Cabinet 7 September 2017

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A new Police helicopter base, anti- social behaviour in Waltham abbey and the Oakwood hill depot were among items discussed at Epping Forest District Council’s Cabinet meeting Thursday 7 September 2017.

North Weald set to become new Police helicopter base

North Weald Airfield is set to become a new base for the National Police Air Service. Three helicopters and a fixed-wing aircraft will be based at the council-owned airfield.

Police Helicopter

Police Helicopter

Asset Management Portfolio Holder Anne Grigg put forward recommendations for a 25 year lease with the helicopter service. The proposals would include a new hanger and buildings to support a range of police helicopter activities.

The Police will be joining a range of other aviation tenants including the Essex and Herts Air Ambulance which has operated very successfully from North Weald for several years. Receiving reassurances about flight lines and noise levels from members of the National Police Air Service at the meeting, councillors welcomed the report and the aspiration for continued development of aviation at North Weald.

Hillhouse Statement

Councillor Sam Kane was welcomed to his first Cabinet meeting as Safer, Greener and Transport Portfolio Holder by Council Leader Chris Whitbread. Councillor Kane has stepped into the role previous held by Councillor Gary Waller who recently passed away.

Councillor Kane’s first act was to deliver a strong statement regarding anti-social behaviour in Waltham Abbey.

Councillor Sam Kane’s Statement:

“Fellow Councillors will know that Epping Forest District Council is working in partnership with local residents and other organisations to improve the quality of life for everyone in and around Hillhouse on the Ninefields housing estate in Waltham Abbey.

Work has started in just the last few weeks on a brand new leisure centre. Health, housing and social facilities are coming together in a major multi-million pound investment.

The vast majority of residents in this area are the most decent and law-abiding citizens you could ever wish to meet. We also know there is an element of anti-social behaviour, a group of people who seem intent on making the lives of everyone else miserable. We are working with all our partners including Essex Police to tackle this behaviour but events in the last day or so have taken a new and very ugly twist.

Fishing line has been tied at knee height between posts and fences with the deliberate intention of tripping and hurting people. This mindless and stupid act has resulted in injury to a small child. Pictures of the serious cuts to his face have been circulated on social media.

I know this will come as a shock to you and I know every councillor would wish to send our sympathy to this innocent young child and his family.

Local residents and all right-minded people will be incensed by this latest incident. Through this meeting I want to let our residents know that we stand with them. The anti-social behaviour of the last few weeks must now stop.

A temporary dispersal order has been put in place from tonight. You will appreciate that many other things are going on behind the scenes that I cannot discuss in public.

Council staff have been working incredibly hard. Plans of action drawn up with Essex Police even before this latest event are being put into effect now. We believe we know who the perpetrators are. It saddens me to say that they are very young. We have been working with our local schools and have passed the identities of the perpetrators to Essex Police.

Enough is enough. Anti-social behaviour is a blight on our communities which must end. As the action plan goes into effect, I expect to see the situation improve significantly. I also know that you can never eliminate all crime, but with the support of my council colleagues I want to send out a clear message. We stand with all the decent and law-abiding residents of Waltham Abbey.

We will not let the few ruin the lives of the many.”

Oakwood Hill

New council office and depot facilities accommodating Grounds Maintenance, Fleet Maintenance and the MoT centre opened recently at Oakwood Hill in Loughton. Latest proposals for the transfer of the Council’s Housing Repairs service to Oakwood Hill were scrutinised at Cabinet.

Proposals for additional staff car parking received particular attention. A petition opposing the use of green space opposite the new facility was delivered by Councillor Chris Roberts.

Councillors agreed the recommendations in the Cabinet report with the proviso that alternatives to the proposals of additional parking would also be investigated. Full public consultation would also take place as part of any planning application process if the proposals for parking set out in the report went forward.

Customer Services

Council Leader Chris Whitbread updated fellow councillors on a range of projects geared towards improving customer service including a new public customer service reception, plans for which are due to come before Cabinet by the end of the year.

Stay well this winter

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With the colder months closing in it’s time to prepare with our ‘stay well this winter’ events.

Stay Well This Winter 2017

Time to prepare is now

Our free stay well this winter events in partnership with West Essex Clinical Commissioning group provide the best health care information with talks from professionals and community groups highlighting the great services available to you this winter.

They day includes informative talks from

  • Pharmacists
  • Community Nurses
  • Specialist health advisors

Stands from health and community professionals including

  • Alzheimer’s society
  • EFDC Housing team
  • VAEF
  • Essex Road Safety
  • Essex Fire Service
  • And more

You will also receive a free lunch and goodie bag.

Where

  1. Tuesday 3 October
    10 am – 2pm
    Waltham Abbey Town Hall
    High bridge Street
    EN9 1DE
  2. Wednesday 25 October
    10am – 2pm
    Theydon Bois Village Hall
    Coppice Row
    CM16 7ER
  3. Friday 10 November
    10am – 2pm
    Roding Hall
    Buckhurst Hill
    26 Station Way
    IG9 6LN

Join us

Booking is required, call 01992 564226 to confirm your place.

51% of households responded, have you?

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51% of Epping Forest district households have responded to the annual canvass so far, that’s 28,600 household Enquiry Forms (HEF) in total, 20,000 were received online, by text and by phone!

Household Enquiry Form - Annual Canvass 2017

Do it online, it’s easier & cheaper

”Responding online, by text or by phone is by far the quickest and simplest way for you to respond and it’s also the cheapest, which helps us keep our costs down” explained Glen Chipp, Electoral Registration Officer for Epping Forest District Council.

”We still have 27,600 households to go, so we will be doing really well if we can keep up this good rate of automated responses before our deadline of 23 August 2017.”

What is a HEF?

Every year we have to send out a household enquiry form (HEF) to update the register of electors and find out if there have been any changes. Don’t ignore it, please respond immediately.

This is known as the annual canvass. It tells us details of people who have moved out and adds details of new occupants. You must respond, even if your details haven’t changed and even you voted in May and/or June this year.

Complete your household enquiry form online

No changes, all details are the same

You will need the 2 part security code on your household enquiry form and can do 1 of 3 options

  1. Confirm online at www.householdresponse.com/eppingforest
  2. Text NOCHANGE – with your security number to 80212
  3. Call 0800 197 9871 to confirm

If there are changes

You will need the 2 part security code on your household enquiry form and can do 1 of 2 options.

  1. Amend the information online easily and quickly at www.householdresponse.com/eppingforest
  2. Amend the form and return it to us in the prepaid envelope – please make sure you give a contact phone number or email address in case of queries

And finally…

Remember – the HEF is only an enquiry form.

If you are adding new names in your response to the HEF, you need to complete the registration process at www.gov.uk/register-to-vote to add those people to the register.

For this, you will need your date of birth, national insurance number, nationality and any previous address.

Please also make sure you include a contact phone number and/or email address in case of queries.

Make sure you can vote

Glen Chipp added: “People think that they are automatically added to the register of electors because they are paying Council Tax or receiving Housing Benefit but that’s not the case. Not being on the register of electors can affect your credit rating and therefore you might have difficulty opening a bank account, getting credit, a loan, a mortgage or even a mobile phone!”

“Don’t ignore your HEF, by law you must confirm your details, or you may face a fine of up to £1,000. Please respond immediately, by 23 August 2017 at the very latest.”

Epping market for young entrepreneurs

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Visit Epping market on Saturday 8 July 2017 and show your support for the districts youngest entrepreneurs, who will be competing for the title of ‘Young Trader of the Year’ and a £250 investment in their business.

Youth Council at Young Traders Market

First steps in business

Young people aged between 14 – 24 that have designed, produced or sourced products or services for sale, will set up their stalls on Saturday and take their first steps in business.

Youth Council

Our Epping Forest Youth Councillors will be there on Saturday with a tombola stall, raising money for The Children’s Society.

Trophy & investment

The youngsters will be competing for a trophy and £250 investment in their business, as well as prizes for two runner up winners.

Established entrepreneur judges

Feedback and mentoring will be provided by established entrepreneurs, who will form the panel of judges.

Talented young people

Epping Forest District Council are supporting Epping Town Partnership in presenting this initiative, to showcase the entrepreneurial spirit and talent of our local young people.

Further information

Working better and working smarter

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Future proof – Epping Forest District Council is investing in people, processes and policies to produce the most efficient council we can – a council fit for the future.

Spring edition business newsletter

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The Spring edition 2017 of the One Business Briefing is now available to download.

One Business Briefing

Download the Spring edition (pdf 5.92MB)

Included in this edition;

  • Proof that Epping Forest is a great place to start a business

  • Celebrate the Investors in Young People Awards

  • Find out how your business could reduce energy consumption & save money

  • Best growth Hub launches workshop

  • Next phase for ‘Visit Epping Forest’ website

  • Launch of Young Traders Initiative

  • Get the latest learning resource tips

Interesting and helpful articles

Councillor Anne Grigg, Economic Development Portfolio Holder said: “The Spring edition of the One Business Briefing is another issue packed with interesting and helpful articles. It’s wonderful to start with two success stories. Firstly, it is great to see the entrepreneurial nature of Epping Forest district recognised in official statistics that reflect the area’s appeal to start-up businesses. Secondly, the annual recognition of young workforce talent and the organisations that support them is particularly encouraging and something to be applauded.”

Funding and support

She continued: ” You will also find details of a variety of funding and support programmes, each with their own particular focus, that are available to businesses. There are also details of initiatives such as the new tourism website, the ongoing delivery of ultrafast rural broadband and a new young traders market project that will bring new opportunities for the local economy.”

Charter to inspire climate change action

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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

Give your unwanted items a new home

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Getting rid of an appliance like a washing machine or a piece of furniture can be daunting due to their size and weight, not to mention the effort involved in taking large items to a recycling centre.

A local charity is working to make donating items a lot easier and will be launching a new campaign to spread the word on how to donate and buy pre-loved furniture and white goods.

Matt Beckett Epping Forest ReUSE manager

Epping Forest ReUSE

Epping Forest ReUSE are working in partnership with Epping Forest District Council and Recycle for Essex to help make life easier for local people looking to donate bulky items like furniture or electrical appliances.

Epping Forest ReUSE will be launching a campaign for donations at

  • Waltham Abbey Market on Tuesday 14 March 2017
  • Epping High Street on Thursday 23 March 2017

The organisation works with volunteers to collect and refurbish pre-loved household items to sell to the public and to support people on lower incomes. But the organisation is in need of more good quality items to help more people in the area.

Helped over 1,200 people

Through 2016 Epping Forest ReUSE helped over 1,200 people buy affordable furniture and appliances.

The 204 tonnes of furniture donated and sold on to local people is the equivalent to 4,121 2-seater sofas, or roughly 2 Boeing 757 aeroplanes!

Helping local people in need

Michael Kushin from Epping Forest ReUSE said: “As a charity and social enterprise, 100% of money raised through Epping Forest ReUSE goes to helping local people in need and we’re always on the lookout for more furniture, and electrical goods like fridges and washing machines.”

“We work with everyone from the general public to social workers and housing associations to make sure that people who need us are able to access the support that they need. We are always very grateful for any donations of items as it helps us help more people.”

Donate your unwanted items

To find out more about how to donate your unwanted items contact Epping Forest ReUSE

Anti-litter campaign cleans up for third year

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An anti-litter campaign across Essex, Kent and Suffolk #BinIt has resulted in a reduction of litter for the third year in a row, an amazing drop in litter of 43%.

Don't toss it - #BINIT

Littering is a criminal offence

The Love Essex campaign, run by the Cleaner Essex Group, is made up of local authorities and local business partners throughout Essex.

This year’s Don’t toss it – #BinIt campaign aims to remind people that:

  • Littering is a criminal offence
  • It comes with a fixed penalty notice from £75
  • And a maximum fine on conviction in court of £2,500

Spreading the message

The ‘Don’t toss it – #BinIt’ message has appeared throughout Essex on

  • Refuse vehicles
  • Bus shelters
  • Petrol pumps
  • 86 McDonald’s restaurants
  • 15 KFC restaurants
  • Spread to 2.4 million social media accounts

This has so far seen an average drop in litter of 43% and helped to reduce branded fast food litter by 63 per cent, in the areas monitored, and independently verified by Keep Britain Tidy.

Tackling litter

Councillor Will Breare-Hall, Environment Portfolio Holder said: “Litter is an issue that costs around £17 million across Essex. Not only does this take resources away from other much needed council services it also damages our environment.”

“It is important for people to remember that littering is a criminal offence that comes with a maximum fine of up to £2,500.”

“As a community we need to come together and tackle this important issue by behaving responsibly and reporting incidents so we can investigate further and take action.”

Working together

Cherry Lewis-Taylor, McDonald’s franchisee added: “I believe that working together and campaigning against littering at our restaurant locations helps remind people to dispose of their litter responsibly.”

“Between McDonald’s and KFC’s participating restaurants and drive-thru’s, we have reached millions of customers. Adding this to the number of people who saw the other campaign material, including social media, it is likely that the Don’t toss it … #Binit message will have been seen at least 6 million times.”

Do the right thing

Huw James, Director of Kefco, the KFC Franchisee in Essex commented: “I am proud that we at KFC can work with councils and other business partners to actively promote that people should do the right thing and bin their litter. As a business, we are committed to looking at ways we can help reduce the amount of litter that ends up on our streets.”

Report it

If there are large amounts of litter in your street or fly-tipped rubbish near where you live, let us know

Please give as much detail as possible so we can investigate what further action can be taken.

Overview and Scrutiny December 2016

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The spotlight was on Transport for London (TFL) and the NHS at the latest meeting of Overview and Scrutiny.

Central Line staffing levels, the possibility of extending tube services from Epping to Ongar and an ‘inadequate’ care rating for Princess Alexandra Hospital, were all subjects for discussion on Monday 19 December 2016.

Following the closure of many of Epping Forest District’s underground station ticket offices earlier this year, Epping Forest District Councillors expressed their concerns about the lack of visible staff presence at off peak times at stations within the Epping Forest district.

Improvements to be made

In response, Chris Taggart (General Manager of the Central Line) and Mark Hart (Stakeholder Engagement Manager for the Bakerloo, Victoria and Central lines) explained that TFL intend to improve staff visibility at stations by ensuring staff work in well lit, focal points, to make it easier for customers to find them later in the evening. The changes are already underway, since a recent Travel Watch survey raised similar concerns.

Late night trains

TFL have no current plans to extend the late night train service to Epping, at the very end of the Central Line. The late night trains terminate at Loughton, this being the most appropriate location as the night fleet is small and at Loughton, they are able to turn quickly and easily.

TFL plan to review the late night service in 2017 but say that it has been successful so far and they have had very few issues since starting the new timetable.

Any possibility for an end-to-end service would be subject to further assessments.

Quashed rumours

Rumours that the Central Line may be extended from Epping to North Weald and Ongar were set straight on Monday evening. TFL do not own the North Weald to Ongar part of the railway and so have no jurisdiction over any decision to extend the line. Epping Ongar Railway (EoR) owns this part of the track and any decisions made would be subject to a feasibility study.

Councillors also discussed various issues surrounding high temperatures, quality of ride, frequency of maintenance works, frequency of trains round the ‘loop’ since a recent timetable change and Wi-Fi access.

Princess Alexandra Hospital ‘inadequate’ rating

A line of questioning was agreed by Epping Forest District Councillors before the meeting of Overview and Scrutiny on 30 January 2017.

At which, Councillors will meet the Chairman and Chief Executive of the Princess Alexandra Hospital NHS Trust and will have the opportunity to ask questions and discuss the recent report of the Care Quality Commission (CQC), which left the Princess Alexandra Hospital with a quality care rating of ‘inadequate’.