Archive for March, 2016

Report on Foxearth and Liston Parish Council Meeting – 19th March 2016

A meeting of the Parish Council for Foxearth and Liston was held on 19th March. Cllr Mrs Corinne Cox was in the Chair, there were 10 members of the public present and apologies were received on behalf of Cllr. Tony Clayton.

The Chairman reported on current matters and changes since the last meeting:

   Flooding in Foxearth: It is hoped that a start will be made on the bypass drain next month and that it will be finished before road resurfacing is due in September. Cllr. Cox paid tribute to her predecessor in pressing for this improvement.

   Street light – Claypits: As attempts to ascertain ownership had been unsuccessful, Cllr Phil Cox had removed the foliage preventing maintenance of this lamp -for which he was thanked.

   PC Web site: A dedicated web site- www,  was now up and running.

   Speed watch: Peter Routley wished to give up the organisation of this monitoring team and appreciation was expressed for his past work. It is hoped that a co-ordinator and volunteers would be forthcoming to maintain this useful exercise

   Defibrillator: This equipment would cost in the region of £1,000 but it was understood that the British Heart Foundation had a grant scheme for which application may be made in the next financial year. An electricity supply would be required to keep the apparatus charged but full instructions would be available at the time of use. It was noted that there was at least one person in Foxearth with the appropriate training.

Braintree District Council- Local Plan: The Clerk reminded members that comment/amendments/proposals concerning the plan should be submitted by 31st March. One suggestion discussed was the possible slight enlargement of the Foxearth Village envelope to include a small section of land adjacent to Glebeside to allow some housing development. It was stressed that if this went ahead it must address local needs in respect of affordable and mobility-friendly accommodation.

Public Question Time: A member of the public explained that she was seeking a plot of land in Foxearth  upon which she could build a bungalow suitable for her needs.

District Council: Apologies for absence were received from District Cllr. Iona Parker who had sent a written report ,which the Clerk summarised, dealing mainly with the Local Plan revision and the future budget limitations.; the District Council would probably face a 13% cut in its  spending power over  the next 4 years

Email and IT policy: Cllr. Posen reported that the working party had examined email arrangements  and they appeared to be satisfactory. The policy document of the Council would be reviewed.

Telecommunications and Broadband: Cllr. Posen said that it was apparent from discussion with some residents that Broadband reception was not considered adequate. He proposed that a residents’ survey be conducted.

 Liston Quiet Lane: For further consideration at BDC meeting on 24th March

Planning application: No objections were expressed to an application for  a single-storey side extension at a property in Foxearth

Next meeting: Saturday 21st May in Foxearth Village Hall 10.30am Annual General Meeting followed at 11.30 by Annual meeting of Electors (Annual Villages Meeting)

Ken Nice

Foxearth & District Local History Society AGM Report

The inaugural meeting of what was to become the Foxearth and District Local History Society was held on 9th March 1999 when about 35 people turned up to hear the then Rector, Rev. Captain Brian Sampson, explain his idea to form an association of villagers interested in local history. Whilst from the outset it was envisioned that “local” would encompass  Foxearth and its neighbours – Borley, Liston and Pentlow – neither the subjects covered nor the membership has, happily, ever been that restrictive. At this first gathering great enthusiasm was evident and a committee was quickly formed with Alan Fitch being appointed as Chairman. In the years since then, the Society has met pretty well every month (on the second Tuesday) for a talk or a visit and (each year)for a Christmas dinner; occasionally a summer month has been deliberately left blank but this hasn’t happened every year. Talks by local experts have varied enormously including every time period from the Iron Age to World War 2. Local industry such as silk weaving, milling, brewing etc have all contributed to fascinating and memorable evenings. Local ghost stories have had an airing and we’ve even had visits from a Pearly king and queen. Each year’s programme has  included  archive film shows during which many members have been able to relate personal recollections.

Visits to places like Bletchley Park and the Duxford Air Museum have been well organised and supported and it’s amazing what one finds out about an adjoining village like Long Melford in the hands of expert guides! Thanks to member Andrew Clarke the Society has an expanding web site which is proving to be very popular.

Well – so much for the potted history. The Society’s 17th Annual General Meeting was held on 8th March 2016 when just 15 members were present. Chairman Alan thanked the committee and others involved in various ways for their service not just in the past year but during his long term of office. He felt that after 17 years it was time to step down and warm tributes were paid to his leadership of the Society. President Ashley Cooper expressed his admiration and thanks to Alan for his conscientious work.

It was  noted that Treasurer John Geddes had tendered his resignation and appreciation was expressed for his work. In his absence on leave a financial statement was presented and accepted showing a satisfactory fiscal state It was agreed that the membership would remain at £10pp. Concern was voiced at the falling membership and the difficulty of meeting the fees that some speakers expected.

Ashley suggested that the Society may like to consider the Bulmer system of meeting every two months if things did not improve.

It was felt that an approach to members as well as a mail drop in the community generally would be worth trying to hike up support and to find people to fill the two vacancies. Also it was agreed that the raffle associated with meetings should be revived. Some time ago the possibility of publishing a book entitled The Mediaeval Roads of Essex was discussed. This exists as an Ebook but it was understood that the author – Helen Walker – had given permission for the Society to print it and it was agreed to proceed.

Refreshed by cheese and wine members were invited to reminisce about their school days – and tongues began to loosen! From the most unlikely sources we heard tales of truancy, corporal punishment (a slipper was presented as evidence) and methods of coping with the discomfort and episodes of clearly “undeserved” punishment. Secretary Clare Mathieson suffered a most uncomfortable ordeal when hailstones got into her underwear and if you want to know more about that you’ll need to ask Clare!

Next meeting:Tuesday 12th April 7.30pm in Foxearth Village Hall when Chris Strachan will talk about the history of Harwich Picture Palace .

Ken Nice