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Save Newlands Corner

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February 2018

SCC has answered our questions about annual parking permits

  • The £60 permit will apply to all the car parks on the five sites on the Countryside Estate owned by the County Council. Newlands Corner is owned by the Albury Estate, and therefore the £60 permit will only apply to that car park
  • The annual parking permit will be provided by a third party, this is likely to be the enforcement provider and all the information held electronically – this means that if the permit holder buys a new car, the registration can easily be changed on the system.
  • The annual permit is a one off charge for the year rather than an accumulated charge and therefore refunds are not available.
  • Annual permit holders will receive an annual parking permit to display in the car. The vehicle registration number will also be held electronically and available to the enforcement team.
  • The permit will be valid for 12months from the date of purchase.
  • SWT members will pay the same [as everybody else].
  • The permit is a one off payment and therefore no consideration has been given to payment by instalments.

This is the exact wording of the SCC response other than the one square-bracketed wording.  The last bullet point was in response to our question: “To help those who are on low incomes, and for whom a single payment of £60 is a large blow, has any consideration been given to part-year payments, say, quarterly permits at £15 a quarter?”.

Why can’t people who buy a permit at Newlands Corner not use it at other SCC Countryside Estate sites?  What has private ownership got to do with it?  Answers on a postcard, please…..

 

Litter Pick at Newlands Corner

We thought that you might all like to hear of a Newlands Corner Litter Pick that is being organised by some local residents.  The details are shown below along with a link to the Facebook event page.


“Let’s give Newlands Corner a spring clean!  Join us for a community litter picking session at Newlands Corner to help clear up the rubbish that inconsiderate people leave there.

Let’s help make Newlands Corner beautiful for the spring.

Meet up outside the visitor centre at 10am on Sunday 25th February.

Litter picking equipment and rubbish bags will be provided but please bring your wellies!”

https://www.facebook.com/events/857027651089087/?__mref=mb

 

 

SCC approves charges at 15 countryside car parks

On Tuesday, 30 January, the SCC Cabinet approved the introduction of parking charges at the five ‘Pay and Conserve’ sites (Chobham, Ockham, Rodborough, and Whitmoor commons and Norbury Park).   This was in the face of bitter opposition from residents, community groups and, of course, Save Newlands Corner.  This move is inextricably linked to the equally-opposed introduction of charges at Newlands Corner, rumoured to be implemented by the end of March.

Following an obviously well-orchestrated performance, Cabinet members voted unanimously to introduce charges at 15 of the most-used car parks.  Payment will be by phone-only at some car parks and by card and phone at others.  This is despite the fact that 75% of people responding to the ‘Pay and Conserve’ consultation said they did not want charges at all and 59% said they wanted cash-payment facilities.

It paves the way for the elderly (who often don’t have or want to use phones or cards), low income groups and other vulnerable groups to be effectively barred from using these sites.  Despite our numerous questions, SCC has remained silent about the negative effects on health and wellbeing of these groups and the long term adverse impact on the adult social care budget, which is already under huge strain, and which could well dwarf any income received from parking charges.  This is short-term gain for long-term loss.

These parking charges are also too high, inefficient, self-defeating, and legally debatable:  too high because £1.30 an hour for a natural countryside car park is unreasonable; inefficient because, using the Council’s own figures, only £201,000 a year on average, out of £448,000 a year raised, will be used to help maintain the countryside; self-defeating because, from the Council’s own consultation, up to 70% of people said they would avoid coming to these sites, or come less often, if charges were applied; legally debatable because the Council says it will not be applying to the Planning Inspectorate for consent to install the parking meters – we firmly believe it should, as it did for Newlands Corner.

Other, more efficient, options should be used to maintain the countryside. Democracy and common sense were left behind when this decision was made.

 

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