Hillhouse planning application submitted

Written on . Posted in Community, Consultation, Democracy, Local plan / planning our future, Meetings, Older people, Out and about, Planning, Residents, Waltham Abbey, Working with the council, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home

An outline planning application for a new development in the heart of Waltham Abbey has been submitted. The plans for a new leisure centre, health centre and sixty independent living properties for older people would see the development at Hillhouse, on the Ninefields Estate.

Plans developed in partnership

Drawn up in partnership by Epping Forest District Council, Essex County Council and NHS England, the plans come following a community engagement weekend held earlier in the year involving local residents, businesses and other interested parties.

Milestone reached

Councillor Helen Kane, Epping Forest District Council’s Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Community Services said: “This is another milestone reached in bringing forward fantastic new facilities for Hillhouse and Waltham Abbey, as well as the Epping Forest District as a whole.”

She continued: ”We have listened carefully to what residents have been telling us and, at a recent meeting that local councillors and senior officers held with local residents, we heard loud and clear that there was only limited support for a new play area and outdoor gym trail, and that residents would prefer to keep at least one playing pitch in the area.  So we have changed some of our plans for the planning application as a result, and now intend to provide a mini soccer grass pitch for use by under 7/8 year olds instead.”

A plan that will truly benefit the community

Cllr John Spence CBE, Essex County Council Cabinet Member with responsibility for Housing added: “Land owned by the public sector – whichever part of the public sector – is owned by the taxpayers, so it is critical that all public agencies work together, either to dispose of such land or to ensure it is used to best effect, and this is a great example of partners working collaboratively towards a development that will truly benefit the community.”

“Within the Epping Forest area, as in other parts of the county, there is a real need for independent living properties designed to support older people, and with an ageing population in Essex we will see an emphasis by the County Council on this type of development in the future.”

Sustainability

Alison Cowie, Head of Commissioning, NHS England (Essex) said, “There is a long established need to find long term sustainable premises for the relocation of the Maynard Court Surgery. The current premises do not meet current standards and no longer provide the space required for the current list size of the practice, which has seen substantial growth over the last few years and is set to continue to grow with future development plans in the area.”

West Essex CCG said: “West Essex CCG supports the regeneration of the Ninefields site as an ideal opportunity for a new health centre without the need to move services from the current area. It will enable an increased number and type of services, while at the same time providing opportunities to improve the health and wellbeing  of local residents.”

Have your say

The plan will now go through the planning process with the opportunity for residents to comment, with a decision likely in November.  If approved, the three public sector partners will then seek detailed planning permission for their element of the overall development next year.

Hillhouse masterplan to be submitted

Written on . Posted in Business, Commercial properties, Community, Housing, Local business, Media, Meetings, Out and about, Planning, Residents, Supporting business, Waltham Abbey, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your home

A planning application for a new development in the heart of Waltham Abbey is to be submitted next month.

The masterplan for a new leisure and community development at Hillhouse, on the Ninefields Estate, has been drawn up by landowners Epping Forest District Council, Essex County Council working alongside NHS England.

Hillhouse masterplan

Hillhouse masterplan

The plan follows community planning events held earlier in the year and will see

  • A new NHS health centre providing modern, fit-for-purpose accommodation to replace the current Maynard Court Surgery
  • An ‘Independent Living’  scheme adjacent to the proposed health centre, providing housing to help people over 55 years old who may need care and support and whose current home no longer meets their needs
  • A new Swimming Pool and Leisure Centre to replace the existing Waltham Abbey Swimming Pool at Roundhills. It is envisaged that this will include a 25m pool with 6 lanes, plus a learner pool, studio for movement/dance activities, fitness suite and a space for community use.

The masterplan will now go through the planning process with the opportunity for residents to comment, with a decision likely in January 2017

Read the masterplan

Re-vitalise this part of Waltham Abbey

Councillor Helen Kane, Epping Forest District Council’s Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Community Services, said: “This is really exciting – for Ninefields, Waltham Abbey and the Epping Forest district.”

“The current Waltham Abbey Swimming Pool is coming to the end of its life, and the proposed new swimming pool will provide a sports and recreational facility for the next generation, whilst ensuring that there will be no loss in continuity of provision.”

“Together with the new Independent Living Scheme and the Health Centre, the new development will re-vitalise this part of Waltham Abbey and provide fantastic new facilities for local people. I am particularly pleased that we took the time to consult local residents and businesses on what they would like to see, and have been able to incorporate many of their suggestions in the masterplan.”

Work alongside the local community

Councillor John Spence CBE, Essex County Council Cabinet Member with responsibility for Housing added: “Land owned by the public sector – whichever part of the public sector – is owned by the taxpayers, so it is critical that all public agencies work together, either to dispose of such land or to ensure it is used to best effect in terms of impact and values.”

“This is an excellent example of what can be done when organisations come together and work alongside the local community.”

Real benefits for the community

Kelvin Rowland-Jones, Head of Commissioning for South and West Essex at NHS England said: “The new Health Centre will provide a much needed up-to-date purpose built GP surgery for the residents of Ninefields. This is a result of close co-operation between NHS England, councils and other partners to deliver real benefits for the community.”

 

Council pioneers drone use

Written on . Posted in Building control, Business, Community, Conservation and listed buildings, Countryside and wildlife, Democracy, Drainage, Media, Meetings, Our countryside, Out and about, Planning, Prosecutions, Regulations, Residents, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment

Stories in both the national and local media published over the last week have reported us buying 2 aerial camera systems also known as drones.

This is true but some of the stories have contained inaccuracies which we would like to put right.

DJI Phantom 3 aerial camera system

To view photos in a slideshow, click on a picture below and click start slideshow.

Cabinet agreed purchase

At a meeting of Epping Forest District Councils cabinet on 11 January 2016 it was agreed to purchase 2 drones for £5,000. This includes Civil Aviation Authority (CAA) approved training for staff. Watch the decision at cabinet.

This money came out of our ‘invest to save scheme’.

The drones purchased are DJI Phantom 3 and will be operated by our GIS team once trained. (GIS = Geographic Information System).

Saving money

We have been buying commercial photographs and videos for site surveys for over 50 years. This has included the hire of drones. Purchasing drones has many benefits that will save the council money and time. These include

  • Real-time surveys for planning purposes saving us having to purchase aerial photography for new planning developments and landscaping enforcement
  • Surveying roofs and guttering on council owned estates saving money and time on scaffolding and surveys
  • Identifying illegal waste transfer sites and previously unidentified unauthorised caravan encampments
  • Find out more on the cabinet report dated 11 January 2016

Generate  income

We are hoping the drones could generate the council income. We will be exploring the opportunities of shared use with other local authorities and public bodies. This will help to ensure we remain a low council tax authority (we have frozen our portion of council tax for the last 6 years).

A valuable tool

We would like to reassure residents that the drones will not be used for snooping on our residents but used as a valuable tool in the fight against environmental and planning abuses. We will not be looking into peoples back gardens.

Innovative use of new technology

This innovative use of new technology helps to save the taxpayer money and helps us to look after the environment in the Epping Forest district, in which we are proud to live, work and enjoy.

 

Over 140 residents attend Hillhouse event

Written on . Posted in Community, Councillors, Media, Older people, Out and about, Planning, Residents, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home

An event to discuss proposals for a development at Hillhouse in Waltham Abbey proved a success, with over 140 residents attending the exhibition and community planning workshops.

Plan images

The plans, jointly developed by Epping Forest District Council, Essex County Council and NHS England include:

  • A new Health Centre providing alternative accommodation for the current Maynard Court Surgery.
  • A new Swimming Pool to replace the existing Waltham Abbey Swimming Pool at Roundhills, including a 25m pool with 6 lanes, learner pool, studio and community space.
  • An Independent Living Scheme adjacent to the proposed health centre providing housing for over 55’s who need additional care and support.
  • Half of the existing playing fields retained as playing fields and recreation space.

Facilitated by architects JTP the two day event saw residents given the opportunity to discuss the proposals and take part in workshops to help guide the future design.

Making sure voices are listened to

Leisure and Community Services Portfolio Holder for Epping Forest District Council, Cllr Helen Kane added: ‘I was very impressed with the participation of the residents and the presence of many local ward councillors at the consultation event.  I would like to thank everyone for their honest and frank views, as well as the many creative suggestions that came forward during these workshops’.

Both as a Cabinet Member and a Waltham Abbey Councillor, I will be working with all those involved to make sure their voices are listened to.  I am confident that our consultants, JTP, will consider all the responses when formulating them into the Master Plan that they are producing.  I am looking forward with much anticipation to the next community event, when JTP will present which ideas have been able to be included within the Master Plan – and can be put to action.’

Following the weekend, the JTP team will develop proposals and a ‘vision’ for the site ahead of future formal planning applications.

 

Help shape proposals for Hillhouse development

Written on . Posted in Community, Local business, Media, Older people, Planning, Private housing, Residents, Supporting business, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment

Waltham Abbey community invited to help shape proposals for the development of Hillhouse

Residents in Waltham Abbey are being invited to attend a community planning weekend to help shape proposals for a new development at Hillhouse.

The plans, jointly developed by Epping Forest District Council, Essex County Council and NHS England include

  • A new Health Centre providing alternative accommodation for the current Maynard Court Surgery
  • A new Swimming Pool to replace the existing Waltham Abbey Swimming Pool at Roundhills, including a 25m pool with 6 lanes, learner pool, studio and community space
  • An Independent Living Scheme adjacent to the proposed health centre providing housing for over 55’s who need additional care and support
  • Half of the existing playing fields retained as playing fields and recreation space

Exciting opportunity

Councillor Helen Kane, Epping Forest District Council’s Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Community Services said: “This is an exciting opportunity – both for the community living in the Hillhouse area and for all Waltham Abbey residents.”

“We know the existing swimming pool at Roundhills in Waltham Abbey is close to the end of its operational life. This development proposal provides a unique opportunity to ensure that a new, modern public swimming pool can be provided in Waltham Abbey, without any temporary loss of provision, for many years to come.”

“The Community Planning Weekend enables anyone from Waltham Abbey with an interest in the proposals to give their initial views on how the proposed swimming pool, health centre and independent living scheme can best be provided together.”

Critical that all public agencies work together

Cllr John Spence CBE,  Essex County Council Cabinet Member for Finance with responsibility for Housing added: “Land owned by the public sector – whichever part of the public sector – is owned by the taxpayers, so it is critical that all public agencies work together, either to dispose of such land or to ensure it is used to best effect in terms of impact and values. This imaginative scheme is an excellent example of the positive impact that can be made.”

Weekend event

The weekend event facilitated by architects JTP will take place at

  • Hillhouse Primary School, Ninefields
  • 5pm and 7pm
  • Friday 18 March 2016

Where residents will be able to view a background exhibition.

It will continue between 10.45am and 3.30pm on Saturday 19 March 2016 with an opportunity for the local community to share local knowledge and contribute to shaping the plans on through workshops, walkabouts and hands-on planning groups.

Following the weekend, the JTP team will develop proposals and a ‘vision’ for the site ahead of future formal planning applications.

 

Parish Council submits Neighbourhood Plan proposal

Written on . Posted in Community, Democracy, Planning, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment

Moreton, Bobbingworth and The Lavers Parish Council have requested that their Neighbourhood Plan Proposal be submitted for independent examination.

Any Parish or Town Council can prepare a Neighbourhood Plan. The plans give communities an opportunity to shape the way in which their local area develops over the coming years.  Neighbourhood Development Plans, must be in accordance to with the District Councils Local Plan, can be used to:

  • Develop a shared vision of the local area
  • Choose where new homes, community facilities and other forms of development should be located
  • Identify and protect important local green spaces
  • Influence what new buildings should look like

Under Regulation 16 of The Neighbourhood Planning (General) Regulations 2012 (as amended) Epping Forest District Council are required to publicise the proposed plan for a period of 6 weeks, so people can comment on it.

View the application

The Moreton, Bobbingworth and The Lavers Neighbourhood Plan can be viewed, together with further information on neighbourhood planning, by visiting

This notice is publicising a formal consultation on the Neighbourhood Plan Proposal itself. The consultation commences on the 12th of February and will run until 5.00pm on the 29th of March.

Comment on the application

  • Comments can be sent by email to ldfconsult@eppingforestdc.gov.uk
  • Post to: Forward Planning, Epping Forest District Council, Civic Offices, High Street, Epping, Essex CM16 4BZ

First steps for Waltham Abbey Neighbourhood Plan

Written on . Posted in Community, Local plan / planning our future, Media, Planning, Residents, Waltham Abbey, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment

Waltham Abbey Town Council has taken the first steps towards preparing a Neighbourhood Plan by informing Epping Forest District Council of their intentions and submitting an application for the designation of their parish as a Neighbourhood Area.

Any Parish or Town Council can prepare a Neighbourhood Plan if they wish.  The Plans give communities an opportunity to shape the way in which their local area develops over the coming years. Neighbourhood Development Plans, which must be prepared in accordance with the District Councils Local Plan, can be used to:

  • Develop a shared vision for the local area;
  • Choose where new homes, community facilities and other forms of development should be built;
  • Identify and protect important local green spaces; and
  • Influence what new buildings should look like.

Waltham Abbey Town Council has identified the area to be covered by the plan as the whole parish.  Under the Neighbourhood Planning (General) Regulations 2012 (as amended) Epping Forest District Council, as the local planning authority, is required to publicise this proposed area for a period of at least four weeks so that people can comment on it.

View the application

A copy of the application, along with further information on neighbourhood planning, can be viewed.

This is a consultation on the identification of the potential plan area, not a formal consultation on the Neighbourhood Plan itself, which will come later as the Plan progresses. The consultation commences on 12 January 2016 and will run for 4 weeks until 5.00pm on 8 February 2016.

Comment on the application

  • Comments can be sent by email to ldfconsult@eppingforestdc.gov.uk
  • Post to: Forward Planning, Epping Forest District Council, Civic Offices, High Street, Epping, Essex CM16 4BZ.

Please be aware that all comments received will be publicly available and may be included on our website. Personal details such as the respondents address, telephone number and signature will not be published.