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5 February 2019


Welcome to the e-newsletter for members, supporters and friends of Witham & Braintree Green Party

If there is an event or news you would like us to include, please get in touch


Essex Libraries campaign gathers strength

Thousands of people have so far taken part in the Essex County Council consultation on the future of library services in the county.

A Tory Cabinet Member at ECC has resigned over the issue and there are many petitions up and running to keep individual libraries open, a county wide petition and events taking place to raise awareness.

The consultation runs until 20th February 2019 and can be accessed here:

Please do take part if you can.

The cuts proposed to libraries in Essex are draconian. Of 74 libraries, 25 are proposed to be closed and another layer could be closed unless run by volunteers.

In Braintree District four village libraries are due to closed at:

Silver End
Hatfield Peverel
Sible Hedingham

In Maldon District the libraries under threat are:

Wickham Bishops

The county-wide campaign is being led by SOLE and they have a group facebook page you can ask to join at:

Sole is due to host a march in protest at the libraries closure plans. It will start in Chelmsford High Street by the Saracen's Head at noon on Saturday 9th February and will then take a circular route through the city centre.

Green Drinks

We next meet on Thursday 21st of February at 7.30pm at Fowlers Farm (just off the A120 at Galley's Corner roundabout Cressing, near Braintree).

Please join us – we meet every 3rd Thursday of the month – the following month Green Drinks will be on Thursday 21st of March.

Contact Karin for more information at

Local News

The Bellway application to build houses on the Gimsons site, next to Witham's River Walk has now attracted over 400 objections. Many residents have commented that Witham is already seeing major development both on its southern and northern edges and in total there are consents already granted or planning applications for around 1,500 houses.

The Gimsons site application is for 78 houses. If the plans are approved by Braintree District Council then most of the trees on the site will be destroyed, including all the trees fronting the Town Park.

It took over 2 months for Braintree District Council to respond to the request from Witham Green County Councillor James Abbott for a TPO on all the trees so that the application will not be decided "after the event" of the trees being destroyed. BDC has recently declined that request and documents suggest that the council is going to allow the developer to take out the majority of the trees and to reduce the height of others fronting the River Walk. Whilst the development is not on the River Walk itself, it is right next to it and serious concerns have been raised about the impact on vulnerable wildlife species that use the river corridor including otters, bats and kingfishers. Residents are also campaigning to stop a new access road being built which would cross a path that is currently well away from traffic, is quiet and safe to use and links the River Walk to the town centre. It has emerged that if the district council does grant consent, then developers Bellway will pay the council to obtain ownership of a strip of land needed to complete the access road – a so called "ransom strip".

Green Party Holistic Review Approved

The Green Party Holistic Review has been approved, achieving the threshold required but on a low turnout
Under the new structure, the party will be governed by 3 newly established bodies. Firstly, a 45 member Council with representatives from the regions, the Young Greens and elected councillors among other groups will be responsible for party strategy and most party activities. Secondly, a small Political Executive drawing members primarily from the leadership team, Green parliamentarians and councillors with 4 members directly elected by the party membership will hold responsibility for political decision making. And thirdly, a 7 member Board will oversee the party's staff and legal compliance.
The proposals will also see one of the party's two biannual conferences abolished. Decision making by the membership will now solely take place at the autumn conference.


Printed and published by Local Party Contact Cllr. James Abbott

1 Waterfall Cottages Rivenhall Witham Essex CM8 3PR

Tel 01376 584576 e-mail

Local Party Agent Cllr. Phil Hughes Tel 01376 515518 e-mail

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