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 The Purley & Woodcote Blog
Cllr  Simon  Brew
Cllr  Oni  Oviri
Cllr  Badsha  Quadir

Coffee morning at Carriages, 840, Brighton Road
24/03/2018 16:15:00......Posted by Simon Brew

Carriages is a residential block of flats for sale at the junction of Brighton Road and Christchurch Road Purley which has just opened following conversion from an office block. At the moment, the owners are keen to increase its profile in the area and invited me to an open coffee morning where prospective buyers can come and look round, and meet a few of the new residents. One of Carriages' attractive features is a large roof-top sun-lounge and bar area where residents can congregate; this is a really good idea, and in my experience is very unusual in residential blocks. 

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 Other Blog Posts

Purley Rail Art project - now down to a small shortlist
10/12/2018 17:02:00.......Posted by Simon Brew

In the end we received no less that 23 entries for this project which was a very satisfying total. The artists live in all parts of the UK including one in Croydon, and they proposed a variety of artforms including sculpture, ceramics and mosiacs; many stressed how keen they were to involve the local community in the finalisation of the design.

We've now managed to whittle the applicants down to a small shortlist, and we hope to conduct final interviews before Christmas. 



Special Council meeting last Monday
10/12/2018 16:56:00.......Posted by Simon Brew


It was a pleasure to attend the Speical Council meeting convened before the main meeting on 3rd December, at the the famous Croydonian Olympic athlete Donna Fraser & Cristal Palace manager Roy Hodgson were both given the award of Fredom of the Borough of Croydon. In their very different ways, but have given immeasurable survice to the Borough and they were both delighted with their awards.



Surrey Iron Railway project: 22 expressions of interest!
03/12/2018 13:13:00.......Posted by Simon Brew

The closing date for initial expressions of interest in the project was 30 November, so this morning I met two council officers to review what we had received.

I'm absolutely delighted that there were no less than 22 responses, so we spent the morning going through them all. A few clearly hadn't read the brief properly or were otherwise unsuitable, but we were still left with over a dozen really good applications. This means that it will take longer than we expected to produce a short-list, but that's a wonderful problem to have. 



Purley Christmas lights switch-on
02/12/2018 17:23:00.......Posted by Simon Brew


Christmas is creeping up on us already!  For me the season starts with Purley's official Christmas lights switch-on which was accompanied yesterday by the singing of carols and other items by several local schools including Christchurch & Cumnor House. Mme Mayor Bernardette Khan and her husband also attended for the ceremony, and many local organisations such as the Baptist Church, Purley Rotary & Purley BID also supported the event. 



Coulsdon's Dinner/dance at Coulsdon Manor Hotel
01/12/2018 17:15:00.......Posted by Simon Brew

Nearly 70 local residents enjoyed an excellent Christmas dinner/dance at the Coulsdon Manor Hotel last night which was organised by the four local residents associations HADRA, ECRA, OCRA & CWRA. It's a great idea to arrange combined events like this, because none of the local RAs are big enough on their own, yet by pooling resources they laid on an excellent occasion.. and I even managed to win a raffle prize :-) 



TWICE - a new organisation aiming to teach people how to deal better with their finances
30/11/2018 17:05:00.......Posted by Simon Brew

TWICE is a new organisation which aims to help people avoid falling in debt by teaching them better how to manage money from an early age. The programme should help people avoid falling into debt, which so often spirals out of control, and can lead to family breakup, mental health problems and much worse. 

They held a launch meeting in Croydon yesterday at which I was pleased to offer to act as a counsellor in this field if required. More details are here: , and I urge anyone who is interested to get in touch, whether as a potential donor, a volunteer, or perhaps as a recipient of help. 



The Queen's Award for Enterprise for International Trade goes to ... a Purley business :-)
30/11/2018 16:52:00.......Posted by Simon Brew


I was honoured to be invited to a really unusual ceremony earlier this week: an investiture by the Queen's representative in Surrey Col. Ian McRobbie, who is the Deputy Lord Lieutenant of Surrey. The lucky recipient was the Purley beauty care products and training company Nouveau Lashes Ltd, based in Russell Hill Place, and they were receiving an award from Col McRobbie for an amazing export performance for their products and services over a three year period. There are only 33 holders of this award all over the whole of London, so the management was justifiably very proud of its achievement. It was a real pleasure to participate in the ceremony and to realise how many small successful businesses there are all around us.



Another busy day...
28/11/2018 16:20:00.......Posted by Simon Brew


I had three Council-related appointments yesterday. At 08:30am I was near Waterloo station visiting a mobile exhibition of the Google Digital garage, actually housed in a bus! We heard a presentation by the CEO of Google UK & Ireland on how Google has embarked upon a campaign to improve the IT skills of small businesses all over the UK. They run group and one-on-one seminars on many topics such as creation of business websites, introduction of online payment systems, how to use data analytics, and IT career development, and amazingly there are all free! Any small business really should check them out here: Just search for Google Digital Garage. 

I was back in Purley for a BID board meeting at lunchtime, and in the evening I attended a meeting of the Council's Cycle Forum, which seeks to promote the use of cycling across the Borough. Particularly in the hilly North & South of the borough, it's literally an uphill struggle to persuade more people to adopt cycling as a routine method of transport; I don't think this will happen until ebikes become cheaper and much more secure; at the moment, they're sadly quite likely to become targets for thieves. 



Purley Youth Project - a fantastic local charity
24/11/2018 21:17:00.......Posted by Simon Brew

Earlier this week, I met the pastor and his wife of a small local church which already does a lot to help the local community, particularly with donations of children's clothes and lots of other equipment. They were asking where else they might be able to offer some assistance and I referred them to the Purley Youth Project. Sited behind the URC in Brighton Road, the PYP does a fantastic job of providing after-school activities and entertainment for several dozen children who congregate there from all over the Borough. The Purley councillors have made annual donations ever since PYP's funding was cut by the Council, because we all believe that it provides really worthwhile activities for disadvantaged kids from near and far. I'm sure that the pastor and his wife will make a significant difference to the PYP, and we wish them well. 



A Licensing Committee meeting
23/11/2018 13:31:00.......Posted by Simon Brew

It's unusual to attend two Council committees on the same day, but that's what happened on Wednesday 22 November; I was at Pensions Committee in the morning (see previous blog) and at a meeting of the Licensing committee in the evening, standing in as a reserve for one of my colleagues who had to be at some other meeting. 

By comparison with the Pension Committee, we had quite a light agenda: two applications for street stall licences, one from Waitrose in Coulsdon and one from a shop in Thornton Heath. The Waitrose decision was quite easy: they wanted to be able to display garden produce such as Christmas trees outside the stors, and that was voted through unanimously.
The Thornton Heath application was more tricky as that section of the London Road already has masses of shops displaying their wares on the pavement, and there may come a point when the Committee has to say that enough is enough. Unfortunately, the shopkeeper did not appear for the meeting, so we were unable to ask him to explain why he needed this additional display facility; however, if we refused the application, there was no right of appeal, which seemed a bit harsh. We therefore resolved to defer decision to the next committee meeting, which we very much hoped that he would attend. 



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 Older Blog Posts
Labour forces shocking decision through Pension Committee
Cabinet meeting on 19 November.
Bins... bins.. bins
Important conference on engaging with London's many diverse communities
A new District Commissioner for Croydon Scouting
Any budding sculptors/sculptresses out there?
Celebration of 33% cut in Business rates
Full House for Croydon Communities Consortium (CCC) meeting
Remembrance Sunday - 100 years on
Referral of planning application for 55 Selcroft Rd 18/05009/FUL
More bin news - this time for Plough lane
Two surgeries this week...
NHS Continuing healthcare funding vs Social care funding
Problem with bins in Monahan Avenue, Cliff End, Godstone Road etc etc
Parking problems in Downlands Road Purley
Continuing use of mobile phones by drivers
Purley BID AGM
Purley Youth Project - a fantastic local charity
Rat-infested rubbish in Russell Hill Parade (behind Foxley Hatch) FINALLY removed
Purley & Woodcote RA committee meeting
IT support for SE Cancer Help centre
Croydon Business Awards - a near miss?
Croydon Community Consortium - AGM
Planning Committee last night
Last Council meeting before the recess: The bins debate
A busy morning at the Carer Support Centre in George Street
Another enjoyable dummy interview session at Purley Baptist Church
Purley Food and Drink Festival - another scorcher!
Purley Classic Car Show - what a scorcher!
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