Parish Council meeting in January
The following notes have been written by the blog editor from the draft minutes and so may contain information that is amended at a later meeting.
All parish councillors attended the January meeting of Old Buckenham Parish Council except Akis Chrisovelides and Sarah Dye who had sent their apologies. Kerry Talbot attended to take the minutes as the parish clerk was unable to be there. One member of the public also attended.
Minutes of December meeting. These were signed as a true and accurate record of the meeting.
Matters arising from the minutes. Adrian Joel advised that a decision on the outline planning application for houses in Fen Street would be delayed until the planning meeting on Thursday 14 February because of Highways reports. Derek Smalley asked if the allotment vacancy had been filled; it had not and Adrian Joel would continue to advertise the matter.
Planning applications. Crown House, Stacksford. Erection of front porch. It was agreed unanimously that there were no objections.
Planning decisions received from Breckland. Alice Cottage, Ragmere Road. Convert integral garage into bedroom and bathroom, and side extension to form cart lodge. Permission granted.
Land off Fen Street. Outline application for five houses. Decision delayed until Thursday 14 February.
The Finches, Cake Street. Front and rear extensions, raise roof to create rooms in roof including Juliette balcony. Permission granted.
Chairman’s report. Tim Ing said that a rebate of £983.50 will be paid to the Council in respect of the Government passing back funding. A discussion took place regarding the affect on the precept. All councillors were happy to retain the rebate for future use as this would be a one-off payment. A decision on how the extra money could be used will be made at a later date. Tim Ing asked for an update on the Recreation Area quotes. Jonathan Kemp had not received any so far, a further update will be given in the parish councillors’ reports. Providing a tree guard was mentioned but Steve Milner said that this was no longer required.
District Councillor’s report. Adrian Joel reported that the current Chief Executive Officer at Breckland Council was retiring at the end of January and a new CEO had been appointed. He would be Trevor Holden from Luton Borough Council, on a three-month secondment. Trevor Holden was a previous CEO at Breckland and will be responsible for Breckland, South Holland and Luton Councils during this period. Derek Smalley asked if anyone was running the local CCTV. Adrian Joel replied that West Norfolk Council were monitoring the cameras through their offices, thus reducing the cost by sharing this resource.
Parish Councillors’ reports. John Frost reported that the Christmas Eve carol service at All Saints, Old Buckenham, was again very successful and raised £540 for the St Martins charity. Donations of food for the homeless were extremely generous including contributions from both local schools and 700 tins of soup from an anonymous donor. Fuller details will be available following the next PCC meeting. It was also mentioned that the Radio Norfolk Treasure Quest programme included a visit to a clue held within the church. Steve Milner reported that five Speed Watch sessions were held in December with five more planned for January. Steve Milner had also drafted a letter to the chief engineer of the County Council Highways Department to ask for advice on the Grove Road/Mill Road junction. Councillors all agreed this draft should be sent to parish clerk to send on behalf of the parish council. Adrian Joel raised the issue of large pot holes running along Post Office Terrace and round to the Hargham Road – this is deemed the responsibility of Green Right Proprietors. Tim Ing suggested waiting for clarification from Highways before taking any further action. This item will be placed on the agenda for the next parish council meeting. Tom Johnson reported on a meeting of the Village Hall Management Committee. The Chair, Treasurer and Secretary will be standing down at the next AGM. Tim Ing offered the help of the parish council to assist in keeping the Village Hall viable. An open meeting is to be held on Saturday 2 March at 11am in the Village Hall entitled “The future of the Village Hall is your hands”. This meeting will be publicised in the Six Parishes Newsletter. The Charity Commission has been consulted and they anticipated that if no officers were forthcoming, the Hall and car park should be locked and the keys handed to the parish council as custodian trustees. This process should take about six weeks to complete. Tom Johnson also asked if sign posts could be erected along the B1077 to advertise the meeting. Adrian Joel suggested contacting the Norfolk Association of Village Halls and inviting them to the meeting. Other suggestions included a leaflet drop to all dwellings in the village and door-to-door canvassing. Jonathan Kemp suggested a copy of the job descriptions for each role so that parishioners could be made aware of what is required for each role. All councillors agreed that this was an urgent issue and would support the Village Hall in any way they could. Paul Boggia advised that he had emailed Breckland Council regarding street lighting for junctions within the village to aid safety. Adrian Joel said that each village pays for their own costs of street lighting through the precept and suggested that Paul Boggia speaks to New Buckenham Parish Clerk for advice. Paul Boggia advised that the cost would be in the region of £1600 for purchase and installation. The general consensus of the Parish Council was that this issue will be on the agenda for the Annual Parish Meeting in March. Jonathan Kemp reported that the grant application for the Recreation Area to Norfolk Community Foundation has been rolled over to the next round in March (a total of £2m was awarded in the first round). Three pieces of further information had been requested and Jonathan Kemp is to organise submission of these to the Norfolk Community Foundation. Tim Ing is to provide a copy of correspondence from Breckland Council regarding planning. Carol Marshall will organise further quotes and Mike Bartlett confirmed (by invitation from the Chair) that the Village Hall had 100% agreed the bins could be moved once work commences on the Recreation Ground. Derek Smalley reported he had received the “Slow down in our village” posters for distribution and placing on wheelie bins at various points around the village. Tim Ing thanked Derek Smalley for his efforts in securing these posters at minimal cost to the Parish Council. Derek Smalley also reported on ASHAP and ACT and the lack of infrastructure planning in respect of the 375 houses being built in Attleborough. He stressed how important it will be for Old Buckenham to pull together to lobby Breckland Council as this new development will affect Old Buckenham and he will continue to copy all correspondence and information he receives to all councillors. He asked that Attleborough Town Council and Old Buckenham Parish Council become more involved. Adrian Joel advised that Section 106 money has been agreed for new housing and ASHAP is on the cabinet agenda for their next meeting. Derek Smalley will ensure information is available for the Annual Parish Meeting on Wednesday 20 March.
Highways. Jonathan Kemp reported that lorries were eroding the bank in front of his house and neighbouring houses. This is mainly due to inconsiderate use of the road by farm vehicles. There is also excessive mud on Hargham Road. Tim Ing suggested contacting Highways and, if nothing is achieved, to notify the Parish Council at the next meeting. Tom Johnson reported that the 30mph sign was not working (near the Gamekeeper). Derek Smalley had checked recently and this is now working. Steve Milner reported deep potholes along the main through road in Stacksford (near to Stacksford Villa). There are also potholes beside the island outside the High School. Tim Ing noted that Highways had responded very quickly to the highways issues reported last month.
The Green. There was no update on the hay bales still on the Green and there was no update on the footpath repairs. The play area parking looks durable and is working well, the section damaged by a lorry will be dealt with once the ground has dried out. The Clerk is to write to the Green Right Proprietors to ask them to remove the bales.
The next meeting of Old Buckenham Parish Council will be on Thursday 7 February in Old Buckenham Village Hall starting at 7.30pm.