Digests

Litcham Parish Council

Extracts first appeared in  the Church and Village in September 2007 in order to keep the village better informed about the activities of the Parish Council. They are written by the Clerk and approved by the Chairman within a week of the meeting and published in the Church and Village around three weeks after the meeting. Prior to this date the minutes  were published only after the minutes had be approved by the whole council at the next meeting of the Council.
Thus they were not widely available to the public until at least two months after the meeting.
They are not official in any way and are not approved by the Parish Council.


FEBRUARY

At the February Parish Council meeting which was attended by seven Councillors, County Councillor M Kiddle Morris and three members of the public the following was considered:
Planning: Applications. There were no applications to consider. Decisions: The application for a single storey rear extension and internal alterations at 19A Wellingham Road and the application for a detached agricultural building on land at Dereham Road had both been approved.
Neighbourhood Watch:There are vacancies for local coordinators for the following areas:- Rectory Meadow and Druids Lane: Pound Lane, Back Street, Front Street and Lexham Road: the north end of Tittleshall Road; Weasenham Road and Keppel Close and Lexham Road West, Hall Farm House and Coronation Cottages.
If any parishioner wishes to assist please contact the Clerk.
Highways: The Clerk had received confirmation that further works are to be carried out on the vegetation along Mileham Road and that the surface at the junction of Druids Lane and Mileham Road is scheduled for repair. The Parish Council is to suggest that this is undertaken in school holiday times to ensure there is no disruption to the school bus services. The problems of potholes on Pound Lane, the unfinished footway on Pound Lane and flooding on Mileham Road will all be reported.
County and District Councillor Reports: The County Councillor reported that the Council tax from Norfolk County Council is likely to rise by 5.99% which will increase revenue by £3.7 million which will pay for the increase in the cap on salaries from 1% to 2% and the possible reduction in bus subsidies and gritting routes had been reversed as the increase in revenue will pay for these. The Police and Crime Commissioner is preparing a business case for taking over the Fire service which is not supported by Norfolk County Council. There is also a worrying trend of drugs coming into Norfolk from London and Birmingham and the suppliers are using young people to deliver these, the young are groomed into the system and are being robbed by the gangs which means that they are then trapped in the system. This is a serious problem which it is difficult to get on top of.
Clearance of Trees. Several parishioners raised concerns over the felling of trees by Breckland Council on the land between Wellingham and Weasenham Roads. Several had been felled on the authority of Breckland Council yet at the open public consultation for a possible development none were said to be felled. The Chairman had contacted Breckland Council who had confirmed that it had given permission for 6 to be felled. A parishioner stated that he did not believe that the fencing contractor employed had the correct licence or that it was conforming to health and safety regulations. It was agreed to monitor the situation and to contact Breckland Council again. It was also disappointing to note that the contractor was from Ipswich when a local contractor could have been employed.


MARCH

At the March Parish Council meeting which was attended by seven Councillors, County Councillor M Kiddle Morris, District Councillor E Gould and twomembers of the public the following was considered:
Planning: Applications. There were no applications to consider. The application for a dwelling on land at Lime Kiln House had been referred to the planning committee. Decisions:There were no decisions to report.
Neighbourhood Watch:There are vacancies for local coordinators for the following areas:- Rectory Meadow and Druids Lane: Pound Lane, Back Street, Front Street and Lexham Road: the north end of Tittleshall Road; Weasenham Road and Keppel Close and Lexham Road West, Hall Farm House and Coronation Cottages.
If any parishioner wishes to assist please contact the Clerk.
Highways: Considerable correspondence had been received regarding the state of the track off Wellingham Road. Breckland Council had suggested that the bollards be re-sited closer to the road but the District Councillor informed the members that this would not occur and that she had informed the officer that the Parish Council would not be contributing to the cost of repairs to the track. Norfolk County Council had also been contacted as it owns the land immediately adjacent to the highway and all the potholes will be filled.
County and District Councillor Reports: The County Councillor reported that the budget for the County Council had been passed. The Police and Crime Commissioner is continuing to prepare a business case for taking over the Fire service which is not supported by Norfolk County Council. The County Council is opposed to this and it would be necessary for the Police and Crime Commissioner to take over all the capital, stations and equipment and he felt that it would be 2 years to sort out the finances to enable this to happen. He also stated that the highways with the assistance of local farmers and builders had managed to get all the roads passable following the drifting snow. The District Councillor reported that Breckland Council. Had set a balanced budget and a Band D property would have an increase of £4.95 on its Council Tax. Breckland Council is supporting a mobile phone app to inform the owner of the availability of items and these can then be delivered to a site in a town. This should encourage more people into the market towns.
Clearance of Trees. Breckland Council had been contacted regarding the cutting down of trees and it had been hoped that a representative from Breckland Council would be attending. The District Councillor reported that as these are on land owned by Breckland Council and there are no tree Preservation orders on the trees the Council is entitled to maintain them as it sees fit. It was noted that the contractor used may well not be employed by Breckland Council in the future. The Parish Council was still disappointed that these had been felled prior to any application being submitted for planning.


APRIL – ANNUAL PARISH MEETING

Prior to the Parish Council meeting the Annual Parish meeting was held attended by seven Councillors, County Councillor M Kiddle Morris and six members of the public.
Reports were received from local organisations, the Chairman of the Parish Council and the County Councillor.
At the Annual Parish meeting the school informed the meeting that it is trying to alleviate the parking problems at the primary phase but Norfolk County Council is not funding any more transport to allow children to be ferried by coach from the High School to the Primary School so there is always a profusion of cars on pound lane which means that a large coach is unable to pass along the road or to turn round.
The Parish Council will support any resolution to resolve the issue but without any land to utilise as a car park this is very difficult to achieve. The school is also looking to replace the pavilion and a discussion was held as to whether a play area could be incorporated within the plans.


APRIL – PARISH COUNCIL MEETING

At the April Parish Council meeting which was attended by seven Councillors and two members of the public the following was considered:
Planning: Applications. No objection was raised to the application from the Jubilee Hall for the extension and redesign of existing single floor structure to allow the hall to be used in a more convenient manner. No objection was also raised for the retrospective application at Willow House Druids Lane for the alterations to the fenestration, insertion of rooflights within the east elevation roof and a new patio and steps to the rear. The Parish Council objected to the change of use of land to residential at Willow House Druids lane as this has encroached onto a SSSI and also the application stated that no trees or hedges would be removed which is not correct as these have already been removed, and a new access constructed which again is not as per the application. Decisions: There were no decisions to report.
Neighbourhood Watch:There are still vacancies for local coordinators for the following areas:- Pound Lane, Back Street, Front Street and Lexham Road: the north end of Tittleshall Road; Weasenham Road and Keppel Close and Lexham Road West. It is anticipated that a meeting of the coordinators will be held in the near future once all areas are covered.
If any parishioner wishes to assist please contact the Clerk.
Highways: The parish Council was pleased that some repairs have been undertaken at the junction of Druids Lane and Mileham Road but was disappointed that not all the resurfacing has been completed. The flooding on Mileham Road opposite the school playing field and also at the bend near to Coronation Cottages will be reported. The potholes on Dereham Road, Druids lane and Pound Lane will be reported.
County and District Councillor Reports: The County Councillor reported in the Annual Parish Meeting on the previous year and has contacted the highways department to install a new post on Dereham Road to affix the SAM2 sign to check the speed of vehicles as a complaint had been received from a parishioner.


MAY

At the May Parish Council meeting which was attended by seven Councillors, County Councillor M Kiddle Morris and one member of the public the following was considered:
Chairman and Vice-Chairman. Councillor M Oldfield was re-elected chairman and Councillor Mitchell re-elected Vice-Chairman of the Parish Council.
Planning: Applications. There were no planning applications to consider. Decisions: The application for the extension and redesign of existing single floor structure to allow the hall to be used in a more convenient manner from the Jubilee Hall had been approved. The retrospective application at Willow House Druids Lane for the alterations to the fenestration, insertion of rooflights within the east elevation roof and a new patio and steps to the rear had also been approved by Breckland Council.
Neighbourhood Watch:There are still vacancies for local coordinators for the following areas:-
Pound Lane, Back Street, Front Street and Lexham Road: the north end of Tittleshall Road; Weasenham Road and Keppel Close and Lexham Road West. It is anticipated that a meeting of the coordinators will be held in the near future once all areas are covered.
If any parishioner wishes to assist please contact the Clerk.
Highways: The flooding on Mileham Road opposite the school playing field and also at the bend near to Coronation Cottages had been reported and Norfolk County council had confirmed that these had been investigated and it is going to resolve the problem. The potholes on Dereham Road, Druids Lane and Pound Lane had also been reported and Norfolk County council had confirmed it is going to repair these but this may tale 6 weeks. The new potholes on Back Lane, Weasenham Road, Tittleshall Road, the overgrown signs on Tittleshall Road and Druids Lane are all to be reported. The white lining on several roads including across the Common are to be requested to be refreshed. As there has been a second accident on the Common involving a pony, the Parish Council is to contact Norfolk County Council to enquire if the speed limit can be extended to the furthest cattle grid.
Accounts for the Financial Year 2017-2018. These were approved at the meeting and the full details will be posted on the website as per the new regulations that have come into force for this year.
County and District Councillor Reports: The County Councillor reported that there is  mobile phone detection sign similar to a SAM2 sign that will scan a vehicle to see if a mobile phone is being used that is not on Bluetooth but is breaking the law by being used whilst driving. There will be four cameras on trial in the county and these will be moved around to determine hotspots for illegal usage of mobile phones. There is a consultation underway on a western link from the NDR to the A47. St present it is likely that there is more traffic on the B1145 through Litcham as vehicles travel from the NDR to the A47 via King’s Lynn.


JUNE

At the June Parish Council meeting which was attended by seven Councillors, County Councillor M Kiddle Morris, District Councillor E Gould and one member of the public the following was considered:
Planning: Applications. The Parish Council supported the application from the Methodist Church to replace the selected wooden windows with uPVC wood grain windows. The applicant explained the reason for the change to uPVC and as this building is an integral part of the village being used continuously the Parish Council supported the application.  Decisions:There were no decisions to report.
Neighbourhood Watch:There are still vacancies for local coordinators for the following areas:- Pound Lane, Back Street, Front Street and Lexham Road: the north end of Tittleshall Road; Weasenham Road and Keppel Close and Lexham Road West. It is anticipated that a meeting of the coordinators will be held in the near future once all areas are covered.
If any parishioner wishes to assist please contact the Clerk.
Highways: All the matters raised the previous month have been reported and the failure to repair around the ironwork on Dereham Road near to Devlin Cottage was raised with the County Councillor again. The footway on Lexham Road and Pound Lane will be requested to be cleared.
County and District Councillor Reports: The County Councillor reported that the Leader of Norfolk County Council had resigned due to ill health. The new leader is Councillor Andrew proctor who has been the Leader of Broadland District Council. An application is being submitted for an extension to the Punch Farm quarry although this had not been submitted in to the Minerals and Waste Local Plan. The first consultation on the Minerals and Waste Local plan is due to commence in mid-June. The County Councillor has requested that the Highways Department look at the speed limit and any other improvements to the road across the Common. The reduction in width of the road at certain points will be requested as well.
The district Councillor stated that the “shopappy” app has been launched which encourages residents to purchase and collect locally. The Breckland Lottery has also been started which will provide funds for local community projects as well as giving prizes to winning residents. The Local Plan examination in public is due to finish at the end of that week.
General Data Protection Regulation: The Parish Council does not have to appoint a Data protection officer so it will now proceed with the policy and privacy notice once clarification has been received on what data is covered by the new Act.


JULY

At the July Parish Council meeting which was attended by five Councillors, County Councillor M Kiddle Morris and District Councillor E Gould the following was considered:
Planning: Applications. The Parish Council raised no objection to the application for the erection of a proposed dwelling, part conversion to link to dwelling and to realign the roof line to the outbuilding on land adjacent to Anvil House Butt Lane. After a lengthy discussion the members decided by a majority decision to raise no objection to the two applications for housing of Weasenham and Wellingham Roads. Both applications are for 8 dwellings on the land to the rear of the houses along Wellingham and Weasenham Roads. Concern was raised by the Parish Council about the increased traffic that would ensue outside the Primary School and at the crossroads at the Bull Inn. A request was made in the response to address these concerns prior to any approval being given. The Parish Council also expected that the provision of play equipment would be a condition of any approval.
Decisions: Approval had been granted by Breckland Council for the change of use of land to a parking area at Willow House Druids Lane although the members were disappointed that no mention had been made of the felling of a tree at this point to provide access to the parking area.
Neighbourhood Watch: There are still vacancies for local coordinators for the following areas:- Pound Lane, Back Street, Front Street and Lexham Road: the north end of Tittleshall Road; Weasenham Road and Keppel Close and Lexham Road West. It is anticipated that a meeting of the coordinators will be held in the near future once all areas are covered.
If any parishioner wishes to assist please contact the Clerk.
Highways: All the matters raised the previous month have been reported and the failure to repair around the ironwork on Dereham Road near to Devlin Cottage was raised with the County Councillor again.
The junction of Druids Lane and Mileham Road had been surface dressed but there was concern that this would not last the constant traffic at this point.
The gulleys on Church street had been cleaned and it was hoped that the refreshing of the signs on the roads in the parish would be done soon.
A parishioner had contacted the Parish Council regarding the junction of butt Lane and Tittleshall Road and the crossroads at the Bull Inn. The County Councillor will take the matter up with the Highways Engineer to see if a STOP sign on Butt Lane could be installed but it is unlikely that any further improvement can be made at the crossroads as this was considered some years ago but would entail the demolition of properties which are listed. This is therefore not feasible.
County and District Councillor Reports: The County Councillor reported that the former Leader of Norfolk County Council, Cliff Jordan, had died. The new Leader had requested additional funding for shire counties from Central Government.
General Data Protection Regulation: The Parish Council approved the General Data Protection Policy, the Terms of Reference for the Committee and the Privacy Statement. To view these documents please visit the website. The Parish Council will only hold information that it has the right to hold to carry out the duties of a Parish Council. All parishioners now have a right to have their information to be removed.


SEPTEMBER

At the September Parish Council meeting which was attended by seven Councillors and County Councillor M Kiddle Morris.
Planning: Applications. There were no applications to consider. Decisions: Approval had been granted by Breckland Council for the erection of a proposed dwelling, part conversion to link to dwelling and to realign the roof line to the outbuilding on land adjacent to Anvil House Butt Lane.  Approval had also been granted by Breckland Council for the addition of first floor to create a two-storey dwelling and proposed car shed at Glenshea Butt Lane.
Neighbourhood Watch: There are still vacancies for local coordinators for the following areas: Pound Lane, Back Street, Front Street and Lexham Road: north end of Tittleshall Road; Weasenham Road and Keppel Close and Lexham Road West.  It is anticipated that a meeting of the coordinators will be held in the near future once all areas are covered.
If any parishioner wishes to assist please contact the Clerk.
Highways: All the matters raised the previous month have been reported and the failure to repair around the ironwork on Dereham Road near to Devlin Cottage was raised with the County Councillor again.  The Clerk is meeting the Highways Engineer the following day and will stress that the road markings need refreshing, the Mileham Road still needs flailing and the gulley on Druids Lane has not been repaired.  The following will also be reported: the footway along Lexham Road needs clearing, a gulley is blocked on Church Street and the roads will be requested to be swept.
Flagship will be contacted regarding the hedge clippings which have been left and are covering a fire hydrant.  It also means that the grass cannot be cut.  A hedge on Lexham Road is overhanging the footway and the owner will be written to.
County and District Councillor Reports: The County Councillor reported that the Business Plan put forward by the Police and Crime Commissioner to take over the Fire Service is flawed and if it is submitted to the Secretary of State then Norfolk County Council will put in a robust opposition to the proposal.  The plan assumes that all land will be transferred to the Police and Crime Commissioner.  There is provision in the Norfolk County Council budget of £8.5 million to upgrade equipment and the debt would be passed on.  Many firefighters are due to retire and with a small budget it would not be possible to recruit more prior to their retirement.  There is resilience within the County budget to cover early recruitment.  He informed the members that he had been selected to stand for Breckland Council next May.  The EDT Committee which is the committee for highways is considering the commercialisation of highways repairs with the contract possibly going to Norse.


OCTOBER

At the October Parish Council meeting which was attended by six Councillors, County Councillor M Kiddle Morris and one member of the public the following was considered:
Planning: Applications. The Parish Council raised no objection to the application for a proposed two-storey extension to the side of the property at 20 Wellingham Road. Decisions:Approval had been granted by Breckland Council for proposed replacement of selected windows at Litcham Methodist Church, Front Street.
Highways: All the matters raised in the previous month have been reported and the failure to carry out repairs around the ironwork on Dereham Road near to Devlin Cottage was raised with County Councillor Kiddle again. The Clerk met with the Highways Engineer and stressed that the road markings need refreshing, the Mileham Road still needs flailing and the gulley on Druids Lane has not been repaired. These have still not been attended to and the Highways Engineer will be contacted again. The pothole on Back Lane will be reported. The landowner responsible for the hedge at The Mount which is overhanging Butt Lane will be contacted to cut this back. County Councillor Kiddle will contact the owner of the Old Fire Station to request a tidy up of the area bordering the road.
County and District Councillor Reports: County Councillor Kiddle reported that it is not yet known if the Business Plan put forward by the Police and Crime Commissioner to take over the Fire Service will be submitted to the Secretary of State. Norfolk County Council is against this move and does not believe that there would be the saving proposed by the Police and Crime Commissioner as this would entail reducing the capability of the Fire and Rescue Service. Hertfordshire, which also runs the Fire and Rescue Service, has also undergone a consultation on this matter and when the proposal was forwarded to the Secretary of State he asked for more information at which point the proposal was withdrawn. The budget setting period has begun which will run until February for the financial year beginning in April. Since 2011 £189million of income has been lost and there is still a further loss of income from Central Government of £95million.There is to be a10% reduction in staff by natural wastage and all departments are looking at savings. There is a consultation on Children’s Centres of which there are 53 at present under 12 different contracts. These are proposed not to be re-negotiated but outreach centres would be provided working from 7 hubs and therefore providing support where it is needed. It is probable that the Litcham Centre will remain open as the school would take on part of the building and Norfolk County Council would provide additional service e.g. Healthy Children support. There was concern from the members that this would be a retrograde step but County Councillor Kiddle stated that the officers feel that this is possible, will reach more children and provide a better service.


NOVEMBER

At the November Parish Council meeting which was attended by seven Councillors, County Councillor M Kiddle Morris and three members of the public the following was considered:
Planning: Applications. The Parish Council raised no objection to the application for a proposed loft extension at 6 Manor Drive. Decisions: Approval had been granted by Breckland Council for the proposed two storey extension to the side of the property at 20 Wellingham Road.
Highways: Some of the problems reported previously have been repaired or in the case of the footway along Lexham Road cleared. The pothole outside the entrance to the school on Church Street will be reported as will the poor state of the footway outside the Post Office.
County and District Councillor Reports: The County Councillor reported that Norfolk County Council is consulting on its budget. Any parishioner can comment on this and find out the details of the proposals at www.norfolk.gov.uk/budget. The County Council is likely to raise Council Tax by 2.99% but not implement an allowed 3% increase for Adult Social Care.
Children’s Centres:This was discussed as the consultation would finish on 12 November. A representative from Litcham Child Care addressed the meeting and stated that it was in favour of the proposals and that the proposals with the High School would give enhanced services. The Parish Council decided to support the proposals for the Litcham Children’s Centre but would wish there to be a centre in each of the market towns.
The Green: The Parish Council is disappointed that the conditions that have been agreed with the Bull Inn have not been complied with. A further letter is to be sent stating that the Parish Council will seriously consider the withdrawal on the permission for 2019.


END IF DIGESTS FOR 2018


Archive of Digests for Previous years


Clerk of the Council (Parish Clerk): Bryan Leigh
Dawn Meadow, Fakenham Road, East Bilney, Dereham, NR20 4HT.

Tel: 01362-861-112
e-mail : bryan.leigh@btinternet.com


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