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Buxted Parish Council

Buxted Parish Council came into being in 1894 when the present system of Parish Councils was instituted to give rural communities a voice. Buxted Parish covers some 7,000 acres with an electorate of about 2,500 out of a population of 3,200. It encompasses the villages of Buxted, High Hurstwood and Five Ash Down.

The parish is divided into two wards – Buxted/Five Ash Down (10 councillors) and High Hurstwood (5 councillors). Councils are elected for a term of 4 years. Council meetings are held on the second Tuesday in every month (except August), alternating between Buxted Reading Room, High Hurstwood Village Hall and Five Ash Down Village Hall, at 19.30. Meetings agendas are displayed one week in advance on the Parish notice boards in Buxted (on the Ionides Trust site), High Hurstwood (near The Hurstwood pub) and in Five Ash Down (outside the Village Hall) and on the website. The agenda includes a list of any planning applications received from Wealden District Council for consultation. All meetings of the Council and its committees are open to the public, who are welcome to ask questions or raise issues with the Council before the meetings formally begin.

An early requirement was to provide allotments, which we do. Councils can also support arts and crafts; contribute to maintenance of churchyards; protect commons, provide buildings for public meetings, functions and entertainment, maintain public footpaths and bridleways (jointly with ESCC), provide footway lighting (we don’t), provide and maintain public open spaces, and comment on planning applications.

We also take an active interest in highways matters, policy and our environment (e.g. trees and hedgerows). More and more we have to comment on government policies for local government and voice our electors’ concerns.

Parish assets include Buxted Reading Room, two recreation grounds (Buxted and High Hurstwood), two allotment areas in Buxted (recently re-generated) and High Hurstwood, children’s play areas in Buxted and High Hurstwood, and two bus shelters. The budget is set annually over the period October to December. Planned expenditure less income forms the ‘Parish Precept’ which is levied as part of annual Council Tax. Apart from meeting general running expenses of the council – specifically employing our Parish Clerk – the council makes grants to local organisations and contributes to local projects e.g. Buxted Traffic calming.

The Parish Council recognises the burden of Council Tax but is also conscious of local needs for improvements in the Parish that increasingly are not being covered by either County or District as they seek to keep within national government budgets. Before increasing Precept to cover costs of local improvements such as the recent traffic calming, the Parish Council ensures that such improvements are what our electorate want and are prepared to pay for.

Councillors sit on various committees (e.g. Finance, Planning, Communications) and outside bodies (e.g. Ionides Trust, Buxted Community Hall Trust). Each keeps an eye on different parts of the Parish, e.g. for planning purposes and trees.

Our Parish Clerks, Beccy Macklen & Claudine Feltham (01435 812798) who act as the Council’s ‘proper officers’ on the Council’s behalf and under its direction. Both Clerks are available at the Reading Room to handle enquiries personally from parishioners on the first Thursday of every month from 10.15-11.30.

Latest Parish News

Round 2 of Lottery Local Connections Fund - closing date 6th August

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July 2021
Round 2 of Lottery Local Connections Fund - closing date 6th August

The National Lottery Community Fund is investing £2 million into this second round of funding to fund hundreds of ‘microgrants’ between £300 and £2,500, so small, local organisations (with an annual income of £50,000 or less) can bring people and communities together.

If you received funding in Round 1, you will not be eligible for funding in Round 2.

What the funding's for

The funding is aimed at bringing people together in safe and secure ways, making people aware of what services are available to reduce loneliness and to build lasting connections to help make:

  • people and communities feel more connected
  • individuals feel supported and less lonely or isolated
  • people more aware of services available that help them to connect with others and get involved

As the COVID-19 restrictions start to ease, we want to change the focus of this funding for Round 2. We know the dangers of COVID-19 are still present, so it’s important applicants demonstrate how they can adapt to meet any restrictions which may be put in place at short notice. For Round 2, we want to focus on:

  • activities which physically brings people together in a safe and secure way
  • remote activities but where this is the best or only way to build connections for that particular community - this might work well for people who are geographically isolated, those with illnesses or disabilities, or those who are not quite ready to meet people face-to-face
  • helping individuals to get out of the ‘lockdown mentality’ and meet people in their communities again for activities which will be a positive experience for people
  • helping organisations who work to reduce loneliness restart activities - this might be getting volunteers or service users to clean and refresh their meeting space or grounds, or refreshing materials and ensuring equipment is ready to be used.

Applications close - 6 August 2021 at 5pm

https://www.tnlcommunityfund.org.uk/funding/programmes/local-connections-fund-round-2

ESCC Cllr Galley Monthly News July

12

July 2021
ESCC Cllr Galley Monthly News July

Local Update.

July 2021

Our Local Environment: Latest News

Waste Management.

Waste Collection performance remains strong, but Biffa have just alerted us to a shortage of HGV and other drivers across the country.

On Garden waste, we are seeing the usual high levels of seasonal waste for collection. Subscriptions for the new contract starting from August 1st are running at 25,000 so far and we are hopeful of reaching over 30000 in total.

Litter clearance has been completed successfully with traffic management in place on the A259, A 22, A27, A264 and A 267.

With the Great British Spring Clean which concluded on June 13th, and since April groups and individuals removed 700 bags/ 3 tonnes of litter.

Our anti-littering campaign continues, and I appeared on BBC Radio Southeast to highlight the campaign.

Our 2020/21 recycling rate has been calculated at 48.4% which is down on 49.5% in the previous year. However, we had a large increase in waste during the pandemic, household tips were closed for a while, and we had to suspend the garden waste collection for 3 weeks so overall our result is not too bad.

Waste Collection Vehicles

We are discussing with Biffa introducing electric vehicles into our operations.

There is a debate, of course, about the long-term impact of hydrogen and whether EV investment will be a short-term solution. Another option is HVO (Hydrogenated Vegetable Oil) which could be another and quicker short-term possibility.

There are cost and contractual implications for any option and the Council will be putting together a full report with the environmental and financial consequences of each.

The Environment Bill.

This Bill is going through Parliament at present.

One objective is to provide consistent collections for recycling across the country. In Wealden, we meet the national criteria, so we are quite supportive of that.

However, we are opposed to a free garden waste collection which is proposed. It would be expensive to operate and deny us the significant revenue which helps to keep Council Tax down.

There is concern about the cost of suggested statutory Food Waste collections. The cost could be huge and the number of bins outside properties will grow. There are questions about the carbon footprint of yet another collection when the overall objective is to reduce emissions. Part of the government’s thinking appears to be stopping food waste going to landfill which, of course, it doesn’t in East Sussex.

We are lobbying our M.P.s on the Bill.

Tourism

Our new Wealden Tourism branding was launched on June 30th and our new website was launched on July 7th. Please have a look and let me know what you think. We will be working on spreading the word in the next few months and looking at other ideas to help tourism businesses.

Climate Change

22 possible partners for EV charging have been identified and we are working through the procurement process.

Hopefully, we will be able to identify likely sites very soon and get on with installing the charging points. At a later stage we will be contacting Towns and Parishes to look at opportunities for working with them.

A further roll out of Solar Together is being planning for later in the year. Homeowners are invited to participate in a bulk buying exercise through an auction

Roy Galley

July 8th, 2021

Your local Councillors.

Roy Galley. cllr.roy.galley@eastsussex.gov.uk

cllr.roy.galley@wealden.gov.uk

01825 713018

Peter Roundell. cllr.peter.roundell@wealden.gov.uk

01825 722030

Toby Illingworth cllr.toby.illingworth@buxted-pc.gov.uk

01825 732115


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