Month: April 2023

Local Garden Competition

At Halstead in Bloom we are launching our Annual Local Garden competition. If you are really proud of your garden or allotment and would like to show it off this is the competition for you.

We have 4 categories this year, Front garden, Back garden, Allotment and young person under the age of 15.

You can enter as many categories as you like.

Entry forms are available at the Town council offices, Librar and on the notice boards of Sainsburys and the Weavers court Co-op, or if you would rather email your details, please do so at hibgardencompetition@yahoo.com the closing date is the 23rd June 2023 and judging will take place over the weekend of 1st & 2nd of July.

Good luck and happy gardening.

Minutes from the 27th April

HALSTEAD IN BLOOM
Minutes of a meeting 27th April 2023 at 6.00p.m. at Royal British Legion Club
Chairman welcomed all present and accepted apologies from those who could not attend, including David
T who has been in Hospital but is now recovering at Cedars and hopes to be home very soon. He sends
his best wishes to all.
Minutes of the meeting of 30th March 2023 had been circulated and were adopted.
UPDATES: *Banner on Sudbury Road now seems to have been fixed and looks fine. *Talk to Halstead
WI went well and some of their members have spoken to team members and said they enjoyed the evening
and learned much about HiB. A donation of £50 was given to HiB and there was £22 in the donation tin
after the evening. *Neil, Bryan’s son, has bought paint and will re-paint the walls of Bryan’s garden when
weather conditions are favourable.
ANGLIA IN BLOOM 2023: *The Spring Launch event for Anglia in Bloom 2023 was held on 31st
March at Swiss Garden, Old Warden and 6 volunteers from HiB attended. Chairman reported that the
venue was superb and very suitable, but it was a shame that the deluge of rain curtailed a visit to the
Garden and also to the Shuttleworth collection of old airplanes and vehicles. Talks were interesting and not
too long. No entry will be made for Halstead town into the Anglia in Bloom campaign 2023 but Halstead
Town Council has agreed that St. Andrew’s Churchyard can be entered for Virtual Judging. Other Virtual
categories for 2023 are:- Care/Nursing Home; Cemeteries and Crematoria; Churchyards; Parks;
Pubs/Hotels; King’s Coronation Celebration; Wildlife Conservation. Any ideas for entry (cost £20 per entry)
will be appreciated. Because Braintree Council has said that no bedding will be used in Halstead (nor
Braintree and Witham) there won’t be entries for the Award Winning Halstead Public Gardens and other
areas managed by BDC. HiB members were upset by the prospect of lack of bedding, and therefore
colour, in the Public Gardens. There is the Its Your Neighbourhood campaign that is free to enter and this
can be two or more houses, a club or association, a group involved with a gardening/wildlife project, a
school growing food for community use, an allotment association, etc. So far we have had entries from
Sharon’s Garden (H.T. School grounds), Community Allotment (Halstead Guides), Halstead Bowls club,
Royal British Legion Club and Causeway, Holy Trinity School PTA. Some leaflets and entry forms were
available at the meeting and can be passed on. All entries get a certificate from RHS showing their
achievements. Again, ideas for entry from Halstead would be appreciated.
SPONSORSHIP: Annie has been busy and contacted all existing sponsors and some possible
new supporters. So far pledges have been made as follows: RE Group Accountants £150; Forge
Vets £125; Premaberg £125, Alumasc Wade £500, Crownlea £750, Secure IT Services £50, JMC
Mortgages £50, Oswick Estate Agents £50, Halstead WI £50, Halstead Flower Club£75, Halstead
Antiques Centre £50 (new sponsor this year), Dr. Hessayon £200 plus £300 donation, Annie and
Mike Rees £50. Well done Annie, great work for Halstead in Bloom.
EVENTS: Next Community Litter Pick – 30th April. Meet at Sainsbury’s Car Park at 10.30 am. All
welcome. *Next River Clean is 7th May (to be confirmed). Meet 10am at Sainsbury’s Car Park. *.
*Halstead Summer Fayre is planned for 5th August and it was agreed that HiB will take a stall.
*Halstead Marathon will take place on Sunday 14th May, We have marshalls as follows: Joan,
Helen, Barry, Julia, Graham, Fiona, Dave, Margaret E, Ian, Dave and Lin Gronland. We really
need to have someone with Joan, please and if anyone else would like to join in that would be
great. We usually have to be at station from about 11.30/11.45 and leave when the last runners
come home, or earlier if convenient. PLEASE let me know as soon as possible if you can help – I
will ascertain official timings and instructions and advise those helping. *Armed Forces Day Fete
will take place in Halstead Public Gardens on 24th June. It was agreed that HiB will have a stall
with archive items and some sunflowers for sale and some to plant. Details at next meeting. *HiB
plant sale will be on 19th May and if necessary on 20th May. Stall manning as follows: 19th May 9-
10 Joan and Sue; 10-11 Jenny B and Jean B; 11-12 Alan and Joyce; 12-1 Margaret C and Wendy.
20th May; 9-10 Joan and Sue; 10-11 Karyn and Billy. 11-12 Don and **** 12-1 Joyce and Ian. Can
anyone be with Don 11-12 on Saturday, please? (all will be advised if the Saturday sale isn’t
needed.) *Annie and Mike have spoken with David who won’t be able to arrange a Quiz for us this
year but they have found someone else who may be able to host one for us, probably in October.
LOCAL GARDEN COMPETITION: Helen reported that posters advertising the Competition were
now distributed and entry forms are at Solar, Library and Sainsburys. Entry can also be made
online. At present team are concentrating on the Shop Window Display Competition and so far
10 have entered. Nicky has suggested a Facebook vote and there will be photos of all entries at
Holy Trinity Church together with voting forms – it is hoped that after the celebrations in Halstead
Public Gardens on Coronation Day people will go to the Church to see the photos and lodge
votes. Winner will receive a ‘Blue Plaque’ for display. There will be more publicity for the Local
Garden Competition after the Coronation events. Team were congratulated for their efforts.
WORKING PARTIES: Joan wasn’t at the meeting, but had left a list! Tuesday 2nd May – Dead
Heading; Tuesday 9th May Dead Heading and Weeding; Thursday 12th May Take out plants at
Library area and Butler Road; Tuesday 16th May Take out plants at Bridge, Causeway and Royal
British Legion; Thursday 18th May Take out plants at Crossing and area outside W.H.Smith;
Tuesday 23rd May Take out plants former Post Office and up to The Fountain; Thursday 25th May
– REST DAY!! Saturday 27th May Sorting plants from 10am; Sunday 28th Setting out plants from
9am, planting from 10.30am. We shall, as usual, be offering the removed winter bedding for free if
you know of any ‘good homes’. Plants were offered to BDC but it isn’t possible for them to take
any bedding.
ANY OTHER BUSINESS: Margaret E noted that containers have been ordered from Amberol;
a double-barrel container for outside Day Centre, 2 double-barrel containers for Library plus 2
small barrels and some half barrels, barrels for under the Town Sign and 7 half barrels for around
the Bandstand in HPG. All will be set out ready for summer bedding. Margaret noted that there is
vine weevil in several containers on the Bridge and at Causeway. Weed Kill recipes have been
sought all these are only for paved areas, don’t use on the garden: Boiling water – not easy if area
is in public areas. Vinegar – 1 cup of baking soda to gallon of vinegar plus washing up liquid
Salt and Vinegar – 1 gallon vinegar, 1 cup salt plus little washing up liquid should be fine. Treat on
a sunny day for best results. Helen asked if HiB would be celebrating the Coronation in any way,
but this was raised at previous meetings with no enthusiasm – there will be events in Halstead
Public Gardens. Joyce spoke about the poor condition of some shops in the Town, but was told
that we have no influence on business owners. Margie C noted that the troughs under the canopy
of Billson’s are very dry (irrigation isn’t on at the moment). Margie also spoke about the 4 stone
troughs at Bus Stop, Trinity Street and said that they don’t do well. Joan to be consulted. Jean
noted that the drain at bottom of Pretoria Road has been cleared. Ian spoke about the pond in
HPG that is now very ‘green’ and asked if anything can be done. Margaret E suggested addition
of barley straw. Julia noted an article in the national Practical Classic magazine when the Editor
has travelled through the ‘very gorgeous village of Halstead’. He has been informed of the Town’s
status!!. Chairman voiced concerns about the lack of team working in HiB, where various groups
are ‘doing their own thing’ but the team is a coherent entity now. She asked for this matter to be
placed on the Agenda for next meeting. She also asked for reports on how the assistance from
HTC is working practically.
There being no other business meeting closed at 6.58pm.
next meeting is Thursday 25
th May 2023 6pm at Royal British Legion Club. All welcome.
Contacts: Margaret Eskins, Chairman: 01787 269443; Joan Gibson, plants/working parties: 01787

  1. Julia Smith, Secretary 07762587141 email;: jaygrey@btinernet.com
    www.halsteadinbloom.org.uk: Facebook: halsteadinbloom; Instagram @halsteadinbloom
    Join membership of National Co-op (Colchester Road) and note HiB as your preferred charity to donate via
    Co-op purchases

Fit for a King

Today Halstead in Bloom have launched a Coronation Shop/Business window competition, We are inviting all businesses and shops along the High Street and surrounding areas to dress their windows Fit for a King. It will then be up to the residents of Halstead to decide on their favourite by voting over the Coronation weekend, To ensure that you are on the final voting list please register your shop/business by emailing hibgardencompetition@yahoo.com the more entries we have the better our lovely Town will look.

Secretary`s report for 2022

Halstead in Bloom.  Secretary’s Report 2022.

2022 saw a return to a full complement of monthly meetings.  An extra-ordinary meeting was held early in January to decide on whether Halstead would enter Anglia in Bloom 2022 campaign – majority vote was for no entry but some additional category entries which were judged virtually were submitted.  All entries received good reports with Halstead Public Gardens being judged as ‘Best Park’ 2022.  An enjoyable ‘Christmas Tea’ was held at Queen’s Hall in January and was well attended by volunteers.  All enjoyed the afternoon and expressed hope that it could repeated in future.

This year we asked for support for volunteers from In Bloom partners and Braintree D.C. pledged continuing co-operation and in return HiB continued to be ‘eyes and ears’ for reporting issues.  Halstead Town Council continued to discuss what support would be available.

It was decided to produce a calendar 2023 and team members submitted photos from which choices were made.  The calendar was well received.

Halstead in Bloom continued to support local groups and events especially those celebrating the Platinum Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II.

Bedding plants for both summer and winter were purchased from our usual sources – Colne Valley Nurseries and Bourne Brook Nurseries.  Many complimentary remarks were made about the displays.  Well done Joan for designs and to all for planting and maintenance.

At our Annual General Meeting 2021 – held in February ’22 – Margaret Eskins was unopposed as Chairman and was re-elected to the post.  Secretary/Treasurer was also re-elected.  It was proposed that all posts should have deputies to step in as required.  Mike Rees put himself forward as Deputy Chair and he was adopted.  No names were put forward for deputy secretary/treasurer but Annie Rees offered to take on the role of sponsor liaison and a team took on organisation of Local Garden Competition.  Cllr Mick Radley offered to oversee accounts.

Halstead in Bloom gave talks at Halstead U3A, Tollesbury Gardening Club, West Bergholt Flower Club, White Notley Gardening Club and Braintree Quadrant Coffee Morning and interest was expressed about In Bloom at all events.  Donations were received at U3A, Tollesbury, West Bergholt and White Notley and Lin and Doug joined HiB as volunteers as a result of the White Notley talk.

The proposed Town Centre regeneration work did not take place in 2022 but is said to be scheduled for 2023.

Monthly community litter picks have been a feature this year and have generally been well supported.   HiB successfully lobbied Eastlight Homes to remove the raised bed at Blamsters Crescent.  This was effective and the area has now been grassed and three fruit trees planted.

HiB was pleased to take part in the spectacular flower festival in July arranged by the Friends of St. Andrew’s Church and team members assisted at the event.  The first local garden competition for 2 years was a success and the managing team are keen to go forward to 2023 with new ideas and strategies.  HiB was pleased to take part in the Christmas Tree display at St. Andrew’s Church and Annie and the Krafty Krew were voted ‘Best Tree’ by visitors to the event.

The very hot, dry weather in summer 2022 posed some problems but with good team efforts and hard work displays were maintained and appreciated by residents and visitors. 

HiB was pleased to assist the family of the late Michael Hutchings by providing a memorial plaque for a bench at Mill Green Playing Field.  The family raised considerable funds for Halstead in Bloom in Michael’s memory.

Year was rounded off with a coffee and mince pie afternoon at the White Hart and was well attended by team – a great end to another successful In Bloom year.

Halstead in Bloom Treasurer’s Report 2022

I am pleased to report that once again Halstead in Bloom had a successful financial year in 2022 finishing in a slightly better position than the year began.

Annie has done sterling work attracting sponsorship with all past sponsors returning and new sponsors coming in.  Halstead Templars Rugby Club, Halstead Women’s Institute and Crownlea all gave sponsor money and have had sponsor signs displayed. 

Donations were also increased this year with the family of the late Michael Hutchings contributing greatly to funds.

Calendar 2023 showed increased profits over the former year and speaker’s fees/contributions were £225 when none were received in the previous two years.

Halstead Town Council paid us to provide baskets in 2022 where we had not charged for them in 2021.  Baskets and much of the town centre planting are owned by Halstead TC which is why they are watered by HTC although we plant and maintain throughout.

Christmas Cards showed a profit of £216.24 in 2022 against £49.33 in 2021 – thank you to Joan and Dennis for this contribution.

Retail donations (from the Co-op and Give as you Live) increased this year to £1038.46.

Interest on our savings account for the year was £2.06 up from 20p. the previous year

On the cost side the amount paid for plants was up by £561.76 and market forces will mean a steeper rise in 2023. 

We paid a greater amount for compost this year, up £361.12 mainly because we had non in stock at the start of the year.

Postage costs rose slightly this year – about 15 copies of the minutes are posted every month plus some additional letters of thank you, etc. We continue to monitor closely the balance sheet for Halstead in Bloom and the Trustees are mindful of their duties to oversee finances diligently.

Minutes 30th March 2023

HALSTEAD IN BLOOM
Minutes of a meeting 30th March 2023 at 6.00p.m. at Royal British Legion Club
Chairman welcomed all present and accepted apologies from those who could not attend.

Minutes of the meeting of 23rd February  2023  had been circulated and were adopted.

UPDATES:  *Mill Chase seat has now been refurbished by Graham and has been installed by BDC.  *Rubbish on river bank was cleared by the River Improvement Group at their litter clearing meeting on 5th March.  *Seat in Halstead Public Gardens – This and another seat near the New Street entrance have been viewed by BDC and some refurbishment will be actioned when the weather conditions are suitable (Ian noted that the memorial seat for Michael Portway is not in  good visual condition – BDC are aware and have promised some action).*Zebra Crossing, Trinity Street – Pot hole in middle of crossing has been repaired.  A part is required for the Belisha Beacon and is being sourced; situation will be monitored. *Creeper over the wall at Holy Trinity Church has been cut back making footpath much more user friendly.  *Banner in Sudbury Road; it is not known if this had been righted, Carol will check. *Verge in Sudbury Road-Carol has ascertained that this will be repaired/reinstated when site works are completed.

 ANGLIA  IN  BLOOM  2023:  *The Spring Launch event for Anglia in Bloom 2023 will be held on 31st March at Swiss Garden, Old Warden and 6 volunteers from HiB will attend, minibus has been arranged.   It has already been agreed that no entry will be made for Halstead town into the Anglia in Bloom campaign 2023 but there will be some virtual categories open for entry.  Braintree DC has made it known that they will not be putting forward entries for virtual judging due to policies that mean there will be no summer bedding in Halstead Public Gardens, Halstead Cemetery and other planted areas in Town.  Halstead Town Council has agreed that St. Andrew’s Churchyard can be entered for Virtual Judging. 
Virtual categories for 2023 are:- Care/Nursing Home; Cemeteries and Crematoria; Churchyards; Parks; Pubs/Hotels; King’s Coronation Celebration; Wildlife Conservation.  Any ideas for entry (cost £20 per entry) will be appreciated.  There is also the Its Your Neighbourhood campaign that is free to enter and this can be two or more houses, a club or association, a group involved with a gardening/wildlife project, a school growing food for community use, an allotment association, etc.  Again, ideas for entry from Halstead would be appreciated.

EVENTS: Next Community Litter Pick – 30th April.  Meet at Sainsbury’s Car Park at 10.30 am.  All welcome.   *Next River Clean is 2nd April.  Meet 10am at Sainsbury’s Car Park.  *Great British Spring Clean will be between 17th March and 2nd April; HiB pledged 15 bags and to date 19 have been collected – let me know if there is more to declare!. Chairman had made BDC aware of litter on the A131 between Halstead and Sudbury.  *Plant Stall will be on 19th and 20th May (second day if we don’t sell everything the first day!).  *Halstead Summer Fayre is planned for 5th August and it was agreed that HiB will take a stall.   *Halstead Marathon will take place on Sunday 14th May, no information available at present.  *Team was told that we have been made aware that there will be no Halstead Flower Festival in 2023 as usual organisers are unable to continue and no-one else has stepped forward to take on this project.  It is hoped that Festival will return in 2024.
 * HiB talk:  17th April Halstead WI at the Con Club.7.30pm

LOCAL  GARDEN  COMPETITION:
Helen reported that a further meeting has taken place and that judging for the Competition will be on 1st and 2nd July.  Last date for entry will be 23rd June.  Competition will be advertised on town Notice Boards and at QD.  It is hoped that Council will put posters on Town Notice Boards and the Town Web Site.   Last year there were many allotments entered and Town Council has agreed to notify Allotment Wardens of the 2023 Competition.  Notices will be sent to Halstead Gazette and also on local Facebook pages.  A poster will follow.  The Children’s category (up to 15 years old) will be re-instated this year.  Entry form will be amended for 2023.   It was thought that perhaps a plaque could be presented to the winner of each category – Helen is investigating costs.  2 former judges had expressed interest in judging again and both have been contacted.  One, Charles Soule, has been in contact and the second will be contacted again.  Joan will take invitations to shops for the Shop Window Display campaign for the Fit for a King window display.  Businesses will be invited to set up a display by 5th May.  There is no Halstead Chamber of Trade now so it was thought that a Poster Campaign and personal visiting would be the most successful way of engaging entrants.  it was thought that a plate or plaque could be awarded to the winner and it was suggested that  residents might be asked to vote for a winner – there could be boxes in St. Andrew’s Church and Holy Trinity Church for votes to be cast.  1st,2nd and 3rd prizes will be put forward with certificates of entry for all entrants.  A further meeting of the Local Garden Competition Team will meet again in the near future.

WORKING  PARTIES:
  Joan asked that for Tuesday 4th April  members help to tidy the beds at Bluebridge – bring secateurs, spades, forks, etc. or do some dead heading at Weavers’ Court, etc. if you like.   Work will then be decided on a week-to-week basis.  Wendy, Jean and Lin will be working on the beds at top of Nether Court and Jean said that these beds will need some regular maintenance.

ANY  OTHER  BUSINESS:
   Margaret Eskins noted the Civic Service on 30th April at 3pm.  Joyce told the meeting that Bryan’s Garden in Weavers’ Court needs repainting and his son, Neil, has volunteered to do this work.  Well done Neil!  Carol noted that many of the daffodils around the Church Wall at St. Andrew’s are blind again this year.  Joan thinks that this is because they are cut down too soon and don’t get a chance to build up ‘energy’ for flowering the following spring. Tim will be asked if it is feasible to leave cutting for a time to allow for some regeneration.  Carol also asked if HiB will make some memorial to our late President, David Hume and it was said that this will be planned for the autumn.  Fiona had asked that the blocked drain at Upper Trinity Road be mentioned and it was noted that there is also a blocked drain at the bottom of Pretoria Road.  Will be reported.  Joan noted that team had been given three horse chestnut trees and Peter Nice had taken these and planted them at Mill Chase.  Joan also told team that the bay trees in tubs at former Post Office, High Street, are not dead and will be cut back at appropriate time to allow regeneration.  Joan showed a poster advertising a Brand Concert at Holy Trinity Church on 16th April.  Cost is £3 per person and tickets are available.  Julia told the meeting that team insurance had been renewed at no cost by the Keep Britain Tidy group. 

                    There being no other business meeting closed at 6.50pm.


next meeting is Thursday 27th April   2023  6pm at Royal British Legion Club. All welcome.

HALSTEAD IN BLOOM
Minutes of a meeting 30th March 2023 at 6.00p.m. at Royal British Legion Club
Chairman welcomed all present and accepted apologies from those who could not attend.

Minutes of the meeting of 23rd February  2023  had been circulated and were adopted.

UPDATES:  *Mill Chase seat has now been refurbished by Graham and has been installed by BDC.  *Rubbish on river bank was cleared by the River Improvement Group at their litter clearing meeting on 5th March.  *Seat in Halstead Public Gardens – This and another seat near the New Street entrance have been viewed by BDC and some refurbishment will be actioned when the weather conditions are suitable (Ian noted that the memorial seat for Michael Portway is not in  good visual condition – BDC are aware and have promised some action).*Zebra Crossing, Trinity Street – Pot hole in middle of crossing has been repaired.  A part is required for the Belisha Beacon and is being sourced; situation will be monitored. *Creeper over the wall at Holy Trinity Church has been cut back making footpath much more user friendly.  *Banner in Sudbury Road; it is not known if this had been righted, Carol will check. *Verge in Sudbury Road-Carol has ascertained that this will be repaired/reinstated when site works are completed.

 ANGLIA  IN  BLOOM  2023:  *The Spring Launch event for Anglia in Bloom 2023 will be held on 31st March at Swiss Garden, Old Warden and 6 volunteers from HiB will attend, minibus has been arranged.   It has already been agreed that no entry will be made for Halstead town into the Anglia in Bloom campaign 2023 but there will be some virtual categories open for entry.  Braintree DC has made it known that they will not be putting forward entries for virtual judging due to policies that mean there will be no summer bedding in Halstead Public Gardens, Halstead Cemetery and other planted areas in Town.  Halstead Town Council has agreed that St. Andrew’s Churchyard can be entered for Virtual Judging. 
Virtual categories for 2023 are:- Care/Nursing Home; Cemeteries and Crematoria; Churchyards; Parks; Pubs/Hotels; King’s Coronation Celebration; Wildlife Conservation.  Any ideas for entry (cost £20 per entry) will be appreciated.  There is also the Its Your Neighbourhood campaign that is free to enter and this can be two or more houses, a club or association, a group involved with a gardening/wildlife project, a school growing food for community use, an allotment association, etc.  Again, ideas for entry from Halstead would be appreciated.

EVENTS: Next Community Litter Pick – 30th April.  Meet at Sainsbury’s Car Park at 10.30 am.  All welcome.   *Next River Clean is 2nd April.  Meet 10am at Sainsbury’s Car Park.  *Great British Spring Clean will be between 17th March and 2nd April; HiB pledged 15 bags and to date 19 have been collected – let me know if there is more to declare!. Chairman had made BDC aware of litter on the A131 between Halstead and Sudbury.  *Plant Stall will be on 19th and 20th May (second day if we don’t sell everything the first day!).  *Halstead Summer Fayre is planned for 5th August and it was agreed that HiB will take a stall.   *Halstead Marathon will take place on Sunday 14th May, no information available at present.  *Team was told that we have been made aware that there will be no Halstead Flower Festival in 2023 as usual organisers are unable to continue and no-one else has stepped forward to take on this project.  It is hoped that Festival will return in 2024.
 * HiB talk:  17th April Halstead WI at the Con Club.7.30pm

LOCAL  GARDEN  COMPETITION:
Helen reported that a further meeting has taken place and that judging for the Competition will be on 1st and 2nd July.  Last date for entry will be 23rd June.  Competition will be advertised on town Notice Boards and at QD.  It is hoped that Council will put posters on Town Notice Boards and the Town Web Site.   Last year there were many allotments entered and Town Council has agreed to notify Allotment Wardens of the 2023 Competition.  Notices will be sent to Halstead Gazette and also on local Facebook pages.  A poster will follow.  The Children’s category (up to 15 years old) will be re-instated this year.  Entry form will be amended for 2023.   It was thought that perhaps a plaque could be presented to the winner of each category – Helen is investigating costs.  2 former judges had expressed interest in judging again and both have been contacted.  One, Charles Soule, has been in contact and the second will be contacted again.  Joan will take invitations to shops for the Shop Window Display campaign for the Fit for a King window display.  Businesses will be invited to set up a display by 5th May.  There is no Halstead Chamber of Trade now so it was thought that a Poster Campaign and personal visiting would be the most successful way of engaging entrants.  it was thought that a plate or plaque could be awarded to the winner and it was suggested that  residents might be asked to vote for a winner – there could be boxes in St. Andrew’s Church and Holy Trinity Church for votes to be cast.  1st,2nd and 3rd prizes will be put forward with certificates of entry for all entrants.  A further meeting of the Local Garden Competition Team will meet again in the near future.

WORKING  PARTIES:
  Joan asked that for Tuesday 4th April  members help to tidy the beds at Bluebridge – bring secateurs, spades, forks, etc. or do some dead heading at Weavers’ Court, etc. if you like.   Work will then be decided on a week-to-week basis.  Wendy, Jean and Lin will be working on the beds at top of Nether Court and Jean said that these beds will need some regular maintenance.

ANY  OTHER  BUSINESS:
   Margaret Eskins noted the Civic Service on 30th April at 3pm.  Joyce told the meeting that Bryan’s Garden in Weavers’ Court needs repainting and his son, Neil, has volunteered to do this work.  Well done Neil!  Carol noted that many of the daffodils around the Church Wall at St. Andrew’s are blind again this year.  Joan thinks that this is because they are cut down too soon and don’t get a chance to build up ‘energy’ for flowering the following spring. Tim will be asked if it is feasible to leave cutting for a time to allow for some regeneration.  Carol also asked if HiB will make some memorial to our late President, David Hume and it was said that this will be planned for the autumn.  Fiona had asked that the blocked drain at Upper Trinity Road be mentioned and it was noted that there is also a blocked drain at the bottom of Pretoria Road.  Will be reported.  Joan noted that team had been given three horse chestnut trees and Peter Nice had taken these and planted them at Mill Chase.  Joan also told team that the bay trees in tubs at former Post Office, High Street, are not dead and will be cut back at appropriate time to allow regeneration.  Joan showed a poster advertising a Brand Concert at Holy Trinity Church on 16th April.  Cost is £3 per person and tickets are available.  Julia told the meeting that team insurance had been renewed at no cost by the Keep Britain Tidy group. 

                    There being no other business meeting closed at 6.50pm.


next meeting is Thursday 27th April   2023  6pm at Royal British Legion Club. All welcome.

HALSTEAD IN BLOOM
Minutes of a meeting 30th March 2023 at 6.00p.m. at Royal British Legion Club
Chairman welcomed all present and accepted apologies from those who could not attend.

Minutes of the meeting of 23rd February  2023  had been circulated and were adopted.

UPDATES:  *Mill Chase seat has now been refurbished by Graham and has been installed by BDC.  *Rubbish on river bank was cleared by the River Improvement Group at their litter clearing meeting on 5th March.  *Seat in Halstead Public Gardens – This and another seat near the New Street entrance have been viewed by BDC and some refurbishment will be actioned when the weather conditions are suitable (Ian noted that the memorial seat for Michael Portway is not in  good visual condition – BDC are aware and have promised some action).*Zebra Crossing, Trinity Street – Pot hole in middle of crossing has been repaired.  A part is required for the Belisha Beacon and is being sourced; situation will be monitored. *Creeper over the wall at Holy Trinity Church has been cut back making footpath much more user friendly.  *Banner in Sudbury Road; it is not known if this had been righted, Carol will check. *Verge in Sudbury Road-Carol has ascertained that this will be repaired/reinstated when site works are completed.

 ANGLIA  IN  BLOOM  2023:  *The Spring Launch event for Anglia in Bloom 2023 will be held on 31st March at Swiss Garden, Old Warden and 6 volunteers from HiB will attend, minibus has been arranged.   It has already been agreed that no entry will be made for Halstead town into the Anglia in Bloom campaign 2023 but there will be some virtual categories open for entry.  Braintree DC has made it known that they will not be putting forward entries for virtual judging due to policies that mean there will be no summer bedding in Halstead Public Gardens, Halstead Cemetery and other planted areas in Town.  Halstead Town Council has agreed that St. Andrew’s Churchyard can be entered for Virtual Judging. 
Virtual categories for 2023 are:- Care/Nursing Home; Cemeteries and Crematoria; Churchyards; Parks; Pubs/Hotels; King’s Coronation Celebration; Wildlife Conservation.  Any ideas for entry (cost £20 per entry) will be appreciated.  There is also the Its Your Neighbourhood campaign that is free to enter and this can be two or more houses, a club or association, a group involved with a gardening/wildlife project, a school growing food for community use, an allotment association, etc.  Again, ideas for entry from Halstead would be appreciated.

EVENTS: Next Community Litter Pick – 30th April.  Meet at Sainsbury’s Car Park at 10.30 am.  All welcome.   *Next River Clean is 2nd April.  Meet 10am at Sainsbury’s Car Park.  *Great British Spring Clean will be between 17th March and 2nd April; HiB pledged 15 bags and to date 19 have been collected – let me know if there is more to declare!. Chairman had made BDC aware of litter on the A131 between Halstead and Sudbury.  *Plant Stall will be on 19th and 20th May (second day if we don’t sell everything the first day!).  *Halstead Summer Fayre is planned for 5th August and it was agreed that HiB will take a stall.   *Halstead Marathon will take place on Sunday 14th May, no information available at present.  *Team was told that we have been made aware that there will be no Halstead Flower Festival in 2023 as usual organisers are unable to continue and no-one else has stepped forward to take on this project.  It is hoped that Festival will return in 2024.
 * HiB talk:  17th April Halstead WI at the Con Club.7.30pm

LOCAL  GARDEN  COMPETITION:
Helen reported that a further meeting has taken place and that judging for the Competition will be on 1st and 2nd July.  Last date for entry will be 23rd June.  Competition will be advertised on town Notice Boards and at QD.  It is hoped that Council will put posters on Town Notice Boards and the Town Web Site.   Last year there were many allotments entered and Town Council has agreed to notify Allotment Wardens of the 2023 Competition.  Notices will be sent to Halstead Gazette and also on local Facebook pages.  A poster will follow.  The Children’s category (up to 15 years old) will be re-instated this year.  Entry form will be amended for 2023.   It was thought that perhaps a plaque could be presented to the winner of each category – Helen is investigating costs.  2 former judges had expressed interest in judging again and both have been contacted.  One, Charles Soule, has been in contact and the second will be contacted again.  Joan will take invitations to shops for the Shop Window Display campaign for the Fit for a King window display.  Businesses will be invited to set up a display by 5th May.  There is no Halstead Chamber of Trade now so it was thought that a Poster Campaign and personal visiting would be the most successful way of engaging entrants.  it was thought that a plate or plaque could be awarded to the winner and it was suggested that  residents might be asked to vote for a winner – there could be boxes in St. Andrew’s Church and Holy Trinity Church for votes to be cast.  1st,2nd and 3rd prizes will be put forward with certificates of entry for all entrants.  A further meeting of the Local Garden Competition Team will meet again in the near future.

WORKING  PARTIES:
  Joan asked that for Tuesday 4th April  members help to tidy the beds at Bluebridge – bring secateurs, spades, forks, etc. or do some dead heading at Weavers’ Court, etc. if you like.   Work will then be decided on a week-to-week basis.  Wendy, Jean and Lin will be working on the beds at top of Nether Court and Jean said that these beds will need some regular maintenance.

ANY  OTHER  BUSINESS:
   Margaret Eskins noted the Civic Service on 30th April at 3pm.  Joyce told the meeting that Bryan’s Garden in Weavers’ Court needs repainting and his son, Neil, has volunteered to do this work.  Well done Neil!  Carol noted that many of the daffodils around the Church Wall at St. Andrew’s are blind again this year.  Joan thinks that this is because they are cut down too soon and don’t get a chance to build up ‘energy’ for flowering the following spring. Tim will be asked if it is feasible to leave cutting for a time to allow for some regeneration.  Carol also asked if HiB will make some memorial to our late President, David Hume and it was said that this will be planned for the autumn.  Fiona had asked that the blocked drain at Upper Trinity Road be mentioned and it was noted that there is also a blocked drain at the bottom of Pretoria Road.  Will be reported.  Joan noted that team had been given three horse chestnut trees and Peter Nice had taken these and planted them at Mill Chase.  Joan also told team that the bay trees in tubs at former Post Office, High Street, are not dead and will be cut back at appropriate time to allow regeneration.  Joan showed a poster advertising a Brand Concert at Holy Trinity Church on 16th April.  Cost is £3 per person and tickets are available.  Julia told the meeting that team insurance had been renewed at no cost by the Keep Britain Tidy group. 

                    There being no other business meeting closed at 6.50pm.


next meeting is Thursday 27th April   2023  6pm at Royal British Legion Club. All welcome.


Contacts:  Margaret Eskins, Chairman: 01787  269443; Joan Gibson, plants/working parties: 01787 473070.  Julia Smith, Secretary 07762587141 email;: jaygrey@btinernet.com


Contacts:  Margaret Eskins, Chairman: 01787  269443; Joan Gibson, plants/working parties: 01787 473070.  Julia Smith, Secretary 07762587141 email;: jaygrey@btinernet.com


Contacts:  Margaret Eskins, Chairman: 01787  269443; Joan Gibson, plants/working parties: 01787 473070.  Julia Smith, Secretary 07762587141 email;: jaygrey@btinernet.com

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