St James School gets new toilets and cloakrooms


Thank goodness for the Community Infrastructure Levy (CIL) – a tax that is levied on developers when they build new homes. Without CIL funds, it is hard to see how St James School would have found the money to make badly needed improvements to their buildings.  Their annual grant for capital projects is just £9,000.

On Wednesday 2nd October, the school was successful in its application for CIL funding to replace toilet facilities for pupils. The CIL grant of £110,000 was unanimously approved by local councillors from Weybridge and Oatlands. The CIL grant will be combined with funds raised by the PTA and a contribution from Surrey CC Property Services.

Pupils, parents, teachers and support staff at the school are all too aware of the shocking state of disrepair of the loos for pupils in years 3, 4 and 5 at the school and of the negative impact on pupil comfort and wellbeing of having loos that pupils just do not want to use.

Now that the school has the funding it needs, the programme of replacement proposed should see the work completed by the summer.

This is the Liberal Democrat Manifesto for Elmbridge

Safer, Greener, Smarter

Environment
Climate Change is an existential threat to humankind.  We will put Elmbridge on a path to become carbon neutral and will adopt appropriate policies to this end. We will work with local businesses and residents to identify and implement smart and practical measures to achieve our goal. This work will bring tangible benefits to our neighbourhoods and to our personal well-being, too.

Traffic
We will begin to tackle traffic congestion and cut air pollution by installing 20mph in residential areas, improving public transport, discouraging engine idling near schools and elsewhere, and promoting walking and cycling options across Elmbridge.  We will install electric vehicle-charging points in our car parks, encourage them in any new developments and provide free parking for zero-emission cars. We will co-ordinate on and off-street parking, introduce smart parking charging and secure easy access to services.

Planning
We will defend the Green Belt and implement a “brownfield sites first” approach in the upcoming local plan.  We will campaign for infrastructure improvements to be in place for new developments. We will set targets for social housing and family starter homes to meet the needs of a younger generation.  We will encourage local forums to create neighbourhood plans. We will also promote the concentration of shops and services in town centres.

Crime
We will strengthen Neighbourhood Watch and anti-social behaviour teams, and work with Surrey Police to restore neighbourhood policing.  We will promote leisure, sport and social facilities for young people in all towns.

Democracy
We will ensure full transparency in both borough and county budget planning and spending, as well as in the conduct of planning applications – with full accountability to residents.  We support the introduction of an effective unitary authority by merging the county and borough levels into one authority in place of the current Surrey County Council and Surrey’s eleven boroughs.

Leisure                                                                                                                               We recognise the importance of leisure to both mental and physical wellbeing and also its economic benefits.  All leisure activities should be provided at affordable cost to participants, including free adult fitness equipment in every settlement. We will safeguard libraries and look to innovate their services.

Our kind of Elmbridge

Is a place where our towns and villages are thriving communities with flourishing local businesses and services centrally located.

Is a place where all our open spaces are valued and protected.  A place where the Green Belt is not built on.

Is a place where the local council is fully accountable to local people, where there is full transparency of council spending at borough and county level. A place where the planning process is fully accountable to local people. A place where local people can have their voices heard.

Is a place where young people are safe and valued, where there are leisure, sport and social facilities for young people in all our communities, where cycling and walking is safe. A place where young people have a future.

Is a place where families thrive. A place where families can live in well designed, well placed affordable housing.

Is a place where green transport is a reality, a place where car charging points are built into the infrastructure and all new developments. A place where car clubs and car sharing is encouraged. A place where public transport meets the needs of the people.

If this is your kind of Elmbridge, then vote for your Liberal Democrat candidate.

Churchfield Allotments – May 2018

In May 2018, allotment holders and residents in roads adjacent to the Churchfield Allotments were informed by the Weybridge Charity, who own the allotments, that the charity is proposing to sell some 5% of the allotment land for development.

Reasons given for this by the charity are: that it is under increasing pressure to meet the needs of Weybridge residents who face hardship. Additionally, the charity is seeking to invest some of the monies raised in improving the amenities for the remaining 4 hectares of allotments so that the site “may be used more effectively and attract new, long-term tenants”  The proposed improvements to the allotments include:

  • Bringing new areas under cultivation
  • Allowing a proper toilet to be built
  • Creating a communal area

The charity is proposing to assign new allotments and to compensate those allotment holders who will be directly affected.

About the Weybridge Charity

The Weybridge Charity’s sole charitable objective is ‘the relief of persons resident in the area of benefit (Weybridge KT13 postal district) who are in need, hardship or distress.’

The charity has nine trustees, six of whom must be appointed by Elmbridge Borough Council, with the remaining three being appointed by the borough appointed trustees.

The background to these arrangements and the history of the Charity can be found at http://weybridgecharity.org.uk/about-us