Esher & Walton Parliamentary Constituency
Boundaries Commission Review 2023
The proposed boundary changes to our Parliamentary Constituency take Cobham and Downside Ward (CDW) out of Esher & Walton, separating it from the rest of Cobham east of Icklingham Road and Fairmile Lane, but also Stoke D’Abernon, Oxshott and the remainder of Elmbridge. The changes place CDW at the far south of a new Weybridge & Chertsey constituency along with Addlestone, Egham and Virginia Water.
This splits our community making CDW an orphan ward with no community connection to its new constituency and separating Cobham’s village centre from the community it serves.
This irrational proposal can be resisted by our whole community, with neighbouring wards, pointing out to the Boundaries Commission that we are one Cobham community.
CDRA will provide guidance on how best to respond prior to the consultation cut-off on 2nd August 2021.
A public consultation is underway, run by Epsom and St Helier Hospitals Trust, to gather views on the design of the new Specialist Emergency Care Hospital in Sutton. This is a pre-planning consultation and will run until 30th June. Services to be moved to the new hospital will be A&E, critical care, acute medicine, emergency surgery, inpatient paediatrics and maternity services. 24-hour Urgent Treatment Centres will continue at Epsom and St Helier Hospitals.
To find out more about the plans, to download a brochure, to register for an online event or to submit your comments visit Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals | Consultation website (esthplanning.co.uk)
It is with sadness that we report that Councillor Dorothy Mitchell passed away on 23rd May 2021.
Dorothy served the Cobham & Downside community for almost 40 years. She was an Elmbridge Borough Councillor from 1983 to 2004 and from 2010 until now, becoming Mayor of Elmbridge for 1991-2 and holding the Highways and Transport Portfolio from 2011-15. She had many other responsibilities and roles as a hard-working Elmbridge Councillor. The loss of her knowledge and experience on planning issues will be particularly felt by the local area. She was Surrey County Councillor for the Cobham Division for eight years until 2009.
Councillors for our area are invited to CDRA committee meetings and throughout her time in office Dorothy was a regular attendee. Her presence was of great benefit to the Residents’ Association. She was supportive of the work of the CDRA in many ways, for example working jointly on the fight against the motorway service area, with Dorothy contributing many weeks of her time and effort to this cause. During the only year since 1983 when she was not a Councillor, 2009-10, she joined the CDRA Committee and was our Planning Officer.
We send our condolences to Dorothy’s family and friends, especially to her daughter Fiona and her son Clive and his family.
CALLING OUR RESIDENTS.
OPPORTUNITY TO ENHANCE COBHAM VILLAGE CENTRE.
Surrey County Council has £100 MILLION for local communities!
Do you have an idea for a big, place-changing capital project?
Get your idea heard by decision makers.
To find out about this exciting opportunity and
to show your support for enhancing our Village Centre
click on Think BIG.
Statement of Position on the preparation of the Elmbridge Local Plan made to the political organisations in Elmbridge.
We are an alliance of Residents and Civic Groups speaking for many thousands of residents right across Elmbridge. We are highly concerned that the current Government imposed housing target for the preparation of the Local Plan in Elmbridge, 633 new dwellings per annum (some 9,500 over the fifteen-year period), will destroy the character of our towns and villages. This number would result in intensification on a grotesque scale and/ or see the release of Green Belt land for development….....…click here to read the rest of the statement.
The Secretary of State has extended the deadline for the final decision on the improvements to the M25 junction 10/A3 Wisley interchange to 12 May 2021. This is to allow further consultation on specific areas of the application. Full details are at https://highwaysengland.co.uk/our-work/south-east/m25-junction-10/
Cobham Chamber of Commerce have produced a delightful video reminding us of the wonderful range of independent shops, cafes and restaurants in Cobham and Stoke D'Abernon. Click here to enjoy the video and make sure you give your support to our local businesses.
Click on Covid-19 Info to visit our page on this topic, which has links to a wide range of information including changes to Surrey County Council and Elmbridge Borough Council services during lockdown.
Many of you will recall that Green Belt at the disused Wisley Airfield near Ockham was released by Guildford Council for the construction of 2000 homes plus offices, a few shops, and two schools. They have insisted on bus, cycle and pedestrian routes to Cobham as part of the sustainable transport plan for the new ‘Garden Village’. Taylor Wimpey, one of the UK’s largest housebuilders, now own the site and have commenced consultation in advance of a major planning application for the new settlement. There is no guarantee that this will succeed and CDRA will assess opportunities to object very carefully.
The site is 11 miles from Guildford but right on Cobham’s border on Old Lane and Martyr’s Green. We would expect new residents to shop in Cobham so car traffic will inevitably rise through the narrow lanes which link us directly to Old Lane where the main arterial road through the new settlement emerges. This has to be balanced against the increase in business for our High Street. It would have helped somewhat if Elmbridge Borough had secured a share of these new homes to offset the large amount of houses the Government requires to be built in the borough. This should have been negotiated with Guildford Borough Council as part of a legally required Duty of Cooperation between them.
CDRA will be doing what they can to help Ockham Parish Council in their struggles to minimise impacts on themselves and other neighbouring villages. (Click here for a letter from Ockham Parish Council to residents). CDRA will, however, prioritise mitigation of the impacts on our own communities in Cobham and Downside. We cannot assume it will not go ahead given the strength of the new developer and need for housing, so it is essential we cover the worst case. (Nov 2020)
A new Patient Information Booklet has been produced for Cobham Health Centre under the auspices of the Patient Participation Group, funded by a grant the Group obtained from Elmbridge Borough Council. The booklet has been distributed to all households in Cobham, Downside and Stoke D'Abernon. Copies are available from the Health Centre, including a larger print version for those who require one. Make sure you are fully aware of the current services the Centre offers and take a look at the Practice's new website.
You will probably be aware of the White Papers on a new Planning Act as part of Boris Johnson’s economic plan to ‘build, build, build’. This is the first complete overhaul to our planning system since 1947 and is hugely significant for Elmbridge, and our area in particular. The CDRA is concerned that this will have big impact on us because housing density will increase with more flats and houses built in our residential suburbs. This has already started on Stoke Road, Fairmile Lane and Green Lane and will put increasing pressure on our already stretched infrastructure.
The government consultation on changes to the current planning system ended on 1st October 2020 and the CDRA, after considerable review and discussion, submitted its own detailed responses which you can see by clicking CDRA Consultation Response.
There has already been a huge increase in Elmbridge’s house building target, from 225 homes per annum in 2011, to 474 in 2016, 623 in 2019, and now to 774 per annum. This means over a 10 year period there would be 7740 new homes in the borough compared to 2720 at the current rate of build.
CDRA accepts Cobham should take its fair share of a fully justified housing target for Elmbridge. However, we want to avoid an increase in housing density and do not agree with other local organisations that a single argument against use of Green Belt will serve Cobham well.
Our recent newsletter covered more of the details of this. (Sep 2020)
The Health Secretary has given approval for Epsom and St Helier's new NHS specialist hospital in Sutton. The aim is to open the new hospital in 2025. Here is some background:
In September 2019 the Government allocated £500 million to improve the current hospital buildings as well as to build a new specialist emergency care hospital on one of 3 sites - Epsom, St Helier or Sutton. Under the proposals most services would stay at the existing sites in refurbished buildings. Six major services for the most unwell, those who need more specialist care, and births in hospital would be brought together onto one site in new state-of-the art buildings.. These new buildings could be located at any of the three sites, but the preferred option is Sutton. This consultation closed on 1st April 2020. In July 2020 Surrey Heartlands Clinical Commissioning Group announced the green light for a £500m investment for Epsom and St Helier hospitals and a brand new specialist hospital in Sutton. Click on hospital investment for details.
If you would like to see a full list of the topics Surrey County Council is currently consulting on, those it has completed and the outcomes then go to www.surreysays.co.uk
Click to view our recent newletters
The CDRA 2021 AGM and Open Meeting was held on 15th April 2021 via Zoom. Chairman Ian Clifford stood down following his move away from Cobham. Thank-you Ian for your contribution to the work of the CDRA - acting as Chair for the last two years and leading us on environmental and amenities matters since you joined the committee. Steve Wood was elected as the new CDRA Chair. Visit www.cdra.co.uk/index.php/the-cdra for a full list of committee members.
We welcome new committee member Brian Teale. He is a Chartered Engineer with over 40 years experience in the Construction and Property Industry as a client and has a background in Contracting, Consulting and Project Management on major commercial projects in the UK and overseas. He is retired but still provides consultancy advice on Business Management and Development. He has lived locally for over 40 years. (Oct 2020)
Anne Bryant is retiring from the CDRA Committee after serving for 9 years. Thank-you Anne for your contribution to our work. (Sep 2020)
We welcome Martine Elbourne who has been coopted onto the CDRA Committee. He has taken on the role of CDRA Police and Highways Representtative.
We have received the sad news that Joyce McDavitt has passed away. Joyce was a long-standing member of the CDRA Committee, retiring from it about ten years' ago. She was 95 and had lived and worked in Cobham for her whole life. She was a fount of knowledge about our area with an amazing memory for people and places in Cobham from her childhood right through to now. Our condolences to her family. Once restrictions are lifted they hope to hold a memorial service to celebrate Joyce's life. (March 2020)
Email us if you think you'd like to find out more about supporting Cobam and Downside by getting involved as an active committee member.