Thank you to all those who attended the Elmbridge Community Assembly meeting yesterday. We had a lively debate and managed to cover quite a lot of ground in a short time. I list below the key points.
- It was very interesting to hear about the Hampton Court Rescue Campaign from Karen Liddle and Ray Townsend. The fact that planning permission was given to landscape this site in 2012 coupled with the obvious difficulty of building on a flood plain, bodes well for a successful outcome. The Your Fund Surreycapital bid has 96 supporters this morning, which is an increase from last night. Here is a direct link to the campaign proposal. Please share and support this project.https://yourfundsurreymap.commonplace.is/comments/5fd206779d963fd035581d4f
- It was also interesting to hear from Sue Hall about the way in which Hampton Court Palace is financed. I was surprised to learn that there was no direct funding from the Crown Estate. The Palace is the largest ‘institution’ in this area and it would be very valuable for the community assembly to develop a good working relationship with our neighbours. I don’t have any contact details for Sue Hall. Can someone ask her if she wishes to go on the mailing list? Also, George L attended the meeting but has not signed up.
- Sue Cooper informed us that any applications to the Your Fund Surrey project would have to come from properly constituted organisations. We are not currently at that stage. Our original idea was to gain capital funding for a community hub. Without access to capital funds, nor funding to meet running costs, we decided instead to piggy-back our project onto existing organisations. I will make enquiries of possible sites and report back at the next meeting.
- Joan and Diana are both keen to engage with the shopkeepers on the Walton Road to find out how they envisage a recovery from the pandemic. This may result in support for a monthly market in the Walton Road car park. Joan and Diana will report back next month.
- In our ‘identity crisis discussion’ we considered who we are and what we want to achieve. To a certain extent, our actions will depend upon community feedback. Sandra Buckdescribed an interesting way to engage with the community on environmental issues and gather their comments when out and about. We are hampered by the weather and the lockdown right now, but hopefully both will improve soon.
- In the meantime, we can firm up our public image. Joan suggested that ‘voice’ would be a better description of the group. I checked out domain names around the word ‘voice’ and found that ‘community-voice.co.uk‘ was available. As it only cost $10 to purchase this for the year, I bought it to prevent it being snapped up by someone else. We can discuss next month if we wish to redirect the Elmbridge Insight Forum domain name and rebrand as community-voice.
- At the February meeting, it would be useful to get information from Steve Bax, Molesey Councillor and Tricia Bland, Thames Ditton Councillor. Steve has a lot of information about Vine Hall and the proposal to use the Walton Road car park for a monthly market. Tricia was the driving force behind the Thames Ditton farmers’ market. I will invite both of them to speak at the next meeting, which will be held on Wednesday 24th February at 6:30.