Tuesday, 25 July 2017

Whitton Conservatives Announce #TeamWhitton for the 2018 Local Elections

We are proud to announce that the following candidates will be part of Whitton Conservative’s #TeamWhitton and will be standing for Whitton in the 2018 Local Elections to Richmond Council.

Gareth Elliott
I have lived in Whitton for 36 years having been born at West Middlesex Hospital and lived with my parents at Runnymede Gardens and now with my wife and children in Derwent Road.
As a local lad I have built up a formidable reputation as someone who cares passionately about Whitton but more importantly has taken action to improve it. Elected in 2010 I promised to reverse Liberal failings in Whitton High Street and am proud that as a Councillor I led and implemented the Uplift plan which resulted in the transformation of our town centre.
I have strong links within the community setting up the Whitton Lions Rugby Club as Chairman and standing as Director for the Whitton Park Sports Association. I also now sit on the Committee of the Whitton Business Association.
I want to ensure that we now win all three and continue to take Whitton forward.

Follow on Twitter - @WhittonThoughts

Grant Healy

Grant Healy was born in the West Midlands, where he worked in the automotive industry. After moving to London he worked for a number of years in the charity sector as a co-ordinator and fund raiser; he is currently a company director.
Grant successfully stood for election as a Councillor for Whitton in 2014. As a Councillor he represents Whitton in full Council and in meetings with the Leader and Cabinet Members, working on issues that affect the ward, etc. He has a 100% Council meeting attendance record and is currently Chair of the Richmond Conservative Group.

Follow on Twitter - @GrantHealySays

Sophie Lister
Sophie has lived in Whitton since January 2016, when she and partner Rob bought their first home together. With a keen interest in local politics and a strong sense of community, she has supported the local Conservatives alongside Grant and Gareth in the most recent General Election.

Professionally, Sophie works for a financial and corporate public relations company in London. After graduating from the University of Liverpool in 2007, Sophie worked for a publishing firm in New York for a year before taking roles in media groups, Thomson Reuters and the Press Association.

Follow on Twitter - @sophiewhitton

Wednesday, 19 July 2017

Turing House Update

Local Councillors met recently with Turing House School’s Colin Mackinlay (Headteacher) and Beverley Sanders (Vice Chair of Governors).

We were briefed on the current situation and the projected timeline and were able to ask a number of questions.
The main surveys have been completed on the Hospital Bridge Road site in Heathfield and the sale is on track for completion. The construction of the school will be put out for tender. The planning permission application process will be undertaken by the winning construction company. It is expected the application will be sent to the Council in the Spring of 2018. If successful the school would open on the permanent site, after a 75 week build, in September 2020.

A traffic plan is to be prepared by an independent consultancy engaged by the Education Funding and Skills Funding Agency.

A roundabout will be built on the current nursey carpark – with the nursery moved back to accommodate it. At present only 10% of students are driven to school by their parents. This is not expected to rise once the school opens on a permanent site.

Turing House School’s Board of Governors have no plans at present to re-examine the admission ratio (80/20%). We were assured that every application for a place for students from Whitton and Heathfield had been accepted. The school’s representatives promised that should this no longer be the norm, a change to the ratio would be considered.

A British Cycling approved cycle track that could be sited on the school’s perimeter is being seriously considered. This would be a part of Project Ride Safe, whose circuits provide opportunities for the young, the old and the disabled to gain confidence before they take to the open road.

We were promised that there would be full public consultation sometime after the completion of the sale and before the planning application stage.

Tuesday, 18 July 2017

Richmond parks set the standard, again!

Seventeen parks across the borough have again set the standard for having some of the best green spaces in the country, by reaffirming their Green Flag status today.

The Green Flag award scheme began in 1996 to recognise these spaces and to encourage others to achieve the same high environmental standards. The award acknowledges high standards of park facilities, including maintenance and community engagement.

Successful parks and green spaces are eligible to fly the ‘Green Flag’ for 1 year after which they have to re-apply to retain the award. However, a park or green space must maintain and improve on previous standards to be guaranteed a subsequent award.

In the 2017 inspection, London Borough of Richmond upon Thames has been re-awarded all sixteen of its Green Flags for its parks and open spaces managed by the Council.  And, a new one has been presented with the coveted award – Carlisle Park in Hampton.

Cllr Pamela Fleming, Cabinet Member for Environment, said:

“The borough has a long standing history of excellence within our parks and open spaces and this year’s Green Flag awards demonstrate that we are still leaders in London, celebrating our reputation as one of the most beautiful places in the country.

“I would like to say a big thank you to the council officers, our contractors and the communities that support our parks – particularly the Friends of Carlisle Park. They are instrumental in ensuring they are recognised as the fantastic green spaces they are.”

International Green Flag Award scheme manager Paul Todd said:

“We are delighted to be celebrating another record-breaking year for the Green Flag Award scheme. 

“Each flag is a celebration of the thousands of staff and volunteers who work tirelessly to maintain the high standards demanded by the Green Flag Award. The success of the scheme, especially in these challenging times, demonstrates just how much parks matter to people.”

The 17 Parks that were recognised by The Green Flag Awards were:

  • Cambridge Gardens
  • Carlisle Park
  • Crane Park (Jt with Hounslow)
  • Garricks Lawn
  • Ham Village Green
  • Hampton Common
  • Hatherop Park
  • Kew Green
  • Kneller Gardens
  • Palewell Common & Fields
  • Radnor Gardens
  • Richmond Green
  • Terrace Gardens and Buccleuch Gardens
  • The King's Field
  • Twickenham Green
  • Westerly Ware
  • York House Gardens

Monday, 17 July 2017

Nelson School Student Wins Competition to Design Nelson Road 20mph Roadsign

Megan's Winning Design

Big congratulations to Megan from Nelson School who won the Council's competition to design a new 20mph road sign for Nelson Road.

The new sign, with Megan's winning design, was installed after a short ceremony conducted during the School's assembly where she was presented with a mock-up of the actual sign, some LED lights and some book vouchers.

Cllr Gareth Elliott said:

Cllr Elliott with Highways
Cabinet Member
 Cllr Peter Buckwell
"I was delighted with the winning sign which was designed by Megan. He signs will now be seen by all drivers coming into Whitton along Nelson Road warning them to slow down as they pass both Nelson and St Edmund's school. It is a wonderful and striking addition to Whitton Village. Well Done Megan."

Thursday, 6 July 2017

Residents to have their say on possible new parking controls in Whitton

Residents in Whitton can have their say on a Council consultation which seeks their views on whether a new Community Parking Zone (CPZ) should be introduced in this area.

This consultation is being undertaken following a number of requests and petitions submitted to the Council.

The concerns from residents regarding current parking availability largely relate to daytime commuter traffic and non-residential parking. This can result in a lack of available parking spaces for the community.

The consultation boundary comprises a number of roads in this area, including properties on the west side of the High Street, though no changes are being proposed in the High Street itself.

Roads that are being consulted include Britannia Lane, Camellia Place, Constance Road, Mayfair Avenue, Melrose Avenue, Nelson Road (part), St Vincent’s Road and Tranmere Road.

The purpose of the consultation is to confirm whether there is over 50% support for a  new CPZ in all or part of the consultation area. The closing date for the consultation is 11 August 2017.

Cllr Peter Buckwell, Richmond Council Cabinet Member for Highways, said:

“Parking can be a big issue in roads where demand is high and our CPZ work programme is intended to respond primarily to those areas where a high number of requests for such schemes has been received.

“I encourage the residents of the impacted roads in Whitton to look out for their consultation documents and respond to the consultation to let the Council have their views.”  

For more information, to see if you live in the consultation area and to have your say, view the Whitton Parking Study Consultation.

Whitton Benefits Once Again from Community Pavement Repair Fund

Twenty seven pavements across the borough will benefit from an additional half a million pounds of improvements, thanks to Richmond Council.
Earlier this year 1342 people nominated 498 local pavements for repair as part of the Council’s Community Pavement Repair Fund.
Now in its sixth successive year, the Fund is £500,000 put aside for the community to nominate smaller pavement fixes in their local area. Each village will then receive £35k over the coming year for the repairs. Fixes could include replacing damaged paving slabs, replacing blacktop infills or eliminating standing water. Funding is directed to those eligible pavements that had the strongest level of support through the nomination process.
The funding is in addition to more than £3.7m allocated within the Planned Highway Maintenance Programme, which is the Council’s overall budget for improving pavements and roads each year.
Cllr Peter Buckwell, Cabinet Member Highways and Streetscene for Richmond Council, said:
"The Community Pavement Repair Fund gives residents that all important say in determining spending priorities. We have set £500,000 aside for this programme, separate from the £3.7m the Council has allocated for planned road and pavement repairs in 2017/18.
“Since nominations closed the Council’s Highways officers have worked hard to inspect the most frequently mentioned roads across the borough and produce cost estimates. I’m very pleased that the Council will now be starting work improving the locations that residents have identified in each village.
 "We know that residents want to see more done to repair pavements that are used day-in, day-out, and so that is what we are doing.  This is another demonstration of our commitment to listen to our residents and direct resources to areas of greatest concern.”

Whitton Road to benefit under 2017 Community Repair Fund
  • Chase Gardens
For further information about the Community Repair Fund and other roads across the Borough that have benefited please click here.

Richmond is the best borough to live with a family!

A London Travel Blog has hailed Richmond upon Thames as the best borough to live, with a family, in the Capita

London Unlocked, a city travel blog dedicated to all aspects of London, has created a guide to boroughs across the Capital, creating a helpful guide for families looking to move house.
They have looked at each London borough, and ranked them on a number of family friendly factors, such as schools, safety and average academic performance.

Richmond upon Thames topped the charts – coming first on GCSE results and lowest childhood obesity. The borough also came in the top five for low crime levels, number of schools per head and the percentage of borough that is green and open space.

Responding to the report, Richmond Council Cabinet Member for Children’s Services and Schools, Cllr Paul Hodgins, said:

“This report is telling us what we already know – Richmond upon Thames is the best place to live in London!

“We have the best primary schools in the country, high performing secondary schools, the fittest and healthiest young people and many award winning parks and open spaces.
“This is reflected in the Council’s investment in these areas. The Council has invested over £80m over the last three years to meet the rising demand for school places; improving and expanding school buildings; including rebuilds of our special schools; and extending parental choice by introducing sixth forms to our secondary schools.

“Since 2005 we will have spent £8.7m in improving parks, open spaces and play areas.
We are also proud to have some of the fittest and most active residents in the country. We pride ourselves in our investment in sport and leisure activities – helping all residents stay fit and healthy. In our borough alone we have 66 playing pitches, 58 tennis courts, and four bowling greens.

“We are not complacent. We do listen to our residents and invest funding in those areas that help make our borough great.”

Wednesday, 5 July 2017

Whitton's Councillors Promoted to Senior Positions

It is with great pride that today we can announce that both Whitton Councillors, Cllr Gareth Elliott and Cllr Grant Healy have both been appointed to senior positions within the leadership of Richmond Council and the local Conservative Party.

Cllr Elliott, Cabinet Member
for Digital and Technology
Following the recent election of the new Leader of the Council, Cllr Paul Hodgins, he has announced that Cllr Gareth Elliott is to be promoted to the Cabinet as Member for Digital and Technology. Cllr Elliott will work to further develop the Council’s own digital projects, as well as develop further opportunities for technology to enhance the lives of residents around the borough.

Cllr Gareth Elliott said: 

"It is with great pride that I have been selected to serve on the Cabinet and to lead on Digital and Technology. I believe strongly that technology can not only assist greatly in the provision of services but can also provide real opportunities to benefits the lives of residents. I look forward to starting in my new role".

Cllr Healy, Chairman of the
Conservative Group of Councillors
In addition to new appointments to the Cabinet the Conservative Group of Councillors are also pleased to announce the election of Cllr Healy as their new Chairman. Cllr Healy will work closely with the new Leader and Councillors across the Borough.

Cllr Healy said:

“I am equally proud to be elected to serve the Borough’s Conservative Councillors as Group Chair. It’s especially pleasing that two Whitton Councillors have been selected for senior roles, as its not many years ago that Whitton was seemingly forgotten by the then Council.”

Further information can be found at Richmond Council's website. Click here.