woking town centre

CHURCH Street East in Woking will be closed this weekend, as part of building works in the town centre.

The street closes to through traffic from 7pm tonight, Friday 25 October to 6am, Monday 28 October 2019.

During the works, Farrans Construction will be resurfacing the highway with grey granite block paving already used in other parts of the town centre.

“Vehicular access to Christchurch Way, Church Path and part of Chobham Road will be restricted during the works. Pedestrian access will be maintained at all times,” said a council spokesman.

“We would like to thank local businesses, road users and residents for their patience during these works.”

A COFFEE shop that combines a wide range of snacks with hot and cold drinks has opened in Woking town centre.

Coffee fans Bradley and Larne Johannie and son Benjamin enjoy drinks at the new cafe

Black and White has taken the site previously occupied by Café Americano, later renamed Santa fe, in Middle Walk.

Carl Whiting-Gorley, the owner of Black and White, has been in catering since he was 16 and considered opening a coffee shop in Guildford before choosing the Woking site.

Carl said the café catered for all dietary requirements and doesn’t charge extra for non-dairy milk.

He said the site was ideal for passing trade, especially commuters going to and from the railway station.

For the full story get the 17 October edition of the News & Mail (Pictures by Terry Habgood)

PLANS to widen the Guildford Road in Woking town centre to a dual carriageway moved closer with the announcement of a £90 million government investment.

The money will come from the Housing Infrastructure Fund, with the Department of Housing, Communities and Local Government saying on Tuesday this week that the project will “unlock plans” for up to 4,500 new homes in Woking.

Plans include the widening of Victoria Arch over the A320

The widening of Victoria Arch over the A320 to accommodate the wider road could also lead to improved rail links through the town, including a possible extra line and expanded railway station.

Kit Malthouse, the Housing Minister, said: “For decades, governments of all stripes and types have not built enough new homes, and we need to see urgent action to turn that around.

“This £95 million investment in Woking town centre will mean the town is ready to support thousands of much-needed new homes.
“We are making money available in Surrey so we can build more, better, faster and meet our ambition to deliver 300,000 homes a year by the mid-2020s.”

Last year, Woking Borough Council announced that it was working in partnership with the county council on plans that would include widening the road and arch to relieve town centre traffic congestion and make journeys quicker and more reliable.

Although funding is now in place, there are several hurdles to cross, including the work receiving planning permission and possible attempts to block it by residents and businesses.

It was estimated that the work could start towards the end of this year, but the timescale seems very tight.

For the full story get the 13 June edition of the News & Mail

A MAN and woman who forcefully grabbed a woman’s handbag stole her mobile phone from her coat pocket in Woking town centre have been sentenced.

Jamie Cook and Hayley Razzell accosted the woman and ran off. A passer-by chased after them, catching Razzell and grabbing Cook’s backpack.

Jamie Cook has been jailed for 17 months

Police said the victim was “left extremely shaken as a result of her ordeal.” Her coat pocket was ripped as the phone was stolen.

Cook, 20, of Woodham Lane, Addlestone, was jailed for 17 months and ordered to pay a £140 victim surcharge when he appeared at Guildford Crown Court last week.

Razzell, 27, of Eden Grove Road, West Byfleet, was sentenced to 10 months’ jail, suspended for 12 months. She was ordered to carry out 80 hours of unpaid work and to pay £350 compensation to the victim, £150 in costs and a £115 victim surcharge.

 The pair initially pleaded not guilty to the robbery in Victoria Way around 10.30pm on 2 November 2017 but changed their plea on the day the trial was due to start.

Woking Neighbourhood Officer PC Sarah Wentworth paid tribute to the passer-by who chased the robbers, saying the action ensured they were both swiftly arrested and ultimately brought to justice.

PC Wentworth said: “The victim was walking home after a night out when she was confronted by Razzell and Cook. I hope that the sentences given to Razzell and Cook will help her to put the experience behind her.”

A WOMAN in her 80s was ran over by a mobility scooter, which knocked her to the pavement and then landed on top of her near Woking town centre.

Passers-by, including motorists, ran to the aid of Gloria Barber, freeing her and taking her to the nearby NHS walk-in centre.

Mrs Barber, 85, told the News & Mail that she was getting on to the pavement after crossing the road near the police station when she was hit in the back by the vehicle.

“I had quite a heavy shopping trolley and was manoeuvring it on to the pavement when I felt a ‘whoosh’ in my back and I went down. Then the buggy was on my feet and legs,” she said.

Passers-by lifted the buggy off Mrs Barber’s legs and a couple who had been driving nearby took her to the walk-in centre.

“Both legs have tissue damage and swelling. They X-rayed my feet and couldn’t see a break and sent me home,” Mrs Barber said.

“I am gradually recovering; the swelling is going down.”

Mrs Barber is expected to make a full recovery and is resting at home.

For more on this story get the 14 March edition of the News & Mail

THE annual Woking Shopmobility pancake race was won by the marketing team from Woking Borough Council on a crisp but dry day.

RETURNING CHAMPION: Woking FC mascot K.C. Cat tries for a second year running as fastest mascot

They finished ahead of Fidessa, from the town centre-based recruitment company, with Seafarers, more used to serving fish and chips, coming third.

A shortage of entrants led Shopmobility to enter a team at the last minute.

“We had fun, but didn’t win our heat,” said the charity’s Joyce Browning.

Despite the slight drop in the number of competitors, there was a good crowd of spectators for the 24th pancake race in Jubilee Square, and the 12th run by the charity that hires out mobility scooters, powered and manual wheelchairs to help shoppers in the town centre.

For the full story and picture feature get the 7 March edition of the News & Mail.

HIGH Street in Woking is closed to through traffic from today, Monday 18 February, for two weeks as part of the ongoing works to transform the town centre.

During the works, Farrans Construction will be installing underground electrical ducting across High Street.

This will involve closing High Street from the junction of Chapel Street to Victoria Way to through traffic. Access for businesses, deliveries and residents will be maintained at all times and limited to authorised vehicles only.

During the works, vehicles will be required to exit High Street via Broadway/Chertsey Road. Traffic marshals will be available to assist drivers and vehicles at all times.

Bus stops along High Street will be suspended and relocated to Broadway.

Woking Borough Council said it thanked residents, workers and all those visiting the town for their patience during the works.

BANDSTAND SQUARE is set to receive a £150million facelift, Woking Borough Council has announced.  

Council chief executive Ray Morgan, flanked by leader of the council John Kingsbury and key stakeholders from Woking Shopping, also revealed that Marks & Spencer would act as the anchor store in a gleaming new 60,000 sq ft unit.

An additional 60,000 sq ft of space will be occupied by other retails in a project that is due to break ground in spring 2014.

TOP MARKS - Marks & Spencer will be the site's anchor store

TOP MARKS – Marks & Spencer will be the site’s anchor store

Woking Borough Council will cover 50 per cent of the overall cost of the development, with the remaining funds being drawn from outside funding partners.

Mr Morgan said the outside parties would be finalised by December this year and confirmed that Marks & Spencer was the ‘vital trigger’ to their involvement.

He added said: “We are delighted that Marks & Spencer have agreed to become our anchor store.

“This project has come from understanding what the town desired and is another step to improving Woking town centre.

“It follows our core strategy and we are pleased with the amount of retailer interest.

“Everything is geared towards trading in time for Christmas 2017.”

Director of Woking Town Centre Management Tim Buckley said: “This is a massive step forward for the town and is a demonstration that Woking is open for business.”

A planning application for Bandstand Square will be submitted early in the new year with approval all but assured. And 190 apartments, plus a new business-class hotel, will also rise up with building work estimated for completion in 2017.

It is estimated the development will generate more than 1,000 new jobs and will complete the integration of the Wolsey Place and Peacocks shopping centres.

Customers will be able to circulate through the two centres with an “enhanced quality retail experience”.

But the project is not without its stumbling blocks.

Construction cannot begin without first relocating the fire station from its current home in Church Street.

Council chiefs also confirmed that an alternate road system will need to be installed, thus creating a need to rehome Woking’s bustling market stalls.

With the acquisition and subsequent demolition of the former Post Office and Globe House in Victoria Way, Gala Coral staff will also need to be suitably relocated.

A spokesman for the betting company said the council had their full backing.

They said: “The council has kept us informed about its plans and we are in discussion with it to relocate our employees during 2013.

“This will enable the site to be cleared in preparation for construction in 2014. It is most encouraging that the council is leading on improving the town and at the same time taking care to retain existing employment.”


CHEER - Paralympian gold medallist Helen Hilderley celebrates London 2012WOKING was alive with the sound of bells on Friday to signal the start of the London 2012 Olympic Games.

At exactly 8.12am, crowds in the town centre joined hundred of thousands of bell ringers across the country as Great Britain ushered in the world’s most prestigious sporting event.

Traditional brass bells, bicycle bells, cow bells, delicate glass bells and even mobile phone ring tones were used to announce the start of the Olympic Games in the capital.

Eagle Radio’s Love Crew led the countdown before mayor Michael Smith and mayoress Anne Murray joined Woking in three minutes of joyous bell ringing.

Former track and road cyclist, Tony Doyle stood on the balcony overlooking the square alongside the councillors to start the event.

Helen Hilderley (above), who competed in the 1984 Paralympics in New York, and won a gold medal in archery, silver in javelin and bronze in club, discus and shotput took part in the musical extravaganza.

Watch the action here: