December 2019

Maltings Amenity Area

We have met with the Broads Authority and communicated with them on number of occasions, over a long period of time. The footpath has been mown and is just about suitable for able-bodied pedestrians. The rest of the meadow is overgrown with thistles and nettles and the beck is also overgrown and barely visible.

However, I am pleased to report that the Broads Authority have now advised the Landowner that they are in breach of the Planning Permission, originally granted, and have asked them to maintain the area in line with their application. It remains to be seen how matters progress but we will continue to monitor the situation.

Street Lamps

I refer to my article in the September issue of this magazine. I had hoped to make the position clear regarding our Policy on this issue. We have had 6 responses, varying from wanting to save all the lamps, to save some and others happy to remove all, or individual lamps outside their properties. There have been various comments on local Social Media, which I have ignored, and posters have been placed in Loddon Road implying that our footpaths would not be safe, which is not the case. These have been removed.

I confirm, again, that any decision to remove lamps will be done after consultation with residents in the immediate area. In the meantime, I am happy for residents to give their views by contacting the Parish Clerk (email: [email protected]) as previously advised.

Chicken Roundabout

I regret to advise that a vehicle has twice driven onto the roundabout, completed a circle around the trees and exited, before driving off. This act of dangerous driving and vandalism has been reported to the Police, and, at the time of writing, I am awaiting a response. Some severe damage has been done and our Contractors, Clinks Care Farm, will need to restore the grass surface before planting wildflowers and bulbs.

We received many positive comments for the wildflower display last year and hopefully, we can continue to maintain this area without further vandalism.

Finally, on behalf of the Council and all our Staff, I would like to wish all residents a Merry Xmas and a Happy New Year.

Alan Larkin (Chair, Ditchingham Parish Council)

October 2019

Ditchingham Community Notice Board At the request of residents a Community Notice Board has been placed in the bus shelter outside the Village Hall. This will display information about what’s going on near you, including news about events and activities. The aim of the new Community Notice Board is to inform local people about what is going on in their area providing information on activities run by local communities and organisations.

To help you make the best use of this facility, guidelines have been placed in the bus shelter and will help you understand the types of notices that may be displayed  and how this can be achieved.

In Summary:-

  • These are for charities and not-for-profit organisations
  • For locally based organisations benefitting local residents
  • For an individual event taking place in the Parish of Ditchingham
  • A diary of ongoing events
  • Posters should preferably be A5 but no larger than A4
  • Names and contact details must be included on the front of the poster
  • Posters can be displayed no earlier than 28 days before an event

Place your poster in an envelope addressed “Community Notice Board” through the letterbox in the Village Hall

I hope that this new facility will prove to be of benefit. My thanks to the Village Hall Committee for their co-operation. I am grateful to a local resident and others who have agreed to take on the responsibility for its management, on behalf of the Community.

Alan Larkin
Chair, Ditchingham Parish Council

August 2019

Street Lamps

As previously advised in this Magazine and Minutes of Meetings over many months, we have, after a bit of a technical delay, taken over responsibility for 86 streetlamps, previously maintained by South Norfolk District Council.

The roads affected are:- Ditchingham Dam, Loddon Road, Station Road, Black Horse Lane, Green Lane, Waveney Road, Lewis Close, Hamilton Way, Rider Haggard Way, Turner Close, Thwaite Road, Windmill Green, Hollow Hill Road, The Loke, Beevors Gardens, and Drapers Lane.

In our initial discussions, SNDC identified 10 lamps which they thought were “needed”. We asked for a further 10 to be considered, and after further thought we decided to take on full responsibility for all the lamps, so as to be in control.

Our Policy is to continue to maintain those 20 lamps considered “essential” (subject to any future change in circumstances) but to decommission the other 66 lamps over a period of time (again, subject to potential changes of circumstances) and with local resident consultation)

The lamps thought (at the present time) to be “essential” are Station Road (opp. St Anne’s House) (4), Loddon Road X roads (2), Loddon Road bus stop and footpath end (2), Rider Haggard Way post box and school entrance (2), Beevors Gardens car park (1), Hollow Hill Road bus shelter, opp Thwaite Road, opp Scudamore Place (3), Thwaite Road by Scudamore Place (2), Black Horse Lane (1), Green Lane (1), The Loke (1), and Drapers Lane (1)

To begin the consultation, I am asking for residents for their views, which will be most welcome.

Do you wish to retain your lamps? If so, why?

Are you happy to lose lamps outside your property? Many residents complain of light pollution.

Points to consider. Many County Councils are switching lamps off (to save money?). Other nearby Parishes have no lamps at all (Broome, for example). New developments are unlikely to have streetlamps as a matter of course.

Other lamps in the Parish continue to be maintained by Norfolk County Council or Housing Associations. Any defects or problems with any streetlamps should be reported to the Parish Clerk and we will act in accordance with our Policy or pass information as appropriate.

 Alan Larkin
Chair, Ditchingham Parish Council

June 2019

Your Councillors were elected without contest in May. Although we are eligible to have 9 Councillors only 6 volunteers put their names forward. Despite a shortfall in numbers, we hope to give good service, as best as possible, to all residents in the Community.

Details of Councillors and future meetings can be found on the Parish notice board, opposite the Village shop and Post Office, and on our web-site: Ditchingham Parish Council

As well as undertaking our statutory and community duties we are also engaged in the following:-

  • Speed awareness – we are liaising with interested residents in the formation of a group to monitor speeding throughout the village. This will be done alongside the SAM2 machines currently placed at random sites and software monitored.
  • Community notice board – we are investigating the possibility, with cooperation from residents, to provide a  board for Community posters, funded by external sources.
  • Streetlamps – Despite a delay, we have taken over responsibility for 86 streetlamps, previously undertaken by SNDC. There is still much work to do, and a further report will be issued later in the year.

It is with regret that I have to report some minor nuisance with play area equipment in Thwaite Road. Although easily resolved by the Council, usage of this equipment was delayed for a number of days. Also, a bench appears to have been rocked off its base and is now unusable and needs major repair, at a cost to the Council, which is unbudgeted.

The play areas are of great benefit, not only to our younger residents, but also to parents and others. The Council has a duty to maintain them and undertake repairs or replacement  when required. However, our Budget is based on natural wear and tear and such misuse incurs an additional cost to our finances.

On a positive note, there have been many favourable comments on Social Media, regarding the wildflowers on the Chicken roundabout. Our thanks go to Clinks Care Farm for looking after them for us.

Finally, If you have any concerns regarding issues in the village, please contact our Clerk (email: [email protected] ) or any Councillor. We may not have the power to deal with everything but are able to forward concerns to Local or County Council departments and other Agencies, where relevant.

Alan Larkin
Chair, Ditchingham Parish Council

Wildflowers on Chicken Roundabout

DPC is pleased to hear of some many positives comments regarding the wildflowers planted on the Chicken Roundabout. They were planted by Clink’s Care Farm and maintained by them and we hope they will be there for many years to come.

Wildflowers on Chicken Roundabout 2019

Wildflowers on Chicken Roundabout 2019

Wildflowers on Chicken Roundabout 2019

Wildflowers on Chicken Roundabout 2019

March 2019

Speed Limits
You will be aware that the 30mph speed limit on Loddon Road ends at Waveney Road and starts again just before Sun Road, in Broome. The speed limit between these two points is therefore unrestricted. In conjunction with Broome Parish Council, we have asked the Highways Department to consider making the whole stretch 30 mph. We have been advised that this does not conform with their policy, and the present system is considered to be reasonable. We have also asked our County Councillor for her help.

This area is used by vehicles, cycles, runners and pedestrians, and is a parking space for those using the Heath. We urge all users to take care, particularly in hours of darkness, as the road is not lit.

Parish Council Elections
Your Council is due to be re-elected in May. At the present time, we are 2 short of the required number. It is also possible that a further 2 experienced Councillors will not be standing again. We are therefore looking for more residents to put their names forward. More details will appear, both in this magazine, on Public Notice Boards and our web-site. If you need further information, please contact our Clerk.

Big Litter Pick
This year the Litter Pick will be held on Sunday 12th May, at 10.00am. We ask residents, once again, to support this event, which has proved to be very worthwhile in the past. Further details will be available shortly.

Alan Larkin (Vice Chair, Ditchingham Parish Council)

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