The Cranleigh Village Nursing Home Trust – previously known as the Cranleigh Village Hospital Trust – has been told by health officials it can no longer refer to its £38m development, with a private provider, as A ‘HOSPITAL’.
Poised to submit plans to build a 60-bed private nursing home for HC-ONE on land in Knowle Lane – which was once owned by the people of Cranleigh and for which it paid, £1! Yes, you did read that right, they paid the princely sum of ONE POUND for land that was valued by the District Valuer at £175,000!!!
Anger is now mounting amongst local residents who raised funds for a project that has strayed so far from its original dream, it has become something of a local nightmare! Not only for CVNT but for Cranleigh Parish Council, Cranleigh residents and now possibly, even Waverley Borough Council?
A: Because Waverley Planners could be faced with determining a planning application for a scheme that was originally intended as a replacement for Cranleigh Village Hospital but which has now morphed into:
• A Private nursing home – with beds priced at the market rate!
• 10 social care beds for Surrey County Council, which allows The County Council to flog off the Longfield Nursing Home site and trouser the cash! Longfield was a council run home once housing over 50 elderly residents and a specialist Dementia unit.
• 10 community NHS beds – but those beds won’t be for the exclusive use of Cranleigh residents. Oh no! They will be available to anyone within the Guildford & Waverley CCG Area’s 37 GP practices!
And, which could now affect its aim to build a new – much bigger Leisure Centre.
• Over £1m raised for a replacement Village Hospital came from men, women, children, clubs, and local businesses in Cranleigh and the surrounding villages; it was never intended for the use of patients of 37 practices which make up the entire G & W CCG!
• In addition, the CVNT, intend to build a block of 26 apartments, adjacent to the three-storey building behind Wiskar Drive and M&S Foods – also on land once owned by the parish and designated by Waverley as an area of Strategic Visual Importance. This now includes an access over the Snoxhall Playing Fields directly onto the already beleaguered Knowle Lane – for which it paid the Parish Council – yes, you guessed it: Zilch!! Allegedly these apartments are ear-marked for “key workers”. But whose key workers? The WW hears, if that isn’t enough, CVNT wants an access over the Downslink – the very same route which Waverley intends to keep sacrosanct should the railway return to Cranleigh.All aboard the Cranleigh express?
Now here’s the rub.
Knowle Lane has a narrow access onto Cranleigh High Street. Traffic backs up there constantly because Kerbside Garage, living up to its name, has a consistent flow of customers who all park on the kerbside, thus reducing the narrow two-lane road to an even narrower one-lane!
Incredibly, juggernauts delivering to both M&S and Sainsbury’s go in either side of the lane, creating yet more, chaos. Oh, and and the icing on the cake is the lane regularly floods! You couldn’t make it up, really you couldn’t!
Almost directly opposite the proposed access to the new nursing home is the recently created entrance into the new Berkeley Homes housing estate – 450 homes consented, 55 of which are accessed off Knowle Lane, almost directly opposite the entrance to M&S’s carpark, Wiskar Drive, Lynn Murray & Associates solicitors and several High Street shops rear entrances.
According to our followers over there in the East, Cranleigh’s old Village Hospital has been smartened up by the League of Friends for ambulatory patients – many thousands of them in the future accessing the services of X-Ray, consultant-led clinics and a proposed MRI scanner. Will these patients come from the CCG area?
And now, the cherry on the cake, Waverley BC has pledged to spend £12m on a new leisure centre to serve Cranleigh New Town! And all of this is the same, small congested area between Village Way and the lane between Bet Fred and Boots!
And, just to add a little spice to the mix, the Devious Dutch Developer behind The Knowle Park Initiative, Nicholas Vrijjland – formerly known as the Lettuce King – wants to build a car park in Knowle Lane adjacent to the Bruce McKenzie field, which he swapped with the parish but which he has nicely wrapped up and tied with a bow, into a Ransome strip!
In addition to clogging up Cranleigh High Street the Devious Dutch Developer is currently clogging up Alfold Road in Elmbridge, where he’s flogged off his former lettuce nursery to A1Dominion – a director of which just happens to be – yes, you guessed it – a director of CVNT, one Andy Leafy. Leafy who is preparing to build 265 homes on the old lettuce nursery, and 26 on the nursing home site, which he and the Devious Dutch Developer claim is all about improving the lives of Cranleigh folk! We think they mean improving the lives of themselves whilst lining their pockets at the expense of Cranleigh folk!
Now the locals are screaming – ‘Anyone want to buy my home in the village that Waverley Planners dubbed “Poor Old Cranleigh?’
Is this Charity fulfilling the expectations of the people of Cranleigh and the surrounding villages? Is it fulfilling its charitable objects? And, has Cranleigh Parish Council achieved Best Value for its residents? Has it acted responsibly?
There are many unanswered questions? Perhaps these will be answered over the coming weeks as the Charity lodges its planning application and holds a public consultation exercise?
If not – why not?