Fringe Box



Letter: Thanks For Highlighing Newlands Corner Campaign – It Will Continue

Published on: 9 Feb, 2016
Updated on: 9 Feb, 2016

From Sally Blake

Thank you very much indeed for putting the Save Newlands Corner campaign in The Guildford Dragon NEWS.

emails letterOn Tuesday, February 2, I presented the petition to the cabinet of Surrey County Council. It has now reached over 9,100 signatures.

I was given three minutes to speak. However, Cllr Mike Goodman’s response was very poor and he is largely ignoring the signatories of the petition.

He then announced ‘drop-in sessions’, so that people could have some input into the design of the play trail.

These have not been widely advertised!

And I believe he is ignoring the fact that the vast majority of people do not want a play trail.

The drop-in sessions are: Tuesday, February 9, 3pm to 7pm at Albury Village Hall, The Street, Albury, Guildford, Surrey GU5 9AD.

And: Wednesday, February 24, 3pm to 6pm at Merrow Village Hall, 177 Epsom Road, Guildford, Surrey, GU1 2QY.

People can also see the plans and have their say on the play trail designs here:


The Save Newlands Corner group are horrified at these plans. People should look at them and comment please.

The campaign to stop all these proposals will continue.


Share This Post

Responses to Letter: Thanks For Highlighing Newlands Corner Campaign – It Will Continue

  1. William Thompson Reply

    February 10, 2016 at 10:34 am

    I have signed the petition because I am not in favour of the proposed development of a new building/cafe and coach park in a position which would affect the views from Newlands Corner.

    And I am not in favour of the car parking charges.

    My family very much enjoy Newlands Corner as it currently is and head there most weekends.

    What I cannot understand anyone having concerns with are the development of environmentally and aesthetically sensitive play trails for children to enjoy.

    I would have thought that the development of play trails would be a welcome addition to Newlands Corner.

    Can the Save Newlands Corner Group comment as to why they are horrified by these plans?

  2. Susan Parker Reply

    February 11, 2016 at 2:22 pm

    The play trail is extensive and will use a lot of land.

    When set up, it will require maintenance in order to be safe, which will cost money – hence the car parking charges.

    Children have played on trees and in wild spaces for centuries.

    They can climb trees, they can swing on branches, and they can run around playing tag and hide and seek, or imaginative games, without any formal physical structures at all.

    As a child I did this. My children did this, including at Newlands Corner, like so many children that have grown up in the area.

    I want future generations to be able to do the same. It is already a wonderful playground.

    My feeling is we don’t need suburbanisation of our wild spaces.

    The play trail would be fine in an urban park, but I do not see why it is needed in a genuinely wild area.

    In my view, we don’t need to stratify and structure play. Let children run a bit wild from time to time and we will all benefit.

    I understand that there are also rare dormice in some of the areas targeted for development.

    If they are indeed present, these should be protected.

    To create a formalised play trail will increase the footfall in potentially vulnerable spaces. If allowed unstructured play, children will not focus on specific areas.

    I was sent a copy of the invitation to the drop-in session at Albury with the wrong address on it (an address in Shamley Green was given rather than in Albury). I am sure others were also sent the wrong information. As a result perhaps that drop-in session should be repeated.

    I have signed the petition but I am not an organiser of, or involved with, the Save Newlands Corner Group.

    In this matter I am merely an interested member of the public.

  3. Pauline Surrey Reply

    February 11, 2016 at 10:58 pm

    I have seen so many of these wooden “natural” looking play trails, with no children anywhere to be seen!

    Do children maybe find them boring once they have been on everything one or two times?

  4. Claire Morris Reply

    February 12, 2016 at 6:23 am

    My personal opinion is it depends on the trail.

    If it is like the ones at Hatchlands Park or Box Hill, then I think it would be highly used and certainly my kids would use it.

    However, as a matter of principal, I have to agree in some part with the sentiments expressed in the above chain.

    Too much structured and formal play is not great for the imagination, my kids tend to run around in the undergrowth chasing the dog which keeps them occupied when we go to Newlands.

    I do think some upgrade to the toilet facilities and moving the cafe to the same side of the road as the car park would be useful.

    I hate crossing that road with two kids and a dog!

    Whether doing that requires the magnitude of development proposed is a different matter.

    I personally don’t mind the proposed car park charges though.

  5. Mary Bedforth Reply

    February 12, 2016 at 7:59 am

    Off topic, but I would like to know how the Wild Wood feature at Stoke Park is doing.

    I never see anybody using it. A large GBC subsidy was given for the installation.

  6. Adrian Atkinson Reply

    February 12, 2016 at 10:10 am

    But where are the kids supposed to play when the mums are having lattes and cupcakes in the cafe?

    People just need to get real, it’s not easy for people to both enjoy the views of the countryside, have a latte, eat cake, watch the kids whilst having a rest from the pilates class earlier in the day.

    It’s people’s right to have things made easy and put on a china plate for them.

    Next people will be expecting one to actually get their Dubarry’s and Le Chameau Jamesons dirty by “walking”; the council will surely be leaving themselves up for prosecution should that happen.

    At least in the play area the clean, sustainable wood chips (produced from all those inconveniently located mature trees felled to build all the play areas, additional parking, restaurant, shop, etc) will prevent that from happening.

    We should all be grateful for the council for that at least.

    The other feature I love is the creation of a wild garden right by the car park, again really easy to get people to see nature in situ, I mean without actually going too far afield, actually in a field.

    What if people slip on some wet grass, or trip over a tree root, better keep them safe, warm and clean.

    After all that is what Surrey Wildlife Trust was set up to do; we put trust in them that we will be well looked after, warm, well fed and watered when we go anywhere near wildlife with the play/wildlife box easily ticked.

    After all they don’t see any wildlife in Val Thorens whilst skiing, so I see Surrey Hills as no different.

    • Mary Bedforth Reply

      February 12, 2016 at 6:50 pm

      I like your irony Adrian Atkinson. Well done.

      Newlands Corner has been a lifesaver for me through bereavement and more recently illness.

      My recovery can be partially attributed to walking there with my present dog and previous others, while observing the lovely downland meadow flowers and the beautiful views of the landscape south.

      I do not want to see it either Disneyfied or commercialised.

      Any spare cash in Surrey CC’s coffers can be spent on local road mending.

      The surfaces in Harvey Road and Warwick’s Bench, to name just two roads, are appalling.

      Also drain cleaning. A blocked surface water gulley outside my house, completely silted up and growing weeds, will not be attended to until 2017 I was told.

  7. Alex Munt Reply

    February 12, 2016 at 11:54 am

    In reply to Sally Blake:

    I am Alex Munt, the editor of The Merrow Pages, a local magazine for the residents of Merrow and surrounding area – we deliver a free magazine to over 5,000 homes in this area every month.

    I would love to include regular information about the Newlands Corner campaign, so if you would like to get in touch, hopefully we can get something sorted.

    I have been unable to find any contact details for you elsewhere, so hence this message.

    Hope to hear from you. Please Google “The Merrow Pages” for contact details.

Leave a Comment

Please see our comments policy. All comments are moderated and may take time to appear.

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *