Bricket Wood Residents' Association
The Association was founded in 1959 as the Bricket Wood Ratepayers' Association and the name was altered to Residents' Association when the term 'rates' no longer applied to local taxation. There are over 1800 households / 4500 electorate in Bricket Wood and the majority are members, almost 60 of whom, as Road Stewards, volunteer to be a point of contact, deliver the quarterly Newsletter 'The Voice of Bricket Wood' and collect the annual subscription from a group of members in their area.
At the Annual General Meeting in March, a Management Committee is elected which meets monthly and has Sub-Committees taking action on Highways and Planning matters, Membership and the production of the Newsletter. In addition, on the first Tuesday in June, September and December, an Open meeting is held in St Luke's Church Hall, when a talk on a topic of interest is often arranged and members have an opportunity to discuss village affairs. The notice board, opposite the Sub-Post Office in Oakwood Road, displays useful information including events taking place, and a local planning application list.
The Residents' Association is non-party political and the Management Committee work with all Councillors, Council Officials and Organisations to endeavour to maintain / improve / change matters in the interests of the village as a whole. For example, the profile of the traffic problems caused by the M25 / A405 / M1 Junction 6 South/ Mount Pleasant Lane has been raised at every level of Government with a campaign. Our MP, Councillors and officials, and the committee continue to work to try to improve our local traffic situation and public transport service. Members are supported in trying to maintain and improve our environment, for example arranging the repair of street lights or signs, alerting Councils to problems with roads or footpaths, arranging the annual Village Clean Up usually in September (always in jeopardy due to lack of support), seeking improvement to the infrastructure in line with growth of Bricket Wood, as well as liaising with local police, Neighbourhood Watch and other local Organisations.
The Bricket Wood area (even outside the Common SSSI) is recognised to have some of the most important wildlife/ecological sites in Hertfordshire. Old Bricket is in a conservation area. It is outside the 'specified settlement' of Bricket Wood which is surrounded by Green Belt. Situated within the Watling Chase Community Forest (whose aim is "to develop multi-purpose forests which will create better environments for people to use, cherish and enjoy"), the settlement of Bricket Wood is changing and evolving. Representations are made on relevant planning applications that may have an adverse impact on the consideration of Bricket Wood as a village in order to preserve its garden character. There is a constant battle to retain the openness and rural character of the surrounding area so particular attention is paid to intrusion on the Green Belt. Public Consultation opportunities are usually responded to; such as the review of the District Plan which forms the basis of planning decisions.
The quarterly Newsletter is a useful means of communication for Bricket Wood as it is distributed to all members of the Residents' Association. It contains articles reflecting the work of the Association as well as a wide variety of items generally of local interest. Contributions from organisations and residents are welcome and a section entitled 'Letters to the Editor' also acts as a forum to express views on local topics or issues. In addition a Village Diary includes details of regular meetings of local clubs and organisations and their events are publicised, together with a list of current members of the Management Committee and sometimes details of local Councillors. Many local businesses take the opportunity to publicise their services by advertising in the Newsletter.
The Management Committee occasionally organises events for the community. A special Millennium Committee involving organisations in the village arranged a Celebration Weekend to mark the Millennium in Bricket Wood.
In 2003 we entered the CPRE Village of the Year competition and won an award for 'Community Life'. This was followed in 2004 with a 'Young People' commendation.
To celebrate our 50th Anniversary in 2009, a village event, organised by members of the management committee and involving many local clubs and organisations, was held on Pound Green and at the Parish Centre.
Much has been achieved by the action of the Bricket Wood Residents' Association, particularly the Management Committee members over the years. This is all thanks to the willingness of residents to get involved and do more than just live in Bricket Wood.
There is always a need for 'new blood' so please contact any member of the Management Committee if you would like to join it.