The Enfield Society

The Enfield Society Management Committee Report for the year ended 31st December 2014


Members of the Management Committee have legal responsibility as directors of the Society as a Company and as trustees of the Society as a Charity. All Committee members must be members of the Society. During the year ended 31st December 2014, the following served as members of the Management Committee:-

Dave Cockle (Chair)
John Davies
Tony Dey
Robert Fowler
Stephen Gilburt
David James (Hon. Treasurer)
Joyce James
Janet McQueen
Stuart Mills
Colin Pointer
Monica Smith
Richard Stones (Hon. Secretary)
John West (Co-opted in October )
Moira Wilkie
Val Munday
Leonard Will

The President, Dr Christopher Jephcott, has attended meetings regularly during the year.

Structure, governance and management

The governing body of the Society, known as the Management Committee, consists of not less than six or more than eighteen members. The Honorary Secretary and the Honorary Treasurer are ex officio members and up to three members may be co-opted to serve on the Management Committee. At every annual general meeting one third of Committee members retire and may be re-elected. New members can be proposed by the Committee or by any member of the Society provided they have the support of nine other members. If necessary Committee members are given training and attend relevant courses and seminars as appropriate to their role within the Society.

Strategic aims

The main aims of the Society are to:-

Financial Results

The Society ended the year with an overall decrease in total funds of £4,109, this despite the total income increasing by just over £21,000 largely due to generous legacies from Hazel Giles and Marion Sellers.

Our total expenditure increased by £32,000. This was made up of payments of £6,500 in advance payments for History of Enfield Volume 4, £12,500 for Trees in Enfield Town Park and Chase Green, £3,000 to administration costs and £9,000 on various approved grants.

Reserves Policy

The policy of the Society is to maintain unrestricted funds, which are the free reserves of the Charity, at a level which would allow the Society to contest actively any threat to its aims. The members of the Management Committee consider that the balance of the reserves, after deduction of the designated and restricted funds, is reasonable in view of the high legal costs that could be incurred in defending such threats.

Review of the year and future developments

There were few changes in the Management Committee this year. We are pleased to welcome John West who was co-opted this year and is an active member of the Footpaths Group.

Membership has continued at just below the 1900 mark. It is open to all and we hope our low membership fee would not prevent anyone joining the Society. Please encourage all your friends to join us.

Our award winning newsletter continues to be sent to all our members four times a year. We encourage new members to join by advertising the Society in local public buildings, having a presence at local Festivals as well as using our very active social programme of walks and talks which are free of charge to all.

We have continued to work closely with the Council, meeting both the Leader of the Council and Council officers regularly.

Other Society matters in 2014 are covered in the following reports.

Architecture and Planning Group

The group continued to monitor all planning applications in Enfield it now has five members and can cover planning applications in Edmonton as well. Chase Farm Hospital and Tottenham Hotspur’s site in Whitewebbs Road took up a great deal of time.

The general picture in the Borough continues to be larger houses in the West being developed, predominately into flats and mainly extensions to older houses in the East.


The original gateway to Forty Hall was widening by repositioning the Northern column. The future of the Trent Park Campus and the future of Broomfield House, remain unresolved. Further incremental applications have seen the Spurs Training Ground more and more resembling a suburban recreation ground.

The Enfield Town Study Group continues to be very active under the leadership of Caroline Carter.

The Edmonton Group

The Edmonton Group supported Art Start’s bid to move into the Charity School, Church Street – a grade II listed building which is in very poor condition and on the At Risk register. A joint meeting with Edmonton Hundred Historical Society on “Love the Lea” attracted a good audience.

Many people visited The Enfield Society stand at the Edmonton Festival in July which was staffed by members of the group. There was continued concern about the pollution of Pymmes Lake and Heritage Information Boards in the Church Street Conservation area. Although the latter were replaced during the year they are already affected by condensation. The Group welcomed the improvements to The Crescent, Hertford Road and the Heritage Lottery Fund grant for the restoration of All Saints Church.

Publicity Group

During the year we continued our regular activities, co-ordinating production and circulation of the TES News, various evening as well as Tuesday morning meetings, updating community notice boards at Frog’s Bottom outside the Jolly Farmers pub and at Enfield Chase and other stations and arranging the AGM.

We organised three Heritage Walks and a coach outing. We attended the Edmonton Show and the Town Show organised the New Members Evening and held our usual Christmas open morning at Jubilee Hall, all of which made sales of TES publications and resulted in signing up some new members.

Heritage at Risk Group

This group was set up in 2013 with the principal aims of researching and developing ways of protecting Enfield's built and green environment and preparing an Enfield Society Heritage strategy. During the past year we have become involved in several projects and would seem to have an exciting year ahead.

During 2014 our main focus was the list of locally listed buildings. We identified and photographed all the locally listed properties in an attempt to assist the Council in their planned review of the list. We have also prepared a list of suggested new buildings for listing. During this process we have liaised with other local groups and societies and developed useful new contacts.

We have also been looking at the blue plaque scheme, and developing a list of the local horse troughs which adorn our streets.  The cycle Enfield project has also been a major focus for us as has the development of the Chase farm site.

By the end of 2014 we had started to look at the nationally listed buildings and plan to continue with this in 2015 particularly as it has become clear that Trent Park is at high risk.

Historic Buildings Group

During the year there were illustrated talks on E.A. Bowles and Myddleton House, From Jamestown and Williamsburg to Washington, Kew Village and Gardens and Kensington Palace.

Our newsletter had articles on historic buildings in Winchmore Hill (including John Nash’s Groveland’s of 1797) and Church Street, Edmonton (including the 1784 girls charity school ); as well as private semi-detached and detached “Tudorbethan” style houses on the Meadway Estate, Southgate constructed between 1923 and 1938 (with interior views of a 1928 show house) and council houses built for Enfield Urban District Council between 1921 and 1955 (with interior views of 1946 show houses in Addison Road, Enfield Highway).

Footpaths and Open Spaces Group

2014 saw the completion of The Greenway between Clay Hill and The Ridgeway, thereby making an all-weather route from Maiden’s Bridge and eliminating the permanently flooded section of Strayfield Road.

The footpath network has been improved by the installation of a bridge over Turkey Brook linking Forty Hall Park with the “Spurs Path” but, unfortunately, the latter continues to be water-logged near Bulls Cross. However, we obtained Enfield Council’s agreement to install both a board walk and the Enfield Society footbridge (which has been in storage for several years) across the worst section. The Council also agreed to reinstate the missing bridge on the permissive path from Park Drive to New Cottage farm near Potters Bar.

The Society (with the help of John West) has undertaken a survey and appraisal of the Pymmes Brook Trail and our report on potential improvements is being submitted to Enfield Council.

The Society continues to support the Thames21 watercourses charity with their Sustainable Drainage Systems water quality improvement schemes for watercourses in Enfield.

We remain concerned about the continuing degradation in the urban street scene and quality of the environment due to the epidemic of hard paving materials that are laid in front gardens from boundary to boundary with no space for vegetation. Such use not only severely damages the environment, increases level of urban pollutants, flooding, heat and dust, but is no longer permitted without planning approval from the local authority.

The Society thanks those members who volunteer to lead walks and/or visits. Without them the Group’s regular programme would not exist. During 2014 there were 63 such events, of which 33 were within the Greater London area (including 10 within Enfield itself) with the remainder to the Lea Valley, Epping Forest, Essex, Hertfordshire, Buckinghamshire and the Chilterns, Bedfordshire, Cambridgeshire, Kent and Surrey. We try to cater for as many members as possible, including those without cars, so the majority start from points convenient for public transport and many can be shortened in length. During the year there was a record total number of 1373 attendees for these events.

Unfortunately, during 2014 we had to report the deaths of two long-term members and leaders, Elizabeth Reed and Christine Fookes. Christine had led over 100 walks and coach trips. Part of the generous legacy left by another leader, Marion Sellers, who died in 2013, has been used to fund a £3,000 grant for improvements to the natural environment and wild life habitat on Enfield Chase Green.

Records and Research Group

Work continued to organise and rationalise the collection of photographic prints and slides. Pictures were selected for use as illustrations in History of Enfield, vol. 4, and these were scanned and in many cases digitally enhanced to improve contrast and sharpness and to remove defects. The collection of colour slides bequeathed to us by Graham Dalling was assessed and over 3600 slides that do not relate to Enfield were offered and distributed to archive collections in appropriate parts of the country. The largest groups of slides went to Hertfordshire Archives and Local Studies, the Bishopsgate Institute, the Norfolk Gardens Trust and to Sheffield Hallam University. Some of these recipients will be making a selection of the slides publicly available on their web sites.

Trees Group

We have recruited some new volunteers and they continue to maintain our tree nursery on our allotment plot, off Trentwood Side, helping raise saplings of various trees. Some of the trees on our plot have now reached the size for planting out as planned.

Financial review

The short financial review part of the annual report was circulated to members with the Summer 2015 issue of TES news. The full Report and Financial Statements for the Year Ended 31 December 2014 was made available for inspection at the AGM.

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