The Clothmaker’s Wings – a female empowerment textiles project

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Working in partnership with Epping Forest District Museum and Lowewood Museum, local charity The Gifted will be delivering a female empowerment textiles project, called The Clothmaker’s Wings, exploring the textile industry from 1790 – 1890.



Workshops

A series of textiles and craft workshops will explore identity, adversity and up-skilling the female voice, by celebrating who they are and what they can do.

Many of the workers and contributors to the textiles industry were women (and children); this project aims to give a voice to those forgotten women and bring their stories alive, whilst connecting their skills and narration to young women of today.

It will end with an exhibition at Lowewood Museum in summer 2019.

For further information about The Gifted and The Clothmaker’s Wings contact Tori Jacovides at Tori@thegifted.org.uk

This project has been made possible by funding from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

The Gifted

The Gifted is a Hertfordshire wide charity, based in Broxbourne, that aims to give children and young people who are experiencing disadvantage or seeking additional support and creative access, to work with them on bespoke programmes.

They can receive training, volunteering opportunities, skills based learning (both creative and life) to help overcome struggles.

The Gifted use interactive workshops and bespoke educational training programmes and run two core programmes; ‘The Butterfly’ for vulnerable young women seeking personal and learning support, and ‘Reality Check’ aimed at enabling boys at risk of exclusion or hardship, to gain new skills and mentorship.

500 turn out for Singing in the Wilderness

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Epping Forest District Council and St John’s C of E Primary School, Buckhurst Hill hosted a special event, ‘Singing in the Wilderness’ to celebrate the life and work of local artist Walter Spradbery.

A A4 Spradfest flyer

The event, on Saturday 29 September, was a recreation of the ‘Open Air Social’ event that Spradbery and his wife Dorothy held at their home in 1938, marking its 80th anniversary.

500 people

An estimated 500 people came along to see the stalls, sideshows, donkey rides, traditional dances and art displays and raised over £600 for St John’s C of E Primary School. The event brought together the local community with Buckhurst Hill Residents Society working in partnership with the council, school and St John’s Church, Buckhurst Hill.

Flux Dance Collective

There was a specially choreographed dance performance by Flux Dance Collective who worked with pupils from the school to create a piece inspired by Spradbery. A historical interpreter played the role of Walter Spradbery, leading tours into the Wilderness to visit the site where the house once stood, next to the school. Buckhurst Hill Community Association and Bedford House both had art exhibitions on display, and there was a small exhibition about Walter Spradbery. The day ended with a fun performance by Impropera, the world’s only improvised Opera Company.

Exhibition at Epping Forest District Museum

This event is part of a programme of activities for the ‘Walter Spradbery, Artist in War and Peace’ exhibition, at Epping Forest District Museum, Waltham Abbey; on display until Saturday 22 December 2018.

For more information visit www.eppingforestdc.gov.uk/museum

Walter Spradbery

Spradbery is best known for his poster designs for London Transport, one of which was recently used on the new signboards marking the boundaries of Epping Forest. He and his wife, opera singer Dorothy D’Orsay, also held many musical and opera performances in the gardens of ‘The Wilderness’ for the local community.

Spradbery was also a committed pacifist. He served in the Royal Army Medical Corps during the First World War, receiving the Distinguished Conduct Medal for his bravery in rescuing injured comrades under intense enemy fire.

Council 25 September 2018

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The Burton Road fire, proposals for the St Johns Road development, the Epping Forest Shopping Park and the Epping Forest District Local Plan submission were amongst the topics of discussion at Full Council on 25 September 2018.


Burton Road fire

Council Leader, Councillor Chris Whitbread set the record straight in response to questions asked by Councillor Steven Neville relating to the fire at Burton Road on 17 August 2018.

Councillor Whitbread said: “Having read the comparisons with the Grenfell disaster on the front page of the local paper recently, we are concerned that sensational headlines will cause a great deal of unnecessary anxiety for potential tenants. Links with the Grenfell Tower do a disservice to the people involved in that disaster as well as families currently waiting for a new home on our waiting list.

He urged: “Burton Road is a completely different building and it is not yet finished. The fire was caused by a construction related accident, not the materials used. Unlike Grenfell, Burton Road only has four floors. The interior was practically untouched by the fire. Even if it had been possible for such a fire to start once the building was finished and occupied, all the evidence suggests people would have been able to escape unharmed. The building stood up remarkably well to the blaze.”


St Johns Road proposals

Options for a new leisure centre at the St Johns Road development site in Epping are being explored. Proposals are being discussed with the District Council’s current leisure provider Places for People and Epping Town Council.

The new leisure centre could form part of the larger St Johns development and could potentially include the first cinema in the town for decades, new shops, public open space and housing.


Local Plan progress

Planning Portfolio Holder, Councillor John Philip announced that Epping Forest District Council’s Local Plan, a set of policies to manage development within the district up to 2033, has been submitted for approval to the Planning Inspectorate.

The Local Plan’s submission was delayed following a Judicial Review brought by CK Properties in March 2018.


New leisure hub for Waltham Abbey

Council was given an update on the new leisure centre in Waltham Abbey by Portfolio Holder for Leisure and Communities, Councillor Helen Kane. She informed Council that the new health and wellbeing hub is now in the final stages of construction and is on target to achieve its scheduled opening on 17 November 2018.


It’s a ‘Crime Not To Care’

In a bid to combat fly-tipping and increase awareness throughout the district, the Cleaner Essex Group will be ‘recycling’ the Crime not to Care campaign this year to highlight issues caused by fly tipping and how residents can help.

The campaign, due to launch in October, will ask residents and businesses to ‘Check, Challenge and Record’ when handing their waste over for disposal – ensuring waste is kept out of the hands of the rogue traders that fly-tip for profit.


New brands at Shopping Park

Home Bargains and Boots Plc are the last two brands to join the group retailers at the Epping Forest Shopping Park in Loughton.

Home Bargains opened its doors on 1 September 2018 and the lease on the final retail unit has now been agreed with Boots Plc, with completion imminent pending approval of the shop fit out.


Funding granted for inclusion project

Councillors noted a report which referred to the grant of extra funding from Action for Children, for the Epping Forest Inclusion Project. The project provides an important resource, offering a wide range of sport and leisure activities for children and young people with disabilities and their families.

A Summer of fun and more at the Museum

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Epping Forest District Museum was buzzing with visitors over the summer 2018 for all sorts of fantastic creative activities. Why not take a look at what is on offer for October half-term holidays?

Summer round up

Budding artists took inspiration for their own works of art in How to Paint…Like an Artist, from artists in the museum’s collection. They used colour like Walter Spradbery, texture like Lucien Pissaro and painted beautiful watercolours like Jacob Epstein.

In our new ‘How to Draw…a Portrait’ workshop, participants got tips and tricks for drawing faces and experienced what it is like to be a model – not as easy as they thought!

At the ‘Little Storytellers’ workshop in Ongar, Michael Rosen’s classic tale ‘We’re Going on a Bear Hunt’ was used as inspiration for our little explorers to go on a journey through long wavy grass, sticky mud, a deep dark forest and even a snow storm, before creating their own maps and bears.

There was another wacky show from Booster Cushion Theatre Company; Old MacDonald and the Three Pigs Plus. The ‘Musical in 2 Days’ workshop cast worked incredibly hard to learn songs, scenes and choreography from Bugsy Malone and were ready to perform in just two days.

Garden and forest

Young artists and keen gardeners designed their own flowers, complete with Latin style names; did botanical drawings from plants in the museum garden and planted their own seeds to watch grow, in ‘Art and the Garden’. Participants designed beautiful prints, inspired by work from the current exhibition ‘Walter Spradbery: Artist in War and Peace’ and the forest in ‘Be a Printmaker’.

Family Fun

Over 400 children and their families enjoyed the ‘Family Fun Day’ drop in sessions at both Epping Forest District Museum and Lowewood Museum on Tuesday and Thursday afternoons.

October half term holiday sessions

Epping Forest District Museum have some great drop in arts and crafts sessions planned for October half term holidays.

Clay days

Come and play with clay! Our clay days are set up to give everyone a chance to create something, whatever your age or experience.

  • Monday 22 October 2018 and Wednesday 24 October 2018
  • 11.00am – 15.00pm
  • Epping Forest District Museum, 39-41 Sun Street, Waltham Abbey, EN9 1EL
  • £1.50 per child
  • All ages welcome

First World War Postcards

Fun family art and craft activities for you to make together and take home.

  • Tuesday 23 October 2018
  • 12.00pm – 15.00pm
  • Epping Forest District Museum, 39-41 Sun Street, Waltham Abbey, EN9 1EL
  • All ages welcome

Comments from participants

Alistair said: “Phil was highly engaging and really entertained both my 8 year old and 3 year old throughout the entire performance. We will be back!” – ‘Old MacDonald and the 3 Pigs Plus’ by Booster Cushion Theatre

“It was fun; I liked rolling through the wavy grass.” – Participant from Little Storytellers

Singing in the Wilderness

Written on . Posted in Arts, Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Community, Countryside and wildlife, Epping, Loughton, Museum, Older people, Ongar, Our activities, Our attractions, Our countryside, Out and about, Uncategorized, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community

Epping Forest District Council’s Museums, Heritage and Culture team and St John’s C of E Primary School, Buckhurst Hill are hosting an event to celebrate the life and work of local artist Walter Spradbery.

A A4 Spradfest flyer

Event details 

In 1938, Spradbery and his wife Dorothy held an ‘Open Air Social’ with stalls, sideshows, donkey rides, traditional dances and art displays. This will be recreation of that event on its 80th anniversary.

Where: St John’s C of E Primary School, High Road, Buckhurst Hill, IG9 5RX
When: Saturday 29 September
Time: 3pm – 7pm
Price: Free (some activities may be charged for; all money raised will go to the school)
Everyone welcome

There will be a specially choreographed dance performance by Flux Dance Collective who has been working with pupils from the school to create a piece inspired by Spradbery. A historical interpreter will play the role of Walter Spradbery, leading tours into the wilderness to visit the site where the house once stood. The day will end with a fun performance by Impropera, the world’s only improvised Opera Company. Buckhurst Hill Community Association will have an art display, and there will be a small exhibition about Walter Spradbery.

He lived next door to St John’s C of E Primary School, in a house known as ‘The Wilderness’ from 1929 – 1969. The site is now part of Epping Forest and a stone plaque marks where the house once stood.

This event is part of a programme of activities for the ‘Walter Spradbery, Artist in War and Peace’ exhibition, at Epping Forest District Museum, Waltham Abbey; on display from Saturday 21 July to Saturday 22 December 2018.

Walter Spradbery

Spradbery is best known for his poster designs for London Transport, one of which was recently used on the new signboards marking the boundaries of Epping Forest. He and his wife, opera singer Dorothy D’Orsay, also held many musical and opera performances in the gardens of ‘The Wilderness’ for the local community.

Spradbery was also a committed pacifist. He served in the Royal Army Medical Corps during the First World War, receiving the Distinguished Conduct Medal for his bravery in rescuing injured comrades under intense enemy fire.

More information

For more information visit

Statement – Fire at Burton Road, Loughton

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Updated Information – 13.15pm on 17 August 2018

Essex Fire and Rescue Service have announced that the fire is now out.

We cannot speculate on the cause of the fire at the moment, that will come out following an official investigation.

The photo below shows the building now that the fire is out and demonstrates how remarkably well the structure has stood up to the fire.

Council Leader, Chris Whitbread said: “You can always rebuild bricks and mortar, the important thing is that everyone appears to be safe and the fire is now out.”

Original statement made – 12:00pm 17 August 2018

A development of new flats in Burton Road, Loughton has caught fire and the fire service are in attendance.

This is a development of new council housing being built for Epping Forest District Council. A £10 million design and build mixed tenure residential development of 51 affordable rent units, comprising of 17 homes and 34 apartments.

Councillor Chris Whitbread Leader of Epping Forest District Council is at Burton Road.

He said: “Our first concern is for the safety and welfare of all concerned. It looks like everyone is safe. Essex Fire and Rescue is on the scene and it is under control. These flats are still being built. This is a construction site and there are no tenants living here. However we are obviously concerned about everyone working on the site at the time the fire started.

“The development is being built for us by Mulalley – a large construction company with a long and successful track record of building major projects. It is too early to say what caused the fire but it is clearly large. Essex Fire and Rescue has cordoned the site off.

“Our first priority is to ensure people are safe. Neighbouring residents are being asked to stay in their homes. This is bound to cause some travel disruption and people are being asked to avoid the area if they can.

“The council has several roles: we are the client and this is a serious setback for us and all those people we are building these new homes for. More importantly in the short term we have a supporting role to the emergency services and would be in a position to set up rest centres nearby if required for neighbouring residents. At this stage our staff are on standby if rest centres are needed. We also employ specialist building control officers who will be at the disposal of Essex Fire and Rescue to assess the damage and ensure the buildings are made safe once the fire is out.

“In the longer term we will recover. Bricks and mortar can always be replaced and we will rebuild these much needed homes for local people. For now, our thoughts are focused on the safety of everyone living and working in the area.

Please visit the Essex County Fire and Rescue Service website for reliable advice and up to date information about the incident http://www.essex-fire.gov.uk/incidents/i7458/

 

eNgage dance show returns for 2018

Written on . Posted in Arts, Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Community, Epping, Health, Loughton, Museum, Older people, Ongar, Our activities, Our attractions, Out and about, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community

Dance groups from Essex and Hertfordshire gave a wonderful performance at this year’s eNgage at the Spotlight Theatre, Hoddesdon on Friday 29 June.

eNgage 2018

Click on an image below to begin slideshow

With an audience of over 300 and a cast of 130, eNgage brought several communities together for an evening of spectacular dance. The mix of dance styles included Street Dance, Tap, Musical Theatre and Commercial.

The dancers

Performers were of all ages and abilities, from 8 years old to 72 years young!

The evening welcomed a new group to perform, Mayhem Theatre Arts. They closed the show with a great number representing all dances through the decades. Big Funksters Tappers performed for the first time ever after only having formed in 2017.

A journey through time

CoCoCare, an adult group with disabilities from Colchester, wowed the audience with their use of props and quick costume changes, that also take us on a journey through time with different dance styles and moves including Disco and Break Dancing.

Jason Theatre School celebrated girl power with a feisty but feel-good female medley, the piece was created in the Daniela’s Dance classes; a special class started in memory of pupil Daniela Ruggiero. Straight Up Dance, closed the first act with a phenomenal piece inspired by The Greatest Showman, that had both adults and junior classes performing together.

DNA Studios and Flux Dance Collective choreographed pieces especially for the show to commemorate the centenary of the end of World War I.

The show

The show is organised by the Epping Forest District Museums Heritage and Culture team and is part of the U.Dance network of events that aim to provide every child and young person with the opportunity to take part in a dance performance.

The flyer and programme for the show are designed by Art and Design student, Annabel Christian from Epping Forest College who beat fellow classmates to be the winning design.

“Not to be missed”

Epping Forest District Council’s Chairman, Councillor Richard Bassett attended, and said: “ What an amazing evening, I consider it a privilege to have been invited. It’s wonderful to be a part of an event that showcases so much local artistic flair and talent. I was exhausted by the sheer energy of all the groups! Congratulations to the performers and well done to all of the event organisers for putting on such a wonderful show. Please make sure you get a ticket for next year it’s not to be missed.”

What’s on? Week 5 of the summer holidays

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Looking for summer holiday activity inspiration? Take a look at what we have in store for Monday 20 to Friday 24 August 2018 of the summer holidays.

Click on an image below to begin the slideshow

How to draw…a portrait

This practical artist led workshop will teach you tips and techniques for drawing the human face.

  • Monday 20 August 2018
  • 10:30am – 12 noon
  • Epping Library, St John’s Road, Epping, CM16 5DN
  • £8 per child
  • Suitable for children 8 to 14 years old
  • Booking essential

How to draw…a landscape

This practical artist led workshop will teach you tips and techniques for drawing landscapes.

  • Monday 20 August 2018
  • 1.30pm – 3pm
  • Epping Library, St John’s Road, Epping, CM16 5DN
  • £8 per child
  • Suitable for children aged 8 to 14 years old
  • Booking essential

Funky seed head sculpture

Create a funky seed head sculpture that will grow into something amazing!

  • Tuesday 21 August 2018
  • 10am – 12 noon
  • Epping Forest District Council Community Services, 25 Hemnall Street, Epping, CM16 4LU
  • £5.50 per child
  • Suitable for children aged 5 to 14 years old
  • Booking essential

Family fun with clay

Be inspired by objects in the Museum displays and make your own clay creation

  • Tuesday 21 August 2018
  • 12 noon – 3pm
  • Epping Forest District Museum 39 -41 Sun Street, Waltham Abbey, Essex, EN9 1EL
  • £1.50 per child
  • Suitable for children aged 5 to 13 years old
  • Drop in event

Art in the garden

Spend a fun morning in the Epping Forest District Museum garden

  • Wednesday 22 August 2018
  • 10:30am – 12 noon
  • Epping Forest District Museum, 39 – 41 Sun Street, Waltham Abbey, Essex, EN9 1EL
  • £8 per child
  • Suitable for children aged 8 to 14 years old
  • Booking is essential

Teddy bears picnic

Join Countrycare and our teddy bears for some fun outdoor activities!

  • Wednesday 22 August 2018
  • 12noon – 2pm
  • Linder’s Field, Roebuck Lane, Buckhurst Hill, IG9 5QN
  • £3 per child
  • Suitable for children aged 3 to 6 years old
  • Booking is essential

Graffiti spray painting workshop

Create your very own graffiti style picture to take pride of place at home!

  • Wednesday 22 August 2018
  • 1pm – 3pm
  • Oakwood Hall Community Hall, Longcroft Rise, Loughton, IG10 3NB
  • £5.50 per child
  • Suitable for children aged 8 to 16 years old
  • Booking essential

How to paint…like an artist

Learning from great artists of the past, you will work in a variety of different styles, with a variety of different materials to produce your own artwork

  • Wednesday 22 August 2018
  • 2pm – 4pm
  • Epping Forest District Museum, 39 – 41 Sun Street, Waltham Abbey, Essex, EN9 1EL
  • £10 per child
  • Suitable for children aged 8 to 14 years old
  • Booking essential

Family fun – arts and crafts drop in

Join us for a morning of fun family arts and crafts for you to make together and take home

  • Friday 24 August 2018
  • 10:30am – 12:30pm
  • The Limes Centre, Limes Avenue, Chigwell, IG7 5LP
  • £2 per child
  • Suitable for children of all ages
  • Drop in event

Multi-sports, forest adventures and more…

We have also planned a wide range of sport, play and adventure days regularly, at multiple locations, throughout the 8 week holiday

  • Multi-sports days – book
  • Forest adventures – book
  • Play in the forest – no need to book
  • Play in the park – no need to book

Check the full brochure for locations, dates and times


Further details


Summer holiday by week

Walter Spradbery, Artist in War and Peace exhibition

Written on . Posted in Arts, Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Community, Countryside and wildlife, Epping, Loughton, Museum, Ongar, Our activities, Our attractions, Out and about, Travel, Waltham Abbey, Your area

A new exhibition about Buckhurst Hill artist, Walter Spradbery, opens at Epping Forest District Museum on Saturday 21 July 2018.

Walter Spradbery exhibition

Event details

  • Where: Epping Forest District Museum, 39 – 41 Sun Street, Waltham Abbey, EN9 1EL
  • When: Saturday 21 July – Saturday 22 December
  • Time: Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday 10am – 4pm. Saturday 10am – 5pm
  • Free entry: donations are gratefully received

The exhibition, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, will feature Spradbery’s medals, on display for the first time, alongside many of the paintings he made, both during his time in training and on the front line in France.

It will also include work loaned from the Imperial War Museum, Peterborough Museum and material supplied by the Welcome Trust.

About Walter Spradbery

Spradbery, best known for his poster designs for London Transport, was also a committed pacifist. He served in the Royal Army Medical Corps during the First World War, receiving the Distinguished Conduct Medal for his bravery in rescuing injured comrades under intense enemy fire.

After the war, Spradbery was one of several artists commissioned to create art for the Army Medical Section of the new Imperial War Museum display which opened at the Crystal Palace in 1920. As part of the exhibition, a section of the display will be recreated, including reproductions of some of the huge artworks created by Spradbery’s friend and fellow local artist, Haydn Mackey.

Spradbery married in 1929 and lived in Buckhurst Hill with his wife, opera singer Dorothy D’Orsay. Together they held many community music and opera performances in the garden of their home, known as ‘The Wilderness’.

Spradbery also worked hard to create opportunities for people to enjoy and engage with art. He helped establish the Buckhurst Hill Community Association and the William Morris Gallery in Walthamstow.

Spradbery Events

To commemorate the opening of the exhibition, visit the museum on Saturday 21 July, from 11am – 4pm, for special activities including a chance to meet Walter Spradbery himself, played by historical interpreter Andrew Ashmore.

Other events include a historical walk, a talk from the exhibition curator and a celebration event at ‘The Wilderness’ site.

More information

Award-winning volunteer team

Written on . Posted in Arts, Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Community, Epping, Loughton, Media, Museum, Older people, Ongar, Our attractions, Out and about, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community

Epping Forest District Museum and Lowewood Museum Collections Volunteers team have won the Collections Champion Award from SHARE Museums East.

Andrew and Sarah Goodliffe, 2 of our volunteers, attended the celebration evening at Museum of East Anglian Life, Stowmarket on Wednesday 6 June to collect the award on behalf of the whole volunteering team. Our team was 1 of 11 from the East of England to be shortlisted for this award.

Andrew and Sarah SHARE awards

Our Volunteers

With only 1 full-time specialist Collections Officer the museum relies on the help and care the team of volunteers bring to the collection to fulfil its potential. In making their decision the judges considered the team’s passion, commitment, dedication and initiative.

Our core team of collections volunteers consist of 12 members. We have 3 volunteers who work on the garden and 2 front of house volunteers. At the moment there are a further 12 volunteers working on specialist projects and exhibitions; the largest cohort has recently been researching Hertfordshire man Stephen Warner for the current exhibition Stephen Warner: One Man’s Journey through War at Lowewood Museum.

Group photo of winners at SHARE Museums East award ceremony

Volunteers’ Week

This week, 1–7 June, is Volunteers’ Week, a chance to thank all volunteers for their contribution to our service. This award, which the team were nominated for by Assistant Museums, Heritage and Culture Manager, Will O’Neill, is the perfect way to say thank you.

SHARE Museums East

SHARE Museums East, based in Norfolk, support museums in the East of England. They provide staff and volunteer training, project funding and help with collections management.

Find out more at sharemuseumseast.org.uk