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.



The country’s largest annual heritage festival will take place from Thursday 7th to Sunday 10th September. With over 75 events on offer in Mole Valley alone, residents and visitors of all ages can look forward to exploring a wide-range of fascinating guided walks, talks and exhibitions, showcasing the district’s heritage.

      Details of every event, all of which are free of charge, taking place in Mole Valley’s Heritage Open Days (HOD) is available online by visiting or by picking up a booklet. The Mole Valley Heritage Open Days booklet is available from the Council’s Pippbrook offices in Dorking, Dorking Halls, the HelpShop in Leatherhead, the Leatherhead Institute, local libraries and National Trust properties in the local area. Some of the events require advance booking where space is limited. Details of how to book are included in the booklet and on the HOD website.

    The title theme for Heritage Open Days 2017 is ‘Wheels in Motion’. Many of the participants in this year’s festival have taken the opportunity to interpret the theme in original and quirky ways. Given the nature of this year’s theme, visitors can look forward to a number of intriguing transport-inspired events, including trains, buses – of the horse drawn variety too – and a fire engine. There will be plenty of fascinating non-transport related events on offer across the district too. They will cover many aspects of Mole Valley’s heritage, from landmark buildings to beautiful countryside, including a variety of examples of industrial history and mechanical heritage.


Mole Valley District Council has approved £1.4 million of investment into The Swan Shopping Centre to improve the shopping experience in Leatherhead for residents and visitors.

  Building on the feedback received during public consultation on the Transform Leatherhead Masterplan, a £1.2million investment will inspire a number of enhancements to the Centre of benefit to shoppers in the short-term, in addition to examining potential major schemes in the long-term.

  The short-term initiatives, planned to start later in the year, include: the creation of four new retail units at the Leret Way entrance to the Centre; essential maintenance to public areas; new toilets and enhancements to the Centre’s car park, including new lifts.

  Potential longer-term schemes will seek to address feedback received in consultation on the Transform Leatherhead Masterplan by identifying opportunities for leisure, larger retail units and considering incorporating housing in the Centre.

  Simon Edge, Executive Member for Transform Leatherhead, said: “These exciting plans for The Swan Shopping Centre have been driven by the feedback from residents and businesses during the creation of the Transform Leatherhead Masterplan.

  Residents want to see the car park improved and broadening the range of retail on offer to improve their shopping experience. These schemes will firmly anchor both The Swan Shopping Centre and the High Street at the heart of a transformed Leatherhead town centre. Further retail opportunities on Bull Hill will complement and extend the core town centre offering, enabling Leatherhead to compete with neighbouring towns.”

   Further information about Transform Leatherhead can be found at Keep up to date with the project via Twitter (@transformleath1) and Facebook (@transformleatherhead)


Have your say by 7th August. Councillor Vivienne Michael, Leader of Mole Valley District Council, said: “Surrey County Council (SCC) could be making changes to the provision of Community Recycling Centres (CRCs), more commonly known as tips, as part of the authority’s effort to find savings of £100million this year. One of the proposals is to close the Ranmore Road CRC in Dorking which, if approved, would leave the Randalls Road site in Leatherhead the only CRC in the District.

  “SCC has launched a public consultation on the proposals which is open until 7 August 2017 and I would urge our residents respond to this by visiting and completing the online survey. Alternatively, hardcopies will be available by calling SCC on 03456 009 009.

  “MVDC will be responding to the consultation in the best interests of Mole Valley tax payers and provision of waste and recycling facilities in the District.”


14th August 2pm-4pm - Room G6, Letherhead Institute. The Leatherhead Macular Support Group, in partnership with the Macular Society, has organised the event, which takes place on Monday 14 August, from 2-4pm, in Room G6 at the Leatherhead Institute in the town’s High Street. The event will offer information about age-related macular degeneration (AMD). It will also highlight the wide range of support available to people living in the local area with AMD and other macular conditions.

  On the day, members of the Leatherhead Macular Support Group will be on hand to talk to visitors about the group’s activities and how it helps people with macular conditions living locally. The group, which has been running since 2009, meets at the Leatherhead Institute on the second Monday of each month. It is one of more than 350 macular support groups all over the UK and offers information, encouragement and friendship to people with macular disease.

  AMD affects the central vision and more people are being affected as our population ages. It is estimated that around 600,000 people in the UK have AMD, with another 200 new cases being diagnosed every day. At the current rate, around 1.3 million people will be affected by 2050.

  Trudie Allibone, leader of the Leatherhead Macular Support Group, said: “Events like these are a great way to raise awareness of macular disease and highlight the work of the Leatherhead Macular Support Group. The group is here for anyone affected by macular degeneration and we want to see as many people using it as possible.

  “It’s good to be able to learn from each other’s experiences and tips. The peer support can be so helpful – our groups can really help people increase in confidence and become more independent. Guest speakers often visit our monthly social meetings to talk about a variety of interesting subjects, and we organise outings, trips and quizzes as well, so there is always something going on.

  “If you have AMD or any other macular condition, or if you have a friend or family member who has been affected by sight problems, then please come along and see us at the Leatherhead Institute to find out more.”

   For more information on the event, or the Leatherhead Macular Support Group, please contact Trudie Allibone on 01372 454077 or email:


Councillor Vivienne Michael, Leader of Mole Valley District Council (MVDC), said: “Following a robust recruitment process, I am pleased to confirm that Karen Brimacombe has been appointed as Mole Valley’s new Chief Executive. Karen succeeds Yvonne Rees, who has taken up the position of joint Chief Executive of Cherwell District and South Northamptonshire District Council.

  “Karen brings 25 years of local government experience to this important role. Karen’s previous posts include Head of Environmental Health at Spelthorne, Head of Health, Housing and Community Development at Chiltern District Council and, latterly, Operations Director at Hampshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. We were particularly impressed with Karen’s depth of experience and her attitude to working with partners and other stakeholders. We expect her to join us in the autumn”.

  Karen Brimacombe said: “I am delighted to be appointed Chief Executive at Mole Valley.  Everyone I met during the interview process reinforced my view that Mole Valley, with its balance of rural and urban areas, strong track record of partnership working, talented workforce and ambitious plans for the future, was indeed the place for me.  I am acutely aware of the pressures that local government is operating under at the current time and the intense commitment and teamwork required to ensure that we continue to improve the services we provide.”


The return of our popular FREE FAMILY CRAFT AFTERNOONS. Fridays 11th, 18th and 25th August 1pm-4pm.

There will be a mix of hands-on crafts, which will vary for each session, for children to participate.

Entry is free but donations welcome. All children must be accompanied by a responsible adult.


The AshLea Medical Practice PPG were recently delighted to receive news from the National Association of Patient Participation Groups that they had been awarded the prestigious Corkill Award for the PPG of the Year Award 2017 and Chairman, Richard Garrard, recently attended their Annual Conference in Basingstoke to receive this on behalf of the PPG and Practice.

  What has been happening at both Linden and Gilbert House to warrant such an accolade you may ask?

  Following a patient survey, recommended changes and improvements to the Appointment Process. These were accepted and implemented by the Practice.

  Improvement to the service provided to Under 18 patients suffering from Autism.

  Developed a number of paths for two-way communication with patients. Patients can now have a voice and know they will be listened to.

  Looked into the reason why a number of patients with eye conditions were being sent to St Helier and not Epsom. Introduced changes to the booking system which resulted in patients now mainly going to Epsom.

  Produced a 12 page twice yearly Practice Newsletter aimed at informing and educating patients on a range of health and Practice issues.

  Compiled a Local Services Signposting leaflet for both Doctors and patients which detailed contact points for local support services.

  Actively involved Local Councillors and Surrey County Council in the car parking and access issues affecting Linden House surgery.

  Introduced twice yearly Open Meetings where patients are brought up to date with PPG and Practice matters. To date we have welcomed speakers on Alzheimers, Stroke, Diabetes and the Princess Alice Hospice.

    Much to be proud of and if you would like to become involved in any way, big or small, please contact: or call: 07436 003 449


Mole Valley District Council’s crackdown on environmental anti-social behaviour has this year resulted in a formal caution and four separate Fixed Penalty Notices having been accepted by offending parties for fly-tipping and littering offences.

       Individuals or businesses found to be responsible for fly-tipping in Mole Valley risk receiving a £300 Fixed Penalty Notice (FPN) from Mole Valley District Council (MVDC). Anyone who undertakes work themselves, or hires a contractor or tradesperson to do work to a property – be that at home or a place of work – has a duty of care to ensure that the resulting waste is removed and disposed of in a responsible and legal manner.

  Work could include anything from the installation of a new kitchen, up-grading a workspace or having work done in a garden. Every householder, landowner, occupier or manager has a legal duty to ensure that a contractor or tradesperson is a registered waste carrier. This can be checked by calling 03708 506 506 or visiting

  The formal action taken so far this year by MVDC for fly-tips in Dorking and Leatherhead included a formal caution being accepted by a tradesman and FPN’s being paid by a householder, building contractor and property maintenance company. Despite not carrying out the fly-tip themselves, those who accepted fault failed to undertake the necessary checks to ensure the waste was going to be disposed of in a legal manner by a third party. The £75 littering FPN was issued after a witness submitted photographic evidence to MVDC that captured the littering taking place in Dorking.

  Councillor David Mir, Executive Member for Environment & Parking, said: “If a fly-tip is reported to us, we will work with our partners and contractors to clear the waste as quickly as possible and follow any leads with the intention of identifying and prosecuting the offender”.

   If you see a fly-tip in progress, please contact the police directly on 101. To report a fly-tip, please visit, message MVDC on Social Media or call 01306 885001. For more information about fly-tipping duty of care, please visit