Chairman Impressed by Fire Fighters

Written on . Posted in Chairman, Community, Epping, Residents, Your area, Your community, Your council

The Chairman with an Epping fire fighter on the 24 hour static cyle ride

The Chairman of Epping Forest District Council, Councillor Penny Smith stopped by Epping Fire Station on Saturday 12 September 2009 to support fire fighters in their 24 hour static cycle ride.

The cycle ride was part of the fire stations open day and raised funds for the Fire Fighters Benevolent Fund and Guide Dogs for the Blind.

The fire fighters said they really appreciated the support of the public who stopped to chat. A fire fighters told the Chairman that people had asked mostly about home fire alarms and he was pleased that fire prevention in the home was being taken seriously. He added that advice is available from them at any time, all you have to do is ask.

Chairman Penny Smith said: “All the cyclists were brilliant and were obviously rewarded by generous public support over the 24 hour period.”

Chairman Penny Smith with Epping fire fighters

North Weald Fly-in: Veterans and Presentations

Written on . Posted in Chairman, Community, North Weald Airfield, Our attractions, Residents, Your community, Your council

Photographs of the veterans and presentations for the veterans of the Royal Norwegian Air Force over the weekend of the Spirit of North Weald Fly-in and Community Day on Sunday 13 September 2009.

Friday 11 September 2009

Arthur Moreton greets Lieutenant General Mohr as he steps off the Falcon Jet

Pictured above: Arthur Moreton greets Lieutenant General Mohr as he steps off the Falcon Jet

Norwegian veterans were met on the tarmac

Pictured above: Norwegian veterans were met on the tarmac

Chairman Penny Smith greeting an F16 pilot

Pictured above: Chairman Penny Smith greeting an F16 pilot

Veterans greeted at the Squadron

Pictured above: Veterans greeted at the Squadron

Flag bearers from the Royal British Legion enjoying the day

Pictured above: Flag bearers from the Royal British Legion enjoying the day

Saturday 12 September 2009

Chairman Penny Smith greeting guests outside the civic offices

Pictured above: Chairman Penny Smith greeting guests outside the civic offices

Visitors outside the Civic Offices in Epping

Pictured above: Visitors outside the Civic Offices in Epping

Crowds Flock to North Weald Fly-in

Written on . Posted in Chairman, Community, North Weald Airfield, Our attractions, Residents, Volunteering opportunities, Your community, Your council

Chairman Penny Smith and Councillor Cyril Hawkins greeting the veterans

Thousands of people headed for North Weald, home of the famous Battle of Britain airfield owned by Epping Forest District Council on Sunday 13 September 2009.

Three days of events and celebrations commenced on Friday 11 September 2009 when veterans of the Royal Norwegian Air Force flew back to the Airfield.

Back in 1942, the flight approach to North Weald would be very familiar to the veterans as they guided their Spitfires home. For this approach, the Royal Norwegian Air Force provided a Fan Jet Falcon Executive Jet, escorted by two of the most modern and formidable F16 Jet Fighters.

Accompanying the veterans on their fight from the Norwegian City of Bodo were senior serving officers of the NoRAF and the civic leaders including City Mayor Odd Tore Fygle.

Pictured above: Chairman Penny Smith and Councillor Cyril Hawkins greeting the veterans

F16 landing with parachute deployed

Pictured above: F16 landing with parachute deployed

 

The veterans were met on the tarmac outside The Squadron by members of the RAF Association, Councillor Cyril Hawkins of North Weald Parish Council and Councillor Penny Smith, Chairman of Epping Forest District Council.

Chairman Penny Smith welcomes the pilots

Pictured above: Chairman Penny Smith welcomes the pilots

Councillor Mrs Smith, welcomed the delegation to Epping Forest District Council`s Civic Offices on Saturday morning. She presented a glass globe of the world to the City Mayor as a token of the friendship between the two communities. Later, District Council Vice-Chairman, Councillor Anne Grigg welcomed the veterans to Norway House, today, the Council`s homeless persons` hostel but 70 years ago the North Weald Officers` Mess. Lunch was served at Hill Hall were many servicemen were billeted during the War.

The special links between Epping Forest and Norway culminated in a Fly-In and Community Day on Sunday. Visitors, young and old enjoyed the spectacle as Vampires, Spitfires and Hurricanes invoked memories of the airfield in its heyday from the 1940s and 1950s.

Representatives from Bodo in front of the Royal Norwegian Air Force F-16

Pictured above: Representatives from Bodo in front of the Royal Norwegian Air Force F16

Stars of the Fly-in were the two Royal Norwegian Air Force F16 Jet Fighters as well as North Weald Airfields own historic aircraft including the only flying `Hurribomber` and the Hurricane and Spitfire of the RAF Memorial Flight. North Weald’s own Vampire, a Fighter Jet of the type flown by the RAF at North Weald in the 1950`s was joined by another owned by Norwegian pilot Kenneth Aarkvisla. Kenneth`s wife, Mette, was one of the number of ladies dressed in Norwegian national costume.

Mayor Odd Tore Fygle, was one of a number of people to try out the seat of an RAF Tucano, the aircraft used to train modern RAF fighter pilots.

Mayor Odd Tore Fygle was one of a number of people to try out the seat of an RAF Tucano

Pictured above: Mayor Odd Tore Fygle was one of a number of people to try out the seat of an RAF Tucano

Many other guest aircraft flown into North Weald for the weekend were displayed along-side the airfields own resident collections. Static displays included two older RAF jet trainers, the Gnat of Red Arrow fame and the Jet Provost. Migs and Mustangs took to the sky during the afternoon.

As crowds enjoyed the displays of aircraft, community stalls and exhibitions, wreaths were laid in commemoration of the 36 Norwegian pilots who fell in conflict at North Weald. Brigadier Per Egil Rygg of the RNoRAF, reminded all present of the continuing sacrifice of the armed forces of Norway and Great Britain. Later, a short `Bond of Friendship ceremony took place to reaffirm the special links between the people of North Weald, Epping Forest and Norway.

Bond of Friendship ceremony

Pictured above: Bond of Friendship ceremony

Families Revel in Community Day Activities

Other attractions at the Spirit of North Weald Fly-In and Community Day were vintage cars, the model flying club, WW II re-enactment groups, fairground rides and bouncy castles, and council and community stalls. Essex Police, Essex Fire and Rescue Service and the Herts Air Ambulance helicopter also welcomed families to special stands. There was also a chance for people to have a go at archery with Epping Archers.

Councillor Penny Smith said afterwards. It was a thoroughly enjoyable three days. The veterans are an inspiration. I was very proud of the associations our communities have maintained over the years and the roles of North Weald Parish Council and Epping Forest District Council in keeping those links going. Those were young men back in the early 1940`s. They arrived in this country and found a new home. In return, they fought for us and many of their friends and comrades made the ultimate sacrifice. North Weald stands as a potent symbol of the best in human nature.

F16 ready for take off

Pictured above: F16 ready for take off

Norwegian Royal Air Force F16

Pictured above: Norwegian Royal Air Force F16

 

Theydon Bois Local History Report

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

Tony OConnor, Penny Smith, Trevor Roberts and Susan Jones view the reports

Every year Trevor Roberts the Local History Recorder for Theydon Bois produces a Chronicle of events and stories which have taken place in the village in the preceding year. These form a valuable local history record and Theydon Bois Parish Council has presented a set to the Epping Forest District Museum in Waltham Abbey for inclusion in the Museum`s Local History Archive.

The Local History Reports were presented to Councillor Penny Smith, the Chairman of Epping Forest District Council by Theydon Bois Parish Chairman, Councillor Susan Jones.

Trevor Roberts has lived in Theydon Bois since 1995 and is a long standing member of many of the Community and Heritage organisations in the District.

Tony OConnor, Penny Smith, Trevor Roberts and Susan Jones with the latest report

Pictured from left to right in both pictures are Epping Forest District Museum Officer Tony O’Connor, Chairman of Epping Forest District Council Councillor Penny Smith, Local History Recorder Trevor Roberts, Theydon Bois Parish Chairman Councillor Susan Jones

The volumes cover the period from 1996 to the present and further volumes will be presented to the Museum on an annual basis. The Essex Local History Recording scheme has been in existence since 1981, the aim being to capture contemporary historical data at a local level and so create a record for future generations.

The Museum`s local history records can be viewed by appointment, you can contact the Museum by telephone on 01992 716882 or by email to museum@eppingforestdc.gov.uk.

Council Gains Accreditation Status

Written on . Posted in Chairman, Civic events, Community, Democracy, Residents, Your community, Your council

Epping Forest District Council has successfully attained Accreditation Status under Essex Police`s Community Safety Accreditation Scheme. This Scheme is a national initiative launched in 2002 allowing organisations and their employees to be given targeted police powers to deal with incidents such as anti-social behaviour, disorder and nuisance. Officers in Epping Forest District Council`s Environment and Neighbourhoods Section will be now be able to call upon Police support in using their existing powers to deal with incidents such as littering, dogs fouling on land, fly posting and graffiti.

Presentation of the Certificate of Accreditation

Pictured above are:
Presentation of Certificate of Accreditation to the Epping Forest District Council Chairman, Councillor Penny Smith, by Chief Superintendent Tim Stokes on the left and Inspector Craig Carrington of Essex Police

`Accredited Persons` can also act as the `eyes and ears` of the police helping to improve quality of life issues that may occur in the local community. They can request names and addresses of any persons acting in an anti-social manner. It is an offence to fail or refuse to comply. It is also an offence to assault or obstruct an Accredited Person or person assisting them.

Organisations granted Accreditation Status must meet standards set by Essex Police and individuals must satisfy strict criteria including positive extensive police vetting and training. Accredited people display a nationally-agreed standard approved badge on the uniform of their employer and carry an identification card stating their name and confirming what powers that individual has been granted by Essex Police.

Council representatives being awarded with the Certificate of Accreditation

Pictured above from left to right are:
Jim Nolan, EFDC Assistant Director of Environment and Street Scene (Neighbourhoods)
Richard Gardiner, EFDC Environment and Neighbourhoods Manager
Essex Police Chief Superintendent Tim Stokes
Essex Police Inspector Craig Carrington
Councillor Penny Smith, Chairman of Epping Forest District Council
John Gilbert, EFDC Director of Environment and Street Scene
Jenny Ayres, Essex Police Community Safety Accreditation Scheme Officer

    Information on the Community Safety Accreditation Scheme:

  • Essex Police Community Safety Accreditation Scheme (CSAS) website

Nazeing Playground

Written on . Posted in Chairman, Community, Democracy, Our activities, Out and about, Playschemes, Residents, Waltham Abbey, Your area, Your community, Your council

The sun came out to shine on Thursday 16 July 2009 as children from Nazeing celebrated the opening of their new £50,000 playground with Councillor Penny Smith, the Chairman of Epping Forest District Council. The new facilities at Hoe Lane are a collaborative venture between Epping Forest District Council and Nazeing Parish Council, using money from the Big Lottery Children`s Play Programme Fund.

After the official ribbon cutting with Madison Lang, Tyree Zengini, Josh and Freya Lock, Councillor Smith helped to test the new roundabout and climbing frames. She could then not resist joining the older children for some shots with the new basketball hoop.

Councillor Smith congratulated everyone involved in the project including local children and parents involved in the design consultation and Council staff from Community Development and Housing. Asking the children if they liked their new playground, she was rewarded with cheers of agreement.

Nazeing is one of three areas to benefit from improvement to playgrounds by Epping Forest District Council using £243,000 of Big Lottery funding. After spending more time with 12 year-old Keiran Poonwassie and his friends at the basketball hoop, Councillor Smith headed to St Giles` Church Hall where local people were meeting to discuss plans for another playground at Elizabeth Close in Nazeing.

Councillors Wowed on Copped Hall Visit

Written on . Posted in Chairman, Conservation and listed buildings, Countrycare, Countryside and wildlife, Epping, Our countryside, Your area, Your council, Your environment

After more than 90 years, the gutted remains of Copped Hall are rising from the ashes thanks to a band of dedicated volunteers and trustees. Members of Epping Forest District Council including the Chairman, Councillor Penny Smith, were treated to an extensive tour of the restoration works as the Hall returns to its former glory. Where only a short while ago there were no floors or roof, councillors were able to walk from room to room, admiring the restoration work in warmth and comfort as thunderstorms lashed the building outside.

Copped Hall on a stormy day, it is hard to imagine the vast amount of restoration work going on

The current Copped Hall was built in 1753 near the site of an earlier Tudor palace. It was extended and embellished but disaster struck when fire ripped through the building in 1917. What remained was left to decay and the Hall could have been demolished entirely. However, unlike so many English stately homes, it was not knocked down. In 1993 the Copped Hall Trust was established to save the house and surrounding gardens.

Councillors see where new floors will be laid across fire resistant steel beamsArchitect Alan Cox by one of the restored fireplaces

With support of organisations including Epping Forest District Council and the dedicated hard work of many individuals, Copped Hall, the gardens and associated buildings are gradually being brought back to life. The Trustees hold events including the Copped Hall Run with Epping Rotary, music and open-air theatre productions. Tours around the inside of the building are being held for members of the public and local schools.

The cellars at Copped HallCouncillors visit the stables at Copped Hall

Councillor Penny Smith`s family has farmed land in nearby Epping Upland and she remembers some of the people who used to work on the Copped Hall Estate.

She said: Today, many people have no idea about the hall or estate. Most only catch a glimpse as they speed past on the M25. However, there was a time when the lives of people in Epping, Epping Upland and Upshire revolved around Copped Hall. It is steeped in history with records as far back as the Doomsday Book.

The restoration still has a very long way to go but walking through the rooms is incredibly atmospheric. From the great dining and bedrooms to the servants` quarters, kitchens and stables, you get a sense of the generations that lived, worked and died there. Small touches such as the restoration of a fireplace, paintings on a wall and the occasional piece of period furniture add to the impression that this was once a very special place and is becoming so again.

Chairman Penny Smith with Councillor Mary Sartin and Copped Hall Trustee John Padfield

Although there are public footpaths across the Copped Hall Estate, entry to the House is by appointment with the Trustees only who run regular tours, proceeds from which go towards the restoration work.

Councillor Penny Smith thanked Alan Cox and Denys Favre of the Copped Hall Trustees for showing the Councillors the Hall. She said: It is marvellous to see the fantastic work taking place. The Copped Hall Trust is a charitable organisation. It relies upon an army of dedicated volunteers led by Alan, Denys and the other trustees. They have done a tremendous job and I look forward to seeing the restoration progress over the next year or so.

Raising The Flag For Britain`s Armed Forces

Written on . Posted in Chairman, Civic events, Our activities, Out and about, Your council

Armed Forces Day 27 June

Epping Forest District Council proudly joined the nation`s celebrations on Monday 22 June 2009 to recognise the contributions of Her Majesty`s Armed Forces. A specially commissioned flag was raised as part of Britain`s first ever Armed Forces Day, which will now take place on 27 June each year.

A short service was conducted by the Reverend Bryony Morrison, Team Vicar in the Epping District Team Ministry. The Chairman of Council, Councillor Penny Smith raised the flag in front of senior councillors, officers from the district council and members of the Royal British Legion. A piper from the Epping Forest Pipe Band played the bagpipes during the service.

Chairman Cllr Penny Smith shows the special Armed forces Day flag

Councillor Penny Smith, who had the honour of raising the flag for the first time said: The day is an opportunity for the whole nation to show its appreciation for the contribution made by all those who serve or have served in Her Majesty`s Armed Forces past, present and future.

Epping Forest is one of hundreds of towns and cities around the country to fly a special flag throughout Armed Forces Week which runs from 22 to 27 June 2009. After the ceremony, the Chairman of Council hosted a short reception for those attending the event.

Chairman’s Golf Day Raises Money for Charity

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Chairman Penny Smith thanked all involved for taking part

Golfers raised close to £600 for charity in the annual Chairman`s Charity Golf Day on Tuesday 16 June 2009 at Chigwell Golf Club. Twenty-one golfers comprising of Councillors, Officers and Guests of the Chairman of Council, Councillor Penny Smith took to the fairways to raise money for the Epping Forest branch of the Alzheimer`s Society, the Chairman`s chosen charity for 2009 to 2010.

The winner and champion golfer for 2009 with a score of 34 points was David Clifton from the Housing Directorate.

He received the much coveted Don Spinks Shield. Both Councillor Anthony Watts and former EFDC employee Trevor Johnson scored 33 points with Trevor Johnson declared as runner-up on the count-back rule.

Wendy Macleod from Democratic Services won the Robert O`Mallby Cup for ladies golfers with a score of 31 points, followed by the winner of the Longest Drive competition, Julie Chandler from the Office of the Deputy Chief Executive, with a score of 28 points.

Chairman Penny Smith and champion golfer for 2009, David CliftonChairman Penny Smith and the Robert O Mallby Cup for ladies golfers winner, Wendy Macleod

Nearest the Pin prize was awarded to Councillor Ricki Gadsby and Ron Sutcliffe won the award for being the highest placed Guest of the Chairman. Former Council employee Bill Brooks scored 32 points with Council Officers Tony Cooper also scoring 32 points and both James Warwick and Gary Woodhall scoring 31 points.

The Chairman of Council, Councillor Penny Smith provided strawberries and lemonade to contestants from the hut on the 9th green at the halfway stage.

Chairman of Council Councillor Penny Smith thanked all those involved for taking part and raising £568.67 for her nominated charity.

Land Army Girls Honoured

Written on . Posted in Chairman, Civic events, Community, Councillors, Older people, Our activities, Out and about, Residents, Your area, Your community, Your council

Former Chairman Cllr John Knapman thanked the Land Girls on behalf of the District

Over thirty surviving `Land Girls` who toiled on the Home Front to provide food for Britain were officially honoured at a reception host by Epping Forest District Council at Theydon Bois Village Hall.

Official recognition of their role has been woefully late in coming. When the Women`s Land Army was disbanded in 1950 the members were shabbily treated, receiving neither medals nor gratuities, and being required to return most of their uniforms.

It was not until the new millennium that members of the Women`s Land Army and Women`s Timber Corps were allowed to join the annual Remembrance Day march in London to the Cenotaph, despite the fact that other national service organisations had for some time been part of the parade.

Chairman Cllr Penny Smith listens to stories of happy memories and comradeship

It took a further eight years of pressure before the British Government agreed to officially recognise the efforts of Land Girls in 2008 and award a specially designed badge to commemorate their service.

The badge has been specially designed by the Garter King at Arms and bears the Royal Crown. It shows a gold wheat sheaf on a white background surrounded by a circlet of pine branches and pine cones to indicate the work of both the Land Army and the Timber Corps.

Each `Land Girl` was represented with her official badge and a specially designed certificate by former Chairman of Council, Councillor John Knapman and the Deputy Lieutenant of Essex, Michael Chapman.

Former Chairman Cllr John Knapman enjoys a cup of tea with the Land Girls

The afternoon reception was a very happy occasion with many of the guests getting a chance to recall their wartime memories with fellow `Land Girls`, of whom many are now over 80 years of age. Stories told were of the incredibly hard work, long hours and even some of romance. But overwhelmingly it was a time of happy memories and comradeship.

Following the presentations Florence Harrison 86 from Theydon Bois said I`m very proud to be given this medal, although I didn`t think about what I was doing at the time. We just got on with it and had a thoroughly enjoyable time – just like this afternoon`.

A full list of the Epping Forest District Land Girls who received an official badge is listed below with links to photographs of those who attended the reception.

Susanna Andrewes Ivy Grant Christine Rumball
Frances Astrella Lillian Griffiths Muriel Rush
Marjorie Bird Joan Hammond Doris Sage
Evelyn Bolden Dorothy Harris Margaret Saggers
M P Butcher Florence Harrison Rosetta Saville
Edna Campion Queenie Harvey Doris Seaman
Doreen Childs Betty Holland Joan Sleet
Joan Cloughton Sheila Horsham W M Smith
Sylvia Cole Constance Jackson Myrtle Stallan
Frances Cray Gladys Kempton Margaret Starling
Elsie Dearson Phyllis Kennerley Sylvia Studwick
Irene Edwards Kathleen Knott Mary Trower
Amy Eldridge Rita Lea Lilian Twaites
Joan Everett Jenny Lowe Violet Webb
Lilian Fensom Joan Lynes Barbara Williams
Doreen Fitzpatrick Constance McPhail Rita Williams
Ivy Gaze Jean Ann Murray Joan Wood
Mollie Gingell Joyce Pollard Jessie Wood
Bessie Goss Gwendoline Rae Marcia Wood
Jane Gottschalk Flora Rideout