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Archive for Hockley

Police Commisioner Has Public Meeting In Hockley on March 13th

essex police crop

From Commissioner Nick Alston’s blog:

The next Police and Crime Commissioner public meeting discussing local crime and policing issues, will take place in Hockley on Thursday March 13, 2014.

Nick Alston said: “We’ve had an excellent series of public meetings in all parts of Essex over the last fifteen months, and we’re looking to build on those events. I encourage everyone who lives in Rochford district to come along to our next event and raise the issues that matter to them.
“We provide the very latest crime figures at the meetings, publishing these on our website too. We also explore the facts and context around any crime trends, with briefings from the local Essex Police District Commander, Chief Inspector Ian Cummings, and the Community Safety Partnership. Everyone attending the meeting can put their questions directly to the police, the community safety team, and to me. I will also ask challenging questions of the police and council, as well as highlighting some of the excellent work that is taking place.
“If you care about keeping your community as safe as it can possibly be, please come along and get involved.”

The next event is scheduled for:
Time: 18:00 to 20:00, Thursday March 13, 2014
Location: Hockley Primary School, Chevening Gardens, Hockley, Rochford SS5 4UR
A briefing document containing the latest crime figures for the area will be published shortly on the PCC website, and discussed in detail at the meeting.
Nick Alston adds: “Each meeting will be two hours long. We’d love people to attend all the meeting, but if you can only make part of it, please still come along. I want your views to be part of the debate about how we can best keep the streets and countryside of Essex safe.”

We hope that street lighting gets discussed..

A Big Night Next Tuesday

Market Car Park 2 78009. crop
There are four big items on the agenda for next Tuesday’s Full Council meeting:

- a motion to keep free parking on Saturday afternoons. This looks like being a very tight vote.
whether or not to finally approve the Allocations Document, which has just been okayed by the government inspector
whether or not to approve the Hockley Area Action plan
setting up of a ‘flood forum’

It would nice to have some people in the public gallery! It’s harder to argue that free car parking or protecting the green belt is important, if absolutely nobody from the public bothers to turn up!

The meeting starts at 7:30 in the Civic Suite, opposite Holy Trinity Church. The public can come along to listen, but can’t speak. (Unless someone has submitted a public question).

Who Are They?

From Anglia News:

Essex Police are appealing for information following a series of 20 thefts from motor vehicles in the Hockley area. They all happened between Sunday, January 5, and Wednesday, January 8, in quite a small area. Officers are releasing CCTV in the hope that someone may recognise the men pictured.




Sweyne Park Update

We know some residents are unhappy about the state of the bridle path in Sweyne Park.

Here’s a photo before Xmas:

sweyne park before xmas

and here’s a photo this week: (photocredits: Claire Priest Smart)

sweyne park jan 7th

We’re pleased to say that council officers are also concerned – they care about the park too – and want to carry out remedial work when the weather improves. They have told us:

“We are aware of the issues on the bridle path at Sweyne Park, especially the area between Canterbury Close and the school. We will be carrying out reinstatement works to our bridle paths at Sweyne Park, Cherry Orchard and Hockley Woods when the areas have dried out.
Until the areas have dried out its very hard to say exactly what is required to the areas. We usually top up the bridle paths with a granite dust type material which goes over the top of the larger sub base, and it may be that the path only requires this. If the areas have suffered substantial damage which has caused the sub base to be washed away then we would have to look at replacing the sub base and terram. It would surprise me if we have suffered this much damage as the path that washed away in the 24th August storms at Cherry Orchard (adjacent to the River Roach) still had the terram and sub base in remaining and only required the top redressing. Once the paths have dried out we’ll carry out a proper look and see exactly what work is required and programme it in to be carried out.
You may also be interested to know we will be carrying out some work to the hedges in Sweyne Park. We will be lowering the hedges (to the height of the old ascot fencing) at the following entrances; the car park, Pooh House, Canterbury Close, Victoria Avenue, Priory Chase/Asda. We will also be reducing the section of hedge from Victoria Avenue to Priory Chase/Asda, if this proves successful we may look to reduce more sections of hedgerow in the future . This work is being carried out to improve visibility along the bridle path, to make it easier to maintain the hedge and to show off the view of the park & Rayleigh when you are walking/cycling/horse riding, along the path.”

Three Planning Applications…

Before the Council meeting on Thursday night, there was a meeting of the Development Committee.

Three planning applications were considered.

The very small traveller site at The Pear Tree, 750 New Park Road, Hockley was given temporary permission.
The very small traveller site at Land West of The Pumping Station, Watery Lane, Rawreth was refused. Councillors were concerned about highways issues, flood risk and green belt policy.
A proposed car boot sale at Rayleigh Station Car park on Sundays was refused. (although they can still hold one for up to 14 days a year without permission)

Two Traveller Applications – And Another Meeting On Housing Allocations And Hockley Town Centre.

There are two district council meetings next Thursday evening.

The first is a routine Development Committee meeting – the main items on the agenda are two planning applications that , by coincidence, are both for very small traveller sites. One is at The Pear Tree, 750 New Park Road, Hockley, and the other is at Land West of The Pumping Station, Watery Lane, Rawreth.

Officers are recommending that both are given temporary permission until the end of 2018.

The other meeting is an extra meeting of Full Council to deal with the proposed Allocations Document in the Core Strategy and also the proposed Hockley Area Action Plan. It will take place as soon as the first meeting is over.

Basically the Planning Inspector has suggested some changes to the allocations document; this meeting is to agree to lots of changes in wording to comply with his suggestions, and then there will be an eight-week public consultation period. However the consultation won’t be on the whole core strategy, just on the changes that the inspector wants. So the consultation won’t include the principle of 550 houses “North of London Road” or the proposed traveller site at ‘Michelins Farm, because the inspector seems happy with this. But the consultation will include removing the 5% cap on additional housing for each site – because the inspector wants to remove that upper limit! So the council is saying, for example, it is allocating 550 houses North of London Road, but if other sites fall short they would allow a maximum extra 5% here, to increase it to 578 homes. But the inspector doesn’t want an upper limit… Thats’s something that will worry a lot of people…

In a similar way there will be changes in wording to the Hockley Area Action Plan and an 8 week consultation period.

It’s useful to quote parts of the officer’s report.

On the allocations document:

3.3 The Inspector’s initial assessment into the soundness of the Plan was
received by the Council on 18 October 2013 and published on the Council’s
website. A number of observations were made, including to the proposed 5%
cap on housing numbers for residential extensions, Policy NEL3, Policy
SER7, Policy SER1, Policy NEL1 and Policy BFR4; and recommendations to
make the Plan sound and/or legally compliant were suggested by the
Inspector. These recommendations have been integrated into the schedule of

3.4 The schedule of modifications can be divided into main and additional
modifications. Main modifications are defined as those that are required to
satisfy legal or procedural requirements or to make the plan sound, and
additional modifications are those that do not materially affect the policies.
The Council is only required to consult on the main modifications agreed by
the Inspector, which would make the Plan sound and/or legally compliant.

3.5 Proposed main modifications in the schedule include, but are not limited to:-
 Making reference to viability testing for brown field land development
(Policy BFR1, 3 and 4);
 Removing the 5% cap for residential extensions (Policy SER1-9);
 Aligning the western boundary for proposed development to the north of
London Road in Rayleigh with the pylon line (Policy SER1);
 Amending the requirements for site access and relocation of the sports
pitch (Policy SER1);
 Removing the land to the north of Lark Hill Road and to the west of
Church Lane in Canewdon from the proposed residential allocation (Policy
 Reducing the housing numbers to be delivered over the plan period for
Canewdon to 49 (Policy SER7);
 Removing proposed employment land to the south of London Road in
Rayleigh (Policy NEL1); and
 Moving the proposed relocated employment site for Great Wakering
(Policy NEL3) northwards so that it abuts proposed residential
development at the brick works site (Policy BFR1).

3.6 If accepted by Full Council, it is proposed that the schedule of modifications
will be consulted on for approximately eight weeks (longer than the usual sixweek
period in order to take account of the Christmas period and ensure there
is sufficient time for interested parties to respond). Those who commented at
the pre-submission stage, as well as general and specific consultation bodies,
will be invited to comment on the schedule. This is a formal consultation
stage, which forms part of the examination process.

3.7 Following completion of the consultation, the results will be submitted to the
Inspector who will consider them before preparing his final report…

For Hockley centre:

3.5 Proposed main modifications in the schedule include, but are not limited to:-
 Amendments to Policy 6, replacing the criterion that limited a new food store to a maximum of 3,000m² with one that sets a maximum overall additional retail capacity for the centre of 3,000m² (gross);
 Additional text to Policy 6 to make clear that the Council will favour the development of smaller retail units in the centre; and
 Additional text to Policy 6 setting out the criteria a larger retail store would need to meet in order to be considered acceptable.

You Can Return To The Woods

The district council website advises:

Hockley Woods is now open. Thank you for your patience.




The planning inspector’s ‘Interim Report ‘ on the Site Allocations  can be downloaded by clicking  here.

We are still looking at it but the key points seem to be:

1) The inspector is satisfied with most of the housing site allocations, but he wants to reduce the housing proposed for Canewdon

2) For each of the housing sites, RDC had proposed that slightly more homes could be built there if there was a shortfall elsewhere, but only up to a possible maximum of 5% extra. The inspector doesn’t want to have any limit on this possible extra housing, which is worrying.

3) The inspector thinks the proposed employment land south of London Road (NEL1), isn’t needed, so that proposal is likely to be scrapped:

In my opinion Policy NEL1 is not deliverable and therefore ineffective and does not comply with national policy. Removing this site from the Plan would, in my view, be sound and the Plan would
be consistent with the Core Strategy in that eventuality.

4) The inspector seems satisfied with the proposal for the traveller and employment site at Michelin’s Farm / Fairglen – he barely mentions it in his report.

5) The inspector wants to make the site for 550 homes “North of London Road” slightly bigger, by extending it 30 metres further to the west. He thinks this would give a more suitable boundary and have the access road inside the site rather than in the Green Belt.

6) The inspector has also written about the Hockley Area Action Plan – click here to download.

Key paragraph:

Policy 6 is not sound and should be revised taking account of the following principles:
Setting a maximum overall additional retail capacity of 3,000 sq m (gross)
Removing reference to food (although this would not preclude an individual proposal from coming forward);
Giving priority to smaller shops or the expansion of existing stores; and
If a proposal for a large single store does come forward it would be expected to
demonstrate that ‘clawback’ of expenditure from other centres would be achieved and to assess the implications for them
. Any such scheme should also show that a development of this size would not harm th overall vitality of Hockley by, for example, marginalising
existing units.

7) He prefers to use a different site in Great Wakering for employment land.

Eldon Way Development Recommended For Refusal

A planning application to demolish 3 warehouse units in the Eldon Way Industrial Estate in Hockley and replace them with 5 retail units and 20 flats is being recommended for refusal by planning officers. Unless any councillor calls it in by 10m Wednesday, it will be refused.

The site is in the Core Strategy for redevelopment, with homes as one of the new uses. However officers are recommending refusal for two reasons.

First of all, overdevelopment – there isn’t enough amenity space included for residents in the proposed flats, and parking is inadequate.

Secondly, the applicant hasn’t provided any information on the site will contribute towards delivering the Hockley Area Action Plan , on matters susch as affordable housing, transport assessment and infrastructure.

The application number is 13/00/351/OUT   You can download  the whole report here. (215 kb)

The Hockley Rescue

The BBC reports

A family had to be rescued from their sinking car after it became trapped in flood water as it was being driven under a railway bridge in Essex.

The Mitsubishi Pajero, driven by Scott Swinford, 30, of Southend, who had three children on board, was hit by the rising waters on Spa Road, Hockley.

“As I put the car into reverse the current of the floodwater just lifted us further in,” Mr Swinford said.

I thought the motion of the wheels would drag us out, but we just started sinking”

Heavy flooding caused major disruption in south Essex throughout Saturday.

Essex Fire and Rescue dealt with more than 300 calls for help as the result of floods.

Mr Swinford was returning from Rayleigh Weir with his eight-year-old son Reece, his niece Jessica, 6, and four-year-old nephew Alfie.

The group was rescued by friends Hannah King and Emma Burles, from Hockley, and three boys who had gone to watch the floods….

Well done to the rescuers! You can see the video on You-tube at

Hat-tip: Graham Osborn

Some More Police Meetings….

From the Essex Police website:

Hullbridge Neighbourhood Meeting

Date: 24th July 2013 11:00 – 12:00
Where: Hullbridge Sports & Social club,
Lower Road,
Hullbridge. SS5 6BJ
Extra Info: The Neighbourhood Meeting is a monthly meeting for anyone living or working in Hullbridge to attend and highlight issues that directly affect the area. The meeting is open for any member of the public to attend and share their comments and concerns. Please advise us of any particular requirements you have, or of any other arrangements we should make for you, to ensure that you can fully participate in the meeting.
Contact: Email:

Beat Surgery – Hockley Library

Date: 1st August 2013 11:00 – 12:00
Where: Hockley Library Southend Road
Hockley Essex SS5 4PZ
Extra Info: Officers will be available to discuss issues and concerns for Hockley and Hawkwell.
Contact: Mobile: 07710046161

Beat Surgery – Hullbridge Library

Date: 1st August 2013 13:00 – 14:00
Where: Hullbridge Library,
Ferry Road.
Extra Info: Officers from the Neighbourhood Team will be at the library to discuss any concerns or issues in your area.
Contact: Mobile: 07710 046161

Rochford Neighbourhood Action Panel

Date: 12th August 2013 19:00 – 20:30
Where: Parish Council Rooms
82 West Street
Rochford SS4 1AS
Extra Info: The Neighbourhood Meeting is open to any member of the public living or working in Rochford. It is held in order for those in attendance to highlight any issues and concerns that directly affect the neighbourhood & also to receive updates as to what’s happening in your area, community & Policing wise. At the conclusion those in attendance will decide on up to 3 priorities that they would like to be actioned and these will be progressed for updates at the following meeting. Please advise us of any particular requirements you have, or of any other arrangements we should make for you, to ensure that you can fully participate in the meeting.
Contact: Mobile: 07710046161

Ashingdon Neighbourhood Action Panel

Date: 20th August 2013 19:00 – 20:00
Where: Ashingdon & East Hawkwell Memorial Hall
Ashingdon Road,
Extra Info: A Neighbourhood Action Panel is a multi-agency, problem-solving group that consists of relevant partner agencies, key stakeholders and, most importantly, members of the local community. The Neighbourhood Action Panel focus’s their work around the main priorities that are identified after consultation with the local community. Members, who are all volunteers, take on responsibility for achieving certain tasks on behalf of their neighbourhood. If you are a member of a partner agency, key stakeholder, or a resident of the local community, then you can attend without prior invitation. If you would like to know more about the Neighbourhood Action Panel then please contact us as soon as convenient.
Contact: Mobile: 07710046161


Two New Applications for Flats In Hockley

Just submitted:

Parish:Hockley Parish Council
Ward: Hockley Central
Responsibility:Committee/Weekly List
Outline Application to Demolish Warehouse Units 27, 28 and 29
and Construct Three Storey Building Incorporating 5no. Retail
Units and 20 Flats (8no. Two Bedroomed and 12no. One
Bedroomed) and Associated Parking and Amenity Areas. All
Matters Reserved.
Location: 27-29 Eldon Way Hockley Essex

Parish:Hockley Parish Council
Ward: Hockley Central
Responsibility:Committee /Weekly List

Demolish Existing Bungalow and Construct Three Storey Building
Containing 5 No. Two Bedroomed Flats. Form Parking, Refuse
Collection Point and Amenity Areas and Construct Cycle Store.
New Vehicular Access From Southend Road.
Location:49 Southend Road Hockley Essex

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April 2014
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The Core Strategy

This is the official master document for planning policy in our district! To download it, click here click here. (2.5mb)

Planning Applications…

If you want information on a particular planning application, you can find it on the District Council website here.

If you want to know what new planning applications have been submitted this week, click here.

Reporting A Problem

If you want to report a problem, you can email Lib Dems councillors by clicking here.
There's also an independent website called FixMyStreet. It's very good for reporting minor street problems like holes in the road, grafitti or failed streetlights. You can find FixMyStreet here.

The Roads That Need Repairing

The County Council admitted in July that over 200 roads in our district need repairing! They say they will fix them by May 2013. Click here to see the list.

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