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COMMUNITY CONNECTION - 14 January 2017 by Richard Hewitt

THE SPEED MONITORING SIGNS IN BRESSINGHAM & FERSFIELD: You will have seen the two speed monitoring signs the Parish Council has installed in our villages – the two signs ‘travel’ between the three principal locations of (Bressingham) Common Road and School Road and Fersfield’s Street and are complementary to the established ‘Speedwatch’ scheme. The signs were first used on 7 September 2016, indicate the speed of a passing vehicle and record the volume of traffic and vehicle speeds. They do NOT record details (registration, photo) of vehicles and drivers. We now have data for the period 7 September 2016 to 10 January, 2017.  We will share the headline features with the community.

For the September-January period, a total of 21,132 vehicles were recorded passing the signs.  They were set at 30 mph: above this speed a notice to decelerate was displayed. 40% of vehicles included in the 21,132 total were exceeding 30 mph. Of those speeding, 46% were exceeding 35 mph. The fastest speed recorded was 85 mph (yes, 85!) on Bressingham’s Common Road. (The signs only operate where there is a speed limit of 30 mph…..)  Each of the 3 locations recorded speeds in excess of 60 mph. Peak ‘speeding times’ were between 0800-0900 hrs. and 1700-1800 hrs.  The inference here is clear!

We know what we say about statistics and averages, but please note that whilst 46% of vehicles exceeded the speed limit by 5 mph or more, the constant speed recorded was 34 mph or more.  The clear message is that we, and our visitors, are  DRIVING TOO FAST IN OUR VILLAGES.  The speeds shown are known to cause accidents….and injury….and cost lives…..

CONSULTATION ON 2016-7 COUNCIL TAX: South Norfolk District Council, our district council, which collects our council tax on behalf of the county, district and parish councils, is running a consultation on council tax. This is everyone’s opportunity to have a say – it seems inevitable that we face a rise of some sort in our tax notification this year. Please take the chance to make your views known – there is not much time left.  To comment on this issue, go to http://www.smartsurvey.co.uk/s/Budget-Consultation/

YOUR HELP IS NEEDED from Richard Hewitt
You will know that we have a citizens’ watch system in our parishes, which is designed to help protect our homes and other properties from criminal activity. Michelle Lanchester has said that we need more volunteers to make this scheme more effective. If you would like to help or obtain further details, please contact PC 1224 Jim Squires, on 01953 423773 or 07766 990811.

There have been reports of thefts from homes in the Bressingham and Fersfield area recently,, including burglary and stealing heating oil from tanks.  Please be careful with your own security and keep a general eye out for suspicious activity in your neighbourhood.

Click the image below to learn more about getting involved with a new BBC2 series

Police budget 2017/18 consultation | Norfolk PCC
A message from your Police and Crime Commissioner, Lorne Green:
As your Police and Crime Commissioner (PCC), it’s my job to set the policing budget for Norfolk and, with it, how much you contribute through council tax. 60% of Norfolk’s policing budget is funded by the Government; your council tax contribution makes up the rest. With such a significant contribution coming from your pocket, I want all Norfolk residents to have a say on how that funding is used. Please spare a few minutes to take my online survey. If you’d like a hard copy of the consultation information pack and survey sent to you, or require the information in another format, please get in touch. You can also share your views on 01953 424455, by email to TellLorne@norfolk.pnn.police.uk or by writing to me at OPCCN, Building 8, Falconers Chase, Wymondham, NR18 0WW. Follow this link - it only takes a few minutes to complete the survey.

Bressingham and District Ladies Group - December Meeting
New members always welcome

Colin Hopper provided members with a brilliant demonstration of the World of Optical Illusions. Using 32 different images, he revealed that our eyes and brains can be teased into believing the impossible and the illogical. There were images from an “Upside down” world of stretched perspectives and impossible landscapes. We witnessed pictures changing before our eyes of simple jigsaws with pieces left over. An 11th Century Ancient Castle scene became a ghostly head; will we ever trust what we think we see again? Mulled wine and mince pies completed a very entertaining evening attended by over 30 members and guests.

Colin Hopper, the Speaker Chatting with Chris Peachey
Chairman, Sharon Cole, expert baker of many nice pies Committee member, Ros, in festive mode!  
There is NO MEETING of the Ladies Club in JANUARY.
On February 20th 2017, Ben Potterton (Blacksmith’s Cottage Nursery, Dickleborough) will talk on Sri Lanka.
Visitors and new members are always most welcome to our meetings which are held in Bressingham Village Hall on the 3rd Monday of each month, 7.30pm for 7.45pm unless stated. Annual membership £20 - Visitors £3.

Memories of Stone Lane farm, Fersfield - from Sarah Roberts
As part of proposals to restore the house on the bend at Stone Lane, Fersfield, Mrs Dorothy Smith recalls some memories which may be of interest.
Memories of Dorothy (nee Deveraux) and Brian Smith,
recorded by Christine Murton, 30 August 2016
Following our visit with Dorothy and Brian Smith on 30th 0f August 2016, I confirm Dorothy grew up in the house on Stone Lane, at the time they simply referred to it as the Deveraux House Stone Lane, Fersfield. The family moved there in 1945 from South Lopham. She lived there with her Parents Violet and Fred Deveraux and her brother Tommy until she married Brian Smith in the early 1960s. Both Dorothy and Tommy went to Bressingham School.
Fred Deveraux was a river dredger based at East Harling, and a regular at Bressingham Bowls Club. Dorothy’s mother remained in the house with Tommy after the death of Fred until around 1974, as a widow. The then owner, Gerald Worby charged no rent. Dorothy states he always treated the family well and speaks very fondly of her time living at the house. In 1974 Violet and Tommy moved to Olsens farm (now Holdsworth farm, Fersfield), where Tommy became a farmhand. Click to read more >. If anyone else has any memories or information about the property at Stone Lane (opposite Poplar Tree farmhouse) I would like to hear them. Please ring Tel: 01379 687705.

The New Year has brought good and bad news from the shop. There was a break in two weeks ago in the middle of the night. Thankfully, the alarm worked and the culprits ran off after causing some damage. We understand that the Barn Nursery also had unwelcome visitors that night, no doubt the same people. 
Times of opening :
Mon - Fri 7.30am - 5.00pm
Saturday 7.30am - 1.00pm
Sunday 8.30am - 1.00pm
The good news is that December was a busy month, and Alan has started the new year with a new selection of Haggis, neeps and tatties pies to help us celebrate Burns'  night on 25 January. A bargain at £2:00 each. 

It'll soon be Valentine's Day, and you'll be able to get some lovely flowers, choccies and bubbly for the special person in your life. 

One of the community posters currently in the shop is about the new community defibrillator coming to our villages. It's a fantastic opportunity for us all, you can find the contact details elsewhere on the website.

Norovirus and Clostridium Difficile are well known causes of sickness and diarrhoea. In fact Norovirus is the most common stomach bug in this country, characterised by malaise, cramps, fever and muscle pain as well as vomiting and diarrhoea.
Sometimes called the Winter Sickness bug, it's very nasty, spreading through hospitals, schools and so on like wildfire. So prevention is definitely better than cure. And it's easy – just WASH YOUR HANDS! But remember that hand sanitiser gels cannot kill these little nasties – it's got to be soap and water, it's got to be a wash that gets into all the corners, especially around nail beds, and you must dry thoroughly! This all sounds obvious, but 1 in 5 of us isn't doing it.

January thoughts – on into 2017 - by Leo Pearce

Then came old January, wrapped well
In many weeds to keep the cold away;
Yet did he quake and quiver like to quell;
And blow his nayles to warme them if he may;
For they were numb'd with holding all the day
An hatchett keene, with which he felled wood,
And from the trees did lop the needlesse spray.

The Saxons called January “Aefter-yula” or After Christmas, which is accurate!

The month was often depicted as a man carrying kindling or a woodsman's axe, shivering and blowing his fingers; an image reflected in this verse of Edmund Spenser's poem of the Faerie Queene. Gathering fuel was a key feature of this wintry month, especially for the poor.The picture here was taken on a bright, frosty morning, during a local walk early this month. We were glad of a warm log fire and some mulled wine when when we got home!

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We want to make this community website a useful and fun source of information covering all that’s happening in our villages so we need YOUR HELP - if you have any news, event information or items of interest please click here to email us

Tue 24   Lunchtime meal at the White Horse, South Lopham - anyone wishing to go (husbands, friends etc welcome) please contact Kay Brock (01379 688331) by 10 January
Tue 14   Afternoon Club - 1st Anniversary!
Mon 20   Ladies Club - Ben Potterton will talk on Sri Lanka
Tue 14   Afternoon Club
Tue 11   Afternoon Club
Sat 22   Guided walk and talk by landscape historian, Professor Tom Williamson, inaugurating Bressingham & Fersfield Historical Society. (Charismatic, fascinating speaker!)
Graffiti Project in Bressingham church begins, with Dr Matthew Champion
Bressingham Church Bench Ends project begins, assisted by Dr Richard Hayman
Sat 6   7.30 pm, Bressingham Church: South Norfolk Youth Symphonic Band - £10 including refreshments
Tue 9   Afternoon Club
Tue 23   Guided tour and instruction at Norfolk Archives for History Society members - contact 01379 687729 for more info
Thu 25   Bressingham Primary School children take part in Graffiti Project workshop
Tue 9   Afternoon Club
Thu 6   Research training at NCC Historic Environment HQ, Gressenhall - contact 01379 687729 for more info
  HLF Project Celebration: Church Ale weekend with medieval re-enactment in Bressingham Churchyard and church, assisted by troupe of professional historical medieval interpretation actors
Following a suggestion from Allan Byrne at the end of last year we were successful to be awarded a community defibrillator from the British Heart Foundation. As part of the agreement for getting this very important piece of equipment we must advertise and also train 10 people a month to use it. Training will be via a video and practical work in the Village Hall.

We are very fortunate to get this piece of life saving equipment so we would ask all of you to think carefully about becoming a trained operator. If you do not like the idea of actually using this machine you can still come along and watch the video as one day you may have to help someone who is using the machine.

If you would like to put your name down for this worthwhile cause then please call Allan Byrne on 01379 688452 or Reg Brock on 01379 688331 or email regkaybrock@btinternet.com.

Please watch this website for further information as it becomes available.

The Afternoon Club held its 12th meeting on the 10th January and we had 30 of our members enjoying a light hearted quiz on what has happened over the last year. They had to guess the date certain events took place and Joyce managed 8 out of 12 and won a canvas bag.
For a special event we invited two members of Norfolk Police to come along and talk to us about home and personal security and also what to do about cold callers, telephone and internet scams.

All topics were covered in great detail plus the many issues we have with traffic through the village. Many questions were asked during the talk and were expertly answered. Everyone without exception found the talk very informative and many of our members have put their names down to have a free security inspection of their home by the Crime Prevention Team.

As usual we had a selection of delicious homemade cakes and plenty of tea and coffee. After our guests left, the room was still buzzing and this continued till the end of the afternoon when everyone went home with lots information on security.

Our next meeting is the 14th February which is our 1st Birthday.

If you have been thinking of giving us try why come along and join us. Your first meeting is free of charge. For more information please contact Kay on 01379 688331 or email regkaybrock@btinternet.com

A Coffee Morning held at Burrowood on 16th December raised £285.00 towards replacing the grave stone which was smashed when the lead was stolen from the south isle of the church roof on 9th November. I  would like to thank everyone who attended or sent donations. The stone has been ordered and the rest of the cost will come out of church funds. The insurance money from the theft was paid in less than a month and I am pleased to say that we received £7,500.00 towards the lead, and this was because we had Smartwater on it. This is about a quarter of what it will cost to replace. All the cost of making the church waterproof was returned and £250 to replace the bench which was smashed at the same time. I have been trying to trace the family who gave the bench in the first place. It was given in memory of Peggy Lee who lived at 40 Common Road, Bressingham and died in 1998. Her husband Joe was still living there when he died in 2007. If anyone reading this is still in contact with any of their family please email me on dianajb@btconnect.com or T: 01379 688291. We plan to buy a new bench and replace the brass plaque on it, and re-site the bench in a less vulnerable position.

Bressingham Church, Heritage Lottery Funding update

Following a successful ‘first round’ bid to the Heritage Lottery Fund in late 2015, most of 2016 was taken up with background investigations in our ‘Development’ phase bid for almost £250,000 to make Bressingham Church watertight. Overall, it was a busy year, with our architect, Nicholas Warns, and builders ‘opening up’ the church to check the extent of roof damage, and a team of consultants - including Bat experts, an archaeologist and a building historian – providing background information so our architect could provide accurate costings for repairing and relaying the roofs and replacing all rainwater goods.  

Our ‘second phase’ bid was finally submitted in December, 2016.  In the next few months we will hear whether HLF is happy with our bid.  Once we have their approval, we then need to submit a couple of further requirements (March-April 2017) before building works can actually begin in May, 2017.

Click here to email Jackie
YOGA - Mon 9.30-11.00 am - Bressingham Village Hall
Hatha yoga, taught by Jackie Samways, a British Wheel of Yoga qualified teacher. Benefits include gaining physical flexibility, suppleness and strength achieved by postures together with breathing exercises to encourage full use of the lungs and meditation/relaxation to create a calmer mind and greater sense of well-being. Suitable for all abilities, complete beginners to experienced, and all ages. For more info please contact Jackie on 01379 650513/mobile 07868 314805 or jackiecornish@live.com
GENTLE, CHAIR-BASED YOGA - Monday 11.15-12.15
Ideal for those unable to attend a general class AND anyone interested in a gentler approach to yoga postures, meditation, breath work and relaxation. Mainly chair-based, with some standing to encourage increased joint mobility, improve circulation, confidence and strength and general well-being. For details contact Jackie Samways,details above.

Various teams play at Bressingham on Saturday mornings and Sunday. Teams from U7 up to U16 age groups with coaching for girls and boys starting from 5 years old. Contact Mark Channell by email at markv414@hotmail.com or call T: 01379 650591.

All enquiries re becoming a member and use of the court to
Brenda Webb T: 01379 688375 or email
The course (open at all times) is in Village Hall Car Park. Anyone in the community is welcome to play - Bring your own boules.

Bressingham Steam & Gardens
Local resident's discount of 20% off a 1-3 person season ticket or 30% off a 4+ person from the same local address. Claim your discount by showing proof of residence (eg a recent utility bill) when buying your tickets. Visit their website for more information >

How would you like to win £10 or £25?
Then join the 59 Club and also support your local Church. We have 7 spare numbers waiting for you – just telephone 01379 688331 or email Reg or Kay at regkaybrock@btinternet.com for further information.
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