Automatic Number Plate Recognition cameras
On Monday 25 October the Surrey Police Commissioner Lisa Townsend, Surrey County Councillor Becky Rush, the WPC and several members of the Tandridge Police Team held a meeting with Woldingham residents to discuss local issues and concerns and how the police team can work better with us to enhance the safety of the village residents.
One of the most effective crime prevention measures the Police recommend is the use of Automatic Number Plate Recognition (ANPR) cameras. These can monitor vehicle activity and alert the police to suspicious movements in the village. They are monitored by the police who can then rapidly deploy resources as necessary.
It was thought that by siting 3 ANPR cameras at strategic locations in Woldingham good coverage of the village could be obtained.
Woldingham Parish Council would purchase the cameras and the police would then take over responsibility for siting, monitoring and maintaining them.
The Parish Council believe this would be a positive step towards crime minimisation and hope to have the cameras in place shortly.
Further information on ANPR cameras can be found on the Surrey Police website. Go to www.surrey.police.uk and enter ANPR in the search bar.
Councillor Peter Hutchinson
Speeding in the Village
You may recall that in June of this year the Woldingham Parish Council (WPC) contracted with Surrey Highways to undertake a speed survey on Station Road. The data from that speed test, taken across 6 days, demonstrated an average vehicle speed of 31.8 miles per hour on the road, 89% of which were cars. 2% of the vehicles were travelling at over 40 miles per hour. We continue to focus on speed and safety in the village and are looking to undertake more surveys to understand where we have speeding hot spots that we should pursue measures to address. We have asked Surrey Highways to undertake another speed survey for us on The Ridge. We do not have a firm date for this yet but we expect it to be early next year.
We have spoken to Surrey County Council about lowering the speed limit on our roads, but they have advised us that data shows this is ineffective. We will continue to pursue speed tests so that we can amass data to direct our activities.
We also own two Vehicle Activated Signs (VAS) – speed signs to alert drivers to speeding -which we can move around the village. They must be attached to existing poles, but please let us know if you think there is a location that needs them.
As a Parish Council, we have also sponsored a Neighbourhood Speedwatch. The initiative faltered some time ago as we lost volunteers and then efforts were interrupted by the pandemic. Speedwatch can be an effective way to discourage speeding. Speedwatch reminds drivers as they are on the road, but also results in police reminders. A report of any speeding vehicles is sent to the police and offenders are sent a warning letter. Multiple offences result in a driver being put on a list for final action, and once on this list, the next action is a fine or penalty points, with any prior violations on record taken into account.
We are aiming to restart Speedwatch as soon as possible. The Parish Council can provide the speed gun and organise training with the Police, who do both the vetting and the training. Speedwatch must be done in pairs, and we will get started with a minimum of 6 people, but need at least 10 volunteers to be effective.
Your village needs volunteers! Let’s work together to keep our village safe in every way. If you can spare some time, at least occasionally, then please contact the Parish Clerk to put your name forward: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Chairman Deborah Sherry
Planning Challenges and Wins
On the planning front, the Parish Council continues to work to protect the Greenbelt and our sylvan village. The Parish Council is also grateful for the expertise and assistance of the Woldingham Association on planning.
There have been a spate of recent applications with intensified development, many of which have threatened the Greenbelt. Four stand out as contentious. Of these, three were refused and one was granted on appeal.
The Warren: an application in the Greenbelt on Church Road to demolish an Arts and Crafts building and build 9 houses on the property. The application included, amongst other things, a proposal for a building that was materially larger than the existing building and for new buildings in the Greenbelt, which would harm the openness of the Greenbelt. This application was refused.
North Downs Golf Club: an application in the Greenbelt on Northdown Road to demolish existing golf club buildings (including an Arts and Crafts Clubhouse) and build 2 new houses on the site. The application included, amongst other things a proposal for new houses and a new and highly prominent modern building in the greenbelt, spoiling AONB and Greenbelt views and therefore harming the Greenbelt. This application was refused.
Atherfield: an application in the urban area to demolish an existing house and build 4 new houses. Additional applications for 8 houses were refused due to the intensification of use out of character with the surrounds, however the proposal for the 4 houses was considered sympathetic to the surrounds and granted on appeal.
Woodrising: an application in the Greenbelt on The Ridge, adjacent to AONB and AGLV designated land, to demolish an existing house and build a modern block of 12 flats. The application included, amongst other things, a proposal for a new modern building and associated outbuildings and large car park in the Greenbelt. It was visible in AONB and AGLV vistas. This contentious application was called into planning committee, at which your District councillor (and Vice Chair) Carole North and your Chairman, Deborah Sherry, spoke on behalf of the Council position. The application was refused on the grounds that it would harm the Greenbelt, the AONB and the AGLV.
Chairman Deborah Sherry