Logo of the Highcliffe and Walkford Parish Council

Quick Updates

Important Notice

Your local PCSO will be holding a Street Corner Meeting on Tuesday 25th January 2022 from 6.30-7.30pm outside Walkford Stores

Regular “drop in” sessions will be held on alternate Thursdays at Highcliffe Library 10am to 11am. Next session 27th January 2022

Logo of the Highcliffe and Walkford Parish Council

Highcliffe History Society

Highcliffe History Society will have to fold after 40 years unless new officers can be found.

The society, set up in 1981, needs an honorary chairman, secretary, treasurer and programme secretary.

Please contact Ian Stevenson on 01425 272507 by August 9.

Logo of the Highcliffe and Walkford Parish Council

Minimise Litter In The Parish

The parish council has been active in trying to make sure litter problems of last year are not repeated this Summer.

BCP have now assured us that:

  • All litter bins will be emptied twice daily from Easter until the end of School Summer holidays
  • The 240lt bins in car parks are to be replaced by 360lt bins
  • Additional bins for Highcliffe will be delivered before the Season gets into full swing.
Jesmond Avenue

Highcliffe And Walkford Parish Council Has Reconsidered Its Position On Jesmond Avenue

Highcliffe and Walkford Parish Council has reconsidered its position on the Jesmond Avenue planning application and will now advise BCP Council it formally objects to the scheme.

The council held a special meeting on Wednesday (March 3).

Additional information had come to light from a number of organisations since the council last considered the scheme in December.

The application has also raised significant concern among local residents.

Planning lead Cllr Willie McNeill outlined the latest developments to members including reports from the Woodland Trust, Natural England and BCP itself.

A proposal from vice chairman Cllr Andy Martin was agreed unanimously.

It said: In the light of the additional information made available since HWPC last considered the Jesmond Avenue planning application particularly in relation to ecological and environmental issues, the parish now formally objects to the application and wishes to advise BCP Council of its position.’

The council has sent the following submission to BCP Council.

The application has been designated as a ‘green corridor’ in the Christchurch and East Dorset Local Plan since 2001, providing an important ecological corridor linking Nea Meadows and Chewton Common, and the site is included in a Tree Preservation Order.

This corridor is confirmed as part of the Dorset Ecological Network, and will be reduced from 56m wide to around 10m under this application.

The saved Policy ENV 15 (Christchurch Local Plan, 2001) states that “development proposals adjacent to or within a green corridor will be expected to respect its function and integrity.

Where a proposal is likely to prejudice a green corridor, its enhancement or expansion will be sought as part of the proposal.” The application does propose a green corridor, but by comparison to the existing woodland, this is narrow and does not provide the same scale of usage for wildlife as the existing corridor habitat.

For instance, at least 7 species of bats have been identified as using and foraging in the corridor and its width provides darkness for bats to use away from lighting. Reduction in the corridor width will reduce its “function and integrity” and increase light pollution within it. The corridor is recognised as part of the Dorset Ecological Network both as high value habitat which is important for foraging and breeding species such as woodland birds and bats.

The Arboriculturally Report identifies at least one veteran tree, with a number nearing veteran stage. A Tree Preservation Order (TPO) covers the site and the woodland is of high amenity value to the character of the area.

Housing is proposed close to TPO trees which means that there will be future pressure to fell or prune them as they grow, as well as the felling of TPO trees to facilitate the development. The development will therefore impact on TPO trees and the character of the area, being contrary to Core Strategy, Christchurch and East Dorset Local Plan Policies HE2 and HE3.

Reflecting their ecological importance and irreplaceable nature, the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF), which protects ancient woodland and veteran trees (whether mapped or not), provides special protection – NPPF Paragraph 175c – ‘Development resulting in the loss or deterioration of irreplaceable habitats (such as ancient woodland or veteran trees) should be refused, unless there are wholly exceptional reasons….” Therefore, this woodland site should be assessed before any decision is made on the planning application as in suggested by the Woodland Trust

The site’s current broadleaf habitat is identified by Defra as a Priority Habitat of biodiversity value, as part of the ecological network, which is also of importance to the Council’s declared (December 2019) climate and ecological emergency as a carbon sink.

National Planning Policy Framework Paragraph 118(a) states that planning policies and decisions should “encourage multiple benefits from both urban and rural land, including through mixed use schemes and taking opportunities to achieve net environmental gains – such as developments that would enable new habitat creation or improve public access to the countryside”. This proposed development does not enable new habitat creation, it does the opposite and takes away valuable ecological and biodiverse habitat.

Core Strategy, Christchurch and East Dorset Local Plan Policy ME1 “aims to protect, maintain and enhance the condition of all types of nature conservation sites, habitats, and species within their ecological networks …” This site is part of the Dorset Ecological Network and the proposal is contrary to the policy of protecting its unique features, amenity value and biodiversity.

Logo of the Highcliffe and Walkford Parish Council

State Of Bus Shelters In The Parish

The Parish Council is swiftly responding to complaints received about the general state of bus shelters in the Parish. Having identified some 21 of these we are carrying out a condition survey of them all.

BCP Council has responsibility for the maintenance of the shelters and we’ve learned from them that in the last ten years there have been 250 new shelters provided in Bournemouth and Poole as opposed to just one in Highcliffe. BCP have promised to do more and they are relying on our condition survey to identify shelters that most need attention.

If any resident is aware of a shelter that’s not properly cleaned they can report this directly to the contractors responsible for cleaning. They are ClearChannelPetersfield@clearchannel.co.uk or to the responsible BCP officer who is nick.phillips@bcpcouncil.gov.uk. Simply report the details with the location of the shelter.

Bespoke Council Regalia For Highcliffe And Walkford Parish Council

Bespoke Council Regalia For Highcliffe And Walkford Parish Council

Wirral Silversmith Lisa (LWSilver), was recently awarded a commission to produce a Chain of Office for the newly created Highcliffe & Walkford Parish Council in Dorset.

Lisa commented that “We were one of several silversmiths approached by the council and were delighted to receive the final commission. The finished piece is some of our finest work and something we are rightly proud to have produced”.

A Chain of Office – technically known as a livery collar – is an important piece of official regalia worn by mayors and other civic leaders around the UK. They date back to the Middle Ages, with the first recorded example being bestowed upon Geoffrey de Belleville (Chamberlain to Charles V of France) in 1378. Over the centuries, these collars stopped representing a person’s association with the aristocracy and came to symbolise their deep connections – their links, if you will – with the community that they serve.

Highcliffe and Walkford Parish Council is a new local authority formed in 2019. Their instructions were simple – they needed a new Chain of Office for their council. Specifically, they wanted one that evidenced them as a new Parish Council for the 21st century.

LWSilver consulted closely with the council on the design of the chain, ensuring that all aspects of it met with their approval. It was to be wrought in high-quality silver, with name plates around the collar, connected by robust, silver links. The central badge – or genet – includes a depiction of Highcliffe Castle, one of the council’s most familiar landmarks.

The Chain of Office incorporates two semi-precious stones. On the front piece, lapis lazuli is inlaid on enamel to produce a rich, deep blue behind the silver castle. The bail, connecting the genet to the chain, was inlaid with two horizontal bars of carnelian. This cylindrical bail represents the local lighthouse.

On delivery of their new Chain of Office, the council said it was delighted that LWSilver had produced it ahead of time and within budget. The Council Chairman, Bob Hutchings said: “The Parish Council expresses its appreciation to Lisa, the silversmith. I am confident that successive chairmen will be very proud to wear the Chain of Office for many years to come.” The Parish Council also expressed its sincere thanks to Rosie Kennar, Chairman of Hoburne for her generous contribution towards the cost of the Chain of Office.

Logo of the Highcliffe and Walkford Parish Council

Environment Agency: Illegal Burning Of Waste

Parish Council has received this bulletin from the Environment Agency about illegal burning of waste in the area. You can read the content below, or download the original document here.

The Environment Agency has been investigating reports of waste being burnt at sites in the Christchurch area. They have identified that landowners are receiving waste from carriers and tradesman and burning it as a means of disposal. This is illegal. The fuel for these fires is likely to be originating in the surrounding area, from construction businesses, tradesman, landscapers and gardeners or waste carriers. In all cases, these businesses generate or remove waste as part of their operations and then dispose of it illegally to cut costs. If you are a business owner or householder in the area having renovations or other maintenance work done, it could be your waste that is being disposed of in this way. Whilst you are paying your contractor to fulfil their responsibility and make sure waste is safely and legally disposed of, they are cutting costs, damaging the environment, causing a fire hazard and creating a health hazard for nearby residents.

You can stop this from happening by understanding your waste duty of care. Anyone who produces waste at home or from a business has a duty of care to take all reasonable steps to make sure it is disposed of legally and safely. There a few main ways to do this:

  • Check for a waste carriers licence. Whether you are employing a waste carrier directly or a tradesman, builder or other contractor is getting rid of waste on your behalf, ask for their waste carriers licence. They should be registered with the Environment Agency and be able to provide you with their licence details. You can check these online or by calling the Environment Agency (details below).
  • Ask where they will be disposing of your waste. They should be taking it to a commercial waste transfer station where it will be professionally processed.
  • Get a receipt, invoice or waste transfer note for waste being removed on your behalf. Make a note yourself of the company name, contact details and vehicle registration of the person or company.
  • Do not accept unsolicited offers to dispose of waste and beware of prices that seem too good to be true. They will be. A commercial transfer station could charge up to £150 per tonne of waste.

Any legitimate carrier should be happy to provide you with this information. If they’re not, don’t let them take your waste away. If your waste is illegally disposed of and you are found not to have met your duty of care, you could be fined.

How to check waste carrier licence details

Online: search ‘waste carriers public register’ or go to:
Call the Environment Agency contact centre tel. 03708 506 506

If you believe someone is burning business waste illegally you can contact the Environment Agency incident hotline on tel. 0800 80 70 60 to report it.

More guidance on waste duty of care can be found online at gov.uk – search ‘waste duty of care code of practice‘.

Fencing On A337, Highcliffe

Fencing On A337, Highcliffe

Work on replacing the very old and dilapidated fencing on the A337 between Hinton Wood Avenue and the Medical Centre has been completed with generous contributions from St Mark’s Church, Brentland Ltd and Cllr Nigel Brooks. The work was carried out by Ashley Tree Surgeons. The Parish Council has worked hard to bring about this much needed project to tidy up some 250 metres of unkempt and broken down fencing and vegetation and it has definitely improved the look of that section of the “village entrance” and does present the village as somewhere we care about.

Logo of the Highcliffe and Walkford Parish Council

How Clear Is Your Pavement?

We know that the majority of people who live in Highcliffe & Walkford are exemplary in cutting back their hedges and branches to make sure their growth doesn’t inconvenience others walking along the pavements.

But a few people inevitably do forget or otherwise fail to do what needs to be done. The Parish Council is really keen to see its pavements cleared of all obstruction and, if they are, the new pavement sweeper we’ve been promised by BCP should make our pavements cleaner and wider than they have been for many a long year.

Please help us to achieve this goal. Please take a look at your own hedges and trees and where appropriate take action to cut them back. This is a good time of year to be doing it; it’s also a good thing to do because we understand that BCP are currently inspecting our streets and they will be sending statutory notices out soon requiring occupiers to deal with overgrown hedges and branches. Please do make sure you don’t qualify to receive one of these!

The Chairman of the Parish Council, Bob Hutchings, said “the appallingly overgrown state of the Lymington Road pavements (adjoining St Mark’s Churchyard) has now been resolved after years of Dorset County Council neglect and it would be great to think we can aim to meet that standard throughout the parish”.

Logo of the Highcliffe and Walkford Parish Council

Roeshot Hill Allotments Green Flag Status

The Roeshot Hill allotments in Highcliffe have been awarded Green Flag status for the ninth consecutive year.

Vice chairman of the allotments association, David Keeton said: “This is a tremendous achievement. We are all really proud of the accolade.”

The allotment complex on Lyndhurst Road is owned by Highcliffe and Walkford Parish Council.

Chairman Cllr Bob Hutchings added: “It’s fantastic news and a real testament to the hard work, skill and pride that all the allotment holders bring to bear.”

The Green Flag status is awarded by the Tidy Britain Group.