Stoke d’Abernon News Spring 2021

If you would prefer to read a PDF copy of this newsletter please click here. Stoke d’Abernon News is edited and produced by John Dare.

Building bridges between Stoke d’Abernon & Oxshott

Not that we have actually disagreed with Oxshott and it is only one bridge! Surrey County Council have a £100 million fund called ‘Your Fund Surrey’ for local communities. This is to be put toward improvements to community life, infrastructure and amenities in Surrey. By February some 878 suggestions had been submitted, one of which is for a pedestrian bridge alongside the intimidating and dangerous to walk over, road bridge crossing the railway at Blundel Lane.

The bridge has relatively blind and sharp, bends either side which also impairs sightlines for drivers. A feasibility study will need to be done and there is no guarantee that our plan will be selected from the many applications received.

The road bridge over the railway at Blundel Lane. Perfectly safe for pedestrians in the days of the occasional horse and cart and possibly in the 1950s when few people owned a car and traffic was slower, but today decidedly dangerous!

Bridging that gap

Some side slats had gone ‘missing’ from the footbridge over the river Mole on the way to Downside. Rather than invoke Surrey C.C. to add to their long list of outstanding jobs, local resident and skilled carpenter Nick Price, – owner of a Bond car, see previous newsletter – effected repairs and made an excellent job of it.

Footbridge Before
Footbridge After, courtesy of Nick Price

Further to Nick’s good work above, SCC have now added a strip of wood on both sides which hopefully makes it more difficult to kick out the slats in order to play a new, bigger variant of ‘Pooh sticks’ by sending slats down the river Mole.

New strip, courtesy of Surrey County Council

Membership subscriptions

It is subscription time for 2021 !

The amount is now £5 and can be given to your road representative in cash or cheque, or if reluctant to do this during the pandemic, then payment can be by bank transfer to:

Stoke d’Abernon Residents’ Association:- Sort code: 09-06-66, Account number: 41936443.

To provide unique identification, please state as the reference: Your surname. Road number and Road eg. Trump, 1600 Pennsylvania Ave.


The Residents’ Association is seeking a volunteer membership secretary to assist the treasurer. If this interests you then please contact Ian Nelson on 01932 863073.

Green Belt

Our association has joined with 10 other residents groups in Elmbridge to encourage councillors to reject the government’s target of 633 new dwellings a year, which would have a huge adverse impact on our area. The council’s new Local Plan is due this spring.


The grass verges by the pavements add to the appeal of our area, but please be considerate to others and clear up after your dog and please do not throw full plastic bags into nearby gardens.

The Editor’s Ramblings

Some people thought the picture of the youthful magician in the last edition was a young Ian Nelson! I’m unsure if Ian or I was more miffed by that observation, but we can see how the misunderstanding happened. To put the record straight, the picture was that of your editor (John Dare) whose name appears alongside the text at the bottom of the last page of each print edition.

This is the first of our newsletters to be printed by an Essex based company; following Brexit the previous firm relocated to Poland to remain within the EU and thus we were hit by the 23% Polish rate of VAT whereas in the UK it is VAT exempt – so now as the popular saying goes, ‘the only way is Essex’!

Cherry Trees

Opposite the Plough and tucked away behind hedging is a small children’s playground. It is often overlooked and is the original recreation ground of the village. It appears as such on Ordnance Survey maps going back some 120 years. The recreation ground at one time contained the ‘pound’, something like a sheep pen, where stray goats and other animals were kept only to be released for a fee. Prior to that the pound used to be the other side of Stoke Road roughly in the vicinity of the village sign today.

Over the years the recreation ground has been something of a memorial place; after WW1 a flagpole was donated by a Mrs Buscarlet (who also donated the village hall) and Mr Tom Fuller used to fly the Union Jack each Armistice Day. Unfortunately the flagpole seems to have long since disappeared. After WW11 the local Women’s Institute planted a line of cherry trees (see picture above) in memory of the fallen and this is a registered war memorial. The trees are now quite elderly and some were ‘accidentally’ removed by Elmbridge council.

From 1913 Ordnance Survey 6″ map

Clearly it would be inappropriate to eradicate history, desecrate a war memorial and remove all trace of the sacrifice that Stoke d’Abernon locals ever made for their country. Therefore the Stoke d’Abernon Residents’ Association in conjunction with Elmbridge Council and Cobham Heritage intends inspecting the existing trees, replacing where necessary and installing a stone memorial tablet and a new information board.

(Thanks to local resident Annette Parkin who provided some historical information. Ed.)

Fish Bar

Michael is a familiar sight to the happy customers who come from far and wide to experience his delicious fish and chips. His Cobham Fish Bar is next to the station and is open every day till 9pm except Sunday. Originally from Turkey, Michael has been frying fish for 30 years, and acquired the business in October 2019. Definitely worth a visit. 01932 989621.

All those boxes! When I was young fish & chips used to be wrapped in newspaper – no doubt ‘elf & safety’ nowadays. Ed.

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