Friday, 22 January 2016

Proposed Changes to Biggin Hill Flight Paths over Croydon

The 8 Residents Associations covering the south of Croydon have created a press release commenting on the proposed changes to the flight path at Biggin Hill.

Here is the full release, please click on link below the image.

Thursday, 14 January 2016

Help Urgently Needed to Fight Against Purley Hopsital Closure

The Croydon Clinical Commissioning Group (CCCG) who are now responsible for healthcare in the Borough of Croydon have issued an engagement document on urgent care.

Right Care, Right Place, First Time: Involving Croydon in improving urgent care NHS Croydon CCG's right care, right place, right time engagement document has set out the possible ways of organising urgent care to meet national standards and local needs, as Croydon grows to a predicted population of 396,000 by 2020.

If you wish to read the full document it can be found at :

This contains 5 options 1, 2, 3a, 3b & 3c please see options attached

The 8 Residents’ Associations in the south of the borough have been in discussion with the CCCG for over a year expressing our concerns over the downgrading of the Urgent Care Centre at Purley Hospital to  minor injuries unit and also reducing the opening hours from 8.00am to 8.00pm to 2.00pm to 8.00pm only.

You will see from the 5 options proposed by the CCCG that only option 1 proposes to locate a GP Hub which does more than a minor injuries unit but not as much as an urgent Care centre at Purley.  However, this may not be on the existing hospital site.

Option 2  keeps Purley as it is part time and not much more than a first aid station.

The other options do have a GP hub in Purely, but sets up a conflict with other parts of the borough and the options without Purley  may be favoured by other people in other parts of the borough.

So we would like as many people to respond to the Engagement document opting for Option one and giving the following reasons. Please feel free to edit change or your own comments:  

1. Which of the three ways of organising urgent care services, Option 1, Option 2 or Option 3 do you think best meets the needs of all of the people in Croydon? (Please tick one box only).

Option 1    √ or YES

2. Please tell us why you chose this option

Purley already has an a purpose built fully equipped urgent care centre situated on level ground access and is in easy reach by residents and businesses in the south of the borough and many other locations in Croydon and beyond by car and public transport. At least 40% of the population of Croydon has easy access to Purley Hospital compared to the other sites.

5.  Is there anything else that we should think about when organising urgent care services in Croydon?

Purley Hospital already has a purpose built fully equipped urgent care centre that was downgraded. A GP hub should be situated there offering urgent care  12 hours per day with full access to the X-ray facilities.

Please then put in your personal detail on page 2

Documents Below;

CCCG Urgent Care Options Document
CCCG Response Page 1
CCCG Response Page 2


You can also fill in the document on line via


Wednesday, 13 January 2016

Changes to Flightpath at Biggin Hill

Currently there is a consultation regarding the flight path at Biggin Hill which I understand will have an impact on our area.  The proposal take the route down the A23 and over Coulsdon, Cane Hill and Chipstead.  They would be flying at 3000ft.

Here is the link for the full consultation document.

Friday, 8 January 2016

Flyer Re: Review of Urgent Care services in Croydon

Review of Urgent Care Services in Croydon
The View of the Residents Associations in Croydon.
Over the past 18 months, a grouping of Croydon Residents Associations have been lobbying the Croydon Clinical Commissioning Group regarding urgent care services in the community. Unfortunately, our views and our suggestions have been ignored in the production of the final 3 potential scenarios. The Residents Associations do not believe these scenarios present the best choice for Croydon and we question the validity of the review process.
There are a number of issues regarding the review process:
Errors: the CCCG confirmed at our meeting in December that the cost for 3 GP hubs included in their preferred option is nearer to £1.75 million rather than the £340,000 stated in the September strategy review document and they were aware of this massive error in October at the latest!
Scenario appraisals: There are some obvious anomalies in the appraisal process, for example, Scenario 5 with 6 GP Hubs is appraised as less safe than scenario 6 with only 3 GP Hubs. How can more GP hubs be less safe than fewer GP hubs?!
Existing facilities: the CCCG appraisal of providing x-rays facilities at Purley ignores the fact that there is already an existing x-ray facility on site; used during the week for outpatients. The incremental cost of expanding x-ray usage for minor injuries, and longer hours is relatively small. Why have the CCG disregarded this in their appraisal process?
Finances: The CCCG have put operating costs of an Urgent Care Centre at Purley at approximately £2 million per annum. Whereas, prior to the downgrading of the unit in May 2014, the Purley Urgent Care Centre had an operating cost of £864,000 per annum. How do the CCG reconcile this increase in assumed costs?
Members of the CCG executive team have suggested that minor injuries service could be provided by a “Federation of GPs”. There are already press articles questioning the potential conflicts of interest of CCG Governing Body members through their financial interests as GPs. We share this concern. Additionally, the CCG Governing Body members combined remuneration package is already almost £1million per annum – isn’t it time that savings were made here, and money directed to front-line services?
There has been a significant miscalculation in the consultation document – as accepted by the CCCG at our meeting in December - which was not publicly corrected despite being known since October. Therefore, the CCG should start again with the review process, and properly and openly consult with Residents Associations, and members of the public, before decisions are made.
Issued by: Purley and Woodcote, East Coulsdon, Coulsdon West, Old Coulsdon, Hartley and District, Kenley and District, Sanderstead, and Selsdon Residents’ Associations
1) Why were the figures not corrected during the public consultation when it was discovered in October 2015 that there was a significant error in calculating the cost of the 3 GP extended services as £340,000 when, according to amended calculations, the cost will be between £1.5m and £2m?
2) How was the decision made - at what the CCCG considered was the end of the consultation - to move to 2 or 3 extended GP hubs as their preference?
3) What information was considered to make this decision?
4) At what point was the CCCG board made aware of the error in the costing in the consultation document?
5) When, and by whom, was the decision made to continue the public consultation with the cost errors uncorrected?
6) In view of the discovery of the calculation errors, will you now re-consider the scenario 6b, with 2 GP hubs and Purley UCC which is the preferred service of all the residents associations in the area?
7) Throughout the consultation, there has been an extreme resistance for any details on specification and locations of the services to be released on the grounds of “commercial confidentiality”. Please will you explain the circumstances?
8) The specification for the emergency and central UCC services should be that of the ‘Healthy London Partnership, November 2015’. Are you working to this specification?
9) The exact specification for the GP extended services is not provided. The public need to know more detail about these services to be able to fully understand what will be provided and to be able to fully engage in any consultation.
10) How will these services be procured and how many providers will be invited to bid?

11) How will these services be managed and monitored?

Monday, 4 January 2016

Purley Hospital Meeting

Public meeting with the CCCG at 7:30pm this coming Thursday (7th January) at Christchurch on Brighton Road in Purley (opposite the Rotary Field; it is in a room at the rear of the Church and can be accessed via the back) to hear directly from the CCCG about their plans and allow us all to put our views directly to them. We apologise for the very short notice but we wanted to get this done before the consultation closed. Residents have not been attending or engaging in the ‘consultation’ which the CCCG have been carrying out and they need to know your views. 
 If you would like to come, or think you might, please reply to this email so we can get an idea of numbers.
Please do also feel free to email your views to:  getinvolved@croydonccg.nhs.ukYou may wish to copy the CEO and Chairman of the CCCG at You can also sign a petition at"

It would be excellent if you could attend this meeting

January Update from Chris Philp MP

Dear Resident

This is an update on local issues that I have been working on as our MP which I hope you will find useful. The first item, about the Minor Injuries Unit at Purley Hospital, is especially important. Do please come along to the public meeting I have arranged for this coming Thursday evening (7th January, 7.30pm at Christ Church, Purley) if you can.  Full details below.

Purley Hospital Minor Injuries Unit
I have been calling for restoration of the service level at Purley Hospital’s Minor Injuries Unit for some time. Morning opening hours and emergency access to the X-Ray machine should be reinstated, both of which were available until May 2014.

Croydon’s Clinical Commissioning Group is currently consulting on new options for urgent care in the Borough. The good news is that their apparent favoured option includes the restoration of morning opening hours and also the continued treatment of minor injuries in what they are now calling a “GP Hub”. It looks likely that one of the three Hubs in the Borough will be at Purley Hospital.

However, the option does not include the restoration of emergency access (i.e. without an appointment, for a suspected fracture or similar) to the existing X-Ray facility at Purley. Nor does it include the ability to treat fractures and more serious injuries.

I believe that this omission is completely wrong. For residents of Coulsdon, Kenley, Purley, Sanderstead, Croham and beyond it is far easier to get to Purley Hospital than to make the long journey to the A&E at Croydon University Hospital (CUH, or Mayday as was) for suspected fractures or more serious injuries. Reinstating the emergency X-Ray facility and ability to treat fractures will make full use of the Purley site, part of which was designed with this exact purpose in mind during its £11m re-build, which only finished in 2013. It will also alleviate pressure on A&E at CUH. If properly publicised, the service is likely to be very highly used. In 2013-14 the unit saw a 56% year-on-year increase in usage despite a lack of publicity.

Consultation on the options closes in mid-January. I have therefore organised a public meeting at 7:30pm this Thursday (7th January) at Christ Church on Brighton Road in Purley (opposite the Rotary Field; it is in a room at the rear of the Church and can be accessed via the back) to hear directly from the CCCG about their plans and allow us all to put our views directly to them. I apologise for the very short notice.  If you would like to come, please reply to this email so we can get an idea of numbers.

Please do also feel free to email your views to:  getinvolved@croydonccg.nhs.ukYou may wish to copy the CEO and Chairman of the CCCG at and

I very much hope that we can get the CCCG to upgrade the specification of the Purley Unit in the way I have suggested. Keep an eye on for updates.

Southern Rail – Appalling Service
Southern Rail’s performance continues to be abysmal. The huge problems with their service include lateness, apparently arbitrary train cancellations, over-crowding and station-skipping. It is the worst performing line in the country. Since I was elected as our MP I have called a Westminster Hall debate on the subject (see: and met repeatedly with the Rail Minister. Although the Rail Minister agreed to my suggestion to have weekly performance reviews with Southern and Network Rail (which started happening a few months ago) the situation has recently deteriorated.

I have now requested, and the Minister has arranged, a formal meeting with her, Network Rail, Southern Rail and all the MPs representing Brighton main line constituencies (about 20 MPs in all) on 18th January to pile on more pressure to urgently fix these problems. I will forcefully communicate how bad their service is at this meeting. I will keep up this pressure and, going forward, I am prepared to call for Southern to lose the franchise if the problems are not fixed fast. Keep an eye on for updates.

Coulsdon Parking Problems
Parking in Coulsdon continues to be a serious problem following the closure of Lion Green Road car park in July (losing 200 spaces) with no adequate substitute put in place.

There have been two welcome developments recently. Firstly, the CALAT car park is now available for general public use with 32 spaces from 7am to 6pm Monday to Friday. There is a small entrance from Chipstead Valley Road with a larger one from Woodcote Grove Road coming soon. Secondly, Aldi had planned to make their car park customers-only but have now agreed to leave it available for the general public for the time being.

I met with the Chief Executive of Croydon Council just before Christmas to call for two further measures to help the situation: firstly, for a new temporary car park just off Marlpit Lane roundabout on land that the Cane Hill developers do not currently need and secondly, for herringbone (angled) parking on Brighton Road to create many more kerb-side spaces there. I have been promised action on these two points.

Less good news is that the Labour council have welched on a manifesto promise to have 1 hour’s free parking in district centres and are now planning to cut the free parking in Coulsdon town centre from 1 hour down to 30 mins. I have formally complained about this proposal, which will further damage local businesses.

Fairfield Halls
The council are planning to close the Fairfield Halls from July this year for refurbishment. Whilst the principal of refurbishment is welcome, there are a number of problems with the approach proposed. Firstly, the money for the refurbishment is supposed to come from the development of nearby private flats. But there are neither concrete plans nor a developer in place for this. The redevelopment plans have not been published and in fact a planning application has not even been made. It seems reckless to shut down the Fairfield Halls before details of the redevelopment plan (both financially and physically) have been worked out. Finally, it would be better to do a phased redevelopment so the Halls could continue to partially operate during the refurbishment. It is very hard to re-open a venue once it has lost momentum after a total closure. Please sign this petition to protect the Fairfield Halls: and forward the link to friends and family.
Purley 2016 Charity Swimathon – Chance to take part
Since 1988, the Rotary Club of Purley has organised the annual Purley Swimathon which has so far raised over £450,000 for local and national charities. They hope to reach £500,000 soon.

There are still a few lanes available for the 2016 Swimathon on Saturday 27th February and Thursday 3rdMarch, at Purley Pool (thankfully still open!). This is an ideal opportunity to raise funds for any local or national cause you support. The Rotary Club does all the organising; all you need to do is enter a team of 5-10 swimmers from your club, association, family or friends.

The Swimathon is not a marathon and is a ‘fun’ event open to swimmers of all ages and abilities. They have had swimmers aged 6 to 80+ enter the event.

If you want to fundraise for your organisation or cause, please don’t overlook this rarely-available opportunity. For further information and lane availability, contact Swimathon organiser Tony Farrell on 020 8660 3084 or email

Campaign for a Grammar School for Croydon
Many people will have heard that a grammar school in Kent recently received approval to open a satellite school. Here in Croydon we do not have any grammar schools, although neighbouring Bromley and Sutton both do (I went to a grammar school in neighbouring Bromley because my parents could not afford the fees at Trinity here in Croydon, where I was offered a place). I believe that grammar schools help children from ordinary backgrounds, like mine, to achieve their potential. I have therefore been working with the Headmaster of Wallington County Grammar School in Sutton to explore opening a new satellite of that school here in Croydon. I have already written to Education Secretary Nicky Morgan and met with officials to get the ball rolling.

Purley BID Success (and sausage incident)
I was delighted to have worked with Steve O’Connell in supporting Simon Cripps and the team at the Purley Business Improvement District (BID) project, who won the vote of local businesses in November to set up the BID. They will be able to levy a 2% Business Rates surcharge and use the money to improve the town centre. Tesco in Purley represents 40% of the local business vote by rateable value, and their support was key. They had threatened to vote against, but Simon and I persuaded them to support the BID and they will now contribute significantly to the funding of the BID. I did unfortunately nearly choke on a Tesco value mini sausage at a tense moment in the discussions, as reported here by the Daily Mail and Croydon Advertiser:

Purley Skyscraper
The formal planning application for the 16 floor Purley skyscraper has not yet been made, but it was included in the recent draft Local Plan and is coming to another pre-application review meeting soon. The Council still seem minded to support it. The skyscraper is totally out of keeping with Purley where the next tallest building is only 5 floors and I therefore totally oppose it.  Zac Goldmsith has publicly said that he will veto the application if elected as Mayor of London (which he has power to do for an application of this size), which is good news. Please do sign the petition against the skyscraper, and forward the link to friends and family: Our London Assembly Member Steve O’Connell is also firmly opposed to the skyscraper. I will keep a very close eye on this, and let everyone know as soon as they make a formal planning application which I expect to be quite soon.
Activity in Westminster
I have been active in Westminster on national issues as well. This has included campaigning against fraudulent personal injury insurance claims (speech in a Westminster Hall debate here: resulted in the Government announcing in the Autumn Statement that whiplash injury claims for less than £5,000 would now be banned (many of these claims are spurious and they add £93 to everyone’s annual car insurance).

I also called for a significantly higher minimum wage, which is being implemented in April (£7.20 per hour, up from £6.50 per hour the previous year and rising to £9.35 per hour by 2020). You cannot live on £6.50 an hour, and it is unfair that employers who underpay staff get subsidised by the general taxpayer through top-up benefits. Employers should pay at least enough to live on.

I have spoken a great deal on increasing housing supply, especially on brownfield land (not greenbelt land) and I served on the Housing and Planning Bill Committee which went through hundreds of pages of draft legislation line-by-line. Two recent speeches I gave in the Commons on Housing are here: and here:

Shortly after being becoming our MP I was elected to the Treasury Select Committee by other MPs. I have already questioned the Chancellor, the Governor of the Bank of England and the Head of the Office for Budget Responsibility on topics such as growing the economy, creating jobs and on interest rates. My experience setting up and running my own businesses for the past 15 years has been useful in doing this.

Finally, I have appeared on Channel 4 news fairly regularly in the last few months and also appeared on ITV’s Late Debate review of the year just before Christmas. The video clip is here:

I hope that this rather lengthy update has been useful. More information is at or by following @chrisphilp_mp on twitter.

With my best wishes for 2016.

Chris Philp MP
Member of Parliament for Croydon South