WELCOMING RABBI SHMULI SAGAL

With Rabbi Shmuli Sagal

With Rabbi Shmuli Sagal

There are three places of worship in our Ward – Christchurch in Christchurch Park is a Victorian Church of England church while in Cedar Road there is the Friends Meeting House and the Sutton and District United Synagoge.

On 11 September Richard attended the induction service to induct Rabbi Shmuli Sagal at the Sutton and District United synagogue in Cedar Road. Rabbi Shmuli Sagal studied in Israel and the USA, as well as the UK, in completing his studies prior to his appointment. The service was attended by the Chief Rabbi, Ephraim Mirvis, both Sutton and Carshalton Members of Parliament, and the Leader of Sutton Council, Councillor Ruth Dombey. It coincided with the 70th anniversary of the founding of the synagogue and was celebrated by the dedication a set of renovated Torah Scrolls.

PROGRESS ON TRAFFIC AND PARKING SCHEMES IN THE WARD

 

The extended yellow lines at the bottom of Downside Road

The extended yellow lines at the bottom of Downside Road

There is further progress on the traffic and parking schemes under consideration for the Ward to report following the meeting of the South Sutton, Cheam and Belmont Local Committee held on 8 September 2016 and the discussion at the Environment and Neighbourhoods Committee on 15 September of a global strategy for parking. To ensure a consistent approach throughout the Borough, all local schemes will be drawn into a central strategy and progressed on the basis of an assessment of priorities.

An ambitious scheme for the introduction of a 20mph scheme across most of the area of Sutton South Ward west of the Sutton to Belmont railway line has now been included in the “Local Implementation Plan” prepared by Transport for London. This was the subject of proposals put to the local committee in 2015. However, it is on the “reserve list” which means that implementation in the near future is most unlikely.

A parking scheme for the newly-named Berridge Close is agreed, implementation to coincide with the opening of the adjacent Subsea7 building, as this will lead to more intensive use of the road by those working in the building and accessing the underground car park. Obstructive parking in Berridge Close could lead to problems when the building is occupied, so needs to be avoided. It is proposed that the road will be included in the controlled parking zone with four parking bays in the road, reserved for residents with parking permits. Completion of the building is unlikely before December.

Traffic and parking schemes were the subject of a session at the December 2015 meeting of the South Sutton, Cheam and Belmont Local Committee, when residents noted down parking and traffic problems. A list of the proposals raised by residents was reported back to the local committee meeting on 10 March.

In relation to our own area, the proposals fell into three main categories.

First, concerns about intensive and sometimes obstructive parking in Mayfield Road and roads nearby (The Ridgway, Chalgrove Road, Upland Road).

Second, concerns about visibility at the Farm Road / The Ridgway junction.

Third, a set of other concerns, mostly about speeding at various locations.

This listing will form the agenda for further work by the traffic department within a wider cross-Borough study, which is centrally managed by the Council. A number of minor, initial proposals were agreed on 10 March, including to restrict parking at the Prior Avenue / Banstead Road junction due to visibility issues.

The question of a parking control scheme in Mayfield Road and the surrounding area was the subject of a consultation exercise by local Councillors last year which showed support in Mayfield Road but not adjacent roads. On 10 March the local committee agreed to devote some of its public realm funds to fund the traffic department to “kick start” a study of potential for parking controls in this area. A discussion between traffic engineers and Ward Councillors to consider this study was held on 8 June in Mayfield Road. The traffic engineers will design a parking control scheme for consultation. The precise parameters of this scheme and the consultation have yet to be finalised. Consultation with residents is due to begin in January 2017.

Some residents of Audley Place have commented to us that there is difficulty when driving out of Audley Place in seeing vehicles coming down Camborne Road, if cars are parked close to the corner. We raised this issue with traffic engineers and the Council is proposing a small extension of the yellow lines on each side at the exit from Audley Place. We think this will do the trick in terms of making it easier, and safer, to drive out into Camborne Road.

Residents of Tapestry Close have complained to us about obstructive parking in the Close. We raised this issue with traffic engineers and a scheme of yellow lining was proposed. Further consultation with residents, required by law, found some residents objecting and this scheme is currently on hold.

Several schemes consulted on some time ago have now been implemented, including yellow lining at the bottom of Downside Road to deal with obstructive parking (see photo above) and switching some “pay and display” bays to “dual use” so residents with parking permits can use them, in Grange Road and Langley Park Road.

A CRICKET BALL ROLLS IN SUTTON

Richard with the two teams and supporters

Richard with the two teams and supporters

On 16 August Richard, in his capacity as the Mayor of Sutton, together with the chief of Sutton’s police service, Chief Superintendent Stringer, gave enthusiastic support to the teams from Sutton police and the local Muslim community who met for their annual cricket match at Purley cricket ground.

The match, which was called off last year due to rain, was played in near perfect conditions, warm evening sunshine, starting at 5pm. The match was played under 20/20 rules. The police won the toss and put the Muslim Cultural Welfare Association in to bat. The Association’s batsmen were quickly racing along at over ten runs an over, and scored 204 for the loss of seven wickets off their twenty overs. The police were never likely to match this score and eventually fell well short, scoring 152 and losing by 52 runs.
Richard said “The quality of the cricket we saw thisevening was inspiring. It is heart warming that, at a time of problems and difficulties in some parts of the world, we have the annual tradition of this cricket match in Sutton promoting warm relations between the police and the local community.”
Richard with Chief Superintendent Stringer

Richard with Chief Superintendent Stringer

VICTORY IN CARSHALTON CENTRAL BY-ELECTION

The Liberal Democrat fightback continues.
The Party won the Carshalton Central by-election and Chris Williams has been elected as a new Sutton Councillor!
This maintains the number of Liberal Democrat Councillors on Sutton Council as 44, with just 8 Tories and two Independent Councillors (not elected as such but one each elected as a Tory and a Liberal Democrat who later fell out with their parties).
Chris achieved a 5.1% increase in the LibDem share of the vote compared to the 2014 result.

WEEKLY COLLECTION OF FOOD WASTE PROPOSED

bulbs oct 15

Proposals for a new waste collection service include a weekly collection of food waste.

There will continue to be fortnightly collection of re-cycling waste. The waste that currently goes in the brown bin will be divided, with the food waste collected weekly and other waste collected fortnightly. At present around 40 per cent of brown-bin waste is food waste, so this will mean residents will be able to reduce significantly the amount of waste in their brown bins. These changes will mean less waste goes to landfill, which is good for the environment.

Garden waste collections for paying residents will be extended from nine months a year to all year round. This will be collected in the same green and brown wheelie bin.

Street cleaning operations will be extended to 10pm from the current 6.30am start.

The new contracts will enable Sutton Council to save £10.3m over the first eight years. It is estimated that Sutton’s recycling rate will increase from 37 per cent (2014/15) to 42 per cent by the end of the first year of the contract.

Sutton Council has agreed to the shared service approach with its neighbours due to the unprecedented Government cuts to the Council’s budget, along with the opportunities to increase recycling rates. Currently Sutton has to save £31m from its annual budget due to Government cuts. The Council’s annual budget is £148.4m.

quadrant bins

AMNA AHMAD TO FIGHT SUTTON IF SNAP ELECTION CALLED

Amna addressing the Sutton Liberal Democrat Group

Amna addressing the Sutton Liberal Democrat Group

Amna Ahmad has been selected overwhelmingly as the Liberal Democrat parliamentary candidate for Sutton and Cheam, ready to fight the seat if a snap election is called in the autumn. The Liberal Democrats are now ready to fight a General Election, having selected candidates in areas with a proud liberal tradition, such as Sutton and Cheam.

This follows reports that the new Prime Minister might go to the country early, before a possible recession and to take advantage of Labour in-fighting.

As the former London Assembly candidate for Sutton, Amna has a strong record of fighting for people, having campaigned for better trains, half price fares and more affordable housing for local residents.

Amna Ahmad said: “I am really proud to have been selected. It would be a huge honour to represent this wonderful area.

“I am well aware that Sutton, Cheam & Worcester Park does have its challenges. As such my three campaign priorities will be to improve train services, provide more school places for local families and protect local health services. 

“Nationally the country is in crisis. Both the Conservatives and Labour are focused entirely on in-fighting while the economy worsens, threatening jobs, public services and our efforts to build the houses Britain so badly needs.

“The Liberal Democrats are well placed to fight a general election whenever it is held and I am raring to build on our local tradition of delivering for local people. Since the referendum we have signed more than 17,500 new members nationally including a large number in Sutton.

“The Conservatives have destroyed their reputation for economic competence, with investment plummeting, putting Sutton jobs at risk. Their vicious cuts to local government are putting a strain on our community services. Labour has given up even trying to speak to the British people, and is engaged in a vicious fight with itself. We, meanwhile, are selecting candidates in key seats.

“Only the Liberal Democrats are an open, optimistic and united party committed to spreading opportunity for the next generation and focus on re-building the British economy to protect jobs and services.”

Former Sutton and Cheam MP, Paul Burstow said: “I am delighted that Amna Ahmad will be fighting for Sutton, Cheam and Worcester Park. We have a strong liberal tradition in the area and I am confident that Amna will continue this, and make sure the voices of  residents are heard.”
Amna with Trish and Richard

Amna with Trish and Richard

SUTTON SOUTH HELLO’S SUCCESSFUL GARDEN PARTY

hello garden party 16

On 20 July we attended the Sutton South Hello annual garden party, held in the garden of Nancy, in Chalgrove Road. About 50 residents attended. There was good weather and music, and a good time was had by all.

Sutton South Hello, a social club for the elderly and those seeking friendship, is the result of collaboration between local Councillors, associations, residents, churches, our Sutton South Safer Neighbourhood police team and voluntary organisations like Age UK Sutton and SKILL (Sutton Centre for Independent Living). Heather Honour, former Liberal Democrat Councillor, chairs the Board and has worked hard to involve all aspects of the community in the project. Richard is a trustee of Hello, sits on the committee and was amongst those who helped found it.

It was launched at Christchurch, in Christchurch Park, on 9 May 2012 by the then Care Minister, Liberal Democrat MP Norman Lamb, and was the pilot for similar initiatives elsewhere in the Borough.

LOCAL POLICE PRIORITIES ASSESSED

Sutton police station in Carshalton Road

Sutton police station in Carshalton Road

On 12 July Trish and Richard attended the police consultative group meeting for Sutton South Ward, held in the church hall at Christchurch. It is a pity these public meetings attract so few members of the public, only four tonight. The police priorities for the next quarter will include seeking Neighbourhood Watch co-ordinators at Farm Close and Audley Place, and tackling the problem of rough sleepers in Ambleside Gardens and Beauclere House, in Brighton Road. There was also discussion of the theft of bins at blocks of flats in Brighton Road and in Christchurch Park. The overall level of crime in the area remains low.

The police are very keen to monitor any community tensions that might have arisen as a result of the EU referendum. Emotions may run high for a while and there have been some reports in the national media about a rise in hate crime and harassment in some areas. We have not heard of any such incidents locally; but obviously the police rely very much upon the community and the Neighbourhood Watch to monitor things like this for them.

If you have detected any such issues – or know of anyone who has – please do not hesitate to contact Sutton police to report them.

If anyone wishes to make an anonymous report they can always call Crimestoppers at any time – day or night – on 0800 555 111, in complete confidence.

eid celebrations

On 6 July Richard, by invitation, attended the Eid celebrations held annually in Overton Park (see picture above) at the end of Ramadan, to show his support for multculturalism and opposition to hate crime.

Cllr Ruth Dombey, Leader of Sutton Council, Niall Bolger, Chief Executive of Sutton Council, Cllr Tim Crowley, Leader of the Opposition at Sutton Council, and Sutton Borough Police Commander Dave Stringer said in a joint statement on 30 June:

“Since the EU referendum result there have been media reports of hate crimes against people living in this country. However, there has been no increase in hate crime incidents reported to the police in Sutton and across London.

“We are grateful that Sutton has not seen an increase in such intolerant and antisocial behaviour. The vote is not a licence for racist and xenophobic behaviour. We would urge residents to be vigilant to ensure that all borough citizens continue to live together in a peaceful, harmonious and responsible way.

“We are aware that certain events can spur intolerance, hate or extremism. Anyone who witnesses or suffers any hate incident of any type should report it immediately to the Police so that they can take action and deal with any incidents quickly.

“Sutton is a popular place to live, in part because we are a tolerant, open society that values people of all cultures, nationalities and religions. At this time it is more important than ever that we show solidarity with our neighbours of all different faith and cultural groups to ensure that extremist views and behaviour have no part of our community.”

HONOURING OUR ARMED FORCES

 

Richard visiting the army cente in Stonecot Hill on Armed Services Day

Richard visiting the army centre in Stonecot Hill on Armed Forces Day

On 20 June Trish and Richard attended the flag raising ceremony, raising the Armed Forces Day flag in Sutton Town Square, to honour our armed services. This marked the start of Armed Forces Week. Richard, as Mayor, led the event.

Richard said “Our Armed Forces are busy working around the world, promoting peace, delivering aid, tackling drug smugglers, tackling people smugglers, providing security, fighting terrorism.   They work in difficult, dangerous and unpleasant conditions away from their families and the luxuries we all take for granted.   They operate in environments where the very basics of security and safety are absent.   They face, daily, a daunting challenge, doing work that is vital to the protection of our society and our way of life. we now watch with pride as the Armed Forces Day flag is raised for those  who are currently serving and those who have served.”

On 25 June Richard visited the army centre in Stonecot Hill (see photo) and observed the work of 151 Logistics Corps. On 20 July he attended a reception given by 151 Logistics Corps at which there was stirring rendition of “Highland Cathedral” (a composition popular with the concert bands Richard plays with) by the Ghurka pipe and drum band.

army gurka

A BUSY WEEKEND FOR THE MAYOR

carshalton carnival

The weekend of June 11 and 12 was incredibly full for Richard and Gloria, in their roles as Mayor and Mayoress.  On Saturday Richard and Gloria attended the Carshalton Carnival, the picture showing them with the Carnival Queen and her attendants. Richard then opened the St Helier Festival, after which he played the trumpet with the Phoenix Concert Band at a concert during the afternoon tea for senior citizens at the Friends’ Meeting House in Cedar Road.

Opening the St Helier Festival

Opening the St Helier Festival

On Sunday there were many street parties, including one in Cumnor Road, to celebrate the Queen’s birthday.

[ Further and regular updates on Richard and Gloria’s Mayoral activities can be found on “Richard’s Blog” – go back to the top to find the link to click on. ]

In Cumnor Road

In Cumnor Road