Tuesday, 31 January 2012

More Than Theft

The owners of More than Lofts have released CCTV footage in the hope that Worcester Park Blog readers can help catch those responsible for the theft of an iPhone from their offices in Central Road.

Three youths entered the More Than Lofts office on Central Road at 11.21am on Friday 20th January enquiring about job opportunities. When the staff member's back was turned, one of the youths can be seen grabbing an iPhone from her desk. 

When she notices that the item is missing she uses the landline to ring the mobile, at which point the thief leaves the office with the iPhone in his pocket.

If you recognise any of the youths in this footage or have any information about this theft, contact the Metropolitan Police by dialling 101. 

Monday, 30 January 2012

Clegg Over

As the good folk of this town were distracted by the fierce debate about the misuse of the baskets-only aisle at Waitrose and concern about the whereabouts of Oscar the cat at Pets Place, our esteemed Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg was able to slip unnoticed in and out of Worcester Park on Friday.

Mr Clegg, Sutton Borough’s two Liberal Democrat MPs, Paul Burstow and Tom Brake, and London Mayoral candidate Brian Paddick were at Cheam Common Infants School last Friday to meet local party activists.

The Deputy PM was apparently grilled about a possible war with Iran, the replacement of Trident and the future of the Euro. And then he was gone.

Did you fail to notice Nick Clegg's visit to Worcester Park? Did you not witness anything? Do you have no photos of this event? Have you or someone you know been unaffected by Nick Clegg's visit to Worcester Park? Contact the blog and us know.

Not Very Niceland

Detectives from Sutton CID would like to speak to these two women in connection with the theft of a purse from a customer at the Iceland in Worcester Park on Monday 9th January, shortly after 12.30pm.

Police stress that the individuals in these photos may not be connected with the offence and may be innocent.

If you are one of these individuals or you are able to identify who these individuals are please contact Detective Constable Matt Harris at Sutton Police station on 020 8649 0777. Alternatively, you can contact Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.

Sunday, 29 January 2012

Off Her Trolley

A customer in Waitrose waits in the 'baskets only' queue with a shopping trolley (containing only a few items). There is a baby in the trolley seat:

Waitrose Partner: This is for baskets only, I'm afraid.

Customer: Yes, I know. I'm only buying a few items but I can't use a basket because I've got my little girl with me. I can't carry both - she needs to go in the seat.

Waitrose Partner: I appreciate that, but this is for baskets only.

Customer: So, what do you suggest I do, put the baby in the basket as well??

Waitrose Partner: [Blank look] Erm...

Customer: I tell you what, how about I put these items in the basket and then put the basket in the trolley, would that be OK?

Waitrose Partner: [panicked look] Erm, yes...

The customer picks up an empty basket, puts her shopping items into the basket, puts the basket in the trolley, approaches the checkout and is duly served.

Friday, 27 January 2012

Burglary Suspects Detained

Those of you kept awake (or woken up) by the police helicopter hovering over Worcester Park just before midnight last night can take some comfort in the news that two people have been arrested on suspicion of burglary.

The Metropolitan Police Air Support Unit was called in to assist local borough officers and dog units who were searching local gardens in the hunt for the burglary suspects.

The suspects are understood to have been detained in a garden in Hampton Road having attempted to break into a shop on Central Road.

Thursday, 26 January 2012

Steampunk comes to Worcester Park

If you have heard of 'Steampunk' before then you can skip this first paragraph. If, like me, you have never heard of it (and assumed it was the name of a band) then let me enlighten you. Steampunk, is a movement based loosely around science fiction of the Victorian period started by authors of the time such as Jules Verne and one-time Worcester Park resident HG Wells. The style may be seen in such movies as “The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen”, “The Three Musketeers” and the new Sherlock Holmes movies.

The 'Surrey Steampunk Convivial', a single day event celebrating “Steampunk”, is coming to Worcester Park and surrounding areas on Saturday 25th February.

The Steampunk style of dress is adopted by many, with corsets, top hats, waistcoats and goggles. The day starts at The Worcester Park Tavern at 10:00am from where the group will take a gentle stroll up and down The Avenue in Worcester Park, where HG Wells lived in when he wrote “The Time Machine.”.

The walk will be hosted by local history enthusiast Clive Popkin (described as poet and descendant of Vlad the Impaler). Following this will be a chance to eat, drink and chat at the HG Wells pub, on Cheam Common Road.

Afternoon events will take place at The Royal Oak in the faraway land of New Malden, with a mini-market full of handmade steampunk items for sale, with a shadow puppet workshop, tea-duelling (a traditional steampunk sport), and snail racing (snails permitting).

An evening of original music will follow at The Royal Oak, including steampunk artists Tom Slatter and 'Moth' who are based in Worcester Park - with eclectic all girl band Smiling Knife and Dick Philpot, with black and white projections by Prof. Kit Krakenspine, and Djing from The Inimitable Sarah Kingham (don't pretend you haven't heard of them all).

All are welcome – Victorian or Steampunk dressing up is not obligatory, but is highly encouraged. Tickets for the whole event are £5 available online. www.harpsfest.com or you can find out more at the event's Facebook page.

I don't know about you, but I am feeling very out of touch. And ever so slightly  scared.

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

UPDATED: Fire in North Cheam

London Fire Brigade has tackled a large fire in garages behind Evans Autos on London Road, North Cheam. 

Six fire engines and around 30 firefighters from New Malden, Wimbledon, Surbiton, Mitcham and Norbury fire stations were called to the blaze which affected nine garages behind the Evans Autos car dealership.

Fears that gas cylinders may have been involved in the fire led to around 60 residents living in nearby flats being evacuated from their homes as a precaution.

One person is believed to have been taken to St Helier hospital after being injured in the blaze.

The fire was brought under control at 17.15.

Clothed Down, Opening Up

My sources tell me that the lease on the former 'Zeus Clothing' shop unit has been acquired by Worcester Park-based loft conversion and building company 'Kingston South Limited'.

Kingston South's offices are currently located in the Fitzroy House office development, so it will be just a sort hop downstairs to move into their new showroom and office on Central Road.

As you will see from their website, Kingston South's corporate colour is distinctly orange so expect a bright future for that particular shop unit when they open in a few weeks' time.

Saturday, 21 January 2012

Fighter jets over Worcester Park...

Fear not - the fighter jet that flew over Worcester Park on Saturday evening was one of two Eurofighter Typhoon jets taking part in practice sorties in preparation for their security role during the London 2012 Olympic Games.

The fast fighter jets (normally based at RAF Coningsby but due to be stationed at RAF Northolt during the games) have been flying sorties at 1,000ft over a number of areas of London and Surrey.

Thursday, 19 January 2012

Counter Crime

Staff at Lloyds TSB bank in Worcester Park have been praised by police for their actions after a 94-year-old woman told a cashier at the counter that she wanted to withdraw £4,000 cash to pay a man to repair her front garden wall.

The elderly woman, who lives alone, had been visited at her semi-detached home in Caldbeck Avenue on Saturday 7th January by a man offering to do work. She recognised the man as having undertaken some work for her previously and she suggested he repaired the pillar which had come away from the main front wall.

The man returned a few days later and told the victim that the work would cost £4,000. The woman gave the workmen some water to mix cement and then left to withdraw the money from Lloyds TSB on Central Road.

Worried bank staff called Worcester Park Safer Neighbourhoods Team. Officers arrived at the woman’s home address and a man in his 50s was arrested for fraud by misrepresentation.

The man told police that he had not had any direct contact with the elderly resident and that he had been offered the work for £80 ‘cash in hand’ earlier that morning from a man named Paddy. The man denied knowing about any payment of £4,000. The man has been bailed to return to Sutton Police Station.

PC Duncan Harris, of Sutton’s Crime Prevention Unit, advised residents not be persuaded to have work carried out on their homes by doorstep ‘workmen’. “If you receive such an approach and are suspicious don’t let any workmen into your home under any circumstances. Close the door on them and call police immediately on 999,” he said.

Det Con Paul Williams, of Sutton CID, said: “The management and staff at Lloyds TSB are to be congratulated for their vigilance and prompt actions which have saved this woman from losing £4,000 for work which should only cost a fraction of this sum.”

Saturday, 14 January 2012

Taking A Pounding?

When Poundland opened its Worcester Park branch in March last year you could almost hear the anguished cries of 'there goes one's neighbourhood' - the fact that it opened in the former home of an upmarket M&S Simply Food store only serving to rub freshly-ground Atlantic sea salt into the wounds of the appalled middle classes.

The store has been beset by disappointing sales figures ever since and the Worcester Park Blog understands that last autumn the retail giant gave the fledgling branch until the New Year to prove that it could pay its way. 

Sources now indicate that after only nine months of trading, the writing could be on the wall for Worcester Park's Poundland. 

Watch this space.

Friday, 13 January 2012

Roofless Tactics

Beware of what would appear to be a roofing scam operating in the Worcester Park area. Blog reader Glen explains: 

"The doorbell rang and a man wearing a sweatshirt with a logo on it asked if he could rest his ladder in our front path tomorrow when he was repairing our neighbour's roof. 

We said this wasn't a problem. He then told us that we had 2 loose tiles and would we like him to replace them while he was up there. He wanted £40 to get the tiles. I told him I had no cash so he said he would come back tomorrow evening and sort out invoices then.

I then went and checked with my neighbour who has not booked any work so it is a complete scam.
We then saw them working their way down Colborne Way."

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Office Building Ransacked

Local businesses are being warned to be vigilant after a Worcester Park office building was targeted by thieves last night.

Offices at Fitzroy House (at the junction of Central Road and Lynwood Drive) were ransacked with hundreds of pounds worth of computer equipment amongst the items stolen from a number of small businesses.

The thieves also caused extensive property damage, kicking down doors in the complex before finding a set of keys in one of the offices which they used to let themselves out of the front entrance.

A Plumb Note

Central Plumbing Supplies, on the corner of Brinkley Road, has taken the curious decision to shut at 12.30 every Saturday 'because of the roadworks' on Central Road - which both  perplexed and disappointed me when I turned up there at 1 o'clock on Saturday, having walked past Worcester Park's other retailers who all seemed to be going about their business as usual.

It was disappointing too for the other couple who arrived at the shop a few seconds after me and were similarly turned away by the hand written sign in the window.

Fortunately I have never found that the roadworks cause any traffic problems on a Saturday, which meant I was able to breeze out of Worcester Park and take my cold hard cash to B&Q who were most definitely open for business.

Where the other couple took their custom I shall never know, but I can't help wondering if this particular retailer hasn't scored a bit of an own goal.

Friday, 6 January 2012


A by-election is to be held in Sutton Council's Worcester Park ward, after Liberal Democrat Councillor Jennifer Cambell-Klomps resigned her seat to move abroad.

Ms Campbell-Klomps who lives on The Hamptons (which is much the same as living abroad, really - so why relocate) was elected in May 2010, toppling the incumbent Conservative candidate.

The by-election (which will cover just the one seat in Worcester Park ward) will be held on Thursday 16th February 2012.

Thursday, 5 January 2012

Happier New Year?

Happy New Year all!

Here's hoping that 2012 brings you everything you hope for. For those struggling with the thought of the new months stretching ahead, I thought I would start this year's blogging with some timely words of advice from Richard Cruz of the Worcester Park Counselling Practice:

"Out with the old, in with the new. If only it was as easy as that. 

Often it is a challenging time in terms of expectation and a sense of changes needing to be made in aspects of our lives. There can be a struggle to cope with the start of the New Year and turn over that new leaf, particularly if the year gone by had not been easy.

2011 was a difficult year for Britain, with widespread financial instability, redundancies, service cuts, mounting debts, fee increases and riots.Life is tough for everyone, but especially for those suffering hardship and the impact of that hardship on their personal relationships and emotional lives.

Mental health services can’t make people’s lives easier, but they can help people to cope with what life brings, however hard it may be. Here are some tips for improve your mental health in these troubling times:

1. Keep active – exercise really does noticeably change the way you feel by releasing certain feel-good hormones. Not only does it make you happier, it keeps your body looking healthy and working properly. It can also help people suffering from serious mental illnesses such as psychosis.

2. Eat well – research has revealed significant links between eating plenty of fruit, vegetables and protein, with an improvement in mental health. Diet is important – you will notice that if you eat junk food, you feel worse even if you enjoyed it at the time.

3. Sleep well – try to go to bed at a reasonable time, allowing you to have 6-8 hours of sleep at night. Relax before bed – don’t work at the computer, play games, watch TV or drink caffeine before sleeping as these activities act as stimulants and will keep your brain awake.

4. Don’t drink too much – we all enjoy a drink every now and then, but moderation is essential. If you are feeling low, alcohol will act as a depressant and make you feel even worse. Find another way to distract yourself, like immersing yourself in a book or a film.

5. Keep a social life – sometimes it is an effort to socialise when you don’t feel like it. Forcing yourself to get out and keep in touch with family and friends is important and will make you feel better.

6. Talk about it – if you think you might need professional help, don’t be afraid to seek it. Admitting to a problem is the first step towards fighting it. We all feel sad sometimes, but if the feeling won’t go then you may benefit from some external advice or treatment.

7. Go outside – fresh air really is medicine. Going for a walk in the park can do wonders for your mind. It will replenish your oxygen supplies, heighten your senses and maybe even take your mind off things.

8. Think of 3 good things – when things are particularly tough and you struggle to find any positive aspects to your life, force yourself to write 3 good things down. This can involve even the smallest achievement or event – from getting out of bed, to someone smiling at you in the street. Reading back at the end of the week will make you realise that not all is bad.

9. Help someone – sometimes all we need is to feel a little compassion. Doing something good for someone not only spreads goodwill, it also makes you feel better. Human beings are social creatures – it makes sense that helping each other makes us happy.

Whilst tips and advice can go some way to alleviating distress, anxiety or depression, many find that support of a deeper nature is needed such as counselling" 

Richard Cruz is a counsellor based in Worcester Park (also available in Oxford Circus) providing support for a wide range of mental health problems. Further details can be found at www.wpcp.co.uk or to book a confidential appointment please call Richard  on 07813944146.