Flooding, be aware and be prepared

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Business, Chigwell, Commercial properties, Community, Countryside and wildlife, Crime and safety, Drainage, Emergencies, Environmental health, Epping, Housing, Local business, Loughton, Media, Older people, Ongar, Our countryside, Out and about, Private housing, Residents, Supporting business, Travel, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home

If flooding has been forecast where you live, listen to local radio or check the Environment Agency’s website for updates and news.

Driving through flood water

Environment Agency

Latest flood warning updates for the Epping Forest district (in alphabetical order)

Know what the levels of flood warning mean

  • Flood Alert: Flooding is possible. Be prepared
  • Flood Warning: Flooding is expected. Immediate action required
  • Severe Flood Warning: Severe flooding. Danger to life


Stay in touch

Listen for flood updates on BBC Radio Essex and Heart Essex Radio.

Get up-to-date weather warnings from the Met Office.

Advice to motorists to take care in bad weather from Essex Police.

Latest incidents from Essex County Fire and Rescue Service.


Emergency planning advice from Essex County Council.

Information on emergencies from Epping Forest District Council.

The National Flood Forum is a national charity dedicated to supporting and representing communities and individuals at risk of flooding.

Practical tips and health advice in new flooding leaflet on gov.uk Flooding: advice to the public.

Flooding presents a number of risks to health – advice from Public Health England.

Do you know what to do with your animals if it floods? Advice from RSPCA.


Photos from around the district

View photos in a slideshow by clicking on a picture below and then click start slideshow.


Introducing the creativity award

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

If you are an individual or group aged between 13 and 25 years and have a real talent or interest in the arts and creativity, Epping Forest District Council would like to support you in further developing your skills with our new creativity award.

Creativity award

Awards range from £50 to £1,500. To be considered for a creativity award you will need to demonstrate a desire to learn more about your interest or develop your talent by providing us some information about what you would like to do. We have redesigned this process to make this as simple as possible so you can get on with what you do best – being creative.

Individual creativity awards

Awards of between £50 and £1,500 are available for individuals  aged 13 to 25, who are looking to develop their talent in their chosen creative field. Applicants must be able to demonstrate that they are actively pursuing their area of interest. This can be through education, exhibition, performance or other routes.

Group arts awards

These new awards are for applications of between £50 and £1,500 for groups (a minimum of 3 people) aged 13 to 25 who are looking for support for their creative activity. This could be a group that is already established (such as art clubs, theatre groups, choirs or orchestras) or one that is formed especially to apply for funding.

These awards are designed to support whatever activity the group would like to undertake. It could be a visit to exhibitions or a show, it could be to hire someone to teach them a new skill, or for equipment for their group, or to hire a space to rehearse, exhibit or perform.

Apply now

Apply for a creativity award here 

Deadline for applications is 12 noon on Monday 20 January 2014.


Want to know more?

Can I apply?

To be eligible for an award you must

  • Be aged between 13 and 25 years on the closing date of noon on 20 January 2014
  • Live in the Epping Forest district – if you are at college/university return ‘home’ to the Epping Forest district during the holidays
  • Demonstrate a high level of interest or skill
  • Explain how the award will be spent and what it means to you

You cannot

  • Have won a sports or arts award in the last 2 years

How can I use the Creativity Award funding?

The purpose of creativity award funding is to support you in progressing your creative talent to the next level. For example it could help you buy specialist equipment or materials, go towards competition/event entry fees and any associated travel and accommodation, enable you to undertake specific research projects, help fund extra tuition. You just have to tell us how it will help.

How do I apply?

You will need to complete the application form.

There are 7 steps that you will need to fill in. These include your details and information on what you are applying for. You may find it easier to look at the questions and type your answers in Word (or another application) and then cut and paste them into the form. You will need to provide at least 1 reference, this could be from your teacher, youth worker, tutor or group coordinator and return it to us by Monday 20 January 2014.

Your referee will be contacted and asked to support your application so please make sure you have spoken to them about it. We may call or email you after the deadline for more information and may either request that you meet with the arts officer or that we visit you or your group at your venue if you have one.

How much can I apply for?

You can apply for between £50 and £1,500.

When will I know?

Depending on the number of applications we hope to let you know by the end of January 2014. Creativity and sports awards will formally be presented at the council’s civic awards ceremony which is held in the Spring.

Who decides on the award winners?

Choosing who wins the award is a difficult process. The applications will be reviewed by a panel of EFDC staff which different specialisms. Should there be any conflict of interest (for example if one of the members of the panel knows an applicant) this will be declared and they will not be able to comment on the application. As well as assessing the applications on the impact they will have on individuals we will also be looking to support a range of groups and individuals across a variety of areas of interest.

Are there any conditions?

Yes there are 5 conditions. When you apply you will need to confirm that you have read them.

  1. The award may only be used for the purpose stated on your application form
  2. You must start to spend the award before 31 March 2014 and have completed the activity by 31 March 2015
  3. Award winners will keep the arts department of Epping Forest Council informed of their success and provide at least 1 image and/or statement after the activity or by June 2014 if still on-going
  4. Agreed the use of the image(s) or statement for press releases and to appear online
  5. Successful applicants may be requested to demonstrate their skills or exhibit their work at an appropriate local event or civic function during the year

What do I do if I have more questions or need further help with completing the form?

Please email us at efa@eppingforestdc.gov.uk, you can either write your question or give us your number and we will call you back as soon as we can. Please be aware that we may not be able to respond between 20 December and 6 January 2014 so please get in touch before then.


Weather leads to local travel disruption

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Countrycare, Emergencies, Epping, Loughton, Media, Ongar, Our countryside, Travel, Waltham Abbey, Your area

Severe weather overnight is continuing to cause travel disruption across the region. Fallen trees and debris has affected road and rail routes across the county. Motorists are being advised to take extra care on local roads. Standing water may also add to the hazard of debris from trees and buildings.

Storm damage - take care on the roads

Contact numbers

Residents are being directed to Essex County Highways to report fallen trees on

  •  0845 6000 110

Essex Police has also issued two numbers for non-emergency weather related calls

  • 0800 092 0410
  • 020 7158 0124

Keep up to date

According to BBC Essex, there is widespread disruption across Essex. There are reports of power supply problems in Theydon Bois, Coopersale and High Ongar. The M11 southbound between Harlow and Bishops Stortford (Junctions 8 and 7) has been closed by a blown over lorry. The Central Line was closed between Leytonstone and Epping by several trees on the line. On the M25 the QEII bridge has been reopened.

Golding’s Hill in Loughton has been blocked by a fallen tree. A tree is down just past Rolls corner blocking entry to Chigwell. On the Dobbs Weir Road a Highways team completed the removal of a tree blocking the road. There was also evidence of another tree already removed in Lindsay Street. A tree is reported to be partially blocking the Four Wantz Roundabout at Ongar. Other roads will be affected across the district.

Other local headlines include the Helter-Skelter blown down on Clacton Pier and the Travelodge roof at the Army and Navy partially blown away and closing Parkway and other roads in Chelmsford.

Refuse and recycling vehicles have gone out this morning. However, many blue boxes and recycling sacks are being blown by the wind. Operatives are laying down wheelie bins where appropriate so they do not get blown about. Street cleansing operatives are emptying litter bins and will carry out litter picking where and when possible. Essex County Council has closed the landfill sites, so that will cause some disruption to collection arrangements.

Epping market is officially closed.

Epping Forest District Council’s Housing services has reported fence panels and TV aerials down which are mainly tenants responsibilities, and one house damaged by a fallen chimney in the Broadway, Loughton.

The Met Office reports that the strongest of the winds have now moved out into the North Sea and the Amber Warning for Wind  that has been in force for some time has now been cancelled.

Planning application validation requirements checklist consultation

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Building control, Chigwell, Community, Conservation and listed buildings, Consultation, Epping, Local plan / planning our future, Loughton, Older people, Ongar, Planning, Regulations, Residents, Trees and landscapes, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment, Your home

The Department for Communities and Local Government recommend that Local Planning Authorities regularly review their own validation requirements. Our current validation checklist now needs to be updated to make sure our requirements remain relevant and appropriate to current policies and legislation. Therefore, we are reviewing our checklists and would appreciate your feedback.

A draft validation requirements list has been produced for consultation. The draft validation requirements have been simplified from our previous requirements so that it provides more explanation as to the instances when we should require information from you to support your planning applications. The format has also been converted into an easy to read table to make it user friendly. Some changes have also been made to bring the list up to date where changes have been made to planning legislation, policy and guidance upon which the requirements are based.

Epping Forest District Council is undertaking a 21 day consultation period commencing on 18 September 2013 so that the deadline for comments is 5pm on 9 October 2013.

View the consultation and comment upon it here

Or email us at contactdc@eppingforestdc.gov.uk for more details.


Park Homes event for residents on 2 October

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Community, Epping, Gypsy and traveller, Housing, Loughton, Ongar, Planning, Private housing, Residents, Waltham Abbey, Your area

‘LEASE’ will be presenting at a Park Homes event for residents on 2 October at Epping Forest District Council. Please note that attendance at the event is by invitation only. However, the event will also be webcast live, and the recording will be available after the event.

The presentation will cover the Mobile Homes Act 2013, explaining the new legislation and how it affects park homes residents.

The Leasehold Advisory Service (LEASE) is a Non Departmental Public Body (NDPB) funded by government to provide free advice on the law relating to Park Homes in England.

Click on this link for more information about the event

Help for young athletes

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Community, Epping, Health, Loughton, Olympics, Ongar, Our activities, Residents, Sports, Sports centres and pools, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community

If you are a county or national standard athlete and need a helping hand why not apply for our young sports award. You could win a prize of up to £1,500 to help you progress further in your sport.

Young sports award

To apply you must be

  • Be aged between 13 and 25 years on theapplication closing date of 6 September 2013
  • Live in the Epping Forest district (or if at collage or university return ‘home’ to the Epping Forest district during the holidays)
  • Competing at county, regional or national level in a nationally governed sport

Deadline for applications is 6 September 2013, so get your applications in now.

Winners will be announced in October and all winners will be automaticly nominated for the regional awards taking place in November.

Apply now

To request an application form, contact Fabrizio Ferrari by telephone on 01992 564567 or by email fferrari@eppingforestdc.gov.uk.


Sports award deadline looming

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Community, Epping, Health, Loughton, Ongar, Our activities, Our attractions, Out and about, Residents, Sports, Sports centres and pools, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community

Want to reward your club, coach or volunteer for the great work they do in the community? If you do, get your nominations to us by 6 September 2013 as the deadline for the Epping Forest District Council sports award is fast approaching.

Community sports awards categories

  • Club of the year
    £1,000 for a local club that is able to demonstrate that is has made a significant contribution to community sport over the previous year
  • Community coach of the year
    £500 to use for continuing professional development (CPD) for a local coach (they must coach in the Epping Forest district) who has made a significant and positive contribution to their club or to sport, health and fitness in the district
  • Volunteer of the year
    £500 for CPD to a local volunteer whose contribution helps make a positive impact to sport health and fitness in the district

Nominate now

To request a nomination form or for information on the categories, contact Fabrizio Ferrari by telephone on 01992 564567 or by email fferrari@eppingforestdc.gov.uk.


Three Billy Goats Gruff visit District Museum

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

This Saturday (3rd August) the Three Billy Goats Gruff will be trip-trapping their way to the District Museum in Waltham Abbey for the Family Fun Day!  Come along too and enjoy the puppet show version of this great story, with lots more entertainment for all the family. 

Out in the garden, local artist Georgia Wisbey will be helping you weave a willow herb crown, and if the sun shines we’ll also have sandcastles and shrimping. 

Activities take place between 11am and 4pm, with the puppet show taking place three times during the day at 11.30am, 1pm and 3pm.

Entry is free of charge, but donations are very much appreciated.

Summer Family Fun at District Museum

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

Summer Family Activities

Summer Family Activities

On Tuesday afternoons between 12noon and 3pm throughout the Summer holidays, fun family art and crafts activities are taking place at the District Museum in Waltham Abbey.  Many of the activities have a Tudor theme, to go with our latest exhibition.

On Tuesday 30th July you can design and make your own Tudor knight’s shield.  On Tuesday 6th August the shield might be useful to go with the hobby horse you can make for the Tudor joust.  We will be modelling Tudor clay pots on  Tuesday 13th August, then print making on Tuesday 20th August.  Bringing the holidays to a close, the last activity on Tuesday 27th August will be making a bookmark, using a Tudor quill pen to write your name and a lucet fork to weave a tassel to hang from it.

There’s no need to book, you can just drop in.  Most activities take about 20 minutes to complete.

Children need to be accompanied by adults as it is a family activity.  Cost £1.25 per child.

Epping Forest Countrycare Volunteer Walk 2013

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Community, Conservation and listed buildings, Countrycare, Countryside and wildlife, Epping, Local plan / planning our future, Loughton, Older people, Ongar, Our activities, Our countryside, Out and about, Planning, Residents, Sports, Travel, Trees and landscapes, Uncategorized, Volunteering opportunities, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your environment

As a thank-you to all our hardworking volunteers we organised a circular six mile guided walk last month. Led by Kevin Mason, an interesting and diverse route took the volunteers through woodlands, grasslands and green lanes.


Taking a break in Norton Heath

We were blessed with a fine sunny day, and set off from the Chipping Ongar heading east through the fields alongside Cripsey Brook. After crossing the River Roding we headed across the old landfill site at the former LECA works. The volunteers noticed the spread of the invasive plant Goats Rue (Galega officinalis) across the site, which they work hard to control on the EFDC’s nature reserve and former landfill site at Bobbingworth.  The walk next followed  St Peter’s Way besides arable fields and through overgrown field margins.

Volunteers identifying wildflowers found along the way

Several stops were made along the way to look at the flora and for anecdotes about the sites we were passing. The walk made its way to Norton Heath for lunch supplied by the Norton Heath Café.  The heath is formed on one of the smallest Essex outliers of gravel and in the early part of the 20th Century was heavily excavated to provide gravel for the Chelmsford to Ongar road A414.  Norton Heath was designated a Local Wildlife Site in 2010.

The return trip was made through the fields and along Norton Lane in a westerly direction to reach Norton Mandeville. A stop was made at All Saint’s church and Norton Hall to admire the church and learn a little of its history. After the church we followed the farm track down to High Ongar.

We crossed the River Roding again at the footbridge and made our way back to

Heading home

Chipping Ongar passing the castle on route.  Fortunately we were back at the start before the rain came.

Despite the nettles the walk was thoroughly enjoyed by all and everyone is looking forward to next year’s volunteer treat.

The volunteers said:

“Very many thanks for such a lovely day today.  The walk was varied and interesting.”

“It was very interesting to hear some of the local history and to appreciate the splendid views.”