NEWSLETTER - JULY 1992
THE ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING & AWARD PRESENTATION
In his review as outgoing Chairman, Graham Panton, reminded all members present that there had been eight meetings of the Society during the year - five in East House and three in the renovated Town Hall which it was hoped all would consider had been a good change of venue.
The Executive Committee had met seven times during the same period and, as we had heard from the Group Chairmen, both Groups had been fairly active with numerous informal gatherings in private homes.
This year we had made contact with several other nearby Amenity or Historical & Archaeological Societies including Ipswich, Woodbridge, Long Melford and Harwich. Arrangements have been made for a return visit to Harwich in May 1993 and this September 13th we are all invited to a guided tour of Woodbridge. Later in the same month we can look forward to the Woodbridge Society's expert on Napoleonic Woodbridge coming to talk to us and, no doubt, high lighting points of the areas toured.
Graham went on to thank all those who had worked so hard for the Society during the year particularly our Treasurer, Paul Garrod, who was standing down under the 5 year Rule and Joe Byrne and Sally Looker who were handing over as History Group Chairman and Secretary respectively. Sincere thanks were also given to those behind the scene workers who had provided us with refreshments at our meetings and, what is equally important, cleared-up afterwards.
Executive Committee for 1992/93
There being only sufficient nominations for office no election was necessary and the following were duly elected.
Michael Greenwood gave a brief outline of the views to be expressed to the District Council on their proposed Alteration No.1 to the Local Plan. This was later debated and the motion put that "This Society is emphatically opposed to the proposed Super Market development project and its associated Car Parking scheme" which was carried. The views were also expressed that our Reports should be submitted in the name of the whole Society and should be of a positive nature and not always taking the negative view.
Members were encouraged to express their views either in writing or at the next meeting of the Environmental Group - details from Michael on Hadleigh 824477.
Presentation of the Hadleigh Society Noel Turner Award
The Rev. Canon John Griffin made this years Award on behalf of the Society to Mr Barritt, our local Engineer for the National Rivers Authority Anglian Region, who was accompanied by Mr Ripton the District Engineer and associate Mr Almond.
The Award was for their work in connection with the relief Weir adjoining Toppesfield Mill House which, in responding, Mr Ripton gave the following explanation of the background to its introduction and working.
The sluicegates at Tinkers Lane are part of the control structure for the former Toppesfield Mill which used the water of the River Brett to power its Mill Wheel. When the Mill was demolished the raceway was filled in and this reduced the capacity of the river structures. As a consequence in time of storms and large flow rates in the river it has overflowed its banks. This resulted in flood water in the gardens and cellars of adjacent dwellings and flooding of the road and of footpaths; at times flooding washed away the soil of the footpath and playing field as it rushed from the high level at Tinkers Lane by the shortest route back into the river channel downstream.
The problem was worsened if a rapid rise in river flow occurred and the manually operated sluice gates were not raised quickly enough. The operation of the gates is NRA's responsibility but it has not always been possible to get men there quickly enough in an emergency when urgent other situations may have higher priority. To avoid this as far as possible NRA arranged with the Hadleigh and District Angling Society for their local members to assist by opening the gates when required to prevent flooding and they have done a good job. They also re-close the sluices as flows subside to avoid environmental and fishery damage which may occur if the 'ponded' stretch of river is drained out because the sluice is left open for too long. However there was still occasions when flooding occurred
To reduce the operating problem and increase the capacity of the system, NRA decided to build an overflow weir beside the existing sluice gate. The weir operates at a river level a little higher that the sluice overflows. This is designed to prolong the period of build-up in the river level and reduce the extent of out-of-bank conditions.
The construction was undertaken in 1991/92 by the NRA Emergency Workforce. It was built in reinforced concrete and clad in brick facework to harmonise sympathetically with the surroundings. The earth embankment and slopes have been topsoiled and sewn with a suitable seed mixture. Some tree planting is planned to enhance the scenic appearance and benefit wildlife.
Initial operating experience in the Spring of 1992 indicates it is successful.
Are you interested in the Countryside and the maintenance of our footpaths ?
Then you are just the person or couple we are looking for to go along to the Town Councils 'Right of Way Committee' which meets periodically in the Guild Hall together with representatives from the local Ramblers Association and Naturalists Society.
Do get in touch with Michael Greenwood (Hadleigh 824477) or Jim Betteridge (Hadleigh 823991) for further details.
HISTORY GROUP MATTERS
As reported at the A.G.M. Joe Byrne and Sally Looker have stood down as Chair man and Secretary of the Group although remaining on the Society's Executive Committee. The new Chairman is Gordon Sutcliffe with Jill Sutherland taking over as Group Secretary. For further information of group activities please do not hesitate to contact either of the new team who may be reached by telephone on Hadleigh 823464 or Hadleigh 822207 respectively.
SNIPPETS FROM THE CIVIC TRUST
The Civic Trust is urging big high street names to join in the governments new £25 million "Living over the Shop" initiative. The Trust intends to set up a Forum to encourage leading retailers to take part in the programme. Local authorities are being invited to bid for Government grants to develop 'Over the Shop' schemes in partnership with private retailers and housing associations. Martin Bradshaw, Director of the Civic Trust, says "We are glad the government has at last recognised this as an issue. The waste of so much upper floor space is a national disgrace."
Planning Policy Guidance 19 (from HMSO Bookshops) on Outdoor Advertisement Control includes advice for conservetion areas and on listed buildings and ancient monuments.
The paper states that "it is reasonable to expect that more exacting standards of advertisement control will prevail in conservation areas." However, it warns against conservation areas being "areas of special control of advertisements."
Additional controls apply to listed buildings and sites of scheduled ancient monuments. The guidance states "special care is essential to ensure that any advertisement displayed on, or close to, a listed building does not detract from the integrity of the building's design, historical character or structure."
Policy Guidance Note 3 (from HMSO Bookshops) on Housing increases the emphasis on re-using urban land as a way of relieving pressure on the countryside.
It encourages use for housing of land where there is planning permission for other development but little prospect of that development taking place.
We would welcome your ideas and suggestions for our 1993 programme - just drop a line to the Hon. Secretary c/o 16 Highlands Rd Hadleigh or telephone 823991.
Editor: Jim Betteridge