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COMMUNITY CONNECTION - 23 MAY - from Richard Hewitt
Bressingham and Fersfield Parish Council meetings are attended, where possible, by our County and District Council elected members. At our meeting of 14 May, Beverley Spratt, our Norfolk County Council member, was with us. We were relieved to hear from him that, contrary to earlier media reports, Norfolk County Council was in a sound financial position. Beverley discussed with us two issues connected with the A1066: the flooding during periods of wet weather and the practicalities of the access from the A1066 to the Harvest House development. We are very thankful to Robert West and his regional NCC highways team for their actions in improving the drainage – and safety – of the A1066 at Bressingham (you will know there have been traffic controls to allow this to happen). Beverley also explained that he had not been able to arrange a visit from a member of the NCC highways planning team to address the Parish Council (and any members of the public who wished) at a meeting (suggested for 14 May) to explain the thinking behind the A1066/Harvest House proposed entrance. The design of this has caused concern in regard to safety: our hope had been that some explanation from those responsible for the safety of the highway would be able to allay our fears……..the communication we received from Mr. Hanner of NCC on this issue is reproduced here. We did feel a little surprised that officers,  mployed by a council, did not support the request of an elected councillor to attend a meeting that was intended to reassure community members (their employers…..?). It is also of note that we discussed with Beverley the rising feeling that the Council Tax does not represent value-for-money in all areas of responsibility (road surfaces, drainage, potholes as examples, perhaps).

Other items discussed at our meeting included our desire to strengthen community care (by ‘joining up’ other agency work and proposed initiatives with our moves to improve life quality, particularly in combating loneliness and poor inclusion, for example) in the face of financial constraint and increasing administration concerning safeguarding. The Parish Council is the responsible authority for our allotments in Common Road: we agreed that Councillor John Kemp and the allotment committee should call in estimates with a view to improving the allotment access drive. We also looked at planning proposals and the perennial issue of heavy lorry traffic.

You will know that 2018 marks the centenary of the 1918 Armistice, and that there is a national programme of recognition for this. We have secured a grant of £500 from our South Norfolk District Council towards our own arrangements for Sunday 11 November, when there will be ceremonies at our two war memorials (Bressingham morning, Fersfield afternoon) and a lunch-time event in the Village Hall. We hope to establish a unified programme, and will shortly be asking all those people who are interested, to attend a meeting shortly. Please keep an eye open for further details about this.

…..and, a huge ‘thank-you’ to those people who took part in the recent litter collection, and to Geoff Lazell for his leadership of this. We now look forward to lovely weather for the ‘Open Gardens’ next week and the Fete later in the Summer.

Throwing litter out of your vehicle could now land you with a £150 fine, which is 50% more than the £100 you could be charged if you were caught speeding. The fine not only applies to drivers but also to passengers who litter, however it will be the driver who is sent the penalty notice to pay.
This new fine increase came into force on April 1st, 2018 and it can be charged on the spot or retrospectively with video evidence. It aims to deter people from littering and decrease a form of anti-social behaviour, which is having such devastating effects across the country’s highways. Click here to read more >

Hyperfast broadband (1,000 megabits per second) is now a reality in Scole village courtesy of BA4N and a small number of volunteers.  BA4N have issued an open invitation for any interested parties to visit Scole Community Centre on Friday evenings between 7 and 10pm to talk with the volunteers and technicians and see the system in action. You can even take your laptop and try the download speeds for yourself. Scole Community Centre, Ransome Avenue, Scole IP21 4EA
The Parish Council is aware that large parts of the parish suffer from intermittent and /or slow broadband service and that BT have no plans or intention to improve on the current position. We contacted B4RN, a non-profit community benefit society who are supporting the installation of superfast broadband across rural areas of Norfolk , to establish the possibility of providing superfast broadband across this parish. B4RN require sufficient confirmed interest from householders, businesses, local volunteers and investors before they will commit to a project. Costs are difficult to estimate but for 100 households will be in the region of £120,000 and the level of investment needs to match the estimated overall cost. Investments in community benefit societies  qualify for HMRC’s Enterprise Investment Scheme incentive of a 30% tax rebate. There is a minimum period of 3 years before the investment can be withdrawn or interest is payable on it. If the investment can be found then a steering committee is created to identify landowners and obtain wayleave permission to bury the fibre tubes across their land. The fibre tubes are laid by local volunteers under the guidance of B4RN. B4RN charge a one off connection fee of £150 per property and £30 per month for 1,000 megabits per second (compared with 24-80 megabits per second from other providers). If you are interested in receiving superfast broadband from B4RN and / or investing in this parish’s broadband network then please register your interest at https://b4rn.org.uk/b4rn-service/charges/ under “B4RN East Anglia Area”.

Click here to see the photos >

Two hundred and seventy people enjoyed a weekend of events at Bressingham Church to celebrate the completion of a £250,000 Heritage Lottery Fund building repair project to make this architecturally important landmark building watertight and preserve it for future generations to enjoy. Matthew Champion kicked off proceedings on Friday evening with an extremely well-received, lively and ‘illuminating’ talk on the hidden history in Bressingham Church. Matthew’s talk included showing people changes in the layout and appearance of the church over the centuries, and more detailed information about hidden graffiti and the building’s most important feature: the magnificent carved pre-Reformation bench ends. The evening had promised to make people look at churches in a ’new light’ and it really didn’t disappoint. (Matthew is an archaeologist and historian who has specialised in medieval graffiti - ancient graffiti in churches is only revealed by fluorescent light, hence the puns!)

The church looked splendid and colourful all weekend thanks to a Floral Festival by nine local groups who thoughtfully created beautiful and fragrant ‘country garden’ floral displays in the church. The flowers really made the church come alive, and the work by the local community really showed how much local goodwill and support there is for this ancient building.

Blessed by warm, sunny weather, the weekend culminated in a service of thanksgiving for the restoration of the church roof, led by the Bishop of Norwich, the Rt Rev’d Graham James. Bishop Graham gave thanks for the restoration work and he emphasised the importance of Norfolk’s churches as local landmarks, community hubs, and a vital spiritual resource. Bishop Graham said Norfolk would be “flattened” without our magnificent churches. The service was attended by the local community and many of the craftsmen and consultants who helped make the entire project such a success, and attendees enjoyed wine and nibbles following the service.

St John the Baptist PCC would like to thank everyone who contributed to the project.

HLF development and delivery phases include:

2016: Development Phase funded by HLF - Investigate ‘opening up’ works with wildlife reports, archaeology report, historian’s report, building assessments, access reports.

2017-2018: Delivery phase funded by HLF - new downpipes and gutters; nave and south aisle roofs releaded; new bellicote; new soakaways (with archaeologist supervision); repairs to the tower roof; flint work repair; improvements to the south porch; new lighting and improved heating.

Heritage Activities in 2017:
Historical landscape walk by Professor Tom Williamson launched Bressingham and
Fersfield History Group
History Group training sessions at Norfolk Archives and the Norfolk Historic
Environment Record offices at Gressenhall
Graffiti Project by Matthew Champion (graffiti survey and graffiti workshops with
Bressingham Primary School, and talk at HLF celebratory weekend)
Bench Ends project (Richard Hayman survey and report on the bench ends; booklet on the bench ends produced by Bressingham and Fersfield History Group)
Medieval Weekend and Church Ale (with historical reenactment professionals, De Mowbrays

The Bressingham Church Restoration Blog is about the Heritage Lottery Funded repair works to the church which began on 2 May 2017. Use the direct link to the Church Blog on our top menu to read all about what's happened or click here >

Become a member by providing your address and contact details and help to make Bressingham and Fersfield parish safer. Contact the scheme co-ordinator, Michelle Lanchester, telephone 01379 688109 or 07824515801 or email:- michelle.lanchester@gmail.com

Non-members and men very welcome!
Free for members, £3 for non-members
Our meetings give everyone a chance to catch up with friends or make new ones over refreshments at the end. Guests are welcome and despite the title of our club, men are allowed.  (£3 for non-members) - Do come and meet us – we are everso friendly!
Click here to see our 2018/19 Programme of Speakers and list of Committee Members
Here's another great recipe from Sharon Cole

LEMON CREAMS - Serves 4-6
397g (1 can) Carnation Condensed milk
150ml (¼ pt) Double cream
Finely grated zest & juice of 4 large un-waxed lemons (about 150ml)

To serve:
1tbsp fresh mint leaves
Squeeze of lemon juice
1 teaspoon sugar
Lemon zest
Fine biscuits
Beat the cream until forming softly whipped peaks - Combine the lemon zest, and juice with the condensed milk, the mixture should thicken. Fold the whipped cream into the condensed milk mixture until combined. Spoon the lemon cream into six small dishes, or wine glasses and chill until ready to serve.
To serve: very finely chop the mint leaves, and mix with a squeeze of lemon juice, and sugar.
(Pound to a sauce with a pestle and mortar if you have one). Add a teaspoon of the sweet mint sauce to each dish and serve curls of lemon zest and fine biscuits. Click here to download & print the recipe >

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 >

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Norfolk Record Office have year-round events that are well worth attending. Refreshments included. For information and to book a seat, call  01603 222599 or www.archives.norfolk.gov.uk/events. To sign up for Norfolk Record Office newsletters, contact: norfolkcc@public.govdelivery.com

2-3rd   Blooming Bressingham & Fragrant Fersfield Open Gardens
Tue 12   Afternoon Club 2- 4pm
Sun 8   "STAYING ALIVE" Fun day event in aid of East Anglian Air Ambulance & First Responders - HELP NEEDED
Tue 17   Afternoon Club 2- 4pm
Thu 19   7.15 pm - Bressingham Village Hall - talk by Stella Taylor on the "Wild flowers of East Anglia". Coffee and Cake to follow. Tickets £5 available from Jan on 688340 or from Alan in the Shop.
Tue 14   Afternoon Club 2- 4pm
Tue 11   Afternoon Club 2- 4pm
Tue 9   Afternoon Club 2- 4pm
Tue 13   Afternoon Club 2- 4pm
Tue 11   Afternoon Club - Xmas party

The weather was kind to us on the morning of Saturday 12 May, when a considerable number of people attended St Andrew's Plant, Craft and Cake Sale. The marquee was full of super plants, flower and vegetable, and delicious cakes and beautiful crafts were available inside the church, where refreshments were also served. The event has so far raised a marvellous £960.00 towards the church's restoration fund (recently boosted by a generous grant from Norfolk Churches' Trust). Considerable thanks are due to Sally, Sharon, Shirley, and all their great team, and all those who baked, grew, worked, crafted, photographed and supported to achieve such a successful outcome......and, have you noticed?  The scaffolding is at last up around the east end of St. Andrew's! Photos by John Walker.
from Kay Brock
We always welcome new members to our Club—we DO NOT sit and knit all afternoon.  We have a very wide selection of games to play (good way of making new friends) and we also have meals out and trips during the warmer months. We have started a scrabble competition which will last all year, it's an aggregate score so it doesn't matter if you miss one or two months. Watch this space for further events. We like to think we provide an outlet for those in the community who spend a lot of their time on their own. PLEASE come along and give us a try - first session is free. More especially if you know of someone who would benefit from a couple of hours in good company please encourage them to come along. For more information telephone Kay or Reg on 01379 688331 or email kayhbrock@gmail.com and watch below for all our events.
May 24   Visit to Knettishall Heath, bring your own picnic and if you would like a gentle stroll through the woods
June 12   Afternoon Club 2 - 4 pm
June 19   Lunch at the Golf Club details later
July 10   NO CLUB MEETING - MOVED TO THE 17th July
July 17   Afternoon Club 2 - 4 pm
Aug 14   All day Coach trip to Southwold & Aldeborough 9.30 to 5.00 ish - Approx £15.00
Sept 11   Afternoon Club 2 - 4 pm
Sept 25   Afternoon Club Lunch at the Golf Club details later - (This is in place of the Open Afternoon)
Oct 9   Afternoon Club 2 - 4 pm
Nov 13   Afternoon Club 2 - 4 pm
Dec 11   Afternoon Club - Xmas party

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 - all abilities, beginners to experienced, and all ages.
GENTLE, CHAIR-BASED YOGA - Monday 11.15-12.15
A gentler approach to yoga, meditation, breath work and relaxation. Mainly chair-based, with some standing to increase joint mobility, improve circulation, confidence, and general well-being.
For more info on both classes contact Jackie: 01379 650513/mobile 07868 314805 or jackiecornish@live.com
Various teams play on Saturday and Sunday. Teams from U7 to U16 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.
Become a member, use the court, contact Brenda 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.

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