Tuesday, 27 July 2021

Old Buckenham Players

Back on stage

Old Buckenham Players will be performing the 1970s farce, There Goes the Bride, by Ray Cooney and John Chapman at the Village Hall on Thursday 16, Friday 17 and Saturday 18 September at 7.30pm. Tickets cost £9 and will be available in early August via Ticket Source at www.ticketsource.co.uk

When harassed advertising executive Timothy Westerby hits his head on the morning of his daughter's society wedding, he awakes to find himself in the company of a 1920s' Flapper girl straight out of his current advertising campaign. It soon becomes all too clear that no-one else can see or hear her and when another bump on the head transports Timothy back to 1926 and the Savoy hotel, the wedding preparations disintegrate into chaos as friends and family attempt to lead Timothy back to reality and his daughter down the aisle before the newly arrived 'in-laws' abandon the wedding.

A classic Ray Cooney farce guaranteed to make you laugh and enjoyable fun for all the family. Put these dates in your diary now.



Monday, 26 July 2021

Old Buckenham's new arrivals

Dog, witch and matron

What's the connection between a dog, a witch and a matron? The answer is that they are all scarecrows that you can find in Cake Street.

Pottie Dog is made out of flower pots

Flying Witch appears above the hedge

This attractive trio are named 'Oh Matron'

A map showing the locations of the twenty-nine scarecrows on display can be obtained from the village shop. One aim of this Scarecrow Trail taking place around the village until Saturday 7 August is to raise some extra funds to help with the upkeep of the Children's Play Area.

The blog editor aims to show further batches of photos for those who can't get round to see them all. Click on the pictures to see them at a larger scale.

 

Tuesday, 20 July 2021

Old Buckenham's new tractor

Filling the space

Equipment in the Children's Play Area needs regular maintenance and inspection. The original tractor and trailer had been well used and have now been replaced by a newer model which should delight some of the younger villagers. Thanks are due to the Parish Council who have spent several thousand pounds on the purchasing and installation this item.

All that remained after the old tractor was removed

The new version



The Scarecrow Trail that will be taking place throughout the village from Saturday 24 July to Saturday 7 August has been organised to raise some funds towards the upkeep of this play area. Have you made and entered your scarecrow yet?


Sunday, 11 July 2021

Old Buckenham PC meeting in July

Latest council discussions

These notes were 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 1 July at 7.30pm in Old Buckenham Village Hall. Present were councillors Steve Milner (Chair), Adrian Joel, Terry Cook, Naomi Bailey and Mike Farrington. Also attending were Rachel Noyes (Clerk), County Councillor Steve Askew and five members of the public.

Apologies for absence. Jonn Hicks has resigned from the Parish Council. There were many thanks from everyone for the all the hard work he has put into the Council over the years. Steve Milner will chair this meeting and councillors will look at re-electing a Chair at their next meeting in September. Both Ben Devlin and Andy Nicholls had sent their apologies.

Minutes. The minutes of the meeting held on Thursday 3 June were approved (5 in favour). There were no matters arising.

Financial matters. The Community Account balance is now £30,050.77 including a £500 loan repayment from the Village Hall Management Committee. The AGAR forms have been submitted to external auditors before the due date. Payments of £1541.99 were approved (5 in favour) that included audit fees, payments to community car drivers and various maintenance work.

Public participation relating to agenda items. A resident wanted to highlight the many issues with 3PL/2020/0578/O Appeal application. They felt strongly that the Parish Council C should not approve the document up for approval due to its major differences with the original design and that it should be treated as a new application. The resident also highlighted that this new documentation was only bought to public attention because they found it and highlighted the issue to the Planning Inspectorate. They had also personally organised a full traffic survey of the road which showed the majority of cars speeding as they travelled towards Attleborough, which contradicts the information in the original official traffic survey which was completed during lockdown.

Another resident highlighted the poor condition of the Recreation Area grass, which had grown too long to play football on and urged action to get it cut as soon as possible. A further resident explained that they had tried and failed to request a road sweeper to clean the road outside the new development on Fen Street as it had been left in a poor state. A drain was also blocked with mud, etc, outside the new bungalow. Rachel Noyes and Steve Askew to investigate. A resident also explained that they were concerned that the new development on Fen Street was slightly different to the original plan and had left a large plot of land on the end. Rachel Noyes to contact Breckland Planning to query this.

New planning applications. Albemarle House, The Green. Ground floor extension to rear/side of property and roof top extension partially within retained roof space to create an additional second floor of accommodation (3PL/2021/0823/HOU). No objections. Proposal to support was approved (5 in favour).

The Gamekeeper Public House, The Green. Proposed single storey link extension to rear of property with entrance porch canopy and insertion of dormer window to form fire escape at second floor level to rear roof elevation (3PL/2021/0759/F and 3PL/2021/0760/LB).

No objections. Proposal to support was approved (4 in favour, 1 abstain).

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

No objections. Proposal to support was approved (5 in favour).

Scales Farm. Change of use from agricultural building to office use (3PL/2021/0742/F). No objections. Proposal to support was approved (4 in favour, 1 abstain).

Rear of 41 Hargham Road. Erection of single storey dwelling and two bay cart lodge (self build) (3PL/2021/0830/O). The Parish Council had previously objected to development of this site. Councillors felt there was not a sufficient entrance to the property. It is also located opposite a difficult junction with Fen St, which could cause problems. A proposal to object was approved (5 in favour).

42 Fen Street. Single storey side and rear extensions. (3PL/2021/0947/HOU). Councillors were very concerned about yet more construction traffic on Fen Street which has tested residents’ patience recently. A full Traffic Management Plan (TMP) would be required in order to keep the road clear and clean at all times. A propose to support, subject to an approved TMP, was approved (5 in favour).

Appeal. Land west of Attleborough Road, north of the property East View. Outline application for 5 residential dwellings. Application reference 3PL/2020/0578/O, Appeal reference: APP/F2605/W/20/3264207 and appeal start date: 12 February 2021. The Parish Council has been asked whether a new document, showing a new design for the development, should be accepted by the Planning Inspectorate. This document has only come to light after being highlighted by a member of the public who has also sought a new traffic survey. The Parish Council have only been given one week to provide feedback and this feedback needs to be submitted by midday on Friday 2 July. It was proposed to object on the grounds that there are such significant differences to the original that it should be a new Planning Application. The new traffic survey data shows the true dangers of the road and the public should be given the opportunity to see all this new information in a new application. This proposal to object was approved (5 in favour) and the Parish Clerk to submit report to Planning Inspectorate.

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

Laurel Tree Centre, The Green. Change of use of consultation osteopath clinic with 1 bedroom flat to one residential dwelling (3PL/2021/0634/F).

West View Farm, The Green. Convert the existing barn into one dwelling to include the demolition of adjoining existing hen house and erection of side extension and the creation of a new access (3PL/2020/1500/F and 3PL/2020/1501/LB)

45 Fen Street. The removal of the existing conservatory to the rear of the dwelling with a new single-storey extension and a new two-storey extension to the front of the dwelling (3PL/2021/0681/HOU).

The following application has now been considered and the application has been refused. Westward, The Green. To convert Clay Lump Barn to residential dwelling (3PL/2021/0570/F).

Two Wheel Tuesday complaint. Breckland Council have been notified and are investigating if there have been any breaches of Covid rules. Need to see full report in order to make informed decisions and will discuss at next meeting if it is still appropriate. Also received complaints about noise and parking around the village. The clerk to look up original agreement regarding rules including marshalling and the chairman will talk to the Ox and Plough owners regarding speed and noise.

Working Parties organisation and participation. With resignation of Jonn Hicks, the Parish Council is down to seven councillors. It needs to have a big push on recruitment before the next meeting. The issue of Working Parties organisation will then be addressed once there are more councillors. All councillors were asked to encourage residents to consider being a part of the Parish Council. They will promote the subject on their website, Facebook and in village newsletter as well as organisin a leaflet that will be delivered to every resident. It aims to hold co-opting interviews at the next meeting on Thursday 2 September.

(Mike Farrington had to leave meeting early)

Queen’s Platinum Jubilee. There had been a proposal from the Green Working Party to consider planting of trees to mark the event. The Parish Council will hold a village meeting to gather lots of ideas of ways to celebrate including any tree planting and will decide on an overall plan after this meeting.

Handyman/grass cutting. John Fernihough (Green Working Party) has proposed a couple for small village maintenance jobs including strimming around signs, benches etc. They have experience of similar work and will work at the same rate of £12.50/hour. There may be a larger amount of work required initially but then will be about one day’s work a month in future. John would also manage them and the work required. They also have the relevant insurance in place. A proposal to accept this was approved (4 in favour). The Recreation Ground is in urgent need of cutting. Andy Nicholls has proposed (via email) that Stuart Barker has previously cut it and could do so again. May require several cuts initially but will then be cut once a month after that. Proposal to accept this was approved (4 in favour).

Clerk’s report. Hargham Road will be closed to traffic on Wednesday 14 and Thursday 15 July at junction with Ley’s Lane. Bill and Cecilia Wardman memorial bench to be installed outside Almshouses on Thursday 8 July. A couple of queries had been made about the existence of a Welcome Pack. The clerk to go through and update any information and ask residents to notify the Parish Council of any new neighbours who might require it. Concerns received about the oak trees on Hargham Road by new development site and whether they need to have Tree Protection Orders. The clerk to enquire about the process with the Breckland Tree Officer. A query has been received about whether Ragg’s Lane is an official footpath and if not, how to adopt it. Enquiry was passed to Terry Cook who was being advised by the Countryside Access Officer. The Officer could not find the relevant documentation and came to the conclusion that the relevant documentation was not available online. Therefore, the advice was to contact the Legal Orders and Register Team. This has been undertaken but no response has been received. Planning application 3PL/2021/0544/PIP has gone to the Planning Committee on Monday 5 July. The Parish Council can send a representative to speak but decided it was not required.

Green Working Party (GWP).The GWP meetings have resumed. Reports of these meetings will be attached to Parish Council minutes.

Road Safety. The SAM sign has been moved to Cake Street. There are still issues with producing graphs from the data being collected.

Play Area. The old tractor has been removed by Phil Littleand and the new tractor to be installed in week beginning12 July by Playdale. Exact date of installation will be publicised beforehand.

Councillors’ reports. Steve Askew announced that work outside High School for footpath and flashing signs is still on track for completion over the summer holidays. Grass has been cut on Puddledock Corner to help drivers’ visibility. He is chasing up pothole work and any new street signs that are required.

Adrian Joel said there had been reports of rat poison around the allotments but none had been found when visited. Also there have been some break ins to sheds recently and damage which has been reported to police.

Terry Cook reported that a meeting took place between three Highways representatives, two Norfolk County Council representatives, two representatives from Sapientia Trust, our County Councillor, two Village Hall representatives, one Primary School Parent representative and one joint Parish Council and Village Hall representative to discuss the condition and responsibility of the road that leads to the Primary School and the Village Hall. After much discussion, it was concluded that the Sapientia Trust were responsible for its maintenance and would need to arrange repair work. Norfolk County Council still needs to ascertain who has responsibility for the ditch at the side of the access road. When the Sapientia Trust has made further enquiries into parking and traffic measures, they will be reporting back.

Naomi Bailey said that sixteen scarecrows signed up so far and reminded everyone that the event takes place from Saturday 24 July till Saturday 7 August. She has made good progress on posters and information for the phone box and has been getting help with information about tree and flower species found on Green.

The next Parish Council meeting to be held on Thursday 2 September 2021 at 7.30pm in Old Buckenham Village Hall.

Please note that there is no meeting in August.



Thursday, 8 July 2021

New bench on Old Buckenham Green

 Sit and enjoy the view

Today saw the installation of a new wooden bench placed on the Green in commemoration of the lives of Celia and Bill Wardman who ran the village shop from 1963 to 1991.

The concrete base had been laid earlier and so a few friends and relations gathered to see the new oak seat (made by Jonathan Bacon of the Harry Stebbings Workshop) arrive on the site outside the village Almshouses and be installed for all to use.








Saturday, 3 July 2021

Yet another Old Buckenham newsletter

More local news

The printed version of the July newsletter became available on Thursday 1 July,  a little later than usual, but distribution around the village is well under way. You can read all about when Caravan came to the High School, an item on the Methodist Church in Old Buckenham and of course the exciting news from the Parish Council.



Monday, 28 June 2021

Old Buckenham almshouses

 Assist the Almshouses

Do you have a little time to spare? Would you like to volunteer for a new role within Old Buckenham? The Robert Cocks Almshouse charity is looking for new trustees to help manage their almshouses on the village Green. Experience with building maintenance would be beneficial, although not essential, as would an understanding of financial planning and/or the needs of our older population.  A willingness to help other people is the most important quality they are looking for in a Trustee. 

The Robert Cocks Almshouses Charity consists of 10 homes in a Grade 2 listed building, founded in 1860. It provides accommodation for the residents, who need to be over 55 years, with a strong connection to Old Buckenham and can demonstrate a need for assistance. Working with a board of fellow trustees, the role would particularly suit someone from the local area who is able to attend a minimum of four meetings a year. Pre-Covid, meetings are normally held at 7.45pm on Tuesdays. To apply please send a brief application letter, with details of any relevant experience or interests, by email, in confidence to the Chair, Canon Steve Wright, at canonstevewright@gmail.com

Monday, 14 June 2021

Latest from Old Buckenham Parish Council

Parish Council minutes for June

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

Old Buckenham Parish Council met on Thursday 3 June in Old Buckenham Village Hall. Those present were councillors Jonn Hicks (Chair), Steve Milner, Adrian Joel, Terry Cook, Naomi Bailey and Mike Farrington. Also attending were Rachel Noyes (Clerk), Donna Oakley (RFO) and two members of the public. Apologies for absence were received from Andy Nicholls and Ben Devlin. Steve Milner was late in arriving.

The minutes of the meeting held on Thursday 6 May were approved (4 in favour, 1 abstain). Arising from these minutes Adrian Joel raised the issue that while Working Parties were updated last month, some councillors were lacking in commitment to their roles. Terry Cook highlighted that a lack of structure and nominated chairperson for each Working Party is the major contributor to the problem so the subject should be discussed in depth next month.

(SM arrived)

Financial matters. The Community account balance presently stands at £36,730.69.

Payments of £4,352.47 were approved (6 in favour) including to Playdale (tractor deposit of £3,123.33), community car drivers £24.75 and Brent Hibbert (bench plinth) £396.

Donna Oakley proposed that a bonus payment of £250 be paid to Rachel Noyes for her hard work over the last year. This was approved (6 in favour).

Annual Governance and Accountability Return (AGAR). Donna Oakley provided a breakdown of the Parish Council finances for the last year. She highlighted that the Parish Council had spent less than expected and that there was significant spending on the Green (a full breakdown of Green expenses will be supplied soon). In February next year, the Parish Council will need to look at and assess the depreciation of assets. Donna Oakley was thanked for all her hard work and a proposal to accept the AGAR finances and to send for auditing was approved (6 in favour).

Public participation relating to agenda items. A proposed new property (planning application 3PL/2021/0781/F will be accessed via the existing driveway which has the gate set back slightly to allow for greater visibility for drivers. Property will be used for the couple as they get older. There was once a previous property on the land but exact location not known.

Breckland Councillor Steve Askew has been helping to raise the issue with Breckland Council concerning litter in Prince Harry’s Wood but little is being done (Breckland Council own the land on which the woods are located). The Parish Council will try and help resolve the issue.

To consider planning applications and to receive Breckland District Council’s decisions made on any planning applications received before the meeting:

(All planning applications are available for viewing on the Breckland District Council planning portal www.breckland.gov.uk/article/2933/Search-Planning-Applications. Parish Councillors have been asked by the chairman to view the new applications in advance of the meeting.

New planning applications. Laurel Tree Centre, The Green. Change of use of consultation osteopath clinic with 1 bedroom flat to one residential dwelling (3PL/2021/0634/F). No objections. A proposal to support was approved (6 in favour).

45 Fen Street. The removal of the existing conservatory to the rear of the dwelling with a new single-storey extension and a new two-storey extension to the front of the dwelling (3PL/2021/0681/HOU). A proposal to support was approved (6 in favour).

Oak Lodge, 2 Fen Street. Proposed Single Storey Rear Extension (3PL/2021/0709/HOU). There are two windows on the plan which will overlook a neighbouring property. One is a bathroom and the second is a bedroom. Neighbouring properties should not be overlooked and lack of privacy is a valid reason for objection. Proposal to support on the condition that the issues of the windows is resolved was approved (6 in favour).

Hunters House Access Roads in and around Old Buckenham Hall. Erection of a 5m x 3.5m wood cabin within the front garden for use as a small dog grooming business (3PL/2021/0721/F). The property is accessed via a Right of Access on neighbour’s property. Proposal to support was approved (5 in favour, 1 abstain).

Coal Storage Yard. Road from Stacksford Lane to Hargham Road. Outline Planning Application for 5 no. Dwellings (3PL/2021/0500/O). Breckland Council granted an extension to the Parish Council to allow time for Highways to submit their viewpoint. However this has not occurred. All Councillors felt strongly that this was a dangerous, narrow road with blind junctions either side of the proposed site. It is also outside the Village Boundary and the housing quota has already been met. A proposal to object was approved (6 in favour).

Snetterton Farm, Banham Road. Erection of bungalow and garage including workshop/store (3PL/2021/0781/F). While the property is located off a narrow road, the property would be accessed via an existing driveway, which has good visibility. Proposal to support was approved (6 in favour).

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

The New Agricultural Barn, Land adjacent to The Roughlands Farm, Grove Road. Variation of Condition nos 2 and 3 on 3PL/2020/1334/F ( Erection of a single agricultural building and new vehicular access (3PL/2021/0429/VAR).

Standing Orders Review. There are no proposed changes. Proposal to accept was approved (6 in favour)

Phone box noticeboards. Thanks to Phil Little for installation of new noticeboards in the phone box by Rod Alley Row. It will be used as an ‘information hub’ about the Parish Council, the Green and the village in general. Ideas for what could go on these boards included Parish Council to display agendas/minutes, maps of local walks for visitors, information about plants/trees that can be found on the Green and possible activity sheet for children. Also spare copies of Village Newsletter to be displayed. Naomi Bailey will collate information and display. The noticeboards will not be used to display advertisements for local businesses. The Village shop and Newsletter already provide advertising space and the Parish Council do not wish to take revenue away from them.

Website. The Parish Council website could do with updating. The present councillors lack the skills to make it as good as it could be. They will start by looking to see if there is anybody in the village with the necessary skills and willing to help by sending out a request via Facebook and Village Newsletter. Could also look at creating a logo/header for the Parish Council to provide some consistency across their many platforms of communication.

Chairman’s report. Jonn Hicks will suggest the date of Friday 13 September for joint Village Hall and Parish Council meeting. Volunteers will cut the grass around the benches/signs soon. Thanks are due to Martin from the Ox and Plough for cutting the playground grass while the chairman is unable to do it. There will be no Parish Council meeting in August. The clerk is away and will be unable to minute the meeting.

Green Working Party (GWP). The Green will be cut once wildflowers have gone to seed. In order to try and find a balance between encouraging nature yet usable for the public, an area in the middle of the Green will be left uncut. Footpaths will continue to be cut in this area and around the Green when needed. The GWP will be meeting on Wednesday 16 June. The plinth for Bill Wardman’s memorial bench has been completed near the Almshouses. The clerk is to liaise with Bill’s family about the installation of the bench.

Play Area. Playdale have been in contact regarding installation of the new tractor. It will take place during week starting Monday 12 July and should take one day (exact date to be provided closer to time). The Church Rooms have kindly agreed to allow use of their toilets and outside tap which will eliminate need for portaloo to be provided. Container on the original quote will not be needed, thereby reducing total cost by £422. Phil Little will remove old tractor the week before. Playground will need to be closed to the public during these works. Rope and connectors (including some spares) to be ordered for climbing rope.

Recreation Area. Recreation ground needs cutting and fence removing. Jonn Hicks to arrange.

Councillors’ reports. District and County councillor Steve Askew had been in contact via email. Blocked drains between Scales Farm and Hargham Road have been booked for clearing. Pot holes on Fen Street (near Fen Road junction) and B1077 (between Doe Lane and Ragmere Road) have been booked in too. Further points to be raised with Steve Askew included pot holes on St Andrews Close, pot holes in the Danbrigg area and traffic speeds in Quiet Lanes.

Terry Cook said he will attend a meeting on Friday 18 June between Village Hall, NCC Highways, Steve Askew and Primary School representatives regarding the road leading to the Primary School and Village Hall. They are hoping to resolve the issue about payment for repairs to the road.

Naomi Bailey is starting to get entries for the Scarecrow Trail which will include all the village including Stacksford. Steve Milner is looking at setting up a Gorilla Poetry event. This will involve poetry around the village for people to visit and discuss.

Items for next agenda. Will include Working Parties/participation and the Queen’s Platinum Anniversary in 2022.

The next Parish Council meeting to be held on Thursday 1 July at 7.30pm in Old Buckenham Village Hall. 

Saturday, 5 June 2021

Old Buckenham parish council in masks.

 Requirement to meet in person

Parish and Town councils now have to meet together in person rather than via Zoom or any other similar system. This is the scene in the village hall last Thursday when the June meeting took place - socially distant, window and doors open and with all members wearing their face coverings.



Wednesday, 2 June 2021

Old Buckenham cyclists' adventure

 Cycling across England

Hugh and Francis Darrah finished their own customised version of the Way of the Roses at Runswick Bay, just north of Whitby on Monday 24 May. They had started from Morcambe the previous Friday in heavy rain which eased after a couple of hours. The rest of the 145 miles was a mixture of overcast and sunshine with either a gentle crosswind or a favourable tail wind. 

Leaving Lancashire quite quickly they passed through the Yorkshire Dales and descended into the Vale of York from Brimham Rocks, passing through the grounds of Fountains Abbey before a quick excursion around Ripon. A brief climb in the Howardian Hills took them through Ampleforth and onto Pickering before a glorious south to north crossing of the North York Moors brought them to the coast at Runswick Bay. They finished at the bank top before walking down the 1 in 4 road that leads to the sea. 

Lydia Darrah had supported them all the way with lunch stops and they all met together in b&bs or pubs for the overnight stops. They have admitted walking up a few of the steeper hills but their Norfolk training paid off and they made it without feeling completely exhausted and are looking forward to another challenge on their bikes.

Monday, 31 May 2021

Open air service in Old Buckenham

Sunshine for service

This Sunday was the 150th year anniversary of the building of the Methodist Church in Hargham Road. To celebrate this occasion an open air service was held followed by the unveiling of a plaque to commemorate the occasion.

Original foundation stone

Sitting in the welcome sunshine

Uncovering the new plaque

Myrtle Bloom and Jonn Hicks complete the task


Saturday, 29 May 2021

Old Buckenham June Newsletter

 Something interesting to read

Learn about the planning decision on the proposed weather radar, grass cutting on the Green, the tractor in the children's Play Area and cricket pavilions over the last 100 years. All in the June issue  that may have already come though your letter box. Read and enjoy.



Tuesday, 25 May 2021

Anniversary service in Old Buckenham

Outdoor celebrations

On Sunday 30 May the Methodist Church building will be exactly 150 years old. To celebrate the event they are planning to hold a special church service which they hope to be held outside, weather permitting, so that they will be able to have social distancing and be allowed to sing.

It well start at the usual time of 10.45am and all are invited to attend and join in the celebrations.

Being outside (and the forecast at the moment is for sunshine) this means that the congregation will be able to sing, very apt for a Methodist church given John Wesley’s open air sermons. There will also be an unveiling of a plaque to commemorate the date.  This will be done by Myrtle Bloom and the Parish Council chair Jonn Hicks, who was married in the church.
It will probably be a slightly shorter service than usual so will be over by 11.45am. There will be chairs put outside so people will have a choice to sit or stand. The order of service will be on a handout for safety reasons and so no need for hymn books. It will all take place using the space next to the church so the car park will available if you are driving there.

Sunday, 23 May 2021

All about Old Buckenham Church

New booklet gives the history

Now available to pick up from in the church, this booklet gives descriptions of all you may find both inside and outside of the building. Illustrated with many photographs and drawings.

Drop in and get a copy.

And on the way to the church door admire the flower bed. How it has changed from February to May. Thank you John




Thursday, 20 May 2021

Old Buckenham Village Hall AGM

Meeting in the Hall

At the AGM held on Wednesday  19 May,  members of the management committee reported back on a very eventful year. Held socially distanced in the Village Hall the following  officers were elected: 

Chairperson - Eileen Oliver, Treasurer - Graham Dye and Secretary - Linda Foulger.

At the end of the meeting a hanging basket was presented to Sheila Freake as a thank you for her work on the committee. Rosemary Pratt will be taking her place.



Saturday, 15 May 2021

Old Buckenham Parish Council

May Parish Council minutes 

The following notes were written by the newsletter editor from the draft minutes so may contain information that is amended at a later date.

A meeting of the Old Buckenham Parish Council was held on Thursday 6 May at 7.30pm via Zoom. Those present were councillors Jonn Hicks, Steve Milner, Adrian Joel, Terry Cook, Andy Nicholls and Naomi Bailey. Also attending were Rachel Noyes (Clerk), District and County councillor Steve Askew and three members of the public.

A minute’s silence was held in memory of ex-Parish Councillor Terry Cracknell who recently passed away.

Election of Chair and Vice Chair. Jonn Hicks was elected as Chair (5 in favour, 1 abstain) and Steve Milner elected Vice Chair (5 in favour, 1 abstain).

Apologies for absence. Mike Farington had sent his apologies. Ben Devlin was absent.

Minutes. The minutes of the meeting held on Thursday 1 April were approved (4 in favour, 1 abstain). Steve Milner lost internet connection and was unable to vote. There were no matters arising.

Financial matters. The bank balance now stands at £40,191.69 (this includes monies received from Breckland District Council of £11,155 and a VAT claim of £1,095.99).

Payments of £1162.70 were approved (5 in favour) including £554.32 for insurance and £165.55 to community car drivers.

Planning. All planning applications are available for viewing on the Breckland District Council planning portal www.breckland.gov.uk/article/2933/Search-Planning-Applications. Parish Councillors have been asked by the chairman to view the new applications in advance of the meeting.

New planning applications. Coal Storage Yard, Road from Stacksford Lane to Hargham Road. Outline Planning Application for 5no Dwellings (3PL/2021/0500/O). Councillors highlighted that the proposed plot is situated on a single track road with difficult and dangerous junctions at either end. It is also outside the settlement boundary and has the potential to result in the loss of a large amount of hedgerow. The proposed dwellings are mainly bungalows and would provide greater variety to the demographic of properties being built in the village. The main concern was that of road safety and how increasing the number of vehicles on this road could potentially result in an increase in accidents. Highways have not yet submitted their comments but councillors were keen to see their opinion and whether any improvements would be suggested in order to make junctions safer. A proposal to ask for an extension in order to see Highways comments and any potential improvements was approved (5 in favour).

Land at Poplar Farm, Fen Road. Permission in Principle for a New Self Build Single Storey Residential dwelling for a disabled person (Town and Country Planning Act 1990 Town and Country Planning (Permission in Principle) (Amendment) Order 2017).(3PL/2021/0544/PIP). Previous applications have been rejected by both Old Buckenham Parish Council and Breckland District Council. It is on a narrow single track lane and is situated on a corner. A proposal to object on the grounds of road safety was approved (5 in favour).

Westward, The Green. To convert Clay Lump Barn to residential dwelling (3PL/2021/0570/F). Councillors had no objections with the proposed plans. A proposal to support was approved (4 in favour, 1 abstain) on the condition that guidance on historic buildings is adhered to.

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

22 Oaklands. Proposed garage extension to rear to provide workshop area (3PL/2021/0271/HOU).

The Gamekeeper Public House, The Green. Replacement of structurally damaged roof timbers (including removal, storage and reuse of roof tiles) and associated repair works where necessary (3PL/2021/0272/LB).

Downmore Farm House, Banham Road. Creation of first floor addition to existing single-storey annexe which is part of main dwelling (3PL/2021/0327/HOU).

The following applications have now been considered and the applications have been refused. 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. (3PN/2021/0013/UC).

Part of Anglian Water Drilling Unit site, Abbey Road. Erection of a 24.46m high radar tower and associated comms cabin (3PL/2021/0091/F). Thanks are due to Councillor Steve Askew, Andy Nicholls and resident Alison Gilmore who spoke at Breckland Planning Committee regarding the Radar Tower application. The facts were supported with passion and from the heart from everyone. The Parish Council agreed that it was also a great example of a community making a stand and working together, from the residents up to the local MP.

Working Parties. The members were decided.

Personnel Committee: Steve Milner, Ben Devlin, Mike Farrington

Play Area Working Party: Jonn Hicks, Naomi Bailey, Kerry Talbot (resident).

Recreation Area Working Party: Jonn Hicks, Andy Nicholls.

SNAP: Steve Milner.

Old Buckenham Village Hall: Terry Cook.

Allotments: Adrian Joel.

OBPC website: Steve Milner, Rachel Noyes.

Old Buckenham Green Rights: Andy Nicholls.

Almshouses Trust: Ben Devlin.

Village Green Working Party: Andy Nicholls, Adrian Joel, Sarah Dye (Green Right Proprietor), Allison Frank (Green Right Proprietor), Lord of the Manor, John Fernihough (resident).

Eleemonosynary Trust: Jonn Hicks.

Neighbourhood Plan: Steve Milner, Ben Devlin, John Hicks, Adrian Joel, Mike Farrington, Terry Cook, Andy Nicholls, Naomi Bailey.

Public Rights of Way (PROW): Steve Milner, Terry Cook.

School Liaison Officer: Naomi Bailey.

Tree work on Green. Green Working Party members met with the Breckland Tree Officer to conduct a survey of all trees on the Green and any potential work required. Report was submitted to the Parish Council asking what work the Parish Council wanted them to do. Councillors struggled to make a decision as there were no detailed quotes comparing the price of completing all work now versus spread out over a time period. The Parish Council also wanted a clear proposal, detailing what work was to be completed and when. The Parish Council were also aware that they have spent a significant amount of money in the last few years on tree maintenance and wanted to understand how much of the Green Working Party budget remained. The Clerk is to request detailed quotes and proposals from Green Working Party and a balance sheet update for their 5 year budget plan. A proposal to set aside £1000 in the budget for the Parish Council to use for emergency tree work was approved (5 in favour).

Playground. The playground tractor is in a poor state of repair and, despite being repaired many times, now needs replacing. Quote from Playdale for new tractor and tunnel trailer is £5,205 + VAT. This includes delivery, removal and disposal of rubbish and installation. Grants may be available but it could take a long time to get and tractor needs replacing urgently as it could cause potential failure of an Inspection. Proposal to order the tractor and enquire about delaying inspection until after tractor is replaced was approved (4 in favour, 1 abstain).

Due to the high maintenance costs of the playground, the Parish Council have decided to look at fundraising ideas for the replacement of the tractor and any future maintenance. Naomi Bailey suggested the idea of a scarecrow trail around the village, which villagers could pay to enter and to sell maps, with a prize for the winner. Suggestion was made of having an Olympics theme and holding between Friday 23 July and Sunday 8 August (during Olympics). Naomi Bailey agreed to organise.

Clerk’s report. A resident had contacted PC with concerns regarding traffic on Hargham Road during SUE construction. The Clerk has emailed Breckland for confirmation that road will not be used and they have replied that a Traffic Management Plan is currently being drawn up for Phase 1 for approval and which the Parish Council will be consulted on.

Green Working Party (GWP). The GWP have sent a report providing summary of the current situation with the Green and annual maintenance. This report is reproduced at the end of these notes.

Road Safety. The SAM sign has been moved to Attleborough Road. Steve Milner is still having IT issues when analysing the recorded data but working on it. He will look at setting up the Community Speed Watch groups soon.

Play Area. All playground bins to be emptied by Serco. There was some confusion about how many they were supposed to empty but this is now clarified. The toddler swings have been replaced and some concrete ground down after being notified by resident as a potential trip hazard.

Recreation Area. The existing wooden fence to be removed so that it is safe. Donation of 300 laurel plants offered from Besthorpe Garden Centre. Looking to plant them in September.

Councillors’ reports. Steve Askew said that work to improve crossing by the school entrances was on track for work to be completed during summer holidays. Pot holes filled in on Grove Road and Mill Road to Hargham Road, one may have been missed but he will chase up.

Andy Nicholls thought that the Parish Council should highlight the work involved and success of preventing the Weather Radar tower from being built in the village. Rachel Noyes is to write an article for inclusion in the village newsletter.

Items for next agenda. These would include the Annual Governance and Accountability Return (AGAR) forms.

The next Parish Council meeting will be held on Thursday 3 June starting at 7.30pm in Old Buckenham Village Hall. Information regarding attendance in a Covid-safe manner is to follow.

 

The village Green and the Green Working Party (GWP).

The Green covers a total of 42 acres, seven being woodland and 39 rough grassland, ponds and tracks. It is leased by the Parish Council for about 25 years from The Lord of the Manor and the Green Rights Proprietors. In accordance with the provisions of the lease the committee comprises two Green Rights Proprietors, representative of the Lord of the Manor, two members of the Parish Council and two parishioners.

The only income from the Green is about £500 from wayleaves (for electricity poles), £550 payment from Ox and Plough for Green usage, and a further payment (amount to be agreed) from The Gamekeeper for usage of the forecourt of the business. At present this totals just over £1000 a year.

The GWP has an allocation of £3000 per year from the Parish Council to spend on maintenance such a mowing and tree work, with any proposed spending over £200 to be agreed by the Parish Council.

The Green is mown twice yearly and the grass under the trees annually. The grass has no value, due to the poor quality, weed burden, etc and contamination with soil from the multiple mole hills. There is also some rubbish contamination. The cut grass is left to dry out, due to the cost of removing and disposing of it, as it is valueless.

Every year the GWP look at the environmental issues. There are those who do not want the Green mown at all, some want it mown once, in July, and others who would like to see it mown monthly. The GWP take a pragmatic view and normally mow it twice a year. This year they are to leave a large central part of the main Green unmown until the autumn (mown once to encourage wild flower growth, etc) but will undertake to mow footpaths through the long grass for the community to use. The cost of the mowing will be £1000, covered by the Green income, as mentioned earlier.

Tree management has been an expensive item but the GWG seem to be on top of it now, no trees blew over in this winter’s gales. The Group have just completed a tree survey, with the Breckland Council Tree Officer, to identify any trees at risk and will now propose a management plan for the next few years. Eighty “new” trees were planted last autumn at no cost to the Parish Council.

All the paths and ponds that fall within the Green are in reasonable order, no spending envisaged. Because of the pandemic the Group has not had a meeting since last August but the management continues at a distance. The organised village litter picks to remove rubbish, etc, from the Green have been difficult at the present time.

Scarecrows coming to Old Buckenham

 Start designing now

You and your children might like to consider what they can make for this fortnight's event later in the year. It will help keep the Play Area in tiptop condition.


Tuesday, 11 May 2021

Cycling far from Old Buckenham

Riding for fun

Francis Darrah and his son Hugh have been in training since the start of this year for a challenge later this month. They have covered about 600 miles cycling around Norfolk before travelling the 160 miles from Morecombe to near Whitby (their own version of The Coast to Coast) over four days. They will be staying in bed and breakfasts along the way and are hoping for a westerly wind and just the right amount of sun.

Training in Norfolk for the hills of the Yorkshire Dales and the North York Moors shouldn’t really work but they seem to have had a head winds for most of the 600 miles of training rides so maybe they’ll be OK. And they are not raising money but just doing it for the fun of it!

Friday, 30 April 2021

Saturday funeral in Old Buckenham

Remembering Terry

Terry Cracknell’s funeral will take place on Saturday 1 May. The cortege will be leaving Rosedale Funeral Home in Attleborough at 9.20am for the service at 10am at All Saints Church, Old Buckenham. This will be followed by cremation at Breckland Crematorium. Unfortunately, due to current COVID restrictions, only family and close friends will be in attendance at the church. Those wishing to pay their respects may wish to be on the village Green, along the road leading up to the church, when the cortege arrives.

Donations are invited to the British Heart Foundation via Rosedale Funeral Home. 

Thursday, 29 April 2021

Latest Old Buckenham village newsletter

Lots of interesting news

Copies of the May issue are now out with the distributors and should shortly plop through your letter box.

Lots of original stories and writings covering the painting by a famous wicket keeper of a memorable local cricket match that took place one hundred years ago, a piece written in Norfolk dialect, the eulogy written for a well-known villager and of course notes on the last parish council meeting. 

Saturday, 24 April 2021

Working in Old Buckenham Garden Retreat

 Volunteers help out

Work continued this morning to plant out things at the garden. There are more sessions planned for the future so why not come along to the Country Park in Doe Lane and join in the fun.





Next sessions are on Saturday 8 May, Saturday 22 May and Saturday 5 June



Tuesday, 20 April 2021

Funeral of Old Buckenham resident

 Information from Terry Cracknell's family

Terry Cracknell was taken into the Norfolk and Norwich Hospital on Tuesday 6 April, his aorta having “sprung a leak”. He slipped away peacefully with family members at his side on Sunday 11 April. 

Terry’s funeral will take place on Saturday 1 May.  Terry will be leaving Rosedale Funeral Home in Attleborough at 9.20am for the service at 10am at All Saints Church, Old Buckenham. This will be followed by cremation at 11am at Breckland Crematorium. Unfortunately, due to current COVID restrictions, only family and close friends will be in attendance. Those wishing to pay their respects may wish to be on the village Green when the cortege arrives.

Donations are invited to the British Heart Foundation via Rosedale Funeral Home.


Sunday, 18 April 2021

Gardening in Old Buckenham

 Volunteer gardener wanted

At Old Buckenham High School they realise the importance of being eco-friendly and are educating their students on the benefits of re-cycling, saving energy and growing their own food. They have recently prepared an area of the school for an allotment and are in the process of purchasing a polytunnel. They are now seeking a keen gardener volunteer who would be willing to take on the allotment. You would be free to use the area as your own to grow your own produce. All the school ask in return, is that selected groups of children, who are genuinely interested in gardening and will be supervised by members of staff, can be involved with hands-on help and have the opportunity to taste the produce. This will enable the students to gain valuable knowledge of plant science, wildlife and environmental issues and hopefully encourage a few green fingered students to ‘grow their own’ in the future. If you are interested in this opportunity please email the school via office@obhs.co.uk

Friday, 16 April 2021

Old Buckenham parish council minutes

 April’s Parish Council meeting

The following notes were written by the newsletter editor from the draft minutes so may contain information that is amended at a later date.

Old Buckenham Parish Council met via Zoom on Thursday 1 April at 7.30pm. Those present were councillors Steve Milner (Vice Chairman), Adrian Joel, Terry Cook, Andy Nicholls and Naomi Bailey. Also attending were Rachel Noyes (Clerk), County and District councillor Steve Askew as well as two members of the public.

Mike Farrington and Jonn Hicks had sent apologies for their absence, Ben Devlin was absent.

The minutes of the meeting held on Thursday 4 March were approved (5 in favour) with the amendment to say that Stuart Baker had offered to help cut the recreation ground grass.

Financial matters. The Community account balance was now £31,199.21 and a VAT claim had been made for £1,095.99.

Payments totalling £3,436.19 were approved. These included £234 for the inspection of the Play Area, £927.31 for repairs to the swings in the Play Area and £1,593.60 for installation of an improved security camera system at the Village Hall

Planning. All planning applications are available for viewing on the Breckland District Council planning portal www.breckland.gov.uk/article/2933/Search-Planning-Applications. Parish Councillors have been asked by the chairman to view the new applications in advance of the meeting

New planning application.  The New Agricultural Barn. Land adjacent to The Roughlands Farm, Grove Road. Variation of Condition Nos 2 and 3 on 3PL/2020/1334/F ( Erection of a single agricultural building and new vehicular access) (3PL/2021/0429/VAR). Councillors could see no issues with the proposed variations. Proposal to support was approved (5 in favour).

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

Land off Banham Road. Erection of a single agricultural building and new vehicular access (3PL/2020/1334/F).

64 Fen Street. Construction of Swimming Pool and erection of Pool Building including gym, changing room and lounge area (3PL/2021/0102/HOU).

Downmore Farm House, Banham Road. Creation of first floor addition to existing single-storey annexe which is part of main dwelling (3PL/2021/0327/HOU).

The following application has now been withdrawn. Double Banks Farm, Old Buckenham Road Carleton Rode. Change of use of existing waste processing/composting facility to a HCL waste processing and recycling facility to produce RDF (Refuse Derived Fuel) and SRF (Solid Recovered Fuel) grade material (FUL/2019/0010).

Village Hall security. Terry Cook passed on the thanks of everyone on the Village Hall committee for the installation of a new security camera system. Thanks also to Stewart Ramsey for his professional, quick and efficient service. The new cameras cover a large and enhanced area. Installation was quite a big job as it involved re-wiring and setting up the new system. It should provide excellent support and prevention against anti-social behaviour which has been a problem in the car park in recent weeks. There has not been any such behaviour occurring since the installation.

Parish Partnership Scheme (PPS). The application for the PPS to improve road safety near the schools has been approved. The final cost is broken down as follows:

Total cost: £14,500

NCC contribution: £7,250

Members’ Fund Contribution: £3,500

Parish Contribution: £3,750.

A big thank you to County Councillor Steve Askew for his generous donation of £3,500 towards the project from his councillors’ personal budget. This has significantly reduced the amount the Parish Council have to pay and Steve Askew has been vital in driving the project forward at a great pace. There will be two “wig wag” (flashing 20mph) signs placed on Abbey road (one before the bend as you approach the schools and one from the opposite direction) and also a rough footpath cut into the edge of the turning island outside the High School to help encourage pedestrians to cross at one spot and away from the blind corner. Councillor Askew was happy to help support the project and was able to give that amount due to the increase in his councillors’ personal budget. Proposal to approve payment for the project was approved (5 in favour).

Green cutting. The Village Green Working Party (VGWP) requires approval for a quote of £1000 to cut the grass on the Green this year. The cut will happen twice a year (exact timings are dependent on the weather). This is a discounted price and the VGWP have struggled to get another quote as no one wants the job. The grass is of poor quality due to weeds, etc, and so has no value. Councillors considered that if the VGWP felt that this was a good deal, then they should listen to their advice and accept the cost. Propose to approve payment was approved (5 in favour).

Clerk’s report. The need for Public Liability Certificates for workers on the Green were raised in previous meetings. Most have been collected, remaining will be chased.

Location has been chosen for the memorial bench for Bill Wardman. It will be in front of the middle of the Almshouses. Once the family agree with the location, work will start on a plinth. There will need to be some gradation of the soil so that it is easily accessible.

The Brownies Leader has sent her thanks for sending the Precept Grant early. It helped significantly and stopped the unit having to close.

Various Highways issues were raised last meeting. Reflector posts in front of ditch by the Stud have been fixed. Posts by Manor Pond have been inspected and will be fixed soon. The damaged Cake Street sign was deemed by Highways to still be acceptable and so will not be replaced.

The Parish Council will return to face-to-face meetings from the June meeting onwards. The Clerk and Jonn Hicks will work with the Village Hall to ensure it is covid-safe. TheChair and Vice-Chair will be elected at the next meeting.

Road Safety. The SAM Sign has been moved to the Attleborough Road site. Will look in to setting up Speedwatch groups as restrictions are eased.

Play Area. Swings and inspection ordered. The tractor is also very run down and requiring attention. Jonn Hicks has looked at replacing the tractor with one from Playdale. Still waiting for a final quote but to buy, deliver and install it could be over £4000. Councillors felt this was very high and wanted to look at other options and also look at raising funds for the playground. Naomi Bailey will investigate fundraising ideas.

Recreation Area. Grass had been cut but not sure who did it. Lines for football pitch will now need to be painted.

Councillors’ reports. County Councillor Steve Askew said that most of the potholes that he has been made aware of have been filled in. There are just a few more to go. Grove Road has potholes that need attention.

The road approaching the Primary School is getting in a bad state. This road has an agreement between Highways and Parish Council from the 1970s that states maintenance is paid for 50/50. Steve Askew will enquire with Highways.

Terry Cook had attended a Webinar about Green Ways which was very useful and informative. There will be significant amounts of money assigned to improving Green Ways across the country and there may be up to £1.6million for Norfolk. This will include Public Rights of Way, cycle paths, bridleways, etc. Old Buckenham need to start thinking if and how we could bid into the best use of this money Also, how can we encourage younger generations to get actively involved in these improvements and looking after the countryside in general?

Items for next agenda. Village Handyman?

The next Parish Council meeting will be held on Thursday 6 May via Zoom and starting at 7.30pm.