Diary of a Sutton Councillor

Your Councillors’ Summer Update

  

A long spell of good weather, England in the semi-finals of the world cup and no rain at Wimbledon – it all feels a bit surreal and rather discombobulating.

This can’t possibly be an English Summer!

Whatever the weather the work of your ward councillors continues and here is our latest update:

Wallington Square

Your three ward councillors have been keeping an eye on this private development and liaising with the contractors and residents. At a recent site meeting we were able to confirm that spikes will be added to all the struts and ridges to prevent pigeons roosting.

The paving is the square is looking very dirty already, a lot of it is due to the pigeon droppings so we have asked for it to be given a good clean. However there appears to have been oil of some sort staining the paving which we have asked to be investigated as this is going to be harder to clean up.

The problem with the downpours over the shopfronts when we had heavy rain was the result of the guttering being incorrectly installed (essentially it was back to front). This has now been corrected. The drainage of the square has been confirmed as being to the required standard.

There are electrical connections so that Christmas lights can easily be put in and the light-sensitive lighting has been fully installed and is working well.

Following liaison with the local Police works have been undertaken to prevent young people getting onto the canopy. CCTV has also been installed.

The owners are yet to secure a tenant for the empty unit but are marketing it currently.

Wallington Library and Gardens

Refurbishment works

Wallington Library is undergoing refurbishment to improve the children’s library area, adapt the Mallinson Room so it can be hired out, and use the old conference room for a new Health and Social Care integrated team based locally to support Wallington Residents. More information is available here. The library will be closed for this work until Tuesday 7th August.

The work aims to ensure the ongoing viability of the library by making the space work harder as well as seeking to meet the needs of residents. Our borough libraries are proving very popular as places for our students to study, so the council is increasing the space available for study use.

Your ward councillors have been working with the Friends of Wallington Library and Gardens to make sure that they are able to continue their positive work for the library and residents. Staff changes and the refurbishment had caused a few problems but we hope that with our backing the library staff will work in partnership with the Friends for the benefit of the library and its users.

Unlocking the Library Gardens

We have received complaints that the library gardens were locked whenever the library was closed. This had occurred due to incidences of anti-social behaviour in the gardens including vandalism of the pond and fountain. We agreed with residents that as public space the gardens should be open in the early evenings and at weekends to be enjoyed by the community. We are therefore pleased that thanks to our efforts the library has agreed to leave the gardens open with immediate effect.

We think that anti-social behaviour is less likely to take place when the gardens are well-used. Determined vandals were able to access the gardens even when locked, and the lack of other users made it easier for them to misbehave.

Wallington Gardens fountain and pond

Contrary to rumours the pond is here to stay. It has recently been drained for cleaning and has now been refilled. The pump has repeatedly broken and a replacement is in the process of being purchased.

Professional pond and water experts have been consulted on the pond and they advised that the water was contaminated and unsuitable for fish. They have confirmed that the pond is not of a suitable size to sustain any significant numbers of fish in a healthy and humane way. As a result the fish have been rehomed and a mesh will be introduced to prevent vandalism and the introduction of fish to the pond.

As rubbish and food are regularly thrown into the pond as well as fish it means that it would be impossible to prevent future contamination of the pond presenting a health hazard to both the fish and the public. For this reason fish will not be a feature of the pond. The fountain will however remain and be in use once the new pump is installed.

Untidy Grass Verges

IdVerde are contracted by the council to maintain Sutton’s parks and grass verges. The significant rain earlier in the year meant that they were unable to cut the grass according to schedule as their vehicles would have cut up the wet ground. They aim to cut the grass verges twice monthly during the April to June growing season.

This means that the grass is longer when it is cut, and cannot be cut as neatly. The cuttings are left in place as mulch and normally are not noticeable. However because the grass is currently longer when it is cut, and drier, it is more visible and is being blown into the roads and gutters. The contractors have still to get back on schedule to cut it as frequently as required.

The result is that our grass verges are not looking as tidy as they should. The council is aware of this and IdVerde are working to get round all the verges to keep on top of the growth.

In the meantime please report excess cuttings in the street that need sweeping up here.

You can report very overgrown verges here.

Wallington Music Festival

The festival held in June was the fourth year it has been held and continues to be very popular with locals. Steve, Muhammad and Jayne work alongside the other residents and businesses who give up their time to help organise the festival. We are lucky to have such community-minded people and great venues and contacts to bring such high quality music to Wallington.

Our own councillor Steve Cook, who is currently our Sutton Borough Mayor, surprised the crowds when he opened the festival, as he then joined a specially formed band – The Mayors Flares and proceeded to play drums as they knocked out some popular numbers. All caught on video here.

Wallington Girls School Event dates

Wallington Girls School puts out information each term about upcoming events at the school, especially those likely to see an increase in traffic and parking congestion. If you wish to be included on their circulation list please contact the school via Jenny Andrews: jandrews@wallingtongirls.org.uk. Local residents have found this to be very helpful advance warning and the school works with Parking Enforcement and has also worked with Woodcote Nursery to provide additional parking for attendees at their events.

Hillside Gardens Roundabout

Residents have repeatedly raised concerns about safety at the mini-roundabout on Sandy Lane South at the junction with Hillside Gardens. We raised this with the council and as a result a speed check sign has been introduced to encourage vehicles to reduce their speed on the approach to the roundabout.

Changes to bin collection schedules

As part of the new waste contract all four boroughs in the South London Waste Partnership: Kingston, Merton, Sutton and Croydon, will eventually all receive the same waste collection service. Although at present all have their waste collected by Veolia, there are differences between bins and collection days.

From September Croydon will be fully on the same system as us and to achieve the savings and ensure the most efficient vehicle routing across the boroughs there will be some changes to the days that your waste is collected. These changes will particularly affect those wards closest to Croydon so our ward, Wallington South will have some changes.

For some of you it will mean putting out your bins in a different week, and in other cases the bins you put out each week will change i.e. it might be paper and card with landfill rather than mixed recycling and landfill.

Any Saturday collections will now be made on a Monday.

You will receive notification if you are affected followed by a new calendar.

There will be additional collections during the changeover to ensure that no waste waits longer than a fortnight for collection, and the food waste no longer than a week. The crews will accept side waste over the period of the change too.

There will be no changes to the bins themselves or what you put in them so do keep up the good work. Sutton is now recycling 50% of its waste – making us the top London borough for recycling, and we have significantly reduced the amount of waste being sent to landfill since the new service was introduced.

New Trees Planted

We were pleased to secure funding from the Local Committee to replace diseased trees in Woodcote Road close to Birdhurst Court. We also saw a broken bench replaced.

New trees planted in the area have suffered as a result of this long hot dry spell. If you live close to one please give it a bit of TLC by watering it regularly. You can use your waste washing up water or bath water as long as they have nothing stronger than washing up liquid in it.

 

A Foodbank for Wallington

Sutton Community Works is a charity that already runs a foodbank in Sutton, and is also the group responsible for the Street Pastors and a Job Club. They work closely with Sutton Council and the police. They have identified a need for a foodbank in Wallington and are in the process of setting one up to open in September. It is expected to be held once a week for a couple of hours at St Michael’s Church in Milton Road. The Woodcote Flying Club have offered to be a collection point for donations, and the charity is looking for other places to be collection points. They are also looking for volunteers to be stock checkers etc.

Whilst it is shocking that foodbanks are necessary, we fully support this local initiative and hope that local people will help with donations and help.

 

PLANNING NEWS

The scaffolding around Lidl appears to be in respect of work to replace the roof. It does not require planning permission but is subject to Building Control sign off.

An Enforcement Notice was been issued in respect of works on Land Adjoining 274 Woodcote Road Wallington.

DM2018/01097 11 Hall Road Wallington SM6 0RT Change of Use from a Care Home to a House in Multiple Occupation involving a single storey rear extension, a two storey side extension and alteration to side elevation. Conversion of loft space involving an additional dormer extension at rear. Click on the link to comment on this application

DM2018/00539 11 Park Hill Road Wallington SM6 0SD Conversion of existing 4 bed residential unit into 1×1 bed, 1×2 bed and 1×3 to 4 bed flats with associated parking and landscaping. Refused as provides inadequate space standards and amenity space, insufficient off-street car parking and potential harm to the street tree.

DM2018/00128 25-27 Beddington Gardens And 18 Holmwood Gardens Wallington SM6 0JG Demolition of a 1 storey house and 2 bungalows. Erection of a three storey building plus roof accomodation compromising 22 x one bedroom flats, 14 x two bedroom flats and 4 x three bedroom flats with accomodation in the roof, 32 solar panels on block B, landscaping, basement parking with 40 car parking spaces, cycle and refuse stores. Refused on the grounds that it is overdevelopment of the site, out of character with the surrounding area, would provide insufficient light and privacy to the occupants and does not provide sufficient affordable accommodation or family units.

DM2018/00398 127 Boundary Road Wallington SM6 0TE Demolition of existing single-family dwelling and erection of one 2-storey block with accommodation in the roof level and basement, containing 8 flats with associated access, 8 parking spaces, cycle storage and refuse store. Refused as overdevelopment of the site and an inappropriate design that would cause harm to the streetscene

D2017/78438 127 BOUNDARY ROAD WALLINGTON SM6 0TE
Demolition of existing single-family dwelling and erection of one 2-storey building with accommodation at roof level, containing 9 flats ( eight 2-bedroom and one 1-bedroom) with associated access, 9 off-street parking spaces , cycle storage and refuse store. Refused as overdevelopment of the site and an incongruous design that would cause harm to the streetscene

D2017/ 78115 Public convenience and land r/o Crosspoint House 28 STAFFORD ROAD WALLINGTON SM6 9AA Conversion of public convenience and erection of a part two, part three storey extension to create two 1 bedroomed and one 2 bedroomed self contained flats, together with roof terrace and balcony and refuse and cycle store. Refused due to its excessive scale and poor design that would detract from the character of the area

DM2018/00354 5-6 Ross Parade Wallington SM6 8QG Erectionof part four, part five storey extension to existing building comprising 33 self contained flats (twenty four 2-bedroom, eight 3-bedroom and one 4-bedroom) with refuse store and 62 cycle parking spaces. Application withdrawn

 

BEDDINGTON AND WALLINGTON LOCAL COMMITTEE & AREA NEWS

The Beddington & Wallington Local Committee took place on 17th July at Wallington Boys Grammar School. Items of interest to our ward were:

Local Police Update

The Front Counter at Crosspoint House is now closed and all the Safer Neighbourhood teams will instead be holding one hour Community Contact sessions each week in venues in their wards. These will be advertised over social media and through local forums.

The Wallington South Team had been made aware of two brothels operating in our ward and after working with landlords and housing associations have successfully closed both down.

The Team are also working with us to seek to gate the Ross Parade alleyway to prevent the anti-social behaviour this area regularly attracts.

TfL Funding for Traffic Schemes

The council has to propose schemes for funding by Transport for London on an annual basis. Two of the four schemes included for funding in the 2019/20 bid are in our ward: Clyde Road/Ross Road and Onslow Gardens/Blenheim Gardens. These schemes are to address traffic and parking issues in these areas. As there is unlikely to be sufficient funding for all four schemes we asked that the Clyde Road/Ross Road scheme be prioritised of the two in our ward, as the pressures are greatest there.

Capital funding for local schemes

It was agreed to continue funding hanging baskets and festive lighting across the area. This takes up a significant amount of the funding allocated to the committee but they are well supported by local residents and businesses, and there is still funding left for other schemes.

It was noted that previous agreed schemes had now been implemented including the installation of new play equipment in Roundshaw Park including specialised disability play equipment; and improvements to the Mellows Park tennis courts and multi-use play area.

Event Fees and Charges

There will be a review of the process for Event Fees and Charges including street closures for street parties as the current system is too bureaucratic and is proving a blockage to community events taking place. We were saddened to learn that some planned events did not take place as residents were put off by the requirements. When local groups approached us about these problems we were able to help them successfully through the process, but not everyone contacted their ward councillors and so may have given up. If you have any examples of hitting problems when applying do let us know so we can feed this into the review.

The next meeting of the Beddington & Wallington Local Committee will be on 30th October at 7pm. Venue to be confirmed.

Award-winning Community Representative

We would like to congratulate our local Woodcote Avenue Road Fund Committee community Representative Colin Wadeson who won an award for his contribution to the local area at a recent event celebrating the work of the community representatives that attend the local committee meetings and act as leading members of the community, making the area better for everyone. Colin was especially recognised for bringing the bandstand and resulting music festival to Wallington, as well as his practical help with the Christmas Fair and festive lights switch-on.

 

So that is it from us for now. Have a lovely summer, and don’t forget your suncream.

Jayne, Steve and Muhammad

Your Wallington South Liberal Democrat Councillors

 

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August 3, 2018 Posted by | Information, Liberal Democrats | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Report back from October 2017 Beddington and Wallington Local Committee

Councillor Muhammad Sadiq has provided below a summary of the Beddington & Wallington Local Committee meeting held on 10 October at Wallington County Grammar School attended by your Wallington South Councillors.

Various issues were discussed in this meeting and some ward related and general interest issues are listed below for your information.

Tackling Anti Social Behaviour in Beddington Park

Andrew Chandler, our Neighbourhood Manager presented a report. The main concerns which had been raised by the local Councillors, Community representatives and the local residents were discussed.

One of the main issues which was leading to Anti Social Behaviour was people using either fixed or disposable barbecues and the excessive use of alcohol. Disposable barbecues were also considered to be a major health and safety risk.

It was proposed that a temporary licence, at a small cost, should be introduced for people to be allowed to come into the park and use fixed barbecues. A similar system is being used in Epsom which appeared to be successful and has reduced Anti Social Behaviour considerably. Enforcement officers will be deployed to enforce this and the police will also be there to help if necessary.

Some new communal barbecue models were considered  – such as 2 metre x 2 metre barbecues fixed in the park which people could share.

The above was discussed in detail and the final proposals will be submitted to the Local Committee at the meeting in January 2018.

Waste and Recycling Service

The waste and recycling service was discussed and in general everyone at the meeting was in agreement that the service has improved considerably. Scott Edgell (General Manager Veolia) and Mark Dalzell, a Sutton Council Officer, were also in attendance to answer any waste related questions.

In general the feedback was positive that things were moving in the right direction.

Public Realm Projects and Neighbourhood Grants

New Public Realm projects for additional festive lighting, Royal British Legion ‘Silent Soldiers’ to commemorate Armistice Day, a zebra crossing in The Chase and  repairs to Mellows Park tennis courts and multi-use games area were considered and approved as appropriate.

There are still some funds available for Neighbourhood Grants and if you have any projects which might benefit the local community then please get in touch with us and we will put you in the right direction as to how to apply for this grant.

Highways Updates

The Senior Highways Engineer, Ian Price, (Kingston and Sutton shared services) provided an update on all ongoing and new projects including:

Clyde Road Traffic Survey

This survey had been conducted completed and the results showed that there was a need to address speeding and HGVs in this road. Mr Price assured us that the results will inform a scheme design to be presented and discussed with the local residents in due course.

Traffic Junction At Woodcote Road with Stafford Road and Stanley Park Road

Some improvements to the Traffic Junction at Woodcote Road with Stafford Road and Stanley Park Road are being discussed with Transport for London and the results will be shared with the local Councillors and residents before any work will be carried out.

Outstanding double yellow lines in Onslow Gardens and Cranley Gardens were also discussed and Mr Price promised to come back to your local Councillors with a further update.

Full papers and minutes of the meeting can be read online.

The next meeting of the Beddington & Wallington Local Committee will be held on 9th January 2017 7pm. Venue to be confirmed.

October 16, 2017 Posted by | Committee Meeting, Information | , , , , | Leave a comment

Report back from July Beddington & Wallington Local Committee

Cllr Steve Cook has provided the following summary of the July Beddington & Wallington Local Committee meeting attended by your ward councillors:

The meeting started with Public Question Time which majored on the current situation with Veolia, collection of waste, street cleaning and re-cycling.

Scott Edgell (local area manager from Veolia) and Mark Dalzell (Sutton Council Head of Waste Services) were in attendance to answer questions on this area. Many questions were put by local residents and councillors alike, wanting updates and answers on the new service which began in early April this year. It has been a lack lustre start-up which has received countless complaints and queries on to the council web-site. However, the answers received from both Scott and Mark were most helpful and we finally felt the tide was turning in resident’s favour. Scott said in closing “We (Veolia) will not rest until the service is better than it was previously” which gave us all cause for encouragement, as the prior service provided by Sutton Council directly, was of the highest quality

A petition was then heard from Mr Bernard Rofe of Elles House, Shotfield in Wallington. He was requesting the highways department look into creating a central refuge to help pedestrians crossing Shotfield outside Elles House. This was approved in principal and the department concerned will look at the options available for this proposed scheme. The immediate difficulty was the current positioning of the bus stop between the entrance and exit of the library car park, which obstructs the view of pedestrians crossing at this point.

Another petition was heard, this time from Mr Peter Coughlan, who expressed concern about the random and illegal pavement parking that takes place outside his bakery shop and the impact on his business on Stafford Road and the corner of The Chase. He is seeking a Controlled Free Parking Zone and this will be explored by the councils Chief Parking Officer.

Sgt O’Brien on behalf of the Safer Neighbourhood Teams delivered an up-date which covered all the Beddington and Wallington wards and gave an in-depth view of the current policing plans and a report of recent local activity in fighting crime and dealing with anti-social behaviour.

A presentation was then given by Mandar Puranik and his colleague Holly on the exciting plans for the improvements to Beddington Village and the new traffic scheme.

Following this, Christine Lindsay gave an interesting and rewarding talk about the Wallington Wellbeing Group and their calendar of activities for the up-coming summer. Health and Wellbeing amongst our community is at the forefront of all our concerns and these events are of particular interest to the retired and more elderly residents in our borough, especially those who may feel isolated.

All the new Public Realm Projects and Neighbourhood Grant applications were unanimously approved.

Finally we received a Highways up-date from Sutton Principal Engineer Ian Price.

Full papers and minutes of the meeting can be read online.

The next meeting of the B&W Local Committee will be held on 10th October 2017 at 7pm.

The venue is yet to be confirmed.

We hope you will be able to attend and join in.

July 24, 2017 Posted by | Committee Meeting, Information | , | Leave a comment

   

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