Loughton Luxe licence reviewed

Written on . Posted in Business, Community, Crime and safety, Emergencies, Licensing, Loughton, Media, Out and about, Regulations, Residents, Your area, Your community, Your council

Following a number of violent incidents linked to Luxe in Loughton, Essex Police asked Epping Forest District Council for a full review of their licence after it was temporarily suspended on 5 May 2017.

Suspended for 3 months

Councillors on the licensing sub-committee met on 30 May 2017 and agreed that all licensable activities should be suspended for the next 3 months.

Reopening as a Gastro Pub

The licence holders of Luxe in Loughton informed the committee they would be reopening the venue as a Gastro Pub and renaming it the Royal Standard. Following the suspension, licencing hours would be reduced to close at 11pm on Sundays to Thursdays, and a midnight close on Fridays and Saturdays.

The licence holders agreed to hold regular community liaison committees with local residents should they need to report any concerns about the venue.

Planning application validation list consultation

Written on . Posted in Building control, Business, Commercial properties, Community, Consultation, Local business, Media, Out and about, Planning, Private housing, Regulations, Residents, Supporting business, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home

Tell us what you think about our revised planning application local validation list.

We are consulting on revisions to the validation list of local information requirements. This now includes the addition of a guidance note on the submission of viability and financial appraisals for affordable housing.

Planning application local validation list consultation

What is the local validation list?

The local validation list identifies information required to register, assess and validate a planning application. We are asking any person or organization with an interest in or involvement with planning applications submitted to Epping Forest District Council to respond.

The previous validation list was produced in 2015 and we are required to review it every 2 years.

Consultation documents

How to respond

The consultation is open for 6 weeks from 21 April until 30 June 2017 – send us your comments by

Charter to inspire climate change action

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Community, Doing business with the council, Energy efficiency, Environmental health, Epping, Health, Leader, Loughton, Media, Older people, Ongar, Our activities, Our performance, Out and about, Recycling and waste, Regulations, Residents, Uncategorized, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home, Your money

Reducing emissions and tackling climate change are the key aims of a new Environmental Charter signed by Leader of Council Councillor Chris Whitbread and Chief Executive Glen Chipp.

Leader of Council Councillor Chris & Chief Executive signing the Environmental Charter

 

Climate Local

The Environmental Charter is part of Climate Local. Climate Local is a Local Government Association (LGA) initiative which asks councils for a commitment to help drive and inspire climate change action in the UK.

We have

  • Installed solar panel’s at the civic offices
  • Increased the recycling of our waste – through providing more bins and training staff
  • Insulated all council-owned properties to a high standard

We will

  • Help local people and businesses to be smarter about their energy use
  • As service providers aim to deliver services that are resource efficient and less carbon intensive
  • Ensure council owned buildings and operations are resource efficient and prepared for the impacts of a changing climate

Responsibility to our environment

Leader of Council Councillor Chris Whitbread said: “As a council we have a responsibility to our environment, by endorsing this Charter we are taking steps in the right direct towards making change.”

“Not only do we hope to reduce our carbon footprint but hope to inspire residents to make small changes resulting in a big difference.”

More info

Pub to replace Nu Bar

Written on . Posted in Business, Community, Councillors, Crime and safety, Democracy, Licensing, Local business, Loughton, Media, Meetings, Our activities, Out and about, Regulations, Residents, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home

As part of a crackdown on crime and disorder in Loughton, Essex Police asked Epping Forest District Council for a summary licence review after a serious assault at Nu Bar in February 2017.

Licensing noticeCCTV evidence

The review hearing took place on 7 March 2017.  The police evidence referred to CCTV footage, which showed that Nu Bar had not only failed to manage the incident effectively, but that management had been operating outside the permitted hours of their licence.

Illegal activity

Patrons were seen leaving more than 3 hours later than the licence allowed, via the back exit, in an attempt to conceal the illegal activity.

At the hearing the premises licence owners, Greene King, informed the licensing sub-committee that it had taken steps to change management.

Last orders 11pm

District councillors reduced the licencing hours, with last orders at 11pm Monday to Sunday and applied the stringent conditions agreed between Essex Police and Greene King.

Overview and Scrutiny 28 February 2017

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Community, Councillors, Democracy, Epping, Loughton, Media, Meetings, Ongar, Our performance, Out and about, Regulations, Residents, Uncategorized, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home, Your money

The newly-appointed principal of Epping Forest College, Saboohi Famili came before councillors at the meeting of Epping Forest District Council’s Overview and Scrutiny Committee on 28 February to discuss the damning recent OFSTED report.

Principal sets out college improvement plans

Ms Famili joined the college a matter of weeks before the inspection and is addressing the wide range of short-comings identified in the report. She was joined in Overview and Scrutiny by Councillor Gagan Mohindra in his capacity as the newly-appointed chairman of governors.

A new senior leadership team is in place. Ms Famili confirmed that recruitment of the next level of high-quality leadership and management was already underway. Action plans monitored and assessed on a monthly basis are being introduced. The Board of Governors led by Councillor Mohindra are undertaking regular scrutiny. Ms Famili also confirmed OFSTED will be making frequent repeat inspections to ensure changes are implemented. Councillor Mohindra confirmed that the board of governors would be ‘robust’.

OFSTED carried out its inspection during November 2016. Councillor Stephen Murray suggested the problems were deeply ingrained and asked Ms Famili how she felt these issues had come about. Ms Famili described a previous culture of ‘blame and fear’. This resulted in a tendency to hide problems. Ms Famili said the new culture could be characterised as ‘Proud to share and not afraid to ask’. By bringing issues into the open and recognising the problems she believed the cultural was changing.

Councillors applauded the accessible approach being adopted Ms Famili.

Highways, rail and health scrutiny

Councillors also noted the latest responses of Transport for London, Essex County Council Highways and Princess Alexandra Hospital to previous scrutiny enquiries.

TFL reported on the evolving organisational structure and engagement with non-Greater London councils. It supplied further information on the provision of Oyster cards and improvements to the line between Epping and Loughton.

Councillors noted difficulties in resolving issues with highways and disappointment with the County Council’s reluctance to attend a meeting of Overview and Scrutiny. In the absence of the County Portfolio Holder, councillors supported the formation of a delegation to attend County Hall in order to put the district’s concerns in person.

Councillor Ricky Gadsby updated fellow councillors regarding the concerns of the Care Quality Commission on the performance of Princess Alexandra Hospital. Councillors noted the commitment of the Chairman and Chief Executive of Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust to attend Overview and Scrutiny on 6 June 2017.

J9 trained staff tops 400 across Essex

Written on . Posted in Business, Community, Councillors, Crime and safety, Local business, Media, Older people, Out and about, Regulations, Residents, Supporting business, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your home

Since the launch of the J9 domestic abuse awareness programme in Epping Forest back in 2012, the Community Safety Partnership have now trained over 400 public sector and voluntary staff across Essex and progress continues with increasing momentum.

J9 trainees

Raising awareness

The J9 initiative aims to raise awareness about domestic abuse and training provided by the Epping Forest Community Safety Partnership gives valuable guidance to staff that are often the first point of contact for people that are victims of domestic abuse.

Providing support

The initiative provides a network of resources, support and advice for victims that are in desperate need of assistance. The distinctive pink heart logo identifies a place where victims and concerned relations can access information and guidance safely and discretely.

Growing influence across Essex

Safer, Greener and Transport Portfolio Holder Councillor Gary Waller said: ‘’Following the successful launch of J9 across all 14 of the Job Centres in Essex last year, we are delighted to see the project gain even further influence across Essex this year too.’’

‘’We are working closely with Chelmsford, Tendring, Castlepoint and Basildon Community Safety Partnerships to provide more training opportunities for staff across Essex. We have also been working closely with Essex County Council to promote the initiative and raise awareness during Domestic Abuse Awareness Week 2016.’’

He concluded: ‘’It is vital that we work with as many organisations as we can, to ensure that we can help as many victims as possible across Essex. We need to make it clear to victims that they are not alone and that there are places that they can go to get the advice and support they need to thrive, especially in times of great difficulty.’’

Find out more

Contact us if you are an organisation interested in training

The Freezer Fairy is coming

Written on . Posted in Business, Community, Councillors, Environmental health, Food safety, Media, Out and about, Regulations, Residents, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your home, Your money

The Food Standards Agency’s Freezer Fairy is coming to the Epping Forest district to leave tips on how to pre-prepare foods, how and what foods can be frozen and the best way to defrost foods safely.

She will also leave handy tools like a portions planner and recipe tips for those delicious leftovers.

Freezer Fairy says ...

The Freezer Fairy advises

  1. Freeze up to the use by date
  2. Plan portion sizes
  3. Separate raw foods when shopping
  4. Cook in advance and freeze
  5. Label food in the freezer

You can find all this information and more from the Freezer Fairy, helping you to have a less stressful and wasteful Christmas.

Change wasteful behaviour

The Food Standards Agency (FSA) has been looking at the issue of food waste and enabling consumers to help change wasteful behaviours. In the UK we throw away 7 million tonnes of food and drink every year, most of which could have been eaten. The average cost to each household for wasting this food is £470 a year.

The FSA has set out to educate people on reducing waste and increasing safe freezer use.

A happy and a healthy Christmas

Councillor Will Breare-Hall, Environment Portfolio Holder said: “At this time of year, when residents might be cooking for more people than normal, it’s helpful for them to be reminded how they can use their freezer most effectively and how to defrost food properly.”

“I encourage residents to follow the FSA Freezer Fairy’s advice. Not only could it save you time and money but it’ll help ensure everyone has both a happy and a healthy Christmas.”

 

#OurDay the people behind your local services

Written on . Posted in Arts, Business, Chairman, Community, Councillors, Countrycare, Crime and safety, Environmental health, Epping, Food safety, Health, Housing, Housing repairs, Local business, Loughton, Media, Museum, Older people, Our activities, Our attractions, Our countryside, Out and about, Regulations, Residents, Supporting business, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home

Tuesday 15 November 2016 is #OurDay. #OurDay is a yearly tweetathon for local government to show what it does in a typical day.

Here are just a few of the people behind your valued Epping Forest District Council services.

Karen & her lifewalkers set off from Clayton Hill on a mild autumn morning

View photos in a slideshow by clicking on a picture below and then click start slideshow

Shopping Park in Loughton underway

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Business, Business rates, Chairman, Chigwell, Commercial properties, Community, Councillors, Doing business with the council, Epping, Jobs, Local business, Loughton, Older people, Ongar, Our activities, Our attractions, Out and about, Planning, Regulations, Residents, Supporting business, Waltham Abbey, Working with the council, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home, Your money

Work has started on the construction of the Epping Forest Shopping Park at Langston Road,  Loughton.

Howard Parkes with (L-R) Councillor Jeane Lea, M and H Project Manager Alex McCalley, Councillor Anne Grigg and Derek Macnab

View photos in a slideshow by clicking on a picture below and then click start slideshow

Site tour

Councillor Jeane Lea, Chairman of Epping Forest District Council and Councillor Anne Grigg, Cabinet Portfolio Holder responsible for the council-owned scheme met McLaughlin and Harvey construction project manager Alex McCalley and members of the workforce during a tour of the site on Monday 26 September 2016.

Accompanied by the Council’s Deputy Chief Executive and Director of Neighbourhoods Derek Macnab, Councillors Lea and Grigg inspected well-advanced demolition work as the former council depot buildings come down. The adjoining site bought by the council previously is already clear with excavations already evident where surface water storage tanks are to be installed.

Assisted by Alex McCalley of McLaughlin and Harvey, Councillor Lea posed for traditional ground-breaking photographs.

Biggest names in retail

Once completed, Loughton Shopping Park will potentially host some of the biggest names in retail including Next, Aldi, TK Maxx, Pets at Home and Hobbycraft.

New jobs

Around 200 permanent new jobs will be created while rental income from the park will help Epping Forest District Council provide public services to local residents and maintain one of the lowest Council Taxes in Essex. Associated highway improvements on Chigwell Lane will also ease congestion on one of Essex’s busiest roads. There will be on-site shopper car parking for up to 350 cars as well as excellent public transport links a short walk away at Debden Underground Station. With a footprint of 94,000 square feet (or almost 150,000 square feet taking account of mezzanine floors) there will be plenty of retail space with something for everyone including children with Smyths Toys expecting to be a big draw for families.

Boost to the local economy

Councillor Grigg said: ”I was delighted to see the progress. McLaughlin and Harvey has made a cracking start. The site is clean and the demolition work is being carried out with meticulous attention to safety. Now the barriers between the old council depot and the adjoining site have been removed you start to get a real perspective on the size and scale of the shopping park. It will be a fantastic asset and a tremendous boost to the local economy.”

Minimal disruption

During the tour, Alex McCalley explained some of the ways in which McLaughlin and Harvey will minimise disturbance to neighbours. He said: “Years ago we would have had hundreds of lorries coming on and off site as we transported the thousands of tonnes of hardcore rubble. These days we are much more environmentally friendly. Nearly all the rubble will be recycled into the foundations of the new retail park. We are using better methods of pile driving, drilling our way down to the London Clay rather than the old method of banging away with the pile-driver. We are also making contact with our neighbours, keeping people informed and setting up those vital lines of communication that let everyone work together.”

First shoppers next summer

Councillor Jeane Lea was also very impressed: she said: ”McLaughlin and Harvey are one of the most experienced retail park developers. They have worked with some of the biggest companies to deliver large schemes. I would like to thank Alex and his team for such an informative tour and  look forward to being invited back to review progress.”

Construction is expected to take around 40 weeks meaning the first shoppers through the doors next summer.

First look of our draft Local Plan

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Business, Business rates, Chigwell, Community, Consultation, Councillors, Countryside and wildlife, Epping, Housing, Licensing, Local business, Local plan / planning our future, Loughton, Media, Meetings, Older people, Ongar, Our attractions, Our countryside, Out and about, Private housing, Regulations, Residents, Supporting business, Travel, Trees and landscapes, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home

Residents and councillors have their first chance to view an advance version of the draft Local Plan before Epping Forest District Council’s Cabinet meeting on 6 October 2016.

Website launch infographic

The plan, available to view on the Cabinet agenda from 27 September, is subject to change at Cabinet and the meeting of Full Council on 18 October 2016. Only once agreed with any further amendments at Full Council will the draft be ready for public consultation from Monday 31 October 2016.

First chance to see

Planning Portfolio Holder John Philip said: “This is everyone’s first chance to see what the Plan for consultation will look like but it is important to remember that things could still change between now and the end of October. It won’t be finalised until all councillors have had their final say at Full Council.”

“However, by getting this early draft out a month before the official consultation starts, we are ensuring everyone has as much time as possible to consider the issues before the deadline for responses on 12 December 2016. We don’t want your views yet – not until the draft plan is finalised, but we are looking for as much feedback as we can possibly get once the consultation starts on 31 October 2016.”

Consultation website

A special consultation website has been created to support the Local Plan consultation process. It has been designed to make consultation feedback as simple and straightforward as possible.

Epping Forest District Council is also preparing a leaflet for district-wide delivery to households and businesses in the next few weeks to encourage feedback, as well as holding exhibitions, placing adverts in the local press, handing information cards out at railway stations and sending frequent reminders out on social media.

Local town and parish councils are helping the district council with articles in local magazines, posters on noticeboards and more social media.

Everyone’s Local Plan

John Philip said: “This is everyone’s Local Plan. It is the plan for our future, the future of our children and the future of our grandchildren. It will guide development across the district including where to build new homes and employment for a growing population right up to 2033.”

“It will also seek to protect all the most important things we love and cherish about our district including natural spaces and the Green Belt. Please get involved. Follow the process and give us your feedback.”

Local Plan infographics

View the infographics in a slideshow by clicking on a picture below and then click start slideshow