Saturday, 31 July 2010

What shall we do in August?

Yet another month with plenty going on
Diary dates for August in Old Buckenham
Sunday 1 Wargames club visit to Norwich
Tuesday 3 Coffee and chat, Church Rooms, 10.30am to 12 noon
Wednesday 4 Women's Fellowship, Methodist Chapel, 2.30pm
Wednesday 4 Luncheon Club, Village Hall, 10am to 2pm
Friday 6 Crib Drive, Village Hall, 7.30pm
Saturday 7 'Fly in' at Old Buckenham Airfield
Sunday 8 'Fly in' at Old Buckenham Airfield
Sunday 8 Askew Agricultural Museum, open 2pm to 5pm
Monday 9 Whist drive, Church Rooms, 2pm
Wednesday 11 Request Songs of Praise, Methodist Chapel, 7.30pm
Thursday 12 Breckland Flower and Garden Club, Village Hall, 2pm
Friday 13 'One Stop Bus' outside Village Shop, 10am to 12 noon
Sunday 15 Wargames club, Village Hall, 2.30pm to 6pm
Wednesday 18 Luncheon Club, Village Hall, 10am to 2pm
Tuesday 24 Fete organising meeting, Village Hall, 7.30pm
Thursday 26 Women's Institute, Village Hall, 7.30pm
Monday 26 Monday Mardle, Church Rooms, 2.15pm to 4.15pm
Friday 27 Balloon Festival, Old Buckenham Airfield
Saturday 28 Balloon Festival, Old Buckenham Airfield

Saturday 28 'Fly in' at Old Buckenham Airfield
Sunday 29 Balloon Festival, Old Buckenham Airfield
Sunday 8 'Fly in' at Old Buckenham Airfield
Monday 30 Balloon Festival, Old Buckenham Airfield
Monday 30 Closing date for OB2000T grant applications

Friday, 30 July 2010

Councillors' recent discussions

July parish council meeting
These notes of the parish council meetings are prepared by the editor of the village newsletter and blog from the draft minutes and so may contain information that is amended later at the next month's meeting.
If you wish to read the full, unedited minutes, then they are posted on the notice board outside the village shop prior to the next parish council meeting.
There were eight members of the public at the July meeting of the Old Buckenham Parish Council. Vice-chairman Tim Ing was unable to attend and sent his apologies.
The minutes of the June meeting were signed as a true and accurate record of the meeting.
Matters arising from the minutes. Adrian Joel raised the question of the meeting to be held in the village on Saturday 11 September on the Attleborough expansion proposals. He also asked about the damaged notice board on the Green. Norman Cawston said the matter would be dealt with shortly as he had spoken to the parties involved. Derek Smalley raised the matter of the recent court case between the Green Right Proprietors and the Ox & Plough which dismissed the claim of the Green Rights Proprietors and it was agreed that there would be further discussion later on in the agenda. Stephen Thorley raised the matter of the Dam Brigg junction of B1077 and B1113 as he thought the accidents were because the grass on the edge of the road was too tall and needed to be cut back. There had been another accident there on very recently and the Parish Clerk is to contact the County Council Highways Department on the matter.
Adoption of new councillor. Stephen Thorley proposed that Jonathan Kemp be adopted as a new Parish Councillor. This was seconded by Carol Marshall and agreed unanimously. Jonathan Kemp signed the ‘Acceptance of Office’ form and joined the meeting.
Adoption of new Standing Orders. The Parish Clerk gave a brief overview of the changes to standing orders and the reasons why these changes had been needed. They were agreed with 9 for and 1 abstention.
Allotments. Adrian Joel said he along with Carol Marshall and Derek Smalley had attended a very good meeting on allotments at Sprowston Council. They had visited the allotments there which were not fenced off as each allotment owner was able to pay for their own fencing. There was a water charge to the allotment holders. All matters relating to the allotments were controlled by Sprowston Council. The Old Buckenham allotment working party would be meeting in mid-July when they would visit potential sites and hopefully be in a position to report back to the Parish Council at its September meeting. Stephen Thorley gave details of some funding that may be available for the project.
Newsletter. Derek Smalley said he had spoken to Ron Brewer who was more than happy to put in articles that he submitted in addition to the Parish Council minutes. These articles would be used to keep villagers informed of what was going on. The submissions could be done either monthly, bi-monthly or quarterly dependant on what number of articles were submitted and Derek Smalley was authorised to submit items on subjects that were not being actively discussed by the Parish Council.
Planning applications. Holly Cottage, Ragmere Road. Garage extension. No objections from Parish Council, agreed unanimously.
The Old Dairy Barn, Fen Street. Amendments to previously granted application for conversion of former workshop to dwelling with new garage. No objections from Parish Council, agreed unanimously.
Scales Farm. Revised internal layout, solar panels and external finish. No objections from Parish Council, agreed unanimously.
59 Fen Street. Alteration to garage roof. No objections from Parish Council, agreed unanimously.
44 Hargham Road. Erection of tandem garage. No objections from Parish Council, agreed with 8 for and Jonathan Kemp abstaining as he had an interest in the application.
District Councillor’s report. Adrian Joel said the latest Breckland Settlement Boundaries consultation document is in line with the government’?s policy not to allow garden infills. Breckland are also trying to encourage glass recycling. During the period from Monday 21 June to Thursday 31 March 2011 a prize of £300 will be awarded to the parish which recycles the most glass per household. Breckland Council’s website now has a new free service which reads the website out aloud. The service called ‘Browse Allowed’ aims to make the sites more accessible to those with sight problems.
Parish Councillors’ reports. Stephen Thorley raised the matter of the firewood on the Green as he considered it a possible fire risk. Norman Cawston said he had offered to move it but the Green Right Proprietors said it would be dealt with once nesting birds had left. Norman Cawston agreed to speak again to the Green Rights Proprietors on the matter. Adrian Joel raised the matter of grass around the edge of the Green which is getting high and the Parish Clerk is to arrange with Highways to have it cut. He also raised the matter of the tree by the B1077 on the edge of the pond which was blocking the view and needed cutting back, Norman Cawston would speak to Mike Read on the matter. Carol Marshall said Norfolk County Services have not been cutting the grass properly on the recreation area so she had arranged a meeting with them. There had been a Recreation Area working party meeting in mid-June and they had discussed items that could be erected including full size goal posts. They also want to spend £420 on the goal posts and rounders equipment which would bring the total expenditure to approximately £600. Gerald Norton said that someone from Norfolk County Council was coming to see the state of the Village Hall car park. Derek Smalley raised the matter of the Ragmere Road and Crown Road grass verges needing cutting. He also asked about a footpath at Cake Street but the Parish Clerk said no funding was available. Tom Johnson raised the matter of the benches on the Green and said consideration should be given to cutting the grass around the benches. He also raised the matter of potholes and Parish Clerk informed the meeting of the Norfolk County Council comments on the matter. Norman Cawston said recently police had carried out many days of speed checks on the Green and had caught 137 speeding offenders while other drivers were caught not wearing seatbelts or using mobile phones while driving.
The Green. No report was available as the Parish Council representative was not at the meeting. The Green Rights Proprietors had very recently held a meeting and were considering lodging an appeal to the recent court judgement but were waiting for a transcript of the original hearing before taking it further. Adrian Joel raised the matter of the Parish Council being responsible for some of the costs of such an appeal. He said that three years ago most villagers had said they wanted the Parish Council to manage the Green and that the Parish Council should push for this to happen. He suggested a Green working party be set up and asked the matter be put on the September meeting agenda.
Any other business. Norman Cawston said the seat around the tree on the Green and another further down need painting, Mike Craven Romain said he would be able to help with this.
There will be no meeting of the parish council in August, the next meeting will be on Thursday 2 September in the Village Hall at 7.30pm.

Wednesday, 28 July 2010

Churchyard information

John and Ann Cocks
Following the item about Robert Cocks in the item posted on this blog on Tuesday 20 July it has been pointed out that one of the more prominent graves in All Saints churchyard (on the left as you enter from the Green and with a metal railing around it) is for John and Ann Cocks. The obvious conclusion is that they were the parents of Robert Cocks but this has not been verified.
The information on the memorial is that John Cocks died on 9 April 1825 aged 63. His wife Ann Cocks died on 2 February 1851 aged 85.
Now if it can be confirmed that they are Robert Cocks’ parents and that they lived in Old Buckenham then this may provide more details on where Robert Cocks was born and perhaps his reasons for being such a wonderful benefactor to this village.
Can you help? Just leave any further information by email to

Thank you.

Tuesday, 27 July 2010

August comes early

Next month's newsletter here now
Thanks to our ever helpful printer and co-operative newspaper deliverer, the August issue of the Old Buckenham newsletter is available all around the village. If you haven't got a copy yet, just pop into the village shop, either of the pubs or the Clinic on the Green to pick up a copy.

Monday, 26 July 2010

Household memorabilia

Meeting old friends
Old Buckenham Women’s Institute spent a most enjoyable evening at their July meeting entertaining their friends from New Costessey WI. They get together every year and have done so since 1985 when members met on a WI holiday and enjoyed each others company so much that they decided to meet annually. Although many of the original people have been joined by new members it is good to meet a WI in a different part of the county and exchange ideas.
The July meeting was a fun evening with the Memory Joggers and their Reminiscence Road Show. They had brought lots of memorabilia for members to handle and discuss - how kitchens and household chores have changed since the 1930s and 1940s. Even items from the 1950s seemed so very old.
The evening ended with a delicious supper and thanks go to everyone who had contributed.
The next meeting is on Thursday 26 August when Christine Rook will be talking about all the changes that have occurred in tea drinking with a talk entitled ‘From Tea Bowl to Tea Bag’.

Saturday, 24 July 2010

Raise your glasses

Celebration time
Today was a chance for some of the tenants and trustees of the Old Buckenham almshouses to get together and share the odd glass of Bucks Fizz to celebrate the founding of their almshouses 150 years ago.

Friday, 23 July 2010

Doing a good turn by recycling

Doing our best
The latest textiles collection around the village amounted to a total of 684kg being collected. This was rather less than usual but resulted in the sum of £169.80 being raised and passed over to the Cub Scouts.

Tuesday, 20 July 2010

Robert Cocks, music publisher and local benefactor

Serendipity is wonderful
Today, Tuesday 20 July 2010, it is exactly 150 years since the cornerstone was laid for the almshouses in Old Buckenham. So although the weather was a bit overcast, it seemed a good time for the editor of the village newsletter and village blog to go and take a few photographs of the building as it is today.
Unaware of the significance of the date, John Wagstaff, the Head of Music and Performing Arts Library, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign was staying in Norwich and decided to pay a visit to Old Buckenham to follow up his interest in Robert Cocks. John had earlier written a paper entitled “Type and Hype: Robert Cocks and London Music Publishing” so the opportunity to visit the village where Robert Cocks was born seemed too good to miss. After taking the train to Attleborough he had walked the four miles to the almshouses, arriving by the building to take his photos just as the editor was taking his.
Robert Cocks was a great benefactor to the village of Old Buckenham. Apart from founding the almshouses he was also involved in the building of the infant school on the Green (now a private house) and provided the large stained glass window behind the altar in All Saints Church.
Robert Cocks & Co was one of the principal London music publishing firms of its time. The business was established in 1827 by Robert Cocks and was carried out in Hanover Square for about 21 years before moving to 6 New Burlington Street. In 1868 Robert Cocks took his two sons, Arthur Lincoln Cocks and Stroud Lincoln Cocks into partnership with him. During its existence some 16,000 publications were issued including many worthy works. Robert Cocks did not hide his light under a bushel claiming his firm to be “By Special Appointment Music Publishers to Her Most Gracious Majesty Queen Victoria, His Royal Highness the Prince of Wales and the late Emperor Napoleon III”.
Do you know more about Robert Cocks? Where was he born? Are there any members of his family still living in the area? John Wagstaff would be very interested to find out and is intending to provide the editor with more information that will be published later. Just click on ‘post a Comment’ below and you can leave any details that you have. Or just email to tell us what you know. Thank you.

Money for local organisations

Old Buckenham 2000 Trust grants
The OB2000T Trustees are pleased to announce that further funds have been made available for qualifying projects within the parish of Old Buckenham.
To apply for a 'Grant Application Pack' please send your request by Monday 30 August to the Chairman, OB2000T, 32 Hargham Road, Old Buckenham, NR17 1SL or via email to
Application packs will be sent out after the closing date with instructions and a return date. Any requests received after the closing date will not qualify.

Monday, 19 July 2010

A moving meal

Progressing around the village
Saturday 17 July was the time for the annual Women’s Institute’s Progressive supper around Old Buckenham. Some of the locations were nearer to each other than usual but there was still some walking to do between courses.
Sherry and nibbles were served in one house in Mill Road where everyone gathered together before going off for their starters of pate or melon elsewhere in Mill Road. The main course had been prepared at a house in Attleborough Road so this was a chance to have a gentle walk around the village Green and to work up an appetite. This year the meal had a French theme with a delightful coq au vin being served on tables decorated in the red, white and blue of the French tricolour. Then a stroll back in the evening sunshine for a glorious array of sweets, The WI ladies do make wonderful puddings and there is usually the chance to try more than one if you still have room.
Everyone sat around on what turned out to be a calm and warm evening, talking and sipping their coffees and teas until darkness began to fall and it was time to go home.

Sunday, 18 July 2010

Games back in September

NetGamers closing for August
There will be no meeting of NetGamers during August. The next meeting will be on Friday 10 September.
Netgamers meet on the second Friday of the month from 7pm to 9pm at Old Buckenham Village Hall offering a meeting place for those who want to play computer and board games. They have eight laptop computers linked together with a selection of games for LAN tournaments (including Dawn of War, CoD 4, Battlefield 2) along with a variety of board games. Entrance to the hall and use of the games is free. To play on the computers costs £3 for the evening (space allowing).
There are also soft drinks on sale and a small selection of eats. All profits made go towards new games/computer upkeep. Please note the club is for over 12s only. Non-gamers are also welcome - feel free to use the club for meeting up with friends.
For more information call Paul on 01953 860023, or log on to

Saturday, 17 July 2010

Lunch in the garden

Breckland Flower and Garden Club
Flowers, gardens, good company and a tasty lunch were enjoyed in glorious weather by members and friends of Breckland Flower and Garden Club at their July meeting held in Joy Tunmore's garden.
Wearing buttonholes, everyone strolled round the garden for a plant identification quiz, the sweet pea entries were judged and plants sold.
In the various competitions the ‘Best corsage’ was worn by Sue Blackett, Jane Cannell's sweet peas were placed first and Shirley Betts had the most points in the plant identification quiz.
The next meeting will be held on Thursday 12 August at Old Buckenham Village Hall starting at 2pm when 'The Girls' will be flower arranging from 'What's in the box?'
The competition that day will be for an arrangement in a box and the table show is for 'three stems of hot colour from the border'.
Visitors are always very welcome. Further details from Pat on 01953 457305 or Sally on 01953 788712.

Friday, 16 July 2010

Black bus arrives in Old Buckenham

A new vehicle on the Green
In partnership with Poultec Training, Breckland District Council have launched a new mobile service to bring access to services out into local communities. The black bus is equipped with the latest satellite technology so you can get exactly the same access to services as callers to the main Council customer service centres.
At the One Stop Bus you can get advice, support and information about Breckland services. This may be about council tax or benefits - or you may want to book a bulk collection or report a missed refuse collection. "Service Connectors" will be available on the bus when it calls in to Old Buckenham each month and they are there to help all those customers calling in to see them. The bus will be making a number of regular stops around the district and should be in Old Buckenham again on Friday 13 August.

Thursday, 15 July 2010

Mardling the evening away

Cheese and Wine evening
The promised rain did not come and over a hundred people came along to Barbara and John Frost’s garden in Mill Road, Old Buckenham, last night for a cheese and wine evening. The aim was to raise funds for the upkeep of All Saints Church and the visitors spent freely on the tombola, plant sales, bric-a-brac stall and raffle to raise the wonderful sum of £725. There were plenty of attractive flower beds and a productive vegetable plot to see and admire as well as the opportunity to mardle the evening away with people from Old Buckenham and the surrounding area.
Thanks are due to all those who helped Barbara and John with this event by supplying chairs to sit on, providing prizes to raffle, manning the stalls and pouring out endless glasses of wine.

Wednesday, 14 July 2010

Looking for bone crushers

Interested in Wargames?
Now in its sixth year, the Old Buckenham Bone Crushers Wargames Club meet at Old Buckenham Village Hall, usually on the first and third Sundays of the month. The club currently has over 20 members with ages ranging from 12 to over 40 but are always on the look out for new members, young or not so young.
Games consist of mainly Warhammer and 40k battles along with the odd Zombie game. They are also currently running a Blood Bowl and 40k tournament and are in the process of organising a coach trip to Eastern Front Wargames in Norwich on Sunday 1 August.
There is an age limit of 12, those under 12 must be accompanied by a parent. Cost is £2 for members (£3.50 non-members), there are snacks available. First visit is free. Membership is currently £5 per year. Email or call Paul on 01953 860023.
Meetings start at 2.30pm with a 5pm finish for the under 14s and a 6pm finish for those 14 and over.
For more information log on to

Monday, 12 July 2010

Sowing the first seeds

An Allotment Society
A meeting was held at the Church Rooms on Saturday 26 June to set up the Old Buckenham Allotment Society. Eighteen people attended and it was agreed that Tim Bornett would chair this inaugural meeting.
It was formally agreed to establish an Old Buckenham Allotment Society and discussion took place on its function and its purpose.
The Society is to be open to all individuals who live in the parish or immediate neighbourhood and who have an interest in allotments or wish to obtain a plot in the future. Some basic rules were adopted after further discussion and debate. As the proposed constitution would allow the rules to be amended if at least half of all members agreed, it was decided to adopt a ‘wait and see’ approach to any rule changes.
The following were elected as officers. Tim Bornett would be chairman, Keith Hodgson secretary and Tom North treasurer.
The meeting agreed to seek affiliation to the National Allotment and Leisure Society and the secretary would write to the Parish Council informing them of the formation of the society.
There was general debate on the provision of allotments in the Parish and it was agreed to write to the Parish Council asking for their working party on allotments to meet more often and provide feedback. Decisions on who would run the allotments would await model rules from the National Allotment and Leisure Society and an agreement with the Parish Council. A person wanting an allotment does not necessarily have to belong to Old Buckenham Allotment Society. Some two acres of land would be needed to provide up to 18 plots and there was discussion on the suitability of possible sites including the provision of water and access to the plots.
It was agreed that members would pay £5 as a joining fee and that the treasurer would collect this at the next meeting which would be held on Monday 12 July.

Sunday, 11 July 2010

Ducks at the playground

Just like the photo

Friday, 9 July 2010

Circumzenithal arc above Old Buckenham

Smiles on everyone's faces
Old Buckenham Social and Wine Circle had its annual al fresco evening last night in a member's garden. Both the garden and the weather were beautiful and, despite most people enjoying a little wine and refreshments, it provided the opportunity to see a rare circumzenithal arc in the evening sky. The photo above does not give justice to seeing the real thing.

Unusual atmospheric conditions rarely seen outside the polar regions are credited with causing the formation of an "upside down rainbow". Normal rainbows are made when light penetrates raindrops and re-emerges out the other side in the same direction but the inverted types, known as circumzenithal arcs, are caused when sunlight bounces off ice crystals high in the atmosphere, sending the light rays back up.
The "smiley faces in the sky" need extremely specific conditions not usually found above Britain.

Tuesday, 6 July 2010

All the show details

The full schedule
Here are details of all the classes in the Old Buckenham Open Produce and Handicraft Show on Sunday 12 September 2010. It is an open show so entries will be welcomed from anyone willing to come along on the day with their exhibits.

Just click on the images to enlarge them to a more readable size.

Saturday, 3 July 2010

Food raising funds

Have a cream tea
The date for cream teas to raise funds for the Senior Citizens’ party is Saturday 10 July. Come along to 26 Hargham Road between 3pm to 5pm and you can also enjoy the cake stall, white elephant items and a raffle. Any contributions of raffle prizes, etc, will be gratefully received beforehand by Eileen and Brian.

Friday, 2 July 2010

Remembering Tony Freake

A pilgrimage to Phortse
Sheila Freake of Old Buckenham recently made an emotional trip back to Nepal and has kindly written this report of her visit.
When my husband Tony passed away last December, the news spread very quickly thanks to emails and within a matter of hours had reached Phortse, the village in the Himalayas that he had been helping for over 20 years. The villagers were devastated and held a Puja (prayers) in the village Buddhist monastery or Gompa as it is known locally. The building of this Gompa was one of the early projects supervised by Tony.
It was not long before the Phortse people had decided to build a Chorten (memorial) in memory of ‘Papa Tony’. Then we learnt of plans to build a statue. When I heard about this I felt the need to visit the village again.
My son, Andrew, and daughter, Julie, agreed to accompany me as well as a very good friend Margaret Taylor from Kendal. Margaret has been to Nepal many times as she and her husband George have led several groups to Nepal since Tony’s knees became a problem and prevented him from taking on long treks.
Arrangements were made and we set off for Kathmandu on Thursday 20 May. Having buried half of Tony’s ashes in the burial ground in Old Buckenham I took the remainder with me to leave in Nepal.
Getting to the village entails a 35 minute flight, over very hilly country, in a Twin Otter plane carrying about 15 people. The landing strip at Lukla is quite small with high mountains close behind. Cloud at Lukla caused a brief delay but we were soon on our way and landed safely at Lukla at 2,800m. The rest of the journey to the village is a three-day walk. We stayed two nights at Namche Bazaar (3,400m), the main village of the region, in order to acclimatise. From Namche to Phortse the path climbs to 4,000m, then drops down to the Dudh Kosi river and finally climbs to the village at 3,800m.
We were met by villagers who bedecked us with Khartas (silk scarves of welcome) and a doorway draped with the greeting ‘Welcome Mama Sheila and Family’. Phortse Guest House was our home for our three-night stay in the village. This is owned by PaNuru and Passang Diki, the couple who stayed with us in Old Buckenham in 2007. PaNuru has climbed Everest several times.
At the end of May the Buddha’s birthday is celebrated and several monks came over from Tengboche (the main monastery in the area) to stay in the village for a few days.
So came the day to unveil the statue of Tony and to place some of his ashes into the Chorten. The Gompa stands above the village and we made our way slowly uphill. We could hear the cymbals and horns played by the monks as we approached. There was another welcome banner at the gate and we entered the Dewang (courtyard) of the Gompa. I was invited to cut the red ribbon and then pull aside the curtain concealing the head and shoulder statue of Tony, with a plaque listing all the projects he had been involved with over 20 years. I was then asked to light three butter lamps - not easy as there was quite a strong breeze. After this I had just a few words for the villagers.
‘Papa Tony loved this village and the people who live here. He has given you a good start. Please build on it. This will be the best way to remember him.’
Then we proceeded together with the monks to outside the courtyard and gathered at the Chorten. A cavity had been made into which I placed a small container filled with some of Tony’s ashes. The monks chanted, we threw rice and then Andrew and I each read one of the passages we had used at Tony’s funeral service in Old Buckenham. The remaining ashes were to be put into small Chortens made by the monks and then placed into caves high above the village.
It was a fairly short ceremony but I think Tony would be very happy with the proceedings.
We stayed one more day in the village visiting the school, the library and the power house. Then it was over to Tengboche before making our way back to Namche, Lukla and Kathmandu.
The donations given in memory of Tony will be used to help three girls from the village complete their education in Kathmandu. Hopefully at least one will return to teach in the village school. Any remaining money will be used for the maintenance of the Gompa.