Portmore Park & District Residents Association - ARCHIVE

A voluntary association of Weybridge residents



Watching Brief

This page features local topics that people may want to keep an eye on.

Desborough Island

Desborough Island is a wonderful asset for our community. It has acres of tranquil riverside meadow, with easy public access from Walton Lane.  It is a beauty spot we want enjoy and not lose.  Graham Winton, former Elmbridge Borough Councillor for Weybridge North, takes up the story:

"The island is a jewel of open space largely undiscovered by Weybridge. Desborough Island was formed in 1930’s by the cutting of the Desborough Channel for improving the flow of the Thames. It covers 45 hectares of which 14 hectares is open space. It is a site of nature conservation importance and is looked after by Elmbridge’s commons management team. The island has many owners:  The North Surrey Water company, University Vandals Rugby Club, The Environment Agency, Surrey County and Elmbridge Borough Councils. 
The council has been encouraged to carry out some maintenance works over the years and the paths and hedges are now in reasonable state but much more needs to be done to show it in its true glory. It is too precious a place to leave in such a state. What we need is action from all those interested in the area. The Friends of Desborough Island should be restarted (under the auspices of the PP&DRA?) and all the land owners got together to agree a way forward. "

UPDATE:  Surrey County Council had been looking to sell Point Meadow, a fine area of riverside open space at the north of Desborough Island, which is currently accessible to the public.  We now understand that the County Council is to allocate Point Meadow to Elmbridge Borough Council. We are delighted that Point Meadow will not be lost to local residents.    

Would you like to be part of a restarted Friends of Desborough Island?  We are interested in all practical suggestions about how to help ensure that this lovely open space is conserved. If you would like to support the cause of Desborough Island please contact us.  

New Walton bridge: traffic impact?

When the new Walton bridge is built, the choice of road junction design at Cowey Sale (the area around the Surrey bank of Walton bridge) could have a major impact on Portmore Park. If it allows a big increase in traffic flow to and from Walton Lane, it would mean a big increase in through-traffic using Portmore Park Road and Thames Street as a ‘Weybridge Bypass’.

The road planners unveiled possible designs for the new Walton bridge in March 2003, and displayed three new junction designs. Junction option 1 is much as now. Junction options 2 and 3 include an underpass to speed up flow into Walton Lane. 

We strongly oppose Junction options 2 & 3. The underpass would damage the existing amenity area at Walton Bridge. And the greater traffic flow along Thames Street and Portmore Park Road would be disruptive, damaging and dangerous.

Do the planners know your views?

The new Walton bridge planning exhibition had little visible advance publicity. Many Portmore Park & District residents may have missed it.  

The choice of new bridge and junction matters. If you have concerns, please write to Councillor Ian Lake at Members’ Reception, County Hall, Penrhyn Road, Kingston upon Thames KT1 2DN.   

In April 2003 we wrote to our county councillor for Weybridge, Mr Ian Lake giving our views on this, and also to the planners at Surrey County Council.  We have now received a response from Councillor Lake.

The Planning Decision by Surrey CC is due early in 2004. It is important that the final choice of bridge is the right one.


Information is also available from the Walton Bridge Campaign website.


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