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Plans for Night Working at Epsom Station Deferred

September 3, 2010 5:17 PM
Town Hall - Epsom

Residents in the town centre are fed up with noise during the night

Amidst much heckling from the public gallery, a planning application to allow night working at Epsom Station has been deferred. A meeting of the Planning Committee on 2nd September was remarkable for two reasons : firstly the "consultation" period on the proposals had not expired by the time the plans were brought to the Committee for decision and secondly a blow-by-blow commentary of the meeting was transmitted via the internet on Twitter thanks to local Guardian reporter Thais Portilho-Shrimpton.

Epsom town centre has recently been the subject of numerous complaints about noise during the early hours. Radio Surrey broadcast a news item on the topic last week. Residents of Hudson House and elsewhere have challenged the council's out-of-hours noise service and been in contact with the Police and council officers about the on-going problems, partly the result of licensing issues. A high concentration of night clubs within a small geographical area is under scrutiny. Bass vibrations from music have been said to travel up into residential buildings. Local residents have therefore become vigilant about any further disruption during the night time and a petition had been raised by residents living nearby who were against the proposals.

At one point during the meeting it was suggested that Council Officers should be left to make the decision but this proposal did not find favour.

Councillor Alison Kelly (Town) was horrified to think that a major development of nearly 2 years duration had so little project planning that the developer could only give 24 hours notice of proposed night work. She said "The whole application showed a complete lack of respect for local residents who already have to live in a noisy environment. At the very least residents should be written to so they know when works are to be carried out, if night time working is unavoidable. It became clear that the notice of this application was not circulated very widely, many blocks such as Marquis Court and Oaks Square were not included as they were considered to be outside the area of nuisance."

An interesting point of note that did come out in discussion was the suggestion that the developer was happy to create a "user group" to keep councillors and resident representatives informed.

The proposals will be decided upon at October's meeting, which will be held on Thursday 7th October.