Olympics come to district

Written on . Posted in Arts, Chairman, Community, Loughton, Meetings, Museum, Olympics, Parking, Sports, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your community

At the start of the Council meeting on 31 July, Councillor Brian Rolfe, Chairman of Epping Forest District Council invited members to enjoy a short video made to commemorate the arrival of the Olympic Torch Relay to Waltham Abbey. He then announced the award of Canoe Slalom Olympic tickets to lucky residents at the Lee Valley White Water Centre for London 2012.

See the videos



The Chairman went on to describe a very memorable day at the Mini Olympics at Davanent Foundation School in Loughton. Children from across the district came together to show true sporting spirit supported by teachers and other school staff.

Councillor Liz Webster, ‘Olympics Champion’, reported on the first two days of London 2012 competition at the White Water Centre. The Canoe Slalom events have progressed very well with relatively minor disruption to local people and services. A temporary Controlled Parking Zone (CPZ) has been established to protect local residents and businesses from congestion by spectator parking. Some Penalty Charge Notices have been issued in Waltham Abbey and a similar number in Broxbourne. Councillor Webster confirmed any Epping Forest District resident who produced their vehicle registration document showing they live in the zone would have the penalty charge cancelled.

Among the distinguished guests attending the first two days of competition were Princess Anne and the Duke and Duchess of Gloucester. Leading foreign dignitaries including the Prime Minister of Belgium, members of the French government and the Chairman of LOCOG, Sebastian Coe were expected at the Lee Valley White Water Centre before the end of the day’s competition.

Ready, Steady, Go! at Lowewood Museum, Hoddesdon

Written on . Posted in Arts, Museum, Olympics, Our activities, Our attractions, Out and about, Sports

A picture of Cheshunt Rugby Club from 1953-54Feeling inspired by the London Olympic Games?  This exhibition celebrates the history of local sports clubs and personalities through a captivating story of awe-inspiring determination and remarkable  achievements.

From local sprinter Harold Abrahams (1924 Olympic 100m gold medallist) to Broxbourne Olympic rowers, Tom Stallard and Acer Nethercott (2008 Olympic Men’s Eight silver medallists), the Borough is full of sporting success.  Find out more about how you can get involved in sport in this one off exhibition that is not be missed.


Part of the local cricket display at Ready, Steady, Go!The exhibition displays sporting memorabilia from local sports clubs, including an impressive collection from Hoddesdon Town Football Club and spectacular film footage of Broxbourne Rowing Club, filmed by former Hoddesdon resident, Mr Thomas Franklin.

With the Olympic Canoe Slalom events taking place at The Lee Valley White Water Centre Olympic venue in nearby Broxbourne, why not combine a visit to the venue with a visit to Lowewood museum and experience our sporting history as well as the modern day atmosphere of our sporting legacy.

Ready, Steady, Go! will be open until 6 October 2012 and there will be a number of sporting activities to accompany the exhibition, as part of the museum’s new family fun programme taking place on Thursday afternoons between 12noon and 3pm.

Admission to the museum is free

Opening times:  Wednesday, Thursday and Friday 10am – 4pm and Saturday 10am – 5pm

For more information please telephone 01992 445596, email museum.leisure@broxbourne.gov.uk or visit www.broxbourne.gov.uk/lowewoodmuseum

Lowewood Museum, High Street, Hoddesdon, Hertfordshire, EN11 8BH

Tel: 01992 445596

Part of the local football display at Ready, Steady, Go!





Community celebrations as Olympics comes to town

Written on . Posted in Chairman, Civic events, Community, Museum, Olympics, Our attractions, Out and about, Waltham Abbey, Your area, Your community

East met West as thousands of local people celebrated the Olympic Torch Relay arrival in Waltham Abbey on Saturday 7 July. Estimates of up to 20,000 people thronged the streets, many enjoying the antics of street-entertainers preceding the Flame. As the Flame departed for the Lee Valley White Water Centre, the Epping Forest Pipe Band marched from Waltham Abbey Town Hall towards the Meridian Line to be met by two Chinese lions dancing their way down from the Epping Forest District Museum.

Further displays of Chinese culture were on show outside the Museum where the Chairman of Epping Forest District Council, Councillor Brian Rolfe launched an exhibition of China in the East. Displays of Tai Chi and dance entertained the Sun Street crowds as further community events commenced in the Abbey Gardens.

The Epping Forest Pipe Band led spectators into the Abbey Gardens where they were treated to rousing performances from the Funky Voices choir, further performances of the Epping Forest Pipe Band and the Make a Move dancers.  In addition to the performances, there was a variety of activities for both children and adults, including Tai Chi demonstrations, Play in the Park games, Healthworks, Mini Beasts, canoeing machines and Giant Games.

Councillor Liz Webster, ‘Olympics Champion’ for Epping Forest District Council and Mayor of Waltham Abbey Town Council, was delighted with the day. She said: “Waltham Abbey turned on the style today. Nowhere has the Olympic Flame received a better reception than in Waltham Abbey. The crowds were amazing. I have never seen our streets so colourful or the town looking better.

“There are just so many people to thank. From the teams of workers mowing the grass, clearing litter and putting up decorations to the entertainers in Sun Street and the Abbey Gardens, everyone was wonderful. We should also remember the time and energy spent in planning the day. Epping Forest District Council, Waltham Abbey Town Council, Lee Valley Regional Park Authority, Waltham Abbey Town Centre Partnership, Essex Police and many other organisations working with local businesses and volunteers did a terrific job. The crowds had a marvellous time. I am sure it will live in the memories of people for many years to come.”


Police exhibition

Written on . Posted in Museum, Our attractions, Out and about, Waltham Abbey, Your area

Drawn from the extensive police archives collected locally and held by the Epping Forest District Museum, this exhibition provides a flavour of the lives of police men and women. In addition to the stories there are the tools of a policeman’s trade in the days before they arrived at high speed in motor cars.

The exhibition is being held between 17 March to 23 June 2012 at Epping Forest District Museum.

This exhibition tells the changing story of the Policing of the Epping Forest District over the last 160 years, and the impact of law enforcement by the Metropolitan Police, the Essex police and Ministry of Defence Police on the history of our area.

The exhibition is about ‘old fashioned’ policing, of horses and bicycles and big blue telephone boxes that are better recognised as time machines today. So take a step back in time with us to take a nostalgic view of law enforcement in the style of Dixon of Dock Green and PC49.

As well as a wealth of photographs, uniform and equipment the exhibition also features a reconstruction 1980’s police office. For those not old enough to remember the real thing the exhibition features a child size “Tardis” police box and a reconstruction of the interior from the days before radio and mobile phones.

The exhibition will be held at the Epping Forest District Museum, 39/41 Sun Street, Waltham Abbey, Essex, EN9 1EL.

Entrance to the museum is Free and opening hours are Monday, Tuesday and Friday 10am to 4pm, Saturday 10am to 5pm.

For information contact 01992 716882 or museum@eppingforestdc.gov.uk

Meet the artist, Jeff Cummins to visit museum

Written on . Posted in Museum, Our attractions, Waltham Abbey, Your area

Cover artist Jeff Cummins will be at Lowewood Museum in Hoddesdon on Saturday 10 March to give a personal tour of his exhibition, Vinyl Canvas.

The exhibition showcases a stunning collection of vinyl record covers and original artworks designed by Jeff for music legends such as Paul McCartney, Eric Clapton, Rainbow and Whitesnake. Uncover the secrets behind the covers and discover how they came about in this relaxed and informal session.

Jeff will be at the museum from 11.30 am to 2.30 pm, don’t miss out on this one-off event. Signed limited edition prints will also be available for purchase.

The exhibition, Vinyl Canvas, will be on display at Lowewood Museum until 31 March 2012.

For more information on the museum, visit www.broxbourne.gov.uk/lowewoodmuseum


Mosaic to celebrate museum’s 30th anniversary

Written on . Posted in Chairman, Community, Museum, Our attractions, Out and about, Waltham Abbey, Your area, Your community

To commemorate the 30th anniversary of Epping Forest District Museum at its site in Sun Street, Waltham Abbey, a special mosaic has been made for the museum’s garden.

The mosaic was designed and created by members of Community Development’s Youth Club, ‘We Don’t Do Bored’ based in Ninefields, Waltham Abbey. Ten young people from the group visited the museum to choose objects to include in the design and find out more about the history of the district.

They worked with Essex based mosaic artist, Paul Siggins to come up with a design, then over February half term they have been making the mosaic at the museum, assisted by visitors to the museum including the Chairman Ken Angold-Stephens and his wife Jill who really enjoyed having a go.

The mosaic will be completed on Friday 17 February and will be installed in the museum garden on Tuesday 28 February.


Councils team up to run Lowewood Museum

Written on . Posted in Museum, Our attractions, Waltham Abbey, Your area

Published on 9 February 2012

As from 1 February 2012, Broxbourne Council will enter into a five-year partnership arrangement with Epping Forest District Council for the operation of Lowewood Museum, Hoddesdon.

Following the retirement of the Museum’s two long standing staff members, Broxbourne Council was able to explore the cost-effective opportunity of a service level agreement.

Under the new arrangement, Broxbourne Council will continue to own and maintain the listed building whilst we will deploy staff from our museum in Waltham Abbey to manage the facility. The existing identity, opening hours and current programme of temporary exhibitions will be maintained.

With years of experience operating Epping Forest District Museum in Sun Street, Waltham Abbey, Broxbourne Council expects a seamless transfer period and hopes the partnership will promote future service development.

The integrated service aims to draw on the collections of both museums and provide an opportunity for wider ranging exhibitions to increase interest and footfall.

Councillor Ricki Gadsby, Leisure and Wellbeing Portfolio Holder for Epping Forest District Council said: “This is a great deal for both councils and residents. Broxbourne and Epping Forest have independently built high reputations for their respective museums. We hold common values, working at the heart of our communities. The staff at Epping Forest share a deep respect for the work done by their colleagues in Broxbourne and are committed to continuing the cultural legacy of Lowewood. The two service collections will compliment each other as will the new working arrangements between our two councils.”

Portfolio Holder for the Community for Broxbourne Council, Councillor Paul Seeby, says: “With this partnership in place, it will enable the Lowewood museum service to be developed further, building upon the excellent work that has already been achieved. We look forward to a long and prosperous working relationship with Epping Forest District Council.”

For further information of the new arrangement or services that Lowewood Museum provides, residents are asked to call 01992 445596 or visit the leisure and culture pages on Broxbourne Council website.

Museum exhibition celebrating 30 years

Written on . Posted in Museum, Our attractions, Out and about, Waltham Abbey, Your area

Join us this autumn in celebrating the 30th anniversary of Epping Forest District museum. A special exhibition showing the life and work of the museum over the last 30 years runs from 8 October 2011 to 3 March 2012 at the historic museum in Waltham Abbey.

For 30 years the museum has celebrated the unique history of this beautiful part of South West Essex, capturing the unique stories of those who have lived and worked here. To mark this special occasion the museum is hosting an exhibition looking back at the last 30 years and looking forward to the next 30!

Museum celebrating 30 years

On display you will see a number of highlights from the museum’s collection since it first opened its doors to the public in 1981. From paintings and posters by local artists Walter Spradbery and Eric Dawson, to pieces from the museum’s unique police collection. Also on display is a snapshot of some of the museum’s best loved exhibitions. From Narnia to the WWI trench, this 3D interactive room is not to be missed.

Why not email us at museum@eppingforestdc.gov.uk and tell us about your memories of the museum?

Sue Davies (former museum officer), Tony O'Connor (current museum officer), Chairman Ken Angold-Stevens (Epping Forest District Council) and Anne Edwards (the museum's first museum officer)

Opening the exhibition Chairman of Epping Forest District Council, Councillor Ken Angold-Stephens said: “Museum collections have the power to tell stories, connecting us to the people and communities who have been here before. This service would not be possible without the support of local people and visitors who help to record our district’s rich history so it can be celebrated for generations to come. We are very proud that the museum is viewed as resource at the heart of the community.”

Admission is free, for information and opening times contact the museum by telephone on 01992 716882 or email museum@eppingforestdc.gov.uk.

Epping Forest District Museum, 39-41 Sun Street, Waltham Abbey, Essex EN9 1EL

Waltham Abbey Bible in Top 10

Written on . Posted in Community, Museum, Older people, Our attractions, Residents, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community

The Waltham Abbey Bible, on display at Epping Forest District Museum, has been selected as one of the top ten most important museum objects to reflect Essex`s history.

BBC Essex has joined up with museums across the county to choose a number of objects the people involved feel best reflect its unique place and past in the world. This is part of the BBC`s Nationwide history of the world project. A series of television and radio programmes will be broadcast on the BBC throughout 2010 with a vision to tell the history of the world through man-made objects.

Epping Forest District Museum Officer Tony O`Connor was interviewed about the significance of the Waltham Abbey bible by BBC Essex radio on Thursday 28 January. He said: The bible is one of our star items on display at the Museum. It dates back to about 1200 AD and is all that survived from the library in the Abbey Church, the last in the country to be dissolved by King Henry VIII in 1540.

A BBC reporter interviews District Museum Officer Tony O'Connor about the Waltham Abbey Bible

Inscriptions inside the Bible tell us it was the property of the Prior (the second most important official in the Abbey). The lack of rich decoration suggests this book was used for private study and not for display within the church. Both the Old and New Testaments are written in tightly-packed Latin script on 238 pages of Vellum (Parchment), the standard writing material in medieval England, made from treated animal skins.

Tony O`Connor added: It is a real privilege for the Bible to be chosen as one of the most important objects in Essex`s history. The Bible does not just belong to the Museum but to all the residents of the Epping Forest district and represents an important part of local and national history.

The Waltham Abbey Bible, which was acquired with support form the Victoria & Albert Museum Purchase Fund can be viewed at Epping Forest District Museum. For opening times, please call 01992 716882 or visit the Epping Forest Museum Website. More information about A history of the world can be found at the BBC Essex Website.

Museum Wins Visitor Attraction Award

Written on . Posted in Community, Museum, Our attractions, Residents, Waltham Abbey, Your area, Your community

enjoyEngland.com - Quality Assured Visitor Attraction logo

Epping Forest District Museum in Waltham Abbey has won a coveted visitor attraction award. The National Tourism body `Visit Britain` gave the Visitor Attraction Quality Assurance Scheme (VAQAS) award after one of their inspectors conducted an assessment.

The Assessor from Visit Britain looked at the whole experience of visiting the Museum from telephone and Internet enquiries through to on site staff and the visit itself, judging it against nationally set standards. They described various features of the Museum`s exhibitions as `Excellent`.

This prestigious quality assurance award means that the Museum can now display the `Enjoy England` Quality logo outside the building and on all the Museum`s promotional literature.

The Visitor Attraction Quality Assurance Scheme (VAQAS) was established in 2001 by the then English Tourist Board to provide a quality standard for visitor attractions, similar to that for hotels and other forms of accommodation. Under the VAQAS scheme, attractions are assessed on their merits using objective quality benchmarks provided by the industry. All areas that impact on the quality of the visitor experience are included in the assessment, ranging from the initial enquiry through to departure.

Tony O`Connor, the District Museum Officer for Epping Forest District Council said: “We’re delighted to have received this prestigious award recognising the quality experience that we offer to Museum visitors. We aim to ensure that visitors of all ages enjoy a fascinating, informative and fun experience when they come to see us.”