Janet PowellTown Twinning / Rotary
Alistair SempleChrist Central
Angie AustinSurrey Police
Jerry O’LearyRedhill Football Club
Neil MundaySuzy Radio
DavidMcDonalds Franchisee
Simon BlandReigate and Banstead Council
Tuke SonaikePackage of Sunshine
Ian GreenUltimate Database
Diane Dunkley Reigate and Banstead Council
Tony ParkerAbility Back
John WrightIt’seeze Horsham
Graham PowellRedhill Redstone Rotary Club
Ceri WilliamsOwxich Accountancy
Ian OrrickHarlequin Theatre
Josh WebsterHarlequin Theatre
Zahra DhaimishSurrey Care Trust / Community Allotment
Nick GuyMartin & Co
Paula EdwardsGeneration Redhill Twitter account
Andy NashBelfry
Andy BrownBrown’s Traditional
Ian MatthewsKingston Smith
Crispin JonesCave Spider Productions
Simon PitherProperty and Tenant Manager

There were new faces aplenty at the Redhill Business Guild Meeting tonight, one of whom was the delightful Angie Austin who spoke about the multifaceted duties of policing the local area. We are hugely grateful to the police, of course, and somewhat surprised to hear the small number of individuals responsible for a large amount of local crime. For all that, up to 90% of their workload is more to do with mental health issues than organised or intentional crime. Angie gave a detailed report of the last 24 hours of local reporting which included: 2 missing vulnerable adults, 3 people who refused treatment and discharged themselves without notice from the hospital, 1 vehicle damage, 1 fraud, 3 shoplifting offences, 1 stolen parcel from a doorstep, 1 business burglary. Many of these either had no evidence to link the crime to any suspect or not enough to satisfy the CPS. On the other hand, there had been a particularly unpleasant group of local young men who were now serving considerable sentences after extensive police work, and the Travellers whose presence caused local concern recently – not least because one of their dogs bit a couple of people – similarly had been moved on after police negotiated the legal minefield presented by the Human Rights Act which gives rights to those who live alternative lifestyles. Violent crime in Redhill, she observed was almost always linked to young people and 6 individuals who have been issued with ASBOs are taking a lot of police time. Woodmansterne residents who might be alarmed at the high crime rate might be reassured to know that it nearly all goes on behind bars in the local prison there. It was a fascinating insight into many local issues and we appreciate Angie taking the time to come and talk to us. 

Following this we had two updates on big events locally. 

Diane Dunkley spoke about the Business Awards, which all those who attended considered a great success. There were lots of Redhill-based businesses as sponsors, nominees and winners. And Redhill Guild members did surprisingly well against Reigate Guild members – although, like any sibling rivalry, that wasn’t technically part of the competition until we started winning! Diane and her team at the Council have been sending out emails inviting feedback in order to assess how frequently to hold the awards and what can be learned for future events. Andy Nash commented: “Very well done, especially considering it was the first one. A good vibe, good opportunity to network, fun for the young people who attend and the presentation and entertainment were excellent.” In addition, the evening raised £3,500 for two popular local charities: James and Giant Pledge, and Stripey Stork

Tuke Sonaike spoke about the first ever Redhill Summer Festival.  The sun shone on the day and there was good feedback from stall holders and food vendors. There were a few teething problems, but it was a good community endeavour of people pulling together and plans will shortly begin for the next one. Andy Nash, whose stalwart efforts had provided a marquee big enough to house our table as well as the Belfry and Redhill 175, had enlarged some pictures he was able to show the group. The raffle had not been particularly well supported and he suggested the Guild approve running it for a little longer in the Belfry. We were privileged to have Neil Munday from Suzy Radio at the meeting and he reported on the successful radio show they had run from the event. He particularly mentioned the Include choir whose performance was streamed live on Facebook and is still online for those who wish to see it.  

Members were informed that we have access to the notice board in the middle of the High Street and can post notices and information there. Members who wish to use this should contact Andy Nash. 

On the subject of the Christmas tree, Ian Green reported he had contacted many local businesses for support but no positive response yet. Janet and Graham Powell attended from the Redhill Rotary who had previously provided a tree and lights for the town. They are now planning on planting a tree in the Memorial Park by the cafe, which can have seasonal illuminations. It sounds like a great idea. 

We had a couple of visitors from the Harlequin. They are looking for sponsors for the pantomime. A variety of sponsorship packages are available. Interested parties should contact

Crispin Jones spoke about an event at Le Barbe to raise money for the Children’s Trust. Last years event was a thundering success and raised 14k on the evening. Tickets can be booked at or call 01737 241966. 

Simon Pither, who has taken on the role of helping us manage our website, invited articles about local businesses or community projects. We are happy to publish articles about businesses of members, or of community issues by those who are not members. Our motto is, Enhancing Redhill as a place to live, work and do business. So anything about those type of issues will be welcome. Please send articles and pictures to

The Redhill 175 project suffered a setback when John Capon who had spearheaded it was involved in an accident and required hospitalisation. John has been involved in many community projects through the years, notably the Carols in the Belfry services, and our thoughts are with him for a speedy recovery. The Redhill 175 initiative is now being promoted in the Belfry. They are still looking for local residents to volunteer 175 minutes of their time to improve the town. In particular they still have some of the 175 trees that can be used for community planting schemes; applications via the Belfry.