28th November 2020

Village News and Events

in Boxted and Langham

Welcome to this week’s newsletter.

If you wish to have an item included in this newsletter, please email us at boxtedvillagenews@gmail.com by Thursday 5pm at the latest. Thank you.

Stay safe everyone.

From the archive …

Len Turner and his Cycle Repair Shop

Len, the son of the village blacksmith, Bert Turner, ran his repair shop from a shed next to his home for over 50 years.

The wooden shed had a black stove standing in the centre where Len spent all his spare time mending cycles. He never charged much for the repairs – it was the original Men’s Shed!

Very few residents owned a car years ago so Len was kept busy.

His day job, which he held for over forty years, was as supervisor in the cycle department at Fred Medcalf’s in Maidenburgh Street, Colchester. He died in 1983 aged 71 years.

Pictured below- then and now: The original Forge pre WW!. Old Forge House in 1982 and again in November 2020.

Finally, a view from how things used to be inside the Forge:

*Photos courtesy of Peter Gant, one time village resident and village archivist.

The Royal British Legion; Boxted Branch is looking to co-opt between five and eight new committee members.

Our branch has been active in the village since 1935 and continues to support the charitable work of the national organisation.

For those of you unfamiliar with the difference between the Branch and the club –
Branch – a branch of the national charity; The Royal British Legion (RBL).

As a charity group we raise funds to support service personnel, both past and present, this includes the Poppy Appeal. We also promote remembrance of those that have lost their lives in conflict.

Social club – an independent business that pays for a license to use the RBL name and must adhere to certain criteria set out by the RBL.

For more information please contact – boxted.secretary@rbl.community

Avian Flu Outbreak – how can you help?

Bird flu national prevention zone declared after outbreaks confirmed.

The UK Chief Veterinary Officer has declared a national Avian Influenza Prevention Zone (AIPZ) covering all of England to reduce the risk of the disease spreading.

This comes after two separate, unrelated cases in kept poultry and birds confirmed in England last week and a third case of H5N8 avian flu in captive birds was confirmed at a broiler breeder farm in Herefordshire. A very small number of wild birds in South West of England have also been found to have had the disease.

This means it is a legal requirement for all bird keepers to follow strict biosecurity measures. Advice for poultry keepers can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/avian-influenza-bird-flu

Some of the basic things you can do even if you keep just a small amount of birds are:

  • Minimise movement in and out of bird enclosures
  • Keep areas where birds live clean and tidy, and regularly disinfect hard surfaces such as paths and walkways
  • Place birds’ food and water in fully enclosed areas protected from wild birds and remove any spilled feed regularly
  • Make sure there is no direct contact with poultry or other captive birds on other neighbouring premises
  • Keep birds separate from wildlife and wild waterfowl by putting suitable fencing around outdoor areas they access

You should keep a close watch on them for signs of disease. If you have any concerns about the health of your poultry, seek prompt advice from your vet. If you suspect any type of bird flu you must report it immediately by calling the Defra Rural Services Helpline on 03000 200 301.

Socially-distanced church fundraising

We’re looking for volunteers!

Langham with Boxted Church Finances have been badly hit by the pandemic and being realistic this will continue well into next year and beyond. Traditional fundraising events will not be practicable for some months, probably well beyond when the government guidelines permit them.

After the Christmas break we will be launching two online fundraising initiatives which can be supported from home.

The two initiatives are:

eBay sales of unwanted items

This was run with great success by Patsy Ann Maggs as part of the St Peter’s Tower fundraising so we know it works. Patsy Ann has agreed to mastermind the initiative again and will handle all the eBay offers and the dispatch/collection of the sold items. However success will depend on having a flow of items to sell throughout 2021 as well as identifying items which you no longer have use for and are prepared to donate we are looking for a group of ten or more volunteers who are prepared to ask their friends, families and neighbours for similar donations. Guidance will be prepared as to the sort of items which will sell and which we are looking for and also those items which will not and which we should avoid. Everyone will of course seek donations in the manner which they feel most comfortable.

Virtual plant sale

Over the years plant sales have been a productive means of raising funds and with the ever growing interest in gardening and the growing cost of plants this is likely to continue. Although much remains to be worked out the essence of the ideas is that volunteers will contribute plants from their gardens and that these will be offered for sale on a website at very attractive prices. I am looking for lots of volunteers to contribute plants in 2021, a couple of volunteers to help with the planning and coordination and someone to set up and manage a website!

I hope each of you will feel able to volunteer some help with one of these initiatives. By doing so as a church community we can make a real contribution to keeping the PCC’s finances above water!

Please help Patsy Ann and myself succeed with these Covid-safe fundraisings

Stephen Whybrow
01206 272773

Operation Christmas Child

Following the national lockdown there will be a further opportunity for Operation Christmas Child boxes to be donated between Saturday 5th and Sunday 13th December, these can then be sent out to children across Eastern Europe, Central Asia and Africa.

Boxes can be dropped off at our stall at both the Langham and Boxted local markets, (Langham Sunday 6th 10 to 3, Boxted Sunday 13th December 2 to 5), or Wednesday 9th 1.15 to 2.15 at Langham Community Centre, 2.45 to 3.45 at Boxted Village Hall, Monday 14th December 10 to 12 at Langham Community Centre. Alternatively they can be left at 1 Pegasus Way on St Johns Estate Colchester CO4 0QG each day between 10 and 4.

At both fairs there will be an opportunity to support by helping to pack community boxes, sections for each box can be purchased for £1 and then be made into full boxes, alternatively a complete box can be sent on your behalf for £10.

Thank you again for the support shown to this year’s appeal. You truly are helping to spread great joy in a year when it’s needed more than ever.

Church services

Sunday 29 November marks the start of Advent.

Traditionally one of the four coloured candles, which represent hope, faith, joy and peace are lit on each successive Sunday up to Christmas.

The fifth, white candle, is lit on Christmas morning, to celebrate Christ’s birth.

This first candle to be lit in Advent represents Hope:

“For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future”

Jeremiah Chapter 29 Verse 11

Zoom services:

  • November 29, 2020 at 10:00 am – 11:00 am
  • December 6, 2020 at 10:00 am – 11:00 am

Should you wish to have the details of the services emailed to you beforehand please email the Church administrator on lwb.wb.gh.parishes@gmail.com .

Should you require prayer please contact Revd Mandy Elmes via email lwb.wb.gh.parishes@gmail.com .

Sunday services are on theLangham and Boxted Church Website for all to view under Streamed Services. https://lb-churches.co.uk/streamed-services/ They will be uploaded on Sunday afternoons for as long as services are streamed.

Daily Hope – a free phone line of hymns, reflections and prayers. Available 24 hours a day on 0800 804 8044 has been set up for those unable to join in online church services during the period of restrictions.


In brief …

Your quick reference guide to newsletter regulars.

Mobile library

The following dates have been advertised on the Essex Libraries website for the mobile library:

  • 03 December 2020
  • 24 December 2020
  • 14 January 2021
  • 04 February 2021
  • 25 February 2021

Van will be at Boxted Village Hall car park between 10.10am and10.40am. To keep up to date with any changes please visit the Mobile Library Service website

Councillor wanted

Are you interested in getting involved in grass roots decisions and making a real difference to your community? If so, and you meet the eligibility criteria1, why not consider standing for co-option onto Boxted Parish Council? We currently have a vacancy and are looking a Councillor that will work to improve the Parish.

If you are interested please write (no more than 250 words) explaining who you are, why you would like to join the council, aspects of the community that are of particular interest and what qualities, skills and expertise would you bring.

Applications should be emailed to boxtedparishcouncil@gmail.com

The position is not paid but full training is provided.

It will take a few hours of your time each month and you need to commit to being available for Parish Council meeting which take place on the second Wednesday evening of each month.

Closing Date for applications is Wednesday 6th January 2021.

Call for Sites for Local Needs Homes

In December 2019, Boxted Parish Council supported a parish wide housing needs survey (posted to every household) by an independent Rural Housing Enabler (RHE) from the Rural Community Council of Essex (RCCE). This survey identified that there is a need for a small number of homes for local people in Boxted and the Parish Council and RCCE are exploring how a small scheme of around seven affordable homes for local people could be brought forward. This may include a range and combination of one-bedroom flats to 3-bedroom homes, depending on the needs of local people.

‘Local’ generally means a person who is;

• Currently resident in the parish
• Was previously resident in the parish
• Is permanently employed in the parish
• Is connected by close family still living in the parish

As a result of the evidence gathered, the Parish Council are keen to pursue a ‘Rural Exception Site’. These schemes are built on land which would not usually be allocated by the planning authority for housing but can be considered for affordable housing to meet a proven local need. These must be sites that are contiguous with or adjacent to existing village settlement boundaries.

The aim of affordable housing is to provide homes for people who cannot afford to buy or rent a home on the open market. The term includes rented and affordable home ownership. New affordable homes help sustain communities by offering local families, couples and single people the chance to stay living in the place where they have strong connections. This can be those who aspire to their first / independent home or those who wish to downsize.

The proposed homes will be for rent and shared ownership sale and can never be sold on the open market, remaining as homes only for locals forever. The Parish Council is currently looking at possible suitable sites in the Parish and there will be full Consultation on any proposals.

We would also like to hear from Landowners who might have a suitable site for an affordable housing proposal. Ideally, it would be a site of around one acre in size. As this is an exception site for local people, the land does not hold the same value as ‘normal’ or open market development. It is often put forward to support local needs would be at an exception site rate or in some cases, land is gifted as a legacy to the Community by landowners who wish to support such projects.

Please submit details of your site to the Parish Council Clerk ( boxtedparishcouncil@gmail.com ) – Deadline Wednesday 6th January 2021.

From 4 November, Thursday opening times for the Post Office at the Langham Community Shop will change to the afternoon, from 12.30 to 4.00 pm.

Monday opening times remain the same at 9.00 am to 12.30 pm.

Digital help at home

Remember that this service is still available online. Michael Smith at Colchester Borough Council is still offering digital support via a remote service. See the Council’s webpage or, for further information.

Covid symptom app

Please continue to use the app, log in as often as possible to let us know if you feel well or not, and encourage others to do the same.

Langham Community Shop
Calendar photo competition

All ages, all abilities. Monthly competition to find pictures through the months and seasons of Langham for our 2022 calendar. Call in the shop or email for full details and requirements.

communityshoplangham@gmail.com .

Include ‘Langham Calendar Competition’ in the subject line along with the following information “The photo (as an attachment – jpg or png) title, date photo was taken, your name, contact number and permissions (this will b e required if faces are included in the image). Deadline for entries is 12noon on the 15th (e.g. if you enter November photo, send in by 15th December).

Winners will be announced at the end of each month and the 12 images that make it into the calendar will receive a published copy and prize when each win is announced. There will be four photos shortlisted and put up for you to vote on each month. Make sure you vote when you pop in for your shopping!

Useful links:

Boxted Parish Council
Boxted Village Hall
Boxted Village Website
Boxted Neighbourhood Plan
Boxted Primary School
Boxted British Legion

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Newsletter editor: Angela McLauchlan : Design and layout: Shirley Szymanek