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RHC and Runnymede Consultation Group


Royal Holloway & Runnymede Consultative Group meeting


Monday 1 June 2020

MS Teams Meeting


Royal Holloway: David Ashton (CHAIR/ Deputy Principal (Operations), Mike Berry (Director of Estates), Marie Ennis (Chief Marketing Officer), Helen Groenendaal (Head of Student Advisory & Wellbeing, Academic Services), Sarah Ixer-Pitfield (Head of Public Relations and Media)

Royal Holloway Students’ Union: Dr Tom Flynn (Chief Executive Officer)

Councillors: Cllr Nigel King, Cllr Marisa Heath, llr Isabel Mullens, Cllr Nick Prescot, Cllr Japneet Sohi

Chamber of Commerce: Mark Adams

Residents’ Associations: Chris Fisher (ERA), Christine Welsh (EGVRA)

Surrey Police: Inspector Nick Pinkerton

Neighbourhood Watch: Stephen Hodgkinson


Cllr Parshotam Sohi (Mayor of Runnymede) Runnymede Borough Councillors: Cllr Michael Kusneraitis, Cllr Alan Alderson Environmental Health: Aileen Baker, Daniel Bradding Jack O’Neil, President SU, SU sabbaticals

1. Welcome & introductions

2. Minutes and actions from previous meeting (10/3/20)

The last meeting on 10 March 2020 was cancelled. The actions carried over from November 2019 were discussed within the agenda points of today’s meeting.

3. Updates on areas of mutual interest:

David Ashton updated the group on the university’s plans for returning to campus in at the start of a new academic year. He explained that the university, like many others across the UK, is expecting fewer students from overseas and that some postgraduate courses will offer September and January start dates. The university will be offering alternative dates in 2021 for graduation ceremonies for those who have graduated in summer 2020. He confirmed that the university will know more about student numbers by the autumn.

  • RBC:
    Councillor Prescot provided an update on the actions taken by the council as they operated in emergency mode during the coronavirus outbreak. He praised the response of the local community, residents groups and those who worked to provide the local foodbank. Councillor Heath provided an update on the progress of the CPZ and the work on a recovery plan for the borough which includes improving transport systems. Christine Welsh (EGVRA) enquired about public consultation for the CPZ to which Cllr Heath confirmed that a consultation will follow for residents to engage with. Christine Welsh requested a separate meeting with Cllr Heath to discuss the CPZ. Councillor Sohi provided an update on the foodbank and enquired with regards to the development of Royal Holloway’s Car Park 14, the closure of Spring Rise Gate, dangerous parking in the area as the Covid-19 lockdown begins to ease. In response to these queries: Mike Berry confirmed the application is currently on hold for Car Park 14, David Ashton confirmed that Spring Rise Gate is completely closed for the time being but it is expected that it will re-open (5am to 12.30.am) in time for the start of the new academic year. Inspector Nick Pinkerton confirmed that parking is an issue caused mainly by people coming from outside of the borough to visit Virginia Water and Windsor Great Park. Student cars are not involved. He also advised that Police have visited the Fox and Hounds pub following complaints but no action is being taken. Christine Welsh discussed that Mike Kelly is the Chair of the Englefield Green Village Forum and he or someone else had potentially been in touch with the internal communications team at Royal Holloway to provide information about the forum for staff and students in the area. Information has not yet been received by the team at Royal Holloway
  • Egham Chamber of Commerce:
    Mark Adams updated that it was a difficult time for local businesses but he welcomed the support from local residents. He provided an update on the following events:
    • Successfully hosted a virtual Frogs Island Fair
    • Discussions underway re a virtual Magna Carta Day event
    • 21 June - Make Music Day - virtual event being promoted by Egham Museum and Egham Town Team
    • 18 July - Classic Car Show on Egham High Street is TBC
    • The French market will come back to Egham when it is safe to do so
    • 12 Dec - Egham Christmas Fair on Egham High Street
  • EGVRA:
    Christine Welsh confirmed the Englefield Green Village Fair is postponed until 5 September 2020 but it is unlikely to go ahead if social distancing regulations are in place. Christine queried the planning application for Royal Holloway’s theatre and the potential for open air performances as well as the installation of bird and bat boxes at George Eliot Hall. Mike Berry confirmed that there will not be any open air theatre performances and that bird and bat boxes are in place in the grounds of George Eliot Hall.
    Action: Mike Berry to provide Christine with details of which trees the bird and bat boxes are located in.
  • ERA:
    Chris Fisher enquired as to the progress of Rusham Park Student Village and David Ashton updated that the planning application has been submitted with the outcome likely in autumn 2020. 
  • Surrey Police:
    A report is provided in appendix A.
  • Royal Holloway Estates:
    Mike Berry updated the group that the university’s capital programme is on hold due to the outbreak of coronavirus with the following exceptions:
    • The planning application for the relocation of the Handa Noh Theatre has been submitted
    • The planning application for the Rusham Park student village has been submitted with outcome expected in autumn 2020.

‚ÄčThe university is mainly preparing for the arrival of students on campus in September 2020 and expects to review its bus services.

  • Student wellbeing:
    Helen Groenendaal confirmed that approximately 380 students remained on campus and were being supported during the outbreak. The Be A Good Neighbour Guide will be updated with regards to social distancing guidelines for September 2020.
  • Students’ Union:
    Tom Flynn shared the news that he will be leaving his position as Chief Executive of Royal Holloway Students’ Union in September. Max Ross and Abi Jesson will jointly share the position of interim Chief Executive until August 2021. Tom explained that the team were planning for the next academic year and the services they will be able to operate. At present the SU shop remains open for grocery boxes, a service that members of the local community have made use of. All other venues are closed.
    Through the PubWatch scheme, the Students’s Union aims to meet with local landlords to take a collective view on how to operate when students return and social distancing rules are in place.

4. AOB: There were no AOBs.

5. Proposed date of next meeting: Tuesday, 3 November 2020 via MS Teams.

  Action Owner
1 Mike Berry to provide Christine Welsh with the details of which trees the bird and bat boxes are located in at George Eliot Hall. Mike Berry



RHRCG Police Report 1 June 2020 - Appendix A.pdf

RHRCG Community Report 1 June 2020 - Appendix B 1.pdf