New Government Restrictions Announced

Yesterday, on the advice of the four Chief Medical Officers, the UK’s COVID alert level was raised from three to four, the second most serious stage, meaning that transmission is high or rising exponentially.

The Prime Minister has made a statement to the Commons today. This covered these main points:

  • Office workers who can work from home should do so.
  • From Thursday, all pubs, bars and restaurants must operate table-service only, except for takeaways. Together with all hospitality venues, they must close at 10pm.
  • The face coverings will be extended to include staff in retail, to all users of taxis and private hire vehicles, and to staff and customers in indoor hospitality, except when seated at a table to eat or drink.
  • In retail, leisure, tourism and other sectors, Covid-secure guidelines will become legal obligations. Businesses will be fined and could be closed if they breach these rules.
  • The rule of six will be tightened. From Monday, a maximum of 15 people will be able to attend wedding ceremonies and receptions, though, up to 30 can still attend a funeral as now. The rule of six will also have to extend to all adult indoor team sports.
  • The spread of the virus is now affecting the ability to reopen business conferences, exhibitions and large sporting events. Plans to do so will be on pause.

Other points:

  • Local lockdowns will continue where necessary. Where local lockdown areas are under more stringent measures these will continue for as long as necessary.
  • The penalty for failing to wear a mask or breaking the rule of six will now double to £200 for a first offence.
  • Following advice from senior clinicians, people do not need to shield – except in local lockdown areas. This will be kept under constant review.
  • If these actions fail to bring the R below 1, then the Government reserves the right “to deploy greater firepower, with significantly greater restrictions”.

It is vital to remember the basics – washing hands, covering faces, observing social distancing – and following the rules.

Updated guidance on social distancing measures

Following a press conference yesterday afternoon, the government has updated its social distancing measures in relation to social gatherings amid a rise in COVID-19 cases. From Monday 14 September, it will be illegal to meet in groups of more than six people in England. This applies to gatherings outside and inside the home.

The updated measure will be enforceable by law and the police can split up larger gatherings and impose fines of up to a maximum of £3,200. This single measure replaces both the existing ban on gatherings of more than 30 and the current guidance on allowing two households to meet indoors.

COVID secure venues, such as places of worship, gyms, restaurants and other hospitality venues, can still hold more than six people in total but within these venues there must not be individual groups larger than six. Education, work settings, weddings and funerals and organised sport are unaffected by the change. More information on the new guidance can be found here.

The government also announced a stronger enforcement approach which includes the following measures:

  • Businesses will have a clear duty to support NHS Test and Trace. From 18 September, it will be mandatory for certain businesses to have a system to collect NHS Test and Trace data, and keep this for 21 days
  • The government will support councils and police forces to respond to breaches of COVID-19 Secure guidelines. A register of newly qualified and recently retired Environmental Health Officers will be launched so that local authorities can recruit more quickly and fill any gaps. In addition, COVID-19 Secure Marshals will be available to help local authorities support social distancing in towns and city centres
  • The current fine regime remains in place with escalation of fines for persistent non-compliance to a maximum of £3,200
  • There will be further steps to improve compliance with quarantine and UK border/point of entry requirements.

In addition to these measures, the government will review its current plans to pilot larger audiences in venues this month.

Tumber Street Road Closure

D314 Tumber Street, Headley – Temporary Prohibition of Traffic Order 2020

Surrey County Council propose to make the above mentioned Temporary Order under Section 14(1) of the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984, the effect of which will be to prohibit all traffic (including pedestrians and cyclists) from entering or proceeding in the entire length of D314 Tumber Street, Headley. This Traffic Order is required to enable Lanes Group Plc. to carry out sewer cleaning and/or maintenance works.

These works are anticipated to be carried out between the hours of 9:30am and 3:30pm, within 1 day of the 12 month period of operation of this Temporary Order that commences on 15 September 2020. Advanced warning signs will be displayed and the temporary closure will only operate when the relevant traffic signs are displayed. Access for emergency services will be maintained at all times.

Access for residents, businesses, cyclists and equestrians will be maintained at all times via Slough Lane, Church Lane and Leech Lane. Access for pedestrians will be maintained via Slough Lane, Church Lane, T8074 Townpath Church Lane and Leech Lane. In the event that it is necessary to restrict any access at any time under Section 3 of the Act, the road can only be closed for a maximum of 8 hours in any 24-hour period.

Parish Council statement regarding Headley Court Planning Application

Headley Parish Council (HPC) has noted the recent request from some members of the Headley Residents Action Group calling on us to pass an urgent resolution for a Judicial Review (JR) into the recent Headley Court planning application.

HPC has been working for over 6 years to secure a future use of the Headley Court estate that reflects its setting and location and is acceptable to the local community.

Most recently we provided a powerful summary of the planning case against the application and we were surprised and disappointed that it was approved by Mole Valley’s Development Management Committee.

At an Extraordinary meeting in July, HPC decided to ask the Secretary of State to call in the decision, but this request was refused.

At the subsequent scheduled Parish Council meeting, HPC decided to lodge a formal complaint with Mole Valley about aspects of the decision-making process. This complaint is progressing and we have asked for various forms of redress, including clarification of which elements of the approved application may be challenged when the Reserved Matters are considered.

We also agreed a framework for making decisions regarding initiating legal action of any sort, including a possible Judicial Review (JR). Such a decision-making framework is essential to ensure that any expenditure of, or possible risk to, the public funds entrusted to us can be justified to all the Headley residents who have contributed via their Council Tax.

We have a duty to ensure that any decision is based on the available evidence and an assessment of the likelihood of success and is only undertaken once other, less costly, avenues have been explored. Since the July meeting, HPC has been continuing to assemble the evidence needed to make a decision under this framework.

At this stage any decision to proceed with a JR would be premature, since no JR can be initiated until the Decision Notice is published (which we have been advised will not be before the next Parish Council meeting), and counter-productive, since it would bring an immediate end to any prospects of elements
of redress from MVDC’s complaints process.

This issue will be reviewed at our next Parish Council meeting which will be on Monday 28th September at 7.30pm via ZOOM. Please email the Clerk for login details and to submit any questions you may have, prior
to the meeting.

clerk@headley-pc.gov.uk

First Ever National Impact Survey Launched By Neighbourhood Watch

This is a survey open to all members of the public including our supporters and members and we are asking our partners to share across their public networks.  It will enable us to look at how Neighbourhood Watch impacts in our communities and identify the concerns surrounding crime, fear of crime and the increase in neighbourliness and community spirit.

We ask that you share the survey IMPACT SURVEY with friends, neighbours, colleagues and your partners, to ensure that we get a good mix of responses.  You can do this in various ways through email, using social media and any other methods that you may have.

We look forward to receiving your responses on our survey which needs to be completed by 21st August 2020.

Neighbourhood Alert.

Casual Vacancy for a Councillor at Headley Parish Council

HEADLEY PARISH COUNCIL – CASUAL VACANCY FOR A COUNCILLOR

LOCAL GOVERNMENT ACT 1972

There is a vacancy on the above Parish Council following the resignation of Councillor Vivienne Williams. 

A by-election to fill the vacancy will be held if, within 14 days (not counting a Saturday, Sunday or Bank Holiday) from the date below, ten electors for the said Parish give notice in writing claiming such an election to the
Returning Officer. Due to Covid-19 restrictions, any by-election would not be held until May 2021.

The address of the Returning Officer is:

Mole Valley District Council
Pippbrook
Dorking RH4 1SJ

If no such notice is given, the Parish Council will fill the vacancy by co-option.

This notice is dated Tuesday 28th July 2020.

Interested parties should email the clerk for further information – clerk@headley-pc.gov.uk

Tracy Hamer – Clerk to the Council
Headley Parish Council
07778 546477

 

CASUAL VACANCY FOR A COUNCILLOR – July 2020 HPC

Press Release – Our Green Belt Is At Risk

HEADLEY PARISH COUNCIL – PRESS RELEASE

OUR GREEN BELT IS AT RISK, FOLLOWING A VOTE BY THE DEVELOPMENT MANAGEMENT COMMITTEE OF MOLE VALLEY DISTRICT COUNCIL

On Wednesday 1st July Mole Valley’s Development Management Committee (DMC) considered the application by Angle Properties to build a housing estate of up to 70 dwellings on land to the west of Headley Road, being only part of the site of the Headley Court estate.

The Chair of the Parish Council was allowed to speak for 3 minutes and the live-streaming of the hearing was observed by more than 70 members of the public including all Parish Councillors. The 4 hour meeting was notable for the lack of balanced opinion, the omission of topics of both local and national significance and the fact that Councillors admitted to having had insufficient time to read the information supplied for their consideration. However, despite the lack of informed debate, the Committee voted in favour of the development.

There were a number of “elephants in the room” – important topics that everyone should have known about but no one wanted to discuss. “Strictly personal consents” granted by MVDC to the MOD but now used to benefit Angle Properties was one and there were also planning issues of more than local importance such as the Green Belt and lack of Sustainability.

David Preedy, Chairman of Headley Parish Council concludes:

“Overall, in the opinion of Headley Parish Council, the Application does not comply with national policies on important issues. When combined with our concerns at various aspects of Mole Valley’s handling of the application, Headley Parish Council unanimously decided at an Extraordinary Meeting on 13th July that the Application should instead be referred to the Secretary of State.

“The Parish Council has therefore formally requested that the Secretary of State (under section 77 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990) call-in for determination the Mole Valley planning application MO/2020/0185 (Headley Court, Headley Road, Headley, KT18 6JW).”

 

Background information
Headley Court achieved world-wide recognition as the home for the Defence Medical Rehabilitation Centre (DMRC) – a centre of excellence for the rehabilitation of UK service personnel, especially for those who received life-changing injuries sustained in the UK’s military engagements in Afghanistan and Iraq. Initially it was exempt from the civilian planning processes, but since about 2006 it has been subject to local planning policies.

In 2014, the MoD announced its decision to cease using Headley Court, handing the site back to its then owners – the Headley Court Charity. They in turn announced their intention to sell the site and it was purchased on 1st May 2019 by Angle Properties who immediately sold on the part of the site to Clerkenwell Properties.

Like the rest of Headley, the site is wholly ‘washed over’ by the Metropolitan Green Belt. In Mole Valley’s planning policies, Headley is not even designated as a ‘smaller rural village’, so planning constraints are tight for all residents, reflecting the unsustainable nature of housing development in the area.

Parts of the Headley Court were recognised as a Major Developed Site in the Green Belt (MDS) and it has always been recognised that, in the event of the MoD leaving the site, some redevelopment, including some housing, would be appropriate subject to constraints to protect the Green Belt; the current application breaks these conditions. Moreover many buildings were given permission personal to the Minister of Defence reflecting the very special role played by the DMRC. Controversially Mole Valley has not resisted the new owner’s attempts to argue that this benefit should now accrue to them.

For further information, please contact David Preedy, Chair, Headley Parish Council

chair@headley-pc.gov.uk

07904 127091

 

Headley Court Planning Application – LIVE STREAM 1st July 2020

The Headley Court planning application will be considered by Mole Valley’s Development Management Committee in Wednesday 1st July, The meeting starts at 6pm and will be live-streamed for the public to watch here.

The Officer’s recommendation is for the Committee to approve the application. The Officer’s report (all 210 pages of it) can be viewed here.

The Parish Council will continue its strong opposition to this application. Our submission can be viewed here.

Changes to lockdown measures

Prime Minister Boris Johnson has today announced further changes to lockdown measures in England from Saturday 4 July.

Guidance, giving further details, is awaited but the key points are:

  • from Saturday 4 July:
    • if it is possible to keep the two-metre distance then we should do so;
    • in places where it is not possible then the guidance is for ‘one metre plus’, which means other mitigation is required – this will include plastic screens and masks but also measures such as giving details to restaurants so that if there are links to an outbreak of Covid-19 then people can be contacted;
    • despite reduction in the distance, “the fewer social contacts you have the safer you will be”;
    • two households of any size can meet in any setting inside or outdoors but multiple households can’t meet indoors – social distancing must still be in place;
    • restaurants and bars can open but must run a table service system and ensure minimal staff and customer contact;
    • places of worship can open for prayer and services, provided social distancing is maintained; weddings of no more than 30 people can go ahead;
    • hairdressers with appropriate precautions can open but nail bars and other close contact personal services cannot yet open;
    • people will be free to stay overnight in self-contained accommodation, including hotels and bed and breakfasts, as well as campsites as long as shared facilities are kept clean;
    • most leisure facilities and tourist attractions can reopen if they can do so safely, including outdoor gyms and playgrounds, cinemas, museums, galleries, theme parks and arcades as well as libraries, social clubs and community centres;
  • ‘close proximity’ venues such as nightclubs, soft-play areas, indoor gyms, swimming pools and spas will need to remain closed for now, as will bowling alleys and water parks;
  • the government will work with the arts industry on specific guidance to enable choirs, orchestras and theatres to resume live performances as soon as possible;
  • courts, probation services, police stations and other public services will increasingly resume face-to-face proceedings;
  • wrap-around care for school age children and formal childcare will restart over the summer;
  • primary and secondary education will recommence in September with full attendance and those children who can already go to school should do so
  • People shielding from COVID-19 will be advised they can spend more time outside their homes from Monday 6 July, the Health and Social Care Secretary has announced here.

Headley Court Planning Application

The Headley Court planning application will be considered by Mole Valley’s Development Management Committee in Wednesday 1st July, The meeting starts at 6pm and will be live-streamed for the public to watch. The link will publicise how you can watch the meeting here at least 24 hours before the meeting.

The Officer’s recommendation is for the Committee to approve the application. The Officer’s report (all 210 pages of it) can be viewed here.

The Parish Council will continue its strong opposition to this application. Our submission can be viewed here.