Diary of a Sutton Councillor

Free Seniors Christmas Lunch at Wallington Arms 20.12.16

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The lovely Wallington Arms is once again inviting our local senior residents to celebrate Christmas with them on Tuesday 20th December at 1pm. The pub will be providing a free festive lunch for Wallington’s older people.

Please do call and reserve your place so the pub knows how many to expect: call 0208 773 0404.

Since the Wallington Arms took up residence in Wallington it has put on a number of free lunch events for our older residents that have been well attended and much appreciated.


December 13, 2016 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , | Leave a comment

Wallington Festive Lights Switch-on Friday 25th November 2016


November 14, 2016 Posted by | Information | , , , , | Leave a comment

Flytipping in Ross Road

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A resident alerted me to this appalling flytipping in Ross Road that took place around 2.30am on Sunday 9th October.

The Police and emergency Sutton Council staff had tidied the waste up to keep the road accessible to vehicles. Unfortunately the contractors the council normally calls on to get flytipping removed at weekends were busy elsewhere.

Talking to local residents it was clear that if the flytip stayed where it was there would be traffic bedlam along Ross Road on Monday morning. Ross Road is already a nightmare with all the local movement of parents dropping their children at the nursery, people trying to get to work, businesses, employees and commuters parking in the roads, and the ever present problem of obstructive parking.

I have pressed the council and been assured that they will send out a team first thing Monday and hopefully have it cleared by 6.30am.

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October 9, 2016 Posted by | Information | , , | 2 Comments

African and Caribbean Heritage Musical Picnic

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July 11, 2016 Posted by | Information | , , , | Leave a comment

Wallington flash flooding


The flooding under the railway bridge in Manor Road, Wallington has made the national news with pictures of the submerged cars and the dramatic rescue thanks to a quick thinking local man.

The reason the road dips so dramatically here is that it was lowered many years ago to allow double decker buses under the bridge. However this dip means that in severe weather all the local runoff gets directed into the dip and there were a number of occasions when significant rainfall resulted in floods under the bridge.

A major part of the 2011 improvement works involved addressing the flooding issues under the railway bridge. This involved installing four new soakaways* in Beddington Gardens, Ross Parade and Woodcote Road and improving the existing one under the bridge.

These five soakaways appeared to have addressed the problem, until Tuesday’s rainstorm.

We know that exceptional amounts of rainfall does lead to some drains being unable to cope with the volume leading to what is known as flash flooding. Apparently the rainfall this time was so torrential that elsewhere the sheer force of water gushing through the drains pushed the drain covers off, including in Stafford Road.

Sutton Council does undertake a program of gully & drain clearing – look out for a small lorry with a tube going into the drains, but I don’t know when the soakaways were last checked. As your ward councillors we will of course be finding out whether there were any issues with cleaning that may have contributed to the situation.

Update 10th June – feedback from council on gully cleaning:

Roads noted as high flood risk have a gully cleanse quarterly. The most recent gully cleanse of Manor Road from Wallington Green to the traffic lights at Sainsbury’s was on 14th April 2016.  It is on the high flood risk list so is cleaned quarterly and would be due again in July.  No issues were noted on last clean. All the other roads in the town centre were done in mid May around the 18th including Ross Road, Ross Parade, Elgin Road to the east of the town Centre and Shotfield, Parks Hill Ave and Beddington Gardens to the west.  These roads all feed down to the sewer under the bridge.

The crew use a gully tanker to suck all the silt and debris out of the gully pot, clear debris from the grill and then flush the system.  They check the gully pot is clean and working efficiently.  If they detect a blockage, they use a jet to try to remove the obstruction and get the gully and connecting drain that links it to the Thames Water main sewer running again.
If they are unable to get the system working, they note this on their report sheet.  Defects are then reported to the Highways Service so they can instruct their contractor to investigate further and make a repair.
 Update 23rd June – further work on Ross Road area drains to be undertaken
Thanks to an impromptu survey mid-rainstorm by a public spirited resident we have learnt from the council that at the last gully cleansing there were problems accessing some of the drains and gullies due to parked cars. This means that they cannot be certain that all the gullies in the Ross Road area are completely clear of blockages, and certainly the information supplied by the resident and checked on myself would suggest that there are some issues that need to be addressed and liaison with Thames Water as necessary.
To address this the council will seek to suspend parking for a day in relevant areas so that they can have a good look at the missed gullies and clean them out as necessary.
We appreciate that any suspension of parking is very inconvenient, particularly in Ross Road and surrounding streets, but it is the only way that the drain cleansing can be addressed, so when you see the parking suspension notices go up, please obey them. If people park and prevent access to the drains then it means that the crews have to keep coming back which means more days with parking suspended.

*According to Susdrain Soakaways are square or circular excavations either filled with rubble or lined with brickwork, pre-cast concrete or polyethylene rings/perforated storage structures surrounded by granular backfill. They can be grouped and linked together to drain large areas including highways. The supporting structure and backfill can be substituted by modular or geocellular units.

Soakaways are a sustainable way to provide stormwater attenuation, stormwater treatment and groundwater recharge, are installed underground and are not visible.

June 9, 2016 Posted by | Information | , , , | Leave a comment

Wallington Music Festival 25th June 2016



June 8, 2016 Posted by | Information | , , | Leave a comment

Free Seniors Lunch at Wallington Arms 10th June

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To help celebrate the Queen’s 90th Birthday the Wallington Arms are once again offering a free lunch for local senior citizens.

It will take the form of an afternoon tea starting at 12 noon on Friday 10th

This will be the third free Seniors Lunch the Wallington Armwallington Arms 2s have put on and the feedback from those attending has been very positive.

We think it is lovely that a local business is willing to put on these events for our older residents and think it shows just what lovely people we have in Wallington.

For more information and to reserve places call the pub direct on 0208 773 0404

June 5, 2016 Posted by | Information | , , , , | Leave a comment

Free Easter Lunch for Wallington Seniors Tuesday 5th April 2016

easterAfter the success of their Seniors Christmas Dinner our wonderful Wallington Arms Public House is now putting on a free Easter Lunch for senior Wallington residents.

It takes place on Tuesday 5th April, 12 noon at the Wallington Arms.
We are so pleased at the community spirit of one of our local businesses so please pass on the invitation to your friends and neighbours who might be interested.
For more information and to reserve places please contact the pub direct on 0208 773 0404

March 24, 2016 Posted by | Information | , , | Leave a comment

Love Food Hate Waste

love food hate waste logoSutton Council is supporting the Government’s Love Food Hate Waste campaign and I must say that it is a campaign that very much chimes with me personally.

You see I have become a bit of an addict at seeking out recipes to use up leftovers and fresh produce before it goes off.

I have made it even more of a challenge as for many years I have had a regular organic veg box delivery. Whilst I love trying to use seasonable veg that hasn’t travelled for hundreds of miles, it has led to me encountering a much broader range of fruits and vegetables than I would have picked out at the supermarket. As a result I have had to learn how to prepare and cook them. Some vegetables I have come to know and love: squashes, aubergines, kale, spinach and leeks, but there are still one or two that I haven’t developed a taste for like celeriac and Jerusalem artichokes (although I did manage to smuggle Jerusalem artichokes into a recipe recently that the family actually liked!)

What is left of my carrot & honey muffins

My latest effort – carrot & honey muffins – or what’s left of them.

My failsafe is to make soup. There are so many soup recipes out there that I don’t believe there is a single vegetable that can’t be made into a warming and delicious soup (except perhaps celeriac!) Family favourites in my house are Leek & Potato, Pumpkin and Sweetcorn, and Chinese Noodle soup –  which is especially good for using up small bits of whatever leftover meat and leafy veg you have.

My next favourite way of using vegetables or an excess of fruit is to use them in baking. Carrots, parsnips, potatoes and beetroot can all be used in cake recipes. I love to see the faces when I serve up my chocolate beetroot cake and people realise that it tastes really moist and chocolatey and nothing at all like beetroot. I have a special apple cake that is full of fruit and so good when you need to use up your apples as they start to wrinkle, and of course if you can make a crumble topping or pastry that is an easy way to use up most fruit in various combinations.

Some other dishes I find helpful for using up leftovers are:

Macaroni cheese – use up those end bits of cheese and throw in any leftover veg – peas, onions, frozen mixed veg, chopped kale or spinach.

Kale or spinach are also lovely mixed in with a curry, and very good for you. Curry is also good for a variety of veg leftovers.

Meatloaf with courgette and herbs is a firm favourite in our house when I have a glut of courgettes.

Banana & cocoa muffins – perfect for using up overripe bananas.

Omelettes and frittatas are perfect for lunch and can use up lots of leftovers like bacon, tomatoes, mushrooms, chorizo, cooked potatoes, peas and onions.

Leftover wine (it can happen occasionally) gets thrown into tomato sauces for pasta, and don’t throw away your stale bread (unless it is mouldy of course) as there are many recipes that need stale bread, or blitz them into breadcrumbs and make a savoury crumble topping (mix with grated cheese) or mix with melted chocolate and ground almonds for an indulgent chocolate cake.

Having given it a trial I have now swapped to the Sutton Community Farm for my regular veg bag delivery as I was very impressed with the quality. Even less food miles as it is based in Wallington and I know I am supporting a local enterprise too.

If anyone is interested in some of the recipes I have mentioned drop me a line as I am happy to share.

The Love Food Hate Waste website has lots more tips and recipes for anyone who wants to find out more, and Sutton Council is providing special activity sessions for local people in support of the campaign – for info contact amy.harris@sutton.gov.uk or on 020 8770 6389.


February 15, 2016 Posted by | Information | , , , , | Leave a comment

Information, advice and activities for over 50’s

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February 2, 2016 Posted by | Information | , , , , | Leave a comment

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