News and Notices


A gloriously sunny and warm day, one of very many this year, helped our celebration of seventy consecutive fetes a real joy for our many fans and supporters. Seventy years is a fantastic achievement and our fete has been the main financial stay behind all of our village facilities for each and every one of those years. It has continually eased the running and maintenance of both our church and village hall and, in recent years, our children’s play facilities. It goes further than that: As the fete also shows community commitment it has helped us to obtain grant assistance from both national and local funding sources. So, in short, Berden would not be what it is today without our magnificent fete, and it is probably the best in the area by a long way.

Huge thanks to all, and there were a lot of you, who got involved in any way – baking, donating, assisting on stalls, selling grand draw tickets, moving equipment (from A to B to C and finally back to A), coming up with ideas and just plain being there! There were just so many jobs, both small and large, and all very, very worthwhile.

Elsewhere in this magazine, and on the website fete Facebook page, you will find a full breakdown of the figures, and a lot of work went in to that as well. Close to the bottom right hand corner you will see that we ended up with an income of £11442.08 which gives, less expenses, an event profit of £9759.44. Just over £2500 will be retained as working capital to cover all overheads and ease the cash flow for 2019 and the remainder will be divided, in varying amounts depending upon needs and circumstances, between the church fabric fund, the village hall and the children’s playground.

Our gratitude to all of you who helped to make life easier for us, your 2018 fete committee and sub committees, and easier than it appeared in early January and thanks also to Paul and Michelle for the use of their truly beautiful garden.

Steve Bates, John Burton, Amanda Coomber, Fi Cook, Sue Griffiths, Kae Hewitt, Jayne Liddle, Deborah Patrick, John Riddell, Wendy Riddell, Emma Slade, Rob Talks, Chris Thickitt and  John Walker.


  1. And my own personal thanks to both the committee, the sub committees and Bronwen for making the job of fete chair a real privilege. JB.

Quote from old Mr. Grace – ‘You’ve all done very well!’



The really worthwhile job of fete chair 2019 is up for grabs. You will get lots of experienced help, guaranteed. A new broom is now essential.

If interested please call me on 777674. JB

Fete Accounts Summary 2018

Overhanging Branches: a reminder from Essex County Council!

After a summer of exuberant plant growth there are trees, shrubs and even low growing plants that need cutting back if they are forcing people to walk in the road (or if they could damage passing vehicles). We have had a reminder from Essex County Council of the legal position:

“Landowners have responsibility for any trees near the road….These should be regularly checked and cut to prevent large branches or the whole tree blowing down and blocking the road. People walking along the pavement or verge shouldn’t have to avoid overgrown trees or hedges. 

The Council has the power to issue enforcement notices to landowners….with

branches and vegetation found to be obstructing the highway, compelling the owner to carry out any necessary work.

Pavements should be entirely free of plant growth up to a height of 8ft (2.5m). The

road should be clear to a height of 17ft (5.1m) and 1.8ft (0.5m) from the edge of the

road towards your land.”

We appreciate this is difficult to achieve in a rural area, but please do your best to comply with the legislation.

Sue Griffiths, Clerk, Berden Parish Council



We have been receiving more complaints about dogs out of control and their owners not clearing up after them on public footpaths and, astonishingly, on other people’s private property. In recent weeks we have had a report of a young Berdenite, and that means a friend or neighbour of all of us, coming indoors from the families own property ‘covered’ in dog waste.

 Please enjoy walking your dog but do make sure that you stick to the legal public paths, or those routes where you know for sure that the owner is happy for you to use them. In the eyes of the law you are trespassing if you step off a public right of way. We are very lucky in Berden: We have a relatively large network of enjoyable legal and permissive paths and, with just a few exceptions, they are all clearly defined through use, so – please – stick to them and keep your dogs under control at all times

There are dog waste bags, provided by your parish council, available by the bus shelter. Please use them and help everybody to enjoy their time out and about in our beautiful countryside.

If you wish to consult the definitive rights of way path, please contact John Burton on 777674.


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Essex Air Ambulance latest Newsletter


NhW logo


Berden Parish is part of the Uttlesford Neighbourhood Watch (NhW) scheme. Its aims are to keep parishes up to date on the latest crimes in the area and offer advice on how to avoid becoming a victim of crime. As we know, police resources are in decline and it is becoming more and more important to raise awareness in our community about the possibility of crimes and frauds. By being watchful and alert we can help the police with vital information.

Since our village is sprawling in various directions, we have contact persons in the different parts who will be your first port of call for anything unusual, an incident or a crime. The names and phone numbers of these volunteers are published below and will also be published on the Berden Website. Although we live in a safe and generally trouble-free area with little crime, we would all be advised to consider the following:

  • Home security
  • Garden, outbuildings and vehicle security
  • Bogus callers/doorstep crimes
  • Telephone and online security
  • Identity fraud

Nowadays, the largest surge in fraud is on the telephone or on-line. Everybody is no doubt aware of this or may have experienced scams. NhW publishes a very useful guide to safety and to crime prevention and their website is: Weekly, Uttlesford NhW emails me an online Bulletin with updates of the latest crimes in the area and also with very useful advice on crime prevention. I will forward these to John Barber who will regularly put them on Berden Facebook.

If you see something suspicious or want to report information about a crime that has taken place, call the police non-emergency number 101. At the same time, alert your local coordinator. If you see a crime in progress, always use the emergency number   999.

Local coordinators:

Potash, Highlands, Mill Hill, Peyton Hall        John Barber 145

Little London                                                   John Arnell 239

Dewes Green, Priory, the Knoll                      Andrew Nelson 784

St. Nicholas Field                                             John Walker 470

The Street                                                       John Burton

Brickhouse End, Park Green                           Deborah Patrick

Village Hall, Pelham rd. Vicarage Lane, Bonnetting Lane       Ulla 994

We would welcome a volunteer for Benskins, Gawlers and upper Pelham Road.

Ideas and suggestion regarding the NhW scheme are always welcome.

Email here for more information

 New Demand Responsive Transport

An exciting new Demand Responsive Transport (DaRT) has been introduced in parishes in the North of Essex.

This service allows residents to travel between 0600 and 2000 Monday to Saturday.  It increases the opportunities to travel and improve access to shopping, health appointments, work, school or college.  It can also be used to visit friends and family.

Passengers can travel alone or as a group.  Concessionary Bus pass holders can use the service for free after 0900 Monday to Friday and all day on a Saturday.

 Instead of using fixed routes with fixed stops and times, customers book journeys with the operator in advance and are picked up from an agreed point – often their own home, a bus stop or local place of interest.  To book the DaRT service contact Arrow Taxis on: 01621 874411.

For more details click here Rural Transport publication May 16

ECM logo

Doorstep/Rogue traders are operating in your area trying to obtain work related to block paved driveways, garden work or tree cutting, roofing or any other household repair or maintenance.

Never agree to have work carried out by traders who knock on your door offering these services and always thoroughly check out leaflets as addresses provided can be false with telephone numbers that stop working if you have a problem with the work. You can also be provided with guarantees that are worthless.

We would always advise residents to consider using one of our Buy With Confidence businesses who have been audited and approved by Trading Standards. The nearest three to your postcode can be found by calling the national consumer helpline on 03454 040506 or

We would ask all residents to look out for household repair and maintenance activity at the homes of elderly neighbours, friends or family members.

Residents who do get caught out by doorstep/rogue traders are often too embarrassed to
report it. If you are concerned call the helpline with the information.

Sue Bunney
Trading Standards

ECM logo

The Parish Safety Volunteer Programme is a new community safety initiative, delivered in partnership by Essex Police, Essex County Fire and Rescue Service and volunteers from local communities. Could you volunteer?

Parish Safety Volunteers are trained by experts from our organisations to deliver bespoke fire and crime safety advice and fit smoke detectors in homes. Parish Safety Volunteers will work in pairs, in a smart but comfortable uniform and visit people in their own homes to offer this bespoke service. A diverse range of people will benefit from the Parish Safety Volunteer programme from young families, to the elderly and those vulnerable to the risk of fire or fear of crime. You must be over 18, know your local area well and be able to commit to an average of 10 hours each month. Everyone who volunteers as a Parish Safety Volunteer will be interviewed, provide two references, complete standard Police security checks and a confidential health questionnaire. Good all-round communication skills are also a must. Reasonable expenses will be paid. If you are interested in finding out more about what is involved in becoming a Parish Safety Volunteer, please visit or email or ring 01376 576237.

Ancell Book

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