Farnham Parish Council

Front page imageWelcome to the website of Farnham Parish Council. The Parish of Farnham is situated in the Uttlesford District of Essex County Council.  More detailed information on Parish Council business may be found as follows:

Latest Information - On this page;

Information regarding the Parish Council [Minutes of Parish Council meetings, meeting agendas, finance, planning issues & published documents such as policies and statements] see 'Our Files'.

Photographs of a variety of events and scenes around the village see 'Photo Album.' We are happy to receive any interesting photographs from around the village for inclusion.

 

An introduction to FARNHAM

Location: 2 miles west of Stansted Mountfitchet and 4 miles north of Bishop’s Stortford. Ordnance Survey grid square: TL4724. Postcode: CM23 1HT.  Access: northwest off B1004.  There is a private subsidised Community Bus operated by Uttlesford Community Travel on Thursdays. Depart Farnham Green 11am via Farnham, Levels Green and Bishops Stortford. Return journey 1.45pm.  This service is reviewed every year. The fare for this route is £4 currently single or return journey. As it is a private service the National Bus Pass cannot be accepted on this route.    Population: 358 in 2016.   

ABOUT FARNHAM

T

he Parish of Farnham consists of several small hamlets; FarnhamVillage, Farnham Green, Hazel End, Levels Green and Chatter End. Most of the Parish consists of the old Hassobury Estate.  The ParishChurch was demolished and rebuilt on its present site in 1859. 

Farnham  - originally Fearnham - ‘The place where fern and bracken grow’ - has a recorded history dating back many hundreds of years and Hazel End, Farnham is in fact, mentioned in the DomesdayBook. The name Hassobury means ‘Hart’s Ridge’. Walker’s farm and Earlsbury are probably the oldest settlements in the village and were formerly part of the possessions of the Earl of Sussex.

 Farnham has predominantly been a farming village with one land owner but as time passes, properties change hands and circumstances alter with young families moving in.

Farnham can be approached from one of three directions, all of which can be difficult in prolonged wet conditions, adding to its isolation! It can be approached from the west via Hertfordshire passing through Little Hadham and Albury before taking the narrow lane linking the Albury road with Upwick and eventually Levels Green where the lane can be followed to the left passing some very interesting properties such as Earlsbury and Walkers.  This lane then joins Rectory Lane by the well maintained village hall. Bearing to the right at the village hall leads to FarnhamPrimary School.  This approach is the last to flood should there be heavy rain! 

The second approach is via the Manuden to Bishops Stortford road (Hazel End Road) when a very narrow and winding lane can be taken from Hazel End which starts near to a charming pond and small green.  The lane passes a few houses in the hamlet of Hazel End and then approaches woodland where the road drops steeply to a ford which can rise rapidly in prolonged wet weather. It is Bourne Brook which crosses the road and can rise to depths of 1.5 metres and is situated in the middle of a z-bend which means that drivers can come across it without warning. After negotiating the ford there is a steep climb away which leads to the centre of the village. On this latter section of the road there are some pleasant views of St Mary’s Church, Farnham to the right and Hassobury in the distance.  At the end of the lane the main Farnham Road is joined and soon after FarnhamPrimary School comes into sight.

The third lane to Farnham is the most commonly used and starts at the junction of St Michaels Road and Rye Street, Bishops Stortford near to  the Mountbatten Restaurant (until recently known as the Red, White and Blue public house).  This approach is not without its element of surprise as it climbs over the A120 bypass north of Bishops Stortford and then drops down to a z-bend which marks the Hertfordshire and Essex border. Coming out of the z-bend is a straight stretch of road which runs alongside Bourne Brook.  The brook is a main tributary of the River Stort and, again, in wet weather runs very high, often overflowing and making progress along the road very difficult if not impossible.  This road then leads to FarnhamPrimary School.  Life in a small, isolated village can be both exciting and daunting!

Turning left into Rectory Lane at FarnhamPrimary School leads to the main village of Farnham.  Continuing along Farnham Road from the school leads eventually to the far reaches of the village passing by a lodge house of Hassobury at Saven End and passing the raised cottages of Chatter End. Passing Thrifts Farm the lane then leads to Farnham Green with the green itself on the right surrounded in a very attractive setting by some delightful thatched cottages and houses.  Continuing straight into Shaw Wood Lane visitors will pass a telephone kiosk which has long been converted as an exchange book library. This not only contains books but has some maps and copies of the Farnham Circular Walks booklet. Surprisingly the books in this kiosk usually change completely within a six month period. The rules are simple – take a book and leave another book in its place.  Further along this road, passing Farnham Hall on your left, there are just four more houses, the last being situated almost on the Herts and Essex border with Shaw Wood in sight from where there are views across Hertfordshire towards Albury and the Patmore Health nature reserve.

Farnham has a small but active community. There are numerous social activities that take place in the village including the popular Safari Supper where participants have one course of a three course meal somewhere in Farnham and move onto different houses for the remaining two courses.  Nobody knows where they are going until the last moment with the hosts being the last to know until visitors arrive! Another successful activity was started recently: a coffee morning in the village hall on the last Wednesday of each month. The attraction is the variety of home made cakes and good quality coffee. Just a simple charge of £1 per slice of cake and £1 for a cup of coffee – no raffles or other forms of fund-raising, just a quiet cup of coffee, cake and conversation with friends.  A must for any visitor on the last Wednesday of the month.

 A most recent addition to the village has been the completely refurbished Recreation Area situated between 10 and 12 Rectory Lane.  This has apparatus for all ages including a cross trainer for adults over 18 years and a zip wire for the more adventurous.  Another recent addition to the village were three defibrillators - one at Thrifts Farm, Farnham Green; one at The Three Horseshoes, Hazel End; one outside the Village Hall in Rectory Lane 

Hospitality: 

The Three Horseshoes, Hazel End Road. Bar and restaurant. 01279 813429;

Coffee Morning last Wednesday every month in Village Hall, Rectory Lane, 1030-1200;

Farnham Circular Walks Ten walks in the parish with maps can be found in a booklet (£5 from the Clerk or free from website).

Adjacent Parishes parishes: Albury, Manuden, Stansted Mountfitchet, Birchanger.

Further reading:  Farnham, Essex: Past and Present’ written by Canon J. J. Geare 

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Christmas Bin Collection - Please be aware of the changes

Collection days for the week commencing Monday 25th December will be 1 day late.  For most of Farnham the usual collection day is Friday and so this will take place on Saturday 30th December this year.  Back to normal the following week (i.e. from Tuesday 2nd January ).

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Farnham Bus

The Farnham bus is provided by DaRT Travel (Archers Taxis) and route DaRT1 covers west Uttlesford.  The bus will visit Farnham on a regular basis every Thursday. It will start at Thrifts Farm (Chatter End, Farnham Green) at 11am, picking up at Globe Crescent/Rectory Lane at 11.05am.  The return journey will depart from Bishops Stortford at 2pm.

These times do vary according to the number of pick ups that the bus makes prior to arriving in Farnham. The bus driver will notify passengers of any signficant changes in advance and times will be confirmed when seats are booked.

The bus will accept senior citizen bus passes which will enable free travel.

This bus often picks up passengers from other villages as part of its route prior to arriving in Farnham. Any person can use the bus - just be at either Thrifts Farm or Globe Crescent by 11am on Thursdays. Normal cost is likely to be around £5 but those who have concessionary bus passes will travel free.  It is advisable to book a seat (whether for a one-off journey or for a regular pick up).on the bus by telephoning 01621 874411.

This bus also operates on other days as a book a ride service and can be booked as requested by contacting the same number. It could be used for hospital appointments, visit friends, shopping etc. 

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Parish Council Meetings for 2018

15th January

26th February [new date]

19th March (Annual Meeting of the Parish)

23rd April

21st May

9th July

3rd September

22nd October

19th November

 All meetings take place in Farnham Village Hall, Rectory Lane, Farnham at 8pm (unless otherwise stated).

 The Council has been advised that nationally, Freedom of Information requests from some enquirers are being blocked as spam.  Normally, this should not happen to us, but to prevent your message being blocked, we would ask you to add 'FPCFOIA' to the title line and we can be sure of receiving it.

The village is served by Farnham Primary School, Rectory Lane, Farnham (www.farnham.essex.sch.uk).

The Parish Council actively monitors the local footpaths and bridleways which are clearly marked around the village. It is the responbility of Essex Highways to maintain them.  A booklet of suggested circular walks in Farnham may be obtained from the Clerk of the Parish Council (price £5). It can also be downloaded from this website free of charge (see 'Our Files').

Farnham Parish Councillors:

Chris Barrett (Village Hall)
Ian Delvalle (vice-Chair; Finance; Village Hall)
Petronella Humphreys (Chair)
Barbara Jarman (War Memorial; Recreation Ground)
Maureen Lowden
Rob Navara (Parish footpaths & bridleways; Neighbourhood Watch)
Ian Pinder (Neighbourhood Watch)

In accordance with the Localism Act 2011, on 9th July 2012 Farnham Parish Council resolved to adopt the Code of Conduct of Uttlesford District Council.  The Code may be viewed at: http://www.uttlesford.gov.uk/uttlesford/file/Code%20of%20Conduct%202012.pdf or on this website under 'Our Files'. The Register of Interests may be viewed at the following link: https://uttlesford.cmis.uk.com/uttlesford/ParishCouncilInterests.aspx

Annual Audit: The Parish Council is audited every year as required by government regulations. The last audit took place in August 2017 and the external auditors, PKF Littlejohn LLP,have reported back and a completion statement may be found under 'Our Files'.

Copies of the Parish Council Accounts for current and past years are available on the Parish Council website - see 'Our Files'.

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Essex Superfast Broadband Project

The Parish Council is aware that BT/Essex are currently upgrading the green box by the village hall. However, it is not clear at present if this means that BT will upgrade the village to superfast broadband.  We are aware that BT/Essex are considering removing some postcodes from their upgrade list due to the fact that some third party companies (such as Virgin, Gigaclear) are preparing business plans for the area.  If BT are successful in removing Farnham from their project list then BT will not provide superfast broadband to Farnham and the only option for Superfast Broadband in Farnham will be through Gigaclear.  A more accurate idea of timing for different areas of the village may be found by looking at the Essex Broadband website (www.superfastessex.org) and inserting your post code.  This will show if you are included and give a period of time.

Gigaclear plc has announced that it has reached the 40% level for take up by Farnham and therefore Gigaclear superfast broadband will be coming to Farnham with speeds of 50-1,000 Mbps depending upon which package you choose with no fall off in speed if it is being heavily used.  We know that there has been a series of delays with regard to Gigaclear confirming plans for laying of cables but Gigaclear has now circulated residents in Farnham to say that they are now progressing with cable laying and that Farnham residents will have superfast broadband provded by Gigaclear installed by 30th June 2018.

It is still possbile to sign up for Gigaclear broadband.  Details can be obtained by contacting Gary Brokenshire (Gary.Brokenshire@gigaclear.com) for more details. Mobile number 07747 273946.

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UTTLESFORD LOC AL PLAN - 2017

This process has now re-started and a draft of the updated Local Plan has been circulated to those who are on the Parish Council contact list.  A summary is attached and more details may be seen on the Uttlesford District Council website (see 'Local Plan').

Last Thursday evening the Planning Policy Working Group agreed unanimously to endorse the newly emerged draft local plan.
It will go to Cabinet on July 6th and full council on July 11th.

There will now be a public consultation on the 'preferred options' There will probably be some changes this year and again after another public consultation next year. The plan will then be placed before the Planning Inspector, in public, for examination. If the Inspector is satisfied it will be adopted as The Uttlesford Local Plan.

As a member of the PPWG I have been closely involved in the process which has been evidence led. The last local plan was not adopted by the Planning Inspector and it was said to be politically driven. Meetings were closed to members of the Public and Councillors who were not members of the group could not comment. It was an unsatisfactory situation and was ultimately discredited on many points.

The recent PPWG has been cross party - 4 Conservatives, 2 Lib Dems and 2 R4U Councillors.
There has been a multitude of evidence and studies carried out by officers and outside consultants. To name some - The Green belt review, a retail study a transport study, a review of the countryside Protection Zone (related to the airport) and many others resulting in thousands of pages of documents to be read and commented upon.

The latest draft of the plan recommends 3 new settlements known as Garden Communities.

1. North Uttlesford, in Great Chesterford Parish. (1,900)

2. Easton Park, between Little Easton Village and Great Dunmow. (1,800)

3. West Braintree - the name currently given to land east of Stebbing village within Uttlesford District but stretching into Braintree towards Braintree Town. (970)

Provision will be made for about 14,100 net additional dwellings during the local plan period 2011-2033 of this total:

2,468 dwellings have already been built 2011-2016

1,190 dwellings will be provided on small unidentified windfall sites between 2016-2033

4,513 dwellings are already identified in outstanding planning permissions at 1 April 2016

5,926 dwellings will be provided in the following locations between 2016-2033

Saffron Walden. 240
Great Dunmow. 743
Elsenham. 40
Gt. Chesterford. 31
Stansted Mountfitchet. 62
Takeley. 42
Thaxted. 54
Type A & Type B Villages. 44

Easton Park Garden Community. 1,800
N. Uttlesford Gdn Community. 1,900
W of Braintree Gdn Community. 970

I hope the foregoing has been useful in providing some information on numbers.. The Regulation 18 Local Plan can be seen on the council's website.

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Farnham Parish Plan.

During 2014, a questionnaire was circulated to every household as a way of trying to obtain information on a number of issues that affect life in the village.  In March 2014 the results of this were fed back to the village and this plan has now been adopted by Uttlesford District Council (approved in February, 2015) and can be found on the Uttlesford website under 'Community-Led Plans'.  It can also be found on this website under the heading of 'Our Files' (see top left for this heading) where it is listed as the Farnham Parish Plan. Penny Tattersall or the Clerk will endeavour to put out progress reports on these at least every six months through the Farnham Monthly News magazine.

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Defibrillators in Farnham

There are now three defibrillators installed in Farnham - outside of 'The Three Horseshoes' at Hazel End, outside of the Village Hall and outside of Thrifts Farm at Farnham Green.  They are in working order and are connected to the Ambulance Service. The machines do give full instructions for users to follow.  The first action must always be to dial '999' and ask for an ambulance. The abulance service will then give you the code to open the defibrillator case which will give access to the actual defibrillator.

Rob Navara, a Farnham Parish Councillor, has co-ordinated the project and he can be contacted for any further details (771071).

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Contact Information

Small Map

Office: Mill Toft
Farnham Green
Nr Bishops Stortford
Hertfordshire
CM23 1HP

fpc@aic.co.uk

01279 771443