The Potty one is “so excited” that the redevelopment at Blightwells has begun.

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I’m so excited – I almost Pirates of Penzance.

 

We nearly fell off our Web with helpless laughter as we hung suspended in a dark and dusty corner of Farnham this week – and we could hear the chuckles reverberating through the town.

Are we – Waverley taxpayers’ paying good money in council tax for this drivel to be printed by ‘Your Waverley’s’ spin machine called – ‘Your Waverley.’

Because if it was OUR Waverley ‘Your Waverley’ would be listening to the opposition that is rearing its head ever higher to us with the “vibrant new scene”  about to land in our midst!

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• Bridge over the River Wey

Trees have been cleared along the A31 to make way for a new bridge across the River Wey, which will take construction traffic away from the town during the main works starting in 2019. Hoarding will go up around the site in August and there will be traffic management measures on the A3l, reducing to one lane and reducing the speed limit from 50 to 44 miles an hour until Christmas.

• Walk this Wey

To make way for the scheme there are also some planned footpath closures. The footpath that runs behind Dogflud Car Park, between South Street and the Leisure Centre is closed and re-routed. From 6 August until March 2019, Borelli Walk will close so the bridge can be built. New access schemes will be created within the completed scheme.

• New Wey in

Dogflud Car Park will be closed during the construction phase and will be upgraded, along with South Street Car Park, to provide modern accessible and safe parking. Other benefits include an additional £l.4 million to improve traffic flows at key junctions in the town centre, a new park and stride scheme and upgraded public transport infrastructure.

The leader of the Council and Portfolio Holder for Brightwells. Councillor Julia Potts, was so excited she put on her best bonnet and said:

“I am so excited that work has now started to progress the scheme and residents can see that things are happening. Once the hoarding is up and the bridge starts to get built there will be some disruption but I hope that people will see that it will be worth it in the long term. Farnham is desperate for a cinema, new homes and a retail offer”.

What a load of drivel. 

Blightwells here we come!!

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And guess where the developer’s money’s going? … To fund improvements to Godalming and Farnham Leisure Centres and build a new £12.7m centre in Cranleigh New Town!

 

WHY? Because there’s an election coming!

 

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We couldn’t have put it better ourselves Neil!

 

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Need a job?

 

 

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How did Waverley Conservatives manage to shrink the Brightwells dividend so much?

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Or Perhaps as an alternative headline as suggested by Farnham’s Laurence Garner in this letter to the brilliant Farnham Herald…and which has been sent to us.

 Council taxpayers ‘royally swindled’

Sir,
On the front page of your July 19 edition, you quote councillor Julia Potts boasting that there was ‘money in the bank’: £3.2 million from Crest Nicholson. Your older readers may recall that when Waverley decided in 2002 to award the contract to Crest Nicholson they boasted that there would be £20 million for the council to spend.
It was on this basis that the council over-rode the wishes of the people – expressed in a public consultation – and awarded the project to Crest Nicholson. Since then the value of the land shrank to eight-and-a-half before finally shrinking mysteriously to three-and-a-half million.
Up until 1973, Brightwells Gardens was the property of the people of Farnham, a pleasant amenity: mature trees, shady lawns with park benches and flower beds, a tennis court, a bowling green, and originally an open-air swimming pool; a pleasant spot in the heart of the town.
This was gifted, in a moment of folly, to WBC. After the agreement with Crest, the garden was deliberately degraded by Waverley to an unsightly slum, the bowling green trashed, the tennis courts wrecked, the gardens neglected before finally being sold to Crest Nicholson. They now have the impudence to call the Brightwells scheme a ‘regeneration’.
Councillor Potts neglected to mention that the £3.2 million must be off-set against the £4 million spent by WBC to buy The Marlborough Head public house and the £3.2 million spent on the Gostrey Centre extension to the Memorial Hall – a project originally to be built by Crest at Brightwells at their expense.
The fact is that the council tax payers of Farnham, and all Waverley, have been royally swindled by WBC, whether by design or through incompetence, it really doesn’t matter.
Laurence Carter, Wykeham Road. Farnham

However, what he omits to say is the council also allowed the Gostrey Centre for the elderly to deteriorate over many years. In fact, if a well-intentioned chef hadn’t reported the disgraceful state of the kitchen to Waverley’s own environmental health officers, it would have been forced to close down much earlier. But allowing it to deteriorate fitted in nicely with ‘Your Waverley’s cunning plans!

Yolande Hesse has written.

Sir,
On the front page of your July 19 edition, you quote councillor Julia Potts boasting that there was ‘money in the bank’: £3.2 million from Crest Nicholson. Your older readers may recall that when Waverley decided in 2002 to award the contract to Crest Nicholson they boasted that there would be £20 million for the council to spend.
It was on this basis that the council over-rode the wishes of the people – expressed in a public consultation – and awarded the project to Crest Nicholson. Since then the value of the land shrank to eight-and-a-half before finally shrinking mysteriously to three-and-a-half million.
Up until 1973, Brightwells Gardens was the property of the people of Farnham, a pleasant amenity: mature trees, shady lawns with park benches and flower beds, a tennis court, a bowling green, and originally an open-air swimming pool; a pleasant spot in the heart of the town.
This was gifted, in a moment of folly, to WBC. After the agreement with Crest, the garden was deliberately degraded by Waverley to an unsightly slum, the bowling green trashed, the tennis courts wrecked, the gardens neglected before finally being sold to Crest Nicholson. They now have the impudence to call the Brightwells scheme a ‘regeneration’.
Councillor Potts neglected to mention that the £3.2 million must be off-set against the £4 million spent by WBC to buy The Marlborough Head public house and the £3.2 million spent on the Gostrey Centre extension to the Memorial Hall – a project originally to be built by Crest at Brightwells at their expense.
The fact is that the council tax payers of Farnham, and all Waverley, have been royally swindled by WBC, whether by design or through incompetence, it really doesn’t matter.
Laurence Carter, Wykeham Road. Farnham

Waverley planners are not bats, they are devious, dishonourable​​, and don’t even obey their own YES men/women!

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BETTY PUTS THE BOOT IN ON BLIGHTWELLS BATS and the Farnham residents who mourn for the town!

Well, Councillors Follows; Townsend; Hyman and Ward are you going to sit back and accept the duplicity of your planning officers, you know, the ones you employ to do the bidding of the elected representatives of the public?

Didn’t you witness the request by your colleagues on the Joint Planning Committee to add a condition to Crest Nicholsons’s Planning application No  Screen Shot 2018-06-25 at 17.53.11.png

A Condition that would protect the bats in the “Maternity Wing” of Blightwells Cottage and anywhere else on the Farnham East Street site? A CONDITION Not an Informative? An informative that just reminds CNS that it is an offence to disturb protected species under the wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 should a protected species be found during the course of the works!

Stop work?!

Wanna bet no bats will be found there?  But if its alright with Bet the Boot – then its all legal and above board… isn’t it?

It’s official – Waverley Planners have gone Bats!

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The Farnham Society turns the spotlight on Blightwells and the town’s future but why airbrush out The Redgrave Theatre!

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Has the Farnham Society dropped a brick?

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 The Farnham Society’s recent video about East Street/Brightwells has prompted a response from Anne Cooper, chairman of the Farnham Theatre Association. This e-mail has been forwarded to all the  FTA contacts including the Waverley Web.  Anne urges everyone to view this Youtube video which is about a better future for Farnham. Please make your own comments about the film – not just to refer to Anne Cooper’s response. 

Wherever you live in Waverley – please take five minutes to watch this important film. One of our historic towns is under threat and th bulldozers are moving in!

Dear Farnham Society,

Congratulations on making this film, which will be seen by a very wide
audience. I hope it will bring changes for a better future for Farnham.

However – and you will know what I am about to say – WHY IS THERE NO
MENTION OF THE DESTRUCTION OF THE REDGRAVE AND THE POTENTIAL THAT A
THEATRE CAN BRING TO A TOWN CENTRE? Between the years when Crest
Nicholson’s first planning application appeared in 2006 and its most
recent applications, the loss of the theatre brought in just over half
the total number of the many thousands of objections. FTA led the way in
2006 by standing on the streets with objections to the demolition of the
theatre and people formed queues to sign. The Farnham Herald has a
picture of Jeremy Hunt ppc supporting a placard saying ” Sign here.
Save Your Theatre!” He knew what a popular issue it was.

Recently FTA met Waverley’s CEO Tom Horwood and Julia Potts. Tom
Horwood said he was very well aware that High Streets everywhere are
struggling and that people no longer want to come away from a town
centre with just purchases as they want experiences too. We said that
is why we want a theatre and he agreed.

The film’s silence on the emotive subject of the demolition of the
theatre is blatant. It apes Waverley’s revisionist tendency in trying
to write the Redgrave out of history, as though it never happened.
There seems to be a fear that any mention of a revived Redgrave would
undermine Farnham Maltings. How wrong that is! The Maltings could
expand its operations with access to a purpose-built theatre designed to
attract audiences. Now, that is a future worth contemplating.

With best regards,

Anne Cooper

Farnham Theatre Association Chairman

This Farnham lady wants her brick back!

It’s official – Waverley Planners have gone Bats!

Crest Nicholson get Licence to Kill…bats!  And if you link into the comments box – you can hear the debate which was very kindly sent to us here at the WW by Mushroom Management. Presumably, because they (WBC) keep most people in the dark and throw a bucket of sh*t over them?

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Potty & Co go batty! 


Lies, damned lies, and no proper statistics – for the endangered bat population of 
Blightwells, Farnham’s infamous multi-million-pound development in East Street.

Easing into her new role as part of the England Team and with Nikes at the ready, Chief Planning Officer put the boot in on councillors  in readiness for her World Cup debut, when they dared to ask too many questions and took more than their allotted four minutes on Crest Nicholsons’s planning application to mitigate the loss of habitat and “protect” the Blightwells bat population.

Whilst everyone is aware from previous surveys that there are bats in the Redgrave Theatre, the Blightwells Cottage, The Marlborough Head, and elsewhere on the site all either demolished or awaiting the swinging ball,  – there is to be NO MITIGATION – for the loss of the Maternity Roost, NO BAT HOUSE, as previously agreed with Crest Nicholson just a handful of aluminium poles stuck up around the site with  bat boxes on the top!

There will be no bat houses to replace the maternity roost despite calls from rebellious councillors  Farnham Residents’  Jerry Hyman and John Ward, Paul “fearsome” Follows, and  Cranleigh Tory Liz Townsend,  who was sitting on the Joint Planning Committee for the first time and who might just have to watch her seat!  Disobeying Betty Boot on your first outing!

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 Watch out Liz, or we might have to start referring to Cranleigh’s ‘Liz as the Biz.”

There were some lovely quotes from councillors:- here’s just a few to make you smile.

“If we go ahead and grant this… it could be A LICENCE TO KILL – BATS!

Godalming’s Paul Follows: “Isn’t it an offence to disrupt or injure roosting bats.”

Cranleigh’s Liz Townsend: ‘How will the bats survive if the Blightwells Cottage is demolished?”

Anna James (Chiddingfold): “I’m quite happy to grant this application as it stands.” In other words Bug**r the Bats!

John Ward (Farnham)If we don’t have a maternity wing- we may not have any more little bats.”OH! and I object to the Chairman asking us at the start of this meeting to “curtail the debate.”

Jerry Hyman (Farnham) “It’s not rocket science if  they, (the developers and the planning officers) don’t care about endangered species, and the environment – what do they care about?”

You may well ask – WWethinks … letting developers do whatever they like?

Planning Officer: “Natural England has issued a licence, and under the terms of that licence the developer cannot damage bats. Followed by: “Natural England have not actually assessed it?”

Screen Shot 2018-06-14 at 20.17.48.pngBetty Boot: Then dons her steel toecap Nike’s saying:”We are quite confident about our recommendation to approve this application because it is sound. and… In the big scheme of things, this is an insignificant matter”

Insignificant matter?

Here’s what many Farnam people think!

Screen Shot 2018-06-14 at 19.22.07.pngAnd… didn’t our Betty do well last night in her first World Cup game against Tunisia? But, she gets a lot more practice than most of the team, she puts the boot in on a daily basis. 

However, we have just heard from one of her fans, that it isn’t her fault – she is just doing her Master/Mistresses bidding!

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Where will Waverley members be watching the World Cup in Farnham?

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Marlborough Head East Street June 2014

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Marlborough Head 2018

We are grateful for these photos from Martin Gardiner and John Spackman in Farnham for pointing out the irony. Where once there was a thriving community pub on East Street, now there is a boarded up, fenced off shell. Never before has the ‘Blightwells’ development been so aptly named!

Where will we watch the Russian held World Cup now? Answers to Waverley, please! Spasibo!

We’ve heard it on the grapevine, that Liz the Biz or Betty Boot as she is fondly known – (remember staff and councillors have been warned not to refer to the Chief Planning Officer by this name!!) – has donned her brand new Nike football boots, to take part in the English line-up for the World Cup. Apparently, she has put the bover boot in so many times to give rebellious Waverley concillors a good kicking, that England Manager Gareth Southgate, is putting her on first reserve in the attack. Watch out Tunisia!

Please Waverley, tell us you haven’t gambled a £17m black hole like Surrey Heath!

closingdownSurrey Heath Council recently spent £17.6m buying the freehold of the Camberley House of Fraser building. The money was completely borrowed from the Government’s Public Works scheme – so they didn’t even have the money themselves! Casino gambling at it’s best.

THIS WEEK HOUSE OF FRASER PULLED THE PLUG ON ITS CAMBERLEY STORE – serving a CVA on the council no less!

The Council said: “By acquiring the freehold of this site, Surrey Heath did so as part of the wider regeneration of its town and not as an investment. The store has suffered from under-investment over the years and the Council was in discussion with them to address this. Whilst these discussions are still ongoing, their own reinvestment proposals are dependent on a formal CVA and their position on legacy stores.”

This is the massive ANCHOR store for Camberley – not something easily re-let – or even turned into flats in the current climate!

We know Waverley Borough and Surrey County Councils have invested in the disastrous Blightwells in Farnham, and we know Waverley agreed to borrow £30million to buy some commercial property early in the year. Surely this is a risk too far?

Isn’t it time to come clean Waverley and publish a list of whats going on? After all if we suddenly all have a half share in a shopping centre in Runcorn, perhaps there will be more incentive for us to visit!!

WW sees trouble ahead?

How refreshing to see Godalming’s new boy on Waverley’s block speaking up on our behalf, and asking questions.  However, watch out boyo, we foresee trouble ahead – ask Farnham Residents’ councillor Jerry Hyman, who we understand from an officer, has been brought before the standards board on more than one occasion for asking too many questions? 

Despite being outnumbered, outflanked by heavyweight tories unused to being Screen Shot 2018-01-17 at 19.45.34.pngchallenged, and a rather intimidating veiled rebuke from Mistress Betsy at the Joint Planning Committee meeting last week, Paul Follows the Liberal Democrat Councillor for (Godalming Central & Ockford) didn’t turn a hair of his meticulously coiffed young head as he challenged the  council’s decision-making process. He wanted to know why the controversial Blightwells redevelopment wasn’t getting anywhere! A scheme – which was,  “going on when I was at secondary school”.  Did anyone laugh? No way Jose!

Confidence exudes from this young man, and long may it be so, – here’s his profile for the by-election just before Christmas Ding, Dong the fight’s begun to win Godalming’s By-Election. Part 1.Lib Dems.

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Wow! his work covers standards, legal compliance, and ethical conduct! If that’s the case then he’s in for a field day at ‘Your Waverley’ and we hate to think what he might uncover when he digs into the latest shenanigans in his new role  at Godalming Town Council!   Dare we suggest he starts looking into why the Clerk left?  How much she was actually paid?  Not quite the £30,000  which appears in the annual accounts?  

No surprise to us here at the Waverley Web to hear that some parish clerks around the borough are being bullied – except of course the ‘crystal tips’ clerk of most of the councils in the East – Dunsfold/Hascombe/Alfold/Loxwood who appears to run the show on councillors’ behalf! 

Perhaps  Councillor Follows will delve into why Councillor Anne Bott (now Town Mayor following the sudden resignation of Mayor Simon Thornton) is allowed a conflict of interest as she is employed by The Surrey & Sussex Association of Local Councils) funded, in part, by Godalming Town Council. Of course, most of us realise parish councils are no longer the autonomous parochial bodies they once were! They are now controlled by Conservative dominated Waverley, which is, in turn, controlled by South West Surrey and Guildford and Cranleigh Conservative Association.

So, Councillor Paul Follows,  we look forward with some trepidation to watching your progress over the coming year. But, be warned, if you rattle their cages too often your opponents will stack everything up against you next May!  But then you don’t appear to be a guy who scares easily!

 

They cannot make the Farnham Herald’s letters page big enough to take the complaints against ‘Your Waverley.’

Buy that Great Farnham Newspaper and read it!  

Here at the Waverley Web we want the whole borough to be aware of the Balls Up Of  Blightwells – about to be built on Flood Zone 3 in East Street, Farnham.

 

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