Friday, 21 January 2022

Old Buckenham meeting

 Your thoughts required

Come along to the Village Hall on Saturday 12 February from 10am to help plan a fantastic celebration for the Queen's Platinum Jubilee this summer. Tea and coffee will be supplied to help stimulate those creative ideas.

Thursday, 13 January 2022

Latest news from Old Buckenham

 January Parish Council meeting

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.

Old Buckenham Parish Council met on Thursday 6 January 2022 at Old Buckenham Village Hall. Those present were Councillors Steve Milner (Chair), Adrian Joel, Naomi Bailey, Doug Irons, Mike Farrington and T Cook as well as Rachel Noyes (Clerk), Donna Oakley (RFO) and four members of the public. Andy Nichols had sent his apologies.The minutes of the meeting held on Thursday 2 December 2021 were approved (6 in favour).

Financial matters. Community account balance was currently £32,935.42 which includes £500 from the Village Hall and £500 from the Green Rights Proprietors (wayleave payment). Also received but not yet paid in was £107 from collection tins for the play area. Payments of £1265.10 were approved (6 in favour) which included £648 to Broadland Tree Services for supply and installation of the Christmas tree on the Green.

Matters arising from minutes. Steve Milner thanked Adrian Joel for organising the Christmas Tree and Naomi Bailey for speaking at the switch-on event. It was very well received by residents and looked great. He is waiting for contractor to complete the Recreation Ground fencing soon.

The Clerk said that all Precept Grant applicants had passed on their thanks for approving applications. The Charity tins in the village shop raised £107 towards upkeep of the play area. Many thanks to Lesley Coates for putting the tins in the shop, the shop owners and everyone that donated money.

Steve Askew has asked Highways about gritting Hargham Road in future. While it is a minor road, it is used a lot by school traffic. This cannot be done this season but it is on the list for consideration for next winter. Steve Askew has arranged for a representative from Breckland Council to attend the February meeting to discuss Prince Harry’s Wood. The fly tipping of an oil drum by the bus shelter was reported but had not yet been collected as Breckland Council couldn’t find it! Resurfacing works will take place around the Hargham Road and Fen Street junction from Monday 24 January until Friday 18 Feb. This will cause significant disruption and the Clerk will publicise when more details are known. The Clerk had also been contacted by a resident about speeding and poor driving on Abbey Road. Councillors felt that a 30mph zone for all of Abbey Road was unrealistic. Terry Cook highlighted that there are many roads around the village where speeding is a problem and maybe the issue should be tackled as a whole by meeting with our Elected Member to see what could be done. Councillors agreed that this could be effective and worth a try. Mike Farrington explained that he felt Puddledock Corner is a special case and doesn’t want it lost amongst other issues so would continue to highlight the problem and look for a solution, although still fully supported the idea of looking at speeding around the village collectively.

Doug Irons had contacted Heras about a new buffer for gate at the playg area and was awaiting a reply. Terry Cook had-spoken to a parishioner about Raggs Lane Right Of Way. She is making progress and has been pointed in the right direction. The Parish Council committee do not have a meeting this month. However, he had been contacted by their Chairman regarding the Recreation ground waste bin which the Village Hall cleaner empties. There are increasing levels of household rubbish and dog bags being put in the bin, which is not very nice to empty. The Clerk will create a sign for bin explaining what can be put in it and publicise that it is only for small rubbish. Councillors asked whether a new dog bin was needed in this area and the Clerk to investigate.

Naomi Bailey had met with the headteacher of the High School who would like to get children more involved in village life. It was suggested that the School makes list of ideas to bring forward to the Parish Council. Councillors explained that there has previously been a School Council that liaised with the Parish Council on issues and this could be restarted if there was significant interest.

Mike Farrington had organised a meeting between Puddledock residents with Steve Milner. County Councillor Steve Askew has liaised with Highways to try and arrange a visit. Unfortunately, Highways felt that due to there being a fatality, a visit could only take place after the independent enquiry was completed and provided possible recommendations. Mike Farrington was frustrated that it is taking time to wait for results but will push for a timescale if needed. He wished to thank to Steven Askew for his help and advice on the matter.

The Christmas tree switch-on went well and extra cabling purchased was effective. Thank you to Dave Tranmer at the Ox and Plough for providing the electricity free of charge. Adrian Joel requested that a copy of the Welcome Pack is provided for each Councillor so that they can pass them on as required. The Clerk to get packs printed professionally. The electrician contacted about installing defibrillator has not been in contact and the Clerk is to organise getting another electrician.

Public participation. A resident raised questions about the Green asking “Does ‘Proprietors’ mean they have ownership of the Green?” In this instance, the term Proprietors means they have the right to use the land, but not ownership. Also ”Who has final say on decisions about the Green? The Parish Council is leasing the Green and therefore have final say on decisions and spending. However there is a Working Party, with a budget from the Parish Council, to help manage it on a daily basis.

New planning applications. Walnut Shade, Cake Street. Retrospective alterations to the layout of the annexe and change of use to enable the annexe to be rented out as a separated self-contained unit (3PL/2021/1555/F). Work has already been completed so is retrospective. No complaints or objections from neighbours logged. Terry Cook highlighted that there is very little documentation available so it is difficult to understand the application. There are no detailed plans explaining changes. Due to this issue, Councillors were unable to propose a decision. The Clerk to contact Breckland Council to request more information and raise this problem.

The Almshouses,1-10 Hargham Road. Raising of Ridge Line and Parapet Coping in Association with Proposed Re-Roofing and Removal of Modern Chimney Pots (3PL/2021/1650/LB). Roof needs to replaced. Listed buildings consultants and architects have looked at it and an air space is needed under the roof. Therefore the plan is to raise the roof by 6 inches, while also replacing chimney pots with ones more in keeping with the building. Proposal to accept was approved (6 in favour).

Cuffer Lane. Erection of a new Agricultural Building (3PL/2021/1528/F). This application was initially mistakenly classed as New Buckenham and so there was a delay in being reported to Old Buckenham Parish Council. A New Buckenham resident explained that New Buckenham Parish Council discussed the application and objected to it unanimously. The site is very close to the border between the Parishes of New Buckenham and Old Buckenham and lies near the Tas Valley Way walking route. The field was purchased 2.5 years ago and has seen a dramatic change in that time. The small pond on the site has been excavated to significantly increase its size, which has also destroyed any existing wildlife. There has been storage of equipment on site in a storage unit and large scale burning of waste. None of this activity has been approved through applications or consultations. The application notice was only on display for a week and has now been removed from clear sight. The site lies on Cuffer Lane which is a very small, narrow road which is unsuitable for heavy machinery. As it is difficult to access the site from the north of the village via the narrow road, all traffic has entered through the village of New Buckenham. The roads here are very narrow and often full of parked cars, making access difficult. Cuffer Lane is now primarily used by walkers and cyclists, especially those with children and provides a safe route between the two communities of New Buckenham and Old Buckenham. Issues with the application itself were also highlighted including stating that there are no trees or hedgerow nearby, which is incorrect. The Application contradicts itself as it states there is no water course nearby, but then states that floodwater will go in to existing water course. The site plan also shows the field previously, before changes were made to the pond. Councillors agreed that the field’s location on a narrow road was unsuitable for the large agricultural machinery mentioned in the Design and Access Statement and therefore would not be a suitable location to store goods. The road is more suitable for the many walkers and cyclists that currently use it .A propose to object was approved (6 in favour).

Planning decisions by Breckland. The following applications have now been considered and the applications have been approved:

Old Buckenham Country Park, Doe Lane. Four New Holiday Lodges (3PL/2021/1406/F).

Canem Cave Cottage, 62A Fen Street. Side and Rear extensions and detached garden room (3PL/2021/1482/HOU).

Old Hall, Harlingwood Lane. Replacement dwelling (3PL/2021/1251/F).

Slutshole Lane. Screening opinion for new water pipeline (3SR/2021/0006/SCR).

The following applications have been appealed. Roughlands Farm, Grove Road. Prior Approval for Change of use of Agricultural Building to a Dwelling (permitted development) The Town and Country Planning (General Permitted Development) (England) Order 2015 (as amended) Schedule 2, Part 3, Class Q. Application reference 3PN/2021/0013/UC. Appeal reference: APP/F2605/W/21/3279448. Appeal start date 3 December 2021

Part of Anglian Water Drilling Unit site, Abbey Road. Erection of a 24.46m high radar tower and associated comms cabin (portakabin). Application reference: 3PL/2021/0091/F. Appeal reference APP/F2605/W/21/3280426. Appeal start date 10 December 2021. All information regarding the application and feedback have been passed to Her Majesty’s Inspectorate. Councillors raised the question of whether additional information has been submitted in the application, which is against the Appeal policy. Met Office application seems to suggest that the property next to the proposed site would be the closest to a mast in the country. Clerk to enquire and raise any issues.

Precept. Old Buckenham Primary School and Nursery Families Association have not submitted a new application in time so Grants budget stays at £3606. Grants allowance includes extra £500 on standby for Almshouses Trust, as agreed. Over spent on Play Area this year because of several large issues needing attention. Shouldn’t be so much next year so will keep budget the same. A £500 reserve for Queen’s Jubilee Celebrations to be added. Precept raised for 2022/23 changed to £21,941 which is a decrease of £369 from the previous year. The proposal to accept was approved (6 in favour).

Village Shop parking sign. Currently have a small sign outside village shop stating that cars cannot park for more than 45 minutes. Shop owners wish to install a larger sign as many cars are parked for longer. Parish Council have no objections to a new larger sign but acknowledge that the car parking area is part of the Green and so they cannot stop people parking there. However the Parish Council wishes that people to remain considerate when parking by the shop so that the business is not affected. Proposal to support approved (6 in favour).

Queen’s Jubilee Village meeting. It is planned to hold village meeting to allow parishioners to come along and brainstorm ideas of how to celebrate the Queen’s Jubilee (Thursday 2 to Sunday 5 June). Aiming for a meeting in the Village Hall on Saturday 12 February.

Lease of the Green renewal. Sarah Dye was present to represent the Green Rights Proprietors. She had read the draft version of the Use of the Green Policy that the Parish Council approved last meeting. Happy with it overall as it provides a general overview of situations which can then be assessed on an individual basis by the Parish Council. Queries over whether it covered more permanent features by businesses was shown to be covered in the last bullet point. Sarah Dye signed on behalf of Green Rights Proprietors and Steve Milner signed on behalf of the Parish Council.

Lease of the Green by Parish Council. Lord of the Manor executor has explained that the family wish to withdraw their interest in the Green and therefore not be a co-signature of the Lease Agreement. Initial agreement period of the Parish Council lease expires on Tuesday 29 March 2022 and would need to be renewed by this date. Steve Milner, Terry Cook and Doug Irons are to write a new lease agreement, removing the Lord of the Manor. This can then be approved by Green Rights Proprietors and the Parish Council.

Items for next agenda. Breckland Council representative to attend to discuss Prince Harry’s Wood.

The next Parish Council meeting will be held on Thursday 3 February in Old Buckenham Village Hall and starting at 7.30pm.

Saturday, 8 January 2022

Old Buckenham Mill progress

They have walked around the world

Over the last year, a group of local fundraisers has been walking and running in order to raise money for the restoration of Old Buckenham Windmill - an event called 'Miles for the Mill'. The final total is in, and collectively the fundraisers covered 25,300 miles! The earth’s circumference is 24,900 miles, so they steamed past Old Buckenham and the target by an extra 400 miles. So far, £2,252.89 has been collected through Miles for the Mill fundraising and they are still collecting. If you would like to show your support for the mill restoration, you can donate via the new JustGiving site:

Thank you to each and every one of the fundraisers who took part in this event. In addition to getting out and about during another turbulent year of Covid, every mile walked or run has helped raise funds for the ongoing restoration of our village mill.
It was wonderful to see the first phase of works completed on the mill last year, with grant support from Historic England and the Association for Industrial Archaeology. During that work, essential maintenance to the tower brickwork was completed in addition to woodwork repairs throughout the tower and some of the cap. Planning work for phase two is already underway which will include further work on the cap, including the reinstatement of the fantail which will see the cap moving again to always face into the wind. Phase three should one day see stocks and sails turning in the wind.

Tuesday, 4 January 2022

Flowers in Old Buckenham

 Through the keyhole

Breckland Flower and Garden Club starts this year's meetings on Thursday 13 January in the Village Hall. If you are interested in going along for the first time, visitors are welcome and pay £6 while new membership starts in March/April (£30 for 12 months).

Saturday, 1 January 2022

Old Buckenham 2022 walk

 A good start to the year

The sun was shining when villagers gathered outside the Church Rooms for a New Year's Day Walk. Here are a few photos of the morning's activities

collecting up

posing for a group photo
starting off

stretching out across the Green

coming back well over an hour later

more coming back

hot homemade soups awaiting...

...and being served

enjoying a good talk...

...and meeting new friends

overflow and dog watchers enjoy the sun

It seems approximately 80 people turned out and 60ish returned for soup and rolls. The sum of £230 was raised and will be donated to the Big C and Star Throwers

First Old Buckenham newsletter this year

Printed in time for 2022 

Another five thousand words to flog through if you want to know about raising money for Parkinsons and for the windmill restoration. Also the panto, the annual programme of WI talks and notes on a long parish council meeting.

Best wishes for 2022 from the editor to the readers, the volunteer distributors and the advertisers as well as the hard-working printer.

Thursday, 30 December 2021

Walk in Old Buckenham

 New Years Day Walk update 

The rolls are in the oven, the soup is being made and the weather forecast looks good. For those of you not too hungover, or even if you are it will be a good cure, why not come out and enjoy some fresh air with friends for the NYD Walk? We will leave from outside the Church Rooms at 10.30am. The walk will be approximately 3 miles walking on fields and roads, dogs on leads will be welcome. After the walk you are invited back to the Church Rooms for the homemade  soup and rolls, etc.

We ask for a voluntary donation. Sadly with so many people in the village struggling with cancer, donations will be split between the Big C and Star Throwers. Should you wish to donate, the collection buckets will be in the Church Rooms. Thanks

Sunday, 19 December 2021

Parish Council in Old Buckenham

 Parish council in December 

These notes have been written by the blog editor from the draft minutes so may contain information that is amended at a later date.

Old Buckenham Parish Council met on Thursday 2 December in Old Buckenham Village Hall. Those present were councillors Steve Milner (Chair), Adrian Joel, Naomi Bailey, Doug Irons, Mike Farrington and Terry Cook. An apology for non attendance had been received from Andy Nicholls. Also present were Rachel Noyes (Clerk), County and Breckland councillor Steve Askew as well as three members of the public. The minutes of the meeting held in November were approved (6 in favour). 

Declarations of interests. Naomi Bailey is a member of Families Association of Old Buckenham Primary School and Nursery and Terry Cook is a Governor of Chapel Green School. Both groups have submitted Precept Grant applications to be considered later in the meeting.

Financial matters. The Community account balance now stands at £33,294.30 including an allotment rent of £40. Payments for approval were a total of £809.99 which included rent for use of the village hall, handyman fees and payment of £212.85 to the community car drivers. These were aall approved for payment (6 in favour).

Reports from councillors. Steve Milner said that a Solar Park Community Grant (from PACE) would work out at £36,000 over a 10 year period (£3,600 a year). Several good ideas suggested by councillors included a cycle path and a project at the Windmill. There are plans in the Attleborough SUE to create a cycle route up to Bunn’s Bank. Could use some of the Grant funds to improve path from Bunn’s Bank to Old Buckenham which would allow a safe walking/cycle route into Attleborough from Old Buckenham. The existing footpath could be developed into a bridal way (which allows both cyclists and walkers). An initial quote to surface the 1.8km is between £23,000 and £36,000. Work at the Windmill could be the building of a small heritage centre (with solar panels) to show development of the village from its use of wind energy through to modern day solar energy. This could be useful for the schools and bring visitors to the village. The Windmills Trust would have to be contacted. A further suggestion was the installation of electric car charging points at central village locations, such as shop or village hall. Village Hall Committee are positive about the initial suggestion. The council chairman is to write an initial proposal for PACE.

Councillors had also visited a presentation of the Attleborough SUE at Attleborough Town Hall on Tuesday 30 November. The main issues that were raised by Steve Milner and Adrian Joel were healthcare provision, cycle ways and public transport. It is confirmed that they are building a health centre as part of the development on the corner of Bunn’s Bank but with no timescales yet. There will be a cycle network from the centre of Attleborough to the outskirts of the development. Public transport from Old Buckenham to Attleborough is very poor and Steve Milner suggested to developers that they extend from Bunn’s Bank in to Old Buckenham. Steve has contact details for the Head of Planning and will raise these issues. Land from Old Buckenham will now be part of attenuation pond for new houses development.

A joint Village Hall and Parish Council meeting had taken place. The sum of £1500 owed to Parish Council is currently being paid over a period of time but the Village Hall would like to pay it off in one lump sum to make them debt free. The joint letter with Parish Council distributed in the newsletter was effective as they have gained two new people on Village Hall committee. The Village Hall Committee praised the work of the Parents Group who monitor parking at the Village Hall during school start/finish times. They were also very appreciative for the CCTV that Parish Council funded earlier in the year which has stopped anti-social behaviour in the car park at night. Village Hall are also happy with the Parish Council suggestion for the Recreation Ground fencing, which will hopefully be completed in the New Year.

The Clerk had contacted Highways regarding the speed limit on Fen Street. She was informed that it is an expensive process but there is a Road Safety Community Fund that will be used in Breckland in 2024 for speed limit reviews. Fen Street has been added to the list for consideration for this funding. A wayleave payment of £500 (for the telegraph poles on the Green) has been received from the Green Working Party. More work was scheduled for Church Lane at the beginning of December for two days. A Tree Preservation Order has been served on ten oak trees on Hargham Road around the paddock and current building site.

Concerns were raised that more people may want newsletters, such as those living just outside village. This can be solved by increasing number of copies printed or encouraging residents to pass on copies. Newsletter editor confirmed that they are now printing more copies (to cope with increase in number of residents) and there should still be enough. Could ask residents asked to pass on their copies, once they have read them, by leaving at central village locations such as shop’s new seating area, the pubs, etc.

Naomi Bailey said connectors had been re-fixed on the climbing net in the play area and have found two more connectors that are loose. Working with the Clerk to make list of small parts to order. Also concerned that the Handyman still isn’t strimming around the fencing. The Police have responded about anti social behaviour in bus shelter and will monitor the situation. A recent delivery to the Hargham Road building site caused severe delays to morning school traffic and buses. No unloading should occur on road. There is no footpath yet and no one allowed to live in the first house until footpath is completed. Steve Milner to talk to the developer about this.

Terry Cook reported back that the Village Hall are very positive about growing relationship with Parish Council. They have the researched the technicality of trustees. No members of Village Hall committee are covered by Corporate Public Liability. To overcome this, there needs to be up to three trustees for the Village Hall. As the Parish Council is covered by Personal and Public Liability, this could provide the necessary cover to Village Hall committee members if the Parish Council became a trustee. Village Hall Committee would like to know if Parish Council would become a management trustee of the Village Hall? Steve Milner questioned if you can be a custodial trustee and a management trustee. The Clerk to contact Richard Crawley (Clerk to the Village Hall) and Graham Dye (Treasurer to the Village Hall) about Trustee of Village Hall status.

Doug Irons has continued Neighbourhood Plan research and spoken to NALC for advice. Susan Heinrich at Breckland has a designated area already. Question over whether any money has already been spent as could affect future grants/funding available. Adrian Joel confirmed no money spent on Neighbourhood Plan so far and offered to help with Neighbourhood Plan research and initial stages.

Mike Farrington has attended meeting of Almshouses Trust. They are also having questions and queries about trustees liability and are researching further. Adrian Joel said the Christmas tree has been delivered. The official tree lights switch on would be occurring on Sunday 12 December.

Public participation relating to agenda items. Prince Harry’s Wood was discussed. Many possible options for the area. It could be a lot of work for the Parish Council but could also be developed in to a useful area.

New planning applications. Canem Cave Cottage, 62A Fen Street. Side and Rear extensions and detached garden room (3PL/2021/1482/HOU). Have existing outside buildings. Fen Street residents might be upset about more disruption but no reasons for objection. Proposal to support approved (6 in favour).

Coal Storage Yard Road from Stacksford Lane to Hargham Road. Outline permission for 3 no. Dwellings (3PL/2021/1564/O). Comments made on previous application still stand for this new application: it is outside the village boundary and Grove Road is too dangerous to add more houses and cars to. Highways have not commented on this application yet but said on previous application (for 5 houses) that they would support 3 houses here. Land Contamination Officer stands by comments on previous application, but these are not visible. Lots of official statements are very vague and don’t give clear concrete answers. Proposal to object approved (6 in favour).

Planning decisions by Breckland Council. The following applications have now been considered and the applications have been approved. 26 Oaklands. Proposed Single Storey Front Extension to create Annexe Accommodation (3PL/2021/1348/HOU).

The following applications have now been considered and the applications have been withdrawn. Old Buckenham Country Park, Doe Lane. Erection of Rural workers dwelling including sustainable technologies (3PL/2021/1024/F).

Rosedale, Fen Street. Demolish existing industrial/storage unit and erection of one two-storey house (3PL/2021/1070/F).

Prince Harry’s Wood. County Councillor Steve Askew explained he was contacted about ongoing fly tipping in Prince Harry’s Wood and tried to get it cleared up via Serco with limited success. Questions were then raised about future plans for the area. The wood belongs to Breckland Council but they had little knowledge about the wood and the fact that they owned it. Councillor Askew had spoken to a cabinet member about their future plans and they are happy to transfer it to the Parish at no charge. If the Parish Council is not interested in ownership, they will continue to monitor trees every few years and keep it tidy. A member of Breckland Council is happy to attend a future Parish Council meeting to help explain things in more detail. Many factors for consideration in the decision including maintenance costs and future use of the area. Residents that live near the wood highlighted that some trees would need cutting back or removing. Previously there was evidence of great crested newts in the area, so could be used to support wildlife. Councillor Askew highlighted that if owned by residents then it may lead to parishioners taking more pride and ownership, which may reduce fly tipping, although some occurs through drivers passing through. Decisions on its use for the community can only be made if Parish Council takes it over. Parish Council expressed interest in speaking to Breckland representative in order to gather all necessary information. Councillor Askew will coordinate with Parish Council Clerk and Breckland Council.

Puddledock Corner. A fatal car accident had occurred at Puddledock Corner a few days before this parish council meeting. Mike Farrington lives on this corner and explained that there are frequent accidents, some of which have already resulted in life-changing injuries. Majority of accidents are cars approaching from Attleborough, although occasionally some in opposite direction too. A lot of assumptions are made about the drivers and their speeds but the reality is that experienced drivers also lose control on this bend. A meeting has been organised between the residents of Puddledock for Friday 3 December to look at what could be causing problems and suggestions of possible improvements. They would then like to organise meeting with Parish Council, NCC Highways and Breckland Council. Steve Askew explained that the number of documented accidents will likely to be low as majority of drivers are able to drive off after skidding. This means that there is no written evidence of high numbers of accidents, which doesn’t help support the argument for changes. He will contact the local Highways Engineer about a possible meeting and begin initial discussions. He will keep the Clerk and Mike Farington informed.

Precept Grant Applications. Old Buckenham Cricket Club - £852. Detailed breakdown provided which shows grant is for equipment and staff training. Councillors felt the club was popular with the children of the village and should be supported as it continues to grow. Proposal to support approved (6 in favour).

Robert Cocks Almshouses Trust - £500 to £1000. Grant to be used towards installing new heating systems in the Almhouses. Councillors understood the expense of such a project and also its importance. Propose to give £500 initially and another £500 for next system if needed later in the year. Approved (6 in favour).

Monday Mardle - £100. Used towards running costs and hiring of premises. Also to subsidise occasional trips out. Councillors agreed that it is an important group that helps bring individuals together. Proposal to support approved (6 in favour).

Old Buckenham Village Hall - £703. To help fix various maintenance issues raised during recent health and safety report. Councillors agreed that the Village Hall was an important part of the village that supported many groups across a range of ages and wanted to help support its improvement. Proposal to support approved (6 in favour).

Fawns - £651. Grant to be used for rent of premises and to subsidise specialist activity sessions for the children. Councillors felt that with a large number of young families in the village, the group was important for helping the children and their parents in socialising and developing skills. Proposal to support approved (6 in favour).

Friends of Chapel Green School - £300. Grant to be put towards Fusion Enterprise Scheme to help students prepare meals for the community which will help develop pupils’ confidence, independence and skills before leaving school. Proposal to support approved (5 in favour, 1 abstain).

Families of Old Buckenham Primary School and Nursery - £5000.Grant applied for improving outside areas including play equipment, early years outdoor area and school pond. Councillors felt that the application was for areas of teaching and learning which should be provided by the school and the Sapientia Education Trust. While Councillors understood that schools need support, this would result in ‘double funding’ as teaching and learning at schools are already funded. Propose to defer decision until next meeting in order for application to be reassessed This was approved (5 in favour, 1 abstain).

Use of the Green policy. Steve Milner, Terry Cook and Doug Irons met to draft a policy for the use of the Green by individuals, businesses, events, etc. Thanks to John Fernihough (Green Working Party) for providing a lot of technical background information. Councillors felt the Policy was written in a concise and clear manner which set a parameter and then required six sets of information for each request. Terry Cook explained that some details are already set in the contract of the lease of the Green. Proposal to approve the Policy was agreed (4 in favour, 2 abstain) subject to the condition that any issues raised are passed on by the end of the week.

Plaque location. Commemorative plaque had been received for the community spirit and resilience shown during the Pandemic. Propose to put the plaque near the village shop on a temporary basis due to high footfall there before moving to side of Church Rooms for a permanent setting. The Clerk to consult Church Rooms for approval. Approved (6 in favour).

Allotments Working Party. Adrian Joel has stepped down from Allotments Working Party. Steve Milner offered to take on the role.

Playground quote. Rachel Noyes, Naomi Bailey and Doug Irons have compiled a list of minor parts required for small maintenance issues raised during September inspection by Playdale. Parts and delivery would cost £241.83 (including VAT). Would then require a day’s work by builder to fix various issues at £170. Also the roundabout is increasingly difficult to push and requires Playdale to attend and fix new bearings. Parts, delivery and installation costed at £1,768.74 (including VAT).The VAT will be reclaimed on both quotes at a later date. Proposal to approve both quotes was approved (6 in favour).

Village Shop parking sign. This item deferred until next meeting due to time limitations.

Queen’s Jubilee village meeting. This item deferred until next meeting due to time limitations.

Items for next agenda. These will include Precept payments and the Green Lease renewal/changes.

The date of next Parish Council meeting is Thursday 6 January 2022. It will start at 7.30pm in Old Buckenham Village Hall.


Wednesday, 15 December 2021

Carols in Old Buckenham

 A chance to sing

Old Buckenham Methodist Church will be holding a Carol Service this coming Sunday 19 December starting at 10.45am. All are welcome to come along to the Chapel in Hargham Road and join in.

Thursday, 9 December 2021

Christmas lunch in Old Buckenham

Luncheon Club meet for their Christmas meal

After not being able to meet for ages, the Luncheon Club was back for a proper meal on Wednesday 8 December. Thanks to all the new volunteers coming along and doing the cooking and serving.

Busy mardling...

...and chatting

Starting to serve

Plates filling up

Drinks available too

A full plate...

...soon all eaten

Just some washing up to do.

Tuesday, 7 December 2021

News of Old Buckenham

December newsletter is out and about

Contains news of the carol service in All Saints on Christmas Eve, some festive activities in the Church Rooms on Saturday 11 December, full details of the Parish Council's November  meeting and how  the Parish council's chairman is cycling the length of Route 66 over the next twelve months. Read it from cover to cover to keep up with what is going on.

Monday, 6 December 2021

Old Buckenham New Year's Day activity

New Years Day Walk

For those of you not too hungover, or even if you are it will be a good cure, why not come out and enjoy some fresh air with friends for the NYD Walk? It will leave from outside the Church Rooms at 10.30am. The walk will be approximately 2 to 3 miles walking on fields and roads, dogs on leads will be welcome. After the walk you are invited back to the Church Rooms for homemade soup and rolls, etc.

Normally just a voluntary donation towards the food. Sadly with so many people in the village struggling with cancer, any money raised will go to a local cancer charity.
More details will follow later.
Ready to start on the walk at the start of 2019

Saturday, 4 December 2021

A thank you to Old Buckenham

The village did well

 A special plaque commissioned and produced by the Norfolk Lieutenancy was presented to the village before the parish council meeting on Thursday 2 December. It was to commemorate our community's resilience in the year of the pandemic. It was brought along by Ian Lonsdale who is one of Norfolk's Deputy Lord Lieutenants and was handed over to Terri Hammond as a representative of all those who did so much during the lockdown to help the many villagers in need.

Thursday, 25 November 2021

Library calls at Old Buckenham

 Use the mobile library

The Norfolk mobile library vehicle visits Old Buckenham once every month so why not make use of it? It is not just for old people.

Books borrowed from the mobile library are issued for eight weeks as opposed to three weeks from a “bricks and mortar” library. Books borrowed from any Norfolk library can be returned through dropping in on the mobile library. More importantly library users can request any book from within the Norfolk Library Service online and collect from the mobile library (this request/reservation service is free to under 16s). Simply request a book online and under “Location” select CEN516 which is the Buckenham route number. The requested book will then be on the mobile library as and when it becomes available. 

The next visit will be on Friday 17 December from 10am. Pop in and have a look around. 

Saturday, 20 November 2021

Old Buckenham's Christmas tree

 Lights on the Green

Lots of activity planned for Sunday 12 December.

Thursday, 18 November 2021

Revisiting an Old Buckenham walk

 Local history in comfort

The group at Buckenham Castle

Were you unable to come on the recent Heritage wellbeing walk? Those taking part walked from All Saints church to New Buckenham and back - via the castle and priory site in Abbey Road, St Martin's church and the 'new' castle, hearing about the history of these important places for our local heritage along the way. Perhaps you did come but would like to hear the history again, this time from a comfortable seat with a glass of wine?

Come along at 7.30pm on this Saturday 20 November to Old Buckenham Village Hall for the 'Heritage illustrated talk'. You will be shown pictures of the places that were  visited and will be told a few bits of local history that were not covered fully on the walk. The event is free, and a glass of wine or soft drink, and nibbles, will be provided to enjoy while the talk takes place. 

Donations for the All Saints Restoration fund will be welcome as there is a need to rebuild the funds (much depleted after completion of the re-thatching and the impact of such a long period of church closure on donations) in the expectation of more work being needed to this ancient church in the near future. If you haven't yet picked up a copy of the history guide book these will be available on the night, or you can always pick one up from the church (suggested minimum donation £2).

Looking forward to seeing you on the evening of Saturday 20 November.

Tuesday, 16 November 2021

Old Buckenham's new choir

Why not join in?

There is a newly-formed community choir in Old Buckenham. They are called The Old Buckenham Singers and met together for the first time on Tuesday 9  November in the Church Rooms. They had seven new members join them and had a really lovely evening singing Christmas carols and some Christmas songs. They will of course be singing lots of different  songs in the new year. 

They are a choir that sings for pleasure, fun and well-being regardless of singing ability. They  will be meeting at 7.30pm every Tuesday evening in the Church Rooms and would welcome anyone that loves to sing to come along and join them. For more information please contact Jill Irons via email  or by phone on 07756 233064.

Monday, 15 November 2021

Old Buckenham remembrance

 Yesterday on the Green

At the war memorial

Sunday, 14 November 2021

Old Buckenham Parish Council notes

November Parish Council

These notes have been written by the blog editor from the draft minutes and so may contain information that is amended later.

Old Buckenham Parish Council met on Thursday 4 November in Old Buckenham Village Hall. Those present were Councillors Steve Milner (Chair), Adrian Joel, Naomi Bailey, Doug Irons, Mike Farrington, Terry Cook and Andy Nicholls. There were no apologies. Also attending were Rachel Noyes (Clerk) and eleven members of the public.

The minutes of the October meeting were approved (5 in favour, 1 abstain).

Reports of matters arising from these minutes. Steve Milner reported that he had attempted to clear the two overgrown allotments but struggled. He will use the Parish Council’s strimmer to have another attempt. There is a need to advertise the two remaining vacant allotments. He had not yet had the chance to sort out recreation ground fencing.

The Clerk reminded all that the Precept Grant Application deadline is Saturday 20 November. The flashing 20mph signs (wig-wags) have been installed on Abbey Road as part of the PPS project. A charity tin has been organised by volunteers in the village shop towards the upkeep of the play area. Many thanks from the Parish Council for this gesture and support. A memorial plaque will be presented to the community to commemorate all the efforts during the pandemic. It was suggested to present plaque before the start of the next Parish Council meeting at 7pm on Thursday 2 December. Once the time and date are confirmed with the Deputy Lieutenant, Terri Hammond and the team of volunteers will be invited and the event advertised to the public.

Mike Farrington reported another accident at Puddledock the previous week. Time to re-start a campaign about the danger of the corner, especially during winter weather. There also seem to be diesel spilt on roads occasionally too. Need to coordinate a meeting with NCC Highways about what changes can be made to lower the risk.

Doug Irons had researched structure of Neighbourhood Plans and has made contact with New Buckenham and Breckland Council. Funding may be reduced in future and only appears to be made for a year at a time. Going to need a lot of volunteers within the village to push it forward as it is a community project. Need to publicise to entire village.

Naomi Bailey had spoken to the High School Headteacher, who has been very helpful, about graffiti in the bus shelter. An in-person meeting is scheduled. Also she had contacted local police regarding reports of drugs being used there. The Playground had been inspected and monthly report written. Maintenance work is currently being planned and costed up.

Trevor Cook admitted that Parish Councillors had forgotten to attend a planned joint meeting with the Village Hall management. The rearranged meeting needs to discuss the Parish Council’s role as Custodial Trustee and matters of common interest.

Adrian Joel pointed out that the County Council are taking back the cutting of borders/edging so need to confirm with Breckland if cutting will continue in the village. Also need to elect a Chairman of each working Party so that meetings can be called and organised. Remembrance Sunday Service will take place on Sunday 14 November at 10.45am at the War Memorial. Steve Milner and Naomi Bailey volunteered to lay Parish Council wreath. The Christmas tree is ordered and the lights have all been replaced/repaired. Ox and Plough has organised some music/food/drinks and school choir will also perform. Switch on is at 4pm on Sunday 12 December.

Financial matters. Community account balance is currently £34,883.16. Payments totalling £911.45 were approved (7 in favour) which included nearly £200 to the community car drivers and £250 for the Christmas tree lights. Payment was approved at the last meeting of £500 to ATTCARE.

Public participation relating to agenda items. A resident has met with District Councillor Steve Askew and a Breckland representative to inspect Prince Harry’s Wood. There was still rubbish to be cleared. Breckland Council own this piece of land and the resident requested that Councillors and villagers walk through to have a look themselves to see the state of it and consider what action, if any, might be necessary in future. Further residents raised the issue of speeding on Fen Street, which is mostly National Speed Limit (60mph). The Parish Council explained that there have been many attempts to get it changed to 30mph but with no success. The Clerk is to write to Highways again. The Parish Council also advised that the more comments from residents the better. Steve Milner highlighted that we are unable to use the mobile SAM sign on de-restricted roads, only in 30mph zones.

Planning applications. Old Buckenham Country Park, Doe Lane. Four New Holiday Lodges (3PL/2021/1406/F). Highways are happy and doesn’t appear to cause any issues for neighbours. Proposal to support approved (6 in favour, 1 abstain).

Planning decisions by Breckland Council. The following applications have now been considered and the applications have been approved. Land off Attleborough Road. Ground mounted solar photovoltaic (PV) farm along with continued agricultural use, ancillary infrastructure and security fencing, landscaping provision, ecological enhancements and associated works (3PL/2021/0236/F).

Twitchers Cottage, Stacksford. Retention of a mobile home which is used as an annex for a member of the family (3PL/2021/1333/F).

Old Buckenham Water Treatment Works, Abbey Road. Construction of a pump store at Old Buckenham Water Treatment Works (3PL/2021/1354/F).

Crumb Cottage, Cake Street. First storey extension over existing single storey element and internal reconfiguration (3PL/2021/1290/HOU).

Development Site 605747 291109 Hargham Road. Erection of 4 dwellings and garages - technical details consent following application 3PL/2020/0117/PIP (3PL/2021/0210/TDC).

The following applications have now been considered and the applications have been refused. Coal Storage Yard Road, from Stacksford Lane to Hargham Road. Outline Planning Application for 5 Dwellings (3PL/2021/0500/O).

Old Buckenham Country Park, Doe Lane. New cabin to replace existing poly tunnel for fitness and well-being centre (3PL/2021/0908/F).

Trustee of Old Buckenham Eleemosynary Charity. The Eleemosynary Charity provides support to residents that are facing financial difficulties. Majority of the trustees are Parish Council appointed. A Parish Council trustee has recently stepped down and therefore necessary for the Parish Council to nominate a new councillor to be a trustee. Proposal to nominate Naomi Bailey for the position was approved (6 in favour, 1 abstain).

Temporary Gamekeeper rent. Area in front of the Gamekeeper is part of the Green. As the Gamekeeper is beginning to trade again, the Parish Council need to address the issue of renting this area of the Green, just as other businesses currently do. Councillors have started working on a new policy about renting the Green. This will then allow clear and consistent rules for areas of the Green to be rented, both by businesses and individuals for events. Until this policy is completed, a temporary agreement needs to be written for the Gamekeeper to use this area in front of the premises. Proposal to write a temporary agreement for the Gamekeeper and then create a contract for the use of the Green was approved (7 in favour).

Wildflowers on the Green. The Green Working Party have decided to have a designated area to encourage and diversify wildflowers. The aim is to prepare the area in March 2022 and sow seeds in April. Area is 30 metres by 50 metres (0.2 of a hectare) and will be marked with 4 or 6 fence posts, rather than a full fence. Will be easy to mow around when Green is cut. Aim is that the wildflowers are in an area that will allow them to be seen and enjoyed. Initial thoughts were to plant on the western side of the Green (between Windmill corner and Almshouses) but a resident highlighted that it does get fairly wet there during winter. Suggestion of nearer the traffic lights so that people can easily see them as they walk/drive past. Surveys are frequently completed of existing wildflowers by Green Rights Proprietors and there are equations to calculate the biodiversity gain. Seeds are all native species. Any donations received from public will be put towards costs and remainder paid for from Green Working Party budget.

Village footpaths. Terry Cook has looked at maps with Countryside Officer but there is no record of a permissive path from Puddledock Corner. There may have been one previously but it just was not transferred to the maps. If an individual or group of individuals wishes to check if a Permissive Path was granted in the past they would need to check with the NCC Legal Orders and Registers Team. If an individual wants to make a claim for a footpath to become a Permissive Path then they would need to contact the Legal Orders and Registers Team and would need at least 12 people to sign a document claiming they have walked the footpath for over 20 years. While the Parish Council will not be doing this, Terry Cook is happy to advise. There is still confusion about why the permissive path was recently rescinded. Could enquire with the landowner for their reasons why they have done this.

War Memorial maintenance. Steve Milner and Adrian Joel have inspected War Memorial. Most slabs are solid and stable although a little uneven. Need to ensure any cleaning would not cause any damage to the stone. A parishioner explained that it could be sensitively cleaned without chemicals and would cost an estimated £1500. This would last 4 to 5 years and needed to be done in the Spring. May require scaffolding to reach the highest parts. Parishioner kindly offered to donate half of the money towards its cleaning and the Parish Council will match the donation to cover total cost. Proposal to also put aside £300 a year towards regular maintenance in the future was approved (7 in favour).

Queen’s Jubilee. A village meeting is to be organised to get ideas and plan a village celebration of the Queen’s Jubilee. A second meeting will be required for discussing a Neighbourhood Plan. Need to talk to the local community groups/businesses so they can get their ideas together before the meeting. Also need to look at funding of the celebrations. Steve Milner will bring a proposal to the next Parish Council meeting.

Neighbourhood Plan. Need to advertise for more residents to join the Neighbourhood Plan team. It is a big commitment and requires a large number of residents to support it. While the Parish Council are supporting the Neighbourhood Plan and helping to organise a group, it is a community project. Possibly could pay for a professional to put together a framework which would give clearer information to residents and explain the process. Doug Irons to research consultants/cost/grants/funding.

Items for next agenda. These will include Precept Grants, Queen’s Jubilee celebrations and the Neighbourhood Plan.

The next Parish Council meeting will be held on Thursday 2 December at Old Buckenham Village Hall starting at 7.30pm. There will be a presentation beforehand of a commemorative plaque for the community at 7pm.