Ragwort pull – resounding success

The Parish Ragwort ‘Pull’ on Sat 5th July was a triumph of parish co-operation.


What a wonderful turnout – approximately 30 people ‘pulled’ and
‘picked’ for about 2 hours on Saturday morning, leaving us with verges unsullied by the glowing gold of Ragwort! It proved that many hands do make light work. Newlands Farm turned out in force, with Nick Smith, 10 volunteers and a flat bed truck. Michelle, Lee and Laura from the National Trust provided well needed resources, such as ragwort forks, black bags and refreshments.P1040434

The objective of the ‘pull’ is to reduce the amount of wind-born Ragwort seed that gets launched onto the breeze in late July. Fewer seeds should mean less Ragwort seedlings popping up next year to cause problems on agricultural land where stock graze.

Ragwort is not all bad, those plants that had resident Cinnabar moth P1040426caterpillars were left to be devoured by the many hungry mouths. Of course not all Ragwort were eliminated so those creatures that like Ragwort were left with a food resource. Getting rid of all Ragwort would be a counsel of perfection that is unlikely to ever be achieved.

A big thank you to all concerned, let’s do it all again next year!

Caterpillars of the Cinnabar moth feeding on Ragwort


County Council consultation on household waste recycling

Hampshire County Council is holding a public consultation on the household waste recycling centre (HWRC) service from 2 June until 22 August.

County Council officers have been looking at different and innovative options for running the HWRC service, partly as a response to financial pressures. The consultation is an opportunity for interested parties to help inform the future of the HWRC service and to give their input on potential changes to the service.

The outcomes of this consultation will inform the new HWRC management contract from April 2015.

The consultation will be available online at: http://www.hants.gov.uk/recycling from 2 June 2014. To request paper copies, email: hwrc.consultation@hants.gov.uk or call Hantsdirect on: 0845 603 5634. Paper copies can also be collected from Hampshire libraries and local district and borough council offices.


Safer New Forest

Let us be your guide for a safe visit

Whether you live in the Forest or are just visiting us for a fun day out, let us be your guide says Safer New Forest.
Pick up one of the bright blue ‘Welcome to the beautiful New Forest’ visitor guides from information centres and campsites around the district for useful information and reminders to help you enjoy your time safely in the forest.
Packed with tips to keep visitors safe and to protect the environment, the guide features:
Cycling in the forest – make sure you use a padlock, wear high-vis gear and look out for cattle grids and animals on the road.
Park wisely – never leave valuables in your car and always lock it.
Eat out with confidence – choose a restaurant, pub or café with a high food hygiene rating.
Camp safely – barbecues, whether gas or charcoal, should only ever be used outdoors and never taken into an enclosed space, such as a tent or caravan.
Only use barbecues at designated campsites. Wild camping is not allowed in the forest.
Please report any anti-social behaviour or criminal damage to the police on 101.
Stick to the footpaths if possible; avoid farm land, bogs and marshes.
Take your litter home or use the pony-proof litter bins.
Keep your dog under control, use a lead if necessary, and be aware of grazing ponies and cattle and nesting birds.
Cllr Jill Cleary, New Forest District Council portfolio holder for housing and communities, said: “We welcome visitors to the New Forest and hope this little blue guide will help them get the best out of their time here, whether it’s a day trip, a walk or a holiday.
“There is plenty of useful advice for visitors so please pick one up from the local information centres or campsites.”
Alternatively, the guide can be downloaded at http://bit.ly/1l0ljyd
If you are a local hotel or business and would like some copies of the guide for your clients, please contact community safety coordinator Stephanie Bennett on 023 8028 5588 or email stephanie.bennett@nfdc.gov.uk


Electoral role changes coming soon

Electoral registration system is changing this summer

Over the summer, all New Forest District Council residents will receive a letter telling them about the biggest change to the electoral registration system in nearly 100 years.

A new, more secure, system of Individual Electoral Registration is being introduced to replace the old system where the “head of household” registered everyone living in a property. Now, each individual will be responsible for registering themselves.

Many New Forest District residents will automatically move onto the new electoral register. However, some will need to take action to join or remain on it, which they will now also be able to do for the first time by registering quickly and easily online.

New Forest District Council’s Electoral Registration Officer, Dave Yates said:

New Forest District residents will receive a letter towards the end of July 2014 that will tell you if you have been automatically transferred to the new register or not. If you have not been transferred, you will need to provide some additional information and the letter will tell you exactly what you need to do.”

Samantha Mills, Head of Campaigns at the Electoral Commission, said:

This summer the Electoral Commission will launch a major advertising campaign that will raise awareness of the change to Individual Electoral Registration. We welcome this change, which will lead to a more secure register and replace the outdated Victorian concept that a single ‘head of household’ is responsible for registering everyone.”

For more information visit www.gov.uk/yourvotematters . If you do not receive a letter contact New Forest District Council elections team on 023 8028 5445 or electoralservices@nfdc.gov.uk