In December Wealden District Council hosted their annual Parish Conference and there were some interesting presentations and snippets of information that residents may wish to know.
- Communities in Policing
Sussex Police’s Wealden Prevention Team informed that they will be working with communities to identify the needs of each parish and that they will be increasing the number of neighbourhood officers by 2022. They have started running surgeries as a ‘mobile policing approach’ in community buildings and in a mobile unit that they park at local supermarkets. Information on where and when these surgeries will take place in the future will hopefully be shared with us. They have also challenged themselves to be in our parishes on some occasions to deal with parking issues which I know will please a lot of people.
- Refill Wealden
City to Sea gave a very useful talk on how we can all help to cut plastic waste by refilling reuseable water bottles, a very hot topic at the moment. Their campaign works by connecting people who are looking for water with local businesses, transport hubs and public spaces where they can refill for free. Anyone can download the free app to find Refill Stations near them to refill for free on the go. Participating businesses simply sign up to the app and put a sticker in their window – alerting passers-by that they’re welcome to come on in and fill up their bottle. There are now more than 14,000 Refill Stations in the UK alone – including railway stations, airports and high street chains. The Parish Council will certainly be joining and it would be great to see other local businesses signing up too. Visit www.refill.org.uk.
At the Parish Conference we were also told a little about Wealden District Council’s various Commercial Projects that are they are investing in such as the building of affordable homes and the regeneration of shopping centres. You may be pleased to know that the majority of the construction work at their new crematorium is now drawing to a close and may be interested in the following:
- Trees and landscaping – a bonus for the local environment
The majority of the crematorium site will feature well thought-out formal and informal gardens, woodland areas, grazing and wildflower meadows. New native species hedgerows are also being incorporated into the scheme. The landscaping includes the planting of nearly 8000 trees to form new native species woodland and for screening. Care has been taken to avoid species where there are recent health issues for example Ash.
In addition over 4500 shrubs and over 4700 herbaceous plants are being planted. The site has a high potential for nesting birds as the woodland, scrub, scattered trees and hedgerows provide ideal nesting habitat for a range of bird species. A number of bat boxes have also been installed across the site.
- Supporting the local economy
Wherever possible the contactor has taken care to engage local suppliers, sub-contractors and trades people. Once the crematorium opens there will be further ongoing benefits to local businesses.
- Advantages for the wider community
Baxall Ltd, the main contractor, plans to donate some of its workforce time to maintain and enhance local stretches of the much used and much enjoyed Cuckoo Trail.
Wealden District Council will be organising open days for the general public and businesses in January or February 2019, once the main building work has been completed.
Helping Wealden’s Street Scene Team help you
Wealden District Council has a Street Scene Team of three officers who often work closely with the Parish and Town Councils to resolve issues such asFly Tipping, Abandoned Vehicles, Littering and Dog Fouling. They investigate fly tipping incidents both on public and private land including the fly tipping of non-recyclable waste at the Neighbourhood Recycling Centres. They are however unable to arrange for the clearance of fly tips from private land. It is important that any fly tip is not disturbed prior to the team visiting as crucial evidence may be destroyed. If evidence is found within the rubbish by the team, action is taken where appropriate. This can range from a warning letter to full-scale court prosecution.
The team is also able to assist with abandoned vehicles. These are vehicles that are untaxed and either unsecure in poor condition or unroadworthy. However, in the first instance these should be reported to Operation Crackdown at www.operationcrackdown.org
They will investigate both littering and dog fouling issues. Where the appropriate evidence is available, such as witness statements, they will take further action by issuing warning letters or Fixed Penalty Notices as appropriate. Dog patrols can also be set up in problem areas, subject to resources, to help catch and deter offenders.
It is important for all of these issues to be reported to the Street Scene Team as soon as possible to allow them to investigate. To contact them email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01892 602735
Ready to brave the cold
East Sussex Highway’s winter gritting season runs from 1 October until 30 April. During this period, they have Winter Duty Officers who are on call 24 hours a day. Theyare responsible for collecting information about the weatherand determining if any routes require gritting. Gritting the road at the right time is crucial, so they use weather forecasts and monitor the road surface temperatures to decide when to put salt down. They often grit during the evening or early mornings to try and limit the likelihood of frost/ice forming on the road.
They operate a fleet of 24 gritters, with two spares in case of breakdowns or accidents. Each gritter lorry operates a pre-planned route that takes two to three hours to complete. They treat 777
miles of highway. All pre-planned gritting routes can be found at www.eastsussexhighways.com.
Remember: Winter car kits should include:
- Ice scraper & de-icer
- Warm clothes & boots
- First aid kit
New water main in The Warren
Work to install a new 390 metre water main, to replace an old pipe prone to bursting is planned to start on 02 January 2019 and will take place along The Warren between ‘Sandleford’ and ‘Fairways’, including the looped section of the road. Work will take place during normal working hours, although there may be some activities at weekends. This essential work forms part of a £3 million improvement to the local water network in Mayfield, Five Ashes, Rotherfield and Crowborough.
Compass Travel bus service changes
Compass Travel is unable to continue to provide all of their current provision of services due to financial pressures. This has been caused by higher fuel and insurance costs, along with reduced levels of income because of declining passenger numbers. Several services have few or no changes, with the main alterations affecting the worst performing journeys. One of the services affected is the 227 Five Ashes-Beacon Academy Crowborough school servicewhich is mainly used by pupils entitled to free home to school transport. The County Council has confirmed it will secure an alternative service provider to maintain the current service timetable.