Sunday, 26 February 2017

Old Buckenham future events

Looking ahead
Here is an updated list of events that the blog editor has been informed about from April onwards. It is a decent list of individual activities and there are certainly more that could be included so please pass the information on to the editor, via the comment box if you prefer.

Sunday 16 April, Floral displays of lilies in All Saints Church from 11am, refreshments in Church Rooms from 2pm to 4.30pm.

Saturday 29 April, Prize Bingo, Church Rooms, 2pm.

Friday 19 May, New Buckenham Silver Band at Methodist Chapel, 7.30pm.

Saturday 20 May, WI Coffee Morning at 59 Fen Street.

Saturday 27 May, Coffee Morning, Church Rooms, 10am to 12 noon.

Sunday 11 June, Village-wide garage sales plus open gardens.

Saturday 24 June, Church Garden Party, Mill Cottage.

Sunday 25 June, Sunday School Reunion, Methodist Chapel.

Saturday 1 July, WI 50th Birthday Garden Party, Mill Cottage.

Saturday 8 July, Village Fete, Village Hall, 12 noon to 4pm.

Friday 21 to Sunday 23 July, Breckland Flower Club 35th Anniversary Flower Festival at All Saints Church.

Saturday 29 to Sunday 30 July, Old Buckenham Airshow.

Wednesday 23 August, Luncheon Club coffee morning, Village Hall.

Saturday 26 to Monday 28 August, Flower Festival at Methodist Chapel.

Saturday 2 and Sunday 3 September, Cycling weekend.

Sunday 10 September, Produce Show, Village Hall.

Saturday 7 October, Village Quiz, Village Hall, 7.30pm.

Saturday 14 October, concert by Liquorice Allsorts, All Saints Church at 7.30pm.

Sunday 12 November, Remembrance service at Airfield.

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

Old Buckenham's latest school news

Progress at Chapel Green School

The first period back on site since the holiday season has been exceptionally busy. The access road leading to the project has been completed and tarmac has been installed, giving clear uninterrupted access to the main site. This has allowed progress to accelerate at a great pace.
With clear access to the site, they have been importing Type 1 material (crushed aggregate) and laying this across the full area for the building footprint. Following compaction, this gives a solid and clean hardstanding area on which they can then construct the building and will form the base for the ground floor concrete slab.
A lagoon has been excavated to the south east of the site which gives a holding area for all surface water on site, allowing control of both the water that falls from above and water that flows. The contractors have also been working hard to form the main site set up which includes the installation of temporary site accommodation, storage and parking area.
Engagement with the local community is a key part of this project, and during February there have been site tours with students from Old Buckenham Primary School, Old Buckenham High School and Chapel Road School. Children had the opportunity to sit in a digger, carry out some setting out using state of the art equipment and also received an update on the project progression.
Morgan Sindall have also carried out some works to the village hall – repairing potholes to the car park and providing safer access for all.
Finally, the project now has a website for you to stay up to date with everything:

Monday, 20 February 2017

Old Buckenham Village Hall

Have your meetings at the Village Hall

Blog posts during the last couple of weeks have listed two places in our village where you can hold your meetings. Here is one more. Old Buckenham also has a lovely Village Hall for larger functions like wedding receptions, adult and children's parties, film shows, quizzes, etc. It seats 120 people, has a sprung floor for dancing, a well equipped kitchen and a bar. Then there is also the Memorial Hall suitable for smaller functions. All for hire at very competitive rates.
For booking enquiries contact Eileen Oliver at or telephone her on 01953 860664.

Friday, 17 February 2017

Another meeting place in Old Buckenham

A location available for use

On Tuesday 7 February there was a post about Old Buckenham Church Rooms. Another place that might be suitable for your local meetings is the Old Buckenham Methodist Church in Hargham Road. It is available for bookings for meetings, events and activities. It is fully renovated with a kitchen and ample parking. There is a small booking fee to cover costs, though reductions are available to Old Buckenham residents, charities and church groups. To enquire please contact 01953 861207 or email

Wednesday, 15 February 2017

Colourful arrangements in Old Buckenham

Breckland Flower and Garden Club
For the meeting on Thursday 9 February the skies outside Old Buckenham Village Hall threatened snow but all of this was soon forgotten as members sat down to be entertained by Susan Horn with her demonstration titled “Pick a colour, any colour”. For almost two hours Susan charmed the audience with her unique talent for flower arranging, creating nine colourful arrangements whilst sharing an insight into her family life and her love of flower arranging and demonstrating. She used a variety of foliage, most of which can be found in the garden even at this time of the year, adding bright colours with her selection of flowers. These were not large flamboyant blooms but the sort you can buy in the supermarkets. There were of course a few exotic ones for extra effect as she was there to put on a show. Susan concluded her visit by judging the competition before heading back to Chelmsford. The arrangements were all raffled and nine lucky ladies each took one home.
There were eight entries in the competition titled “Love is in the air” and the winner was Alison Vivian with a stunning heart-shaped table arrangement.
The next meeting, at Old Buckenham Village Hall on Thursday 9 March at 2pm, is the Club’s AGM followed by a talk by Chairman Christine Hewson and using slides to look back over the many years of the Club.

If you would like further details please contact Christine on 01953 454528 or Sally on 01953 788712.

Tuesday, 14 February 2017

Old Buckenham Parish Council in February

February Parish Council
These notes have been written by the blog editor from the draft minutes and so may contain information that is amended at a later date.
The meeting was held on Thursday 2 February. Councillors Adrian Joel (Chairman), Terry Cracknell, Ben Devlin, Tom Johnson, Steve Milner and Andy Nicholls were present along with the parish clerk Hilary Clutten. There were apologies for non attendance from Rona Boggia, Sarah Hornbrook and Jonathan Kemp.
Minutes of the January Parish Council Meeting. These were agreed as a true and accurate record of the January meeting.
Matters arising from these minutes. The metal village sign needs sandblasting and then repainting – a quote is to be obtained for the work. An item had been put in the Village Newsletter about the dog mess on the Green. There has been a problem about installing a broadband box on Hargham Road as it was not possible to obtain a wayleave to get an electricity supply. It might be possible to connect it to an electricity pole in a different position. The purchase of the telephone kiosk is in hand. BT need to carry out a consultation exercise before removing the telephone service, then the purchase of the kiosk can be completed. The litter bin purchased by the Clerk has been delivered to the shop and installed.
Public participation on agenda items. It was reported that the road sign on the corner of Abbey Road is in a disgusting state and part of the sign is missing; Clerk will report this to the Highways Department. The Parish Council was urged to be cautious about erecting a mirror as they can be dangerous to road users. The Parish Council was urged to show it appreciation for everything that Ron Brewer does in the village at the Annual Parish Meeting next month. A lady living at Ragmere will be 100 years old in March, the Clerk will arrange for the Parish Council to send hera card.
The Green. A report was given by John Fernihough and Sarah Dye of the first meeting of the Green Management Working Party. A potential lease has been thrashed out which if acceptable to the Parish Council will be presented to the Green Rights Proprietors at their AGM in February and to the Annual Parish Meeting in mid-March. It is a tight timetable to ensure that work can start on the Green to remove the mole hills so that the grass can be cut. More work may need to be done on mole eradication later this year and next year as the problem is prolific at the moment. Three ponds need to be cleaned eventually and potholes filled in which in the course of time will improve the look of the area. There are three dog bins at present but they are not in satisfactory places and possibly four more may be required; the next Green Management Working Party Meeting will discuss locations and cost.
It would be good to have some publicity for the Annual Parish Meeting, such as posters put around the Green. Steve Milner agreed to look into doing this. Also publicity would be useful on the village noticeboard, the Parish Council website, perhaps a press release, an entry on Facebook and the village blog, leaflets in the Ox and Plough and at the next film presentation in the Village Hall. Possibly also a leaflet within the Six Villages Newsletter. Steve Milner will seek volunteers to help him with distributing publicity material.
The public liability insurance for the Green will be covered by the Council’s current insurance so no additional premium will be necessary. The parish councillors were then offered the opportunity to make their own comments on the suggested lease arrangements. Comments ranged from it being immoral to ask people in Old Buckenham to pay for what are effectively the financial responsibilities of the Green Right Proprietors to something has to be done to improve matters as it has gone on too long but to keep in mind getting value for money. The Village Survey responses on the Green last year are indicative of what the residents think about the current situation.
A vote was then taken on whether or not to accept the terms of the draft lease document drawn up by the Green Management Working Party. The Council resolved to accept the terms of the draft lease and it will now be presented to the Green Right Proprietors for agreement at their AGM in February.
Planning applications. Oak Lodge, Fen Street. Single storey extension – the Parish Council had no objections to this application.
The Parish Council had just received pre-application details of a plan to convert an old agricultural building into a residence in Doe Lane – the Parish Council had no issues with this prior application.
Planning decisions received from Breckland Council. Land off Fen Road. Planning refusal for three detached dwellings and garages.
5 Hargham Road. Planning permission for extension to dwelling.
Old Buckenham Airfield, Planning permission for temporary office space.
Whitehands Farm, Stacksford. Planning permission for variation of condition.
9 Old Yard. Planning permission for static caravan as temporary accommodation (retrospective).
Financial matters. The Clerk had circulated a financial report prior to the meeting.
The Clerk had carried out the annual update of the Parish Council’s Risk Assessment and had distributed it before the meeting and the Council resolved to adopt the revised Risk Assessment. The Clerk explained the problems that she had had with getting monthly payslips and had offered to take over the PAYE calculating and reporting for a fee of £10 per month which represents a saving of £5 per month compared to the current external contractor. The Council agreed that the Clerk should take over the PAYE calculating and reporting from April 2017 at a cost of £10 per month. The Information Commissioner’s annual fees would in future be paid by direct debit
Chairman’s report. The Chairman will be away for the next Parish Council meeting and it may be necessary to appoint a chairman for the meeting if the Vice-chair is not present. The tenure of the present Chair will come to an end in May 2017 and a new Chair will have to be appointed.
Breckland Council would be holding a Local Plan Working Party meeting in February and members of the public and parish councillors were invited to attend and make their contributions. The recommendation being put forward for Old Buckenham is that the two additional sites are not suitable, but the proposal to allocate 50 houses without the sites being specified is still on the table. This leaves the village with a great deal of uncertainty and despite several ‘calls for sites’ being made, no suitable land has been offered. The Chair will be asking the Local Plan Working Party to revise the Old Buckenham housing figure downwards.
Attleborough Town Council Highways meeting. Tom Johnson and Terry Cracknell reported that there had recently been a meeting in the Council Chamber in Attleborough Town Hall where about 150 people had attended in a room that would only comfortably seat 80. Another meeting will be called to summarise the views of Breckland Council and Highways Department to improve the Attleborough road network and associated traffic issues.
Attleborough Neighbourhood Plan. Terry Cracknell reported that the plan was in its final stages and it should soon be possible to move forward.
Parish Councillors’ reports. Andy Nicholls reported that the Gamekeeper public house was shown as being under offer to rent on the Enterprise Inns website. The Clerk was asked to contact the local Highways Engineer to thanks him for his recent assistance with highway matters and to report a blocked drain on Crown Road/Ragmere Road as well as outside Down Combe on Attleborough Road. Andy Nicholls also reported that he had a nasty experience on the road whilst walking his dogs as a driver was not paying due care and attention to the road. The community policeman, Andrew London, had been called out and given an excellent service. The Clerk was asked to thank him.The road near Councillor Nicholl’s development site in Harlingwood Lane will be closed for a while for highway improvements to be carried out and it is hoped that any upheaval will be kept to a minimum. Terry Cracknell reported that he had visited the resident on Harlingwood Lane with the local Highways Engineer about the hedge. The house owner has cut back his trees but there is still two feet overhanging the area designated as ‘highway’. The banking by the edge of the road is prone to crumbling and Highways offered to arrange some edging and will also do some road markings. Terry Cracknell reported on the most recent Village Hall Management meeting where a risk assessment has been carried out and fifty-six permits been issued for parking at the Village Hall. The Village Hall is hoping to have further work carried out on the car park using the balance of the Parish Partnership’s Award for 2016/17. The Clerk said that this would need to be paid for by the end of the current financial year and will liaise with the Village Hall Committee.
Terry Cracknell would still like the Parish Council to consider appointing an ‘odd job man’ to do village jobs. Ben Devlin offered to chase up the fence quotation for the Play Area – the Chair said that he would let him have a copy of the quotation. Steve Milner reported that the village would have the SAM sign for the next few weeks but it is not suitable for use on single track roads. Concern about speeding on Doe Lane was raised and Steve Milner reported that he has an app on his mobile phone to measure road speeds which provides good data.
Terry Cracknell reported that litter is being thrown out of vehicles between Attleborough and Old Buckenham, and that asbestos is also being dumped.
Steve Milner has completed the Parish Partnerships grant application. The next film to be shown at the Village Hall will be “A Street Cat Named Bob”.
Road Safety Working Party. The Chair reported that Norfolk County Council has replied to the letter sent by George Foreman MP and that he will be arranging for the Parish Council to get a copy of this response. The Council resolved to amend the description of a ”Traffic Survey” mentioned in the minutes of the November 2016 meeting to “Road Safety Survey” and to pay the invoice received from the contractor for £3256.
Play Area Working Party.The Council resolved to allocate up to £5,000 on the new fencing for the Play Area from the Council’s Play Area reserves. At the beginning of the meeting the Clerk had been handed cheques totalling £800 from Lesley Coates being donations from residents of Old Buckenham and fundraising carried out at the summer fete – this sum to be added to the Play Area reserves. Some steering wheels for the tractor were also provided.
Almshouses Charity. Nomination of a Parish Council trustee for next four years is necessary but as the current appointed trustee was not present it was agreed to leave the item until the next meeting.
Highways matters. The Clerk is awaiting further details about verge cutting from the Highways Department. The subject of roadside mirrors is to be discussed at the next meeting.
Update on Chapel Green School. The Clerk is to contact Rona Boggia on her return to the village to organise a meeting with Norfolk County Council regarding the road crossing. It was also agreed to invite local resident Tim Bornett to the meeting. The School Governors have met with Norfolk County Council but Old Buckenham Parish Council was not invited to the meeting.
Items for the next meeting. These are expected to include the Green, highway verges, Chapel Green School, Doe Lane speed limit, the Annual Parish Meeting, the PC-appointed Trustee to the Almshouses Charity, the Play Area, the Recreation Area and Highways matters.

The next meeting of Old Buckenham Parish Council will be on Thursday 2 March in the Village Hall at 7.30pm.
The Annual Parish Meeting to take place on Friday 17 March in Old Buckenham Village Hall starting at 7.30pm.

Sunday, 12 February 2017

Old Buckenham learns about Jane Austen

Women's Institute's first meeting of 2017
Old Buckenham WI were pleased to welcome Rev Jacqui Horton (the local Methodist minister) to their first meeting of 2017. Jacqui gave a fascinating insight into the life of Jane Austen, who died at the early age of 42 in 1817 (this year is the bi-centenary of her death). The title of the talk was “The Trail of Jane Austen” and the speaker traced the life of this remarkable author from her birth at Steventon (a village in Hampshire) in 1775 until her death in Winchester in 1817. Her father was the vicar of this village and on his retirement she, with her parents and sister, moved to Bath and lived there for four years. After her father’s death in 1805 she and her mother and sister moved around the country until finally settling in the village of Chawton in Hampshire (this house now houses the Jane Austen museum). She had already written in script form the novels of Northanger Abbey, Pride and Prejudice and Sense and Sensibility whilst living at Steventon and the latter two books were published in 1811 and 1813 respectively. Her other books were published posthumously. For the last two years of her life she and her sister lived in Winchester so that she could be near to her doctor and she died there in July 1817. She is buried in Winchester Cathedral and there is a stained glass window in the cathedral dedicated to her memory.
Members were pleased to hear that Alison Frank has now raised over £1,000 through the “Waste Not Want Not” table she organises each month. This money is donated to the Associated Country Women of the World, of which the WI is a founder member, and supports the education and training of women in third world countries.

The next meeting is in the Village Hall on Thursday 23 March starting at 7.30pm. The speaker will be Chris Brown and the subject of his talk is “The Case for the Defence – life as a criminal lawyer”. Old Buckenham WI meets on the fourth Thursday of each month and they are always pleased to welcome new members. 

Saturday, 11 February 2017

Old Buckenham jumble today

Pictures tell the story
No need for many words, these photos show the action from the Church Rooms earlier today. Lots of happy customers went away carrying bags of bargains.

Thursday, 9 February 2017

Rumble in the Old Buckenham jumble

Are you ready for the scrum?
For the bargains of the year come to the jumble sale in the Church Rooms at Old Buckenham on Saturday 11 February. Everything kicks off at 10am so get there to pick up clothes, toys and bric-a-brac. Refreshments too.

Tuesday, 7 February 2017

Using Old Buckenham Church Rooms

Take part in village activities
There are lots of things going on these days in the Church Rooms in Old Buckenham. 
There are new pilates classes (including one for the over 60s) , the weekly Art Group, the Monday Mardle, the Fawns baby and toddler group, bingo sessions, whist drives, the Wine and Social Circle, Cubs, and every Sunday after the service in All Saints there is coffee from about 10.30am. 
It is a great venue for parties or craft courses or training groups. Why not come along and try something new this year? Or book the rooms for your own event. Hire charges start from only £5 per hour. 
Lydia Darrah, 01953 860136 or, can point you in the right direction for details of all of the groups using the hall and is the person to contact for new bookings. There is room for more activities!

Sunday, 5 February 2017

Old Buckenham lilies

All Saints and Easter lilies
On Easter Day each year, All Saints Church in Old Buckenham commemorates the lives of loved ones who have died and they will continue this tradition this year. Flower arrangements in the church at Easter will comprise of lilies, each in memory of departed relatives or friends. If you would like to contribute to this event could you please let Alistair Monnkhouse have your donation before Sunday 2 April together with the name of the person to be remembered. In the event you have not subscribed before please also advise year of birth and date of death. 
It is estimated that each lily will cost in the region of £4 and any additional monies received will go towards a lasting memorial. Last year donations given went towards the purchase of a fifteen set of Nativity figures. If you wish to contribute please send a cheque made out to ‘Old Buckenham PCC’ with details of the deceased to Revd Alistair Monkhouse, Wildwood', Mill Road, Old Buckenham, Norfolk. NR17 1SG

Friday, 3 February 2017

Old Buckenham events throughout 2017

Happening during 2017
Here are the dates of some meetings and events in Old Buckenham that are fixed to happen later this year. There must be many more so if you know of others then please let the village newsletter editor know (via the comment facility on this blog or emailing and he will include the information in future blog posts and in the printed newsletters.
Put the information in your diaries now to make sure that you do not miss them (or arrange other things on the same dates).

Saturday 4 March, Prize Bingo in the Church Rooms, 2pm.

Sunday 16 April, Floral displays of lilies in All Saints Church from 11am, refreshments in Church Rooms from 2pm to 4.30pm.

Saturday 29 April, Prize Bingo, Church Rooms, 2pm.

Saturday 20 May, WI Coffee Morning at 59 Fen Street. 

Saturday 27 May, Coffee Morning, Church Rooms, 10am to 12 noon.

Sunday 11 June, Village-wide garage sales plus open gardens.

Saturday 24 June, Church Garden Party, Mill Cottage. 

Saturday 1 July, WI 50th Birthday Garden Party, Mill Cottage. 

Saturday 8 July, Village Fete, Village Hall, 12 noon to 4pm.

Friday 21 to Sunday 23 July, Breckland Flower Club 35th Anniversary Flower Festival at All Saints Church. 

Saturday 29 to Sunday 30 July, Old Buckenham Airshow.

Wednesday 23 August, Luncheon Club coffee morning, Village Hall.

Saturday 26 to Monday 28 August, Flower Festival at Methodist Chapel.

Saturday 2 and Sunday 3 September, Cycling weekend.

Sunday 10 September, Produce Show, Village Hall.

Saturday 7 October, Village Quiz, Village Hall, 7.30pm

Saturday 14 October, concert by Liquorice Allsorts, All Saints Church  at 7.30pm.

Sunday 12 November, Remembrance service at Airfield.

Wednesday, 1 February 2017

What to do this month in Old Buckenham

Diary dates for February 

Thursday 2   Parish Council, Village Hall, 7.30pm

Sunday 5   Wargames Club, Village Hall, 2.30pm to 6pm

Monday 6    Monday Mardle, Church Rooms, 2.15pm to 4.15pm

Tuesday 7   Coffee and chat, Church Rooms, 10.30am onwards

Wednesday 8   Luncheon Club, Village Hall, 10am to 2pm

Thursday 9   Breckland Flower Club, Village Hall, 2pm

Thursday 9   Social and Wine Circle, Church Rooms, 7.30pm for 7.45pm

Saturday 11   Jumble Sale, Church Rooms, 10am to 12 noon

Monday 13   Whist drive, Church Rooms, 2pm

Friday 17   Visits from Mobile Library during morning

Saturday 18   OB 2000 Trust Ceilidh, Village Hall, 7.30pm

Monday 20    Monday Mardle, Church Rooms, 2.15pm to 4.15pm

Wednesday 22 Luncheon Club, Village Hall, 10am to 2pm

Thursday 23   Women's Institute, Village Hall, 7.30pm

Tuesday, 31 January 2017

Old Buckenham's February newsletter

More village news
Printed copies of the Old Buckenham village newsletter for February 2017 have been spread around at various locations in the village. If you haven't had one put through your door, go and pick one up soon.

Monday, 30 January 2017

Old Buckenham funding for homeless project

Handover at breakfast time
During the latter months of 2016, residents of Old Buckenham in Norfolk had been raising money to help with the building of more accommodation to be used by the St Martins Trust in Norwich to care for those who find themselves homeless.
So early on the morning of Saturday 28 January many of those involved in raising the money found themselves at Route 11 on the outskirts of Attleborough for the ceremonial handing over of the results of their efforts. 
Wally Webb of BBC Radio Norfolk was on hand to do some interviewing and the Bishop of Norwich  (who had done his session of bucket collecting outside a local supermarket in December) spoke about the problems of homelessness.
Three cheques were handed over to Derek Player of St Martins. The major one was for over £29,000 pounds and a further £1004 came from the Old Buckenham 2000 Trust and £477 had been collected at the candlelit carol service at All Saints, Old Buckenham, on Christmas Eve.
The total sum raised was a staggering £31,253.42.
Many thanks are due to the staff of Route 11 for opening up early, hosting the event and providing refreshments.

Posing for the EDP photographer

Sunday, 29 January 2017

Annual meal in Old Buckenham

Senior citizens enjoy their lunch
Old Buckenham Village Hall was full yesterday as the older members of the community sat down for their annual meal provided by a team of volunteers and financed by various fund-raising events during the previous twelve months.
After the roast beef dinner, homemade sweets, drinks galore and cheese and biscuits there was a chance to relax listening to songs from Wymondham singer Carole Lea. This was followed by a short session of bingo, warm mince pies and a choice of tea or coffee.
A pleasant way to spend a Saturday afternoon , all provided by the generous activities of local people.

With special thanks to the cooks

Wednesday, 25 January 2017

Gardening advice in Old Buckenham

Organic gardening
Growing Buddies are volunteers who offer free food growing advice and encouragement to Breckland residents. You can learn to grow your own food and join many local residents who benefit from growing organic food in their garden. To learn more, contact Deborah on
Growing Buddies are volunteers managed by Garden Organic offering food growing advice and support. They don't offer a gardening service. Participation for all involved is free.

Sunday, 22 January 2017

House move in Old Buckenham

Lifted out for repairs
The recent high winds had caused the duck house on the pond by Post Office Terrace to capsize as one of its mooring lines had become detached. This morning the operation took place to turn it up the right way once more.
The job was made more difficult as the structure was surrounded by thick ice. Eventually the house was freed and lifted out on to the bank. A quick examination showed that a few repairs are needed so it was placed in 'dry dock' until this can be done.
A big hole in the ice was all that was left as a reminder of a good morning's work.

Thursday, 19 January 2017

Old Buckenham learns of an exotic garden

Breckland Flower and Garden Club
The speaker for the January meeting of the Breckland Flower and Garden Club in Old Buckenham Village Hall was Andrew Brogan with his talk ‘The Making of an Exotic Garden’. It’s difficult to believe that anyone could create an exotic garden close to our east coast but Andrew had a vision that was very evident throughout his talk. With the aid of slides he had a captive audience as he spoke jokingly of his father who had no interest at all in gardening (but more the appearance of a local drug dealer), his tales of growing up in Notting Hill in the 60s, moving to Suffolk, the obstacles he had encountered, including objections from local residents which resulted in planning issues lasting several months. Things finally ended in his favour and the relief was evident as he told his story.
Andrew has created an exotic garden able to survive the British climate. He doesn’t wrap his plants in fleeces and bubble wrap but chooses and positions his plants carefully. The garden has featured in several gardening magazines and been visited by celebrity gardeners. One, Alan Titchmarsh, gave it the accolade of ITV’s Britain’s Best Garden 2015. You can read more about Andrew’s Exotic Garden on his website
Winner of the competition for an arrangement entitled “Winter texture” was Jean Carnwell. The table show for “Winter Colour” was won by Christine Hewson.
The next meeting is at Old Buckenham Village Hall on Thursday 9 February starting at 2pm with a floral demonstration.There is a £4 entry fee for visitors who are always welcome.
If you would like further details contact Christine on 01953 454528 or Sally on 01953 788712.

Monday, 16 January 2017

Old Buckenham parish council in January

January Parish Council minutes
These notes have been written by the newsletter editor from the draft minutes and so may contain information that is amended at a later date.
At the meeting of Old Buckenham Parish Council held on Thursday 5 January the councillors present were Adrian Joel (chairman)), Terry Cracknell, Sarah Hornbrook, Jonathan Kemp, Tom Johnson, Carol Marshall, Steve Milner and Andy Nicholls as well as the parish clerk Hilary Clutten and county councillor Stephen Askew.
There were six members of the public who attended including John Fernihough and Sarah Dye in relation to the discussions on the Green.
Apologies for absence had been received from councillors Rona Boggia, Ben Devlin and Graham Hart.
The minutes of the meeting held in December 2016 were approved as a true and accurate record of the meeting
Public participation in relation to agenda items. Two members of the public had come to speak about their current planning application to convert a barn into a house at Stacksford House Farm. The access to the site has been moved to a new position where there are better visibility splays. Tree, structural and bat surveys have also been carried out.
There was a complaint about extensive dog mess on the Green. It was agreed to put an item in the village newsletter about this. It is hoped that the situation will improve when the Green is better looked after.
The village sign and the Parish Council’s noticeboard are deteriorating and it was agreed to put these items on the next agenda.
The village shop/post office owners are having a problem with people parking outside the shop at school opening and closing times. As the land involved is public land there is nothing that can be done to deter this.
It was noted that an increasing number of people are bringing dogs in cars to the village for exercise.
It was confirmed that the Parish Council owns the village sign.
It is important for the Parish Council and the Green Right Proprietors to decide on an option to support the upkeep of the Green and to present this to the village. It was also thought that a working party should be set up to look for funding and ideas for fund raising. These things need to happen quickly so that matters can be agreed by the February Parish Council meeting and then presented to the village at the Annual Parish Meeting in March. It was suggested that a working party be set up to look into the future management of the Green with the following make up:
Two Green Right Proprietors, two parish councillors, two independent village residents and the Lord of the Manor. This working party would need to meet soon and make a recommendation to the Parish Council at its next meeting. It was also suggested that a separate group be set up to deal with the conservation issues of the Green and which could then advise the management working party.
The public and parish councillors were invited to make comments.The members of the public present were keen to see the Parish Council take over the management of the Green which would be an asset to the village if properly maintained as well as making it more user-friendly. Most councillors were in favour of taking on the management of the Green regardless of who owned it. It was said that it was not useful to discuss the past wrongs of the situation but to work to sort something out particularly as it appears to be something that the village residents want.
There is a concern about the trees on the Green as some have specific owners who have the right to estovers (necessaries allowed by law to a tenant especially fuel or wood for repairs) and some trees have no owners. The Green Right Proprietors have a map of the trees which they can provide. It was suggested that the estover tree owners should give up their rights. Some of the Green could be managed as an amenity area similar to the area in front of the Ox and Plough and some areas left for conservation. Speaking as Lord of the Manor, Terry Cracknell said that the project has his full support as it had been purchased with a view to providing a village amenity.
The Council then resolved, with one abstention, to set up a Green Management Working Party with the following make-up:
Adrian Joel and Andy Nicholls on behalf of the Parish Council,
Terry Cracknell as Lord of the Manor,
Sarah Dye and one other on behalf of the Green Right Proprietors,
And John Fernihough and Ray Bayfield as independent village residents
It was agreed that the Working Party should meet in about ten days’ time.
The Clerk was asked to arrange to give her comments on the proposed contract.
It was agreed that Ron Brewer should be asked to put something in the February issue of the village newsletter about the management of the Green being discussed at the Annual Parish Meeting in March and that a poster should also be put on the Parish Council’s noticeboard.

General Power of Competence. The Clerk had circulated information on the General Power of Competence (Localism Act 2011) to all the councillors. The Council confirmed, with one abstention, that it now met the criteria to adopt and use the General Power of Competence and resolved to adopt it with one abstention.
County Councillor. Stephen Askew arrived and was invited to speak to the meeting. Referring to the road crossing issue he said it was a case of waiting for the County Council to reply to the letter from George Freeman MP. It was reported that there had been some near misses recently involving vehicles on the road through the village. It is important to get a new site for the 30mph sign as soon as possible. Stephen Askew asked if he could be emailed about this matter. Stephen Askew was also asked by Steve Milner if there was any news about the changes to the recycling sites but there was none.
Planning applications. Barn at Stacksford House Farm, part demolition of existing agricultural building and conversion of remaining barn to dwelling house with new detached garage and access. The Council agreed to support this application with one abstention.
Stacksford village, Stacksford. Removal of condition to not use the existing septic tank and to provide a new treatment for the disposal of water. Council agreed to support this application with one abstention.
Planning permission by Breckland. The Joules, Crown Road. Permission has been granted for change of use of a workshop to an annex.
Local Plan. Two additional sites within Old Buckenham have been submitted to Breckland Council for consideration. One site is on Attleborough Road but, if this site were to be allocated for development, the village would want a safe road crossing point, roundabout and a school dropping off area. 
The other site is behind the area known as the Pound but has no access so is not really an option. In addition the site is huge and development in that location would spoil the view of the Green. It was agreed that Sarah Hornbrook would word a suitable response on the two sites.
Financial matters. The Clerk had circulated a financial report to the councillors and said that since the report was written she had submitted the VAT repayment claim for 2016 and the Charity Return for the same period. The income of the charity was confirmed as £371 and a Charity meeting will be held after the next Parish Council Meeting.
Update on highways matters. It had been determined that a broken pipe was responsible for all the water in Cake Street and the County Council spent about a week rectifying matters. Some potholes and road edging have also been repaired and currently the finger posts are being cleaned. It was reported that there was a problem with water in a ditch on the right of leaving the village from Cake Street towards Dam Brigg.
Steve Milner proposed that the Parish Council purchase a mirror for the Grove Road/Mill Road junction and ask a nearby landowner if it can be mounted on his property. Council agreed to set a budget of £100 to purchase and erect a mirror subject to the Clerk checking on potential liability for accidents and Steve Milner speaking to a nearby landowner.
Sarah Hornbrook and Jonathan Kemp asked for it to be recorded that they had voted against this resolution on safety liability grounds.
The Council discussed the continuing issue with the hedge in Harlingwood Lane and agreed that a councillor should visit the landowner together with a representative from Highways.
Chapel Green School. It was reported that the contractors were making a good job of the road and that work should start on the building in February. There is still a problem with access to Footpath 4 during weekdays and the Clerk is to make further enquiries about resolving this issue. The Village Hall Committee had hoped to use a nearby ditch to help with its car park drainage problem but the ditch has been used by the school contractors for services. Morgan Sindall has agreed to mend a ceiling in the Village Hall in return for using services at the Village Hall and will possibly remove the BMX humps but is unlikely to help with the drainage problem in the car park too. The Clerk was asked to contact the Village Hall Committee to remind them that there was still Parish Partnership money available from NCC for the car park until the end of March 2017.
Broadband update. Work is in progress and some results are likely to be seen by March 2017.
Purchase of the village telephone kiosk. The Clerk had circulated information from BT about purchasing old telephone kiosks. The Council agreed to purchase the BT telephone kiosk near the Green for the sum of £1. The Council also agreed that it preferred BT to continue paying for the electricity supply to the kiosk and would let BT know that it intended to install a defibrillator in due course.
Precept Grant. The Council agreed, with two abstentions, to make an advance payment of £640 to New Buckenham Football Club being its Precept Grant awarded for 2017/18.
Chairman’s report. The Chairman requested that the correspondence folder be circulated more quickly.
District Councillor’s report. Breckland Council is switching to one main customer contact number, 01362 656870, which is expected to make it quicker and more convenient for residents to contact the District Council. Residents and businesses in Breckland are being invited to have their say on the Council’s draft budget for 2017/18. The consultation started on Friday 23 December and will last for one month. To have a say people can visit the Breckland Council website to view the budget and for further details of how to respond. Printing of the Breckland Voice magazine was suspended but money has been found to enable it to be published again twice per annum. To balance its budget Breckland Council is not selling off land but aiming to make better use of it as a partner in a Local Asset Backed Vehicle (LABV). A member of the public drew attention to the fact that a growing number of homeless people from Thetford were ending up in Norwich. Adrian Joel reported that there was a lack of social housing in Thetford.
Neighbourhood Plan. Sarah Hornbrook said that there was nothing to report at present but that a meeting would be held soon.
Attleborough Neighbourhood Plan. Nothing to report at present as the Plan has been handed in and developments are awaited.
Road Safety. Some members of the group had met with George Freeman MP and they were very pleased with the letter he had written to Norfolk County Council in support of a safe road crossing. The Clerk was asked to write a letter of thanks to George Freeman.
Play Area. The Chair reported that the group was awaiting further news from Graham Hart and that grants were being sought towards the cost of the new railings.
Parish Councillors’ reports. The Chair reported that the allotments were much better now and he would advertise for tenants in the village newsletter. It was requested that the Parish Council still pursue the possibility of finding a new site for the allotments. A new litter bin was requested and the Clerk would action using her spending power. There was a report of a dog bin not being emptied. There was a query about an invoice for a ‘traffic survey’ and the Clerk will resolve this at the next meeting.
Sarah Hornbrook had noticed that the Santander Account was still open. Carol Marshall said that a problem had arisen with one of the alleged signatories to the account and the Clerk will investigate.
Correspondence. A letter had been received from Age UK Norfolk seeking financial support. A thank you letter had come from the Village Hall Fete Committee for the Precept grant it is to receive in April
Items for the next meeting. These should include dog bins, the allotment site, Chapel Green School, the Green, Highways, village sign, noticeboard, and road safety invoice.

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

Saturday, 14 January 2017

Past picture of Old Buckenham

As seen on the radio
Back in the early 1980s, BBC Radio Norfolk broadcast a series of programmes under the title of Village Voice. One such visit was to Old Buckenham and the presenter, Wally Webb, went around many of the highlights of the village and interviewed the locals to learn more about them.
The speaker at the January Social and Wine Circle meeting in the Church Rooms was situated in a cassette recorder used to play a tape of the broadcast.

Some of the people on the recording were invited along to the meeting to hear their contributions. Mike Bartlett had been talking about fundraising for the 'new'village hall while Jean Wade gave details of the Womens' Institute.
Other people heard on the tape explained more about the village sign, the doors and windows of All Saints Church, John Askew spoke about growing reed for re-thatching the church roof and Rosemary West on the history of the Green. Other subjects covered were Abbey Farm, Old Buckenham Hall, the local playgroup, Robert Cocks and the Almshouses, Terry Frost and his 'Hovis' house and the history of the windmill.

Thursday, 12 January 2017

Old Buckenham thanks volunteers

Luncheon Club says thank you
Yesterday was the first Luncheon Club meeting of 2017 and also the opportunity to thank all those people who help this activity to continue to take place. It was an extra special meal with roast beef, yorkshire pudding, roast potatoes and several vegetables - all washed down with a glass of wine or appropriate soft drink. And followed by sherry trifle, after-eight mints and coffee.

All those volunteers who collect members from home and take them back again afterwards were invited along to this meal as a special thank you. Bridget Burton also thanked all the other helpers including the main cooks Jean and Barbara, also Annabel, Peggy and Margaret who all just do whatever else needs doing in the kitchen as well as Enid and Carol who are two of the drivers who stay on to help and then end up serving coffee, running the raffle and serving meals.
Then there is Steve who puts out all the tables and chairs and then has to come back to the hall to put them all away. 
The members themselves are so generous with raffle prizes and always put their small change in the box and this year there was enough to pay for the November meal on the outing to Thetford. A kind offer from the Six Villages magazine also paid for the coach on that occasion so all were able to have a free outing. 
Once again an anonymous donor gave their winter heating allowance to the club and this, along with other kind gifts and help with the outings, means that the price of the meals will be able to remain at £3.50 during 2017.

Tuesday, 10 January 2017

Still time for Old Buckenham panto

Oh yes, it's here again

Old Buckenham Players are back with their pantomime offering for 2017. This time it will be 'Aladdin and his Wonderful Lamp' by Ron Hall.
Transporting you back in time to Peking, the brave Aladdin along with his cheeky-chappy brother Wishee Washee and his voluptuous Mother Dame Widow Twankey will set out to avenge the kidnapping of his true love, Princess Lotus Blossom, by the evil Abanazar. He meets loveable and not so loveable characters along the way. Only the Genie of the Lamp's magic can help save the day on their intrepid journey. The riches on offer to the audiences include colourful costumes, eye-catching scenery, special effects and show-stopping musical numbers.
Performances start at 7.30pm on Thursday 19, Friday 20 and Saturday 21 January 2017 with a matinee performance at 2.30pm on the Saturday. It's all taking place at Old Buckenham Village Hall where there'll also be a raffle and a reasonably priced bar serving a range of soft and alcoholic drinks. Tickets are on sale now and cost just £8 for adults or £4 for the under 16s. They can be purchased by calling 01953 861336 or in person from Old Buckenham Village Stores or from the Nuts 'n' Bolts shop in Attleborough.

Sunday, 8 January 2017

Ceilidh in Old Buckenham

Time for a good old knees up

On Saturday 18 February the Old Buckenham 2000 Trust will be hosting a Ceilidh event at the Old Buckenham Village Hall. Doors open at 7.30pm with the Fezziwig Band leading the evening. There will be a bar and food available so come and join us for a good old knees up. Tickets are £7.50 each and are available from Meg Batchelor (860992) or Celia Clarke (860129). 
Please note this is an adult event so over 18s only.

Wednesday, 4 January 2017

Old Buckenham Parish Council in 2017

Visit the meetings
Here are the dates for the meetings of Old Buckenham Parish Council during 2017. All are in the Village Hall and start at 7.30pm.

Thursday 5 January

Thursday2 February

Thursday 2 March

Friday 17 March, Annual Parish Meeting

Thursday 6 April

Thursday 4 May

Thursday 1 June

Thursday 6 July

There is no meeting in August

Thursday 7 September

Thursday 5 October

Thursday 2 November

Thursday 16 November, Precept Meeting

Thursday 7 December

The public are welcome to attend these meetings so why not go along and listen to the councillors’ deliberations?

Monday, 2 January 2017

Getting ready for Old Buckenham jumble sale

Get ready to jumble
It was a hive of activity in 2016
If you are having a post-Christmas sort out, please remember that the Buckenham Pre-school Group are having their annual fund-raising jumble sale (with tombola, cake stall and refreshments on Saturday 11 February. It is being held in the Church Rooms (by All Saints Church), doors open at 10am and buying will go on until 12 noon.
If you have any jumble or bric-a-brac to donate for this event then please contact the Pre-school on 07799 778806.
Anything left unsold at the end of the sale will be collected by the charity UK2ROM where it will be delivered to Romania or used to raise funds for those who need it most.

Sunday, 1 January 2017

Wet walking in Old Buckenham

Out and about for the New Year
Unfortunately New Year's Day didn't dawn like the photo posted earlier today. By mid-morning the rain had set in and probably deterred some of those intending to take part in the village walk that took place regardless of the weather.
People and their dogs were gathering outside the Church Rooms at around 10.30 am and they set off for their three mile walk a little later.

As they walked off  they were passed by the radio car of Radio Norfolk on its Sunday morning Treasure Quest. Clue 3 was hidden on the Christmas tree in the Church Rooms
where it was soon found by 'Big Band' Anna and read out so that everyone listening to the programme could help solve it. This gave a chance for Linda Foulger to explain about our village walk and how it was raising funds for the Alzheimer's UK charity

When the clue was solved it turned out that the next location was to New Buckenham for their 'Hair of the dog' walk which has taken place for many years having first taken place in 1996.
For the next four weeks you can listen to the broadcast of the appropriate Treasure Quest edition on  Start at about 1hr 35 mins in for the local part.
When the Old Buckenham walkers returned they were welcomed by the sight of nice hot home-made soup and the opportunity to sit, talk and dry out from their morning's excursion.

Old Buckenham in 2017

Dawn of a new year

Why not follow the blog throughout 2017?

Friday, 30 December 2016

Starting the year in Old Buckenham

Diary dates for January

Sunday 1   New Year Day walk, from Church Rooms at 10.30am

Tuesday 3   Coffee and chat, Church Rooms, 10.30am onwards

Thursday 5   Parish Council, Village Hall, 7.30pm

Monday 9   Whist drive, Church Rooms, 2pm

Wednesday 11   Luncheon Club, Village Hall, 10am to 2pm

Thursday 12   Breckland Flower Club, Village Hall, 2pm

Thursday 12   Social and Wine Circle, Church Rooms, 7.30pm for 7.45pm

Monday 16   Monday Mardle, Church Rooms, 2.15pm to 4.15pm

Thursday 19   OB Players pantomime 'Aladdin', Village Hall, 7.30pm

Friday 20   OB Players pantomime 'Aladdin', Village Hall, 7.30pm

Friday 20   Visits from mobile library during morning

Saturday 21   OB Players pantomime 'Aladdin', Village Hall, 2.30pm

Saturday 21  OB Players pantomime 'Aladdin', Village Hall, 7.30pm

Monday 23   Planning meeting for 2017 village fete, Village Hall, 7.30pm

Wednesday 25   Luncheon Club, Village Hall, 10am to 2pm

Thursday 26   Women's Institute, Village Hall, 7.30pm

Saturday 28   Senior Citizens' Party, Village Hall, 1pm

Saturday 28   Film 'Absolutely Fabulous', Village Hall, 7.30pm