Birch Village SignHome Page

The village of Birch lies about four and a half miles south west of Colchester in the county of Essex. The civil parish of Birch comes within the administrative area of the Borough of Colchester.

On this site you will find information about Birch Parish Council, its Councillors, meetings, the Parish boundary (with maps) and Policies & Procedures.

As a service to the local community, you will find here also information about local organisations, activities and amenities for which the Parish Council is not responsible and for which it cannot, therefore, accept any liability.



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Parish Council Meeting held on 7th February 2017

A Press Release, summarising matters discussed at the meeting held on 7th February, is available on the Meetings page of this website.

Litter Pick in Birch - Wednesday 1st March

A litter pick is to take place in Birch on Wednesday 1st March from 12 noon to 2-00 pm. If you are able to help with this 'tidy up' of our village, please meet at Birch Memorial Hall at 12 noon. Grabbers and bags will be provided but if you have your own please bring them along. Hi-Visibility outerwear will be provided by our Zone Wardens who will be supervising the event. For safety reasons, as most of the litter picking is done on roadsides, in close proximity to traffic, it is recommended that children do not take part.

Defibrillators in Birch and Layer Breton

DefibrillatorThe Three Villages Community Association (TVCA) has installed two public access defibrillators, one in Birch and one in Layer Breton.

Defibrillators improve chances of surviving a cardiac arrest. More and more are being placed in community locations to be used before arrival of a paramedic or ambulance. Less than 5% of people survive cardiac arrest with CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) alone but the odds are greatly improved, up to 50%, with the prompt use of a defibrillator and effective CPR.

The latest Automated External Defibrillators (AEDs) are now built specifically for any person to use, not necessarily someone who has had training. Our local defibrillators, which are portable, are located at:
 • Birch Memorial Hall, Birch Street. Birch, CO2 0LZ
    (located by the main entrance to the hall)
 • The Hare and Hounds Public House, Layer Breton, CO2 0PN
    (located in the garden; access through door to the left of the building)

The TVCA has already run some training sessions in the Memorial Hall so that village clubs and individuals can practice CPR and familiarise themselves with the AEDs. However you can use a defibrillator without having received training. The equipment provides step by step verbal instructions on what you need to do and will "talk you through" the procedure.

The TVCA is happy to provide further training sessions should any clubs or individuals wish to see the training video and learn how to do CPR.

Next Parish Council Meeting - Tuesday, 7th March 2017

The next meeting of Birch Parish Council will be held on Tuesday 7th March at 7-30pm, in Birch Memorial Hall.

Birch Church Public Inquiry

As at February 2017 the Planning Inspectorate now thinks that the Public Inquiry about the Church Commissioners' Draft Pastoral Scheme to demolish Birch Church is likely to go ahead in about September this year. As far as we are aware there is still no agreement on the venue for the Inquiry's public hearings. In due course notices will be posted giving the date for the Inquiry, the venue and the procedure for submitting representations.

Call 105Power Cuts - Reporting, and Getting Information About Them

Many Birch residents rely on overhead power lines for their electricity supply. From time to time extreme weather conditions and other incidents lead to power cuts in our locality.

There is now a new three-digit telephone number, 105, which can be used to report or get information about power cuts. You can also call 105 to report damage to electricity power lines and substations. The 105 number is free of charge and will put you through to UK Power Networks, the electricity network operator for London, the East and South East of England. 105 can be called from most landlines and mobile phones.

Alternatively you can report or get information about power cuts by calling UK Power Networks on their freephone number 0800-316-3105.

It is important to be aware that cordless 'phones do not work when there is no mains power. During a power cut you will need to use a corded landline or mobile 'phone to call 105 or 0800-316-3105.

Bus Service between Birch and Colchester

Last year Hedingham Buses announced that following the closure of its Tollesbury depot on 23rd July it would be withdrawing the 92 Service. Essex County Council stepped in to support the continued running of this and other services which were due to be withdrawn. The times of buses between Birch and Colchester are shown in the table below

Year End Report - for the Year to 31st March 2016

A report on the concerns and activities of Birch Parish Council during the year ended 31st March 2016 can be viewed on the page Year End Report.




Birch Parish Council Information

On this site you will find information about:
 – The Responsibilities and Work of Birch Parish Council
 – Parish Councillors and the Parish Clerk
 – Dates of Birch Parish Council Meetings
 – Press Releases issued by the Council after meetings
 – Minutes and Agendas of Council meetings
 – Year End Report for the year ending 31st March 2016.
 – Boundary and Maps of Birch Civil Parish
 – The Council's Policies and Procedures

Birch Parish Council Annual Accounts and Returns

The Council's Accounts for the Year Ended 31st March 2016 are available for viewing or download in PDF format by using this link Annual Accounts 2015/16   Also available for viewing or download in PDF format are the Annual Accounts 2015/16 - Bank Reconciliation Details

The Council's Annual return for the year ended 31 March 2016 is available for viewing or download in PDF format by using this link Annual return 2015/16. The return contains four sections:
Section 1 - Annual governance statement 2015/16
Section 2 - Accounting statements 2015/16
Section 3 - External auditor certificate and report 2015/16 Certificate
Annual internal audit report 2015/16

Other Local Information

The site also carries information about:
 – The Village Hall
 – Policing and Crime Prevention
 – The Three Villages Community Association (TVCA)
 – Websites with local content.

Please contact the webmaster or Parish Clerk if you think there is other information which could usefully be added to the site.

Monthly Newsletter: 'Parish News'

This monthly magazine goes to every home and is produced independently of Birch Parish Council. It provides useful information on the many local community social events and carries Council notices, press releases and other information. In addition to a range of articles including our countryside, food and local history, Parish News carries a range of over 40 local commercial advertisements.
For further information and contact details, see www.bretonheath.me.uk/parnews.htm



Bus Service between Birch and Colchester

Service 92 is operated by Hedingham Buses with the financial support of Essex County Council.

As at September 2016, bus times to and from Colchester High Street are as shown in the abridged table below.

It is recommended that before travelling you check whether there have been any timetable changes by visiting the Hedingham Buses website at www.hedingham.co.uk

BIRCH to COLCHESTER

Monday to Friday, except public holidays
Birch Street, Mill Lane 08:0509:2710:5212:5213:5215:5217:02
Colchester, High Street 08:2509:4711:1213:1214:1216:1217:22
Saturdays
Birch Street, Mill Lane   10:2512:25 15:25 
Colchester, High Street   10:4412:44 15:44 

COLCHESTER to BIRCH

Monday to Friday, except public holidays
Colchester, High Street [DC] 08:2509:4711:1213:1214:1216:1217:22
Birch Street, opp Mill Lane 08:5510:1211:4213:4214:4216:4217:55
Saturdays
Colchester, Osborne Street [AA]  09:3011:30  16:15 
Colchester, Crouch Street [DA]  09:3311:33  16:18 
Birch Street, opp Mill Lane  09:4811:48  16:33 


Disclaimer of Legal Liability

Information on this website is given in good faith, but Birch Parish Council does not accept any liability for the accuracy or reliability of such information. References on this website to other organisations, individuals or businesses do not imply any endorsement, approval or recommendation of them by the Parish Council.

This site has links to external websites. Birch Parish Council has no control over third party websites or services and is not responsible for their content. The existence of a link here to an external website does not imply endorsement or approval by the Council which accepts no liability for loss or damage arising from reliance on the content of external websites.