Stress, bullying and drugs at Youth Conference

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Chairman, Chigwell, Community, Consultation, Councillors, Crime and safety, Democracy, Epping, Loughton, Media, Ongar, Residents, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your home

Stress, bullying and drugs were top of the agenda when young people met in Epping for the Epping Forest District Youth Council Conference.

Almost 90 delegates aged 11 to 17 packed the council chamber for a welcome by District Council Chairman Tony Boyce and a video message by constituency MP and Deputy Speaker of the House of Commons Eleanor Laing.

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

Local Democracy Week

The Youth Conference aims to engage young people in local politics and provide an opportunity for them to voice their concerns and make councillors more accessible.  It was timed to coincide with Local Democracy Week. It is a great opportunity for councils to engage with people across the UK and encouraged more young people to take part in civic life.

Local Democracy Week runs from 13 to 19 October with a variety of initiatives aimed at encouraging people to take up the right to vote, get involved in local government and have a say in their council. The Epping Forest Youth Conference gives pupils representing the secondary schools in the district a voice and the opportunity to question those people holding the local reins of power including the Leader of Epping Forest District Council and the Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner.

Local schools participating

  1. Braeside School (Buckhurst Hill)
  2. Chigwell School (Chigwell)
  3. Davenant Foundation School (Loughton)
  4. Debden Park High School (Loughton)
  5. Epping Forest College (Loughton)
  6. Epping St John’s (Epping)
  7. King Harold Academy (Waltham Abbey)
  8. Roding Valley High School (Loughton)
  9. West Hatch High School (Chigwell)

Getting to grips with the issues

Delegates split into morning and afternoon workshop sessions. Epping Forest Youth Council brought skilled experts in their fields in to facilitate each group.

  • Alcohol – Terry Martin, AlcoHELP
  • Bullying – Royston John, RDJ Training
  • Stress – Alexia Doherty, Epping Forest District Council
  • Drugs – Trevor Griffiths, Alcohol and Drugs Advisory Service
  • Volunteering – Patrick Arnold, Epping Forest District Council
  • Skills and Jobs – Ruth Warner, Department for Work and Pensions

After a good lunch in the Members’ Room at Epping Forest District Council, the highlight of the afternoon was Question Time with a panel of some of the most influential people in the district.

Question Time panel

Gareth Clement – Chief Executive Alcohol and Drugs Advisory Service, Jacqui Foile – Chief Officer Voluntary Action Epping Forest, Inspector Andy Fusher – Essex Police, Councillor Helen Kane – Cabinet Member for Leisure and Community Services Epping Forest District Council, Donna Martin – Drugs and Alcohol Partnership Trainer EYPDAS The Children’s Society, Michael O’Brien – Head of Commissioning Education and Lifelong Learning Essex County, Council Chris Seward – (Chairman) Chair of the Secondary Schools Group and Head Teacher Davenant Foundation School, Councillor Chris Whitbread – Leader of Epping Forest District Council, Lindsay Whitehouse – Deputy Police and Crime Commissioner for Essex.


Drawing Shadows – The Big Draw

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

This October the world’s biggest drawing festival, The Big Draw, will be taking place in 14 countries around the world and Epping Forest District Council is looking for you to get involved.

This year we’re working with Loughton Arts Centre to bring you ‘Drawing Shadows: A large scale collaborative drawing‘.

Drawing Shadows

Visitors to Loughton Arts Centre from 10 to 24 October can participate and contribute to a ‘live’ drawing session on the gallery wall, that will develop over the 2 week period, gradually being added to by different visitors. The drawing is made using live video projection via a video camera and projector.

Participants work in pairs – one participant stands in front of the camera, the other draws around the projected image. Over time this creates a network of outlines that overlap making other shapes and connections in the drawing. There’s no need to book and it’s free to take part, all ages and abilities are welcome.


Fusion – a day of dance for boys

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

Fusion is back!

The dance experience for boys was such a great success when first launched by professional dancer, Micheal Downing in February 2014, that it’s back on Saturday 25 October and is bigger and better.

Fusion Freeze - Participants strike a pose

Whether you have little dance experience or are a regular in the studio, this is a fantastic opportunity not to be missed. Learn new styles and skills from professional dancers and choreographers, including a Michael Jackson workshop.

There will also be a chance to ask the professionals your dance questions.

  • Ages - for 7 to 16 year olds
  • Date - Saturday 25 October 2014
  • Time - 10:30am to 2.30pm
  • Cost - £22
  • Where - West Hatch High School, Chigwell High Road, IG7 5BT

Find out more

For more info contact Micheal on 07903 232 873 or email

Book now

Book on the Eventbrite website.

This event is in partnership with Epping Forest District Council.


The search is on to find the 2015 Citizen and Young Citizen of the Year

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Chairman, Chigwell, Civic events, Community, Epping, Loughton, Older people, Ongar, Residents, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council

Is there someone in your neighbourhood who unselfishly brightens the lives of other residents? Somebody who goes that extra mile to care for their town or village and for the people who live there?

Epping Forest District Council has started the search to find the 2015 Citizen and Young Citizen of the Year. If you know someone who deserves the title, why not nominate them for this prestigious award?

Youth Councillors Julie Turrell and Joseph Pascoe with James Lingfield (centre)

Nominate now

Complete you nomination online - Nominate a Citizen or Young Citizen of the year or

Nomination forms can also be obtained from the council’s reception desks.

Who can I nominate?

Anyone who lives in the Epping Forest district can be nominated to be Citizen of the Year or, if between 11 and 18 years of age, Young Citizen of the Year.

It can be for any reason

  • if they have shown outstanding courage
  • if they have done something of service to you or the community
  • perhaps it’s someone who has shown extraordinary commitment, energy and effort in their particular field or towards achieving a particular goal

The winners will be invited to attend the civic awards ceremony in February 2015 to receive their award and certificate. The Young Citizen of the Year will also receive a cheque for £100.

Unsung heroes

Chairman of Council, Councillor Tony Boyce said: “The annual civic awards ceremony enables the council to thank publicly those special residents of our district who always ‘go the extra mile’ and often think of others before themselves.”

“Without them our district would be a much poorer place. If you know someone who you think has made an exceptional contribution to the Epping Forest district community, do please take the time to fill in a nomination form now, so we can all celebrate the efforts of these unsung heroes in our community.”


James Lingfield from Davenant School is the current Young Citizen of the Year. He was delighted to be chosen and said on winning his award: “I’m so amazed, so grateful and shocked and still can’t believe I was awarded Young Citizen of the Year. I still really don’t believe I deserve it, thank you all so much. I can’t begin to tell you how much it means to me and my family – thank you, thank you.”

“You have made me feel special, honoured and as though the challenges in my life have been acknowledged and have made a difference.”


Closing date for nominations

  • Citizen of the Year - Friday 21 November 2014
  • Young Citizen of the Year - Friday 28 November 2014


Job Fair at Stansted Airport

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Business, Chigwell, Community, Epping, Jobs, Local business, Loughton, Media, Older people, Ongar, Residents, Supporting business, Travel, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your money

The Stansted Employment and Skills Academy is holding a free job fair at the airport’s Enterprise House from 10am to 3pm on Thursday 16 October 2014.

Let your career take off at London Stansted Airport.

Stansted Jobs Fair Poster Oct 2014

Over 100 full time and part time positions

The fair is open to everyone and will offer information on the many types of vacancies at the airport.

Companies attending include Stansted Airport (M.A.G), Premier Work Support (recruiting on behalf of handling agents), Boots, McDonalds, No.1 Traveller, Premier Inn, World Duty Free, SSP, The Restaurant Group, Radisson Blu, ITSU, JD Sports offering over 100 full time and part time positions.

Job seekers will be able to meet potential employers face to face, obtain careers advice, travel advice, receive guidance about the application process and find out more about free training opportunities and existing vacancies.

Free car parking will be provided for all job seekers in Enterprise House Staff Car Park.


One of the many benefits of working at Stansted Airport is the wide range of public transport discounts available to staff. The Airport Travel Card offers an attractive option for staff to use public transport, offering significant savings on standard rail, bus and coach fares.

The airport also operates a very successful staff car share scheme, which is one of the largest of its kind in Europe.

Find out more

For more information about the job fair



Autumn half term playschemes

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

Bring your kids along to our explosive and spooky themed week during autumn half term.

Epping Forest Playschemes are an opportunity for children to have fun, learn new skills and make new friends. Activities include sports, art and craft, drama, indoor games and exciting challenges.

Autumn half term week playschemes

When - Monday 27 October to Friday 31 October 2014.

Time - 8:45am to 3:30pm.

Ages - For children aged 5 to 11 years.

Cost - £15 or £8.50 concessions per day.

Where - Upshire Primary Foundation School, Upshire Road, Waltham Abbey, Essex EN9 3PX (click for map).

Download the flyer

Activities include sports, arts and crafts, drama, indoor games and exciting new challenges. All children to wear suitable clothing and shoes and bring a packed lunch.

Book now

Places are limited so book now to avoid disappointment, you can book online or call our booking line on 01992 564226 between 10am and 4pm.


Holy Cross Day at Waltham Abbey

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

Jan Boyce, wife of Epping Forest District Council Chairman, Councillor Tony Boyce captured some good images of the preparations for Waltham Abbey Holy Cross Day parade on Saturday 13 September. The chairman is seen meeting people at the start of the parade and enjoying a conversation with Peter Frost, Town Crier for Waltham Abbey at the conclusion of proceedings.



Council commitment to low-tax at O&S

Written on . Posted in Community, Consultation, Council tax, Councillors, Elections, Leader, Local plan / planning our future, Meetings, Our performance, Parking, Performance, Planning, Residents, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your community, Your council, Your home, Your money

Epping Forest District Youth councillors looked on as members of Epping Forest District Council’s Overview and Scrutiny Committee quizzed Cabinet portfolio holders on Tuesday (16 September).

Members of the Youth Council who were welcomed to the meeting by committee chairman Councillor Richard Morgan, represent young people across the district. They range in age from 13 to 17 and are drawn from local schools, colleges and the local community.

Items on the agenda included progress on Epping Forest District Council’s corporate plan objectives, the forward plan of the Cabinet, and reviews of the recent local election procedures and polling stations. Councillors were reminded of the Council’s responsibility for running the local General Election counts next May and the need to identify a count centre large enough. Councillors highlighted the extremely smooth conduct of recent elections and paid tribute to staff including the recently retired Returning Officer Ian Willett.

The electoral registration process has changed. Councillor Brian Surtees asked if the introduction of Individual Elector Registration might cause difficulties. Assistant Director Simon Hill noted that a great deal of advanced preparation by the elections team had eased the process. However, Mr Hill acknowledged that a significant level of ongoing work would be necessary to maintain the highest voter registration levels. An amendment to the polling station review to combine voting for all Waltham Abbey North East residents at the Community Centre in Saxon Way will go with the report for final determination by Full Council.

Councillors also responded to an invitation by the Mayor of London to comment on infrastructure growth. They supported the prioritisation of transport schemes on the West Anglia and Central Line as a means of encouraging job growth, delivering commuters and in support of the London-Cambridge-Stansted Corridor. Emphasis was placed on the need for greater infrastructure in the form of railway station car parks.

District Councillors raised issues around Central Line capacity, and bus services. They supported Mayor Boris Johnson’s approach to keeping London growth within current boundaries and hoped that Essex County Council might also support this objective.

Planning Portfolio Holder Councillor Richard Bassett assured members of Overview and Scrutiny following a request by Councillor Brian Surtees for continuing information to the public on Local Plan progress. Council Leader Chris Whitbread followed up by encouraging all Councillors to attend forthcoming Local Plan events and to share information with their residents.

Responding to comments by Councillor John Knapman, Councillor Chris Whitbread agreed that the Council’s drive to keep Council Tax down could be more prominently identified within the Council’s Key Objectives. Epping Forest District Council has not increased its Council Tax precept to residents for 4 years and strives to be one of the lowest in Essex.

Lifewalkers walk for charity

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

Kind-hearted walkers have supported Cancer Research and Macmillan Cancer Support by raising money whilst taking part in Epping Forest District Council’s Walking for Health Scheme Lifewalks.

Lifewalkers group

Elaine Hammond, a mum who has secondary breast cancer and has been told she has only years to live is hoping to raise £20,000 for cancer charities by organising a series of sponsored walks around the world. Around 65 individuals took part in several walks in the Epping Forest and Lee Valley areas, raising a total of £91.

Elaine Hammond said: “I really appreciate the support the Epping Forest Lifewalks are giving us. Nearly everyone is affected by cancer and walking is a great way to get fit meet new friends and raise money for an extremely good cause.”


There are 27 Lifewalks in various locations in the local area including Loughton, Roding Valley, Lee Valley, Chingford and Theydon Bois. There are 5 led walks a week, which range from 1 to 3 miles. The duration of each walk is dependent on participants’ walking speed. The idea of Lifewalks is to try to walk a little faster than normal to get your heart rate up – as if late for an appointment but still feel comfortable and able to hold a conversation.

The first walk is free and then pay on the day – just £2 per walk. Alternatively, if you hope to come to at least 1 walk a week, pre-pay for 6 months for £27.50. This will entitle you to join up to 5 walks a week. A GP referral system is available – if your GP fills in the form and sends it into us, you are entitled to 1 month of free walking.

You can find out more on the Lifewalks website.

Contact Lifewalks

For a paper copy of the diary contact Karen Murray Lifewalks Co-ordinator


The Great War exhibition at Lowewood Museum

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

A new exhibition will open at Lowewood Museum on Saturday 13 September 2014, marking the centenary of the start of the First World War. The display will explore how the Borough of Broxbourne was affected.

The free exhibition, entitled ‘The Great War: Home Life and Service during the 1914-18 War’, first takes visitors back to 1914, revealing how the War was met with initial excitement by many, with huge numbers volunteering to enlist in Kitchener’s army.

The Great War Exhibiton poster

The exhibition goes on to show how this initial excitement quickly declined as the horrors of war began to show. By 1915, Britain was on full alert as the menacing zeppelin entered the skies. By the end of 1915, 37 tonnes of bombs had been dropped over Britain and the Borough of Broxbourne did not escape. For the first time in history Britain faced a world war, with threats from land, air and sea.

From the top to the bottom of society, people stepped up to help with the war effort. This exhibition reveals just this, showing how local people adapted and did their bit, from the role of local women and the Special Constabulary, to the establishment of make-shift hospitals like Rosehill in Hoddesdon.

Exhibits include a collection of diaries written by Stephen Warner, the great grandson of John Warner of Hoddesdon. During the War, Stephen served initially as a Private in the Royal Army Medical Corps, but after a time there he felt that he could not let others bear the brunt of the battle and so became 2nd Lieutenant in the 9th Battalion Essex Regiment where he was served with distinction and was awarded the Military Cross, which also can be seen on display.

Find out more

The exhibition runs from 13 September to 20 December 2014 and entry is free.

You can find the address, contact details and opening times on the Lowewood Museum website.