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Raynes Park Forum - 30 June 2015

Notes from the Raynes Park Community Forum held on Tuesday 30 June 2015 

The meeting was chaired by Councillor Michael Bull, assisted by Tony Edwards from the local business Place, Design & Planning. 

Local Issues covered: School Places, Planning Applications, Cycle Route, Best High Street, Health Services, Future Meetings.


School Places

Tom Procter, the council’s Service Manager for Contracts and Schools Organisation, gave a presentation on school places. The presentation can be viewed at http://www.merton.gov.uk/community-living/communityforums/raynesparkcommunityforum.htm.

The council has implemented a primary school expansion programme to meet unprecedented additional demand, which together with a new primary ‘Free School’ (The Park School), is providing 4,830 extra places compared to 8 years ago. However, after this year, demand for the first year of primary school is forecast to fall slightly, so the challenge now is to provide sufficient places for the growing number of children that are transferring from primary to secondary school. 

For the west of the borough the strategy is to provide a new secondary school.  ‘Harris Wimbledon’ has been approved by the Department for Education as a free school but finding a suitable site is extremely challenging. The council accepts the need for this school and is still in discussions with the DoE over potential sites. It is hoped an announcement might be made on the matter in October. The council is not considering additional sites for a primary school as forecast information shows that demand is no longer increasing. Forecasts do take into account planned housing growth, but it is also necessary to review the impact of major developments on ‘child yield’ in a specific area. 

Current and Anticipated Planning Applications

Neil Milligan, the Development Control Section Manager at Merton Council, provided an update on planning applications:-

Rainbow Estate: The GLA raised issues which have now been resolved, therefore there are no insurmountable obstacles left to address.

Highways experts are looking at access around the site; parking spaces have been restricted to manage traffic and access.

Travelodge: A new contractor has been found and will commence work in about 10 weeks. The entrance to the hotel will be on amity Grove. There will be about 85-90 rooms and some parking spaces, but not many.

Greyhound Stadium: The application is likely to go to committee in September. There are still some issues to be resolved, such as affordable housing.

Amity Grove: An application for nine flats at building 2a was granted at committee.

14-16 Coombe Lane: An application for a 24-hour gym has been submitted; the council will look at if this is appropriate for the town centre. 

Proposed New Malden-Raynes Park-Wimbledon cycle route: Neil Milligan agreed to look into this further and to see if someone from Merton’s Highways team or from Sustrans might come along to talk about the topic at the next forum meeting. 

Application for Best High Street Award

Tony Edwards explained that a submission is to be made in mid-July, entering Raynes Park for the Best High Street Award. More details on the submission can be seen at: http://www.merton.gov.uk/community-living/communityforums/raynesparkcommunityforum.htm. 

Local Health Issues

Clare Gummett, Lay Member on the Merton Clinical Commissioning Group, gave an update:- 

Local GP practices in the borough are working to form a federation across the whole of Merton. One of the aims of the federation would be to help meet requirements for extended 8am-8pm GP hours.

An initiative has begun to encourage people to stop stockpiling unused medication and to only get repeat prescriptions for what they need as unused medicine currently costs Merton £1million a year.

A ‘Merton on the Move’ initiative has been launched for residents and businesses, encouraging people to be more active by walking, running or cycling more. For more information, visit https://merton.yomp.co/.

Work is taking place across the five South West London Clinical Commissioning Groups together with acute trusts, community services and Mental Health services, to look at working together as much as possible. An Issues Paper has been put together, which residents are encouraged to read ahead of proposed discussions to look at how the issues are resolved. The paper can be accessed at www.swlccgs.nhs.uk/issues-paper/. 

Open Forum

Councillor Jill West may start a petition against the closure of Barclays Bank in Raynes Park.

Councillor West also said that a sponsorship evening is planned on 16 July at 5.30pm at Absolute Abode, ahead of the Raynes Park Christmas Festival on 4 December. Small businesses are welcome to attend the evening to explore sponsorship opportunities.

Councillor Mary-Jane Jeanes encouraged residents to water trees and saplings on their streets and in the local area during the hot weather. 

Dates of future meetings all at 7.15pm, in the Library Hall:

Thursday 1 October 2015

Tuesday 1 December 2015

Thursday 3 March 2016



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