South London listens

South London Citizens and the South London Mental Health and Community Partnership have put together a survey to understand how people are coping during the Covid-19 pandemic, and what issues are putting pressure on people's wellbeing.

It is part of the South London Listens campaign, run by local community groups, mental health trusts and local authorities, with the aim of working together to support and protect local mental health during and after the pandemic.

You can take part in the survey here - it's open until the end of March.

Stop the Mayor from closing Wimbledon police station!

Whilst Cllr Paul Kohler's court case forced the Mayor of London to reverse his initial decision, the reality is that we’ve only guaranteed Wimbledon police station's future until 2022 and we need to keep fighting.


Join the campaign


The Daily Mail today (1st March 2021) leads with the story that half of British police stations have closed over the last 10 years. Merton Lib Dem Cllr Paul Kohler is quoted in the article which can be read on the Daily Mail website.

Keeping up the fight, you can listen to Cllr Kohler's interview with LBC's Nick Ferrari (also 1st March 2021) on how important community police stations are and how we must continue fighting to keep our police station in Wimbledon.

Read more

Enhanced coronavirus testing in Wimbledon Park

Residents who live or work in the Wimbledon Park area are being asked to get tested for coronavirus, even if they have no symptoms, as part of an enhanced testing program due to a case of the South African variant being found in the area. 

You need to get tested if you meet all of the following criteria:

If you meet all these criteria, and do not have symptoms of coronavirus there are two ways you can get a test:

  • Book a test at one of the mobile testing units. These are located at Wimbledon Park Golf Club and at the car park at the rear of Wickes on Waterside Way. These will be open daily 8am-3pm from Friday 26th February to Thursday 4th March. Slots can be booked here (pre-booking is required).
  • Use a home testing kit. These can be picked up and dropped off at Christ the King Church Hall, 9 Crescent Gardens, Wimbledon Park, SW19 8AJ. This will open daily, 8.30am-6pm, from Monday 1 until Friday 5 March. No booking is needed. If you are shielding and need help to pick up / return a home test kit contact the council on 020 8274 5332 between 9am and 5pm, Monday to Friday. 

If you have symptoms of coronavirus (high temperature, new continuous cough, or loss / change to sense of smell / taste) you should get tested in the normal way by booking a free NHS test.

More information about the enhanced testing program is available on the Merton Council website

Resilience & wellbeing event

Lib Dem Executive Team member and business / well-being coach Viv Vella recently held a members’ event centred on boosting well-being and resilience. She recommended the following resources:

Exercise & movement

  • Movement is crucial to our wellbeing, and lockdown has made exercising difficult for many people. Couch to 5k is an app to help everyone (especially complete beginners!) get running. 

Wellbeing & mental health resources


Viv also has some more specific resources for people experiencing domestic abuse and eating disorders - if you would like her to send you any of these resources please send an enquiry to [email protected]

Vaccination update

The NHS in Merton has now moved on to vaccinating people who are aged 65-69, or who are aged 16-64 and have underlying health conditions. If you fall into either of these groups you should wait to be contacted by the NHS before trying to book an appointment:

  • People aged 65-69 will receive a letter from the national booking service with details of how to book a vaccination appointment
  • People aged 16-64 with underlying health conditions will be invited to appointments by their GP

Anyone over 70 years old who has not yet received their first vaccination is being urged to come forward and contact the NHS to book an appointment. This can be done via the national booking service, either at this website or by calling 119 free of charge between 7am and 11pm seven days a week. If no suitable slots are available through the national booking service you can also ring your GP practise. People over 70 years old who have not received their first vaccination do not need to wait for an invitation letter before booking an appointment.

The NHS is working with the Council to provide vaccination appointments to all front line social care workers.

If you do not fall into any of the above categories then the NHS will contact you when it is your turn to receive a vaccination. Please don't try to book an appointment until you receive an invitation letter or are contacted by your GP.

Signing up for a postal vote

It's just been confirmed that the London elections in May are due to go ahead. It's difficult to predict what the next couple of months will bring, but it is likely that there will still be some social distancing measures in place in May. So there's never been a better time to sign up for a postal vote to ensure that you don't miss out on your chance to have your voice heard.

Apply for a postal vote today with these easy steps:

  1. Complete and print the form at
  2. Sign the form and send it to Merton council at: Electoral Registration Officer, Merton Civic Centre, London Road, SM4 5DX


    Sign Up for a Postal Vote

Merton Lib Dems call for action on single use plastics.

The Liberal Democrats are calling for local government to take action in reducing plastic pollution across the borough.

Long after it has been discarded, plastic creates greenhouse gas emissions that are contributing to the climate change emergency. The average London adult buys more than three plastic water bottles every week - a startling 175 bottles every year per person. In total, some 7.7 billion plastic bottles are bought across the UK each year, resulting in substantial amounts of single-use plastic waste.

This is why Merton Liberal Democrats are calling for the Council Cabinet to:

  1.     Work with residents, businesses and organisations across Merton to help them go ‘single-use plastic free,’ sharing business support and practical advice to help the transition from single-use plastics to re-usable alternatives.
  2.     Incorporate a relevant workstream into the Climate Change Delivery Plan. This might include, for example, the Council itself becoming ‘single use plastic free’, participation in schemes that encourage the refilling of drinking bottles, the installation of further water fountains, the collection and recycling of a full range of plastic materials, deposit schemes for plastic containers and information for residents and businesses.

The Merton Liberal Democrats believe that if the Council agree to these proposals will drastically help Merton’s fight against plastic pollution and to meet London recycling targets. 

Current 'live' planning applications in Wimbledon


Below is list of significant planning applications which are 'live' in the Wimbledon/Raynes Park/Motspur Park area.
Merton Council


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Approved planning applications in Wimbledon

Below is a list of significant approved planning applications in the Wimbledon/Raynes Park/Motspur Park area.

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Lib Dems move motion to end cladding scandal

Merton Liberal Democrats are moving a motion for the council cabinet to sign up to the ‘End Our Cladding Scandal’ campaign. 

The motion comes as some flat owners are spending lockdown in unsafe homes which they can’t sell, and facing huge bills to fix the safety failings. 

The motion states “many owners, in buildings of all heights, have been left in limbo” and are “understandably concerned about the cost of remedial work”.

Councillor Hina Bokhari for West Barnes, one of the motion’s movers, stated:

 “After seeing first hand the effects the fire in Worcester Park last year had on residents, I know how devastating such a tragedy can be for residents. With the added extra mental trauma of this cladding scandal it seems completely unfair that the government are not doing more to support them and make sure they don’t have to pay the bill for fire safety in buildings.”

Liberal Democrat Parliamentary Candidate for Wimbledon and fellow mover of the motion Councillor Paul Kohler Trinity further added:

"After the tragedy of Grenfell I am appalled the Tory government has done so little to ensure it does not happen again. Too many people are trapped in dangerous flats they can neither make safe nor sell. The government and developers must act urgently to  solve a crisis that has made it impossible to even sell purpose built flats in blocks without cladding."

Supporting the ‘End our Cladding Scandal Campaign’ means supporting the campaign’s ten demands. This includes urging the government to lead a national effort to remove all dangerous cladding from buildings by 2022, ensuring that costs are not passed onto residents and providing mental health support to those affected.

Despite the backlash to the Government’s inadequate response to the Grenfell tragedy there are many residential buildings still finding they have unsafe cladding. In a 2020 survey of leaseholders from 117 housing developments by the Leasehold Knowledge Partnership, 90 per cent of respondents said the government’s response to the ‘cladding crisis’ had been “no help at all.”

This is why Merton Liberal Democrats are asking Merton Council Cabinet and the government to go further when it comes to protecting those in residential housing. 

In addition to supporting the demands from the ‘End our Cladding Scandal’ campaign, the motion calls for officers to make their audit of cladding issues in Merton available for public access, the audit to include low rise blocks under 18m, and for the creation of an online ‘hub’ for residents, tenants and long leaseholders in both the private and social housing sectors to access relevant support to deal with housing safety issues. 

Click here to view the motion. You can also follow the End Our Cladding Scandal campaign here and keep up with our campaigns here.

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