Charles Cryer Update

Jake, Jill and Chris are very pleased to be able to announce that following productive discussions between the Council and CryerArts, the Charles Cryer Theatre aims to open in early November now that the lease has been agreed. 

CryerArts are a locally-based collective bringing different cultural activities together. Works can now visibly be seen to be taking place on the exterior of the building as CryerArts complete the necessary works to bring the building up to standard before opening in the next few weeks.

While the process may have taken longer than some had hoped, both the Council and CryerArts have been working tirelessly to provide a major cultural space in the heart of Carshalton. 

This ambition, which is now very nearly a reality, is also backed up by Sutton Council’s ambitious bid to be the London Borough of Culture for 2023. With the exciting news about the Charles Cryer, Jake, Jill and Chris hope that residents can show their support for the Council’s bid. More information can be found by going to

St Helier & Epsom Hospital

“After 20+ years of campaigning, it was announced in today’s Telegraph that our local NHS is in line to receive millions of pounds of investment!

This funding will help refurbish the older parts of St Helier and Epsom Hospitals, recruit more staff and build a brand new acute health facility for the sickest patients. This is what local residents, Lib Dem Councillors and I have so tirelessly fought for!

It appears the Government have finally listened to our demands, but the fight is far from over. This wouldn’t be the first time that a Tory Government has promised major funding for St Helier and then ended up breaking their promise.

I will be seeking cast-iron guarantees and holding them to their word – but I need your help to do that.

Help keep the pressure up, hold the Government to their promise and continue the fight for our hospital! Add your name and join our campaign:

Tom Brake, 29 September 2019

Councillors Join Better Buses Campaign

Carshalton Central Liberal Democrat Councillors Jake Short, Jill Whitehead and Chris Williams have today joined Tom Brake’s Better Buses for Sutton campaign. This campaign aimed at improving local transport in Sutton has already received hundreds of responses in support and has already chalked up some big wins for local residents.

Two key demands of the Better Buses campaign have already been met with approval from Transport for London. Starting at the end of this month, the 407 route will run with increased capacity as a double decker bus, and the 127 will run with increased frequency, easing the extreme congestion the routes see particularly during the school run.

Commenting on the new campaign, Cllrs Short, Whitehead and Williams said:

“We’re very pleased to see the Better Buses campaign has gotten off to a really good start. Improving transport in Carshalton is a key pledge that we made at the last local elections. Alongside the new Lime e-bike scheme and the GoSutton trial, improving our local bus routes in Carshalton is clear evidence we’re well on our way to meeting this pledge. We are particularly pleased to hear that the campaign is already being met with success- increasing frequency and capacity on the 127 and 407 routes will help residents in Carshalton immeasurably.”

GoSutton has expanded!

Sutton’s new Demand Responsive Bus trial- GoSutton- has expanded! From today onwards for the rest of the trial, you will now be able to use the service anywhere between Cheam and Beddington.

This new announcement is excellent news for local transport in our area, opening up a new accessible means of getting around for residents right across the borough. To celebrate, GoSutton have announced that for the rest of August the price of a ride has been reduced to £2. To start using this trial service, click here to find out more.

Dominos Licensing Application: Have Your Say

Recently, Dominos were allowed under the Conservative Government’s permitted development regulations to take on the former Siam Orchid site on Carshalton High Street.

Unfortunately, as this was a permitted development, Sutton Council had no input into the decision.

Now, the new Dominos have applied for a new premises license.

This new license would allow for the sale of Late Night Refreshment (hot food and drink) from 11pm to midnight Monday to Thursday and Sunday, with an additional hour until 1am on Fridays and Saturdays. The application also states they will not be serving alcohol.

The application can be viewed online here.

If you want to comment on the application, you can do so by filling in the form under the heading ‘Making a Representation’; by sending an email to or by post at:

Licensing Manager,
Regulatory Service-Licensing,
London Borough of Sutton,
24 Denmark Road,

The closing date for representations is 2nd September.

Please note that if no valid representations are received by then, the application is required by law to be automatically granted.

Conservatives ignore St Helier in spending spree

As Prime Minister Boris Johnson excludes St Helier Hospital from his £1.8 billion NHS announcement this week, Sutton Liberal Democrats say the Conservatives are abandoning Sutton’s NHS.

The list of 20 hospitals around England includes only two allocations for London: in north-east London and for Croydon University Hospital. Not a penny has been announced for St Helier Hospital.

The Epsom & St Helier NHS Trust is seeking government funds to build a new hospital for acute services. This would include A&E, emergency surgery, hospital births, amongst other vital services.

During the 2010-15 coalition government, Liberal Democrats had ensured £219 million was earmarked for investment in St Helier – funds the Conservatives withdrew after the 2015 general election.

Tom Brake MP and Sutton Liberal Democrats are leading the campaign for the new hospital to be built by St Helier and in the borough. Tom Brake’s petition has already been signed by 3,000 local residents.

Commenting, Tom Brake said:

“Boris Johnson has been prime minister for two weeks and already he’s abandoned Sutton’s NHS. The Conservatives cannot be trusted with the future of St Helier Hospital, which desperately needs further investment. As Boris excludes St Helier from getting new funds, it is clear that only Liberal Democrats will stand up for Sutton’s vital NHS services.”

Manifesto promise delivered: E-bikes come to Sutton

Sutton Liberal Democrats’ ambition to make Sutton one of London’s greenest boroughs took a big step forward this week with the launch of an electric bike rental scheme for residents and visitors.  

The fifty new electric bikes will help Sutton become a zero-carbon emissions borough in line with plans agreed by councillors this week. They will also help the Council improve local air quality by encouraging more people to use a bike and make cycling easier locally.

Parking Strategy Update:

Where We Are Now

Jake, Jill and Chris have spent the past year talking to residents about the parking situation on their road. Late last year, proposals were put forward for roads in half of the ward, stretching from Sutton Grove and Kings Lane in the west, to Mill Lane in the east of the ward, and between Banstead Road in the south and Brookfield Avenue in the north. This was Stage 2 of the Parking Strategy, asking for feedback on proposals ahead of a formal consultation at Stage 3 on final recommendations.

For most roads in this phase of the Parking Strategy, there were no proposed changes- as residents were very clear that they have no major parking issues on their road. This was particularly the case in the Harrow Road/Oxford Road area. In this part of the ward, the only proposed change focused on extending yellow lines on Cambridge Road, near the junction with Carshalton Road to allow greater clearance for buses. Equally, for the areas around Brookfield Avenue, Milton Avenue and Kingsley Avenue no major changes were proposed, except for yellow lining of certain areas at the Milton Avenue/Brookfield Avenue junction to formalise rules that residents said were unofficially being followed. This was proposed here so that enforcement action can be taken in future if those unofficial rules are not followed.

For other parts of the ward, there were several different proposals being put forward to try to deal with issues that residents had raised. These were organised into several different coloured zones.

Green Zone- Paid CPZ.
Roads: Sutton Grove and Waterloo Road
Councillors Recommendation: To NOT go ahead
This proposal was for a full paid Controlled Parking Zone operating from 8am to 6:30pm. This means it would require paid permits for residents to be able to park here. Only residents living in the zone would be eligible for permits to park here.

Based on clear feedback from residents here, Jake, Jill and Chris have recommended to officers that this proposal NOT go forward to the Stage 3 consultation.

Blue Zone Free CPZ.
Roads: Ringstead Road, Carshalton Grove, Byron Avenue, Byron Avenue East, Byron Gardens, Cowper Avenue, Harold Road, Florian Avenue and Orchard Way

Councillors Recommendation: To NOT go ahead

This proposal was for a non-permit parking scheme involving marked bays and single yellow lines. The single yellow lines would have one hour of operation, outside which anyone could park on those lines. Permits would not be required to park in the marked bays at any time. Based on firm feedback from residents in this area, Jake, Jill and Chris have recommended to officers that this proposal NOT go forward to the Stage 3 consultation.

Yellow Zone Paid CPZ
Roads: Rossdale, Alma Road, Shorts Road, Colston Avenue, West Street, West Street Lane, North Street, Rochester Road, Mill Lane, Station Road, Palmerston Road, Gurney Road, Grove Mill Place and Papermill Close

Councillors Recommendation: Alter proposals from a CPZ to a PPA in the Mill Lane area up to West Street for Stage 3 and for the proposal to NOT go ahead on Colston Avenue, Rossdale, Alma Road and Shorts Road.

This proposal was for a full Controlled Parking Zone in the roads listed from 8am to 6:30pm. This means it would require paid permits for residents to be able to park here. Only residents living in the zone would be eligible for permits to park here.

The feedback to Jake, Jill and Chris showed support for this proposal was very mixed, with some roads clearly wanting it and others clearly not wanting it. It also contains roads where, upon reflection, a paid CPZ would not adequately deal with the parking issues presented. This is particularly true in Colston Avenue, Rossdale, Alma Road and Shorts Road. In this area, Jake, Jill and Chris have asked that the proposals be scaled back and changed. We have recommended that the scheme not go ahead on Colston Avenue, Rossdale, Alma Road and Shorts Road for that reason.

Jake, Jill and Chris have spent several months speaking to residents in the Mill Lane area where feedback has been very divided. We took concerns from those who were opposed to the proposal back to Council officers- who have suggested that instead of a Controlled Parking Zone, a Parking Permit Area go forward to Stage 3. This is very different to the CPZ proposal as it is much more time limited- focusing on a two hour period of operation and would not lead to yellow lines being placed in front of dropped kerbs, which was a major cause for concern on Mill Lane. Speaking to residents in the Mill Lane area, Jake, Jill and Chris have found substantial support for this compromise solution and will therefore be recommending it go forward to Stage 3. This new proposed Permit Parking Area would cover roads from West Street to Mill Lane, including the roads coming off of Mill Lane.

Proposals revealed to bring theatre complex back into use

Final decision to be announced In October

A longlist of five formal bids has been selected to bring the Charles Cryer Theatre complex in Carshalton back into use.

More than ten bids were submitted and the longlist is drawn from bidders who are offering to lease all the buildings on the site and meet Sutton Council’s rent expectations.

Bids will be assessed by council officers and a shortlist decided by the end of August based on the viability and sustainability of the proposals.

Feedback on the bids will also be given by representatives of Arts Network Sutton, an independent charity, as well as community representatives on the Carshalton and Clockhouse local committee. A stakeholder panel of citizens and young commissioners will also be asked to give feedback on the bids. They  will assess how closely the bids meet the brief to benefit the wider community and maintain a venue for cultural activity in the borough.

A recommendation will be made by officers to the council’s Strategy and Resources committee with a final decision to be announced on 29 October.

The longlisted bidders and details of their proposals, in alphabetical order, are as follows:

Caliburn Fitness and Strengthening
A start up company which is supported by a long-established company. Intending to use the premises as a Crossfit Gym, creche cafe that will health focused and accessible to non-members, physiotherapy clinic, exercise studio and social space to host workshops and seminars related to health, exercise and nutrition..

Carshalton Baptist Church
Christian organisation seeking to become a visible, accessible and supportive resource in the community. Intending to use the property for Church, community cafe, provision of training and development to residents and offer space for use by community groups, and as rehearsal and performance space for local theatre groups, artists and musicians. To also run activities and services extended to the community that includes, youth club, parents and toddlers, counselling and support groups for the elderly and for carers.

Cryer Arts Limited
A start up company formed for this bid by founders with experience of running successful leisure, construction and entertainment businesses. Intending to use the premises for mixed events including music, film, theatre, comedy, food and drink tasting and TED type talks with a new bar and eating space in the existing restaurant..

Nickel Support Community Interest Company
A partnership bid by three organisations – Nickel Support, Tom Franck Productions and Spilt Milk Kids Cafe. Intending to use the premises for theatre productions and workshops, annual arts festival, child-focused and multi sensory cafe and as a centre for developing enterprises managed and run by trainees with learning disabilities. Will also open a shop for selling upcycled furniture made by trainees and will deliver training and workshops from the premises.

Victory Bible Church International Limited
Christian organisation intending to use the property for Church, social and community activities including assisting those in hospitals, prison and the homeless by giving practical support. Intend to undertake diversity projects through activities including funfair, music concerts and sporting activities