Be warned, errant councillors. Today​ Hadleigh tomorrow Waverley?

Oops! We almost forgot…

It’s already happened here in Waverley!

One member of ‘Your Waverley’ had his collar felt a while back before being elected to serve the people of Farnham.  Council Leader ‘Bobby’ Knowles’ friends in the force sought an ‘interview’ to put the frighteners on. So a knock on the door from the boys in blue is nothing new!

So watch out Councillor Paul Follows, Godalming’s new Lib Dem  – just read the article below! Just in case you start making a nuisance of yourself! Oops – you already have!Screen Shot 2018-02-06 at 17.02.08.png

Of course, it helps if you are in the Police Federation, like ‘Your Waverley’s’ former leader Robert Knowless.  According to some of our friendly Waverley plods it’s easier to pull in the odd favour when you are one of THEM!  So the present Leader Julia Potts may not be quite so lucky?

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Oh dear! Did Surrey County Council Highways take us too literally?

There we were doing our public-spirited bit to save Godawfulming’s poor unsuspecting souls from falling down pavement potholes!

Then along comes a highway wally to fill in the offending potholes and then makes his way to Cranleigh to fill in its potholed streets – along with the roadside drains! 

However, we are aware that when God was handing out BRAINS some of those a little hard of hearing stood in the line that said –  DRAINS!

Here’s our earlier post.

Come to Surrey and visit the UK’s capital of potholes – on and off-road!

 

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Cranleigh electrician Ron Jimmison, who along with many others, have been complaining about the new town’s potholed streets, spotted this drain covered in tarmac after the highway wallys had made a visit! 

 

A Touch of Frost nips the ankles of Godalming’s new boy!

A little outburst about the adoption of ‘Your Waverley’s Local Plan by Councillor Paul Follows brought a moment of theatre to The Towers when a council veteran waded in to rebuke the new boy on the block after he received a round of applause!

 

Never one to be outdone – The Frosty one, poked Councillor Paul in the eyes, with her increasingly blunt stick – in the hope that the voting fodder would actually believe that the past Local Plan failures, were of course, not the fault of Tory Tossers, but the Liberal Democrats!

touchoffrostIs that chattering the sound of icicles forming on the Frosty one’s lips that we hear? Is she fearful of losing yet another of her Farnham seats? Pat Frost lost her county council seat to her Farnham Residents rival, Councillor Andy McLeod last year.

We say bring those 2019 elections on!

 

OH! WHAT A NIGHT.​

As we all here at the Waverley Web watched the webcast last night there was a certain MADNESS in the air followed up by a Press Release from POW – the Protect Dunsfold Aerodrome group – purporting to be standing up for the whole borough! Hence the reason why we all – burst into song!

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What a night? What a week!

Protect our Waverley – rather like Donald Trump – seems to be in a tail-spin at the moment. Across the pond, The Donald is proposing to arm teachers and here in good old Waverley Bob Lees and his cronies – all 35 of them according to our headcount in the Public Gallery! – are accusing Waverley’s Executive and Full Council of acting unlawfully

‘with a gun against its head’!

Protect our little corner had the bare-faced cheek to accuse the Leader – Oh-not-so-Potty-One now – of taking their comments ‘very seriously’.  Seriously? They flatter themselves! No one takes that bunch of nincompoops seriously, least of all La Potts who, like Joan of Arc, has swept all before her and led her Council from abject and repeated failure (under her predecessors Robert Knowless and Richard Shut-the-Gates ) to triumph. It has taken La Potts less than two years to knock the Council into shape and deliver the much needed Local Plan which her predecessors had failed to deliver in over 10 years! Just goes to show what happens when you put a woman in charge – you get results and in double quick time! You go, girl!

Their brush strokes getting ever broader, ‘Protect our little corner of the Borough’ accused the Council of an ‘attitude of bravado’ and spoke of the ‘surreal experience’ of Councillors expressing serious concerns about the new Local Plan, yet then voting in favour of it’! Seriously? We all know that the Councillors – with one or two notable exceptions – all speak with forked tongues. They twitter on about the lack of merit in this planning application and that planning application and then, like the good little Tory sheep they are, they all fall into line and do as they’re told when it comes to entering the voting lobby.

‘Turkeys voting for Christmas’ according to Protect our Little Corner … Maybe that explains the poultry crisis, with no fowl to be had since KFC’s decision to switch delivery companies from Bidvest Logistics to DHL. Now we know it’s nothing to do with DHL, all the turkeys buggered off to vote at the Burys!

Here at the Waverley Web, we don’t often give advice! But on this occasion, our advice to PoW is: Give it a rest for all our sakes.’

Instead, why not start taking the anti-depressants – apparently they work – and Oxford University (not Trinity College Cambridge, owners of Dunsfold Park, we hasten to add) is recommending they be prescribed to up to a million more people. And, in the meantime, keep drinking the Red – because it fends off irritation (OK, maybe they are talking about teeth and gums but, who knows, it might just help the very sore losers get over their bitter disappointment!

Now, everyone! Down to Bet Fred, who will be laying odds on whether POW has gone really, really, mad, and having passed around the begging bowl…again…decide to issue a legal challenge – so that even more green fields across the borough can be developed!

The PoW Press release is a bit mad too- you can read it here:
http://powcampaign.org/press-release-waverley-adopts-plan-potentially-unlawful-meetings-gun-head

 

Is the Cranleigh Society shutting the stable door after the horse has bolted?

Here’s the latest message from Cranleigh’s ‘former rather weary watchdog’ that suddenly appears to have a new lease of life. But, as Cranleigh sits on the cusp of becoming Waverley’s fourth town, is it now too late to save its rural character?

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The Committee of Cranleigh Civic Society announced this week that it has been strengthened and energised to fight the growing avalanche of proposed housing.

In the wake of the adoption of ‘Your Waverley’s’ Local Plan, far be it for us at the Waverley Web to want to pee on anyone’s fireworks, but isn’t it all over bar a lot of shouting? 41 councillors voted for – one was against – and three councillors abstained! All Cranleigh members voted for the plan, which will undoubtedly lead to yet more housing in Cranleigh. But then, why wouldn’t they?

Most of them were taking part in secret meetings with developers and planning officers long before the ink was even dry on the Daft Local Plan to determine just where thousands of new homes on the countryside would go!  And, as one Cranleigh councillor, the late Brian Ellis, stated at the time – Cranleigh shops need more footfall!’  Now those same councillors actually believe an adopted local plan will minimise the harm! Do they? Do they really? Whilst most of them were busy opposing development at Dunsfold Aerodrome, believing Cranleigh should become a New Town, they were also busy meeting with developers, even in their own homes, planning Cranleigh’s demise. They should be careful what they wish for – soon they may get the worst of both worlds! 

The new man heading the CCS, Terry Stewart, was Chair, then President, of Dorset CPRE (Campaign to Protect Rural England) for eight years. Whilst there he was faced with the threat of housing developments throughout the Poole and Bournemouth Green Belt so lead a team of six villages and communities to defeat the proposals. This included MPs speaking to a demonstration outside Parliament and a procession to Downing Street to present a petition to the Prime Minister (see photo). The proposals were defeated – as were plans for a new village at Lytchett Minster. (See photos below).

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It says experience shows that attacks on the Green Belt and unprotected beautiful countryside can only be defeated if there is a strong, professional team leading an active, widespread community with clear objectives. So the new Civic Society Team includes a retired Solicitor, two experts on building and infrastructure, an insurance expert and environmental and wildlife specialists – meeting on a fortnightly basis or more often if needed.

The society understand that villagers may believe that, whatever they feel, the Council and Government will do whatever they want to do, but the successes referred to above demonstrate that these battles CAN be won! Apathy only plays into their hands – do you really want this to happen?

It claims, ‘CRANLEIGH IS UNDER AN INCREASING THREAT FROM DEVELOPERS – changing your quality of life and the Cranleigh we know and love.’ Since 2014, Waverley Borough Council has approved the building of over 1,300 houses in Cranleigh. Think for a moment the huge impact this will have on the A281, our B-roads and country lanes, our already overloaded and inadequate sewage treatment works and the crumbling infrastructure – and the increased flooding risk. Also, please remember that we are the only main settlement in Waverley without a railway station.

Despite all this, more and more new planning applications are regularly being received.

Just a few days ago we heard that Dunsfold Park is virtually assured of being given approval for 2,600 new houses – and that is just the beginning! Just think of all those extra cars entering and using the A281.

We have heard credible accounts of a developer acquiring “options to buy” large tracts of land down Knowle Lane – is the idea for Cranleigh and Dunsfold to merge? Are we to become another Crawley?

Or does the Waverley Web dare to suggest … Crandun-for!

Cranleigh Civic Society needs YOUR support so please visit our website – www.cranleighsociety.orgFacebook and Twitter links and join our membership. We are working hard on YOUR behalf to protect our very special village, its environment, and wildlife.

The Waverley Web puts up the WANTED sign and guess what? Up pops a Povey on the BBC!

There we were thinking that  Cranleigh & Ewhurst’s Surrey County Councillor Andrew Povey had gone missing so we put out the WANTED poster on the link below.

Have you seen this man?

No sooner said than done. What do they say about … hell having no fury like a BLOKE… scorned! 

Now, with his feet now firmly gazunder County Hall’s tables, than..Screen Shot 2018-02-19 at 22.15.42.png !

as Councillor Andrew Povey – attempts to scratch the eyeballs out of the bloke who snatched the Leader’s mantle from him after the 2011 coup when the Deputy Dog. Bodge and his fellow Tory Tossers took a Vote of No Confidence in him and forced him to resign!

Following his resignation, his immortal words still ring in our ears! He said:

“I came to a crossroads in my life.”

It wasn’t a crossroads you arrived at Councillor ~Povey – it was the end of the road, for one of the most ambitious, unscrupulous, double-dealing, opportunist politicians, it has been our misfortune to come across! And, because Guildford Conservative Association scraped the bottom of the barrel and persuaded the voting fodder of Cranleigh & Ewhurst to put you right back where they believed you belonged, claiming  you were a better bet than your running mate Alan Young, you can now continue your long-held ambition to…

bbc-surrey-logoDislodge the Bodge!

Watch out Hodge there’s a Weasel breathing down your neck aiming to dislodge you!  Povey has been biding his time for almost 10 years to poke you one in the eye for booting him out of his hot seat.

Who says .. what goes around…! Who needs an opposition when you have a Povey in your midst?
Listen to the interview here – starting 2hours 7 mins in.

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Councillor Andrew Povey:

The former leader of Surrey County Council (SCC) criticised the current leader David Hodge, over financial difficulties SCC now face as a result of a  £100 million funding crisis, council tax set to increase by 6%, cuts of £66 million and the council forced to dip into its reserves. Dr  Povey, who led SCC until 2011 said: “They [SCC] had a report from CIPFA, a professional institute for accountants, … in September 2016, and at that time the leader was very much pushing the idea of a 15% [council tax rise] referendum in Surrey, which was really a complete non-starter and this report told him that in history no one has ever won a referendum like this… and that there was an absence of any credible cost reduction plan.
“So in September 2016 that’s when he [Hodge] should have started to make savings because those savings would then have been made in 2016, they would have continued through into ’17 and ’18 so we would now be in a much better position than we are…”

Cllr David Hodge – v- Povey.
Povey and Hodge fell out in 2011. Povey resigned following the resignation of Hodge, his deputy at the time, and Hodge took over as the leader.
At the time Povey said: “It is my intention to stand down as leader of Surrey County Council… so I can develop my business interests.” He also said “It got to the point where we were seeing things differently… we have a different style, are very different people – that can be a strength, but I think it got to the point where it was going the other way.”
Andrew Povey also stood down as a councillor but, after a four-year break, made a surprising comeback in last year’s county council election when, with the approval of Anne Milton MP, he stood as the Conservative candidate for the Cranleigh & Ewhurst division, following the controversial deselection of the incumbent, Alan Young. Since then the local Cranleigh/Ewhurst branch has been in complete disarray with Anne Milton’s new lady-in-waiting Screen Shot 2018-02-21 at 14.54.10.pngalso working tirelessly behind the scenes to unseat the present Chairman of  Cranleigh Parish Council – Mary Foryszewski, and to take her seat at Waverley in 2019!
Now, some observers are questioning whether Povey’s public criticism of his leader too, is the first sign of a new leadership bid.

What do they say about – “rats altogether in a sack.”

Cllr Hazel Watson
Cllr Hazel Watson, the leader of the Liberal Democrats, said yesterday: “I am pleased that Cllr Povey agrees with what the Liberal Democrats and I have been saying about Surrey County Council’s finances over the last 18 months.
“He is right to draw attention to the criticisms of the county council contained within CIPFA’s report Financial Resilience Review – Surrey County Council. This report was commissioned by the current leader of the council and was kept hidden from county councillors for months.
“He is correct in his judgment of the folly of the leader in pursuing a doomed policy of a 15% council tax rise which was subsequently abandoned. The CIPFA report clearly stated that such a referendum was unwinnable but the leader of the council refused to act on their advice.
“Instead of blaming the government for lack of funding and backing an unwinnable referendum, the Conservative administration should have been working on identifying sensible efficiencies and a realistic level of deliverable savings without cutting services. It should also have acted much earlier on the many empty buildings it owns across the county, which have cost the taxpayer hundreds of thousands of pounds each year to maintain.
“Surrey County Council is in a poor financial position with no clear plan to improve the situation. Unless a solution is found, then we only have to look to Northamptonshire County Council to see the consequences of when the money eventually runs out.”

THE PLOT THICKENS…!

WAVERLEY BOROUGH COUNCIL INVESTIGATED BY POLICE!

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After ranting on for years about Farnham’s Air Quality issues has someone, somewhere, finally listened to Jerry Hyman? 

After following the powerful Environment Overview & Scrutiny Committee chaired by Farnham Resident councillor Jerry Hyman for some time it was only a question of time before he would force his, and the serious concerns of many others, including the Farnham Society, to be heard. 

AND… NOW THEY HAVE!

Funny really when the webcasts of his meetings are either – not webcast at all  – or they don’t seem to work most/all/some of the time!!

Cover up or what…?  Accountability –  what accountability?

• Air Quality Officer Ann Marie Wade – GONE!
• Executive Director Paul – Wen-am-I-leaving – GONE!
• Deputy Director – Damien, The Omen,  Roberts – GONE!
• Council Leader during most of the period in question Robert Knowless … Has he gone… or is he just missing, most of the time?
• As for Julia – has she just put on her mask and gone to Potts?

WHO PAYS? We Do!

Roger Steel, a former borough councillor and member of Waverley’s executive, has criticised Waverley’s handling of Farnham’s air quality problem on behalf of the town planning watchdog the Farnham Society.

He told the Farnham Herald: “At the moment, Waverley judges that NO2 levels contravene safe limits set by European Union Regulations at three places in Farnham – two in The Borough and one in Wrecclesham Road. But with the correction of the local bias factor, I fully expect at least six to seven places to be exceeding that limit.

“We are concerned that there may now be further delay in the issuing of the 2016 Air Quality Report and subsequent air quality data which is needed so that appropriate measures can be taken to reduce the health risks to residents and retailers, and also so that well-informed planning decisions can be taken.

“Large developments such as East Street – which will increase traffic in the town centre by around 15 percent – should be well and truly put on the back burner until we know the full extent of the problem.”

Mr Steel added, although the content of the audit report and scope of the police investigation is unknown, he believes Waverley faces a substantial “six-figure” fine should it be found guilty of any wrong-doing, adding “if it is the case that Waverley knew its figures were wrong when submitting them to Defra, it could be very, very serious indeed”.

He continued: “The Environment Act 1995 makes clear that local authorities are obliged to monitor local air quality and submit their findings to Defra – and can be penalised if they break this law.

I’ve been writing to Waverley for years saying they are breaking this law, and the council’s leadership has got to take overall responsibility.”

WILL THEY WON’T THEY… NO! Because there is no accountability at Waverley Borough Council.

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But the council is yet to release the audit report in the public domain or reissue its withdrawn 2016 air quality report – leaving a huge question mark as to whether Farnham has a pollution problem or not, at a time when planning appeals for more than 500 homes in the town area are to be determined in coming weeks.

Confirming the news, a police spokesman said: “Surrey Police is investigating following concerns reported to police over an official council environmental report. No arrests have been made and an investigation is ongoing to establish whether any criminal offences have taken place.”

A Waverley spokesman added: “The final version of the audit report has been received. The report has been passed onto the police, who are now investigating. We can’t say anymore until their investigation is completed.”

It comes after Waverley commissioned an independent review of its 2016 Air Quality Annual Status Report last August following complaints by the Farnham Society and Farnham-based air quality expert David Harvey that council officers had got their figures wrong.

This error was confirmed by red-faced council chiefs a month later – calling into question the validity of previous annual air quality reports that have used the same basis of calculation, and prompting a comprehensive audit of Waverley’s air quality monitoring and reporting arrangements.

Waverley is duty-bound to submit an annual air quality status report to DEFRA after an Air Quality Management Area was declared in Farnham in 2004, following the discovery of excessive levels of nitrogen dioxide (NO2) which has been linked to as many as 40,000 premature deaths every year in the UK.

The council’s latest Air Quality Annual Status Report, published last May, claimed air pollution – and specifically levels of NO2 only “slightly exceeds” the national objective at three monitoring stations in Farnham; two in The Borough and one in Wrecclesham Road.

However, this was challenged by Mr Harvey, the director of West Street firm ADM Ltd, who believes Waverley has dramatically under-estimated the problem after miscalculating two ‘bias adjustment factors’ used to counter discrepancies between the council’s monitoring equipment.

Waverley’s situation bears painful similarities with that faced by another unitary authority, Cheshire East Council, which admitted ‘falsifying’ its own air quality figures last year, requiring hundreds of planning applications to be reviewed and prompting an ongoing police investigation.

Responding to the criminal investigation into Waverley’s own botched report this week, Mr Harvey told the Herald: “I am baffled as to why what seemed to be a case of discourteous incompetence has been referred to the police to investigate.

“There does seem to be similarities with the between what is going on at Waverley and East Cheshire where the police were called in to investigate what appears to have been ‘deliberate and systematic manipulation of data’ and perhaps is pointing to a wider problem with how local authorities are undertaking their statutory duties to review and assess air quality.

“I have no idea what the police have actually been asked to investigate and cannot understand how it could have come to this.

“I have been in contact with Waverley since first drawing attention to the problem in May last year and have been impressed by how pro-active they have been since understanding that there was a problem with the data.

“I hope that they will now release the corrected and update 2016 monitoring report so that we can understand whether this is actually an air quality problem in Farnham.”

Tell us what you want, what you really really want Cranleigh?

Frank talking on behalf of the people of Cranleigh as more bulldozers head towards Waverley’s NEW TOWN.

As if these developers give a tuppeny duck what the residents of Cranleigh want –  what they really, really want!

Because from what we hear over here in Farnham, Cranleigh people really, want is some peace and respite from HGV’s thundering through their once peaceful village, and the unrelenting onward march of developers through their streets. Who are they providing homes for? The locals? No homes to satisfy the housing needs of the Woking Wimbledon and Wandsworth Wanderers!

As for the low-cost homes, for village people?

We here at the WW are totally discombobulated!

Low cost for whom exactly? No doubt the very same Cranleigh people that moved into Sirus Place in Parsonage Road, most of whom are from outside the new town! Pull the other one – it’s got cement on it! Three four and five-bed low-cost homes!

And… where did the village benefactor Lettuce and his friend Leafy (aka Vrijland and Leahy) Go? Well you know where don’t you Cranleigh residents? Laughing all the way to the nearest bank! Well, that is if there’s one open?

We notice that now the West Cranleigh Nurseries 265-home development in Elmbridge/Alfold Road has been re-named – Knowle Park. No doubt that sounds slightly more grand than mentioning that it is adjacent to a Poo Factory and to floodplains? No doubt those flooded plains will be a little further away now Lettuce and Leafy have illegally dredged the Cranleigh Waters, affected flooding further downstream, and got clean away with it?

No surprise there then for the Tory Party donors!

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Sorry, Ms. Faithfull. The days you and Mr. Swinnerton cherished have long gone.

 

Farnham’s not a pretty sight these days!​

Here are just a few of the fifteen, and counting,  empty or closing, retail outlets in Farnham.

But worry not!- Soon there will be lots of new ones to take their place and all funded by the county and borough councils. Happy days! Because quite soon we will ALL be paying more council tax! And, there are suggestions that Waverley’s ‘high worth individuals could pay even more.’

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