Crash exercise for airfield fire crews

Written on . Posted in Community, Crime and safety, Emergencies, Media, North Weald Airfield, Our attractions, Out and about, Residents, Your area, Your community, Your council

North Weald Airfield’s Fire and Rescue Crew were put through their paces in a simulated crash, known as incident response training, involving a car and a plane.

Incident response training

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

In the exercise on 17 December 2015, a vehicle strayed onto the runway and collided with a light aircraft. This resulted in the plane catching fire and the driver of the vehicle being killed and the passenger seriously injured.

Incident response training is vital

Once the crew had extinguished the fire, they turned their attentions to the casualties. One person was trapped in the vehicle with a serious head laceration and possible blunt trauma injury. The casualty was extracted using a speed board and placed on a scoop stretcher. He was taken to the designated casualty clearing area where he was stabilised until handover to the paramedics.

Our Emergency Planning Officer played the role of the main casualty. Screaming and covered in fake blood his realistic approach added to the authenticity of the exercise.

Incident response training is vital for the Airfield’s Fire and Rescue crew. It helps to hone the crews skills in team working, dealing with fires, extracting casualties and performing life-saving trauma treatment.

Realistic training

Darren Goodey, North Weald Airfield manager said: “Nothing can prepare you for the real thing. This is realistic training that reflects the type of emergency our crews could be called to.”

“It was a great success from which a lot was learnt by all involved.”


Helping refuge families at Christmas

Written on . Posted in Business, Chairman, Chigwell, Community, Crime and safety, Democracy, Media, Out and about, Residents, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your home

Council staff, Chigwell parishioners and a local resident were all praised by Chairman Liz Webster for their fantastic help in donating gifts for families spending their Christmas in local refuges.

Staff refuge gifts

Pictured from the left are Safer Places Kimberley Bull, Claire Baccarini, Nicola Leach, Chairman Liz Webster, Caroline Wiggins and Lorraine Cordell.

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

Local resident Janet Abbott, parishioners at St Winifred’s Church in Chigwell and staff from Epping Forest District Council gave hundreds of presents to Safer Places in Harlow. Safer Places manager Kimberley Bull picked up the presents on 17 December 2015 from the civic offices in Epping.

Organised by Safer Communities Manager Caroline Wiggins the gifts will hopefully make Christmas happier for the families sheltering from domestic abuse in refuges over the festive period.

Help is out there

Chairman Liz Webster said: “Christmas is the time when we think of others and I hope this provides families with encouragement knowing help is out there. Having to spend time away from home can be particularly difficult for families at this time of the year.”

“I would like to thank our local people for their generosity, and my sincere gratitude goes to all our staff who have worked wonders to bring some real festive cheer to those in difficulty.”


Christmas gifts for refuge families

Written on . Posted in Business, Chairman, Community, Crime and safety, Democracy, Local business, Media, Out and about, Residents, Supporting business, Waltham Abbey, Working with the council, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your home

Families staying in refuges this Christmas will have a happier festive season thanks to the amazing generosity of customers and staff at the Waltham Abbey branch of Tesco.

Vice-chairman Jeane Lea and Safer Communities Manager Caroline Wiggins collected trollies full of presents for women and children of all ages on Tuesday 15 December 2015 from Michele Moore, Tescos Community Champion.

Vice-chairman Jeane Lea

All the gifts were given to a refuge in Harlow.

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

Overwhelmed by generosity 

Vice-chairman Jeane Lea said: “I’m completely overwhelmed by peoples generosity and kindness. My sincere thanks go to Tesco Community Champion Michele Moore who organised the collection, and to all the people who visit Tesco at Waltham Abbey for their support.”

“Christmas and New Year can be an extremely hard time for families in refuges. I hope these gifts will make them smile and feel hopeful for the future.”


Job centres help domestic abuse victims

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

All 14 Job Centres across Essex became contact centres for victims by receiving Domestic Abuse and J9 awareness sessions, as part of a range of international events for Domestic Abuse Awareness Week.

J9 Domestic Abuse Multiagency trainning

Allowing victims to get help discreetly 

J9 named in memory of Janine Mundy by her family and the Police, aims to help victims by providing a wide variety of places to report domestic abuse and receive help in a safe efficient way.

Victims can get discrete help in any local shop or business where the J9 sticker is on display. They simply need to make themselves known to someone in the shop or business who can then put them in touch with professional help at Epping Forest District Council and the Safer Places charity.

Raising awareness 

Loughton Job Centre staff were joined by Caroline Wiggins Community Safety Manager at Epping Forest District Council and Joanne Majauskis from Safer Places Essex for training sessions led by Social Justice Coaches. The sessions included advice on how to identify potential Domestic Abuse, and what everyone can all do to support people.

Let victims know they are not alone

Caroline Wiggins Community Safety Manager at Epping Forest District Council said: “14 new outlets through Essex job centres is absolutely fabulous but we still need more support from local businesses. It is vital that we work together with as many organisations as possible to help as many victims as we can. We need to let victims know they are not alone and we are here to help. J9 is a great initiative and awareness will continue to grow.”

We are here to help

Want your business to become part of J9?

More information here


Limes Centre office soon open all day

Written on . Posted in Abandoned vehicles, Animal welfare, Benefits, Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Community, Council tax, Crime and safety, Epping, Housing, Housing repairs, Media, Parking, Residents, Your area, Your community, Your council

The council’s office at The Limes Centre in Chigwell will soon be open all day.

Tenants and other residents living on the Limes Farm Estate and in surrounding areas can visit the office for advice on a whole range of issues including

  • rent
  • council tax payments
  • repairs
  • refuse
  • pets
  • parking
  • tenancy conditions
  • anti-social behaviour
  • estate
  • environmental issues

Limes Farm EFDC local office

Longer opening hours and new services

Until now the office has been open during the mornings only, but from 4 January 2016 the hours will be

  • Monday to Friday 9am to 4.30pm.
  • Benefits and council tax advice service everyday
  • Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB)  advice services on Wednesday and Thursday mornings

We are also extending the range of services available to include

  • A new facility to pay your rent and council tax by debit or credit card
  • An Epping Forest District Council and Essex County Council information kiosk
  • Community services, tenant participation and advice on repairs, estates and environmental issues

The longer opening hours will be trialled for 18 months with a review after 12 months and the extended service may continue if it is popular with residents.

Further details

Please contact us for more information on the new hours and services, or for any of your housing enquiries


New and extended stray dog service

Written on . Posted in Animal welfare, Community, Crime and safety, Media, Out and about, Residents, Your area, Your community, Your environment, Your home

Stray dogs found in the Epping Forest district will be collected by the London Borough of Waltham Forest’s dog wardens from 23 November 2015.

Dog wardens

This new and extended service is available every day (except Christmas Day, Boxing Day and New Year’s Day) between 7am and 9pm Monday to Friday and 10am to 7pm on weekends and Bank Holidays.

Dogs will be taken to Waltham Forest’s holding kennels.

To report a lost or found stray dog call 07815 512833

Report a stray dog on 07815 512833

New weekend and evening service

Environment Portfolio Holder for Epping Forest District Council, Councillor Will Breare-Hall said: “I am delighted to announce our new and extended stray dog collection service with Waltham Forest Council. Stray dogs tend not to adhere to 9 to 5 office hours so this new weekend and evening service represents a great improvement for our residents. It also allows us to provide better care for the dogs too.”

Your dog is your responsibility

“Your dog is your responsibility” said Councillor Breare-Hall “The law says owners must ensure their dogs wear an identity tag with their contact details when out and about. Microchipping becomes a legal requirement for all dogs over 8 weeks old from April 2016, so it is important that owners remember to update their details if they change address or if their dog goes to a new home.”

Councillor Will Breare-Hall continued: “Losing your dog can be an expensive and distressing experience. The fee for reclaiming a dog is £78, plus a daily kennelling charge. Making microchipping a legal requirement should make it much easier to reunite stray dogs with their owners, but it is still up to owners to take care of their pets and not let them stray in the first place.”

Councillor Breare-Hall added: “If you find a stray dog with a tag please phone the owner. If it has been chipped, your local vet will be able to tell who it belongs to. In all other circumstances contact Waltham Forest on 07815 512833. If your call is not answered, leave a message and you will be contacted within 30 minutes. Dogs can be collected by their owners from Waltham Forest’s Council Offices or delivered to your home for an additional £40 charge.”

Pleased to be providing this service

Waltham Forest Council’s Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Environment, Councillor Clyde Loakes said: “We’re pleased to be providing this service to our neighbouring borough and can assure the dog-owners of Epping Forest that we not only do we have a top team of officers, but state-of-the-art facilities in the shape of our new kennels.”


Crimestoppers pocket card, helping fight crime

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Community, Crime and safety, Epping, Loughton, Media, Older people, Olympics, Ongar, Residents, Travel, Waltham Abbey, Working with the council, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your home

A new pocket card informing people how to help keep communities safe, has been developed by the crime-fighting charity Crimestoppers and has just been launched in Essex.

The ‘Tell us what you know about crime, not who you are’, card has been produced with support from Epping Forest District Council and outlines the unique services offered by Crimestoppers through its 0800 555 111 phone number and online.

CrimeStoppers 0800 555 111

Crimestoppers 0800 555 111

The independent charity operates a 24/7 service for people to give information anonymously about crime or criminals. No names are taken, no one can be identified and calls or online information cannot be traced. It’s all anonymous when the information is passed to police.

The 8 page folded card is designed to be carried in a pocket or handbag as a reminder or to give to those who may need Crimestoppers’ services.

Police can’t solve crime on their own. They need to be pointed in the right direction by people who want to keep their communities safe.

Provide information without the fear of being identified

Councillor Gary Waller, Safer, Greener and Transport Portfolio Holder for Epping Forest District Council said: “These cards are really compact and full of useful Crimestoppers information. People will be able to access contact details quickly, easily and feel safe in the knowledge that they can provide information without the fear of being identified. This is an excellent resource that will benefit our community and Epping Forest District Council is proud to be involved in its production.”

You will remain anonymous

Crimestoppers Regional Manager Antonia Litten said: “Some people won’t go to the police, as they fear what will happen to them if the criminal finds out. Crimestoppers removes that concern and gives people peace of mind. No one has anything to fear by contacting Crimestoppers as you will remain anonymous. We never ask for your name and no personal details are taken, we just want to know about the crime.”

 More information

  • For more information on Crimestoppers visit their website
  • Call Crimestoppers anytime on 0800 555 111


Cabinet 5 November

Written on . Posted in Benefits, Community, Council tax, Councillors, Crime and safety, Doing business with the council, Housing, Leader, Local business, Media, Meetings, Planning, Prosecutions, Residents, Supporting business, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your home, Your money

Councillors discussed many issues at the cabinet meeting of Epping Forest District Council on 5 November 2015.

Watch our council meetings online

Breaches of standing orders

Councillor Chris Whitbread set out details of breaches to standing orders in response to a public question by Mr Blanks. Responding to a supplementary question by Mr Blanks, Councillor Whitbread confirmed that the breaches of standing orders relating to cumulative orders placed with contract suppliers had been identified by council officers.

Councillor Whitbread undertook to provide further details in due course. Returning to the item later on the agenda, cabinet actions now require assistant directors to avoid similar occurrences in the future. Standing Orders are also to be reviewed.


Gracelands, a local company has been awarded a new 5-year contract to provide gas and heating services to council housing tenants. Gracelands came in the with the lowest bid of just under £400,000 per year. Previous work by Gracelands has provided some of the highest levels of tenant satisfaction for Epping Forest District Council.

Civil penalties

Councillors supported the introduction of civil penalties for people giving false information when making Council Tax and Housing Benefit claims. The penalties of £70 for Council Tax and £50 for Housing Benefit cheats can also be applied to people who deliberately withhold information when their circumstances change. Anyone providing false information would also have to pay back any overpayment of Benefits.

Bus shelters

The cleaning and refurbishment of 60 local bus shelters has been awarded to Clear Channel for a further 4 years. The contract was awarded at no cost to the council. Maintenance costs to Clear Channel will be met from revenue raised through advertising.

Payment kiosks

Payment kiosks are to replace the staffed Epping cashier office. Residents increasingly make payments to the council by direct debit, phone and online with a consequent decline in cash payments. The council successfully implemented a payment kiosk alternative in Waltham Abbey several years ago with significant ongoing savings. Implementation of a similar plan in Epping is expected to save more than £20,000 a year.

Epping Forest College redevelopment

Councillors agreed to release restrictive covenants on land owned by Epping Forest College. Redevelopment of the land for housing will provide a proportion of new affordable housing within Loughton. Profits from the development will be used by the College to develop new educational facilities.

Epping Forest Shopping Park

The Epping Forest Shopping Park project remains on schedule. Asset Management Portfolio Holder Councillor Ann Grigg updated cabinet with latest progress on retail tenants, highway works and relocation of council services to Oakwood Hill.


Keep warm and safe this winter

Written on . Posted in Community, Crime and safety, Loughton, Media, Older people, Our attractions, Residents, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your home

Get your electric blanket tested for free at Loughton Library and get advice from Trading Standards and Essex County Fire and Rescue Service while you wait!

Keep warm and safe this winter

  • When: Tuesday 17 November 2015 between 10am and 3pm
  • Where: In the Gallery, Loughton Library, Trapps Hill, Loughton, IG10 1HD

While your blanket is being tested you can get advice from Trading Standards and Essex County Fire and Rescue Service.

Keep warm and well

Link to GOV.UK leaflets that give advice on staying well in cold weather, covering issues such as financial help, healthy lifestyle, flu jabs and heating.


North Weald Airfield hosts Exercise Kingsway

Written on . Posted in Community, Crime and safety, Media, North Weald Airfield, Out and about, Residents, Your area, Your community, Your council

Paramedics, Firefighters, Police and other emergency services came to North Weald Airfield on Tuesday 27 October to take part in ‘Exercise Kingsway‘.

Exercise Kingsway

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

Exercise Kingsway recreated a large scale multi car pileup involving a number of cars, heavy goods vehicles, a mini bus and even a horse trailer. Exercises like these are vital to see how our emergency services operate and work together in disaster situations. To add realism over 60 students were used as casualties, acting highly distressed to distract the services and make it hard for those at the scene to priorities the injured.

The exercise was overseen by experts, there to see how the services combined and dealt with the disaster, ensuring the best possible outcome for the patient in a real life situation.

With the M25 and M11 running through the heart of the Epping Forest district we know incidents do occur. Allowing the services to train together and work as one, we hope to ensure they have all the skills and tools necessary to tackle these large scale incidents.

We would like to thank the Essex and Herts Air Ambulance Trust for organising the exercise and all the participants including

We would also like to thank all the students from Anglia Ruskin University, University College London, St Bartholomew’s Hospital and the London Medical School and of course North Weald Airfield for use of the airfield.

These training exercises are vital in the continual training of our emergency services allowing them to carry on saving lives.