. The Leisure Centre should be expanded rather than being re-built in another location, by extending the building into the staff car park – and tennis courts if necessary, in order to provide changing rooms for Male, Female and Families. The pool should be improved, but it must retain spectator seating. A Sports Hall would be a good
benefit if there is space.

5. The Plan should state that Cranleigh residents should get priority for Affordable Home allocation.

6. 3 storey buildings should be avoided, such as the ones at Crest Nicholson and Hewitts, since these impact the privacy of nearby existing buildings.

7. Development sites must retain as many existing trees, hedges and natural features to retain the site’s character. All Planning Applications MUST include a scaled landscape and tree plan showing trees proposed for removal and new trees.

8. A replacement building must not appreciably increase mass, height or scale compared to the existing building, and be compatible with the street scene and scale.

9. The Snoxall Fields should be protected as an Area of Special Visual Interest, apart from the Care Home Site.

10. The increased homes in Cranleigh and Dunsford will put severe pressure on parking for shopping. The Society is against building a multi-storey car park on Village Way.

11. There must be no further loss of employment sites for commercial, light industrial and entrepreneurial use, with the loss of Hewitts – and the Astra House and buildings must not be demolished for housing.

12. The Waverley Plan has dictated that Cranleigh MUST build 1,700 houses by 2032 – but we have had over 1,700 Planning Applications already – and the great majority have been given Planning Approval. So what is going to happen for the next 14 years? There MUST be firm policies that NO Planning Applications – apart from windfall sites should be approved.

Please let us know if you have any comments for improvements.

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Asbestos Cement Fibres in Tap Water…& what to do

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As members of the Society you will be aware that 29.6% of our drinking water pipes are made of asbestos cement, that they are coming to the end of their “lifespan” and that bursts are becoming more frequent.

You are also aware that when bursts occur, asbestos fibres are released into the drinking water pipes.

We continue to put pressure on Waverley Borough Council (who are the body responsible for the delivery of safe drinking water) and Thames Water to replace ALL these pipes.

Some residents have asked what they can do in the meantime to ensure that the water they drink is free of asbestos fibres.

The water filter jug market leader is Brita but they confirmed to us that their products do not filter out asbestos so we looked elsewhere and you may like to consider a ZeroWater product.

We have had lengthy discussions with ZeroWater in the UK and USA and you may wish to visit www.zerowater.co.uk – and possibly their US site www.zerowater.com

They have have advised us that independent testing confirms that their products filter out virtually all asbestos fibres.

Also, their products are inexpensive with current prices being £24.99 for a 7 cup capacity and £44.99 for a 23 cup capacity – and you also receive an electronic testing device so you know when to change the filter.

So, while we continue to fight the good fight with the powers that be, you may wish to invest in a ZeroWater filter jug!

Oh, we must not forget the “legal bit”! We are suggesting, in good faith, that you look at the merits of a ZeroWater filter jug but the Society does not accept any responsibility and/or liability for this product.

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