Woking and Surrey local news

  • Article: Dec 8, 2020

    Earlier today, the Conservative majority on Surrey County Council used their own amendment to vote down a Lib Dem motion that would have tackled child food poverty.

    If approved, the original proposal by Lib Dem County Councillors would have committed the Council to taking the small, albeit valuable steps of ensuring the availability of breakfast clubs at schools across Surrey - as well as to lobbying Central Government for changes to the welfare system.

  • Article: Nov 30, 2020

    Following a request from Councillor Will Forster at last week's Police and Crime Panel the Surrey Police and Crime Commissioner agreed to work with the Ministry of Justice to try to reopen the former Magistrates' Court in Woking.

    Cuts to the justice system coupled with the pandemic lockdown have resulted in a huge backlog of court cases across the country. In the criminal courts the situation is so bad that there are now 558,000 outstanding cases; 509,347 cases waiting to be heard in Magistrates' Courts and 48,713 in Crown Courts.

    Surrey's Police and Crime Commissioner is already working with the Ministry of Justice, the HM Courts & Tribunals Service and others in the justice system on tackling the backlog in the courts. Capacity at Guildford Crown Court has recently been expanded by installing a portacabin and rebuilding one of its courtrooms to enable 5 court cases to take place there.

    Lib Dem Councillor Will Forster, said:

    "To help clear the court backlog and get justice for victims of crime I am pleased the authorities will look at reopening the Woking Magistrates' Court. The court closed ten years ago and is now used as a Coroner's Court, but it could clearly be used for criminal cases as well."

    "Years of cuts have stretched the justice system to breaking point. The Government needs to build a more effective judicial system as we come out of the pandemic and this should include reopening Woking's Magistrates' Court. We cannot allow justice delayed to become justice denied."

  • Article: Nov 30, 2020

    We have all become more aware of the need for free school meals in the last few months, but child food poverty did not start with the covid pandemic.

    That is why the Lib Dems are calling on Surrey County Council to take steps to address this growing problem across the county.

    Surrey is a comparatively wealthy county, but this generalisation hides a number of uncomfortable truths about the level of poverty experienced by those living in some of its poorer areas. Some families are already struggling to put food on the table for children in a county where housing costs are four times less affordable than the national average and are amongst the highest in the country.

  • Ellen Nicholson
    Article: Nov 28, 2020

    Our NHS is bearing the brunt of this pandemic. Would the system collapse with the influx of COVID-19 patients? What about cancer patients requiring regular treatment or those booked for routine operations? Ellen Nicholson is a nurse, health researcher for the Liberal Democrats and chair of the General Practice Nurse Forum for the Royal College of Nursing. If that wasn't enough, she's our 2021 candidate for Mount Hermon & Woking South East. In this podcast Ellen, interviewed by Adam Kirby and Dale Roberts, talks us through the digital appointment revolution, her thoughts on herd immunity and the incredible work going on behind the scenes to keep the NHS serving those who need it most.

  • Ed Davey reading to children
    Article: Nov 26, 2020
    By Cllr Will Forster

    Will Forster and the Lib Dems are asking people across Woking who care for relatives to get in touch and share their story - to mark national Carers Rights Day.

    Lib Dem Party Leader Ed Davey has said he wants the party wants to be a "strong voice" for the millions across the country - including the 9,817 people in Woking who care for those who need it.

  • Paul Kennedy
    Article: Nov 25, 2020

    The Lib Dem Police and Crime Commissioner candidate, Paul Kennedy, is calling on Surrey's current Commissioner to take action to stop the 101 service being overwhelmed by the pandemic, as Lib Dem research reveals 30-40% of non-emergency calls to Surrey Police went unanswered in late summer.

    In August alone nearly 10,000 callers - representing 32% of total 101 calls - gave up in the face of a 4 minute average waiting time, while nearly 1,000 callers had to wait more than 20 minutes to get through.

  • Article: Nov 20, 2020
    By Cllr Will Forster

    The local Lib Dems have welcomed the Early Day Motion tabled by Lib Dem MP Daisy Cooper which raises concerns regarding the proposed new M25/A3 junction alongside RHS Wisley.

    In the motion Daisy Cooper MP highlights RHS Wisley's concerns around the impact the proposal will have on 44 trees along their boundary with the A3, including the felling of 17 Grade II Heritage trees and 27 other trees being negatively impacted by the undermining of their root strength. She also notes local concerns from residents and the local councils about the wider environmental impact as a result of the unnecessary extra mileage and inevitable increased pollution created by the junction, ending with a call for the Government to stop the proposal and require Highways England to consider and implement an alternative approach.

  • Postbox
    Article: Nov 20, 2020

    The Woking Lib Dems are calling on the Royal Mail to allow people to send cards, letters and parcels to loved ones in care homes for free for the rest of the year.

    It comes as Irish postal service, An Post, has announced it will carry letters, large envelopes, packets and parcels up to 2 kg addressed to residents in nursing and care homes for free until 31st January.

  • Article: Nov 18, 2020

    The Lib Dems have called on the Chancellor to "level the playing field" to help small high streets compete with internet giants in the run up to Christmas.

    The Lib Dems fear local shops hit by decreased footfall during the coronavirus pandemic will continue to struggle and have therefore proposed a new scheme in a similar vein to how the Eat Out to Help Out scheme aided restaurants.

  • Liberal lockdown podcast logo
    Article: Nov 13, 2020

    Unnecessary packaging and unsustainable products are intertwined with our everyday lives. It doesn't have to be this way: Re-fill your shampoo bottles, don't throw them away! Swap to the metal straws, bamboo toothbrushes and reusable menstrual products that are filling our shelves.

    Our latest Liberal Lockdown podcast episode with Mel Hemmings, founder of Woking's first zero waste shop Bare + Fair, joins us to share her eco-friendly top tips for consumers and businesses alike. Listen with one click on the green play button below - no registration required! We're also available on Apple Podcasts, Spotify or wherever you get your favourite podcast.