Mount Hermon East
I’m pleased to report that County Councillor Liz Bowes and I have been successful in persuading Surrey County Council to introduce traffic calming measures in areas of Mount Hermon where residents have complained about problems with speeding.
After a number of accidents at the junction of Old Woking Road and Maybury Hill, the County Council agreed at a recent meeting of the Local Committee to introduce traffic islands on the approach to Maybury Hill to narrow the lanes and encourage drivers to reduce their speed. The pedestrian island on Maybury Hill will also be moved closer to Old Woking Road to make the junction more visible to traffic approaching from Old Woking and coming into the town through Byfleet. The County Council will also put down coloured anti-skid material to highlight the junction and make it easier for drivers to brake at short notice should the need arise.
The improvements at the junction have been on the County Council’s work programme for some time and the area was also independently highlighted as a collision cluster site at the most recent Road Safety Working Group, so I am pleased that the changes will be delivered before the end of the financial year.
Following representations from residents, the County Council has also agreed to introduce and fund a build-out feature on Park Road to encourage motorists to watch their speed. I went out with the local SpeedWatch patrol last year and saw for myself how bad the traffic is along this road, so it is good that the need for effective traffic calming measures at this location has finally been recognised.
Woking Conservatives announce borough council election candidates for Mount Hermon East and Mount Hermon West
Last night I was formally adopted by the Woking Conservative Association to stand for re-election as the councillor for Mount Hermon East in next year’s local elections.
I’ve had a fantastic three and a half years on the council and have been pleased to be able to stand up for residents’ interests by helping to establish the East Hill Residents’ Association; campaigning against inappropriate development proposals on the old St Dunstan’s church site; working with Cllr Liz Bowes to persuade the county council to introduce traffic calming measures along Park Road; and making representations at the planning committee to protect the special status and character of the Hockering.
I’m also proud to have played a role in the shaping of Woking town centre and the redevelopment of our community by supporting measures such as the Hoe Valley scheme; the Moor Lane PFI project; the revitalisation of the town square, and the exciting changes taking place in Commercial Way and Victoria Square.
My priorities if re-elected next May will be to continue working with colleagues to transform Woking town centre into a high quality retail, commercial and entertainment destination; to protect our green spaces by campaigning against over-development in our residential areas; and to support the Executive as it continues to reduce wasteful and unnecessary expenditure and find innovative ways of delivering improved services and better value for money for residents.
I would also like to congratulate my friend Colin Scott, who has been selected to stand for the Conservatives in Mount Hermon West. Colin stood in the ward at the 2012 local elections and came very close to winning the seat. I know he will do a formidable job and be a strong voice in representing the interests of his residents.
Earlier today I went to see residents on Maybury Hill who have complained about the building works taking place at Noel Cottage. Having viewed the site for myself, I agree the state of the pavement and front driveway at this location is unacceptable, with rubble strewn everywhere and dust from the works covering cars and front gardens in neighbouring properties. I have also been told that the building work has been going on at weekends and through the night, despite conditions being put in place that state such activity should be restricted to the daytime and through the week.
I’ve been in touch with Environmental Health who tell me they have already been out to to see the premises and spoken to the builders regarding the times they are allowed to start working on site. I’m told that the council has also given the builders advice on how they can improve the situation with the dust, including using a hosepipe to dampen down materials. Residents have been given some diary sheets to record any further incidents. These will allow the council to gather evidence in relation to the noise and dust and will support any formal action that may be taken against the developer, and can also be used to demonstrate that the situation is ongoing.
If residents have any further complaints, they should record them on their diary sheets and return them to the council. If the council does not receive any written complaints, they will not be able to take action against the builders if the problems carry on. Should Environmental Health receive diary sheets back, the council will assess the complaints and determine whether there is anything further it can do, such as serving enforcement notices.
I recently met with the principal of the Harven School of English to discuss concerns about noise disturbance made by residents in Heathside Gardens, including complaints about children screaming and shouting while playing during breaktimes, loud conversations and heated arguments amongst older students, and footballs being kicked against neighbours’ fences. While residents accept that there will be a degree of noise from the school, it was felt that the situation has deteriorated in the past few weeks and was spoiling the tranquil and peaceful character of Heathside Gardens during the summer months.
Following my intervention, the school has agreed to move the sports equipment away from the boundaries of the neighbouring properties and to have a word with their older students about the need to be considerate of others during study breaks. I am now told that there has been a marked improvement, and that the principal has been in touch with neighbours to talk through any issues.
I am pleased this matter has been resolved constructively and that the school authorities are making a positive attempt to control the noise. Future issues could best be resolved by direct contact and communication between residents and the school, and a willingness to show tolerance and flexibility on both sides.
Residents on Oriental Road and Maybury Hill will have noticed ongoing roadworks over the last few weeks. This work is being done as part of Surrey County Council’s Project Horizon, a programme of maintenance that will see £100 million spent on essential pothole repairs over the next five years.
Some people have expressed annoyance that the work is being carried out during the night and over the weekend, as this is creating noise disturbance for those living in Maybury Hill. I have also received complaints that the workmen are parking their vehicles inconsiderately in front of people’s driveways in Little Riding.
I have taken these issues up with the County Council and been advised that the reason for allowing the work to carry on through the night was to ensure the minimum amount of congestion on Oriental Road and the least disruption to businesses trading in the Lion Retail Park. While this may create a degree of noise nuisance for residents, it was felt that a balance had to be struck and hence a decision was taken to carry out the work while the roads would be quieter. The fact that the repairs are being done outside normal working hours also means they should hopefully be finished more quickly than might otherwise be the case.
The County Council tells me that, following my representations, they have spoken to their contractors and been given assurances that they will no longer park their vehicles on Little Riding. However, if residents have any further complaints then please do get in touch and I will be happy to raise them with the relevant authorities.