Latest parish council minutes
This report has been written by the blog editor from the draft minutes and so may contain information that is amended at a later date.
All the parish councillors attended apart from Jonathan Kemp who had sent his apologies. Three members of the public were also present.
There was a short public recess when the meeting was suspended to allow members of the public to ask questions.
Minutes of April Parish Council meeting. These were signed as a true and accurate record of the meeting. There were no matters arising from these minutes.
Adoption of accounts. The accounts for the year ending March 2013 were unanimously approved and adopted by the council.
Annual Governance Statement. The Parish Clerk read out what items were covered in the statement relating to the accounts and it was agreed that the statement be signed.
Neighbourhood Plan. Adrian Joel had a booklet on neighbourhood plans and Tim Ing read out how a plan is constructed and exactly what it is. Adrian Joel gave details of what funds would be available from Breckland Council from any new development in the village if a Neighbourhood Plan is in existence or if one is not. The Village Plan must look at what is required in the next 18 years to tie in with Breckland’s Local Plan. All councillors are to look at the booklet and come back for further discussion at the June meeting.
Old Buckenham website. Steve Milner gave details of a major upgrading of a village website. He is now the ‘webmaster’ and has carried out a programme of updating the site. He especially wants to expand the Parish Council section and suggested that all councillors write a small biography of themselves and what responsibilities they have on the Parish Council. He also wanted residents to be more involved and be able to contact the Parish Council through the website. Adrian Joel thanked Steve Milner for all his work on upgrading the website.
Authorisation to change bank mandate. The Clerk explained that in order for online banking to happen for the Parish Council he would need to be added to the list of authorised signatories. It was agreed unanimously that the Parish Clerk be added to bank mandate.
Planning applications. Derek Smalley informed the meeting that the applicant had lodged an appeal against the decision on their application for alterations and extension of existing stables at Roughlands, Grove Road. This was originally agreed for personal use only and they now wanted to change it to business use. The Parish Clerk is to write to the Planning Inspectorate outlining the Parish Council’s objection to the change of use.
Park Farm, Abbey Road. New grain storage to replace existing silos. There were no objections except that the two existing silos need to be demolished as new facilities are replacements and not additional. This was agreed with nine for and one abstention.
Vine Cottages, 64 Fen Street. Installation of a ground array of photovoltaic solar panels. The parish council had no objections, this was agreed with nine for and one abstention.
Willow Farmhouse, The Green. Two-storey four-bedroom detached house and detached cart lodge for three cars. Tim Ing sought the views of councillors. It was then proposed that there were no objections, this was agreed with five for, two against and three abstaining.
21 Fen Street. Remove door and replace window with patio door. No objections, this was agreed unanimously.
Planning decisions received from Breckland. None.
Chairman’s report. Tim Ing asked if there should be another litter picking session on the Green this year. Councillors reported that the Green was in a very tidy condition. It was also reported that John Hicks had cut the grass and repaired the fence at the play area and had done a marvellous job.
Parish Councillors’ reports. Adrian Joel said the gate on the recreation area was left open and suggested a sign be put up asking for people to close the gate after them. Allotments are now fully taken. Tom Johnson suggested having broadband internet access with WiFi in the village hall. It would cost approximately £408 per year, item to be put on June agenda for further discussion. Steve Milner reported that the Speedwatch team had recently held a meeting to review its activities. They had carried out 13 sessions with 11 cars exceeding 36mph and they had been reported. They also discussed ways in which the group could be more effective. It was suggested putting speeding signs on private land in the village. Steve Milner would bring costs of this suggestion to June meeting. Derek Smalley attended a SNAP meeting in April. The new policing team were introduced, a poster showing the officers and their respective areas has been put in the Village Hall and the village noticeboard. Complaints were registered on Old Buckenham’s behalf, one was inconsiderate parking at Oaklands and again dangerous driving/parking at Abbey Road by parents dropping off or collecting schoolchildren. The local officers said they would keep an eye out and visit the schools to drop off some safety leaflets.
A further point raised was regarding getting the SAM2 (a mobile speed indicating sign) deployed at the Attleborough end of the village speed limit to warn drivers of their speed when entering the 30mph limit. The police initiative for the next period was “hardening attitude to crime”. In this context it was suggested any suspicious behaviour in the area be reported and logged with the police by phoning 101. Derek Smalley was invited to attend a meeting of the working group to discuss Attelborough’s proposed Neighbourhood Plan and its impact on surrounding parishes. Of particular interest at this first meeting was Attleborough’s request to include a strip to the south of Bunn’s Bank within their proposed plan for commercial use as the northern side is already used for this purpose. Although it does fall within Old Buckenham Parish boundary, this area has already been put forward by the owner, Kevin Edwards, for commercial use. Any expansion development within Attleborough is going to have an effect on Old Buckenham and other surrounding parishes because of increased use of the B1077. Derek Smalley felt it will be wise to engage with the Attleborough Development Working Group to represent the views of the village and have our voice heard. He sought the approval of the parish council to having a representative from Old Buckenham to champion our views and agree in principle for the inclusion of the strip of land mentioned before within Attleborough’s Neighbourhood Plan.
Highways. Adrian Joel said he had received a report of road damage in Fen Street outside Highbank Cottages, the potholes had been reported by Parish Clerk to Highways.
The Green. Sarah Dye said maintenance work had been carried out by the new contractor on lots of areas and the Green was now looking very nice. Tim Ing reported that two trees on the Green need replacing.
The next meeting of Old Buckenham Parish Council will be on Thursday 6 June in the Village Hall at 7.30pm.