Loughton Town Council was established in its present form on the 1st April 1996 as a result of the review of local government in England and Wales instigated by the government of the day. Since the current Town Council's inception it has taken over a number of functions from Epping Forest District Council and has also developed its own activities. The Town Council has premises in Loughton which house the offices and Council Chamber, and also has various other properties throughout the town for which it is responsible.
A Loughton Parish Council was set up in the 1890s, pursuant to the Local Government Act, which replaced the old system of vestries with elected councils and parish meetings. Loughton at this time had as its "principal council" the Epping Rural District Council. In 1900, the Parish Council was constituted an Urban District Council with greater powers, but with the same area as the parish council. The parish council was abolished, and Loughton was taken out of the Epping RDC. But in 1933, Loughton UDC was amalgamated with Chigwell Parish Council and Buckhurst Hill UDC, rather incongruously taking the title "Chigwell UDC" (that is the reason Loughton is missing from so many older maps).
It might have been logical at this point to re-establish the parish councils for purely Loughton matters, but the Order which set up the UDC did not permit this. In 1974, Chigwell UDC was merged with Epping UDC, Epping and Ongar RDC, and Waltham Holy Cross UDC to form Epping Forest District Council. Epping and Waltham Abbey were given Town Councils, but there was a political majority in the 70s and 80s against doing this for Loughton, Chigwell, and Buckhurst Hill.
The tide turned during the early 1990s, when the idea of subsidiarity was being espoused, and local political composition changed. The Review of Local Government provided for the setting up of new parish councils if there was demonstrable public demand. This was the case in Loughton and in 1995 the Essex Parishes Order was signed by the Secretary of State for the Environment setting up the new parish. Loughton parish councillors were elected in May 1996, although the parish was in being from the previous December. One of the Parish Council's first acts was to resolve to become a Town Council.
The Council's website was established in 1997. The Council became one of the first accredited "Quality Councils
" in 2003. In 2004 the Council resolved that its Chairman and Vice Chairman would adopt the titles of Town Mayor and Deputy Town Mayor.
The Council Logo
When the Loughton Town Council was established in 1996 one of its first actions was to hold a competition to design a logo for the new council. All local schools and colleges were invited to take part. Judging of the entries took place in Spring 1997. The judges were looking for an emblem which embodied the spirit of the town, yet would be suitable for reproduction. The winning entry was designed by Adrian Jalal, a student at Epping Forest College in Loughton. His design reflected the influence of Epping Forest on the town of Loughton by showing a deer (a pricket - a year-old deer) and oak leaves (oak trees are a major species in the ancient forest), set in a visually attractive framework. The design was passed to a local graphic designer who worked it into the logo which is seen today.
To see details of our previous Chairmen & Vice-Chairmen, Town and Deputy Town Mayors and Town Clerks, please click here.