Parish Council News – May 2018

Annual Parish Meeting Reminder

This year’s Annual Parish Assembly will be held in Mayfield Memorial Hall on 21 May 2018 at 19:30.This is not a council meeting but a meeting of the parish electors which has to, by law, take place between 1 March and 1 June each year. All electors are invited and can contribute to the agenda and debate current issues in the community so please come along and have your say. The meeting agenda will be issued on 09 May so any items you might like to discuss need to be sent in to the Parish Council office before that date. There will be a short overview on the new General Data Protection Regulations that will hopefully prove to be informative to any village clubs or societies.


Another moan about dog mess

There have been more complaints from residents about dog poo not being cleared up, this time there has been a big problem on the pavements in East Street. Most dog owners are responsible and clean up after their animals but a few are letting everyone down.


Dog fouling in public areas is anti-social. Dog waste is associated with a number of diseases including toxicarasis. Toxocara is a roundworm commonly found in dogs, and almost all puppies. Eggs from the roundworm are found in dog waste, where they can pose a health risk if eaten, particularly to small children.

The parasite can cause stomach upsets, sore throats, asthma and in some cases blindness. The eggs remain active in the soil for years, long after any dog waste has weathered away, so the risk isn’t always obvious.


If you are witnessed failing to clear up your dog’s waste, you will be offered a Fixed Penalty Notice. Similar to a speeding ticket, you have the option to accept this Notice and pay the fixed penalty of £75 within 14 days, or alternatively face prosecution in the Magistrates’ Court. The maximum penalty upon conviction is currently £1,000. Registered blind people are exempt. Not being aware that your dog, or a dog under your control, has fouled the land or not having suitable means to remove the dog’s waste are not reasonable excuses for failing to remove it.


Please be prepared and always carry a poop-scoop or bag. A variety of disposable dog fouling bags and scoops are available from pet shops and other retail outlets – although a carrier bag will suffice. Ensure the dog waste is removed in its entirety and that bags are tied up before disposal. The bags can be placed in both litter and dog bins within Wealden as well as your own household waste bin. Whoever is walking the dog is held responsible to clear up immediately after the dog on all land, both public and private to which the public has access. These areas include:

  • Footways and adjoining verges
  • All highway and land maintainable at public expense
  • Pedestrianised areas
  • Churchyards
  • Open spaces owned by various councils, registered social landlords, public authorities or charities
  • Playing fields / recreation grounds / public parks
  • Public footpaths, bridleways and adjoining verges
  • Beaches

If you come across an area with an amount of dog waste you can contact Wealden District Council by telephoning 01323 443322 who will send a street cleansing team out to clean & disinfect the area. Please try to keep an eye on problem areas and report anyone you spot not cleaning up after their dog.


Wealden Local Plan Update

You may already be aware that Wealden District Council (WDC) has now received advice from Natural England in respect of the impact of air quality on the ecology of the Ashdown Forest Special Area of Conservation. The advice makes suggestions on clarifications and additions to the Air Quality and Ecology Report produced by WDC’s consultants.


WDC is working with its specialists to update the Air Quality and Ecology report including undertaking additional work. The Natural England advice will form part of the evidence base feeding into the Habitats Regulations Assessment (HRA) which will continue to be progressed.


It is critical that the HRA is as comprehensive and robust as possible and having reviewed the Natural England advice, WDC estimates this will result in the need to revise the date for consideration by Council of the updated Wealden Local Plan by two months from its current date of 25 April and expect to deliver an updated Wealden Local Plan to Council by the end of June.


Until the Appropriate Assessment and the HRA is completed they will be unable to determine planning applications submitted to Wealden District Council that result in additional vehicle trips across the Ashdown Forest and these will continue to be held. They will also be expecting that neighbouring authorities will continue to review any planning applications that they receive which may result in additional trips across the Ashdown Forest to determine if this is the case and, where appropriate, screen these applications and conduct an Appropriate Assessment if required.


False Telephone Preference Service Calls – Neighbourhood Alert

Fraudsters are cold-calling victims, falsely stating that they are calling from one of the well-known UK telecommunication service providers. They call victims claiming to provide a ‘Telephone Preference Service’ – an enhanced call-barring service, which includes barring international call centres. They ask victims to confirm or provide their bank account details, informing them that there is a one-off charge for the service. Victims instead see monthly debits deducted from their accounts, which they have not authorised.


In all instances, direct debits are set up without following proper procedure. The victim is not sent written confirmation of the direct debit instruction, which is supposed to be sent within three days. On occasions when victims attempted to call back, the telephone number provided they were either unable to be reached or the victim’s direct debit cancellation request was refused. During 2017, there were 493 Action Fraud Reports relating to this.

Protect yourself:

  • There is only one Telephone Preference Service (TPS). The TPS is the only official UK ‘do-not-call’ register for opting out of live telesales calls. It is FREE to sign-up to the register. TPS never charge for registration. You can register for this service at
  • You will receive postal confirmation of genuine direct debits. If you notice unauthorised payments leaving your account, you should contact your bank promptly.
  • Always be wary of providing personal information, or confirming that personal information the caller already claims to hold is correct.
  • Always be certain that you know who you talking to. If in doubt hang up immediately.

If you have been affected by this, or any other type of fraud, report it to Action Fraud by visiting or by calling 0300 123 2040.


Online Marketplace Fraud Advice For Sellers

Action Fraud has received several reports indicating that sellers of items on online marketplace websites are falling victim to fraud by bogus buyers. Typically, the bogus buyers contact the seller wanting to purchase the item for sale and advise they will be sending the requested amount via PayPal or other electronic payment method. The seller then receives a fake, but official looking email stating they have been paid more than the asking price and to send the difference back to the buyer’s bank account. In reality, no money has ever been sent to the seller; the bogus buyer has spoofed an email and purported to be an online payment company. All contact is then severed with the seller.

It is important to remember that selling anything could make you a target to these fraudsters however it those offering sofas, large furniture and home ware are particularly vulnerable.

  • Don’t assume an email or phone call is authentic. Remember criminals can imitate any email address. Stay in control. Always use a trusted payment method online, such as Paypal, and have the confidence to refuse unusual requests for payment like bank transfers.
  • Don’t be rushed or pressured into making a decision. Always verify that you have received payment from the buyer before completing a sale.
  • Listen to your instincts. Criminals will try and make unusual behaviour, like overpaying, seem like a genuine mistake.


Raising awareness of Clare’s Law

Sussex Police are carrying out a campaign to raise awareness of ‘Clare’s Law’. The Domestic Violence Disclosure Scheme (DVDS) enables people to apply for information about their partner’s (or ex-partner’s) history if they’re concerned about their own safety. It also enables a concerned family member, friend, neighbour or colleague to apply for that information to protect someone they believe to be at risk of harm.

A disclosure means sharing specific information about a partner for the purposes of protecting the person in a relationship with them from domestic violence, and is known as a ‘Right to Ask’ disclosure.

To make a Clare’s Law application contact Sussex Police:


East Sussex Wildlife Rescue and Ambulance Service

Information has been received from that East Sussex Wildlife Rescue Ambulance Service has a series of presentations which can be undertaken at schools, colleges, universities and community groups for a fairly modest fee for any interested organisations – the list and costs are on their website:


Parish Council office opening hours

The office will be closed on Wednesday 30 May 2018 and Friday 01 June 2018.


Parish Council Grants:

Please not that the application deadline for Parish Council grants each year is 30 September for the following financial year. Information on how to apply and the application form can be found in the “Key Documents / Finance” section on the Parish Council website at Alternatively contact the Parish Council office on 01435 873784 for a copy of the grants policy and application form.