Don’t forget, you can pick up a copy of The Ashtead & Leatherhead Local magazine from Ashtead and Leatherhead libraries, as well as the customer service desk of Sainsbury’s Leatherhead.



There are many defibrillators available in public places such as airports, shopping centres etc which provide essential life saving equipment for members of the public to help when someone is in cardiac arrest.

In January this year a Defibrillator was installed outside the Buckley Pharmacy in The Street, Ashtead and it is now registered with the Emergency Services.

Training has already been given to some 50 Ashtead residents and more is planned. However, anyone can use the equipment in an emergency as the “speaking instructions” are built into the Defibrillator.

In late 2015 Ashtead Good Neighbours became aware that The British Heart Foundation and the Department of Health were providing funds and running a national campaign to install Public Access Defibrillators. This was taken up by Marian Guess, the then Chair of Ashtead Good Neighbours, and subsequently her successor, Richard Garrard. With help from Councillor Chris Townsend, a grant of £500 was obtained from Surrey County Council and with Ashtead Good Neighbours making up the balance, the Defibrillator finally went live on the 12 January. Thanks also go to Abdool Kureeman, Buckley Pharmacy, for not only allowing his premises to be used but also for meeting the costs of the installation.


Hit & Run Victim Back on Bike and Helping Raise Money for Schools with Rianna's Fund   Readers may remember that just over a year ago on November 25th 2015, Leatherhead resident Sally Edwards was knocked off her bike in a hit and run incident near Headley Court. The driver, who was never caught, left her on the road with six broken ribs, a floating shoulder, multiple fractures to her pelvis and collapsed lungs. St George's hospital helped put her back together and amazingly four months later she was back on her bike thanks to the support of everyone around her. A month later Sally was then misdiagnosed, in America, with a rare form of incurable skin cancer. This was a devastating blow but fortunately it was seen as a misdiagnosis and although Sally didn't get clinical clearance, she has now moved on - as fast as possible!   The way she has moved on is to focus on healthy living and her bike again. It helps to ride for a purpose and so she is doing a big challenge in South Africa, off-road riding cross-country for 900 kilometres in 9 days from Johannesburg to Durban in the 'Joberg2C' in April.   Sally is fundraising for Rianna's Fund, an Ashtead-based charity known for it's sustainable values, working with local people and sound financial accountability. Every penny is well spent. Currently they are working in Uganda on three projects. The schools are called Hope Hill (pic above right), Covenant School and Bunabuloli. Each school will have three classroom blocks and between them will teach nearly 600 children! It is amazing to see how these schools grow and progress but they need our help. It makes a huge difference to their communities in the short and long term.   Please help drive Sally on her challenge and build these schools for children less fortunate than our own. Go to Justgiving and give what you can. Please type in:   For more information on the charity please go to One life, many changes. Thank you.


The Leatherhead Community Association (LCA) which is based at The Institute at the top of the High Street, has been serving local residents for the past 40 years, providing educational, social and recreational facilities. It is run predominantly by enthusiastic volunteers guided by a board of Trustees, protected by a trust set up with a limited financial guarantee.

  In order to keep up the good work we require additional Trustees with an interest in involvement in the community but especially, in the near future, a Joint Treasurer to replace the current Trustee, who has filled this post diligently for a number of years. He or she would work with our existing Joint Treasurer/Company Secretary, who has a wide knowledge of charity finance and would give lots of support. A financial background and being able to work on the excellent Excel worksheets that record our accounts would be an advantage.

  The work of a Trustee carries responsibility but is not too onerous and is highly rewarding. For further information please make contact with our Chairman by email - Mrs June Robinson -'

  Friday 3rd March: there is a special talk at the Institute at 7.30 given by Martin Hunka on 'A re-telling of the Odyssey'. Martin is a member of the Surrey StoryTellers' Guild and he used to run Mole Books in the 1980's where he used to tell stories in the shop. He has developed this fascinating version of Homer's Odyssey. Full details on the LCA website -

  Frances Presley


Abigail Bruce, a pupil at St John’s School and a Fetcham resident, along with 16 fellow athletes, has been chosen to represent Team GB at the 2017 European Youth Olympic Festival at Erzurum, Turkey.

The PyeongChang 2018 Olympic Winter Games are just over a year away but for a group of 17 promising talents, their first taste of a multi-sport event will come in Erzurum.

The athletes, all aged 15-17 years old, will compete across five of the nine disciplines at Erzurum 2017; alpine skiing, cross country skiing, figure skating, short track speed skating and snowboarding - with the Festival set to run from the 12th-18th February.

They will test themselves against Europe’s finest youth winter athletes as the Festival welcomes over 800 competitors from 40 nations for five days of action in Turkey.

Abigail will represent GB in the Alpine Skiing category. Go Girl!

More info on Abigail can be found on her website:


Looking to build on Team Mole Valley’s success in 2016, young people are invited to take part in FREE training sessions ahead of this year’s Surrey Youth Games competition, taking place on Saturday 17th and Sunday 18th June at the Surrey Sports Park.

  The free sports sessions are open to 7 to 16 year olds of all abilities who either live or go to school the district. Everyone who takes part in the sessions is in with a chance of representing Team Mole Valley at this year’s Surrey Youth Games, sponsored by Specsavers. The Games offer the opportunity for young people across the district to develop and show off their talent on a county-wide stage. Participants are given the chance to try something new, make new friends and build confidence.

  Young people interested in getting involved need to visit for the complete list of sports available. Registration closes on Friday 7th April.

  Students at schools across the district are being encouraged to sign up to the annual competition. The school with the highest number of pupils participating in the training sessions, run by local community sports clubs and led by qualified DBS-checked coaches, can look forward to receiving £150 of sports equipment.


My mother, Joan Baker, lived in Dorking for 20 years and was an avid poetry writer. Diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease in 2004 - she continued writing until her death aged 91, in 2013. Mum used her poetry to help her cope with the increasing reliance on others. She often said she was learning to be “Dependently Independent!”

Parkinson’s UK (PUK) supports those affected by the progressive, neurological disease. They fund research to find out more about it and for a cure. In 2013 I became a PUK volunteer, as an active member of their Campaigns and Research Support Networks, and as a lay member on committees to ensure the views of those affected by Parkinson’s are taken into account. I have also been a healthy control in research projects. I have taken part in a sponsored walk and abseiled from Guildford Cathedral. I said then, that the next fundraiser would be with both feet on the ground!

  Mum’s poems are a light-hearted reflection of life and how the disease affected her. For example, they show how anxious she became when she had to hand over the control of her medication to others. I think the poems will be appreciated by people affected by Parkinson’s, (and other conditions) and gives insight into living with the disease for carers and nurses.

  With both feet firmly grounded; I compiled a book of my mother’s poems. A Parkinson’s nurse wrote the foreword. The title was easy, I used the phrase I often heard Mum say… “ I’ve just written an odd ode or two ….”

  Then I needed to find a printer – and by chance selected the same one Mum used to self-publish some poems in 1999! Skipton Building Society sponsored the printing costs, and Dorking businesses (that Mum used when she lived in Dorking) have donated prizes for a lucky dip! (Heyland & Whittle, Abel &Cole, Denbies, COOK and Waterstones.)

  I now have a wonderful collection of my mother’s poems that I can share with others and raise much needed funds for PUK.

  The book is available now in Dorking Waterstones,,
Gorgeous Gerties , 61 West Street, Dorking, and Foyles, 107 Charing Cross Rd, London, at a cost of £5 – all of which goes to Parkinson’s UK

  Please join me at my Free Book Launch at Dorking Library on Saturday 18th March.

  If you would like to make a donation to Parkinson’s UK, go to:   Anne Ferrett  


As a general rule, I am not overly keen on attending conferences. I much prefer to be out-and-about, doing my job rather than sitting in a conference venue listening to speaker after speaker! Recently, however, I attended a conference hosted by Buckinghamshire and Surrey Trading Standards, which had the impressive (and long) title, “The Cost of Scams and Financial Abuse: working together to protect residents from harm.”

  This was a totally different experience, mainly because of being able to hear, first hand, what the impact of scams and frauds can have on the victims. The organisers had persuaded a victim of postal scams to speak to us about how they were drawn into a situation where, eventually, they were close to bankrupting themselves by sending literally thousands of pounds over several years to scammers. I was shocked to find how much their words upset me and I was not alone.

  This particularly lady was an articulate, intelligent person from a generation that was brought up to trust “authority” and to believe the best in others. Over time, she realised that she was being scammed but had been drawn in so deeply by this point, she found herself unable to break the cycle. She felt stupid and ashamed and too afraid to confide in her family. In the end, her family found out what was happening by pure chance and rallied round to support her but, by the time this happened, she had given away over £20,000 pounds and had built up huge debts.

  Another speaker told us about a victim of scams who finally approached Trading Standards for help. She disclosed that she knew she was being tricked but, as she was so lonely, she actually looked forward to the post arriving as it “was my reason to get up in the morning.”

  There are numerous variations on scams and frauds, some of which I have mentioned in this column previously. The one common factor, however, is that the scammers don’t care one iota about their victims. They are simply on, what is disgustingly known as, a “Suckers List” and they will carry on targeting them until they have “bled them dry”. Some have been driven to suicide by these people and I want to ask you all to look out for anyone in the community you feel may be vulnerable to this type of activity.

  If you notice that someone you know is receiving large quantities of “junk” mail, it is quite possible that they are already or about to become targeted. Bogus lottery draws, prize draws, special offers – all could be the beginning of a cycle. If you see this happening, please consider talking to the person about it, or even contact Trading Standards on their behalf. I can assure you they will make very discrete enquiries to see if there is any possibility they are being targeted.

  Anything that we can all do to help protect people from this type of activity and to frustrate the scammers can only be a positive thing.

  Thank you.

  Neil Clarke, 13363. Crime Reduction Advisor - Eastern Division, PO Box 101, Guildford, Surrey GU1 9PE

  To contact Neil Clarke direct, please call:
Tel:  101 Extension 30809 or
01483 630809 / 07467 3367783 or email:

  Call 101 for all non-emergency policing matters.

  Call 999 if you have a genuine emergency requiring the attendance of the police (e.g. a crime is in progress or someone is in immediate danger).

  Call Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 if you have information about crime and don't want to leave your name.

  For more crime prevention advice visit  


As in previous years, Leatherhead Rotary Club is appealing to Mole Valley residents to help them support West Hill School in North Leatherhead by collecting vouchers for schools from Sainsbury's supermarkets.

Up until Tuesday 2nd May 2017, for every £10 spent in a Sainsbury’s store or online, customers can claim an 'Active Kids' voucher, which can subsequently be converted by the school into vital sports and healthy lifestyle equipment.

West Hill School ( is an Ofsted-rated ‘outstanding’ special school in Kingston Road, North Leatherhead. West Hill has previously been a secondary school supporting pupils aged 11-16 with learning and additional needs and Autism. In September 2016, West Hill also began a four-year transition to become a county-wide primary school for children with learning and additional needs and they currently have reception pupils and are looking forward to growing as their building adapts and changes.

Over the past nine years, thanks entirely to the generosity of Mole Valley residents, Leatherhead Rotary Club has been able to present almost 60,000 supermarket vouchers to the school, enabling them to 'buy' hundreds of pounds worth of equipment to support their pupils!

Simon Edmands, the club's PR Officer, said "This is such a simple way for people to support West Hill School and its pupils. Our club has been working with the school in a variety of ways for many years now and both the pupils and staff alike are a genuine inspiration!"

Please send your vouchers to Leatherhead Rotary Club, c/o Donovan Hewitt, The Leatherhead Theatre, 7 Church Street, Leatherhead, KT22 8DN by Friday 30th June.

Leatherhead Rotary Club meet at 7pm most Wednesday evenings at the Police Federation Headquarters in Highbury Drive, Leatherhead. For further info about the club and its wide range of community, fundraising and social activities please visit or contact Simon Edmands on 07753 821964 or  


Wednesday 29th March - 7.30pm. The Old Chapel, St John’s School, Leatherhead.

The Chairman, Richard Garrard, will open the meeting with his Report which will highlight the work carried out by the Committee during the past year and outline plans for the coming months, followed by a short Q&A session.

There will be a guest speaker from the Stroke Association and, following her presentation, there will be another Q&A, at which time two GP's (Dr Lynne Davies and Dr John Wong) will be available to answer medical questions.

The AshLea PPG is also looking for patients with an interest in their medical Practice to join the Committee.  The AshLea PPG Committee meets once a month for around two hours and members work on small projects which will benefit both the Practice and patients.  The newsletter is a fine example of our work and we are currently preparing the 3rd edition for publication in May.

If you would like to know more, please contact Lynda Feeney, PPG Secretary via email on