Molesey

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigation Jump to search

Molesey
Bridge Road - geograph.org.uk - 1170972.jpg
Bridge Road, East Molesey
Molesey is located in Surrey
Molesey
Molesey
Molesey shown within Surrey
Area 5.87 km2 (2.27 sq mi)
Population 19,088 (2011 census)[1]
• Density 3,252/km2 (8,420/sq mi)
OS grid reference TQ145675
• Charing Cross 12 mi (19 km) NE
Civil parish
  • n/a
District
Shire county
Region
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town EAST MOLESEY
WEST MOLESEY
Postcode district KT8
Dialling code 020
Police Surrey
Fire Surrey
Ambulance South East Coast
EU Parliament South East England
UK Parliament
List of places
UK
England
Surrey
51°23′42″N 0°21′11″W / 51.395°N 0.353°W / 51.395; -0.353Coordinates: 51°23′42″N 0°21′11″W / 51.395°N 0.353°W / 51.395; -0.353

Molesey is a suburban district comprising two large villages, East Molesey and West Molesey, in Surrey, England, just outside the edge of Greater London and situated on the south bank of the River Thames.

East and West Molesey share a high street, and there is a second retail restaurant-lined street (Bridge Road) close to Hampton Court Palace in the eastern part of the district, which is also home to Hampton Court railway station in Transport for London's Zone 6. Molesey Hurst or Hurst Park is a large park by the River Thames in the north of the area, and is home to East Molesey Cricket Club. The Hampton Ferry runs from here to Hampton on the Middlesex bank, from where it is a short walk to the central area of Hampton.

Molesey is divided into three wards of the United Kingdom: Molesey South, East and North. The majority of Molesey's detached properties are in the east, which also contains the highest proportion of apartments of the three wards.

History[edit]

The earliest documentary evidence of a settlement in Molesey appears in a 7th-century charter, shortly after Erkenwald founded Chertsey Abbey in AD 666. He secured from Frithwald, sub-king of Surrey, a charter endowing the abbey with much of the surrounding land, including Muleseg. Etymologists suggest that the town's name is derived from the personal name Mul (pronounced Mule) compounded with the Old English word eg, meaning an island or river meadow – thus Mul's Island. Therefore, Molesey is not, as commonly believed, named after the River Mole that runs through it. The prefixes East and West did not appear until about the year 1200, before which there was only one parish centred around what is now known as East Molesey.[2] Molesey lay within the Saxon administrative district of Elmbridge hundred.

East Molesey appears in Domesday Book of 1086 as Molesham. It was held partly by John from Richard Fitz Gilbert and partly by Roger d'Abernon. Its Domesday assets were: 2 hides and 3 virgates. It had 7 ploughs, 2 oxen, and 32 acres (13 ha) of meadow and woodland worth 10 hogs. It rendered £6 15s 0d. West Molesey was held by Odard Balistarius. Its Domesday assets were: 1 hide, 1 church, and 5 ploughs. It rendered £4.[3]

Along with neighbouring Thames Ditton, East Molesey formed a part of the ancient parish of Kingston upon Thames. From 1933, the Urban District of East and West Molesey became part of the Esher Urban District, which was originally recommended by the Royal Commission on Local Government in Greater London (the Herbert Commission) for inclusion within the new ceremonial county of Greater London. In 1974, the district eventually merged with its neighbour to the west, Walton and Weybridge Urban District, to form the new borough of Elmbridge within Surrey.[4]

Molesey was one of the many villages and towns along the Thames valley affected by flooding in 1968; specifically here the flooding of the River Mole. Some barriers and overflow fields have been created since then by the Environment Agency and its precursors.[5]

East and West Molesey uses a roughly due north-south compass axis, based on a point of division by the Molesey Stone on the grass outside Molesey Library on Walton Road, though the Stone has been moved from its original position and the actual boundary between East and West Molesey has become somewhat blurred and disputed.

Locality[edit]

West Molesey, East Molesey and Hampton Court

Molesey is directly south of the River Thames, with several large reservoirs bordering the town to the west and south that provide water within the London Basin. Some of these are now disused and are being converted into nature reserves. To the west lie Bessborough Reservoir and Knight Reservoir, to the north-west Molesey Reservoirs, to the south Island Barn Reservoir, and to the south-west Queen Elizabeth II Reservoir. There are walks beside Metropolitan green belt fields to the south along the river Mole to Esher, and to the west along the Thames Path to Walton-on-Thames.

Hampton Court Palace is immediately north-east of East Molesey across Hampton Court Bridge.

Hampton Court Bridge and East Molesey Riverbank

The Palace, together with the southern part of Bushy Park and most of Hampton Court Park are in the post town East Molesey.

Molesey Lock is just above Hampton Court Bridge, downstream of Sunbury Lock and upstream of Teddington Lock. Cigarette Island Park is just below the bridge, occupying the eastern extremity of the town.

Hurst Park is on the south bank of the Thames, from where there is a daily ferry service to Hampton on the Middlesex bank. It once had a horse racing course but no longer does.

The residential streets of East Molesey run directly into Weston Green and the northernmost stretches of residential Esher to the south, and Thames Ditton to the south-east. Together with the reservoirs, Green Belt land to the west and south-west divides West Molesey from Walton on Thames.

On the south side of Molesey, separating West Molesey from Hersham and Walton-on-Thames, lies Molesey Heath which is home to a large and rapidly growing roost of Parakeets, one of several in North Surrey. Thousands of these bright green birds can be seen flying across the heath in the hour before sunset each day as they return to their roosts on the heath and at nearby Esher Rugby Club.

The central shopping area of Kingston upon Thames lies 1.7 miles east of Bridge Road in East Molesey, while central Walton on Thames lies 2.3 miles to the west-southwest of West Molesey High Street.

Landmarks[edit]

Molesey itself has some interesting landmarks, including three listed Church of England churches and The Bell, a public house, formerly known as "The Crooked House", built in the mid-15th century. Other Landmarks include The Jubilee Fountain in Bridge Road. There are three designated Conservation Areas in East Molesey.

Other historic buildings include the Grade II-listed Matham Manor, an altered 15th-century house with timber frames and red brick; and a 16th-century house, Quillets Royal, with an 18th-century extension (The Manor House). Both buildings lie near The Bell in Bell Road/Matham Road.[6]

In April 2017, 15th Century St Peter's church on Walton Road, said to be the oldest building in Molesey, had lead stolen from the roof and historic masonry damaged in a nighttime theft. Thieves used scaffolding put up to install an antenna approved by Elmbridge Council. Press reports at the time alleged that police had been alerted to the crime by a local resident but that they had declined to attend.[7]

Bars, public houses and restaurants[edit]

Molesey has many traditional pubs and restaurants, though several public houses have closed in recent years to become apartment buildings. They have largely consolidated on a few with successful niche products or music offerings such as The Poyntz Arms with live music on Friday evenings.

Molesey's modern bars are composed of Signature Cafe Lounge and Bar, the Square Olive and the Prince of Wales in East Molesey.

Molesey East & West Conservative Club and the Royal British Legion Club are the only members' clubs (both in East Molesey). In West Molesey is The Europa, The Lord Hotham, The Cannon and The Royal Oak. As of 2015, there are Chinese, Indian, French, Italian, Greek, Nepalese and Lebanese restaurants in the area, as well as branches of Pizza Express and Zizzi.

Scout groups[edit]

Molesey has three Scout groups which all belong to Esher District. 1st Molesey is a Royal Navy-recognised Sea Scout group whilst 2nd and 3rd Molesey are both Land Scout Groups. All groups have sections from Beavers right through to Explorers. The groups take part in a wide variety of activities and events throughout the year at various locations.

River channels, flooding, planning rows and speculative building[edit]

Molesey's conservation area is to the south by a corollary channel of the River Mole, known as the River Ember, where successive environment authorities have implemented capacity-adding flood defences following a widespread and costly flood in 1968. Following further extensive flooding along the Thames in 2014 the Environment Agency is to carry out more large scale 'capacity building' work involving the construction of nine miles of new channels in areas upstream of Molesey as part of a flood relief project known as the River Thames Scheme (RTS) running between 2018 and 2027. This is hoped will protect built-up areas adjacent to the Thames between Datchet and Teddington which the Agency describes as "one of the largest and most at risk developed but undefended floodplains in England" in the report. Costs were estimated at around £476 million with an extra £100m for disposing of excavated waste as landfill. There has been political controversy about how the totality of these vastly costly works will be met. The Latin motto of Elmbridge council is "Dum Defluant Amnes" (Until the rivers cease to flow), somewhat ironically in view of this threat.

Before 1968 the whole area including expensive areas such as East Molesey flooded badly on a regular basis as they are in part located on the former flood plains of the Thames and the Mole. Even today localised flooding and standing water can be quite common in times of heavy rain as the area is very low lying and flat. Molesey can be the subject of flood warnings that affect the Thames Valley.

Some recent development has been very controversial for this and other reasons, including a long-running planning row lasting many years over the empty "Jolly Boatman" site opposite Hampton Court Palace which later began to be used by fly-tippers on a large scale, an issue often reported on in the area. The row over this site has been running since the 1990s when plans to redevelop East Molesey railway station and the adjacent site were first mooted. At various times national heritage organisations, historians of national significance, MPs and local residents and businesses have become involved resulting in extensive national press coverage. In 2006 a developer lodged formal plans with Elmbridge Council and a formal opposition group, Hampton Court Rescue Campaign was formed. The numerous twists and turns in a highly contentious battle have been extensively documented and included an appeal against Elmbridge Council by a developer in 2013 which resulted in costs being awarded against EBC. Total costs to the council were some £78,000. The site changed hands in 2015. A further large-scale riverside planning row has been running over the development of the so-called Walton Sports Hub which is sited on a former waste tip adjacent to the Thames. Elmbridge originally gave planning permission without requiring an Environmental Impact Assessment despite concerns of local residents and businesses on a range of issues including fears of toxins entering the Thames, only to be immediately overruled by Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, Eric Pickles. Objectors then mounted a legal challenge to the original application and a High Court Judge quashed the original planning application in January 2017 following a legal challenge. The following day the council passed a second planning application and this has been in consultation during 2017. The "Surrey Advertiser" called the project history "marred in controversy" in September 2017. A third major controversy over the nearby Drake Park site off Molesey Road and near Fieldcommon Lane has been running around two years where a developer wants to build a 'village'. Hundreds of objections cited issues such as access and traffic problems, periodic local flooding and green belt considerations and the proposal was rejected by Elmbridge Council late in 2016 but an appeal to the Planning Inspector brought a further hearing in October 2017 which is currently being considered. However this was rejected in May 2018 with another Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government once again intervening in Elmbridge planning, supporting the Planning Inspector's decsion to reject the developer's appeal. This was days after Local Government elections in which an alliance of opposition parties which surprisingly ousted the Conservatives in 2016 handed back the leadership of Elmbridge Council to a Conservative nominee following a drawn election result. In another bizarre lengthy planning row in 2014, Elmbridge Council gave permission for further works on a house in Molesey where unfinished works had already been in progress for well over a decade, despite over a dozen objections and despite the then leader of the Council referring to the house as "Visual Armageddon" in the local press.

Local politics in Molesey have a very robust history with the mainly independent minority groupings in Molesey and other parts of Elmbridge often at odds with the dominating Conservatives. One Conservative defector to the Liberal Democrats who helped oust the Conservatives for the interim period 2016-18 called the usually dominating party "complacent and arrogant" in 2017 and went on to say "When as a member of same political group [the Conservatives] my efforts on behalf of my ward residents were frustrated at every stage, something is very wrong".[8]

Molesey Lock is the second lock (and weir) on the River Thames, and marks the furthest point upstream that the influence of the tides on the Thames (regulated by the Thames Barrier at Woolwich) may be registered. The lock is located within 100 metres of Hampton Court Bridge, designed by Edwardian Arts and Crafts architect Edwin Lutyens, styles reflected by contemporary properties in the town. Other styles which are prevalent are 1960s red-brick semi-detached homes and Art Deco/Bauhaus.

In the West Molesey area some houses are the result of over-optimistic development in the 1930s by developer Donald Gordon Howard who eventually went bankrupt trying to sell houses at exceptionally low prices - at £395 some of the cheapest in the London area - while implying a misleading proximity to Hampton Court - a selling strategy not unknown to the present day. The attraction was cheap, low-lying land near the London reservoirs and quite remote from transport links, especially the railway. Speculative land dealing and building go back a long way in the area. Much of East Molesey resulted from large scale land speculation in the 1850s by one Francis Jackson Kent who saw an opportunity to make a killing when the railway arrived at Hampton Court in 1849, quickly snapping up land nearby and selling it on to wealthy individuals or developers who rapidly built on low lying former meadows that had always been flood prone. They naturally remained so until the 1960s when the nearby River Mole was re channeled after a hugely expensive flood. Pictures of the East Molesey area and Hampton Court station environs (on the opposite bank to the Palace) in flood conditions recur in 19th and 20th centuries.

Traveller sites[edit]

There are no permanent traveller sites in East or West Molesey, but there is believed to be a significant settled traveller population in the Field Common area to the south of Molesey Heath and in adjacent Hersham, which featured in the TV series "My Big Fat Gypsy Wedding". Elmbridge borough as a whole has also had the equal largest number of illegal transient traveller incursions in Surrey in recent years and the former leader of Elmbridge Council referred to this being a particular problem in Molesey in extensive press coverage of the issue which has been ongoing and contentious in recent times. In 2013 nearly 80 people signed a petition to Elmbridge Council concerning an illegal traveller camp on land adjacent to Molesham Way and eventually the site was cleared and barriers erected. However, travellers later returned to the adjacent car park and the cycle repeated leading to speculation that the group had contacts in that vicinity also. In 2015 the Traveller Movement, a traveller charity, complained about Elmbridge Council to the Equality and Human Rights Commission. As of 24 July 2017 The Surrey Advertiser's online outlet 'Get Surrey' reported there were three illegal traveller sites at that time in Elmbridge in Cobham, Esher and Weybridge with some 60 travellers estimated at the Cobham site. At the end of August 2017 another group moved onto West Molesey Recreation Ground, Walton Road, West Molesey close to the earlier incursions off Molesham Way, staying around a week. On 17 November 2017 "Get Surrey" reported that there had been 14 unauthorised traveller camps in Elmbridge to that point in 2017 a pattern continuing in 2018. Traveller or gypsy associations with the riverside areas of Elmbridge and adjacent boroughs seem to have a long history and may be associated with the availability of marginal land not very suitable for permanent settlement and riverside sports and entertainments as in the Hurst Park area of Molesey.

Women "Terrorists", dubious policing, devious politicians[edit]

The former Hurst Park race course in Molesey was the scene of one of the most dramatic or as some have said 'outrageous' events of the suffragette campaign when two women extremists set fire to the grandstand in 1913 virtually destroying it in a huge and costly blaze that could be seen across large parts of south London, requiring fire crews from many surrounding areas to extinguish it. The attack was said to be in revenge for the death of Emily Davison at the Derby earlier that year and part of a deliberately violent and destructive campaign by the suffragette movement that in turn provoked an increasingly harsh crackdown by politicians, police and judiciary with more arrests and imprisonments and a raid on the suffragette HQ by police. There had already been large deployments of police to protect politicians and break up suffragette demonstrations and numerous complaints about the aggressive tactics of the police and 'roughs' or thugs who seemed to be allowed to attack and assault the demonstrators. Suffragette fury built over time but especially in 1910 when the Government promised a bill giving some women the vote but this was talked out in a drawn out cynical and devious political move resulting in a mass demonstration by women to Parliament on 'Black Friday' 1910.[9][better source needed] It had seemed that the system was on the side of justice and reason in a case of clear injustice but this now appeared a sham. Violence erupted and police arrested over 100 women but once again there were many complaints about police actions and their apparent 'blind eye' or even encouragement of harassment and assaults by thugs and yobs - a common bullying tactic in dealing with dissent throughout history by repressive political regimes - most notoriously the Nazis who often drove their victims out of their homes and careers in a prelude to the evil 'Final Solution'.[10][better source needed] The Government tried to suppress the "Daily Mirror" which appeared to show a policeman and yobs kicking an apparently well-off middle class women on the ground on the front page. One of the women, Kitty Marion, was somewhat of a thorn in the side of the authorities and had already been in prison for breaking windows and causing disturbances at speeches by prominent politicians and had staged violent hunger strikes while in prison but had been brutally force fed on several hundred occasions. However, an interview in the "BBC History" Magazine in May 2018 describes the violence of the suffragettes revealing the extent of their bombing and arson campaign - Marion herself is said to have carried out a "nationwide" arson and bombing campaign while in May 2013 alone suffragettes carried out 52 attacks the "majority" involving bombs and arson while a loaded revolver, shotgun and prepared bomb were found in a raid on another woman's home. Nitroglycerin and phosphorus bombs were also used the latter causing serious injuries. Author and historian Fern Riddell labels the suffragettes of the WSPU as "terrorists". [11]. The police regarded the women extremists as more dangerous than Irish and anarchist terrorists and "the most dangerous organisation operating in Britain at that time" accordng to the interview.

At this point the majority of the political establishment regarded stopping women voting as the lifestyle choice of the day but others such as Labour MP George Lansbury labelled Liberal PM Herbert Asquith "a torturer of innocent women". Marion was given a further three year sentence of penal servitude for the Molesey fire but released after a short while because of another hunger strike, but promptly smashed more windows, was imprisoned again and staged more hunger strikes until released after four and half months in her campaign for justice. She then went to the USA and was subsequently frequently arrested by US police campaigning on birth control issues. All women in Britain were finally enfranchised in two Acts in 1918 and 1928 so it could be argued that violence by women such as the event in Molesey achieved fairness in voting rights.

Sports[edit]

Molesey was once the bare-knuckle boxing centre of England,[12] and had a famous horse-racing track stretching the length of the River Thames from where Hurst Park School now stands, down to Molesey Lock. Much of the course was built on in the 1960s: the Hurst Park Estate has a mixture of three and two-storey homes and a block of flats overlooking the river. Part of the open space that was part of the racetrack is now an riverside park. There is a wide grass expanse, a playground and open access to the Thames, features here include the popular Hampton Ferry and Molesey Regatta, a major event in the sport of rowing with catering and evening outdoor music. There are some large iron gates in the access road to Hurst Park called Graburn Way which were built so that horse races then started just east of the road and enabled the course to have a 'straight mile'.

Cricket[edit]

'Moulsey Hurst' is a very early site of cricket (from 1731) and that tradition is continued to this day by East Molesey Cricket Club, which is located alongside the South bank of the Thames, half a mile from Hampton Court Palace. Founded in 1871, it is a thriving local sports club with a long and glorious history. The Club's first XI play in Surrey Championship Premier Division and there are three other senior Saturday league sides and one senior Sunday league side, regularly competing against other Surrey clubs. The club continues to place special emphasis on generating a love of cricket amongst Molesey's junior residents. The first recorded Leg Before Wicket (LBW) dismissal in first class cricket is said to have been given in a game between an XI of Surrey and a XIII of England at this site in 1795. Prior to this date there had been several attempts to formulate a law that would stop batsmen simply obstructing their wicket with their leg pads to prevent beng bowled, a tactic regarded as blatant cheating in many quarters. So in this respect Molesey at least can be said to have stopped a blatant dishonesty. The LBW law has been revised several times since then.

Rowing[edit]

Molesey Boat Club (established 1866) is one of the UK's leading rowing clubs, home to some current Olympic and World Championship medallists and domestic success at all ages, particularly in its adult crews. The rowing club also competes in the Amateur Molesey Regatta held annually in Hurst Park[13]

Football[edit]

Molesey F.C. is a football team based in West Molesey, the club is currently a member of the Combined Counties League Premier Division and plays at the Walton Road Stadium.

Metropolitan Police F.C. is a Non-League football team based in East Molesey and are based at the Imber Court Sports Ground.

AFC Molesey is a former football team that was also based in West Molesey, a member of the Surrey County Intermediate League (Western) Division One and played at the West Molesey Recreation Ground, Walton Road, West Molesey. Up to the date that the club folded, the club had seen its popularity grown significantly following its winning several honours including the Lower Junior County Cup in the 2007/08 season and successful consecutive league promotions.

Molesey Juniors FC is a community youth football organisation based at the Wilderness Playing Fields, East Molesey

Swimming[edit]

Just beyond the gates of Hurst Park used to be the home of the open air Upper Deck swimming pool, the nearest open air pool now being across the ferry up Hampton High Street in Hampton. An indoor pool was built by the council nearby as a replacement. Upmarket flats are now built on the site of the outdoor pool. The entire riverside recreational area was previously referred to as Moulsey Hurst. Hurst swimming pool is in Dunstall Way in the north of Molesey.

Pool/Billiards[edit]

The Poyntz Arms Public House and Molesey East & West Conservative Club host matches in the Tolworth and District Pool League.

Darts[edit]

Darts is a very popular sport in Molesey, played at several public houses including the Molesey Football Club, The Royal Oak, The Cannon, the Lord Hothem and the Royal British Legion (Molesey Branch). Teams are made up of patrons and club members. All teams compete in the Molesey and District Darts League.

Cycling[edit]

In 2012 Bradley Wiggins won the Olympic Time Trial event. A lot of the course passed through East and West Molesey and Hurst Park, and the event finish was at Hampton Court Palace, which has an East Molesey postcode: Hampton Court Palace, East Molesey, Surrey KT8 9AU.

The Surrey Classic Cycle race passes East and West Molesey and Hurst Park yearly.

National Cycle Network route #4 passes along the River Thames towpath through Molesey.

Crime[edit]

'Get Surrey' The Surrey Advertiser's online news outlet reported in July 2017 that police statistics show that Elmbridge including Molesey had by far the worst burglary numbers of any of the 11 Boroughs in Surrey for the period January to August 2017. The figures showed that there were 672 burglaries across the borough in that period, 170 more than Runnymede, the second highest area which had 502. Surrey Heath and Epsom and Ewell had the lowest numbers. Surrey Heath was lowest with 238 burglaries.

However, for West Molesey itself a third party website[14] that collates various police statistics for locations across the country reports that for the period September 2016 to August 2017 Violent Crime was the biggest single category of offences for the West Molesey area with 241 instances shown. According this data Violent Crime comfortably exceeded the second category which was Anti-Social Behaviour with 224 instances. Criminal Damage and Arson ranked third with 104 instances and Burglary fourth with 82 instances. The reasons for this level of violent crime are not clear from the data. A large increase in serious crime reported to the police locally was recorded in the period 2014-16.

According to some rather dated Office for National Statistics (ONS) figures published on Wikipedia for 2011-12 Surrey Police had the joint second poorest crime detection rate of 43 forces in the country at that time.[15][better source needed]. However, more recent figures for 2017 published in the UK national press on 18th June 2018 put the national average clear up rate for burglary at only 3%, for robbery at 4% and violent and sexual offences at 8% which if true for Elmbridge would represent a catastrophic collapse in police performance from an already very low level.[16] In 2011-12 in most categories it lagged significantly behind the national average. For Violence Against the Person the clearup rate was 27% compared to 44% across England and Wales, for burglary it was 10% compared to 13% and for Fraud and Forgery it was 15% compared to 22%. However police performance in Molesey is thought to have been significantly hampered and vast resources wasted in the 2005-2014 timeframe by fabricated and malicious complaints being made to them in the area.

As well as the statistics there have been a number of very serious crimes in the Molesey area in the recent timeframe. There were three brutal murders locally in 2016-17 none of which has been solved as of June 2018. A woman was found murdered with a machete or axe according to police in the front garden of her house on Walton Road, Molesey in March 2016 resulting in extensive national publicity and so far unsuccessful appeals. An angler was murdered apparently on the Thames towpath in nearby Walton in July 2016 and found in the Thames. In both cases groups of suspects were questioned locally but released on lengthy police bail. Police launched a third current local murder investigation on 7 December 2017 when a woman reported as previously deliberately run down in the small hours of the morning in a car park on land already mentioned above between Hurst Road, Molesham Way and Walton Road died in hospital. This is only a few hundred yards from the earlier murder site in Walton Road. Following the third murder enquiry in December 2017 police announced that they would step up patrols in the Molesey area "to reassure the community". Residents have been quoted in the local press in recent times expressing fears about leaving their homes. On 2nd June 2018 a man was reported in the "Surrey Comet" as deliberately run down in adjacent Hersham and had surgery for serious injuries in hospital.[17]. On 12th July 2018 local press reported that a man in his 20s was in a serious condition in hospital after a "sustained" stabbing outside Sainsbury's Local also on Walton Road, West Molesey. Four men were arrested and one has been charged with attempted murder. Local press also reported a gang of five men hospitalising and robbing a man of his bicycle and other items on the Thames towpath in Molesey on 2nd July 2018 with police appealing for help once again. On 27th July 2018 local press reported an attempted armed robbery on a convenience store in Molesey with armed police being involved. No one was arrested. Police "patrolled the area overnight to resassure residents" according to the report. [18]

Another obnoxious incident in the Walton Road/Moleshame Way area extensively reported in both the local press and nationally including in the "Daily Mail" on 5 February 2018 was a firework or firecracker attack by hooded youths on the bar of the Lord Hotham public house in Walton Road which slightly injured one customer and on 3rd May 2018 local press reported an attack on two men in their 60s and 70s by a "young man" also in Walton Road which hospitalised one. On 12th January 2018 "Get Surrey" reported large knives being taken by police from a 13 year old and a 15 year old in Walton and Molesey respectively. In March 2018 police appealed for help over an assault by five men in the nearby Wilderness area of East Molesey in which weapons were reported as being used. Well off Weybridge which had the highest burglary count in Elmbridge in the 2017 statistics saw a mass brawl between nine men armed with knives and baseball bats in early June 2018 with five arrests according to local press reports. On June 12th a police car chase in Molesey ended with a crash and the arrest of two men and woman and the seizure of a baseball bat, a knife, a "noxious" liquid and suspected class B drugs. One man was tasered and another man ran off.[19]

There was a string of arson attacks and other fires reported across the Molesey and Walton areas in the 2016-17 period and a number of violent vehicle thefts and muggings and attacks involving the use of hammers and knives. In the Autumn of 2017 the police again appealed for help regarding a series of violent burglaries across Molesey and adjacent areas. Two men of Molesey Road, Hersham, were arrested for modern slavery offences in 2017 and later found guilty after raids on various properties and in the Autumn of 2017 according to the London "Metro" newspaper a man and two accomplices who maintained a property in Esher were jailed for running an international people trafficking operation for prostitution. As noted above the lead was stolen from the roof of St Peter's Church, Walton Road, Molesey in April 2017 despite a call allegedly being made to the police while the theft was taking place. With respect to the 2015-16 tax year, according to "Private Eye" Magazine one Conservative Councillor on Elmbridge Council was taken to court for non-payment of Council Tax amounting to £2,798.07p. Unlike many other councils named in the report Elmbridge Council refused to identify the individual but they subsequently stood down.

Ironically in the light of the fly-tipping issue there was also a lengthy row in June 2017 over piles of "maggot infested" rubbish left uncollected across Elmbridge, with vermin and health hazards complained of during a handover of waste services to a new contractor. There were a large number of angry complaints to Elmbridge Council, councillors and the press in which a common theme was being 'ignored', 'not getting anywhere' or 'fobbing' off complaints. Scrap metal collections are however said to be "extremely frequent" in the area.

Transport[edit]

Rail service[edit]

The railway station in East Molesey is Hampton Court railway station in Transport for London's Zone 6, operated by South Western Railway. This is the terminus of a stopping commuter service to London Waterloo that takes around thirty-five minutes. Principal stops are Surbton, Wimbledon and Clapham Junction. During the Hampton Court Palace Flower Show extra trains run to and from London.

Bus services[edit]

Four bus routes serve the town.

To the east

Transport for London's London Buses route 411 (previously the route 131 from West Molesey to Wimbledon), is operated by Quality Line. The short route begins at Central Avenue in West Molesey and runs through East Molesey, past Hampton Court Station and on to Kingston town centre.

To the north-east

East Molesey's northern point by its station, shopping parade and small riverside park is the terminus of a second Transport for London bus service, route R68, operated by Abellio Londn. The route begins at Hampton Court station, and runs through Hampton, Hampton Hill, Teddington, Strawberry Hill, Twickenham and Richmond before ending at Kew retail park.

To the west

Route 461, operated by Abellio Surrey on behalf of Surrey County Council, runs from Kingston, through Molesey and on to Walton, terminating at St Peter's Hospital, Chertsey.

To the south-west and south-east

Route 514, also operated by Abellio on behalf of Surrey County Council, runs from Hersham to Kingston via Molesey, Thames Ditton, Long Ditton and Surbiton.

Notable residents[edit]

  • Chemmy Alcott, British Olympic alpine skier
  • Mick Avory, drummer and percussionist for rock band The Kinks, grew up in West Molesey[20]
  • Keith Barron, actor, lived in the town from the 1970s to 2017.
  • Liv Boeree, professional poker player, lives in East Molesey
  • Bernie Constable (1921–1997), cricketer, brother of the below
  • Terence Cuneo 1907-1996 Artist. His house and studio in Molesey was demolished and replaced by a number of modern houses after some controversy in 2013.
  • Dennis Constable (1925-2011), cricketer, brother of the above
  • Bill Cotton, the television producer and executive and the son of big-band leader Billy Cotton, lived in East Molesey in his latter years
  • Hazel Dean, pop music singer, lives in the town.
  • Roy Holder, actor
  • Marius Goring, actor
  • Jentina, British rapper
  • Lee Mack, stand-up comic, lives in East Molesey
  • Piers Morgan, presenter, has lived in West Molesey
  • Howard Parkes (1877–1920), cricketer, buried at Molesey Cemetery, West Molesey[21]
  • Robert Robinson, when presenting the Radio Four programme Stop the Week, regularly quoted from an alleged correspondent in East Molesey. Many believe this to have been merely a device used by Robinson to promote his own whimsical views on a variety of obscure subjects
  • Luke Shaw, professional footballer, grew up in West Molesey[22] and played for Molesey Juniors FC.
  • Alfred Sisley (1839–1899), French impressionist painter, resided in Molesey a few months in 1874, executing nearly twenty paintings of the Upper Thames.
  • Steve Steen, actor, lives in East Molesey.
  • Les Strong, professional footballer who played for Crystal Palace and Fulham
  • Michael Underwood, the physician who first described polio, was born in West Molesey.
  • Julius Vogel (1835–1899), British-born Prime Minister of New Zealand, retired to East Molesey, and died there
  • Matt Willis, the musician, TV presenter and ex-actor, who is best known for being the bassist in Busted, lived in Molesey during his youth
  • Ray Galton script writer. Comedy. Most notable for Hancock's Half Hour and Steptoe and Son. Two BAFTA awards amongst many others. His writing partner is Alan Simpson.

Demography and housing[edit]

2011 Census Homes
Output area Detached Semi-detached Terraced Flats and apartments Caravans/temporary/mobile homes Shared between households[1]
East (ward) 909 677 334 753 1 11
North (ward) 454 879 818 358 0 0
South (ward) 247 1,113 867 595 0 2

The average level of accommodation in the region composed of detached houses was 28%, the average that was apartments was 22.6%.

2011 Census Key Statistics
Output area Population Households % Owned outright % Owned with a loan hectares[1]
East (ward) 6,337 2,685 38 40 298
North (ward) 6,008 2,509 37 41 164
South (ward) 6,743 2,824 27 41 125

The proportion of households in the settlement who owned their home outright compares to the regional average of 35.1%. The proportion who owned their home with a loan compares to the regional average of 32.5%. The remaining % is made up of rented dwellings (plus a negligible % of households living rent-free).

There is a locally moored boat, the West Molesey houseboat, which is moored on the river Thames.

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b c Key Statistics; Quick Statistics: Population Density United Kingdom Census 2011 Office for National Statistics Retrieved 21 November 2013
  2. ^ The Book of Molesey by Rowland G M Baker
  3. ^ Surrey Domesday Book Archived 15 July 2007 at the Wayback Machine.
  4. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 23 December 2010. Retrieved 21 April 2010. 
  5. ^ http://www.environment-agency.gov.uk Flood Prevention Scheme Map. Retrieved 10 April 2012.
  6. ^ The Heritage List for England online. Retrieved 10 April 2012
  7. ^ Get Surrey 6th April 2017
  8. ^ Cllr Chris Elmer April 2017
  9. ^ Black Friday (1910)
  10. ^ Sturmabteilung
  11. ^ BBC History Magazine May 2018
  12. ^ Baker, Rowland (1989). Thameside Molesey. U.K. ISBN 978086023 414 2.  extracts available here
  13. ^ Molesey Boat Club website medal results 2011–2012. Retrieved 10 April 2012
  14. ^ UKCrimeStats.com
  15. ^ Surrey Police
  16. ^ "Daily Mail", "Daily Express" 18th June 2018
  17. ^ Surrey Comet 4th June 2018
  18. ^ SurreyLive 27th July 2018
  19. ^ Get Surrey 12th June 2018
  20. ^ in Balmoral Crescent
  21. ^ [1] CWGC Casualty record.
  22. ^ "Shaw Savouring Chelsea Contest". Southampton F.C. Retrieved 17 August 2013. 

External links[edit]