Thursday, 18 September 2014

Old Buckenham raises money for Star Throwers

Rosemary's productive bike ride
Tuesday evening is 'Two Wheel Tuesday' at the Ox and Plough in Old Buckenham. Bikers galore turn up to chat, admire the other machines and perhaps have the odd half pint.
But this Tuesday was a little different. Three weeks ago Rosemary West, who lives next door to the pub, agreed to go for a ride on one of the large machines. As Rosemary will admit to being over eighty, this was a big challenge so she decided to ask for sponsorship to raise money for the local Star Throwers charity.
Everyone was generous in their pledges and the sum raised by Tuesday evening was £800. Dr Henry Manning, who founded the Star Throwers charity, was there to receive the money from Rosemary who had managed to get onto the driving seat of the Goldwing that had provided her with the ride of a lifetime. The event was recorded on video and by a photographer from the Eastern Daily Press. 
Dusk was falling and some bikers were wending their way home by the time the presentation came to an end.

Wednesday, 17 September 2014

Old Buckenham residents comments to Parish Council

Subjects raised during public recess
A period at the start of each parish council meetings allows the public to raise points that they would like to be considered. Notes of the points raised is given below and is based on the draft notes produced by the parish clerk.
A resident wanted parking in the Village Hall to involve both the Junior School and the Pre-school group. A letter has been sent to parents giving two options regarding parking in the Village Hall car park. The first option was for parents to buy a permit costing £7 for 34 days to enable them to seek a parking space. Option 2 was to allocate up to 40 spaces which will be available only to selected parents at a small cost in the village hall car park. A plan to extend car parking at the village hall has been submitted to the Parish Council which would use part of the recreation area. The recreation area currently is 1.2 acres and they would use 0.4 of an acre for parking. They would be seeking approval from the Parish Council for this option. Steve Milner asked for councillors and other groups within the village to set up a working party to look at the suggestions. Adrian Joel, Carol Marshall and John Frost expressed views on the matter. Steve Milner said the school would not accept responsibility over the parking issues. It was suggested that two councillors join the working party along with representatives from the Village Hall. A resident raised matter of a planning application due to be discussed later in meeting. Another resident raised the matter of the new school and involving the local MP. Steve Milner referred to a letter from NCC which indicated they would extend the current 30mph speed limit and also supply part-time 20mph flashing signs following intervention by the local MP. A resident asked why no money was coming from NCC and also raised the matter of a roundabout outside the school entrance. He was informed that a roundabout would not be put in place. Resident raised matter of new proposed Disciplinary and Grievance policy and said he had been in contact with both NALC and ACAS.

Tuesday, 16 September 2014

Old Buckenham Parish Council in September

September parish council meeting
These notes have been written by the blog editor from the draft minutes and so may contain information that is changed at a later date.

At the September meeting of Old Buckenham Parish Council all councillors were there apart from Tim Ing, Sarah Dye and Derek Smalley who had sent their apologies. Fourteen members of the public attended and also Stephen Askew, the Norfolk County Councillor for this area.
There was a public recess at the beginning of the meeting to allow members of the public to give their views (a list of subjects raised will be published as a separate blog post tomorrow).
Minutes of previous Parish Council meeting. These were signed as a true and accurate record of the meeting.
Matters arising from the minutes. Tom Johnson raised matter of potholes around the village. The Parish Clerk responded by saying that Norfolk County Council have a large programme ongoing regarding potholes and there were thousands throughout the county which were being dealt with. The Parish Clerk to speak to Highways on the matter.
Minutes of Special Council Meeting on Thursday 14 August 2014. These were signed as a true and accurate record of the meeting.
Matters arising from these minutes. Adrian Joel asked that the approval given to the planning application for Chapel Road school be revoked and a new discussion and vote take place. The Parish Clerk informed the meeting that he had received the required number of written notices to overturn the previous vote. The item is to be put on the October agenda. Tom Johnson raised the matter of councillors having to have a computer to be able to access documents as this could preclude some people becoming councillors if they did not have a computer or were not computer literate.
Adoption of New Grievance and Disciplinary Procedure. Paul Boggia asked if the matter could be deferred. Adrian Joel said that he felt that with 15 pages it is too complicated. The Parish Clerk said the code presented was the one recommended by NALC and both Akis Chrisovelides and Jonathan Kemp said it was good practice to have a code. Paul Boggia proposed deferring the adoption of the policy until the October meeting and this was agreed with 5 for and 3 against.
Adoption of Financial Regulations. It was agreed that the new policy document be adopted.
Allocation of Parish Council Funds. This matter was deferred until a later date.
Planning applications. 6 Oaklands. Two-storey front extension. It was proposed by Akis Chrisovelides and seconded by John Frost that the parish council should object to this as it extended too far forward and was out of character. This was agreed with 7 for and 1 abstention.
Vine Cottage, 64 Fen Street. Single-storey rear extension to dwelling and erection of two-storey side extension. There were no objections, this was agreed with 7 for and 1 abstention.
Planning decisions received from Breckland. 5 Fen Street. Two-storey residential extension. Permission granted.
Mill Farm, Fen Street. Removal of concrete render and replace with lime-based render. Permission granted.
Almshouses, The Green. Replacement of corrugated asbestos cement bathroom roofing and steel windows to 10 Almshouses. Permission granted.
Stonehouse Farm, Stacksford. Conversion of former pump room and store to form self-contained holiday rental. Permission granted.
Chairman’s report. Steve Milner had recently attended a meeting in Attleborough regarding the Tuesday motor cycle meetings at the Ox and Plough. Some actions have been put into place to regulate the meets and these seem to have had some good effect. Another meeting with the police will be arranged soon and parking at pub is still a problem. He is seeking a meeting with NCC regarding Chapel Road School and is liaising with Stephen Askew and trying to arrange a meeting with George Freeman MP. He has received a suggestion of the Parish Council setting up a working party, if the planning application for the school is successful, to monitor the situation as the building progresses. Jonathan Kemp agreed to be the representative on such a working party. The Village Hall are arranging a three-night international film festival at the end of November.
District Councillor’s report. Adrian Joel reported that the Boundary Commission have completed their review of ward boundaries in Breckland. The total number of wards has been reduced from 54 to 49, with Old Buckenham and New Buckenham combining with Banham to form The Buckenham and Banham ward. These changes will take place from the 2015 District Council elections. The new affordable dwellings in St Andrews Close are finally near to completion. All 14 dwellings will shortly be allocated to those with connections to the village and they could be moving in late September. Breckland have put up to £950,000 to improve high speed broadband in Breckland. They gained match funding from central government which gives a total of £1.9 million towards the project. High speed broadband should now be available to all residents in Old Buckenham and if anyone requires the service they should contact their broadband supplier. With effect from Wednesday 1 October, residents can place both glass and plastic in their black recycling bins. Adrian Joel has asked VERG to place a notice in village newsletter to ask residents to continue to use the glass recycling bins in the village hall car park as this provides income for the village hall.
Parish Councillors’ reports. Tom Johnson reported that the Village Hall Committee have asked the Parish Council for a rent increase on the Recreation Area as per lease conditions allow. The Village Hall will also be asking the Parish Council for a grant of up to £3,000 to improve the insulation of the village hall. Akis Chrisovelides asked that if the parish had prepared a Neighbourhood Plan, would it have stopped the Chapel Road School? This item to be put on the October agenda. Adrian Joel asked for the allotments to also be put on October agenda. Tim Ing is to speak to the farmer regarding any possible increase in the rental. John Frost has been going around and cutting the grass under the benches and it should be noted that he does this on a voluntary basis and receives no payment for it. Carol Marshall said a whole village garage sale was being held on Sunday 21 September with 30 pitches. It will start at 10am and go on until 1pm.
Parish Clerk’s report. The Clerk said that the Parish Council accounts had been passed by the Government auditors with no comments or alterations. The Standing Order Working Party had finished their work and he would be sending out a copy of the new standing orders for councillors to read as they need to be adopted as soon as possible.
Highways. The Parish Clerk is to follow up with NCC Highways regarding potholes in village.
The Green. The Green Right Proprietors will be holding a meeting on Tuesday 21 October and Steve Milner will be attending on behalf of the Parish Council.

The next meeting of Old Buckenham Parish Council will be on Thursday 2 October in the Village Hall starting at 7.30pm.

Monday, 15 September 2014

Flower Club meeting in Old Buckenham

Breckland Flower and Garden Club

Demonstrating her title 'Could you just', Crystal Dyball entertained over 60 members and guests at September's meeting. Using some unusual containers, her designs contained a wide variety of foliages and beautifully conditioned flowers. From an 'all white' arrangement to a purple and orange design, all were the result of a 'could you just' moment - enter a competition, decorate the church or make a bridal bouquet.
In the monthly competition the winner in the Old Hand class was Alison Walker with the New Hands class, the monthly cup and the table show going to Alison Vivian.
On Saturday 15 November the Club wil be holding a charity event at Bunwell Village Hall between 2pm and 5pm. It will be for Scotty's Little Soldiers - a Norfolk charity supporting children of men and women killed whilst serving in the British Armed Forces. 'Afternoon Tea' will be served together with stalls and a tombola. Items for sale or cakes would be most welcome. Please contact a committee member for further details.
The next meeting will be held at Old Buckenham Village Hall on Thursday 9 October starting at 2pm. Adele Kent will be demonstrator and the competition will be for an 'Exhibit to include a shoe'.
Visitors will be very welcome. Further details can be obtained from Christine on 01953 454528 or Sally on 01953 788712.

Friday, 12 September 2014

Artwork by Old Buckenham High School

Chance to see art produced by pupils
In four weeks time there will be an exhibition of the items produced at Old Buckenham High School for the GCSE examinations. The exhibition will be in All Saints Church on Saturday 11 and Sunday 12 October between 11am and 5pm each day.

There is no charge for admission and cream teas will be available on the Sunday between 2pm and 4pm. Any money raised by donations will go towards the upkeep of All Saints Church.

Sunday, 7 September 2014

Equipment grant for Old Buckenham Village Hall

Handing over the cheque
Before last night's screening of the film 'Inside Llewyn Davis' at Old Buckenham Village Hall there was a little ceremony to perform. New equipment has been installed in the hall to improve the quality of the film projection and this has been made possible by a grant from Breckland Council.
There to hand over the cheque in front of the new drop-down screen was Mark Robinson, Breckland ESM for Communities  shown in the picture along with
Lynn Milner, Chairman of Old Buckenham Village Hall Committee and Adrian Joel, Breckland Councillor for Buckenham Ward.

Now that there is a permanently installed large screen and a quality projector fixed to the existing lighting rig, putting on films and other audio visual items should be much, much easier and effective in future.

Friday, 5 September 2014

September weekends in Old Buckenham

Plenty to do each weekend
No need to wonder what to do with your time on Saturdays and Sundays in Old Buckenham during this month.
Saturday 6 September. Come to the Village Hall and be part of the 'Village Cinema' audience. The film this time is Inside Llewyn Davis and it starts at 7.30pm. You can contact or ring 01953 860866 to buy your tickets (it is cheaper to book in advance).
Sunday 14 September. Again at the Village Hall there will be the annual Produce and Handicraft Show. This is an open show so you can all enter. Over a hundred categories so a very wide range of items you can show - how about a knitted scarf, half a dozen bantam eggs, an orchid plant, a red cabbage or a jar of blackcurrant jam? If you are fifteen or under you might like to make a robot from Lego and children's entries are free. All the details are in the schedule available by ringing 01953 861322.
If you can't manage to enter anything then why not come to the hall at 2.30pm and enjoy looking at all the things on the show benches?
Sunday 21 September. Starting at 10am there will be loads of garage sales throughout the village so you can help with some large scale recycling. There may still be a chance to have a pitch of your own - ring 01953 861480 and leave your contact details.
In the afternoon there will be a Companion Dog Show on the Green outside the Ox and Plough. Registration from 12 noon with judging starting at 2pm. Full details and a schedule by emailing
Saturday 27 September. This will be the last night of the Old Buckenham Players' Murder Mystery evening. The performance of The Death on the Smug Juggler starts at  7.30pm at the  Village Hall. You need to ring 01953 861336 to buy tickets which cost £8 each.
Also on Saturday it will be the first day of the annual garage sale at Karmel on the Green. Raising money for the East Anglian Air Ambulance, this will take place from 8am to 4pm and there will be bargains galore including homemade cakes.
Sunday 28 September. The annual garage sale at Karmel continues for another day, again starting at 8am and going on until 4pm.
Sunday is also the second day of a Balloon Festival at Old Buckenham Airfield so, weather permitting, there may be some flights around early in the morning.

Monday, 1 September 2014

Old Buckenham Women’s Institute

Learning about the Waveney Trust

How long does it take to get a charitable trust off the ground? The speaker at August’s Old Buckenham WI meeting, Geoff Doggett, managed to raise enough enthusiasm and cash to make sure that The Waveney Trust became a successful river conservation charity within two years.
From a meeting in a Harleston pub in March 2012 to managing 668 members and a budget of tens of thousands of pounds in grants and donations two years later has been quite an achievement.
The Waveney Trust aims to provide a programme to improve the River Waveney from source to sea. It works with a range of wildlife groups and agencies to protect the whole river environment. Projects so far have included rubbish clearance, eradicating invasive plant species, raising awareness of the problems of phosphates and farm chemicals leaching into the river courses and livestock pollution.
The redundant Otter Trust buildings at Earsham have been revamped to provide an educational base for the general public to raise awareness of the importance of bio-diversity in the local environment. Eels have been encouraged back by provision of special gates to enable them to access the upper reaches of the Waveney. For the first time in fifty years, rush has been harvested for local craftsmen. And of course the otters, at the top of the food chain in the Waveney, still have their place too.
The next meeting is on Thursday 25 September when members will be treated to 'Patchwork – Show and Tell' by Meg Brown. The meeting will be held in Old Buckenham Village Hall and starts at 7.30pm.

Saturday, 30 August 2014

It's all happening in Old Buckenham

Diary dates for September

Monday 1    Monday Mardle, Church Rooms, 2.15pm to 4.15pm

Tuesday 2    Coffee and chat, Church Rooms, 10.30am to 12 noon

Wednesday 3    Women's Fellowship, Methodist Chapel, 2.30pm

Saturday 6    Village Cinema, Inside Llewyn Davis, Village Hall, 7.30pm

Sunday 7    Wargames Club, Village Hall, 2.30pm to 6pm

Wednesday 10   Luncheon Club Coffee Morning, Village Hall, 10.15am

Thursday 11    Breckland Flower Club, Village Hall, 2pm

Thursday 11    Social and Wine Circle, Church Rooms, 7.45pm

Sunday 14    Harvest Festival, Methodist Chapel, 10.45am

Sunday 14    Askew Agricultural Museum open, 2pm to 5pm

Sunday 14    Old Buckenham Windmill open, 2pm to 5pm

Sunday 14    Village Produce Show, Village Hall, 2.30pm

Monday 15    Monday Mardle, Church Rooms, 2.15pm to 4.15pm

Monday 15    Service at Methodist Chapel, 7.15pm

Wednesday 17    Songs of Praise, Methodist Chapel, 7.30pm

Sunday 21    Garage Sales throughout village starting at 10am

Sunday 21    Dog Show, outside Ox and Plough, entries open 12 noon

Wednesday 24    Luncheon Club outing

Thursday 25    Women's Institute, Village Hall, 7.30pm

Friday 26    OB Players Murder Mystery evening, Village Hall, 7.30pm

Saturday 27    Balloon Festival at Airfield

Saturday 27    Weekend garage sale, Karmel, 8am to 4pm

Saturday 27    OB Players Murder Mystery evening, Village Hall, 7.30pm

Sunday 28    Balloon Festival at Airfield

Sunday 28    Weekend garage sale, Karmel, 8am to 4pm

Thursday, 28 August 2014

Old Buckenham village newsletter for September

Newsletter out and about

Copies of the September issue have now been put around at all the usual places in the village. Many villagers are now have copies delivered along with the Six Villages Newsletter which should also be available at the end of this week.

Tuesday, 26 August 2014

Latest at Old Buckenham Village Cinema

Old Buckenham Village Cinema
will be showing
Inside Llewyn Davis on Saturday 6 September starting at 7.30pm.
This is a special evening in that the Hall will  be using their own audio visual equipment for the first time. Also there will be a cheque from Breckland District Council being presented at the begining of the evening. The cheque is a £2400 contribution to the cost of the new equipment.

The film appears to be a well hidden gem, a comedy/drama written and directed by the Coen brothers (No Country for Old Men).  It has had two Oscar nominations and two Golden Globes. There have been good on line reviews and you can see the trailer
Advance tickets are £4, on the door they will cost you £6. Just call 01953 860866 or email to book your tickets. As usual there will be a bar and refreshments.

Saturday, 23 August 2014

Two Wheel Tuesdays in Old Buckenham

Weekly gatherings of enthusiasts
Ben Delvin of the Ox & Plough in Old Buckenham invites all two wheelers to gather outside his pub on Tuesday evenings. The event has proved very popular with bikers from far and near arriving to show off their machines and to talk with other enthusiasts. There are even a few people who cycle to the pub too.
On the light summer evenings bikes stretch out across Old Buckenham Green and the mobile caterer is kept busy.

It is understood that this coming Tuesday 21 August the pub's neighbour, Rosemary West, has been persuaded to have a ride on the back of one of the machines. She is taking this opportunity to raise money for the local Star Throwers charity so if you want to add your name to the sponsorship list you'll need to pop along on Tuesday evening around 6pm. You can probably get more details by emailing

Friday, 22 August 2014

Quiz coming to Old Buckenham

It will be nice with rice

Monday, 18 August 2014

Old Buckenham's response to school move

Supporting documents
The following text relates to the post yesterday on the Special Parish Council held to decide the Parish Council's position on the proposed move of Chapel Road School to Old Buckenham.
Appendix 1. Comments on planning application.
While Old Buckenham Parish Council approved application y/3/2014/3006, Chapel Road School Relocation, a number of significant areas of concern, errors and omissions were found, see below. This resulted in the listing of a number of conditions that we request the applicants meet.
The proposed development is outside the village boundary; the justification given for this within the Planning Statement is that it is a sustainable development, and that no other sites were available.
With respect to the former, it cannot be described as sustainable as both staff and pupils will be entirely dependent on cars and minibuses as there is little to no public transport in the area. Whilst it is accepted that public transport is not a realistic option for the majority of the pupils, the vast majority of vehicle movements (according to the Transport Statement) will be generated by staff, who have no reason not to use public transport, if it were available.
In relation to the availability of other sites, a list is provided within the Appendices of the Planning Statement, which lists a number of other sites that were considered. A number of these have been discounted solely for the reason that they are outside the settlement boundary, with little or no public transport, and therefore unsustainable. This is exactly the same case for the current location, a point acknowledged in the applicant’s analysis of the current site. It is therefore unclear why this particular site was considered the most suitable.
In summary, the proposed development is located in open countryside, where there is a general presumption against development. Whilst the NPPF introduces a presumption in favour of sustainable development, this development cannot be considered sustainable, primarily due to its reliance on the private vehicle, and is therefore contrary to both the Adopted Development Plan and the NPPF.
One of the primary reasons given for choosing this location for the school the building at this location is the potential for integration with mainstream schools. However, it is unclear the extent to which such integration currently takes place, or is intended to in the future, as no information appears to be provided within the application supporting information.
The Design and Access statement states that public access to the MUGA and other facilities would be through the village hall boundary. The Village Hall has made it clear that this is not an option due to an already oversubscribed car park.
The Transport Statement describes that there is unlikely to be an increase in traffic travelling through Old Buckenham. With up to 80 teachers arriving, a total of 38 minibus movements in and out, and 16 private car movements in and out (134 movements in total at each end of the day) and around 50% going through the village, there will be a significant traffic increase especially considering these movements will take place during peak times.
The Transport Statement describes no safety measures where the access road joins the B1077 at a point where cars could be travelling at 60mph. The document describes an 85th percentile speed of 35mph using the moving observer method, Sample sizes have not been disclosed. Independent measurement reveals a 42mph 85th percentile speed, determined by timing a vehicle over a known distance with a sample size of 50. An 85th percentile speed of 42mph requires a 120m vision splay; the plans show a splay of only 90m on the south side.
Insufficient parking spaces have been provided for staff when pupil numbers reach target. A target of 11% reduction in single occupancy journeys has been set, with no plans on how this will be achieved or what sanctions will be applied if target is not achieved; it therefore a meaningless aim.
The design of the building is poor and is not in keeping with the neighbourhood; the building is extremely large in footprint, and whilst it is accepted that the building form is, in part, dictated by a need to meet certain operational requirements, the architectural treatment makes no attempt to break up the visual mass. The building is poorly articulated, bulky and unattractive. It pays no respect to local architecture, and does nothing to enhance local distinctiveness. It is therefore contrary to both the Adopted Development Plan and the NPPF.
The Statement of Community Involvement (SCI) is inaccurate and misleading. It makes no attempt to summarise the many and varied issues raised by local residents at the consultation event of 17 and 18 June. There was a significant turn-out from villagers at this event, which is not conveyed within the SCI. The key issues debated following NCC’s presentation at this event related primarily to highway safety and traffic.
Old Buckenham does not have public street lights and most importantly does not want them. This development has significant external lighting and if not properly controlled, there is potential for both light and noise pollution.
It would appear that utilities have not been consulted based on the absence of any consultation to the water authority, who also denied knowledge of the development when telephoned, and the electricity companies. The new school will significantly increase the population during the day and we already have areas of the village with low water pressure.
The room adjacencies diagram in the design and access statement refer to expansion of the current building. No details of this proposed expansion are given in the application

Appendix 2
The support of Old Buckenham Parish Council is subject to the following conditions.
Moving the 30 mph limit to include the new entrance to the B1077.
New entrance to be a mini roundabout.
A 20mph temporary speed limit at school start and end times (to include the B1077 to the Memorial, Hargham Road and Abbey Road).
Crossing refuges at the Hargham Road junction and the Memorial junction to be installed
Transport levels have been detailed in the transport statement, therefore movements in and out of the school must be capped at these levels.
The restriction on the new relief road being for the new school only to be lifted as access to the recreation area and to the primary school could relieve traffic and parking pressure significantly.
External lighting is to be switched off by 10pm at the latest. Also the pitch and MUGA be relocated to the paddock area to reduce noise and light pollution.
The barrier position is too close to the B1077. Any delays caused by the barrier will very quickly back traffic to the main road, therefore barriers must be moved to the car park entrance.
The transport statement states that building traffic will not pass through the village. All contractors and suppliers are to commit to taking disciplinary action against drivers who ignore this requirement.

Sunday, 17 August 2014

Old Buckenham Parish Council special meeting

Proposed move of Chapel Road School
These notes are written by the blog editor from the draft minutes of a Special Meeting of Old Buckenham Parish Council held on Thursday 14 August at Old Buckenham Village Hall.
Those present were Steve Milner (chairman), John Frost, Adrian Joel, Derek Smalley, Paul Boggia, Tom Johnson and the parish clerk James Watling (parish clerk). Apologies had been received from Carol Marshall, Sarah Dye, Tim Ing, Jonathan Kemp and Akis Chrisovelides.
There were also 12 members of the public present.
The only matter on the agenda was the proposed move of Chapel Road School to a site in Old Buckenham adjacent to the Village Hall. Steve Milner said the planning application for the new school had now been received by the Parish Council. There had been two opportunities for the public to view all the documents. This special meeting was to decide if the Parish Council wished to support the application or to vote against it. If they voted to support the application, they would need to decide what conditions or restrictions should be forwarded to Norfolk County Council concerning the application. One resident informed the meeting that local notices on the application had not been put up by NCC. The Clerk replied that he had spoken to Neil Campbell of NCC on the matter and he was assured that they would be displayed. Steve Milner then read out eleven points of concern regarding the planning application (see appendix 1) before asking for the councillors views on the points raised. Derek Smalley, Adrian Joel, Paul Boggia and Tom Johnson replied on various matters that they had been asked to look into. Steve Milner then read out a list of conditions (appendix 2) that he said should be put forward by the Parish Council if they voted to support the application and asked members of the public for their views on the application. Residents gave criticism of previous meetings with Norfolk County Council on the application. They also raised the question of emergency exit and access to the school which was not in the application. A small majority of residents were in favour of the application not being approved. Derek Smalley then proposed that the Parish Council object to the application on the basis of the points discussed in appendix 1. This was seconded by Tom Johnson and the vote was 3 for and 3 against the proposal. The Chairman then used his casting vote to vote against the proposal. Paul Boggia then proposed that the Parish Council support the application subject to the conditions discussed in appendix 2 and agreed in the meeting. This was seconded by Adrian Joel with 3 councillors for, 2 against and one abstention, therefore the proposal was carried.

Details of appendix 1 and appendix 2 will be given in a further post on this blog tomorrow.

Saturday, 16 August 2014

Tower repairs in Old Buckenham

Rebuilding work on All Saints Church tower
The building specialists have come all the way from Barrow, set up their own builders' hut in the churchyard and the protective netting is all around the scaffolding.
But on a sunny day it is still very photogenic.

Thursday, 14 August 2014

Housing progress in Old Buckenham

Cotman housing reaches last stages
About a year ago the blog editor started taking photographs of the housing site being developed by the Cotman Housing Association. He always stood at the same place on the edge of Prince Harry's Wood and tried to take the same view to show what progress was taking place.
There has been a lot of banging going on over the last couple of days and the view now consists of tall wooden fencing with some roofing appearing over the top.
So future photos will have to be taken around the front of the site...

October 2013

August 2014

August 2014
August 2014

Tuesday, 12 August 2014

Details of Old Buckenham produce show

Produce Show schedule 2014
This schedule is distributed around the village by putting a copy in the village newsletter. Many people don't remember to keep it so here are copies of the two pages of the document.
Just click on the images to enlarge them to a more readable size.

Sunday, 10 August 2014

Looking at an Old Buckenham garden

College Farm opened for charity today

You work on your garden for ages, knowing that visitors will be looking around and you will be raising funds for St John Ambulance. It is the first time you have done it and everything is ready. Then the weather breaks and sudden downpours and thunder are forecast for opening day. It rains, hard at times all morning  and is not much better when opening time comes at 2pm.
But people still come and cars start to line up in the field. Some locals just walk down the road to see how a garden has progressed from a farmer's field over the last ten years. The sun comes out for a while, then it gets cloudy and thunder starts again which means the teas and cakes do well as people shelter from the rain. Before the closing time at 5pm the sun is out again and it has all seemed worthwhile.

Friday, 8 August 2014

Latest from Old Buckenham WI

Local friends and the National Trust
Old Buckenham WI were pleased to welcome members from New Costessey Evening WI to their July meeting. This link between the two WIs was established about 30 years ago when members went on a WI holiday to Hampshire together. Since then they have met on a biennial basis and it is always good to meet up and exchange ideas.
After supper and a glass of wine, the speaker for the evening was Hazel Gillingham who talked about the life of Octavia Hill, who was born in Wisbech in 1838, the eighth daughter of a prosperous corn merchant and former banker. Although known as a co-founder of the National Trust, Octavia Hill was an energetic campaigner who did much to improve the lot of impoverished city dwellers, especially in London. She was a pioneer of social housing who believed that there were better and more humane ways of arranging accommodation for the poor than through the state. Aided by her friend, John Ruskin, she bought houses and let them to the urban depressed. Octavia Hill provided an early model of social work, did much to preserve urban open spaces and was the first to use the term “green belt”.
September is always a busy month for the village WI – there is a group meeting (when they meet with other WIs in the area) and then there is the very popular Village Produce Show on Sunday 14 September. A copy of the schedule was sent out with the June edition of the village newsletter so search yours out and see if you can enter. They would love to see you (and what you have produced) there at the show in the Village Hall.

Tuesday, 5 August 2014

The Old Buckenham pagoda

Scaffolding can be pretty
Proving a safe platform for the workers to use when repairing the octagonal tower of All Saints Church in Old Buckenham has been a major job. But the skillful scaffolders have provided a structure with a beauty of its own.
Seen in nice weather across the churchyard it provides a different but attractive picture.

It also looks different when floodlit during the night. Last night, as part of the remembrance of the start of the First World War, the floodlighting was switched off between 10pm and 11pm leaving just a single light to shine out over the village. Also at 10pm a single bell tolled out and was rung one hundred times.


Sunday, 3 August 2014

Film festival for Old Buckenham?

Cinema in September and November
The Village Hall will be shortly taking ownership of their own cinema equipment and the first film to be shown will be ‘Inside Llewyn Davis’ on Saturday 6 September. This is a highly-rated comedy drama by the renowned Coen Brothers.
The story follows a week in the life of a young folk singer as he navigates the Greenwich Village folk scene of 1961. Llewyn Davis is at a crossroads. Guitar in tow, huddled against the unforgiving New York winter, he is struggling to make it as a musician against seemingly insurmountable obstacles - some of them of his own making. Living at the mercy of both friends and strangers, Llewyn's misadventures take him from the basket houses of the village to an empty Chicago club - on an odyssey to audition for music mogul Bud Grossman - and back again.
You can watch a trailer at

 For future films, the Village Hall have a wonderful opportunity but it will need a great deal of time investment and so it is necessary to gauge the level of support there is for such an event.
The proposal is that the village have a mini film festival and show some fantastic films from America, Ireland and the continent (subtitled). The aim would be to show three films, one each on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, over a weekend sometime in November. The three films would be (subject to availability):
‘Mood Indigo’ - a French film starring Audrey Tatou.
The surreal and poetic tale of Colin, an idealistic and inventive young man, and Chloé, a young woman who seems like the physical embodiment of the eponymous Duke Ellington tune. Their idyllic marriage is turned on its head when Chloé falls sick with a water lily growing in her lung. To pay for her medical bills in this fantasy version of Paris, Colin must go out to work in a series of increasingly absurd jobs, while around them, their apartment disintegrates and their friends go to pieces.
‘Calvery’ - an Irish film starring Brendan Gleeson and Chris O'Dowd.
Father James is a good priest who is faced with sinister and troubling circumstances brought about by a mysterious member of his parish. Although he continues to comfort his own fragile daughter and reach out to help members of his church with their various scurrilous moral, and often comic, problems, he feels sinister and troubling forces closing in and begins to wonder if he will have the courage to face his own personal Calvary.
‘Chef’ - a US film about a frustrated chef who, after some stormy scenes with restaurateurs, sets up his own mobile restaurant. Chef Carl Casper suddenly quits his job at a prominent Los Angeles restaurant after refusing to compromise his creative integrity for its controlling owner. Finding himself in Miami, he teams up with his ex-wife, his friend and his son to launch a food truck. Taking to the road, Chef Carl goes back to his roots to reignite his passion for the kitchen and zest for life and love.
Because these films are subsidised by the British Film Institute, it would be possible to offer advanced tickets at £3 per film or £6 for all three.

So please let the organisers know as soon as possible if a mini film festival is an event that you would support. Contact Steve and Lynn on 01953 860866 or by emailing

Friday, 1 August 2014

Quiet August in Old Buckenham?

Diary dates for August

Tuesday 5    Coffee and chat, Church Rooms, 10.30am to 12 noon

Wednesday 6    Women's Fellowship, Methodist Chapel, 2.30pm

Sunday 10    Open garden at College Farm, 2pm to 5.30pm

Sunday 10    Askew Agricultural Museum open, 2pm to 5pm

Sunday 10    Old Buckenham Windmill open, 2pm to 5pm

Monday 11    Whist drive, Church Rooms, 2pm

Wednesday 13     Luncheon Club, Village Hall, 10am to 2pm

Thursday 14    Breckland Flower Club, Village Hall, 2pm

Thursday 14    Chapel Road School meeting, Village Hall, 7.30pm

Wednesday 20    Songs of Praise, Methodist Chapel, 7.30pm

Wednesday 27    Luncheon Club, Village Hall, 10am to 2pm

Thursday 28   Women's Institute, Village Hall, 7.30pm

Thursday, 31 July 2014

See plans for proposed Old Buckenham school

Look, read, think and comment
Here are some of the points that have so far been raised concerning the Chapel Road School relocation (planning application y/3/2014/3006).
  • The proposed development falls outside the present village boundary. The justification given for this being that it is a sustainable development and that no other options were available. With respect to the former, it can hardly be described as sustainable as it is totally dependant on cars and minibuses as there is little to no public transport in the area. The latter comment is not substantiated with details of approaches made to land owners.
  • One reason for siting the building at this location is integration with mainstream schools. No details of integration, already happening or planned, is given to justify this statement.
  • The Design and Access statement states that public access to the Multi Use Games Area (muga) and other facilities could be through the village hall boundary. The Village Hall has made it clear that this is not an option because of an already oversubscribed car park.
  • The Transport statement describes that there is unlikely to be an increase in traffic travelling through Old Buckenham. With up to 80 teachers arriving and a total of 38 minibus movements in and out, with around 50% going through the village, there is a significant traffic increase especially considering these movements will already be concentrated into a busy time
  • The Transport Statement also shows no safety measures where the proposed new access road joins the B1077 - at a point where cars could be travelling at 60mph. The document describes an 85th percentile speed of 35mph using the moving observer method but sample sizes have not been disclosed. Independent measurements reveal a 42mph 85th percentile speed (this was determined by timing vehicles over a known distance with a sample size of 50). With a 42mph 85th percentile speed this requires a 120m vision splay. On the south side only a 90m splay has been recommended.
  • Insufficient parking spaces have been provided for staff when pupil numbers reach target. A target of an 11% reduction in single occupancy journeys has been set, with no plans on how this will be achieved or what sanctions will be applied if target is not achieved.
  • The design of the building is not in keeping with other buildings in the neighbourhood.
  • In the community consultation that occurred in June there was strong concern expressed about inadequate infrastructure and the increase in traffic at times that the roads of Old Buckenham are already congested.
  • Old Buckenham does not have public street lights and, most importantly, does not want them. The proposed development has significant external lighting The application does not describe switch off times to limit light pollution.
  • The proposed kitchen garden area is not in a good position in that light from the south side will be shielded by the building.
Remember there is an opportunity to see all the detailed plans in the Memorial Room at the Village Hall tonight between 7.30pm and 9.30pm.
If you cannot get there then the following is the web address that should take you directly to the application where you can look through everything and leave your comments.
Make sure your voice is heard, don’t just leave it to others.

Wednesday, 30 July 2014

Work starts on Old Buckenham church tower

All Saints gets enclosed in scaffolding
There is activity to make access to the church tower at All Saints, Old Buckenham, so that work can start on repairing the flintwork cladding over the rest of the year. Some pieces of the surface had been tending to fall off and make it unsafe to walk nearby. Repairs and repointing will continue for many months.

It may make some interesting photographs but the church will not look its beautiful self for some months to come.

Tuesday, 29 July 2014

August newsletter available in Old Buckenham

A summer read
Copies of the August issue have been taken aroung the village this morning. 
Some of you will be getting a copy delivered with the Six Villages Newsletter which will be put together on Thursday afternoon. Otherwise you can pick up a copy from the shop, church, pubs, clinic, etc.

Monday, 28 July 2014

Fund raising at Karmel in Old Buckenham

Worthy cause to support
The date has been finalised for the now annual weekend garage sale at Karmel on the Green at Old Buckenham (postcode NR17 1RR for satnav users). All the proceeds from this event go to support the East Anglian Air Ambulance.
The sale will be on both Saturday 27 and Sunday 28 September between 8am and 4pm on both days. There will be bric-a-brac, books, homemade cakes, clothes, new items suitable for presents, toys, DVDs, etc.
All donations of items for sale will be gratefully received  by Yvonne and Henry now or nearer the time, they can be contacted on 01953 860011.
(taken at last year's sale)

Saturday, 26 July 2014

Plans of new Old Buckenham school

See plans on Thursday
Steve Milner, chairman of Old Buckenham Parish Council, has arranged  for the full size drawings that are in the planning application for the new Chapel Road School site to be available for all to see in Memorial Room at the Village Hall on Thursday 31 July between 7.30pm and 9.30pm.
If you go to
it is possible to look at all the data for the new school site. You can look at plans or read the details of how local ponds were searched for great crested newts. This is also the place where you can leave your own comments on the scheme before it goes before the planning committee.

The Parish Council has also arranged a meeting about the school in the Village Hall on Thursday 14 August.

Thursday, 24 July 2014

Dog show in Old Buckenham

Top dogs

On Sunday 21 September there will be a Dog Show on Old Buckenham Green in front of the Ox and Plough pub. The Dog Show is being organised in conjunction with Rosedale Funeral Homes who are trying to raise £10,000 for lots of local good causes throughout 2014 which is their 10th year. The funds raised by this dog show will go towards the tower repairs and stained glass window restoration in All Saints Church.
The Companion Dog Show is being held under Kennel Club rules and schedules are available from all Rosedale homes or by emailing Registration will open at 12 noon for judging at 2pm. The Church Rooms will be open for refreshments and it is hoped to have other stalls on the Green.
Sunday 21 September is also the date of the Village Garage sale so there should be lots of visitors in the village – with and without dogs.

Sunday, 20 July 2014

Old Buckenham's village fete

All the fun of the Fair
Despite all the pessimistic forecasts of erratic weather, the annual Old Buckenham fete went ahead yesterday afternoon without a drop of rain falling. There had been thunder rolling around in the very early hours of the morning but preparing the stalls went ahead as usual up until lunchtime.
Everything was set up on the lawn outside the village hall or within the building itself. Visitors started arriving and by 2pm and the stalls were in business. You could buy jam or jewellery, win bottles in the tombola, learn circus skills, get a prize from the human fruit machine, watch some energetic Zumba or cool down in the stocks as wet sponges were thrown at you.
There were refreshments of all sorts from tea and homemade cake, pulled pork rolls, burgers, ice cream and a small beer tent. Inside the hall there were more stalls, photos of the village in earlier days and a display of paintings by a village art group.
Overall a successful afternoon that will have raised money for the Village Hall finances and for all the local groups and organisations that ran their own stalls.

(Remember you can see these photos at a larger size by just clicking on them)
The popularity of paying to throw wet sponges at people increased considerably when the chairman of the parish council took his place in the stocks.
And finally here is the human fruit machine having a well-earned break.