To All Hartswood,
Firstly the good news, we have had another delivery of horse manure.
Now the not so good news. In the hot weather when everyone wants to be outside the smell is such that the neighbours are objecting.
In an effort to minimise the problem we have covered the heap with some white tarpaulin but it would help enormously if you could use it as soon as possible and, after loading your wheelbarrows, replace the tarpaulin.
Ian and Steve, site reps
Last week there was another incident regarding unauthorised access to one of the allotment sites.
This one occurred at Hartswood when three male adults, who clearly had no respect for social distancing rules, effectively barged past plot-holders who were accessing the site and who “stepped back” for their own safety. The intruders then wandered about the site, interfering with at least one of the plots before exiting when another plot-holder opened the car park gates to leave. As far as we are aware no damage was done and nothing was stolen but this was a very un-nerving experience for the plot-holders involved. Fortunately, unlike a recent event at the Ongar Road site, there was no direct threat of actual bodily injury, but this was a trespass and has been reported to the police.
Can everyone please:
1. Be aware of strangers acting suspiciously near the gates. Maybe just bide your time and wait for them to go away.
2. Be aware that if you are accessing a site by car it is extremely easy for an intruder to “tailgate”.
3. Stay safe – under no circumstances should any plot-holder confront any stranger at the site, particularly if they demonstrate any aggressive behaviour.
4. If you are threatened then please call the police on the emergency number, 999 immediately. Otherwise please file a report using the police website (https://www.essex.police.uk/).
5. Always lock the gates.
But above all else, stay safe.
Chair, Brentwood Horticultural Society
We have been advised that the Hutton Horticultural Society Trading Hut will be open for business this coming Sunday, May 17th.
Please make sure that if you do decide to visit that you take with you a valid up-to-date membership card. You will not be served without one.
If you do not have your membership card, please contact your site representative or committee member so that you can arrange a mutually agreed handover of a new one.
For newer members who have never used this facility, our society has an arrangement with the Hutton Horticultural Society where our members can use their Trading Hut which is situated on their Birkbeck Road allotment site and which trades on Sunday mornings. You have to show a valid membership card.
Their website is: https://www.huttonhorticulturalsociety.co.uk/
We have updated the rules and regulations for allotment holders. Please read them and keep to them.
DEFRA have declared a bird flu prevention zone across the whole of England. All bird keepers will have to follow strict biosecurity measures.
The prevention zone means bird keepers across the country must:
- Ensure the areas where birds are kept are unattractive to wild birds, for example by netting ponds, and by removing wild bird food sources;
- Feed and water your birds in enclosed areas to discourage wild birds;
- Minimise movement in and out of bird enclosures;
- Clean and disinfect footwear and keep areas where birds live clean and tidy;
- Reduce any existing contamination by cleansing and disinfecting concrete areas, and fencing off wet or boggy areas.
The prevention zone will be in place until further notice and will be kept under regular review as part of our work to monitor the threat of bird flu.
Poultry keepers and members of the public should report dead wild birds to the Defra helpline on 03459 33 55 77 and keepers should report suspicion of disease to APHA on 03000 200 301. Keepers should familiarise themselves with DEFRA’s avian flu advice.
We are expecting the Council Green Waste skip on Tuesday, 3rd October, morning and need lots of volunteers from around 9am to help fill it.
The more the merrier — many hands make light work.
So, Tuesday at 9. please.
Steve and Ian,
Following the reporting of asbestos to the Council by a plot-holder on another site we have been checking our site at Hartswood for any evidence of asbestos cement panels and corrugated roofing.
Those plot-holders where evidence of asbestos is obvious have been informed and requested to take action. However, a visual inspection on a site walk around can never be 100% certain of identifying all evidence of asbestos. Can ALL plot-holders please inspect their own plots and either remove any asbestos or report the situation to the site representatives. We can then arrange its removal to a central consolidation point prior to having it professionally removed by an appropriately licenced waste disposal firm (Bowmers).
It is in your own interest to take advantage of this offer. Disposal of any subsequent discovery of asbestos will be the plot-holders responsibility.
A big “Thank you” to all who helped during the past few days.
On Friday, we managed to clear away three trailer loads of scrap metal from the vicinity of plots 1, 2, and 3 (as well as from 5 and 16). Special thanks to Colin for providing the trailer. And of course to G J Bowmer (Waste Disposal) Ltd who took the scrap. They have also helped in the past with disposal of asbestos.
On Saturday we had a major fire on plot 118, the plot just inside the main gate. This has cleared an awful lot of rubbish and allowed Jim to start digging. Many thanks for those who were able to help at such short notice.
There is still a lot of work to do on plot 118, which is now the community plot. Any help with the digging would be much appreciated. Whenever you are available, and even when you are at your own plots, a few minutes digging would make a huge difference. Just turn the soil and heap up any weeds and roots you dislodge. We cannot leave it all to Jim.
And finally a big thank you to Olivier who has been working with his chainsaw to get proper access to plots 29 and 30 and open up the far corner.
I have attached a few photos I managed to take.
I hope we see you soon — especially helping recover plot 118.
DEFRA have raised an order for all poultry keepers to keep their birds indoors for at least 30 days to help prevent the spread of a new strain of Bird Flu.
BBC News Story