Author Archives: Councillor Jonathan Essex

Reigate and Banstead can choose to invest to make our services better and living here more affordable

This is the speech I made in response to Reigate & Banstead Borough Council’s budget proposal at last night’s Council meeting. (Please see the footnotes for references and further information.) I will start by thanking officers for their work preparing this financially sound budget. Yet our strong financial position includes money not yet used, which […]

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The Government should not force Surrey to make frontline cuts

Today was the annual budget-setting meeting for Surrey County Council.  This is the speech I made. I cannot support this budget.  As an opposition member here in Surrey I only get to vote on the budget envelope rather than on what’s inside. This budget hides all the details which could mean deeper cuts to care […]

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Marketfield Way: why no affordable housing?

At the Reigate & Banstead Borough Council Executive meeting last Thursday, the Conservatives announced the next phase of plans to develop on Marketfield Way car park in Redhill. The latest proposals added a few extra storeys to the plans previously unveiled – it will now be up to ten storeys – and included agreement that […]

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Greens oppose Airport City Gatwick plans

I am supporting residents opposed to the construction of a 172-acre business park to the east of Horley. Although I serve on both Surrey and Reigate and Banstead Councils, the first I heard about this was when the proposal for ‘Airport City Gatwick’ came to Reigate and Banstead’s Executive last week for agreement – you […]

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Parking update

Parking issues are probably raised more often than any others, with many residents finding it difficult to park near their homes because of commuters and shoppers parking in local roads. There are no easy answers to this thorny problem, and we are very aware that no solution is going to work for everybody.  The only […]

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Airports Commission report backs third Heathrow runway

The Airports Commission report, published today (1 July), has backed a third runway at Heathrow, saying it will add £147bn in economic growth and 70,000 jobs by 2050. This proposal from Howard Davies is deeply disappointing. His proposal for a third runway at Heathrow would see local communities further blighted by noise and air pollution […]

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Proposed cuts to bus services

Surrey County Council is proposing to make cuts to its local transport budget to the tune of  £2 million by 2017/18.  The proposals will be discussed at the Cabinet meeting next Tuesday (23 June). You can see the report that will be presented to the meeting here: http://mycouncil.surreycc.gov.uk/mgIssueHistoryHome.aspx?IId=13185

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Improving walking, cycling and bus facilities – have your say

Surrey County Council wants residents’ views on its proposals to improve walking, cycling and bus facilities between Redhill, Reigate, Woodhatch and along the A23 towards Horley and Gatwick. The aim is to make it easier for people to travel between Redhill, Earlswood, East Surrey Hospital, Whitebushes, Salfords, the new housing developments in Horley and Gatwick […]

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Redhill’s new road layout: less congestion now, more in the future?

Many residents have contacted us with concerns about the new road layout in Redhill. I welcome the improved facilities for walking, cycling and buses. But welcome as they are, these weren’t the reason for the change from one-way to two-way traffic. That was done to avoid complete gridlock resulting from the quadrupling of supermarket capacity […]

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Small improvements

This year we have secured a number of local highway improvements in Redhill East. Most are small and very local – but we hope that together they make a difference to the local environment.

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