THE former Toys R Us site in Woking town centre has been bought by a mystery buyer for up to £5 million.

The sale was announced last week by the asset and property management company that was appointed to manage the 31 former toy stores in May this year.

The 41,360 sq ft Woking store has been sold to “a private buyer” according to FI Real Estate Management, who declined to disclose the identity of the new owner.

The deal was one of six for former Toys R Us stores around the country, totalling £30.5 million. The Woking site is the second largest, with the others in parts of the country where property is cheaper, the deal could be £5 million or more.

For more details, see the 26 July edition

Farewell to town’s plane on a pole

THE Hawker Hunter that has stood on a 10m pole in Woking town centre for more than 20 years has been removed to be restored and put on display elsewhere in Surrey.

The removal of the Hawker Hunter was prompted by health and safety concerns and has been given by Woking Borough Council, which owns it, to the Hawker Association, which is working with Brooklands Museum to find a permanent home for the jet fighter.

Julian Temple, the museum’s estates and heritage manager, said: “After over 20 years on top of a pole in all weathers, XL623 is in need of some tender loving care to restore her to her former glory and to preserve her for the future as an historic reminder of Britain’s post-Second World War aircraft industry.”

Moving on – The Hunter says goodbye to Woking

See the 26 July edition for more details

THE mini-power station planned for a former West Byfleet waste tip would be constructed and run with the consideration of residents in mind, says the company which has applied to build it.

UK Power Reserve Ltd insists the 33 gas-fired generators it wants to install would create minimal air, traffic and noise pollution.

This assurance has been given in the face of more than 750 public comments made on the planning application, with just one letter of support submitted at the beginning of this week.

Woking Borough Council has extended the public consultation period deadline to 1 August and its target date for a decision is 20 August.

A power station in Gloucester which has generators similar to those that would be installed at Camphill Industrial Estate

For more details, see the 26 July edition

WOKING volunteers have been recognised for their hard work in a competition in which the two winners son £3,500 for their charities.

David Wheeler was declared Woking Volunteer of the Year at the awards run by Greenoak Community Focus, with 18-year-old Will Siegmund winning the young volunteer category.

David was given £2,500 for the Woking Community Furniture Project (WCFP), while LinkAble received £1,000 thanks to Will’s achievement.

The winners, runners-up, nominees and presenters of the awards, including Jonathan Lord, standing far-right, and Lady Gill Baker, seated, second right

 For the full story, pick up the 26 July edition

Horsell’s sun-baked show

HORSELL’S biggest community event of the year had plenty to keep whole families happy as they basked in the sun on Saturday afternoon.

The field at Horsell Junior School was packed with people enjoying the annual village show in weather that was a stark contrast to last year’s wet and cold affair.

The main focus was on traditional horticultural and crafts competitions but there was a collection of attractions and entertainments to keep people of all ages happy.

The Chobham Morris dancers in full swing with their sticks

See our picture spread and more details in the July 26 edition

An elderly woman who died after being injured by a robber in her Kingfield home was kindly and adventurous, travelling the world and going around a racetrack in a sports car just a few years ago.

Joyce Burgess’s son Iain has paid tribute to the 84-year-old after she passed away three days after the incident at her Loop Road home.

Iain said: “My mother was a very kind and friendly woman. She was a sweet old lady who would do anything for anybody.”

Supt Graham Barnett said: “Mrs Burgess’s death came as a huge shock to her family and friends as, although she suffered serious injuries, she was showing positive signs of recovery and was talking in hospital.”

Joyce Burgess

For the full story, see the 19 July edition

THE company seeking to build houses on Fairoaks Airport land says it aims to rebalance the housing market in the area.

As expected, Fairoaks Garden Village Ltd applied for outline planning permission for a 1,000 home community on Thursday last week.

The company has moved the emphasis of its plans to have 40% of the houses to be “affordable”, after cutting 500 houses from its original scheme.

It now plans a mix of affordable rent, shared ownership and shared equity housing for the airport land on the borders of Chobham, Horsell and Ottershaw. Private rental and self-build homes will also be included.

An illustrative impression of Fairoaks Garden Village

For the full story, see the 19 July edition

RELIGIOUS, military and civic leaders came together at Woking’s Muslim Burial Ground Peace Garden Sunday to honour all the Muslim soldiers who gave their lives for Britain in both World Wars.

The service at the site on Horsell Common, also marked the anniversary of the first soldier, Shaikh Abdul Wahab, who was buried there on 16 July 1915.

There were addresses by Sophina Chisembele, daughter of last soldier to be buried in the Muslim Burial Ground, John Kingsbury, Armed Forces Champion, Muhammad Jawad Ajmal, Second Secretary, representing the High Commission of Pakistan and Colonel Simon Browne, Deputy Commander of 11th Infantry Brigade.

In addition there was a laying of wreaths by the Mayor of Woking, Cllr Will Forster, and Col Browne.

Tribute to Muslim soldiers

For the story and more pictures, see the 19 July edition

PYRFORD international archery champion sisters Louisa and Eleanor Piper have returned triumphant to the UK with a team silver medal from the European Youth Archery Championships in Patras, Greece.

This was the first time the sisters have shot together in the same team, as Louisa was shooting as an Under 21 Junior three years early. They have now come home with a European Silver Team Medal – contributing to GBR’s (Great Britain Recurve) second place in the overall medal table.

They finished Team Qualification ranked first, with Eleanor 6th and Louisa 11th individually. Louisa was the youngest in the 49-strong category. Both girls improved on their scores from the Shanghai World Cup in April and the Antalya, Turkey, Hyundai World Cup in May.

“This means that Louisa has managed to debut for GBR as an Under 17 Cadet at the international archery events in Croatia and Argentina, as a Senior at Shanghai and Antalya, and as an Under 21 Junior at Patras, Greece – all in less than a year,” proud mum Helen told the Woking News & Mail.

For the full story, see the 19 July edition

CRICKET: AFTER FOUR away fixtures, Old Woking were glad to finally return home and get back to winning-ways against Tadworth.

Without a win since 9 June, skipper Dean Stenning was rightfully keen for his players to regain their composure at the crease to help Old Woking move away from the relegation zone.

Tadworth opened the batting procedures through Craig Stevenson and Stewart Strachan, who scored at a rate of six runs per over to help set the tone.

For the full report, buy the 19 July edition