Chairman’s Report

The Annual Parish Assembly was held on 6 April 2021. The Chair of the Council gave his report on the Council’s activities during the last year and can be read here:

Solitary Soldier

The Solitary Soldier silhouette has now been placed permanently on the traffic island at Mill Lane. The village gardening club is now looking to enhance the silhouette with some suitable planting. A replacement ‘Lest We Forget’ sign has installed. A poppy wreath will be placed by the soldier for Remembrance Day.

Playing Field and Village Green

GRANT APPLICATION FOR NEW EQUIPMENT – The Parish Council’s application for grant funding for new adult fitness equipment has been successful. New equipment has been ordered and should be in place the week commencing 18 October.

PLAY AREA – Consideration has been given to issues flagged up by a recent ROSPA inspection report. Councillors have carried out some rust proofing and repainting of equipment and this will be completed soon.

DRONES – The Council has adopted a policy preventing use of drones on the playing field. There is concern around public safety issues and also possible breach of privacy for residents in adjacent properties. The policy can be found here

CAR PARK – Work has taken place to improve the surface of the car park. Various posts in the car park and field entrance will be replaced.

VILLAGE GREEN – The Millennium bench has been repaired and treated with preservative.

INSURANCE CLAIMS – The Parish Council’s insurers have investigated two claims for subsidence to buildings in relation to oak trees in the playing field. Four of the trees in question have now been felled and four others are to be pollarded. A discussion was held about planting some replacement trees in the wild area to encourage wildlife.

NEW NOTICE BOARD – Funding for a new village notice board to be put on the Village Green will be included in next year’s budget. Consideration is being given as to whether a list of house names on the board would assist delivery drivers, if residents were happy for their house details to be included.

Speeding in the Village

The Trucam Patrols operated by Maldon District Council which aim to catch people speeding through the village are ongoing. There were 3 captures in September.

It is hoped that Community Speedwatch sessions will commence again soon.

The Parish Council has made an application to the Local Highways Panel for a portable Speed Indicator Device for the village. This is currently being validated.

Highways and Footpaths

WALKABLE VERGE TO VILLAGE HALL – A request has been made to the Local Highways Panel for a walkable verge from the playing field car park to St Nicholas Hall. We have been advised that the scheme cannot be carried out due to insufficient space along the edge of the road. At some point in the future the issue of integrating the Hall and the playing field should be discussed with Parochial Church Council.

PARKING AT THE VILLAGE HALL – Anyone using the Village Hall is reminded that they can park at The Bell Pub to prevent cars having to park along the road.

DAMAGED ROADS / SIGNS – Potholes in Witham Road have been reported and are scheduled for future work. A large pothole left by BT following work to remove a telegraph pole will again be reported to Highways.

The poor state of the carriageway in Sawyers Road will be reported to Highways.

The damaged kerb on the footway opposite St Nicholas Hall has now been marked up for repair work by Highways as has the damaged sign outside the nursing home in Brick House Road.

APPLICATION FOR VEHICLE LICENCE AT WICKS FARM – It is now understood that the processing plant operated by Stigs Grab Services has had its permission withdrawn by the land owner. The Traffic Commissioner’s Office has refused the application by Stigs for an HGV licence to operate from Wicks Manor Farm. A public inquiry will be held by the TCO to consider the existing licence held by Stigs.

ENFORCEMENT – Following concerns raised by the Parish Council that a new mobile home has recently been put in at Two Acres Bickleigh Lane, Maldon District Council’s enforcement team has advised that there is permission for one residential caravan at this site.

The owner of the loose dogs on the footpath near the horse field at New Farm in Beckingham Street was prosecuted for allowing the dogs to run loose and cause injury to a walker, but one dog has been allowed back to its owner and must wear a muzzle and be on a lead near the public. If this dog is seen without a muzzle or off the lead, photographic evidence should be obtained and sent to Essex County Council which is dealing with the issue.

LITTER – The Parish Council is extremely grateful to the ladies who have been litter picking in and around the village. Bags, fluorescent jackets and litter pickers will be obtained for them to use and members of the Parish Council will assist with marshalling on the busier roads.

The Parish Council discussed supporting an annual litter picking weekend which could take place once restrictions are lifted.

CLOSURE OF FACTORY HILL, TIPTREE – Anglian Water is proposing to close Factory Hill in Tiptree for a period of six weeks in January and February 2022 as part of a scheme to improve the water network in Tiptree. This will inevitably mean more traffic through Tolleshunt Major as motorists try to find an alternative route into Tiptree and beyond. Councilors feel that the roads around Tolleshunt Major are totally unsuitable for any increase in traffic especially large lorries. A letter will be sent to Anglian Water requesting details of diversion routes and asking for the provision of traffic control devices to prevent speeding.