As with any other local neighbourhood, the policies and actions which affect the character and future of Lower Sunbury are generally framed and implemented by a combination of local and national government, along with the vested interests and market forces which operate within those frameworks. Lower Sunbury is by no means unique in being under threat from a creaking infrastructure brought about by rapid urban development, the growth of traffic, and other pressures affecting the quality of life and the character of the area.
Working with the local authorities, we see it as the responsibility of residents’ and amenity groups such as LOSRA to address the underlying issues which fundamentally affect their members’ lives, as well as the minutiae of everyday life with which such groups are often concerned.
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The following is an extract from a letter received by LOSRA today from the National Planning Casework Unit :
"The Secretary of State has carefully considered this case against call-in policy, as set out in the 1999 Caborn Statement. The policy makes it clear that the power to call in a case will only be used very selectively. The Government is committed to give more power to councils and communities to make their own decisions on planning issues, and believes planning decisions should be made at the local level wherever possible.
The Secretary of State has carefully considered the impact of the proposal, and the key policy issues which this case raises. In his opinion, the proposals do not: involve a conflict with national policies on important matters; have significant effects beyond their immediate locality; give rise to substantial regional or nation controversy; raise significant architectural and urban design issues; or involve the interests of national security or of Foreign Governments. Nor does he consider that there is any other sufficient reason to call the application in for his own determination. He has therefore decided the application should be determined at local level, and has not called it in. The decision as to whether to grant planning permission will therefore remain with Surrey County Council."
It goes without saying that we are staggered by this mystifying decision as we believe that at least two grounds for a Secretary of State's determination are satisfied, namely; that the application for the incinerator will have significant effects beyond its immediate locality; and that there are significant architectural and urban design issues. Readers will doubtless make up their own minds as to why, after the application had been deliberated for 5 months by the DCLG (Department of Communities and Local Government), it has taken so long to reach this decision. All the more puzzling when we consider that the Secretary of State had been made aware of the Advertising Standards Authority findings that SITA, the contractors, had misled the public in three important respects during their public consultation (See entry for 26th October).
The latest news on the Skate Park in Green Street, initiatives to tackle speeding, fly-tipping and the Sunbury Football Project are all featured in Caroline's November report.
In April,2010,the Old Hamptonians Amateur Dramatic Society,(OHADS),a local amateur drama group of some 80 years standing, were privileged to present an evening dedicated to the genius of Tony Hancock, and his writers, Alan Simpson and Ray Galton, both of whom live locally. The production was completely sold out and it received consistently enthusiastic reviews. Indeed, the performance of "Hancock" received three nominations in last year's Richmond upon Thames "Swan Drama Awards", and Andy Smith received the "Best Actor" award for his portrayal of Tony. Alan and Ray were also kind enough to come along and see the production, and were very appreciative of OHADS's efforts.
As last time, the cast will perform six shows. These shows will consist of two studio "Half Hour" recreations of the classic radio series in the first half of the evening, followed by a fully dramatised show drawn from the TV series. This year, the two drama productions are the classic "The Lift" and " The Reunion Party". A very strong cast is in place, and again Andy Smith with be portraying Tony in "The Lift" and the "Reunion Party".
As the shows are being performed close to Christmas, two Christmas shows are to be performed, one of them being the relatively little known "Department Store Santa" half hour, which is a real gem.
The details are as follows:
Monday 12th December, Wednesday 14th December, Friday 16th December at 7.45 pm; and Saturday 16th December (matinee) at 2.45pm
Tuesday 13th December, Thursday 15th December, Saturday 17th December at 7.45 pm
Tickets for the show will be £10, and all enquiries for tickets should be addressed to Mr. Bernard Wigginton,who can be contacted on 0208 979 4596.
This is the first time that Old Hamptonians Amateur Dramatic Society has performed at the Riverside Arts Centre, so it would be great if they were to be given a warm reception by our local community.
Riverside Youth Theatre presents "Double Act", a double bill of one act plays for their December production. Sparkleshark by Philip Ridley recently won the best youth play (senior) at the Spelthorne and Runnymede Drama Festival as well as best youth actor for Alex Blackie. Sparkleshark is moving, very funny and highly topical. Alongside this award winning play, RYT are presenting The Nativity by David Farr, a seasonal offering which brings a humorous and contemporary touch to the story we all know so well.
RYT has been delighting local audiences for nearly thirty years. Based at Riverside Arts Centre in Thames Street this volunteer led drama group has produced a varied and challenging programme over the years, including Into The Woods, Momo and The Crucible. Members are between 12 – 18 years old and includes a very professional youth technical team, the alumni of which have gone on to work in the theatre and television industry, as well as lighting the annual Carols in the Meadow!
Double Act runs from 8th -10th December at 8pm, tickets are £8 each and can be ordered from 07531 797990 or online at www.riversideyouththeatre.com, where you can also find out how to join.
Following its public consultation in September and November of 2009, the Environment Agency is holding three exhibitions this week to inform the public of its Lower Thames Flood Risk management strategy.
This is very short notice indeed, and LOSRA only found out about the exhibitions from a resident who just happened to have had the email copied to her. The exhibitions will be held on Tuesday, Thursday and Friday this week. For details of times and venues, click here.
LOSRA has today been informed by the Secretary of State's Office that the appeals by London Irish to develop their Avenue Site and the Hazelwood Golf Club have been refused. Following a 12 day Public Inquiry at which LOSRA gave evidence as a third party, The Planning Inspector recommended to the Secretary of State that the appeals against the Council's refusal to grant planning permission should be dismissed. The Secretary of State agreed. The letter from the Secretary of State's Department together with the Inspector's report may be viewed by clicking here.
Readers will remember that the two sites subject to appeal; and which were interdependent were:
LOSRA together with SOLID (Sunbury Opposes London Irish Development) and HAG (Hazelwood Action Group) have campaigned tirelessly for over two years to oppose these most unwelcome developments and we are delighted by the Secretary of State's decision. This said, LOSRA is, and has always been, a friend to London Irish; and it brings us no pleasure to see these particular plans for relocation brought to an unhappy conclusion for the Club. Our argument has always been that the proposals did not satisfy local and national planning policy and were in any case wrong for Lower Sunbury especially as they would have resulted in a net loss of open space.
First reported on this Site in September 2009, we can now report good news for those who have been concerned with the spread of aquatic vegetation in the stream separating Rivermead Island and Thames Street. After many months of campaigning by LOSRA the Environment Agency has now started a major clearance of this suffocating and unsightly obstruction to water flow. The photos illustrate the state of the stream before and after work began (though the seasonal algae in the latter somewhat detracts from the visual effect) .
LOSRA has received the following Statement from Surrey Police:
Surrey Police will be doing everything possible to maintain public confidence on 30 November and plans are in place to ensure that critical policing services such as 999 and response to serious crime are maintained throughout the county. However, the implications of strike action for the force include the possibility of police staff striking, but also the consequences of other public services participating and the increased demand this may place on the Force.
To help the force manage demand and prioritise its services, we ask the public to adhere to the 999 calling guidance which states that this number should only be used for an emergency, such as endangered life or a serious offence in progress. Other matters should continue to be reported appropriately via other contact methods such as online and 101, the non-emergency number. Police Counter services will be open at Guildford, Woking, Staines and Reigate and the Surrey Police website will be updated if service is disrupted at other locations.
The following news release has been received from Spelthorne Council and LOSRA are pleased to reproduce it here:
The next Spelthorne Safer Stronger Partnership Action Day will take place at Sunbury Manor School on Tuesday 29 November.
The main focus for this Action Day will be young people and the Partnership will be working with three local schools: Sunbury Manor, St Paul’s and Bishop Wand. Students from these schools will be taking part in activities alongside Surrey Police and other partnership agencies, carrying out a number of activities in the local area including cycle security marking, environmental audits, and speed watch.
Partnership Action Days offer residents the chance to see how the various organisations, involved in community safety, work together to tackle crime and anti-social behaviour. There is also an opportunity to speak with representatives from a variety of organisations including Surrey Police, Surrey County Council and Spelthorne Council.
The Partnership exhibition trailer which will be visiting Sunbury Manor School will be staffed by Police and other partnership agency officers, offering advice on home security, personal safety and crime prevention. Crimestoppers will also be on hand to promote ‘Fearless’, a web site where young people can get advice and information about crime.
We are fortunate indeed to welcome the great Texan blues guitarist/singer/songwriter Buddy Whittington who played with John Mayall's Blues Breakers from 1993 to 2008.
Sunbury-based drummer Darby Todd of Protect The Beat is a member of Buddy's touring band. This is a very special occasion and one not to be missed. Of Buddy Whittington, John Mayall said "Possibly the greatest Bluesbreaker of them all."
Buddy will be appearing at the Sunbury Cricket Club, Lower Hampton Road on Friday 25th November at 8.30pm.
Price of admission £10. See attached poster.
The Beautiful Losers are a four piece Surrey-based band that play a very English take on rock 'n roll sounds of the American West Coast. Those who have been to the Cricket Club for one of their superb Friday night gigs can expect another night to remember. Those who haven't should come down and see what everyone's talking about. Click here to see poster.
A free photo exhibition will be held at Sunbury Library on Saturday 12th November between 10am and 4pm.
Besides new photos from the large archive of Sunbury and Shepperton Local History Society, a number will also feature Sunbury with a sporting theme.
To celebrate the Society's 60th anniversary a new publication entitled Sunbury & Shepperton in Old Photos will be available to purchase for £4.
For more details of the Sunbury & Shepperton Local History Society, visit their website at: http://sslhs.org.uk/
The play 'Phantom of The Arts Centre', has been specially adapted by local Playwright Geoff Buckingham for broadcasting at 5pm this Remembrance Sunday, 13th November. The play touches upon events in Sunbury during World War Two and there is an interview afterwards which mentions many of the local arts groups and organisations which use the building.
It can be listened to online, by logging on to www.radiowey.co.uk and then clicking on 'listen now'
It will also be broadcast to hospitals and nursing homes at St Peters and throughout the region. The more listeners the station gets, the more likely it is to support other locsl residents' events and organisations. To view the poster, click here.
Former Engineering Manager with BBC TV Outside Broadcasts, Ian Dow, of Lower Sunbury, will be giving a talk on Friday, 18th November, 7.30pm at St Nicholas Parish hall, Church Square, Shepperton entitled ‘Lights, Camera, Action –oops!’ . The event is arranged by the River Thames Society and entrance costs £4 (members) and £5 (non-members).
For a man who has covered all the logistical problems of lighting,
filming and sound for the Oxford Cambridge Boat Race, football
matches, concerts, last night at the Proms, Animal Hospital the move of a
lighthouse from the cliff edge for “Tomorrow’s World” and lightning
early episodes of Dr Who, a calmer man would be hard to find.