You may be aware that there are plans proposed by 1st Molesey Scouts to build a new Water Centre on the Molesey bank of the river. It is a contentious proposition and is opposed locally as it is poorly sited owing to the already intense use of the river at this spot and also because of the impact on local heritage assets, not least Garrick's Temple. Suzettte, Vince and I are opposed.

However a new angle has recently arisen which could threaten the very existence of Hampton Ferry.

There is a proposal to site two beaches on either side of the ferry landing point on the Molesey side. This would make it impossible for the ferry to dock safely for fear of collision with swimmers, dogs, paddling toddlers, etc

There has been a ferry operating on this site for 500 years. Should its existence be thrown into question because of a desire to have a couple of beaches? No!

Therefore it is VITAL that those of you who want to see the ferry survive submit your objections to Elmbridge Council

Go to and look up application 2018/0312


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I had to google the website as the lead didn't take me there.  Having got to that point the number is for the Water Centre (which I don't object to) and that was suppose to be near the slipway on the Molesey side, so that would not interfere with the ferry. The beaches should be under another planning application so we could really address it. I have put a comment on that application form objecting to losing the ferry as both sides of the river use it and it has an historic background.  This really does affect us, really do miss it in the winter when it isn't running

As it affecting the Richmond side, can't Richmond Council do something?  I know our local councillors are trying, but surely how can one borough stop something (and taking jobs with it) from another borough. Hello Elmbridge you want to build Kempton which will affect us (Hampton) and that's on the same side of the river, now you want to take our lovely ferry away, LEAVE US ALONE

Janice It is the same application that Gareth mentions. The Activity Centre is on the Hurst flood plain meadows, opposite Taggs island and they are putting beaches by the ferry landing to compensate for the loss of Flood storage.  But the Activity Centre development itself will set a precedent of building in the natural flood plain and if development continues there then it will affect all Hampton properties near the Thames. For example Taggs Island was flooded in 2014 and many houseboats were disconnected from their services and nearly lost their moorings. Just a few more inches and it would have been a disaster. It is the floodplain protecting us so if we lose the floodplain riverside properties are in trouble.  The scouts say they will use the centre for 2 sessions a week the rest of the  time 8am-10pm it will be hired out to allcomers. So there will be a large number of inexperienced novices on the river in the navigation channels, its much safer on a reservoir or lake. There are other places for the Sea Scout Centre to go which will not interfere with the Ferry or the floodplain. Platts Eyot and the council owned eXcel center for example. We already have the Hampton Hill Sea Scout hut on the Hampton riverside which has been no problem at all. Plus the three rowing clubs, the canoe club and Hampton Sailing club. 

This may be a better link to the application:

There is also a film called "The Nature of Hurst Park" which shows the wildlife on the floodplain over there.

 and more information on

Thank you but as I said I found the application and put my comments on there to save the ferry

In 1996 we fought very hard to keep the Hampton Ferry going. The Hampton Society and local Hampton councillors battled to save it from imminent closure after George Kenton died and it has been a great success since then. To lose it now because of some inappropriate development on the other side of the river would be crazy.  

Richmond Council are holding a consultation on this application  which is number 18/1145/CON

If you object or support this application then make sure you copy your comments to the Richmond consultation too.  It has happened before that out of borough comments sent to Elmbridge Planning have been disregarded.
According to the Hampton Ferry owner, Dave Bedford, if this application gets permission as it stands then the Ferry will have to close.


This is not just about the ferry.

More it is about despoiling a large swathe of open land which can be enjoyed by all. Open vistas are important and buildings which spoil these ruin the pleasure walkers and cyclists enjoy.

John Orr

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