Thursday, 30 October 2014

Wind Farm - Latest news from PNF

Latest news
   
We hope you all have had a good Autumn.  Below is a summary of our latest news.  For more detail, please read the newsletter.
  1. We are pleased to announce that Lord Patrick Cormack has formally accepted our invitation to become President of PNF to assist us in our fight against the proposed Nocton Fen Wind Farm. We are also pleased to announce that Robin Battle whose family farm land adjacent to the wind farm site has formally accepted our invitation to become Vice President of PNF.
  2. People registered with Vattenfall will have received their Feedback Report Two published after the public exhibitions in June 2014. On 21 October 2014 Vattenfall issued an email Newsletter announcing that the number of turbines are now to be reduced from 23 to 20 with the turbine height remaining at 149.5m (490ft).
  3. To date a few individuals have kindly made contributions to the PNF fighting fund which has been spent mainly on paper and printing of leaflets, signs and presentation materials. We are reaching the stage that costs are inevitably rising as we seek to send out more advertising material and look to supplement our “in house” technical expertise with specific professional advisors. We have now established a Community Bank account and attached is a donation slip in the hope that people will financially support PNF. Without raising significant funding to raise public awareness and support to fight the Vattenfall planning application it will be difficult to effectively campaign against the wind farm. Financial support no matter how small will be gratefully received.
  4. We have produced an information sheet detailing how this development will impact the local and wider community.  Please feel free to distribute copies of this sheet to spread the word about this development.
There will be more updates from PNF soon.

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Parish Council Report

Report of the Parish Council Meeting held on Tuesday 21 November at 7pm

Parish Council ’Cabinet‘ reshuffle!

A depleted Parish Council sat this month; the Clerk was on holiday, apologies were received from Councillor Neil Summers and our district and county councillors and news of the resignation of Councillor Jill Burr.

Parish Councillors took the opportunity to thank Jill Burr for all her good work whilst a member of the Council and to wish her well for the future.

Reports
  • Police – Councillor Graham Jones reported on the theft of a bicycle and items from unlocked cars in Potterhanworth.  Despite previous requests, the information provided by the police in their written reports is very basic and the Clerk is to ask again that for the information to be of real use to the public and to help us play our part in reducing crime, we need to know rather more!
  • Clerk - Information on a proposed new bench at the end of the bridleway (costs kindly donated by a resident) were circulated.
  • Wasps Nest Grit Bin - The residents of Wasps Nest (as the principle users) are to be asked where they wish the new bin to be sited.
Central Lincolnshire Local Plan

Councillor Ian Goldsworthy had, on behalf of the Parish Council, read all 97 pages of the draft Plan and prepared a suggested response from the Parish Council.   This can be read in its entirety on the Parish Council website.
 
Important points included making a formal application to have our green spaces protected and supporting the proposal that smaller villages, such as ours, should only be subjected to limited housing development and not be increased in size by more than 10% - measured from 2011.

Vattenfall Wind Power Ltd
Councillors Goldsworthy and Jones had met with a representative from Vattenfall and learnt that following the recent public consultation, the project size was now to be reduced from 23 to 20 turbines and the development moved further away from houses and the River Witham.  Recent news that future subsidies would not continue at the same level or the Prime Minister’s comments that there were enough on-shore windfarms in Lincolnshire were not commented on and it was still currently proposed to put in a planning application next autumn/winter.  Neither would Vattenfall confirm or deny that there was insufficient capacity in the National Grid to deal with the Wind Farm’s output – as had been claimed by some people recently - but said that discussions were continuing with Western Power on this particular point.
 
Budget
The six monthly budget report was circulated and showed that the Council’s expenditure was broadly in line with projections.  However, it was agreed that a close eye would continue to be kept on avoiding unnecessary costs.  A letter had been received from NKDC asking that each Parish Council add £1000 for meeting the costs of electing parish councillors next May to its precept for 2015/16.  This was considered a rather large proportion of our small budget and clarification is being sought.
 
Nocton Village Hall Refurbishment
The long awaited plans for the proposed remodeling of the Village Hall were circulated and will be discussed at the next Project Team meeting.  Councillor Williams is to replace Mrs Burr and Councillor Goldsworthy is taking over from Councillor Tyler for the next phase of this project.  The plans are attached and if anyone has any queries, suggestions or any other positive input please do not hesitate to let either the Parish Clerk or one of the Project Team members know.  It is intended to have the plans and suggestions on show at the next Parish Council meeting on Tuesday 2 December.
 
Nocton Youth Club
Two taster sessions have been well advertised and we are hopeful that this initiative will be a resounding success.
 
Grant Aid
It was agreed to give a grant of £250 to the Parish Church towards its costs in maintaining the churchyard.
 
Welcome Pack
Councillor Jones agreed to take over producing the Welcome Pack from Mrs Burr.  Councillor Faulkner said that he will know when new people move into the Peter Sowerby houses and other new arrivals could be reported by the Neighbourhood Watch Co-ordinators.  In this way, it was hoped that a Pack would be given to all new residents as soon as they move into the village.
 
Wild Flower on the Green
Councillor Williams asked that seeds donated by National Rail for village space enhancement be sown along the back edge of the Village Green by the wood (opposite the Church).  This was agreed and a one metre strip will be roped off while the seed has a chance to grow.
 
A suggestion that further ‘dragons’ teeth’ be put on the school entrance to stop parking on the Green was rejected for the time being on the grounds of cost and the potential for restricting access to emergency vehicles.  Rather, it was hoped that drivers will respect the grass verges, especially during the wet winter months.

Councillors Reports
  • No news yet on Nocton Hall.
  • SID has returned although we have not yet received the new speed aware signs.
  • The street light outside Halls Yard is to be checked as it appears not to be very bright.
  • A lawnmower has now been purchased which will negate the need for the NKDC to cut our Village Green (and the subsequent cost that this entails).
Date of Next meeting Tuesday 2 December at 6.30 p.m.

Before the meeting mince pies and a glass of cheer will be available together with a chance to see the proposed Village Hall plans and suggestions.

Remember “It seems impossible until it is done!”

Councillor MaryAnn Williams

Tuesday, 28 October 2014

Stephen Phillips MP

First person: Tackling crime and supporting victims remain key priorities

'The latest crime statistics for England were published by the Office for National Statistics this month, and they are very good news.'

http://www.lincolnshireecho.co.uk/person-Tackling-crime-supporting-victims-remain/story-23379412-detail/story.html


MP's Recall Bill Debate

You may like to see our local MP's comments on this matter.

Saturday, 25 October 2014

Neighbourhood Watch

Nocton Neighbourhood Watch

It has recently come to notice that a pedal cycle was stolen from the village.  If anyone has any information, please pass it on to 101.

Please  keep your valuables, including pedal cycles locked when not in use.  Keep valuables out of sight and your vehicles locked when unattended.  A recent spate of thefts from vehicles in neighbouring villages has highlighted the need for extra security.

Also, now that winter is almost upon us, many of us will be replenishing our heating oil stocks.  Remember to keep your tanks locked up, and if a non-recognised supplier offers you cheaper than usual oil, that “If it’s too good to be true, it usually isn’t”.  There have been occasions when an unwitting buyer agreed to buy cheap oil and the ‘supplier’ drained what was in the tank and taken their money for the privilege.

Remember, now that the nights are closing in and with the clocks going back, darkness can be a thief’s best friend.  Wherever you can, make the most of security lighting and also keep everything locked up.
 
If you haven’t already done so, sign up to the Nocton Neighbourhood Watch site by visiting www.lincolnshireneighbourhoodwatch.co.uk and follow the links to Nocton, enter your details and become one of the growing number of Watchers.

Stay safe,
Graham Jones
Nocton NW co-ordinator

Friday, 24 October 2014

Mega dairies - but not in Nocton

Nocton Dairies Ltd

I remember all too well the ambitious plans for an 8,000 'cow factory' that would have affected our local village for years to come. The topic of the dairy industry dominated my life over many months, until such point when the applicants decided to withdraw their proposals.

The amount of material recorded in the Nocton Blog over the period of the campaign is testament to the considerable time invested by all campaigners, who fought long and hard to influence the local planning authority against the plans.

The specific article 'The battle for the soul of British milk' even refers to our vigorous campaign!

It is clear the UK dairy industry is still facing acute problems. Dairy farmers are under huge pressure, with very low returns that do not even cover their overheads. The industry will need a radical overhaul if it is to continue and survive the competitive world markets.

You may like to revisit some of the blog entries that brought our campaign to an end:

Press Releases

Victory for common sense

Great idea possibly but wrong place... definitely

The battle for the soul of British milk

'The supermarket price wars that let you buy a four-pint carton of milk for one pound are driving farmers out of business. Are American-style mega-dairies the only way for them to survive?'

http://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2014/oct/02/-sp-battle-soul-british-milk

France's 1,000 cow factory - a second battle of the Somme

'For all France's rhetoric about supporting the small farmer, the authorities are bending legalities to push through the country's biggest dairy farm, writes Evan Jones.'

http://www.theecologist.org/News/news_analysis/2590353/frances_1000_cow_factory_a_second_battle_of_the_somme.html

Collapse of dairy farming could be a rural disaster

'Despite having one of the most efficient production systems in the world, UK dairy farmers are unable to cover their costs and dairy processors are outcompeted by imported products.'

http://www.yorkshirepost.co.uk/news/debate/columnists/anne-mcintosh-collapse-of-dairy-farming-could-be-a-rural-disaster-1-6888545

Support for British dairy farmers is vital

'Support for British dairy farmers from the public, processors, retailers and Government is vital since farmgate milk prices have plummeted following the trend on world markets, the NFU has said.'

http://www.thejournal.co.uk/business/business-news/nfu-support-british-dairy-farmers-7921884

Dairy industry problems to be discussed in Westminster

'LIZ Truss will meet representatives from the milk processing industry today to discuss the current problems facing the dairy sector.'

http://www.farmersguardian.com/home/hot-topics/dairy-industry/dairy-industry-problems-to-be-discussed-in-westminster/68207.article

The state of the UK dairy industry

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201012/cmselect/cmenvfru/952/95205.htm