Decisions from Plans East 9 August 2017

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Planning application decisions from Area Planning Sub-Committee East meeting on Wednesday 9 August 2017.

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Decisions

  1. EPF/0947/17 – 1-5 Stonards Hill, Epping, Essex, CM16 4QE
    Permission refused
  2. EPF/0567/17 – 9 Orchard Drive, Theydon Bois, Epping, Essex, CM16 7DH
    Permission granted
  3. EPF/1170/17 – 27 Barnfield, Epping, Essex, CM16 6RL
    Permission granted
  4. EPF/1397/17 – Willow House, The Street, Sheering, Essex, CM22 7LR
    Permission refused
  5. EPF/1400/17 – 41 Bowes Drive, Ongar, Essex, CM5 9AX
    Decision deferred
  6. EPF/1414/17 – 7 Harrison Drive, North Weald Bassett, Essex, CM16 6JD
    Decision deferred
  7. EPF/1454/17 – 91 Tower Road, Epping, Essex, CM16 5EW
    Permission granted
  8. EPF/1471/17 – The Retreat, Market Place, Abridge, Essex, RM4 1AU
    Permission granted

Planning application search

Council 27 July 2017

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In a sombre council meeting on 27 July 2017 tributes were paid to current Councillor Gary Waller and 3 former councillors who passed away recently.

Gary Waller 1945-2017

Council remembers Gary Waller

Council Chairman David Stallan and Council Leader Chris Whitbread led emotional tributes to Councillor Gary Waller who passed away just a few days earlier.

Gary Waller was one of the most active and senior members of Epping Forest District Council, holding one of the most responsible cabinet roles as Safer, Greener and Transport Portfolio Holder. So sudden was his passing that his reports still featured on the council agenda.

A former MP with a wealth of experience, good humour, and friends across the council, councillors offered their heartfelt condolences to all he knew and loved.

Ian Abbey, Stan Goodwin and Keith Wright

In a sombre council meeting, councillors also fondly remembered former councillors Ian Abbey, Stan Goodwin and Keith Wright who all passed away in recent weeks. Councillor Stallan thanked all those who spoke so movingly in memory of ‘4 great councillors’.

Good progress reported to councillors

Council Leader Chris Whitbread and fellow members of the cabinet reported on a range of recent successes.

Reports included

  • Epping Forest Shopping Park
  • Tourism website and conference
  • Fly tipping prosecutions
  • Progress on a new leisure centre for Waltham Abbey following the letting of a new leisure centre management contract with Places for People
  • MiLife mental health and awareness programme for school children
  • Grant aid to 11 local organisations totalling £29,667
  • Updating information on the draft Local Plan
  • Council CCTV cameras helping the police

Council housing safety

Following the Grenfell Tower fire, Housing Portfolio Holder, Councillor Syd Stavrou also provided councillors with extensive information and reassurance on the safety of local council housing.

There are no high-rise council properties in Epping Forest and very few with any form of cladding (checks suggest this cladding is safe). All council properties are low enough to be reached by Essex Fire and Rescue vehicle platforms. Councillors were invited to attend future meetings to satisfy themselves of the fire safety measures and procedures in place.

Annual reports

Annual reports of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee and Audit and Governance Committee were also noted along with the council’s anti-fraud and corruption policy.

Chairman’s golfers raise money for local charity

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Generous golfers raised an amazing £704 at our Chairman’s charity golf day to help Safer Places, a local refuge that supports people through abusive relationships.

Chairman Dave Stallan with the charity golfers

Click on an image below to begin the slideshow

Epping Forest District Council Chairman Dave Stallan opened the golf day at Chigwell Golf Club on 11 July 2017. He teed off and decided to retire gracefully (watch Chairman Dave Stallan tee off below) to let 24 keen golfers battle it out on the fairways.

All the golfers were local councillors, former and current council employees, and guests of the Chairman.

Winners of the golf day were

  • Theydon Bois Parish Councillor Mike Hannibal won the Don Spinks Shield scoring 39 stableford points
  • Elections Officer Wendy MacLeod won the Robert O’Malley Cup for Lady Golfers (for the 5th time!) scoring 29 points
  • Waste Support Officer Paul Coletti got a prize for being nearest the pin on the 10th hole
  • Housing Repairs Officer Daniel Wimpress won a prize for the longest drive on the 18th hole

I won’t win The Open

Chairman Dave Stallan said: “I had a wonderful day and I would like to thank everyone that took part. Unfortunately my golfing abilities leave a lot to be desired and I think it’s fair to say I have no chance of ever winning The Open! My golfing skills can be seen by everyone as my opening tee off was caught on camera!”

Raising money for charity

The Chairman continued: “We raised £704 for local charity Safer places. Safer Places helps adults and children affected by domestic and sexual abuse. The money will go to helping survivors of domestic abuse to recover and rebuild their lives, building a brighter and safe future which they might once have thought of as impossible. I’m delighted to support this great local charity.”

Councillor Gary Waller dies

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Councillor Gary Waller, a former MP, current cabinet member and district councillor for the Lower Sheering ward, has died aged 72.

We offer our sincere condolences to Councillor Waller’s family, friends and colleagues. The district council flag in Epping has been lowered as a mark of respect.

Gary Waller 1945-2017

We have lost a great councillor

Councillor David Stallan Chairman of Epping Forest District Council said: “It is with deep sorrow that I announce the death of my friend and colleague Gary Waller. We are all stunned by his sudden death.”

“I worked with Gary on the cabinet for many years. He was very knowledgeable and enthusiastic about the Safer, Greener and Transport Portfolio he represented. He had a wicked sense of humour and always stood up for what he believed in, even if it was unpopular. We have lost a great councillor who will be sorely missed.”

Shocked and saddened

Epping Forest District Council Leader Councillor Chris Whitbread said: “I was shocked and saddened to hear of Gary’s death. On behalf of the conservative group, I offer sincere condolences to his family and to all who knew him. Today, we mourn together the loss of a dear friend and hard-working local councillor.”

Political history

Gary had been the Member of Parliament (MP) for the Brighouse and Spenborough constituency in Yorkshire from 1979 until 1983, until the seat was abolished after boundary changes. He was then elected MP to the nearby Keighley constituency in 1983 until he lost he seat in the 1997 General Election.

Gary was elected a district councillor on 5 May 2011 to represent the Lower Sheering Ward on Epping Forest District Council. He was the cabinet member for the Safer, Greener and Transport portfolio and a member of many committees and panels, including the Essex Police and Crime Panel.

Decisions from Plans West 19 July 2017

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Planning application decisions from Area Planning Sub-Committee West meeting on Wednesday 19 July 2017.

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Decisions

  1. EPF/1232/16 – Chimes Garden Centre, Old Nazeing Road, Nazeing, Waltham Abbey, Essex EN10 6RJ
    Application withdrawn
  2. EPF/1492/16 – The Chimes Nursery, Old Nazeing Road, Nazeing, Waltham Abbey EN10 6RJ
    Application withdrawn
  3. EPF/2881/16 – Pine Tree Nursery, Avey Lane, Waltham Abbey, Essex EN9 3QH
    Permission granted
  4. EPF/0517/17 – Land to north of 8 Old House Lane, Roydon, Harlow, Essex CM19 5DH
    Permission granted
  5. EPF/0792/17 – Red Roofs, Low Hill Road, Roydon, Essex CM19 5JN
    Permission granted
  6. EPF/1153/17 – Units 20-21, Former Mushroom Farm, Laundry Lane, Nazeing, Essex EN9 2DY
    Permission granted
  7. EPF/1221/17 – 1 Hansells Mead, Roydon, Essex CM19 5HY
    Decision granted

Planning application search

A date with the future

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Councillors at Epping Forest District Council had a date with the future as they met with Epping Forest youth councillors at a speed meeting event to discuss issues and learn about each other in a fun and informal way.

The speed meeting event was organised by the Epping Forest Youth Council on 3 July 2017 at the civic offices in Epping.

EFYC speed meeting

Click on an image below to begin the slideshow

An overwhelming success

Youth councillors were given 5 minutes to question councillors before moving on. All participants filled in a score sheet to find out who the best communicators were. The best communicators were Suzannah Halcrow and Adam Freeman from the Epping Forest Youth Council and Councillors Amy Beales and Will Breare-Hall for Epping Forest District Council.

Everyone thought the evening was an overwhelming success.

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Amazing

Epping Forest Youth Councillor Suzannah Halcrow said: “It was amazing. Meeting one on one with the adult councillors was a great way to tell them what we thought the issues were that young people face today.”

Inspiring evening

Councillor Helen Kane, Leisure and Community Services Portfolio Holder said: “It was a really inspiring evening, a great opportunity for us all to learn and interact with each other. It was clear there was a lot of passion in the room for making things better. I am looking forward to working with this fantastic group of young people.”

eNgage dance show returns for 2017

Written on . Posted in Arts, Buckhurst Hill, Chairman, Chigwell, Civic events, Community, Councillors, Epping, Health, Loughton, Museum, Older people, Ongar, Our activities, Our attractions, Out and about, Residents, Sports, Uncategorized, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home

Youth and community dance show, eNgage 2017 returned on Thursday 22 June 2017 after a year’s break, to a new venue for the show, The Spotlight in Hoddesdon.

eNgage programme p1

Click on an image below to begin the slideshow

Spectacular dance

With an audience of over 350 and a cast of 170, eNgage brought several communities together for an evening of spectacular dance. The blend of dance styles included Hip Hop, Contemporary, Tap and Commercial.

The Dancers

Performers were of all ages and abilities; from 7 years old to 71 years young!

New groups

The evening welcomed a few new groups to eNgage; CoCoCare (an adult group with disabilities from Colchester) used Creative Movement and props to create a beautiful sea scene, questioning our environmental awareness; Straight Up Dance UK, Loughton and Brentwood, showed us that you are never too old to learn some Hip Hop moves, with two pieces to ‘She’s Got That Vibe’ and ‘Whoomp (There it is)!’ Mark Hall Academy, Harlow, treated the audience to a sneaky peek of their latest school production, ‘School of Rock’.

Exciting and colourful routines

Jason Theatre School gave a brilliant performance and closed the show with their version of Riverdance, which got the audience tapping along. DYD from Debden Park High School had everyone swinging in their seats with a fun energetic version of Benny Goodman’s ‘Sing, Sing, Sing.’

Flashdancers, Moves & Grooves, All Saints, Stadium Theatre School, Big Funksters, DNA Studios, West Hatch High School and Scene II Theatre School all returned to perform with exciting, colourful and powerful routines.

RE:Generation installation

As part of eNgage, Lowewood Museum, which is managed by Epping Forest District Council in partnership with The Borough of Broxbourne, played host to a VIP guest reception with temporary exhibition ‘Moving Photography’ RE:Generation, an older people’s dance group from Chelmsford.

Importance of dance & movement

The installation is part of the end product of a project by The Dance Network Association and CHP, working with older people to learn the importance of dance and movement and what effect it has on the mind and body.

Visit the exhibition

The exhibition is at Lowewood Museum until Friday 7 July 2017.

‘Well done’

Chairman of Epping Forest District Council, Councillor David Stallan was among the guests for the evening and he said: ”What an amazing showcase for all of our talented local dance groups. It was great to see so many creative people of all ages, from different areas, all coming together and producing such an exciting evening of performances. Well done to everyone involved and thank you to everyone that helped make the evening possible. Most of all, thanks for having me!”

‘Wonderful spectacle’

Councillor Steve Wortley, Deputy Mayor of Borough of Broxbourne said: ”What a wonderful spectacle it was, with a wide range of dance and performances from a bunch of very talented artists. I truly had a lovely time and thoroughly enjoyed the whole evening. Please pass on my sincere thanks to everyone involved, including those unsung heroes backstage too! Epping Forest certainly does have talent!”

Pupils learn life lessons at Crucial Crew 2017

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Over 1,338 Year 6 pupils from Epping Forest took part in Crucial Crew, a week of interactive days to educate young people about staying safe, fit and healthy.

Crucial crew 2017

Click a picture below to start slideshow

Crucial Crew experience

Crucial crew teaches children how to tackle the dangers they may encounter in everyday life and encourages them make sensible decisions about personal safety and lifestyle choices.

This year the annual event was hosted at Debden House Centre in Loughton for a week from 12 June 2017 to 16 June 2017.

Over the week the children took part in 10 scenarios including

  • Road safety (Essex County Council)
  • Vehicle blind spots (Sainsbury’s)
  • Building sites – dangers and hazards (Mears)
  • Healthy relationships (Safer Places and Epping Forest District Council)
  • Drugs and alcohol (Adas)
  • Bullying (Red Balloon Learner Centres)
  • Internet safety (Essex Police)
  • Healthy lifestyles (ACE – Anglian Community Enterprise)
  • Ambulance (East of England Ambulance Service)
  • Fire safety escape plans & smoke alarms (Essex County Fire & Rescue Service)

Untitled

(Left to right – council Community Health and Wellbeing Manager, Gill Wallis, Safer, Greener and Transport Portfolio Holder Councillor Gary Waller, council Chairman Councillor David Stallan, The High Sheriff of Essex, Simon Hall, Community Engagement Officer at Essex County Fire & Rescue Paul Fenwick, council Vice Chairman Councillor Richard Bassett, council Safer Communities Manager, Caroline Wiggins)

VIP visit

Epping Forest District Council’s Chairman, Councillor David Stallan was welcomed to the event by council organisers, alongside other VIP’s including the High Sheriff of Essex, Simon Hall, Vice-Chairman, Councillor Richard Bassett, Councillor Gary Waller and Councillor Helen Kane for an informative and enjoyable visit.

Fun way to learn

Councillor David Stallan, Chairman of Epping Forest District Council said: “Crucial Crew is a fun way to prepare children to remain safe in a variety of emergency situations and to be aware of dangers they are likely to encounter as they advance through life. This fantastic and well-supported event allows us to offer awareness and safety advice to our young people just as they’re ready to take a big step in their lives and go to secondary school.”

”It leaves our children with the right skills and knowledge to keep themselves safe, both now and in the future. I enjoyed my short visit and was pleased to see how the different agencies work together to provide this to the kids”

Life lessons

Councillor Helen Kane, Leisure and Community Services Portfolio Holder said: “All children who attended Crucial Crew will take home a wristband with a link to the Crucial Crew pages which includes advice on dealing with challenging or potentially harmful situations. They can also find out more information about the scenarios they have seen and how to make positive choices regarding their own behaviour. I hope the children remember and use the lessons from Crucial Crew, which one day might save their lives.”

“Crucial Crew is organised and facilitated by the council’s Community Health and Wellbeing team but could not take place without the hard work and continued support of partner agencies – a big thank you to all involved.”

Further information

Cabinet 15 June 2017

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Cabinet meeting on 15 June 2017 discussed local plan, homelessness and shopping park.

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Shopping Park 

Next (including a Costa Coffee), TK Max, Aldi, Hobbycraft, Pets at Home and Smyths Toys have been confirmed among the tenants of the new Epping Forest Shopping Park. Councillor Anne Grigg made the announcement at the meeting of Epping Forest District Council’s Cabinet on 15 June. Construction of the retail units is nearing completion with the supporting highway improvements due to finish in August. The Council expects handover on 19 June with the start of shop fitting starting a week later. The park will also set high green transport standards in Essex with 10 electric charging points.

Local Plan Implementation

Proposed masterplans covering areas in Epping, Waltham Abbey, Loughton, North Weald, Ongar, Chigwell and sites around Harlow will be produced as Epping Forest District Council works towards the implementation of the new Local Plan. The need for strategic masterplans to ensure development and infrastructure requirements across groups of sites in the same area was outlined in a report presented by Planning Portfolio Holder John Philip.

Infrastructure 

Councillor Philip explained that it was necessary to show the government-appointed inspector that the Council is taking steps to ensure that growth can be delivered in a coordinated way with necessary infrastructure provided. He emphasised that this does not mean any sites will definitely be in or out of the final Local Plan or that planning approvals have been decided or approved. No definitive decisions have as yet been taken on which sites will be included in the final draft of the Local Plan.

Councillors should be involved early without being predisposed to deciding planning applications. None of the work proposed in the report committed councillors to approving individual sites or applications.

Homelessness

Cabinet approved proposals to allocate the Homelessness Support Grant. Councillors supported the recommendations by Housing Portfolio Holder Syd Stavrou to allocate £60,000 to Genesis Housing Association to provide private sector accommodation, and £29,000 to the young parents scheme at Railway Meadow in Ongar. Further allocations will be made as additional reports come to Cabinet. 

Superfast Broadband 

Reports on the extension of superfast broadband and free wifi in town centres put forward by Technology Portfolio Holder Alan Lion were supported by Cabinet colleagues.

Overview and Scrutiny 6 June 2017

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Princess Alexandra Hospital is in special measures after its services were rated ‘inadequate’ by the Care Quality Commission. Senior staff from Princess Alexandra met with Epping Forest District councillors at the meeting of the Overview and Scrutiny Committee on Tuesday 6 June for an improvement plan update.

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  • Lance McCarthy – Chief Executive
  • Stephanie Lawton – Chief Operations Manager
  • Nancy Fontaine – Chief Nurse

Waiting times

A&E waiting times and delays in bed allocation were raised by Councillor Stephen Murray.  Stephanie Lawton apologised for the long waiting times but confirmed that patients remain safe. She said that some improvements had been made to flow and discharge of patients with support from community teams. Building works have been commissioned to extend admission facilities. Together with other plans these improvements should improve admission times. Nancy Fontaine added that where elderly patients are being admitted there is some discretion in allowing family members extra access to provide support.

Recruitment and retention

Responding to a question by councillor Aniket Patel, Nancy Fontaine outlined a number of new ward management and leadership training programmes. Councillor Yolanda Knight praised hospital staff following a ‘faultless’ recent visit. However, she also knew from experience that the quality of service varies greatly across different areas of the hospital. She raised the issue of staff morale, staff retention and the training provided to staff in dealing with difficult members of the public.

Nancy Fontaine was pleased to report that some members of staff have been with the Trust for many years. In some instances, three generations from a family are working in different areas of the hospital while many staff trained at Harlow coming back as more senior staff in later years. However, Lance McCarthy did acknowledge that recruitment was affected by the special measures issue.

Safeguarding for children

Councillor Steven Neville sought reassurance on safeguarding for children. Nancy Fontaine responded with a discussion around a culture of failing to follow policy and training. Safeguarding is now more embedded into hospital standards. She said that policies were now tough but it is probably never possible to ’do enough’.

Responding to a question by Councillor Holly Whitbread, Nancy Lawton described methods of recruitment including links with local colleges and interviews by Skype. Councillor Roger Baldwin asked about the financial deficit and plans to reduce reliance on agency workers.  Nancy Fontaine responded that there is a very clear direction to reduce reliance on temporary staff. Lance McCarthy was able to provide figures illustrating the drop in agency expenditure from more than £20m a few years ago to somewhere nearer £13m more recently.

Emergency Planning

Responding to Councillor Nigel Bedford, Lance McCarthy said that the hospital managed the recent cyber attack on the NHS thanks to internal IT protecting services and installing the relevant patches very quickly. Stephanie Lawton outlined the processes and partner agencies working together to coordinate patient discharge in a timely way. She said this was not ‘cracked yet’ but improvements were being made.

Nancy Fontaine and Lance McCarthy outlined in more depth the health and social care solutions used to address issues of patient isolation raised by Councillor Aniket Patel. Stephanie Lawton also confirmed the regular update, review and training for emergency planning situations such as the recent terrorist attacks in London and Manchester.

Lance McCarthy acknowledged the Trust has a long way to go in moving out of special measures but felt the hospital was in a much more positive position. He is also looking at the long term redevelopment or relocation of Princess Alexandra to a better site.

Caring Hospital

Committee Chairman Councillor Mary Sartin thanked Lance McCarthy, Stephanie Lawton and Nancy Fontaine for answering so many questions and offered best wishes for the future. She said that whatever the issues, the CQC report made clear that Princess Alexandra Hospital was a ‘caring’ hospital.

Corporate Plan

In other business Council Leader Chris Whitbread reminded committee members of some of the key achievements of previous years including the freeze on Council Tax for a seventh year and the development of new assets such as the Epping Forest Shopping Park. He said that the delivery of keys to residents for the first newly built council houses had taken place.  Focusing on community services he also applauded the work of the Council in attracting external funding. Local Plan development continues. The Council has listened and consulted with residents.

Councillor Whitbread continued with a description of the transformational changes being implemented across the Council leading to modern working, better use of technology and the facilitation of future service improvements. He also reminded fellow councillors of the benefits of the new leisure contract with a projected income of £20m over the next 20 years.

Other items covered by Overview and Scrutiny included:

  • Select Committees Terms of Reference
  • Select Committee membership
  • Task and Finish Panels
  • Annual Report of Overview and Scrutiny