Changing the name – so what’s the game?

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Dinah Washington’s What a difference a day makes:

What a difference a change could make
Just five little letters
It might bring back the sun and the favour
Where there used to be rain
Our yesterday was blue, dear villagers, without you
Today we’re a part of you,
Our lonely days are through, dear villagers
Soon you might just be ours
Lord, what a difference a name makes
There’s now a rainbow before us
Skies above can’t be stormy
Since that moment of bliss
That thrilling idea
It’s heaven when you
Find a trick up your sleeve
What a difference a name change might make
All the difference to us!

Changing the name – so what’s the game?

As they say in a marriage – ‘Change the name but not the letters – you change for worse and not for better.”

After 20 years has the Cranleigh Charity, Cranleigh Village Hospital Trust (CVHT), given up or is it proposing to battle on regardless of public opinion? The residents, including many donors, have written to the Waverley Web saying they are completely baffled.

They are asking:

WHY has CVHT announced – just days after its planning application for a Care Home + community beds was refused – a name change?  Do they seriously think it’s going to be a game-changer?  If so, they’re doomed to disappointment!

CVHT – CRANLEIGH VILLAGE HOSPITAL TRUST
HAS NOW BECOME
CVHT – CRANLEIGH VILLAGE HEALTH TRUST

Do the Trustees – like Jeremy Corbyn & John McDonnell – think that local residents are daft?  Do they really think they can continue to bamboozle them?  If so they are living in a bubble bigger than the Westminster bubble that failed to predict the recent political earthquake!

 Apparently, the Trustees have also changed their charitable objectives, according to the Charities’ Commission website:

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We very much doubt the people of Cranleigh and the Eastern Villages care about the so-called charity’s objectives any longer simply because they know it’s no longer a charity but a private enterprise.  

What they do care about is the fact that they’ve been robbed!  And in broad daylight!  
Until the Trustees of CVHT fess-up, admit to their chicanery and offer to reimburse those who supported their original objective – a NEW COTTAGE HOSPITAL – not a PRIVATELY OWNED NURSING HOME the Villagers – v – Trustees divide will continue.  
Rather like Momentum, the Trustees have built themselves an echo chamber and moved into it.  But what they need to remember is that there are more villagers than them and that doesn’t bode well for their welcome should they ever succeed in getting their miserable, tainted project off the ground.  Do the residents of Cranleigh and the Eastern Villages want this self-serving project to succeed in the teeth of local opposition?  The answer is short and to the point: NO!  Perhaps there should be a vote on it … just saying

 

Here are the original Objects…

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Here are the new Objects, if you can Adam and Eve it, published on the Charity’s website. Note: In the area of the Primary Care Group.  A group soon to become Surrey Heartlands Trust. Also note the new Charitable Objects cater for anyone and everyone, for anything and everything,  – just so long as it can hang onto the land and the public’s money?

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No wonder Cranleigh Parish Council, which handed over the proposed site in a land-swap, has set aside £3,000 of its limited funds to seek legal advice?

Power to the people of the eastern villages as they joined Waverley Planners to give a controversial Care Home development the order of the boot.

Jeremy thanks his electors..and the gloves are off!

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WHAT DO WE WANT? RESULTS MR HUNT NOT RHETORIC.

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Perhaps now – the SW Surrey MP will meet with the new leaders of Waverley Borough Council in a spirit of co-operation. Because you know what Mr Hunt, the people of this country, and this borough are heartily sick of politicians playing their own silly games. Show us what you are made of now you have the power you crave and make a difference to the lives of YOUR residents.  Help our children walk to school without choking on exhaust fumes. Because after 15 years as our MP, we now demand RESULTS, not RHETORIC!

Was this woman a scapegoat for the failure of others at ‘Your Waverley?’

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A former Waverley council officer has been convicted of air quality fraud.

However, there is no mention of the fact that the offence was reported to the council by a member of the public, and had not been spotted internally.

A report in the Farnham Herald led Farnham-based air quality expert David Harvey to question the council’s data – while The Farnham Society also raised concerns that Waverley was dramatically underestimating the town’s pollution problem.

Well done David Harvy = and well done to the Farnham Herald.

The errors were confirmed by council chiefs just a month after the report was published, in June 2017, prompting an independent audit of the borough’s air quality monitoring and reporting arrangements.

The WW wonders why the offence continued for so long without being spotted by more senior officers? And, who was her line-manager?

The results of this audit were then referred to Surrey Police in February 2018, with a court date and location for Ms Wade to answer the ensuing charges to be arranged in “due course.”

Now the former air quality officer has been handed a suspended prison sentence and ordered to complete 150 hours of unpaid work after admitting she fudged pollution data.

Ann-Marie Wade, 44, of Durrington, Wiltshire, was sentenced at Guildford Crown Court last Thursday,  after pleading guilty to deliberately submitting false air quality figures to Waverley Borough Council between March and December 2015, and a separate charge for the same offence for all of 2016.

She was handed a 12-month prison term, suspended for 12 months, and also told to pay costs of £1,500.

A third fraud charge relating to alleged fraudulently-claimed expenses during Wade’s time at the council, which she denied, will lie on her file after the Crown Prosecution Service opted not to pursue a conviction.

Waverley Borough Council said in a statement released after Wade’s sentencing: “The council takes the issue of air quality extremely seriously and recognises that it is an important issue for our residents.

“That is why we acted promptly by commissioning an independent audit investigation after discovering issues with the reporting and monitoring of the council’s air quality data and subsequently asking the police to investigate.

“We are pleased with the outcome of this case and would like to thank Surrey Police for their hard work on this investigation, and the CPS for ensuring that justice prevailed.

“We will now focus on continuing to guarantee that our routine monitoring of air quality is carried out to the highest standards.

“Following our independent audit investigation, we reviewed our procedures and appointed independent contractors to carry out all of our monitoring.

“Our diffusion tube data is published online monthly and our analyser data is also published online in near real-time.”

Residents in other parts of the borough are also calling for diffusion tubes. The residents of Bramley are becoming increasingly concerned about the fumes filtering through the narrow village street an into shops and businesses. Also at the Crossways Junction in Alfold. Will the borough council be rolling out its air quality programme soon?

Rome wasn’t built in a day – and it will take time to change years of Tory-controlled Waverley.

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Cllr Paul Follows even found time during the last knockings of the election campaign to take a picture and stop to appreciate this beautiful site in his home ward of Godalming. 

Now that the dust has settled – and Jeremy Hunt is firmly ensconced back into his ‘entrepreneurial’ MP role at Westminster, let us reflect for a moment on the amount of criticism heaped upon the new coalition administration of ‘Your Waverley,’ that is beginning to feel more like “Our Waverley.’

 

Every new administration – regardless of its political allegiance – needs time to settle in. When that new administration is comprised of Labour; Liberal Democrat; Farnham Residents’ and an Independent – it could take a little longer. Let us be patient?

However, the borough’s residents are already beginning to feel the wind of change and each day that goes by, are beginning to feel considered, and more involved. Watching the webcast run properly, the ability for residents to ask questions – and more important, getting answers.

Fairer hearings for the public at planning meetings, and a Mayor who has asked members not to stand, as is customary, to speak during Full Council meetings. If they do, their heads are chopped off. Saying she will only vote on items where there is a tied vote, and generally assists in lightening the mood.

It is refreshing to see the new portfolio holders getting to grips with their briefs without point-scoring and continuously thanking officers for reports. That’s an officer’s job, that is what officers are paid for.

It is great to get regular up-dates on social media about the issues of the day – and the public welcomed The Listening Panel on oil and gas exploration which was presented by the portfolio holder with the experience of one who had been in the job for years. Steve Williams did what it said on the tin – he listened. Likewise with the Climate Emergency declaration – which everyone recognises will take time to bed in. and requires commitment from the council, developers and residents’ alike. The Green Party is a welcome addition to Waverley.

The public like the fact that the new guys and gals are questioning how and where Waverley spends its finite resources. Resources which diminish by the day due to Government cuts.

The Waverley Web joins others in being particularly impressed that the new administration wants funds distributed more equally between the major settlements in the borough. Over here in Farnham, we have received more than our fair share of Waverley handouts over the years. So too, the decision to meet with the residents of the small rural villages, often forgotten in the past.

WW remembers only too well the commitment made by the Tories to commit £12m to a new leisure entre for the benefit of the eastern villages, just a month before the May election. Did it have the money to make such a pledge? Will Cranleigh see that new Leisure Centre soon, or did the Tories commit a new council to a pledge it could not afford to keep?

As for Brightwells – the fact that New Waverley intends to look at the scheme with different eyes is welcomed by most here in Farnham. But is it too late?

 

Even if nobody else does. The Waverley Web fully appreciates the transparency of John Ward, Paul Follows and their team. So let’s give them a break and if then, they don’t deliver then we will be among the first to say so.

POSTSCRIPT

 

We are relieved for the residents of the borough that the deputy leader Lib Dem Paul Follows failed to win the SW Surrey seat in the General Election. And join others in congratulating Mr Hunt, and in particular, Cllr Follows a 33-year-old working man, of modest means, who doesn’t drive, and who leads both Godalming Town Council and Waverley Borough Council.

Although he certainly gave Jeremy Hunt a run for his money by polling 23,374 votes against JH’s 32,191. Labour’s Tim Corry 4,775.

Even Mr Hunt admits that it was the toughest campaign he has fought since standing 14 years ago, as the Lib Dems gained 28.9% of the vote share since the previous election.

 

Tis the season to be merry as a bit of a spat takes place at ‘Your Waverley?’

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There we were thinking that the last Full Council meeting before Christmas would be full of bonhomie and Christmas spirit – before everyone slopes off for a Christmas drink in the Mayor’s digs – than wham bang and off go the fireworks!

 

image002-1Cllr Carole Cockburn had obviously been sucking lemons before bowling down the A31 to Waverley Towers. She grabbed the opportunity of commenting on the Council’s new Communications Strategy to settle old scores with two of her colleagues.

No sooner had the new administration presented its new strategy for communicating with councillors and the public, than out came Carole with all guns blazing.

“The irony of this is that Cllr Paul Follows is telling us how to communicate when it was his wild accusations when he first took office that `Local Plan Part 1 would basically be torn up, which almost scuppered the Farnham Neighbourhood Plan (2) before it had a chance….. to …

At which point Cllr Follows interjected – but was stopped in his tracks with… “I am speaking – and I am allowed to speak without interruption.” And she did, by now firing on all four cylinders and with a face resembling a patient after root canal treatment turned on Farnham Residents’ Cllr Jerry Hyman.”

Who she claimed, – “came along to preliminary hearing to communicate directly to a Government inspector – correct me if I am wrong – and repeated what Cllr Follows had said  ‘thankfully’ the Comms Team had issued a press release on the eve of the public examination refuting this.

This was a good example of uncontrolled communications. We need more control of media and communications.

Cranleigh’s Ruth Reed swung in behind to congratulate the Portfolio holder for providing the new strategy and  lightened the mood with something along the lines of “it’s not what we do it’s the way that we do it – it’s not what we say but the way that we say it”

Then upshot Tory Michael Goodridge still smarting from having to earn his council seat at the May polls – full of the same festive goodwill stoked  CC’s flames – in his own pompous inimitable way by saying the new Strategy was “similar to ours.” He argued that communication was a two-way matter and there were 57 members of the council, with whom the new administration should be communicating.

Then used the same document as an excuse to fire another missile into the new Administration for not going out yet to consult on Local Plan Part 2. Which was a bit rich bearing in mind it was the TT’s who postponed it due to the damage it may do them in the May elections? An outrageous use of political advantage to serve political ends. 

Cllr Hyman ended the debate by saying he had had no communication with the Lib Dems – Paul Follows -before the Farnham NP hearing – and he was happy to provide Cllr Cockburn with a full recording of the hearing which would confirm exactly what he did say.

So ended the last council meeting of the year in the true spirit of Christmas. A year during which there was more togetherness in Eastenders than between the Tories and the new Coalition of Greens, Labour, Independent and Farnham Residents.’

 

https://youtu.be/XQw6rfuXeXU

Country Park in Cranleigh given the go-ahead.

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Is it all happening in Knowle park in Cranleigh?

Approval has been given by Waverley’s Joint Planning Committee for a new country park, which includes lakes, adventure play area – and a bridleway, which magically meets up with an emergency access road at the other end of Knowle Park. Quelle surprise!

The need for an emergency access road was questioned by councillors when the Knowle Park Initiative was granted detailed planning permission for 75 homes in Alfold Road, earlier this year. Cllrs Paul Follows and Jerry Hyman wanted to know why an emergency access was required by the developer when none existed for any other developments?

Officers just looked dumb, and said in future before any other such requests were made they would determine why? Just goes to show how easy it is to pull the wool over officers’ eyes at ‘Your Waverley?’

The Park was part of the pay-off for the development in Knowle Park – which has no affordable homes at all, these were removed at the detailed stage  – and another which totals circa 270 at the former West Cranleigh Nurseries site, also in Alfold Road, where the developer must provide affordable homes.  

The deal was – we will hand over a park to a Trust for villagers use, which villagers have been using for decades – and once was the venue for the annual Cranleigh Agricultural Show,  in return for another shedload of housing. Ah well – you get ought for nought as we say in Yorkshire.

So the question is? When will the new bridleway become a new road?

Thankfully, it appears this time planning officers were wide awake and imposed a condition on the use of the “bridleway and footpath 393,” which must be gated and not used for vehicles, without approval.  WW wonders, how long will that continue?   The council has also imposed a shedload of conditions to ensure the wildlife, the Littlemead  Brook, trees and hedgerows are not disturbed or damaged in any way.

The Environment Agency has raised concerns of the detailed design of the proposed lake and wants full details on how it will affect Littlemead Book, which boasts otters, how the lake will be filled and water levels managed?

All roads lead to riches​ , ​don’t they? Especially when they live in Cranleahy.

Will a Folk Concert herald the opening of the new Cranleigh By-Pass?

Another planning application now in the pipeline proposes to build on to the existing Knowle Park Nursing Home, pictured in brown at the bottom of the diagram. The Caring Homes Health Group wants to build 23 additional bedrooms onto the long-established nursing home.

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The WW has been warned by its readers to keep off the B-word and the E-word and concentrate on ‘YW.’

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Never let it be said that the Waverley Web doesn’t listen to its followers – so to-day its back to business the Waverley Way.

Last night’s motion put forward by Farnham Firgrove councillor Jerry Hyman at first appeared to be a potent firework, but when he couldn’t find a seconder to debate the motion – it went off like a damp squib. His comment after the Full Council went completely silent for a few moments? – “How sad.”

Wouldn’t it have been great to see just one of his Farnham Residents colleagues, give the man who founded the group in 2015, a break and support him, so that at least the subject could have been given an airing? Exactly! “How sad.”

Despite his challenge to the Chief Executive to give a straight answer to a straight question, Tom Horwood stayed shtum. But then doesn’t he always? We have hardly heard him say a word since he arrived from the depths of Hampshire. Unless of course, when he wrote to the people of Farnham to tell us all what a wonderful development Blightwells, East Street would be and how Waverley would collect up all the golden eggs from the golden goose, once they were laid. Of course, now his predictions have been laid bare –  he has gone back into silence mode! Will ‘Your Waverley’ be shaken and stirred by the shocking revelations on Blightwells?

So, it was left to Solicitor Daniel Bainbridge, who seemed rather reluctant to even speak on the knotty subject of the  Special Protection Areas surrounding Farnham – and the  “truly appropriate assessment”  that Cllr Hyman was calling for, was it exasperation, or was it hesitation. Suffice to say, Barristers have told them that Waverley is doing everything right and is obeying environmental law. So that’s alright then. Cllr Hyman can put up and shut up? However, We think not.

Suffice to say – nothing changes – everyone sticks their heads back in the sand – and Farnham Park a SANG ( the area of natural greenspace) which is the mitigation that is regularly offered up to offset the harm caused by housing development, loses another deer or two or maybe three… or even more, torn apart by dogs. Try ringing ‘YW’ to report an attack and all you will get is the bums rush because it is only interested in stray dogs!

Anyway – who cares about deer – Mr Nick Macfarlane, the countryside ranger at the medieval deer park says he cares. He says Farnham Park is a nature reserve and wildlife should live “free” from fear and attack. So while shedloads of new homes are built, and occupied by shedloads more families with lorry-loads more dogs, how many deer will exist in Farnham Park in another decade?

 

Are councils taking notice of the new Habitats Directive – everywhere – except ‘Your Waverley?’

Are councils taking notice of the new Habitats Directive – everywhere – except ‘Your Waverley?’

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Despite election fever hitting a crescendo – remember – it is business as usual at ‘Your Waverley.’

Tonight (Tuesday) a Farnham councillor will call on the council to suspend the granting of planning permissions for more housing, in the light of more Government guidance on habitats regulations.

Jerry Hyman the councillor for Firgrove Ward will propose a motion calling for the suspension pending “appropriate assessment” of the heathland surrounding Farnham due to fears the impact new housing is having on wildlife and the environment in its Special Protection Area (SPA.)  This follows action already taken by other councils in the country.

Will the new coalition administration, which declared a climate emergency just weeks ago, back the motion? Or will it stick its head in the sand just like the former Tory administration has for more years than we care to remember?

We vividly remember one Cranleigh Tory councillor suggesting that Farnham’s problems could be sorted by Climate Change.  He predicted the Dartford Warbler, flying to the warmer climes in the North of England enabling more development in Farnham! 

The Cranleigh Warbler…warbling…

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Waverley Cllr  Jerry Hyman has been banging on for years, even ended up before the Standards Board – due to his insistence that the council was continually ignoring the Habitats Directive and forging ahead with development that is having a detrimental effect on Special Protection Areas including those in Farnham.

It has been a year since a European Court of Justice (ECJ) ruling on the environmental impact of nitrates from new developments which threw plans for thousands of homes in England into doubt.

“The effect of [the ruling] is colossal,” says Seán Woodward, leader of Fareham Borough Council and chairman of PUSH (the Partnership for Urban South Hampshire), a group of 11 local authorities that says some of its members cannot grant planning consents for fear of breaching European Union habitats regulations.

“Planning in south Hampshire has ground to a halt.” David Hayward, planning policy team leader at Havant Borough Council, adds: “We deal with habitats laws as par for the course here as we’re in a protected area, but on this issue there was, and still is, no resolution.” Hayward and Tim Pike, Havant’s deputy leader and the councillor responsible for planning, regeneration and communities, are hoping a solution can be found quickly.

On November 7, 2018, the ECJ ruled in two joined cases related to the EU Habitats Directive, known together as the ‘Dutch case’ (C-293/17 and C-294/17). Its judgment raised the bar that development projects would have to clear when being assessed to see if they breached rules protecting sensitive habitats, such as EU “special protected areas” (SPAs). During these appraisals, known as “appropriate assessments”, promoters of such projects will often cite measures that they argue will mitigate any habitat harm. The ECJ judges said that assessors should not take these measures into account…

…”if the expected benefits of those measures are not certain at the time of that assessment”.

The decision has had far-reaching repercussions for developers. In June, wildlife regulator Natural England responded to the case, and other ECJ rulings by issuing new guidance to councils on compliance with habitats regulation assessments (HRAs) taking a much tougher stance. 

Tonight ‘Your Waverley will consider the following motion. Which if agreed could bring a moratorium on housing in parts of the borough.

  1. MOTIONS ON NOTICEIn accordance with Council Procedure Rule 12, Councillor Jerry Hyman proposes the following motion:

    “That the Council instructs Officers to

    1. (i)  reinstate the moratorium on the granting of consents to new housing within the visitor catchment zones of the Thames Basin and Wealden Heath SPAs (which was implemented temporarily from May last year), with immediate effect, and to
    2. (ii)  suspend the Waverley Avoidance Strategy,

(and to advise relevant developers and other interested parties as appropriate), until such time as the requisite evidence and appropriate assessments have been produced in accordance with all relevant legislation;

and in order to enable limited development to be lawfully consented through the ‘exceptions tests’ of ‘Habitats’ Art.6(4) and Reg,64,

that the Council further instructs Officers to write to Natural England requesting that they provide the information necessary for Waverley to conduct complete appropriate assessments of the Local Plan, Avoidance Strategy and relevant planning applications, to specifically include all currently available and relevant information evidence in respect of

  1. (iii)  the robustness of the current (2009) TBHSPA Delivery Framework strategy and SANG Standards,
  2. (iv)  population data and dynamics (historic to date, and trends) for the 3 relevant bird species, for the Thames Basin and Wealden Heath SPAs,
  3. (v)  the current Conservation Status, and the necessary specific Favourable Status Conservation Objectives for the habitats and species of those SPAs,
  4. (vi)  the measured effectiveness of On-site, Local and Strategic SANGs in displacing visitor pressure and disturbance from the SPAs to SANGs,
  5. (vii)  the extent to which SANG provision and promotion encourages dog ownership in the area over time, and
  6. (viii)  the measured effectiveness of the SAMM Strategy,

and if any of that requested information is not currently available, that Officers request that Natural England advises when that information is likely to become available.”

 

 

Nobody says it better than Farnham’s David Wylde?

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It cannot be true – can it? Crest Nicholson pressurising shopkeepers to move out of Farnham’s high street in return for two years rent-free in East Street just so they can get some stickers on our Waverley Web book? They cannot be serious?

So exactly when will Waverley’s new administration decide that it wants an Independent Audit of the Blightwells scheme in Farnham?

And who will be held accountable for the damage that has been done, and continues to be inflicted on our lovely town? And why has Waverley’s  Chief Executive Officer Tom Horwood gone silent on us? Perhaps he should be writing another little letter to the people of Farnham – and not leaving it to David Wylde to pin the tail on Farnham’s donkey?

Will ‘Your Waverley’ be shaken and stirred by the shocking revelations on Blightwells?

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How Jeremy Hunt protects Whistleblowers.

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This excerpt from another website makes interesting reading. However, all you whistleblowers out there in South West Surrey don’t be put off – keep whistling in  Jeremy’s ear… and tell him – that whistleblowing is professional suicide!

P.S. If he has a moment – perhaps he should pop down to a few of his local acute hospitals. Ambulances stacked up, A & E’s overflowing, waiting rooms resembling war zones, and some “very, angry and totally demoralised staff.” 

All that – and patients driving around car parks losing the will to live.

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Is MP Jeremy Hunt exploiting Haslemere minor injuries unit?

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As far as we can ascertain Mrs Chowdhury has been unable to find work in the NHS and is suffering from stress and cancer. WW wrote to her website for a comment, but have not received any at the time of posting.