Diary of a Sutton Councillor

Contact Me

Email: jaynemccoy@suttonlibdems.org.uk


The Wallington South ward councillors also hold Councillor’s Surgery every third Saturday in the month (except August). This is held in the rear entrance foyer to Sainsbury’s (by the lifts) in Wallington from 10-11.30am. No appointment necessary.


  1. i appreciate you are not my local person of contact but no one else is answering my questions.
    the chiltern wing in-patient area shut in September. not as much as 1mm of pipe work has been done since its closure.
    Fox ward is not to re-open and now we have been told that Horizon is to shut within the next 2 weeks. given that to keep any hospital viable it needs at least 58 beds this clearly will not be the case for the chiltern wing.
    if the current policy is to have health care closer to home why is this not the case for mental health and learning disability. the patients and relatives are expected to travel much further than those who have a physical illness. if we told all black people they would have to travel further for their care it would be discrimination why is this not the case with those who are unfortunate enough to have a mental illness or learning disability.
    having autism or schizophrenia is NOT A CAREER CHOICE. the nhs was set up to ensure everyone had health care – it did not say apart from those who have mental illness or learning disability. i would truly wish we could fix our clients and make their lives better and for them not to continue being dependent on services but sometimes this is not possible.
    also why are people with dementia being passed off to the private sector and not having care available local to their families? these are the people who have contributed more than anyone else in terms of national insurance -how would you like to pay for your house insurance for 30 years and then get told you can’t claim
    these are the issues – nurses losing their jobs,
    unqualified personnel who are not registered or accountable being given case loads, giving out medication with no training and the qualified nurse carrying the can when things go wrong. one of the best things in the uk is the nhs and here you are destroying it

    Comment by margaret dudhee | January 7, 2010 | Reply

    • Margaret, I completely understand your frustration because it is shared by myself and my councillor colleagues across both parties in Sutton. We are very concerned for the future of the Chiltern Wing at the Sutton Hospital site and for local mental health services generally. Many of the issues you mention have been raised by councillors sitting on the various health scrutiny committees as you may see from my previous postings about these meetings. Unfortunately the NHS is not truly accountable to any external body. The Council’s scrutiny role allows councillors to look into local health provision and make recommendations based on that review, however it has no powers to ensure any recommendations are put into practice. The limit of the health scrutiny committee’s powers are to require the NHS to formally consult on any significant variation of service, and it has the option to refer a matter to the Secretary of State for Health if the committee feels that the local NHS is not acting in the best interests of local residents. Referrals have been made to the Secretary of State in recent years by local health scrutiny committees with unsatisfactory results. Basically the issue was referred back to us as being ‘a matter for local determination’.
      In Sutton we are therefore trying to influence local health services by building relationships with our health service partners. Last year we decided that mental health services deserved greater scrutiny and this has been our major focus for some time. This will continue whilst the uncertainty over the Chiltern Wing remains. I will continue to speak up on behalf of relatives and patients such as yourself, highlighting your concerns, in my role on the health scrutiny committee.

      Comment by jaynemccoy | January 8, 2010 | Reply

  2. Here I am 6 years later – The Chiltern Wing is now a boarded up empty building
    god alone knows what services are available for those with mental health problems.
    On Friday last I was in St Nicolas Centre and I saw a lady pick some drink out of a nearby bin.
    After 37 years in Mental Health Services I was able to identify someone with mental health problems given her
    presentation – here she was in one of the wealthiest countries in the world picking out a drink out of a bin
    Don’t you just love the christian country that this is???

    Comment by Margaret Dudhee | August 8, 2016 | Reply

    • Margaret, I couldn’t agree more. Whilst ‘boom and bust’ was supposedly abolished we saw profligerate spending, but not on housing or the NHS, rather on bailing out the unregulated banks that got us into that mess, which then left the country with massive debts. The new government then imposed austerity measures which hit the poorest and most vulnerable the hardest, and which is being continued by the current government as an ideology rather than a necessity. As a result we have seen more homelessness and the NHS creaking under its underinvestment and mismanagement. The need for and increased use of food banks in our supposedly wealthy country is something we should all be ashamed of. Mental health services have always been a Cinderella service and despite the hopes raised by Norman Lamb MP campaigning to see equal investment in mental health services we have yet to learn whether the current health minister plans to implement such measures. However, locally we have worked closely with the NHS to try to implement strategies to assist those suffering from mental health issues such as our ‘One Place Sutton’ project and ‘Sutton Uplift’ initiative. However I appreciate that these are more at the preventative end of the issue and I am less knowledgeable about those more in need of specialist care. I will raise your concerns with my colleagues who are more involved with Health and see what I can find out.

      Comment by jaynemccoy | August 9, 2016 | Reply

      • Margaret, I have received the following information from my council colleagues who are more involved with Health & Wellbeing services:

        Mental health services have come on a long way.

        Only inpatient services and specialist services are based at Springfield in Tooting. Outpatients are based at the Jubilee Centre in Wallinton and also at a range of GP and community settings.

        The launch of Sutton Uplift took place last year http://www.suttonuplift.co.uk. This is a fully integrated primary mental health care service including:
        A single point of access
        A comprehensive IAPT (talking therapy) service
        A wellbeing arena working with people who may need non psychological/psychiatric support to improve their mental and social wellbeing.
        A primary care team working with people who live well with long term mental health conditions but who need ongoing support.

        We have also seen further investment in mental healthcare including:
        Increased resource for older people services including Dementia which has seen an increase in dementia diagnosis rates from 39% to 65%. This is very close to the national target of 67%

        Also further investment in our Admiral Nurse service. This is a council provided service working with Carers and people directly living with Dementia. This service has increased from 1.00 wte to 4 wte (CCG funded)

        We have seen the introduction of Street Triage. This is a service that works in partnership with the police and physical health care in order to prevent mental health admissions.

        Also investment in children’s services (CAMHS) including a Single Point of Access for GPs and Education.

        We have also seen the introduction of a local Adult ADHD and Autism assessment and brief treatment service

        Comment by jaynemccoy | August 9, 2016

  3. I am disappointed that the canopy on Wallington Square is not the transparent one they had permission for. The canopy is making the square too dark and uninviting. Any retail units will need lights on throughout the day which does not fit in with Sutton’s green aspirations. I am sure that the canopy will be replaced with the one they were given consent for, otherwise the whole planning process is pointless.

    Comment by Paul Garratty | April 28, 2018 | Reply

    • Like most other people we were under the impression the canopy would be transparent, and so I checked this with Development Management. This was the reply:

      Dear Councillor McCoy,

      Thank you for your email dated 19th April regarding the canopy currently being erected over Wallington Square.

      Your email refers to condition 37 of the planning permission which required details of the canopy to be submitted. Following a visit to the site, the information submitted to the Council in order to discharge condition 37 (application reference D2017/1017) has been reviewed and it appears that the works are in accordance with the approved details.

      Kind regards,

      Robert Favela
      Planning Enforcement Officer

      Having checked back to the design statement it appears that the intention wasn’t for it to be totally transparent:
      9.1.5 It is proposed that the canopy is clad with Silicone Glass Weave (SGW). This waterproof product allows 40% of the light that hits it through to the other side (whilst filtering out UV rays except UVA required for plant growth). Therefore the mall will still be largely lit naturally during the day (albeit augmented with some additional artificial light), and from within the mall views through the fabric to the surrounding buildings will still be possible. The fabric itself has a lifespan of 30 years and is fully recyclable

      And yes, perversely this does mean that it will need additional lighting. I feel we have all been misled by the ‘artists impression’ of the square https://jaynemccoysblog.wordpress.com/tag/wallington-square-redevelopment/

      Comment by jaynemccoy | April 28, 2018 | Reply

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