Parish Council in January
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 corrected later at the next month's meeting.
The chairman welcomed two members of the public to the meeting at the Village Hall.
The minutes of the December meeting were approved and signed by the Chairman.
Village Hall. The VAT refund situation has now been resolved and the clerk is happy to proceed with processing the request for grant funding on behalf of the parish council if so instructed. If there is a subsequent problem for the VAT reclaim, the burden of any shortfall will devolve to the village hall.
County Councillor’s report. John Baskerville said that Old Buckenham High School has been classified as being in phase 4 or 5 for development. So the redevelopment work is well down on the list. He has protested at this classification and hopes to bring Old Buckenham up the list.
The footpath route from the Ox & Plough to the High School will be addressed as per the comments in the adjournment meeting.
More information on the Local Government Revue will be forthcoming in February.
Tenders are to be sought now for the second footpath on Green. The clerk was so instructed and Trevor Crook has kindly agreed to draw up a plan for the path specification.
Children’s Play Area. Kerry Talbot reported that an accident book had been supplied.
The Breckland grant application has to go to Cabinet for consideration on Tuesday 24 February. Kerry Talbot and Mike Craven-Romain will attend.
There will be a meeting with Lucinda Leonard of Norfolk Rural Community Council concerning further funding.
Kerbing of the road by the play area will be considered after the playground extension has taken place. The Clerk will process this request on behalf of the parish and the Green Rights Proprietors.
Settlement Boundary Review. Inspectorate will consider comments in June/July 2009 in respect of core strategy and development control policies.
It was felt that the increase in housing development must be curtailed to accommodate the current situation financially. Adrian Joel is hoping to get cabinet support for this restriction. Old Buckenham should be represented by a member of the parish council.
Recreation Area. The Clerk had been notified on Tuesday 6 January that the Agreement to Lease the land behind the Village Hall was executed that day. The planning application has been sent recorded delivery to Breckland.
The Green. The Clerk has raised a query with Mott McDonald about the promised dropped kerb that has not yet been installed.
The County Council legal department has not yet responded about planning permission for the proposed footpath. John Baskerville stated that it could go ahead as it is on Old Buckenham Green land. The clerk was instructed to proceed with obtaining tenders for the work involved in constructing the path.
The Proprietors have said that a guaranteed rental for letting of the Green is required by any tenant.
Mike Read suggested that he will notify the Proprietors before their AGM and circulate what he finds out to all interested parties.
Planning applications. Mr and Mrs J Germany, Thistledown, Crown Road. Replacement conservatory. No objections from the parish council.
Mr and Mrs Dye, Grove House, Grove Road. Raising external walls of kitchen/utility rooms to first floor (amendment to previous application). No objections from the parish council.
Mr and Mrs De’Ath, Lark Rise, Hargham Road. Single storey rear extension. No objections from the parish council.
Planning decisions by Breckland.
Mr and Mrs A Medley, Ottomer Cottage, The Green. This application, supported by the parish council, went to Breckland Committee in November 2008. Permission was refused at that meeting.
Stephen Thorley, College Barn, Cake Street. Proposed rear extension. Approved at Breckland.
A Nicholls, Cart Lodge, Cake Street. Erection of new stable and tractor store. Tiled roof not feasible. The Clerk advised Breckland that it would support whatever alternative Breckland feels appropriate. Approved at Breckland with provision of suitable hedge planting and the use of red “Onduline” sheeting for the roof. Exact specification is to be agreed before the commencement of work. This development is as part of the existing property and may not be sold, let or sub-let as a separate unit.
M Frazer, Peacehaven, Fen Street. Rear conservatory. Approved at Breckland.
Stephen Brown, Shardalows Farm, Fen Street. Conversion of barn to provide residential accommodation. Approved at Breckland.
District Councillor’s report. Adrian Joel said that, in spite of the fact that investment accounts are proving very difficult to manage in the present situation, the tax base for council tax has not altered very much. It is proposed that there will be an increase of 3.35%. Breckland Council is awaiting capital return from Icelandic investments. There will, almost certainly, be a loss of interest.
Attleborough has launched a task force to investigate, amongst other matters, infrastructure, schools provision, etc so that it can advise on the scope of development.
The Banham Poultry site in Attleborough looks dreadful and should be tidied up. The clerk was asked to write to Attleborough town council.
Councillors’ Reports. Could the mound by Dairy Cottage be removed? This is a Highways issue as it is in close proximity to the road. The clerk will investigate.
The clerk will also check dates and book the Village Hall for the Annual Parish Meeting at a date late in March.
Serious worries were expressed regarding the manning of Village Hall management committee.
The possible relocation of the dog bin near the playground was discussed and notification has been given to Serco to get it emptied as soon as possible.
Clerk’s report. The clerk will contact neighbouring parish councils about supporting a public meeting in Old Buckenham about a proposed Flexi-Bus service and will then fix a date.
Highways. A satisfactory inspection took place with Adrian Sewell and Highways Inspector Luke Denny. Some immediate repairs have been undertaken already. Others are agreed and will go ahead. The new drains have been installed on Church Lane in the vicinity of the playground. The clerk suggested that a request for kerbing in that area be requested to make the general drainage of the lane more efficient.
The clerk has heard from Adrian Sewell that the Cake Street flooding is now being tackled with the co-operation of Old Buckenham Stud who are removing a section of hedge and dredging out a drainage ditch whose blockages are contributing to the problem.
Hargham Road, Old Buckenham, should be added to the gritting programme for the winter season. The Clerk will notify Highways.
Correspondence. A reply has been received from the High School headmaster about safer cycling.
Copies of the new Electoral Register that had been received by the clerk were distributed.
An enquiry from Peter Martin about seeking co-option as a parish councillor has been circulated to all councillors.
A discussion on eleemosynary disbursements was conducted in camera.
The next meeting of Old Buckenham Parish Council will be at 7.30pm on Thursday 5 February in the village hall.