Chapter 1. Biggles and the Council Combat
The Surrey County Council conservation officer wrote telling Biggles he saw no sign of water splashing the walls of his cottage.
“By jove'” said Biggles “you should have gone to Specsavers”.
Biggles Birthplace. This tiny, listed, thatched, timber framed cottage – the last thatched cottage in Lingfield, Surrey, UK is where the author, W. E. Johns, lived from 1927 to 1937, and where he wrote the 1st of many ‘Biggles’ books. It has been damaged by large, heavy lorries that hit its thatched roof, and by surface road water that soaks its walls. After 11 years of pleading for some suitable traffic calming and drainage an uncaring Surrey County Council has ‘sold out’ to house-building developers by agreeing to let the developers put in unsuitable, inappropriate and badly placed pinch-points. One of these pinch-points will cause serious further damage by sending double the amount of water across the road to the cottage; all of the traffic across the road to the cottage so doubling the vibration that cracks the plaster away from the timber, and double the number of juggernauts that hit the thatched roof.
The cottage gets in the way of developers – so they left it off the plans; they also left off telling the owner about the the fresh-build application to which the pinch-points are attached; Surrey County Council and Tandridge District Council did not even ‘notice’ these omissions. So the cottage is right now being sacrificed to satisfy the clever developers.
For at least 11 years Surrey County Council has said that there is not a splashing problem. Have you had to drive through it? What do you think? They have recently and with difficulty, had to accept that there is a road-water and splashing problem.
They continue to ignore the fact that lorries hit the roof.
Regarding the Biggles literary history Surrey County Council says ‘I am afraid your point about Johns living here does not carry any weight in this case’.
“Doesn’t carry any weight eh?” said Biggles. He adjusted his flying helmet and pulled down his goggles. Then squaring his broad shoulders and pulling himself up to his full height he added “Well right now Marty old chap, come outside and say that!”.
Nov 3 2011
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