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.
Please sign up to receive our regular e-bulletins by subscribing via the facility at the top left hand of this page. It goes without saying that, 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 2024 are now payable.
As indicated in a previous post on this site, LOSRA was furious that the Planning, Design and Access Statement (PDAS) for the BESS application indicated that our Association was supportive of this ill-conceived enterprise (scroll down to articles of 5th and 8th February). Following our representation to the company, they made the following statement:
“Following submission of the application for Sunbury BESS (Spelthorne planning application reference 24/0017/FUL) the Applicant was made aware of an error in paragraph 1.9 of the Planning, Design and Access Statement (‘PDAS’). The error stated that Lower Sunbury Residents Association had indicated support for the application, which they had not. The Applicant has subsequently updated the PDAS to remove this sentence and resubmitted it to Spelthorne Council, and made the case officer aware.”
Jordan Martin,Associate at DWD Chartered Surveyors and Town Planners
The RTS is a major engineering project by the Environment Agency and Surrey County Council to reduce the risk of flooding along the Thames between Egham and Teddington.
In addition to two new channels upstream of Walton, there will be additional weirs downstream, including a large one across Sunbury Lock Ait. This will inevitably damage the view from Kings Lawn.
The principal benefits of the RTS are reduced river levels upstream of Sunbury. These are estimated to be up to 90cm in the area of the two channels - but only 4-8cm downstream of Sunbury Lock. This is a minimal amount given recent river level increases.
The proposals include an “active travel” route between Egham Hythe and Walton, including two new bridges at Chertsey and Desborough Island. However this will be of little benefit to Sunbury residents because the continuation of the active travel route is the tow path on the Walton side of the river.
We believe that incorporating our proposed bridge at Sunbury into the project would provide Sunbury residents with a material benefit from the RTS and we will be lobbying hard for this. Without this benefit there is little, if anything, for Sunbury residents to gain from the RTS.
A “consultation event” is being held at the Hazelwood Centre on Monday 19th February, between 1pm and 7pm. We encourage anyone with an interest in this important subject to attend - and to let the promoters know your views on incorporating a Sunbury bridge and on the new weir.
Further to the article posted on Monday 5th February (scroll down), the following is the text of the Association's letter of objection:
The comments given below on planning application 24/00017/FUL, for the construction and operation of a Battery Energy Storage System (‘BESS’) on strongly performing Green Belt land adjacent to the Charlton Lane EcoPark, are from the Lower Sunbury Residents Association (LOSRA).
LOSRA dissociates itself from the impression given in paragraph 1.9 of the submitted PDAS that it supported the proposed development that was presented to local residents on 19 June 2023. Not only did LOSRA attendees express no such support at the time; LOSRA is now strongly objecting to the submitted proposal for the following reasons:
1. The proposal comprises ‘inappropriate development’ within Green Belt under paragraphs 152-156 of the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF):
The Applicant has therefore put forward a ‘Very Special Circumstances Report’ in order to argue that the application should nonetheless be approved
2. The claimed ‘very special circumstances’ do not justify such approval:
3. If it were to be built, the BESS complex would represent an unacceptable industrial visual intrusion and extensive health and safety risks:
The next Music Night at Sunbury Cricket Club is on Friday week, 16th February, when the Club welcomes back FIRE & WATER, a band who played one of first Music Nights more than 12 years ago, and who have headlined one of their Beer & Music Festivals in the past.
Capturing the spirit and music of Free, Bad Company and Led Zeppelin, Fire & Water comprise Paul Cox, who Radio 2’s Paul Jones says has “one of the best voices in Europe” and has worked with Ray Charles, Eric Clapton and others; guitarist Mike Summerland, who was with Blodwyn Pig, Georgie Fame and William Bell; bass player Al Maclean, formerly with Kokomo and Hershey & The 12 Bars; and drummer Jim Russel, whose background includes Stretch, Scotty Moore, Curved Air, Desmond Dekker and others.
An evening of top quality rock and blues is absolutely guaranteed, and it will be a classic old school Sunbury Music Night.
It's £10.00 on the door payable by cash or card. Hot food will be available as usual from about 6.30pm, and the band will be on stage around 8.30-8.45.
Spelthorne is consulting with residents about its proposals to introduce a new Public Space Protection Order (PSPO) on the misuse of public land. The consultation will conclude on 31 January 2024, and you can respond online via: spelthorne.inconsult.uk/PSPOmisuseofland/consultationHome
This Council has been listening to residents' concerns and the overarching aims of this PSPO is to tackle issues and behaviours which are unacceptable and impact on our communities across the Borough. The PSPO proposal includes:
Currently, the Council has limited powers to deal with these issues. If a PSPO is in place the Joint Enforcement Team will be able to issue Fixed Penalty Notices for non-compliance with repeat offenders risking prosecution. The team would have discretion and, for example, would signpost rough sleepers towards appropriate assistance.
Residents can read more details about the PSPO and respond online via: spelthorne.inconsult.uk/PSPOmisuseofland/consultationHome
The following email has been forwarded to LOSRA and we are pleased to reproduce it here:
Thank you to all of the individuals who have already shared the link to this year’s council tax survey from our Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Surrey Lisa Townsend.
The survey is an important chance for local residents to share their views on the amount of council tax that they will pay in 2024/25 towards the Surrey Police budget that, together with a grant from central government, will fund the service they receive in Surrey from April.
There is still time for Surrey residents who have not yet had their say, to complete our survey by 30 January at https://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/3BJ307/
If you haven’t done so already, we would greatly appreciate it if all local councillors could promote the survey using the above link to their constituents, so that we can maximise the number of local residents who are able to share their views. Every comment they leave is read by our team and will help to inform the priorities for Surrey Police during the year ahead.
Please do let me know if you have any questions - we appreciate your support.
James SmithCommunications and Engagement Officer
Office of the Police and Crime Commissioner for Surrey
John Etheridge rightly enjoys a glowing reputation throughout the jazz world and beyond and has been described by Pat Metheny as, "One of the best guitarists".
He is a prodigiously gifted and creative player whose approach to music can only be described as 'eclectic' as he refuses to accommodate or even acknowledge artificial musical boundaries.
His range is well illustrated by his years of touring and recording with the iconic Stephane Grappelli while simultaneously doing likewise with the legendary jazz-fusion group, The Soft Machine.
John is equally at home on acoustic and electric guitar and his willingness to engage with so many styles is matched by his ability to excel in any of them.
He has played with John Williams, Yehudi Menuhin, Dizzie Gillespie, Herb Ellis, Mundell Lowe, Nigel Kennedy, Pat Metheny, Birelli Lagrene, Barney Kessel, Vic Juris and countless others.
John's ability as an outstanding composer is sometimes overlooked but he is often under pressure from audiences to feature more of his own material.
John joins the Terence Collie Trio on Sunday, 4th February at the Riverside Arts Centre, Thames Street.
For further details, click here
The London Irish Amateur Rugby Football Club (LIARFC) and Brentford Football Club Community Sports Trust (Brentford Sports Trust) have submitted a joint letter of Intent to the Administrators of London Irish Holdings (LIH) setting out their intention to purchase the Hazelwood site and place it in a Community Owned Trust for the benefit of future generations. The letter has been received positively by both the Administrator and DCMS (Department of Digital, Culture, Media & Sport) / Sport England, and they are in the process of organising some direct talks with them to progress their bid.
The LIARFC bid is very much about preserving Hazelwood for amateur sports and community use. The thriving mini rugby section for both boys and girls is renowned throughout the southeast of England and beyond. In addition, the most recent facility for community use, parkrun, is positive, welcoming and inclusive. There is no time limit and no one finishes last. (parkrun is a free, community event where you can walk, jog, run, volunteer or spectate. parkrun is 5k and takes place every Saturday morning. junior parkrun is 2k, dedicated to 4-14 year olds and their families, every Sunday morning).
The future of the Hazelwood Centre has been discussed at our Committee and we unanimously support LIARFC's bid.
We are aware of a competing bid from a football club with ambitions for promotion and which may require exclusive use of the site; and which may have little or no benefit accruing for the local community.
Comments from our readers would be most welcome.
The next Music Night comes round very quickly and is next week on Friday 26th January, when Sunbury Cricket Club welcomes back THE 60s ALL STARS for a long overdue visit – they haven’t played at the Club since the spring of 2022, because it’s been hard to pin down a date.
They played at our the Club's first Music Night back in 2010, and it’s always great to welcome them, as we know a proper rave-up can be guaranteed with a rip-roaring evening of wall-to-wall beat era classics, and they have always been one of the Club'smost popular attractions.
Their line-up for this gig comprises Alan Lovell of The Swinging Blue Jeans on guitar and vocals, the ever-popular Robin Bibi, also on guitar and vocals, Roger Flavell, formerly with Geno Washington and others on bass, and Mick Avory, original drummer with The Kinks. Put this one in the diary and get a gang of friends together,
Hot food, prepared by resident caterers Surplus To Supper, will be available as usual from about 6.30pm, with the band on stage around 8.30 pm or soon after.
Admission is £10.00 on the door, payable by cash or card.
Following a planning enforcement question at a recent meeting for residents associations led by the Leader of the Council, their Communications Team, in liaison with the Planning Enforcement team, included an e form for reporting a planning enforcement issue on the `Report’ tab on the front page of the website.
The Council has forwarded a document that explains how the team prioritises suspected breaches of planning regulations, the various ways to report concerns and a link to some frequently asked questions.
To see document, click here
The following Council email has been received by LOSRA and we are pleased to reproduce it here:
Do you know a special young person aged between five and 19 years of age who is living or receiving education within Spelthorne and deserves recognition for their achievements? You may wish to nominate them for a Spelthorne Youth Award!
We are looking for nominations for the following categories:
Anyone can nominate a young person for an award. All young people nominated will be made aware of their nominations and then short listed for an award. The top nominees from each category will be invited to a special awards ceremony and presented with a certificate and prize from the Mayor of Spelthorne. The deadline for nominations this year is Friday 9 February 2024.
The Mayor of Spelthorne, Cllr Denise Saliagopoulous, said: "The Spelthorne Youth Awards are about recognising and celebrating inspirational young people within our wonderful Borough. If you know a special young person who has excelled in a particular field, made a big difference to their local community, overcome very challenging circumstances or shown exceptional personal qualities, then we would love to hear about them and their achievements."
Further information and nominations can be made online at www.spelthorne.gov.uk/youthawards.