Category Archives: Haslemere first

Emergency utility works on High Street, Haslemere

Dear Cllr,

Please be advised of emergency utility works on High Street, Haslemere.

The works are on behalf of Scottish and Southern Energy to repair a low voltage cable fault outside number 49.

They started these works on the 10th June, however our officer has instructed them to amend the traffic management to two-way signals due to safety issues with the previous set up. They currently have an estimated end date of the 26th June.

I trust you find this information useful.

Kind regards,

Please note, due to the current situation with the Corona Virus, I am working from home with limited access to a phone. If you’re unable to get hold of me via phone, please email me.

Network Coordination Team

More Haslemere Covid19 testing dates

Members of the Waverley Local Committee have been sent the message below about more dates for Covid19 testing in Haslemere:

Dear Waverley Local Committee,
In case you were not already aware, on Friday 12 June and Saturday 13 June there will be a Mobile Testing Unit (MTU) at:
Haslemere Leisure Centre,
Kings Road
GU27 2QT
It is open to anyone with symptoms of COVID-19.
Children under the age of 5 can be tested but there will need to be 2 parents or guardians in the vehicle – one driver plus one adult in the back to administer the test, as people are not allowed to leave their vehicle once on site. If only one parent is present, they should park away from the test centre and enter on foot, where they will be taken to a different area for testing.
You do not need a car to attend this testing centre, you can ‘walk-in’ but an appointment is still required and the MTU will turn away those who do not have a valid QR code/appointment.
In order to book an appointment, individuals should submit their details via one of the links below, and then choose the MTU site as their preferred test location:

Essential workers
General public
People without access to the internet can call 119.

Update from South Western Railway’s MD

I received this update today from Mark Hopwood, MD, South Western Railway:

Dear Nikki,

I wanted to write to you to update you on the steps we are taking to ensure that those customers who do need to travel with us, can do so safely.       

This has included promoting the latest Government messaging on using public transport at our stations and on our trains. We’re encouraging social distancing on board our trains and at our stations by introducing stickers and vinyls to serve as a reminder of the 2m guidance. This week, we have also begun the installation of hand sanitiser machines at over 100 of our stations, so that our customers can help fight the virus before and after they travel with us.

We have also produced an animated guide providing our top 10 tips for travelling with us covering all stages of the journey, from before customers leave their homes, to arriving at our stations and travelling on board our trains. We would welcome you sharing this on your website, social media and other platforms to ensure this reaches as many of our customers as possible. You can view and share the video here.

As I’m sure you are aware, from 15 June, the wearing of face coverings on public transport will become mandatory. We are working hard to promote this message across our channels, and at stations and on trains and would also welcome your support in sharing this message.

However, the Government advice on essential journeys has not changed. So, we’re asking all our customers to consider whether their journey is really necessary. If they have no other option but to use our services, we’re encouraging them to travel at less busy times of the day.

I also wanted to update you on the current progress of refunds for our customers. We have received around 35,000 refund requests in total, and we have processed around 29,000 of them. This means, around 83 per cent of requests have been processed, with around 6,000 currently outstanding. Our teams are continuing to work hard to process these refunds, and we now expect all outstanding refunds will be completed by mid to late June.­

I will of course update you as the situation develops.

Thank you for your continued support.

Yours sincerely,

Mark Hopwood
Managing Director
South Western Railway

Tribute from BBC Surrey for Community Ken

On Friday, Ken Griffiths, a BBC Surrey and BBC Sussex Community Hero (volunteer award) from 2018, celebrated a big birthday. Mark Carter of BBC Surrey surprised Ken with a tribute on his show last Friday.

Ken is involved in so many local organisations (Little Lumpy, gardening at Haslemere Museum, Haslewey, Wey Hill in Bloom, Haslemere Fringe, Haslemere Festival, Haslemere’s Community Rail Partnership to name just a few…).

In case you missed it, here is the interview in a video format put together by another Haslemere resident, Miles Weston.


Mark Carter, BBC Surrey: Now, for our first Make A Difference update today, we’re going to head to Haslemere. We’ll find out what’s going on there with our Community Heroes Awards Winner, Ken Griffiths, otherwise known as Community Ken. He’s with me. Good morning to you, Ken.

Ken Griffiths: Good morning, Mark. Good to talk to you.

Mark Carter, BBC Surrey: Now then. It’s very nice to speak to you. And I’d like to know please, just a brief summary, of just how life is going at the moment in terms of Haslemere and the help and support that’s available.

Ken Griffiths: Well, Haslemere has actually rallied round as Haslemere would and the good people of Haslemere are helping in many many ways. There’s Haslemere Help, which has actually been set up, which is helping local people in getting drugs from the pharmacy, shopping, etc. It’s talking to and helping people who are in isolation. The Community Meals Service is up and running from Haslewey and I know you know Haslewey because you actually broadcast from there before. Just recently, The Haslemere Community Store has just opened offering free food to those who actually need it. So, Haslemere has responded in a great way as I would expect it to.

Mark Carter, BBC Surrey: Very good news. Now let’s remind people if they haven’t come across you before Ken, this is a little bit of the story behind Ken and our brilliant Community Heroes Awards Winner. Let’s just have a listen:

Mark Carter plays a clip of past BBC Surrey interview with Ken Griffiths in 2018 from BBC Surrey BBC Sussex Community Heroes Awards Event.

Ken Griffiths: Welcome to Haslemere Museum on a very autumnal day. The leaves are now fallen. We can actually hear them under our feet. And, here we are, in the grounds of the museum. And, we’re actually restoring them to what they once were in their Georgian heyday.

Music plays

Ken Griffiths: Well for my sins, I seem to volunteer for one or two projects that take place in Haslemere. You know what it’s like. You put your hand up once and they come back again.

Haslemere Volunteer One: He really is inspiring to all of us really. He’s showed the way. And, I’ve been involved with Ken I think for I don’t know how many years on Haslemere initiatives and others and he is always upfront. He’s a bit of a devil for engaging people and it’s a job to say no to him.

Haslemere Volunteer Two: He was instrumental in arranging a new Post Office when the main post office was being closed and shows us really the way to go.

Haslemere Volunteer Three: Since Ken joined us a couple of years ago, we’ve done so much more work. He’s been an inspiration to all of us. His drive and motivation are quite incredible. And, without him, I don’t think we would have done anywhere near as much as we have done.

Awards’ Host: Well, what a brilliant category. The winner of the BBC Sussex and BBC Surrey Community Heroes Award in the category of Volunteer is Ken Griffiths.

Ken Griffiths: (accepting his award): For me to win this award, it’s humbling. It really is. I’m only one of many and there are many people around Haslemere who also volunteer and this award is not only just for me, it’s for them as well.

Audience claps. Clip ends. Main interview resumes.

Mark Carter, BBC Surrey: You might have guessed by now that I had an alternative motive for getting you on today … because … let’s have a listen to this particular message.

Recording of Haslemere Town Crier, Christian Ashdown: Bell rings. Oyez. Oyez. Oyez. Good people of Haslemere, please join me your Town Crier in wishing Community Ken Griffiths a happy 70th birthday. And wish him all the best tomorrow morning as he plants up the Wey Hill in Bloom hanging baskets. God Save the Queen.

Mark Carter, BBC Surrey: Ken, Happy 70th birthday!

Ken Griffiths: Thank you. That’s very, very kind of you. I’m a little bit overwhelmed now.

Mark Carter, BBC Surrey: Well, yes, I’ve had a few people working behind the scenes for this little surprise for you this morning, including Áine Hall who got in touch with me saying it’s his birthday and, due to lockdown, all his family plans have been postponed. Lots of surprises had been planned, but do you think Mark you could give Ken a shout out on his birthday and wish him a happy birthday from everyone in the community. And … I’ve also got somebody else on the line. Good morning, Councillor Nikki Barton.

Councillor Nikki Barton: Good morning. Happy birthday Ken.

Ken Griffiths: Thank you, Nikki. That’s very kind of you and thank you for what you did this morning. You might like to tell Mark about that. I don’t know.

Mark Carter, BBC Surrey: What were you up to earlier then?

Councillor Nikki Barton: Oh, well, just a little bit of garden decoration to celebrate the birthday so that, when Ken woke up, he looked out of his window to see, yes, suitable birthday decorations

Mark Carter, BBC Surrey: How wonderful and Nikki, just tell us a little bit in your view of what makes Ken such a special man.

Councillor Nikki Barton: Gosh. I don’t know where to start really. I think it’s just Ken’s energy and vision and he’s just tireless and he’s just willing to give anything a go. Ken’s been a really close partner on the Community Rail Partnership at Haslemere and recently we’ve gone up the line to Surrey Hills and the South Downs and, you know, I can always count on Ken. He’s just tireless and fantastic and positive. And he’s a real community champion. We’re so lucky to have Ken in our town.

Mark Carter, BBC Surrey: And Nikki, you have some good news. Just … was it yesterday?

Councillor Nikki Barton: Yes, absolutely, the Surrey Hills to the South Downs Community Rail Partnership, which includes all the train stations from Haslemere up to Farncombe, has just been awarded accreditation by the Department for Transport as a Gold Star organisation. We’re all about promoting our towns and sustainable transport in the visitor economy and encouraging people to use the train to explore the countryside.

Mark Carter, BBC Surrey: Oh, how wonderful. And, this has come in as well, Ken, from Councillor John Robini, Haslemere’s Town Mayor. Thank you for giving me the opportunity to congratulate Ken on his 70th birthday. I’ve known Ken for many years. He’s an inspiration to the town as he leads many voluntary groups, not only to raise money, but leading by example: the flowers at Wey Hill and the Little Lumpy cycle ride are just two of the things that he does. When he’s out and with others watering those boxes to bring colour to enhance the area. On behalf of the town. I would like to thank you for your many years of volunteering, Ken, and I hope many more to come. And finally, if you wish to find him, try his allotment where he spends many hours tending to his plants.

Ken Griffiths and Mark Carter laugh

Mark Carter, BBC Surrey: Isn’t that lovely? You’re so well thought of, Ken, and that’s a lovely little tribute I hope for you this morning of all the amazing work that you do

Ken Griffiths: That is a lovely tribute indeed. And I have one or tears in my eyes at this moment in time.

Mark Carter, BBC Surrey: Well deserved. Are you having cake later?

Ken Griffiths: I don’t know what’s happening later. I’ve been told to be here, there and wherever. Things are happening, but I just do not know what they are.

Mark Carter, BBC Surrey: Well, happy birthday from me and, Nikki, thank you for joining us.

Councillor Nikki Barton: Happy Birthday, Ken. Enjoy your day.

Ken Griffiths: Thank you, Nikki. Thank you, Mark. It’s great to be talking to you again.

South Western Railway Strike Compensation Scheme

Today, I have received the update below from the MD of South Western Railway about the Special Compensation Scheme they are running for their customers who were affected by the industrial action on our network in December 2019.

Dear Nikki,

I’m writing to update you on the Special Compensation Scheme we are running for our customers who were affected by the industrial action on our network in December 2019.

We are pleased to announce that we have now started contacting customers who we’ve been able to determine as eligible for compensation under the scheme. At the same time, we also have our dedicated service team in place who will be able to offer support about the scheme by phone or via our webform. 

Additionally, the December 2019 Strike Compensation Scheme eligibility checker is now live. This useful tool allows our customers to check whether their journey/route is eligible for compensation.

The main compensation scheme will run in two phases. We have now launched Phase One and have started the process of contacting customers who we’ve been able to determine as eligible for compensation under the scheme.  We will contact season ticket holders (valid for a month or longer) for whom we hold complete sales records and accurate contact information, typically those customers who purchased a season ticket through our website or at one of our stations. We are aiming to compensate as many customers as possible during this phase so it will take several weeks to complete.

In Phase Two, all customers who have not already been contacted but who travelled with us during the industrial action in December will be able to apply for compensation by submitting their details through our online system. We will be launching Phase Two when Phase One is complete and we will be using a wide variety of communications channels to spread the message about the scheme. In addition to posters and announcements on our trains and stations we’ll also be using digital channels to reach as many customers as possible even if they are not currently travelling with us due to the Covid 19 pandemic.

Child season tickets will also be included in this process however in Phase One, claim details will only be sent to a parent/guardian where we have that information, all other child season tickets will need to be claimed during Phase Two.

I hope this update is useful and I will keep you informed as the scheme progresses.

Thames Water update for Haslemere today

As you are aware, many houses in Haslemere are without water or are experiencing low water pressure.

I discussed this in an interview on BBC Surrey:

Below is a councillor update from Thames Water’s Local Government Liaison :

Dear Councillors,

I am writing to update you on ongoing water supply issues to properties in and around the Haslemere area.

Since we updated you yesterday evening, our engineers have been working hard to keep supply disruption to a minimum through the use of tanker infusions, with only some pockets of residents seeing a complete loss of supply earlier this morning.

To give you some sense of the scale of this operation, yesterday we infused our network with 215,000 litres of water and, though I cannot yet confirm today’s figure, we have more than doubled our tankering presence in the area.

This work together with reducing demand means that only a very limited number of residents are likely to be noticing any problems with their supply at this stage, though this is subject to some degree of caution as demand increases into this evening.

To offer an indication of those residents most likely to be affected, I have attached here a map of the impacted area which visualises each property we supply with a dot. The properties in red are on the highest ground, which lose water pressure first and are therefore most likely to be affected should interruptions continue. Conversely, the green properties sit on the lowest ground and will be affected last.

As our reservoir levels gradually replenishes itself, our engineers will continue to mitigate impact to residents as far as possible, while are customer team delivers bottled water to those most in need.  We are also continuing to operate our drive-through bottled water station Grayswood Village Hall, Grayswood Road, Haslemere GU27 2DJ, which will close at 21:00 this evening and reopen in the morning, should these interruptions resurface.

Thank you for your patience as we work to resolve these issues and please do not hesitate to get in touch should you have any queries or concerns. We will continue to update you and your colleagues as these issues progress, and should your residents need to report a new interruption to their supply or need direct support, please direct them to our 24-hour line on 0800 316 9800.

Kind regards,

Local Government Liaison

Plea to visitors to respect the Surrey Hills

Message from Surrey Hills

The Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB) is currently receiving a higher than usual amount of visitors to the area.

We want to re-iterate our message that this is not the time to travel to visit the Surrey Hills Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB).

Many public facilities and car parks remain closed or require booking in advance.


This video footage shows the devastation of the Thursley Common wildfires over the weekend. The cause of the fire is not yet known but we urge everyone to refrain from using disposable BBQs, having camp fires, and to ensure smoking materials are fully extinguished to prevent more wildfires.

Read Surrey Hills’ press release here.

Water Collection Point from Thames Water

Dear Councillors,

I am writing to update you on ongoing water supply issues to properties in and around the Haslemere area.

Since we updated you this morning, our engineers have been working hard to keep supply disruption to a minimum through the use of tankers, with only some pockets of residents seeing a complete loss of supply over this afternoon. As demand drops and our reservoir gradually replenishes itself, we expect some of these interruptions to continue into tomorrow.

For residents living in these areas, we have set up a bottled water collection point at Grayswood Village Hall, Grayswood Road, Haslemere GU27 2DJ, and we have updated our website to notify residents of this location. This station will remain open until 21:00 this evening, and will then be reopened from tomorrow morning.

To ensure the health and safety of residents and our staff, we are asking residents to arrive and remain in their vehicle, while our team on site load the water into their vehicle. We have also delivered bottled water to residents registered on our priority services register and are working with local resilience partners to further identify any residents that may be shielding or require additional support during the current pandemic.

We will continue to update you and your colleagues as these issues progress. Should your residents need to report a new interruption to their supply or need direct support, please direct them to our 24-hour line on 0800 316 9800.

Kind regards,


Local Government Liaison

Thames Water shortage in Haslemere – update

Mayor John Robini has been leading the Town Council and Waverley BC response to lack of water supply in Haslemere in the past 48 hours. Cllr Robini is arranging a meeting with Thames Water, the chief executive of Waverley and others to try and look at the long term solution, as this has been going on for several years.

Today, I met contractors on site. Half of Haslemere continues to be without water while Thames Water ferries tankers (capacity 19,000 litres) from Godalming to top up the reservoir in order to restore supplies to our homes.  They are also topping up water supplies (yesterday in Tennysons Lane and today in Scotland Lane) by pumping water directly into the water supply.

Haslemere Town Councillor, Cllr Ellis wrote:

Haslemere Town Councillor, Cllr Weldon confirmed emergencies supplies are being delivered to priority households and collection points are being arranged:

This is not the first time Haslemere has run out water, and is a wake-up call that key infrastructure issues – like the supply of water – must be addressed (not just in Haslemere but also across the Thames Basin) where towns are mandated to take hundreds of new houses imposed by central government.  Clearly significant investment is going to be required. Central government must take the lead and utility companies must legally be required to fulfil their obligations. 

Climate change, with more frequent extreme weather events will exacerbate the fragility of our water supply- action must be taken as a matter of urgency.

Councillors have received the update below from Thames Water’s Local Government Liaison Officer:

Dear Councillors,

I am writing to update you on ongoing water supply issues to properties in and around the Haslemere area.

From earlier this morning, supplies in our reservoir that serves properties to the south west of Haslemere were outstripped by record demand, which had gradually depleted these supplies over the past few days.

During this time, our engineers were able to employ tankers to manage these levels, but demand has now exceeded this supply and so we have begun to see reports of no water from residents stretching into this afternoon. These reports are likely to continue through the remainder of the day as demand drops and our reservoir is able to replenish itself.

We wholly recognise the disruption this interruption will cause to residents, and our teams are working to set up bottled water stations in the area, the locations of which I will share with you as soon as I can. These stations will work on a drive-through basis to allow residents to collect water in line with current government guidance on social distancing.

We are also reviewing our Priority Services Register (PSR) to deliver bottled water directly to those who most need it, which residents can sign on to using this link:

It may be helpful to explain that record dry weather is combining with current lockdown restrictions to cause unprecedented demand on our network, as residents stay home in exceptional numbers. To offer some sense of the scale, on Bank Holiday Monday alone we pumped an extra 63 Olympic swimming pools’ worth of water in the Thames Valley – around a third more than normal.

As such, we are asking residents to help reduce demand by using water sparingly, either by switching off hoses and sprinklers, avoiding washing cars or taking only short showers, and I would be very grateful for any support your teams can lend in driving these messages, especially at peak draw hours.

We will continue to update residents through the day, and we will provide a further update to you and your colleagues as these issues progress.

Kind regards,

Local Government Liaison

A3 Hindhead Tunnel – Improvements to Technology – Overnight Closure on Saturday 6 June

Dear Stakeholder,

A3 Hindhead Tunnel – Improvements to Technology – Overnight Closure on Saturday 6 June

As part of the ongoing work to upgrade the technology within the Hindhead Tunnel, we will be closing the Tunnel (in both directions) overnight this weekend.

The closure will be in place from 9pm on Saturday 6 June through to 9am on Sunday 7 June 2020.

During the closure a signed diversion will be in place via the A31 and A325.

Please be aware that due to the current Covid-19 Pandemic, all our works are subject to change due to available resource by our Supply Chain, as well as possible adverse weather conditions – please check the yellow signs placed in advance for confirmation of the closures dates/timings.

We would like to apologise in advance for any inconvenience or disruption during our work. If you have any questions, or if you’d like you know more about our work please email us at or call us on 0300 123 5000.

Yours faithfully

Area 3 Communications Coordinator

South East Region