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EVERYTHING WALTHAM ABBEY
Everything Waltham Abbey, part of the Everything Epping Forest local news and information service, features news and information for Waltham Abbey and the surrounding area.
If you have news or information about a business, school or organisation which could be featured, email 
everythingeppingforest@gmail.com  
Tricia Gurnett, King Harold Day orgainser - Congratulations David. This is a great idea and will be very useful. To have a specific Everything Epping Forest page for Waltham Abbey is a real step forward and will help in promoting the town and what is happening, The very best of luck to you.
Pixel Business Centre, Waltham Abbey

Serviced office space suitable for 2-20 people. On-site café, meeting rooms, manned reception, fully furnished and high-speed wi-fi are just some of the benefits available to our tenants.
For more details, email info@pixelbusinesscentre.co.uk or ring 01992 667700.


Website  Facebook
Oakland Care

Oakland Care’s range of care homes include Lambwood Heights in Chigwell, Woodland Grove in Loughton and Elsyng House in Enfield. All our homes offer five-star facilities and state-of-the-art features for a fulfilling and purposeful stay within our homes.
To book a tour, ring 0300 303 5445.
Website
Stagecoach Performing Arts Loughton

At Stagecoach Performing Arts Loughton we love to bring out the best in every child through the wonderful world of Singing, Dancing and Acting. 
We work on developing Creative Courage For Life so our students can shine on whichever stage they choose to in life. 
We are proud to offer high quality live Zoom classes when our sessions cannot run in person.


Website  Instagram  Facebook


 
For details about the advertising options available email everythingeppingforest@gmail.com CLICK HERE
3.51pm - November 28

Two year groups to study at home for a week after teachers test positive for COVID-19

Two year groups at King Harold Academy in Waltham Abbey will be studying from home this coming week after "a significant number" of teachers have tested positive for COVID-19 "in the last few days".

Members of the Senior Leadership Team are among the staff members having to isolate for ten days.

A letter to parents states: "Fewer staff and a lack of supply teachers locally (since other schools are in a similar position), means that we are unable to welcome all year groups into the Academy between Monday (November 29) and Friday (December 3).

"Without the required number of teaching staff available, we cannot guarantee a safe and effective environment for all students, so we are going to remain open for specific year groups only."

Students in Year 8 and Year 9 will be set remote learning to be completed at home. The school adds that any students unable to study safely at home will be able to complete work in school in a supervised setting.

Students in Years 7, 10 and 11 are required to attend school as normal.
3.40pm - November 18

Man stabbed

Police are continuing to investigate after a man, aged in his 30s, sustained stab wounds in an incident on Paternoster Hill, Waltham Abbey, at about 10am yesterday (Wednesday).

The man was taken to hospital for treatment.

A police spokesman said no arrests have been made and enquiries are ongoing. 
3.38pm - November 18

Students act as museum guides for Takeover Day at Epping Forest District Museum

Students from King Harold Academy in Waltham Abbey acted as guides when the Epping Forest District Museum in Waltham Abbey took part in the national Takeover Day event.

The students demonstrated the knowledge they had learned about various displays and items to give guided tours around the Sun Street venue.

Various exhibits were also explained to Upshire Primary School children who also took part in activities at the museum.

Year 7 King Harold Academy students Grace Cooper and Tilly Giddy showed Epping Forest MP Dame Eleanor Laing and Epping Forest District Council chairman councillor Helen Kane around the museum.

Dame Eleanor said: "It was a pleasure to visit the Epping Forest District Museum and be shown round by Grace and Tilly. Their knowledge of the displays was amazing and they would certainly make good museum guides or curators in the future!

"The museum is a fantastic place with so much of our local history recorded there, including many artefacts that have been recovered from around the Epping Forest area."
3.41pm - November 16

MP cuts ribbon to officially open estate agent's new office

A Waltham Abbey estate agent has officially opened its new offices to the public.

Epping Forest MP Dame Eleanor Laing was invited to cut the ribbon at the new premises of Duncan Phillips at 40 Sun Street on Friday.

Dame Eleanor said: "I was delighted to officially open the new offices.

"Duncan Phillips is a long-established Waltham Abbey business, having been based in the town for more than 30 years, and I wish Howard Green and his staff all the very best as the business starts a new chapter in its history."

Duncan Phillips caters for residential and commercial sales, lettings and management.

The company was founded by Howard Green in 1990.
12.22pm - November 13

More events confirmed for 'Festival of Light'

New events have been added to the 'Festival of Light' programme of festive events which begins with the 'Cavalcade of Light' on Friday, November 26.

Members of the Epping Forest Band will be playing while printable sing-a-long carol sheets are now available to download at https://festivaloflight.uk/sing-a-long/

The 'Cavalcade of Light' procession will set off from the Cornmill car park at 7pm and head to Waltham Abbey Town Hall for the switching on of the Christmas lights.

The procession will then head up Quaker Lane before turning left into Sun Street.

Local groups and organisations - including schools - as well as individuals are invited to take part in the procession with the town council awarding a prize for the best float and best individual entry.

For more details and to register an entry for the procession, email sarah.colley@walthamabbey-tc.gov.uk.

* Friday, November 26 - A Christmas Carol-oke will take place outside the Abbey Church directly after the procession.

* Friday, November 26 - Epping Forest District Museum in Sun Street open 5pm to 7pm - festive refreshments, live entertainment and games, Free entry.

* Friday, November 26 - Wilsons of Waltham Abbey, 29 Sun Street - Elf workshop with a special gift for every child and Prosecco for adults (6pm to 8pm).

* Sunday, November 28 - A carols and Christmas tales service will be held at St Thomas' Church, Upshire, at 4.30pm.

* Monday, November 29 - A Christmas event will be held at Hillhouse Square, Ninefields, with a lantern workshop in the Community Room at Waltham Abbey Leisure Centre (3pm-5pm) and an event featuring the U3A Line Dancers and Chingford Morris Dancers and carol singing at 7pm.

* Thursday, December 2 - Christmas wreath making and festive floral arrangements - Waltham Abbey Community Centre, 46 Crooked Mile, Waltham Abbey. Booking required via https://eppingforestdc.bookinglive.com/book/add/p/277

* Saturday, December 4 - A Christmas Market is being held in Sun Street.

* Saturday, December 4 - Father Christmas at Epping Forest District Museum (11am to 3.30pm) with a Game Plan exhibition and Santa's grotto.

* Tuesday, December 7 - Toddler Father Christmas event at Epping Forest District Museum (10am to noon) and an Evening Father Christmas event (4pm to 7pm). £6 per child. Booking not required. Time slots will be allocated on the day. More details at https://www.eppingforestdc.gov.uk/museum/

* Thursday, December 16 - Christmas wreath making and festive floral arrangements - Waltham Abbey Community Centre, 46 Crooked Mile, Waltham Abbey. Booking required via https://eppingforestdc.bookinglive.com/book/add/p/277
6.38pm - November 11

Still time to book a stall for Christmas Market

There is still time to book stalls for the Waltham Abbey Christmas Market which is being held in Sun Street on Saturday, December 4 (9am until 3pm).

Stalls already confirmed will be selling crystal candles, sterling silver men’s jewellery, glass art, shawls, blankets and Christmas stockings, handmade face masks, wheel thrown pottery, scented wax melts, handmade children’s clothing and craft gins.

St Clare Hospice will also be having a stall.

Anyone interested in booking a stall should ring Sarah Colley on 01992 714949.
5.06pm - November 9

Fundraiser receives recognition from Prime Minister

The fundraising efforts of a Waltham Abbey man who has raised over £160,000 over the past ten years to support victims of crime or abuse and those affected by ill-health or disability has been recognised by the Prime Minister with a Points of Light award.

Shane Yerrell, who is a Waltham Abbey town councillor, receives the award in recognition of his dedicated fundraising in support of anyone facing hardship.

Shane, who runs the 'Through the Fight Foundation', started fundraising after being the victim of a knife attack in 2007, and realising he could turn his experience into a positive by supporting others who were going through their own traumatic or difficult situation. 

Following the success of a sponsored climb in aid of ‘The Rob Knox Foundation’, set up in memory of the actor killed in a knife attack to support young people gain opportunities in the arts, Shane was inspired to continue his fundraising efforts, leading to the creation of his own foundation,‘Through The Fight’ in 2016.

'Through the Fight' is dedicated to supporting anyone facing hardship. 

Shane's most recent fundraiser is in support of a terminally ill 48-year-old man, raising over £3,000 to help him fulfill his bucket list wish of attending a Tottenham Hotspur match in a VIP box with all his family.

Shane said: "This is so overwhelming. I’ve had an incredible journey over the last ten years and met some amazing people.

"I set up ‘Through The Fight Foundation’ to ensure victims of violent crime and people affected by illnesses could have somewhere to turn. Someone who would reach out to them. I wanted to be the person who reached out.

"To receive recognition from our Prime Minister is incredible. The fact that he has taken time out of his busy schedule to acknowledge my fundraising is amazing.

"I would like to dedicate this award to my family, close friends and all the people who have have fought back from their struggles.

"Without them I wouldn’t be where I am today."
5.04pm - November 9

Two teenagers convicted over pedestrian's death

A teenager has been convicted of murdering a man in Waltham Abbey earlier this year.

A second teenager has also been convicted of manslaughter in connection with the death of local man Neil Darnell, 50, who was found seriously injured at about 10am on Friday, April 16, after being hit by a car on Farm Hill Road.

The driver of the vehicle failed to stop at the scene and the car was found abandoned a short while later.

CCTV footage recovered showed that two teenagers had attended Le Golden Touch barbers on Market Square, Waltham Abbey, that morning.

An unknown man had approached the barbers to threaten the two teenagers, before slashing the tyres of their car. 

He then fled the area on a bicycle.

Despite the car having been damaged and in a dangerous condition to drive, the two teenagers then got behind the wheel of their grey BMW to pursue the man at speed.

Mr Darnell, an innocent pedestrian crossing the junction at Farm Hill Road, was struck by their car.

He died in hospital two days later.

A forensic post-mortem examination found he had suffered a traumatic head injury.

On Saturday, May 8, a 17-year old boy, from Cheshunt, was arrested in Harlow and charged with murder.

Within a week, a second 17-year-old boy, from Hertford, was also arrested and charged with murder.

Both teenagers stood trial at Chelmsford Crown Court and yesterday (Monday) a jury found both guilty in connection with Mr Darnell’s death.

The Cheshunt boy, the driver of the car, was found guilty of murder.

The Hertford boy, the passenger, was found guilty of manslaughter.

Both will be sentenced in December on a date yet to be fixed.

Senior investigating officer Detective Chief Inspector Greg Wood said: “What initially appeared to be a case of dangerous driving turned out to be much more disturbing.

“Evidence clearly showed that both the driver and passenger got behind the wheel of their car intending to cause harm to someone.

“During their pursuit the driver drove directly at oncoming vehicles and mounted the pavement several times to deliberately try and collide with the cyclist.

“Even after they hit a completely innocent bystander, who subsequently lost his life, they continued to follow the cyclist with no regard for anyone else around them.

“At no point did they attempt to get help for the man they had fatally injured. Their only focus was to cover their involvement.

“As with any investigation where someone’s life has been cut short by the actions of others, I know this result cannot bring back the loving husband and father Neil’s family have lost.

“I hope they can take some solace knowing that our teams have worked tirelessly throughout the investigation and that those involved have been convicted of their crimes.”
9.12am - November 8

UPSHIRE: Teenager seriously injured in road crash

A 19-year-old man has suffered serious injuries and two other people have been taken to hospital as a precaution following an incident on Horseshoe Hill, Upshire.

Police say the collision involved a silver Clio sometime before 8.30pm last night (Sunday).

A spokesman said: "A 19-year-old man sustained serious injuries and has been taken to hospital. Two other occupants of the vehicle have been taken to hospital as a precaution."

Officers want to speak to anyone who was in the area at the time and saw the collision or the car shortly before it happened.

Anyone with any information or dashcam footage should submit a report online at https://www.essex.police.uk, use the 'Live Chat' button to speak to an online operator between 7am and 11pm, ring 101 or ring Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111  quoting incident 1414 of November 7.
9.12am - November 7

Festival of Light

A host of events are being held this year as part of the inaugural Festival of Light in Waltham Abbey.

The festival begins with the traditional Cavalcade of Light through the town on Friday, November 26.

The parade, involving floats and individuals, will set off as usual from the Cornmill car park at 7pm, for the Christmas lights switch-on outside Waltham Abbey Town Hall.

Then, in a change to previous years, the parade will follow a route along Quaker Lane before turning into Sun Street.

Waltham Abbey Town Council will award a prize for the best float (£1,000) and the best walking entry (£500).

A Christmas Sing-A-Long will take place directly following the parade outside the Abbey Church (7.45pm).

Also on that day, the Epping Forest District Museum in Sun Street will be open until late (5pm to 7pm).

On Sunday, November 28, a Festival of Light Carols and Christmas Tales service will be held at St Thomas' Church, Upshire (4pm) and a Service of Music and Readings for Advent will be held at the Abbey Church (6.30pm).

On Monday, November 29, a Ninefields Christmas Extravaganza event will take place at Hillhouse Square, Ninefields (7pm).

A Christmas Market will be held on Saturday, December 4.

A Carol Service will be held at the Baptist Church, Paradise Road, Waltham Abbey, at 4.30pm on Sunday, December 19.

Local groups and organisations - including schools - as well as individuals are invited to take part in the Cavalcade of Light procession while Festival of Light organisers are encouraging people to create-a-lantern which can be taken to any of the events.

For more details about the Christmas Market and to register an entry for the Cavalcade of Light procession, email sarah.colley@walthamabbey-tc.gov.uk.

More details about all the Festival of Light events can be found at www.festivaloflight.uk
3.30pm - November 1

Cavalcade of Light is back

Waltham Abbey Town Council - after a year's absence - will again be launching the festive season with the Cavalcade of Light.

This year the event - on Friday, November 26 - is being held as part of the town's Festival of Light which is seeing other events held across the town.

The Cavalcade of Light will set off as usual from the Cornmill car park at 7pm, for the Christmas lights switch-on at Waltham Abbey Town Hall.

Then, in a change to previous years, the parade will follow a route along Quaker Lane before turning into Sun Street.

A Christmas Carol-oke will take place directly following the parade outside the Abbey Church.

Also on that day, the Epping Forest District Museum in Sun Street will be open until late.

On Sunday, November 28, a Festival of Light carols and Christmas tales service will be held at St Thomas' Church, Upshire (4.30pm) while on Monday, November 29 (7pm) a Christmas Festival event will take place at Hillhouse Square, Ninefields.

A Christmas Market will be held at Waltham Abbey Town Hall on Saturday, December 4.

Local groups and organisations - including schools - as well as individuals are invited to take part in the procession.

The town council will award a prize for the best float and best individual entry.

For more details and to register an entry for the procession, email sarah.colley@walthamabbey-tc.gov.uk.

More details about all the events can be found at www.festivaloflight.uk
9.44am - October 31

Halloween party guest carrying toy shot gun sparks armed police incident

A man carrying a toy shot gun as he walked home from a Halloween party in Waltham Abbey sparked an armed police incident after a member of the public reported seeing a 'gunman'.

Armed officers were among those who responded to the call and scoured an area around Woodgreen Road in the early hours.

The police helicopter was also involved in the search for the man who was given "words of advice" when he was found.

The man later explained the situation in a post on social media.

He said: "The police were raiding my house. I was seen walking back from a Halloween party with a toy shot gun and it got reported.

"I gave them the toy and it was all over in about 15 to 20 minutes, I can assure you they do not mess about and take their job very seriously. Hats off to them!"

A police spokesman told Everything Epping Forest: "We were called to reports of someone seen with what was described as a firearm in the Woodgreen Road area of Waltham Abbey shortly after 12.40am on Sunday (October 31).

"Officers attended, located the person and established it was a toy. "Words of advice were provided."
5.15pm - October 22

Multi-storey car park plan for Sainsbury distribution centre

A three-storey car park accommodating almost 500 vehicles - which would provide an additional 187 spaces on the site - is proposed for the Sainsbury distribution centre on the edge of Waltham Abbey, a planning application reveals.

The Waltham Point Distribution Centre, which employs just over 1,000 staff, currently has parking for 432 vehicles and space for 40 cycles.

In addition to Waltham Point’s core use as a 24-hour, seven-day-a-week Sainsbury distribution centre, the site also contains a Resource Recovery Unit and Vehicle Maintenance Unite. 

The company is moving to a "more labour intensive system" which will create about 350 new jobs. 

A planning statement submitted to Epping Forest District Council with the planning application states: "The way that the shift patterns operate means that there is an overlap between shifts that mean pressure for car parking can be intense. 

"To accommodate new colleagues, even assuming future model shifts, SSL will need to provide approximately 200 additional parking spaces.

"The most sustainable and efficient way to accommodate these is to provide a new decked car park, comprising 494 car parking spaces, over the existing colleague car park. This will provide an increase of 187 new car parking spaces. 225 cycle spaces are also proposed." 

The planning application also includes proposals for 99 new trailer spaces.

The planning statement adds: "The car park will have three decks above the ground, reaching a parapet height in the north of 11.6m and a parapet height to the south of 10.5m.

"The highest point, at the top of the stair core, will reach 12.5m. This is still well below the height of the adjacent Waltham Point building and Resource Recovery Unit.

"The north and south elevations of the car park will be treated with a metal perforated cladding.

The south elevation is the most visible from outside of the site. The car park will be designed to have a functional aesthetic, taking context to its commercial surroundings and the needs of its proposed use, but opportunities to provide decorative elements will be pursued.

"The decorative cladding will be located in distinct areas to break up the façade. Textured and flat panels will be used with an inverted undulation to create a woven effect."
3.28pm - September 24

Two men charged after car crashes into house

Two men have been charged after a car crashed into the front of a house in Waltham Abbey.

Police were called to Stanway Road at about 6.50am yesterday.

Two men were later arrested.

Michael Zahra, 36, of Turpin Road, Romford, has now been charged with failing to provide a specimen.

William Smith, 37, of Leamington Road, Romford, has been charged with failing to provide a specimen and using threatening or abusive words or behaviour likely to cause harassment, alarm or distress.

They are both due to appear at Chelmsford Magistrates’ Court on October 12.
2.21pm - September 23

Car crashes into house

Firefighters called to reports that a car had crashed into a house in Waltham Abbey this morning feared people were trapped inside the property, it has emerged.

Emergency crews were called to Stanway Road shortly before 7am after the vehicle went into the front of a house.

The property is having to be assessed for structural damage and the area remained cordoned off this lunchtime.

An Essex County Fire and Rescue Service spokesman told Everything Epping Forest: “Firefighters were called to Stanway Road, Waltham Abbey, at 6.58am to reports that a car had collided with a house and the residents were trapped inside. 

“On arrival, crews reported that a car had collided with the front of a house and nobody was trapped in the car or the house. 

"Firefighters from the Urban Search and Rescue team have been working throughout the day to make the house structurally safe and remain at the scene.”

Essex Police has been asked for a statement about the incident.
12.23pm - September 21

Police officers "followed policies and procedures" in pursuit

Officers acted appropriately, following policies and procedures during a pursuit prior to a fatal road traffic collision in Waltham Abbey, an Independent Office for Police Conduct (IOPC) investigation concluded.

The collision occurred on March 28, 2019, in Parklands when a Vauxhall Corsa, which had failed to stop for police, collided with a Vauxhall Mokka and a Range Rover, killing the driver of the Corsa,

Jessica Ladkin, 31, (also known as Jessica Michael). The driver of the Mokka sustained serious life-changing injuries.

The IOPC investigation established that a police car from the combined Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire and Hertfordshire Road Policing Unit had been following the Corsa after it was identified as being uninsured. 

Officers made two attempts to stop the Corsa before the collision.

IOPC investigators attended the scene at the time and the police post incident procedure. Investigators gathered and assessed evidence including the incident data recorder, radio communications, dashcam footage captured from the Vauxhall Mokka, CCTV, body-worn video footage, statements from the officers involved and witness statements. 

The six-month investigation concluded there was no indication that any of the officers may have committed a criminal offence or behaved in a manner justifying the bringing of disciplinary proceedings. All officers were treated as witnesses throughout.

An inquest jury at Chelmsford Coroners Court on Monday (September 20) returned a finding of death by road traffic collision for Ms Ladkin.

Regional Director Graham Beesley said: “The consequences of this incident are tragic and my thoughts are with Ms Ladkin’s family and all those who were affected by the events that evening. 

“When fatal road traffic incidents involving the police occur it is important we establish the circumstances surrounding them. 

"Having conducted a thorough investigation we found the officers’ involved followed policies and procedures during the pursuit which lasted under a minute.”

Hertfordshire Constabulary made a mandatory referral following the collision in March 2019 as is standard in cases where a death has occurred following police contact. 

Prior to Ms Ladkin’s inquest, IOPC provided its investigation report to family members, Hertfordshire Constabulary and HM Coroner. 
2.20pm - September 6

Firefighters called after van hits house

Fire crews from Loughton and Chingford were called to a house off Monkswood Avenue, Waltham Abbey, this morning after a van struck the front of a house and hit a gas box.

Gas engineers from Cadent as well as police officers were also on the scene.

The property sustained structural damage but no-one was trapped either in the house or the van.

An Essex County Fire and Rescue Service spokesperson told Everything Epping Forest: “Firefighters were called to Windsor Wood in Waltham Abbey at 11.04am to reports that a van had collided with a gas box in a house. 

“On arrival, crews reported that a van had collided with a house and had hit a gas box. 

“Nobody was trapped inside the vehicle or house and crews worked with the gas board to check if there was a gas leak. 

“Firefighters confirmed there was no gas leak and left the scene in the care of the gas board and homeowners.”
12.43pm - September 4

Town council hosts horticultural show and Waltham Abbey in Bloom presentations

PICTURES

Flowers and vegetables, scarecrows designed by children, and homemade pickles were just some of the entries submitted for the seventh Waltham Abbey horticultural show and Waltham Abbey In Bloom competition.

The events, held by Waltham Abbey Town Council in conjunction with the allotment association, culminated with the presentation of certificates and trophies at Waltham Abbey Town Hall on Friday evening.

Waltham Abbey in Bloom prizes included awards for the 'Most Colourful Public House' and 'Most Colourful Business Frontage' both of which were won by The Welsh Harp.

Hillhouse Primary School won the 'Best School Garden with Pupil Involvement' and the 'Best Communal Container' category and was second in the tallest sunflower category.

Numerous horticultural show awards were presented with Monica Brzoza and Steven Moore receiving the 'Best in Show' trophy. The winner was based on the number of points gathered in all categories.

Town Mayor councillor Jodie Lucas, who announced the winners and presented certificates for the winners and second and third placed entries in a range of categories, said: "Well done to everybody. It was fantastic to visit the allotments and the schools to see what had been grown, and it was an absolute pleasure to see all the entries brought along to the town hall for judging.

"Congratulations to everyone who took part."
9.10pm - August 28

Firefighters tackle van blaze

Firefighters spent about 45 minutes dealing with a blaze which tore through a van on Honey Lane, Waltham Abbey, this afternoon.

An Essex Fire and Rescue Service spokesman said the alarm was raised at 4.03pm and the fire had been extinguished by 4.50pm.

Firefighters arrived to find the van was "100 per cent alight".

Damage was also caused to a nearby shop.

There are no reports of anyone being injured in the incident.

 
2.34pm - August 24

Police message ahead of weekend festivals

Police are asking people to enjoy themselves but to act responsibly as the Eastern Electrics and Maiden Voyage festivals make their debut at the Lee Valley Showground, Waltham Abbey.

Up to 15,000 people are expected to attend Eastern Electrics on Saturday (August 28) and another 15,000 are expected at Maiden Voyage on Sunday (August 29).

Event organiser Columbo Star is responsible for safety and security on site during the festivals.

The company has been working closely with Epping Forest District Council, Essex Police, Hertfordshire Police, Essex County Fire and Rescue Service and the East of England Ambulance Service to ensure the event is safe.

Essex Police and Hertfordshire Police also have plans in place to respond to any incidents that may require a police response and there will be officers near the showground.

Superintendent Craig Saunders said: “We’ve worked with partners to be satisfied that Columbo Star has a robust security plan in place to ensure the highest standards of public safety.

“As with any large event we also have a policing plan in place to ensure troublemakers do not spoil the event for the majority of people attending, or cause disruption to the local community.

“We want festival-goers to enjoy themselves, look out for one another and be safe.

“But anyone intent on committing crime or disorder will be dealt with robustly.”

If anyone experiences crime or sees something of concern, they should approach a member of the security team, speak to police officers outside the site or contact Essex Police online at https://www.essex.police.uk/ and speak to an online operator between 7am and 11pm.

Always call 999 in an emergency.
8.13am - August 24

Three dead; two arrested after M25 crash

Two people have been arrested following a collision on the M25 near Waltham Abbey in which three people died and another sustained life-threatening injuries.

The incident happened on the anti-clockwise carriageway at about 6.15pm yesterday (Monday) and involved a Ford Mondeo, a minibus and a lorry.

The opposite carriageway was also closed for a time so that air ambulances could land.

The road finally reopened at 5.10am.

The East of England Ambulance Service said nine ambulances as well as its Hazardous Area Response Team, two air ambulances, four ambulance officers and a BASIC vehicle were sent to the scene.

Fire crews from Brentwood, Loughton, Epping and Waltham Abbey were also dealing with the incident.

Anyone with any information about the collision, the moments leading up to the collision or who has dash cam footage is being asked to come forward.

Detective Sergeant Steve Holmes, from Essex Police's Serious Collision Investigation Unit, thanked everyone who had assisted officers in the investigation so far.

Speaking from the scene last night he said: “This evening has been incredibly challenging and we are continuing to work as quickly as we can to piece together exactly what led to this tragic incident.

"My thoughts and those of all officers on scene are with the families of those who lost their lives this evening.

“At present, two drivers have been arrested on suspicion of causing death by dangerous driving and on suspicion of causing serious injury by dangerous driving.

“I need anyone with further information to come forward. The road remained closed whilst our colleagues tended to those who were injured and whilst we have gathered evidence and preserved the crime scene.

“I would like to thank everyone on the M25 for their patience - I know it’s been a long night."

Anyone who witnessed the collision, has dash cam footage, or has information on it should submit a report online at https://www.essex.police.uk or use the 'Live Chat' button to speak to an online operator between 7am-11pm.

Information can also be given on 101 (quote incident 972 of Monday, August 23), or via Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or at https://crimestoppers-uk.org.
4.15pm - August 19

Police respond to 'firearm' sighting

Police searched an area of Waltham Abbey after receiving reports that two people had been seen with a "firearm".

The alarm was raised yesterday afternoon (Wednesday)  with the person who reported the incident believing an air weapon was involved.

Everything Epping Forest received reports that armed officers and the police helicopter had been called out to help with the search.

A police spokesman told Everything Epping Forest: "We were called to reports of two people seen with what had been described as a firearm in the Roundhills area of Waltham Abbey at around 4.25pm on August 18.

"The person reporting the incident believes it was an air weapon.

"Officers attended and carried out a search of the area but could not find the people."

Anyone with any information about the incident can submit a report online at https://www.essex.police.uk or use the 'Live Chat' button to speak to an online operator between 7am and 11pm (quote incident 826 of August 18).

Information can also be given via 101 or by ringing Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
7.07pm - August 17

Teacher receives special lockdown award

King Harold Academy PE and maths teacher Eleana Clark has received a Lockdown School Hero award from the Jack Petchey Foundation.

Miss Clark was nominated by a student at the Waltham Abbey school for her supportive and empathetic approach to teaching. 

Miss Clark created enjoyable and informative classes online throughout the lockdown but was also praised for her response when students returned to school.

She understood that many students found it hard to work at home and worked hard to help them catch up.

Miss Clark also went the extra-mile to aid the wellbeing of her students during lockdown. 

She would call regularly to check up on her students and their mental health. She had a sensitive approach and did not push students when they did not want to talk, but instead waited until they were ready to open up. 

Miss Clark would then give advice or signpost them to appropriate help. 

Her efforts were vital in a very difficult time for young people.

The student who nominated Miss Clark said: "If it wasn't for her I wouldn't of [sic] got the help I needed."

Miss Clark said: “Thank you to the Jack Petchey Foundation for this amazing award. It means so much because a student has gone out of their way to nominate me. I will truly treasure this award.”

Miss Clark received a certificate from the Foundation, a letter from Sir Jack and a special face mask to congratulate her on going the extra mile to help students in the lockdown.

The Lockdown School Hero award scheme was launched by the Jack Petchey Foundation this year to recognise school and college staff members from London and Essex who have gone the extra mile to support and motivate students during the coronavirus outbreak.
7.05pm - August 17

Firefighters commended for lifesaving actions

Four firefighters from Waltham Abbey and Brentwood fire stations have received Chief Fire Officer commendations in recognition of their lifesaving actions following a flat fire in Cheshunt.

Chief Fire Officer and Chief Executive Jo Turton visited Waltham Abbey Fire Station on Monday to present the commendations to Crew Manager Mav Langdon, Crew Manager Brenden Cardy and Firefighter Robert Bull from Waltham Abbey Fire Station and Firefighter Daryl Chapman from Brentwood in recognition of their courageous, lifesaving actions that gave a man fighting for his life the best chance of survival.

Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service also recognised their crews involved in the incident with Group Commander Commendations to highlight their quick actions in rescuing the man and woman trapped in the flat fire.

Jo Turton said: "Their perseverance in a situation like this, when all hope could have been lost, is commendable beyond words.

"The way the crews worked as one team and dealt with this very high-pressured situation was exemplary. They gave the man the best possible outcome of survival and it is truly remarkable. 

"They all demonstrated compassion and professionalism, and I am incredibly proud of them."

Station Manager Dave Bond said: "Our crews were called over the border to a flat fire in Cheshunt and worked with firefighters from Hertfordshire Fire and Rescue Service.

"The woman was rescued by Cheshunt crews down the ladder and the Cheshunt Breathing Apparatus crew found the casualty unconscious in the flat and brought him out the front door where our crews took over his care.

"Our crews carried out CPR on the man for around ten minutes. During this time the defibrilator that we were carrying on the fire engine analysed the casualty three times and at all times it found no shockable rhythm meaning there was no heartbeat detected to shock. The crews thought the casualty had passed away.

"The crews continued to work on him and their hard work meant that just as the ambulance turned up and were about to take over, colour had returned to his face and the ambulance crew detected a faint pulse. 

"The man had suffered significant burns and was placed in an induced coma. At the time of the incident his injuries were described as life-changing but not life-threatening."

He added: "I am incredibly proud of the professionalism and dedication shown by our crews and our colleagues from Herts Fire Service on that day. The joint working between both services and the clear communication shown in an incredibly challenging situation was key to giving the man a fighting chance when the initial outcome looked bleak.”

Waltham Abbey Fire Station is recruiting on-call firefighters. If you live or work within five minutes of Waltham Abbey Fire Station you could be paid to protect your community.
9.08am - August 5

Man taken to hospital after becoming unwell following arrest

A man was taken to hospital after he became unwell after he was arrested on Woodredon Hill, Waltham Abbey, after police were called to reports of a vehicle "acting suspiciously" in Horseshoe Hill.

Police were contacted shortly after 5pm yesterday (Wednesday).

A spokesman said officers attended the scene but the vehicle was driven off.

The vehicle later stopped in Woodredon Hill and a man was arrested.

The spokesman added: "Following his arrest he became unwell and was taken to hospital."
3.10pm - August 2

Housing plans for former swimming pool site

A planning application has been submitted for a development of 28 terraced homes on the site of the former Waltham Abbey swimming pool.

Qualis Commercial has submitted the application for the Roundhills site.

The application proposes 22 two-bedroom and six three-bedroom terraced homes with 40 per cent of the development allocated as "affordable" housing.

A report submitted with the application states: "Parking will be provided in a mixture of small parking courts accessed off the new street and undercroft spaces to the three-bedroom houses. 

"One cycle parking space will be provided per unit within secure garden sheds. At least 20 per cent of car parking spaces will feature electric charging points (eight spaces).

"Each three-bedroom dwelling will have an independent parking space positioned close to their front door. 

"Six private spaces are designed to be under-croft accessed at ground floor level of homes. Seven visitor spaces are positioned separately across the site for flexibility."

The application will be considered by Waltham Abbey Town Council before a decision is taken by Epping Forest District Council.
5.03pm - July 30

Fire station becomes a fully 'on-call' station

Waltham Abbey Fire Station has moved to a fully on-call fire station, with firefighters responding from home or work seven days a week.

The station had seen firefighters respond from home during evenings and weekends but has now become an on-call station meaning firefighters will respond from home or work at all times. 

A number of whole-time firefighters will also support the transition while some of the station's newer on-call firefighters continue their training. 

Station Manager Dave Bond said: “We’ve seen some really successful recruitment campaigns recently which have resulted in more on-call firefighters joining our station. 

"We now have 17 in our team with one more firefighter due to join later in the year.

“This success wouldn’t have been possible without the support of our local community - they are the ones who have stepped forward to apply to become on-call firefighters and play a part in protecting the local area.

“The additional support from our existing colleagues will also ensure we will maintain the same level of protection for the Waltham Abbey area.

“We’re still encouraging people to join us, so if you or anyone you know is interested please visit our website for more information.”

About 75 per cent of fire stations in Essex are crewed by on-call firefighters - people who live or work within five minutes of the fire station. 

They respond when called to an incident and are paid for the time they give.

For more about becoming an on-call firefighter visit www.join.essex-fire.gov.uk/on-call/
1.25pm - June 28
 
Mayor: Thank you to all involved with "fantastic" Town Show

The two-day Waltham Abbey Town Show, organised by Waltham Abbey Town Council, has been hailed as a "fantastic family and community event".

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic it was the first Town Show for two years.

Families turned out over the weekend for a variety of entertainment and stalls run by local charities and businesses.

Entertainment at Town Mead included a performance by Streetzahead dance group, Stagecoach Loughton and a display of Morris dancing.

There was also ferret racing, a dog agility course and dog show, Punch and Judy shows and circus skills.

Town Mayor councillor Jodie Lucas said: "I had such a fantastic weekend. Well done and thank you to everybody involved. 

"It was so lovely to see everyone out enjoying themselves with family and friends and with their dogs taking part in the agility course and the dog show.

"I'm so glad we were able to go ahead and despite some challenges and the current situation we were still able to provide a great family and community event."

She added: "We had some great performances across the two days with lots of fantastic stalls and entertainment for the children with circus skills, Punch and Judy, trampolines and the climbing wall! 

"I hope everyone that attended enjoyed themselves too."
8.39pm - June 26

High street retailer Next to "review options" after council rejected distribution centre plans

High street retailer Next is to "take time" to review Epping Forest District Council's decision to reject its plans for a distribution centre in Waltham Abbey before deciding its next step, "including whether to appeal".

Next's proposals for a distribution centre, photo studio and multi-storey car park off Dowding Way, close to the M25, were rejected by 25 votes to 10 at the end of a four-hour extraordinary district council meeting on Thursday.

The reasons for objection include the adverse impact the development would have on the Green Belt, the size of the proposed building, air pollution issues surrounding the nearby forest and the additional traffic the site would attract.

A Next spokesman told Everything Epping Forest today: "Next is naturally disappointed with the decision, which was made against the recommendation of council officers, and with it the opportunity to provide 436 full-time equivalent jobs.

"Next looks forward to receiving the decision notices in due course and we will take the time to review our options, including whether to appeal."
4.01pm - June 15

Town Show to go ahead as planned

Waltham Abbey Town Council has confirmed that the Town Show will go ahead as planned on Saturday and Sunday, June 26 and 27.

The confirmation follows the Prime Minister's announcement that the current COVID-19 lockdown restrictions will be extended by a month until July 19.

A council spokesman said: "The Town Show will still go ahead, all appropriate measures will be in place.

"On a normal year we usually have around 2,000 people attend on any given day of the show and that number is presently half the total number allowed per day for outdoor events. 

"It is expected that numbers will most likely be significantly lower due to the ongoing pandemic."

The event - with stalls, numerous other attractions including a Punch and Judy Show, ferret racing and a visit from the Essex Fire and Rescue Service and The Copped Hall Trust's Rolls Royce - will be held at Town Mead.
4.39pm - June 5

Woman arrested after woman hit by car

A woman has been arrested after a woman suffered serious injuries when she was struck by a car in Badburgham Court, Waltham Abbey, shortly before 1.45am today (Saturday).

Police were called by the ambulance service after a car collided with the woman who remains in hospital.

A 28-year-old woman, from Waltham Abbey, has been arrested on suspicion of GBH with intent, failing to stop and driving whilst unfit through drink or drugs.

She remains in custody for questioning.

A police spokesman said officers do not believe there is any wider threat to the community.

Officers want to hear from anybody who witnessed the incident or has relevant dashcam or Ring doorbell footage.

Anyone with information on the incident but who has not yet spoken to police, should ring 101 and quote incident 94 of June 5.

Information can also be submitted online at https://www.essex.police.uk or via the 'Live Chat' button where you can speak to an online operator between 7am and 11pm.

Information can also be given anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or at https://crimestoppers-uk.org.
3.52pm - June 3

Arsonist convicted over blazes which caused damage costing over £250,000

An arsonist who caused hundreds of thousands of pounds worth of damage by starting fires in Sedge Green and Waltham Abbey has been convicted following a trial at Chelmsford Crown Court.
 
Mohammed Azizi had set fires at a garage in Sedge Green on July 1 last year and to a VW Polo parked in Bradley Road, Waltham Abbey, six weeks later.

The fire at the garage burnt several vehicles and a building causing £250,000 worth of damage.

Through their investigation, officers were able to identify DNA evidence which established Azizi was at the scene.

On August 15, Azizi, 30, of Bradley Road, Waltham Abbey, was caught on CCTV setting a fire underneath a VW Polo parked next to a residential address.

Later that month he was charged.

He denied arson, arson with recklessness as to whether life would be endangered, and malicious communications.

He was found guilty of the arson offences but was found not guilty of malicious communications.

He is due to be sentenced on August 13.

Detective Inspector Kate Murray, from Loughton CID, said: “Mohammed Azizi caused hundreds of thousands of pounds worth of damage and put lives at risk.

“His actions were premeditated and reckless and he clearly poses a significant danger to the public.

“I know these incidents caused significant concern within the community and I’m glad we’ve been able to bring Aziz to justice.

“He now faces time behind bars and our communities will be a safer place as a result.”
2.28pm - June 2

EXCLUSIVE

Council hopes to persuade Met not to reopen High Beach air base saying "there are other options in and around London"

Epping Forest District Council has told Everything Epping Forest it "will do all we can" to try and persuade the Metropolitan Police Service not to reopen its air support unit site at High Beach.

The council has told Everything Epping Forest "there are other options in and around London that could have a far less detrimental impact on residents and the local environment" than reopening its air base in Epping Forest.

The council has issued a full statement to Everything Epping Forest following yesterday's exclusive report that confirmed police helicopters are to return to Lippitts Hill.

A National Police Air Service email seen by Everything Epping Forest confirmed helicopters "will most certainly" return in "late August or early September".

Residents living near the site, which closed a couple of years ago when the Met's air service transferred to the National Police Air Service, are opposed to the return of the Met's air support team while Epping residents have welcomed news saying it will reduce the number of  helicopter movements over the town to and from the present base at North Weald Airfield.

The council says it has "explored every avenue" to challenge the move back to Lippitts Hill however with planning consent still in place for the site there appears to be nothing the council can do, at the present time, to prevent the controversial return.

Epping Forest District Council says it wants to assure residents that it opposes any return of police helicopters to Lippitts Hill.

The National Police Air Service is a joint operation providing air support to police services across the UK. 

The Metropolitan Police Service flew helicopters from the forest base from 1980 until a couple of years ago when it relocated to North Weald Airfield as part of the National Police Air Service which provides air support to police services across the UK.

NPAS currently operates two helicopters (a third non-operational aircraft is also accommodated) from new £4m facilities on North Weald Airfield.

A council spokesman told Everything Epping Forest: “Lippitts Hill had a number of drawbacks including noise nuisance to local residents and pollution in a Special Area of Conservation. 

"North Weald is an established airfield with many other aviation operators including the Essex and Herts Air Ambulance as well as private companies. 

"NPAS has made a long-term commitment to flying at North Weald with significant investment in brand new facilities.

"As the owner of the airfield, Epping Forest District Council does have a commercial interest in the retention of NPAS at North Weald but our concerns are not financial. 

"We have a lease agreement which NPAS would continue to honour, and we also understand that NPAS would remain at North Weald. 

"The difficulty has arisen for operational reasons with the Metropolitan Police Service which needs to reduce response times for certain tasks and sees a return to Lippitts Hill as a solution.

"Epping Forest lies outside the control of Epping Forest District Council. It is owned and managed by the Corporation of London but the old helicopter base at Lippitts Hill belongs to the Metropolitan Police which retains historic permissions to resume flying.  

"District councillors are appealing to the Metropolitan Police to reconsider.”

The council spokesman added: “It is not for Epping Forest District Council to advise the Metropolitan Police on operational matters but there are other options in and around London that could have a far less detrimental impact on residents and the local environment.

"We don’t have the final say but we will do all we can to persuade the Metropolitan Police Service not to relocate back Lippitts Hill.”
4.45pm - June 1

EXCLUSIVE

Police to reopen High Beach helicopter base

* District council "explored every avenue" to challenge decision
* Return of helicopters "won't help" forest pollution issue
* Nearby residents "very unhappy" at resumption of flights
* National Police Air Service to remain on North Weald Airfield 


The Metropolitan Police Service is to reopen its air support unit site in High Beach, Everything Epping Forest can reveal. 

A senior district councillor has told Everything Epping Forest that Epping Forest District Council "explored every avenue" to try and challenge the decision but said the force has a "legal right" to resume helicopter flights at the Lippitts Hill base where the necessary planning consent remains in place despite the site having closed some years ago.

An email sent by the National Police Air Service to a High Beach resident on Tuesday, April 27, reads: "Aviation will most certainly return to Lippitts Hill late August or early September.

"NPAS is the operator of police air support for England and Wales and whilst it is a collaboration of all the English and Welsh police services there is a ‘customer / client’ type of relationship that exists whereby NPAS is required to meet the demands of the customer.

"The customer in this case is the Metropolitan Police Service and they have requested air support for London be returned to Lippitts Hill to meet response times to the ever changing needs and security issues affecting the capital."

It is unclear what implications, if any, there will be for the council's Interim Air Pollution Mitigation Strategy and the possibility of a Clean Air Zone (CAZ).

The council hopes a CAZ will not need to be introduced but if a Clean Air Zone is implemented it could see charges to drive on some roads through Epping Forest. 

Loughton Residents' Association councillor Chris Pond, who led a group of five non-majority group councillors who called for an extraordinary council meeting in February to discuss the pollution strategy, said the return of helicopters to High Beach "won't help" pollution in the forest.

The air support unit was established at Lippitts Hill in 1980, but the site was closed with the transfer of the Met's air support resources to the National Police Air Service which opened a purpose-built £4m base on North Weald Airfield two years ago.

The reopening of the High Beach site - which Everything Epping Forest understands has recently undergone refurbishment work - is being opposed by local residents who have expressed concern over potential noise and fumes, flight paths and other issues including the increase in traffic on local roads. They add that they believe the helicopters should continue to be based at North Weald.

Resident Carol Moya told Everything Epping Forest: "The structural plan of High Beach has changed considerably over the last three years, since the helicopters moved away, and some new housing has been built directly under one of the flight paths."

Another National Police Air Service email, sent last Tuesday (May 25) and seen by Everything Epping Forest, states: "The flight paths have been discussed and confirmed. They will mirror as far as reasonably practicable that of the past."

A district council source told Everything Epping Forest: "The position for the council is that NPAS has invested in a brand new state-of-the-art facility at North Weald Airfield. Our relationship with NPAS is commercial. They have a long lease and are not leaving North Weald, as far as I know.

"The Met Police wants its old arrangement at Lippitts Hill back.

"However from an environmental perspective North Weald is obviously a better location."

Epping Forest District Council customer and corporate support services portfolio holder councillor Sam Kane told Everything Epping Forest he was "extremely surprised" when he learnt of a letter from the MPS "advising of their intention to resume operation at the Lippitts Hill base".

He added: "In my view the helicopters belong in North Weald and not in the heart of the forest. 

"The council have explored every avenue open to them to challenge the decision but it appears that the Metropolitan Police Service (MPS) do have the legal right to return to the base and resume their operations again.

"As things stand Epping Forest District Council have no further measures available to prevent the resumption of flights at the site. 

"MPS have not provided a confirmed date when operations will resume nor any explanation as to why they are returning to Lippitts Hill. 

"Going forward all we can do is carefully monitor activity at the site and enforce the conditions that were imposed when permission was first granted. 

"I have great sympathy with the residents affected by the MPS decision, particularly those who have moved to the area more recently and have no previous experience of the noise nuisance that will be caused by flights in and out of the site."

Epping Forest District Council planning officer Andrew Marx, in an email to councillor Kane, said he had met with colleagues in Environmental Health and spoken with the Met and its planning representative to discuss the return to High Beach.

He said: "We appreciate the concerns of the local community and I have written to the planning representative and the Met officers responsible to ask whether they will be engaging with the local residents before flights commence.

"I have suggested that they arrange periodic liaison meetings with local residents and that they inform us of a suitable channel for complaints regarding disturbance from flights directly to the Met or the base.

"However as it appears, at this point in time, that neither Planning nor Environmental Health (officers) may have any controls over the re-starting of the flights or the undertaking of flights from the site I do not consider there is much more we are able to do at this point in time.

"We will no doubt be asked to formally investigate the lawfulness (in planning terms) of the flights recommencing, but we are unable to do so until activities have actually started.

"There is an extant planning permission that allows flights by helicopters from the site, subject to conditions.

"I have asked that the Met confirms the date of actual commencement as information I have received is that they may not be starting on June 1, 2021, as previously indicated by them."


Return of helicopters to Lippitts Hill "won't help" forest pollution

The return of police helicopters to Lippitts Hill "won't help" the issue of air pollution in Epping Forest, a councillor has said.

Loughton Residents' Association councillor Chris Pond led a group of five non-majority group councillors who called for an extraordinary council meeting in February to discuss the pollution strategy.

He told Everything Epping Forest: "Of course the police in London must have access to air services for everyone's wellbeing and security but we all thought the transfer of police helicopter activities to North Weald would remove some of the noise and pollution away from the adjacent towns of Chingford and Loughton and the centre of the Special Area of Conservation. Evidently not!"

He added: "Air pollution and the delicate ecology of the forest and the proposed CAZ is already an important issue. A helicopter base in the very heart of the SAC (Special Area of Conservation) won't help matters."

The February extraordinary council meeting voted to set up a cross party advisory group to come up with initiatives not currently in the strategy to advance air quality improvements with the objective of removing the need for a CAZ (Clean Air Zone).


Residents oppose reopening - living without helicopters has been "bliss"

People living near the Lippitts Hill site say it should not reopen and that the police helicopters should remain on North Weald Airfield.

Local resident Carol Moya told Everything Epping Forest: "We are very disappointed that the council is unable to legally stop the helicopters from returning. This is due to existing permissions in place.

"The structural plan of High Beach has changed considerably over the last three years, since the helicopters moved away, and some new housing has been built directly under one of the flight paths.

"Residents are very concerned about potential damage to their mental and physical health should the helicopters return for reasons which include interrupted sleep, not being able to be heard, or being able to hear when craft land and take off abd the permanent smell of aviation fuel in the air. The particulates are comparable to diesel."

Another resident said: "Residents are very unhappy. North Weald is, after all, a registered regulated airfield and not a field in the middle of a residential area surrounded by Epping Forest."

She added: "My husband has lived in High Beach for 64 years. We have lived next door to the Camp for nearly 30 years. 

"The last two years (while the helicopters have been based at North Weald Airfield) have been bliss!  

"Our main issue is not so much the noise, but the aviation fuel fumes are not so good. It makes a nonsense of the proposed CAZ."

* Everything Epping Forest has contacted the Metropolitan Police Service and National Police Air Service for statements.
9.22am - May 30

Twelve planning applications to be considered

Twelve planning applications are to be considered by Waltham Abbey Town Council's planning and licensing sub-committee which is being held at Waltham Abbey Town Hall, Highbridge Street, at 4pm on Wednesday (June 2).

The applications are:

* dropped kerb for a width of 3 metres, 36 Crooked Mile

* single-storey side extension, 47 Upshire Road

* haybarn, 7 Sergeants Green Lane

* new two-storey building for B1 / B2 / B8 offices, storage and light industrial use

* conversion of garage into habitable room, 3 Cobmead Drive

* retention of a permeable roadway made of broken brick, Normandy Nursery, Avey Lane

* retention of a 40ft container, previously used to block the second site entrance, Normandy Nursery, Avey Lane

* alteration of design and location of house on Plot 1, Fairmead, 1 Church Road, High Beech

* demolition of rear triple garage and conservatory and erection of a single-storey rear extension together with rooms in the roof of the existing bungalow, Roundhills, Mott Street

* work on protected trees - one Willow, one Ash, two Oaks and three Prunus, Baden Drive

* single-storey rear extension and loft conversion with dormer window, 4 Willmott Cottages, Copt Hall Green

* application for a Lawful Development certificate for existing use of Class B8 storage purposes.
9.02am - May 27

Town council's youngest member elected Town Mayor

PICTURES

Waltham Abbey Town Council's youngest member has been elected Town Mayor for 2021-22.

Councillor Jodie Lucas, 27, told the Annual Council Meeting she was "truly and deeply honoured" to have been nominated for the position.

She succeeds councillor Antony Watts who received his past mayor's badge from councillor Lucas at the meeting held at Waltham Abbey Town Hall on Wednesday.

Councillor Lucas said: "I really am truly and deeply honoured to be elected as Mayor of Waltham Abbey and it is a privilege to accept this position in the town my family has resided in for nearly 200 years."

Councillor Lucas, who has represented the Paternoster ward for more than five years having been co-opted in 2016 and elected in 2019, added: "I have learnt so much both personally and professionally for the best interests of the town and for those that I represent.

"As the youngest member of the council, guidance and support has been an essential aspect of my development."

Councillor Lucas has chosen the mental health charity Young Minds as her charity for the year.

She said: "Mental health and especially children's mental health is something I am personally passionate about. Mental health is at its most prevalent due to the increased stress and strain the pandemic has put on us all, and especially the younger generation."

Councillor Liz Webster, who was re-elected as council leader, had nominated councillor Lucas saying it was a "really, really, great pleasure" to put her forward for the position. Her nomination was seconded by councillor Tim Matthews.

Members of councillor Lucas's family - including her 96-year-old grandmother, Eugenia - were among the members of the public who attended the mayor-making meeting which saw councillor Jeane Lea elected as Deputy Mayor.

* Cheques totaling £4,250 have been presented by Waltham Abbey Town Council to three local organisations.

A cheque for £2,000 was presented to Waltham Abbey Youth 2000 (WAY 2000) while Through the Fight Foundation received £1,250 and 3FoodU £1,000 from outgoing Town Mayor Antony Watts.
12.50pm - May 25

Three arrested after police respond to report of man threatened with firearm


Three people have been released by police after officers were called to reports that a man had been threatened with a firearm in Waltham Abbey on Sunday evening.

A man was arrested on suspicion of possessing a firearm while a man and a woman were detained on suspicion of possessing drugs with intent to supply.

A police spokesman said: "We were called to an incident in Waltham Abbey around 10pm on Sunday (May 23).

"It was reported that a man visiting an address in Beechfield Walk had been threatened with a firearm.

"Officers attended and arrested a man and two women at the scene, all from the area.

"A 21-year-old man arrested on suspicion of possession of a firearm was released on bail until June 17.

"A 23-year-old woman and a 40-year-old woman who were arrested on suspicion of possession with intent to supply Class A drugs have been released under investigation."
2.49pm - May 21

New councillor co-opted onto town council


Waltham Abbey Town Council has co-opted Tim Matthews onto the council to fill the vacant High Beech Ward seat.

Mr Matthews was elected in the High Beech Ward for Epping Forest District Council on May 6 and is Waltham Abbey Town Council’s fifth councillor to sit on both the town and district councils.

Councillor Matthews said: “It is a great honour to have been co-opted on to Waltham Abbey Town Council.

"I was born and raised in the Waltham Abbey area and still live there today with my young family."

He added: "I look forward to being able to represent the residents from all areas of Waltham Abbey.

"I strongly believe Waltham Abbey is a very special place that I would love to see thrive. I will do everything possible within my new position to make this happen and ensure we leave it in a strong position for future generations to enjoy."
3.20pm - May 20

Mayor reflects on "difficult couple of years"


The Mayor of Waltham Abbey has reflected on "a difficult couple of years" caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and praised the town's community spirit as he prepares to hand over his chain of office next week.

Councillor Antony Watts, who has been Town Mayor for the last two years, has also remembered the family of Neil Darnell, the father-of-two who died in a hit-and-run road crash in Farm Hill Road, Waltham Abbey, last month, saying Mr Darnell and his family "will always be in my thoughts".

Mr Watts, in his annual report at the end of the 2020-21 civic year, said: "It's been a difficult couple of years. For most of us, we are looking forward to getting back to some sense of normality, albeit living with this virus.

"I count my blessings as I’ve only lost one friend to this dreadful disease. It has taken the lives of so many too soon but left so many more with their grief.

"My thoughts and best wishes go out to you all, and to those unfortunate to have 'Long Covid' and who are still struggling with its effects.

"I was warned over a year ago that we will probably have to live with COVID-19 for years to come.

"One person and family will always be in my thoughts; the care home worker who tragically died just a few days after her husband."

He added: "Alas, life, and death goes on outside COVID-19 and the whole town's thoughts and prayers are with Neil Darnell's family."

Mr Watts added that his "biggest regret" at the end of his two-year spell as Mayor is that because of the pandemic he has not been able to play a more active role.

He said: "One of the great privileges and pleasures of the office is to get out and about meeting people, in the town and representing it elsewhere. That has just simply not been possible. 

"I have tried to 'do my bit' with so many others and have hopefully helped in some small measure. 

"Of course, the most effective weapon in our armoury is the vaccine. I’ve had my first dose and, like many, felt relieved that at last we finally seem to be getting the better of this deadly enemy. But we will also have to continue being careful, wearing masks indoors, social distancing and washing hands.

"For many it has been, and continues to be a very difficult time but there have been many positive stories.

"Waltham Abbey has always been a supportive community and this has never been more evident than during this past year.

"The immediacy with which community support groups swung into action was breathtaking. The Town Hall has done its part, giving financial support to our customers, providing seed funding for 3Food4U and support groups and, of course, making the building available for the NHS.

"The Town Hall is there as a facilitator. The real work is done by each and every one of you. It might be collecting shopping or prescriptions, arranging food parcels, or just being there to provide a shoulder to cry on or an ear to listen.

"I am so immensely proud of everyone who has helped and are still playing their part. It’s what makes our town and our community such a great place. It’s not unique. Communities all over the country have done their bit.

"I know, I’m a newcomer having lived here since 1985 but it is my town. Our community spirit existed long before COVID-19. It will survive COVID-19, and I hope that later in the year we will all be able to celebrate it."
4.53pm - May 19

Nine-hour music event gets go-ahead

A nine-hour live music event at the J26 Diner, off Honey Lane, Waltham Abbey, for 450 people has been given the go-ahead - a month after an initial application was rejected.

Epping Forest District Council's licensing sub-committee refused an application for a Temporary Event Notice last month on the grounds of "public safety" after Essex Police licensing officer Ronan McManus expressed concern over pedestrians and HGVs sharing the same entrance and exit, and the potential for people under the influence of alcohol wandering onto the nearby M25.

However a new application for the event - running from 2pm until 11pm on Saturday, June 26 - was approved last week after district councillors were given reassurances over the issues and the objections which were set to be challenged at an appeal to magistrates.

Sarah Clover, speaking for the applicants, said there were two main issues which had been the subject of the sub-committee's initial decision to refuse a Temporary Event Notice for the event.

These were the issue of conflict between pedestrians and vehicles on the site, and the fear that intoxicated people could wander onto the M25.

Ms Clover told the sub-committee the conflict issue had been resolved as HGV movements would be grounded for the entirety of the event and also for two hours before and two hours after the event.

On the issue of people possibly walking onto the motorway, she said the likelihood was a "complete mismatch" between the "very, very unlikely" chance of it happening and she cited the example of motorway service areas selling alcohol and no such incidents of drunkenness having been reported nationally.

She said event-goers would arrive and be directed to a car park.

"It's not a common thing for people to get roaring drunk because they have to get themselves home again."

She added that since the original application had been rejected the proposed fencing had been upgraded with steel panels instead of wooden panels proposed.

Mr McManus told last Thursday's meeting that Essex Police repeated its objections and concerns and, again, referred to an unlicensed event at the site last August.

He also repeated his concerns over the possibility of intoxicated people walking onto the M25, issues over the number of taxi being available and the lack of public transport in the immediate area.

"Our concerns remain the same," he said.

The hearing was told the event is aimed at people aged 25 to 40.
4.12pm - May 19

All set for Town Show - COVID-19 restrictions allowing

More than 20 stalls have registered for the Waltham Abbey Town Show which Waltham Abbey Town Council hopes can go ahead as scheduled at the end of June, depending on COVID-19 restrictions.

The final stage of the Government's roadmap is set to see COVID-19 restrictions lifted on June 21.
Waltham Abbey Town Council, which organises the show, is currently working on the show going ahead at Town Mead on Saturday and Sunday, June 26 and 27.

In addition to the stalls, numerous attractions are planned including a Punch and Judy Show, ferret racing (thanks to Southern Ferrets) and a visit from the Essex Fire and Rescue Service and The Copped Hall Trust's Rolls Royce.

There will also be a mixture of stage performances, and a DJ.

Anyone interested in finding out more about having a stall or performing at the show should email sarah.colley@walthamabbey-tc.gov.uk or ring 01992 714949 for more information.
4.10pm - May 18

Development of 28 houses set for old swimming pool site

A development of 28 houses is being proposed for the site of the old Waltham Abbey Swimming Pool in Roundhills, Waltham Abbey.

Qualis Commercial - part of the wholly district council-owned Qualis Group - is behind the plans.

The development would see six three-bedroom houses and 22 two-bedroom houses.

It is unclear from flyers being distributed in the area whether the homes are for sale or rent.

Each house would have one parking space with the development would have three visitor spaces.

An area of community space for outdoor play with seating is also proposed.
3.11pm - May 14

Second teenager charged with murder after death of man "with a heart of gold"

The family of a man who died after being hit by a car in Waltham Abbey have described him as a “genuine force of life” with “a heart of gold” who would always “go out of his way to help others”.

Police today said a second 17-year-old boy had been charged with murder following the collision which happened in Farm Hill Road on Friday, April 16.

Local man Neil Darnell, 50, was found injured at about 10am after he was hit by a car.

He died in hospital two days later as a result of his injuries.

In a statement, those closest to him said: “No family should ever have to go through losing a loved one in these circumstances.

“Neil was a compassionate and loving family man. He had celebrated 26 years of marriage to his wife, Michelle, was a devoted father to his two daughters, Alice and Grace, and loved nothing more than taking his little dog, Ted, out for walks.

“He was extremely proud to have served his country with the British Army for six years, including in the first Gulf War, and would go out of his way to help others.

“Neil also completed three marathons, including both the London and Chelmsford marathons, to raise money for Teenage Cancer Trust and the Alzheimer’s Association.

“He was always happy, always joking and could always see the brighter side of life.

“In the coming years, Neil and Michelle had plans to move to the countryside and travel to a long list of destinations they hadn’t yet had the time to visit.

“Neil was particularly looking forward to devoting more time to his passion for cooking, sampling different craft beers and bourbons, and seeing his beloved Arsenal play.

“Through such a senseless act, these aspirations have been taken from both ourselves and from Neil, and our lives have been changed forever.

“We are all completely heartbroken and no words can express how much Neil will be missed.”

On Saturday, May 8, a 17-year old boy, from Cheshunt, was arrested in Harlow and charged with murder.

He appeared at Colchester Magistrates’ Court on Mayc10 and will next appear at Chelmsford Crown Court on July 6.

Yesterday, a 17-year-old boy, from Hertford, was also arrested and charged with murder.

He is due to appear at Colchester Magistrates’ Court today (Friday).

Detectives are continuing to investigate the circumstances behind the collision and ask anyone who has yet to speak to them and has any information or footage, to contact the Major Crime Team quoting reference 42/72816/21 at scd.appeals.essex@essex.pnn.police.uk

Information can also be given online at https://www.essex.police.uk or via the 'Live Chat' button to speak to an online operator between 7am and 11pm.

Information can also be given by ringing 101, or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111, or by visiting https://crimestoppers-uk.org
9.18am - May 10

Boy, 17, faces murder charge after road crash

A 17-year-old boy has been charged with murder in connection with the death of Neil Darnell, 50, who died following a collision with a car in Farm Hill Road at 10am on Friday, April 16.

The boy, from the Cheshunt area, was arrested in Harlow on Saturday.

He has now been charged with murder and is due to appear at Colchester Magistrates’ Court today (Monday).
1.53pm - May 9

Boy, 17, arrested over fatal crash

A 17-year-old boy, from the Cheshunt area, has been arrested in connection with the fail-to-stop collision in Waltham Abbey last month after which a 50-year-old local man died.

Neil Darnell died in hospital two days after he was in collision with a car in Farm Hill Road at 10am on Friday, April 16.

The teenager was arrested in Harlow last night and remains in custody where he is being questioned on suspicion of murder.

Detectives are continuing to investigate the circumstances behind the collision and thank witnesses who have helped with their enquiries.

Anyone who has yet to speak to detectives and has any information or footage is asked to contact the Major Crime Team quoting reference 42/72816/21 by emailing scd.appeals.essex@essex.pnn.police.uk, contacting police online at https://www.essex.police.uk/ or by ringing 101 or Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
4.18pm - May 6

Man dies in road collision

A man has died following a collision involving a car and a lorry on Dowding Way, Waltham Abbey.

The man, who was driving the car, was pronounced dead at the scene.

The collision happened shortly before midday.

The road remains closed while police officers investigate the incident and recover the vehicles.

A police spokesman said the road is likely to remain shut into this evening.

Anyone who saw the collision or has dash cam footage is asked to contact police on 101 (quoting incident 386 of May 6) or ring Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
1.09pm - April 30

Man robbed in McDonald's drive-thru queue

A man was robbed of his watch when he was threatened with a knife while he queued at the McDonald's drive-thru at the Highbridge Retail Park in Waltham Abbey.

Police say the victim was approached by another man on foot at about  9pm on Thursday, April 15.

The man threatened the driver through his car window with what is believed to be a knife and stole his watch.

The man is described as white, aged in his early 20s and about 6ft tall. 

He was wearing a yellow high-vis jacket over a hooded jacket with a face covering, ski mask and blue cycling helmet.

He is believed to have fled towards Waltham Cross.

Anyone who may know the robber or saw the incident, or anyone who may have dash cam footage from the time, is asked to contact police on 101 quoting crime reference 42/69035/21.

Information can also be submitted online at https://www.essex.police.uk or via the 'Live Chat' button to speak to an online operator between 7am-11pm.

To submit information anonymously, ring Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
5.15pm - April 27

Police name hit-and-run victim as hunt goes on for car driver

Police have named the pedestrian who died following a hit-and-run collision in Farm Hill Road, Waltham Abbey, on Friday, April 16, as the hunt goes on for the car driver.

Police have not traced the driver of the car - a grey BMW 3 Series - which was found abandoned a short while later in Valley Close, off Crooked Mile. 

Neil Darnell, 50, died in hospital two days after the collision.

Following a post-mortem examination the initial cause of death is believed to be a traumatic head injury.

Detectives continue to appeal for witnesses who were in the area at the time and witnessed the collision, or the circumstances which led to it.

Anyone with any information, or with any CCTV or dash cam footage available to view, is urged to contact the Major Crime Team on 101, quoting reference 42/72816/21.

Information can also be given anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or at https://crimestoppers-uk.org.
4.22pm - April 27

Views sought over 'community and cultural hub'

Epping Forest District Council is working in partnership with Essex County Council to combine the Epping Forest District Museum and library buildings in Sun Street in Waltham Abbey.

The new facility will include attractions and spaces for early years, improved access to local heritage, spaces and services to support health and wellbeing, spaces to socialise, and an offer for all age groups to access leisure, learning, culture and the arts

A district council spokesman said: "We want this new Community and Cultural Hub to become the 'go to place' for local residents, helping to support the regeneration of Waltham Abbey town centre through new and additional footfall to Sun Street.

To give your views on the new facility, complete the online survey
HERE before Friday, May 21.
3.03pm - April 21

Three people arrested for immigration offences

Three Ethiopian nationals - two men and a woman aged in their 30s - were arrested on suspicion of immigration offences after police received a report of people getting out of the back of a lorry at the Junction 26 Diner truck stop by the M25 at Waltham Abbey.

A number of police vehicles and ambulances were reported being seen at the location and on Honey Lane last night.

An Essex Police spokesman told Everything Epping Forest: "Officers attended and three Ethiopian nationals - two men and a woman all in their 30s - were arrested on suspicion of immigration offences and our enquiries are ongoing."

Anyone with any information can submit a report online at https://www.essex.police.uk or use the 'Live Chat' button to speak to an online operator between 7am and 11pm (quote incident 1006 of April 20).

Information can also be given via 101 or to Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111.
2.39pm - April 21

Boy arrested over knife and fight

A 16-year-old boy has been released under investigation having been arrested after a youth made off from officers in the Hillhouse area of Waltham Abbey at about 8.40pm on Monday.

The local boy was arrested on suspicion of possession of an offensive weapon - a knife - and taken into custody. 

He was later further arrested on suspicion of affray in relation to a fight reported at the same location at about 1.50pm last Sunday (April 18). 

The boy was released under investigation on Tuesday evening while  further enquiries are progressed.
5.52pm - April 20

Walk-in first COVID-19 jabs available tomorrow only

A COVID-19 vaccination bus will be in the Tesco car park, Sewardstone Road, Waltham Abbey, between 9am and 2pm tomorrow (Wednesday) giving walk-in vaccinations to people aged 45 and above, those who are clinically extremely vulnerable and health and social care workers aged over 30.

The bus is only operating for one day. There is no need to book. 

People attending will need their NHS number (which can be found via the NHS website) and give their full name, date of birth and address. If people do not have an NHS number, they can still be vaccinated.
8.07pm - April 20

VOTE 2021: Woman branded "stupid" by For Britain Movement election canvasser who called at home during Royal funeral

A Waltham Abbey woman who challenged a For Britain Movement election canvasser for campaigning during the Royal funeral was branded "stupid" three times by the caller during the doorstep encounter.

The whole episode was captured on the woman's doorbell video.

When asked for a response to the incident, For Britain Movement candidate Pat Richardson told Everything Epping Forest: "If she was that engrossed in watching the funeral why did she answer the door..."

The woman was watching television coverage of the funeral of HRH The Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh on Saturday afternoon when the doorbell rang - during the national minute's silence at 3pm.

The woman was described as a "stupid woman" by the canvasser after she told him to 'take the leaflet away'.

The video shows the man, who was not wearing a face mask, on the doorstep.

When the woman answers the door, he says: "Good afternoon madam, sorry to disturb you."

When the woman said he was disturbing her because she was watching the funeral, and she told him to 'take the leaflet away', he replied: "Why, what is wrong with you?"

The canvasser for Waltham Abbey Honey Lane ward For Britain Movement candidate Pat Richardson can then be heard to say "stupid woman" as he walks off from the property in Ruskin Avenue.

The woman told Everything Epping Forest: "I think this is extremely rude and dreadful timing, and this so-called patriot showed no respect for the passing of our monarch's husband."

Mrs Richardson, replying to Everything Epping Forest's request for a statement about the incident, said: "After listening to the recording,  I am astounded at the aggressive attitude of the 'complainant'.

"If she was that engrossed in watching the funeral why did she answer the door, as she would have seen who it was on the doorbell.

"Prince Philip himself was no stranger to controversy and wouldn't have put standing upon ceremony above democracy and supporting this country. 

"She might think she was being patriotic but seems to lack interest in local matters."

* Four candidates are contesting the Waltham Abbey Honey Lane seat on Thursday, May 6. They are Robert Greyson (Labour), Steven Heather (Conservative), Liam Lakes (Green Party) and Pat Richardson (For Britain Movement).
12.35pm - April 19

Hit-and-run victim dies

The man struck by a car in a hit-and-run collision on Farm Hill Road, Waltham Abbey, on Friday has died.

The man, aged in his 50s, was taken to the Royal London Hospital, Whitechapel, following the collision which happened at about 10am.

The car - which was being driven towards Honey Lane - failed to stop at the scene.

Detectives are still looking to speak to the driver of the car, a grey BMW 3 Series, which was found abandoned a short while later in Valley Close, off Crooked Mile.

Anyone who was in the area at the time and witnessed the incident, or anyone with dash cam footage of the vehicle, is asked to contact police.

You can submit a report online at https://www.essex.police.uk or use the 'Live Chat' button to speak to an online operator between 7am-11pm, or ring 101, quoting incident 309 of April 16.

Information can also be given anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or https://crimestoppers-uk.org
3.24pm - April 16

Man suffers life-threatening injuries in hit-and-run

A man has been taken to hospital with life-threatening injuries following a hit-and-run incident in Farm Hill Road, Waltham Abbey.

Police say the pedestrian was struck by the car on Farm Hill Road at about 10am today.

A police spokesman said: "The car failed to stop at the scene and the pedestrian, a man in his 50s, has been taken to hospital with life-threatening injuries.

Officers remain at the scene and the road is expected to remain closed until this evening.

Officers want to speak to the driver of the car, a grey BMW 3 Series, which was found abandoned a short while later in Valley Close.

Anyone who was in the area at the time and saw what happened or has dash cam footage is also asked to contact police by submitting a report online at https://www.essex.police.uk or by using the 'Live Chat' button to speak to an online operator between 7am-11pm or call 101, quoting incident 309 of 16 April.

Information can also be given anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111 or https://crimestoppers-uk.org
9.30am - April 16

Dispersal order put in place after large group refused to leave area

A dispersal order was put in place last night to prevent anti-social behaviour from a large group which had gathered in the Sewardstone Road area of Waltham Abbey and were refusing to leave, police said.

The dispersal order gave officers the power to order people causing anti-social behaviour to leave the area. Breaching any direction given under the order is a criminal offence.

The order was in place from 11.15pm last night (Thursday) until 6am today (Friday) and covered an area including the whole of the A112 Sewardstone Road, Hayes Lane, Butlers Drive, Godwin Close, Mott Street and The Playing Field, Sewardstone Close.
2.52pm - April 9

District council rejects proposals for nine-hour music event

An application for a nine-hour outdoor music event for a maximum of 450 people at the Junction 26 Diner, off Honey Lane in Waltham Abbey has been refused permission on the grounds of public safety.

Essex Police objected to the application highlighting various concerns - including that the site was the venue for an unlicensed music event last August.

Hayley Rogerson applied to Epping Forest District Council's licensing sub-committee for a Temporary Event Notice for the event with live music, food and drink at the truck stop and restaurant at Skillet Hill Farm on Saturday, June 26, with the event running from 2pm until 11pm with food served between 4pm and 7pm.

However the application, considered by the sub-committee today, was refused on "public safety" grounds after Essex Police licensing officer Ronan McManus expressed concern over pedestrians and HGVs sharing the same entrance and exit, and the potential for people under the influence of alcohol wandering on the adjacent M25.

In a letter to the council, Mr McManus said Essex Police was objecting on the grounds of crime and disorder, public nuisance and public safety.

The objection referred to an unlicensed music event at the site on Sunday, August 30, last year when police reported 100 people present, dancing in the car park and signs of drug abuse.

The objection added: "The site is still being used by large goods vehicles with both pedestrian and vehicles sharing the same entrance and exit point with large vehicles in close proximity with people under the influence of alcohol at night.

"Given the number of people expected (450 - up to 499 with staff numbers included) Essex Police believe this is an unacceptable risk.

The police added the site is next to junction 26 of the M25, the site is not secure and there is a "real possibility" of people under the influence of alcohol making their way through the back of the site onto the motorway.

Mr McManus also noted there are no car parking facilities at the venue "therefore people attending will be forced to park their cars in the local vicinity thus causing nuisance and congestion to the community going about their lawful business" however the meeting was told there would be parking for between 80 and 100 cars.

In addition, Mr McManus stated in his letter: "The event organisers have given no consideration on how to get 450 people under the influence of alcohol safely away from the venue at 11pm."

He added the last bus from the location at 9.53pm and the nearest train station (Cheshunt) 5.5kms away."
2.52pm - April 9

UPSHIRE: Man charged after more than 400 cannabis plants found at property

A man was due to appear in court today charged over the discovery of more than 400 cannabis plants at a property in Upshire.

In a statement issued to Everything Epping Forest this afternoon, an Essex Police spokesman said: "A man has been charged after cannabis plants were found at an address in Warlies, Upshire, on Wednesday, April 7.

"Approximately 437 plants were found.

"James Lewis, 39, of Broomfield Street, Poplar in London, has been charged with producing cannabis, possession of cannabis with intent to supply, and using electricity without authority."

He was due to appear at Colchester Magistrates’ Court today.
Police remained at the property this morning after a "large number" of cannabis plants were discovered yesterday
5.49pm - April 8


EXCLUSIVE


UPSHIRE: "Large number" of cannabis plants found at property

Police activity which has been ongoing at a property in Upshire for two days follows the discovery of a "large number" of cannabis plants, Everything Epping Forest can reveal.

A man has been arrested in connection with the find and remains in police custody.

Everything Epping Forest was first alerted to a police presence at the property, off Horseshoe Hill, yesterday afternoon.

Comments posted on social media report a police helicopter hovering over the area in the early hours of yesterday morning, but it is not known if that is linked to the cannabis plants discovery.

A dog walker who contacted Everything Epping Forest yesterday afternoon said she had seen "three police vans and two police cars and police officers going in and out (of the property) with evidence bags".

This morning five police vehicles - including two forensics investigations vehicles - were parked on the access road leading to the Warlies Park Estate.

This afternoon, an Essex Police spokesman told Everything Epping Forest: "A section 23 Misuse of Drugs Act warrant was conducted at an address in Warlies, Upshire, on the afternoon of Wednesday, April 7.

"A large number of immature cannabis plants were found and are being removed.

"A 39-year-old man, from east London, was arrested on suspicion of being concerned in supplying a controlled drug, possession of drugs with intent to supply, abstracting electricity without authority and producing cannabis. He remains in custody for questioning."
2.05pm - April 8

Police objecting to nine-hour music event at truck stop

A proposed nine-hour outdoor music event for a maximum of 450 people at the Junction 26 Diner, off Honey Lane in Waltham Abbey, is being opposed by police.

Essex Police has lodged objections highlighting various concerns - including that the site was the venue for an unlicensed music event last August.

Hayley Rogerson is applying for a Temporary Event Notice from Epping Forest District Council to hold an outside music event with live music, food and drink at the truck stop and restaurant at Skillet Hill Farm on Saturday, June 26.

The event would run from 2pm until 11pm with food served between 4pm and 7pm.

Essex Police licensing officer Ronan McManus, in a letter to the council, states police are objecting on the grounds of crime and disorder, public nuisance and public safety.

The objection refers to an unlicensed music event at the site on Sunday, August 30, last year when police reported 100 people present, dancing in the car park and signs of drug abuse.

The objection adds: "The site is still being used by large goods vehicles with both pedestrian and vehicles sharing the same entrance and exit point with large vehicles in close proximity with people under the influence of alcohol at night.

"Given the number of people expected (450) Essex Police believe this is an unacceptable risk.

The police add the site is next to junction 26 of the M25, the site is not secure and there is a "real possibility" of people under the influence of alcohol making their way through the back of the site onto the motorway.

Mr McManus also notes there are no car parking facilities at the venue "therefore people attending will be forced to park their cars in the local vicinity thus causing nuisance and congestion to the community going about their lawful business". 

In addition he states: "The event organisers have given no consideration on how to get 450 people under the influence of alcohol safely away from the venue at 11pm."

He adds that the last bus from the location at 9.53pm and the nearest train station (Cheshunt) 5.5km away."

The application will be considered by the council's licensing sub-committee at 10am on Wednesday, April 14.
5.42pm - April 6

'Closure order' issued for flat

A property in Caneland Court, Waltham Abbey, which was the scene of an alleged serious assault last month has been closed down under the Anti-social Behaviour, Crime and Policing Act 2014.

A joint operation between Epping Forest District Council’s Community Resilience team and Essex Police led to the Closure Order being made by Chelmsford Magistrates last Thursday.

The flat’s tenant had been ‘cuckooed’ and is now being safeguarded.

A Closure Order of up to six months can be granted to restrict all access and address disorderly, offensive or criminal behaviour, serious nuisance to the public or disorder near the premises.

A council spokesman said: "This is an excellent example of teamwork between our Community Resilience Team, police officers based at our Council Hub and the wider Essex Police force. 

"A closure order allows us to quickly close premises being used, or likely to be used, to commit nuisance or disorder. 

"We acted swiftly to get the order made and it has already been posted on the property. This action should address the concerns of local residents and bring peace to the area.”

Sgt Neil Ross, part of the council's Community Safety team, said: "Epping Forest District Council officers worked closely with the Community Safety Team to secure the closure order.

"We understand the impact that visitors to this property have had on the local community and I now hope this will prevent further disturbance to local residents."

* Cuckooing is where a criminal gang targets the home of a vulnerable person to use it for drug dealing - in the way the cuckoo bird invades other birds’ nests. Victims are often left with little choice but to co-operate.
5.17pm - March 10

Town Show to go ahead

The Waltham Abbey Town Show is set to go ahead at the end of June, the town council has decided.

The council intends to hold the event - at Town Mead on Saturday and Sunday, June 26 and 27 - in line with any Government COVID-19 restrictions in place at the time, but it is hoped that on June 21 national restrictions will be lifted.

Deputy Town Mayor Jodie Lucas told today's town council promotions and festivals sub-committee: "It seems we have some positive news (regarding the 'roadmap') that we can plan to go ahead.

"If we can pull it off it will be absolutely brilliant for our community. We need to be sensible and be planning for allowing for COVID restrictions - one-way systems, keeping everyone outside. That's probably going to be the most sensible way of going about it."

Councillor Bob Holmes said: "I think it would be ideal for Waltham Abbey people. It would give them a bit of oomph!"

Councillor Shane Yerrell said: "I don't think we should delay it as it would clash with the football (season) and the pitch hire.

"Everyone will be buzzing to get out as they have been indoors for so long."

Tricia Gurnett, representing various organisations in the town, told the meeting she was "nervous" about holding large events and was concerned about controlling social distancing where there is a "mass" of people together.

Councillor Lucas responded saying: "We will not be going ahead if it is not safe to do so. It is just going to be something we have to be quite flexible with.

"It's important to our community to show we have the right spirit and get back to normal as soon as possible but if there are any restrictions or we can't run it safely then we won't do so."

The council is to contact potential stallholders about having a stall at the event.
5.15pm - March 10

Police suspend search for missing man after body found

Police have suspended a search for Alan Wright, 48, who was reported missing from his home in Waltham Abbey yesterday following the discovery of a man’s body in woodland off Nursery Rise, Upshire.

The death is not being treated as suspicious.

Mr Wright 48, was reported missing having been last seen at 10.30am yesterday (Tuesday).
6.33pm - March 8

Retired detective dies in car blaze

A former senior detective who investigated several murder cases in the Epping Forest area when it was covered by the Metropolitan Police has died in a 'non-suspicious' car fire in Suffolk.

The victim has been named by villagers in Cavendish as retired detective superintendent Edwin Williams, who was aged in his 70s, and is understood to have lived in the village for about 15 years following his retirement.

Fire crews and police were alerted on Saturday morning to reports of a car exploding. He died at the scene.

Among the high-profile cases he headed was the murder of student nurse Judith Knights, 20, whose body was found at Claypit Hill, High Beach, in August 1989.

Mr Williams was based at Kings Cross for a time and worked locally as a detective at Woodford, Walthamstow and Waltham Abbey.

A file will be prepared for the coroner.
12.57pm - March 6

Update on Ninefields Estate incident

Police have given Everything Epping Forest an update on the two people arrested in connection with two incidents, which officers are linking, in Waltham Abbey yesterday.

A 16-year-old boy, from Waltham Abbey, who was initially arrested on suspicion of GBH and robbery was subsequently arrested on suspicion of GBH and being concerned in the supply of a Class B drug. He has been released from custody and bailed until March 14.

A 44-year-old man, from Beckenham, south London, who was initially arrested on suspicion of robbery was later arrested on suspicion of GBH. He remained in police custody this morning (Saturday).

The two were arrested after a man was stabbed and another man sustained injuries to his face and head in two incidents in Caneland Court, on the Ninefields Estate, in the space of about 45 minutes.

Police were called with reports of a man being stabbed shortly after 11.45am.

He sustained injuries to his arm and head and was taken to hospital for treatment. His injuries are not thought to be life-threatening or life-changing.

Then at 12.30pm police officers attended a separate address following reports from the ambulance service of an injured man who had sustained injuries to his face and head.
5.28pm - March 5

Two arrested after man stabbed and another injured

Two people - a 16-year-old boy and a 44-year-old man - have been arrested after a man was stabbed and another man sustained injuries to his face and head in two incidents in Waltham Abbey in the space of about 35 minutes.

Police say they were called with reports of a man being stabbed in Caneland Court, on the Ninefields Estate, shortly after 11.45am.

He sustained injuries to his arm and head and was taken to hospital for treatment. 

His injuries are not thought to be life-threatening or life-changing.

A police spokesman added that officers then attended a separate address in Caneland Court shortly after 12.20pm following reports from colleagues in the ambulance service of an injured man who had sustained injuries to his face and head.

Police are treating the incidents as linked.

The 16-year-old boy has been arrested on suspicion of GBH and robbery.

The 44-year-old man has been arrested on suspicion of robbery.

An area of the Ninefields Estate remained cordoned off this afternoon as forensics officers worked at the scene.

Everything Epping Forest understands emergency services, including the Essex and Herts Air Ambulance, were called before a casualty is reported to have been taken from the scene in a land ambulance.

A resident told Everything Epping Forest that residents of four flats in the block in Caneland Court where the stabbing incident occurred are unable to leave their homes as the communal staircase is within the cordoned off 'crime scene' area.

Police enquiries are continuing and officers are appealing for anyone who witnessed the incident or has information to submit a report online at https://www.essex.police.uk or use the 'Live Chat' button to speak to an online operator between 7am and 11pm.

Information can also be given to police on 101, quoting incident number 407 and 466 of March 5, or via Crimestoppers anonymously on 0800 555 111 or  at https://crimestoppers-uk.org.
4.43pm - March 4

Two people arrested and drugs and cash seized

Two people have been arrested and psychoactive substances with a street value of up to £57,000 and about £24,000 in cash seized as part of an ongoing investigation into the supply of illegal substance, Spice, into prisons.

Officers from Operation Raptor, Essex Police's specialist teams targeting and dismantling drugs gangs, executed a warrant at an address off Mason Way yesterday (Wednesday).

A 42-year-old man, from Waltham Abbey, was arrested on suspicion of being concerned in supplying a controlled drug.

A 71-year-old woman, from Camberwell, London, was arrested on suspicion of possession with intent to supply drugs.

Both have been released under investigation pending further police enquiries.

Detective Inspector Scott Fitzmaurice said: “These arrests are part of an ongoing investigation into the supply of class B drug Spice into prisons across the country.

“In yesterday’s operation we seized “In yesterday’s operation we seized psychoactive substances with a street value of up to £57,000 and about £24,000 in cash.

“We began our investigation last year after being notified by prison authorities, who have been working closely with us.

“The substances are believed to have been disguised and sent through the post and our enquiries remain ongoing.”


(Pictures: Essex Police)
4.08pm - March 4

Town Show and horticultural events to be discussed by councillors

Arrangements for the Waltham Abbey Town Show and the Waltham Abbey In Bloom and horticultural show will be considered by town councillors on Wednesday (March 10).

The council's town promotions and festivals sub-committee will discuss the events at the meeting, to be held via Zoom, at 3pm.
4.05pm - March 4

Planning applications to be considered

Thirteen planning applications will be considered by Waltham Abbey Town Council's planning and licensing sub-committee which meets via Zoom at 4pm on Wednesday (March 10).

The applications to be considered are:

* 2 Silver Street - demolition of sheds and erection of two semi-detached dwellings with two parking spaces within the curtilage of the dwelling.

* land adjacent to 22 Woodgreen Road, Woodgreen Road Upshire - two-storey detached house

* Forest View, Avey Lane - roof extension including the formation of front and rear gable-ends, a side facing dormer and installation of rooflights

* The Forge, Wellington Hill, High Beach - removal of timber decking to rear of property and installation of above ground timber swimming pool and new patio area

* 4 Wren Drive - crown reduce selected limbs on protected oak tree 

* 78 Beechfield Walk - new roof to previous rear extension

* Garden Centre, Crown Hill - resubmission of planning consent EPF/2030/17 for four semi-detached houses

* Forest Lodge Main House, High Road, Epping - retrospective advertisement application for replacement fascia sign to existing building and replacement sign to existing signpost

* 6 Claverhambury Road - rear extension and roof extension to extend the loft area

* 26 Harveyfields - two bike hangars to house six bicycles to flank walls of blocks 26-32 and 61-65 Harveyfields Estate

* 4 Wormley Court - front single-storey extension and covered area.

* 31 Skarnings Court - single-storey front extension

* Evergreen Garden Supplies, Mott Street - retrospective change of use from plant nursery to mixed use of plant nursery and wholesale landscaping supplies (sui generis).
3.54pm - March 4

Man suffers serious injuries in collision

A man aged in his 50s suffered serious injuries in a two-vehicle collision which closed Crooked Mile near Waltham Abbey for two-and-a-half hours yesterday (Wednesday).

Police and ambulance crews were called to the collision on Holyfield Road at the junction with Stubbins Hall Lane at about 7am.

The road was closed while officers investigated the incident and was reopened at 9.30am.

Anyone who witnessed the collision or has dashcam footage are asked to ring 101, quoting incident 124 of March 3. 

Information can also be submitted using the 'Live Chat' button on the Essex Police homepage or anonymously to Crimestoppers on 0800 555 111.
5.01pm - March 1

Waltham Holy Cross Primary Academy consults over extending school day

An extended school day may be introduced at Waltham Holy Cross Primary Academy to help pupils catch up with the schooling they have missed over the last 12 months because of Covid-19.

The academy is part of NET Academies Trust whose five other primary schools, all in Harlow, moved to an extended day four years ago.

The extended day has meant pupils have been able to enjoy more extra-curricular enrichment (sport, arts and more) as well as study more subjects and have boosters in reading and maths.

Children at Waltham Holy Cross Primary Academy would use the extra time for more project-based learning, extended science lessons, booster lessons and extra subjects, such as philosophy for children. This would allow the school to give adequate time to the core subjects while also continuing to enrich children's experiences in sports, science and the arts. 

The summer and autumn half-terms would be extended to two weeks, during which free holiday clubs for children would be run so that working parents are not inconvenienced. 

Staff would also be given extra days off at Christmas.

The suggestion for an extended day was put forward by staff, and today the school has launched a month-long consultation to ask parents for their views.

Executive principal James Hollinsley said: "All NET academies have excellent remote learning provision in place but there is no question that pupils generally have fallen back because they haven’t had the face-to-face teaching that is best for them.

"I have seen first-hand the huge benefits of an extended day for our pupils in Harlow in terms of catch-up, booster sessions, learning more subjects and extra-curricular opportunities, so would support it coming in at Waltham Holy Cross Primary.

“Especially in the context of Covid-19 and if children are to catch up what they have lost over the last year, the argument in favour of an extended school day is compelling.”

In Harlow, the NET schools’ day is longer by just 40 minutes than the norm equating to an extra three hours and 20 minutes of extra school time each week, or an extra 19 additional days of school a year. 

In particular, the arrangement maximises “prime learning time” (the mornings) so starting just a little earlier means the schools run three sessions before lunch, followed by two after lunch, while still allowing for additional reading and assembly at the end of the day.

The additional time teachers would be in school would still be within the stipulated 1,265 hours maximum that teachers can work but in recognition of this extra time and the commitment shown by teachers, they will receive additional holidays including an additional week’s holiday for autumn and summer half term, and extra days to be added to Christmas holidays to ensure staff get two full weeks off.

NET Academies Trust chief executive Jo Coton said: "Our experience over the last four years at the NET academies in Harlow demonstrates that a extended school day provides children with the best quality of education, while also offering an enhanced work-life balance for staff.

“It’s proved to be an excellent initiative - our parents and staff are really supportive of it, and above all we have seen such huge benefits for our pupils in terms of catch-up, booster sessions, teaching more subjects and extra-curricular opportunities.

“We hope parents at Waltham Holy Cross Primary are similarly supportive.”

If the proposal is taken forward, the extended day would be introduced from September and reviewed in June 2022.
2.01pm - February 20

Driver seriously injured in tree crash

A seriously injured driver was freed from his car by firefighters after the vehicle hit a tree off Woodridden Hill, Waltham Abbey, this morning.
 
Two fire crews - from Waltham Abbey and Chingford - were called out at about 8.15am following the crash which happened near the bottom of the hill, before the Woodbine pub.

Firefighters took about 45 minutes to free the casualty who was taken to hospital with what police described as "serious injuries".

A police spokesman said enquiries were "ongoing" into the circumstances leading up to the crash.

The road was closed until about 11am while the vehicle was recovered.
2.51pm - February 19
 
Train carriages to be primary school library and pre-school

Three train carriages are to be used as a pre-school and a library at Upshire Primary School.

The school is raising money and seeking sponsors so it can install a 'platform', book shelves and connect the carriages to the utilities. It is also looking for railway track on which to site the carriages.

A former 'first class' carriage will sit on the playground and be transformed into a library which the children can use at lunchtimes. Most of the seats and tables will remain enabling the carriage to be a luxurious and relaxing place for the children to read and play board games.

The other two carriages will go on the field behind the pre-school. The seats will be removed making them suitable for many purposes. 

The school's finance and personnel manager, Julie Hockley, told Everything Epping Forest: "Initially they will be home to our breakfast and after-school clubs as Covid-19 has made it impossible to use the spaces that have been used historically.  

"Having the extra spaces means we will not have to restrict available places and therefore can go back to ‘business as normal’ for our working parents. Once Covid-19 has gone, we will also use these two carriages to offer additional pre-school places to the local community."

She added: "The children are really excited. This is such an exciting project but it will cost a lot of money. We are looking for sponsors who can in turn share in the publicity surrounding the project.

"We have a fundraising team who are busy planning events to raise as much money as possible.  

"We have not set an overall target, we are instead focusing on each individual event as it comes. We hope this project will be good for the profile of Waltham Abbey and Upshire."
7.42pm - February 18

Police secure closure order for illegal party house
 
Police have secured a closure order for a property in Sewardstonebury which has hosted four illegal parties since New Year’s Eve.

Most recently, 18 people were fined a total of nearly £15,000 after officers attended an unlawful house party at Knoll House in Bury Road on Saturday, January 30.

That came after police received reports of a number of people having a party at the privately-rented property in a clear and blatant breach of coronavirus regulations.

Police officers had already dispersed illegal gatherings at the property three times, on New Year’s Eve and twice earlier in January.

Now Essex Police has secured the closure order from the courts stating the order was necessary to prevent coronavirus breaches and disorder continuing.

The order means no one can go into the property or live at it.

District Commander Chief Inspector Antony Alcock said: “It has taken a significant amount of work from our local community policing team in order for us to gain these powers which means people cannot go to the property, they cannot reside at it and certainly cannot engage in any further unlicensed music events.

“I am really grateful to people who have reported these events so far. It is a difficult time for everybody and made more difficult by the people who are choosing to ignore the restrictions.

“People who are adhering to the restrictions, please tell Essex Police if you witness breaches.

"We will respond and will take matters seriously and will issue fines where there are clear and blatant breaches.”
5.01pm - February 18

Twelve planning applications to be considered by town council

Twelve planning applications will be considered by Waltham Abbey Town Council's planning and licensing sub-committee on Wednesday, February 24 (4pm).

* Luthers, Sewardstone Road - rebuilding of the lost coach houses to form two two-bedroom houses with parking, refuse and amenity space

* Luthers, Sewardstone Road - Grade II* listed building for rebuilding of the lost coach houses to form two two-bedroom houses with parking, refuse and amenity space

* 1 Darby Drive - extension and shop front renovation.

* 214 Upshire Road - single-storey garden building for use with future swimming pool

* The Barn, Rats Lane - two-storey side extension

* The Coach House, Woodredon Farm Lane - variation of condition 2 'fenestration' on EPF/1836/19 (removal of a building to rear and replacement with rear and side extensions (revised application to EPF/0713/19)

* Woodredon House, Woodredon Farm Lane - sub-division of previously approved apartment - unit 2 (under EPF/0729/19) into two two-bedroom apartments with minor fenestration changes and reconfiguration of cart lodge to provide an additional car parking space. (amended scheme to EPF/0729/19)

* 2 Forge Cottages, Sewardstone Road - rear two-storey extension and enlargement to existing dormer.

* Normandy Nursery, Avey Lane - retention of 2m high galvanised steel boundary fencing and replacement hedgerow planting

* Cedar Lodge, Mott Street - demolition of existing structures, alterations to existing vehicular access, retention of existing dwelling, Construction of one detached four-bedroom house and provision of associated parking and landscaping.

* Timber Lodge, Copped Hall Estate - single-storey rear extension.

* 168 Honey Lane - redevelopment to provide two semi-detached houses.
1.38pm - February 16

Plans emerge for 425-home development

Initial details have emerged of plans for a 425-home development in Waltham Abbey.

Manor Oak Homes is promoting the proposed development for land north of Parklands in Waltham Abbey.

The land forms part of the Waltham Abbey North Masterplan Area earmarked for some 740 homes, a local centre, community facilities, traveller pitches and publicly accessible open space in Epping Forest District Council's emerging Local Plan.

The scheme is described as "a residential-led development of around 425 market and affordable dwellings" with areas of "publicly accessible open space and associated infrastructure". 

The land forms part of the Waltham Abbey North Masterplan Area earmarked for some 740 homes, a local centre, community facilities, traveller pitches and publicly accessible open space in Epping Forest District Council's emerging Local Plan.

A spokesman told Everything Epping Forest: "Manor Oak Homes are working alongside other site promoters and Epping Forest District Council to bring forward some initial proposals for the Waltham Abbey North Masterplan Area in line with the council’s emerging Local Plan. 

"We hope to be able to share our ideas and seek residents views as part of a consultation exercise later this year.”
2.19pm - February 15

Six-mile Lea Valley Park walk

A six-mile (9.65km) walk with good views across wetland and lake in the Lee Valley Park has been launched.

The walk instructions start from the Epping Forest District Museum in Sun Street in Waltham Abbey. For more details
CLICK HERE

Most of the walk is on solid pathways but some are uneven in places and may be slippery in wet and icy weather. The walk will take about two to three hours, depending on your walking speed and what you stop to look at.

A sunny crisp morning is the perfect time to go on the walk for the best chance of seeing the birds and other wildlife noted in the documents above.

This wildlife walk is part of the Epping Forest District Festival of Culture.
3.15pm - February 8

Market cancelled

Waltham Abbey Town Council has told traders not to turn out for tomorrow's market  (Tuesday, February 9) "due to the dangerous underfoot snow and ice conditions prevailing in the Market Square".

It is hoped the market will return on Saturday.
The Church of the Holy Innocents, High Beach, and the Kings Oak, High Beach, this morning (Monday, February 8) (Pictures: Michael Power / eyesuphigh.co.uk)
Eighteen people fined after third illegal house party at property in a month

Eighteen revellers caught having an illegal house party at a vacant rented property near Waltham Abbey have been fined nearly £15,000 by Essex Police after officers used new powers available under the Health Protection (Coronavirus) Regulations.

Police officers attended a house in Bury Road, Sewardstonebury, at 5pm last Saturday following reports that a number of partygoers were at the property having a party in breach of the current COVID-19 restrictions.

It is the third time officers had attended an illegal gathering at the property in a month.

Officers were initially refused entry from those inside the property who claimed to be making a music video.

A spokesman said officers gained entry and inside found 18 people clearly having a party while others were still arriving.

Officers quickly contained the party, prevented any others from attending, and fined all of those present before sending them on their way.

Detectives have now started an investigation to establish who organised the event. 

Essex Police is also working with its partners to put measures in place to prevent the future unlawful use of the property.

All 18 people present - including 17 people from London and one from Essex – were fined £800 each following the introduction of higher penalties last week for those caught attending illegal house parties of 15 people or more.

For the full Everything Epping Forest article on the incident 
CLICK HERE
Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition

The Wildlife Photographer of the Year exhibition at the Epping Forest District Museum in Sun Street has been postponed until 2022 following the latest coronavirus guidance.
Epping Forest District Council housing and community services portfolio holder Holly Whitbread said: "Although this news may be disappointing, it is crucial we all do our bit to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 and the best way to do this is to stay home. 

"I’m happy to hear we will be rescheduling for next year and am confident this will enable a safe and sociable experience for all our visitors in the future."
Waltham Abbey Town Council news

Planning applications to be considered

Four planning applications will be considered by Waltham Abbey Town Council's planning and licensing sub-committee at 4pm on Wednesday, February 10.

* 7-9 Sun Street - two slatted fascia sign with internally illuminated Co-op logo; one non-illuminated acrylic letters.
 * 3 Rounton Road - pitched roof single-storey rear side infill extension

* 14 Wren Drive - single-storey rear elevation with wrap around to part side elevation

* West Essex Golf Club Ltd, Bury Road - single-storey mono-pitched building to house ten covered bays and a golf tuition studio, with surrounding landscaping works

Zoom access information - Meeting ID: 811 5394 1664  Passcode: 098837

Policy and resources committee

Waltham Abbey Town Council's policy and resources committee meets via Zoom at 7.30pm on Monday, February 15.
Town council opposes CAZ proposals

 Waltham Abbey Town Council is opposing Epping Forest District Council's plan for a road charging scheme on roads through Epping Forest as part of a proposed Clean Air Zone which could be introduced in 2025.

The town council's policy and resources committee wants Epping Forest District Council to subsidise a local bus route which uses the proposed CAZ roads to mitigate the impact of the scheme on local residents should the charging scheme go ahead.

The council has also highlighted the lack of north facing slip roads at Debden as a key factor in the use of forest roads.

If north-facing slip roads were to be introduced, then a significant amount of traffic wanting to head north on the M11 would not need to travel through the forest to junction 26 of the M25 to then join the M11 at junction 27, the town council said.

Councillors agreed that the town council would work with Loughton Town Council to oppose the proposals.

The issue will be debated at an extraordinary Epping Forest District Council meeting on Monday, February 8 (7pm).

For more about the issue read Everything Epping Forest's full article
HERE
Police appeal for collision witnesses

Police are appealing for information following a collision involving a black Ford Fiesta and a blue Volkswagen Polo at the Sewardstone Road-Avey Lane junction near Waltham Abbey.

A woman was taken to hospital with what were believed to be minor injuries following the collision which happened at 2.35pm on Thursday, January 28.

Anyone who saw what happened or has dash cam footage is asked to contact Chigwell Roads Policing Unit quoting incident 679 of January 28.

Information can also be reported online at https://www.essex.police.uk or via the 'Live Chat' button to speak to an online operator between 7am and 11pm. Alternatively, you can ring 101.
If you have a news item or information about a local school, business or organisation which could be featured on Everything Waltham Abbey CLICK HERE
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