“That was the best meeting I’ve attended in the last 20 years”
Over 50 residents turned out last night to attend the Effingham Residents Association Annual General and Public Meetings. It was clear right from the start that a small group had several issues they wanted to air. As the meetings progressed the questions and comments turned to rants followed by dignified rebuttals. It was, as one resident put it, “The most exciting meeting for years!”
Several items were put to the vote including an increase to the number of Committee members and broadening the membership catchment to include places like all Manorhouse Lane and Woodlands Road, as well as others with a contribution to make and strong Effingham ties (but probably not Denmark as one wit suggested!). Further changes were made to include out-of-committee decisions and non-voting co optees. It was announced that draft Minutes would be circulated within a reasonable time instead of waiting a full year to see the Minutes. Virtually every change was challenged and then voted in by an overwhelming majority of residents. Lots of useful comments were made and taken into account – some of these will be considered and in all probability acted on in the near future as the draft Minutes are worked on.
Following the meetings, that lasted a surprising hour and quarter, Helen Jeffries of Wisley Action Group (WAG) gave a fascinating presentation on the former WW2 Wisley aerodrome and the issues that need to be considered by Guildford Borough Council before the possibility of granting planning permission. These issues included poor air quality, massive increases in traffic movements and congestion as well as significant concerns over wildlife protected areas . WAG has consistently employed top rate QCs to provide legal advice and put their case forward. Helen made clear how uncertain the future is as Wisley is still in the 2016 Local Plan. Any large scale development would inevitably impact on all the surrounding areas with road congestion and closures, overcrowded trains and parking areas as well as the loss of heathland, farmland and wildlife habitats. EFFRA would like to offer thanks and appreciation to Helen for coming to talk to us and for answering our questions so clearly and concisely.
The meetings ended with some much appreciated wine, soft drinks, nibbles and informal discussions.
Anyone wishing to make a written contribution or ask questions about your residents association are welcome to contact the Secretary David King on firstname.lastname@example.org