Monday, 30 November 2009

Parish Council report

November Parish Council
These notes of the parish council meetings are prepared by the editor of the village newsletter 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.
Councillors present were Norman Cawston (Chairman), Tim Ing (Vice-chairman), Mike Craven-Romain, Trevor Crook, Adrian Joel, Carol Marshall, Gerald Norton, Kerry Talbot, Liz Taylor and James Watling (Parish Clerk).
Apologies were received from Stephen Thorley and there were six members of the public also present.
Matters arising from the October minutes. Adrian Joel asked if final details had been received from Trell & Co regarding the footpath costs. The Parish Clerk said he had a final invoice from Trell and this had been paid in full and according to Trell & Co the Parish Council had no further liabilities. Adrian Joel then raised the matter of the drainage works along Crown Road. Councillors expressed their views and raised points on the matter. It was finally agreed that the whole matter needed further discussion and it was agreed to discuss the matter in the public recess section of the meeting.
Adrian Joel said that the figure given as the church donation of £600 was incorrect, the actual donation amount from the Church was £840.14. The Parish Clerk will write to the Church and thank them for the donation.
Minutes of the Precept meeting in October. These were signed as a true and accurate record of the meeting.
Matters arising from Precept minutes. Adrian Joel said he had been asked by Stephen Thorley to raise the matter of Council Fund Balance at year end. According to the September Bank Reconciliation it was stated that £14,000 would be Fund Balance yet the Parish Clerk said at Precept Meeting it would be £11,000. The Parish Clerk said the Parish Council may wish to allocate further Specific Reserves before the end of the year to reduce Fund Balance.
The Green. Tim Ing had attended the Green Rights Meeting and the Probation Service is going to arrange manpower for the tidying up of the Green. Tim Ing stated that the Green is in the best condition it has been for years. The ditches at the Gamekeeper have been drained and the water runs freely now. There are possible problems further down the line and it was suggested that the residents concerned with the problem sort the matter out between themselves. It was also pointed out that the Ox and Plough had not paid for their benches to be sited on the Green for the past two years. The AGM of the Green Rights Committee is on Tuesday 23 February. Tim Ing also reported that the Old Buckenham 2000 Trust had awarded the Parish Council a grant of £380 for two benches for the Green. He had put forward possible sites for the benches at the meeting and no objections to his suggestions were raised.
Planning. There were no applications to discuss and no planning decisions notified.
District Councillor’s report. Adrian Joel informed the meeting that Attleborough Town Council had asked Breckland to look at car parking charging in the town. A meeting has been arranged and presentations had been made by interested parties and the public had spoken on the matter. The UEA are to do a survey on car park usage and a further meeting was to be held in mid-November at Attleborough Town Hall. Cotman Housing Association’s bid for funding had not been successful but another bid could be submitted in the next couple of weeks. The Association is hoping to be successful and to be able to start the new units in the New Year. Breckland have launched a web site where people on the housing list are now able to see what houses are available and can express their interest in the property. An application has been made by Old Buckenham Cricket Club to Breckland for a match funding grant of £3,000 towards new double nets. Also a welcome home parade will take place on Friday 4 December for the Light Dragoons in Dereham where 200 soldiers of the Regiment will take part accompanied by the Parachute Regiment Band. The parade starts at 11am.
Parish Councillors’ reports. Adrian Joel had received a letter from BT offering the Parish Council the opportunity to adopt the red telephone kiosk in the village once the telephone is removed. The item is to be put on the December meeting agenda. Gerald Norton informed the meeting that the Village Hall Committee had met and intended to start the kitchen refurbishment in February. The question of the car park of the village hall was raised as it is getting the worse for wear. The Parish Clerk to write to Norfolk County Council and see if they are prepared to pay towards the repair as parents using the school use the car park to drop off their children. Carol Marshall said the Old Buckenham 2000 Trust had given a grant of £1,000 to the recreation area for six picnic tables and towards fencing. Kerry Talbot informed the meeting that the Just Play project was still awaiting decision from Community Spaces. They had also had a meeting with Playdale who will put into place the final drawings for the project. The area itself had been levelled and large boulders removed and she thanked all the volunteers who had helped in the clearing of the area despite having to work in torrential rain. She also expressed thanks to Miah Tonkin, John Frost, Norman Cawston and Stephen Askew who all gave up time to make the area ready for seeding.
Clerk’s report. The Parish Clerk said he would produce a Health & Safety policy document for the Parish Council and hoped it would be ready for adoption at the January meeting.
Highways. Kerry Talbot said the speed limit signs on Crown Road were round the wrong way. Also that on the flashing speed signs on the approaches from both Attleborough and New Buckenham, the 30 flashing speed sign does not work. The Parish Clerk to contact Highways on the matter.
The next meeting of Old Buckenham Parish Council will be on Thursday 3 December in the Village Hall starting at 7.30pm.

Saturday, 28 November 2009

Have a busy December

Diary dates for December

Tuesday 1 Coffee and chat, Church Rooms, 10.30am to 12 noon
Wednesday 2 Women's Fellowship, Methodist Chapel, 2.30pm
Thursday 3 Parish Council, Village Hall, 7.30pm
Thursday 3 New Buckenham Silver Band, Methodist Chapel, 7.30pm
Friday 4 Crib Drive, Village Hall, 7.30pm
Sunday 6 Wargames club, Village Hall, 2.30pm to 6pm
Sunday 6 The Big Square Draw, Church Rooms, from 4pm
Monday 7 'Fit together' walk, starts from All Saints Church, 10.30am
Monday 7 Monday Mardle, Church Rooms, 2.15pm to 4.15pm
Monday 7 Scout Gang Show, Village Hall, 6.15pm
Tuesday 8 Ladies Fellowship, Church Rooms, 2pm
Wednesday 9 Luncheon Club, Village Hall, 10am to 2pm
Thursday 10 Breckland Flower and Garden Club, Village Hall, 2pm
Thursday 10 Social and Wine Circle, Church Rooms, 7.45pm
Friday 11 Women's Institute, Village Hall, 7.30pm
Monday 14 Whist drive, Church Rooms, 2pm
Wednesday 16 Request Songs of Praise, Methodist Chapel, 7.30pm
Friday 18 Mobile Police Station outside village shop, 9am to 10.30am
Sunday 20 Wargames club, Village Hall, 2.30pm to 6pm
Sunday 20 Christingle workshop and service, All Saints, from 3.30pm
Thursday 24 Candlelit carol service, All Saints, 7pm
Thursday 31 Closing date for recycling bag photograph competition.

(Friday 1 January, village photograph, Village Hall, 11.30am)

Friday, 27 November 2009

Get fit together

Walking for health
Breckland Council, together with various other organisations, organise a programme of walks under the general title “Fit together” with the aim of improving people’s fitness. They are open to anyone.
There is a local walk on Monday 7 December starting from Old Buckenham Church at 10.30am. It will be 4 miles long but has an option to stop after 2 miles for anyone who wishes to do so. It is entitled Old Buckenham Stud and the description is 50% hard tarmac quiet lanes/pavement and 50% soft grassy or mud tracks. The route crosses fields of grazing horses. There are three stiles and one bridge with large steps down.
If you have not taken part in these walks before, just get there a quarter of an hour before the start and introduce yourselves to Rick and Nancy who will be leading the walk that day.
The next programme of walks for January to March 2010 will soon be out and the blog will try to mention the local ones in future issues.

Wednesday, 25 November 2009

Be there, be square

The big square draw
Squares for the Christmas draw are selling well and will be available to buy until Saturday 5 December at the Old Buckenham village shop. They cost £1 each and all the money collected is spent on buying the prizes (all purchased at the best prices that the shop can negotiate).
So why not come along to the Church Rooms on Sunday 6 December from 4pm to hear a live performance from local singing star Jessica Todd who will start singing at 4.30pm.
Father Christmas will be there during the afternoon/evening to meet everyone and to give small gifts to the children. He will also start the Big Square draw.
Refreshments will be available throughout the event in the Church Rooms.
So bring along all the family for what promises to be an enjoyable afternoon/evening. And make a point of visiting the village shop to purchase a square (or several if you like) where you can also see a display of the Christmas gifts on offer including sweets, chocolates, Christmas cards, gift wrap, toys or even a Christmas outfit.
Be in it and try to win it.

Monday, 23 November 2009

Ten years older

One decade on
On New Year’s Day in 2000 Old Buckenham residents met to have their photograph taken as we went forward into the new millennium. It is proposed that the village does it again ten years on and maybe have regular photos taken every decade as a record of the village inhabitants. Lots of people research their ancestors so there will be photographic evidence for future generations.
If you are interested please make the effort to come to the Village Hall at 11.30am on New Year’s Day where Ivan Hardy will take the photo(s). Copies will be available later (and many of you can compare how your looks have changed since the photo of 2000).

Friday, 20 November 2009

High School leadership

Appointments at the top
The governors at Old Buckenham High School have made two new appointments to the leadership of the School—a new Head and a new Business Manager.
Peter Whear is the new headteacher. The governors feel he is a gifted teacher, leader and manager who puts the success and well-being of every pupil at the heart of all his thinking. Peter was the outstanding candidate amongst an accomplished field of applicants and will start his job in the new year.
The school has also been looking for a new Business Manager. This is a really important role, overseeing all the non-teaching aspects of the School. Lorraine Collins has been appointed to this job and she has now taken up the post.

Wednesday, 18 November 2009

Charity monies

Eleemosynary elucidation
One of the Eleemosynary charity trustees has provided this item which aims to explain where some of the village charity money comes from.
The notes on the parish council’s October meeting (the blog post on Sunday 1 November) stated “it was unanimously agreed to transfer £962.92 from general funds to Old Buckenham United Eleemosynary Charities”. Before anyone looks for significantly increased sums to more beneficiaries of the OBUEC on the back of this apparently well-timed donation from the council, it must be stressed that what was almost certainly intended was a transfer to the Former Highways Surveyor’s Land charity, of which the council is the sole trustee.
The council appears to have been pouring all receipts into one pot without adequate allocation, and its attempts to sort the many problems this has caused are to be commended, especially in relation to the money it controls as charity trustees, rather than as local authority. But it has not quite got there yet.
As the newsletter’s regular readers will know, OBUEC is a collection of bequests and allocations dating back to the sixteenth century, for the benefit of those in the parish less fortunate than the rest (those who have drawn the short straws in life, in Warren Buffet’s words). Its only connection with the parish council is that as a parochial charity it has six of its ten trustees appointed by the council. These can be, but do not have to be, councillors. They are in no way responsible to the council, only to the community. (The numbers are made up by two ex officio trustees, the Lord of the Manor and the vicar of the parish, and two co-opted trustees. The current Scheme of Management was issued by the Charity Commissioners on 1 September 1914).
The Former Highways Surveyor’s Land Charity has its origins in the responsibility parishes used to have through the Church of England vestry meetings for much of their own affairs, including provision and repair of roads. Highways Surveyors were appointed and pieces of land allocated for the provision of necessary materials. But towards the end of the nineteenth century responsibility for local government was transferred to specially created local authorities and so highways surveyors in each parish were no longer needed. Nor were their special pieces of land. The new local authorities took on responsibility for the land but were required to administer it on a trust basis, on behalf of the local communities who still owned it.
In due course Breckland Council became responsible for Old Buckenham’s former highways surveyor’s land and rented it to the OBUEC at a peppercorn rent, £2 per annum. (This went into the parish account that was then part of the rating system). OBUEC, some of whose own land was adjacent to the former highways surveyor’s land, added it to the lease with its own tenant, at a market rent, and used the income for its own beneficiaries. But in the 1980s, Breckland Council transferred the trusteeship to Old Buckenham Parish Council whose legal advisers warned that it could not lawfully continue to rent at a peppercorn because everyone in the parish should benefit from the Highways Surveyor’s land, whereas only the less fortunate could benefit from OBUEC. So OBUEC dropped out of any connection with the highways surveyor’s land and the tenants paid a market rent direct to the parish council.
As is so often the case, over time most of this has been forgotten. The parish council has not understood why it was receiving rent, neither what it was supposed to do with it. Briefings provided for the succession of parish clerks have not succeeded in establishing the information firmly in local knowledge, though possibly more recent dissemination via email to all councillors may have a better outcome, for a while. Our ancestors may have had more success through the information put up in the church (shown in the photographs) recording what the parish owned. Perhaps the archives evening next year will encourage more interest in the village’s heritage and how we can best protect and use it.

Tuesday, 17 November 2009

Christmas crackers

Breckland Flower and Garden Club
November's meeting in Old Buckenham Village Hall was very well attended when Alan Smith from Ipswich gave his demonstration titled 'Christmas Crackers'. He is always an entertaining demonstrator, his designs evoking the spirit of the festive season. Using variegated foliage and mainly red and white flowers, with occasional gold roses and purple orchids, all were 'cracking' arrangements. His finale included bronze chrysanthemums and red lilies atop a wonderful brass urn – did this arrangement manage to get home in one piece?
The competition table for a table ring was very colourful. The winner of the Old Hands class (and Joan Barry Trophy for best use of garden plant material) was Sylvia Briggs and the New Hands class winner was Margaret Smith.
December's meeting will commence at 10.30am on Thursday 10 December at Old Buckenham Village Hall. In the morning members will be able to make 'floral cake'. All ingredients will be provided - however please bring a table cover, scissors and plate on which to place your cake. Cost will be £5 each. Please also bring something for a 'plate lunch'. During the afternoon members of the committee will be showing ideas for Christmas.
The competition is for an arrangement entitled “A Christmas Carol” - with a title card. Trophies for the best exhibit will be awarded for each class.
Further information can be obtained from Pat on 01953 457305 or Sally on 01953 788712.

Sunday, 15 November 2009

Gang Show coming soon

All for Children in Need

1st Old Buckenham Scout group proudly present their Gang Show on Monday 7 December commencing at 6.15pm in Old Buckenham Village Hall.
The price of the tickets for adults are £2.50 and children £1. The proceeds from this performance are to go to Children in Need. To reserve tickets please contact Akela on 01953 860121.
The stars of the show range from 6 years to 18 years and should include music, drama, and action.

Saturday, 14 November 2009

Marilyn Monroe in Old Buckenham

Looking at a star
What were over twenty of the village’s older inhabitants doing sitting in the darkened Church Rooms looking at pictures of an infamous pin-up and film star? It turned out that they were at the November meeting of the Old Buckenham Social and Wine Circle listening to a talk about Marilyn Monroe by John Lee.
John started by explaining that Marilyn had a very unsettled childhood and got married for the first time just after her sixteenth birthday so that she could get out of the children’s home that she was in. During the war she worked packing parachutes and it was photographs taken of her at this time that led to more photographic work as a model. Despite having no experience or training in singing, dancing and acting, she eventually became a popular film star. Her first marriage ended in divorce as did her subsequent marriages to baseball star Joe DiMaggio and playwright Arthur Miller. The later involvement with the Kennedy family and subsequent presumed suicide when only 36 meant that she became even more of an enigma.
One result of giving these talks is that John has been able to amass a collection of all sorts of Marilyn memorabilia. Apart from many books he now has bags, calendars, mugs, plates, drink mats, clocks, pens, shopping bags, a neck scarf and even wrapping paper all carrying images of this unforgettable lady.
At the start of the meeting the club held a short AGM. Chairman Alistair Monkhouse reported back on a successful year with many good speakers. The financial position was stable and would be improved with larger attendances at the monthly meetings. David Sallnow was appointed vice-chairman, the intention being that he will take over at the end of 2010 allowing Alistair to retire after twelve years in the post.
Talks planned for next year will cover subjects such as herbal medicines, seaside architecture, fostering and the Attleborough Fire Station. All are welcome to attend, all it costs is £1 per evening.
The December meeting is the usual party evening with a fish and chips supper. The meeting will start in the Church Rooms at 7.45pm on Thursday 10 December.

Friday, 13 November 2009

Games off in December

No NetGamers in December
The Old Buckenham computer games club - NetGamers - will not be running in December. The next meeting will be Friday 8 January in Old Buckenham village hall from 7pm to 9pm and on the second Friday of the month thereafter.
For more infomation call Paul on 01953 860023 or visit

Thursday, 12 November 2009

Increased donations

Poppy collection

John and Chris report another successful remembrance poppy collection and, thanks to the generosity of the residents of Old Buckenham, are pleased to say that the village donated a total of £937.38 This is a substantial increase on last year, when the gross was £882.52.
They also wish to take this opportunity to thank all collectors, particularly those that do the house to house collection, as without their help the collection would not be possible.
Many thanks to everyone and any further volunteers to help with collections next year would be much appreciated.

Sunday, 8 November 2009

The day to remember

Remembrance day service on the Green

The villagers of Old Buckenham gathered at the war memorial on the Green this afternoon for a short Remembrance Day service.

Saturday, 7 November 2009

Raising money for a good cause

Funding the lunch
Several recent events have provided very welcome funding for that most important event in January next year. A big thank you to Janet Moore and her helpers for the generous cheque of £251.20 from the bingo fund raising. Another thank you for £293.80 from the textile collection plus another £66.48 from the lanfill refund. Also thanks to the Old Buckenham 2000 Trust for the £600 donation.
All these are for the Senior Citizens lunch and have really bumped up the fund. This will ease the pressure for next year’s fund-raising programme. Eileen, Brian and Carol are very grateful and hope to put on a good show once again.

Friday, 6 November 2009

More hot air in 2010

Floating above Old Buckenham

Looking forward to 2010, the newsletter has been told that there will be another balloon festival at Old Buckenham airfield over the August bank holiday weekend. So let’s hope for nice bright calm weather during Saturday 28, Sunday 29 and Monday 30 August to give the participants more opportunities to fly than they had in 2009.

Tuesday, 3 November 2009

Pumpkin delight

Shining bright

Anna was out and about on Halloween and took photos of some great pumpkins in Old Buckenham. She thinks there are obviously some very talented people around here.

These pictures are from Forge Close, Post Office Terrace and Hargham Road.

Monday, 2 November 2009

A day to remember

There will be a Remembrance Day service on Sunday 8 November at the Old Buckenham War Memorial on the Green at 2.30pm.

Sunday, 1 November 2009

Will there be fireworks?

The next Old Buckenham Parish Council meeting will be on Thursday 5 November in the Village Hall starting at 7.30pm.
These notes of the parish council meetings are prepared by the editor of the newsletter 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 four members of the public present at the October meeting of the Old Buckenham Parish Council and there were no apologies for absence from the council members.
Minutes of the May, June and July meetings were all agreed to be true and accurate records of the meetings. One item from the meeting in May was to be put on the November agenda.
Concerning the minutes of the September meeting, Carol Marshall said that under section 8 it should read "property two doors down" (not at the property). With this amendment the minutes were signed as a true and accurate record of the meeting.
Matters arising from the September minutes. Tim Ing said that he had a quote for the benches for the Green at a cost of £190 plus VAT for each bench which are made from recycled materials. Also an application had been made to Old Buckenham 2000 Trust for a grant. The council hoped to put four benches on the Green. He also said that he had attended the presentation with Norman Cawston to receive the award for being runner up in a community award scheme. The prize included £40 in garden centre vouchers.
The Green. Tim Ing said there was a Green Rights Meeting being held on Tuesday 6 October and he would be attending. Carol Marshall asked that tree management on the Green be raised at the meeting as the trees were getting untidy.
Planning applications. Homestead, The Green. Rear extension. No objections from parish council (agreed with 8 for and 1 abstention).
Southview, Fen Street. Erection of oak frame 2 storey cart lodge with playroom above. Matters to be put on the November agenda and the parish clerk to arrange an extension with Breckland.
District Councillor’s report. Adrian Joel said the Breckland Council Policy Core Strategy had been approved as “sound” by the Government Inspectors. The Strategy is expected to come into force in January 2010. The Local Development Framework Task and Finish group has started to look at site specifics. They recently looked at Watton and East Harling and Old Buckenham will be looked at in the New Year under Settlement Boundaries. Attleborough Town Council is considering introducing parking charges in the town. Members of the public were encouraged to attend a meeting about this at Connaught Hall in mid-October. Breckland’s planning applications will be live on Breckland’s website from Tuesday 27 October. The public will be able to view planning applications online as well as the comments made by parish councils and members of the public. Cotman have submitted their grant application for the new houses in St Andrews Close and are waiting a decision.
Parish Councillors' reports. Stephen Thorley attended the Attleborough Task Force meeting in September along with Adrian Joel. The objective of the task force is to facilitate the area-based and multi-agency working in Attleborough to get together the public and local community groups to discuss and implement possible improvements for the area. At the September meeting Breckland ‘s Principal Planning Policy officer raised the points that 4000 new homes had been agreed for the Attleborough/Snetterton corridor area and this could create 2,000 jobs but is dependant on the outcome on the Core Strategy report which was with the Government inspectors and their report is due early November. They will also offer a view whether the preferred option of development south of the railway line is the best way forward, or whether land north of the A11 will be included. Also being considered is whether the Snetterton aspect of the development is deliverable. The Parish Council’s watching brief will include the areas of Infrastructure, Services and Recreation and Leisure. Stephen Thorley will report back after the next scheduled meeting in early November.
Adrian Joel said the hedge at Castle Hill needs to be cut back, parish clerk to arrange. He also said that he had written to the Chairman suggesting inviting the new temporary Headmaster to a meeting. Councillors suggested waiting till a permanent appointment had been made at the school. Liz Taylor said that a recent garage sale for the recreation area had raised £415.02 and that Robert and Denise Ziman had donated £50. She thanked all who had taken part in the fund raising and suggested that the recreation area needed to have its own cheque book.
KerryTalbot said the play area site is now cleared and levelling was due to start in the next week. They have applied to Breckland Council for up front funding but they need a letter of support from the Parish Council showing the support and confirming a contribution of £3,900 (the parish clerk to arrange). They had received funding of £5000 from the Grassroots Foundation and total funding at the bank now stood at £16,388.
Norman Cawston said a trustee was needed to sit on the Old Buckenham United Eleemosynary Charities. Adrian Joel agreed to serve for the three-year period.
Clerk’s report. The clerk informed meeting that he had written to Zurich Insurance to get cover for the new fence at the recreation area and obtaining public liability cover for the area. He had also received a letter from Government auditors on the accounts for 2008/9. He had agreed that the accounts would be with them by early October. Breckland Council was holding an Open Forum evening for parish councillors on Thursday 29 October and councillors were invited.
Freedom of Information Act Model Publication Scheme. The parish clerk had produced a Model Publication Scheme which showed how members of the public could obtain information from the Parish Council under the Freedom of Information Act. It was agreed unanimously that it be adopted by the Parish Council,
Transfer of funds to Special Reserves. The parish clerk said that he wished to simplify the funds held by the Parish Council so that they could be easily identified for future purposes in the accounts.
It was unanimously agreed to transfer £962.92 from general funds to Old Buckenham United Eleemosynary Charities. To transfer from general funds to Old Buckenham Just Play £16,388.60. To transfer £3,089.04 from general funds to Old Buckenham Parish Council (Recreation Project). It was also agreed that the project name be changed and for the working party to have their own cheque book account with a minimum of two authorised signatories.
Parish Council accounts. The parish clerk said he had produced a set of amended accounts for the year ending March 2009. It was agreed unanimously that they be adopted and forwarded to government auditors. The parish clerk said that following the departure of the previous Internal Auditor Robert Ziman, he had a replacement available who was a Mrs Carole Porter.