An Overwhelming Response And Great News From
Cllr. James Friend
– The Leader Of Mole Valley District Council!

Thank you so much to everyone who responded to the ARA (Ashtead Residents’ Association) / S.A.V.E. Parking Questionnaire. We received an out standing 2,252 responses in a very short 2 week period.

We have presented the full results to Cllr. James Friend, the Leader of Mole Valley District Council, who has responded in an amazingly positive way.

The results provide very clear and credible evidence of local opinion relating to the key issues.

Cllr. James Friend thanked

“everyone involved in collating this representative set of opinions from Ashtead residents… It is much appreciated”.

He reiterated that his own position is that

“We will do nothing unless the residents of Ashtead tell us that they have a scheme with Tesco that they want us to consider”.

This is EXCELLENT news for us! We very much appreciate the Council’s support as well as that of Chris Grayling, our M.P. The approach adopted appears to be consistent with that out-lined in The Localism Bill, recently published by the Government, which gives more power to local communities in planning issues.

Why The Questionnaire?

The Key Condition from the Planning Inquiry of July 2010 was the Inspector’s decision that Tesco could only build their proposed 750sq metre supermarket if the current 74 long term car parking spaces were relocated outside of the Ashtead Peace Memorial Car Park. This would leave all 181 spaces in the APMH car park for short term parking i.e. 4 hours or less.


The Questionnaire was created to obtain the views of residents and regular visitors to Ashtead on:

  • The impact of this Planning Condition being met. How would all users of Ashtead’s parking (long and short term) as well as Ashtead in general, be affected by the possible options for relocating the long term parking?
  • What could be considered to be a suitable development on the old Esso site, given that Tesco own the land, if the Long Stay Parking Condition could not be met for a store of 750sqm?

The Results

Chris Grayling MP, with Gillian Russell (SAVE Spokesperson) supporting the 'Save Our Car Park' Campaign

1. Parking Provision

The results for questions relating to parking provision were very clear, with opinions being close to unanimous.

  • 97% thought that “MVDC should continue to provide long stay parking in the Village”
  • 99% considered that “the APMH car park should continue to meet the needs of APMH users, other shoppers, business users and visitors”
  • 91% agreed that “long stay parking needs should continue to be provided in the APMH car park.”

There is consequently clear evidence that an overwhelming majority wishes to maintain the current mix of long and short term parking provision in the Village and to safeguard the interests of all current users of the APMH car park.

2. Development of the Site

  • 67% agreed that “a smaller store could be acceptable” but
  • 78% supported the proposition that “any new proposal should be restricted to a convenience store.”

The results from the Questionnaire support the views of SAVE, the ARA and Ashtead residents that were presented during the planning process i.e.
That the proposed store is much too big for the space available and the surrounding infrastructure. It would be approximately more than 3x the size of Tesco Express in Craddocks Parade. It would have a very negative impact including on the use of The Ashtead Peace Memorial Hall which often hosts events requiring long stay parking, and on office and shop workers who need to park long term.

Click here for the full Questionnaire Results

Click here for the full text of the ARA/SAVE letter sent to Councillor James Friend

Next Steps: A Win Win Situation?

Given that Tesco owns the site, SAVE believes a better solution would be:

  • A much smaller, basket only store, akin to a Tesco Express size.
  • The development should be SELF-CONTAINED within the old Esso site with on-site parking for staff and delivery vehicles.
  • No change to the current car parking arrangements in Ashtead, with the Car Park remaining under the full control of Mole Valley District Council.
  • Only a front entrance, to draw shoppers onto The Street and into other shops.
  • A design that delivers excellence in sustainability.

We believe that a smaller store would provide the following benefits:

  • Minimising the environmental impact on the surrounding area (including no felling of trees outside of the site and no raising of the car park)
  • Protecting the future of the Ashtead Peace Memorial Hall
  • Minimising the traffic increase to acceptable levels
  • Maintaining the character of the village

How You Can Help

  1. Help us with our ongoing publicity campaign e.g deliver posters to shops. Click here
  2. Make a small donation to help fund our campaign. Click here
  3. If you shop at Amazon via this link we make a small percentage on any purchases you make
  4. Spread the word amongst your neighbours, family and friends e.g forwarding this website