Author: Julia Smith (Page 1 of 7)

Minutes 28th April 2022

HALSTEAD  IN  BLOOM

Minutes of a meeting 28th April 2022  6.00 p.m. at Royal British Legion Club

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

Minutes of meeting of 31st March 2022 had been circulated and were adopted.

UPDATES.  *Partnership Review.  There will be another meeting of the review group on 4th May.  Hopefully we will be able to make some progress on moving the matter forward.  *Ray Sharman of Halstead Road Runners who will be running for Halstead in Bloom and has pledged to raise £500 for us does have a Facebook page but not, at the moment a Just Giving page.  We may be able to make some enquiries on Marathon Day as to how we can support him.

LOCAL  GARDEN  COMPETITION.  Report was given by Helen and Karyn that posters advertising the Children’s Competition for a ‘portable’ garden on the theme of the Queen’s Crown or a Garden Fit For A Queen have been placed in schools, in retail outlets in the town and on the Community Facebook Page and there has been a good response so far.  Entry forms have been made.  Judging will be done by Halstead Town Councillors and prizes, that have been donated by Karyn, will be given at an event on 2nd June at Holy Trinity Church.  All entries will be on display in Holy Trinity Church for the week following the prize giving.
It was said that there will be further meeting of the Local Garden Competition Team to discuss the main Competition in the near future.  Team were thanked for their efforts and we look forward to two good competitions this year.

SPONSORSHIP Annie gave a report  that all letters/emails to existing sponsors have been sent and there has been a good response so far with £1275 being paid or pledged.  There is a potential further £1150 to come in.  Annie reported two new sponsors this year, both of whom have contacted us rather than us going out to recruit.  These are Halstead Rugby Club who will sponsor two sites – muck spreader and the new container at Butler Road – and Crownlea who will sponsor the display outside The Bank and also the three large tubs outside what is now Ukraine House.  Meeting was told that these three large tubs will need to be moved so that scaffolding can be erected but Halstead TC has made it clear that they must remain outside this building even if they are spaced out differently.  Don suggested that HiB contacts Halstead Cricket Club for sponsorship, but Annie said that with the past difficult two years it was felt that new sponsorship won’t be sought for this year but for 2023 the Cricket club and also local Estate Agents will be contacted.

ANGLIA  IN  BLOOM Campaign 2022.  I have a meeting with Officer from BDC and Peter Nice on 6th May to discuss photos submitted so far (thank you Alan!) and what will be needed.  The areas entered are: Halstead Public Gardens, Halstead Cemetery, Halstead River Walk and Mill Green.  Also HTC/HiB will be entering St. Andrew’s Churchyard.

EVENTS.  *Next Community Litter Pick – Sunday 29th May. Meet 10.30 at Sainsbury’s Car Park.  *Halstead Marathon is on 8th May.  Places have been allocated for HiB team as follows:  Bottom of Field – Colin Bailey and David Tarbun.  Entry to hedge path and new estate – Karyn and Billy Ballard. Field Exit path – Fiona and Dave Bazley.  Churchill Avenue – Julia and Graham Smith.  Portway Court – Annie Rees and Joan Gibson.  Colne Road – Ian Jarvis and Margaret Eskins.  Bois Hall Gardens – Helen Rose and Margaret Tyler;  1st Leisure Centre Gate – Eileen Penn and Joyce Saville.  2nd Leisure Centre Gate – Meg Hollinshead, Thelma Salmon and George Lipyeat.  HiB Marshalls to sign in at race HQ (rear of Leisure Centre) at 11.10am and will need to be in position by 12.10.    I will send ‘What 3 Word’ location identifiers to marshalls individually.  Any changes will be reported directly.  *Plant Stall on 21st May.  Stall will be set up from about 8.30am.  Stall manning as follows:  9-10  Joan, Joyce and Margaret E. 10-11 Derek Holmes  and someone from Daniel Robinson & Sons. 11-12 Don and Helen.  12-1 David T and Ian.  1-2 Alan and Chris.  It may be that we will be overwhelmed with customers so if anyone else can help at any time please do join in.   *Plant collecting/sorting will be on Saturday 28th May (see Working Parties) and planting will begin on 29th May.   *There will be a Jubilee Fayre on Saturday 4th June.  So far volunteers are:  9-10 Joan and Joyce.  10-11 Billy and Karyn;  11-12  Nicky and Chris.  12-1  Alan.  There are still some selling slots to fill – we are supposed to be at the Fayre until 4pm and will be positioned opposite Costa Coffee.   *There will be a Fete in Halstead Public Gardens on 25th June to celebrate the Royal British Legion, we will probably have some plants left to sell plus any other bits and pieces that we can get together, no further info at the moment but will make arrangements at next team meeting.  *Halstead T.C. is planning a Summer Fete on 6th August.(sorry, wrong date given at meeting) It was decided that we want to take part and perhaps we could have an Archive Day? If so, I will probably need some help curating our display from the 22years worth of archive!  *Halstead Flower Festival is going ahead on 8th/9th/10th July.*alsteadalsHal alstea

WORKING  PARTIES
 Joan was not at the meeting due to prior engagement but had sent a list!!
Tuesday 3rd May – Deadheading and weeding;      Thursday 5th May – Flower Arrangements **; Tuesday 10th May – Deadheading and weeding;     Thursday 12th May – Flower Arrangements**;  Tuesday 17th May – start to remove winter bedding;  Thursday 19th May – Remove winter bedding;   Tuesday 24th May – Remove winter bedding;  Thursday 26th May – remove winter bedding (if necessary).  Saturday 28th May – Plant sorting from 10.30am.  Sunday 29th May – Setting out from 9am. Planting from 10.30am.
**Materials will be required – trays/dishes and also artificial flowers (can be bought at charity shops, etc.).  Joan will advise where these working parties will take place – please let Joan know as soon as possible if you are interested in taking part.  Times of flower arranging meetings to be arranged.

ANY  OTHER  BUSINESS.    
*Julia queried whether vehicles are still parking on the verge at Parsonage St.  It was said that there was one parked there at present – details have been passed to Essex Parking Partnership.  *Derek Holmes said that Daniel Robinson are keen to assist Halstead in Bloom and have volunteered for the plant stall.  If there is any other help needed we can contact Derek or Terry at High St. premises.  *Annie noted that the grass at Halstead Hospital is very much in need of some attention.  It was suggested that the Friends group may be able to get something done – Annie to contact Dr. Symington.  *Fiona noted that ground around bins/signs and trees has been sprayed and that this is an eyesore.  She asked if these areas could be strimmed rather than killed.  A definitive answer will be sought.  *Ian asked if the Town Centre Regeneration is anywhere near to commencement as HiB will need to consider if next year’s Anglia in Bloom entry will be feasible and not hampered by town centre road works.  Cllr Gronland who attended the meeting said that matters are moving forward slowly and that signage and street furniture will need to be considered as well as road and pathway works.  The area outside W H Smith will be upgraded and that means that the tree will probably have to be sacrificed as it is causing damage to the surrounding area.  *Joyce asked for donations of knitting wool as she wants to commence making hats/coats/mittens for sale later in the year.  *Alan asked if there is anything that can be done about the eyesore around Halstead Mill.  He was told that this is all private land and although the Mill buildings are Grade II listed Councils cannot enforce action.  *Debra noted that the former Blacksmiths’ Tea Room is to be opened as an Indian Restaurant next Tuesday (3rd May) and that the owner of the restaurant will buy a lawn mower and cut the grass each fortnight!  *Chris noted that the polytunnel purchased for Holy Trinity School Gardening Club is erected and looking good;  The Gardening Club is up and running and hopefully will be potting up some seeds and growing on plants soon.
Posters for the forthcoming Plant Sale were distributed – HTC will be asked to display some on Town Notice boards after the May Bank Holiday.
Some leaflets about Sudbury’s Jubilee Celebrations were available.

There being no other business the meeting closed at 6.40 p.m.

Next team meeting on Thursday 26th May 2022. 6.00p.m. at British Legion Club, The Causeway.  


 Contacts:  Margaret Eskins Chairman.  01787 269443;  Julia Smith, Secretary. 0776 2587141 / 01787461806. e-mail jaygrey@btinternet.com; Joan Gibson, plants/working parties. 01787 473070www.halsteadinbloom.org.uk       Facebook: halsteadinbloom.Instagram @halsteadinbloom
Join membership of National Co-op (Colchester Road)   and note HiB as your preferred charity
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Minutes of Meeting 23rd February 2022

HALSTEAD  IN  BLOOM

Minutes of a meeting 23rd February 2022  7.30p.m. at Royal British Legion Club

 Chairman, welcomed all present and accepted apologies from those who could not attend.   Meeting followed AGM 2021.

Minutes of meeting of 23rd January 2022 had been circulated and were adopted.

UPDATES.  *David has booked the Con Club for Friday 14th October as agreed.  Annie and Mike will assist with entrance and raffle.  *Van has been booked at just insurance and diesel costs from EA Van Hire, Weavers’ Court.  *Footpath from Kings Road to Doctors’ Surgery – this footpath was put in by developer who has now no interest.  BDC say that they can’t manage it; HTC is exploring possibilities but no agreement so far. Post meeting note:  Billy offered to cut back the brambles to make the footpath safe.  Work to be done on Sunday 27/2.  *Holy Trinity School Gardening Club- Chris says that this will be up and running very shortly and has asked if HiB could purchase a polytunnel for their use.  Officers have agreed to this spend and all agreed that this would be good use of funds. *Total for calendar sales 2022 now stands at £453.00 profit – not sure if there is any more to come in from Phil the Egg Man and there will be further cash from Thelma.

NEWS:  *We are due to receive the first part of the Community Grant from Colchester Road Co-op in April having been accepted for funding from 2022.  A team member has donated £270 to HiB as she is in awe of the work done by volunteers.  * We were asked to support the Halstead Horticultural Society by sponsoring their schedules again this year, this has been agreed.  *We have booked in for a free event to celebrate the Queen’s Jubilee on Saturday 4th June.  This will be similar to the Christmas Fayre and we will be selling plants as well as some hand-made items. It was suggested that we might sell some table decorations made under Joan’s guidance.  Possibility to be explored.  We will be based opposite Costa as usual.

ANGLIA  IN  BLOOM Campaign 2022. 4 places have been booked and paid for to attend the Spring Launch of Anglia in Bloom on 24th March at Hyde Hall.  Jenny Brimley has asked for one place, and Annie has said she would like to attend.  Margaret E and Margaret T also asked for places.  At present there are just 4 places available – team will be told if more places can be booked. * BDC has asked if we will enter the Public Gardens, the Cemetery, Mill Chase and possibly the River Walk.  HTC will be asked if they would like the St. Andrew’s churchyard to be entered. (These ‘additional categories’ will all be judged virtually we understand and there will be a cost of £20 per entry).

EVENTS.  *Community Litter Pick – Sunday 27th February. Meet 10.30 at Sainsbury’s Car Park.  *Jubilee Events:  As well as the Fayre on Saturday there may be other events taking place.  To be advised.

*Keep Britain Tidy’s Great British Spring Clean Event will take place this year from 25th March to 10th April.  There will be our usual Community Litter Pick on 27th March and the working party on 5th April will also be a litter pick event.  Chris is to send note to local paper and post on Facebook.  *We have agreed to take part in the Flower Festival to be held at St. Andrew’s Church on 8th/9th/10th July.  The theme is ‘Songs of Praise’ so I’m sure that Joan has thinking cap on!  She will appreciate ideas on this theme. *Margaret T has been told that there will be a Fete in Halstead Public Gardens on 25th June to celebrate the Royal British Legion. 
WORKING  PARTIES Joan  gave a resume of the planting for summer 2022 with some themed areas for the Jubilee celebrations namely the ‘badge bed’ in Halstead Public Gardens and the Loom garden.  Joan asked team to collect small white bottle tops and milk bottle tops for the Badge Bed.  The colours in Town Centre and other areas will be red/gold/cream – regal colours.  Working Parties for the next month will be: 1st March (St. David’s Day and Pancake Tuesday!) Halstead Public Gardens and Bluebridge.  Tuesday 8th March Public Gardens and Bluebridge.  15th March Deadheading.  22nd March Clearing the River Bank near to Peter Robertson’s  29th March River Bank again 5th April Litter Picking for the Great British Spring Clean.  Margaret E also noted that some work will be required in car park near to Thelma as a tree has come down. 

HIB GOING FORWARD  Joan and Julia attended the Town Council meeting on 14th February where a report was before Council to give HiB money to purchase in sub-contractors for necessary work.  Julia spoke during Public Question Time and said that money was not what was required from Council but support will be necessary if Halstead in Bloom is to continue with entry to prestigious In Bloom campaigns.  There was a proposal to re-write the Partnership Agreements and a meeting has been called for further discussion on this matter on 3rd March.

ANY  OTHER  BUSINESS.    Colin said that he has been told informally that the Local Garden Competition 2022 will not be judged by independent judges as has been the case in previous years.  Margaret, Helen, Billy and Karyn explained that they had one meeting so far and thought it would be better – as there were only 6 entries in 2021 – to try and have a more relaxed and information competition with less rigid criteria.  This would be tried for one year and if the idea didn’t work then something else would be tried for the future.  Karyn said the team were trying to encourage everyone of all ages to take part and brighten the environment.  Colin was assured that the competition would be judged fairly but Colin was not happy that it would not be independently judged.  The Local Garden Competition team will meet again before next HiB meeting and the L.G.C. team will give further information then.  Annie noted that the area in front of the former Premaberg building has been cleaned and tidied with paving slabs put back in better positions.  Fiona noted that most of the litter bins that are hung on lampposts do not have lids so that in windy conditions the contents tend to blow away and cause litter.  Fiona asked if this could be addressed clarification will be sought.  Fiona also noted that many street signs are in a dirty and unkempt state.  (This is ECC Highways responsibility).Linda asked where matters of Highway/Pavement defects can be reported and was told that there are reporting facilities on the Essex County Council web site, or ring Halstead Town Council and they will report.  Linda also spoke about the seats that HiB installed at the rear of the Hospital and said they were well used and still looked clean and tidy.  Cigarette bins are being fully used.   Jean asked if the Local Garden Competition this year will include allotments and was told that it will. Margaret T noted that there is part of an inspection box from the electricity sub-station near to the Town Bridge lying over the railings.  Will be reported.  It was asked if any decisions had been made about Halstead Hospital’s future and it was said that meetings had taken place but no decisions had been made.  Clinics and outpatients departments at the front of the building will remain but the wards at the rear may be sold if they cannot be re-used.  Ian asked if there was any news on the proposed Town Centre Revamp but as yet no further meetings had taken place.  Julia explained that the bench that HiB removed from Kings Road/Parsonage St. and repaired and refurbished was offered to HTC to replace the broken bench in St. Andrew’s Churchyard.  It had somehow been put forward as a ‘Jubilee Bench’ and there had been some resistance from public and Councillors for this.  HTC may have another use for the bench to replace another broken bench outside Queen’s Hall.

There being no other business the meeting closed at 8.45 p.m.

Next team meeting on Thursday 31st March 2022. 6.00p.m. at Royal British Legion Club, The Causeway.  

All further meetings will be on last Thursday of the month at RBL Club starting at 6pm unless otherwise notified.


 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.   

Instagram @halsteadinbloom
Join membership of National Co-op (Colchester Road)   and note HiB as your preferred charity

Minutes of Meeting February 2022

HALSTEAD  IN  BLOOM

Minutes of a meeting 23rd February 2022  7.30p.m. at Royal British Legion Club

 Chairman, welcomed all present and accepted apologies from those who could not attend.   Meeting followed AGM 2021.

Minutes of meeting of 23rd January 2022 had been circulated and were adopted.

UPDATES.  *David has booked the Con Club for Friday 14th October as agreed.  Annie and Mike will assist with entrance and raffle.  *Van has been booked at just insurance and diesel costs from EA Van Hire, Weavers’ Court.  *Footpath from Kings Road to Doctors’ Surgery – this footpath was put in by developer who has now no interest.  BDC say that they can’t manage it; HTC is exploring possibilities but no agreement so far. Post meeting note:  Billy offered to cut back the brambles to make the footpath safe.  Work to be done on Sunday 27/2.  *Holy Trinity School Gardening Club- Chris says that this will be up and running very shortly and has asked if HiB could purchase a polytunnel for their use.  Officers have agreed to this spend and all agreed that this would be good use of funds. *Total for calendar sales 2022 now stands at £453.00 profit – not sure if there is any more to come in from Phil the Egg Man and there will be further cash from Thelma.

NEWS:  *We are due to receive the first part of the Community Grant from Colchester Road Co-op in April having been accepted for funding from 2022.  A team member has donated £270 to HiB as she is in awe of the work done by volunteers.  * We were asked to support the Halstead Horticultural Society by sponsoring their schedules again this year, this has been agreed.  *We have booked in for a free event to celebrate the Queen’s Jubilee on Saturday 4th June.  This will be similar to the Christmas Fayre and we will be selling plants as well as some hand-made items. It was suggested that we might sell some table decorations made under Joan’s guidance.  Possibility to be explored.  We will be based opposite Costa as usual.

ANGLIA  IN  BLOOM Campaign 2022. 4 places have been booked and paid for to attend the Spring Launch of Anglia in Bloom on 24th March at Hyde Hall.  Jenny Brimley has asked for one place, and Annie has said she would like to attend.  Margaret E and Margaret T also asked for places.  At present there are just 4 places available – team will be told if more places can be booked. * BDC has asked if we will enter the Public Gardens, the Cemetery, Mill Chase and possibly the River Walk.  HTC will be asked if they would like the St. Andrew’s churchyard to be entered. (These ‘additional categories’ will all be judged virtually we understand and there will be a cost of £20 per entry).

EVENTS.  *Community Litter Pick – Sunday 27th February. Meet 10.30 at Sainsbury’s Car Park.  *Jubilee Events:  As well as the Fayre on Saturday there may be other events taking place.  To be advised.

*Keep Britain Tidy’s Great British Spring Clean Event will take place this year from 25th March to 10th April.  There will be our usual Community Litter Pick on 27th March and the working party on 5th April will also be a litter pick event.  Chris is to send note to local paper and post on Facebook.  *We have agreed to take part in the Flower Festival to be held at St. Andrew’s Church on 8th/9th/10th July.  The theme is ‘Songs of Praise’ so I’m sure that Joan has thinking cap on!  She will appreciate ideas on this theme. *Margaret T has been told that there will be a Fete in Halstead Public Gardens on 25th June to celebrate the Royal British Legion. 
WORKING  PARTIES Joan  gave a resume of the planting for summer 2022 with some themed areas for the Jubilee celebrations namely the ‘badge bed’ in Halstead Public Gardens and the Loom garden.  Joan asked team to collect small white bottle tops and milk bottle tops for the Badge Bed.  The colours in Town Centre and other areas will be red/gold/cream – regal colours.  Working Parties for the next month will be: 1st March (St. David’s Day and Pancake Tuesday!) Halstead Public Gardens and Bluebridge.  Tuesday 8th March Public Gardens and Bluebridge.  15th March Deadheading.  22nd March Clearing the River Bank near to Peter Robertson’s  29th March River Bank again 5th April Litter Picking for the Great British Spring Clean.  Margaret E also noted that some work will be required in car park near to Thelma as a tree has come down. 

HIB GOING FORWARD  Joan and Julia attended the Town Council meeting on 14th February where a report was before Council to give HiB money to purchase in sub-contractors for necessary work.  Julia spoke during Public Question Time and said that money was not what was required from Council but support will be necessary if Halstead in Bloom is to continue with entry to prestigious In Bloom campaigns.  There was a proposal to re-write the Partnership Agreements and a meeting has been called for further discussion on this matter on 3rd March.

ANY  OTHER  BUSINESS.    Colin said that he has been told informally that the Local Garden Competition 2022 will not be judged by independent judges as has been the case in previous years.  Margaret, Helen, Billy and Karyn explained that they had one meeting so far and thought it would be better – as there were only 6 entries in 2021 – to try and have a more relaxed and information competition with less rigid criteria.  This would be tried for one year and if the idea didn’t work then something else would be tried for the future.  Karyn said the team were trying to encourage everyone of all ages to take part and brighten the environment.  Colin was assured that the competition would be judged fairly but Colin was not happy that it would not be independently judged.  The Local Garden Competition team will meet again before next HiB meeting and the L.G.C. team will give further information then.  Annie noted that the area in front of the former Premaberg building has been cleaned and tidied with paving slabs put back in better positions.  Fiona noted that most of the litter bins that are hung on lampposts do not have lids so that in windy conditions the contents tend to blow away and cause litter.  Fiona asked if this could be addressed clarification will be sought.  Fiona also noted that many street signs are in a dirty and unkempt state.  (This is ECC Highways responsibility).Linda asked where matters of Highway/Pavement defects can be reported and was told that there are reporting facilities on the Essex County Council web site, or ring Halstead Town Council and they will report.  Linda also spoke about the seats that HiB installed at the rear of the Hospital and said they were well used and still looked clean and tidy.  Cigarette bins are being fully used.   Jean asked if the Local Garden Competition this year will include allotments and was told that it will. Margaret T noted that there is part of an inspection box from the electricity sub-station near to the Town Bridge lying over the railings.  Will be reported.  It was asked if any decisions had been made about Halstead Hospital’s future and it was said that meetings had taken place but no decisions had been made.  Clinics and outpatients departments at the front of the building will remain but the wards at the rear may be sold if they cannot be re-used.  Ian asked if there was any news on the proposed Town Centre Revamp but as yet no further meetings had taken place.  Julia explained that the bench that HiB removed from Kings Road/Parsonage St. and repaired and refurbished was offered to HTC to replace the broken bench in St. Andrew’s Churchyard.  It had somehow been put forward as a ‘Jubilee Bench’ and there had been some resistance from public and Councillors for this.  HTC may have another use for the bench to replace another broken bench outside Queen’s Hall.

There being no other business the meeting closed at 8.45 p.m.

Next team meeting on Thursday 31st March 2022. 6.00p.m. at Royal British Legion Club, The Causeway.  

All further meetings will be on last Thursday of the month at RBL Club starting at 6pm unless otherwise notified.


 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.   

Instagram @halsteadinbloom
Join membership of National Co-op (Colchester Road)   and note HiB as your preferred charity

Minutes of 2022 AGM

HALSTEAD  IN  BLOOM

MINUTES OF ANNUAL  GENERAL  MEETING 2021
23rd February 2022.

Apologies received:  There were some apologies from team members and apologies from President David Hume.


Chairman Margaret Eskins welcomed all present
 and acknowledged that this was a different AGM from normal but that it did still comply with our Constitution.

Chairman Margaret Eskins gave a brief review of 2020 and 2021 which were, she said,  very different but still busy years.  Chairman noted that the planting and maintenance done by Halstead in Bloom had been very much appreciated by residents and by visitors.  Chairman thanked the team for their wonderful efforts and congratulated them on their hard work.

Secretary Julia Smith gave a report of events over the past year with some brief details of events in which HiB took part and brief details of some monies spent.
A financial report
was given by Treasurer – copies of all reports were available and further copies can be supplied.  Accounts will be scrutinised by Cllr Radley  – Chairman of Halstead TC as sponsorship in kind. Accounts will be posted on the Charity Commission web site. It was noted that the team still has a 1 year cushion of finances as required by Charity Commission and Halstead in Bloom is thankful for the support of local business and residents.  Treasurer’s report is attached.

Election of Officers. There were no nominations for Chairman so existing Chairman.  Margaret Eskins  indicated that she would be willing to serve for a further year as Chairman of Halstead in Bloom.  Nomination of Margaret Eskins as Chairman for 2022 was made by Margaret Tyler                  and seconded by  Ian Jarvis. Vote for proposal was unanimous.  Margaret Eskins was elected as Chairman of Halstead in Bloom 2022.

It had been decided during the past year that there should be deputies for each Officer.  Mike Rees had volunteered to stand as Deputy for Chairman.  There were no other nominations.  Nomination of Mike Rees as Deputy Chairman was proposed by Julia Smith and seconded by           Margaret Tyler.  Vote for proposal was unanimous.  Mike Rees will stand as Deputy Chairman for 2022.

There had been no nominations for Secretary or Treasurer so existing Secretary/Treasurer  Julia Smith  indicated that she would be willing to serve for a further year as Secretary/Treasurer of Halstead in Bloom.  Nomination of Julia Smith for post of Secretary/Treasurer for 2022 was made by  Mick Rees and seconded by  Ian Jarvis. Vote for proposal was unanimous.  Julia Smith will stand as Secretary/Treasurer for 2022.

There were no nominations for Deputy Secretary but Annie Rees said she would be prepared to take on responsibility for sponsors and a team comprising Helen, Karyn, Margaret and Billy said they would take on responsibility for Local Garden Competition.  Vote for these changes was unanimous. 
There were no nominations for Deputy Treasurer but Cllr Mick Radley had volunteered to assist with work of Treasurer.  Discussions took place about this being a conflict of interest but it was decided that this assistance would be trialled for a year to see if this was successful.

Appoint Assistance for Joan As Joan did not attend the meeting due to an eye operation that day it was decided to leave this matter in abeyance until next HiB meeting.

Any Other Business Debra had suggested that a Volunteer Welcome Pack should be made available for all new volunteers.  This was thought to be an excellent idea and a sample pack had been made.  Don looked at it and thought it would be worthwhile and Karyn asked if she could keep the sample.  Further packs will be prepared.  Debra also suggested that the town be split into different areas with one, or a team, of people managing each area.  This matter was left in abeyance for next HiB meeting.

Chairman thanked all for their input and attendance at the AGM.

AGM was closed at. 7.55pm.

Minutes for January 2022

Minutes of a meeting 25th January 2022  7.30p.m. at Royal British Legion Club

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

Minutes of meeting of 25th November 2021 and of extraordinary meeting on 6th January 2022 had been circulated and were adopted.

UPDATES.  * Letter was received from Halstead Town Council thanking HiB volunteers for assisting at the Torchlight Procession in December.  The amount collected at the event was £1068.39 which, together with any other money collected this year will go to Halstead Day Centre.  * Email was received from Friends of St. Andrew’s church thanking HiB for assisting at the Christmas Tree Event and for sponsoring the programme.  It was thought that over 1000 people visited the church during the 3 days and the winners of the Favourite Tree were Holy Trinity School.  *Christmas Tea. All present thought that this was a very enjoyable event – a change from the usual Christmas Dinner, very relaxed and with excellent food.  Margaret T was thanked for organising the tea and many present expressed a hope that similar events could take place later in the year.  Jenny B has suggested a Picnic in the Park event in the summer, just as a chance to get together; this to be discussed at next month’s meeting.  *New Sponsors.  Crownlea the company that has taken the former Barclays Bank premises and the former Premaberg building have offered sponsorship of some planters at the front of the Bank building and for the three large tubs that formerly held magnolia trees.  They have offered £250 for sponsoring both areas.  Plaques have been ordered and both areas will be planted when weather is suitable. *Bench from Kings Road.  Graham has repaired and refurbished the seat and it has been offered to Halstead Town Council to replace the broken seat in St. Andrew’s Churchyard – good ‘reduce, re-use, recycling’!!     *Statement to HTC and note to BDC.  As agreed at the extraordinary meeting Secretary made a statement at Town Council Meeting regarding Halstead in Bloom and reasons for not entering the Town into Anglia in Bloom 2022.  Councillors expressed their wish to see HiB continue and wanted to support volunteers.  This matter will be discussed further at next Town Council meeting on 14th February, 7.15pm at Queen’s Hall.  BDC was also advised of plans going forward and Secretary will meet with BDC representative on 28th January to discuss what support BDC will give to HiB.     *Note has been received from Royal British Legion thanking HiB for support at the poppy appeal 2021.  The amount raised in our box was £162.11.
ANGLIA  IN  BLOOM Campaign 2022. As agreed Anglia in Bloom has been advised that Halstead will not be entering the 2022 campaign but it has been decreed that it will be possible to make some ‘additional category’ entries at a cost of £20 per entry and these will be judged virtually.  The ‘additional categories’ are:

Parks; Care or Nursing Home; Cemeteries/Graveyards/Crematoria; Churchyard; Nature Conservation/Nature Reserve; Pubs/Restaurants/Hotels; Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Display.  Further HiB discussions to take place.

There will be an Anglia in Bloom Spring Launch event taking place on 24th March at RHS Hyde Hall.  Places will be limited and charge will be £20 per head to cover beverages on arrival and a working lunch.  There will be speakers and tours of the gardens may be arranged (possibly at additional cost).  Please advise Chairman if you wish to attend.  Further details at next meeting.

CALENDAR 2022.  Analysis shows that sales exceeded cost.  At end of year ‘profit’ was £149.00 but additional £40 has been received from Halstead TC and £120 from Greenstead Green.  It is believed that there is still money to come in from Halstead Icing, possibly Willow and Gray and perhaps from Phil the Egg Man.  Enquiries to be made.  Further discussions will need to take place on Calendar for 2023.  We have a couple of excellent photos so far but need many more in order to have good choices.  Our first Halstead Calendar was produced for 2003 so we have produced 20 years worth.  A calendar 2022 was sent to Halstead in Kent and the Clerk there emailed back to Halstead TC to say thank you and commented that the calendar had ‘brightened her day’.  She said it was good to see the town and noted that she fields several enquiries meant for Halstead, Essex!!  No comment has yet been received from Halstead, Kansas, USA.

EVENTS.  *Community Litter Pick – Sunday 30th January. Meet 10.30 at Sainsbury’s Car Park.
*Halstead Marathon will take place on Sunday 8th May and HiB has been asked if we will again help to marshall.   Several HiB volunteers have already come forward and Race Organiser has been advised that we will help.  It was noted that Halstead Road Runners have supported HiB in the past with cash donations and there will be a runner in the London Marathon 2022 running on behalf of HiB.
*Jubilee Events.  Full details of what is taking place have not yet been published, but it is thought that there will be 4 days of celebration over the Jubilee Holiday – 2nd/3rd/4th/5th June.  A beacon will be lit (Halstead beacon is at the Fire Station), HAPPY will have an event, Beavers will organise an event, there will be choir events and possibly communities will want to hold tea parties, etc.   It has been advised that there will be no May Day event this year.

WORKING  PARTIES Joan said that there is more work to do at the Road Runners’ Bed and that for the time being there will be ‘as and when’ working.  Please let Joan know if there is anything that needs to be done and advise of what is being done.           Plans for 2022:  Joan said that she has plans for a Jubilee display along Solar Wall with colours of purple and platinum and a depiction of the Jubilee Emblem.  The plane will transmogrify into a Red Arrow and there will be paintings of the Red Arrows.  Decision hasn’t yet been made about the bed in Public Gardens nor at the Loom.

HIB GOING FORWARD  At the meeting on 6th January it was decided that HiB will have some fund raising events in 2022.  A cake stall was agreed for 16th April (Easter Saturday).  A plant sale was agreed for 21st May and an autumn plant sale on 22nd October. (Summer plants will be collected on 28th May and winter plants collected on 29th October.  David will arrange a Quiz Night on 14th October at the Con Club.   Awards will be held sometime in October/November tba.  Joan will order in some plug plants for the May plant sale and it is hoped that some of the team will be able to take them and grow them on.  Any other donations of plants/shrubs will be appreciated.  Any donations of cakes for the April stall will be much appreciated.

ANY  OTHER  BUSINESS.    *It has been noted that Friends of Halstead Hospital are looking for support to keep the wards at Halstead Hospital open in some way.  Team asked Secretary to write a letter of support to the NHS/Friends.      *At a recent Partnership meeting Joan suggested that residents of Halstead should be encouraged to write to the owner of Townsford Mill to deplore the state of the Mill building and surrounding buildings and grounds and ask that some repairs/refurbishment be effected as soon as possible.  This is an iconic Halstead building, much photographed and visited, and should be preserved.  The condition of the fence surrounding the rear car park is deplored and the car park and surrounding area near to the Halstead Icing building is in a dangerous condition. As far as is known the owner of the Mill still lives at Anstey Hall, Maris Lane, Trumpington, Cambridge CB2 9LG.       *Margaret T noted that the dumped tyres are still at the site of the proposed Halstead Community Hub. Has been reported.  Margaret also noted that a battery in a cardboard box has been dumped in Trinity Court Car Park.  Will be reported.  *Eileen spoke about the Braintree Local Plan where part 1 was accepted by the Inspector but part 2 needs modifications.  Originally it was stated in the plan that retention and refurbishment of ‘at least 1 of the air raid shelters’ on land East of High Street was planned which meant that there was no surety that all shelters would be protected, however in the revised plan it was noted that  ‘the air raid shelters’ should be retained and refurbished but still no guarantee that the over ground shelter will be safe.  21st C group will petition the Inspector to ensure that matter is clarified.  Any support will be welcomed.  Eileen said that part of the land had been sold at auction and some clearance had been done.  There is no planning application at present and it is thought there are covenants in place and that some drainage will need to take place.  *Mike announced that there will be a Halstead Flower Festival at St. Andrew’s Church on 8th/9th/10th July and help from HiB volunteers will be appreciated.  Please contact Mike on mirees100@hotmail.com or 01787 828642 if you can assist. *Linda noted that the footpath in Colne Road outside the cemetery is covered in leaf litter and is very slippery when frosty/wet.  Joan noted similar conditions in Parsonage St. near to the 3 large tubs and also on the footpath from Parsonage St. to Weavers’ Court. All have been reported.  *Joan noted that Ruth has advised that all plants required for the summer will be available (apart from some dichondra but these can be replaced with different plants).  *Joyce noted that the footpath between the Surgery car park and Kings Road is very overgrown and it’s impossible to pick litter out of the brambles.  Joyce also noted some fly tipping on Mount Hill – residents have left old fencing on the bank when replacing garden fences. Both have been reported.  *Margaret E has had reports of chewing gum left on pavements.  Has been reported.

There being no other business the meeting closed at 840. p.m.

Next team meeting on Wednesday 23rd February 2022. .30p.m. at Royal British Legion Club, The Causeway.  
 This will also be our Annual General Meeting.   All Officers will, as our Constitution determines, retire at the next Annual General Meeting although may indicate that they are prepared to stand again and at that time Officers for the following year will be elected.    Please forward any nominations for Officer (Chairman, Secretary, Treasurer) to Secretary by Monday 21st February.  Voting will take place at AGM.  
Discussions took place about future venues for meetings as RBL Club is now closed on Tuesday and Thursday evenings.  It was said that the Club is preferred venue. Secretary to speak to Secretary of Club to see what can happen for the future.
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.   
Join membership of National Co-op (Colchester Road)   and note HiB as your preferred charity
 to donate via Co-op purchases.

Minutes of 28th October 2021

Minutes of a meeting 28th October 2021 7.30p.m. at Royal British Legion Club

 Chairman, welcomed all present and accepted apologies from those who could not attend.   
Chairman congratulated Billy on the Award for Best School Garden in London given to the school where he is caretaker and leader of the gardening club.  Well done Billy and children.

Minutes of meeting of 30th September 2021 had been circulated and were adopted.

UPDATES.  *Community Centre Ground. This area has been tidied at the personal expense of one of the Trustees.  Team expressed thanks to this Trustee for her efforts.  *Kerb stones out of alignment.  ECC Highways were informed of location but nothing has been heard back. *Plant Stall. Just over £200 was taken on the day with other sales post plant sale day amounting to just over £27 with more to be added.  Sale was deemed to have been worthwhile.  Carol offered to take some of the indoor plants to keep overwinter for the proposed spring plant sale. *Butler Road hedges- matter was discussed at recent Partnership meeting and it was said that HTC could write to owner of the hedge that is overgrowing the footpath and if no action is taken then ECC could cut back hedge and charge householder if it is deemed to obstruct the pavement.  It was noted that the hedge at top of Factory Lane West is causing difficulties for pedestrians; this is verge area and will be reported.  *Ivy over footways. This has been cleared by Eastlight contractors. *Weed Buster machine has been trialled in Halstead but results not known.  At Partnership meeting it was said that surface weeds are dealt with but machines tried don’t grub out roots so results are not long lasting.  Other weed control methods have been tried. *Trinity Flats area has been tidied but suggestions were given to further enhance the area.  It was noted that although HiB gave some cash for planting in the beds at Trinity Flats car park it does not seem to have been used and the beds are not in good condition.  Will be reported. *Buddleia on footway at River Walk should have been cut back now (my fault it wasn’t done earlier as I neglected to report it, apologies).  *Containers for top of High Street (outside nail bar/T-shirt printers).  There is an area of private land that will take a couple of half barrels – these to be purchased for summer planting; shop to care for planting.  *Bench at Parsonage Street now has a licence to be renewed as a memorial to Linda McCarthy.  Bench and plaque are ordered and contractor ready to install.  Existing bench will be removed and it was agreed that this could be placed at the Resource Centre when the gazebo is removed. 

ANGLIA  IN  BLOOM Virtual Campaign 2021. Results to be published on Anglia in Bloom web page and Facebook page on Friday 29thPost meeting note: they are there and Halstead has been awarded a Gold mark.  Results of the Neighbourhood judging are also on the sites.  There is to be a Spring Launch for Anglia in Bloom 2022 on 24th March at RHS Hyde Hall, Essex and certificates for the ’21 campaign will be presented at this event.  The Awards Day for 2022 event will be on 7th September ’22 at Orsett Hall, Essex – not so much travelling for us next year!!    It has been made known by Anglia in Bloom that the entrants designated for RHS Britain in Bloom in 2019 will also be invited to take part for 2022 (that includes Halstead).  Team agreed that they would like to take part, but felt that statutory bodies will need to give assistance in areas such as weeding, painting/renewing of street furniture, etc.  Further discussions to take place!

CALENDAR 2022.  Calendar is now on sale at Halstead Icing, Hardys Menswear, Phil the Egg Man, Halstead Town Council, Greenstead Green P.O. Stores and Willow and Gray.  So far, on our stalls, we have sold 123 calendars so several more to sell.  It was agreed that we should try having Fridays and at Chapel Street Car Park.  So for Friday 5th November (at Chapel Street). I have 9-10 Carol and Pat; 10-11 Chris and Nicky; 11-12 Margaret T and Ian; 12-1 Fiona and Julia.  We will use this as a trial event and maybe have other Friday stalls.  If weather is not good we will have to transfer to usual place outside Solar – watch the WhatsApp group for details.  On  6/11 at Solar – 9-10 Linda and Sue; 10-11  Nicky and Margaret T;  11-12 Annie and Mick; 12-1 Alan  and Margaret E.  On 13/11 at Solar- 9-10 Linda and Annie; 10-11  Don and Joan; 11-12  David and Barry; 12-1 Margaret E and Ian.  On 20/11 outside Solar- 9-10 Linda and Joan; 10-11  Don and Helen; 11-12   Billy and Karyn; 12-1  Margaret E and Ian.  27/11 – This is the Christmas Fayre. Starting at 9.  Joan, Annie and Mick; 10-11  Linda, Joyce and Sue; 11-12  Debra and ??  12-1 Ian and David; 1-2 Billy and Karyn; 2-3 Linda and Tony; 3-4 Graham and Julia.  Just the one space to fill on 27th, offers please! 
EVENTS.  *Community Litter Pick – Sunday 31st October. Meet 10.30 at Sainsbury’s Car Park.  *Remembrance names will be placed at WW1 memorial (St. Andrew’s churchyard) on Monday 8th November starting at 10am.  They will need to be spaced out a bit more than last year to allow people to move and view and place wreaths on the memorial. WWII names will be placed on the same day.  We will put our poppy fall on the railings of HPG as we did last year, that will be probably w/e 6th/7th November.  David spoke about the poppies placed on lamp posts in Witham with names of fallen and questioned whether we might think of something similar for another year.  We guess that we will have to seek permissions for this.  *Event arranged by 21st C group at Empire Theatre on 17th November.  Local author James Canton will be speaking about Ancient Oaks and Other Wonders of North Essex.  Doors open at 7.00pm for 7.30pm start.  Admission is free.  Email info@halstead21stcentury.org.uk or phone 07842907501 to book a place. *Christmas Fayre.  Is  27th November and there will be stalls in Weavers Court, behind the gates (hope the grass gets cut!!).  We will need to move the plane to accommodate stalls (this is in hand). *Torchlight Procession is on 1st December.  8 of the team have volunteered to act as marshalls/collectors and as far as I know we will need to be on the Hill for 6.30pm.  *Christmas Tree event in St. Andrew’s Church is planned for 26th/27th/28th November.  HiB will have a tree and has booked an ‘advert’ in the programme.  Margaret T noted that youth groups haven’t yet been invited to take part – Mike and Annie to chase this up.  *There will be some Christmas trees in Holy Trinity Church, some trees and decorations have been retained in the church from previous years and HiB will have a working party on the afternoon of 23rd November to set up a display.  Speaking events: HiB team has been booked to speak at U3A AGM on 5th April ’22; Tollesbury Gardening Club on 25th April ’22 and Great Notley Gardening Club on 12th October ’22.  There may also be a booking for West Bergholt Flower Club date to be advised.  It was agreed that our presentation needs to be revamped, team will meet to discuss.
HiB Christmas ‘do’  It won’t be possible to have the usual dinner, open to all, this year as St. Andrew’s Church Hall will be too small for a socially distanced event and it isn’t possible to have a full meal at Queen’s Hall.  It is thought that perhaps an afternoon tea might be a nice idea just to celebrate success of 2021 and look forward to 2022.  Margaret T to explore options. 

PLANT  COLLECTION Plants due to be collected on Saturday 30th October.  Van booked. Please meet at Gate House (next to Fire Station) at 10.30am to help sort the 6,500 plants! 
Planting will be on Sunday 31st. Those helping to set out please meet on Town Bridge at 9am.  Those planting from 10.15 onwards, meet at Town Bridge.  Please bring gloves and hand tools (and steps for Bridge planting).

WORKING  PARTIES From 2nd November working parties will be for planting.  We will be selling calendars at Priory hall on 4th November so anyone available to assist will be welcome.  Hopefully planting will be complete by 18th November so that the Road Runners’ bed can be tidied. 23rd November will be at Holy Trinity Church (see above) and 25th November will be setting up tree(s) at St. Andrew’s Church.  After that work will be as and when required.

ANY  OTHER  BUSINESS.    *Margaret T noted that the Halstead Horticultural Society will be having their autumn show on 13th November at Queen’s Hall.  HiB to sell calendars (let me know if you can help).  Schedules will be sent round.  *Fiona spoke about cars/parked on verge at Parsonage Street.  This was raised at Partnership meeting but land is owned by Essex CC and it seems that nothing can be done to stop this erosion of the verge and dangerous blocking of sight line.  *Alan asked if the cart at Blamsters Crescent is due for a revamp but it was thought it is in an OK condition for now.  *Karyn and Billy offered to help on Saturdays when required – Billy offered to cut back vegetation opposite the Empire and in Factory Lane West if necessary.  *Carol says she has been given a donation from Barbara Coe and will hand this in over the weekend.  She also asked if Holy Trinity School Gardening Club had made requests for grants for the required poly tunnel.  Christine said that the Gardening Club hadn’t yet started up and that there were no funds for the Club so she wasn’t sure of the future. (Margaret T said that the future of Halstead Brownies and Rainbows wasn’t sure because fees have been set so high for future).  *Julia spoke about the Local Community Fund set up by the National Co-op Society and noted that a further payment of £662.28 is due to be paid this month.  There will be a presentation ‘do’ sometime between 18th and 20th November, no details to hand as yet.  HiB has been made a recipient of the Local Community Fund for 21/22.  Julia then spoke about Halstead in Bloom going forward.  It was said that recent events and recent difficulties encountered by local groups have highlighted that HiB must make plans for the future, for instance if/when HiB comes to an end.  Our constitution says that any assets should be ‘given or transferred to such other charitable institution or institutions having objects similar to the objects of the Charity’  All were asked to consider this point and what would be desirable.  Chairman asked what thoughts the team have about future workings and noted that some members aren’t able to work as previously and asked for considerations about what the team should be tackling. Do we do too much?  Should we be tackling weed clearing and painting?  If the answer is no, and if these duties can’t be carried out by statutory bodies should we still be entering Anglia in Bloom and if asked RHS Britain in Bloom?  Team felt that entering gives a focus for efforts but that some decisions would have to be made.  All are urged to consider and pass on thoughts to Trustees.

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

Next team meeting on   Thursday 25th November  7.30p.m. at Royal British Legion Club, The Causeway.    
Contacts:  Margaret Eskins Chairman.  01787 269443;  Julia Smith, Secretary. 0776 2587141 / 01787461806. e-mail jaygrey@btinternet.com; Joan Gibson, plants and working parties. 01787 473070www.halsteadinbloom.org.uk                                                                                                Facebook: halsteadinbloom.
Join membership of National Co-op (Colchester Road)   and note HiB as your preferred charity
 to donate via Co-op purchases

Minutes 30th Sept 2021

Minutes of a meeting 30th September 2021  7.30p.m. at Royal British Legion Club

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

Minutes of meeting of 26th August had been circulated and were adopted.

UPDATES.  *Community Centre Ground.  Cllr Jackie Pell was contacted and said that money to clear the ground would be money that was needed for the project and therefore this would not be done.  Further information will be available.  *Whitehorse Avenue road sign.  The broken sign was reported and has been/will be mended.  *Himalayan Balsam.  The River Improvement Group and Environment Agency were informed and 2 of the RIG team cleared the plants (there were 2) and looked for more.  HiB was thanked for prompt action.  *Dog fouling on river walk.  This should have been cleared now and action will be taken to deter repeat offences.  *Kerb stones out of alignment.  Were reported by ECC said they could not identify the problem.  I have an incident number and now that location is established I will inform Highways. *Donation in memory of Iola was taken to Danaher Animal Home.  We were thanked and a lovely letter from the home was received.

LOCAL  GARDEN  COMPETITON.  Letters giving results were taken round by Chairman and were enthusiastically received.  An email from the winner was received, encouragement to enter next year was given!  Certificate and prize was handed to Colin Bailey who was present at the meeting

ANGLIA  IN  BLOOM Virtual Campaign 2021. A meeting of judges should have taken place on 30th September but was postponed because of the fuel situation (judges have to travel from the 6 counties of the Anglia region to attend).  Meeting will now take place, fingers crossed, on 21st October and results will be published thereafter.

 CALENDAR 2022.  Calendar is now on sale at Halstead Icing, Hardys Menswear, Phil the Egg Man, Halstead Town Council and will be on sale from tomorrow at Greenstead Green P.O. Stores.  We have had 3 successful selling stalls with more planned until Christmas.  Sellers will be required where ?? are shown.  Please let me know if you can help !

So far we have: 2/10. Joan and Carol. Sue and Margie Clarke. Linda and Debra. Billy and Karyn.

9/10. Joan and Jean.  Sue and Pauline.  Don and Margaret T.  Ian and David.
16/10 – Plant Stall.  Sue and Joan.  Carol and Margie Clarke. Linda and Nicky. Ian and David.  We need at least one more seller for each shift as we will have plants plus calendars.

23/10  Joan and ??  Nicky and Margaret T.  Annie and Mick.  Don and Margaret E.

29/10 – Friday Don and Joan.  Pat and ??  Linda and ??  Ian and David.

6/11 – Linda and Joan.  Nicky and Margaret JT.  Annie and Mick. Don and Margaret E

13/11 – Linda and Annie.  Don and Joan.  David and ??  Margaret E and Ian.

20/11 – Linda and Joan.  Don and ??  ?? and ??  Margaret E and Ian.

27/11 – This is the Christmas Fayre. Starting at 9.  Joan and ??  Linda and Joyce  Debra and ??  Ian and ??

This takes us up to 1pm so more spaces are vacant.  Graham and I will do the last shift 3-4pm.

Christmas cards are also on sale and have been selling well. Chairman thanked Joan and Dennis for their hard work.

PLANT  SALE. It was agreed that we will have a plant sale on 16th October .  We will be selling donated plants, anything saleable from the removed summer plants and it was  suggested that we sell the remaining knitted poppies – money from these to be given to the RBL poppy fund.  We will also sell the knitted items that we have in stock at present. 
Please let me know if you need pots for plant donations.  We do have some compost as well if necessary.

WORKING  PARTIES.   Joan has obtained permission from the Doctors’ Surgery for HiB to tidy up the area that we had cleared before the pandemic.  It is now very overgrown again so on Tuesday 5th October a small working party will convene.  Saws, loppers, secateurs, forks, spades – and muscles will be required!  Spoil will be taken away in bags to put in the green bin at The Empire.  Work probably won’t be completed on Tuesday so Thursday 7th will also be dedicated to this effort.  Any not attending at Surgery there is plenty of deadheading and weeding still to be done.  From Tuesday 12th we will begin removal of summer plants (boo hoo!!) and this will continue up to and including 19th and if necessary 21st but some work needs to be done as and when possible at the Road Runners’ bed.  On Tuesday 26th it is hoped that we may be able to help Peter in the new Play Park at HPG as this is getting a bit weedy.  There will not be a working party on 28th!! (unless there is work left to do!!!!!).  On 2nd November there will be planting to be done and on the morning of 4th November we will be selling calendars at Priory Hall.  Phew! 

ANY  OTHER  BUSINESS.    *Margaret E noted that there are hedges overhanging the pavements along Butler Road – left hand side going towards Empire.  These are responsibility of the property owner although they can be asked to cut back.  Will be reported.  Ivy encroaching on the footway was noted in the footpath between Mitchells Avenue and Holmes Road.  Not sure who has responsibility for this footpath but will be ascertained and reported.  Pat noted that there is also ivy coming through fence and onto pavement from Trinity Flats into Bridge Street.  This is Easlight Homes responsibility and will be reported.  Margaret E asked what had happened to the magnolia trees in High Street – their fate is not known at present, information to be sought.

*Linda spoke about the amount of weeds in pavements and at base of walls and asked if Braintree DC could bring their weed grabber to Halstead.  This machine was used on trial in Braintree, it isn’t known if one was purchased and if it is to be used in the district. Margaret E noted that there is to be a Partnership meeting on 26th October – the first for some time – and matters such as these will be discussed.  *Debra asked that whoever placed the new dog bin at Star Stile be thanked as this has improved the area greatly.  *Ian noted that the area near to the gates to Trinity Flats, at the rear of the Library is in a poor state and looks neglected.  This is Eastlight Homes property and this will be reported.  *Colin noted that at Portway Bridge (Chapel Street) the buddleia bush is overhanging the walkway and needs to be cut back.  There is only a very narrow gap for pedestrians to negotiate now.  This is BDC property and will be reported.  Colin also said that he had attended the Notley Gardening Club where HiB gave a talk some time ago and there were several favourable comments about Halstead and HiB.  Nice to hear!  *Don (a recent recruit to the team) said that he very much admired the flowers and the work done by HiB team that was let down by the state of the river.  It was agreed that while some good work had been done to ‘landscape’ the river bed the weeds do look unsightly.  EA say that they are good for wild life.   *Joan said she has heard that there is to be a Christmas Tree event at St. Andrew’s Church this year but no details have been received.  Mike said he would ask at forthcoming Church Meeting.  Joan also asked whether Holy Trinity Church would be open for refreshments and decorated with Christmas trees after the switching on of Christmas lights (27/11).  Situation not known at present.  Joan asked if HiB would be placing the soldiers’ names at WW1 and WW11 memorials this year.  It was said that this will be done, and the poppy fall will be placed on HPG railings as previously.  Joan said that the Chamber of Trade wanted to give a donation to HiB but it was agreed that we are struggling to handle the goods we have for sale at present and can’t really accept anything else.  Joan said that she had been approached by Chamber Chairman to place containers near to his premises in Head Street.  It isn’t known at present whether the designated area is Highway but this will be investigated.  *Joyce asked if Council could enforce owners to upkeep their properties in the centre of Town.  This isn’t possible, it is believed.  *Julia said that BDC are offering free bulbs and free whips and HiB has applied for 4 bags of 100 bulbs for entry beds and memorial bed in Chapel St. Car Park.  HTC are also going to apply and I suggested that they might be planted at Butler Road, outside the Public Gardens and at the Sudbury Road project.  Julia also said that the Officer at ECC now has all the info required regarding the bench replacement at Kings Road/Parsonage Street but it isn’t known when the licence will be granted.  The family who donated money are now pushing for this to be spent.  *Margaret T said that her Brownies and Rainbows would like to apply for bulbs and it was said that some could be planted in Sharon’s Garden and some at Adams Court.

*DON’T FORGET THE MONTHLY COMMUNITY LITTER PICK – date for next one to be announced as on 30th October we will begin planting.  For Community Litter Picks meet 10.30am at Sainsbury’s Car Park.  Monthly river clean will be on Sunday 3rd October.  Meet at 10am at Sainsbury’s Car Park.

There being no other business the meeting closed at 8.30 p.m.

Next team meeting on   Thursday 28th October  7.30p.m. at Royal British Legion Club, The Causeway.     


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.
Join membership of National Co-op (Colchester Road)   and note HiB as your preferred charity
 to donate via Co-op purchas

Newsletter 25th Jan 2021

26th February 2021

Good day to you.  Hope that you are still keeping well.  It is a year ago – 27/2/20 – that we had our last Halstead in Bloom team meeting.  In my diary for 26/02/20 I noted that there were ‘concerns about the new Coronavirus that seems to be spreading in UK.  If we had known then……….. 
At our meeting we were planning various events for the year with no idea that most of them wouldn’t happen.  Derek Holmes (from Daniel Robinson & Sons) joined us to pledge to provide transport for Anglia in Bloom and RHS Britain in Bloom judging; there was to be a seminar about Climate Emergency Water Crisis in April that Graham was interested in attending; we planned our AGM in March, VE celebrations, Halstead Marathon, Halstead Flower Festival, Children’s’ Competition ’20 and a Quiz and none of them could take place.  We did visit Gestingthorpe church and museum on 17th March and that visit was interesting and informative, and we did manage to get some summer bedding in place – bit of a scramble, but we got there!  We had attended a Britain in Bloom seminar in Birmingham and came back with lots of ideas – we can hold them over until 2022!  What else did we discuss?  Well, it was reported that Graham had repaired the Bluebridge cart but concerns were raised about the seed drill on Sudbury Road.  Bellway Homes were contacted and they rose to the challenge – the drill now looks great.  Damage to the drinking fountain on Mount Hill was reported – thankfully this was not too difficult to repair and the water has been flowing freely.  The very bad state of pavements in Colchester Road had been reported to ECC, and these have been repaired in the past 12 months.  A letter had been received from the GP Surgery thanking the HiB team for work done in their courtyard garden – unfortunately there has been no possibility of maintenance and the bamboo has enjoyed the lack of attention!    But let’s not dwell on what didn’t happen, but look forward to a better 12 months coming.

Community Litter Pick should be happening this Sunday but won’t take place as an organised event this month.   Please do feel free to combine some collecting with your permitted daily exercise safely at all times please.  The next event should be on Sunday 28th March, just one day before the planned ‘rule of 6 will apply’ so similar plans for then, please.  Hopefully by the last Sunday in April it will be possible to have a ‘proper’ community litter pick.

River Colne.  Work to repair the Riverside footbridge has been completed and Halstead TC minutes say that when painting is completed the footbridge can be opened to the public.  With regard to the stretch between Town Bridge and the Mill the planning application has been lodged (can be viewed on the BDC web site – look for Old Surgery, Weavers’ Court) to trim trees on that side of the river and if no objections are received by 1st April we will be free to organise the work.  Cllr Jo Beavis, ECC, has arranged for a grant of £1000 to be made to HiB so the cost of work will be covered.

Vandalism You may have read in the local press that there has been a spree of vandalism recently.  Two of the troughs at the Fountain on Market Hill were pulled off and were damaged.  Linda and Carol cleared up the mess and put the troughs back together as best they could.  The plants seemed to survive and are brightening up the area.  It was prudent, however, to purchase new troughs that will be put in situ for the summer bedding – money from the ECC grant will be used for the replacements and the surviving troughs will be used elsewhere.

Re-vamp of the High Street A post appeared on Facebook (but was quickly taken down) saying that HiB has received £400K to revamp the High Street while businesses are struggling.  This, of course, is not true but we did wonder if this ignited the spate of vandalism.  HiB has been asked and has agreed to be a consultee on plans.  Some of the planters in High Street – especially those near to W H Smith – have rusted through and badly need to be replaced.  We will be asking if water retaining containers can be purchased; they are robust and will assist with maintenance.  A meeting between Halstead TC and Braintree DC will take place soon and HiB will attend.

Plant Stall After much discussion, fingers in the wind and eyes on the news we decided that we would go ahead with purchase of some bedding plugs and hope that we can have a plant stall in early May.  Some of the team are growing on various cuttings from their gardens as well as these plugs and with the recent published ‘route map’ it looks as if the stall can go ahead.

Summer Bedding has been ordered and we will be planting up the town at the end of May/beginning of June under whatever restrictions are in force at the time.

 RHS Britain in Bloom and Anglia in Bloom  Britain in Bloom this year will be aimed at  Community Champions and Halstead in Bloom told the Chairman for  Anglia in Bloom that we would be prepared to stand aside for 2021 and let others have a chance of entry.  The 5 chosen entrants from Anglia are Brandon, Chatteris, Dunstable, Gosfield and Huntingdon.  We are sure that they will bring some great entries forward, and of course HiB will be pleased to assist them if we can.
Anglia in Bloom has also decided that for the safety of all entrants and judges the 2021 campaign will be virtual.  There are 10 categories for entry, and I attach a list and terms of entry.  Please note that up to 5 photos of each entry can be submitted, and up to 3 entries in each category except the Its Your Neighbourhood category where there is no limit.  All this for a £10 entry fee!!  We must be able to put forward a strong entry from Halstead, please have your cameras primed!

 Calendars 2021 We have, once again, to thank Phil the Egg Man for his great assistance in selling when we could not.  We now have most of the money in from sales and I’m pleased to say that most of them were sold – none were recycled by us. 
We will be producing a calendar for 2022, so please send any photos of Halstead or surrounding area to me so that we have as wide a choice as possible.  Maybe think of some areas that we haven’t featured before, and ‘bright and beautiful’ will be the order of the day.
We do still have some face shields left, and I guess that we will all be need to wear some sort of face covering for weeks/months to come.  They cost £2.50 each and will be available at our plant stall or ask one of the team and we will get one to you.

Banners at entry to the Town you may have noticed that the banners on the muck spreader, near the seed drill and at Halstead Public Gardens proclaim Halstead’s successes in 2019.  While we don’t mind shouting that the Town is a Gold Award Winner we aren’t keen on out of date posters.  Team has decided, therefore, to remove those posters, but some others noting successes will be hung.

I think that’s all the current news, so stay optimistic and keep safe and well.


Please, if you have any questions, suggestions or comments don’t hesitate to contact us .          
Chairman: Margaret Eskins- 01787 269443. Plants/Planting: Joan Gibson 01787 473070. Trustee Annie Rees.  Secretary: Julia Smith 01787 461806/email
jaygrey@btinternet.com.
Facebook: Halsteadinbl

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