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. 

After 50 years in Farnham – another major chain store​ ​ closes its doors!

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Last Saturday saw the DOROTHY PERKINS store in Farnham close its doors for the last time.

This brings to an end a 50 year-long association of the popular store with our town!  – Here are just a few of the others – but fear not there will be dozens of new shops opening soon in the Woolmead and Blightwells developments (with our money) – won’t there?

But .. according to the DP’s store staff – another nice shop is due to take its place?

Here’s what Farnham people think about our local authorities cunning plan to invest our money in more shops and restaurants.

The number of business and retail units in Waverley being turned into homes is reaching alarming proportions.

And… what about Guildford! Where two flagship stores – House of Fraser and Debenhams boasting half a million square feet of retail floor space look set to fail!

Whatever the outcome of takeover talks going on as we type, questions will remain over the sustainability of these two anchor department stores in Guildford, and there will be concerns about the possible economic and fiscal implications, locally, should either fail.

Additionally, current council plans (Guildford BC) for up to 420,000 square feet of new retail space on North Street might now look even more doubtful, especially following the Local Plan examiner’s remarks querying the logic of this allocation, despite GBC’s planning department’s defence of their decision.

 Tory councils, with the backing of Surrey County Council, are so arrogant as they play Monopoly with our money! Can’t they read the runes?

House of Fraser, Guildford was refitted and relaunched as a new store in 2000. It was previously known as the Army & Navy, and before that Harvey’s. The store includes the Jellicoe Heritage Roof Garden, a water garden designed and installed by the late Sir Geoffrey Jellicoe in 1958 and where customers could once sit and eat enjoying a panoramic view across the town.  It was closed for health and safety reasons. It has a grade II listing from English Heritage and, according to the House of Fraser website, has a dedicated gardener.

See also: Comment: It Is True – The Number of Empty Shops in Guildford Is Increasing

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

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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Farnham needs you! Don’t forget to vote!

Here’s the lineup for the Waverley By-election – provided by the Farnham Herald – because nobody does it better.

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Labour are also standing a candidate for Waverley – Rebecca Kaye.
For the Town Council election the candidates are:

  • Jo Aylwin, Liberal Democrats
  • George Adam Hesse, Farnham Residents
  • Rebecca Louise Kaye, Labour
  • Rashida Ahmad Nasir, Conservative

More Gypsies and Travellers could​ be on their way to Farnham Dunsfold and Cranleigh if the Local Plan part 2 is approved.

Part 2 of Waverley’s Local Plan is presently out to Consultation.

Consultation on the preferred options will end in June. There will be a pre-submission consultation from October until December this year with the Plan being submitted in February 2019 for adoption later in the year.

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When is someone, somewhere, going to stand up and tell Waverley Council it is no longer fit for purpose​!

A COMEDY OF ERRORS.

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The residents of Farnham deserve better than to watch this for the first 15 minutes of Waverley most senior planning committee as they debated the details of a major – 120 housing scheme on the old Hopfields that affects the residents of Crondall Lane in Farnham!

You guessed – that webcast that was flogged on E-Bay wasn’t working… again…!

The system is not for purpose and neither is the council!!

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BLANKETY, BLANK!

They also deserve better than the muddled, confusing, misleading, and according to many councillors the “gobsmacking” apologies for errors, inaccuracies, misinformation and the revelations provided by planning officers. The joint planning committee heard with incredulity last night, that a major developer’s infrastructure contribution for a circa £150/120m development of 120 homes at Crondall Lane, had dropped from an amazing £914,000 at the outline stage of the scheme – to £514,000 at the detailed stage. 

Oh! and guess what – Surrey County Council couldn’t come up with a project for provision of the necessary primary school for the children from those 120 homes, so they just let the developer get away with contributing, – yes, you guessed, nothing! Is that the same county council that has just put up our council tax by 6% because it is strapped for cash!

Suffice to say a member of the public Stewart Edge, raised a shedload of issues; but of course, we couldn’t actually see him! Farnham Residents councillor Jerry Hyman raised another shedload and whenever he bowled a googly at the so-called ‘experts’ he was either fed a fair amount of the stuff we put on our roses or was shut-up by Chairman Peter I tell residents ‘what I think of them only when the mike is off’ Isherwood! And his side-kick Carole Cockburn said, – we are where we are – ‘though I am a bit concerned for the residents of Beavers Close and Beavers Road’ (in other words ignore all the mistakes) and then she said – let’s approve it!

Just as we all just got to the point when Councillor Jerry proposed that the application be deferred – following cries from others of –

the committee was misled at the outline stage” – “Why weren’t we told there was to be a £300,000 reduction in the Infrastructure contributions,” “why have certain conditions been excluded, others are not tight enough.” “Why can’t `I understand the report,” Why aren’t the pages numbered – it is so confusing.” What if our decision here tonight brings on another legal challenge?  And from non-other than councillor Brian Adams the former Portfolio Holder for planning – I am astonished at the scale of the changes,” and so it went on and on… and on!

The Betty BIZ said: “The mitigation agreed remains sound, it is not appropriate to revisit that.”

However, Jerry Hyman said the council’s lawyer Dan Lucas told the Joint Planning Committee  IN APRIL 2017 that the “catchall principle does apply to habitat applications and so the principle of development can be reviewed and, in fact, must be reviewed if an error was made!

And then just as it got really interesting … the WEBcast finally gave up the ghost and died!!

Probably because ‘Your Waverley’ has just cocked up again!

SO HAS EVERYONE  VOTED FOR THIS FLAWED TAYLOR WIMPEY SCHEME  WHO HAS OFFERED UP A PIECE OF LAND IN CROOKHAM PARK AT THE QUEEN ELIZABETH BARRACKS PARK NEAR FLEET IN HAMPSHIRE. A  SITE  THREE MILES AWAY AS  MITIGATION FOR THE LOSS OF LAND IN CRONDALL? 

PERHAPS SOMEONE SOMEWHERE WILL  TELL US ALL WHAT THE DECISION WAS AND IF IT WAS DEFERRED?

We are putting our bets on with Bet Fred for another Tory whitewash!

Here’s the link to the webcast that starts at 1 hr 25 mins.  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OIsaHhaW-Hc

Screen Shot 2018-04-09 at 20.27.29.pngWe have the answer from one of our followers:

 Councillors have granted full planning permission for 120 homes on the Beavers Rd ‘hop fields’ in Farnham – despite a dramatic £380,000 cut in Taylor Wimpey‘s infrastructure contributions for the long-mooted scheme. Full story in this Thursday’s Herald.

Waverley/Surrey Conservatives missed £380,000 from Developers on Hopfields!
Local Liberal Democrat Stewart Edge has slammed Waverley and Surrey Councils for giving up £380,000 of available infrastructure development money from the Hopfields development – leaving no contribution for additional primary school places required for children living there.
At the final Hopfields planning meeting, Stewart asked why the proposed ‘Section 106’ infrastructure contribution totalled only £534,152 when the total had been £894,518 at the meeting in 2015 when outline permission was granted.
The startling answer was that Waverley and Surrey’s Conservative Councils between them had failed to specify specific projects that the rules said were needed to claim the full amounts.
So they signed contracts which fixed the contributions demanded from the developers £380,000 lower than available – and in the final planning meeting said they could do nothing legally to increase these now.
What a disaster! £380,000 less for public services; £380,000 more for developer profits.

In memory of what might have been in Farnham?

Remember this Press Release?

THEN:

Press Release from Council Leader Julia Potts, 5th Sept 2016, celebrating works on the extension to Farnham’s Memorial Hall completing in September 2017!juliapotts_xmas

“The Memorial Hall is an incredible tribute to Farnham’s history and the council is committed to enhancing the space for all. The plaque commemorating those in the community who sacrificed their lives during the First World War has been safely removed and will be reinstated into the new (sic) refurbished hall when it reopens in September 2017.”

Now:

Waverley Press Release 14th March 2018 :
Delays to Memorial Hall opening

The opening of the Memorial Hall is to be delayed following recent weather conditions impacting on the project timetable.
The project was already behind schedule, due to difficulties in procuring the right materials for the build last year. Unfortunately, the council is now faced with considerable delays to the Farnham Memorial Hall refurbishment.
To fully understand what is required to finish the refurbishment the council commissioned an independent survey. The survey has highlighted that, due to the poor weather conditions, a considerable amount of remedial work is also required. This is in addition to the work required to complete the project.

Councillor Jenny Else, Portfolio Holder for Health, Wellbeing and Culture, said:

”I cannot express how disappointed and upset I am that the project is not only much further behind than we expected, but also requires a lot of additional work to rectify damage that has been caused by the weather. I am concerned that this is only going to worsen due to the heavy rainfall that has been forecast for the coming weeks.
“This will also come as a disappointment to the services and the people that will be based in the hall when it is finished. We have informed them of the situation and will continue to provide them with the support they need during this frustrating time.
“We are now considering how to move forward. Sadly we cannot give a revised estimate about when the hall will be open until our consultant and the contractors have identified what remedial work is required.”

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So tell us Aunty Elsie – who exactly has cocked this one up?

Have you donned your camouflage outfit in readiness to miss the flack flying?