This week’s edition has a number of snippets of information. I was hoping to have fresh news about the Plan, but I’m afraid it’s another ‘watch this space’ note. Our chairman, Richard, had a conversation early last week with the council planners to discuss their progress, but the outcome was that they are still finalising their response and we now expect to receive it by the end of the coming week (Fri 29th). This is disappointing but, as I’m sure we all appreciate, the council have had much more pressing priorities to deal with over the last few weeks.
Anyway, onto the more productive snippets
1. Next Steps for the Forum
- The Steering Group met a couple of weeks ago – our first since February – and we started to think about activities we could pursue once the Plan has been submitted. A couple of ideas quickly emerged:
- Designating green spaces. A key environmental policy in the Plan is to protect a number of our green spaces by ensuring they are awarded a ‘designated’ status. There is nothing to stop us from kicking off the process to work towards this, so we’ve agreed to speak to the council to understand how best to proceed.
- Tree Preservation Orders (TPOs). Linked to the above, we also want to fully review the TPOs in force in our Area and to identify any gaps. The aim is to protect as many of our mature and veteran trees as possible. We’ll be pursuing this aspect with the council as well.
- Annual Report and Accounts. The 2019 report has been delayed partly due our focus on revising the Plan this spring but also due to the deferral of the AGM where it would have been published. Regardless, the draft report is now written and the accounts produced. It is currently with the Steering Group for review and sign-off. I hope to publish it here next week, although the accounts still need to go through independent examination.
2. Other meetings past and future
- The Strategic Planning Group met a couple of weeks ago to discuss progress on the masterplan for the area. This Group, you’ll recall, is the prime feed into the Toton Delivery Board, chaired by Notts County Council. Both the East Midlands Hub Station and Chetwynd Barracks are included in the masterplan. The next phase of the workplan is a series of workshops to flesh out the details. These are being arranged between the consultants and officers from both Notts County and Broxtowe Borough Council. We have also been invited to attend and provide input based on our Plan. The workshops are scheduled to take place during June/July.
- Homes England/DIO. We have been in touch with Homes England requesting a catch-up meeting, via Zoom or something similar. We last met with them in January, so it will be useful to understand where they are with their workplan relating to the Barracks. Likewise, we will be updating them on our situation with the Plan and our future activities.
3. COVID-19 links and associated information…
- Neighbourhood contacts/sites:
- Beeston Recycling Centre. In case you missed it, the recycling centres are open again. Beeston’s centre on Lilac Grove is open from 10-6pm daily. Find out more…
- Bulky waste service. Broxtowe Council have resumed bookings for the bulky waste service. However, there are some changes to the service due to COVID 19. Find out more…
4. And finally… Norman is 90!
- I want to steal a little space this week to pay tribute to one of our long-standing stalwarts on the Steering Group: Norman Lewis MBE. Norman celebrated his 90th birthday last Friday and it is to his immense credit that he remains as engaged and involved in our work as any of us on the Group. Norman has championed the environmental strand in our Plan and made sure the environment sits at the forefront of all our policies and ambitions for the area.
- Norman has been involved in the environment all his life starting in 1941 when, aged 11, he took a Saturday job at Hunt’s Roses Nursery off Stapleford Lane (what is now Honiton Close). He was one of the first employees of the Notts Wildlife Trust when it was formed in the early 1960s and stayed with them all his working life. He was integral to the formation of the iconic Attenborough Nature Reserve following which his focus became more local when he became a joint founder member and longstanding chairman of the Friends of Toton Fields LNR.
- Prior to joining the Steering Group at its inception, Norman was also heavily involved in the Toton Environmental Protection Society, which was set up in response to the desecration of woodland on the Toton Sidings almost 10 years ago.
- It is difficult to overstate Norman’s passion for the environment and the Forum is very fortunate in being able to call on his unsurpassed knowledge and experience of all matters relating to ecology and the environment.
- Norman: you are an inspiration to all of us on the Steering Group. Thank you for all you have done in championing the cause of the environment in our Area and we look forward to your wise counsel in the years to come.
And, that’s all folks this week. See you next time.
Broxtowe Lotto: tickets available from our CTTC Forum page where you’ll also find details of the scheme