Fringe Box



Effingham Eye: Tower Restoration Underway and Verges to Follow

Published on: 16 Apr, 2020
Updated on: 17 Apr, 2020

Chris Dick offers some insight on local matters of interest; a tower undergoes restoration, locals assemble PPE,  the county council agrees to sort the verges, a new website for the parish council and an appreciation of a local amenity…

Chatley Heath Semaphore Tower

Readers may recall the previous edition of this article where Surrey County Council (SCC) had closed Wisley & Ockham Common car parks.

What may have passed you by was the extensive restoration work being undertaken on the Chatley Heath Semaphore Tower.

Chatley Heath Semaphore Tower undergoing restoration

Happily, at the time of taking this photograph work was still progressing and the workmen were all observing the two-metre restriction. Let’s hope the restoration is completed by the time these social distancing rules are lifted and that once again we have access to our commons.

King George V playing fields (KGV) in the Spring 

Sam and Charlie (front) enjoying the forest of bluebells in KingGeorge V playing fields (KGV)

Avoiding further use of the car we, like others, were drawn to the KGV playing fields for our dog walking and daily exercise.

What a delight it was to see the bluebells in the woodland behind the new 3G pitch. At the time of writing, they have started to fade but other plants and trees have come to life. The cherry and fruit trees, in particular, are worth seeing.

KGV playing fields

With the car park closed fewer people visit the KGV and so keeping two-metres apart is easy. And with the recent glorious weather, the grounds look well-maintained and inviting.

So thanks as always to the (unpaid volunteer) trustees and staff. The fields have never been more needed by residents for their exercise and mental wellbeing.

Surrey County Council to the rescue

HGVs continue to use Church Street

In spite of SCC Highways installing “Unsuitable for HGV” vehicles, like the one pictured above, continue to use Browns Lane/ Church Street as a cut-through to avoid the traffic lights on the A246 at the junction with The Street.

Eroded verge alongside Church Street

For the geeks amongst us, it may be worth noting that the traffic lights have been upgraded to the Microprocessor Optimised Vehicle Actuation (MOVA) system.

It is a system developed to overcome some of the problems associated with traditional actuation control. MOVA is more responsive to traffic conditions and often leads to a significant increase in capacity at a junction.

In other words, there is no longer delays at this set of traffic lights.

Impatient HGV drivers continue to use the narrow streets of Browns Lane and Church Street and the verges are disappearing.

So it is a relief to hear from County Cllr Julie Iles that SCC Highways have agreed to put in posts along the worst affected parts of the verge.

Hopefully, this will do the trick by deterring drivers from mounting the verge.

Effingham Parish Council (EPC) new website

EPC’s front page of new website (click on image to link)

This attractive site is welcoming, easy to navigate and up-to-date.

While understood to have been a team effort within the council, the majority of work and consultations with the website builders Avansys Software Solutions, fell to Cllr Liz Hogger who, as well as our Guildford Borough Councillor, is a hard-working Effingham parish councillor.

St Lawrence Church assembles and distributes PPE Masks

Louise Hallam delivering masks to Leatherhead Ambulance Serviceman Craig Chitty

Several families, who would usually attend St Lawrence Church Effingham, have kindly helped meet the personal protection equipment (PPE) shortage by making 300 transparent full-face shield masks.

Louise Hallam, who organised the project, delivered 200 sets to Ambulance Serviceman Craig Chitty for use by the Leatherhead ambulance crews.

Emily and Oliver White with two of the transparent full-face shield masks before they were delivered to The Grange in Bookham

Emily and Oliver White as a family helped made a further 50 masks which added to a total of 100 masks that have gone to carers at the Grange in neighbouring Bookham. The staff there support residents with learning disabilities to lead independent and fulfilling lives. However, like so many other residential homes the Grange has had to close its doors to all but essential visitors.

In all 15 families, many of whom regularly attend St Lawrence Church, have worked to produce or deliver these essential safety items. That said, requests for even more masks have just been received from St Helier and Epsom Hospital Trust and other organisations. So it looks like these good people will have plenty to do during this pandemic.

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