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Traffic congestion, pollution and danger are major current concerns in our little corner of car-dominated Surrey and will be at the forefront of our 2014 agenda. Finding alternatives to car use - a policy embraced by central government - will play a key part in improving what is becoming a degraded local environment in Lower Sunbury. 

To help in alleviating the problem, a cycle/foot bridge which was first proposed by the Thames Overways Projects (TOPS) in 2001 but sadly and for a variety of reasons fell off the political agenda, is to be resuscitated. Since 2001 the Lower Sunbury population has increased very considerably. The combined population increase of Sunbury East and Halliford & Sunbury West wards is 10.1% (2011 census) but with no commensurate improvement in local infrastructure amenity. Further, an aggregated total from 271 units of 811 additional bedrooms have been approved in recent planning applications which implies an even greater population increase before the next census is due in 2021. In short, the argument for the construction of a suitable bridge is now stronger than ever.

The River Thames is one of the greatest assets but is also a barrier between places where people live, work and play. LOSRA believes that a car-free bridge would be of enormous benefit to a wide area both north and south of the River. It would mean safer and shorter non-polluting journeys to work, schools and recreation. It would also provide an alternative to traffic-jammed Thames Bridges and the choked main roads leading to those bridges; and facilitate extended access to the Thames Path National Trail to communities north of the river, giving impetus to sustainable local tourism. The river is a beautiful linear park but it also prevents easy sharing of the excellent amenities that exist on either side of the waterway - a situation which should not be allowed to continue.

Please sign up to receive our regular e-bulletins by leaving your details via the Contact LOSRA Menu. Also, without your continued support we would cease to function so we urge you to join, or renew your membership, now. Subscriptions (£5 per household) for 2014 are now payable and may be made via the Paypal facility.

Sunday, 23 November 2014 10:50

Trading Standards Alert

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"Just look at the caller ID display – it’s the same number as your bank, so the call must be genuine, right? Wrong!" - an excerpt from the latest Trading Standards Alert. For further details, click here.

Wednesday, 19 November 2014 17:50

Responsible Dog Owners Need not Read This!

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Responsible Dog Owners Need not Read This!Legislation on dogs has proved hazardous ground for politicians from the Dog Licence to the Dangerous Dogs Act. When the British love of dogs comes up against our law makers, problems usually ensue.

There is, however, clearly a problem with some dogs, and more specifically some dog owners, and their impact on neighbours and wider communities. A few cases are immeasurably worse and, as we have seen on several occasions recently, dogs can kill.

Additional powers were granted to the police and local authorities last month under the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014, designed to give them greater flexibility when dealing with irresponsible dog owners and incidents involving dogs. These powers include acceptable behaviour contracts (ABCs), community protection notices (CPNs) and public spaces protection orders (PSPOs). 

All are designed to give greater flexibility in tackling irresponsible dog owners and incidents involving dogs. The Act also amended Part 7 of the Dangerous Dogs Act 1991 to extend the offence of a dog being “dangerously out of control” to all places, including private property where the dog has the right to be and to make explicit that an attack on an assistance dog is an aggravated (more serious) offence. 

These powers (see below) should not pose a problem for responsible dog owners and it's important to note that ABCs are not legally binding and non-statutory; that CPNs can only be imposed where behaviour is unreasonable and persistent; and that PSPOs are not considered as being capable of applying to the normal activities of working dogs.

Acceptable Behaviour Contracts (ABCs)

These are not legally binding and non-statutory agreements which are designed to enable local authorities to address problems associated with dogs and to try and persuade an irresponsible owner to reform. The guidance suggests that ABCs can be used where behaviour could escalate into more serious incident but does not does not currently meet any statutory thresholds for formal powers.

Community Protection Notices (CPNs) 

These are designed for “low-level” incidents including failing to control a dog and includes causing nuisance to other people or animals. However, such behaviour has to “be having a detrimental effect on the quality of life of those in the locality; be both “persistent and continuing” and “be unreasonable”. A written warning must be issued before a CPN is issued. This is to allow the owner of the dog the opportunity to address any concerns before a CPN is issued. Breach of a CPN is a criminal offence.

Public Spaces Protection Orders (PSPOs)

PSPOS will replace and allow for similar restrictions as Dog Control Orders. They can be used to exclude dogs from certain areas or require dogs to be on leads etc. The guidance on these new powers states that “having a reasonable excuse is a defence for failing to comply with a PSPO”; that “ PSPOs are not intended to restrict the normal activities of working dogs” and that “these activities are not envisaged to meet the threshold for the making of a PSPO.

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Skeleton Crew Returns to Sunbury Cricket Club 28th NovemberThe next Music Night at SCC falls on Friday 28th November when the Club welcomes back SKELETON CREW, who gave us a brilliant night just over a year ago. Their members will be familiar to many of you, as two of the stalwarts are former Sunbury residents who have played in the area many times over the years. The band’s leader is Paul King, playing guitar, mandolin, banjo, harmonica and squeezebox. He was an original member of Mungo Jerry, and went on to be voted the Evening Standard pub entertainer of the year several years in a row - he was a founder member of the King Earl Boogie Band.

With him is bass player Colin Pattenden, original member of Manfred Mann’s Earth Band in their hit-making days, and now also with Jackie Lynton and the Nashville Teens. Both Paul and Colin were regulars in the Magpie and Phoenix for many years on Christmas Day playing jug band carols along with Colin Earl of King Earl Boogie Band.

On guitar is Chris Bryant, who long-time owner of Bryant’s Musical Instruments in Tin Pan Alley - Denmark Street - and on drums is Alan Hitt of Nightshift and the Zen Relics.

As those who came last year will know, Paul is a great entertainer, and we can absolutely guarantee a rollicking evening featuring their distinctive brand of jug band music, blues, skiffle and rock, with fit volunteers needed to bang the zob stick towards the end of the evening. The zob stick is a custom-manufactured instrument comprising a length of wood decorated with small bells and cymbals – an essential adjunct to this kind of music – if you were too shy to get hold of it last year, now’s your chance.

Tuesday, 11 November 2014 15:29

Solid Wall Insulation, Questions Answered

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Streets AheadFurther to the 'Streets Ahead' article published on 25th September, and in answer to queries raised about the Solid Wall Insulation Grants,,the key details are as follows:

  • £3,500 grant
  • Subsidised Green Deal assessment (GDAR) to access grant - £49+vat (usually approx £99)
  • Additional Energy Company obligation (ECO) grant – this varies but is currently approximately £500 - £600 (roughly based on 3 bed semi-detached properties currently going through the process)
  • Access to Green Deal finance loan – Optional Finance assisting residents with some of the remaining installation costs and is paid back through the savings on the energy bills.

There are 6 residents in Spelthorne who have already had a survey and are currently being assisted and the first resident to accept a quote has been awarded an additional £1000 shopping voucher to say thanks.

Solid wall insulation can help make your home:

  • Warmer in winter and cooler in summer
  • Cheaper to heat
  • Have a lower environmental impact
  • Potentially more valuable

The grant is only available for 625 properties across Surrey, so we recommended you register your interest as soon as possible to avoid disappointment. Contact the Streets Ahead team today on 0333 014 3620 or visit our website at http://www.actionsurrey.org/streetsahead.

A case study may be viewed by clicking here

In addition to the Streets Ahead funding Action Surrey also provide free and impartial advice on other energy efficiency improvements and grants (for example replacing boilers or improving loft insulation) and can assist private home owners and renters/landlords, both those who are receiving benefits and those who are not. Please contact the main Action Surrey project team on 0800 783 2503 or by emailing info@actionsurrey.org.

Community Engagement Co-Ordinator - Streets Ahead Project

Tel: 01483 617762 or 0333 014 3620 

Email: Charli.Alderton@thamesweygroup.co.uk

Tuesday, 11 November 2014 15:27

Trading Standards Alert

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The Food Standards Agency (FSA) is calling on people to check the food hygiene ratings of restaurants before booking Christmas meals out with family and friends.

A recent poll found that almost half of the UK public (46%) never check food hygiene ratings of places in which they plan to eat.

To read about this and the upsurge of scams targeting small businesses in the latest TS Alert, click here.

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LOSRA, as part of the SATEP (Spelthorne Against the Eco Park) Group, is helping to fight the grant of planning permission for the installation of the incinerator at Charlton Lane. The Group is currently applying to the High Court for the application to be challenged by way of judicial review. Needless to say, this action implies considerable expense and whilst our funds are sufficient to make a start, they are woefully short of what will eventually be required.

As part of the fundraising effort, the Brit Trio, a group of very talented and experienced musicians will be giving an evening of entertainment on 22nd November at the Jubilee Centre, Manygate Lane, Shepperton. The group covers mainly songs by well known British pop/rock acts including The Who, Stones, Beatles, Oasis, Paul Weller, etc. The lead guitarist has supported various star performers including Cliff Richard whilst the bass player has performed in top Beatles tribute acts including The Bootleg Beatles.

Do come and give your support, it promises to be an evening to remember. To see further details, click here

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A new comedy by Steve Trafford, the Restoration of Nell Gwyn opens on Friday 14th November at the Riverside Arts Centre, Thames Street.

Full of humour and bawdy wit, this new comedy transports us into the wanton world of the English Restoration. King Charles 2nd lies ill, Nell Gwyn, his royal whore, once the brightest star of the Restoration theatre, rages against her fate. What will become of her if Charles is summoned to his Maker? What perils will befall the English nation? Mistress Gwyn and Margery, her maid, lead us a merry dance, filled with their laughter, their tears, and Nell’s enchanting songs of the Baroque: A rollicking romp which ends with a sting in its tail.

For flier and further details, click here

Tuesday, 28 October 2014 10:48

Read our Autumn 2014 Newsletter Here

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Our Autumn Newsletter has been sent to the printers and we expect it back for house to house delivery in about a week's time. You may also read it on line by clicking here.

The Association is always looking for volunteers to assist with distribution. If you think you can help or would like to know more, please contact our Secretary, Colleen Cuthbert. Her details are shown under 'LOSRA Commitee' at the bottom of the last page.

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LOSRA, The Exclusive Outlet for Lower Sunbury Tea Towel

LOSRA, The Exclusive Outlet for Lower Sunbury Tea Towel

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Lower Sunbury Video

Many thanks to Billy Rice for his video montage of Lower Sunbury

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