During our outdoor theatre event on 23rd June a few dog walkers were surprised that the top of the Meadows (Finchams) had been closed off and only those attending or helping with the event had access from 3pm to 7pm. The lower part of the Meadows (Gosses) was accessible from Bures Road at all times. Despite some beliefs, there is no public right of way around or across the Meadows. They are owned by the Parish Council and as a Doorstep Green must remain as a public open space for 99 years (from their creation in 2005) The PC has the right to close all or part of them for a public event and we have done this a few times before but no more than once annually.
As we are a small community, everyone has always understood this before, and it was upsetting to hear that a resident had asserted what he incorrectly thought was his right to walk across the top, verbally abusing the volunteer from the theatre group who had politely asked him to leave. All our events are staged to raise money for the village, so it is disappointing and embarrassing when local people behave in this way towards volunteers.
Furthermore, our village volunteers had already carried out the "poo walk", a disgusting
activity which involves walking across the Meadows and bagging any dog mess left
on site. There is now zero tolerance in this village regarding dog mess -
Finally some good news. An attempt to have land adjacent to Chalkney Chase and also behind 63 Colchester Road included in BDC s new development plans has been thwarted. Due in some part to vigorous opposition from the PC, and an amendment by our district councilor, Chris Siddal, but mainly we believe to sterling work by two of our residents who attended the meeting and made a presentation. Well done!
Chair, White Colne Parish Council
Damage to Village Green and Retaining Wall in Colneford Hill… Chris Pearcey
The Parish Council have been trying to reach a lasting solution to the ongoing damage on and around the Village Green. We finally managed to arrange a site meeting with ECC Highway Officials and our County Councillor (Joe Pike) last month and Highways have agreed to go away and look at the following proposals.
On the top corner near the notice board and direction post (A on map), we have asked Highways to install 'Titan' kerbs at the boundary of the Green with the road. These are very durable kerbs and should act as a deterrent to large vehicles cutting off the top corner and will hopefully prevent further erosion of the Green from vehicle damage. This proposal should not impact on the villagers who currently park on the small section of Colne Park Road as only the very top corner of the Green will be affected.
With regard to the bottom of the Green (B on map), we have asked Highways to look at reconfiguring the Junction to help prevent further damage to the Green and wall. Highways have always insisted that vehicles parked on Colne Park Road caused the problem and despite the PC's protests to the contrary they introduced the yellow line parking restrictions which have totally failed to resolve the problem. The reconfiguration of the junction would mean widening and straightening the junction at the bottom of Colne Park Road. Whilst we would lose a small section of Green it should hopefully prevent large vehicles cutting off the bottom corner and allow a greater turning circle for them to go up Colne Park Road from Colneford Hill. With the larger area to manouevre we see the biggest benefit coming from the fact that the wall on Colneford Hill should suffer much less damage. If Highways adopt these proposals they will repair the wall and remove the yellow line parking restrictions at the same time.
Highway Engineers have gone away to look at the logistics of what would be involved but the PC and our County Councillor firmly believe this is the only long term solution to something which has been a problem for years. We hope that villagers see this in the same light and endorse what the Parish Council is trying to do.
In the last edition of the News, we published a reminder to dog owners about dog fouling on The Meadows and on our footpaths. This was in response to an email from a resident complaining about the ongoing problem. We have been asked by this resident to publish her email in full. While this is not a “letters” page we have agreed on this occasion to print it, as follows…
“To the people who own dogs and do not clear up after them.
There is a huge risk (mainly to children) of 'picking' up such diseases as Toxoplasmosis, Toxocariosis, Hydatid Disease and even E. Coli. All the foregoing can be fatal to a child and in some cases to adults too.
It is hardly an onerous task to pick up after your dog and there are plenty of doggie litters bins situated all over the Parish.
These owners know who they are and so do I and if I catch them I shall duly photograph them and send a copy to the Dog Warden. Maybe naming and shaming and a fine may put a stop to this foul practice.”
Neighbourhood Watch… Sue Norris
Caravan stolen from outside a house in Colchester Road on Tuesday, 2nd July. Any information please ring Braintree Police on 101.
According to 2011 insurance data 57% of caravans are stolen from outside the owner’s
home. For advice on Caravan Security please refer to the ‘Braintree Eye’ Neighbourhood
Watch website: www.essexinfo.net/braintree-
The yellow flag irises, along with many of the trees and other wild flowers, are now in leaf and flowering, and The Meadows are looking a picture. A female mallard and four ducklings have been seen on the pond in the last couple of weeks, followed by a pair of moorhens with a brood of at least five chicks. Please try to make sure they are not disturbed by dogs or young children.
As you may already be aware, the new play equipment is now installed and available for children to use.
On Sunday, 23rd June, the Chameleon’s Web Theatre Company staged their outdoor production of “Alice and Her Adventures in Wonderland” on The Meadows. Unfortunately, the weather intervened and the show was cut short. Many thanks to those of you who braved the elements and turned up and especially to those who sat it out to the end.
Stationmaster’s Arms, 18th May… Rita Pearcey
About 60 people came along to the May pub night and 40 enjoyed a supper of locally produced slow roasted pork or lamb or poached salmon with accompaniments prepared ‘in house’ by Sarah Adlem & Rob Lister. Great to see the kitchen ‘buzzing’ and Sarah & Rob deserve a huge pat on the back for the time they spent in there producing such a delicious supper!
Well done to Michael Turner and Wendy Hamerston who took the winning cash prizes for the shuffle board and darts tournaments respectively and to Team Adlem for winning the table top quiz and kitty. The bar made a profit of £230, which was donated to the ‘50’ Club. Thanks also to the volunteers who set up and run the pub.
Braintree District Council is working in partnership with Essex County Council to bring Superfast Broadband into the Districts rural areas. The plans put forward by Essex County Council to bring Superfast Broadband to 90% of the Essex population by 2015 received the go ahead from Central Government in summer 2012. BDC has been taking part in the ‘Make the Connection’ campaign, and is calling on residents in the District to register their need for the Superfast Broadband upgrade. Areas with the most residents registered, although not guaranteed of an upgrade, will stand a greater chance of being selected as the first areas for the improvements.
Councillor Lady Patricia Newton, Cabinet Member for Planning and Property at BDC, said: "The district of Braintree is one of the largest geographical areas in the county and comprises many rural and remote places. I am sure there will be many residents and small businesses, who have been frustrated by the speed of the broadband service they get, and would love to have the chance to do something about it. We would urge them to register now."
The ‘Make the Connection’ campaign aims to encourage as many residents as possible to show their interest in faster broadband by visiting http://www.superfastessex.org/. Paper postcards are also available in your local parish offices, BDC offices at Causeway House, libraries and at Braintree District Museum