East Huntspill Parish Council
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Nuisances to Report to Sedgemoor

Any premises in such a poor state
  • Fumes
  • Gases
  • Dust
  • Accumulations – eg refuse in garden
  • Animals
  • Insects
  • Invasive weeds
Report noxious weeds to Sedgemoor or Somerset County Council
Under the Noxious Weeds Act 1959 SCC are responsible for controlling certain noxious weeds, including ragwort. This has to be removed where it is reported as causing a nuisance to highway users or adjoining landowners.
Other invasive species being treated in Somerset are Japanese Knotweed, Himalayan Knotweed, Himalayan Balsam and Giant Hogweed. 
Common ragwort
Highly poisonous to cattle, horses and other animals. It is not harmful to humans,, but when handling you should wear gloves and a mask (remove heads first). This weed is a stout ragged plant which can grow to a height of 1 metre. It has long thin toothed leaves which are green on the top and have a whitish underside. It also has large clusters of yellow flowers measuring approximately 2cm across. 
Japanese Knotweed
or Himalayan Knotweed 
A highly vigorous and hardy weed which can grow almost anywhere. It grows in clumps and can reach a height of 3 metres.  It has a thick bamboo like stem which has a red and green pattern. Its leaves are light green, broad and triangular in shape. It can also have small white flowers. 
You don't have to remove Japanese knotweed from your land, but you could be prosecuted or given a community protection notice for causing a nuisance if you allow it to spread onto anyone else's property.
Himalayan balsam  
Often found on river banks, growing up to 2 metres in height. Each plant lasts for one year and dies at the end of the growing season. It has:
- reddish coloured stems, dark green, lance-shaped leaves with jagged edges 
- flowers from June to October, - large, brightly coloured flowers that are usually in variable shades from purple to pale pink, around 2,500 seeds per plant each year, - explosive seed pods that can throw seeds over 6 metres away from the plant
Giant hogweed 
 (each red/white segment 50 cm) You should take great care when identifying giant hogweed. Contact with the plant, particularly the sap, can lead to severe blistering and scarring. Giant hogweed closely resembles native cow parsley or hogweed. It can take four years to reach its full height of 3 to 5 metres and flower.  It has:
- has a reddish purple stem with fine spines that make it appear furry like a stinging nettle, has hollow stems, has spotted leaf stalks, has leaves up to 1.5 metres wide, flowers in June and July, has flower heads that are usually 50 centimetres wide, each flower head is capable of producing 50,000 seeds every year, has seeds that can stay in the soil for several years before they develop
Email:  environmental.services@sedgemoor.gov.uk
Telephone:  0300 303 7806
Neospora Abortion is now the most commonly diagnosed cause of abortion in cattle and is a serious concern for UK farmers. 
It can be caused by cattle ingesting the protozoan parasite Neospora Caninum which is carried by infected dogs and excreted in their faeces.  Other dogs can also become infected when they sniff where dogs have previously been, thus continuing the cycle.  Once a cow has become infected there is no cure, she regularly aborts without carrying a calf to term and has to be destroyed to minimise the chances of her infecting the rest of the herd.  Once a dog has it, treatment is unreliable unless caught in the very early stages and they continue to spread it via faeces to other animals. 
With your help the risk of cattle and other dogs becoming infected can be significantly reduced by ensuring that all your dog’s faeces are picked up when walking in the countryside.  Please remember to carry a litter bag with you and take it to your nearest dog litter bin for disposal.
Please adhere to ‘The Countryside Code’ and help protect the countryside and the animals that live in it.
A new leaflet entitled ‘Enjoy the countryside responsibly with your dog’ is available to view on the NFU website.  To view or download the leaflet visit  www.nfuonline.com/back-british-farming/our-top-content/latest-you-your-dog-and-the-countryside/
Thank you from the farming community for your help in protecting our beautiful British countryside together with the health and well-being of our livestock.
Our village is so full of Country Walks. ‘EH’ has teamed up with Christine Winter who lives in Church Lane along with Councillor Liz Birt to release one of East Huntspill's Secret’s!
It’s a lovely walk, but you might need some wellington boots at the moment (March) and there were sheep and lambs in the fields, so a little caution with our canine friends!
The whole family can easily enjoy this route and discover places that you never knew existed. It’s a flat walk across using Public Rights of Way but there are many stiles to cross.
On to the Millennium Wood – Start walking down Church Lane, take the stile to your right at the junction of Millbatch. Over the stile keeping left at the hedge (not diagonally) Pass over two stiles, where you will have passed Millbatch on your left. Keep straight on through several fields and over several easy stiles. You will then come to The Millennium Wood, planted in 2000, sponsored by numerous organisations.
You can now go right and you come out at New Road or carry on walking straight on, coming out at New Road also.
Turn right onto New Road, crossing over the road and left into Catherine Street, passing houses on your right. Keep left around the bend and you will come to a new metal gate on the right. Go through the gate and The River Brue will be on your left with caravans on the opposite bank.
Walk with the river on your left, through several fields, emerging at Bason Bridge. There is a path you can take before getting here, Turn sharp right through several fields to reach New Road, cross the road going along The Drove until you come to and orchard that belongs to the last house. Walk diagonally right through the Orchard crossing a little bridge. Take a left diagonal line and you will reach the first stile you cr
ossed in Church Lane at the junction of Millbatch.
A good couple of hours are required, why not take a flask of tea and enjoy th
e provided seating at The Millennium Wood, especially this time of year as the deciduous trees start to bud!
Article by
Liz Birt
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