Lightwater’s first Blue Plaque commemorates the work of Mrs Rosette Savill

Pippa Anderson, and Gillian Barnes-Riding deserve our heartfelt thanks for their energies in arranging for the placing of a Blue Plaque commemorating Paddock Wood Girls Finishing School and the WWII Free French Rehabilitation Centre in Lightwater.

This afternoon, just after 2.0pm, the Mayor of Surrey Heath, Cllr Valerie White, unveiled the blue plaque on the School House of the Paddock Wood Girls Finishing School, one of the remaining original buildings on the site.

During WWII Mrs Savill was a Welfare Officer for the Free French Forces and the French Resistance Movement, and offered her Paddock Wood home as a rehabilitation and recovery site for injured Free French soldiers and resistance personnel. At the end of the war, those soldiers helped by Mrs Savill asked if she could arrange an English education for their daughters. It’s from these beginnings that the Girls Finishing School developed.

Today, over 20 past students and teachers witnessed the plaque unveiling, and afterwards listened to past student, Pippa Anderson, retell the remarkable story of Mrs Rosette Savill and her achievements. Here’s my brief photo montage ….. a video of the event, and image of the plaque will follow.

Civic pride is strong in Lightwater

I’ve reported, for a number of years, on the community good spiritedness of generous people maintaining a large island planter in Briar Avenue in Lightwater.

Community spirit seems to be infectious in Lightwater, as GetSurrey reports on a Lightwater woman takes community clean-up into her own hands with brand new project.

All Saints’ Hall refurbishment looks a treat

All Saints’s Church Hall were awarded a £15,000 Community Fund Grant, to modernise the kitchen and toilet facilities, in by Surrey Heath Borough.

That work, plus other refurbishments, is now complete, making the All Saints’ Church Hall a desirable place to hire, with electric opening external and internal doors, re-varnished floor, and new fire exit doors.

Thought you might like to see the improvements, with my photos,

Major redevelopment of the Lightwater CIU Club

I’ve missed writing about a major redevelopment in the centre of Lightwater. The CIU Club on Guildford Road in the centre of the village has applied for planning permission [Application No: 17/0610] to redevelop their site and it’s adjoining bungalow. See HERE for the planning application. Here’s what’s proposed,

Redevelopment of Club & Institute Union (CIU) site to erect part 2 storey/part 2.5 storey building(s) to accommodate new clubhouse facility (Use Class D2), retail floorspace (Use Class A1), residential use (Use Class C3 comprising 11no. flats & 3no. houses), together with 21 parking spaces, bicycle and refuse storage, following demolition of existing buildings.

The reasons the Lightwater CIU Club give to build a new club on the site are well founded, with falling club membership, and expensive maintenance costs of their existing building.

My immediate impressions are, from only a brief look at the plans, over development of the site, unproven need for a retail unit, insufficient car parking for the number of probable occupants, a characterless building design, oh, and no greenery of any kind to be seen.

This planning application is likely to receive many objections. I wonder what will be the final approved application – certainly not the density proposed. I wonder, with the developer contribution fee, if we might get enhanced car parking provision in the village centre? We do need it.