Agenda and draft minutes

Environment Forum - Tuesday, 25th April, 2023 7.00 pm

Venue: Conference Room, Civic Centre, Silver Street, Enfield, EN1 3XA. View directions

Contact: Email: 

No. Item


Welcome and Apologies


The Chair welcomed everyone to the meeting.


Apologies for absence were received from Cllr Rick Jewell (Cabinet Member for Environment); Cllr Maria Alexandrou, who was substituted by Cllr Joanne Laban; and Cllr Hannah Dyson who was substituted by Cllr Michael Rye.


Apologies for absence were also received from: Neil Paddon-Smith (Meadway Group); Carol Fisk (Trent Park Conservation Committee); Richard Beaumont (Forty Hill and Bulls Cross Area Study Group); Robert Wilson (Hadley Wood Conservation Area Study Group & Hadley Wood Association); John West (The Enfield Society), who was substituted by Dave Cockle; and Juliet Barnett (Trent Park Conservation Committee), who was substituted by Tracey Adnan.


Declarations of Interest

Members are asked to declare any disclosable pecuniary, other pecuniary or non pecuniary interests relating to items on the agenda.


There were no declarations of interest received regarding any items on the agenda.


Minutes of Previous Meeting pdf icon PDF 192 KB

To receive and agree the minutes of the previous Environment Forum meeting held on Thursday 2 March 2023.


AGREED the minutes of the meeting held on Thursday 2nd March 2023 as a correct record. Some additional points were noted:


On page 2, a question referred to Mosidge Green, when it should have instead read Mossops Creek.


It was also pointed out that a requested update on planning aspects in respect to telecommunication masts had not been received, and asked that this be considered for discussion in the work programme setting, at the first meeting of the new municipal year.


Green and Blue Infrastructure pdf icon PDF 18 MB

To receive a presentation on Green and Blue Infrastructure.


It was agreed that the Green and Blue Infrastructure, and Rewilding items on the agenda, would be treated and reported on as one, due to overlapping content.


RECEIVED a presentation from Ian Russell, Principal Engineer, who updated the Forum on Green and Blue Infrastructure, and Rewilding in the borough.


The following comments and questions were received, which officers responded to:


a.    The number of trees felled by officers when moving in the beavers. Officers said they were working with Planning on a tree mitigation plan, to plant more trees around Archers Wood and the beaver’s enclosure.

b.    The amount of waste at Forty Hill Farm. Officers stated that they were reminding the farm that the waste needs removing.

c.    A question was received in relation to how the rain gardens would be properly maintained. Officers stated that they were working with colleagues in the maintenance team to ensure that once these schemes were passed on, they had the training and knowhow to look after them. It was expressed that some of what had been planted was lower maintenance, and that a longer hand over period was being adopted, to allow what had been planted time to establish properly; become more mature and make it easier to look after. He conveyed that they were looking to produce information which explained the benefits of different types of vegetation in these schemes, and highlighted that there was a balance between perceptions about what looks good, and what should be planted/ has a range of ecological advantages.

d.    The Forum queried if the woodland trees being planted were different types. Officers responded that the forestry commission funding enabled diversity in planting; 70% had to be productive species, but around 30 different types of trees had been planted and these were all native species.

e.    It was pointed out that last year had been very dry, and it was asked whether the percentage loss of newly planted trees, and how they would be replaced, had been assessed. The officer replied that last year had been a severe drought and they overplant trees, knowing not all of them will mature, which was best practice, and the recommended density to create a thriving wood in the future. Regular surveys were conducted, and around a 30% average loss had been suffered last year, which was significant but not catastrophic; and the trees that survived the stress would be able to do it again. It was highlighted that they plant in winter to give them the best chance of getting their roots in ground and absorbing water, and that they had considered irrigation but found in not feasible/ unsustainable.

f.     A member asked if there was a more environmentally friendly alternative to the plastic covers being used to protect the younger trees. The officer said the tubes were used sparingly, most trees had been surrounded in a block by deer fence instead; that they had considered alternatives, but found the plastic was more reliable and would be reused/ recycled.  ...  view the full minutes text for item 4.


Rewilding pdf icon PDF 15 MB

To receive a presentation on Rewilding.


As agreed, this item was discussed and presented on alongside the Green and Blue Infrastructure item.


Heritage pdf icon PDF 12 MB

To receive a presentation on Heritage. ‘To Follow’.

Additional documents:


RECEIVED a presentation from Christine White, Heritage & Urban Design Manager, who updated the Forum on heritage at risk, in the borough.


The following comments and questions were received, which officers responded to:


a.    A question was received with regards to how often officers had to intervene with carrot and stick measures. The officer responded that the stick approach had been used in a number of cases in which urgent works notices were issued to protect buildings. In some instances, if the owners did not comply, the council would have to step-in in default but that this was not done lightly, due to budgets and recovery of funds through the courts; the carrot technique was mentioned as involving raising funding priority.

b.    It was asked what festival programmes were planned for Trent Park. The officer replied that there was a steering group that look at this, which Cllr James chairs, and is attended by a member of the conservation group, along with other stakeholders. It was said the only festival planned for Trent Park this year was the Ghana and Mauritius festival, and that this was a question for the steering group.

c.    There was a query how Verena McCaig fit in with Broomfield House. The officer advised that Verena McCaig was the Heritage at Risk Officer at Historic England; and that for council owned entries on the register, Historic England put themselves down as the contact, and for privately owned heritage at risk queries the council is put down as the contact. This was followed up by an enquiry if the contacts on the list were all from Historic England, to which officers explained the list detailed Enfield’s entries on the Heritage at Risk register; a document compiled by Historic England.

d.    A member asked, with regards to registered parks and gardens, where Enfield ranked on the league table. The officer responded that Enfield had five parks/gardens, of which four were registered, but did not know the comparison of this relative to other boroughs. It was confirmed that the four which were registered were all council owned, and that the one which was not was owned by Lee Valley Park.

e.    It was then queried if the Director of Environment & Operational Services could commit to getting Forty Hall back to the base line condition that needs to be achieved, before introducing grounds maintenance. Officers replied that the intention would be to produce a management and activity plan to give Historic England confidence that through various workstreams, things were moving forward. This was followed up by an enquiry as to what the timescales for this would be, to which officers said they did not know, but could come back with.

f.     The Forum asked if the works on Trent Park terrace and landscape were part of the planning permission and section 106 agreement and had time conditions. The officer confirmed this to be the case for the part of the site in Barkley’s ownership, and that the wider country park was  ...  view the full minutes text for item 6.


Work Programme

To note the completion of the Work Programme for 2022/23 and that the Environment Forum Work Programme for 2023/24 will be discussed at the first meeting of the new municipal year.


NOTED the completion of the work programme for 2022/23, and that the 2023/24 work programme would be discussed at the first meeting of the new municipal year.


Members asked for more conservation and public travel issues to be considered on the next work programme. The Chair replied that members set the work programme together at the start of the municipal year, and that all issues would be discussed and considered at the first meeting of the new municipal year.


Date of Next Meeting

To note the dates of the future meetings will be confirmed following Annual Council on Wednesday 10 May 2023.


NOTED thatthe dates of future meetings would be confirmed following Annual Council on 10 May 2023.