Fantastic Recycling Levels Achieved By Residents

Written on . Posted in Recycling and waste, Residents, Your community, Your environment, Your home

Recycling officers and councillors are celebrating after new kerb-side recycling collections produced a huge increase in recycled material.

Residents in 6,000 households covering the Chigwell and Lambourne area where alternate collection of wheelie bins and recycling was introduced last month were asked to put all their recycling out for collection on Monday. Councillor Derek Jacobs, Environmental Protection Portfolio Holder for Epping Forest District Council described the response by residents as fantastic. Dry recycling levels for material such as paper, tin cans and plastic bottles increased by more than 11 tonnes over the previous collection. Glass recycling doubled.

Councillor Jacobs said: Judging from the amounts of recycling put out for collection this week, most people have embraced the new collection arrangements. Where households might have put out one or two bags of recycling before, we are now seeing three or four bags. If other areas follow the lead taken by Chigwell and Lambourne residents, we will be cutting the amount of waste sent to landfill by thousands of tonnes every year. That is fantastic news for the environment.

Councillor Jacobs added: It was to be expected that a small number of people would put out wheelie bins or black sacks of rubbish for collection but we hope they will soon get used to the new arrangements too. As most residents have demonstrated, if you are serious about recycling as much as possible, the new system works.

Community Action in Waltham Abbey

Written on . Posted in Crime and safety, Our activities, Out and about, Residents, Waltham Abbey, Your area, Your community

The Epping Forest Crime and Disorder Reduction Partnership organised two community action days in Waltham Abbey. The first action day took place on Thursday 6 October at Ninefields, Hillhouse Square Community Hall and the second took place on Friday 14 October at Roundhills, Brookfield’s Community Hall.

Whilst at the Ninefields community action day, Essex Police Crime Reduction Officer Tony Ellis and EFDC Crime Reduction Assistant Beth Knight were walking around the Ninefields area talking to residents about local issues, when a youth drove past on a motorised scooter. Tony and Beth called after the youth to stop, but the youth made off. The youth was spotted later walking across the estate, he was identified by the crime reduction officers to the police officers patrolling nearby who promptly reported him for Section 59, warning him should he ride any vehicle in a manner that causes alarm, harassment or distress within a 12 month period the motorised vehicle would be confiscated.

Older residents enjoyed the days and were able to take advantage of the Handyvan scheme to obtain free window and door locks or smoke alarms.

At the Roundhills estate, Epping Forest District Council’s cash injection into the area had improved the security, quality of life and general appearance of the shopping area and new CCTV cameras were clearly visible.

Roundhills resident Mr Slade said, “This is a good idea, the noise from the youths used to be terrible, but now it has really quietened down. I do see a policeman and lady going round checking the area.” Another resident added, “There used to be a lot of yobs here at night but it is much better now.”

Crime reduction officer Tony Ellis said, “The feedback we have got from the residents that attended both venues was extremely positive.
The measures we have taken regarding anti-social behaviour have clearly made an impact but there is much work still to be done. I thoroughly enjoyed the two days, there was a great community atmosphere.”



London Explosions

Written on . Posted in Business, Emergencies, Residents, Your community

Following the closure of the London Underground and London Bus networks, Epping Forest District Council has put members of its emergency planning team on standby and alerted senior councillors.

Councillor John Knapman, Leader of Epping Forest District Council said: Many of us will have seen the distressing images from London on our TVs this morning. So far we understand that the London authorities are dealing with the situation and we have not been asked to assist. However, as a district with Central Line services and many residents who commute to work in London each day, we are obviously concerned and keeping the situation under review.

Councillor Knapman added: This is not a time for speculation or needlessly increasing the concern of family and friends who will already be trying to contact loved ones. The District Council is one small cog in a large machine of London-based organisations and neighbouring authorities which sadly have to plan and prepare against the day when such events as this may happen.

Councillor Brian Sandler, Chairman of Epping Forest District Council added to Councillor Knapman’s comments. He said: My heart goes out to everyone who has been touched by the terrible events in London. Yesterday, London received the best possible news when the world community placed its faith in us to deliver the 2012 Olympic Games. As a nation we are renowned for rising to challenges and overcoming adversity. Those people who seek to terrorise us do not understand the spirit and determination of the British people. London has received a grievous blow but I know we will recover from these acts. Now is the moment for us to pull together as a nation and as a community.

Councillor Sandler added: “It will be my privilege in the next few weeks to attend ceremonies to commemorate the end of the last World War and remember those who gave their lives in the defence of our peace, security and freedom. I know these events, like the events of 60 years ago, will unite us and make us more determined than ever never to give in to such atrocities. The terrorists must not win.”


London 2012 Olympics – Fantastic News!

Written on . Posted in Business, Olympics, Residents, Travel, Your community

Councillor John Knapman, Leader of Epping Forest District Council said: This is fantastic news. I am absolutely delighted. London is one of the greatest cities in the world. As a nation we are renowned for rising to challenges and I am sure we will make this one of the most successful Olympic games ever.

He continued: The potential benefits for the people of London and the surrounding area are enormous. This is the chance not just to regenerate East London. It is the best opportunity we will ever have to tackle the under-investment in our roads, public transport and housing as well as business and sports facilities. For Epping Forest District, so well placed right on the edge of London, this is a great opportunity for us too. After the spectacle of the games themselves, the spin-off benefits to the district should last for generations to come.

Councillor Knapman concluded: The next seven years will be crucial. There is a tremendous amount of hard work to do but I for one can’t wait. In town halls across London and the South East of England people will be meeting to digest the news and make plans. We are no different in Epping Forest and I will be calling meetings of councillors and staff to map out the challenges the district faces. I have already asked senior officers to be in my office at 9.30 this Friday to get the ball rolling. We owe it to future generations as well as ourselves  to make the absolute best of 2012.

Council Objects to East of England Plan

Written on . Posted in Business, Conservation and listed buildings, Countryside and wildlife, Local plan / planning our future, Our countryside, Planning, Regulations, Residents, Your area, Your community, Your environment

Development of North Weald on the scale proposed in the East of England Plan is not only excessive but could also undermine the regeneration of Harlow according to Epping Forest District Council. Councillors met at the Civic Offices in Epping on Tuesday (8 March) and Thursday (10 March) to agree their response to the East of England Plan consultation.

If the Government goes ahead with proposals to develop North Weald Airfield and surrounding land at the same time as developments in Harlow, Councillors believe the effect would be for people and businesses to gravitate towards North Weald. Harlow would struggle to attract the same people and businesses the Government believes the town needs for effective regeneration.

Councillor Robert Glozier, Planning and Economic Development Portfolio Holder said that undermining the regeneration of Harlow was one of many reasons why the number of new houses and businesses proposed for North Weald and other parts of the district should be reduced.

He said: Aside from the potential damage to Harlow, development at North Weald and to the South West of Harlow does not look sustainable. The impact on the environment from so much development in the Green Belt would be immense. There are fundamental issues ranging from basic health, welfare and education service provision through to concerns about the supply of water. Even if promises of huge investment in infrastructure such as public transport and roads can be afforded, many other questions remain unanswered.

Councillor Glozier continued: There is an enormous amount of concern among local people. They range from those who believe the great historic significance of the Airfield should prevent development to those who fear the scale of development overall would destroy the fundamentally rural character of our local environment.

Councillors voted to tell the East of England Regional Assembly (EERA) and the Office of John Prescott, the Deputy Prime Minister that the overall proposals of 11,000 extra households plus employment developments were too much for Epping Forest district. They specifically rejected the proposal for 6,000 houses at North Weald and 2,700 to the South West of Harlow. District Councillors also believe that whatever the final number of houses allocated to the district, planning control should be retained by the Council and not transferred to a non-elected organisation such as an Urban Development Corporation.

Councillor Glozier said: We are not saying no to any development in the district. By our own assessment we know we need to find capacity for something like  3,000 new houses over the next 16 or so years. We are particularly concerned about the cost of housing and the need to provide affordable homes for young families and key workers such as nurses and teachers. We want to provide homes for these people.

He concluded: We are saying to the Government that we believe their assumptions about the needs and capacity of our district are wrong. They need to stop and rethink their whole strategy.

Residents demonstrated their opposition to the East of England Plan before listening to the debate in the Council meeting. Epping Forest District Council`s objections to the Plan were sent to the Regional Assembly before the deadline for submission of comments on 16 March.

The next main stage in the process will be an Examination in Public (EiP) starting on 13 September. A Panel of Inspectors will identify topics for consideration and may call local people and organisations to give evidence. The Government will expect to receive the recommendations of the Panel in early 2006.