Morris Men Bonus Donation to Mayors Charities with a plea of help

Squire, Mick Sargent of Ewell St Mary’s Morris Men has presented Epsom & Ewell’s Mayor,Cllr. Clive Woodbridge with a cheque for £663.52 as a  donation towards The Mayor’s charities. The proceeds were collected during the annual Ewell St Mary’s Morris Men’s Boxing Day Tour of Ewell Village on 26th Dec 2023. BUT the morris men need your help as well.

For 40 years Ewell’s local Morris Dance team have danced through the Village on Boxing Days, as well as all over the country,  but the fear is this colourful and lively spectacle for which people travel miles each year to see and enjoy could soon be coming to an end.

New Morris dancers are urgently needed to keep this local tradition alive. It not just men dancing around with bells, hankies and hitting sticks there is a lot more to it. Morris dancing has a long recorded history with the earliest reference being from 1448. By the early 16th century morris dancing had become a fixture of Church festivals. Later in the century the morris became attached to village fetes, and the May Day revels; Shakespeare says “as fit as a morris for May Day”

And that’s the bit people don’t realise. It’s also a brilliant exercise and great for keeping you fit as well as a great break from the daily grind. Plus if you love a real ale you be amazed at how many events they perform at in which are in or outside some great pubs.

If you like to give it ago there is no commitment it’s a come as and when you can basis and you don’t have to live in Ewell. You can be from anywhere.

So give it ago, cheaper than a gym, popping along to one of their Thursday evening practice sessions at the Scout Hut 106A West Street, Ewell KT17 1XR from 8pm onwards. No experience necessary.

For more information contact Alan Greenwood [email protected]  or visit their website CLICK HERE

Morris dancing in Ewell Village on Boxing day


Domestic Abuse Team investigation helps jail ‘violent bully’

After a weekend of constant physical attacks, she realised that her life was in danger. He had beaten and strangled her so badly in their hotel room that she was terrified.

Seeing an opportunity to escape and get help, she ran to the hotel’s reception and the police were called. He was arrested there and then and taken into custody.

Investigating Officer Molly Patterson, from the Domestic Abuse Team, investigated the violent assaults which had happened that weekend using images of her injuries, CCTV from the hotel and witness statements to corroborate her account.

She was assigned an Independent Domestic Violence Advisor to support her through the investigation and court process.

On 20 January, Jordan McFaulds, 25, from Lancashire, was sentenced to two years and nine months in prison at Guildford Crown Court after pleading guilty to two counts of common assault by beating, two counts of actual bodily harm and one of intentional strangulation. *

He was also handed a seven-year restraining order against her, after the Judge branded him a ‘violent bully’.

Speaking to other victims of domestic abuse, she said: “As hard as it might feel to make the change and come forward, your life will never be as hard as it currently is.

“You can feel empowered and be able to move forward to make your life anything you want it to be without the dead weight of an abusive relationship.

“Surrey Police’s Domestic Abuse Team was absolutely amazing, especially Investigating Officer Molly Patterson. She treated me like an equal and re-empowered me.

“I am extremely relieved that he is now in prison for what he did to me.”

Investigating Officer Molly Patterson, said: “At the time of the initial report, she struggled to see a life outside of the abuse, but the bravery and tenacity she has shown throughout the investigation has proved that there is hope and there is life after domestic abuse.

“We know that coming forward to police can feel like a huge, and perhaps scary, step to take, but there are lots of things we can do to safeguard and support you, from providing a domestic violence kit which restricts access to your property, all the way through to providing a dedicated advisor who will support you throughout the investigative process.

“We have specialist people in place who want to help, so please do not suffer alone.”

*The offences relate to assaults which happened on 16 September and 17 September 2022 both outside an address and at a hotel in Staines-upon-Thames.

To access more information about domestic abuse, including how to report it and details of support organisations, please  Click Here.


“Honey We’ve Shrunk The Green Belt”

Amid scenes of dramatic resident protest over Green Belt inclusion for housing, councillors on a planning sub-committee of Epsom and Ewell borough council voted unanimously last night (Jan 30) to accept its Draft Local Plan. It will be formally published tomorrow, February 1st
Of the nine “preferred option” sites in the Plan, five are green belt sites, on which it is proposed to build 2,175 houses – over 41% of the total of 5,400 proposed up to 2040. No visionary large-scale brownfield developments for affordable homes is included, while 137 acres of green belt are now effectively blighted.

Green Belt sites for housing include four on the west side of Epsom- with a huge 1,500 home estate planned around Horton Farm, and one for 350 homes obliterating sports fields near East Ewell station. ( full list below)
There was one spot of good news for the residents after a long fought campaign – as the 110 acre Downs Farm on the Reigate Road was not included in the final list.

Nearly 100 residents protested with banners as the councillors arrived at the Town Hall, with a packed public gallery adorned with “green belts” buckled to its railings in silent protest (see picture). One questioning resident took off his green belt and laid it on the Council Chambers’ speaker’s table, where it stayed for the two hour debate.

“We are furious that the RA controlled council did not fight to keep Epsom’s special character and Green Belt heritage, as is permitted under clear emerging government planning policy” said local resident Yufan Si, for the Keep Epsom and Ewell Green Belt “ There is no clear idea of where any of the much needed social infrastructure, will come from, from schools to doctors’ surgeries, as both councillors and planners admitted in the meeting”

Residents complain that the Draft Plan relies totally and lazily on a “Call for Sites”, with opportunistic developers and landowners putting forward plenty of green belt land, with only a few brownfield sites offered up. There has been no advance discussions with major town centre developers to mix new residential units with job opportunities nearer the urban centre, which most agree needs rejuvenation.

Despite written objections to the committee from the CRPE on sustainability issues and concern over the population projections, EEBC failed to follow the lead of other local councils. Mole Valley voted to remove all Green Belt from its Local Plan, and Elmbridge avoided all Green Belt areas by focussing on smaller 1-5 house brownfield sites – none of which are listed in Epsom’s Local Plan.

Councillors were reminded that the May Local Elections are coming up before the next stage of the Local Plan, and their legacy on supporting Green Belt sites was likely to come under scrutiny – even now, said one resident, they will have to go home to their spouses and say “Honey, I’ve shrunk the Green Belt.”

Residents wishing to preserve Epsom’s Green Belt are now urged to make written representations to EEBC in the six week Public Consultation stage which runs for six weeks from tomorrow. Sites can be added and taken away, say the Council.

Full list of Green Belt “Preferred Option” housing sites in the EEBC Draft Local Plan:

          • Horton Farm land, 1,500 homes
          • West Park Hospital land, 150 homes
          • Chantilly Way, 25 homes
          • Hook Road Arena land, 150 homes (council-owned land)
          • Ewell East Station land 350 homes 

Article and images provided by Keep Epsom and Ewell Green Belt Group. For further info, and Petition, visit

Local Plan Clutches at Green Belt Straws For Houses

MVDC Seeking Agreement to Remove Green Belt Sites from Draft Local Plan

Local Group Ask Epsom & Ewell Councillors to Reconsider the use of Green Belt Land

Local Group Ask Epsom & Ewell Councillors to Reconsider the use of Green Belt Land

Consultation on Epsom & Ewell’s Draft Local Plan going live in February 2023

EEBC set to develop temporary accommodation for local families

Epsom & Ewell Borough Council set to develop vital temporary accommodation for local families

Epsom & Ewell Borough Council has submitted a planning application to create three new temporary homes to house local families at risk of homelessness.

The proposal is in response to the acute demand for temporary accommodation in the borough, particularly for family-sized homes. It forms an important contribution to the Council’s recently launched Homelessness and Rough Sleeping Strategy, which includes the objective to increase accommodation options in the borough including temporary accommodation.

The proposal makes use of brownfield land alongside Fairview Road in Epsom and was approved by the Strategy & Resources Committee on Thursday 26 January. The proposal will now go through the due planning process and if approved, work will start in March 2023.

Alongside providing life-changing support to the families who will make use of the homes, investment in the properties will lead to savings for the Council over time, as the cost of the development is offset by rental income and a reduction in the need for expensive nightly paid accommodation. The Council has also been successfully awarded funding of £75,000 from the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities’ Brownfield Land Relief Fund, to be invested in this project.

The homes are pre-fabricated and built offsite to provide an innovative, attractive and low-cost housing solution. They are at the forefront of energy efficient design and provide safe, welcoming spaces for families.

Cllr Neil Dallen, Chair of the Strategy & Resources Committee, said: “I am delighted that this key project has been approved by Committee, and that its importance has been emphasised by the level of funding we have received from central government. The impact of homelessness cannot be underestimated, and increasing temporary accommodation provision for local families will have a positive impact not only on those being housed, but on the borough as a whole.

This will now progress through the planning process and we will await the outcome with interest.”

Inside view of FamilyHaus
Inside view of FamilyHaus
A bid was submitted to the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities to access the Brownfield Land Relief Fund to provide funding to assist in the development of the site.The funding awarded of £75,000 will assist with the preparation of the site for development.


Haus micro homes are produced by The Hill Group and are at the forefront of prefabricated, energy efficient design. The proposal is for three FamilyHaus micro homes to be installed on the site. The company also produces a SoloHaus unit for individuals and DuoHaus for couples. An image of the FamilyHaus unit can be found here:

Local Plan Clutches at Green Belt Straws For Houses

Epsom & Ewell Borough Council Local Plan Clutches At Green Belt Straws For Houses – Saving of Downs Farm only bright spot , as brownfield priorities missed. Given the Government’s “brownfield first” brief, it looks like the planners did not get the memo.

They certainly did not get the new memo from Government saying that it is not necessary to review Green Belt for housing. And they appear not to have taken the hint from neighbouring Elmbridge, who creatively avoided any Green Belt destruction, and Mole Valley, whose councillors this month voted unanimously to remove all Green Belt sites from its Local Plan.

Out of 5,400 new homes proposed in the Draft Local Plan (2023-20240) , with EEBC councillors due to take a final Section 18 publication decision on Monday 30 January, some 2,175 homes (almost 41%) are earmarked to be built on the borough’s Green Belt land.

Of nine “Preferred Option” development sites proposed, five are Green Belt – with Downs Farm, where 650 homes were proposed, only narrowly missing the cut after a huge campaign by residents.

Over 55 hectares – or some 137 acres – of Green Belt land could be sacrificed. The plans include one gigantic estate of some 1,500 homes on land around Horton Farm, which will have its Green Belt status stripped away.

The “Preferred Options” for Green Belt development are:

– 150 homes around West Park Hospital
– 1,500 homes around Horton Farm
– 25 homes next to Chantilly Way
– 350 homes on the sports fields by Ewell East Station
– 150 homes on sports pitches at Hook Road Arena (land owned by the Council)

Only on its own land can the Council specify 100% affordable homes – the rest will be 40% at best, as developers have many canny ways to get round this stipulation and build more profitable higher end housing.

The Council even admits that they have already taken some slugs of Green Belt land for housing, on the NESCOT campus and the five hospitals housing developments – but they need more.

There is a whole Appendix (Appendix 4 see below) revealing yet more Green Belt sites that have been offered up by opportunistic developers in a “ Call for Sites” that have been mercifully excluded as “Preferred Options”. Much of the analysis seems subjective and open to question.

And then there is this – the previous Council Green Belt studies of 2017-19 have been considered out of date and a new 2022 Green Belt Study has been
commissioned- but we all have yet to see this document.

EEBC needs to plunder more Green Belt, as it appears only a few brownfield
landowners came forward in its “Call for Sites”. So the Plan is offering just
around 1,000 homes in Epsom Town Centre until year 2040, and the same meagre number over 15 years on urban LAA sites, and it reckons the same number again for existing planning permissions.

So where is the real challenge taken up, to redevelop Epsom Town surroundings, which most commentators agree could do with some rejuvenation, to say the least?

Well, the Kiln Lane and Longmead industrial areas are said to be off limits,
according to consultants for EEBC, because of the 1,800 jobs there. So not a single new brownfield affordable home is put forward here, with no imaginative plan to mix housing with job creation and revitalise an area close to the station, shops and entertainment facilities that many people prefer.

Smaller brownfield developments of around 5 -10 homes each, do not seem to be in the Draft Plan either, although we may have missed the brownwood for the trees

“We are left with the conclusion that the planners – and by extension our ruling Councillors – are in a “Call for Sites” trap. This has inhibited visionary thinking and pro-active engagement with urban developers on how much-needed affordable housing might be built in tandem with an exciting redevelopment programme that Epsom’s brownfield areas so desperately need” said Yufan Si, campaign leader for Keep Epsom & Ewell’s Green Belt

“All they seem able to do about it is to bulldozer yet another field of our Green Belt heritage” said Ms Si.

If Councillors vote on January 30 for the Draft Local Plan (Section 18) to proceed, then it will be formally published by EEBC on February 1, followed by a six-week Public Consultation stage.

CLICK HERE For Details of Monday’s Meeting

Article supplied by Epsom & Ewell Green Belt Campaign Group

MVDC Seeking Agreement to Remove Green Belt Sites from Draft Local Plan

Local Group Ask Epsom & Ewell Councillors to Reconsider the use of Green Belt Land

Consultation on Epsom & Ewell’s Draft Local Plan going live in February 2023

Residents Take Action As Green Belt Comes Under Threat



Citizens Advice Saving Money On Your Energy Bills Tips

Citizens Advice Epsom & Ewell shares tips for saving money on your energy bills

As people across the borough struggle with sky-high energy bills, Citizens Advice Epsom & Ewell (CAEE) shares practical advice for bringing down costs. The charity has teamed up with Energy Saving Trust to provide the following advice for making small savings around the home*:

      • Turning your appliances off standby could save you £65 a year;
      • Draught proofing windows, doors and blocking cracks around your home could save you up to £125 a year;
      • Turning off lights when you leave a room could save you £25 a year;
      • Washing your clothes at 30 degrees and doing one less machine run a week could save you around £34 a year;
      • Ditching the tumble dryer and drying your clothes on racks in a well-ventilated room or outside in warmer weather could save you £70 a year;
      • Reducing your shower time to 4 minutes can save you £95 a year;
      • Swapping one bath a week with a 4 minute shower can save you £20 a year;
      • Avoiding overfilling the kettle could save you £13 a year;
      • Running your dishwasher one time less per week could save you £17 a year

People must get all the support they’re entitled to.

These lifestyle changes still might not cover the hole in household budgets, so CAEE is also urging people to check they’re getting all the support they’re entitled to. This could include:

      • Energy Bills Support Scheme — a £400 discount given to every household. People who use prepayment meters are also entitled to this – there’s more information here on how this works;
      • Warm Home Discount — a £150 discount if you get certain benefits;
      • Fuel vouchers — if you can’t afford to top up your prepayment meter;
      • Cold weather payments — payments if you get certain benefits and the weather is extremely cold;
      • Grants from your energy supplier — to help you pay off debts you may owe.

If you owe money to your energy supplier, you should speak to them about setting up a payment plan. They’re responsible for helping you find a way to pay your bills.

image of Lisa Davis, CEO of CAEE, Lisa Davis, CEO of CAEE, said: “We know times are extremely hard and a lot of people are struggling to stay afloat. It’s important to know about any way you can safely save money and what support you’re entitled to.

“We know many people are already doing everything they can and are still stretched beyond their limit. If you need personalised support, don’t hesitate to contact us on Freephone 0808 278 7963   or visit”

For Your Local Citizens Advice CLICK HERE 

New Chief Executive recommended for Epsom & Ewell Borough Council

Jackie King is set to become the new Chief Executive of Epsom & Ewell Borough Council, subject to ratification by Full Council on Tuesday 14 February. Jackie has been recommended for the position following a robust and competitive recruitment process.

Jackie joined Epsom & Ewell Council (EEBC) in September 2021 as Director of Corporate Resources and has been in the position of interim Chief Executive since July 2022.

Jackie has had an extensive career across the public and private sector and prior to joining EEBC was Acting Chief Executive at Tandridge District Council. She also spent eight years at Surrey Police in various People, Change and Transformation roles as well as roles relating to performance and risk in global financial institutions.

image of Hanna DaltonCllr Hannah Dalton, Chair of the Residents’ Association Majority Group, said:

“We are very pleased to be recommending the appointment of Jackie King as the new Chief Executive of Epsom and Ewell Borough Council. Through the rigorous recruitment process undertaken, Jackie demonstrated that she is a strong and effective leader with the drive and vision to take EEBC forward.

Jackie has the support of Councillors, staff and partners in leading the delivery of our agreed priorities and in helping our communities to face the significant challenges that lie ahead in these tough times.

Jackie has been with the Council as our Director of Corporate Services for 18 months and I have every confidence that, with her at the helm as our Chief Executive, we will make strong progress in the years ahead and deliver the change that Councillors are looking for and that our residents expect.”

Image of Jackie KingJackie King said:

“I am delighted to be recommended for this position as EEBC’s next Chief Executive. As a long-term resident of the borough I am so proud of what we have to offer here, and am looking forward to working with colleagues, Councillors, partners and residents to support the borough to grow and thrive.

The last few years have been challenging for us all in many ways and from my time here at the Council I know how committed and ambitious everyone is to really make a difference and deliver the best services we can for our communities, businesses, and visitors.”


Epsom & Ewell Borough Council Chief Executive to leave

Flagpole Donated in Memory of Son

Local Epsom residents Carol and Steve Bridger today unveiled a new flagpole on Epsom Common, by Stamford Green, in memory of their son Richard who sadly passed away in 2018 aged just 34. Richard, who was their eldest son, had suffered with Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy but enjoyed visits to the common as well as looking from his window towards the green from his room.

L to R Steve and Carol, Members of Epsom Common Association, EEBC

The original wooden flag pole was snapped in half during a storm a year and a half ago. The flagpole was used not only for flying the environmental Green Flag award, which the common regularly wins, but also during Remembrance weekend and other special occasions.

Carol and Steve decided to donate a new flagpole to Epsom & Ewell Borough Council. Steve said “Richard loved this area so when we saw the damage pole we knew this would be a fitting memory of Richard”

He went on to say “Carol and I would like to thank Stewart Cocker of Epsom & Ewell Council, Epsom Common Association and Tom Kane of Kane Construction who supplied the labour and materials to replace the base for free”

Steve Bridger raising the Green Award flag on the new flagpole
Steve Bridger raising the Green Award flag on the new flagpole


Surrey Police Virtual Recruitment Session

Anyone thinking of starting a career in Surrey Police’s Contact and Deployment department can get involved in Surrey Police virtual recruitment session to find out more.

Whether it is working in their Contact Centre answering emergency calls, in the Force Control Room deploying their police officers, or as part of the Police Counter Team – being that first friendly face greeting people coming into their stations – the Contact and Deployment department is an integral part of Surrey Police.

The hour-long virtual event is taking place on Wednesday, 25 January at 6:30pm.

So, if you or any of your family or friends may be interested, share the link below and come and join Surrey Police for an informative evening!

The virtual session will be an opportunity to meet the police and ask any questions about the recruitment process, the entry requirements, training or progression.

Register here to get yourself a place at the virtual event:

Are You Looking For A Job In Surrey? If so visit our Jobs Board…..CLICK HERE

Statement from Councillor Stephen Cooksey, MVDC

Statement from Councillor Stephen Cooksey, Leader of Mole Valley District Council

Councillor Stephen Cooksey, Leader of Mole Valley District Council (MVDC), said: “On Monday evening this week, all Members gave consideration to our Local Plan at an Extraordinary Council meeting. I, along with four other Cabinet colleagues, called the meeting so that MVDC’s Members could consider seeking the Inspector’s view on removing all green belt sites from the draft Plan. I am delighted to say that this proposal gained universal consensus across the council chamber and we have written to the Inspector to see if she would consider this modification to the Plan. We will of course update residents on the outcome of this decision when we know more ourselves.

“There will be a drop-in community engagement event taking place at the Leatherhead Institute (KT22 8AH) on Saturday 21 January 2023 from 1-3pm. It will provide an opportunity for anyone to speak to representatives from a range of organisations including the local Safer Neighbourhood policing team, Mount Green Housing Association, the Designing Out Crime Officer and Neighbourhood Watch. A number of teams from MVDC will be there too, including the Transform Leatherhead team who will be able to provide an update on the town’s regeneration project.

“Ahead of the annual Specsavers Surrey Youth Games weekend being held this summer – a brilliant opportunity for young people  across the county to have fun and get active – Team Mole Valley needs enthusiastic Young Ambassadors to help promote and encourage new participants to take part in 2023. It is a great opportunity chance for 7 to 16 years olds to develop leadership skills and build confidence too. Ambassador application need to be in by 31 January 2023. For more information, visit our website.

“Many people in Mole Valley will have one or more dogs in their homes, and it is really important residents are aware of the responsibility that comes with being an owner. Our Environmental Health team have asked I share a reminder that, if your dog is over the age of eight weeks, it must be microchipped and the pet’s details registered. You could face a fine of up to £500 if your dog is not registered on an approved database.

“As a reminder, if you wish to comment on the organisation’s budget proposals for 2023/24, we will need to receive your email to [email protected] before 23 January 2023.

“Finally, I would like to thank everyone who took the time to email us their thoughts surrounding the offer from Dorking Wanderers to purchase the Meadowbank facilities. The report, which will first be considered by the Scrutiny Committee in the evening on Tuesday 24 January 2023, is available on our website. The meeting is also available to watch next Tuesday on our webcast should you wish.”