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
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