Annual Report 2011 to 20112 - (last updated 16/05/2012)


BUCKWORTH PARISH COUNCIL ANNUAL REPORT TO THE VILLAGE APRIL 2011 TO 31 MARCH 2012


The ANNUAL PARISH MEETING will be held on Monday 28th May at 7.30 in the Church.

All residents of the village are invited to participate and comment on the activities of the Parish council over the last year and make proposals for the coming year........ The Annual Meeting of the Parish Council follows.

MEMBERS OF THE PARISH COUNCIL Parish Council .......Stuart Martin Chairman (resigned September), Phil Cooper, Vice Chairman (Chairman from October}, Peter Waterhouse (vice chairman from October), Fiona Morrison Acting Clerk to the Council, Margaret Warrener, John Davison (co-opted and elected RFO from October).

THE COUNCIL met 7 times between 1 April 2011 and 31 March 2012. Winter meetings continue to be held in the Cricket Club with the summer ones taking place in the church. Attendance by members of the public is rare although the 10 minute spot for public involvement remains an agenda item….

The Annual Parish Meeting was held in May and, as in previous years, was poorly attended. The Annual May Day Walk of the parish footpath network on May 2nd was well supported with village people and several dogs setting off on the walk in fair weather. The enjoyable event was rounded off with a BBQ and libation at the Cricket Club, proceeds from map donations and BBQ of £48 were sent to the local Royal British Legion charity.

Some funding towards grass cutting the verges in the village continues to be received from Cambs CC but less than it was some years ago.. Council paid the rest and for the Churchyard to be cut so that the village remains an attractive and well kept community in which to live. The yearly grant to finance cutting some of the headland bridleways was received in full again this year. The Parish footpath network remains a well used facility by walkers, children, ramblers and parishioners with canine pets, contributing no doubt to the walker’s good health.

Just before mid- term Stuart Martin, the Chairman, left the village to take up a new life in Leighton Buzzard with partner Joan. We wish them every happiness and thank him for his period of service with the Parish Council; for his help with marquee erection, stage assembly, and Bar B Qing at various village events over the years. He will be missed.....At the October meeting Phil Cooper was elected chairman with Peter Waterhouse as vice chairman and newly co-opted councillor John Davison as Responsible Financial Officer..... The Council is obliged to maintain what is considered to be a prudent amount of financial reserve to protect the Parish against financial risk. Council still functions with Fiona Morrison acing as Clerk to the Council. Considerable effort to employ a professional clerk has been without success.. On behalf of the rest of the council and parishioners, many thanks to Fiona for her unpaid efforts, she is currently happy to continue fill the gap.. It should be remembered that this has a significant effect in lowering the precept required to maintain the reserve levels whilst trying to stimulate an active community programme.

After a well attended and enjoyed village event last year Council agreed to support the community organised Royal Wedding celebration with a donation towards the cost of the children’s party & the purchase of Royal Wedding mugs for all the children resident in the village. This year support and finance is concentrated on the forthcoming and, perhaps never to be repeated, Royal Diamond Jubilee Celebrations in June 2012. Please try to take part on 3rd June 2012 and be on the village photograph of the event – an historic memory for villagers of the future.

Not without its complications the historic “red phone-box” is now owned by the village with a free electricity supply, so it will remain a piece of village history. Speed of traffic has been a long held worry for parents in the village and Council is pleased to report that a “small works grant” to help finance the installation of Child/parent warning signs and “slow” road markings at the village entrances has been received from HDC. This should encourage drivers to travel at a safe speed through the village.

Sadly all news is not good news and during the year we mourned the loss of two of our parishioners..We remember with affection Jeff Greed and Christine Willcocks who passed away before their time. On behalf of you all Council sends condolences to their families and friends.

This year the village has seen three sets of residents leave the village for pastures new - Tricia Hatfield, Stuart Martin & Rod & Sharon Steward... A warm welcome to the Caroline & Ray Garcia, Amanda & Nic Cox and Elaine & Mark Please enjoy living here and please try to take an active role in village life; in a small community volunteers are always welcome!

FINANCIAL REPORT At the start of the financial year, Council had £4,738 in the bank. Major items of expenditure budgeted for the year were £1,700 for grass cutting, £1,260 for the clerk’s salary and £1,000 for a village party. The major source of income for the year was the parish precept. This was set at £2,563 in November 2010 a reduction of £340 from the previous year. Other sources of income included £217 towards grass cutting from Cambridgeshire County Council (CCC) and a CCC grant for £120 footpath maintenance. At the end of the financial year, Council had £4,986 in the bank versus a planned balance of £2,430, an under spend during the year of £2,556. The most significant under spend was due to the role of clerk remaining unfilled saving £1,260. This role is now carried out by Councillor Morrison as Acting Clerk and Councillor Davison as Responsible Financial Officer and who, as councillors are not allowed to accept remuneration for this work. Other significant savings arose from £900 savings on the Village Party (most of the expenses for the events were born by the Cricket Club), £300 savings on Councillors' training (now scheduled for May 2010), and £100 savings on office expenses.

The only item of unplanned expenditure was for £46 for electricity for the Phone Box lighting. During the year, the Parish Council successfully negotiated the future provision of electricity from July onwards free of any charges.

. At the Council meeting in December 2011, a budget of £5,295 was agreed, requiring a precept of £2,563 for 2012/3, an increase of £55. Major items of budgeted expenditure being again: £1,300 for the remuneration of a clerk, £1,700 for grass cutting in the village and £1,000 for the village Diamond Jubilee Party in June 2012.

CRICKET CLUB ......... There has been a lot of activity at the cricket club over the past year with the Supper Club fund raising Friday evenings and Bingo on Saturday evenings both being very popular and well supported regular events for members. The occasional special events such as the Summer Fete, Trafalgar night supper, the Christmas Fair and Buckworth’s Got Talent all continue to be highlights in the calendar organised by members for members and raising funds for the club and the church restoration fund. A second Club Christmas Lunch, when 43 members sat down to a first class turkey meal with all the trimmings was provided by volunteers. ..All of this activity has raised the money to complete the refurbishment outside and redecorate the interior of the clubroom which has made a more welcoming venue The clubhouse has also been home to other village events such as the Harvest Supper and the Royal Wedding Celebration..The latter, blessed with good weather was a chance for the whole village to celebrate the day as a community made complete with children’s games on the grass at the back of the church.

The Ladies Group met most months with various speakers and activities, and have organised several open events, the last being from the Waldburg Shires based at Alconbury Weston, This was very well attended and by all accounts an informative and entertaining event. Another popular event has been the fashion show where members of the ladies group can buy high street fashion at bargain prices. . All in all, a very good year for the club and its members.

ALL SAINTS CHURCH PAROCHIAL CHURCH COUNCIL Another busy year in our ancient Church’s life! We said goodbye to Jonathan Young and hello to Mary Jepp our new priest in charge, whose strong support and leadership is most welcome. We wish Jonathan a continuing speedy recovery. The PCC continues to meet regularly and has contended with the Pastoral Measures 1983, Quinquennial Inspection, Archdeacon’s Inspection and the holding repairs to the tower and spire. The holding works (installation of some louvres and bird guards) required in excess of £30000 and took almost 6 months to complete. A grant of £18000 was obtained from AMEY Cespa and a loan of £2000 from Cambs Historic Churches, the remainder funded by the Restoration Fund. The PCC had already managed the removal of the bells and further repairs to windows. A big thank you to everyone who helped with fund raising for these projects.

There is still much work to be done to the Church...English Heritage is interested in helping with funding, however the management of this huge scheme would have to be undertaken by a parish member and the restoration fund would have to provide some funding. At this time no one has been found to undertake this task.

The Church continues to hold regular services 3 times per month; every effort is made to welcome new people to join our worship and activities. Special and occasional services such as the Harvest Festival, Mothering Sunday, Taize (a new one to Buckworth); Carols by Candlelight, Christmas Eve Communion and Remembrance Day are well supported by the village and wider community. We are lucky to have beautiful floral decorations and a clean and welcoming place for all our regular and special services provided by a dedicated team of volunteers.. Fund raising, including events supported by Parish Council and Cricket Club, has provided welcome opportunities for villagers to meet and enjoy the company of neighbours and friends....the Amici Concert contributed an amazing £2000 to the Restoration Fund. The Annual August Garden party and the Harvest Supper are always good fun and an enjoyable way to raise funds......thanks again to everyone who contributes to these events.

BUCKWORTH BROWSERS... celebrated 2 years in February! A variety of books has been enjoyed (or not) by members of club. Attendance varies from month to month but enthusiasm for books and poetry remains! Thanks to the Cricket Club for providing as warm and welcoming environment. We look forward more interesting speakers in the coming months too.

SOWERS AND GROWERS.... again the Club celebrated 2 years early this year. For the second year running we hosted a “gardener’s question time” with local plants-man Dick Tuplin and gained useful information. As with the book club meetings are informal, hints, tips, seeds & plants are exchanged (and the odd bit of village news!) Members did very well at the Alconbury Show and we look forward to more success this year!

Phil Cooper Chairman of the Parish Council October 2011 to End March 2012

ROYAL DIAMOND JUBILEE EVENT SUNDAY 3 JUNE ..

Join the Buckworth Celebration Party,.,, free to residents of the parish. 12.30 to 5pm and continue in the club afterwards.

Enjoy a hog roast with salad and pudding. Refreshments including beer, wine, tea, squash. Children’s Games and Crown Competition, Adult Games, Make sure you are in the “Residents of the Village” photograph of the event at 12.30

Big Prize Draw (have you got your ticket yet from Margaret Warrener? You could be the big winner!

Proceeds to Church Restoration Fund