Planned website maintenance on 25 Feb

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Due to essential maintenance our website and online services, including reporting services, will be unavailable from 12pm to 11pm on Sunday 25 February 2018.

Essential website maintenance

If you experience any problems accessing our online services, please try again on Monday 26 February 2018.

We apologise for any inconvenience that this maintenance work might cause you.

Claypit Hill fly tip led to arrest and prosecution

Written on . Posted in Community, Countrycare, Countryside and wildlife, Crime and safety, Environmental health, Our activities, Our countryside, Out and about, Prosecutions, Recycling and waste, Regulations, Residents, Waltham Abbey, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home, Your money

Mr Loredan Ilias of Gascoyne House, London, was ordered to pay a fine and costs amounting to £1686.81 after pleading guilty to flytipping on forest land in Claypit Hill, Waltham Abbey.

Waltham Abbey Fly tipping

Evidence gathered by the Council’s Environment & Neighbourhood team led to a prosecution in Chelmsford Magistrates Court on 14 December 2017.

Found guilty

Mr IIias pleaded guilty to the offence of fly tipping paving stones, rubble and roofing material. He had failed to attend a number of hearings in 2016, leading to a warrant being issued for his arrest. Mr Ilias admitted to fly tipping from a Mercedes Sprinter van on 10 January 2016.

The Magistrates stated that it was a serious offence and a reckless act in a place of Special Scientific Interest.

Fined and prosecuted

He was ordered to pay a fine of £739 together with the Council’s prosecution costs of £724.81 and a Victim Surcharge of £73. The Magistrates also ordered Mr Ilias to pay compensation for clearance of the waste of £150 to the Corporation of London.

‘Blight on environment’

Environment Portfolio holder, Councillor Will Breare-Hall said: “Fly tipping is a selfish and criminal act and a blight on the environment. We recognise it is a growing problem across Essex but it will never be tolerated in Epping Forest and we will continue to pursue the offenders. Those convicted of breaking the law in this way can expect to receive heavy fines.”

Further information

Pair fined for damaging tree

Written on . Posted in Community, Countryside and wildlife, Environmental health, Media, Our countryside, Out and about, Planning, Private housing, Prosecutions, Residents, Trees and landscapes, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your home, Your money

Mrs Helen Kelly–Howe of Chingford was fined £1,850 after pleading guilty to causing or permitting unauthorised work to a tree in a conservation area.

Sycamore 10 High St

Tree within a conservation area

In June, officers were notified that branches of a sycamore tree situated within the grounds of 10 High Street Roydon had been cut back, where they overhung on to the neighbouring property at number 2 High Street.

Standing within the Roydon conservation area a 6 week notice of any intended work to the tree should have been provided. Such a notice would have revealed that consent for the extent of the works would have not been granted in any event.

No checks for consent

Further investigation revealed Mrs Helen Kelly–Howe, a director of the company owning 10 High Street instructed tree surgeon Mr John McAllister to cut the branches back to the boundary.

No checks had been made to find out if the tree was protected and neither sought consent to carry out the works undertaken.

£2,430 worth of fines

Tree surgeon Mr McAllister was fined £300 and ordered to pay a contribution of £250 towards the Council’s prosecution costs plus a victim surcharge of £30.

The Magistrates stated that Mrs Kelly-Howe had a greater role in the matter and was fined £1,000 ordered to pay a contribution of £750 towards the Council’s prosecution costs plus a victim surcharge of £100.

More information

For any inquiries regarding tree protection orders (TPOs) and conservation areas please contact

Woman fined £1,451 for failing duty of care

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Business, Chigwell, Community, Councillors, Countrycare, Countryside and wildlife, Crime and safety, Environmental health, Epping, Licensing, Local business, Loughton, Older people, Ongar, Our activities, Our attractions, Our countryside, Out and about, Prosecutions, Recycling and waste, Regulations, Residents, Supporting business, Waltham Abbey, Working with the council, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home, Your money

Rachel Cooper of Lushes Road in Loughton, was found guilty of a waste duty of care offence for giving 10 bags of household waste to someone who fly-tipped her waste at the junction of Bushfields and Parkmead in Loughton.

Fly-tipping Loughton

Failed to attend hearings

Rachel Cooper failed to attend two court hearings and was arrested on 29 September 2017. At court Ms Cooper pleaded guilty to handing over 10 bags of household waste to someone, who then fly-tipped them at the junction of Bushfields and Parkmead, Loughton on 30 November 2016.

Fined and prosecuted

She was fined £170 for the offence and failing to attend an interview with the council’s Environment and Neighbourhoods team. She was also ordered to pay the Council’s prosecution costs of £1281.33.

So easily avoided

Environment Portfolio Holder, Councillor Will Breare-Hall said: ”This is a situation that could easily have been avoided. Ms Cooper admitted that she had asked for the waste to be removed for cash, without first checking to see whether the person was licensed.”

”Ms Cooper’s decision was particularly foolish as over 80% of the waste could have been recycled using Epping Forest District Council’s normal doorstep collection. If she had used this, or simply checked the licence of the person removing the waste, she would not have been arrested or fined.”

He continued: ”Householders and business must make reasonable checks to ensure that they comply with their waste duty of care. You must only give your waste to a person authorised by the Environment Agency. Businesses who produce commercial waste must also keep waste transfer notes”.

#CrimeNotToCare

Love Essex, a partnership of councils, businesses and environmental charity Keep Britain Tidy, has launched its #CrimeNotToCare campaign to inform residents they could unwittingly end up with a criminal record and face an unlimited fine, if a rogue trader dumps their waste illegally.

Protect yourself and help us catch fly-tippers

To protect yourself from legal action, we advise you check, consider and record

  • Check the person you are asking is licensed with the Environment Agency
  • Consider whether you think the person is legitimate. Be mindful of cold callers, if the deal seems too good to be true, it probably is
  • Record as much information as possible, including licence/vehicle and contact details and what you are asking to be disposed of

If you suspect someone is disposing of waste illegally, tell us. Contact us on 01992 564608 or enofficers@eppingforestdc.gov.uk for help and advice.

Help us catch fly-tippers.

Further Information

Nazeing Triangle improvements complete

Written on . Posted in Countrycare, Countryside and wildlife, Our attractions, Our countryside, Out and about, Residents, Your area

Thanks to the Tesco and Groundwork’s ‘Bags of Help’ grant, the Epping Forest District Council Countrycare team and their volunteers, the Nazeing Triangle project is now complete. The site now boasts a new interpretation board, new aquatic plants and the installation of a hardened path which has significantly improved accessibility.

Interpretation board

Click on an image below to begin slideshow

Showcase of wildlife and plants

With the help of volunteers and the Bags of Help grant, this area has been transformed. The final piece to the puzzle was the installation of a brand new interpretation board in September, showcasing the wildlife and plants people are likely to see at this local Wetland Nature Reserve.

Peaceful pond

The Nazeing Triangle is a peaceful pond and wetland Nature Reserve which lies in the centre of ‘Old’ or Upper Nazeing. The Nazeing Triangle is our smallest Local Nature Reserve at 0.6 hectares, but that doesn’t make it any less important.

Preparing for winter

Countrycare and their volunteers have been busy preparing the site for winter, clearing the area along one of the boundary hedgerows and building a new reptile hibernaculum using rubble from the local area.

Thrilled with the transformation

Councillor Sam Kane Safer Greener  Portfolio Holder said: “We are thrilled with the transformation of the Nazeing Triangle Nature Reserve and we wouldn’t have been able to make all of these improvements without the help of Tesco and Groundwork’s ‘Bags of Help grant’, our wonderful volunteers and Countrycare team.

Thank you to everyone that has supported the work, you have ensured the Nazeing Triangle Nature Reserve is a beautiful little spot that can be enjoyed by everyone and most importantly, you have improved the environment for our local wildlife too! If you haven’t visited yet, make it a priority.”

Further information

Two prosecuted for cutting down protected tree

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Community, Countrycare, Countryside and wildlife, Doing business with the council, Epping, Loughton, Older people, Ongar, Our countryside, Out and about, Prosecutions, Regulations, Residents, Trees and landscapes, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home

Francesca Schillaci a resident in Nazeing and Tom Casey of Casey Tree Services, Nazeing have collectively been fined over £3000 after cutting down a protected willow tree.

Willow tree - Honeysuckle Nazing

Preservation Order

The was tree situated in Mrs Schillaci’s garden in Back Lane, Nazeing and became subject to a Tree Preservation Order (TPO) in December 2016, following a proposal by Mrs Schillaci to cut it down.

In March 2017 tree and landscape officers noticed the willow tree had been cut down, although no consent had been given.

False claims

Mrs Schillaci admitted that she has known the tree was protected but claimed it had been damaged during “Storm Doris” in February 2017 and the willow required urgent removal as there was an imminent danger if this did not happen.

Mrs Schillaci stated that she had contacted the council and having explained the situation was given authority to have the tree felled.

Further investigations

Tom Casey of Casey Tree Services confirmed that he had cut down of the willow tree after Mrs Schillaci incorrectly informed him she had permission from the Council to do so.

Officers confirmed that a telephone call had been traced from Mrs Schillaci, the officer she spoke to did not give her permission to cut down the tree, but advised her in line with the Council’s standard procedure Mrs Schillaci should arrange for the tree to be inspected by a tree surgeon and send in a photograph of the tree in its alleged dangerous state.

Found guilty

At Basildon Magistrates Court in October 2017 Francesca Schillaci and Tom Casey Nazeing were each found guilty of cutting down the willow tree without authorisation.

The Magistrates stated that they found the evidence presented by council officers to be credible and the evidence given by Mrs Schillaci inconsistent.

They also advised as a professional tree surgeon, Mr Casey should have known not to accept what Mrs Schillaci told him without written proof.

The Magistrates were not satisfied that the tree was an immediate risk which required it to be cut down immediately.

Mrs Schillaci was fined £1500 and ordered to pay a contribution towards the council’s prosecution costs of £1,000.

Mr Casey was given a 6 month conditional discharge, ordered to pay a contribution towards the council’s prosecution costs of £1000 and has been removed from the Council’s approved list of contractors.

Further information

Youth Councillors say no to N2O

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Community, Countryside and wildlife, Environmental health, Epping, Health, Loughton, Media, Olympics, Ongar, Our activities, Our countryside, Our performance, Out and about, Residents, Uncategorized, Volunteering opportunities, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment

Epping Forest Youth Councillors took to districts car parks to clean up laughing gas canisters, empty bottles of alcohol and general waste.

Along with members of the Waste Management Team and City of London Volunteer Wardens, Youth Councillors dressed in protective clothing cleaned up over 550 laughing gas canisters in Epping Forest, Traps Hill, Loughton and Cornmill Lane, Waltham Abbey.

So what is laughing gas?

The Home Office has found Nitrous Oxide (N2O) more commonly known as laughing gas, to be the second most popular recreational drug among 16 to 24 year olds in England and Wales.

Nitrous oxide is not a controlled drug, and has legitimate uses in medicine and dentistry.

Under the Intoxicating Substances (Supply) Act 1985, it is illegal to sell to under 18s when the seller believes the substance may be inhaled for the purposes of intoxication.

While it is not illegal for an adult to inhale the gas, many authority’s across Britain are concerned about its use.

Raising awareness

Youth Councillors are currently conducting an on line survey in schools, aiming to identify

  • Young people’s understanding of drugs
  • What drugs they have tried
  • What made they try them
  • Peer pressure
  • Curiosity or boredom

The findings will be published as part of the Youth Council’s drug awareness project.

Youth Councillors are currently designing a poster campaign to take into their schools and raise awareness of the dangers of the laughing gas craze.

Are you aged between 11 and 24?

Understanding the risks

Youth Councillor Nina Honey said: “It is important young people understand the serious health risks the substance can pose.”

“Nitrous oxide can be very dangerous when misused. When inhaled the gas restricts oxygen getting to the brain and can cause someone to become faint or unconscious and can even cause heart attacks.”

“The amount of canisters we found whilst out and about is worrying and it shows laughing gas is a real issue for young people today. Through our drug awareness project we hope to highlight the risks and make young people aware of the damage they are doing.”

More information

For further information contact

  • Di Gilson-Butler
  • Youth Engagement Officer
  • 01992 564 365

Learn about local mammals with Countrycare

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Community, Conservation and listed buildings, Countrycare, Countryside and wildlife, Epping, Loughton, Older people, Ongar, Our activities, Our attractions, Our countryside, Out and about, Residents, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home

Join Countrycare on Saturday 16 September 2017 at 7:30am for a close encounter with some of the small mammals found in Roding Valley!

Small mammal event 2017

Help us identify which animals live in and around Roding Valley, followed by breakfast!

Details

  • Saturday 16 September 2017
  • 7:30am – 9:30am
  • The Grange Farm Centre, Grange Farm Lane, Chigwell, Essex, IG7 6DP (click here for a map)
  • £6
  • Call 01992 564224 to book

Further information

Join us for Mad About Moths

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Community, Countrycare, Countryside and wildlife, Epping, Loughton, Older people, Ongar, Our activities, Our attractions, Our countryside, Out and about, Residents, Waltham Abbey, Working with the council, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home

Interested in learning more about wildlife on nature reserves at night? Join us for our annual Mad About Moths event on Friday 1 September 2017, 8pm until late.

Mad about moths 2017We will also be using bat detectors and looking out for any other signs of nocturnal wildlife!

Details

  • When: Friday 1 September 2017
  • Time: 8pm until late
  • Where: Epping Green Millennium Garden, CM16 6PR
  • Cost: Free entry, donations for refreshments appreciated
  • Book: Call 01992 564224

Hot drinks will be available, don’t forget to bring a torch!

Further information

Roydon man fined for illegal tree felling

Written on . Posted in Community, Countryside and wildlife, Environmental health, Licensing, Media, Our countryside, Our performance, Out and about, Prosecutions, Residents, Trees and landscapes, Uncategorized, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your money

Mr Paul Hayden of Old house land, Roydon was fined a total of £3,199 after illegally cutting down trees protected by tree preservation orders (TPO’s).

Reckless actions

On 6 July at Chelmsford Magistrates Court Mr Hayden pleaded guilty to cutting down 2 oak trees, 2 Hawthorn trees and willfully damaging another Hawthorn, all were protected by Woodland Tree Preservation Orders in a conservation area.

Mr Hayden told the magistrates he had occupied the property for 26 years before buying in it 2016 but did not instruct his solicitor to carry out usual conveyancing searches.

He cut down the trees to clear a riding path for his daughter to avoid the horses eating acorns, which he said are found to be poisonous to them.

£3,199 worth of fines

The Magistrates considered his actions to have been reckless but not for monetary gain and implemented fines of £400 for each tree cut down and £250 for the damaged Hawthorn. He will have to plant replacement trees.

Mr Hayden has also been ordered to pay the council’s prosecution costs of £1,309 and a victim surcharge of £40 making a total of £3,199.

More information

For any inquiries regarding tree protection orders (TPOs) please contact