Elections guide for 2015 candidates

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Chigwell, Councillors, Democracy, Elections, Epping, Loughton, Media, Ongar, Waltham Abbey, Your area, Your council

As potential councillors, standing for election is an exciting but sometimes daunting experience. We have launched our guide for potential candidates in the May 2015 local elections.

Your vote matters, make sure you're in


Candidates evening

The council is also holding candidates evening on Thursday 16 April 2015 at 6pm at the civic offices when we will be able to take you through the election process and what happens after.

We believe that our council is only as effective as our councillors. We have put together guide that is designed for anybody considering standing for election as a district councillor.

The guide gives information

  • About being a candidate
  • On the elections process
  • On what happens immediately after winning the election
  • How the council is run and your commitments as a councillor

Further information about elections is available from our website in our elections and voting section.


Call for volunteers at gala event

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

Some of the finest citizens of Epping Forest District were applauded at a glittering awards ceremony hosted by Epping Forest District Council Chairman Tony Boyce at Down Hall on Friday 27 February.

Letitia Berry was announced as the Epping Forest District Citizen of the Year 2015 and Evangeline Foster is the district’s new Young Citizen of the Year.

Among the other awards were presentations to the emergency services and Epping Forest Youth Councillors. Creativity (Arts) and Sports Bursaries were also presented to some of the district’s most promising young people. In what Councillor Boyce has called his ‘Year of Volunteers’, the voluntary contribution of local people across Epping Forest District was celebrated late into the night.

The Award Winners

  • Back Row L-R Youth Council Cup – Thomas Bromwich, Leonora Troshupa, Matthew Tinker, Olivia Storey, and Sports Bursary/Young Citizen nominee - Daniel Rowden
  • Middle Row L-R Police Community Service Medal – Tony Ellis (Essex Police Crime Prevention Tactical Advisor), Young Citizen nominee – Marnie Cairns, Highly Commended for Citizen of the Year – June Giles and Fire Community Service Medal - Roy Manning (Essex Fire and Rescue Fire-Fighter)
  • Front Row L-R Citizen of the Year – Letitia Berry with Epping Forest District Council Chairman Councillor Tony Boyce and Young Citizen of the Year – Evangeline Foster

Watch a short video of the ceremony

£20,000 target

Councillor Boyce also thanked Daniel Sugarman of Remedy Recruitment, a family business in Loughton and Mr and Mrs Vadher of the hardware shop House to Home in Epping who have played a huge part in helping him raise £14,000 since June towards his £20,000 chairman’s charity fundraising target. The Chairman has already made a donation of £9,000 to Voluntary Action Epping Forest for a new purpose-built mini-bus capable of carrying wheelchair and seated passengers.

His other main charity, Ongar and District Healthcare League of Friends is also set to receive a major donation. Others to receive special mention for their fundraising support included Coles of Epping and Andy Vincent of Woodford Cycle Centre.

The chairman renewed his target with guests at the awards to raise £20,000 by the end of his term of office with the promise of abseiling from Church Langley Water Tower.

First rung on the ladder

However, in an emotional closing speech in which he paid a special tribute to his wife Jan for her support, Councillor Boyce insisted that the most important thing anyone can give is their time. He asked everyone to think what they could achieve if people donated just half a day a week to doing something for other people. He was especially proud to introduce Poppi and Lili to help draw the winning tickets of his prize draw which raised over £1,000 on the night.

The event represented the “first rung on the ladder of helping their community” as the chairman thanked Poppi and Lili, his “fantastic granddaughters”.

Citizen of the Year

Letitia Berry has been at the heart of Epping for 50 years or more. Among her achievements, Letitia was a founding member, treasurer and chairman of the Epping Townswomen’s Guild. She is currently branch secretary for North Weald. An Epping town councillor for more than 20 years including a term as mayor, she is an Honorary Freeman. Letitia is also a key figure in Epping Horticultural Society, a member of St John’s Choir and President of the Epping Forest Band. Her town-twinning efforts have brought people of Epping and Eppingen together in friendship. Letitia provides assistance to musically gifted children from low-income families with the Hope Hambourg Musical Trust.

Other roles include work for St John’s Church, Epping and Theydon Garnon Charities, Theydon Trusts and St Clare Hospice.

June Giles of Ongar was highly commended for her community work bringing company and friendship to elderly and disabled people in Ongar. June is a fantastic cook who regularly caters for up to 60 people at a time. The residents of Frank Breton House in Ongar are particularly thankful for her wonderful generosity. June spends much of her time using her cooking skills to raise money for charity including Rotary and the Ongar League of Friends

A private person who usually stays behind the scenes, Councillor Boyce was particularly delighted to give June public recognition for her work.

The official photos

Young Citizen of the Year

Young Citizen Evie Foster is an elite triathlete. She trained for weeks before raising money on behalf of the Teenage Cancer Trust by swimming an English Channel relay. After the training requirements needed to win two London Regional Championships, Evie now spends more time volunteering to help children with mental and physical disabilities learn to swim.

Evie is also a Lance Corporal in the Combined Cadet Force, Epping Forest Youth Councillor and ‘I Will Ambassador’ in the Step Up to Serve campaign. As part of a team with the Police and Crime Commissioner, Evie helped to produce ‘Generation X’ a video being used to improve the relationship between teenagers and the police across Essex.

Community Service Medals

Tony Ellis of Ongar retired just before Christmas after 50 years as a police officer and crime prevention officer. Fire-fighter Roy Manning has worked from fire stations across the district and worked closely with young drivers on road safety.


Athlete Daniel Rowden (17) from Buckhurst Hill received a Sports Bursary of £1,000. He was also nominated along with Marnie Cairns (14) of Waltham Abbey for the Young Citizen award. Hockey player George Farrant will receive £500. Laurence Williams will receive a cheque for £1,400 and Rebecca Ford a cheque for £1,305 as part of the Creativity Awards.

Smaller awards are to be made to Bethany Trower, a dance student at DNA Studios in Waltham Abbey, Eleanor Ireland, a performing arts student at the E15 Acting School in Loughton, Alex Lamden a young musician from Loughton with a passion for the oboe, and Lydia Dronfield on behalf of the Youth Theatre Group based in Epping.

Epping Forest Youth Council

The Epping Forest Youth Council Cup is awarded to up to four youth councillors each year. 2015 winners Thomas Bromwich, Olivia Storey, Leonora Troshupa, and Matthew Tinker received the awards for their special contributions to engagement between young people and older residents of the district.

The presentations

The speeches

Councillor Tony Boyce was assisted in the presentations by Councillors Liz Webster, Richard Morgan, Ken Angold-Stephens, Gary Waller and Mary Sartin.

The whole set

Giant killers train at Waltham Abbey

Written on . Posted in Community, Media, Our activities, Our attractions, Out and about, Residents, Sports, Sports centres and pools, Waltham Abbey, Your area, Your community, Your council

FA Cup giant killers Bradford City AFC trained on the 3G Pitch at Town Mead Leisure Park in Waltham Abbey ahead of their game against Leyton Orient FC.


To view photos in a slideshow, click on a picture below and click start slideshow.

League One Bradford City, who recently beat Premiership teams Chelsea FC and Sunderland AFC to reach the quarter finals of the FA Cup, trained on the pitch at Waltham Abbey. Their first team players practiced final training drills on Wednesday 18 February, ahead of their 2-0 victory over League One strugglers Leyton Orient FC.

Epping Forest District Council arranged for Bradford City AFC to use the pitch. The club’s coaching staff and players were impressed with the facility and were grateful for the opportunity to use it ahead of the game.

Available for hire

The facility is available for hire to local football clubs for training and matches

  • View details of Town Mead Leisure Park facilities
  • To book, call Waltham Abbey Town Council on 01992 714949 from Monday to Friday 9am to 5pm


Douglas finds a hug

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

The Blunderbus Theatre Company returned to the district with their wonderful production of Hugless Douglas at 2 sold out shows at Epping Hall on Wednesday 18 February 2015.

Douglas finds a hug

To view photos in a slideshow, click on a picture below and click start slideshow.

Little clubs (and their grown-up bears) watched in anticipation to see if and how Douglas would find the perfect hug. Douglas, with help from Mrs Owl, Mr Rabbit and lots of woolly sheep managed to find the best hug of all, from Mummy Bear.

Exciting and entertaining

Arts Assistant Vanessa Gayton said: “The magic of children’s theatre is alive in Epping this week!”

“Massive thanks to the Blunderbus Theatre Company for their exciting and entertaining Hugless Douglas theatre show. It brought together a great blend of music, puppetry and high energy storytelling. The packed out audiences enjoyed every moment singing along and joining in with the show.”

“We’ve had some great feedback from both the ‘little cubs’ and ‘grown-up bears’. I can’t wait to see their ‘Duck in the Truck’ show which will be coming to our district in the summer.”


Come and talk to your local police officers

Written on . Posted in Community, Crime and safety, Media, Out and about, Residents, Waltham Abbey, Your area, Your community, Your home

Essex Police are a holding Local Community Meeting in Waltham Abbey on Tuesday 3 March 2015.

Find out more about what’s going on in your local area and meet with your local policing team. This meeting is an open meeting and all members of the public are welcome.

  • Date – Tuesday 3 March 2015
  • Time – 7pm to 8pm
  • Venue – Town Mead Centre, Town Mead Road, Waltham Abbey, Essex EN9 1RP

Local Community Meeting Poster Waltham Abbey 3 Mar 15


My health, My future, My say feedback events

Written on . Posted in Community, Epping, Health, Media, Older people, Out and about, Residents, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community

As part of the engagement programme My health, My future, My say Part II, NHS West Essex CCG is holding a feedback events in Waltham Abbey and Epping in February.

My Health, My Future, My Say part II

The CCG’s 5 year plan for the future of west Essex health and care services will form the foundation for discussions on the night and local people are invited to feedback on proposals for new and existing health and care services in the area.

  • 9 February, 7pm to 9pm, Waltham Abbey Town Hall, Waltham Abbey
  • 26 February, 7pm to 9pm, Epping Hall, Epping

Find out more

Visit NHS West Essex CCG feedback events for more information and to book your place.


No increase in Council Tax

Written on . Posted in Buckhurst Hill, Business, Community, Council tax, Councillors, Housing, Leader, Local business, Loughton, Media, Meetings, Older people, Ongar, Out and about, Parking, Planning, Residents, Supporting business, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your community, Your council, Your home, Your money

Another freeze in Council Tax is being recommended by the Epping Forest District Council Cabinet on 2 February 2015.

The council has not increased its Council Tax charge of £148.77 for an average Band D property for 5 years. The zero increase in Council Tax has been achieved despite central government funding reduction of approximately 60% over the last 5 years.

Read the agenda

Central government funding

Finance Portfolio Holder Syd Stavrou also provided details of the significant income from investments. As central government funding continues to decline, councillors are looking long-term towards making Epping Forest District Council less dependent on grant.

Councillor Stavrou expressed delight that among the financial achievements was an investment budget of £33 million for new council housing, while stressing the duty to continue searching for savings on council budgets wherever possible.

Thanks to the robust and prudent management of the council’s finances, Councillor Stavrou received support to create a new ‘invest to save’ budget of £500,000. This will be used specifically to put money into projects designed to make long term savings. Epping Forest District Council remains a low-tax council.

Council Leader Chris Whitbread welcomed the budget report. He described it as a really good budget, protecting front line services while never forgetting that it is residents’ money. Every pound should be spent as carefully possible.

Council house building programme

Earlier in the meeting, Councillor David Stallan Housing portfolio holder updated Cabinet on the new council house building programme including progress at Faversham Hall and Marden Close, and ground-breaking for the first completely new properties in Waltham Abbey. Further consideration is being given to plans for the development of council housing at Burton Road in Loughton.

Councillor Whitbread invited Councillor Stallan and Assistant Director Paul Pledger to elaborate on the design standards being applied to new council housing. Councillor Whitbread went on to emphasise the importance of delivering high-quality homes in the shortest possible timeframe to meet the needs of local people.

Work continues to provide off-street parking on council housing estates. Councillor Stallan reported on the completion of 182 spaces at an average cost of £3,340 per bay. Councillors received an updated list of schemes to come including two new sites in Waltham Abbey.

The next 8 schemes subject to consultation with residents and planning applications are

  1. Roundhills (Red Cross site), Waltham Abbey
  2. Etheridge Green, Loughton
  3. Watermans Way, North Weald
  4. Alderwood Close, Abridge
  5. Tillingham Court, Waltham Abbey
  6. Sycamore House, Buckhurst Hill
  7. Roundhills (Site 4), Waltham Abbey
  8. Rochford Green, Loughton

Councillor Stallan stressed that schemes can only go forward with the support of local residents. Councillors are also to look carefully at the potential impact of new council house building projects on off-street parking schemes.

Car parking strategy

The revised pay and display car parking strategy was presented by Portfolio Holder Gary Waller. The strategy sees some modest increases in income from council-run car park tariffs. Parking charges will be kept lower in Waltham Abbey and Ongar which do not benefit from ready access to London Underground stations. The new structure seeks to protect local town centre businesses and shoppers while also investing in maintaining and improving the car parking services.

Weekend shoppers will continue to enjoy free parking for the first 2 hours of their stay where car parks were previously free, but will have to pay £1 after that. The half hour 10p weekday charge will increase to 20p. New ‘smart meters’ and additional CCTV are among the improvements to convenience and security.

Ongar Academy

There is good news for the district’s children. Cabinet provided support for the new Ongar Academy secondary school by agreeing the principle of selling 8.98 hectares of land next to Ongar Leisure Centre. The value of the site to be used by the new school is yet to be assessed.


Inclusion Project half term activities

Written on . Posted in Chigwell, Health, Loughton, Media, Our activities, Out and about, Residents, Sports, Waltham Abbey, Young people, Your area, Your council

The Epping Forest Inclusion Project is running some great activities in the February 2015 half term for children and young people with SEND (special educational needs and disability).

Epping Forest Inclusion Project February half term 2015

Monday 16 February 2015

  • Multi sports camp – 10am to 3pm – £15
    Join our sports camp for a day of activities. The coaching team will be putting on sports including trampolining, football, athletics and dodgeball. Please bring a packed lunch and plenty to drink.
  • Trampolining – 10am to 11am - £4
    If you don’t fancy a whole day of activity then just join us for trampolining in the morning. Siblings welcome. Booking recommended. Limited spaces.

Debden Park High School, Willingale Road, Debden, Loughton, Essex IG10 2BQ

Tuesday 17 February 2015

  • Own a pony morning – 10am to 12pm - £25 including hat hire
    Enjoy a morning of riding and all the fun that comes with owning a pony. Learn how to groom, tack up and feed ‘your’ pony. Limited spaces,must book in advance. This session is only for children or young people with disabilities / SEN. Please wear suitable clothing.

Woodredon Equestrian Centre, Woodredon Farm Lane, Waltham Abbey, Essex EN9 3SX

Friday 20 February 2015

  • Yogini Tinies – 10am to 12pm - play, learn and share workshop – £8 per child
    Learn yoga the Yogini Tinies way through story telling, music and creative play. This fun interactive session will help improve your child’s posture, core strength and muscle tone. Siblings welcome. Booking recommended. Limited spaces.

The Limes Centre, Chigwell, Essex IG7 5LP

Want to know more?

For more information or to book a place on any of these sessions contact Olivia Worsfold


Huggable bear to visit Epping Forest

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

The Blunderbuss Theatre Company returns to the district with the adorable Hug less Douglas at Epping Hall on 18 February 2015.

Hugless Douglas comes to Epping 18 February

Douglas is a young brown bear who wakes up one morning in need of a hug. He tries to find the perfect one, but none of them seem quite right. After all, there are so many different hugs to choose from. With the help of Mr Rabbit, Mr Owl and a field full of woolly-headed sheep, can Douglas find the perfect hug?

Based on the book by David Melling, this delightful show comes to life with an irresistible blend of music, puppetry and high energy storytelling. Little Cubs aged 3 to 7 years old will love this heart warming tale, and grown-up bears will have lots of fun, too.


  • Where - Epping Hall, St. John’s Road, Epping, CM16 5JU
  • When - Wednesday 18 February
  • Performances - 11.30am and 2.30pm
  • Cost - Tickets £5
  • Booking - book online at www.eppingforestdc.gov.uk/holiday-activities or call our booking line on 01992 564226 (open Monday to Friday from 10am to 4pm)

Children must be accompanied by an adult.


February half term playscheme

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

Join us for a fun week of arts and crafts, sporting activities, games galore and a whole lot more for a swash buckling Pirate themed week!

Our February half term playscheme is from Monday 16 February to Friday 20 February 2015 at Upshire Primary Foundation School, Upshire Road, Waltham Abbey, EN9 3PX. It’s for children aged 5 to 11 years and costs £15 per day or £8.50 concession. Activities run from 8.45am to 3.30pm each day.

February half term playschemes logo

Book your place now

You can book the whole week or pick and choose the days you want.

Book online at www.eppingforestdc.gov.uk/holiday-activities or call our booking line on 01992 564226 – open Monday to Friday from 10am to 4pm.

Epping Forest Playschemes are an opportunity for children to have fun, learn new skills and make new friends – join us for a swash buckling Pirate themed week.