Leith Hill Action Group – Newsletter 9 (2nd June 2012)

Stop the Leith Hill oil drilling!

Hello and welcome to our ninth newsletter.  It seems only yesterday that we set out to raise £50,000 for the Public Inquiry, but incredibly here we are already in June.  Fortunately, the wonderful response from all of you has made our job that much easier and pushed us to the brink of success.

How close to success?  Well thanks to incredible sales at the Auction of Promises, the Leith Hill Massage Studio generously donating £435 from all massages in April & May, and yet more generous donations from you, the answer is: a whole lot closer!  Just have a look at the rapidly heating Totalizer, which shows funds pledged to date tipping over £41,000:

Thank you

With that in mind, we’d like to take the time to note some help we’ve had along the way. 

We’ve had a policy of not naming individuals.  So many people have come forward and provided us with help that it’s impossible to thank everyone individually without that being the sole content of each newsletter!  However, let me say a huge thank you to all of you that have assisted us so far.  We couldn’t do this without you and it is incredibly heart-warming to have been greeted with such an outpouring of support and encouragement

Some organisations have also provided substantial financial help and we felt our supporters should be aware of this.

The biennial Coldharbour Fete Auction of Promises is normally for the benefit of St. James Church in Coldharbour.  This year, however, the church has kindly agreed that LHAG should receive the funds instead.  The resulting   £4,500 raised by the auction is a fantastic achievement and very much appreciated by all of us at LHAG. 

Hart, Scales and Hodges solicitors have generously agreed to sponsor “!For Goodness Sake!”, the one night only show at Dorking Halls starting at 7.30pm on Friday 15th June.  A spokesman for the solicitors said,

“Leith Hill is an astonishingly beautiful patch of countryside and a real asset to the county of Surrey. We believe it should stay that way, so have pledged our financial and legal support in fighting the drilling proposals.

“Our law firm has occupied the same spot on Dorking High Street for 230 years, so as established citizens of the Surrey Hills community we fully understand the importance of LHAG’s cause.

We were shocked when we learned of the drilling project and its potentially damaging implications, but inspired by the tenacity with which LHAG opposed the plans right from the very start.

“The environmental, ecological and practical costs of allowing the proposals to go ahead would be unacceptably high, so it’s extremely encouraging to see so many local people campaigning for the area’s preservation.

“We believe Leith Hill is in good hands, but urge as many people as possible to get involved in securing a positive future this irreplaceable part of our wonderful county.”   

Our fabulous fundraising total also includes a £10,000 grant from the Lush Foundation.  Lush Cosmetics were founded on the principle of ethical development and all turnover raised from one of their lines of cosmetics is used to fund their foundation.  All Lush asked for when giving us this grant was that if we are passing one of their shops, we pop in and tell the staff how our fight is going.  But we thought we’d tell you too, as a measure of our gratitude to Lush.

The Woodland Trust have also provided us with a grant, as well as (along with the National Trust) considerable advice and support.  This has included acting as referees, which has enabled us to pursue avenues of help that would otherwise not have been open to us.

LHAG needs your help!

In spite of all this help, however, we are not quite there yet. We still have the best part of £10,000 to raise and so donations are still very gratefully being received.

We also have a number of fundraisers left to help us get there, one of which is the LHAG 10km run being held on Sunday 1st July.  In order to put on this event, we need lots of marshalls!  Marshalls will have to be willing to give up a few hours on the morning of the race and we may have a meeting the afternoon before too, which ideally they would attend.  If you would like to be involved, please contact us at lhag@hotmail.co.uk. If you would like to run the race instead, please visit our LHAG 10km webpage.

!For Goodness Sake!

By the time of the next newsletter, a lucky audience will have experienced our special one-night only performance of !For Goodness Sake!  Time is running out for you to get your tickets, so follow this link to our brand new !FGS! website page, read all about the show and book your tickets now!

The Inquiry

It is important that as many of us as possible can attend the Public Inquiry to demonstrate our opposition to Europa’s planning application.  Ideally, we would like to avoid having everybody attend on the first day and then nobody thereafter.    We are therefore now looking to organise attendance to try to ensure we have an even spread of people across each day of the 8 day Inquiry.  As such, if you think you may attend, can you please let us know at lhag@hotmail.co.uk and we will be in touch.

Meet the LHAG Team... all of them!

In the last newsletter, we promised you that we would somehow get you a photo of LHAG Ecology committee member Max Rosenberg.  Well, having constructed a hide and lain in wait for three days, we finally managed to snap a shot of the camera-shy campaigner.  So without further ado, here it is!

(Right-click and select “download pictures” if your email package doesn’t do this automatically).

And finally…

Once again, thank you so much for your amazing support.  We’re in the final stretch now, but we can’t give up yet.  The community is showing how it can react to a threat – stay with us all the way and enjoy the victory when we make it to our £50,000 target!

Patrick Nolan

Fundraising Committee, The Leith Hill Action Group

Summary of reasons why we are objecting to the application

Keeping in Touch

To feed back, ask questions or offer help, contact Patrick Nolan at pnoley@gmail.com

Follow our Twitter feed: @Leith_Hill_AG

Newsletter 1 (2nd February 2012)
Newsletter 2
(13th February 2012)
Newsletter 3 (1st March 2012)
Newsletter 4 (16th March 2012)
Newsletter 5 (1st April 2012)
Newsletter 6 (19th April 2012)
Newsletter 7 (1st May 2012)
Newsletter 8 (16th May 2012)


Donating by Direct Transfer

You can make a direct transfer to the LHAG account (name “Leith Hill Action Group”) using sort code 09-01-27 and account 3767 8874.  

Donating by Cheque

Make cheques payable to “Leith Hill Action Group” and send to:

Patrick Nolan, Chair of LHAG Fundraising, Oak Lodge, Anstie Lane, Surrey, RH5 6HA. 

Donating by Credit Card, Debit Card or PayPal

You can donate by the card of your choice or even directly from your PayPal account by clicking the button below.  (Some email packages may not allow you to see/use this button without further intervention.  If this is the case, please visit the home page of our website where you will also be able to donate using this facility.)


However you donate, please do provide us with your name, address and email in case we have the chance to return surplus funds (contact details are above).

Fundraising Events

Show at Dorking Halls

Theatre goers will have a unique opportunity to see two highly acclaimed legends of star and screen come together for a one-night only performance to raise funds for the Leith Hill Action Group (LHAG).  

At Dorking Halls on Friday 15th June, Virginia McKenna, actress, author and founder of the Born Free Foundation will join Ron Moody, the international star of stage and screen fondly remembered for his extraordinary performance as Fagin in the film and stage show Oliver!, will join a cast of highly talented artists to present an evening of music, songs and poetry celebrating Leith Hill and the beauty of nature.   The show, !For Goodness Sake!, celebrates nature and the beauty of Leith Hill and has been written by Lindy Alexander, a resident of Brockham and an actress who has regularly appeared on television, the big screen and on stage.   Click here to book from the Dorking Halls box office.

10km run

Sign up for the LHAG 10km run on Sunday 1st July (and guarantee yourself the advance price of £12, rather than the turn-up price of £15) by visiting our LHAG 10km webpage.

Bridge tea

A bridge tournament on the afternoon of Wednesday 20th June, incorporating sandwiches, home-made cake, prizes and a raffle.  For further details, please contact Mary Adair on 01306 711 768 or email mary.adair@which.net

Open garden day

On the afternoon of Sunday 22nd July, from 2pm onwards, Leylands Farm in Abinger Common will be opening its beautiful gardens to raise money for LHAG.  Cream teas and cakes & refreshments will also be available to purchase.