Association archive

  • The Fountain Pub - New Malden

    The Fountain, at the top of New Malden High Street, has been a local landmark in our neighbouring area for many years, but is alas, at least temporarily, no more. 

    It closed in June for a major redevelopment of the site, which will see three 5-storey blocks containing 43 apartments and a shop or café being built. 

    The Pub will be reduced to half its size within the original Georgian building, but will lose its extension, garden and car park, as well as its first and second floors, previously used as a kitchen, meeting rooms and staff accommodation. 

    The loss of garden and car park space will also impact on the annual New Malden Fortnight event, the Korean Food Festival and a regular Farmers’ Market. 

    Construction work is now in progress, behind a barrier of Berlin Wall proportions. At least, for Pub goers, half a pub is better than none! 

    Dick Coleman

  • Chairman's Blog - November 2018


    The Council has announced that the new Morden Leisure Centre will soon be open to the public. 

    This is in Morden Park. It replaces the Morden Park Pool which was said to be energy inefficient and expensive to maintain. 

    Once the new Centre opens, the old building will be demolished, and the land restored to open space and landscaped with trees. 

    The new Centre has a 25m x 13m main pool and a smaller secondary pool with a movable floor, so that it can be used for everything from shallow toddler sessions to diving. 

    There will be a studio and fitness suite, and a café with outside seating for dog- walkers. There are also facilities for disabled people. 

    It will be run by the same company that already manages the Wimbledon Leisure Centre and Canons Leisure Centre in Mitcham. 


     For elderly and vulnerable people living at home, the Mascot telecare service is an enormous comfort. It ought to be better known. 

    It was introduced by Merton Council some 28 years ago and provides a pendant that can be hung around the neck or on the arm, which clients can press to contact the Mascot office 24 hours a day, should they have a fall or accident at home. The telecare service will then contact a nominated relation or friend - or send a staff member to help. They will contact the emergency services if needed.

    The office is locally based. 

    My own mother was given a pendant when she got into her eighties and found it very reassuring when she had to be left alone in the house. On occasion she pressed the pendant by accident, and they were very good in telling her not to worry about this. 

    Since the scheme originally started, they have added a handyman service which means that someone can come and do the small jobs that need to be done, such as changing light bulbs or fitting tap washers or setting up a bedroom for someone who has just come out of hospital. 

    Mascot also offers other technologies that are designed to help people to live independently. These include door sensors to alert family members if a person with dementia leaves the home, and flood sensors to prevent people letting sinks or baths overrun.

     There is a small weekly charge for the monitoring-only service, and a slightly larger one for the response service, including the handyman. Mascot can be contacted for more information on:



    There were in fact two incursions last month by travellers camping on Cannon Hill Common. We understand that the Council is taking up the suggestion of obtaining a permanent injunction in the High Court to prevent further illegal incidents. This won’t stop the problem altogether but should assist in making their removal quicker and easier. 

    John Elvidge

  • 265 Burlington Road - 400+ Flats Proposed

    Huge development Proposals for 265 Burlington Road

    (and part of the Tesco Supermarket Car Park) 

    We have recently learned - following an exhibition at the Holy Cross Church Hall on 18th September - that Redrow Homes are working up proposals for a Planning Application for a large housing scheme at 265 Burlington Road and that part of Tesco’s car park adjacent to Burlington Road 

    The scheme as currently planned would be to construct more than 400 flats in several blocks - some very much higher than any other building in the locality. 

    As we understand the situation the proposals are still being refined and are being discussed with the Planners at Merton Council. 

    Currently it is proposed that there would be a mix of units 1, 2, and 3-bedroom flats, a large proportion of which would be 2-bed units, but no houses. 

    In the main these flats would be for sale, but some would be part sale/part rental (under a shared ownership scheme). The current aim is to provide 35% of the development for “affordable” housing (meaning social or subsidized units). 

    The plans, at present, suggest provision of over 200 car parking spaces for the new residents, who would have vehicle access to the new development from the existing short road leading from Tesco’s car park into Burlington road. Pedestrian access to Tesco itself from the Burlington Road side would be maintained. 

    We are in contact with the agents acting for Redrow and hope to arrange a public meeting with them later in the year. We will try to provide more detail about this proposal as and when available. 

    David Freeman and Jill Truman

  • Raynes Park Townswomen's Guild

     Well.  It’s just as well to have a sense of humour. 

    After the long, hot, dry June, July and early August, for the TWG coach trip to Worthing the rain began as we left Raynes Park, continuing steadily until about 3.00 pm in Worthing.  Surprisingly, or because they did at least have one dry hour, ladies returned to the coach reporting they had enjoyed the day.   The respite did enable them to walk on the pier to admire the stained-glass display screens exhibited there. 

    Our summer garden party also turned out to have been scheduled on a wet day.  Nevertheless, our hostess and helper provided a magnificent summer meal which was fully appreciated by all.  With the ladies spread about the dining room and conservatory this friendly social afternoon was well attended and a great success. 

    The October meeting will be on Thursday, 18th October at 1.30 pm in St Saviour’s Church Hall.  Our speaker is Julia Jones whose talk is entitled ‘Travels in Iceland’. 

    If interested, please check us out.  We normally discuss our planned social activities first, with the speaker starting at about 2.30 pm after a tea break.  

    Dorothy Raymond, Tel: 020 8395 9489


  • Rememberance Sunday, 11/11/2018

    London Borough of Merton -  2018 Services of Remembrance

    The following arrangements are proposed: 

    Sunday 11 November 2018 - Services of Remembrance

    Nelson Health Centre

    Kingston Road, SW20 8DA

    The Service of Remembrance will commence at 9.00am and will be

    attended by the Mayor of Merton, Councillor Mary Curtin, civic representatives, and the Royal British Legion.


    Mitcham War Memorial

    Lower Green West, Mitcham

    The Service of Remembrance will commence at 10.40am. 

    Attended by the Mayor of Merton, Councillor Mary Curtin, Ms Clare Whelan OBE, Deputy Lieutenant, civic representatives and members of organisations in the borough. Members of the Mitcham branch of the Royal British Legion will be in attendance. 

    Following the service the Deputy Lieutenant together with the Mayor will take the salute.

    Please note: For the Mitcham Service, the Parade assembles outside the British Legion Hall, Mitcham.


    Wimbledon War Memorial

    Wimbledon Village, SW19

    The Service of Remembrance will commence at 10.40am. 

    Attended by the Deputy Mayor of Merton, Councillor Geraldine Stanford, civic representatives and members of organisations in the borough. Members of the Wimbledon Branch of the Royal British Legion and the 210 Transport Squadron will be in attendance. 

    Following the service the Deputy Mayor will take the salute. 


    Monday 12 November 2018 - Armistice Day

    Civic Centre, London Road, Morden to commence at 10.50am

    The Mayor and civic representatives


    Mitcham War Memorial to commence at 10.50am

    The Deputy Mayor and civic representatives,

  • Chairman's Blog - Oct 2018


    The Residents’ Association was founded in 1928 and we are celebrating our 90th anniversary with a Dinner. All members are warmly invited, and it will be held on Thursday 8th November. Do please come and join us if you can.   Numbers will be limited so tickets will be provided on a ‘first come’ basis.

    The Dinner is at the Taste Restaurant at Merton College, London Road, Morden. The College is well renowned for its catering and hotel courses for students; and the food and service will be provided by them.  We held our 75th Anniversary dinner in the same venue, and it was excellent. The cost is only £25 for a three-course meal, with a cocktail on arrival.

    Click here for more information on how to make a booking.


    As you will be aware, the Council is entirely changing its system for collecting household waste from October. We are now switching to alternate weekly collections for most refuse and recycling. This means collections will only be every two weeks. Paper and card will be collected every two weeks, as will non-recyclable matter (landfill) This means that storage must be found for two wheelie bins; Three, if you also pay for garden waste. Many will find this difficult to cope with. 

    Paper and cardboard are to be placed in a new wheelie bin provided by Merton, and household (landfill) waste in another.  The rest of the re-cycliable products: glass, tins, plastic bottles and food-trays, cans and cartons will still be collected from our green boxes, but these, too, will only be once a fortnight. 

    The Council has promised that those who cannot physically manage a wheelie bin (they are quite heavy) will be assisted, but, obviously, this will take time to work through.  We also understand that smaller wheelie bins can be supplied for single households – but you must apply for these directly via the Council’s website, or by a telephone call to the refuse department.

    Blue and Black plastic bags will be supplied to flatted housing estates so that they can fill these and put them into the relevant bins for collection.

    Collection days will also change in around threequarters of properties.  

    The aim is to increase amount of re-cycling and to prevent waste from being strewn over into the streets due to foxes and other animals tearing at plastic sacks that have not been placed in a lidded dustbin. It is also claimed that in the long run the new system will save costs.  

    Everyone will have their own views about all this and there are almost are bound to be major problems at the outset, so please let your Councillors know of any issues affecting you. They are the best people to take these matters up with the service provider.


    Once again, a group of Travellers managed to evade the huge logs placed around Cannon Hill Common to prevent incursions and parked their caravans and vehicles near the former Pavilion.

    As before, it was left to the Council to clear up the mess after they were removed.  

    There have been many such incidents on this site, but it is hard to put up sufficiently immovable barriers to prevent these, without taking away the visual beauty of the Common itself.   

    A possible permanent solution has been suggested by one of the Cannon Hill Councillors. He notes that where there is an ongoing problem, other councils have obtained an interim or permanent blanket injunction in the High Court banning illegal traveller incursion. Such an injunction cannot stop the problem altogether but makes removal very much easier and quicker.

    He asked a question at Council to find whether the Council was willing to look at this as a solution. We will let you know whether they take up this suggestion.

    John Elvidge

  • 265 Burlington Road

    The Association has been contacted by Sarah Wardle of BECG, who specialise in community engagement. They are currently working with Redrow Homes, who recently acquired an interest in Land at Tesco, New Malden.  

    Sarah Wardle explains, “The site comprises 265 Burlington Road, a 1980s office building, and part of Tesco car park. Redrow is in the early stages of formulating plans to deliver new homes and commercial space on the site and has started to engage with planning officers. To complement these discussions, we would welcome the opportunity to meet with the local community, to discuss our initial plans for the site and gain your feedback. 

    We would also like to invite you to our public consultation the details of which are as follows: 

    Venue: Holy Cross Church, Douglas Ave, Motspur Park KT3 6HT

    Date: 11th September

    Time: 4- 8pm”


  • Community Forum 18 Sept 2018






    In the Chair:  Cllr Stephen Crowe


    1)     Introduction by Chairman of the Raynes Park Association


    2)     Open Forum – an opportunity to raise any other issue of local interest not covered elsewhere on the agenda.    Kindly email your request in advance of the meeting to:chris.edge@ccedge.comand


    3)     Leader of the Council, Stephen Alambritis, will provide an update on key issues with the Council and take questions


    4)     Abbas Mirza, from Merton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG) will provide an update on local services and commissioning intentions. 


    5)     Town Centre Developments & Railway.  Tony Edwards

    ·         Seating on south side of Skew Arch    

    ·         Possible Removal of Bins on North of Skew Arch

    ·         West Barnes Lane Community Infrastructure Levy [CIL]

    ·         Land purchase corner on South side of Station entrance


    6)     Raynes Park Matters.  Neil Milligan, Raynes Park Champion, LB Merton

    ·         New Malden to RP Pedestrian and Cycle Link

    ·         Advertising hoarding between station and Waitrose

    ·         Planning Matters


    7)     Feedback, Reminders & Updates

    ·         Citizens UK – Merton Branch Peter Brierley

    ·         Prevention of Flooding – update on planned cleaning of gullies. 

    ·         Feedback from Ride London Sunday 29 July 2018

    ·         Feedback from Raynes Park Summer Festival 29 June until 8 July 2018

    ·         Reminder Christmas Festival 7 December 2018 

    Close at 9 p.m. 

    Future date for the Raynes Park Community Forum:

    Thursday 6 December 2018, Tuesday 26 March 2019

    The Raynes Park Community Forum is managed by the Raynes Park Association and chaired by a Councillor from one of the local wards by rotation. 

  • St Saviour's Concert - 6 October 2018

    A reminder about the up-coming concert at St Saviour's Church in Grand Drive when Mark Eden and Chris Stell - internationally recognised as one of the world’s leading classical guitar ensembles - will be playing works by Johannes Brahms, Mauro Giuliani, Domenico Scarlatti, Francis Poulenc,  Federico Mompou and Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco. 

    The Concert is on Saturday 6th October 2018. Reception 7.00 for 7.30pm. and tickets are available at £12 from Wendy Cannon (in advance), or at the door.

  • Open Day - 29 September 2018

    We are pleased to invite all our members to an 



    Saturday 29th September 2018 

    Between 3.30pm and 5.30pm

    Members of the Committee and the Pavilion Management Group will be on hand to show you our “headquarters”, answer any questions you may have for us and generally treat you to an array of light refreshments. 

    This is a free drop-in session, and we would be delighted to meet as many local people as possible. 

    No need to RSVP, just keep a note of the date and come along!

  • Chairman's Blog - Sept 2018


    It may not be generally known that Raynes Park has its own football club, with a dedicated and well-maintained ground, complete with stands. This is next to Prince George’s Playing Fields which itself regularly hosts football matches at the weekend. 

    On Saturday 11th August fans flocked to the ground to see the Club compete in the first Extra Preliminary Round of the FA Cup.   This was against Lingfield. The score was 3 -0 in favour of Raynes Park. Many congratulations!  They have now reached the Preliminary Round. The next step on the way to Wembley, as I write, is their match against Peacehaven on Saturday 25th August. Fingers crossed! 


    While I am writing about football, who can forget when Wimbledon FC won the FA Cup in 1988?  After that, the team was “franchised” up to Milton Keynes, and out of the ashes AFC Wimbledon was re-born, entirely created by fans.  This must be one of the most extraordinary and heartwarming stories ever of local endeavour.

    The Club has been promoted many times and has managed to retain its place in the First Division of the Football League. I saw them play Coventry in their first home fixture of the season, and the team looks good.  They aim to move back to Plough Lane next season, and the ground has already been cleared of the former Wimbledon Greyhound Stadium.  The new stadium will seat 11,000 in the first instance.  The site will also eventually have 604 new homes and retail space.  


    A music festival held in Morden Park over the weekend of 4 and 5 August was so loud that residents as far away as this area were prevented from enjoying their leisure time due to the loud volume of the music.  The Wimbledon Guardian reported that a resident of Raynes Park said that a relaxing weekend in his garden was spoilt by a “thumping bass” that went on until 10 pm on both days.

    The event was authorized by Merton Council and it apparently complied with all the required conditions. 

    It looks as if this is an annual event. Morden Park is in an area surrounded by residential housing. The Council should require in future that the sound levels are moderated, and that the event finishes earlier in the evening.


    Older residents will remember when the Junction Tavern, near the station in Kingston Road, was a pub. When the pub closed, it was turned for a while into The Railhouse, but that venture ceased in 2011. Since then, there have been planning applications to turn the site into a hotel, but these have not been implemented. 

    Now a planning application has been lodged to build nine flats there, but preserving the lower section of the building, which has architectural features that are worthy of retention. 


    The new Harris Academy Wimbledon will open its doors this September at its temporary site in Whatley Avenue, off Martin Way. This is to cope with the extra 260 children who left primary school in Merton this year.

    The permanent home for the School will be a new school building in High Path in South Wimbledon. This is due for completion by September 2020.

     John Elvidge

  • 90th Anniversary Dinner - 8 November

    Raynes Park and West Barnes Residents’ Association

    90th Anniversary Dinner

    Thursday 8th November 2018 

    Taste Restaurant

     Merton College, London Road, Morden, SM4 5QX 

    7.00pm for 7.30pm 



    Roast pumpkin velouté, toasted pumpkin seeds and chilli (v)


    Smoked haddock ravioli, soft poached egg, parsley sauce, pancetta crumb 


    Sautéed chicken, dauphinoise potatoes, spinach, sauce forestiere


    Caramelised onion risotto, rocket, balsamic glaze, shallot rings (v) 


    Bread and butter pudding, vanilla custard


    Shortbread Mille feuille, seasonal fruit and vanilla cream, fruit coulis 

    Freshly brewed tea and coffee 

    Please make your server aware of any allergies or dietary requirements Information about allergens in our dishes is kept onsite and is available on request

    Cost per person, including a drink on arrival, will be £25 

    Members wishing to attend should make contact via the details published in September’s Guide.


  • Changes to our Refuse and Recycling Collections

    Members may have now received Merton's leaflet about the controversial changes the council are going to make to our refuse and recycling collections. 

    To find out more about the new service, residents are invited to visit one of Merton’s roadshow events to speak face-to-face with Merton Council officers and representatives from Veolia, the waste collection contractor. Click here for further information.

  • Raynes Park TWG - July 2018


    Making women’s lives better since 1929 



    Broken down delivery trucks and heroines! 

    On Thursday, 28th June 2018 Raynes Park Branch of the Townswomen’s Guild celebrated its 85th birthday party.  This makes our branch one of the oldest groups (someone said the 3rd oldest) in being today.  However, our party was characterised by what could have been a disaster and a series of rescuing heroines.  In short, the food ordered from a reputable supplier did not arrive and was not available for collection until well after the Mayor and other guests had been welcomed and seated. 

    The first heroine was Mary of our long-suffering catering help team who made three trips (in hope) to collect the food, two abortive and one where it was finally suggested she should help herself to what was ordered, or similar, from the shelves in the store! 

    The second was Penny Ryan, deputising for the National TWG Chairman – in fact the National Treasurer and our national trustee representing southern England on the national council.  After we had welcomed the lady Mayor of Merton who spoke for a few minutes to congratulate us on this birthday, Penny took to the floor to cover quite a long wait with an off-the-cuff, comprehensive, talk on the formation and history of the Townswomen’s Guild. 

    We had booked a group from the Nonsuch Handbell Ringers to entertain us after the meal but in the event, they hastily set up their equipment to play to us while we collected and ate our food, which was displayed speedily by John and Mary.  They played a very enjoyable selection of tunes in a variety of styles, all with a surprisingly mellow sound.  Later they invited members to come to examine the bells.  At least one member had a go!  The ladies of the handbbell ringers, too, deserve special thanks! 

    Our monthly lunch outing took us to The Haywain in Epsom for another very pleasant meal.  We were surprised when another group of ladies arrived a little later, some of whom we recognised.  This was a party from the Morden Park (eve) TWG!  Obviously The Haywain is a general favourite for TWG ladies! 



    Worthing Trip – Thursday, 16th August - £15 

    There are still seats available.  Please telephone 8395 4989 if you are interested in joining us. 

    I am in discussion with our coach company who wish to wait until road works scheduled to cause one-way traffic south along Grand Drive start towards the end of July to see how the traffic flow in the area ‘beds down’ before confirming pick-up points and times.  Please make sure I have your telephone number or contact address so that I can keep everyone informed in August. 

    Next Meeting 

    In September 2018 the monthly meeting will be on Thursday, 20th at 1.30 for 1.45 at St Saviour’s Church Hall.  A speaker – Miss A Hoyland – will give us a talk entitled

     ‘Never judge a book by its cover’.   Do join us. 

    Dorothy Raymond,  Tel: 020 8395 9489 

  • Grand Drive Road Closures - Latest


    Notification of major gas works: Grand Drive, Morden UPDATE 20/07/18 

    You may recall I wrote to you in May to make you aware of our upgrade of our gas network in Grand Drive, Morden. 

    Our project is on course to start as planned on 23 July and last approximately 20 weeks as previously stated. However, following feedback from our stakeholders and the local community we have worked with London Borough of Merton to agree a new phased plan of work to minimise disruption. We will now be working in three overlapping phases as follows. 

    To ensure everyone’s safety Grand Drive will be made one-way southbound for the duration of our works. A signed diversion will be in place for northbound traffic. Access will be maintained for residents by following the diversion routes. 

    Phase one – Grand Drive, between Church Walk and Bushey Road 

    We will start our project with two teams both working in Grand Drive from its junction with Church Walk towards Bushey Road. As this phase progresses, one of our teams will move to begin work on phase two. 

    Phase two – Grand Drive, between Blenheim Road and Church Walk 

    During this phase, one of our teams will begin working in Grand Drive at its junction with Blenheim Road and work towards the junction with Church Walk. 

    Grand Drive will remain one-way southbound to ensure everyone’s safety. However, as our work progresses during this phase, we are hoping to be able to re-open some small sections of Grand Drive for northbound traffic to allow residents on Grand Drive to exit their homes and travel north. Grand Drive will remain closed for northbound through traffic and motorists should still follow our signed diversion. 

    Phase three – Grand Drive, between Heath Drive and Westway 

    Both teams will be working in conjunction on Grand Drive, starting at its junction with Heath Drive and heading south towards its junction with Westway. 

    Grand Drive will remain one-way southbound to ensure everyone’s safety. Some small sections of Grand Drive may now be open for northbound traffic to allow residents on Grand Drive to exit their homes and travel north. However, Grand Drive will remain closed for northbound through traffic and motorists should still follow our signed diversion. 

    You can find more information about our work on our dedicated project page at: 

    Dan Edwards

    Southern Gas Networks

  • Paddock - Flower & Vegetable Show

    Don’t Miss the


    2.30 pm; Saturday 8th August 2018

  • Chairman's Blog - Aug 2018


    We reported a few months ago that Nat West intended to close their branches in Wimbledon Village and in Morden.  They have now gone through with this, and the buildings are firmly shuttered.  Their branch in Raynes Park closed many years ago.  What an appalling disregard they have shown for the convenience of their customers. 

    These branches were heavily used.   Customers will now have to go to the only remaining local branch in Wimbledon Town Centre, which always has long queues of people waiting to be served, and limited numbers of staff.  They try to make you use machines for depositing funds, but these are so difficult to understand that one member of staff, instead of acting as a cashier, has to be on hand. 

    The bank will argue that much banking is now done on-line, but many customers, like me, who have been the subject of bank fraud, refuse to transact financial details on the internet which can be readily hacked. Some people cannot afford the internet or do not know how to use it.   

    What is particularly galling is the pretence that this is somehow improving the service it gives to customers. When will large companies realise that many people prefer to transact their business with real people? When will they understand that putting the needs of customers before increasing profits actually increases their profits by increasing their customer share? 

    We see the same stupid trend in supermarkets when you have to scan your own purchases, and there remain only a token number of check out tills. 


    On a lighter note, I was invited by the Raynes Park Townwomen’s Guild to their lovely 85th birthday buffet luncheon at St Saviour’s Church Hall. You will have seen their articles which we publish in The Guide each month.   The Mayor was the guest of honour, and we had a delightful cabaret performed by a group of hand bell ringers. We were told that the Guild grew out of the movement for women’s rights started by the suffragettes.  I was made very welcome despite being the only man present, apart from the Mayor’s attendant.

    We congratulate them for keeping going for so long, including through the war years. 

    Our Association is celebrating its 90th anniversary this year, and we intend to publish an Anniversary issue of The Guide in the autumn. We also hope to hold a dinner at Merton College. Details of this will follow as soon as the arrangements are finalised. 


    Cross Rail 2 is the proposal for a new rail system that is intended to run from surrey and south west London through a tunnel north of Wimbledon up to north London. This is intended to cope with the vast increase in the number of rail passengers.  It will, obviously, be an enormous expensive project, and so the Government has set up an “Independent Affordabilty  Review”  to advise on whether it is actually financially  feasible.  The scheme is not planned to come into operation until at least 2028 in any event.  The team running this will be conducting another public consultation in due course. 


    We are very pleased that the All England Lawn Tennis Club has provided us with new posts and nets for the tennis courts at our Pavilion in Grand Drive. We have set up two courts for members to use and we have kept the third for short tennis and other ball games. 

    The Club has provided these free of charge as part of its Community Outreach Programme, and we are very grateful to them for the time and effort they have given to us. Any member can use these courts, for a very small hourly charge, on application by e-mail to: 

    John Elvidge

  • Raynes Park Townwomen's Guild - July 2018

    Lyn Chalcroft’s talk to the Guild on 17th May entitled ‘Dem Dry Bones’ turned out to e about osteoporosis, ow to avoid it and ow to keep your bones strong during the aging process.   Apart from a good diet with milk for calcium, exercise is very important.   Lyn demonstrated a number of useful exercises.   Producing silk scarves, she got the whole company trying these out, and having a great deal of fun! 

    On 19th July our speaker will be Heidi Gomes giving a talk entitled ‘World of the lunchbox network’. 

    Details of our annual coastal coach trip are given below.  I am liaising with the coach company about timings and exact pickup points because of the proposed gas road works in Grand Drive due to commence at the end of July and will keep those reserving a place informed as well as putting any update in The Guide. 

    The Raynes Park Townswomen’s Guild meet in St. Saviour’s Church Hall monthly, on the third Thursday of each month (excluding August) at 1.45 pm.  A visit and a lunch together are also arranged each month as well as some social functions in local homes.   New Members are always welcome. 

    Dorothy Raymond



    Thursday 16th August 2018 

    £15.00 per seat

    Leaving approx. 9.00 am (times to be confirmed) 

    Pick-up points at Motspur Park, Raynes Park Station and in the Grand Drive Greenway area (to be confirmed)

    Return at 4.30 pm 

    Tel 0208 395 9489

  • Network Rail Performance - Briefing Note

    Wessex Route Briefing Note – Performance – As of May 2018


    Network Rail’s Wessex route is one of the busiest and most congested parts of the railway network. The number of passenger journeys on the route has more than doubled in the last 20 years, to around 234 million per year, and is expected to increase by a further 40% by 2043.

    We appreciate our service has not been good enough overall following the completion of major upgrade work at Waterloo in August last year. Our passengers deserve, and rightly expect, a high performing train service.

    A number of significant incidents have impacted the service in recent months, including infrastructure issues at Waterloo (see page 2 on ‘Waterloo’), a fire in the throat of Waterloo in December (which caused severe disruption), bad and extreme weather conditions and points failures and track issues at some of the busiest parts of our network. The congested nature of our network means that delays can have a severe knock on effect.

    Train performance on the Wessex route in April 2018 was recorded as 89.5%, using the public performance measure (PPM)1. We will continue to try to provide the best service possible for our passengers. Independent review on performance

    The Transport Secretary, Chris Grayling MP, recently commissioned an independent review into operational performance on the South Western Railway network to ‘ensure all possible steps are being taken to improve performance and passenger experience’.

    We welcome the review and are working with its chair, Sir Michael Holden. It is expected to be completed in summer 2018.

    Responding to incidents

    When an incident happens on the railway network we respond as quickly as possible to limit disruption and get people on the move again. Our joint Network Rail and South Western Railway control centre, at our state of the art Basingstoke railway operating centre, has improved interventions leading to a 1.4% improvement in performance between the morning and evening peaks. We have appointed seven senior incident officer roles working 24 hours a day, 365 days a year to lead on incident responses affecting Network Rail and South Western Railway.

    The public performance measure (PPM) shows the percentage of trains which arrive at their terminating station within 5 minutes (for London & South East and regional services) or 10 minutes (for long distance services) -

    Preventing incidents

    We are making every effort to stop incidents before they happen, through increasing resources on this part of the network and using ‘intelligent technology’.

    We are increasing our asset inspection regime in the Waterloo area and have appointed a new track section manager to prevent incidents occurring.

    We have provided some additional teams and resources for maintenance and incident response between Waterloo and Basingstoke.

    Using ‘intelligent technology’, we monitor the efficiency of our infrastructure, which has allowed us to intervene early on around 500 occasions in 2017/18 which could have all resulted in infrastructure failures delaying passengers.

    There has been a 6% improvement in service affecting failures in the past year, with a 27% improvement since 2014. o We are introducing new safer isolations to turn off electricity to the track remotely. This keeps our staff off the track, improving safety, with less disruption to passengers and means we can deal with incidents more quickly. Waterloo upgrade programme

    Disruption after upgrade work at Waterloo last August was due to signalling equipment faults and snagging issues. Newly installed infrastructure did not perform as we expected in day-to-day operating conditions. All issues relating to the upgrade were resolved in autumn last year.

    The ongoing £800m Waterloo and South West Upgrade will be completed by the end of this year with the reopening of the former Waterloo International Terminal. o This will increase peak time capacity at Waterloo by 30% - space for an extra 45,000 passengers every morning and evening.

    The five additional platforms in the former International Terminal will also give us more flexibility during disruption, which should improve our ability to recover from delays.

    Please direct any questions to the Wessex route public affairs lead, Aeneas Tole, on

  • Chairman's Blog - July 2018


    We remind everyone that traffic will not be able to come down Grand Drive northbound from July 23rd until December. This is because of work to replace the gas mains, which is being done in two phases. 

    Two exhibitions were held by SGN (formerly Southern Gas Network) to set out the diversions that are being proposed. We urged them to set out diversion signs from miles around, since this will be absolutely necessary.

    We fear that despite the advance publicity most motorists will be taken by surprise, and that there will be traffic chaos for weeks to come. It seems certain that Hillcross Avenue, Cannon Hill Lane, Martin Way and Bushey Road will bear the brunt of carrying the extra traffic, and that these roads will be clogged up for the whole day. 

    The plans did not include the new routing needed for the 163 bus, but we have now heard from Transport for London, which may be read here. More about SGN's plans may be read here.


    On top of this, there will be a weekend of further road closures for the now annual cycle race around London. This will be on the weekend of 28th and 29th July. The cycle route is from Kingston Hill, along Coombe Lane and Worple Road, up Wimbledon Hill, and along Parkside. There will only be very limited crossing points, yet to be announced, for cars and pedestrians. More details may be read here, 


    There is a strip of woodland of about half an acre that runs behind the maisonettes in Cannon Hill Lane and next to the All England Club tennis ground in Grand Drive. It is an enclosed site, with no vehicular access.  It was bought some years ago and the new owner proceeded to knock down a number of trees protected by tree preservation orders, until he was stopped by the council, and then prosecuted. There still remain on the site 11 trees with such orders. 

    The owner decided to sell the land by auction, with a guide price of £20,000-£25,000, and obtained the price of £51,000. It appears that the then would be buyer did not complete, and so it has been put up for auction again through a different set of auctioneers.  

    What was unknown to us until we saw the legal pack with the first auction is that the land is not only land locked, but also has a covenant over it restricting its use to a plant nursery. It appears unlikely that this covenant can be broken without a very difficult application to the Lands Tribunal. So probably it will remain as open space, incapable of development for house building. 

    We await to see if anyone buys the land, and for what purpose. 

    John Elvidge

  • Diversion of North-Bound 163 Bus

    From Transport for London - 21 June 2018

    Dear Mr Cuthbert

    Thank you for contacting us on 6 June, about a forthcoming diversion to route 163 in Raynes Park while gas mains replacement takes place. Firstly I apologise for the slight delay in replying.

    I can confirm the diversion, which will be in place from Monday 23 July to late December, was only recently finalised. It was therefore unavailable to SGN for their drop-in sessions. Buses towards Morden will continue to serve the whole of Grand Drive, as the southbound carriageway will remain open. 

    Buses towards Wimbledon will be diverted along Cannon Hill Lane, Martin Way and Bushey Road to re-join the normal route. Raynes Park Station will continue to be served in both directions. The nearest open stops on the normal route will be St John Fisher School (GP) and Raynes Park Station (P).

    We’ll make more information available on our website nearer the time. We did this for the closure of Approach Road at Our local bus operations manager has requested publicity to be produced for affected stops. This will show the nearest open stops. Drivers will also call at any fixed stop, when requested, while on diversion.

    Thank you once again for contacting us. Please contact us again if you need assistance with TfL services in the future. We can also be reached by phone on 0343 222 1234.

    Kind regards 

    Dave Finlow
    Customer Service Adviser, 
    Transport for London


  • Raynes Park Townswomen's Guild - June 2018

    When Claire Nethersole from Age Concern, Merton, visited us last month, she reminded us that they are an independent charitable trust although working closely with Age UK.  With a base in Mitcham, they raise their own funds experiencing the same difficulties in the current economic climate as other small charities, and like Merton & Morden Guild of Social Service operating in Morden to provide many similar services.   Mrs Eileen Brewer gave the vote of thanks. 

    The Pavilion Club reported that they always enjoy a visit to the Earth to Table eatery in Raynes Park.  TWG ladies agree, this month arranging a lunch together there. 

    The following week on a beautiful day a group visited the Millennium Embroidery and Garden, Sunbury.  A bonus discovered on arrival – the local Bead Group was there.  Before looking at the main exhibit we were able to admire their completed items (key rings, bookmarks, necklaces, bracelets and brooches) as well as wandering round to watch them at work, asking questions as we went and examining the equipment and the tiny beads!   We admired their patience and dexterity! 

    A credit to them and the local community spirit, the embroidery itself is a collaborative effort of all the ladies and supporters from local organisations in Sunbury showing the principal features of the area at 2000.  Also shown are the logos of these local organisations carefully embroidered. 

    Seat bookings for our summer coach outing to Worthing are now being taken.  Details below.  Please telephone if you are interested. 

    WORTHING - Thursday, 16th August 2018

    £15 per seat

    Leaving approx. 9.00 am (times to be confirmed)

    Pick-up points at:

    Motspur Park, Raynes Park Station and Grand Drive – Greenway 

    Return at 4.30 pm

    Tel: 0208 395 9489

  • Summer Coach Trips




    The Annual trip to Wisley Flower show will be on


    with pickup points at: 

    Motspur Park, Opposite the Earl Beatty @ 9.15 a.m. approx. 

    Station Approach, Raynes Park @ 9.25 a.m. 

    Greenway bus stop, Grand Drive @ 9.35 a.m. 


    The Coach will leave Wisley at 4.00 p.m. 

    The fare is £10.00 which includes entrance and driver’s tip.

    Money to be paid with the booking please, giving your name, contact information and preferred pick-up point.

    Cash or Cheques made payable to RPWBRA should be given to:

    John Townsend, 128 Grand Drive, SW20 9DZ, Telephone: 07714 705976

  • Motspur Park Post Office

    Motspur Park Post Office - 345 West Barnes Lane, New Malden 

    The Association raised the closure, on 28th April, of the above Post Office with our MP, Stephen Hammond, being particularly concerned at reports that an application had been made by a local Newsagent to take over this service was not likely to come to fruition until the Autumn – far too long to wait.  Stephen Hammond has forwarded to us the following correspondence he has received on the subject. 

    Dear Mr Hammond 

    We’re planning to make some changes to the above Post Office

    For further information please see attached letter. Customer information materials will also be available in branch.

    Should you have any questions regarding the branch, please do not hesitate to contact your local External Affairs Manager, Ken Penton, by e-mail on, or by telephone on 07970 396 440. 

    Yours sincerely

    Audra Mirjah-Clarke
    Post Office Ltd

    A letter dated 16th April 2018, attached, states: 

    “Temporary Closure

    I am writing to inform you that, regrettably, following the resignation of the Postmaster and the withdrawal of the premises for Post Office use, the above branch will be closing temporarily. 

    The provision of a Post Office service to our customers in the local community is important to us, and we will continue to work hard to restore services in the area as soon as possible. We would welcome any applications from potential retail partners interested in running a branch locally on our behalf. The vacancy is currently being advertised on our website: and applications will be carefully considered. 

    If you are aware of any interested parties, please do share the link with them. I would like to assure you that we are currently investigating the options available which will enable us to reinstate a Post Office service to the local community. In exploring this, it is important that any future service is sustainable for the person operating the service, and for Post Office Limited. Future provision will reflect customer numbers and usage and we may take the opportunity to establish an alternative type of service. This may be a new style branch known as a Post Office local. 

    Post Office locals run alongside an established local shop and create a more modern and convenient retail experience for customers in newly refurbished premises. If you have any questions you would like to raise about this matter, please write to me via the National Consultation Team at the address shown below. Please note that your comments will not be kept confidential unless you expressly ask us to do so by clearly marking them “In Confidence”. Any future changes to service provision would be handled in line with our Code of Practice which sets out how we communicate and explain changes to the Post Office network. You can find more information about the Code at the end of this letter. If others in your organisation are interested in the proposal, please feel free to let them know about it. I would like to apologise for the inconvenience the temporary closure may cause. We hope that our customers will continue to use the Post Office and full details of alternative Post Office services in the area are shown at the end of this letter. I will write to you again once I have any news about our plans for future service provision. 

    Deepak Valani, Area Network Change Manager


  • Chairman's Blog - June 2018

    Local Elections

    Our Association is strictly non-party political, and we look forward to working with all the new councillors elected for our local wards, which are West Barnes, Cannon Hill, and Raynes Park.  When we hold our Open meetings and committee meetings we invite a councillor from each of the wards to help us in our decisions.

    At the AGM we paid tribute to the hard work of Mary-Jane Jeanes who was not standing for re-election.  We would also like to pay tribute to the dedication of Gilli Lewis-Lavender, a former Mayor, and Brian Lewis-Lavender. 

    All three former councillors have been assiduous in bringing issues to our notice, in getting council officers to act, and in representing the people they were elected to serve. We wish them well.

    Chaos in Grand Drive

    Residents will be well aware of the traffic chaos caused by the closure of the bottom part of Grand Drive for four weeks while gas mains were repaired. We were not consulted about these works, and so could not advise the gas network and the highways authorities of the warning notices that were necessary to avoid some of the worse effects of the jams.  What was required was notices put in place a long distance away, particularly on the A3, in Tudor Drive and further up Grand Drive, and in Kingston Road so that drivers could find alternative routes earlier. Some warnings were belatedly put up, but not enough.  Even with the notices, a steady stream of motorists came past the road closed notice, and then had to do a U-turn, to the anger and irritation of those living there.

    Worse to Come?

    Two exhibitions are being held about the even worse closures of half of Grand Drive planned to start on 23rd July which will last until December.   Grand Drive will be made one way southbound for the duration of the work. A signed diversion is being proposed for northbound traffic.  Further information is available here. These closures will be worse, as there will literally be nowhere else that traffic can easily be diverted to.  We fear that Cannon Hill Lane and Martin Way will be clogged solid for much of the day. 

    The gas network company, SGN, state that the old metal gas mains are being replaced with new plastic pipe, with a minimum life of 80 years, to ensure a continued safe and reliable supply into the future. This will cost £973,000. 

    Motspur Park Post Office

    The recently relocated post office counter, currently situated in Ecklee International Grocery, is to close. This leaves residents in Motspur Park with nowhere at hand to collect their pensions or for the other myriad things they need to do. The nearest post offices are either in New Malden High Street or Raynes Park, both of which are difficult to get to without a car, and with heavy parking charges for those who drive. We understand that Sima Brothers newsagents, nextdoor to Ecklee, has applied to take over the agency, but that the PO is being rather slow to process the application.

    Open Meeting

    We are having an Open Meeting for residents in Blossom House School, Motspur Park, on Wednesday 13th June, starting at 7.30 pm, with some light refreshments afterwards. Do come and discuss this issue, and any others of concern to you. You will be made very welcome. 

    John Elvidge 

  • Raynes Park Townswomen's Guild

    In May the Raynes Park Townswomen’s Guild ladies are continuing their usual pattern of lunches, visits, social events and monthly meeting.  This will be held at St Saviour’s Church Hall from 1.30 pm on Thursday, 17th May.  The speaker will be Lyn Chalcroft, whose talk is entitled “Dem dry bones”.  The sales table will be ‘Good as New’. 

    Planning for the 85th birthday of the Raynes Park Guild in June is now in full swing.  Our Guild is one of the oldest in the Townswomen’s Guild movement. 

    We are also planning our summer outing to the south coast, this year. As previously, this outing is open to all Residents Ass, Rendezvous Club, Pavilion Club, Friends, Relatives and local couples who would like to join us.  Hope to hear from you. 

    Dorothy Raymond 020 8395 9489

  • Chairman's Report - 2016/2017

    In reviewing the events of the past year, I have to begin on a very sad note. 

    In May Jan Bailey, who had been our Joint Secretary and Minutes Secretary for some 30 years, died very suddenly in her garden. This was totally unexpected, since she was always so full of energy, lively, and extrovert. She knew everything that was happening in our area about planning issues, traffic schemes, and flooding, drains and watercourses, and, if she didn’t know, she knew who to contact to find out. We miss her immensely. 

    Jan also ensured that the developers of the land at Meadowsweet Ditch maintained the free flow of water, and many times cleared it herself to prevent flooding on the properties in Grand Drive. We thank David Rush for taking over from Jan in this essential work. 

    Jan loved trees, and her partner, Gordie, had the excellent idea of planting a tree in her memory in the grounds of our Pavilion in Grand Drive. We published last month the photos of the team who braved the cold to plant it in February. It is a flowering bird cherry. We will be holding a tea party in the spring when the tree will be formally dedicated, and we hope that many of our volunteers will be able to come and join us. 

    We should also remember tonight our members Jim White, who was an Area Co-ordinator and Road Steward for almost 50 years, and Margaret Pye who worked on environmental matters with Jan, and was a regular contributor to our meetings, whose funeral was today. 

    I am very grateful to Jill Truman who took over as our sole Secretary. In addition, she continues to edit The Guide which goes from strength to strength, and is still published 12 times a year.  Her dedication and commitment to the Residents’ Association goes back very many years, and demands all our thanks and congratulations.  

    She was at that time also our Advertising Manager, itself a demanding role, but I want to thank Dick Coleman for taking over that responsibility, and for joining our committee.  He has been very active and imaginative in helping us find new advertisers, as well as retaining the old ones, which is vital if we are to keep The Guide paying for itself, and so keeping our subscriptions to the lowest possible level. 

    To replace Jan as Minutes Secretary we were fortunate to find the ideal person in Clare Townsend, who has thrown herself into the task with great enthusiasm and has brought fresh ideas to our meetings. I would like to thank her for coming forward and for her contributions. 

    Her husband, John Townsend, continues as our Treasurer, and manages our finances with great aplomb and good humour, as well as huge attention to detail.  He will be able to tell us later that we are doing really well financially, despite having taken on the massive demands for a small Association of the building and running of the Pavilion social centre for local residents. I should also like to thank Brian Lewis-Lavender for continuing to audit our accounts. 

    Distributing The Guide each month to our members is itself a major undertaking. Andrew Barwick has been our Distribution Manager for many years, ably assisted by Dick Coleman and George Holder, and I want to thank them for all the hours of work they put into this.  But they and we are dependent on all our Area-Co-Ordinators and Road Stewards, many of whom have delivered The Guide for years. We were very pleased to be able to hold a thank you party for them all, both in the summer during the celebrations for the Queen’s 90th birthday, and at our Christmas Party. This was our best ever, thanks to the initiatives of Clare and John Townsend.   

    We also communicate with a wider public through our website, which grows in importance every year, with an ever-increasing number of enquiries coming in that way. It is kept up to date in content by Jerry Cuthbert and our webmaster is Charles Briscoe-Smith. We would like to thank them both. 

    A large part of the work of the Association continues to be focused on matters of planning and traffic.  We continue to rely heavily on the day to day expertise of David Freeman, Jerry Cuthbert, and Rachel Skinner, and I want to thank them for all the time and energy they bring to this work. We simply could not cope without them. 

    In the past year they have advised us, among other things, on the issues arising from the CrossRail2 proposals.  These will entail over the next few years major changes in this area, including the three stations of Raynes Park, Motspur Park and Wimbledon. We believe that it is likely that Raynes Park station will be moved along the track towards Wimbledon. The proposals may well suggest the closure of the West Barnes and Motspur Park level crossings to allow for the greater frequency of trains. Obviously, this would cause even greater traffic congestion, and probably standstill for much of the day unless alternative provisions are made.  The expectation is that more detailed proposals for this area will be put out for further consultation later this year, and we will ensure that we are well represented at whatever public meetings are called so that we can put our point of view. 

    We have made detailed objections this year to the Council’s proposed introduction of fortnightly rubbish collections and the compulsory use of wheelie bins; and made representations on the plans for a greater housing density on the Atkinson Morley site on Copse Hill, which will bring even more traffic to that area. 

    We have objected strongly to the introduction of a “diesel levy” of an extra £90 this April on residents with diesel cars living in Parking Controlled Zones, which will increase to £150 over three years and raise Merton an extra £861,000.  This gives no opportunity for people to have time to change their cars, which may, in fact, do little mileage. 

    We have also presented detailed objections to the initial proposals of the Boundary Commission to divide up the Parliamentary seat of Wimbledon, which would mean that the London Borough of Merton had no less than 5 MP’s to represent them. 

    We also commented strongly that the Council needed to make further provision for the ever-increasing cost of social care for the elderly and the disabled. 

    But it is fair to say that the major day to day work of the Association is now focused on the Pavilion in Grand Drive, which has been an enormous success since it was re-furbished and opened.  It is a success both in terms of the number of groups now using it, which include yoga and faith meetings, as well as children’s and family parties, and the satisfaction of those users.  It is also a success in the growing income it is bringing into the Association funds. 

    Foremost among these groups is the Pavilion Social Club which was founded in March 2014, and meets every Thursday afternoon with 30 - 40 people attending every week.  It has had some excellent speakers, including the Trading Standards Officer, legal advice on setting up Powers of Attorney, how to keep fit, and manicure and pedicure demonstrations. It also organises some outside visits, and has raised over £150 for charity.  Its success is due to the driving commitment and energy of its two founding organisers, Andrea Hannan and Jill Truman, who create an enveloping warmth and excitement for all. 

    The Pavilion itself is managed by a small group of people who look after the building and its grounds, take the bookings, and open and close the building. The Chair of this group is Jerry Cuthbert, and all of the members of this group deserve a mention and our huge thanks tonight. They are David Freeman, John Townsend, Linda Fitch, Moira Deveson, Howard Phillips, and Tina and Chris Lorimer. 

    We continue to play a full part in the wider meetings of the Raynes Park Association and of the Raynes Park Forum, and I would like to thank our representatives on these bodies, Jerry Cuthbert and Jill Truman for their contribution to these community discussions. 

    I should also mention the valuable help given by all our local councillors, but particularly those from the West Barnes Ward, who attend all our committee meetings.  

    Next year it looks likely that we will be busy not only with sending out our views on the CrossRail 2 proposals, but also on the plans for local hospital provision in this area, about which we are hearing at this meeting. 

    The next calendar year will be 2018. As we were founded as an Association in 1928 we will be 90 years old. We will have to think of some way of celebrating this long tradition of service to the local community.    

    John Elvidge , 5th April 2017


  • Chairman's Blog - April 2018


    The Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan, has set new annual housebuilding targets for Merton, which are one of the largest increases in London. He expects the number of new homes to be built every year in the borough to increase from 411 to 1,328,  i.e. 13,280 over the next ten years. 65 per cent of these will need to be “affordable”. 

    He states that London needs to build 66,000 new homes every year to meet the growing need.

    Merton Council’s local plan wants more land to be released for new housing, with more blocks of flats, and increased density.

    In my view, we have done more than our fair share in this area in the last ten years to increase the number of homes.  We have had major developments of flats on the site of St Catherine’s School off Grand Drive. Further down Grand Drive  more flats and townhouses were built on the former sports fields of LESSA and Sun Alliance.  More flats were built in the Waitrose development in the heart of Raynes Park.

    These hundreds of new dwellings were built with minimal contributions by the developers to the cost of the infrastructure necessary to serve these new residents, despite the increased demand on future population growth,  on the health service, schooling, and road traffic. 

     More were due to be built on the Rainbow Industrial site next to Raynes Park station, but this area now appears to be earmarked as a necessary part of the CrossRail II proposals.

    While everyone can agree on the need for more starter homes for younger people, what is depressing is that all the emphasis from the authorities is on building on green areas ( which is much easier and more profitable for the developers)  and not in identifying and using the many brownfield sites that exist everywhere. Nor is any housing authority putting emphasis on converting vacant properties over shops, or turning redundant shops into housing.


    A resident of Cannon Hill Lane complained to me that her road has not been swept, she believes, since Veolia took over the contract of street cleaning and rubbish collection last April. She also pointed to a large pile of rubbish on the verge which has not been removed despite complaints from her to the Council, and complaints by the local councillors.  Everywhere one sees uncollected litter and rubbish bins that are overflowing.

    It is for the Council to specify to the contractors the frequency with which they must sweep the streets, and empty the bins, and to ensure that this happens. It is clear that they have failed to do so. 

    The Council’s present intention is to move in October this year from weekly to fortnightly collections of landfill rubbish and recycling. The problem of littering will be bound to get even worse. 

     Residents can themselves help by ensuring that items in the recycling bins are weighted down with bottles or heavier items, so that they cannot blow into the street.


    The Annual General Meeting of the Association is being held at Raynes Park Library on Wednesday 11th April starting at 7.30. Do come along and have your say on the area and how you think we can help improve it. 

    We will also have the opportunity to hear from Ruth Whitehead on the work of the Paddock Horticultural Society, on the edge of Cannon Hill Common, which is one of the great success stories in the Borough.

    There’s also the chance to chat over a glass or two of wine, and some nibbles. Do come along. You will be made very welcome. 

    John Elvidge 

  • Raynes Park Townswomen's Guild - April 2018

    A large group of  members met to enjoy lunch at the Lime and Thyme Restaurant in Raynes Park, and the following week a group of 9 ladies visited Bourne Hall in Ewell.  The upstairs museum documenting local history and development, featuring well known Epsom and Ewell historic personalities and, of course, the Race Course and Derby, proved fascinating.  As a bonus, downstairs was an equally fascinating temporary display featuring pictures of the 1953 Coronation Celebrations.  After this, we welcomed tea, light lunch and a sit outside in the sun in the gardens!

     At our monthly meeting in St Saviour’s Church Hall our speaker was Peter Smith whose talk was entitled ‘Living in a Lighthouse’.  Peter told us that practically every male member of the family for generations had been lighthouse keepers.  If not they were lifeboat crew members or strongly connected to the lifeboat organisation.  Peter himself spent his childhood in various lighthouses, a short while at Whitby, but mainly on the many Cornish lights.  With pictures of the periodic delivery of supplies, fishing off the rocks, and the lighthouse completely enveloped in spray and water in rough weather, our Chairman asked how they were constructed.  Apparently, it takes many years – a survey of the rock into which granite foundation stones, hewn by stonemasons to fit exactly are placed.  Similarly, each of the walls is hewn by stonemasons with stones to fit exactly.  No mortar is used.  The last piece added at the top locks the construction solid.

     Our next meeting at St Saviour’s Church Hall at 1.30 for 1.45 pm will be on Thursday, 19th April.  The speaker will be Claire Nethersole from Merton Age Concern.  Visitors or new members are always welcome to our small but friendly group. 

    Dorothy Raymond

  • St Saviour's May Fair - 7 May 2018

    St Saviour’s May Fair will be held on Bank Holiday Monday, 7th May 2018, from 12 noon to 3pm. This annual event gives St Saviour’s the opportunity to welcome local residents, as well as those from further afield, to the church in Grand Drive. As usual there will be a BBQ and other refreshments plus the crowning of the May Queen, Maypole Dancing and a Balloon Race. A wide variety of games and side shows will be there plus numerous other stalls and a grand draw. Admission is FREE.

  • Improved services for Mental Health

    Hannah Pearson, from Merton Clinical Commissioning Group (CCG), updated the Raynes Park Forum on future Commissioning Group intentions. The slides from her presentation can be found here 

    In response to questions from residents Hannah said Mental Health policy is a high priority for the CCG and there have been a number of recent improvements to local mental health services including:

    • Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) service – provides support for anxiety, depression and other conditions
    • Merton Rapid Intervention service – a multi-disciplinary team that includes Mental Health professionals - and aims to prevent hospital admissions
    • Crisis Cafés – informal, drop-in support services.
  • Raynes Park Townswomen's Guild - March 2018

    Once again, the Magnificent Music Hall at Wimbledon Theatre at the end of January gave us a varied, professional and entertaining matinee show enjoyed by the Townswomen’s Guild and groups from several clubs in the Raynes Park area and surrounding districts.  This company’s annual visit to Wimbledon is always popular. 

    The principal activity in February has been socialising over lunch.  First, we visited the busy Morden Brook Pub at Lower Morden roundabout.  A delay in service was forecast by bar staff, but in the event the food arrived in a reasonable time and was judged to be good. 

    Our second visit was to Merton & Morden Guild of Social Service at Morden to join them for their St Valentine’s Lunch.  With a party of 9 TWG ladies boosting their normal numbers, the Guild had to work hard to squeeze everyone in.  The food for a three-course lunch was very good.  Our ladies were very appreciative of the pianist who tinkled the ivories while we ate, and the volunteers who worked smoothly to serve the food and clear tables.  Many thanks to Merton & Morden Guild for this friendly and pleasant lunchtime visit. 

    The following afternoon our monthly meeting at St Saviour’s Church Hall was the AGM.  The committee were returned to office unanimously.  Then, we were very pleased two members volunteered to join the Committee.  Later the Merton & Morden Guild of Social Service was adopted as our charity for the year.  It was agreed the August outing will be on Thursday, 16th to WORTHING.   As usual this outing will be open to all to join us to make a successful coach trip.  Cost and details will follow. 

    March activities include Lunch at the Lime & Thyme, Raynes Park on Wednesday, 7th and a visit to the Museum at Bourne Hall, Ewell on Tuesday, 13th.  Our next meeting at St Savour’s Church Hall will be at 1.30 for 1.45 on Thursday, 15th March. 

    Dorothy Raymond  020 8395 9489

  • Our AGM - 11 April 2018


    of the Raynes Park & West Barnes Residents’ Association

    will be held at the Raynes Park Library Meeting Rooms (Aston Road entrance) 

    ON WEDNESDAY 11th APRIL 2018 at 7.30 p.m.


    1,         Apologies for Absence

    2.         Chairman’s Report on the Work of the Association during 2017/18

    3.         Treasurer’s Report

    4.         Election of Officers and Committee 

    Break for Refreshments


    5.         Speaker:  Ruth Whitehead, Paddock Horticultural Society

    6.         Updates on current Planning Matters

    7.         Residents’ Forum and Any Other Business 

    Please bring a copy of ‘The Guide’ with you to verify your membership

  • Chairman's Blog - March 2018


    The council reports that hundreds more parents are applying for school places this year, due to the rise in population and the improvement in local school results.   The council has received 2,296 admission applications for September 2018, which is 268 more than last year. They say that there is an urgent need to build a new secondary school. 

     A new Harris Academy Wimbledon is due to open on a temporary site in September this year at Whatley Avenue (off Martin Way).  This will be a non-selective state school for both girls and boys. The school is due to move to a permanent new school building in High Path, South Wimbledon, in September 2020. 

    Official figures from the government show that all the borough’s secondary schools continue to be judged good or outstanding by Ofsted; and Department of Education results show that the progress pupils locally have made between the end of Key Stage 2 and the end of Key Stage 4 in eight subject qualifications, with maths and English given extra weight, is among the best in the country. 


    The local Guardian reports that a resident of Westway has seen six crashes at the junction of his road with Crossway within the last two years, and that he has had to replace his fence three times due to cars crashing into it. He is demanding that the council narrow the road or that CCTV measures are put in place to prevent a serious injury at this junction. 

    It is a very busy junction, particularly in the rush hour, and used by vehicles going to and from the two level crossings. Many pedestrians, including children, need to cross it.

    The council states that it will carry out a further investigation into road safety in the area and will ask for police reports. 


    The trend for people to improve their homes by building extensions, including loft extensions, means that a number of local roads now have large builders’ and scaffolding lorries parked near them for much of the day. These roads are often narrow and were not designed for vehicular use. The result is that the lorries park on grass verges, leaving wheel ruts and destroying the grass, or else on the pavement or asphalt verge, damaging that.  Prime examples of this can be seen in Heath Drive, off Grand Drive. 

    I understand that it is a requirement of planning permission that builders reinstate public property that has been damaged, but it is not always possible to find out which builder has caused which damage.  

    The problems in Heath Drive have been reported to the council by the Councillors.  Building inspectors, when they certify the extensions, need also to make a note of the damage done to the local infrastructure, and ensure that this is re-instated at the builders’ cost.



    Our AGM will be held on the 11 April 2018. Click here for further details.

    John Elvidge

  • Proposed Development at Barnes End

    Proposed Development at Barnes End, KT3 6PB

    17/P3991 & 17/P3989 

    Letters have been flooding into Merton Council’s Planning Department in objection to a proposal to knock down some admittedly unsightly garages and replacing them with three houses.  

    Objections centre on the loss of the garages themselves, which are let out mainly for storage purposes, loss of light and privacy. The proposal appears to involve the knocking down of an existing wall separating the two sites and the resultant loss of security as well as additional traffic and parking in an already very congested area.

  • Best Wishes to John Braden


    In this month's blog, our chairman, John Elvidge, tells us about the retirement of John Braden, a cherished and admired member of our community for nearly 50 years. 

    This is why: one neighbour who ‘inherited’ John on moving here in 1992 speaks of his ‘reassuring presence’ and undemonstrative but spontaneous kindness to another neighbour, a widower who was living alone with very few visitors. John would deliver the milk into his kitchen with a friendly word. 

    Another customer speaks of the posters that used to be on her classroom wall when she was five years old, back in the early 1950s. They were called People Who Help Us and there were three: The Policeman, the Postman and The Milkman. 'Nowadays we rarely see The Policeman who is busy elsewhere, the Postman seems to change every few months, but - luckily for us - The Milkman remains the same affable presence that we knew sixty years ago. What was once true for us has still been true for our grandchildren.' 

    Another fan writes:  

    John, who has been driving his ‘Milk & More’ van and timely serving his customers, is a jolly face to look forward to every morning. We have been his customers over a couple of decades. Our friendly experience – he is always cracking jokes - is pleasant to remember. We send best wishes for his retirement, a well-earned time of his life. 

    Many people mention John's conversations on the doorstep, referring especially to his holidays - the animated anticipation and then the relaxed retrospect. But I can think at once of so many more topics that have arisen spontaneously: backache, stolen cars, computers, researching family trees, the state of the dairy business (no surprise there), the foibles of education, mental arithmetic and its superiority over calculators…has anyone known John get a bill wrong?  And the changes that forty years have brought to Raynes Park. 

    We might go on getting the milk, but after February we'll surely miss the warm and generous chat that comes with it.




  • West Barnes Library - Feb 2018

    News from West Barnes Library... 

    About our Volunteers

    There are currently 36 volunteers at West Barnes Library, who perform a range of duties that assist the permanent staff and allow the library to maintain its opening hours.  (The spur for the present Monday volunteering,  in particular, and the formation of the Friends of West Barnes Library, was when, in 2011, it seemed possible that the library might have to close on Mondays. The support offered by the Friends and those who volunteered to cover Mondays meant the library could remain open five days a week.)

    Volunteers' work include 'meeting and greeting' those using the library; assisting library users with the computers and printing; shelving books and ensuring that books are in the right order (so they can be found!); locating books required by other libraries; setting out (and putting away) furniture and equipment for events (such as local history talks and the Rendezvous Group).  Many volunteers are also involved in activities organised by the Friends of the library. 

    Ever since the Friends of West Barnes Library was formed in 2011, there has been a close connection between them and the volunteers.  Most of those involved in organising the Friends are, or have been, library volunteers.  The Friends organise Quiz Nights, fairs, Board Games evenings, local history talks and talks by authors, and from time to time buy items for the library--such as the tables and a sandwich board given during the past year.  

    Toby Ewin

  • Parking Charges - Kingston Hospital


    "I write to you as somebody whom I believe to be involved in a Residents' Association in [the] Kingston [area]. For those of you who do not know me, I'm James Giles, a community activist in New Malden and I am involved in a number of community organisations here.

    "You may [not] be aware that, from 22nd January, Kingston Hospital is set to introduce parking fees for those with blue badges, i.e. disabled people. Until this point, parking has been free.

    "The Kingston Independent Residents Group (KIRG) has launched a campaign to reinstate free parking at Kingston Hospital for blue badge holders, branding proposed changes by the NHS Trust a ‘disgrace’

    "I ask you if you would please be so kind as to distribute the link to this very urgent petition to your members and residents. It is so important that we demonstrate to the hospital the damage that this will cause to the most vulnerable in Kingston.

    "If you are not on-line you can write to:  Cllr. M. Clark, at 135c South Lane, New Malden, Surrey KT3 5HQ.  Cllr. Clark is the Kingston Councillor who will be addressing this matter on the Health Scrutiny Committee.

    "Thank you in advance for your support.

    "James Giles"

  • Chairman's Blog - Feb 2018

    Our Milkman

    The milkman whose round has covered the whole of the West Barnes area every week for almost 50 years is retiring at the end of February.   He is John Braden MBE who is a familiar figure to very many of our Members. We wish him and his family all the best for a long and well-deserved retirement.

    John began working or United Dairies in August 1968 (now Milk & More) and has had to start 5 or 6 days a week, winter and summer and in all weathers, by 3.30 am, for a round that is not completed until the afternoon.

    John’s round covers such roads as Cannon Hill Lane, Parkway, Elm Walk, Southway, Westway, Oakway, Linkway, Grand Drive, and all the roads off.

    One of our Members has rightly described him as a “very reliable, conscientious, and kind-hearted man, who is thoughtful, cheerful, sociable, and has made a huge contribution to his neighbourhood and its sense of community”. 

    John was awarded the MBE for his actions in noticing that an elderly lady in Southway had not collected her milk from the previous day, and saw through the letter box that she had fallen in the hall.  This saved her life. Her neighbours in Southway asked for his public-spirited action and his general community service to be rewarded, and he was presented with the MBE.

    If you would like to mark your appreciation of John’s service, we are making a collection to present to him. Contributions can be sent or taken to John Townsend, our Treasurer at 128 Grand Drive, and clearly marked “Donation – John Braden”, or given to the person nominated to collect for your road.  

    Wimbledon Police Station

    We reported previously that the Mayor of London is to close and sell off Wimbledon Police Station, among many others, claiming that the savings are needed to protect the jobs of front line staff. The Times reported before Christmas that the university lecturer who lives in Wimbledon and who suffered horrific injuries during a raid by four thugs on his family home hopes to prevent this closure by bringing a judicial review in the High Court. He believes that his life was only saved because officers from the police station arrived within 8 minutes of receiving the 999 call from his daughter who was hiding upstairs.

    The Consultation Institute, a not for profit organisation, has stated that the formal public consultation “falls significantly short in best practice standards”.  He hopes to raise £5,000 to pursue the legal challenge.   We can only wish him all the best.

    Thames Water Leak

    As I write there is a major water leak in Firstway which was first reported before Christmas, but which has got steadily worse since. Nothing was done to repair it till 9pm on 12 January when emergency work had to begin, since the road surface was breaking up and a pothole appeared, deep enough to damage vehicles, 12” x 12” x 3”.  The sudden increase in the leak meant that the residents in Firstway had no notice of their water being cut off. We are indebted to our Road Steward Chris Quinby for keeping us up to date with information. 

    Plans had been made to repair the water main over a two-week period which would have necessitated one way working up Grand Drive and major traffic disruption over the whole area. Fortunately, the repairs were eventually carried out quite quickly and without the anticipated traffic disruption  .

    London’s Polluted Air

    The Mayor of London is consulting on plans to help tackle London’s toxic air pollution, which contributes to thousands of early deaths each year. These include proposals to extend tighter emission standards for diesel vehicles to the whole of London for lorries, buses, and other heavy goods vehicles in 2020, and for all vehicles within the North and South Circular roads in 2021.

    If you want to comment, visit  or write to FREEPOST, TFL CONSULTATIONS by 28th February. 

    John Elvidge




  • Leaking Water Main in Grand Drive

    Expect Traffic Disruption in Raynes Park - Jan 2018

    Thames Water is currently working out a strategy for the temporary traffic lights necessary for them to repair the leaking water main under Grand Drive, at the junction with Firstway.  They are not sure what they’ll find until they start digging! 

    It’ll probably be quite a long job; first excavation, then investigation, followed by repairing the pipes and re-instatement of the holes and road surface. 

    Temporary traffic lights are anticipated to be necessary, to allow working on one side of the road first and then perhaps switching to the other. Whether this can be co-ordinated with the lights at the junctions of Bushey Road and Approach Road by the bridge, remains to be seen.  

    Whatever happens, it’s likely to cause traffic jams for several weeks.

  • Raynes Park Association - Jan 2018

    Raynes Park Enhancement Plan

    Railway News

    A meeting was held between Paul McGarry LBM, Neil Milligan LBM, Tony Edwards, Chris Edge & Chris Larkman.  The purpose of the meeting had been to discuss how to respond to a recent unhelpful email from Kirsty Scott (Network Rail) regarding improvements to Raynes Park Station.  It was agreed that Chris Larkman would raise the issues with Stephen Hammond who has subsequently agreed to call a meeting at Westminster with Network Rail and key RPA members.

    Advertising Hoardings

    The RPA has also askedLBM to take enforcement action against the owners of the property on Coombe Lane at the junction of Durham Road for removal of the advertising hoardings.  Chris Larkman has alsomet with Shay Brown, Station Manager, who has agreed to note the matters which are specifically South West Rail to see how she can assist. 

    Bins to the North of the Skew Arch.  Stephen Crowe agreed that these bins should be removed, and he is going to follow up on this.


    Local Business Issues

    It was reported that cars continue to travel the wrong way on the one-way system, and there have been ‘several accidents’ including one serious one which was witnessed by Julie Donabie from her shop.  Julie also said there has been several ‘smash and grab’ robberies including one opposite her shop when someone on a scooter smashed a car window to steal a bag.  She claimed there are still problems with flooding and illegal parking e.g. on pavements.  


    It was noted that Thames Water had made it clear at the last Community Forum that issues of flooding relating to the public sewer should be reported directly to them on 0800 807 060 or 0800 316 9800 rather than LBM.  Blocked drains remain LBM’s responsibility.


    New Malden – Raynes Park Pedestrian & Cycle Route

    This has now been formally approved.  Details of the route through Raynes Park to be consulted on soon.



    Jerry Cuthbert noted that the project was not given the formal go-ahead in the budget, though it had received a brief mention.  

     Chris Larkman

  • Townswomen's Guild - Jan 2018

    Alice in Winterland – the Christmas show at the Rose Theatre, Kingston – was enjoyed by a small party from the TWG.  Loosely based on the Alice in Wonderland tale it proved to be a delightful well produced play with a big cast, incorporating music and dance, and large creatures animated by teams of the cast.  For those looking for something a little different from the usual pantomime this was perfect. 

    The Christmas Lunch was very well attended, arranged at The Leather Bottle, Merton.  Members had a choice of menu, all variations being well received by members. 

    Our first meeting in the New Year will be on Thursday, 18th January at 1.30 at St Saviour’s Church Hall.  Mel Rees will give a talk entitled ‘My family and other setbacks’.  As always, visitors will be welcome. 

    Best wishes from the Townswomen’s Guild for a healthy and happy 2018. 

    Dorothy Raymond



  • Chairman's Blog - Jan 2018


    As we reported in the December edition of The Guide, the All England Club is proposing to provide additional tennis facilities at their ground off Grand Drive. 

    These include an additional air dome over three acrylic courts, which will be situated behind the present air dome, i.e. on the opposite side from the houses in Cannon Hill Lane. They also want to build 16 new international standard grass courts which will be used by the players competing in the Wimbledon Championship.  In keeping with their wish to work with the local community, these grass courts will be available to use by local people, after registration and booking, for a nominal sum after the end of the Tournament and until the end of September. There is an all-year-round Community Tennis Programme on the acrylic courts. A new clubhouse is also being built. 

    The Club hosted two consultation meetings and sent out invitations to the 300 surrounding residents in Cannon Hill Lane, Elm Walk, Southway, and Grand Drive.  I attended one of these, and there was a steady flow of residents in attendance. 

    As part of their proposals they intend to deal with the remaining flooding issues at the ground that have caused major problems over the years to some of the surrounding properties. These include the blockages that often occur to the Meadowsweet Ditch which prevents storm water running off.  The residents were particularly interested in these. 

    The Ground is the home of the Wimbledon Junior Tennis Initiative and over 350 children from local schools now visit the site for coaching every weekend. The Club’s coaching team visits 69 schools in Merton and Wandsworth, giving taster sessions and selecting pupils to receive coaching at the Ground.

    It also is the training base for the Wimbledon ball boys and ball girls, all of whom are drawn from local schools.   

    A sports pitch will be retained for community use on the eastern section of the site. 

    One suggested proposal which may cause controversy is for maintenance vehicles to be able to access the ground off Cannon Hill Lane. Given the outcry this caused when this was proposed as a main access for residential use, we hope that this will not be proceeded with in the formal application.  

    The Club intends to lodge this by the end of January, and, of course, anyone affected by the proposals can object at that stage.  In the meantime, comments can be sent via e-mail to or by post to: Raynes Park Phase 2 Proposals, c/o Rolfe Judd Planning, Old Church Court, Claylands Road, London, SW18 1NZ. 


    The Royal Bank of Scotland has announced that it intends to close 197 NatWest branches by June 2018. These include the branch in Morden and that in Wimbledon Village. Of course, the branch In Raynes Park was closed some years ago. That will only leave the branch in the town centre of Wimbledon open for local customers. 

    The Bank, which is still largely owned by the taxpayer, justifies this on the grounds that the number of customers using branches has fallen by 40% in recent years in favour of customers using online and mobile transactions.  That still leaves 60% of customers who want to access a branch. 

    I have to say that this is a totally retrograde decision.  People have many reasons why they to want to talk to a cashier in person. There are often queues of people at the Morden branch. As a customer of NatWest, I regularly use the branches that are to close in preference to that in the Town Centre, since every time I go there, there is a long queue of people waiting to see the cashiers. The queue is made worse since in each branch there are now only two over worked cashiers available to see people. 

    I suppose that it is useless to protest, but it is a woeful example of a state run organisation putting its own wish to maximise profits against the wishes and needs of the people it is supposed to serve. 


    This year we will achieve 90 years of existence as a Residents’ Association, a major achievement.  We will be letting you know how we are proposing to celebrate this anniversary year. 

    Meanwhile, a Happy New Year to all our Members and readers. 


    John Elvidge 

  • Raynes Park Afternoon Townswomen's Guild - Dec 2017

    During her talk “40 years of Quilting” Mrs Gillian Harris covered a table with an amazing array of quilted items which she produced from a seemingly bottomless case.  These illustrated different styles and designs, using hand and machine stitching techniques.  After questions ladies were intrigued to examine in detail the various items set out over the table.  We all admired the artistry and patience shown in effectively mastering this time consuming, but very worth-while, skill. 

    A repeat visit to Charterhouse.  A second small group of ladies visited this historic building in Charterhouse Square, close to The Barbican.  In summary, this building began as a monastery, became a Tudor Palace and dwelling, then the original home of the Charterhouse School (with many well- known old boys – e.g. Thackeray, Baden- Powell) and currently it’s an almshouse, under the Trust, for ‘brothers’. 

    The local area federation of Townswomen’s Guilds’ autumn lunch was held at South Thames College, Merton, on 15th November.  Eleven ladies, spread over two tables, enjoyed an extremely good meal, with well prepared and presented tasty food which was ably prepared and served by College students.  We hope this venue is selected by the federation committee on a future occasion. 

    Our regular meeting on 16th November featured a talk entitled ‘Gardens of Japan’ by Colin Jones, who is Chairman of Sanderstead Horticultural Society.  It is amazing how many of our favourite garden plants originated in Japan – hostas, hydrangeas, Japanese anemone, wisteria, azaleas and rhododendrons and, of course, maples.  Japanese gardens are designed to be ‘islands of serenity’ often with a limited palette of colours and featuring water, a tea house, lanterns, pines and maples.  Mr Jones illustrated his talk with beautiful slides, also showing intriguing examples of moss and gravel gardens.  I loved the idea of constructing a rope framework in autumn to protect the shaped pines from being damaged in the snow!  He ended of course with pretty shots of the cherry blossom.  Japanese people have such an interest in this ornamental cherry blossom they monitor and report its opening progress from south to north on television.  Spread over several latitudes, it moves at a rate of 4 miles a day up the Japanese islands. 

    Raynes Park TWG Christmas Lunch is to be held at The Leather Bottle on Tuesday, 7 December; we will attend Alice in Winterland at The Rose on Tuesday, 12 December and finally our Christmas Party is at St Saviours at 1.30 pm on Thursday, 21st December 2017. 

    We would love you to come and join us. 

    Dorothy Raymond, 020 8395 9489



  • Chairman's Blog - December 2017


    We have received late notice of a public consultation at the end of November and in early December about the proposed expansion of the All England Lawn Tennis Club in Grand Drive. This is the sports ground bounded by Southway, Elm Walk, and Cannon Hill Lane.

    It has a large indoor tennis court, changing rooms, as well as many outdoor courts.  Members of the Committee were invited to see the facilities in the summer, and they have been built to the highest possible standards. The grounds are used by the Club for the tennis and fitness training of local children, as part of their community outreach programme, and all local schools are invited to send pupils. On the Saturday we were there, it was full of children of all ages, with enthusiastic coaches.

    The Club now wants to expand the facilities, which may include building a further indoor court, and will probably need planning permission to do so.  There were objections from residents to the present indoor court. We hope that the Club will hold a further public consultation in the New Year, but this time with an extended notice period.


    The Mayor of London’s policing and crime office announced on November 1st that Wimbledon Police Station, on Queen’s Road, is to close.   This is despite the representations made by all local politicians that the station is needed, particularly because of the high profile of the Wimbledon fortnight and the night time economy, which brings anti-social problems, in the town centre. The 24/7 front counter will instead be Mitcham police station.

    Sadiq Khan confirmed that more than half of London’s 73 remaining police stations are to close, with many of the buildings sold off to help raise £165 million.  The sale of the station in Wimbledon could raise up to £10 million and save a further £500,000 in running costs.  This may take two years to happen.

    The Merton Police Borough Commander has promised to keep residents informed about proposals also to merge police teams in the boroughs of Merton, Wandworth, Richmond, and Kingston into one large south west borough commander unit. The intention is to increase the number of neighbourhood police based at ward level “hubs”.  There will be more focus on reporting crimes over the phone and online.    


    Once again the clocks have gone back an hour, and it is dark by mid-afternoon.  Why is it that Parliament, which seems, at the moment, to have little to do in legislative terms, can’t do what the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents has wanted for years, and see the clocks moved permanently forward during the winter. It is accepted that more people are killed and injured on the roads during the dark evenings than would be in the dark mornings. There would also be considerable savings in energy costs. It would make the most of the shorter daylight hours.

    The reason for not legislating is always said to be that the Scots would not support it. But they now have their own Parliament and could easily opt out if they wanted to.

    Season’s greetings and a happy Christmas to one and all.


    John Elvidge

  • Notes - RPWBRA Open Meeting - 12/09/2017

    In attendance: 

    Cllrs. Mary Jane Jeanes, Brian and Gilli Lewis Lavender; The Committee; Association Members; Guests, Rev Peter Kelly, Dr Ruth Charlton, Dr James March and Clare Prodlock.

    John Elvidge opened the meeting by welcoming all present, and introducing the Guest speakers. 

    Firstly, he invited the Rev. Peter Kelly, of St. Saviour’s Church, to speak.   He had come along to introduce himself to the Association, and explain what had been happening at St. Saviour’s during the last nine months since he took over his role as priest in charge. He had to get to another meeting by 8.00 p.m. which is why he took first place.  The Chairman’s Comment in the October issue of the Guide referred to this impromptu and welcome visit. 

    We had also invited representatives from the Epsom & St. Helier NHS Trust.   We were delighted to meet the joint Deputy Chief Executives Dr. Ruth Charlton and Dr. James March. As well as the Trust’s communications Director, Claire Proudlock.   The very interesting video that they brought along, and the information about how the Trust had progressed since we last heard from them a year ago, was well received and covered by the Chairman’s comment last month.  Perhaps the most surprising fact to many of us was to learn that the Trust had kept inbudget, unlike so many others. 

    Proposed Telecoms Mast – Combe Lane/Cambridge Road. 

    A Coombe Lane resident, Mr. Otto Hoenig, spoke of his concerns over the proposals for a telephone mast in Coombe Lane. He had attended the meeting on behalf of his neighbours to seek the Association’s advice and support in objecting to a proposed re-siting of a telecoms mast from the Rainbow Estate to the corner of Coombe Lane with Cambridge Road. 

    It was agreed that there were much more suitable sites in the vicinity than one so close to residential accommodation and so visually intrusive.   Residents’ were advised to object to the proposal in the strongest terms and by individual letters including suggestions of more appropriate sites nearby.   It was agreed that the Association would support residents’ views. 

    Editor’s Note:


    Mr. Hoenig has since advised that Merton had turned down the prior approval application by Messrs Walden for the re-siting of the mast contrary to policies DM D1; DM D2; DM D6 of the Merton Sites and Policies Plan (July 2014), policy CS.14 of the Merton LDF Core Planning Strategy and policy 7.4 and 7.5 of the London Plan (March 2015).

  • Townswomen's Guild - Oct/Nov 2017



     The September meeting was, overall, a relaxed social occasion to begin the autumn season, although there was some reviewing of forthcoming events.  Two contrasting quizzes were prepared, but in the event only one was required.  Members were happy to catch up with one another over tea and cakes! 

    A group met at Superfish, Morden for another regular lunch club fixture.  However, on the same day two Committee Members were sad to attend the funeral of Mrs Elizabeth Fleming who had been a loyal member of the Raynes Park Guild for many years.  We will miss her. 

    On 15th November the local area Federation of TWGs have arranged their Christmas Lunch – this year at Merton College.   With such a local venue a large group from our Guild will be attending this event.  

    To avoid everything happening in one week, the visit has been brought forward to Tuesday 7th November.  We will go to The Millennium Embroidery Gallery and walled garden in Sunbury.  

    The monthly meeting on Thursday, 16h November (at 1.00 pm in St Saviour’s Church Hall) will feature a talk by Colin Jones entitled ‘Gardens of Japan’. 

    Please join us at our meeting if you would like to attend, or telephone for more information about any of our activities.  Visitors are always welcome. 

    Dorothy Raymond,  020 8395 9489

  • Notes - Community Forum - September 2017



    Open Forum

    A local resident asked when the hoardings on Durham Road will be removed as they attract fly posters. Neil Milligan, Development Control Section Manager, explained that the hoardings are technically legal; however, the council is investigating whether to act.


    Statistics on the number of Fixed Penalty Notices issued since April 2017 were provided: 2,683 for littering; 0 for dog fouling. Merton Council employs five members of staff from contractors Kingdom Security.


    Asked about whether road markings can be painted at the junction at the bottom of Lambton Road, Neil Milligan said that this has been raised with Chris Chowns, the Council’s transport planner, but the response is that currently there is no budget to do the work. Neil agreed to raise the matter again.


    Residents voiced concerns about the white line outside Waitrose, which has been moved, making it difficult for cars to get past one another and leading to traffic jams. Neil Milligan agreed to speak to Highways engineers about the matter.


    Concerns were expressed about litter outside the library and in the Apostles. It was noted that the drains are also covered in litter.

    Councillor Bull acknowledged the problem.


    Flooding in Raynes Park Area


  • Chairman's Blog - Nov 2017



    So far as we know, the present administration on Merton Council - if re-elected next May - intend to press ahead with fortnightly collection of household rubbish only, and the introduction of wheelie bins.  This is despite what I believe to be the almost universal local opposition to the ending of the weekly service which has operated successfully for many years.


    It is also even though in 2011 the Government’s Communities Secretary pledged to restore the “fundamental right” to weekly bin rounds and provided £250million to local authorities to help them supply them!


    But, according to a recent report in The Times, too few councils took up the offer, with many saying that it was too expensive to maintain weekly collections, or that doing so would undermine their efforts to reach an EU target of recycling 50 per cent of waste by 2020.


    The theory behind this is that fortnightly collections will aid the collection of goods that can be re-cycled. However, Merton is well behind its own target, and nationally the rate of re-cycling had gone down in 2015 from the figure of 44.9 per cent in 2014. 


    Speaking personally, I see no connection between reducing the frequency of general rubbish collection, and increasing the rate of re-cycling. On the contrary, I foresee that reducing the frequency of collections will encourage overflowing bins and so vermin, and cause foul smells.  I see the reduction in weekly collections as simply being cost cutting in a service that every household requires and depends upon.


    However, this may be a battle that is already lost nationwide. Nationally non-recyclable waste is collected once every week in only 24 per cent of local authorities and six councils only collect it once every three weeks. 




    Morden Park swimming pool was opened in 1967. It is now being replaced with a Leisure Centre which will have a 25-metre, six lane main pool plus a second pool, and with a fitness suite and cafe. Work has already started on the construction, and the new building is scheduled to open in the autumn of 2018.   It is said that it will cost less to maintain than the former pool, which will be demolished, and the site returned to green space. The present pool and all its facilities will remain open until the new leisure complex is complete.



    John Elvidge (Chairman)

  • Views from our Advertisers

    Views from our Advertisers

    Locally-based glazing company 1st Call Glazing is a regular advertiser in The Guide. Proprietor Dave Richardson says: 

    “I have quite a large number of customers that use The Guide, so it works very well recommending local businesses. Some customers quite often lose my number, but always go back to this booklet to find it again, as they know I always advertise in it. 

    “Local people trust the Guide and trust the trades advertising in it. Most of my customers tell me that the first place they look when needing a trade is The Guide.” 


    Howell Jones Solicitors, whose local office is in Kingston Road, Raynes Park also advertises each month in The Guide. The firm’s marketing director Tony Sutton says: 

    As solicitors it’s really important to us to be in touch with our local community; in fact our partner and property lawyer Jan Bolden has been supporting the community for 37 years.” 


    Alison Easton offers an osteopathy service from her home in Raynes Park, and advertises regularly in The Guide. Alison tells us:


    “I enjoy being able to help people in my community and advertising in The Guide has enabled me to reach more people locally. It is great to feel a small part of the community that RPWBRA does such a wonderful job to coordinate and keep informed through The Guide”



    For any enquiries, or to place your advert, just email your text and/or artwork, in a standard file format, to our Advertising Manager along with your preferred page size. Your order must be received by the 16th of the month to ensure inclusion in the following month’s issue.


    Back to Advertise with us.

  • Raynes Park Christmas - Friday 1 December

    Raynes Park Christmas Festival,

    3.30pm – 7.00pm

    Friday 1 December 2017


    Merton Council have this year selected Raynes Park

    as the Borough’s Christmas Town.



    The Mayor of Merton, Councillor Marsie Skeet,

    will join the celebrations at 5.00pm.


    There will be a stage in the Waitrose car park, with

    children’s and adult choirs, dancers, live animals and

    nativity acting combining to create a lively event.


    This will be an ideal opportunity ideal for local people to sell craftware. 

    The charge for running a stall inside covered tents, with lighting, is just £30 with

     two chairs and a trestle table (1.8m x 0.6m) included. 

    To book a stall or for more information, please contact David Hurst, , 07716 284287





  • Contraversial Telephone Mast

    Residents in Coombe Lane close to the junction of Cambridge Road and others close by, are concerned at a proposal to site a telecoms mast and associated box on the corner and close to residential property.  

    The mast is being relocated from the Rainbow Estate  and objections are being made on the grounds that it will be obtrusive and unsightly in this position and that it could be better accommodated along the slip road from the A3 to Coombe lane, without being in such close proximity to people’s homes. 

    We hope the Planning Officers and the Telecoms company concerned will consider any alternative sites suggested.

  • Looking After Drains and Ditches

    One of our Members, David Rush has kindly been keeping an eye on the ditch at Meadowsweet Close that the late Jane Bailey kept an eagle eye on, and was often to be seen cleaning out accumulated rubbish herself.   In response to a letter on our behalf from David to Tom Sly, Flood Risk Management Engineer at the London Borough of Merton, we received the following response. 

    I have made contact with L&Q directly and have requested that they raise a purchase order for their contractors, groundscapes, to undertake this work which is done annually at the end of the growing season. Following completion, I will undertake a site inspection to ensure it has been done appropriately” 


    However, Tom also urged us as an Association to remind residents both in Meadowsweet Close and importantly from 167 Grand Drive to 11 Westway, whose properties back onto the ditch that they must keep their back boundary fencing in good order and not put grass cuttings/litter over this fence as this may block the flow and cause a flood risk to properties.

  • Pavilion Club - September 2017

    Pavilion Club Members raised £320.42 at a tea party for the Macmillan Cancer Fund held on Thursday 21st September 2017.  This was over double the amount they made last year, and reflected the huge effort that was put in by everyone. 


    The organizers would like to extend their warmest thanks to all who came for tea and bought raffle tickets and cakes in support of this very worthwhile charity.

  • Community Forum - 14 Sept 2017

    Flooding in Raynes Park Area 

    Carly Mason and Patrick Maher from Thames Water attended the forum to discuss residents’ concerns about flooding. 

    Chris Edge informed Thames Water that there are lots of issues with flooding in the area. He noted that there is a problem under the railway bridge, where the council has cleared gullies, which suggests that the pipe is not big enough to handle the flow of water. Patrick Maher explained that Thames Water have investigated and not found any issues; the pipe is large enough. The problem is that when there is heavy rain, it collects because of the land being basin shaped. It was agreed the problem would nonetheless be taken back to Thames Water for further consideration. 

    Chris Edge suggested that if major building works take place for Crossrail 2, perhaps Thames Water could undertake major sewer works at the same time, including perhaps implementing a soak-away if the sewers cannot handle all the rainwater. Thames Water agreed that such works would take place in conjunction with Crossrail 2 construction.

    Thames Water is aware of flooding at PAG Ltd and Dundonald Church and are carrying out investigations into the problem. 

    Residents were reminded that flooding incidents should be reported every time they occur, so that Thames Water have a record of the problems.

    A resident pointed out that the pump stations have failed and asked why Thames Water are not more proactive in such instances. Carly Mason agreed that the situation is unacceptable and apologized on behalf of Thames Water. Thames Water is adopting private pumping stations and is in the process of investigating and upgrading them: on Abbott Avenue the equipment is being upgraded; and Approach Road is under investigation. 

    Compensation can only be offered if there has been a failure in the service Thames Water provides, not for flooding from foul sewers. In such instances, Thames Water would provide a clean-up service. 

    A resident explained that drains along Clifton Park Avenue are blocked, but when this was reported to Thames Water, the response was that Thames Water would not clear the drains until flooding had occurred. Carly Mason apologized and undertook to report the issue so that it can be fixed. 

    Thames Water agreed to investigate regular flooding of the shops by Raynes Park Bridge. 

    Thames Water is holding discussions with the council to look at inlet gullies.

    Edna Road is being investigated and further works are planned. A CCTV survey of Abbott Avenue was carried out after flooding occurred on 30th July. No structural issues were found. Worple Road, which is linked to the same problem, is being investigated. 

    Carly Mason reported that Dupont Road was heavily filled with silt this was cleared by 23rd June 2017.

    Residents noted that Burlington Road is still flooding, despite works to rectify it.



  • Townswomen's Guild - October 2017

    Kicking off again in September with Townswomen’s Guild activities, on Tuesday, 5 September 2017, a group enjoyed lunch at The Rocket at Putney and the following week a small group made a local visit to The Kingston Museum in Wheatfield Way.   

    In October we have invited Gillian Harris to give us a talk entitled ’40 years of Quilting’, at our monthly meeting on Thursday, 19th October in St Saviour’s Church Hall, Grand Drive.  Visitors welcome to this meeting.  Also planned for October is a social event – a Hallowe’en Lunch. 


    Please join us at our meeting if you are interested, or telephone for more information.


    Dorothy Raymond   020 8395 9489

  • Chairman's Blog - October 2017


    At our Open Meeting on 12th September we were given a presentation on the future of the local hospitals. 

    It was led by the Joint Medical Directors of the Epsom & St Helier NHS Trust. They are Dr. Ruth Charlton, who is also the Deputy Chief Executive, and Dr. James Marsh. They job share so that they can keep up their clinical practices, Ruth being a pediatrician, and James a renal physician. They were assisted by their colleague Claire Proudlock, who showed us a 10-minute video setting out the issues.  

    They are speaking to a number of local organisations to gain the view of residents on the future of the hospital service in this area, in the period from 2020 to 2030. This is an informal consultation at the moment, but the views expressed will be taken into account when they start their formal public consultation. They have guaranteed to continue the level of present service until 2020. 

    What came over strongly was the pressing need to build new hospital facilities on a single site for those who are most acutely ill. That hospital would have Specialist Consultants and nursing staff on duty 24 hours a day, and be able to cope with the widest range of conditions.  They have come to no decision as to where this hospital would be situated. The options are to build it at St Helier, or at Epsom Hospital, or at Sutton Hospital (which is currently closed but has the advantage of extra vacant land) near to the Royal Marsden Hospital. 

    They said that most of those coming to A & E for in or out patient treatment or for operations do not need such acute services, and what they stress is that these patients (the vast majority) will still be treated at St Helier and Epsom, which would be retained as fully equipped hospitals treating a full range of local services. 

    They are pleased that in recent years the service to local people has improved, with much reduced waiting times for people coming to the A & E departments, and a huge reduction in mortality rates. They have also rapidly reduced the expensive reliance on agency nursing staff by employing more full-time nurses. 

    St Helier Hospital was built in the 20’s and 30’s and much of it no longer meets modern standards of medicine. It has shared wards, long corridors, and needs major structural work. Most of it is classed as functionally unsuitable.  However, they stressed that this is not being ruled out as the site of the new acute facility. If that is built elsewhere, they intend that St Helier will remain as a local hospital serving the needs of the majority of less acutely ill patients, and will still provide maternity services for non-acute patients. 

    Their website at: contains their detailed document. If you want to contribute to the discussion, you can e-mail them on: 


    We also welcomed to the Open Meeting the new priest in charge at St Saviour’s Church. He is the Reverend Peter Kelley. He is not yet the incumbent Vicar, and for the moment lives in New Malden and is unpaid!  He intends to have a weekly Sunday service at St Saviour’s, and he especially pointed out that he will revive the former practice of having a special service on 2nd November for All Souls Day to which people may wish to come to remember those who have passed on. 

    We said that we would be happy to have occasional articles from him and to carry notices of church services. The same is true of any other churches or those serving other faiths. 

    John Elvidge




  • Crossrail 2 - Update September 2017

    As our members may have noticed, very little new information has been forthcoming since the end of 2015.

    This is because, following the public consultation, which finished in January 2016, and the subsequent official report on the results, Crossrail 2 was tasked by the Government and the National Infrastructure Commission to prepare a Business Case. 

    The business case, which is confidential, was completed and submitted to the government by March 2017. 

    There was not much news after that as our politicians were then focussed on June’s snap general election. 

    Following the election, Liz Truss, in her new role as chief secretary to the Treasury, announced that she is responsible for public expenditure on infrastructure, housing, planning, roads, HS2 and Crossrail 2. So it would seem the project is still on the cards. 

    Chris Grayling, the Transport Secretary, then had a meeting with Sadiq Kahn, the Mayor for London, at which CR2 was discussed. The Transport Secretary agreed that London needs new infrastructure, to ensure it continues as the UK’s economic powerhouse. However, it would appear that, whilst the business case indicated that London could fund half of the scheme over its life, this is not the same as funding half of the up-front costs during construction. 

    The Mayor for London and the Transport Secretary have agreed to work together to see how Crossrail 2 might be affordable for the UK taxpayer. It seems that if there were a successful outcome from this exercise, a new public consultation would be launched and the safeguarding of land in our area would be clarified. 

    Reading between the lines, it seems likely that the crux of the Business Case was that government money would fund the major part of the capital expenditure, followed by income streams being generated from development along the route, which would then form London’s contribution. 

    Some financial engineering may be feasible, for example by using private finance, with the prospect of future income streams being the payback. However, one can’t help but be concerned that the focus on achieving a lower capital cost may result in the scheme being pared back, both in terms of extent and quality. 

    This could have major implications in dictating the choice of options for Wimbledon, what happens in Raynes Park and Motspur Park and further along the branches to Epsom, Chessington South, Shepperton and Hampton Court. 

    In the meantime, representatives from the Crossrail 2 team have been making contact with various groups in our area, including the Raynes Park Association and the Friends of West Barnes Library. The purpose of these meetings is to establish contact with our community ahead of the next public consultation. When this is likely to be, we do not yet know. Maybe the next Budget, planned for November, will trigger something. 

    However, we have been told that the main proposals for Motspur Park Station would involve providing step-free access to the platforms. At Raynes Park, the station is intended to be an interchange between Crossrail 2 and South West Railway services, so improvements there may be more extensive. 

    The implications for the two level-crossings along West Barnes Lane and the impact this might have on our local road network remain to be seen. 


    Jerry Cuthbert

  • Raynes Park Afternoon Townswomen's Guild - August 2017

    August is a month with no formal meeting when members concentrate on social activities and the annual coach outing. 

    On the social scene Margaret’s Picnic Lunch was a resounding relaxed and very tasty success.  Her garden is always full of flowers which we all viewed and admired from the outside table and the conservatory chairs.  The selection of food was amazing and quite delicious.  Thank you, Margaret, and able helper Jenny, for working so hard to make this friendly get-together also a culinary triumph. 

    A coach without a single spare seat set out on 17th August to Eastbourne.  The summer outing is always open to friends in the Rendezvous Club, Pavilion Club and Residents Association as well our Townswomen’s Guild Members.  Accordingly, we picked up at Motspur Park, Raynes Park and Grand Drive Greenway, promptly, as everyone was on time, getting away by 9.30 am.  The traffic was heavy both ways, the journey taking about two- and-a-half hours, but overall the day proved a great success, the weather improving as we arrived.   

    Eastbourne was full of surprises.   The first was reports of power cuts at various locations, affecting lighting (and the tills!) not to mention their ability to make tea in many of the shops and cafes.  Mercifully they seemed to be intermittent and not too long lasting.  The bonus was on the sea front. We found that by accident we had arranged our outing on the first day of Eastbourne’s air show.  To be able to sit in the sun watching the aircraft manoeuvres and/or wander along the lower deck looking at all the colourful stalls set up there for the occasion, was very pleasant and a distinct bonus.   The various aircraft were amazing with formation flying and aerobatics included in several set pieces.  Early on there was also a wing walker.  Everyone enjoyed watching parts of these displays.  Our driver was first class and after a smooth return we arrived back in Raynes Park at about 7.00 pm.  Many thanks to all the friends who joined us making this trip a success. 

    In October, on Thursday, 19th at 1.30 for 1.45 in St Saviours Church Hall.  Gillian Harry’s talk is entitled ’40 years of Quilting’.  Please join us if you are interested. 

    Dorothy Raymond  020 8395 9489




  • Neighbourhood Watch - Sept 2017

    The MET are working hard to keep the public safe and make the streets a hostile territory for criminals who use scooters, mopeds, motorbikes and bicycles to snatch valuables from members of the public.

    Operations Officers are conducting targeted operations throughout London and through intelligence-led investigations and operations to prevent and detect moped theft. This includes, among other things, raids on individuals suspected of stealing motorcycles and using them to commit crimes, high visibility patrols in key areas and increased street searches for stolen motorcycles.

    Reducing opportunities

    Officers are reducing the opportunities for theft to take place in the first place through a combination of approaches -  such as making owners aware of what they can do about reducing the thefts - and working with industry and councils to protect, or design the theft options out of the vehicles, reducing the ability of the offenders to use the vehicles in crime; Improving public awareness and protection; and removing markets for offenders to dispose of goods.

    There have been concentrated media campaigns for public awareness focusing on distinct victim groups. There has been engagement with Secondhand phone shops, markets, scooter dealers and garages, to improve intelligence and remove locations that will buy the stolen property.

    Bringing offenders to justice

    The police use intelligence and CCTV to identify linked offences and bring offenders to justice. There is a proactive stance with sting vehicles, targeted operations and a focus on criminal cohort, to reduce high volume offenders. Also working in partnership with Youth Services and third sector groups to discuss diversion opportunities.

    How can riders prevent their bikes being stolen?

    · Parking: Choose designated parking with a stand and security loop, or if this is not available try areas with lots of people, good lighting and CCTV

    · Locks: Use more than one lock, focusing on disc locks and chain locks, fitted tight to the bike and through difficult to remove parts

    · Time: When leaving your bike for a long period or overnight, lock it to something secure and use a motorbike cover. At home consider using fitted anchors to secure your bike

    · Attention: Use audible alarms where possible to draw unwanted attention to the thieves

    · Marking: Choose to mark your bike parts with the vehicle identification number (VIN) number, your postcode or registration number using an ultraviolet marker pen or property marking kit

    · Insurance: Some companies will offer discounts on your insurance if you invest in certain security measures, so ask before you make your purchase Personal Crime prevention advice

    · Be aware of your surroundings at all times and keep your personal property secure

    · Don't text while you're walking - you won't notice potential thieves approaching

    · Use the security features on your phone

    · Try going hands free or stand away from the roadside close to a wall so no one can come up behind you

    · Your phone comes with a range of security features, such as keypad locks and remote data wiping. Make sure they are all activated to stop thieves from accessing your phone and personal data

    · Know how to identify your phone if it's stolen

    · Find your IMEI number by dialling *#06# from your phone and keep a written note of it. If the phone is stolen, report it to the police and your mobile provider to stop it being used · Register your phone on to help police return recovered stolen property and combat the sale of stolen goods. Police recover more than 2500 items registered to the website on average every month. Never confront a thief or risk your own safety for the sake of your mobile device

    Pursuit guidelines

    The MPS can and will undertake pursuits in any situation where it is necessary and proportionate to do so. Any pursuit carries risk, and additional safeguards are in place for pursuit of two wheeled vehicles. Only specially trained officers are authorised to engage in pursuit activity and they are supported by a tactical advisor, and a senior officer in our Command and Control centre has oversight.

    A driver or pillion removing their crash helmet does not automatically require a pursuit to be terminated and the police will review the risk posed, balanced against the type of criminality under consideration and the additional risk posed to other road users.,

     Lee Roberts, Neighbourhood Watch Manager

  • Epsom and St Helier Hospitals NHS Trust

    RPWBRA - 12 September 2017 - Open Meeting at the Residents' Pavilion, 129 Grand Drive, SW20 9LY

    Over the last few weeks the Epsom & St. Helier NHT has been actively promoting and encouraging local people to have their say on the future of Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust. 

    We have called this Epsom and St Helier 2020-2030 and already we have received lots of feedback.    We wrote to you at the outset of our engagement exercise and want to hear from as many different individuals and groups as we can before we end the engagement at the beginning of October.   It would be helpful if you could enable us to discuss our plans with some of your Members so that we can reach as wide a range of people as possible.


    In summary, we are looking to keep at least 85% of services locally, which will mean that for the majority of patients they will continue to be seen and treated in their local hospital as they are now:  and then we are looking to attract £300-400 million to build a much-needed new acute facility on one of our three sites.


    We believe that talking to local people about local services and involving them in the future of their hospitals is key. This is not a formal consultation as we are initially wanting to seek local people's views on making local hospital services sustainable for the long term.  


    We do not have preferred option at this stage and want to hear what you think, and over 15 weeks are seeking as many views as possible.  We recognise that funding for NHS investment is difficult -  but we believe that we have a case which if supported by local people will enable us to put a strong case for keeping services local for the future. 


    The information we receive from local people will be used to inform the next stage which will be to develop an outline case which will be put forward to the wider NHS.   Any formal consultation will take place later but we wanted to make sure we have the views of local people well in advance of this process.


    We would like to hear the views of Raynes Park and West Barnes residents and would welcome the opportunity to come and discuss this at a meeting.   


    Lisa Thomson,

    Epsom and St Helier Hospitals NHS Trust

  • Chairman's Blog - September 2017


    Our next meeting on Tuesday 12th September will have a speaker from the Epsom and St Helier Hospitals NHS Trusts which is anxious to hear the views of local residents on the future of the local hospitals.  The meeting is being held at the Pavilion at 129 Grand Drive at 7.30 pm.

    The Chief Executive of the Trusts says that this is not a formal consultation, but is designed to feed into planning for the decade from 2020 to 2030. Their hope is to get permission to spend between £300,000 and £400,000 on a much-needed new specialist facility on one site for acutely sick patients and in accident and emergency cases, particularly for complex emergency surgery. It would also provide inpatient beds for children, and maternity services. Their aim is to keep 85% of services locally. They say that they have no preferred option as to the site. 

    Under the plans £80 million would also be spent on the maintenance of both hospitals. Most of St Helier Hospital was built in the 1920’s and 1930’s, and is badly designed for modern clinical treatment, being assessed as being “functionally unsuitable”. 

    Do come along and contribute to the discussion that the Trusts are having. We had a similar meeting a couple of years ago which was extremely interesting and worthwhile. 


    The Transport Secretary has announced that Crossrail 2 is likely to go ahead, even though it will cost some 30 billion pounds. He said that there was “no doubt” that London needed new infrastructure to ease pressure on its overcrowded transport system. The line would run north -south, and come through Motspur Park, Raynes Park, and Wimbledon after which it would run largely in tunnels to Tottenham Hale and Southgate.

    The intention is to start work in the early 2020’s and the railway could open in 2033. A public consultation has been promised soon to help “gather views to improve the scheme and clarify the position”.

    The draft plans previously published would have destroyed much of Wimbledon Town Centre, and said almost nothing about how the extra tracks required and the increased frequency of trains would affect this area.  It is obvious that both Motspur Park and Raynes Park stations would require major alterations, and there would be the almost inevitable closure of the Motspur Park and West Barnes level crossings, causing major impacts on local traffic. 

    A further consultation had been promised by this autumn, but this is likely to be further delayed. We will, of course, let everyone know when public consultations on the revised plans take place. 


    The day and night long deluge of rain on 9th August has again caused flooding in parts of Raynes Park. This Association was founded in 1928 precisely because of the amount of flooding in the area. With climate change, the chances of such heavy and prolonged rain are likely to be get worse. 

    We reported in the August edition of The Guide the discussion on this at the Community Forum meeting in June. This is worth repeating here.  The meeting was attended by an engineer at Merton Council, and a representative of Veolia. Raynes Park is a known flood risk area and Merton has increased its gully cleansing programme each winter and is formulating a flood prevention plan.

    Residents are encouraged to report each incident of flooding to Thames Water. A resident at the meeting from Dupont Road said that flooding there had been reported to Thames Water last year, but they still had not dealt with the infrastructure. He was talking to them as to how they could be more pro-active when it was known that heavy rain was due. Likewise, there were ongoing discussions about Edna Road where Thames Water had put in a new sewer lining which had blocked some of the road gully outlets into the sewers. Some of this had been repaired by the council but it was the responsibility of Thames Water to ensure sufficient working of the sewer system. 

    Shannon Corner, as an ‘A’ road, was the responsibility of Transport for London, and the council had met on site to discuss flooding there. Blocked gullies, cement in drains, or blockages from leaves should be reported, in the first instance online via the council’s “Report It” tool, or via an app called “Love my streets”.  For those not online, they can call the council.   


    A neighbour had an incredibly distressing experience this month when she found a dying fox on her patio. The RSPCA were called and immediately diagnosed that the cause was leptospirosis, more commonly known as Weil’s disease, which is a bacterial infection. This was probably picked up from rat’s urine or infected water.  They took the animal away.

    The disease is incredibly rare in humans but can be contracted from cuts and scrapes. The advice must be to always wear gloves when gardening. 


    John Elvidge

  • Morden Rotary - August 2017

    Morden Rotary Club invited local fund-raiser Claire Nethersole to talk to us recently about the role of Age UK in our local community.

    We learned that this national charity has over 150 branches in England, each one of which operates independently to meet the needs of the particular area they serve. Their general aim is to provide services and information to the over 50s age group, and to enable and support the quality of life for the growing number of our older generation.

    Claire explained to us the particular kind of help on offer. These include "at home" visits, providing cleaning, cooking or handyman services, all done by the staff team employed by Age UK. Practical household work done regularly and reliably can be a major benefit for many older people. There is a charge for these services, but this is always competitive, and of course the quality is assured.

    Social activities are another very important element provided. The Mitcham Activity Centre offers a programme of social gatherings and regular weekly clubs such as craft, yoga, scrabble, tea dances
    and lots more.  This is run by a friendly support staff and volunteer team.

    Also on offer is an "Out & About" programme organising walks, outings, theatre trips and coach trips. These take place locally, in London or further afield.

    You can find out the full details of what Age UK Merton does locally on their website -

    The Elmwood Centre is at 277 London Road, Mitcham, CR4 3NT, phone 020 8648 5792.

    Morden Rotary was pleased to present Claire with a donation to a very worthwhile cause supporting older members of our local community.


    Joss Ollett

  • Association News - August 2017

    Will we lose our local Police Station?

    Apparently, the Mayor of London, Sadiq Khan wants to close Wimbledon Police Station.  He has just launched a consultation on closing half of all police front counters in London, and Wimbledon is amongst them.   It has been suggested that “response policing” is then likely to be based from Mitcham. 

    This closure seems extremely short-sighted bearing in mind the Town Centre’s huge night-time economy.  Wimbledon is also a large transport hub which needs policing, not to mention the surge of visitors from all over the world who need to be kept safe when they come to watch the Tennis Championships. Wimbledon Police Station also has a great central location and is easy to get to. 

    Because we are constantly being reminded by some politicians about the need to improve security, increase police numbers and so on, I had forgotten that in fact Mayor Khan has already cut £38 million from the metropolitan police staffing budget.  The closure of half London’s Police Stations can only add to any existing problems.   It is to be hoped that residents will let Sadiq Khan know, in no uncertain terms, that they wish to keep Wimbledon Police Station for the reasons stated. 

    Mayor’s Transport Strategy

    The Mayor of London has also just published his Transport Strategy.   He wants Londoners’ views on this to and suggests we all complete his on-line survey.   We can send in our responses as individuals, or as a group or organisation.   Here is the link: 

    Overhanging Trees, and Street planting

    At the June Raynes Park Forum, a resident expressed concerns about overhanging vegetation from people’s gardens which impedes footpaths -  especially for the partially sighted. She pointed out that residents are responsible for cutting vegetation back to their own boundary lines, and if they don’t do it, the council has to but at residents’ expense. It was suggested that advice about the matter could be included in the Guide to increase awareness. Residents were also asked to water newly-planted trees if they live close to any.  

    No Wheelies Please – Merton

    Merton Residents propose that weekly dustbin waste collections are maintained and that two 80 litre, lidded recycling bins be supplied to contain two weeks’ worth of separated recycling; both brown, to match the food waste bin.  

     A great deal of careful thought has gone into Merton residents’ proposal and the campaign was launched this spring to propose to the Council and Veoilia Waste Management what seems to be a much more sensible alternative to their own proposal of fortnightly collections enabled by simply supplying two large wheelie bins to every household. 

    The Campaign’s Five Point Proposal, makes sound common sense and from the point of view of most householders is more practical and unobtrusive.  The organizers aim is to reach over 1000 signatures to their petition by the next Council meeting in September (they’ve reached more than 900 votes already) and ultimately 2000 votes by the time of the next elections in the spring of 2018. 

    To learn more about their proposals and to help the campaign to achieve its objectives visit their website at:

    or contact them at:

  • 16/P3135 - Parkgate House


    The first application (16/P 0233) - which was approved -  was to convert this office building into 19 flats. 

    The second application (16/P3135) was to add a mansard-type roof providing an additional 6 flats. This application was Refused by the Planning Committee and the applicant submitted an Appeal. The Inspectorate decided to deal with this by an 'Exchange of Letters' which nevertheless requires a Site Visit. 

    The Inspector agreed with the Planning Committee and Refused the Appeal. It is clear to me from reading her decision letter that she took her time over the site visit and gave the matter very careful consideration. 

    Main Concerns

    The main concerns of the Inspector’s decision were the effect of the proposed addition on the character and appearance of the surrounding area, and the effect on the living conditions of nearby residents in particular the relevance to privacy and outlook'. 

    The Inspector found there was conflict with Section 7 of the National Policy Planning Framework which seeks to ensure that new development should add to the visual quality of the area; to Section 7.4 and 7.6 of the GLA London Plan and Policy CS 14 of Merton’s Core Strategy. These policies require that new development should aim to reinforce local distinctiveness and respect and enhance the character of the wider area. 

    The Inspector noted that the existing office building appears bulky and at odds with the local shopping parade. The building appears to have an "uneasy relationship" with the local street scene and also struck her as having a "visually jarring" impact in the local context.  She concluded that the proposed addition would appear as a bulky, overly dominant and overbearing form that would fail to have respect for the scale of the (mainly two storey) local shopping parade. She felt this would result in material harm to the character and appearance of the local area. 

    Living Conditions

    The Inspector noted that the proposed addition would introduce additional windows at the third-floor level which she felt called for a greater 'separation distance' from facing buildings than would be the normal 25m requirement. She felt there would be a "perception of overlooking" into the gardens of Marina Avenue and therefore concluded that the proposed addition to provide 6 extra flats would have an overbearing impact on nearby residents resulting in material harm to the living conditions of nearby residents in terms of "loss of privacy and visual impact “. 

    David Freeman

  • Chairman's Blog - August 2017


    We held a very successful summer party to which we had invited all the volunteers who run the Association and look after the Pavilion. It took place on the middle Saturday of the Wimbledon fortnight, and was blessed by weather. In keeping with the spirit of

    Wimbledon, we enjoyed prosecco, and strawberries and cream, as well as lots of savouries. 

    There was a more serious side to the occasion too. In the early spring, we had planted a Bird Cherry tree in memory of Jan Bailey, who was our Secretary for very many years, and who died suddenly last year to our great loss. During the party, her partner, Gordon, unveiled a plaque at the tree commemorating her, and made a lovely speech in her honour. It was very moving. 


    Another reminder that four platforms at Waterloo are being extended this month to take longer trains and new track is being laid. This will cause major disruption to services during the expected work schedule from August 5 to 28, and half the services will not run. The advice is to travel only outside rush hours, if possible, or to find alternative means of getting to London.


    The annual cycle race took place on Sunday 30th July, which required the closure of many major local roads for the whole day. The organisers now build in some crossing points where local people can try and get through, both on foot and by car. Let us know if there were any difficulties that you found, and we will pass these onto the organisers to build in for next year.


    When people ask me why I have never moved, I always say it is because this is the best place to live in London. It has more open space and greenery than anywhere else in the capital, with Wimbledon Common, Wimbledon Park, and Cannon Hill Common, among many other parks, to enjoy. It has

    good transport links by train, tube, tram, bus, and road in all directions. It has accessible major hospitals. It has a variety of housing. It has many sports clubs, including the tennis championships and AFC Wimbledon. 

    It has good schools, both local authority and private. It is also, as the local police officers told us at our AGM, about the safest place in London in terms of crime. Our task, as an Association, is to help keep it this way. 


    We all wish you a very happy and enjoyable holiday, whether you stay at home or go away. 


    John Elvidge

  • Morden Rotary - July 2017

    Here's a mid-year up-date for you to see where donations to the Rotary Club of Morden have been put to work locally.

    St. Raphael’s Hospice received he largest donation. At Christmas, a significant amount of funds are raised by our week-end collections in Lower Morden Lane.
    Local residents are famous for their Christmas Lights and garden displays which draw visitors from a wide area.
    With their endorsement, our buckets of money are set aside to support St. Raphael's, and we aim to continue this in the future too.

    Other local good causes that received support were:  

    • Age UK Merton, Arthritis Care Dictionaries for Schools
    • Friends of King George's Playing Fields
    • Friends of Lower Morden
    • Merton and Morden Guild Polio Plus,
    • Wimbledon Youth Sailing Club, and
    • Young Chef of the Year.
    Also, with the joint help of The Leivers Trust, the Rotary Club supported Merton's children with special needs.

    Students at the Perseid School Cricket Green, and West Wimbledon Primary were recipients of funds, enjoyed Xmas parties, and Santa's visits, and also joined in Rotary's Kids Out Day.

    We also supported several individual appeals that were directed to our Rotary Club.  These helped one family to obtain a specially adapted wheelchair, another family to replace a vehicle essential for the school run, and also provided a specially designed spa bath for a severely disabled baby's benefit.

    We were also privileged to meet and support several young people in Merton who were going abroad to work with charitable projects in Africa.

    Do you know that EVERY SINGLE PENNY you give to Rotary is directed to
    good causes?  We are one of very few charitable organisations that can say this, and that's why some notable people have sponsored and joined us.

    For example, Bill and Melinda Gates have given The Rotary Foundation a
    $100 million grant for polio eradication, and then increased that to $355 million. Rotary agreed to raise $200 million in matching funds but Rotarians worldwide in fact raised $228.7 million!  Going forward, the Gates Foundation will match two-to-one, up to US$35 million per year, every dollar Rotary commits for polio eradication up to 2018.  Although on a more modest your local Rotary Club discusses fully and carefully every funding appeal that is made to us.

    We'd like to thank all of you who have contributed to our fund-raising in past years. Also, we are very grateful to all of you - particularly to the RP&WBRA Pavilion Club members who gave unused spectacles to our project in the schools and villages around Moshi, in Tanzania.

    The spectacles were distributed at local churches, and you'll be pleased to know that those congregations would like to pass their thanks back to the thoughtful and generous people of Raynes Park and Morden.

    Like most voluntary organisations we'd very much like more people to join us to help continue our efforts, and you are welcome to join our weekly meetings on a Thursday evening at The Morden Brook. Why not look up Morden Rotary on Facebook?  Or our website which is also easy to fin.

    Phil Watson, President, Rotary Club of Morden and Joss Ollett, PR , Rotary Club of Morden.



  • Parking Charges - Sir Joseph Hood

    Sir Joseph Hood Memorial Playing Fields

    It is doubtful that the many Friends and users of Sir Joseph Hood’s Playing Fields at Motspur Park will welcome the proposal by the London Borough of Merton to introduce parking controls in the car park there.

    According to the consultation notice the charges would be applicable between 8,.00am and 4.00pm on Mondays to Fridays at the rate of 10p per 20 minutes up to £2.40 for 8 hours.  The purpose being to deter commuters. 

    Residents are being given until 7th July to send in their objections or comments to The Environment and Regeneration Department, Merton Civic Centre. London Road, Morden Surrey SM4 5DX or by email to quoting reference ES/OFFSTREET. 

  • July 2017

    Sir Joe’s Party in the Park

    There will be fun and games on 8th July in the Sir Joseph Hood Memorial Playing Fields at Motspur Park when The Friends put on a great Party in the Park to raise funds for its upkeep.  Between 12.00 and 3.00 p.m. there will be boot camps and trainers; nature walks; football; tennis and a kids and adults yoga class.  There will also be a BBQ, bouncy castles, face painting stalls and refreshments and much more – even sports massages for those in need.  Go along and have lots of fun.  

    Meanwhile, how long have you known and used the Playing fields?

    The Friends of Sir Joseph Hood Memorial Playing Field are looking to put together a history of our park. We are particularly looking for memories and photographs from the 1930s onwards including:

    • Sports Activities
    • The Pavilion
    • Changes after WWII
    • The Bowls Club

    If you have any contributions please send them to: 

    We can make a digital copy of any printed photographs and return them to you.  

    The Great Get Together and Big Lunch picnic organised by the Friends of Cannon Hill Common

    This annual event was organised by The Friends on a sizzling Father’s Day, Sunday 18th June.  Held on the meadow by the lake everyone enjoyed a bring and share picnic to celebrate not only the annual get-together for Neighbours but also in celebration of the late Jo Cox, MP. A lovely idea. 


  • Raynes park Residents' Lawn Tennis Club - July 2017

    We are running two summer camps at the club during the school holidays. The first is for juniors up to the age of about 9, running from the 24th - 28th July, 9.30 am – 12.30 p.m. 

    The second for 10 years and over also at 9.30 am is being run from July 31st – August 4th.  The cost will be £20 per day for junior members and £25 per day for non-members. 

    For any queries relating to the camps, or coaching generally, please contact the head coach José Marquez on 07941 231829. Junior membership is £5 per year. For membership enquiries, please contact

    There will be another Open Day on the middle Sunday of Wimbledon, July 9th, between 1.00 and 4.00 in the afternoon. Everyone is welcome, though due to the exceptional demand for our junior coaching we are not able to offer much capacity in our junior coaching programme. 

    The scheduled sessions are for senior players of any ability from complete beginners, through ‘rusty racquets’ and intermediate to advanced. We hope to see you there. You can register in advance through the website: scrolling down to and clicking on Open Days and searching using the postcode at the bottom of this item. 

    Paul Sadler, Meadowview Road, SW20 9AN

  • Raynes Park Afternoon Townswomen's Guild - June 2017

    Silver Bells’ was the title given to our May meeting.  This proved to be a musical group consisting of two ladies playing mandolins, one lady playing a guitar, and a dapper male singer.  They entertained us with well-known songs from around the world.  Handing out word sheets they encouraged us to sing along.  A vote of thanks for this happy afternoon was given by Mrs Janina Craske. 

    Lunch club changed the date and venue for their June expedition, ending up at The Watchman in New Malden.  They will visit the Haywain in Epsom in July! 

    Stawberry Hill House, Horace Walpole’s Gothic Castle, is a delight.  Over the last few years it has been slowly and painstakingly renovated.  With an army of volunteers explaining all about the house and renovations, it is a credit to them.  They were at pains to answer any questions our small group put to them.  The House stands, very white, with turrets and tessellations overlooking a very pleasant lawn and gardens.  When built it would have had a view of the river, but no more.  

    On 15th June, we celebrated our 84th birthday at St Saviour’s Church Hall with a tea party, a picture riddle quiz, birthday cake, and a lot of chat!  We are looking forward to anothersocial event on 22nd June entitled ‘Mid-summer Lunch’ at our Chairman’s House. 

    On 20th July, the next monthly meeting at St Saviour’s Church Hall at 1.30 for 1.45 is a talk entitled ‘You-the-Jury’ by Peter Thompson.  Visitors are very welcome to this meeting. 

    There are still a few spaces on the coach to Eastbourne on Thursday, 17 August 2017.  We pick up in Motspur Park, by Raynes Park Station and in Grand Drive at the Greenway Bus Stop.  The cost if £14.  Please telephone for more details or to reserve a place. 

    Dorothy Raymond 020 8395 9489

  • Chairman's Blog - July 2017


    Rutlish School has been ranked “outstanding” by Ofsted. We congratulate the Head Teacher, the staff, and the pupils on this excellent achievement. 

    The school, which is all boys, remains a local authority comprehensive, and has a higher proportion of pupils from ethnic minorities than the national average.  The inspectors were full of praise for its “knowledge and understanding of tolerance

    and democracy” which makes the pupils “exceptionally well prepared for the challenges of life in modern Britain”. They found that their progress far outperforms boys’ schools nationally. They praised staff for their “high performance” culture and outstanding subject knowledge as well as for their high expectations for their pupils, and pupils for their very positive attitudes and commitment to learn. 


    The Junior Tennis Initiative was started by the All England Lawn Tennis Club (better known as Wimbledon) some 15 years ago as part of their commitment to the local community and with the desire to bring tennis to local schools. Since that time the hard-working coaches of the Club have been to visit every primary and secondary school in Merton, in order to enthuse both pupils and staff with their desire to give every child the chance to play tennis, and to keep active and fit. Those children who show aptitude for tennis are then given the opportunity to train in squads run by the Club’s coaches.  Literally thousands of children have been helped in this way. 

    The training used to be given only at the main premises in Church Road,

    Wimbledon, but the building of the new roof on the Number One Court forced them to look elsewhere. This is now carried out at the Raynes Park Playing Field, the entrance to which is on Grand Drive, and which is bounded by Cannon Hill Lane, Elm Walk, and Southway. 

    Members of the Committee were given the chance to see the tennis training at the ground on a recent Saturday. It’s a hub of activity. There is training for an hour for each child, arranged in age groups from as young as 4. This starts early in the morning and goes on through the afternoon. 

    The training is led by Dan Bloxham, who is the Head Coach at the All England Club, and his wife Lizzie. They live in our area, and are totally committed and dedicated to their work. 

    The ground itself has been transformed with grass courts, in season, acrylic hard courts, and a state of the art bubble containing indoor courts for inclement weather.

    The building work is exceptionally well done. 


    As we noted in the last edition of The Guide, some 30 Association volunteers and members of the Pavilion Club were given the chance to have a 2-hour tour of Wimbledon, led enthusiastically by the indefatigable Dan Bloxham. 

    The tour began in their indoor courts, where we met some of the senior pupils on the Junior Tennis Initiative, who were practising. They were full of praise for the opportunities given to them. 


    Every year we hold an Open Meeting in the Motspur Park area, so that we can discuss with residents there any issues that concern them. This year we were very fortunate to be given the chance to hold it in Blossom House School, which is a specialist therapeutic school for children with a wide range of learning and communication difficulties. The School was re-located in Motspur Park in 2015, and children come to the school from all over London and Surrey. 

    The Principal is Joey Burgess, OBE, who founded the school elsewhere some 20 years ago with just 4 pupils and has gradually increased it in size so that it now educates some 200 pupils, with a pupil teacher ratio that is second to none. She gave us an inspiring address as to the joy that she and her staff feel when they can bring out the best in children that other schools found difficult to teach. We hope to bring you a detailed account of her remarks at some point. 


    It is worth repeating that, as we mentioned in the last edition of The Guide, there will be major disruption for trains from this area to Waterloo Station, where four platforms are being extended to take longer trains, and new track laid on the approach to the station. The work is meant to run from August 5 to 28, and half the normal train service will be cancelled. If past performance is any guide, we may expect the work to overrun, and the number of cancelled trains to increase. Trains are likely to be queuing right down the line to get into Waterloo, and there is bound to be massive crowding at Waterloo for those trying to get home. 

    The best advice seems to be either to go away or else to find other routes into London. The Thameslink service from Wimbledon to Blackfriars and stations over the river would seem an obvious alternative choice. 


    John Elvidge

  • Cottenham Park Primary School - 150 Years Gala

    Did you attend Cottenham Park Primary School

    (now St Matthew's C of E Primary School)? 

    We would like to hear about your achievements/stories for a special exhibition being collated for the 150th year Anniversary. 

    We would also like to invite you to attend our


    Gala Evening on Friday 7th July 2017.


    To send in your information and to purchase tickets please email

















  • Coach Trip to Portsmouth - 8 August 2017

    THE PAVILION CLUB - Raynes Park

     Coach Outing to PORTSMOUTH

     on TUESDAY 8th AUGUST 2017 

    Price:  £11.00 (to include Driver’s Tip) 

    Pick Up Times

    Motspur Park:                                    9.00 am

    Raynes Park (Approach Road):             9.15 am

    Grand Drive (Greenway stop):              9.30 am

    To Book telephone: Jill:  020 8286 9809 or Andrea:   020 8540 0164

  • Coach Trip to Brighton, 14 July 2017

    Pavilion Club - SUMMER OUTING - Brighton 


    Price £11.00

    Including Driver’s Tip

    To Book, telephone: Jill West 020 8286 9809 or Andrea Hannan 020 8540 0164

     Pick up Times 

    Motspur Park (Opp. Earl Beatty)               9.00  am

    Raynes Park (Approach Road)                  9.15 am

    Grand Drive (Greenway Bus Stop)             9.30 am 


  • Coach Trip to Wisley - 6 September 2017


    The Annual trip to Wisley Flower Show will be on 


    With pickup points at: 

    Greenway bus stop, Grand Drive @ 9.15 a.m.

    Approach Road, Raynes Park @ 9.20 a.m. 

    Motspur Park, Opposite the Earl Beatty @ 9.30 a.m. approx.

     The Coach will leave Wisley at 4.00 p.m. 

    The fare will be £10.00 which includes entrance and driver’s tip. Money to be paid within a week of booking, please.

     Seats may be booked with Margaret Barratt (8949 4304) and Jill Truman (8879 3525)


  • Raynes Park Afternoon Townswomen's Guild - May 2017

    Resplendent is his Farnham Town Crier’s uniform, Jonathan Jones visited our meeting to tell us about his duties.  The uniform is colourful and magnificent consisting of a green coat, decorated with red and gold braid and gold buttons worn over a scarlet thigh length waistcoat similarly decorated with braid. Completing the effect Johnathan wore white stockings and black breeches and of course his bell, in this instance, made by the well-l known bell makers at Whitechapel.  

    The chief requirement for the job of Town Crier is a stentorian voice.  With a naturally loud speaking voice, Jonathan made us jump in our seats when he finished his talk with an example final ‘shout’.  With a naturally echoing hall at St Saviour’s, he set all the rafters reverberating.  Unbelievable! 

    In May, the lunch club enjoyed another successful lunch, this time overlooking the river at Putney.  

    For the visit, a group travelled via The Bank and DLR to West India Quay to visit The London Museum DOCKLANDS.   A long journey with plenty of walking, plus a rather extensive museum, meant that we all ran out of energy before we had investigated all the interesting and well displayed exhibits!  We felt there was enough on the top floor alone to last several hours. 

    The Glen Miller Orchestra provided a pleasant afternoon concert at the Royal Festival Hall which a group enjoyed, (although we were left wondering if the Royal Festival Hall should warn people about the access difficulties to level 6, not to mention the steep stairs and lack of hand rails once there). 

    Our monthly meeting at 1.30 pm at St Saviour’s Church Hall on Thursday, 15th June will feature our 84th birthday party.  The Lunch Club will travel to The Haywain in Epsom and the visit will be to Strawberry Hill House.  There are a few places still available on the Eastbourne Trip on 17th August, £14.  Visitors and friends are welcome to any of our meetings, social events and outings.  Please telephone for more information. 

    Dorothy Raymond

    020 8395 9489




  • Raynes Park Residents' Lawn Tennis Club - June 2017

    The club is holding another Open Day on the middle Sunday of Wimbledon, July 9th, between 1:00 and 4:00 in the afternoon. Everyone is welcome, though due to the exceptional demand for our junior coaching we are not able to offer much capacity in our junior coaching programme. The scheduled sessions are for senior players of any ability from complete beginners, through ‘rusty racquets’ and intermediate to advanced. We hope to see you there. You can register in advance through the website, scrolling down to and clicking on Open Days and searching using the postcode at the bottom of this item. 

    Two new initiatives have started: Cardio Tennis on Monday evenings, 7:15-8pm, £5/session for members with a free trial available. It is £7 for non-members. We are also taking part in the LTA’s Tennis Tuesday initiative with sessions for ladies from 9:30-10:30 am.  Both these are run by Frances Allberry on 07931 703134who can give additional information and would appreciate prior notice if you intend to attend. 

    Don’t forget our head coach José Marquez (07941 231829) is running summer camps for children during the holidays. For information and booking please contact him directly. 

    Paul Sadler

    Meadowview Road

    SW20 9AN



  • Neighbourhood Watch - June 2017

    Change in counting rules in burglary 

    As reported last month, from April 2017 residential burglary will now include all buildings or parts of buildings that are within the boundary of, or form a part of, a dwelling and includes the dwelling itself, vacant dwellings, sheds, garages, outhouses, summer houses and any other structure that meets the definition of a building. 

    The impact on the change will vary across boroughs but is likely to show close to a 12% increase on the current burglary dwelling figures. You may notice the change in weekly and month crime figures. 

    Smart Water kits 

    All except four cheques have been cashed and codes have been sent to over 100 residents.  There were many more who expressed an interest in a Smart Water kit but did not send a cheque.  If you want to know more about smart water or have any questions please visit the smart water website 

    Carnival Help 

    Thank you to those who have volunteered to help at the carnival. It is very much appreciated. If you are about on the 10th June please do come and say hello. 12-5pm Mitcham at Mitcham Fair Green 

    Lee Roberts (Miss)

    Neighbourhood Watch Manager

    Mitcham Police Station’ 58 Cricket Green

    Mitcham, Surrey, CR4 4LA,  

    Telephone: 020 8649 3213




  • Chairman's Blog - June 2017


     Once a year we hold an open meeting in Motspur Park so that residents there can bring to our attention any issues that need addressing in their immediate area.

     This year we have been invited to hold it in Blossom House School, which opened in April 2015 in the heart of Motspur Park.  The School is a specialist, independent day school, which provides a highly supportive curriculum for children with speech, language, and communication difficulties. It draws in children from all over south London. We meet there by kind permission of the Principal, Joanna Burgess, who was recently awarded the OBE for her work, and we are delighted that she has agreed to speak to us during the meeting about the facilities that the School provides.  We will also be welcoming Daniel Elkeles CEO of the Epsom and St. Helier NHS Trust, who will update us on all that is going on at St. Helier and Epsom Hospitals. 

    We are starting at 7.30 pm on Wednesday 14th June, to finish soon after 9pm, and we hope to see as many members as possible there. 


    Our hard-working team of volunteer road stewards will be calling on you shortly if they haven’t already done so, to collect this year’s subscriptions for continued membership of the Association. The cost is again £3 for the year, and it hasn’t increased for many years.  We hope that you will want to join again, so that we can continue to protect the pleasant environment which we have chosen and been fortunate to live in. Next year we will celebrate 90 years of existence, since our foundation in 1928. 


    This year we are again holding a summer party for our Area-Co-coordinators, Road Stewards, and other volunteers. This will be held in our Pavilion off Grand Drive on Saturday 8th July from 3pm to 5pm. This date is the middle Saturday of Wimbledon fortnight, and so we will be providing strawberries and cream, and prosecco as a thank you for everyone who helps keep the Association going. We look forward to meeting up again with all of you. 

    During the party, we have the formal dedication of the tree we planted in February in memory of Jan Bailey, who worked so tirelessly for 20 years for the interests of local residents. A plaque will be unveiled in her memory in the presence of her partner, Gordon.   As she loved the natural world so much, this will be a fitting tribute to her. 

    If anyone wishes to help us by becoming a volunteer in any capacity, please contact any member of the Committee. Our names and contact details are at the back of each copy of the Guide. You will be welcomed with open arms. 


    Some huge oaks trees came down in Cannon Hill Lane during the storms this winter.  They were immediately cut into large segments by the Council’s tree surgeons.  It is well known that the age of trees can be accurately established by examining the rings of the tree, which show its annual growth. 

    Someone unknown to us has done precisely that with the largest specimen. He or she has dated the tree all the way back to 1816 in this way. 

    It is amazing to think that the tree has stood there since before the reign of Queen Victoria, when this area was open country, and survived all the changes since till this year.   I have a self-seeded oak sapling in my garden. It is a sobering, and yet a comforting, thought that, left to itself, it will still be here and thriving 200 years from now. 


    I had the good fortune to play at Malden Golf Club this month. It is worth repeating that this Club was originally based in Raynes Park, and that the entrance to the Club House was marked by the pillars still to be seen at the junction of Grand Drive and Bushey Road.  The roads around were named for the Club, e.g. Fairway, Linkway, Firstway, and Grand Drive. 

    The Club decided it had to move when the course became too wet to play on each winter - as we still see - with the flooding in Prince George’s Playing Field and under the railway bridge.  

    The problem of flooding was also the reason this Association was established, back in 1928. This was one of the matters on which Jan Bailey was a true expert, and why we miss her so much. 

    John Elvidge



  • 14 June 2017 - Meeting at Blossom House

    14 June Open Meeting - 7:30 pm  

    We hope we will have a good attendance at our June Open meeting.  This is usually held somewhere in Motspur Park, and we are delighted to announce that this year it will be in Blossom House School.   We hope that we will have a good attendance from Motspur Park residents (we are sometimes accused of being too Grand Drive Centric) who will not only hear from the amazing Head of the School, but also from the Chief Executive of the Epsom and St. Helier Hospital NHS Trust about some of the great improvements that have been introduced, and plans for the future. 

  • RPWBRA Visit to AELTC

    Visit to the All England Lawn Tennis Club 

    The Association was invited to take a party of residents for a tour of the AELTC.  A group of about 30 residents and members of the Pavilion Club met on 19th May and were accompanied on the tour by the charming and enthusiastic Dan Bloxham (the Master of Ceremonies at the Wimbledon championships) who is very much involved in the Club’s work with the community and in encouraging young people.    

    The visiting group had an extensive tour of the grounds, Centre Court and Court No. 1, and the opportunity to watch Pat Cash and Tim Henman warming up for the opening of the grass courts – an annual event.   The courts certainly looked amazing like velvet carpets, with as yet, not a sign of wear and tear.   


    It was a most enjoyable tour. Thank you to AELTC for inviting us.

  • Planning News - May 2017

    16/P3135 - Parkgate House (in Motspur Park). The applicant has approval already to convert the offices to 19 Flats, but has submitted an application to remove the Mansard roof and construct 6 additional flats. This has been refused by the Planning Applications as being overbearing and inappropriate to the local street scene. The applicant has however submitted an Appeal which is to be considered by an Exchange of letters. The Inspector appointed will have to make a ‘site visit’.  It is worth remembering that because the building is very close to the railway lines and the Station, full development is unlikely (even if the Appeal is upheld) until the proposals for Crossrail 2 are much clearer.

     17/P 0609 Wyke Road (a stretch of land alongside the railway tracks). The application is to develop 10 one bedroom flats. This is still under consideration but Crossrail 2 Ltd has commented that the ‘application site is in close proximity to the safeguarding limits ‘of land required for the development of CR2 if it goes ahead. 

    A very robust Objection has been submitted by the Wimbledon Society. It is worth noting that there have been several applications over the years on this site (mostly for Office space) and all have either been Refused or withdrawn. 

    17/P 0833 - 240 Burlington Road This is a purpose-built block for Students of Kingston university. The application is for ‘Change of Use‘ only into a Hostel. No structural changes to the building or its appearance are being proposed. The applicant claims that because more suitable accommodation has been built for the students much closer to the University in recent years the building is only half full and uneconomic to run. The aim is to provide accommodation for rental in the wider market.

    The Association has written to the Planners requesting strict conditions be imposed if the Officers are mindful to approve this application. 

    17/P 0036 -  63 Grand Drive The application is to demolish the bungalow and double garage at the end of a long drive and construct 5 three-bedroom houses. The driveway leading to the site is very close to the last bus stop in Grand Drive going North which might involve traffic problems if, and when, approved. 

    16/P 4741    641 Kingston Road   The Public House known as The Junction Tavern. The applicant (The Olive Garden) plans to convert the building into a 21 bed Hotel. The application has been approved but just like Parkgate House and Wyke Road, this building is very close to the railway lines and one wonders whether anything is likely to develop until Crossrail 2 proposals are firmed up. 


    At the meeting of the Planning Applications Committee on 16th March it was agreed to restrict the time permitted by Objectors speaking at meetings to a total of 6 minutes instead of 9. The rule that the Applicant has the same amount of time to speak (as ALL the Objectors together) has been maintained. This is likely to be a problem with large applications where several people have requested to speak. They will have to consider who can make the best case in the limited time available.

  • Disruption to Trains - August 2017

    From 5 to 28 August 2017, Network Rail will be reconfiguring the track and platforms at Waterloo Station. This will mean a temporary timetable for trains to and from Raynes Park, with significant reductions in frequency of services and the loss of connections to other stations. To find out more go to and

    Southwest Trains say that, as a result:

    • You may be asked to queue outside Raynes Park station
    • The train you usually catch may not be running
    • Services will be much busier than usual
    • Your journey may take longer
    • You may not be able to board the first train when you arrive

    If you are travelling from this station between the 5 and 28 August, please keep these tips in mind: 

    • Check the advice for other stations nearby. They might have more frequent or less crowded trains
    • Travel slightly earlier or later than normal. The busiest trains arrive into London between 8 and 9am and leave London between 5.30 and 6.30pm. To help you travel outside of these times we will provide longer trains for extended periods
    • Not travelling. If you are able to do so, you might want to consider working from home or planning a summer holiday for some or all of this time.

    As regards loss of connections to other stations, Network Rail says that the following stations will be closed during this period:

    Chessington North, Chessington South, Earlesfield, Norbiton, Malden Manor, Queenstown Road and Tolworth.

    It would also seem that trains to and from Raynes Park will not be stopping at Vauxhall.

    There may also be other impacts at other stations, on buses, on tubes and on local roads due to displaced travellers resorting to other routes.

    Due to superb planning by somebody (who probably wishes to remain anonymous) the Government has decided that that a joint venture between First Group and Hong Kong-based MTR, will take over the train franchise from Southwest Trains on 20 August in the midst of all this!

    Good Luck!



  • Raynes Park Afternoon Townswomen's Guild - Apr 2017

    Mrs Stephanie Bruggerman, a NHS Physiotherapist, and Falls Co-ordinator for Merton, came to speak to us about Falls Prevention at our March meeting.  

    Following a wide-ranging discussion, she summarised with a four-point checklist of positive things we can do to avoid falls.  


    1.  Work at keeping strong and active

    2.  Check round your home for clutter and other hazards

    3.  Regularly check medications taken – requirement and dosage

    4.  Look after your eyesight 

    Also discussed were Personal Alarms and the Message in a Bottle scheme (which involves a summary of personal information being stored in an emergency canister in the fridge) This was a serious topic but the advice was well received by members.

    The meeting closed with a collection towards the famine in Sudan appeal. 

    Taking advantage of the spring sunshine, at the beginning of April, a large group enjoyed a lunch at The Watchman, New Malden.  The following week a small group enjoyed a guided tour of Charterhouse situated at one corner of Charterhouse Square which is close to The Barbican.  This historic building dates from the 1348.  It has served as a monastery, private mansion, boys school and an alms-house which it is today. Our tour took in the Great Hall where the Brothers sit together to eat their meals, the Great Chamber where Queen Elizabeth I held court during the first days of her reign, Wash-house Court associated with the medieval monks of the Charterhouse, and Master’s Court which reveals the opulence of Lord North’s Tudor mansion.  Personally, I liked the cloisters where you could plainly see the big grey stones supporting the small red Tudor bricks halfway up the wall.  There also remained an interesting doorway which would have led to a monk’s cell, with half of the original thick and heavy door on display.  Recently Charterhouse was a school which is now situated in the Godalming area.  The present Brothers are needy gentlemen (along the lines of the Chelsea Pensioners). 

    We are inviting local Residents and friends in the Rendezvous and Pavilion Clubs to join us for a Coach Trip to Eastbourne (Tickets £14).   Please telephone Dorothy Raymond to reserve a place.


    Coach Trip to EASTBOURNE 

    Date:  Thursday, 17th August 2017 

    Transport: 50 seater Edward Thomas coach 

    Pick Up Points:  

    Motspur Park – 9.00 am, 

    Raynes Park Station (Approach Rd side) – 9.10 am, 

    Grand Drive (Greenway bus stop Sth side) – 9.20 am. 

    Return: 4.30 pm. 

    Cost: £14 per seat (including tip)


    Our next meeting is on Thursday, 18th May at St Saviour’s Church Hall at 1.30 pm when Jonathan Jones will give a talk entitled ‘Town Crier’.  Visitors are always welcome at our meetings and other activities.    

    Dorothy Raymond  020 8395 9489

  • Local Transport - Have Your Say

    Tell Merton how you think its public transport could be improved.

    The Public Transport Liaison Committee meeting to be held at the Civic Centre from 7.15 p.m. on Wednesday 10th May 2017, is your chance to learn about how transport is changing and to put questions to Transport for London and other providers. 

    This public meeting is led by the Sustainable Communities Scrutiny Panel councillors and is organized primarily to give residents an opportunity to ask questions on transport topics of local interest.  

    There will be presentations on the Mayor’s Draft Transport Strategy, buses, trams, electric vehicle charging infrastructure and Mitcham town centre update, followed by question and answer sessions.  Following the meeting the Sustainable Communities Overview and Scrutiny Panel will make recommendations for improvements to the Council’s Cabinet and to relevant transport providers to ensure that any issues raised at the meeting are fully considered.  


    For more information or special requirements call 020 8545 3837 or email:

  • Chairman's Annual Report 2014-15

    This year has, as ever, been a busy one for the Association. 

    It has been the first full year of operation for our own Residents’ Pavilion, and I want to begin by thanking everyone involved in its conversion, and in its continuing success. 

    The work to turn the tennis pavilion into a warm and welcoming centre is now complete.  We could not have done this without the expertise and enthusiasm of the Chairman of the Management Group, Jerry Cuthbert. He also continues the time consuming task of managing the site on a day to day basis. The Association owes him a great debt of gratitude.  He has been ably assisted in this work by David Freeman and I also want to thank him for this. 

    We were able to make the centre fully usable for less able people with £9000 from the Lottery Grant. This was secured for us by Christine Rowe.  While she has now left the committee to pursue other interests, I want to acknowledge her great contribution in obtaining this vital extra money. 

    I want to thank Linda Fitch, as well as David, for their work in transforming the overgrown grounds into a pleasant garden, and in maintaining them. 

    Overseeing the complex accounting for this project has been our Treasurer, John Townsend.  He has set up a separate account for the Pavilion so that we can ensure that it pays its way and is not a drain on the general resources of the Association.

    I am delighted to be able to say that the Pavilion is meeting its costs and, even at this early stage, has come into surplus. 

    The bookings for the Pavilion continue to be buoyant and I want to thank the Pavilion Management team for their work in showing people over the building, taking the bookings, and for opening and closing the pavilion on the day. It is heavily booked as weekends as a venue for family parties. 

    I must single out among the regular bookings the Social Club run for our own residents. This takes place every Thursday for two hours in the afternoon, and has been a tremendous success. It clearly is enjoyed and valued by everyone who attends. This is due to the warmth and enthusiasm of its co-hosts, Jill Truman and Andrea Hannan, and I congratulate them. 

    All this has been in addition to the usual work of the Association is trying to preserve the benefits of living in this area. 

    The range of work we cover can seen be seen from the detailed and valuable notes set out in the Guide each month by our joint secretaries, Jill Truman and Jan Bailey.  I want to thank them both for the enormous amount of hard work they put in to keep abreast of what is happening in our area, and for alerting us of matters that we need to comment on and, if necessary, oppose. 

    One successful example of this is that, with others, we managed to persuade the Post Office to retain full counter facilities in the centre of Raynes Park. 

    Planning issues continue to take up a lot of our time. The focus of attention for this coming year is going to be the proposed redevelopment of the Rainbow Estate off Grand Drive, which is the subject of two current planning applications. We have set out our objections at length in responses to these, and I want to thank Jerry Cuthbert and David Freeman for the excellent and expert way they have done so. 

    To summarise, we oppose any housing on this site, which is designed for light industrial and business use. It continues to be needed as such to provide essential local employment. The site is land locked, and is simply unsuitable for housing. This area has more than met its quota for housing, with all the new developments up Grand Drive.  All the schools and surgeries in this area are overflowing, and the developers want to add to the numbers of people living in our community, so as to enhance their own profits, without providing any of the infrastructure needed. 

    What we need in Raynes Park are facilities to drop off and pick people up at the station, and the proposed schemes cannot provide for this. 

    Where a development enhances the community, we support it. We welcome the proposal to build a new library in West Barnes, paid for by residential accommodation, as was the case in the successful redevelopment of the Raynes Park Library. 

    We also welcome the proposal to bring CrossRail 2 to this area, with proposed stops at Motspur Park and Raynes Park. This will enable much easier access for our residents across London. 

    Our planning team is highly experienced, and their contribution to our work is invaluable. They are David Freeman, Jerry Cuthbert, Pamela Robinson, and Jan Bailey. Jan is also an expert on our water courses and drains. Rachel Skinner is professionally engaged in transport matters, and gives freely of her time on issues such as parking, vehicular access to developments, and Cross Rail 2. We thank them all. 

    Communicating what we do, and getting feedback from our members, is vital. We remain, by far, the largest Residents’ Association in Merton, so this is a major task.   We use both traditional and new means to do so. The Guide has been published since 1928, and Jill Truman is carrying on the long tradition of continuously improving it, as our Editor. 

    To get it to our members each month requires the dedicated service of a team of area co-ordinators and road stewards, all voluntary members. They do a sterling job, and we can’t thank them enough. 

    They are all organised by our distribution manager Andrew Barwick and his deputy, Dick Coleman, to whom thanks. 

    The Guide is virtually self funding through the advertisements that it carries. Our advertising manager for the last few years has been Linda Fitch, and I want to thank her for taking on this post and for carrying it through so effectively. She now wants to step down from this role, and we are looking to find someone to carry it on. We welcome any volunteers for this essential task. Linda has agreed to brief anyone fully on the job.   

    We are also modern in our methods of communication, through our web site, which is increasingly well used.   Thanks continue to be due to our Web Master, Charles Briscoe-Smith, for his technical skill, and to Rachel Skinner and Jerry Cuthbert for keeping the content up to date. 

    Our finances continue to be buoyant, and it is extraordinary that we have been able to fund the conversion of the Pavilion while retaining enough funds for everyday and emergency use. John Townsend, whose report will be next, continues to manage these with great aplomb, secure us the best available rates of interest, and has a fine eye to detail. We thank him. I also want to thank our Honorary Auditor, Brian Lewis-Lavender. 

    Brian has now been elected as a Councillor for West Barnes Ward, together with Gilli, his wife, and Mary-Jane Jeanes.  All three of them are assiduous in their attendance at our Committee meetings, and in following issues that our residents raise. 

    We continue to be represented at meetings of the Raynes Park Forum and the Raynes Park Association, which covers the town centre. I would thank Pamela Robinson, Jan Bailey, and Jerry Cuthbert for attending on our behalf, and for their reports back. 

    Of course, we cover also the areas of Coombe Lane, and of Shannon Corner, and we thank Jill Truman and Peter Connellan for keeping us appraised of issues in these areas. We hold an Open Meeting each year in Motspur Park to make it easier for residents there to meet us. 

    Finally, I would repeat my pleas from last year. We are very busy and do an awful lot. But we can always do with fresh blood at all levels. None of us is getting any younger.  We would welcome any new assistance, in any capacity. Just get in touch. Thank you.     

    John Elvidge


    18 March 2015 

  • Ride London again; 28-29 July 2018

    Image result for ride london




    The 2018 Prudential Ride London cycling event will take place over the weekend of 28 -29 July 2018. The final route has yet to be published but we expect it will be coming through Raynes Park again on Sunday 29 July, following a route along Coombe Lane, Worple Road and up Wimbledon Hill. This will mean significant access restrictions to all properties in West Wimbledon, in the Coombe Lane / Copse Hill / Ridgeway areas and north and south of Worple Road. Click on for, what seems to be, mostly last year's information. 

    If you live near Raynes Park or in West Wimbledon area and are planning an event at your home, have travel plans, expect visitors or have similar commitments on Sunday 29 July 2018, you are strongly advised find out in advance how this will affect you.

    As yet, road closure information for 2018 is not available but click here for last year's. It'll probably be similar this year. However, for 2018, the  closure of Grand Drive to northbound traffic for the gas main replacement works will have just started (GRAND DRIVE MAJOR CLOSURES FOR 2018). This will surely add to the confusion.

    Whilst the TfL website currently has no information, this is expect to change at some point.



  • No Wheelies Please

    From the No Wheelies Please - Merton Group 

    The results of two surveys (one borough wide, and the other by the Apostles Residents' Association) have indicated that over 90% of the respondents reject the Council's proposals for fortnightly waste collections (from October 2018) and the introduction of 68,000 wheelie bins across the borough. 

    The NO WHEELIES PLEASE - MERTON group, have instigated a non-party-political RESIDENTS' REFERENDUM to enable residents to make known their preferences for the frequency of dustbin waste collections, and for 80 litre, lidded, recycling bins in a uniform colour, instead of wheelies and open topped boxes. Thephotos on the website say it all! (but there's loads more info at- 

    Having gathered the first thousand signatures, the group will be trying to secure face to face negotiations with the Council and Veolia Waste Management (who are taking over Merton's waste collection service this month).


  • Margaret Pye - Funeral Arrangements

    Sadly Margaret Pye, who was a redoubtable worker on behalf of the Environment for our Association for many years, and worked with Jan Bailey, teaching her a lot, has recently died.  The last few years were unkind to Margaret who had a stroke and was lovingly cared for by Michael.  The funeral will be on 5th April, at 2.00 p.m. at Holy Cross Church Hall, and 3.20 at the Crematorium. There will be light refreshments at the Church Hall following the Cremation.

  • Merton's Scrapped Weekly Collections

    Merton Scrapped Weekly Collection - FAQs

    As you know Merton's council’s current administration is planning to scrap the weekly rubbish collection.  Over 3500 people replied to the opposition parties’ survey, with 95% against the administration’s plans.  Many of you asked for more detail, so here is an FAQ which prepared by opposition Councillors to help you understand more about these plans.



  • Raynes Park Afternoon Townwomen's Guild - April 2017

    A small group enjoyed their visit to Chiswick at the end of February.  Chiswick House Park is a delight at any time of year but even in daylight seems magical when, all around the grounds, there are large, imaginative and extremely well-made soldiers, Disney characters, and fairy tale tableaux, as well as representations of well known world-wide landscapes.   After a restorative lunch-time snack the group examined and admired the camellias in the conservatory, before walking round to Hogarth House.  Partly closed for restoration, there are nevertheless computers in the dining room which give an overview of the house and historic information.  The kitchen area currently holds an exhibition of items not normally on view, including interesting satirical etchings with full explanations.  Incidentally, one of these is acknowledged (and recognisable) as the inspiration for one of the exhibits at the current Hockney exhibition at Tate Britain.

    Lunch Club members found themselves in a Lloyds Bar full of musicians and miscellaneous large musical instruments.  Pushed out of their favourite spot! They nevertheless found a table and enjoyed their lunch. 

    At our meeting on April 20th (at 1.30 at St Saviour’s Church Hall) Jonathan Jones’ talk is entitled ‘Town Crier’.  The next visit is to Charterhouse (Tour on Wed 12th April) and the lunch club will visit The Watchman at New Malden Fountain (Thurs, 6th). 

    Visitors are always welcome to our meetings and other activities.  For more information please telephone. 

    Dorothy Raymond  020 8395 9489


  • Raynes Park Tennis Club

    Raynes Park Residents Lawn Tennis Club News - April 2017 

    The club is holding an Open Day on Saturday 22nd April between 1pm and 4pm. This is primarily aimed at adults including -beginners, those whose skills are a little rusty - and experienced players who might have recently moved to the area. 

    This doesn’t mean that we aren’t interested in helping juniors who will be welcome on the day, it’s just that the enormous success we have had under our head coach, José Marquez, has led to all our courses for juniors being fully subscribed, despite us putting on an additional days coaching. 

    José is proposing to run summer camps in the school holidays with under-9s between the 24th and 28th July, and older children up to 16 in the following week 

     Please contact the club for further details and confirmation.  You can turn up for the Open Day on the day, but if you want more details of the events taking place and the chance to register in advance, you can access the Information through the LTA at: where you click on Open Days and search on SW20 andthen click on Raynes Park Residents LTC. 

    Paul Sadler



  • Raynes Park & West Barnes Libraries


    There are exciting developments afoot regarding our two local, much-valued libraries.

    In this month’s Guide we celebrate the input and achievements of Paul McDermott, the outgoing manager of the Raynes Park branch who is taking charge the borough’s largest library in Wimbledon from next month.

    Whilst still a sixth-former at Wimbledon College, Paul was employed on Saturdays at Morden Library and this gave him great insight into the work and activities involved in the development of successful library provision.

    Following completion of an Arts Foundation Course at Croydon College, Paul continued his studies at the Surrey Institute of Art and Design where he obtained his degree. This led to an enjoyable spell working in Wandsworth -first as a teaching assistant - and then as a fully qualified teacher.  For four years he enjoyed the busy, daily life of primary school teaching before deciding to return to his library “roots” in order to pursue the challenges involved in all-age provision.

    In 2011 Paul became Customer Services Officer at Morden Library and undertook the responsibility of developing the Summer Reading Challenge across the borough.  This was a hugely satisfying task and cemented his desire to involve himself in library development

    In November 2014 Paul was appointed as Manager of Raynes Park where he was pleased to inherit a flourishing, well-organised establishment from his predecessor, Hannah. 

    During his two and a half years at Raynes Park Paul has developed a strong volunteer base of over seventy people involved in a huge range of tasks and activities; he has built close ties with local schools and nurseries and consolidated a timetable of daily activities for both pre-school and school-aged children; he is also very proud to have established a huge variety of free activities for adults.

     Visitor numbers for the last month showed an increase of 8% compared to the same month last year – averaging 10,000 visits at Raynes Park library per month!

    Paul’s calm, encouraging and friendly presence will be missed and we offer him our best wishes for the next phase of his career.

    What next for Raynes Park?      

    Kevin, the helpful, knowledgeable security officer will be remaining as will many volunteers.  However, we wish Cathy, our senior librarian who has given 36 years of devoted service, a happy early retirement.  We also wish every success to Marija (Deputy Manager) who will be transferring to Wimbledon and to Fuad who will continue his valuable work at Mitcham.  

    In a challenging but exciting development, Karren, the highly talented manager of West Barnes library will have the task of combining both our excellent libraries!


    There will be more about Karren shortly.

  • Raynes Park Afternoon Townswomen's Guild - Mar 17


    Our January meeting featured an illustrated talk by a representative of the Air Ambulance Service.  This organisation is a charity set up in the Kent, Surrey & Sussex area in 1989 - the third area service set up - the first and second being London and Cornwall.  The team on board the helicopter includes a Doctor and paramedic, the Doctor commencing immediate emergency care and assessing the appropriate hospital for the patient.  Road traffic accidents make up 40% of call-outs, 40% are to other accidental traumas, the remaining 20% being medical emergencies. It takes 4 minutes for the helicopter to get off the ground but IT can reach any area in the region in 20 minutes. They can land anywhere the pilot decides suitable.  The service has been 24-hour since 2013.  The night-time helicopter is larger taking 9 minutes to take off, but with more space can take patients on board quickly.  This was a fascinating and informative talk from an amazing charity. 

    I think all the local clubs had groups at the Sunday afternoon Magnificent Music Hall at Wimbledon Theatre including a small party of ladies and one husband from the Towns Women’s Guild It was a generously long and varied show, everyone enjoyed this annual event. 

    At our Annual General Meeting held at the February meeting, the current committee was re-elected unchanged.  The secretary then outlined the programme of speakers she had obtained for the year 2017/18 which was well received, following which was a discussion about places of interest to visit. 

    The lunch club dines at the Lloyds Bar, Fulham early in March, on Wednesday 1st, and the next visit has been moved even further forward to Wednesday, 22nd February.  This is to allow members to examine the Festival of Lanterns installations around Chiswick House Grounds before they are taken down on 26th February as well as visiting the Camelia Conservatory, open at this time.  After lunch in the café we will visit the neighbouring Hogarth House. 

    Our next meeting on Thursday, 16th March is at 1.30 for 1.45 at St Saviour’s Church Hall.  At approximately 2.30 pm Mrs S. Bruggeman will give a talk about ‘Falls Prevention’.   Anyone interested in this topic is invited to join us.  

    Dorothy Raymond  020 8395 9489



  • P16/4853 - Former Wolfson Centre, SW20

    To:       Planning Representations

                London Borough of Merton

    From:   RP&WBRA

    Date:   13th February 2017 

    Re:  Planning Application 16/4853 – Former Wolfson Centre, Copse Hill, SW20 

    We write to object to the above application which represents a significant departure from the established design principles with resultant negative impact on the Copse Hill Conservation Area.   We would suggest that the design approach does not preserve or enhance the character of the conservation area and indeed has a negative impact on the neighbouring MOL (see 5.5 of the Merton Core Planning Strategy). 

    Most significantly, we object to the excessive increase in density proposed. The proposed density is  close to 200 habitable rooms per hectare, which for this site, we believe, should be no more than 150 to 200.   In a Conservation area such as this, we consider that the density should be very much at the lower end of this range.  Also seeking to build 5 and 6 stories in a Conservation Area is unacceptable. The height should be restricted to that of the surrounding buildings.                                                                                                                      

    Additionally, there is no compelling case for this revised P/A in terms of the number of proposed housing units.

    (Figures sourced from Merton Annual Monitoring Report 2014/2015).  The GLA London Plan target for Merton was 320 Dwelling Units per annum, which was well exceeded for 5 years in a row, but for the 5 years from 2016 to 2021 this target (set by GLA) has been increased to 411 dwelling units per annum. For years 2014/15 the number of housing completions was 459 well above not just the old target but also the new target. 

    Moreover Merton projected housing provision for the next 5 years safely exceeds not only the new target but also the figure if the 5% safety 'buffer' is added on. 

    The neighbouring site is a SINC – home to nocturnal bats and wildlife, we would suggest that there will be a detrimental impact of light pollution from the proposed large blocks. 

    According to Transport for London, this site has low public transport accessibility with a rating of 1b, i.e. only one bus and a 20 minute walk to the nearest station.  The Application is proposing a total of 96 car parking spaces.  These two factors suggest a potential for very many additional cars onto Copse Hill with a resultant deleterious effect on traffic congestion in the area and pollution. 

    Policy CS8 of the Merton Core Strategy sets a target of 40% affordable housing on sites providing 10 or more homes (subject to viability) and London Plan Policy 3.11 seeks to maximise affordable housing.   This proposal allows for only 25 units (30%) which is inadequate. 

    In summary, the proposals are in conflict with Policy DM D2 (Design Considerations) of the Sites and Policies Plan July 2014 by failure to relate appropriately to the siting, scale, density and height of the surrounding buildings, the local context and the local landscape. Also the potential increase in traffic density is very likely to result in adverse impact on the lives of nearby residents and have adverse impact on road safety.  


    We urge the Planning Applications Committee to refuse this application.

  • Chairman's Blog - March 2017


    It looks as though Merton Council will increase council tax at the annual budget meeting by 3% in order to provide extra funding for adult social care. The Labour administration has been forced into this position despite having previously pledged to keep the levy frozen until 2018. 

    The government has given all local authorities permission to increase local taxation by 3% next year, to help alleviate the obvious shortfall in provision for the increasing numbers of elderly and disabled people. 

    It is reported that the Council was forced into this decision by pressure from Merton’s Clinical Commissioning Group which warned in October that the extra funding which they provided to the Council would be withdrawn unless it raised the precept. It is thought that this extra money will be ring-fenced. 

    The Government also gave local authorities permission to increase rates by a further 3% in the following year, but no decision has been made on this so far.    

    The Government has, in fact, given permission to all local authorities to raise taxation by up to 4.99% next year. They can only go above this figure if they hold a local referendum, but no authority has decided to do so, Surrey County Council having thought better of their intention to hold one to raise their impost by 15%.  It seems doubtful that Merton will increase the tax by more than the 3% next year. 


     There are more and more house owners who are paving over their front gardens to park their vehicles. The proposed impost on diesel vehicles for those householders who need parking permits, which we reported on in the last edition of The Guide, is likely to increase this trend. Other people concrete over their front gardens as somewhere to store wheelie bins, which is again likely to increase if the Council change the rubbish collection provision in 2018.  

    Much of this area is prone to flooding. It is always worth repeating that this Association was founded in 1928 precisely because of this problem. In recent years we have had repeated flooding in certain areas, particularly when there are flash floods.  As the climate grows warmer, the rate of such downpours has increased. 

    Ordinary domestic gardens soak up rainwater, but every piece of concrete we build increases water run-off, and the drains are unable to cope. 

    The Times weatherman reports that some 5 million gardens are now paved, which is one in four of the total. There has been a three-fold increase in the past ten years.   

    Most front gardens need access from a crossover from a dropped kerb, which the Council has to agree. Councils ought to insist as a condition of granting permission for a crossover that the surface of the front garden is not concrete or tarmac, but something permeable which will allow water to soak away gradually. There are many such surfaces on the market. 


    We wrote to the Council protesting at the proposed introduction in April of the diesel levy.  My letter and the reply from the Council member responsible for the introduction of the scheme may be read here.


    We also wrote to Transport for London about the sequencing of the traffic lights turning right into Grand Drive. You can see the reply we received here.


    John Elvidge

  • Diesel Levy

    From:    John Elvidge (RP&WBRA)] 
    To:         Councillor Stephen Alambritis 

    Date:     27th January 2017 

    Re:  Diesel Levy

    I write as Chairman of the Raynes Park and West Barnes Residents' Association. I understand that the Council is proposing to bring in a levy on diesel vehicles as early as this April, with a surcharge for parking permits and business permits, that is likely to increase in future years.   Please take this e-mail into account in reply to the public consultation that you are (belatedly) undertaking. 

    While I understand that modern research shows that such vehicles bring health issues, there does need to be a period of time for public education and during which people are able to change vehicles, otherwise the costs to them will be inordinate. Most people change their vehicles only every three years or so, and those who have recently bought such a vehicle will be heavily penalised, given the depreciation in value.  If the proposal has merit, it should be introduced over a number of years.  The proposal will also hit hardest those who are less well off, as they can ill afford to change their vehicle, simply to avoid extra costs. 

    Further, there seems little evidence of such bad air pollution in Merton that it is vital to introduce this scheme at such speed. 

    I trust that the Council will defer the introduction of the scheme at this time. 

    Please acknowledge receipt.


     From:     Cllr. Ross Garrod (LBM)

    To:         John Elvidge (RP&WBRA)

    Cc:         Cllr. Stephen Alambritis

    Date:      27th January 2017 

    Re:  Diesel Levy 

    Thank you for your email that has been passed to me as Cabinet Member responsible for the diesel levy. I have passed your response to the consultation to the Traffic and Highways team so that it can be considered. However, I must advise that it will be considered as an individual response and I would urge you to speak to members of your association to email the traffic and highways department directly should they wish to raise individual concerns about the levy. Please be reminded that the consultation concludes on 3rd February.  

    Just as a note of background - the proposed introduction of the Diesel Levy is to tackle the issue of air pollution in which the emissions from diesel cars contribute disproportionately. It is estimated that air pollution kills over 9,000 Londoners and will also have a significant impact on the health of many others. I am sure you would agree that this is alarming especially as those exposed to the pollutants would be unsuspecting residents. The issue of air pollution is a top priority for the Mayor of London as the air in particular parts of London is often in breach of regulated levels. This is line with the air quality tests we have undertaken in the borough.  

    As I am sure you will agree, there is a need to act to tackle this issue and as an authority we have a duty to our residents. The powers open to local authorities to dissuade the use of diesel cars are limited. In fact I would have much rather the Government bring in a scheme to incentivise the scrappage of such vehicles. However, they have consistently demonstrated a lack of willingness to act and in their absence I think as an authority we should do what we can to limit the impact and exposure of these poisonous substances impacting on the health of residents in the borough.  

    I appreciate the concerns you raise about the introduction being introduced over a number of years and this was raised at a scrutiny meeting by Councillors and as result we have proposed that the levy be introduced over a three year period. The first year will be set at the reduced amount of £90 and by year three it will be £150. This will afford residents two years to prepare before the full priced levy be applicable.  

    I hope that you have found my email to be helpful and once the consultation closes you will receive further communication from the Traffic and Highways team. 

  • TfL letter - Bushey Rd - Feb 2017

    To:       John Elvidge

    From:   Leon Daniels, Managing

    Director, Surface Transport, Transport for London 

    Re:   Bushey Road and Lower Downs Bridge 

    Thank you for your letter of 11 January. I have addressed the issues you raise individually. 

    The junction of Bushey Road and Grand Drive 

    This junction experiences heavy traffic throughout the day, with long queues on both Grand Drive and Bushey Road. Our primary aim here has always been to strike a fair balance for all and we have tried to make improvements to both of these approaches in response to customer enquiries about the junction. 

    There are four bus services that pass through this junction, including routes 152, 163, 655 and K5, and we need to maintain a smooth journey and minimise delays for each bus. The A298 is also designated as a stretch of the 'Strategic Road Network', which we must prioritise where possible, as it carries a large Volume of traffic. 

    To aid us in reaching a fair balance, this junction was upgraded to operate a newer form of traffic signal control that uses vehicle detection embedded in the road surface to measure demand on each approach. This information allows our computer system to calculate the required length of signal 'green time' to allocate. The new signal timings have been in operation for approximately six months, and we are pleased to say that we have received no negative feedback in that time. 

    However, following your enquiry, we have investigated the operation of the junction in line with your observations, and have confirmed that the right turning movement from Bushey Road into Grand Drive southbound is receiving a shorter signal green time when compared to other approaches, particularly in the morning. To help address the issue with this movement, we have changed the traffic signal timings in the morning to provide a slightly longer signal green time, on average, without significantly impacting upon other traffic movement. 

    We will continue to monitor the junction over the coming months to ensure that our changes are effective, and would welcome any further feedback from you. 

    Lower Downs Bridge 

    This bridge is not part of our road network and any works would need to be carried out by the asset owner and the local borough, the London Borough of Merton.   I would suggest contacting the LB Merton directly about the issue of high vehicles getting stuck. 


    I hope this response is helpful to you.

  • Crossrail 2 - Update February 2017

    What the RPWBRA is doing? 

    Through its membership of the Raynes Park Association (RPA), our association is joining forces with other local residents’ and business associations, in anticipation of another round of public consultation on Crossrail 2 in Spring 2017. 

    Crossrail 2 coming to our area 

    Crossrail 2 is a new railway line, which is planned to come through Raynes Park and Wimbledon stations, providing a completely new link from our area to central London and northwards into Hertfordshire. 

    The Crossrail 2 trains are planned to provide a direct service from Raynes Park to new destinations in central London. After calling at Wimbledon, the trains will run in tunnels all the way to Tottenham Hale. There are expected to be several below-ground stations in central London, including inter-connections at Victoria, Tottenham Court Road and Euston/St Pancras. 

    It will thus make many destinations easier to reach, without the need to travel via Waterloo. For example, it should be easier to reach the City and Docklands by taking Crossrail 2 to Tottenham Court Road and changing onto the soon-to-open Elizabeth Line, rather than going via either the Waterloo & City or Jubilee tube lines, as at present. 

    In the opposite direction, the Crossrail 2 trains are planned to serve the existing Network Rail branches all the way to Shepperton, Hampton Court, Chessington South and Epsom. These branches will also continue to carry national rail services to and from Waterloo. These branches, of course, converge on Raynes Park. 

    Public Consultation in Spring 2017 

    Whilst Crossrail 2 in not programmed to be completed until 2032, we are likely to have several years of construction work in our neighbourhood. Despite this seeming far in the future, the opportunity for us to have our say is likely to be very soon, because once the key decisions are taken, it will be much harder to change things later. 

    Currently, the Crossrail 2 team is considering the recommendations of the National Infrastructure Commission and the Government on the business case for the scheme. They have been tasked with finding £4bn savings from a budget of around £27bn, which is quite a challenge. 

    As a consequence, the next phase of public consultation, which was originally scheduled for the end of last year is now postponed until this spring. 

    What the results of the cost saving exercise may be and when the public consultation may re-start, we have no idea. Stephen Hammond, our MP, has asked for a meeting with Crossrail 2 to find out what we might expect and when. 

    Impact on Wimbledon Town Centre 

    In the winter of 2015/2016 there was an initial public consultation concerning the underground section through central London, which included the area to be taken up by an expanded Wimbledon Station and the land required above ground immediately to the west of Wimbledon Station for sidings to allow trains to reverse direction. 

    Whilst these proposals were very much an initial outline and broad-brush in nature, they proved highly controversial, as they implied that the Centre Court shopping mall would be demolished, together with many other buildings (both old and new) around the station. 

    Due to the largely adverse public reaction, Crossrail 2 went away to reconsider their plans for Wimbledon Station. Whilst we know that several other ideas about how the extra platforms may be accommodated were under consideration during 2016, nothing more has been made public for the reasons explained above. 


    As part of the 2015/2016 consultation process, Crossrail 2 issued “Safeguarding” plans. These delineate the boundaries of the land likely to be required, both during construction and for the permanent works. These plans have a statutory significance, insofar that (a) any planning applications within the safeguarded areas must be referred by the planning authority to Crossrail 2, in case they might have an impact of the scheme and (b) that landowners within the safeguarded areas may apply for compensation from blight, if they consider they have materially suffered as a result. 

    However, the safeguarding plans published so far for our area only relate to the public consultation that has taken place over the proposals for Wimbledon and the associated sidings. 

    Nothing has been published about any proposals west of Lower Downs Road. 

    Likely Changes in Raynes Park and Motspur Park 

    However, we know that it is planned to run something like double the number of trains through Raynes Park and onto the four branches to Shepperton, Hampton Court, Chessington South and Epsom. The initial proposals indicate that this will necessitate two extra railway lines running between New Malden and Wimbledon, through Raynes Park. (one in each direction). This would thus increase the existing four lines to six along this stretch of track. 

    However, we know that Network Rail have been busy working with Crossrail 2 on the design details and we expect that new information will be forthcoming fairly soon. 

    Suffice it to say that these additional lines will be a tight fit through Raynes Park town centre, particularly at the station, where there is very little spare railway land. 

    Ideally, if Raynes Park Station is to be significantly modified, we like to see straighter platforms (without the dangerous gaps we have at the moment) and step-free access from street to trains on all platforms. Whilst, of course, the devil will be in the detail, the RPA is keen to get the best outcome for Raynes Park. 

    We are also concerned about what is planned for the two level-crossings along West Barnes Lane (i.e. at the junction with Burlington Road and at Motspur Park), as it seems inevitable that these level crossings would cease to be practical with the planned increase in trains. It is also anticipated that improvements will also need to be made to Motspur Park Station. 

    We consider it important that any changes to the station in Raynes Park incorporate improvements to the connectivity with pedestrian, cycle, bus and road routes. We also would like to see the plans incorporate improvements to the public realm around the station. 

    Find Out More 

    You can find out more and subscribe for email bulletins on the Crossrail2 website, . You can also find out more on our MP’s website, . 

    In the meantime, we urge local residents and businesses to participate in the next public consultation, when the time comes. 


    Jerry Cuthbert, 2 February 2017

  • What's on at Raynes Park Library?



    Click here for the events Calendar at Raynes Park Library.




  • Raynes Park Afternoon Townswomen's Guild - Feb 2017

    Activities in the New Year seemed to start slowly for the ladies of our Guild, with the lunch club not meeting until 31st.  Nevertheless a number of ladies went to this year’s pantomime Dick Whittington at Wimbledon Theatre, a production which they thoroughly enjoyed, commenting on the costumes and stage sets as well as the professionalism and competence of the cast.  

    A small group also took themselves to the Rose Theatre café for the advertised lunch-time Wednesday Variety Club performance.  This proved to be a disappointment because, regrettably, the entertainment had been cancelled.  Nevertheless, all enjoyed the café’s beautifully presented toasted sandwich lunch-time platter. 

    At the time of writing we are looking forward to our talk by the Surrey Ambulance on 19th January and the Magnificent Music Hall at Wimbledon Theatre on Sunday 22nd. January. 

    Our February meeting will be held on Thursday, 16th February at 1.30 pm in St Saviour’s Church Hall.  This will be our Annual General Meeting with a Bring & Buy sale. 

    Visitors are always welcome to our meetings and other activities.  For more information please telephone. 

    Dorothy Raymond  020 8395 9489

  • Chairman's Blog - Feb 2017

    Council Proposal to surcharge diesel vehicles 

    It will not be generally known that Merton Council is proposing to impose a surcharge on diesel vehicles for the cost of parking permits in controlled parking zones and business permits.  The suggestion was made in a report last autumn, and, if approved at a full Council meeting, could come into effect as soon as April this year. 

    The surcharge, which has already been brought into operation in some other London boroughs, will target only diesel vehicles, which scientists say produce more hazardous nitrogen dioxides and small particulates than petrol or electric vehicles. These get into the lung and bring on long term illnesses.   

    Local authorities are not allowed to bring in such measures for the purpose of raising income, but Merton’s proposals have been calculated to raise a staggering figure of extra income of £516,000 in the first year and over £900,000 by 2019/20. This extra income can only be used on transport measures, but will, obviously, be used to defray other council costs. It is hard to avoid the conclusion that the proposal is driven by the desire to make money, rather than on grounds of health.  

    There have been major published objections to this proposal. 

    The first is that people do not change their cars every year, but only after a period of years, often three. Those who have recently bought a diesel as opposed to a petrol or petrol/electric car will be heavily penalised, given the depreciation in the value of any purchased car.   If the proposal has merit, it should be introduced over a number of years, as the Mayor of London is proposing for a surcharge/ban on diesel vehicles coming within the congestion zone, by 2020. 

    The second is that the surcharge will unfairly hit the less well off, who can ill afford to change their vehicle, simply to avoid extra costs. 

    The third is that most CPZ’s and parking permits are in the west of the Borough, where there is no objective evidence of bad air pollution, indeed the contrary.  

    The fourth, and perhaps major one, is that the Council has not undertaken any public consultation on the scheme, and indeed has had no information campaign to inform the public of it.   This is another example, together with that on wheelie bins, of the majority party on the Council going ahead with an ill thought out policy without full public consultation and approval. 


    Network Rail and South West Trains have warned of major impacts to services into Waterloo Station next August, between August 5 and 28.  For once, this is nothing to do with strikes or union disputes, but is for a good reason. Waterloo is due to have an £800 million upgrade, which will see the five platforms originally used for Eurostar, and which have been long disused, brought back into use. Platforms 1-4, which are used for the suburban trains from Motspur Park and Raynes Park, are being extended to accommodate 10 car trains.   According to Network Rail, the number of journeys into Waterloo has more than doubled to 234 million in 20 years.


    The letter I have written to Transport for London about the traffic light sequencing at the Grand Drive/Bushey Road junction, and about Lower Downs Bridge is below:

     1. The junction of Bushey Road and Grand Drive, SW20, is saturated with traffic for much of the day. We understand that TFL are undertaking a review of this junction. Please let us know whether this is correct, and when we may expect to see the result of that review. In the meantime, the sequencing of the traffic lights has been changed, so that vehicles coming along the slip road from the A3 and wanting to turn right onto Grand Drive are held back far more than other traffic. My observations are that only some 5 cars at a time can get through before the lights change. The result is that traffic is now piled back onto the slip road and as far as the A3, causing obvious danger. To avoid the extended hold up, some vehicles now continue down Bushey Road and then do a U turn, which causes more danger.   I imagine that the purpose of this change was to ease congestion on the other routes, but this goes too far.


    2. There continues to be a problem of high vehicles getting stuck under Lower Downs Bridge, SW20. This is despite the new notices warning on both sides that it is a low bridge, height indicators, and electronic warnings. The problem here is that the entrance to the bridge on both sides is higher than the arch in the middle, and this is not apparent to those unfamiliar with the structure. What is needed is a clear warning that the central arch of the bridge is much lower than the entrance. It would help greatly to have large metal rods (to the height of the central arch) hanging from both sides, which would give a visual and aural warning. 

    I look forward to your reply. With thanks. JE


    I have reported previously about the Council considering whether or not to increase the amount that it pays for social care in the community, on which so many elderly and disabled people depend for their day to day living. 

    A resident contacted me, who herself cares for a neighbour who is disabled. She asked me to make the important point that most elderly and disabled people are enabled to stay in their own homes, and not have to go into care, because of the assistance given by members of their own family or strangers. The charity which supports carers, Carers UK, calculates that across the UK there are 6.5 million people who are unpaid carers supporting a loved one who is older, disabled or serious ill.  That is 1 in 8 of adults. Every day, another 6,000 people become carers. They make an enormous contribution to society and save the economy billions of pounds. 

    The Government does pay a Carer’s Allowance if you spend more than 35 hours a week caring for a relative or friend who is ill or disabled.  You don’t have to live with them or be related to them.  This is currently about £62 a week. You can take up to four weeks break a year from caring and still receive the benefit. But you can only get this allowance if you earn less than £110 per week after tax, and other benefits you receive are taken into account also. 

    Anyone already caring in this way, or thinking of doing so, should consult the local CAB services for details of the Carer‘s Allowance, particularly if they are already pensioners themselves where the arrangements are complex.  Or there is a form on line to complete to obtain this. 

    John Elvidge  



  • Chairman's Blog - Dec 2016


    By the time you read this, we expect that the Council will have committed the expenditure of 7 million pounds of your money for the purchase of wheelie bins. This is to further the introduction of a new system of waste collection sometime in 2018. 

    This is being introduced presumably to save money, but they have produced no evidence to show any cost savings. 

    They have conducted no survey to show that this is wanted by the majority of residents, and most people who have contacted us are very opposed to the proposed changes. This is because they think that the present system works well, and they support the continuation of a weekly collection service both for waste that goes to landfill and waste that can be recycled. 

    The Council is only proposing to collect general household rubbish from the wheelie bins every fortnight, and not every week. A second wheelie bin will be used to collect paper, newspapers and cardboard on the same fortnightly cycle. Very confusingly, glass bottles, tins and plastic will be put in a green or purple box and collected on the alternative week.  This is a recipe for disaster, and will result in even less rubbish being recycled, and more going to landfill. 

    The Council points to what they call “the successful 2015 wheelie bin project in Lavender Fields ward which saw an increase in resident satisfaction with 89% residents saying they were satisfied with the introduction of wheelie bins”.  However, we understand that these residents were not told that the wheelie bin waste would, under their proposals, only be collected on a fortnightly basis, and not weekly. We are not told either of the mix of houses surveyed, and whether any of the residents suffered from disabilities of any kind. 

    Wheelie bins are large and unsightly, and will need to be stored somewhere. If they are emptied only every other week, they will rapidly be filled up, and spill over, spraying rubbish over the streets.  People in terraced homes will have to take them through the house to get them to a point of collection. People who are infirm will not be able to manage them. They will have to be emptied one by one into the dustcart, which will take further time to process.  

    They say that “Prior to rolling out any agreed wheeled bin scheme, the council will “…address any concerns with the implementation of a wheeled bin collection service”. Many residents have already pointed out that they will not be able to manage to get a wheelie bin to the front of their property.  We doubt very much that the new operators will have the time, or be paid the resources, to help householders on an individual basis to collect the bins from inside their home or from the back or side of it.  

    One local resident wrote a hand written leader to the Council leader asking him specifically how he and his wife were going to cope, given that he has heart problems, and his wife has dementia. He received a standard letter from Councillor Alambritis which did not answer either question. Insultingly, it started by thanking him for his email, which indicates that he did not himself see the letter. 

    This is simply not good enough. One of the main duties of a Council is to collect waste. A system that operates well enough should not be changed without strong evidence that its replacement will be better, and not in this cavalier manner. 


    Councils have been given permission by the government to increase council tax by 2 per cent to fund extra social care, which is much needed to cope with the increasing numbers of elderly and disabled people. Merton Council has not increased its council tax for some years, but the Council is conducting a survey of residents to see whether people wish to see no increase in tax, or 2%, which would raise an additional £1.5 million, or 3.99%, which would raise an additional £3 million. The intention is that any extra money raised would be ring fenced for social care use only.   

    Very unfortunately, the consultation was conducted through the pages of the autumn edition of My Merton, and this publication failed to get delivered at all to many residents in our area. The Councillors have written to the Chief Executive to ask how this came about.  

    Social care provision is a very important matter: if you wish to express a view, please write to the Chief Executive of Merton Council with your views. The official consultation promises that your views will be kept anonymous and data protected. 


    The last edition of the Guide contained our response to the proposals of the Boundary Commission in regard to the local Parliamentary constituencies. Our MP, Stephen Hammond, informs us that all responses will be published next spring, followed by a secondary consultation. New proposals will not be published until the end of 2017, and there will then be an 8 week consultation. 


    Once again the clocks have gone back, so that we are now in darkness by 4 pm.  I have said before that the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents has found that more accidents happen in the dark evenings than happen in dark mornings. They want the system changed, but when will Parliament do this?  The argument is always that the present system suits the needs of Scotland, but they now have a separate parliament, and do not need to be on the same time as the rest of us. 

    John Elvidge





  • Friends of Sir Joseph Hood Playing Fields


    ‘The Friends’ was set up in 2003 in response to the threat of paddling pool closure and a decline in the park. Park users felt intimidated by drug users and underage drinkers and reported increased vandalism, graffiti and littering following a decrease in security. 

    Since its formation, the Friends has benefitted from the tireless work of Caroline Ventom, Sophie Cabral, Dianne Walker and Lucy Hill who in 2004 successfully campaigned to overturn the decision to close the paddling pool and have fought hard to raise funding and work with the council and the community to improve the park’s facilities.  Among their achievements was the installation of new playground equipment, a basketball/multi sports area, resurfacing of the tennis courts, installation of the crazy golf and fitness equipment and the formation of a Friends Cafe. In addition the Friends were intrinsic to the Park successfully securing the prestigious Green Flag status from 2008 - 2014. 

    The park is now a true family friendly hub of the community frequented and appreciated by many. However, further cuts have meant that for a number of years the park no longer has a full time park keeper and the facility management is shared between a number of parks which means more emphasis on the Friends and community groups to keep a diligent eye out to ensure it does not yet again decline. Further to this, cuts in funding have meant that in 2015 the council has again tabled the closure of the park’s paddling pool and the Green Flag was also lost. This prompted a resurgence in local interest and an increased membership in the Friends and some new initiatives. 

    On 5th November the Friends held their annual AGM to review the activities to date and to discuss a new committee structure. A summary of the AGM follows. 

    Events from 2015/16 include a Dog walking community day, a Bat walking expedition, a Family Fun run and Splash Dance event (both to raise awareness for the proposed closure of the paddling pool) a Crazy Golf clean up session (in partnership with the Wimbledon 22nd Scout group) and several litter picking events. 

    A  marketing campaign was set up to lobby against the closure of the paddling pool, seeking to replace it instead with a Splash Pad. The campaign included a manual and online petition, liaison with the local media and a social media presence was created with the creation of a Friends Facebook Group and a twitter account. 

    The Friends logo was rebranded and a newsletter was produced. Local businesses, schools and community engagement was engendered and local sponsors endorsed the campaigns sponsoring publicity. Publicity from the local paper and a short film was put together presenting the case for the Splash Pad.  As a result of this, the paddling pool was opened for the Summer of 2106 and a verified anonymous pledge of £50,000 was received towards the building of a Splash Pad in 2017/18. Additionally, the Friends assisted the council in their bid to regain Green Flag Status for 206/17 and were successful in doing so.  

    Ahead of the pool’s opening, the Friends took the decision to move the Friends Cafe into the Golf Hut and sought to establish support amongst the public. They organised and set up a rota opening the cafe on a regular basis throughout the summer. They took on the running of the Crazy Golf on behalf of the council and as a result took profits of £7,000 over the summer period. During the AGM it was agreed that the Friends would pledge this in addition to £3,000 raised previously by the Friends to Merton Council towards a Splash Pad Fund for Sir Joseph Hood Memorial Playing Field. The Friends continue to run the Cafe, Crazy Golf on a rota basis on Sunday mornings. 9 - 12. 

    As the current fundraising aim for the Friends is for a Splash Pad the Friends are investigating moving the committee to charity status going forwards. Attendees at the AGM were asked to vote upon taking this process forward and all voted in favour of doing so. In the face of the new proposed structure for the Friends, new roles were voted on for the committee. 

    The current chair and vice chair, Caroline Venom and Sophie Cabral outlined their wish to step down in these roles and the following roles were voted upon and agreed:

    ·       Interim Chair - Jane Pritchard

    ·                                    Executive Committee - Sophie Cabral, Caroline Venom, Kate North and Dianne Walker

    ·       Secretary/membership - Sarah Thorne 

    ·       Treasurer - Damian Kiernan


    The friends are seeking anyone with knowledge or expertise in the following areas: 


    ·           Setting up a charity

    ·           Fundraising/Marketing

    ·           Website development


    Please do get in touch if you think you can help in anyway or would like to become a lifetime member for £5. We welcome your support!

    Sarah Thorne 


    If you have not already joined, please do join our Facebook group: Friends of Sir Joseph Hood Memorial Playing Field. 

  • Raynes Park Afternoon Townswomen's Guild - Nov 2016

    What an amazing local resource Morden Hall Park is!  It is a credit to the National Trust and their many volunteers.   A member who lives locally in Morden and knows the park well met our November Autumn walkers and was able to act as an unofficial guide.  She took us to the wet area especially to investigate the new board walk through the reeds.  Well designed and strongly made this was opened recently by the lady Mayor.  Our member had attended this opening ceremony and showed us a photograph she had taken.  With its magnificent trees and woods, rivulets, hay meadows, rose garden and children’s area – there is something for everyone here.  Needless to say we ended with a drink in the café. 

    The previous week’s meal in the popular Morden Superfish was also well received by the lunch club. 

    The Last Tango – the show at the Phoenix Theatre, starring previous Strictly Come Dancing professionals Vincent Simone and Flavia Cacace – proved to be a delight.  Flavia and Vincent are fabulous dancers, their final dance, their speciality, the Argentine Tango, brought the whole audience to their feet.  The quality of the show made up for the group’s horrendous journey there involving torrential rain, traffic light to traffic light solid vehicles, a bus terminated prematurely because of conditions and an emergency taxi.  Ironically the journey back was exceptionally slick! 

    We are looking forward to the usual jollifications during December and would like to wish everyone a joyous Christmas and a great 2017. 


    Dorothy Raymond

  • Display Advertising


    Prices and Page Sizes

    Currently our prices (per monthly insertion) are as follows:  


    Size of advert

    Typical dimension (h x w)


    1/8th page

    47mm x 66mm


    1/6th page

    32mm x 137mm


    Quarter page

    94mm x 66mm


    1/3rd page

    65mm x 137mm


    Half page

    94mm x 137mm


    Full Page

    197mm x 137mm


    Full Page Back Cover

    197mm x 137mm



    If you’re looking for another size or configuration, please contact our Advertising Manager who will try to help.


    We try to be flexible – if you want to alter the size or content of your advert from one month to another, just let us know.


    We offer a discount of 5% for a 6 month booking, and 10% for a 12 month booking. 


    Our prices are competitive and do not attract VAT.


    All requests or enquiries regarding advertisements in "The Guide" should be emailed to our volunteer Advertising Manager, Dick Coleman, here.


    Ordering and Payment


    To place your advert, just email your text and/or artwork, in a standard file format, to our Advertising Manager, along with your preferred page size. Your order must be received by the 16th of the month to ensure inclusion in the following month’s issue.


    If any changes are needed, we will confirm by emailing you a ‘proof’ image of your advert, in Adobe pdf format. Once the price and content of your booking have been agreed, we will invoice you by email.


    Methods of payment are cash, cheque or bank transfer – the invoice will confirm the details. We ask that every effort be made to settle the account prior to publication of your advert.

  • Raynes Park Christmas 2016





  • Proposed Boundary Commission Changes

    Association’s response to initial proposals for local Constituency changes


    Dear Sirs, 

    I write on behalf of the Raynes Park and West Barnes Residents’ Association. This was founded in 1928 and is one of the two largest Residents’ Associations in the London Borough of Merton, and has some 2000 household members. Our members live in the Council wards of Raynes Park, West Barnes, Cannon Hill, and Lower Morden.  

    We are in receipt of the Boundary Commission for England’s initial proposals to reduce the number of MP’s from 650 to 600, and to average out the number of voters in each Parliamentary seat.  The proposals, as they presently stand, would have major effects on the London Borough of Merton, which would be split into five different constituencies, and result in Councillors and Council officers having to deal with five different MP’s in order to get action on matters that affected local people. We understand that they, as well as both local MP‘s, are very concerned at this prospect, as are we. 

    We believe that these proposals are misconceived, and that, so far as possible, constituencies should remain co-terminus with the boundaries of London boroughs (which are not about to be altered). There are also natural boundaries which should be respected, such as the A3, Wimbledon Common, and Morden Hall Park.  

    We believe that it is very important to keep communities together, so that shopping centres, leisure outlets, recreational areas, and transport hubs are not divorced from the areas that they serve.  In our own area, residents have always regarded as their centres Wimbledon, and Merton and Morden, and this should be retained.  

    The Commission is proposing that the Council wards of Wimbledon Park and Wimbledon Village are taken out of the present Wimbledon constituency to join the current Putney constituency. These wards are integral to the history of Wimbledon, and cover both Wimbledon Common and Wimbledon tennis. Hardly any inhabitants in Wimbledon have an affinity for Putney, since Wimbledon Common is a natural boundary separating two distinctively different communities. 

    The proposal is to replace them with four wards from Mitcham, being Colliers Wood, Lavender Fields, Ravensbury, and Cricket Green.  These wards have historically looked to Mitcham as their centre of gravity, and not Wimbledon. The rest of Merton would be hived off to three other constituencies.  Lower Morden ward, for example, would become part of the Sutton and Cheam constituency.  

    Our view is that the best solution to maintain the cohesiveness of our area would be to keep the existing Wimbledon constituency and to add on those parts of the Mitcham constituency that are very close to it, being Colliers Wood and Lavender Fields. That would meet the voting registration criteria. Cricket Green and Ravensbury are further away. 

    An example of a major issue where it is important to have a unified view across the whole of our area is that of Crossrail 2, where land will needed to be safeguarded for ten years or more in Wimbledon, Raynes Park and Motspur Park while decisions are taken as to the re-siting of stations, possible tunnelling and bridges to remove the level crossings, and the number of tracks required.  

    The present suggestions would, in our view, result in a cohesive community being irreparably divided, with real consequences for the effective performance of local government. 

    These proposals are for consultation, and we welcome the opportunity to comment upon them.  Having received these consultations, the Commission will, we understand, publish revised recommendations with a view to making final ones in 2018. The Government has said that it is committed to acting on these before the next fixed election. 

    There are four factors which we understand that the Commission must take into account when making a constituency with the correct number of voters (which is around 70,000- 76,000).  These are 

    1. Special geographical considerations, including size, shape and accessibility;

    2. Local government boundaries;

    3. Boundaries of existing constituencies;

    4. Any local ties that would be broken. 

    We believe that these objectives can best be met by retaining in a Wimbledon and Merton constituency the four wards we represent together with those in the central Wimbledon area, as well as Wimbledon Park and Wimbledon Village, but together with Colliers Wood and Ravensbury.   

    We hope that the next round of consultations will put this forward as your preferred option. Please acknowledge receipt of these representations. We would add that Merton Council have not publicised these very important proposals in their newsletter My Merton or otherwise. This means that the information has not been widely disseminated.   

    Yours faithfully,


    John Elvidge, Chairman

  • Merton Refuse Collections

    Are you happy with the new proposals? 

    Very many people have expressed concerns about the Council’s proposals to instigate fortnightly collections of household rubbish and waste for recycling.     Below is the Association’s formal objection.

    The final decision is due to be ratified at the Council Meeting on 23rd November.   If you share our concerns, ­ do please write your own letter of objection as this may help to persuade the Council to think again. 

    To: Mr. Chris Lee

    Director, Environment & Regeneration,London Borough of Merton, Civic Centre, London Road, Morden, Surrey SM4 5DX                                             

    18th October 2017


    Dear Sir, 

    Merton’s Waste Management Proposals 

    I write on behalf of the Association and its members to express our grave concerns over the waste management proposal to introduce fortnightly collections for household rubbish and recycling, which apparently necessitates the provision of two wheelie bins per household as well as additional recycling containers.   We understand that the ‘raison d’être’ for this is an assumed reduction in costs and an improvement in recycling.   We are not convinced that either of these assumptions will be realized in the long-term, nor are we persuaded that the proposed capital expenditure (which we believe to be around £7 million) can be justified at the present time.  Since the present system appears to be working well, why change it when it will inevitably have a deleterious effect on the street scene?  As for the anticipated improvement to recycling in the borough, we find it hard to believe that residents who don’t currently recycle, will be persuaded to do so (and to do so correctly) simply because they have been supplied with more and/or larger containers for these materials. 

    ·                     We would point out that not every household requires a large bin for their household rubbish even if it is only collected once a fortnight.     It would be reassuring to be informed as to whether single households, for example, are to be offered smaller bins. 

    ·                     Terraced properties, particularly those with little or no amenity space to the front, or properties with no side access, will be forced to fill their frontages with a plethora of unsightly receptacles.  No thought at all appears to have been given to the detrimental visual impact of this. 

    ·                     What consideration has been given to those who may need assistance with their collections – the very elderly, the disabled or infirm?  

    This considerable change in a local authority service that affects every ratepayer has not been consulted upon. Indeed we believe ratepayers have been told that the Council does not need to consult on such matters.  This may be true, but it doesn’t make it right, when the majority party is currently seeking our views as to whether we would prefer a 2% or 3.99% rise in the rates. 

    We understand the final ratification of these proposed changes will be made at the Council Meeting on November 23rd.  We would urge that no decisions are taken until the concerns of Merton residents and ratepayers have been seriously addressed. 

    Yours faithfully,

    Jill Truman




  • Pavilion User Manual







     1.         General description of premises

    2.         Access and Security

    3.         Emergency, Fire and Evacuation Procedures

    4.         Outdoor Space

    5.         Main Room

    6.         Kitchen

    7.         Toilets

    8.         Furniture

    9.         Lighting

    10.       Heating

    11.       Electrical Power

    12.       Rubbish & Cleaning

    13.       Terms and Conditions

    14.       Queries

    15.       Key-Holders opening and closing the premises for themselves 


    1.         General description of premises 

                The premises comprise a wooden single storey pavilion, three tennis courts and outdoor space. There is an outdoor picnic area with three picnic tables. All areas are accessible via step-free access. The pavilion includes an entrance lobby, main room, kitchen, toilets and storage areas.


    2.         Access and Security 

                At the start of the hire period, the Hirer shall be shown around the premises by the volunteer allocated for the Hirer’s booking.The Hirer will be shown the key features of the premises and the location of the fire extinguishers and emergency exits. 

                The volunteer shall also return to close the premises at the end of the hire period. 

                The Pavilion only has pedestrian access. Access is via the shared driveway at 129 Grand Drive, SW20 9LY, and the front pedestrian gate. Inside the front gate, there is a 45m pedestrian route, via a second pedestrian gate, to the front-door to the Pavilion. 

                It is recommended that the second pedestrian gate is kept closed when children are present. 

                Car parking is not permitted on the shared drive. The occupants of 131 Grand Drive have a right of vehicle access along the shared drive to their garage at all times. Their access shall not be obstructed. 

                A maximum of 40 people are allowed on the premises. 

    3.         Emergency, Fire and Evacuation Procedures 

                The emergency, fire and evacuation procedures are included in the Pavilion Fire Safety Assessment Plan which may be read at . 

                A hard copy is also kept in the Pavilion. 

    Hirers should take the time to familiarise themselves with the Fire Safety Assessment Plan prior to their booking. 

    4.         Outdoor Space 

                The outdoor space is available to hirers. The double courts (Nos 1 & 2) shall only be used for the playing of tennis. Court No 3 may be used for outdoor children’s games. The playing of football is not allowed on the premises. 

                The floodlighting system to Courts 1 & 2 may only be used by prior arrangement. 

    5.         Main Room 

                The main room is 7.3m x 7.3m. 

                All windows shall be closed before leaving. 

    6.         Kitchen 

    For reasons of safety, children are not permitted in the kitchen. A maximum of three adults is permitted at any one time. The sliding door shall be closed when the cooker is in use. 

    The kitchen is not suitable for food preparation. 

    Cleaning materials are provided in the basket at the far end of the left-hand kitchen window. These shall be kept out of reach of babies and children.

     6.1       Cooker 

                The electric cooker may be used for heating pre-prepared food. The cooker must be switched on by the isolation switch to the right of the cooker. Immediately after use, all cooker controls shall be switched off and the isolation switch switched off. 

    6.2       Fridge Freezer 

                The fridge/freezer may be used for temporary storage of food. Please ensure you remove any of your food/drinks left at the end. 

                Please do not take any other food that may be there. 

                Please do not adjust the controls. 

    6.3       Tea Urn 

                The tea urn may be used for heating water. Fill it with the required quantity of water, using a jug. Plug it in and set the switch to “On”. It will heat the water close to boiling and maintain this temperature until it is switched “Off”. 

                Hot water shall only be drawn from the urn using its tap. 

                After use, please switch it off, unplug it and ensure it is empty. 

    6.4       Kettle 

                An electric kettle is provided. This should be unplugged after use. 

    6.5       Crockery, Cutlery & Utensils 

                Whilst some crockery is available, neither cutlery nor utensils are provided. Hirers are strongly advised to bring their own. Disposable plates and cutlery may be preferable. 

    6.6       Washing Up 

                Washing up facilities are limited to hot and cold water and a washing-up bowl. Hirers are strongly advised to take their dirty dishes etc away with them. 

    7.         Toilets 

    There are two separate unisex WC’s. One is Disabled Discrimination Act (DDA) Compliant. A baby change table, a child’s step-up and toilet seat insert are provided. Non-flushable waste, such as nappies, shall be taken away by the hirer. 

    The DDA Compliant Toilet has an alarm. Should this be activated, instructions are displayed to the left of the door to the WC. 

    Please ensure the toilets are flushed after each use. 

    All used nappies and sanitary products shall be removed from the premises. 

    8.         Furniture 

                There are 7 folding tables, approximately 40 chairs and 2 high chairs available for use. Please return them to where you found them. 

    9.         Lighting 

    9.1       Entrance 

                The front pedestrian gate is illuminated by a PIR light, activated by movement, with timed automatic switch-off. 

    9.2       Walkway 

                The walkway lights are switched by waterproof two-way external switches, one by the front-gate and the other by double doors to the main room. The lights are also on a timer that prevents them being used during daylight hours or accidentally left on at night, after 11:00 pm. 

    9.3       Lobby 

                The rotary switch to the Conservatory/Lobby lights is by the double doors to the main room. 

    9.4       Main Room 

                The switches are below the window, to the right of the main doors, when viewed from inside the room. 

    9.5       Kitchen 

                The switches are to the left of the emergency exit, when viewed from inside the room. 

    9.6       Toilets 

                There are pull-string switches in each toilet. 

    9.7       Toilet Lobbies and Walk-In Cupboards 

                Each of the two toilet lobbies and associated walk-in storage cupboards have light switches. 

                The left-hand walk-in cupboard next to the DDA Toilet is for the storage of furniture and cleaning tools. 

                The walk-in cupboard in the right-hand toilet lobby is for private use. 

                Coathooks are provided in both lobbies for use by visitors. 

    9.8       External lights are rear. 

    The outside lights that illuminate the step-free access at the rear are switched by waterproof external two-way switches, one located by the emergency exit and the other at the corner of the Pavilion, by Court No 3.

     10.       Heating 

                Heating is by electric convector panel heaters located in the main room and toilets. 

                Switching is controlled by timers and should not be adjusted by hirers, as the timers are pre-set for subsequent periods of occupancy. 

                Users may adjust the heat output by only adjusting the thermostat knobs, but please do not switch the heaters off. 

                The water heaters and hand driers are on automatic controls. 

    11.       Electrical Power 

    11.1     Socket Outlets 

                The 13 amp power outlets may be used. Please ensure that the child-proof covers are reinserted after use. 

    11.2     Under certain conditions, a circuit breaker may trip out, cutting off power to some or all of the premises. Under normal operations, a routine lamp failure may cause this. It can also be caused by an abnormal electrical fault. 

                The circuit breakers are located in the consumer unit, which is located in the DDA Toilet lobby, to the left of the toilet door. Power can usually be restored by returning the circuit breaker to the “On” position. It the fault persists, the hirer shall inform the allocated volunteer. 

    12.       Rubbish & Cleaning 

                Hirers shall put away all furniture as found, remove all rubbish and ensure that general cleanliness is kept as found. 

    13.       Terms and Conditions 

                This User Manual shall be read in conjunction with the Association’s terms and conditions, which may be read at . 

    14.       Queries 

                Any queries about these instructions, the Pavilion and its facilities shall be address to . 

    15.       Key-Holders and opening and closing the premises for themselves 

                Key Holders are responsible for open the premises at the beginning their own hire periods. 

                Key Holders shall be responsible for the safety and conduct of those they have invited to the premises. 

                Key holders shall follow the additional checklist for opening and closing the premises, which has already been issued to them.


  • Christmas Lights - 6 December 2016





    From 3.30 pm - Returning about 7.30 pm

    Pick-up Points: 

    Grand Drive (Greenway Bus Stop) 3.30 pm approx 

    Raynes Park (Approach Road)      3.35 pm approx 

    Motspur Park  (Triangle at top of Claremont Ave)  3.40 pm approx 


     There will be a short comfort stop in London before the tour of the lights begins. 

    Tables have been booked at the EDWARD RAYNE if you wish to join us for Supper (extra cost).   Please inform us when you book.

     Contact:  Jill Truman at

  • Raynes Park Afternoon Townswomen's Guild - October 2016

    A tour of The Vintners Hall in Upper Thames Street was arranged as the visit for October.  A small group travelled on the District Line to Mansion House, walking down to Upper Thames Street for a tour of this ancient Guild’s Hall.  With its fine panelling, banister carvings, historic paintings, silver items and wine related artifacts, this was an interesting visit.  The surprise was the Vintner’s connection to the queen’s annual swan-upping in which they participate along with members from the Draper’s Guild and the Queen’s representatives.  We left the dining hall with staff just beginning to set up for an evening dinner function. 

    Our speaker at the October meeting was Julie Chandler who gave a talk entitled ‘The Great Stink’.  Her talk was a history of sanitation and the sewers of London.  Although sounding a rather dry topic, this turned out to be a most interesting talk.  With us seated in an intimate semi-circle, Julie illustrated her talk (from right to left) with pictures shown on her laptop computer.  She ended by saying her favourite engineer is Sir Joseph Bazalgette who built the sewer system at the end of the 1800’s, having the foresight to give them twice the capacity needed at the time.  Born in Morden and later living in Wimbledon, he is her local hero.  We are of course still using this sewer system, although she confirmed Thames Water is currently building a further conduit.  She has whetted our appetite to investigate whether a visit can be arranged to the Victorian pumping station at Crossness.  Mrs. Eileen Brewer gave the vote of thanks.  

    The activity for November will be an exploration of Morden Hall Park in autumn on the 8th.  Morden also features for the Lunch Club who will be going to Superfish on 1st November.  In between, on 3rdNovember, a Bonfire Lunch is planned at a member’s house.  At our next regular meeting at 1.45 on 17th November, Sarah McAlister will give a talk entitled ‘Hats for all Occasions’. 

    Visitors are always welcome to our meetings and other activities.  Our monthly meeting is held at St Saviour’s Church Hall at 1.45pm on the third Thursday of each month.  For more information please telephone. 

    Dorothy Raymond



  • Film "Battle of the Somme" 11/11/2016 at 7:30 pm

    Film Screening: The Battle of the Somme (1916)

    Friday, 11 November, 7.30 – 9.30pm

    Merton Art Space, Wimbledon Library, Wimbledon Hill Road, SW19 7NB 

    On Friday 11 November, as part of Remembrance Day commemorations and to mark the centenary of the end of the Battle of the Somme (18 November 1916), we will be hosting a second screening of this important documentary. 

    Shot and screened in 1916, it was the first feature length documentary about war and changed the way both cinema and film was perceived by the public. In the year of its release around 20 million people, almost half the population of Britain at the time, watched The Battle of the Somme, many hoping to see the image of a loved-one or friend captured on film. These momentous audience numbers make The Battle of the Somme one of the most popular films in British Cinema history. 

    The silent film will be accompanied by Laura Rossi's orchestral score which, screened in Merton's new Art Space, will no doubt be a moving experience. 

    In addition to the screening, there will be exhibitions displaying research on the life stories of Merton men who fought and died in the battle and how Merton newspapers reported on this momentous battle. 

    The screening will take place on 11 November, from 7.30 to 9.30pm at the new Merton Art Space, Wimbledon Library. 

    To book for this event:

    Telephone 020 8545 3239/4038 or Email:




  • Chairman's Blog - November 2016


    The Boundary Commission for England has published its initial proposals to reduce the number of MP’s from 650 to 600, and to average out the number of voters in each Parliamentary seat.  The proposals, as they presently stand, would have major effects on the London Borough of Merton, which would be split into five different constituencies, and result in Councillors and Council officers having to deal with five different MP’s in order to get action on matters that affect local people. We understand that they, as well as both local MP‘s, are very concerned at this prospect, as are we. 

    We believe that these proposals are misconceived, and that, so far as possible, constituencies should remain co-terminus with the boundaries of London boroughs (which are not about to be altered). There are also natural boundaries which should be respected, such as the A3, and Morden Hall Park.  

    It is very important to keep communities together, so that shopping centres, leisure outlets, and transport hubs, for example, are not divorced from the areas that they serve.  In our own area of Raynes Park and West Barnes, residents have always regarded as their centres Wimbledon and the historic areas of Merton and Morden, and this should be retained.   

    The Commission is proposing that the Council wards of Wimbledon Park and Wimbledon Village are taken out of the present Wimbledon constituency to join the current Putney constituency. These wards are integral to the history of Wimbledon, and cover both Wimbledon Common and Wimbledon tennis. They have always looked to Wimbledon as their centre, being divided from Putney by the Common. 

    The proposal is to replace them with four wards from Mitcham, being Colliers Wood, Lavender Fields, Ravensbury, and Cricket Green.  These wards have historically looked to Mitcham as their centre of gravity, and not Wimbledon. The rest of Merton would be hived off to three other constituencies.  Lower Morden ward, for example, part of which is covered by our Association, would become part of the Sutton and Cheam constituency.   

    Our view is that the best solution to keep the cohesiveness of our area would be to keep the existing Wimbledon constituency and to add on parts of the Mitcham constituency that are in Lower Morden. 

    An example of a major issue where it is important to have a unified view across the whole of our area is that of Crossrail 2, where land will need to be safeguarded for ten years or more in Wimbledon, Raynes Park and Motspur Park while decisions are taken as to the re-siting of stations, possible tunnelling and bridges to remove the level crossings, and the number of tracks required.  

    The present suggestions would, in our view, result in a cohesive community being irreparably divided, with real consequences for the effective performance of local government. 

    These proposals are for consultation, and the Boundary Commission will welcome the views of as many people as possible. You can write to them by 5th December at the Boundary Commission for England, 35, Great Smith Street, London, SW1P 3BQ or e-mail them to You can see the proposals in detail for your area online at by putting in your postcode, and clicking on “have your say.” 

    Having received these consultations, the Commission will, we understand, publish revised recommendations with a view to making final ones in 2018. The Government has said that it is committed to acting on these before the next fixed election. 

    There are four factors which the Commission must take into account when making a constituency with the correct number of voters (which is around 70,000 - 76,000). 

    Representations are much stronger when referring to one or more of these. These are:- 

    1  Special geographical considerations, including size, shape and accessibility;

    2.  Local government boundaries;

    3.  Boundaries of existing constituencies;

    4.  Any local ties that would be broken. 

    No local public meetings are planned. But one failure in this process is that Merton Council has done little to bring such important changes to the attention of local residents. We hope that this outline will help to bring these to the attention of our members, so that the response is as wide as possible.    


    John Elvidge

  • Crossrail 2 - November 2016

    What the RPWBRA is doing. 

    Through its membership of the Raynes Park Association (RPA), the RPWBRA is joining forces with the other residents’ and business associations in and around Raynes Park, in anticipation of another round of public consultation for Crossrail 2 this autumn. 

    Crossrail 2 coming to our area 

    Crossrail 2 is a new railway line, which is planned to come through Raynes Park and Wimbledon stations, providing a completely new link from our area to central London and northwards into Hertfordshire. 

    The Crossrail 2 trains are planned to provide a direct service from Raynes Park to new destinations in central London. After calling at Wimbledon, the trains will run in tunnels all the way to Tottenham Hale. There will be stations in central London, including Victoria, Tottenham Court Road and Euston/St Pancras. 

    It will thus make many destinations easier to reach, without the need to travel via Waterloo. For example, it should be easier to reach the City and Docklands by taking Crossrail 2 to Tottenham Court Road and changing onto the soon-to-open Elizabeth Line, rather than going via either the Waterloo & City or Jubilee tube lines, as at present. 

    In the opposite direction, the Crossrail 2 trains are planned to serve the existing Network Rail branches all the way to Shepperton, Hampton Court, Chessington South and Epsom. These branches will also continue to carry services to and from Waterloo. These lines, of course, converge on Raynes Park. 

    Likely Changes in Raynes Park and Motspur Park 

    As it is planned to run something like double the number of trains on these branches, it is planned to have two extra railway lines running from New Malden, through Raynes Park to Wimbledon, to carry the Crossrail 2 trains. This would thus increase the existing four lines to six along this stretch of track. 

    Whilst the changes planned in Wimbledon to accommodate Crossrail 2 were the subject of a public consultation last year and there is still an ongoing debate, we have yet to see any details of what is planned for Raynes Park. However, we know that Network Rail are now busy working on the details and we expect that new information will be forthcoming fairly soon. 

    Whilst, of course, the devil will be in the detail, the RPA is keen to get the best outcome for Raynes Park that we can; particularly if Raynes Park Station is to be modified. We are also concerned about what is planned for the two level-crossings along West Barnes Lane (i.e. at the junction with Burlington Road and at Motspur Park), as it seems inevitable that these level crossings would cease to be practical with the planned increase in trains. It is also anticipated that improvements will also need to be made to Motspur Park Station. 

    We consider it important that any changes to the station in Raynes Park incorporate improvements to the connectivity with pedestrian, cycle, bus and road routes. We also would like to see the plans incorporate improvements to the public realm around the station. We are hopeful that step-free access will be provided to all the platforms and that the dangerous gaps between the trains and the platform edge are done away with. 

    Public Consultation Postponed 

    Whilst Crossrail 2 in not programmed to be completed until 2032, we are likely to have several years of construction work in our neighbourhood. Despite this seeming far in the future, the opportunity for us to have our say is likely to be in 2017. After that, the key decisions will have been taken, it will be much harder to change things later. 

    Currently, the Crossrail 2 team are considering the recommendations from the National Infrastructure Commission and Government on the business case for the scheme. As a consequence, the public consultation that was originally planned for this autumn has now been postponed.


    You can find out more and subscribe for email bulletins on the Crossrail2 website, . You can also find out more on our MP’s website, . 

    In the meantime, RPWBRA members are reminded to participate in the public consultation when the time comes.



  • Carved in Stone - 29 October 2016

    Fighting far from Home: First World War Collection Day

    Saturday, 29 October, 11am – 4pm

    Morden Library, Merton Civic Centre, London Road, SM4 5DX 

    As part of the Carved in Stone project, Merton Heritage Service is keen to talk to current Merton residents whose ancestors fought in the First World War, or contributed to the war effort – whether through industry, charitable work, or as medical staff. On Saturday 29 October, the Heritage team and members of Age Exchange will be staging a special collection day at Morden Library. If you have family war stories, photographs or memorabilia that you would like to share, they would love to hear from you. Staff are particularly keen to hear from local residents whose ancestors travelled from overseas to fight for the Allied cause.

    Thousands of servicemen and volunteers from Africa, India, the Caribbean, Ireland, Canada, Australia, New Zealand and Newfoundland fought alongside British troops during the war. They travelled half way across the world to fight for King and Empire; many made the ultimate sacrifice and lie buried in military cemeteries far from their family and homeland. To broaden our knowledge of wartime history, Heritage staff would like to hear from residents, whose relatives fought on either side of the conflict.

    The collection day will run from 11am to 4pm and will also feature a range of activities from talks and displays, to archive film and the chance to handle genuine wartime objects.

    If you would be interested in this event, or have family stories that you would like to record for posterity, please contact Merton Heritage Centre. Tel. 020 8545 3239/4038  or email

  • Lambton Road Medical Practice - October 2016

    Newsletter - Written by patients for patients 

    PPG Members: Judith Brodie (Chair), Elsa Browne, Marilyn Frampton, Clare Gummett, Clare Pickard, Ian Ritchie, Marie Robertson, Elizabeth Savidge and Peter West 


    We mentioned in our last bulletin (April 2016, no 17) that the Practice was having an inspection visit from the Care Quality Commission (CQC). Their report, which has been published, commented very well on the care given by LRMP. We send our warm congratulations to the Practice. If you have internet access you can find the report here: 


    Edition 2 (June 2016) of the Practice Newsletter is now available online and in Reception in the racks on the wall. It contains excellent information for patients including details of the mobile app: relating specifically to Merton. The Practice plans to produce a Newsletter every three/four months, and we will continue with our PPG Newsletter, as appropriate, in between publication of the Practice edition. The Practice newsletter will cover staff changes, and has plans well in hand to replace staff leaving. In a future edition it will explain how the Lambton Road Practice is part of Grafton Medical Partners. 


    Full information on how to make appointments and request repeat prescriptions online, if you so wish, can be found on the Practice website. This website has some good links and the Practice is keen to ensure this page is relevant to patients and to useful organisations. Do you have any suggestions for inclusion?


    Dr Ruth Goldsmith has left the Practice. On behalf of patients we would like to thank her for her excellent attention to us. Her caring nature at all times was much appreciated by many patients, and we wish her well for the future.

    We welcome Nurse Tippy who has joined the Practice as one of the lead nurses replacing Nurse Louise who had been with us (both at LRMP and the previous Pepys Road surgery) for many years. We also thank Louise on behalf of patients for her care,much appreciated, over a long time. 

    Patient Participation Group 

    Each year the PPG has a focus and this year we are concentrating our attention, in conjunction with the Practice, on self-care – better ways in which we might take health initiatives on behalf of ourselves - though not as a replacement to seeing a doctor face to face. Online facilities The PPG is planning how best to support patients to use the online facility – if they wish - to make appointments and request repeat prescriptions online. If you can think of any further ways we might be of help we would love to hear from you either at or by a note left for us at Reception. We will keep you in touch.


  • Raynes Park Afternoon Townswomen's Guild - September 2016

    On that record breaking September Tuesday, an understandably rather small  group of ladies braved the heat to visit the Salvation Army Heritage Centre and Museum at Denmark Hill.  Although quite small, this is a well presented history of the Salvation Army from its formation and work in the 1800s right through to its activities worldwide today.  Returning to Clapham Junction on the Overground Railway (air conditioned!) we investigated the numerous food outlets and kiosks set up on the overhead pedestrian bridge.  We even found a corner to sit for a drink and a sandwich before the return on SW trains! 

    On another hot day, two visitors joined our September Open Social, a relaxed affair, at which we worked through two quiz sheets as well as enjoying savouries, cake and tea. 

    In September the lunch club visited central Sutton, and plan to visit The Plough on Sutton Common Road in October.  The visit will be to The Vintners Hall on Upper Thames Street. 

    On Thursday, October 20th our speaker will be Julie Chandler whose subject is ‘History of the Sewers of London’.  This meeting will be held at 1.45 at St Saviour’s Church Hall, Grand Drive. 

    Visitors are always welcome to our meetings or other activities.  For more information please telephone. 

    Dorothy Raymond 020 8395 9489

  • Chairman's Blog - October 2016


    In the July edition of the Guide I criticised the proposals of Merton Council to reduce the collection of rubbish from every week to every fortnight. The Council also proposes to introduce wheelie bins to contain all the extra rubbish that would inevitably be built up, at a huge initial cost.

    At the same time, the Council proposes to reduce the frequency of collection of rubbish that can be re-cycled from weekly to every other week. Paper and card will have to be put in one wheelie bin to be collected one week, and plastic, glass, and cans in an open container to be collected the following week. All Councils have to meet targets for the proportion of rubbish re-cycled, or pay financial penalties: these are imposed so as to reduce landfill as much as possible. Merton falls short of meeting these targets at the moment, and reducing the frequency of collecting re-cyclable rubbish will mean that the targets become even harder to reach.

    As we said previously, wheelie bins are not suitable for many smaller houses and flats which have nowhere to store them. They will be left on the streets to become eyesores, will overflow, and will attract foxes and rats.

    Elderly and disabled people will find it difficult, and impossible in many cases, to manoeuvre them through the house and out the front door.

    We find it difficult to understand the thinking behind these proposals. It is

    unlikely to provide any cost saving. The present system works well enough, and the Council has provided no good reason to change it.  If enough residents write in to protest, maybe the Council will change its mind. 


    An example of a change in rubbish collection that has not worked is the decision to remove almost all the dog waste bins, and to require dog waste instead to be put into the ordinary waste bins in our streets and parks. This can only work if the bins are emptied on a very regular basis and before they become full to overflowing. All too often this does not happen. When bins overflow, the results are inevitably disgusting. 

    Removing waste should be the number one priority of any Council, since, while ratepayers may not have children to educate or elderly relatives to care for, we all produce waste. The Council must ensure that enough resources are provided to keep the Borough free of overflowing filth. 


    Like everybody else, I am plagued by nuisance telephone calls almost every day. When you try to find out who has phoned, the call is not traceable. Many of these calls originate abroad, but some are from the UK. The call companies now use smooth sounding staff to allay your initial suspicion. Often they claim merely to be conducting a survey in your area. What is particularly disturbing is when the caller asks for you by name and knows the area you live in. More elderly and confused people can be very upset by such unwanted calls. Even more disturbing, in a sense, are the silent calls when the phone rings, and no-one is there when you answer it. 

    It should be made a criminal offence, punishable with unlimited fines, to make any single such call. It should be made a criminal offence to make a call from a number that cannot be traced. We should not have to pay for a call barring system on our phones, which in any case does not screen out all of these persistent rogues. 


    These much valued shops in the town centre of Wimbledon were pushed out of their sites on Wimbledon Bridge by the new Metro Bank now being built.  Residents will have been pleased to see that both are now due to come back, 

    Waterstones to the Broadway, and W.H.Smiths to Centre Court. 


    For weeks past, it has taken a good half an hour to move from the traffic lights at Grand Drive, or from the slip road leading from the southbound A3, to get past the gas and road works at Shannon Corner. The traffic crawls along Bushey Road, and, more dangerously, is stationary on the A3 out of London. 

    There is no explanation of what is happening, or as to how long the work will take. Often no work seems to be going on. I thought that utility companies were now contractually committed to get on with such work once it started, and to continue till it finished. This needs to be enforced more rigorously.  

    John Elvidge 

  • Public Meeting - Crossrail 2 - 8 September 2016

    Local Councillors, The Wimbledon Society and Wimbledon East Hillside Residents' Association are to hold a public meeting on Tuesday 8th September  2016 at St Andrew's Church, Herbert Road, Wimbledon, SW19 3SH, on the corner of Graham Road, SW19 from 7 pm to 9 pm. 

    The subject will be Crossrail 2 and the effects on Wimbledon town centre and Raynes Park/ Motspur Park centres too.

    To find out more contact Councillor David Dean 

    All local residents are invited to attend. 

  • All About Jan

    The loss of Jan Bailey as Secretary was a great blow to the Association, with whom she had been involved for around an unbelievable 30 years.    Jan was a great character, and we thought that many readers would enjoy reading something about her background, and some of the reasons for her great interest in engineering, underground waterways, and flood relief.

    Jan came from mixed stock.  Her father was a Russian-Jewish, Welsh Cockney, and her mother was a Saxon with a bit of Welsh blood.    Jan was very close to both her parents,   Her father was General Manager of a factory, and when she was 8 years old he started taking Jan to work with him” to see how things were done” He was also a complete DIY man as well as a frustrated farmer, and by and by the age of four Jan was her Dad’s best mate!   Jan described her mother as a brilliant couture dressmaker/designer.   Both her parents had beautiful singing and speaking voices and musically were great sight-readers.   By the age of five, Jan knew “the Children of the New Forest” – her father’s favourite book) by heart.  

    Another of Jan’s mentors at an early age was her Uncle, - Birmingham's Regional Head of Sewers and Rivers who took her around with him to inspect underground waterways and sewers and taught her the importance of the whole water conservancy industry. 

     Jan’s brother was ten years her senior.  But, despite the age difference, like all brothers and sisters, they fought - with dangerous bows and arrows;  an air pistol; and with every kind of unarmed combat nature (rather than training) could devise. All Jan’s cousins were boys too, and, except for one for whom Jan babysat, the same age as her brother.   Jan also played and fought with them, something of a Tomboy it would seem. 

    When her brother was 18 he began studying Civil Engineering. Jan says she remembers sitting at his elbow and learning from his textbooks alongside him, and at 14 she designed a boat and when years later her brother found the design he built it as his first boat - no modifications needed.  

    Jan was a keen swimmer and only stopped when she easily beat her father in the Brighton Two Piers race, which Jan said “made him feel old”.  She didn’t swim again until she was living in Plymouth, then she did half a mile a day in Plymouth Sound each evening from March to October.   She also played tennis, took ballet and piano lessons. 

    At nine years old, Jan started serious voice and drama classes, taking all the Associated Board Exams and eventually gained a place at RADA.   She also took the LAMDA extra mural exams and won Honours in the final Gold Medal exam. Jan started serious singing classes at the age of 18. 

    One of Jan’s first jobs was to work within the Theatrical empire of Impresarios Emile and Prince Littler.  She describes this as a “gift” – very hard work but fascinating – where she learned about design, planning, costume and fashion.  Physhe Littler Wright (pronounced Fish) ran a couture business on the side).  At that time Physhe was also designing and building the interior of Westward TV Studios in Plymouth for Enile and Peter Cadbury, so Jan also had the opportunity of learning about interior design as well.   She also learned something else as a Buyer – “never spend a halfpenny if someone else will supply the same thing for a farthing - and hunt fast”! 

    At 19, Jan was one of the 30 girls and boys picked from 1,000 auditioning from all over the world for the September intake to RADA.   The next two years of ‘psychological bashing’ as Jan puts it, was lots of fund but terrifying. During the holidays Jan worked for Manpower for John Tydeman at the BBC; for various solicitors, and during her second year for Trevor Donaldson’s a Property Management company in Jermyn Street. 

    Jan’s career spanned many different.  After gaining a diploma from RADA, she spent five years as an Actress, Singer and Dancer in Repertory, Musicals, Pantomime, Revue and Cabaret. Then, after retiring and settling in Plymouth, she spent time in management; as a Demonstrator; worked for Save and Prosper; and finally ran the white goods operation for Bosch through Dingles (Plymouth’s House of Fraser store).  She was then spotted by Jenny Winters – an ex-Hartnell model who arranged fashion shows in the West Country and needed a lively assistant who understood the rag trade.   She would arrange the shows for Wednesdays (Jan’s day off) and evenings, and together they worked the West Country also undertaking TV advertisements and voice-overs. 

    However, in 1978 Jan’s favourite drama Tutor from RADA appeared at Dingles.   Knowing Jan as a successful performer, she was cross with her for leaving the business, and persuaded Jan to help tutor her ex-students - now with the newly formed Plymouth Rep - whose Director Jan knew to be a great Production Manager but a somewhat less able Artistic Director. 

    In August 1980 that same Tutor arranged for Jan to be interviewed by Gordon Stratford, the new General Manager of the hole in the ground that was to become the Theatre Royal - with an opening date of May 1982 – the job was to become his Personal Assistant.   He was having difficulty in finding someone with all the right skills and background.  Jan was  captivated by Gordon from the outset and remained so as life partners  she said,  her untimely death last may. 

    Together from April 1981 they built and staffed the new Theatre against all the odds of daft delays and massive interference from the Board of 17.  This was made up of City Councillors and other City worthies, only one of whom knew anything about the business and was very supportive, but who was continually outvoted by the rest. 

    Eventually, when Gordon resigned in October 1983, it took the Board nine months to persuade a new person that he would be given a free reign.  Meanwhile Jan stayed to help the Theatre’s wonderful House Manager (who became Acting General Manager) to continue running the show. 

    After a brief rest, Jan joined Plymouth Manpower again undertaking various roles as required,  and in October returned to the bright lights of London, where she stayed, working for Manpower during the week and returning to the West Country for weekends.  

    In 1985 Gordon sold his flat in Plymouth and moved to London to be with Jan.   They chose to live in Raynes Park because by then Jan was working full time in the West End for the Advertising Agency Ogilvy Mather, and Gordon was a Theatre Management Consultant to theatres in the South East, including Wimbledon and Leatherhead.  Raynes Park was, therefore, a halfway house. 

    Gordon and Jan lived a very full life, enjoying visiting art galleries, exhibitions,  and theatres,  cooking and gardening, and also going to Hampstead Parish Church for Evensong, which in Jan’s view encompassed all the need for live,  beautiful and serious music along with spiritual experience, all at the same time. 

    Despite their busy lifestyle, at home, and with visiting family and friends, Jan still found time and energy to start working for the Association around this time.   “Giving something back to the Community” as she might say, which she did for the next 30 years.   She was a truly indomitably woman and we loved her and she is so very greatly missed. 

    Taken from Jan’s notes about her life and edited by Jill Truman



  • Sepsis Awareness - 6:30 pm,8 September 2016



    Public Sepsis Awareness Event 


    What is sepsis?

    ¨ Sepsis has been previously known as septicaemia or blood poisoning.

    ¨ Early recognition and prompt treatment are critically important

    ¨ Knowing the signs of sepsis can be life saving. To find out more: If you are a member of the public or a patient and would like to learn more about sepsis please join us on: 

    Thursday 8th September, 20166:30 to 7:30 pm. (Please note that the doors will open at 6pm) 

    Speakers:Dr Ram Kumar , ITU Consultant and Lead Clinician for Sepsis 

    Venue: Kingston Hospital NHS Foundation Trust Education Centre, 5th Floor Surgical Wing

    Seminar Room, 1 Galsworthy Road, Kingston upon Thames, KT2 7QB. 

    Everyone is welcome to attend. For more information call 0208 934 3614 or email:



    Seek medical help immediately if you develop any one of the following symptoms: 







  • Raynes Park Afternoon Townswomen's Guild - August 2016

    Our summer social events went with a swing.  The weather was warm and fair for both the Barbecue in late July and the Garden Party in August.  For the barbecue members were able to sit in the garden to enjoy their barbecue lunch while for the garden party they were able to admire the magnificent display of flowers in the garden of their hostess, have a good chat, and enjoy delicious sandwiches, trifle, cake and afternoon tea. 

    In mid-August our coach trip was to Worthing.  Once again we wish to thank members of local clubs and the residents’ association for supporting us.  As a relatively small group we would be unable to organise such a trip by ourselves, and definitely not in a 53-seater, which proved to be very smooth and comfortable.  The day was fair for this event too – pleasantly warm with very little sea breeze – and with light traffic flows, this was an enjoyable day out. 

    After the August break our September meeting on 15th September is a social - an open event - when, once again, friends and anyone interested is welcome to join us.  It will take place from 1.30 pm at St Saviour’s Church Hall.  Please come along. 

    Dorothy Raymond




  • Guide Editor's Blog - September 2016

    This month, the Chairman's Blog is taken over by the Editor of The Guide, our monthly magazine, which is distributed to all members.

    Motspur Park Post Office 

    Following local consultation, the relocation of the Post Office branch at Motspur Park has been confirmed, a few yards along the road to Ecklee (not Eckle as the PO insists!) convenience store, 345 West Barnes Lane. The new location is currently planned to open for business at 1.00pm on Friday 2 Sept. 

    Among the claimed benefits will be improved disabled access and significantly longer opening hours, although a small number of types of transaction will not be available ay the branch. Full details are available at:  

    Merton Walk 4 life

    Free health walks in Merton’s parks and open spaces.  Walking in the fresh air is good for you, lowering blood pressure and helping other health issues such as diabetes, and building strong bones and flexibility.  Plus you can make new friends too.  Walk in safety with our led walks which last around 1 hour but you can walk for less and at your own pace.  Details of walk venue’s, dates and times on our web site  

    Abundance Wimbledon 

    Abundance volunteers pick fruit in gardens around Wimbledon, and use it for jam, baking or freezing.   Some of it is donated to the Wimbledon Guild and other groups providing food for the needy, and they have lots of fun doing this. 

    Do you have a fruit tree in the garden and can’t use all the fruit?

    Please give excess fruit to Abundance – we may be able to help you pick it. 

    Would you like to help us pick fruit in the summer? We’d really appreciate your help, even just or an hour or two.  Or we can lend you a fruit-picking pole so you can pick your own. 

    Which other good causes would like free fruit?  Suggest other local non-commercial groups. 

    Please get in touch if you can help in any way.  CONTACT:  For more information, see .

    The Editor for The Guide




  • Pavilion Fire Safety Assessment Plan






    1          Premises particulars

    2          General statement of policy

    3          Management systems

    4.         Duties of Persons Presiding

    5          General description of the premises

    6          Fire safety systems

    7          Plan drawing

    8          Fire hazards

    9          Evaluate, remove or reduce and protect from the risk

    10         Fire prevention, opening and closing the building.

    11         Fire safety signs and notices

    12.        Fire warning systems and Emergency Lighting

    13         Fire fighting equipment

    14         Maintenance

    15         Method of calling the fire service. Method of calling the Fire Service

    16         Emergency Action Plan (EAP)

    17         Training

    18         Rectification of fire safety deficiencies 


    1          Premises particulars 

                Name and address of premises: 129 Grand Drive, London SW20 9LY 

                Use of Premises: Private Club House 

                Owner in control of the workplace: Raynes Park and West Barnes Residents’ Association and its tenants, where the tenant is using the Pavilion. 

                Telephone number: The Pavilion has no telephone. 

                Date of Risk Assessment: 31 May 2018

                Date of review: to be reviewed on or before: 31 May 2019

                Name & relevant details of the person carrying out the Fire Risk Assessment (“The Plan”): 

                Jeremy Cuthbert, Committee Member 

    2          General statement of policy 

    It is the policy of the Association that all persons, including tenants and contractors to ensure the Pavilion is a safe place to visit. 

    3          Management systems 

    OrganisationThe Chairman of the Association shall appoint a volunteer to review this Plan on an annual basis. 

    Responsibility – Either in the case of tenants hiring the Pavilion for whatever purpose or, where the Association is using the Pavilion itself, the person presiding over the meeting or event shall be responsible for the health and safety of all occupants during each period of use. In this Plan, this person is called, “the Person Presiding”. 

    Duties - The Person Presiding shall ensure he/she is familiar with this plan and shall fulfil and comply with the duties in Section 4 below. 

    MonitoringIn the event of an accident, the Person Presiding shall complete an entry in the accident book.

    Review – The accident book shall be reviewed regularly by the Chairman of the Association or a member of the Association nominated by the Chairman for such purpose. 

    4.         Duties of Persons Presiding 

    The Person Presiding shall ensure that: 

    4.1       At the start of every event: 

    ·                     Take responsibility for the safety of occupants whilst they are on the premises.

    ·                     Ensure all occupants are aware of the non-smoking policy and are reminded of the location of fire exits.

    ·                     Ensure safe use of the cooker and other appliances.

    ·                     Check that the main doors and fire exits are not locked or obstructed.

    ·                     Ensure a mobile phone is available at all times for calling the emergency services.

    ·                     Ensure the occupants know that the alarm is raised by shouting “fire, fire, fire” and to immediately evacuate the building. 

    4.2       At the end of every event, check that: 

    ·                     All combustible materials are away from potential ignition sources

    ·                     The electrical appliances are switched off

    ·                     The cooker is off.

    ·                     The toilets are unoccupied. 

    4.3       In the event of an accident, the Person Presiding shall complete an entry in the accident book. 

    4.4       In the event of a fire evacuation or drill: 

    ·                     Check that both toilets are unoccupied

    ·                     Ensure all occupants are safely evacuated and present in the assembly point. 

    4.5       In the event of a fire being discovered, raise the alarm by shouting “fire, fire, fire” and that the building is immediately evacuated. 

    4.6       Read this Plan and understand it, at least annually. 

    4.7       If presiding on more than 50 separate days in any consecutive twelve months, hold a fire drill. 

    4.8       Advise the Chairman of the Raynes Park and West Barnes Residents Association of any deficiencies in this plan. 

    5          General description of the premises 

    Construction detail of the premises: The Pavilion is a single storey prefabricated building, principally of timber construction. 

    Approximate age of premises    approximately 60 Years

     Times in use: Occasional, both daytimes and evenings. 

    Size of the premises: 105 Sq metres 

    6          Fire safety systems 

    The Pavilion is principally comprised of one large room, with a separate kitchen area which is fully visible from the main room, due to a large service hatch and counter which has no shutters. 

    Only the two toilets (one suitable for disabled persons) are not visible from the main room. However, these are each directly accessible from the main room. 

    Access to the outside is either via steps through the main doors/lobby or through the Fire Exit, which is located immediately between the doorway giving access to the kitchen area and the door to the disabled toilet. The Fire Exit has step-free access. 

    Water Fire extinguishers are provided at two locations around the main room and a CO2 extinguisher in the kitchen. 

    There are no fire alarms or emergency lighting installed. 

    The Association has a No-Smoking policy, anywhere on the premises, both internally and externally. 

    7          Plan drawing


    8          Fire hazards 

    Ignition sources: Cooker/oven, Space Heaters, Electrical appliances, Portable electrical appliances (These shall be “PAT” Tested on an annual basis), Lighting, Arson.

    Fuel sources: The building and furniture, Papers and documents, Curtains and tea towels, Display materials, Waste.

    Policy: The Association’s policy is that none of the above fuel sources will be left in proximity to ignition sources.

     Structural features: The building has two large inaccessible cavities, the roof void, (between the ceiling and roof) and the underfloor void. The most likely cause of fire within these voids would be from an electrical fault. Such a fire would probably burn for some time before it would become noticeable. 

    9          Evaluate, remove or reduce and protect from the risk 

    The main risk of fire is from the cooker, an electrical fault or space heater. 

    Fire risk could also arise from contractors’ works e.g.blow-lamp. 

    Either in the case of tenants, hiring the Pavilion for whatever purpose or, where the Association is using the Pavilion itself, the Person Presiding shall ensure that: 

    ·                     He/she takes responsibility for the safety of occupants whilst they are on the premises.

    ·                     All occupants are aware of the non-smoking policy and are reminded of the location of fire exits.

    ·                     Disabled persons are shown the Fire Exit, which has step-free access.

    ·                     Safe use of the cooker and other appliances.

    ·                     In the event of a fire evacuation, check that both toilets are unoccupied. 

    10         Fire prevention, opening and closing the building. 

    It is important to take all necessary precautions to keep flammable materials away from ignition sources. Due to the construction of the building, once a fire becomes established it would be very difficult to control. 

    Both the main doors and the fire exit lead directly to external open space from which evacuation is easy, so the whole building could be evacuated in under two minutes. 

    The Person Presiding at each and every event shall, at the start, check that the main doors and fire exit are not locked or obstructed.

    The only exit from the toilet cubicles is via the main room from which both the fire exit and main doors are accessible. Therefore, in the event of a fire evacuation, the Person Presiding shall check that both toilets are unoccupied. 

    At the end of every event, the Person Presiding shall check that:

    ·                     All combustible materials are away from potential ignition sources

    ·                     Electrical appliances are switched off

    ·                     The cooker is off

    ·                     The toilets are unoccupied. 

    11         Fire safety signs and notices 

    The main doors and fire exit shall be appropriately signed. The signs shall be visible and not be obscured. 

    The fire exit shall be appropriately signed on the outside. 

    The fire extinguishers shall be indicated. 

    12.        Fire warning systems and Emergency Lighting 

    • There is no automatic fire warning or emergency lighting system. 

    13         Fire fighting equipment      

    Three fire extinguishers are provided. These shall be subject to an annual maintenance regime. 

    14         Maintenance

     All persons presiding shall read this Plan, at least annually. 

    All exits, signage, extinguishes shall be visually checked once a month. 

    15         Method of calling the fire service 

    The Person Presiding shall ensure a mobile phone is available at all times for calling the emergency services. 

    16         Emergency Action Plan 

    In the event of a fire being discovered, the occupants shall raise the alarm by shouting “fire, fire, fire” and the Person Presiding shall ensure the building is immediately evacuated.

     Disabled persons must leave via the Fire Exit.

    The fire extinguishers shall only be used to aid evacuation. 

    The fire brigade shall be called using 999 on the mobile phone. 

    The assembly point is marked by a sign and is located in No 3 Tennis Court, adjacent to the gate from that court into the main pedestrian access path. 

    The Person Presiding shall check all occupants are safely evacuated and present in the assembly point. 

    17         Training 

    All Persons Presiding shall read this Plan at least every 12 months. 

    Any Person Presiding on more than 50 separate days in any consecutive twelve months shall hold a fire drill. 

    18         Rectification of fire safety deficiencies 

    All Persons Presiding shall advise the Chairman of the Raynes Park and West Barnes Residents Association of any deficiencies in this plan.


  • Morley Park - Update August 2016

    Works to complete the park and drainage issues

    Those of you who live in close proximity to the park might already be aware of a serious issue with drainage on Morley Park.  This has brought work to prepare the playing fields to a halt.  The south west corner of the playing field area was under water for much of the winter and the problem has continued despite the installation of soakaways and other works to implement the required playing field drainage scheme.  

    During the recent exceptionally wet weather the scout site and buildings (which are just below the playing field area) were flooded, and water flowed down onto Cottenham Park Road.  The public right of way between Lindisfarne Road and the scout hut has been regularly flooded even during more modest rainfall. 

     At a meeting on 20th June Berkeley Homes were still claiming that they expect to seed the fields in 4 weeks time and that the playing fields could be ready by January 2017.  The specification for the works Berkeley Homes are required to do on the playing fields before the handover of the park to the Council requires 2 seasons growth for the new grass but handover by January 2017 could only allow for less than 1 seasons growth.

    Under the terms of the planning consent Berkeley Homes are obliged to complete works to the park prior to first occupation of the new homes on the hospital site.

    Future Management

    The Council is preparing to grant a 99 year lease for the playing fields and pavilion to the Ursuline High School (UHS) when Morley Park is eventually transferred to the Council. 

    Discussions between LUNG, the Council and the Ursuline School on the management of the rest of the park are now on the assumption that the Council will retain responsibility for the management but with an ‘advisory group’ which would include representatives from the local community and the UHS i.e. the council will not grant a lease to a community trust. 

    Negotiations for a tripartite lease for the rest of the park ended after LUNG proposed an alternative model which did not include UHS as a lessee.  This would have been a simpler model avoiding conflict of interest with the school’s role as both sole lessee of the sports facilities and a lessee with shared responsibility for the rest of the park. 

    Jane Barnes
    (Residents Association of West Wimbledon’s representative on LUNG)

  • Memory Lane Club

    The Memory Lane Club is wondering whether there are any local 16-18 year olds out there who might be able to spare some time on Wednesday mornings during the summer holidays. 

    They wouldn't be committing themselves to every Wednesday morning necessarily as we understand things like holidays and social lives, but we would really appreciate any help you could give.

    The Club, which is a drop-in for people with dementia and their Carers, meets on Wednesdays between 10.30 and 12.30 in the Parish Lounge, Edge Hill.

    We would love some help from about 10.00 am with setting up; and we would then hope that any young volunteers would spend the Club time chatting with our members, helping them with the games and entertainments, such as seated Zumba, snooker, dominos, crafts, and afterwards helping to clear everything away.

    We have a huge amount of fun and really hope there are some of you who might want to join us over the holiday.  It looks pretty good on your CV and personal statement too!

    If anyone would like to learn more, please contact Jill Truman here , who will pass your details on to the organizers. Please mark your email "Memory Lane Club".

  • Motor Vehicle Crime - August 2016

    A Message from Lee Roberts,  Neighbourhood Watch Manager 

    Theft of motor vehicles has spiked recently and is currently up 35% on last 12 month rolling period. It is currently the police's number one concern and the borough has a plan to reduce this. 

    Part of this is a Met-wide problem with the theft of luxury high value cars during the night. Our officers are aware of this and actively stop and engage with occupants of such vehicles during the night. 

    If residents see anything or anyone acting suspiciously by such cars on drives and at night in particular, ring 999. 

    In Merton, theft of Scooters/mopeds is part of the overall increase in this crime. If you own one make sure it’s locked and attached to something that cannot be removed as well. Although there is no particular method, many are lifted into vans during the night. We would like all owners to ensure they are properly alarmed and secure; preferably parked up away from view in the street.




  • Chairman's Blog - August 2016


    Crossrail2 is to be the new line, which the government has committed to fund, and which will probably be routed from several places in Surrey, including Chessington and Epsom to north London. Building this line, part of which will be in tunnels, will be a huge feat of engineering, and will cause major disruption to the whole of our area for ten years or more. There will then be additional trains running through Motspur Park, Raynes Park and Wimbledon into central London and beyond. 

    There was a preliminary public consultation over the Christmas holidays which the promoters are now considering.  You can read an account of their conclusions on the consultation in the our article Crossrail 2 - July 2016. 

    What seems to be clear is that both the level crossings at Motspur Park and West Barnes would probably have to be closed. Whether either or both would be replaced by a tunnel or bridge has been hardly considered. Nor have the traffic flow implications. The stations at Motspur Park and Raynes Park might have to be altered or re-located. There would be major works needed in the centre of Wimbledon to accommodate new tracks, and the commercial centre would be decimated for the period of the works. 

    We will ensure that there will be the fullest public consultation for local residents before major and irreparable decisions are taken, including public meetings if required.  The next stage for consultations is likely to be later in the autumn. 


    Since the last edition of The Guide, there have been further deluges of rain and consequent flooding.  It was pointed out to me that one of the reasons that the flood water could not escape was that the Council has not maintained the regular clearance of the road gullies. Also I mentioned in the last edition that the grass verges had not been cut for weeks, and were very high.  Ironically, they were finally cut the day before one of these rain storms, but the grass was left to blow into the gutters which further blocked the flow of water.  The grass should have been picked up and bagged as it was cut. 

    Another contributing factor is that the building control inspectors no longer seem to ensure when houses are converted to provide extra space by way of back or loft extensions, that the guttering connects to therain water sewers or to a dedicated soak away tank, rather than to the foul sewer system. The result is when there is flooding, sewage comes back into neighbouring houses. 

    The Association has a complete record of the rivers and streams in this area, as well as the whereabouts of the Thames Water and sewage pipes. This was collected over many years by our expert, Jan Bailey, who sadly died earlier this year. Many times she had to point out to Merton officers, and even to the Environment Agency, that a proposed development would impact on a water or sewer pipe, since the Council did not have the information on record. We intend to keep this invaluable information for the sake of future generations, but to give a copy to the Council for their records. 

    The Times weather correspondent pointed out that London is especially vulnerable to flash flooding as it is so heavily built up. Heavy rains run off roofs, roads and other hard services, quickly setting off floods. He notes that in the past ten years the number of front gardens that are paved over across the UK has risen from 28 to 48 per cent, and that a study in Leeds has shown that the paving of gardens over a period of 33 years has led to an increase of 12% in run off.  It is a pity that as street parking becomes more difficult and paid for parking zones become more extensive, more front gardens are disappearing under concrete. 


    Residents will have noticed Merton’s yellow billboards proclaiming that cameras are being installed that will automatically record bus lanes, box junctions, and banned turns. There’ll be a penalty notice of £130 for offenders, reduced to £65 if the fine is paid within 14 days.  While the principle of trying to keep traffic moving can be applauded, I hope that the Council will be sensible in its enforcement policy. Many motorists, from time to time end up in a bus lane, or find that their exit from a hatched area is unexpectedly blocked by other traffic.  I also hope that no penalty will be enforced if the signage is not absolutely clear. 


    Residents may not be aware that our new Prime Minister, Theresa May, began her political career as a Councillor in Merton, becoming its Deputy Leader and its Chairman of Education. Party Politics aside, we should mark it as a great personal achievement. 

     John Elvidge

  • Crossrail 2 - July 2016

    The Raynes Park Association (RPA) is an umbrella grouping of local residents’ and business associations, of which our Association is a member. The RPA has set up a Crossrail 2 sub-committee to try to achieve the best for Raynes Park. 

    Unfortunately, there is currently a paucity of information about the impact of Crossrail 2 on our part of the existing Southwest branches, down the line beyond Wimbledon.  This is where the Crossrail 2 trains are intended to run on the tracks already owned by Network Rail. 

    In contrast, the current proposals for Crossrail 2 from Wimbledon into London have been so far prepared by TfL, who are leading the design effort for this completely new central section. The project is very much in the development phase and so much is uncertain. However, there may be another public consultation on new proposals sometime soon. It is therefore very important that the community is ready to respond. 

    Currently there seem to be a number of threats and opportunities:- 

    Threat of land take for extra tracks/station improvement.

    This is likely to be of potential concern to those with properties close to the existing main line between Wimbledon and Raynes Park, as it would seem additional tracks may be contemplated. Additionally, Raynes Park town centre may be affected by improvements to the station. However, this is all speculation and there is no certainty as to how the project may proceed in this regard. 

    Changes to service patterns

    Not much information is available but it seems there would be changes to the service patterns to accommodate Crossrail 2 trains. There may be an extra four trains per hour on each of the four branch lines beyond Raynes Park, which would flow into Crossrail 2, going to new destinations in London.  There has so far been no confirmation that these trains will stop at Raynes Park. However, if Crossrail 2 trains were to stop in Raynes Park, there would be additional connections through the Crossrail option. There will inevitably be many years of disruption from construction work. 

    Raynes Park Station

    There may be a requirement to realign the platforms to accommodate longer trains. This would give the opportunity to provide step free access, straighter platforms and to remove the ugly footbridge, amongst other things. 

    Two level crossings in West Barnes Lane

    Increased services may render these level crossings impractical. It is important that they are not simply closed but bridges are provided to keep these much used routes open. 


    As and when public consultations take place, it will be important that residents participate, as Crossrail 2 may have a big impact on Raynes Park.  

    In the meantime, if members have any points they wish to share, please contact Jerry Cuthbert, via , marking your email for his attention.

    We would also recommend that you contact Crossrail 2 directly at


  • Curly Hair Project

    The Curly Hair Project (CHP) is a social enterprise  dedicated to supportingfemales with Asperger’s syndrome & other autism spectrum disorders. It aims to improve understanding & communication between women & girls on the autism spectrum & their neurotypical loved ones. Although the CHP was set up with females in mind, most of their work is also relevant to males with autism or Aspergers Syndrome.  

    Dee  McAlinden is a trainer with the CHP & has Asperger’s Syndrome. She is passionate about sharing her knowledge, strategies & experience about her condition. Her presentation about the CHP plus a little bit about Dee, herself is designed for Parents and carers of children and adults with Aspergers.Syndrome, and is being held on Wednesday 6 July, 10am to 12pm, at Chaucer Centre, Room L, Canterbury Road, Morden, SM4 6PX

  • Memory Lane Club - Happy Birthday

    This popular club has gone from strength to strength since it first opened its doors in March 2015. The friendly club operates a drop-in for people with dementia and their carers every Wednesday morning from 10.30am to 12.30pm. 

    Recommended by GPs, right from its opening it has been well supported – news quickly spread across the area that Sacred Heart Parish Lounge on Edge Hill was the place to be each Wednesday morning. 

    Run by volunteers, the purpose of the club is to provide a welcoming space where there can be chat, some fun, laughs and a range of activity for those with dementia and their carers. An additional benefit is the opportunity provided for carers to meet and share experiences with other carers and volunteers, many of whom themselves have had personal experience of looking after a loved one with dementia. 

    A lively party to celebrate one year of successfully serving the local community took place in mid-March. Balloons, birthday cake – and candles - accompanied by the customary singing of ‘Happy Birthday’ were the order of the day. Party games followed – and accompanying laughter as we all competed for mini-prizes. In particular the party provided the opportunity to reflect on and celebrate the new friendships that have been made during the past year. 

    As the Club moves into its second year, we want to encourage any carers of those with dementia that we are a local resource for them. Please do drop in any Wednesday morning along with your loved one. You will receive a warm welcome, will meet new people and it’s all free of charge.  Give it a go! 


    Venue: Sacred Heart Parish Lounge, Edge Hill, SW19 4LU

    Day and time : Every Wednesday morning, 10.30 onwards to 12.30



  • 41 New Traffic ANPR Cameras

    Merton Council is introducing 41 new state-of-the-art cameras  to monitor the area’s roads and keep people safe.  

    Cameras using automatic number plate recognition (ANPR) technology will monitor bus lanes, box junctions, no entry points and banned turns. 

    Cameras, which will go live in July, are portable, and can be moved to where they are most needed.

    The cameras will record short clips of vehicles that break the rules at 41 specially chosen locations across the borough. 

    These clips will then be sent to a team of reviewing officers who decide whether to issue penalty notices. The footage will be made available online for recipients to view. 

    Cabinet Member for Street Cleanliness and Parking, Councillor Ross Garrod, said: “We have listened to residents who have told us that congestion is one of their top concerns again and again. ANPR will keep Merton moving; making it easier for us all to get to work, pick up the kids from school or do the shopping. It will allow us to free up officer time to tackle other areas of enforcement such as badly parked vehicles. Enforcement is one way of encouraging people to obey the law of the road.” 

    For more information, visit



  • Raynes Park Bereavement Service - First Annual Report


    The Service, managed by Christ Church, West Wimbledon, was launched in December 2014 and in that time has received 49 referrals. 34 of these referrals were from people given the information by their GP and the remaining 15 from other sources e.g. Age UK Merton, local newspaper, Women’s Refuge. Of the 34 referrals originating from GPs, 28 of these were from the Lambton Road practice and only 6 from other practices. 

    All befrienders and our supervisor are volunteers. We have received a grant from the diocese to cover training and admin costs. 


    We have recruited and trained a total of 12 ‘befrienders’, currently we have 6 people regularly seeing those bereaved. (Some of the volunteers have dropped out, discovering this was not for them, others for personal reasons.) We have held two full days training sessions, the second of which was joint-training with the RC Bereavement Service based at the Sacred Heart Parish in Edge Hill, SW19. The first day was led by a trained counsellor and the second day by the director of training at St. Christopher’s Hospice. 


    Our service is fortunate to have Breeda Fitzpatrick as our counsellor adviser. Breeda worked until recently as a counsellor at Wimbledon Guild. The group of befrienders meets regularly (about every 6 weeks) with Breeda. The sessions provide ongoing training and support. Indeed since we started, all the befrienders have grown in their ability thanks to the shared experiences of the group. Breeda also provides one to one telephone support to befrienders when requested. Two members of the group attended a training session at St Christopher’s Hospice on the particular needs of older people at times of bereavement. 

    Sacred Heart RC Parish, Wimbledon 

    We have worked closely with the Bereavement Service offered by the local RC church, as already indicated in terms of joint-training. Whilst they operate on a slightly different basis than ourselves, we find that we work together collaboratively. For example, on one occasion we took on someone referred to them whom they thought we could assist more effectively,

    because of the person’s close ties to their parish. Their service additionally offers a monthly drop-in group session. We’ve agreed that people referred to our service are also welcome to join this group. Our working relationship with our ‘sister’ group has given us a further dimension to our learning about bereavement. 

    Referrals to the Service 

    Befrienders meet bereaved people mainly at Lambton Road practice – the practice gives us one of the doctor’s rooms to use on Wednesday afternoons. (A room at Christ Church is also used on occasions.) People are offered a session of up to one hour. For some people one session is enough and for others several sessions have been given. (The decision on the number of sessions is largely the choice of the bereaved person.) Some people have had up to 6 to 10 sessions. 

    Whilst we are based at Christ Church and most of the volunteers are members of that church, our service is offered without reference to anyone’s personal belief. 

    The initial referral to the service is made either by phone or email. The phone is held by Chris Larkman (Service Co-ordinator) who takes responsibility for answering it or checking for messages. (Lucy Christie deputises for Chris when he is away.)

    The spectrum of situations befrienders have been confronted with has been vast:

       - People who have died recently. People who have died some years ago Partners, parents, siblings, sons or daughters, friends

       - Suicides

       - Cot death

       - People of all ages in terms both of those who have died and those bereaved (though we have not and probably would not undertake befriending a child.

       - Parents of a suicide – we met separately.

       - We have also ‘filled a gap’ when someone who contacted us was waiting for another service ‘holding’ them through difficult weeks.


    Although we do not request feedback from the people we meet, we have received many complimentary remarks, 

    Are we ‘Befrienders’ or ‘Counsellors’? 

    The simple answer is that we are not ‘counsellors’ – we could not use that term because we have neither the qualification nor the training to claim such a title. On the other hand we are more than the term ‘befrienders’ implies. Precisely because our training and shared experiences, we’re able to ask some relevant questions and at times to offer reassurances. 

    Conclusion and the Future 

    The project has proved our original assumption of the need for a bereavement service. We have learned that a majority of our referrals have come via GPs. The usual scenario appears to be: a patient speaks to their GP about a bereavement.

    GPs recognize they can only give a short time to the patient. They are then able to reach for one of our cards and offer it to their patient in the knowledge that we will be able a) to give time to listen and b) respond quickly to their request. 

    Chris Larkman (Co-ordinator)

  • Raynes Park Afternoon Townwomen's Guild - July 2016

    Once again, the engaging harpist Margaret Watson gave us an excellent and entertaining performance when she came to our May meeting.  With pieces ranging from part of a Beethoven Harp Concerto to folk tunes, there was something for everyone in her thoroughly enjoyable programme. 

    Eileen’s Coffee Morning at the end of May was a well received occasion, and then - success at last!  This year the lunch club managed to choose a fine day for their annual trip to The Rocket in Putney, so the first time members were able to sit outside to benefit fully from this Pub’s riverside location! 

    The following week, a small group braved the changeable weather and the rather awkward journey to visit Kenwood House, Hampstead on 14th June.  The house proved to be a bit of a treasure with renovated original décor, interesting furniture pieces and fine collections of paintings.  After a slow examination of all the rooms we were ready to repair to the café for sandwiches, but disappointed that it was raining again when we emerged.  This stopped us finding the dairy and touring the extensive garden to admire the views, but with things still to see we may visit again in May 2016 to catch the rhododendrons in full flower. 

    The June meeting was a red, white and blue themed social to celebrate our 83rdbirthday party and the Queen’s 90th.   A friendly, relaxed afternoon, we enjoyed tea together followed by a piece of cake and a toast to the Queen. 

    With a Midsummer Lunch at Eileen’s house on 30th June, the lunch club off to The Woodman on 5th July, a visit planned for The London Wetland Centre, Barnes on 12thJuly and a Barbecue at Dorothy’s scheduled for 28th July, there are plenty of other activities over the next few weeks to keep members busy. 

    Our next regular monthly meeting (held on the third Thursday of each month) will be on Thursday, 21st July at 1.30 for 1.45 pm at St Saviour’s Church Hall when Peter Rainey will tell us all about ‘Wiltshire Farm Foods’.  Visitors are always welcome to our meetings or other activities. 

    For more information please telephone. 

    Dorothy Raymond   Tel: 020 8395 9489




  • Chaiman's Blog - July 2016


    At our Open Meeting in June we had a presentation from Daniel Elkeles, who is the Chief Executive of the Epsom and St Helier NHS Trust, and Tim Hamilton, its Communications Director. They are in the process of meeting a number of residents’ associations in order to discuss the hospitals’ future. 

    Residents will remember the furore a couple of years back when suggestions were made that St Helier should close, with the loss, inter alia, of its accident and emergency department, and its maternity services. The decision was eventually taken to keep both hospitals open, and to maintain all existing services until 2020, while a review was undertaken to discuss all the options. 

    Mr. Elkeles has been in post for only 18 months, and it is his remit to oversee that review. We were impressed by the daunting scale of the problems that the Trust faces, and the obvious care with which he and his team are trying to resolve them. For example, they have managed to reduce the use of expensive agency nursing staff by 70% in the last twelve months by recruiting more extra full time nurses, and also reduced the vacancy rate. But the Trust is in deficit every year by millions of pounds, and the deficit is increasing. 

    A major part of the problem with St Helier is simply its age, dating as it does from the 1930’s, and an astonishing 43% of its occupied floor area has been defined as “functionally unsuitable” for modern health care delivery, and not even fit for purpose. The layout of the rooms is too small to prevent and control infection effectively, and results in over a million of pounds extra a year being spent on cleaning. The wards are situated well apart so that time and money is wasted on taking patients between them. Only 21% of the bedrooms are single occupancy, as opposed to having 4 or 6 beds, and the structure of the buildings means that more single rooms cannot be easily added. 

    It is clear that if St Helier is to remain open, a large part of the building has to be demolished, and rebuilt, although there is enough green space to allow this to happen. That would depend on funding being provided by the Treasury, and planning permission being granted by Sutton Council. 

    The Trust is now developing what is called a Strategic Outline Case which they aim tocomplete by the end of this October. That will then go out for formal public consultation to the Treasury, the two local authorities, and to the public at large. So the process of deciding what to do is still at an early stage, and there will be plenty of opportunity to comment later. 

    One measure of the problem they face is that last week, each hospital had 500 people a day coming into their A and E departments. The officers

    calculate that only 100 of these needed urgent and specialised hospital treatment, and the others could have been treated by other community facilities, including GP’s. They know that the population is getting older and they need more hospital based capacity. They also accept that they need to provide seven day working, with consultants available at all times. 

    The officers of the Trust have promised to come back and discuss this further with us as the plans develop. 


    The Council is set to reduce the rubbish collection from every week to every fortnight, and to introduce wheelie bins. A scrutiny panel voted on June 9 to support a recommendation for Veolia to take over waste collection and street cleaning services in Merton, as part of the South London Waste Partnership. 

    This means that, if Veolia wins the contract, wheelie bins would be brought in across Merton from October 2018. We understand that each household would be provided with 3 smallish wheelie bins, as a cost to the ratepayers of £7 million. 

    The recycling collections for paper and card and for plastic, glass and cans would be divided, and would be collected only on alternate weeks. We regard the decision to move away from weekly collections as utterly misguided, and this will simply contribute to the fundamentally dirty state of Merton’s streets. 

    Public rubbish bins are overflowing in the streets and parks, since they are not regularly emptied, and now have dog waste added to them as well. The results are disgusting. 

    Wheelie bins are not suitable for many smaller houses and flats which have nowhere to store them. They will left on the streets to provide an eyesore and overflow with rubbish, and will attract foxes andrats. Elderly and disabled people will not been able to manhandle them. There is no sustainable evidence of any savings in these proposals. We cannot believe that any sensible and responsible Council could vote to bring in such a scheme. 


    Residents will have noticed that the grass verges, which used to be trimmed regularly, have been left uncut for weeks, and are growing wild. This is the result of another attempt by the Council to save money, which has backfired. 

    The Council thought it could save money on grass cutting by putting it out to tender, but the result has been a gross failure in the provision of services which residents have a right to expect. 


    Flash floods reduced the centre of Raynes Park to a standstill when two cars got marooned under the bridge. The surrounding area was awash and roads blocked all around. This is a reminder that this Association was founded in 1928 because of flooding in the area, which resulted, among other things, in the Raynes Park Golf Club having to re-locate to the Malden Golf Club. 

    It remains vital that any planning application should be carefully considered to see whether there are suitable run-offs for water, and that we retain as much open space as possible to allow for adequate drainage. 


    Don’t forget that much of Coombe Lane and Wimbledon Hill will be closed to traffic all day for the annual bike road on 31 July, and that pedestrian access will also be severely restricted. (See below for more information.)


    We thought that we had lost Waterstones and W H Smith for good from Wimbledon when their leases ran out, and Metro Bank took over. However both firms are coming back to Wimbledon with opening dates promised for the autumn. We don’t yet know where they are going to be located. 


    John Elvidge

  • Spectacles Needed Urgently


    Have you got some old specs that you no longer use, but haven’t yet made the decision to part with?


    MORDEN ROTARY CLUB collects used glasses for villagers in Africa who desperately need them but can’t afford to buy even the cheapest pair.



    The Post Office in Mospur Park collects donations of spectacles for the Rotary Club to forward on. Please think of them when you are having a clear out.

  • Lambton Road Medical Practice - June 2016

    Longer days 

    As we move into British Summer Time with longer days, we also seem to have an increasingly earlier hayfever season.  Please be aware that you can obtain hayfever remedies from the local pharmacists (free-of-charge if you do not ordinarily pay for escriptions) under the Minor Ailments Scheme. 

    If you are buying medication over the counter, we recommend a once-daily non-sedating antihistamine such as Cetirizine 10mg or Loratadine 10mg. Anasal spray such as Beclometasone (Aqueous Beconase) needs to be taken regularly from the onset of symptoms, as do eye drops such as Sodium Cromoglycate (Opticrom) or Otrivine-Antistin. 

    Longer days also mean more sunshine. Vitamin D deficiency is extremely common and current guidelines advise 1 to 11⁄2 hours daily midday sunshine for all of us. This is, of course, not always possible and we recommend certain groups continue to take a daily 1000 unit supplement throughout the year. 

    We are currently having a catch-up campaign for the pneumococcal vaccine at the surgery. This protects against bacterial pneumonia and it is highly recommended for elderly patients and others in high-risk groups. We will be contacting patients who are eligible over the next couple of months and would highly recommend this vaccine which gives lifelong protection in most people. 


    The shingles vaccine is a relatively new vaccine for over 70s and the eligibility can seem quite complicated. Ultimately, the Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation advised that all 70 year olds should be vaccinated as this is felt to be the most at-risk group and the age group for which we know the vaccine to be most effective. 

    The protection is thought to last eight years so vaccinating a 70 year old takes them through most of their 70s. We know vaccinating those over 80 becomes less effective so those in this age group will not be offered the jab on the NHS. 

    The ‘rules’ we must abide by are quite cryptic. The jab is currently being offered to all people who are aged 70 and 78 between October 1st 2015 and before August 31st 2016. In addition, anyone who was eligible for immunisation in the first two years of the programme but has not yet been vaccinated against shingles remains eligible until their 80th birthday.

    This includes people aged 71 and 72 on September 1st 2015 and people aged 79. If you are eligible, we will be writing to you. 

    Online services

     As of April 1st 2016, it is possible to request access to view some of your medical record online. To ensure this is safe, and that records are only accessible to the patient they relate to, it is necessary to apply for this facility providing photographic ID. 

    Online services are developing. We are offering increasing numbers of online bookable appointments – including on-the-day slots which open at 7am – and we are pleased that more local pharmacists are signing up to the Electronic Prescription Service (EPS) which enables you to request repeat medication from the surgery online. 

    These requests can then be authorised and sent to an eligible nominated pharmacy of your choice, removing the need for a paper slip or a trip to the surgery to pick your issued prescription up. Please ask at reception for further information. 

    Booking online also offers you the ability to cancel scheduled appointments online. We have developed an annotated guide which gives clear details as to how to download Patient Access, our online booking app, onto your smartphone. Please ask at reception or take a copy from our leaflet rack. 

    Every day we still waste huge numbers of  appointments. Please keep a note of our cancellation line (020 3668 1946) and let us know if you cannot make your scheduled appointment. Extraordinarily, we continue to have patients who make on-the-day appointments and then fail to turn up and do not even attempt to cancel them. We will be sending letters to our frequent offenders this year and are trying to reduce our Did Not Attend (DNA) rate as it impacts on all of us. Please ensure your contact details, particularly mobile numbers, are up-to-date in our records. This ensures that you receive text reminders of booked appointments and allows you to cancel conveniently by return text. Rising workload, increasing amounts of work transferred from struggling local hospitals, an ageing population and diminishing resources are affecting all GPs. 

    We are not any different. We continue to try and maintain and improve our services but we need you to work with us to do this. 

    Please realise that free NHS appointments are a precious resource and cancel if you cannot attend. Please treat our staff courteously and appreciate that they can have a difficult task at times. 

    Resources for our older patients 

    A recent study led by academics from the University of York was an analysis of data from over 20 studies involving over 180,000 subjects. This suggests that loneliness may be as substantial a killer as obesity and smoking. 

    Our Patient Participation Group (PPG) remains a dynamic ‘critical’ friend. We thank them for their ongoing support and input and for such a detailed analysis of their listening week responses. The practice is working through these and feels confident this will help us to develop better services. 

    Finally, a request. We have two disabled parking spaces at the front of the building. To use these, you need a Blue Badge. Every day, we are very sad to see cars parked there who should not be there, which hugely inconveniences and stresses those who should be able to park there. If it is you, please reconsider. 

    Dr Penelope Smith (Senior Partner) - Lambton Road Medical Practice

  • Lambton Road PPG - June 2016

    Lambton Road Medical Practice - Patients Participation Group 

    PPG Members: Jan Bailey, Judith Brodie (Chair), Elsa Browne, Marilyn Frampton, Clare Gummett, Clare Pickard, Ian Ritchie, Marie Robertson, Elizabeth Savidge and Peter West



    Annual General Meeting 12 March 2016 

    Thanks to all patients who attended our third AGM. Full Minutes, Chair’s remarks and appendices are being sent to patients on our e-mail list, and are also available to view in our folder in Reception. 

    The main focus of the Meeting was the Listening Week and its findings, see our special March Newsletter, no 16. Lisa Manara expanded on the results, and a full copy of her presentation is contained within the appendices to the Minutes of the Meeting. 

    Naturally, as with the country generally, the availability of appointments featured highly in remarks by those attending the AGM, but a final comment from the floor drew attention to the immense challenges faced nationally by primary care, namely funding, capacity and increasing demands. It was nevertheless clear that we are fortunate to have a Practice that successfully provides and delivers high quality clinical treatment to a large population. 


     By the time you read this the Practice will have had an inspection visit on Tuesday 12 April from the Care Quality Commission (CQC). The Practice receives a verbal report on the day, with a formal printed report available some weeks later. 

    The Practice has now issued a Practice Newsletter on their website Printed copies will shortly be available in the surgery. Additionally, the Practice has produced an excellent updated booklet that new patients receive when they join, and which can be obtained from doctors by existing patients when they attend appointments. 

    Patients aged over 75 have a special telephone line (available from 10-12 Mon to Fri) but it now has a new title- the Blue Star Patient Line. If you have mislaid the telephone number this may be obtained via Reception. 

    The Practice has also agreed an action plan from the PPG Listening Week including on the Appointments system. 

    Comings and Goings within the Practice 

    Dr. Conor Molony

    Most of you will have heard that Dr Molony has left the Lambton Road Medical Practice. The PPG wishes to say thank you to him on behalf of all patients for the excellent professional care received over 13 years’ service (between Pepys Road and LRMP). In addition, he attended PPG meetings and was a valuable linchpin between the Practice and the PPG so a very special thank you to Conor, from us. All good wishes for the future. 

    Dr. Elisabeth Wood

    Dr Wood who has joined the Practice graduated from Southampton University in 2008. She has worked in a variety of locations including Bournemouth, Bristol and New Zealand prior to arriving at LRMP. Dr Wood has just returned to work having enjoyed maternity leave with her baby daughter. Her interests include Elderly Care and Children’s Health. 

    The Practice will also be recruiting additional GPs to the Team, albeit they are in short supply nationally. 

    Cancellation of appointments 

    Even with the direct telephone cancellation line and text messaging service, there are still “no shows” by some patients – sometimes for good reason and unavoidable. A wasted appointment deprives another patient of its use. The cancellation number is 020 3668 1946. If you wish to be included in the text reminder service, just leave your mobile tell no with Reception and this will automatically happen. 

    Smoking Cessation Service 

    Are you thinking of making a decision to stop smoking? If so, get some help at Lambton Road. The Practice is offering a free smoking cessation service in conjunction with Live Well Sutton & Merton. You can see an advisor in the Practice.  

    PPG Membership 

    As mentioned at the AGM, four members of the PPG have stood down - Charlotte Bennett and Dennis Railey - (both had been with the Group since the inception of LRMP), Janice Cameron and Lisa Manara. We would like to thank them all for the extremely valuable contributions they have made to the work of the Group, and wish them well for the future.  Clare Pickard and Peter West have joined as the new members of the Group.

  • Raynes Park Afternoon Townwomen's Guild - June 2016

    At the April meeting Mr. Colin James gave us an excellent talk entitled ‘Secret Gardens of London’.   Screened photographs illustrated his descriptions of their origins and character.  We came away with a list of ideas for future trips! 

    At the beginning of May a new lunchtime venue was tried at West Ewell - another Superfish, run on the same lines as the one at Morden.  A group enjoyed a nice bus trip out for a very good meal.   

    A backstage tour of the Royal Opera House, Covent Garden, was the visit in May.  The tour guide was excellent taking us first up to the upper tier of the blacked out auditorium to look down at the pool of light on the stage, where a technical rehearsal for the ballet Ondine was in progress.   We also looked into a studio where male dancers were walking through a new dance, the area where the sets were stored, and through the sewing room and costume department, with everything carefully bagged up and labelled.  An hour and a half later we were more than ready for a sandwich and cup of tea in a small café near The Strand. 

    In June the TWG will be celebrating our 83rd birthday with a ‘Birthday Party with Royal Elements’ on Thursday, 16th at 1.30 pm at St. Saviour’s Church Hall.  Everyone welcome to this social. 

    June’s luncheon will be taken at The Rocket at Putney and the visit will be to Kenwood House by Hampstead Heath.

    For more information about any of our activities please telephone. 

    Dorothy Raymond  Tel: 020 8395 9489

  • Trip to Hever Castle - 28 July 2016

    Pavilion Social Club - Trip to Hever Castle

    Tuesday 28th July

     Cost:  £21 including entry to the castle and gardens, the coach and the driver’s tip.

     Pick up points:

    9.00a.m. The Green at the bottom of Claremont Avenue, Motspur Park. 

    9.15a.m. Raynes Park Station (The bus stop adjacent to ‘Whistle Stop’). 

    9.30a.m. Greenway bus stop, Grand Drive. 

    Money to be paid by cash or cheque within one week of booking please.   (All seats allocated on receipt of payment). 

     To Book contact Jill Truman, here.

  • Association Open Meeting - 15 June 2016

    We are holding the June meeting  open to all members of the Association,  at West Barnes Library in Motspur Park on 15th June.  It will start at 7.30 pm and will finish at the latest by 9.30pm. 

    We will begin the meeting with and important discussion from the Chief Executive and the Communications Manager of the Epsom and St Helier University Hospitals NHS Trust. 

    They are conducting a review into the long- term future of the hospitals and want to talk to as many local people as possible about the future of these buildings, and the consequences for healthcare locally. This is very important, so do come along. 


    Alternatively, if you want to raise an issue or problem with us, or if you just want to hear what’s going on in the locality, our Open Meetings will provide you with the opportunity to do so; for instance, you may want to talk about the new policy on parking on pavements, or residents’ parking problems in your roads. We always have local Councillors in attendance, so your concerns will certainly be taken up and or advised upon.

  • Prudential Ride London - 2016

    Image result for ride london logoPrudential Ride London comes again to Raynes Park on Sunday 31 July 2016.

    Come to Raynes Park and enjoy the atmosphere, as the cyclists pass through.

    However, be prepared for road closures for virtually the whole day. These will, once again, mean that a large part of West Wimbledon north of Worple Road and Coombe Lane will be almost totally cut off for the whole of the day, with very restricted access in or out. People with plans for travel, social events, holiday arrangements and needing visits from carers and the like are strongly advised to plan ahead.

    The official leaflet on road closures, crossing points for residents etc can be downloaded here. See pages 8 & 9 of 12 for Raynes Park and Wimbledon.

  • Raynes Park Community Forum - 22 June 2016

    The next Community Forum will be held in the Library Hall (Aston Road Entrance), Approach Road, SW20 8BA, from 7:15 - 9:15 pm. on 22 June 2016. For more information click here.RAYNES PARK FORUM MEETINGS – 2016/17 

    Future Forum Meetings will be on

    Wednesday 22 June 2016

    Thursday 29 September 2016

    Wednesday 3 November 2016

    Wednesday 8 March 2017

  • Tragic News about Jan Bailey

    It is with great sadness that we report to our members that Jan Bailey died suddenly on 3rd May 2016.

    Jan had been our Joint Secretary and Minutes Secretary for the past 15 years.  She was was full of physical energy, and thought nothing, for example, of regularly clearing out the Meadowstreet Ditch off Grand Drive collecting rubbish with her bare hands, in order to prevent flooding of the surrounding properties. Jan was bubbly, lively and extrovert, and great fun to be with. 

    Jan was also a mine of information about everything that was happening in the area and whomsoever on the Council to approach to get things done. She kept an eye on all the proposed planning applications, and the stage that each one had reached. She could remember exactly what had happened on a traffic scheme proposal in particular, 

    Jan knew more about the drains and watercourses in the area (a special concern in Raynes Park and West Barnes because of frequent flooding) than anyone on the Council; and worked closely with the Environment Agency, keeping meticulous records of everything that occurred, and so was able to turn up vital information that would otherwise have been lost to posterity. 

    We had twice nominated her for Merton's Sir Cyril Black Award that goes each year to the person who has done most for the community, but without success. 

    Jan trained as a professional actress, who could sing and dance, and it was while performing as Cinderella at the Theatre Royal Nottingham (with Mike and Bernie Winters in the cast as a comedy duo), that Jan met her partner, Gordon Stratford, when he was General Manager of Theatre Royal in Plymouth. 

    He needed a PA, and she applied for the job, got it, and stayed! 

    We shall miss her immensely. She leaves her husband, Gordon, and their family. Our thoughts are with them at this difficult time.

    Latest News about the Funeral Arrangements – Updated 15 May

    Jan Bailey's funeral has been scheduled for Thursday 26th May. The service will be held at St. Matthews Church (Durham Road) at 11.00 a.m, with a small reception afterwards probably at the Olive Garden, to be confirmed, followed by a family and close friends only woodland burial at Clandon Woods.  

    The RP&WBRA will be supplying flowers for the top of the coffin, and donations can be made of bulbs for the plot, or money to Headway; the brain injury association;  the Child Brain Injury Trust; and/or the Dog's Trust, and sent to: Truelove, 254 Martin Way, Morden SM4 4AW, Phone:020 8540 6667.

  • Heritage Discovery Day - 28 May 2016

     Carved in stone



    Explore Merton’s fascinating history. Morden Library, 28 May. 12.30 – 4.30pm. ADMISSION IS FREE. For information: Tel 020 8545 3239 or click here.


    The day’s programme includes:

    12.30 – 4.00: Open Air Cinema. Screenings of archive film from Merton and beyond; and on

     Morden Library’s: Ground floor:

    12.30 – 4.30: London’s Open Spaces. A display by the Royal Photographic Society.

    12.30 – 4.00: Kids Archaeology: A mini excavation for children aged 6+. Discover a range of historic finds.

    1.30 – 3.30: Children’s crafts: – Stained glass colouring and dressing up

    First Floor and Merton Council Chamber:

    12.30 – 1.15: Captured on Film. A screening of archive films from the First World War.

    12.30 – 4.00: War Stories. Your chance to watch a fascinating series of filmed interviews with the descendants of Merton’s First World War combatants.

    12.30 – 2.30: Web demonstrations. Your chance to view the new Carved in Stone website about Merton during World War 1.

    Second floor:

    12.30 – 4.30: Exhibition. Discover the story of the St. Helier Estate.

    12.30 – 4.30: The Heritage Marketplace. Stalls and displays from Merton’s many museums,


    Local History Talks:

    1.15 – 1.45: Conservation in action ( Ann-Marie Miller, Codex Conservation )

    2.00 – 2.20: Capability Brown and Wimbledon Park ( Dave Dawson, Friends of Wimbledon Park )

    2.30 – 2.50: Rutlish Combatants in World War One ( Cynthia Clift & Peter Moulin, Rutlish School )

    3.00 – 3.20: Merton Military Tribunals in World War One ( Keith Penny, Merton Historical Society )

    3.30 – 3.50: The Canons and Mitcham Cricket Green ( Tony Burton, MCGC&H )

    4.00 – 4.30: The Merton at War Alphabet ( Sarah Gould, Merton Heritage Centre )



    Historic find: Merton during World War One. local history societies and community groups.

  • Motspur Park Post Office - May 2016

    The PO has started a public consultation regarding a proposal to relocate Motspur Park PO 85 metres from its current premises (334 West Barnes Lane) to Ecklee convenience store at 345 WBL. The consultation began on 22 Mar & runs for 6 weeks up to 5 May. The relocation itself is planned for July/August. 

    Services at the proposed location ‘will be offered from a till on the retail counter’, there will be ‘longer opening hours’ & ‘the majority of Post Office products & services will still be available’. It is reported that disabled access will be better than currently at No 334.

    Full details in a document available at the PO and also here. 


  • Raynes Park Residents' Lawn Tennis Club - May 2016

    The club’s next Open Day is on Sunday 15th May from 10am in conjunction with the LTA’s Great British Tennis Weekends at which there will be special introductory offers, free coaching and refreshments. 

    Prospective members are encouraged book in advance through the LTA website here and enter sw20 9 in ‘Find and Book’ or just turn up on the day. 


    Paul Sadler,, Meadowview Road, SW20 9AN

  • Annual Visit to RHS Wisley Flower Show - 9 September 2016

    The RPWBRA Annual trip to Wisley Flower Show will be on FRIDAY 9TH SEPTEMBER 

    With pickup points at: 

    Greenway bus stop, Grand Drive @ 9.15 a.m. 

    Approach Road, Raynes Park @ 9.20 a.m. 

    Motspur Park, Opposite the Earl Beatty @ 9.30 a.m. approx. 

    The Coach will leave Wisley at 4.00 p.m. 

    The fare will be £10.00 which includes entrance and driver’s tip. 

    Money to be paid within a week of booking, please. 

    Seats may be booked with Margaret Barratt (8949 4304), Edna Gumbrell (8542 5811) and Jill Truman (8859 3525)



  • Raynes Park Afternoon Townwomen's Guild - May 2016

    ‘Collective Legal Solutions’ was the title of the talk given by Mr. Trevor French from the Co-op Group at our meeting on 17th March.  Touching on such matters as Inheritance Tax Planning, Long-term Care Costs, Trusts, Insurances, Funeral Plans, Wills, Powers of Attorney and the term ‘Tenants in Common’, this talk held the groups full attention.  Questions followed.  Mrs. Eileen Brewer gave the vote of thanks. 

    Caught by showers for the journey both to and from The Haywain, Epsom, the group of ladies taking a leisurely lunch on 7th April still enjoyed their visit to this favourite venue, where all meals were of the usual high standard and were accompanied by good conversation! 

    On Tuesday, 12th April a group of ten visited the Dickens Museum set in a typical 3 storey Victorian house, also with basement, which he rented for a time in Doughty Street, Holborn.  It was interesting exploring this house and examining the pictures, letters, furniture and other personal items on display.

    Afterwards a cup of coffee and slice of cake in the ‘Garden Café’ was very welcome. 

    The popular Harpist, Mary Watson, is rebooked to play to us at our May meeting on Thursday, 19th May at St Saviour’s Church Hall.  Visitors, friends and family are invited to join us for this recital.  Please join us for a cup of tea beforehand between 2 or 2.15 pm.  You will be very welcome. 

    As a preliminary notice - friends and family, Residents, Rendezvous Club Members and Pavilion Club Members are also invited to join us on our summer outing to Worthing.  This will be on Thursday, 18th August, Tickets £16, picking up in the area from 9.30 and returning at 4.30 p.m. 

    Dorothy Raymond

    Tel: 020 8395 9489

  • TfL News - A3 Improvements for Cycling and Walking

    Between 17th August and 27th September 2015, we consulted on proposals to make improvements for pedestrians and cyclists at six locations along the A3. After considering all the responses, we intend to proceed with the scheme as set out in the consultation documents. We plan to start work in autumn 2016. 

    Descriptions of the proposals 

    ·         Allowing cyclists to formally use existing pedestrian subways without having to dismount at Ely Close, Bushey Road, Keswick Avenue, Southwood Drive, and Warren Drive South. The subways would be designated as shared use, with signage positioned on approaches to clearly identify areas of shared use

    ·     Improving pedestrian and cyclist safety in these newly created shared use areas by installing cycle barriers at carefully selected locations, guiding cyclists into pedestrian sightlines to be more visible, and reducing the risk of conflict.

    ·    Resurfacing of footways and new tactile paving at Keswick Avenue connection to subway, and improved ease of access  for cyclists with the installation of a dropped kerb.

     ·    Introducing raised tables across the roadway, bollards along the footway edge and tactile paving to assist visually impaired pedestrians at the junctions of Malden Way(Southbound) with Consfield Avenue, Byron Avenue, Stanley Avenue and Woodfield Gardens. The raised tables would have the effect of slowing approaching vehicles and making it safer for cyclists to cross the junction.

    ·   Extending the pavement and formalising shared use for pedestrians and cyclists at the junction of Elmbridge Avenue with Tolworth Rise North, making it safe for cyclists to ride on the footway at the end of the eastbound slip road to continue across Elmbridge Avenue without dismounting

    ·   Widening the shared use path on Beverley Way beneath the Coombe Way Flyover, installing new tactile paving at crossing points and resurfacing the shared path.



  • The Rotary Club of Morden - May 2016

    Rotary - changing people’s lives for the better -Come and join us.

    Your local Rotarians would like to thank everyone who supported our Christmas collection.  It was by some distance our best ever total. The weather was relatively kind, so all Santa's sleigh tours went well, plus we had a very good response with our collection in Lower Morden Lane aka "Electric Avenue". 

    Most of the funds have already been distributed to these local good causes:

    St.Raphael’s Hospice tops the list. Regular readers will know it receives 25% of its costs from the NHS, and each year depends on over £3 million from local fund-raising.  The Hospice assists over 1000 patients and their families annually, and your Rotary Club will continue to give as much support as possible to its essential service to our community. 

    Other organisations we have supported with donations are as follows. 

    Arthritis Care Merton; Merton Guild of Social Welfare; 16th Morden Scouts Morden; Little League Football.Friends in St.Helier and Friends in Lower Morden.  (These Friends are local clubs to prevent loneliness, isolation and to keep people independent and living in their own homes);
    Priory School Wimbledon. (Special gift of books for Year 6 students); ABCDreams (Rotary supports self-help projects in Lyamungo Sinde Village in Tanzania). 

    Also, as I write, the Club is aiming to help a severely disabled local nine year old child with individual transport needs to and from his special needs school in Kingston. 

    We have another two current projects we'd like to ask you to help us with. Firstly, we're collecting your unwanted spectacles again! Any strength and style in serviceable condition please. 

    The first batch of over 100 pairs of specs that were sent out to Tanzania was all taken up by very happy kids and parents straightaway. If we can send the same amount again we now know that there are many more people who would be thrilled to have them! 

    You can take them to the Mace Store / Post Office counter at 340 Grand Drive, and our thanks to Mr. Ashwin for his support. Also you may take to the Millennium Stores / Post Office at 334 West Barnes Lane, and thanks also to Mr. Surej for his help. 

    Secondly, we do collect for
    St.Raphael's all year round.  If you have loose change in a jar / box, ring us if you'd like to donate this to the Hospice, and we'll collect. Your donations are boosted by the charitable giving" tax benefit this way. We've raised over £5000 in loose change, and have a number of "regulars" 
    we'd like to thank. 

    If you'd like us to pick up some change, or specs if the Post office is not convenient, we're happy to oblige. 

    Once again, our sincere thanks for your support, 
    Morden Rotarians. 


    Contact 0208 404 6451 Joss Ollett, for any collection requests. 

  • Chairman's Annual Report 2015/2016

    At this time last year, we were all concerned at the proposals to build a huge number of flats and houses on the Rainbow Estate off Grand Drive. This is a landlocked site, which is surrounded by railway lines, and is designated for mainly industrial and business use. There was also meant to be a facility to park and ride at Raynes Park station, but this was not fully worked through.  Despite our reasoned objections, the proposals were approved by the Planning Committee and not called in by the Mayor of London. 

    The anxiety we felt about these proposals remains, but the chances of any major development being progressed in the near or medium term have been much reduced by the impact of the even more devastating possibilities connected with the proposed CrossRail 2. This is the new cross London railway which will pass through Raynes Park and Wimbledon on its way to north London, and for which the Government has pledged funding. 

    Many of the proposals for enhancing the rail links in this area will cause planning blight for 10 years or more and would seem to prevent any work being carried out on the Rainbow site. 

    We have set out in The Guide our concern at the weakness of the consultation held so far for what is being proposed, and our horror at the suggestions being made. I know that our MP Stephen Hammond is deeply concerned and has held a recent meeting at the House of Commons to find a way forward that does not result in the wholesale destruction of the town centre of Wimbledon. As he will be speaking to us tonight, I will not repeat his views now. The best solution for this area would appear to be a tunnel from Berrylands under Raynes Park and Wimbledon, which would obviate the need to close the two level crossings at Motspur Park and West Barnes. Any other solution would result in traffic being gridlocked on Grand Drive for the whole day and not just at rush hours. 

    Speaking of Grand Drive brings me to the lively debate we have been having as to finding a way to ease the movement of traffic. Coming south from the station, approaching the junction with Bushey Road, the junction is controlled by Transport for London, but Merton Council traffic officers are able to have a real input into proposed solutions. 

    We will continue to put pressure on the authorities to find a permanent solution to this long term problem. 

    One good piece of news is that the gas works intended to be carried out on the bottom part of Grand Drive will not happen this year. Instead, we have been promised a full consultation before the works starts next year. We will hold a public meeting as part of that consultation to try and find a way to keep traffic moving from the Beverley roundabout, without making life intolerable for people living along Cannon Hill Lane, along which the traffic is likely to be diverted.  

    I would like to thank the members of the Committee most involved in planning and transport matters for their hard work and expertise. They are David Freeman, Jerry Cuthbert, and Jan Bailey. I particularly tonight want to single out Rachel Skinner, who works as an expert in the field of transport management, for her enormous contribution, but who is moving away from the area. We’re very glad that she promises to keep in touch. 

    The focus of attention for the Association has continued to move from being principally concerned with matters of planning and traffic to that of its historic role of being a social organisation. 

    Last year was the first full year of operation of the Pavilion which is the centre of the many activities now open to members of the Association and local residents generally. It continues to go from strength to strength, and the Treasurer will shortly be able to confirm this when he reviews our accounts. It houses regular weekly sessions run by various activity and interest groups and bookings are also solid for family parties over the weekends.  

    The Pavilion is managed by a dedicated group of members who take the bookings, open and close the building and keep up the improvements. This voluntary work is time consuming and onerous, and I want to thank again Jerry Cuthbert and David Freeman, as well as our Treasurer John Townsend. Linda Fitch has also been a great help in taking care of and improving the gardens.  

    We would welcome some more assistance in managing the Pavilion which is now such an important part of our activity. We are grateful that Mrs. Deveson has come forward during the year to assist us, and hope that more members can be found to do the same. 

    The Association established the Pavilion Social Club two years ago and is very successful, with growing numbers of men and women at its weekly get-togethers on Thursday afternoons, which have occasional guest speakers. It also organises visits out to places of interest. It has been run from the outset by Jill Truman and Andrea Hannan, and I have seen for myself their extraordinary rapport with the members and the enthusiasm they bring. We thank them. 

    We intend to hold a summer party to thank another much larger group of people without whom the Association could not begin to function. These are our dedicated Area Co-Ordinators and Road Stewards who deliver the Guides to all our members in all weathers. The party will be held at the Pavilion on the afternoon of Saturday 11th June during the weekend of celebrations to mark the 90th Birthday of The Queen. The invitations will be going out soon, and we hope that as many of them as possible will come and join us.  I want to thank also Andrew Barwick and Dick Coleman, our Distribution Managers, for their skilful organisation of such a large group of people. 

    Our web site is much visited, and is always kept fully up to date with matters of both general and immediate interest. We get an increasing numbers of enquiries in this way. The technical work is managed by our Web Master, Charles Briscoe-Smith and on a day to day basis mainly by Jerry Cuthbert. We thank all those involved. 

    The backbone of the Association continues to be the work put in by our Joint Secretaries, Jill Truman and Jan Bailey. They are simply invaluable and are human dynamos.  Jill not only finds time to edit the Guide, but also to act as our Advertising Manager, and we can only continue to afford to publish The Guide if we can obtain ongoing advertising revenue. Jan continues to amaze everyone with her encyclopaedic knowledge of everything that happens here and whom on the Council to approach to get things done she also prepares meticulous minutes of our meetings.   I thank them both. 

    We continue to play our full part in the wider Raynes Park Association and on the Raynes Park Forum. We are proud that Raynes Park is now widely heralded to be one of the finest small high street shopping areas in the whole country. I would thank Jerry Cuthbert, Jill Truman, and particularly tonight Pamela Robinson for their contribution to these community discussions. 

    I must mention also the vital role that our West Barnes and Raynes Park Councillors play in coming to our meetings, in acting on our concerns and in bringing them to the attention of the powers that be in Merton. 

    As our Treasurer will tell you, we are financially in good heart, and John Townsend is that rare person, who is not only excellent with numbers, but can make an explanation of them interesting.  I want to thank him, and would also thank our Honorary Auditor Brian Lewis-Lavender. 

    We are sorry that our of our Committee stalwarts, Peter Connellan, passed away recently. He was a perfect gentleman and looked after the Shannon Corner area of the Association for very many years, as well as serving on local schools and in many other voluntary roles. We will miss him. 

    Finally, as I said last year, we do need fresh blood at all levels both to manage our affairs, and especially to help with advertising, and with running the Pavilion. If you can spare any time or energy to help, we will welcome you with open arms. Thank you. 

    John Elvidge, Chairman

    13th April 2016

  • West Barnes Library - April 2016

    West Barnes Library urgently needs more volunteers to assist staff at a range of levels.  You could be helping to keep the library open for the people of Motspur Park! Don’t hold back - training will be given – and you might find it fun.  For more details and to apply, please ask at the library counter. 

    And the good news is…

    Anthony Hopkins, Merton's Head of Library and Heritage Service has told the Friends of West Barnes Library that the London Borough of Merton remains committed to developing the West Barnes Library site so that first class library services are enjoyed for generations to come. Council officers have been working to explore what will provide the best value and best quality approach for the site and are expected to publish further news regarding the proposed approach soon. As part of the work into starting the development some interesting new options are being explored including the formation of a council run development company to realise the new library and residential property. Due to the detailed work undertaken in looking at the different options there may be a slight delay to the new development starting and we will continue to update you when there is further news.

  • Morden Rotary Club - April 2016

    Rotary - changing people’s lives for the better -Come and join us. 

    Your local Rotarians would like to thank everyone who supported our Christmas collection.  It was by some distance our best ever total. The weather was relatively kind, so all Santa's sleigh tours went well, plus we had a very good response with our collection in Lower Morden Lane aka "Electric Avenue". 

    Most of the funds have already been distributed to these local good causes:

    St.Raphael’s Hospice tops the list. Regular readers will know it receives 25% of its costs from the NHS, and each year depends on over £3 million from local fund-raising.  The Hospice assists over 1000 patients and their families annually, and your Rotary Club will continue to give as much support as possible to its essential service to our community. 

    Other organisations we have supported with donations are as follows. 

    Arthritis Care Merton; Merton Guild of Social Welfare; 16th Morden Scouts Morden; Little League Football.Friends in St.Helier,  and Friends in Lower Morden.  (These Friends are local clubs to prevent loneliness, isolation and to keep people independent and living in their own homes);
    Priory School Wimbledon. (Special gift of books for Year 6 students); ABCDreams (Rotary supports self-help projects in Lyamungo Sinde Village in Tanzania). 

    Also, as I write, the Club is aiming to help a severely disabled local nine year old child with individual transport needs to and from his special needs school in Kingston. 

    We have another two current projects we'd like to ask you to help us with. Firstly, we're collecting your unwanted spectacles again! Any strength and style in serviceable condition please. 

    The first batch of over 100 pairs of specs that were sent out to Tanzania was all taken up by very happy kids and parents straightaway. If we can send the same amount again we now know that there are many more people who would be thrilled to have them! 

    You can take them to the Mace Store / Post Office counter at 340 Grand Drive, and our thanks to Mr. Ashwin for his support. Also you may take to the Millennium Stores / Post Office at 334 West Barnes Lane, and thanks also to Mr. Surej for his help. 

    Secondly, we do collect for
    St.Raphael's all year round.  If you have loose change in a jar / box, ring us if you'd like to donate this to the Hospice, and we'll collect. Your donations are boosted by the charitable giving" tax benefit this way. We've raised over £5000 in loose change, and have a number of "regulars" 
    we'd like to thank. 

    If you'd like us to pick up some change, or specs if the Post office is not convenient, we're happy to oblige. 

    Once again, our sincere thanks for your support, 

    Morden Rotarians.  


    Contact 0208 404 6451 Joss Ollett, for any collection requests. 

  • Raynes Park Afternoon Townwomen's Guild - April 2016

    At the well attended AGM on 18th February the existing Committee of four was re-elected for another year.  The Chairman thanked all those members who help out in various ways at monthly meetings to support this small group, but encouraged members to consider joining the team.  The Bring & Buy table made £35. 

    A large group went to Wimbledon Theatre for Chicago.  Black fishnets, skimpy clothing and tight fitting hipster trousers matched the suggestive movements of the dancers and the sleazy All That Jazz music.  This was played by excellent musicians visible at the back of the stage.   A nicely ironic production which surprisingly had me laughing out loud at some tongue in cheek moments. 

    Following the successful lunch in Fulham on 2nd March, a group tried in vain to get to the Dickens Museum on the 8th.  However, after a long wait for the bus, followed by the investigation of an alternative bus route and another wait, we went to the pleasant  Natural Kitchen at Waterloo Station for a coffee and to warm up.  Here we decided to take the tube to Trafalgar Square, where the party split, some continuing last month’s exploration of the Portrait Gallery and others taking on the National Gallery. 

    We will try again for the Dickens Museum on Tuesday 12th April! 

    The lunch club will go to the Haywain, Epsom on Thursday, 7th. 

    Our monthly meeting is at 1.30 pm at St Saviour’s Church Hall on the 3rd Thursday of the month.  In April Colin James will give an illustrated talk entitled ‘Secret Gardens of London’.  Visitors are always welcome at our meetings. 

    Dorothy Raymond; 020 8395 9489 

  • Raynes Park Residents' Lawn Tennis Club - April/May 2016

    We are pleased that our head coach José Marquez has been appointed to take over the supervision of the Saturday morning junior coaching sessions following the departure of our previous coach Michele Shanley. He already runs the coaching sessions on Tuesday and Friday so this should assist in our aim of increasing the number of junior tournaments and competitions. 

    We will be holding an Open Day on Sunday 15th May in conjunction with the LTA’s Great British Tennis Weekends at which there will be special introductory offers, free coaching and refreshments. Prospective members can book in advance through the LTA website or just turn up on the day. 

    Paul Sadler,

    Meadowview Road, SW20 9AN



  • Chairman's Blog - April 2016


    The Annual General Meeting of the Association will be held in the meeting room behind the Raynes Park Library on Wednesday 13th April, starting at 7.30 pm. 

    Do come along. We’ve invited our local MP, Stephen Hammond, and he will be discussing the latest proposals for CrossRail 2, and other local issues. He’s always keen to answer questions from members present. 

    There’s also going to be a break from the formal business with some wine, soft drinks, and nibbles.   It’s a relaxed and informative way to spend the evening. 


    In the February edition of The Guide I mentioned that the Council was thinking of ceasing to maintain the lawn of the bowling club in the Joseph Hood recreation ground, as it cost too much to keep it in a first class condition. The result would have been that the Club would have had to close.  

    I’m very glad to report that the Council has relented after a massive effort by the Club, the community, and local Councillors.  The majority party was impressed by its level of support, as shown by a petition attracting 1000 signatures, with a further 1000 people protesting on-line. The Club had also found an experienced contractor who was able to halve the yearly cost of maintenance. The Club has been given a year’s grace to see if it all works out, but the signs are good. We are told that the publicity has helped the Club to bring in another 20 members so far. 

    As we said before, this kind of sporting facility can be used by people of all ages, and helps greatly to keep the more elderly among us in good health. It would be very short sighted to lose it. 


    We’ve had a good number of comments about our suggestion that a right hand filter be added at these lights to assist traffic coming from the direction of the station up Grand Drive and wanting to turn right to clear the junction. It would mean that traffic coming down Grand Drive or along Bushey Road  would have to be held up for longer. Most of the comments have been supportive of the idea. 

    The problem is that while there’s enough room for two cars coming from the station to stand alongside each other, there isn’t enough room for a car and  a lorry, bus, or a large 4 x4. So if one of these wants to turn right, it clogs up the whole road, often right back to the tunnel under the railway.  

    It is not possible to widen the road at that point. 

    Our Councillors have taken this up with the Council’s transport officer. The lights are actually controlled by Transport for London, whose decision it would be. It is recognised that this junction, during the rush hours, is heavily congested, but the solution is not easy. The Council says that a re-modelling exercise will be undertaken of the sequencing of the lights, to see if anything can be done. We will keep a close eye on its progress.  


    Each year the Council carries out a detailed review of issues and services that affect local people, through a scrutiny panel.  We have suggested that this year they look at the whole issue of care in the community, given the increasing age of the local population.  This would cover such things as day to day physical help and meals for those who are house bound, access, and the inability of hospitals to discharge in - patients back to their homes because of the lack of care for them ( “Bed blocking”) . 


     While we continue to have a marvellous team of hard working area co-ordinators and road stewards, we do urgently need some fresh blood to help us manage the Association.  We have been looking for an honorary advertising manager for some time, since we can only continue to publish The Guide each month if we get revenue from the advertisements placed in it. 

    Also, the Pavilion continues to go from strength to strength, with large numbers of new bookings. It is run by a dedicated team, but they need extra help with opening and closing the premises. 

    We would be very grateful for anyone who can volunteer their help in any way they can. 

    John Elvidge 



  • Sir Joseph Wood - Litter Pick - 12 March 2016

    The Friends of Sir Joseph Hood Memorial Playing Fields are organizing a Litter Pick on 12th March, meeting in the Car Park at 2.00 p.m.  


    The Friends would be grateful for as many volunteers as possible.  You will be warmly welcomed if you can join them.  Bin bags and Grabbers will be provided.

  • Raynes Park Afternoon Townswomen's Guild - February 2016

    Oh dear! Oh dear!  What a disappointment in January – so our apologies to visitors who came along to the meeting hoping to hear our lady harpist.  Regrettably a hiccup in her diary meant she missed the booking with us.  She is devastated about this and has promised to come to our meeting in May. 

    The Lunch Club visit to The George on 2nd February was a welcome social gathering with a large group filling up one corner of the pub.  The following week a group of five visited the National Portrait Gallery.  With so many interesting contemporary and historic faces to examine, despite breaking for a bite in the basement café, and lingering, we did not get round all the displays in this surprisingly extensive and enjoyable Gallery. 

    Next month the lunch club will visit the Lloyds No. 1 Bar in Fulham on Wednesday 2nd March.  The visit will be on Tuesday, 8th March to the Dickens Museum in Holborn.  Our next monthly meeting will be on Thursday, 17thMarch at 1.30 for 1.45 start at St Saviour’s Church Hall and will feature a speaker. Visitors are always welcome. 


    For more information please telephone Dorothy Raymond on 020 8395 9489.      

  • Lambton Road PPG - AGM 12 March 2016

    Lambton Road GP Practice – Patient Participation Group (PPG) 

    Annual Meeting - 2016 

    Listening Week – the results! 



    §  Come and hear your feedback about the practice

    §  What are your ideas for improving the appointments system?

    §  Meet the PPG, and have your say 

    Saturday 12th March 2016; 2 p.m. - 3.30 p.m.

    Raynes Park Health Centre

    Please note that this meeting will include the PPG AGM 


    No need to RSVP – We look forward to seeing you.

  • Kids First - March 2016

    "Helping your child sleep"

     with Gail Wagstaff, Parent Advisor, Contact a Family 

    Understanding sleep issues, the importance of sleep, top tips & practical solutions.

    Plus sources of help, advice & support 

    Thursday 10 March - 10am to 12.30pm

    Chaucer Centre, Room L, Canterbury Road, Morden, SM4 6PX 

    Places are limited so please book ahead for all events to guarantee your place 

    Tracy Blackwell; Kids First/Talk Autism Administrator

    Merton Mencap

     T:    020 8687 4644



    visit us at

  • Peter Connellan - December 2015

    Earlier this year we received the sad news that Peter Connellan, who had been an active member of the Association, had died on 17 January 2016. Until his recent retirement, Peter was for many years our Area Co-ordinator for the Association’s Claremont Avenue area. 

    The following article about Peter is taken from the article by David Hurst in the December 2015 issues of “Edgeways”, The Sacred Heart’s Parish Magazine.


    The list of Peter’s roles and activities shows that both he (and his wife Mary) worked tirelessly for others, both within their local Parish of Sacred Heart and in the wider community. 

    Indeed they were both awarded the Pope’s Benemerenti Medal for long and exceptional services to the Catholic Church and, in their case, to Scouting and Guiding as well. 

    Married in 1951 at the Church of the Good Shepherd near Bromley (by Fr Rourke SJ), Peter knew his wife since childhood. In fact, it has been said that he was very nearly born in Mary’s parents’ house!   We are also told that before becoming engaged Peter used to visit Mary regularly ‘travelling by 604 trolley, four trams and the 54 bus - and it cost just one shilling and sixpence’! Since then both of their lives have been ridiculously full and fulfilling. 

    Peter worked for BT (formerly the GPO) for 42 years,  and in his spare time - amongst other activities - he was a Governor of two local  schools, Treasurer of the Scientific Society, Secretary of the local Civic Society, Group Scout Leader of 19th Wimbledon Scouts, formerly 5th and 15th Wimbledon Scouts, as well as running the Sacred Heart Mass Centre. 

    Peter’s connection with the Raynes Park & West Barnes Residents’ Association spanned many years – indeed, as long as any of us can remember - as both Area Co-Ordinator for the Claremont Avenue area, and a Committee Member, retiring only very recently, when his health and that of Mary’s, forced him to do so. 

    Mary was equally dedicated.  She was a founder member and vice chair of the National Federation of Credit Unions, treasurer for the local Duke of Edinburgh awards scheme, chair of the Women’s Sodality Group and secretary for the Wimbledon Scout District for which she received a Medal of Merit for Services to Scouting. Mary also received the Mayor of Merton’s Community Award in 1994. 

    Just last July Mary and Peter were honoured at a school leaver’s mass and handed a special icon of the Sacred Heart with Peter’s name on the Heart of Jesus to thank him for running the school’s Mass Centre for so many years 

    We offer Mary and the couple’s family of seven children, our heartfelt condolences on their loss, and our grateful thanks for Peter’s life and all he has done for the local community.


  • Notice of AGM 2016 - 13 April


    of the

    Raynes Park & West Barnes Residents’ Association

    Will be held at the Raynes Park Library Meeting Rooms

    (Via side entrance in Aston Road) 

    ON WEDNESDAY 13th APRIL 2016 at 7.30 p.m. 



    1.         Apologies for Absence

    2.         Chairman’s Report on the Work of the Association during 2015/16

    3.         Treasurer’s Report

    4.         Election of Officers and Committee


    Break for Refreshments


    5.         Speaker:       Stephen Hammond M.P.





    6.         Updates on current Planning Matters

    7.         Residents’ Forum and Any Other Business 


    Please bring a copy of ‘The Guide’with you to verify membership


  • TfL News - February 2016

    Image result for tfl logoNew Film to help make London’s Roads Safer 

    We recently launched a hard-hitting film showing the dangers of taking risks on the road. The film is part of our latest road safety campaign to address the five main sources of road danger that contribute to casualties and collisionon London’s roads:

    • Travelling too fast
    • Becoming distracted
    • Undertaking risky manoeuvres
    • Driving under the influence of alcohol
     or drugs

    • Failing to comply with the laws of the roads

    To watch the film, visit 
    our YouTube page



    Cracking Down on Congestion 

    A new team of 40 TfL Road and Transport Enforcement Officers is being deployed to key traffic routes across London to tackle illegal road behaviour. The team, which will be 80-strong by spring, will deal with problems such as illegal stopping and delays to road users caused by the unloading of deliveries. 

    Funding Secured for New Stations 

    We have secured €4m from the European Commission to progress plans for two new London Overground stations located at Old Oak Common. We will match this funding to develop the various options for possible stations at Old Oak Common Lane and Hythe Road. 

    Temporary Closure of Holland Park Tube Station 

    Holland Park Tube Station will be closed until August 16th for lift replacement work. 

    Bakerloo Line Extension

    We are starting detailed technical work to build a case for extending the line from Elephant and Castle to Lewisham via Old Kent Road, after a thorough assessment of possible routes. We published a summary of our findings which shows this route has the strongest case, and the potential to support around 25,000 homes. By terminating at Lewisham, the link could be operational by 2030. We have not ruled out a second phase extension beyond Lewisham in the future. 

  • Holiday Top Tips

    Top tips from the Safer Neighbourhood Teams to help you avoid being burgled whilst away on holiday 

    • Mark or etch your property with your postcode, house or flat number or the first three letters of your house name.
    • Register items with a serial number at:
    • Do not leave your car keys or ID documents near doors, letterbox or windows. Lock them away safely.
    • Close and lock all your doors and windows, even if you are only going out for a few minutes.
    • Keep your valuables out of sight through windows.
    • Leave some lights on & ask a neighbour to pop in and open/close curtains if it will be dark before you get home or you are away for a few days.
    • Install a visible burglar alarm &/or CCTV & don’t forget to set it!
    • Always keep sheds and outbuildings securely locked.
    • Lock away any ladders safely out of view.
    • Cancel milk or other deliveries if you will be away for days or weeks at a time.

    Don’t advertise your holiday on Social Media!!!
    If you see anyone acting suspiciously in your area, call 999 immediately.

  • Peter Connellan

    It was with great sadness that the Association learned of the death of a dear friend and long-standing Member, Peter Connellan, on Sunday 17th January 2016.  Until his recent retirement, Peter was for many years Area Co-ordinator for the Association’s Claremont Avenue area.  We offer our heartfelt condolences to Peter’s wife and family.



  • The Memory Lane Club

    The Memory Lane Club celebrated nine months of opening with a Christmas Party for all its members in mid-December. Thanks to the generosity of local shops, the members enjoyed wonderful food and mince pies, in a hall filled with balloons, crackers and gifts, followed with dancing to suitably festive music. Everyone was in good voice for a selection of rousing Christmas carols before going home.

    The Memory Lane Club is a free drop-in meeting place for people with dementia and their carers, enabling them to socialise in a supportive environment. It is run by a group of volunteers and meets every Wednesday from 10:30am to 12:30pm in the Parish Lounge, Edge Hill, Wimbledon, SW19 4LU. 

    In addition to fun and friendship, the Club offers a range of games and activities which include dominoes, bingo, snooker, singing and Zumba Gold.  Refreshments are served. The Parish Lounge is a welcoming, comfortable space with disabled access, a kitchen and toilet facilities.  



  • Lambton Road Medical Practice - January 2016

    Written by patients for patients 

    Listening Week – 2

    Many thanks to all those who participated at the Practice or online by filling in the survey form and comments leaflet. We had a great response – a total of 400 survey replies and, additionally, over 100 comments card responses. These are now being analysed and we will let you have further information in due course. We particularly appreciated the time given by patients who talked to us on a one-to-one basis. 

    Local Services for Older People – 2015 edition

    This booklet, which gives details of services that are available for older patients in our area, has been updated by the PPG. After their 75th birthday the Practice will write to patients with details of their dedicated doctor and will include a copy of this booklet. Patients who recently attained the age of 75 will also be sent a copy. 

    We did make a formal application to NHS England for a grant towards its production. Our application, although unsuccessful, was highly commended. Our thanks to the Practice, therefore, for meeting the cost of printing this updated version. 

    The booklet is on the Practice website under Our Documents or a copy may be obtained via Reception. We hope you will find it useful, and if you spot any services that we’ve missed please let us have details (either by email to or by leaving a note with Reception for passing on to us) for inclusion in any future edition. 

    Revised guide to healthy ageing

    NHS England, in partnership with Age UK, has published a revised version of A Practical Guide to Healthy Ageing (mentioned in our April Newsletter). The guide is particularly relevant for people aged around 70 years who may be suffering from mild frailty. It covers key areas including preventing falls, staying well in winter, eye and foot care and mental social isolation, with suggestions on when to seek medical advice and support. Free copies of the guide can be ordered by calling 0300 123 1002 quoting reference HA2, or online via 

    Brief Profile of Doctor Johns who recently joined our Practice

    Melloney Johns studied medicine on the graduate entry program at St George’s Hospital Medical School, qualifying in 2009. She completed her GP training at Guy’s and St Thomas’ Hospitals and worked in an inner city practice in Lambeth until moving to join Lambton Road in September this year. Her particular interests include nutrition, health promotion and preventative medicine. She enjoys running and travel. 

    We are thinking about the possibility of a new look News letter in the New Year, but meanwhile we send Seasons Greetings to all our fellow patients and best wishes for a healthy 2016. 

    Contact: or leave a note with Reception 


    Patient Participation Group (PPG) Members: Jan Bailey, Charlotte Bennett, Judith Brodie (Chair), Elsa Browne, Janice Cameron, Marilyn Frampton, Lisa Manara, Ian Ritchie, Marie Robertson, Elizabeth Savidge

  • Chairman's Blog - February 2016


    Merton Bowling Club is a Council owned bowling green situated in the Joseph Hood recreation ground off Cannon Hill Lane. 

    The bowling lawn has always been maintained by the Council to the highest standards, and the Club is greatly valued as a local sporting facility. It has suitable premises, changing rooms and a bar.  A large number of local residents, particularly of the older generation, use it for 5 months every summer. Matches are played against other Clubs both home and away. 

    It is an affiliated social activity of the Residents’ Association, and the details of its honorary secretary can be found here and in The Guide

    In 2001 the Council’s Open Spaces Strategy undertook to maintain the facilities until 2026, recognising the social pleasure and recreation it offered.  

    Unfortunately the members have been told that the Council will not maintain the green after the end of this financial year in April.  This is to save the relatively small amount this costs. The amount, however, is more than the members can undertake to meet from their own resources. 

    They have circulated a petition protesting at this decision, and hope to get 1,000 signatures. This is to emphasise to the Council majority members that this is a valuable resource, largely used by more elderly people. It is stupid to take away this facility when our population is aging, and all the emphasis is on keeping people alert and fit as they grow older. 

    We urge everyone to write to the Council, asking for an urgent re-think of this regressive policy. 


    The promoters of CrossRail2 held a series of public meetings in December to consult on the impact of the building work necessary to implement the new proposed cross London railway. These included two days in the Piazza in the town centre of Wimbledon. 

    We have to say that the meetings were not well publicised, and were obviously held at the wrong time of the year, when everyone was focused on Christmas.  Further, the responses had to be received by the very early date after Christmas of 8th January. 

    A small group of the committee of the Residents’ Association worked hard to give in our official response by 8th January, and we are very grateful for their expertise and efforts. This may be read here and in The Guide, so that residents can fully understand the major impact this may well have on ourlocal community. 

    If the suggested proposals go ahead, it is likely that the town centre of Wimbledon will be blighted as a shopping centre foryears tocome. The proposals include the demolition of the Prince of Wales pub; the grade II listed fire station from 1904, and the deconsecrated church next door. Part of Centre Court will go. 

    This is on top of the unconnected closure this January of Waterstones and W.H. Smith’s.  There appear to be no plans to re-locate these valuable stores elsewhere in Wimbledon. Waterstones announces in its window that the nearest shops will be in Putney and Wandsworth, while Smith’s give no indications whatever of any new location.  We understand that their moves are the result of a new large bank, the Metrobank, taking over the premises. 

    The proposals do not yet cover the centres of Raynes Park and Motspur Park but we can expect similar disruption here for years to come. 

    The scheme at present would also worsen road access via the West Barnes and Motspur Park level crossings, given the number of extra trains on the lines.  That would mean gridlock on the whole local road system. There have been vague suggestions as to bridges at these points. Local tunnels at these points would not appear to be practical. 

    The suggestion was made at one of the public meetings that to alleviate the wholesale destruction of our local centres, and the problems of crossing the railway, that there should be a much larger tunnel built starting from the Berrylands area, as was done on the new high speed line from Ebbsfleet in Kent to St Pancras.  


    The traffic coming from Raynes Park station to the Bushey Road traffic lights is held up for much of the day as the junction is too narrow to allow for cars going ahead, as well as for lorries and buses wanting to turn right. 

    We wonder whether a right hand filter should be installed at the end of the green sequence for traffic coming from the station up Grand Drive.  While there would be some loss of movement for traffic coming down Grand Drive, the overall flow of the traffic would be improved. Let us know what you think. 


    John Elvidge 

  • Crossrail 2 - The Association's Response

    We submitted the following response to the Crossrail 2 Public Consultation, which closed on 8 January 2016

    The Raynes Park and West Barnes Residents’ Association (RBWBRA) was formed in 1928 to protect the interests of residents living in the communities of Raynes Park and West Barnes. It now represents around 5000 local residents, via a formal household membership that is renewed annually. 

    1.            Overview

    RPWBRA is supportive, in principle, of Crossrail 2 and its promise of improved connectivity for the areas around both Raynes Park and  Motspur Park stations. That said, it is crucial that the scheme details as they affect both areas are given careful thought in order to minimise (a) construction impacts and (b) longer-term adverse impacts on existing and future residents, businesses and visitors. At this time, RPWBRA does not have sufficient detail to form a definitive view about whether this is likely to be fulfilled for our own area or Wimbledon, our closest major retail and commercial centre. 

    Despite our overall support for the scheme, it is worth noting that many of our residents remain very concerned about the Crossrail 2 proposals, as there is very little official information in the public domain and the public consultation exercise was not well advertised in the local area, given the number of local residents who have an interest in the proposals. As a result, speculation is rife and many inaccurate ‘facts’ are in circulation. 

    RPWBRA and our residents would welcome further detail as it becomes available and would also ask for discussions with the team about local opportunities and constraints as they relate to the Crossrail 2 proposals. 

    2.            West Barnes & Motspur Park level crossings

    There are two existing level crossings within the RPWBRA boundary, both of which cross the branch line to Epsom and Chessington South. The first is at West Barnes Lane / Burlington Road, just south of Raynes Park station, while the second is in West Barnes and adjacent to Motspur Park station. 

    Both level crossings are well used and it is essential that high quality rail crossings are maintained once Crossrail 2 is operational. Specifically: 

    •  Leaving the two level crossings unchanged, with an uplift in service, would not be acceptable. The level crossing barriers are already closed for a significant proportion of the day, giving rise to delays, safety concerns and poor journey time reliability by car.
    • Closing the level crossing points is not a viable solution, given current levels of demand. Existing traffic congestion in the area is already high, particularly during peak hours, and closure of the level crossings would divert thousands of vehicles, adding pressure to key local routes such as the A3, Grand Drive and Bushey Road as well as local residential roads.
    • Permanent access across the railway must be maintained, ideally via grade separated crossings in similar locations near to the existing level crossings.  We recognise that the installation of bridges or similar is unlikely to be possible in the exact locations of the two level crossings. We see, however, that it may be possible to provide a new bridge across the railway at West Barnes Lane/Burlington Road, perhaps using land from the Tesco Extra car park and the office building located at the Tesco exit onto West Barnes Lane. We can also see potential to bring land to the south of Motspur Park station into new use (e.g. the former BBC site and/or the former gasworks), perhaps via a southward relocation of the station and the provision of a new bridge across the railway to replace the level crossing. We have not undertaken any formal investigation of these options but would ask that they are considered.

    ·         Care must be taken to balance the end solution in the wider network, to avoid pulling additional through traffic into the local area on distributor and local roads.

    ·         Such designs would also need to take into account the proximity major drainage watercourses in the vicinity that come under the Environment Agency’s authority. 

    3.            Line between Wimbledon and Raynes Park

    Given that the railway is on embankment close to Raynes Park, it is not clear whether a feasible design solution exists to add two new tracks without significant residential land-take. We are also aware of other significant constraints that exist alongside the rail line that would be costly to amend or divert. 

    RPWBRA can see the potential benefit, although not formally mentioned in the consultation material, of an alternative tunnel alignment for the two future ‘fast’ tracks running between Surbiton and London Waterloo, with a possibility for tunnel portals close to Berrylands and Earlsfield. This would then allow the existing four tracks between Raynes Park and Wimbledon (and beyond) to be converted for use by the increased numbers of stopping services, adding route flexibility and alternative routes when incidents occur. 

    4.            Raynes Park and Motspur Park stations

    RPWBRA would welcome the opportunity to share ideas about the future potential for improvement at both stations as part of the Crossrail 2 proposals. We understand that further design work and consultation is planned for 2016 on this section of the route and would ask that we are formally included in this process at the earliest stage.  One key requirement is that both future station layouts allow for full step-free access. 

    To form a more detailed view, we need full detail about the proposed totality of future rail services that will serve Raynes Park and Motspur Park, once Crossrail 2 is operational. 

    RPWBRA recognises that one of the next steps will be to safeguard land at both Raynes Park and Motspur Park stations. In our view, given the single access point to the southern side of Raynes Park station and other known constraints, it will be essential to safeguard land to the south of the station to offer flexibility and maximise long run benefit. 

    5.            Wimbledon station options

    We have reviewed the available information for the proposed Crossrail 2 changes at Wimbledon and we are keen to ensure that disruption is minimised. Specifically:

    ·         We do not have sufficient detail to be able to comment in full at this stage.

    ·         The option shared for consultation, even taking into account the latest construction phasing proposals, would appear to result in very significant and long-term disruption to Wimbledon’s retail and commercial centre.  This will directly impact Raynes Park and West Barnes residents.

    ·         The earlier proposals for a tunnel portal at Dundonald Road would appear to offer a far less disruptive (and possible less costly) alternative. The turning point for trains terminating at Wimbledon could be moved further down the line if necessary, perhaps past Raynes Park. We would ask that alternative options for the tunnel portal and Wimbledon station layouts are considered in full, and that we are involved with any onward consultation.


    We trust that the above is useful and look forward to receiving more detail very soon, and to engaging far more fully during 2016 and 2017.