Parish Council Report - November 2011

Posted in Parish Council Report

North Elmham Parish Council Meeting – 2.11.2011

The monthly Parish Council Meeting took place on 2nd November in the Sports Pavilion with 6 parishioners attending.

The meeting started with the vice Chairman, John Labouchere, reading out a resignation letter from the Chairman, Colin Groom. The resignation was accepted and a vote of thanks was given to Colin Groom for all his previous work.

John Labouchere was proposed as Chairman with all in favor.

There were 2 nominations for the post of Vice Chairman, Peter Braybrook and Martin Phillips. Voting ended with a tied vote and the Chairman gave his casting vote to Martin Phillips.

The meeting then proceeded with the introduction of the Breckland Dog Warden who spoke about Dog Control Orders, how to apply for them and how you enforce them. Hi informed the Council

that there is a general Dog Control Order in place covering dog fouling throughout Breckland. It was hoped in the future to provide an out of hours Centre for strays, although this would have to be carefully looked at in order not to encourage dumping of unwanted animals. Questions were then asked about micro chipping and was it mandatory in the UK?. The answer was Ireland yes, UK no, although he did remind all members that collars were mandatory in the UK as well as name tags giving at least a minimum of owners name and address (and telephone number if possible), failure to comply is a £5000 fine offense! The service would be pleased to listen to any complaints about dog fouling (in confidence) in order that they can build up an accurate picture of exactly where all the problem areas are. The contact details are Tel: 01362 858 500 email: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

Public Participation

Peter Howell again raised the matter of his hedge and tried to complain about Peter Wade-Martins again (in his absence) but the Chairman would not allow any comments like this without the person being present and able to defend themselves and it did appear that there was some animosity between Mr Howell and Dr Wade-Martins but the Parish Council Meeting was not the place to keep airing it. Mr Howell then said that the change of Chairman was a sad day for democracy! (to the disbelief of most of those present) – John Labouchere then pointed out that quotes had been received for cutting the hedge and would be dealt with later in the meeting as normal. A short discussion ensued regarding Mr Howell and the footpath maintenance and it was agreed that the hedge work was not dependent upon the footpath being maintained, however it was hoped that since the council was carrying out what had been agreed, Mr Howell would also keep to his end of the bargain and keep the footpath clear so that it could be used all year.

Apologies were received from Peter Wade-Martins and the previous minutes were accepted.

Land Management Matters

Cathedral Ruins – A letter has been sent to Adrian Baker concerning the loose flints.

Cathedral Meadows – It was thought to be a good idea to distinctly mark out the area for wildflower meadow, details are to be clarified with Peter Wade-Martins. 3 quotes have been received for hedge cutting and a final decision will be subject to checking certifications and insurance.

Street Lights

There are still some problems with certain lights and some people will need to be contacted about cutting of hedges and trees where these impede the light. The quote for the replacement lamp in Eastgate Street has been received for a value of £337 – instructions were given to proceed with the replacement.

Highway Matters

A report had been received from BT concerning the condition of the box in Station Road and BT had offered to refurbish it before sale due to it’s poor condition, it was decided, however, to decline the offerand just retain the existing box in Pump Street. The salt boxes will need filling before the winter fully sets in, highways to be contacted to ensure that is done. The Rangers will be visiting the week commencing 14th November and a list of jobs is being prepared.

PCSO Report

Call Figures: there were x9 Anti Social Behaviour calls, none of which affected the community as a whole, x3 Criminal Damage calls, x2 Highways Obstruction (one an injured deer, the other a board and cable hanging from a building) and x1 Suspicious Circumstances which turned out to entirely legitimate. The only addition to the Crime Figures for the month were x4 Criminal Damage to vehicles (reported under calls) – unfortunately there are no suspects and no further lines of enquiry.

Eastgate Centre

The ceiling work has now been dome, noise levels are now lower and the heating works much better. There will be an Open Day to look at the changes on 24th November 7-8pm. A letter had been received from the pCC asking for £930 for grass cutting at both the Eastgate Centre and the Church etc. £775 was the figure budgeted and this will be sent to the PCC.

Pavilion and Playing Field

The Football did try training by the Tennis Club lights but they were not entirely suitable and another more suitable training ground has now been found. There has been no money spent on maintenance of the car park in the last 4 years, it does not need weeds spraying as had been suggested. There is no progress on the proposed dugouts and it is unlikely that anything will happen this season. The moles have been treated 3 times so far and it will be an ongoing battle to try to minimize the problem.

Village Sign

The new sign is now in place but it needs the direction sign to the Chapel lifting slightly as it obstructs the view of the new sign. A letter of appreciation is to be sent to all concerned with the design and build etc.

Parish Plan

The recent public meeting was very successful with over 100 slips returned with suggestions, these have still to be collated. The next group meeting will be on 14th November in the Pavilion. The display boards that were at the public meeting will be available at different places around the village for a while in order that the maximum number of people can examine them and give feedback.

Station Yard Development

Another letter had been received from Breckland which did not address the complaint at all and the matter will now be escalated to the Ombudsman, Peter Wade-Martins has agreed to take this further.

Land Purchase

An answer had been received from Breckland to the query regarding the planning fund. There was money available but it is only for the purpose of outdoor sports and child play facilities. The Council have to have a specific project that meets the criteria before they can make application to the fund.

Vacant place on Parish Council

This has been advertised in the appropriate places.

Precept and Budget

Detailed proposals will be presented at the next meeting for submission to Breckland, Kevin Webb and Martin Phillips to prepare.

Severe Weather Arrangements

There is a need to identify people in need in order to check if carers cannot attend because of severe weather – A notice in Elmham News to this effect is required.



Lord Charles Cathcart – land north of Silverstone Farm
Erection of an agricultural building for free range hens.

Planning permission granted.