Minutes of a meeting 26th April 2018  7.30p.m. at Halstead Icing

 Chairman, welcomed all present and accepted apologies from those who could not attend. 


MINUTES of 29th March 2018 had been circulated and were adopted


NEWS:  *Electric Ray TV.This is the company responsible for the currently transmitted ‘Britain in Bloom’ programme. They have been commissioned to make a second series and want to come to the Anglia region. They have spoken to Joan, and then to Secretary, but seem to want some ‘large new project’ which we don’t have on the agenda for 2018.  We’ve given some indications of plans for 2018 and we’ll see if they come back to Halstead.  *Nematodes. suggested by Jenny to combat vine weevil have been purchased and will be used.  *Gardeners Question Time. As suggested by Jenny the programme has been contacted to suggest Halstead as a venue but no reply received as yet.  *Halstead Connected. HiB attended a follow up meeting but nothing  to report at the moment. *Cake Stall. Chairman thanked all who baked and supplied cakes.  £62.90 was raised from cake sales; £10.50 from raffle and there was £8.55 in donations time.  Total of £81.95 raised. *Give as You Live notices have been prepared and will be on hand for each sales event, etc.

The ethos of a sales portal for on-line sales was explained; it costs the purchaser nothing but retailers hope to boost sales.  Cards are also available for in store shopping to raise funds.  Look at the Give as You Live web site for more details.  *Hampton Court.  RHS have offered HiB 2 places for a seminar, lunch and tour round the Hampton Court flower show on Monday 2nd July from 9am-3pm.  Only 100 places are available for In Bloom groups so 2 places have been registered for HiB.  Please advise if you’d like to go.

EVENTS:   *Next RiverCare event  will be 6th May.  Meet at 10am at Sainsbury’s Car Park.  *Next Community Litter Pick will be 29th April.  Meet 10.30am at Sainsbury’s Car Park.  More Junior Bloom high-viz vests have been purchased.  Litter pickers and bags will be to hand. .   *May Day Event.  7th May in Halstead Public Gardens.  HiB to plant sunflowers and sell books – several have been donated by Shirley Diver.  Meet at 12noon in Public Gardens to set up.  Event is 2 – 4.30.  *Halstead Marathon. 13th May.  Margaret E, Margaret T,  David, Joan, Annie, Ian, Fiona and Dave, Graham and Julia have volunteered to act as marshalls on the day.  Information to be emailed out when at hand.  *Armed Forces Day. 30th June. HiB has agreed to have a stall; Margaret has donated a large fluffy toy for a ‘name the monkey’ event and we will probably have books and plants to sell.  Raffle tickets for the draw are on sale now at £1 per ticket.  First prize £100, 2nd prize £75, 3rd Prize £50 with many other donated prizes.  Tickets will be available on the day or we hold a limited amount – contact us to purchase.  *Halstead Flower Festival. Dates confirmed as 13th-15th July at St. Andrew’s Church. Joan explained the HiB display.  Several said they will be able to help with information, etc. on the day.  *Plant Stall Booked – on Market Hill 26th May.  Plugs being grown on by Carol, Margaret and Joan. Peter N said he will supply some veg and some flower plants.  David T has some tomato plants to bring.  Any other donations will be welcomed. Set up on Market Hill from 8.30am  *Van booked – for collecting plants 2nd June. Planting on 3rd June.  *Sci-Fi Trail. To celebrate the first airing of a Sci Fi programme on the BBC (Rossums Universal Robots, a play by Karel Capek  first aired on 11th February 1938) we are planning our ‘trail’ for young people (and parents!) over the summer holiday.  Some shops are already on board and more will be contacted. *Local Garden Competition. Letters have gone out to ‘It’s Your Neighbourhood’ entries from 2017 and so far we’ve had one entry returned!  Judges have been contacted and so far there are 5 positive answers.  We probably need at least 1 and possibly 2 more judges – from outside Halstead.  One Gold entrant from last year’s competition is aiming to open their garden at Howe Chase on 20th May from 11-5 for the National Garden Scheme.  Entry is £4.50 (children free) and tea and cakes will be available.  Last year judges agreed this is a fantastic garden – well worth a visit!  More details on our Facebook page.  *Quiz. David said he would be willing to organise another of these popular evenings.  Friday 12th October was discussed as a possible date.  More details later.



*Route for 2018.  The agreed route has been surveyed and discussed with BDC Street Scene.  Very positive results and agreements on what can be done.    *Jobs to be done winter/spring: Annie and Mike have repaired the Loom and given it a first coat of paint.  The birds, butterflies and bees artwork will be given a spruce up by Annie.  Annie and Mike also volunteered to paint the cart at Bluebridge (paint is in hand).  Tubs outside W.H.Smith still need to be rubbed down and Annie will paint.  The 3-tier container outside Hume’s/Saffron B.S. is not thriving so an alternative container will be sourced.  It was decided not to renew the troughs along Solar wall until at least the Autumn (they may need some sprucing up before then.)

WORKING  PARTIESFor all working parties meet at 2p.m. on Town Bridge unless advised otherwiseTuesday 1st May.  Joan will not be available on that day but suggested that the daffodils in St. Andrew’s Churchyard need to be deadheaded.  Joan will contact Linda to see if she agrees.  Daffs in Trinity Churchyard also need to be deadheaded.  There may also be weeding to be done in these areas.  Thursday 3rd May.  Resource Centre – chestnut seedlings need to be removed and some new shrubs added.  Tuesday 8th May.  Litter pick and weeding in Parsonage Street.  Tuesday 15th May.  Weeding and cutting back in Road Runners’ Bed.  Thursday 17th May Possibly weeding in Kings Road; maybe begin removal of winter plants (Gosfield in Bloom – a new group – have asked if they can have some of our winter bedding and we will be pleased to donate to them.)  Tuesday 22nd May. Removal of winter plants.  Thursday 24th May. Removal of winter plants.  Tuesday 29th May.  Removal of winter plants.  Attack vine weevil renewing compost where appropriate.  David suggested that some of our winter plants could be sold on our plant stall.


ANY OTHER BUSINESS:  *Margaret E and Joan reported on their trip to Milsom Country Park for a Rivercare event which they found most enjoyable and interesting.  Halstead was also represented from the Conservation Group at Coggeshall Pieces and the Rivercare team.  There was information about beach litter collections and how waste was being combated on South West beaches.  Some first aid bags were given away and also some re-useable takeaway cups.  Colchester hope to have an event detailing how litter is dealt with in the future and it is hoped that HiB can attend.   *Calendar Photos.  Deadline for inclusion is getting near so Oliver will put out a call on Facebook and Mike will speak to U3A photographic group.. *Oliver gave an update on Facebook – HiB page now has 455 followers with 1460 views. Popularity of the site is increasing greatly and one responder from Colchester in Bloom complemented HiB and admired the success we have had.  Oliver will respond saying we will support Colchester in Bloom where we can. *Margaret T said that she had good reports of the Facebook page, but said that she’d had negative comments about the website.  Will be reviewed.  Margaret also spoke about bollard in Parsonage St. to prevent verge parking that have now been knocked down and large vehicles are parking on the verge destroying it. Margaret reported weeds at Elizabeth Way and also graffiti on the wall from Library to Trinity Flats. *Christine spoke about the compost bins at The Empire and said that there is plenty of room for green waste from winter bedding, etc.  Christine also said that following the successful talk at Earls Colne she would like to put forward that HiB purchases a projector. Costs to be sought and project reviewed.  *Joyce said that she had reports of blocked drains in High St. outside the former Post Office and also Jennings Bookmakers.  *Joan asked if anything can be done to brighten and spruce up shops in the town – particularly the former ‘Options’ store near to the crossing and also Piccadilly Store.  Joan volunteered to speak to the owner of the High St. store.  *Ian thanked all HiB team members who have supported him during his recent stays in Hospital and incapacity at home.  All agreed it was good to have Ian attending meetings again!  *Fiona reported a litter bin a Balls Chase that is broken near to the ground.  Fiona asked that thanks be passed on to those who moved the dog bins away from seats along the River Walk.  Fiona and Dave volunteered to clear litter from the river as necessary. *Carol said she had had good reports about the talk given to Earls Colne W.I. recently and was told that it was very informative and professionally delivered!!  Well done Joan, Chris, Margaret E and Margaret T.



There being no other business the meeting closed at  8.58  p.m.

Next team meeting on   Thursday 31st May 2018 
.30p.m. at Halstead Icing.

All welcome

Contacts:  Margaret Eskins Chairman.  01787 269443

Julia Smith, Secretary. 0776 2587141 / 01787461806. e-mail jaygrey@btinternet.com
Joan Gibson, plants and working parties. 01787 473070
www.halsteadinbloom.org.uk        Facebook: halsteadinbloom.    giveasyoulive.com/join/halstead-in-bloom