Now the Lib Dems have stepped into Matron Milton’s corner!

Matron Milton will not be pleased – that Lib Dem and MP hopeful, Zoe Franklin, is about to pee on her Cranleigh fireworks!

But fear not  Zoe – Matron Milton doesn’t have any confidence in Waverley Borough Council either – and neither does anyone else  – so sadly you have to join a very long  queue!  

But… and it’s a BIG BUT Annie … She claims you have got it wrong… very, very wrong – on DUNSFOLD … and you are turning Cranleigh into a traffic nightmare!

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CROSS OF CRANLEIGH JUST GOT A WHOLE LOT CROSSER …

Watch  film of the meeting here: 

Cranleigh took a unanimous – bar an abstention from Annie Milton’s Mole – vote of NO CONFIDENCE in ‘Your Waverley’s EXECUTIVE!

Middle England was out in force last week, packing  Cranleigh Village Hall at the behest of the Cranleigh Civic Society. and protested against the concreting over of “their village.” 

In the left-hand corner, three intrepid Parish Councillors – Pat Ellis, Mary Foryszewski and Liz Townsend – heard  parishioners vent their feelings all over the village hall. In the right-hand corner, three representatives of The Cranleigh Civic Society (CCS) whose anger was  directed at  Waverley Borough Council, which it claims, despises and ignores the views of the local voting fodder (except when there’s an election in the offing.)

 Our Regular readers, ( we clocked up over 1,200 yesterday,) will be pleased to know that, residents  got to the bottom of some of the questions that have baffled  them for a very long time:

Q: When is a secret meeting not a secret meeting?

A: When the public find out about it!

Oh, and we’re sure you’ll all be very relieved to know that Councillor Pat Ellis  didn’t attend one of the secret meetings that wasn’t a secret meeting because she got there just as it was finishing!!! As one gentlemen was overheard to say,

‘You couldn’t make it up.’ Really, you couldn’t!

Sadly, Cranleigh people have been slow, far too slow, to wake up and smell the coffee – or, in this case, the concrete!

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It’s only now, with 1,328 new homes about to settle in its  green fields   and with  many more planned,  they realise that Cranleigh has become Waverley’s ‘dumping ground for 44% of the borough’s housing quota’. Oh – and the latest ‘secret meeting,’ with 14 developers, which isn’t secret – even though some of its own councillors were banned from attending –  because,  the minutes will go up on the website. Who writes the minutes … say no more. A calculated guess? Infrastructure Problems – water, sewage treatment… and a call for yet more sites?

 All this development will come to pass despite the fact that Cranleigh’s infrastructure is  groaning under the weight of  existing homes. It could  be on its knees by the time Amlets Lane, Hewitts Industrial Estate, Horsham Road, Knowle Lane and and West Cranleigh Nurseries – all consented – come out of the ground. By the time pending applications  are consented Cranleigh could  be swimming in sewage – always assuming the population hasn’t already expired from ingesting  asbestos fibres which are seeping into the drinking water supply. 

 Cranleigh Civic Society’s Adrian Clark, broke the bad news – that 29.6% of Cranleigh’s water pipes contained blue asbestos cement. They had  a 70-year life span and there was no  provision to replace them.  When  new homes come on stream,( literally,)  they must, by law, have one bar water pressure. Trouble is, the old asbestos pipes aren’t designed to take that degree of pressure, therefore, every time  people living in those lovely new developer built homes turns on the taps or flush the loo, they will send a spurt of water up the pipes that will dislodge even more blue asbestos into Cranleigh’s water supply!

Ask the people of Godalming?  One contacted us to say their water softener blew up due to increased water pressure and their home was… under water!

Stand by your beds! Matron Milton is about to be on the receiving end of a petition from very, VERY, VERY Cross of Cranleigh, demanding she does something about the upgrading of Cranleigh’s water pipes. Our advice to the (CCS)  and Cranleigh folks:

Screen Shot 2017-05-28 at 21.58.37.png Matron Milton has been lobbying Thames Water about the affluent’s effluent in Alfold. but two years on – or is it three?  it’s still coming up through their bathtubs and into their appliances.

So … start stockpiling bottled water as we confidently predict there’s  going to be a run on bottled water in Cranleigh once this article gets tweeted and re-tweeted! In fact, start stockpiling milk too, you may need it to bath in. If it’s good enough for Cleopatra, it’s good enough for The Cranleigh Babes!

But, as some enlightened soul  pointed at the  end of the meeting, it’s all about politics! And, the problem in Waverley is, I know we’ve said it before –  if you stuck a blue rosette on a monkey’s arse the good people of Waverley would vote for it! The councillors, officers and  politicians don’t give a Donald Duck what Waverley’s  man in the street thinks because they are confident  he will carry on voting for them!  

This  was underlined when a UKIP man from Farnham –   said he had attended another meeting at ‘YW’  on 12 August 2014 when the majority of councillors present made it all too clear that they didn’t agree with the content of the daft Local Plan but then 38 Conservative councillors all voted for it, leaving their three Independent / UKIP colleagues to vote against.

Why? Because  Conservative councillors are whipped; the decision had been taken, by the Party, before the meeting took place.  And they call it democracy ...

As Cllr Mary Foryszewski rightly pointed out, ‘You, the people voted for us to represent you and if you don’t like it, you need to do something about it.

And there you have it folks, if you don’t like what Your Waverley is doing in your name YOU – yes, we’re talking about YOU PERSONALLY …

…need to volunteer,  get involved, become councillors, give up some of your spare time and walk the walk, not just talk the talk! And, yes, it is far easier said than done because as we all know, your busy people, you’ve got lives to lead, children to feed, jobs to go to and, at the end of the day, it’s much easier to leave it to someone else to do and then just have a moan about it when you don’t like what they do.

A lot of hot air was vented at that meeting but, in reality, it’s all over bar the shouting. How do we work that out? Because none of the vested interests, that turned up for the last public meeting, bothered to turn up. Why? JOB DONE!

No Berkeley Bunnies, Lettuce or Leafy’s – No Thakeham Thugs – or Crest’s Cowboys. They are all celebrating having successfully secured a planning permission to build many hundreds of homes on recognised flood plains  – trousering millions.

 A middle aged woman who was overheard to say, when asked  what she thought of the meeting – ‘Unfortunately, whilst they all mean well, I’m very much afraid they’re shutting the stable door after the horse has bolted …”

We couldn’t have put it better ourselves!

Is the milk about to go sour in POW’s Brown Cow?

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So determined is  Protect our Little Corner to stop the development of Dunsfold airfield – the borough’s largest brown field site, in case you and they’ve forgotten! – that they’ve now dragged tax-payer funded Historic England into their increasingly bitter battle against the Dunsfold developers.

In yet another attempt to deter development at the old airfield the duplicitous diehards called in Historic England in order to try to persuade the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport to list the entire airfield as a best preserved example of a World War II asset or, failing that, to list individual structures – such as the Control Tower and Bomb Stores – on the aerodrome. Did the forget the WW II lavatory?

Make no mistake, Protect Our Little Corner are throwing your Waverley Council Tax Payer money about like Smarties in their endeavours to save their own patch of the borough from development. In addition to trying to turn the aerodrome into a National treasure (AKA a Heritage Site) complete with its very own blue plaque, they’ve also sought and gained permission for a Judicial Review – another very costly Council Tax Payer money funded exercise …

… because Your Super-Efficient Waverley forgot – yes, that’s right, FORGOT! – to add a decision made by The Executive plonkers, on 2nd of December 2014 into its Constitution!

Who were the Plonkers present: On 2nd December 2014?

Councillor Robert Knowless (Chairman); Cllr Tom House-Martin (Vice Chairman); Cllr Julia Gone-to-Potts; Cllr Brain You-wouldn’t-Adams-and-Eve-it; Cllr Donal O’Neill Cllr Adam-I’m-On-my-way-to-make-squillions-Taylor-Smith; Cllr Oh! Carole King; Cllr Simon Thornton.

Read the details here: Cranleigh’s voice has spotted that mistake – that might be getting… BIGGER!

At the Executive on 6th June 2017 –  having now had the benefit of obtaining even more costly Tax-Payer-Funded legal advice – the council will vote to rectify its mistake!

As a little bit of background: This is taken from the Council Minutes.

In January 2008 the Joint Planning Committee had 48 members.
To improve its efficiency it was dropped to 23.
Then it met on an ad hoc basis.
Due to poor attendance levels (Mostly only half turned up) it was decided to introduce ‘SUBSTITUTES’ – (to ensure the committee is well represented by members across the Borough when dealing with large-scale planning applications, particularly when a number of apologies have been received. It is envisaged the arrangements will maintain the political balance and the geographical spread on the JPC.)

Now listen very carefully – we will say this only once:

ALL members of the Area Planning Committees, who are not members, will be listed as Substitutes.
Upon receipt of any apology from a member of the JPC by noon on the day of the meeting, substitute members will be arranged by the Democratic Services Team;
A substitute will be called from the same Area Planning Committee as the member giving their apology from the JPC.
The member must from the same political group as the member giving an apology and in the event that no substitute is available, no substitution will be made for that member.
It was AGREED. With effect from January 2015.

UNFORTUNATELY SOMEONE FORGOT TO INCLUDE IT INTO THE COUNCIL’S CONSTITUTION WHICH IS WHY Protect Our Little Corner NOW BELIEVE THEY CAN SCUPPER THE DUNSFOLD PARK APPLICATION, THE LOCAL PLAN AND EVERY OTHER BLOODY PLANNING APPLICATION THAT THE NUMPTIES AT YOUR WAVERLEY HAVE BEEN SHOVING THROUGH AT A RATE OF KNOTS.

NO WONDER FARNHAM HAS GIVEN THE DUMB & DUMBER BRIGADE AT YOUR WAVERLEY A VOTE OF NO CONFIDENCE … WITH CRANLEIGH FOLLOWING HARD ON THEIR HEELS LAST WEEK!

 

All around the borough they are whacking Waverley.

We hear from our ‘WW’ readers  in Godalming,  Haslemere and Cranleigh –   they too are turning their faces against Gone to Potts and her Executive posse.

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Once Upon a time one half of Waverley didn’t know what the other half was doing! Now it does.

It is just 24 hours since Cranleigh villagers turned out in their droves to take a vote of NO CONFIDENCE  in the Executive Tory stronghold that is …

“Your Waverley.

Just two weeks since  Farnham folk kicked into touch two Tory councillors,  narrowly missed kicking out a third – and putting people before politics.

Is ‘YW’s  face about to be given a makeover?

Here’s what they did in Cranleigh: Cranleigh’s fight back has begun. And here’s this weeks Farnham Letters Page:

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Cranleigh’s fight back has begun.

A public meeting has decided Unanimously …

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Cranleigh_bannerA passionate and determined crowd turned out in force to hear Cranleigh Civic Society (CCS) spell out the reasons WHY  it had called a public meeting. . . to tell more than 500 people  how their borough council and their elected councillors were representing them!

However, despite invitations – only three councillors turned up!

Mary Foryszewski (Con); Patricia Ellis (Con West) .. of the – ‘we do no hold secret meetings, they are just meetings not open to the public’) and Liz Townsend (Con West).

It was No show from the Stennett duo – Stuart and Jeanette! (Con East) No surprise there then?

(CCS)  Chairman Phil Price said the Society was working tirelessly to protect Cranleigh, and despite repeated attempts to persuade WBC to listen to residents’ concerns it had failed.. Screen Shot 2017-05-25 at 23.50.05.png

He said the Society’s remit was to  protect Cranleigh and  despite its repeated attempts to  persuade WBC to “listen to a host of residents’ genuine concerns”  it had failed..  

‘Well, that is until to-day, when we received a telephone call inviting  us to meet with them!

Waverley Councils’ message to us was “We want you to know.. We really do care’  – which brought howls of derision.

He outlined the concerns that had brought so many people to the meeting:

  • 1,300 houses already granted planning permission –  was just the tip of the iceberg.
  • The lack of infrastructure including – sewage treatment; the flood risk; asbestos in 70-year-old  water pipes.  – Is it white or is it blue?
  • Polluted waterways.
  • Traffic congestion.
  • Water pressure.
  • 40% of the borough’s housing was on its way to Cranleigh!

and more…

After ( CCS) members gave detailed explanations of the problems  Cranleigh faced now, and  in the future – due to s(WBC’s)determination  to create  Cranleigh New Town. They urged the public to sign the Asbestos Petition, (open until Sunday evening) to be sent to MP Anne Milton calling for the water supply to be tested.

“As the Surrey County Councillor is here this evening perhaps he could explain how  highway authority will deal with the extra traffic? 

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Questions from the floor came thick and fast : The Answers – not so fast!

  • Why was Cranleigh under-represented on the Joint Planning Committee?
  • Why was it being ‘dumped’ on?
  • Why was it being asked to accept the lions share of development almost half the borough’s quota?
  • How many brown envelopes were being handed over by Developers to gain permission?
  • Why couldn’t take Farnham’s example and leave the borough of Waverley?
  • Could it hold a Referendum to leave.
  • Why – are so many homes required – and who dictates the housing need?
  • Why wasn’t a Local Plan in place years ago?
  • Why were developers financial contributions under (106 agreements) so low.
  • Were  Cranleigh borough councillors satisfied with the authorities handling of the housing situation?
  • Why is over £177,000 being provided by Berkeley Homes towards a sports pitch for Cranleigh Public School?

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Villager Eddie White Summed up the Answers to most questions:

“We are in the mess we are in here in Cranleigh because Waverley Borough Council has repeatedly failed to produce a Local Plan – No Plan – No protection.”

After two hours – The Cranleigh Civic Society proposed a Vote of No Confidence in THE EXECUTIVE of Waverley Borough Council. TWO  COUNCILLORS LEFT THE ROOM – ONE REMAINED (MARY FORYSZEWSKI. who voted against) The decision by the people of Cranleigh was Unanimous.

Read more in a  post to follow: 

 

 

 

 

KERCHING COMES TO C-C-C- CRANLEIGH!

Here comes the choo-choo?

Regular readers will know that we, at Waverley Web, are never churlish or mischievous – perish the thought! But we did a triple-take when we read about the new pay-on-departure scheme in the Stockland Square car park! This has been introduced after some heavy-handed lobbying by Cranleigh traders who, apparently, believe everyone will spend more time in their shops – drinking coffee, nibbling on a croissant or two, before moving on to linger in the lingerie, browse among the beds … we needn’t go on, we’re sure you get the picture, if they don’t need to worry about their parking ticket running out.

Unfortunately – for traders and shoppers alike – all is not quite as wunderbar as it seems because, whereas elsewhere (Guildford & Horsham to name but two), drivers take a ticket on arrival and insert it into the machine on departure, enabling them to just pay for the length of time they’ve parked, here in the  Wunderland that is Waverley, the Council wants to charge you potts (sorry, Julia, no pun intended – well, maybe just a small one!) of money upfront – £8.40p – and give you a refund – if gonetopottsthey really must – when you return.

Trust Your Waverley to make a mountain out of a molehill! Why make things simple when you can make them c-c-c-complicated?

We are grateful to Beth Hughes who shared her experience of the new parking situation in Stockland Square with us below.Screen Shot 2017-05-23 at 09.50.42

Screen Shot 2017-05-23 at 09.58.53So there you have it, folks, Your Waverley is not only keen to grab your money upfront, it’s incredibly reluctant to return it to you later! Of course, the generous-minded amongst you may think that it takes time for new-fangled schemes to bed-in and things will sort themselves out – eventually – but, in the meantime, the Cranleigh Traders can only hope and pray that Waverley’s answer to ‘Stand & Deliver’ – otherwise known as Daylight Robbery at the c-c-c-Cashpoint – doesn’t cause shoppers to vote with their feet and go elsewhere to drink coffee, snaffle a sausage and linger in the lingerie …

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Especially as the mutter in the gutter is … that a certain large brownfield site, just a hop-skip-and-a-jump away from Cranleigh, is in discussions with the owners of Bicester Village to create a Surrey-based designer outlet at the old aerodrome if their planning application – which, courtesy of Matron Milton, is currently languishing in the Secretary of State’s in-box – is turned down.

Apparently, the owners of the incredibly successful chi-chi outlet shopping villages – 11 and counting across Europe and China – are looking to extend their reach in the UK by tapping into the prime Surrey Yummy Mummy market. They have their eye on Dunsfold Park because of its close proximity to the old Downs Link Railway Line.

So successful is the Bicester Village site that the owners have, singlehandedly, paid for a small branch line bringing the railway directly into Bicester Village itself. The thought is they could easily do the same at Dunsfold, making it a mecca for designer bargain hunters in the south-east whilst, at the same time, helping to ease congestion on the A281. Needless to say, Surrey Highways is orgasmic at the prospect of a retailer-funded railway line – something even Dunsfold Park themselves have admitted they couldn’t  afford to fund.

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Should this come to pass, the Bramley-Babes will be torn between lying down in front of the trains and boarding them. Forget Boden, girls, it’s all about Balenciaga now … !

As for the Cranleigh Traders, who together with Protect our Little Corner, egged Matron Milton on in her bid to get Dunsfold Park called in … they’d be well advised to be careful what they wish for!

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Thanks  Beth – do we predict traffic chaos in Cranleigh. Here’s what her friends think! C

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Is the boat about to sail for – Care Ashore?

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There’s a little matter that is concerning residents over there on the Surrey/Sussex border village of Alfold.

To worry or not to worry?

Like the residents,  we are not entirely sure what Thakeham Homes is up to this time in its desperate bid to cover the green fields of a  once  tiny village with many hundreds of new homes – not to make any money, say they,  – but to save a National Charity!

The Merchant Seaman’s War Memorial Society – now called Care Ashore wants to more than double the size of the place – only a few hundred yards from Dunsfold airfield!

But then desperation is the name of the game all over “Your Waverley’ at the moment – but in particular in the East. Why? Because ‘YW’ is claiming it has a five-year land supply tucked under its belt and developers beg to differ!

The Springbok planning consultants have written to ‘some’ objectors informing them that they are requesting that the new Springbok application (WA/2017/0360), is applied to the existing appeal (APP/R3650/W/16/3155714) instead of the original application (WA/2015/1381). 

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Now of course, it may actually be a good thing, if the whole matter can be resolved by just one appeal, rather than two. However, we, and the residents of Alfold believe it does raise a few very important  questions. 

Q As the appeal against Waverley Planners’ refusal is to be held on 18  July, how can the new application (0360) be part of the appeal as it has yet to be either refused or recommended by said  Planners, whose current decision target is recorded as being 29th May?

There is nothing concerning this application on the Joint Planning Committee Agenda for tomorrow Tuesday –  and currently there are no meetings scheduled for the month of June!!

Will there be time for everyone to be properly notified and make their comments on any second refusal? If not – why not?

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Villagers  are concerned that the developers might be trying to bypass the planning officers and put their second application straight to the appeal. After all, if the second application decision was delayed long enough, they could end up hearing an appeal on an application that had not actually been refused!

One thing WW can be sure of –  the developers will have done the least possible that they are obliged to do to inform the good people. of Alfold, and  everything they do is for a reason, and of course their main aim is to see the development go ahead, as, with Matron Milton’s success in persuading the Secretary of State to call in the Dunsfold scheme perhaps they believe they can snick in while no-one is looking – Suspicious – or what?

Perhaps If the locals, or anyone else for that matter,  have any views they can contact the Planning Inspectorate through their web page at https://acp.planninginspectorate.gov.uk/ViewCase.aspx?caseid=3155714

Alfold Parish Council is presently talking to another developer – Richard Cook – about his proposals for a new scheme to build on Chapel Fields – on green fields opposite the Alfold Craft Centre.

Let the burrowing begin..

Not Tonight Josephine – but Wednesday – Waverley Planners – will view the detailed drawings and Reserved Matters – concerning the first phase (55) of the Berkeley Bunnies new 425  home burrow – on the former Bonham Trust Land behind Stocklund Square in Cranleigh.

The mainly two storey dwellings will be three, four and five bed homes with access onto Knowle Lane. 

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Along with all the other developers in Waverley, they have convinced officers, and members alike, that the two and a half storey homes  are just that. Well – just go and view other Crest Nicholson/Berkeley developments and see what you think. They are three storey houses in everything but name.

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As you will see there is a very strong presence from Councillors representing Cranleigh!

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Here’s what the parish council – the local watchdog – has to say, will anyone take one blind bit of notice… here come the diggers!

  • Strong concerns over the movement of construction traffic on Knowle Lane.
  •   The dwellings are higher than those planned forAmlets Lane and the pitched roofs are considered to be too steep and should be reduced.
  •   The proposed footpath is inadequate for pedestrians as there is only adequate space for one person.
  •   This is a wetspot, highlighting flash flooding in the area at the carnival in 2016.
  •   The roads are too narrow and should be made wider to support passing traffic.
  •   The proposed garages would obstruct the highway, causing a lack of space for access.
  •   Object to the ornamental entrance gate as the site must be inclusive, not exclusive. This also includes the brick wall which would create a separation and social exclusion from Cranleigh.
  •   The SuDS scheme is not yet agreed and would need to be heavily relied upon.
  •   Members would like a CEMP to be made a condition of this application.Additional response:
    • –  Gate should be removed from the entrance
    • –  Estate roads are too narrow, and cars will parkalong them restricting access for emergencyvehicles and refuse collection lorries.
    • –  Plots 4, 51, 52 and 53 are 45% higher thanneighbouring properties. The two storey houses have been increased to make the three storey houses look less intrusive.
    • –  Plots 4 and 51 are within a metre of the pavement, making them appear as gateways which would cause harm to the character and appearance of the lane as appears urban.
    • –  Plots 4, 51, 52 and 53 are located opposite Snoxhall Fields ASVI and would be harmful as too bulky and large.

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  • It is contrary to the Cranleigh Design Statement.
  • and.. last but not least.. the transport Statement refers to a roundabout being built to service a new private nursing home (formerly intended to be a replacement hospital) but its permission has now lapsed, so the developer should not rely upon this roundabout.

Needless to say  – there is no objection from the county highway authority or the flood authority. Surprise, surprise! Screen Shot 2017-05-22 at 15.24.24.png
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New roads = more traffic!

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New roads do not relieve traffic congestion or boost local economies but devastate the environment,  according to a study commissioned by the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE).

The study, which it is claimed is “the largest ever independent review of completed road schemes in England” finds that recent road schemes, rather than provide solutions, have encouraged millions of extra car journeys each year, resulting in greater congestion of local roads.

More than half of the road schemes analysed, it was found, harmed protected landscapes and designated environmental sites, including National Parks, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, ancient woodland and historic places. Overall, there was evidence that 80% of schemes built damaged the surrounding environment.

The study also questions the benefits of the road building programme planned by Highways England set to triple spending to £3 billion a year by 2020.

The CPRE said: “Of roads promoted for their benefits to the local economy, just one in five demonstrated any evidence at all of economic benefit, and that was weak. More than half of the road schemes analysed harmed protected landscapes and designated environmental sites, including National Parks, Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty, ancient woodland and historic places.”

A Highways England spokeswoman said recently  that its road building programme would “ensure our roads continue to operate safely, efficiently and effectively”.

Reaction from local councillors in Guildford was mixed. Council leader Paul Spooner (Con, South Ash South & Tongham), said: “Interesting to see the change of strategy from CPRE.

“Previously they were arguing that infrastructure was necessary to support development and when funding comes forward to support infrastructure it now makes things worse. Sadly this damages the credibility of this campaign group.

“But opposition councillors appeared to partly or completely agree with the CPRE study. Caroline Reeves (Lib Dem, Friary & St Nicolas) said: I think the building of the M25 and the constant need to widen it ever since the “completion” date shows what we all really know, the more road you build, the more cars will fill it. This has been proven around the world.“There is however a difference between extending road networks and improving connectivity through rationalising junctions, which is what is sorely needed around Guildford and  Waverley. The existing roads need to work effectively if we are ever to embrace driverless cars, a jam at an inadequate junction will still be a jam whether the car is driven by a person or not.

“The bottom line is that we need a vastly improved public transport system and until the government will back this, instead of new roads, we are never going to succeed.

“The Conservative government must invest nationally in public transport if we are to solve the traffic problems – and improve our air quality, surely equally important for many reasons.”

Susan Parker (GGG, Send) said: “I welcome this sensible research from CPRE. It states clearly what many of us believe – road building does not ultimately resolve congestion.

“Building roads should not be seen as a panacea for our congested area. A few million pounds for minor adjustments to the A3 will certainly not allow the population to increase by around a quarter, as has been proposed under the previous draft Local Plan.

“It is about time that local and national politicians started to recognise that our environment matters and that people care about it.”

This article is taken from the amazing on-line Guildford Newspaper the Guildford Dragon.

When is a hospital – not a hospital?

 

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The Waverley Web has been contacted by ‘Cross of Cranleigh’. In fact, no holds barred, they’re not just cross, they’re very, VERY, VERY CROSS!

And, for once, they’re not talking about the proliferation of Cranes! – and, no, we’re not talking about the ones that gave rise to the village’s historic name: CRANE LEIGH! – When they talk about cranes, they’re talking about the construction cranes that are turning a once peaceful village into a full-blown new town that, if it keeps spawning cranes at the current rate, will give birth to a town on a par with Farnham. Yes, we’re talking about the birth of Cranleigh New Town!

Waverley Web has received correspondence of an altogether different but equally alarming and deadly devious nature!

Apparently, a Newsletter has been distributed to homes in Cranleigh’s burgeoning New Town, advising the townsfolk that a  new village hospital is no longer going to fulfil the promise that Cranleigh Village Hospital Trust intended.   CVHT, is a charity set up almost twenty years  ago to  provide a replacement  hospital – for ‘local’ people.

It’s complicated story stretches back over two decades – so bear with us – but our researchers have established that back in the days when Cranleigh was, what it said on the tin,  -‘ a village ‘- CVHT was established to  replace an  old cottage hospital, which was under threat of closure, and which was subsequently closed down by the NHS.

Villagers – a very civic-minded lot back then, so we’re  told, –   pulled together, dug deep (no, silly, not in their gardens! In their pockets! It’s only developers who go digging around in gardens and fields where they’re not wanted!) They  held thousands of fund-raising events to raise the millions of pounds needed to build a modern, replacement hospital on land, formerly a playing field,  and donated by the Parish Council in return for  land across the  busy Knowle Lane,  to replace the playing fields. 

So far so good. But now we learn from a  Newsletter, sent to us at contact@waverleyweb.org that there’s a fly in the ointment – no pun intended! Well, maybe just a little one, cos, if we didn’t laugh we’d cry!

Apparently, Cranleigh New Town is NOT  now to get  the spanking new Cottage Hospital it was promised, and which the locals raised funds for. Instead, it is getting  a PRIVATE, PROFIT MAKING NEW NURSING HOME with 80 beds, to be built on land donated by the Parish Council, on behalf of its residents to whom it belongs, and with money raised by said residents!

You couldn’t make it up, really you couldn’t! 

The scheme now includes  26 residential flats alongside the PRIVATE NURSING HOME and which the Trust claims will support the 20 community beds!

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So what the very, VERY, VERY Cross of Cranleigh and we at Waverley Web want to know  on their behalf… is?

Q: Did Cranleigh Parish Council, when swapping a very valuable piece of parish owned land, for a HOSPITAL, realise, all those years ago, that it could become a private venture by a developer and which would serve the entire population of the Guildford and Waverley Area?

Q: And did they understand that a former parish playing field would be used to build 26 residential flats, to service said privately owned for profit nursing home?

Whatever the answer to those very pertinent questions, as Very, VERY, VERY Cross of Cranleigh told us: … It’s beginning to sound a lot like Christmas for the owners of the new, privately owned, for profit nursing home!!!

Meanwhile,

Q: What of the village dubbed by Waverley  Councillors as, ‘poor old Cranleigh!’?

A: More, much, much, much more traffic, in an already congested area (Knowle Lane – a narrow road with no pavements and with  a business (Kerbside) which sees cars parked on double yellow lines every day of the week, narrowing the road  to a single lane. Not to mention the Berkeley Homes’ development of 50 high-end executive homes, about to access onto it, and into the high street!)

Q: Where are the hospital services that were promised to Cranleigh residents as part of the new village hospital?

A: Back where it all started: in the old community hospital which was extended – again with money villagers raised – parts of which are now to be demolished, re-built and modernised … again … and again … and again!

Q: And who is the other winner here?

A: Certainly not the good people of Cranleigh and the surrounding villages. Some of whom left their homes to the Trust.  Oh no! It’s good old Surrey County Council! The same County Council that has closed down an old people’s home in the village – called Long Field – and will, no doubt, trouser the money from selling off the site in order to try to plug the gap in its Gold Plated Pension Fund! The same County Council that will have “priority access” at the private nursing home, being built on publically owned land, with  public’s money, for its clients!

PS. Oh, and just for good measure, WW has heard from very, VERY, VERY CROSS OF CRANLEIGH that a ‘local benefactor’ – AKA the Lettuce King – is about to trouser millions of pounds after obtaining planning permission for 265 homes in Cranleigh, whilst at the same time being behind The provision of said  new PRIVATE NURSING HOME.  Apparently, that’s the going rate for conducting a wrecking mission in a once peaceful rural area and turning it from a village into a NEW TOWN!

Ah well – that will teach people to support local fund-raising initiatives – and as for the parish council – maybe in future it will hang onto its valuable village assets?

Note: The Newsletter mentions WHEN planning permission is granted – NOT IF! Seems  it is all  in the bag! Another secret meeting with ‘Your Waverley’ perhaps?

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