Friday, 28 February 2014

A busy March in Old Buckenham

Diary dates for March

Saturday 1    Jumble sale, Church Rooms, 10am to 12 noon

Sunday 2    Wargames Club, Village Hall, 2.30pm to 6pm

Monday 3    Monday Mardle, Church Rooms, 2.15pm to 4.15pm

Tuesday 4    Coffee and chat, Church Rooms, 10.30am to 12 noon

Wednesday 5    Women's Fellowship, Methodist Chapel, 2.30pm

Thursday 6    Parish Council, Village Hall, 7.30pm

Monday 10    Whist drive, Church Rooms, 2pm

Wednesday 12    Luncheon Club, Village Hall, 10am to 2pm

Thursday 13    Breckland Flower Club, Village Hall, 2pm

Thursday 13    Social and Wine Circle, Church Rooms, 7.45pm

Saturday 15    WI Coffee Morning, Church Rooms, 10am to 12 noon

Monday 17    Monday Mardle, Church Rooms, 2.15pm to 4.15pm

Wednesday 19    Annual Parish Meeting, Village Hall, 7.30pm

Wednesday 19    Songs of Praise, Methodist Chapel, 7.30pm

Saturday 22    Primary School table top sale, 10am to 1pm

Saturday 22    LAA and home-built Fly In at Airfield

Saturday 22    Quiz evening, Village Hall, 7.30pm

Sunday 23    Cycle Cinema, Village Hall, 5pm

Wednesday 26    Luncheon Club, Village Hall, 10am to 2pm

Thursday 27    Women's Institute, Village Hall, 7.30pm

Saturday 29    Village Hall cinema, Village Hall, 7.30pm

Thursday, 27 February 2014

Old Buckenham newsletter for March

Ready for you to read
The newsletter for March has now been distributed around and about in Old Buckenham so that you can pick one up and have a good read.

Tuesday, 25 February 2014

Quiz and bangers in Old Buckenham

Book a place for your team
Old Buckenham Village Hall is hosting a quiz evening on Saturday 22 March. It may be a month away but now is the time to put the date in your diary, fill in an entry form and hope that the right questions come up on the night'

Sunday, 23 February 2014

Sporty time in Old Buckenham

Kurling, carpet bowls or table tennis
The Norfolk Village Games Roadshow came to Old Buckenham Village Hall for a couple of hours this afternoon. This was a chance to try out some different sports and people of all ages dropped in to try them out.
Kurling was probably the most popular (the Olympic effect?). There was obviously no ice but these little 'stones' had wheels underneath and needed a good push to propel them across the hall floor. Even the youngest players knew all the jargon as they sent down their final stone to clinch the game.
Other families were introduced to the joys of carpet bowls, a sport played regularly in the hall, and they soon realised that it required a greater amount of skill than they first thought.
Later in the year, on Sunday 27 April, the Roadshow will be back and will involve sports that can be played outdoors.

Saturday, 22 February 2014

Seniors' party at Old Buckenham

Senior Citizens' Annual Party
Today was the time for nearly ninety of the village's older residents to come along to Old Buckenham Village Hall for a pleasant and relaxed party. The format and timing may have changed over the years but it is a much appreciated event.
Everyone gathered around one o'clock, found a group of people to sit with, enjoyed a small sherry, attempted to work out answers to a set of general knowledge questions and posed to have souvenir photographs taken.

By half one the main meal was being served - a wonderful roast beef dinner with all the trimmings. Wine and soft drinks were freely available. Then there was a choice of sweets followed by cheese and biscuits.

To help all this food go down there was a chance to listen to a close harmony singing group, enjoying the tunes of many years ago and joining in with the words when you could remember them. This was followed by a couple of games of bingo for further relaxation.
The answers to the quiz questions were revealed, together with a friendly groan when the normal table of 'clever clogs' got the highest marks for yet another year. But there were presents for many people after a completely free raffle took place.

This whole afternoon was free for all those attending thanks to various fund-raising events in the village previously and because of all the volunteers who had prepared the food, cooked it, served at table and cleared up afterwards. Even so the event takes about a thousand pounds to put on and everyone (Eileen and her team) should be proud to have been part of it.

Friday, 21 February 2014

Jumble sale in Old Buckenham

Search for a bargain
A real old-fashioned Jumble Sale will be taking place at the Church Rooms in Old Buckenham on Saturday 1 March. Doors open at 10am so why not come along and see what you can find?

Tuesday, 18 February 2014

Old Buckenham boat show

Fun on the water
The sun was shining and the Ottomer pond on Old Buckenham Green was very full of water so why not go canoeing? Steve Hammond was there to record the activities last Sunday and here are some of the photographs that he took.

Monday, 17 February 2014

Try new sports in Old Buckenham

Free Roadshow in village hall
Come along to Old Buckenham Village Hall this Sunday 23 February between 2pm and 4pm to try out various sports - and all for free.
Adults and children can have a go at carpet bowls, table tennis, new age kurling, darts and corn boards. All equipment is provided and coaches will be present to help.
(If you click on the image of the poster you can see it at a larger size)

Saturday, 15 February 2014

Valentine's arrangements in Old Buckenham

Breckland Flower and Garden Club

On Thursday 13 February, with Valentine's Day just around the corner, Christine Hewson led the Breckland Flower and Garden Club members in creating an arrangement in a pot with foliage, sisal, tulips or roses complimented with a heart, fashioned from cornus or dogwood. Over forty members attended and everyone was pleased with their creation.
In the monthly competitions the Old Hands class was won by Sylvia Briggs and the New Hands class by Alison Vivian. The competition title was 'Hearts and Flowers'. Alison Walker and Alison Vivian both earned the same points for their displays of snowdrops on the show table.
The next meeting of the club will be held at Old Buckenham Village Hall on Thursday 13 March starting at 2pm. The AGM will be followed by a presentation by Mellissa Sheldrake entitled 'A Box of Delights'. The competition will be for an arrangement with the title 'Twigs and Tulips'.
Visitors are always welcome. Further details from Sally on 01953 788712 or any Flower Club committee member.

Friday, 14 February 2014

Old Buckenham pond continues to fill

Ottomer pond extends its boundaries
Ottomer pond, by All Saints Church, is normally by way the largest pond on Old Buckenham Green. Now it is even larger still...

Thursday, 13 February 2014

Old Buckenham Village Hall Cinema

Enjoy saving Mr Banks
After a straw poll of Old Buckenhamites it has been decided to show Saving Mr Banks, starring Emma Thompson and Tom Hanks, at the next film night on Saturday 29 March at 7.30 pm in the Village Hall.
This film tells the story behind the making of the Mary Poppins film. When Walt Disney's daughters begged him to make a movie of their favourite book, P L Travers' "Mary Poppins," he made them a promise that he didn't realise would take him 20 years to keep. In his quest to obtain the rights, Disney came up against an uncompromising writer who had absolutely no intention of letting her beloved magical nanny get mauled by the Hollywood machine. But, as her books stop selling and money grows short, Travers reluctantly agreed to go to Los Angeles to hear Disney's plans for the adaptation. For two short weeks in 1961, Walt Disney pulled out all the stops. Armed with imaginative storyboards and chirpy songs from the talented Sherman brothers, Walt launched an all-out onslaught on P L Travers. But the prickly author didn't budge. It was only when he reached back into his own childhood that Walt discovered the truth about the ghosts that haunted her. Together they eventually manage to set Mary Poppins free and the story makes a most endearing film.
Seats are limited so book early to avoid disappointment. Call 01953 860866 or email to reserve your seats. Advance tickets are £4, bought at the door they will be £6.

Monday, 10 February 2014

Latest from Old Buckenham WI

Women’s Institute meeting

Susan Hunter (President) welcomed members to the first meeting in 2014 of Old Buckenham Women’s Institute. The speakers were John and Jane Richardson from Dereham. These “Grey Nomads” entertained everyone with a wonderful talk on the eight months they spent touring the USA, Australia and Malaysia. This was not a hurried dash from country to country. These mature travellers wanted to shop, cook and understand the people and communities they met with during their journeys.
They used many forms of transport and undertook two great train journeys; 23 hours on the Californian Zephyr across America and the jungle railway through the centre of Malaysia to the Islamic state of Kelentan on the Thai border. They encountered bears and wolves in Yellowstone Park and experienced Queensland’s worst ever floods. Their talk was accompanied with slides of stunning scenery.
Each year Old Buckenham WI award prizes to the members with the most points achieved in the two monthly competitions. This year’s recipient of both prizes was Kathy Fleckney who was presented with M&S vouchers. Congratulations Kathy!
Two members (Alison Frank and Betty Stacey) are looking forward to their forthcoming visit to Denman College in Oxfordshire. Alison will be studying the Treasures of the Ashmolean and Betty will be learning the intricacies of buying and selling on eBay. This demonstrates the diversity of the courses offered at Denman, the WI’s own college, and members will be looking forward to hearing their reports at the next meeting.
Next year is the centenary of the WI in this country and there was much discussion on how this milestone should be celebrated. The WI has its roots in Canada and the first WI was set up in Llanfair PG on the island of Anglesey in September 1915. Thence it rapidly spread throughout England and Wales and the first WI in Norfolk was formed in 1917. Sandringham WI was among the first to be formed in Norfolk and it was avidly supported by Queen Mary and the then Princess Royal (Princess Mary).
The talk at the meeting on Thursday 27 February will be on the Ladies’ Tractor Run and will be given by Annie Chapman. The monthly competition is for an item to fit the title ‘Think Pink’.

Old Buckenham WI are holding a Coffee Morning in the Church Rooms on Saturday 15 March and are looking forward to welcoming villagers and friends that morning between 10am and 12 noon.

Saturday, 8 February 2014

Old Buckenham Parish Council in February

Parish Council in February
These notes have been written by the blog editor from the draft minutes and so may contain information that is changed at a later date.

There were six members of the public at the February meeting of Old Buckenham Parish Council. All parish councillors were present apart from Sarah Dye and Akis Chrisovelides who had sent their apologies. The meeting was suspended for a short while to allow members of public to ask questions.
Minutes of the January Parish Council meeting. The minutes were signed as a true and accurate record of the meeting.
Matters arising from the minutes. Adrian Joel raised the matter of the recently adopted Harassment and Bullying Policy. He said it showed a typing error of Necton Parish Council and it needed to be signed by all councillors who have a copy. He had also done some investigating and said no other parish councils had this policy. The Parish Clerk said just because he knew of no other council who had one did not mean that this Parish Council should not have one. It was recommended by ACAS that all employers should have one. Jonathan Kemp said the policy had been adopted by a majority of councillors and therefore the meeting should move on.
Old Buckenham High School. Aron Whiles, the new headmaster, wished to introduce himself having now been at the school for one term. The school had an OFSTED inspection in October and it was not as good as hoped but improvements are being made and early indications showed marked improvements since the inspection. Certain areas require more effort and these issues are being addressed. The school will always support the community. Steve Milner raised the question of the problems relating to traffic and parking at the school. He suggested the school and the village hall should get together to promote alternatives to people driving their children to school which could help alleviate the parking problems. Also raised was the access to the Junior School. Tim Ing thanked Aron Whiles for attending the meeting.
Future Precept meetings. Steve Milner said that at the last Precept meeting there was no provision for a public recess and referred to recent correspondence by a resident on the subject. Steve Milner thought not allowing public recess was undemocratic. Tim Ing said the Precept meeting could be emotive, especially when the awarding of grants was discussed. He said that residents can speak at any parish council meeting prior to the precept and raise the matter then. Tom Johnson said he agreed with Steve Milner and that a standing order should allow members of the public to speak at the precept meeting to question the whole precept. This view was also shared by Adrian Joel. John Frost said residents have the opportunity to raise precept matters at any parish council meeting. Steve Milner proposed allowing members of the public to speak at Precept meeting but they would be limited to three minutes per person. Also to allow parish councillors to ask members of the public for their views. This was seconded by Tom Johnson and voted on, with four for and five against, the motion was therefore defeated. Adrian Joel proposed moving the Precept meeting to November (from the present October) and that grant applications may be discussed at the October Parish Council meeting. This was agreed with eight for and one abstention.
Planning application. Vine Cottage, Fen Street. Erection of detached garage with office above. Single-storey rear extension to dwelling and erection of two-storey side extension. There were no objections from the parish council, this was agreed with seven for and two abstentions.
Planning decisions received from Breckland. Magnolia, Fen Street. Single-storey outbuilding to rear of property. Permission granted.
3 Mill Cottages, Mill Road. Erect timber framed first floor extension. Permission granted.
Chairman’s report. Tim Ing said he had attended a recent meeting with Norfolk County Council (NCC) regarding the new Chapel Road School where a number of suggestions were made to try to sort out potential traffic issues at the new school as well as the existing schools in the village. The next meeting will be in March and further public consultation will take place. In May it is anticipated that an artistic set of drawings for the project will be available. He then raised the matter of the Annual Parish Meeting which is being held on Wednesday 19 March and asked if councillors could start planning what reports they would give to enable residents to be informed of the activities that the Parish Council are currently doing. The Parish Clerk is to invite the NCC councillor and Tim Ing would try to get someone from the NCC education department to come and speak on the new school.
District Councillor’s report. Breckland Council agreed a final submission concerning ward boundaries at its meeting last September. The Local Government Boundary Commission published its draft recommendations concerning the new arrangements in January. These propose a council size of 49 councillors together with a proposed reduction in ward numbers from the existing 36 to a proposed 27. Old Buckenham’s ward is presently ‘The Buckenhams’ which includes both Old and New Buckenham. The Commission’s recommendation is to add Banham to the ward and it would become ‘The Buckenhams and Banham' ward. A further period of consultation will now take place until Thursday 17 April with final recommendations published by July 2014. Alternative proposals are now available for public viewing on theCommission’s website The government are proposing to move to Individual Elector Registration (IER) and this is scheduled for introduction in July 2014. Individuals will now be responsible for their own electoral registration rather than by household. Residents are encouraged to register. The New Buckenham cabinet broadband will be complete as phase 1 by the end of March. There are 460 properties connected to this new exchange cabinet. Once live it is expected that at least half of these properties will have access to superfast broadband (up to 24Mbps) and the majority of the remaining properties (because of varying distances from the cabinet) will have speeds of between two and twenty Mbps. Only twenty properties are too far from the cabinet that they will need to develop an alternative technology during 2016 to achieve access to basic broadband of at least 2Mbps.
Parish Councillors’ reports. Tom Johnson had attended a recent meeting of the Village Hall Management Committee who have agreed to have a year-long trial of broadband at an initial cost of £500 per year. Paul Boggia said he would want a zebra crossing near the school on the B1077 and would like the subject put on the March agenda. Derek Smalley had attended a SNAP meeting and informed the meeting that 20mph can be enforced on fixed signs but not on flashing signs. Old Buckenham has become a priority with Norfolk Police over the next three months so there will be extra police presence in the village to deal with parking, road crossing at school and the village is a second priority to deal with speeding in the village boundary. A resident had raised the matter of the knocked down posts outside the Ox & Plough and one bay of matting needs attention because of the recent bad weather. Carol Marshall said they would be getting a digger in as soon as the bad weather finishes to complete the BMX trail at the recreation area. They are also planning a garage sale for May/June. An electrician is updating the wiring systems at the Almhouses. Steve Milner says a Google calendar of events has been set up to publicise Old Buckenham events at He is still working on the school crossing situation and had completed another audit recently. Steve Milner also asked about the precept support grant. The Parish Clerk said that Breckland was having a further meeting later this month and would look at its previous decisions not to pay it. A resident had raised the problem of Serco emptying the dog bin in Raggs Lane. Adrian Joel said he and George Freeman MP had looked at the school crossing problems and suggested at looking at getting a proper crossing.
Parish Clerk’s report. The Parish Clerk informed the meeting that, due to recent changes in government rules, Parish Councils can now use online banking. He had inserted extra software and an encrypted security browser on the computer to make it as safe as possible. The Parish Council would now start to pay invoices by BAC transfer to reduce costs. The Parish Clerk also informed the meeting that he would be on holiday from Thursday 20 to Thursday 27 February.
Highways. Carol Marshall raised the question of the road sweeper vehicle leaving litter as it swept. Also the problem of tractors digging up grass verges outside houses. The meeting was informed that it was a private matter and the resident would have to identify the owner of the tractor and take the matter up with them. Road problems reported included water down Church Lane causing the road to flood and potholes in Hargham Road at the junction of the road going to The Grange, on the left hand bend just before Puddle Dock on Attleborough Road and in Sandy Lane and Wilby Road. The Parish Clerk to inform Highways.
The Green. The Old Buckenham Green Right Proprietors’ AGM is being held on Tuesday 25 February.

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


Friday, 7 February 2014

Flooding in Old Buckenham...

...but not very much
With over 20mm of water in the rain gauges this morning, the water ran off the fields and soon filled all the ditches before flowing onto the road and into some front gardens. Large vehicles went through rather too fast and one cottage tried to live up to its name of Brookside.
Some allotments looked more like paddy fields, one lane tried to become a river and there was even a very small waterfall.

Next production for Old Buckenham Players

Appropriate play for 2014
(just click on the image to read the details)

Wednesday, 5 February 2014

Banham to join Old Buckenham?

Have a say on new ward boundaries      
The independent Local Government Boundary Commission for England is asking people across the Breckland district to comment on its draft proposals for new Breckland Council ward boundaries.
A twelve-week public consultation on the recommendations began in January and will end on Monday 14 April. The consultation is open to anyone who wants to have their say on new council wards, ward boundaries and ward names across the district.
The Commissions draft recommendations propose that Breckland District Council should in future have 49 councillors, five fewer than the current arrangements.

Our present ward is "The Buckenhams" which includes both Old and New Buckenham. The Commission’s recommendation is to add Banham to the ward and name it "The Buckenhams and Banham".
Existing ward:
 Proposed ward:

The full recommendations and detailed interactive maps are available on the Commission’s website

Monday, 3 February 2014

Going up higher in Old Buckenham

Building progresses
Despite a long break over Christmas and the New Year, changes have been taking place on the Cotman building site in Old Buckenham. Not much is easily visible to the public but the blog editor still occasionally goes to his standard spot in Prince Harry's Wood to record what is going on.
The two pictures below show the diffeences from mid-December to the end of January.