Swaffham Newsletter

February 2021

February 2021


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February 2021

Your free town newsletter published by Iceni Partnership


newslet ter


Swaffham set to turn purple

Read about Rotary's crocus planting for polio awareness on p.7












published by

Your monthly magazine is published by:

Contact the editor:

01760 722 800


Swaffham Newsletter

Iceni Partnership

Swaffham Community Centre

The Campingland


PE37 7RB

Registered in England Company Number 4257830 Charity Number 1101814 VAT Number UK800057775

Comments or queries welcomed.

Delivery issues should be addressed to Kerry at

Swaffham Town Council - details at rear of magazine.

Deadline for editorial and advertising is the

12th day of the previous month.

Advertisers - We operate an industry standard

pre-paid system of billing. The rates were subject

to a small increase beginning April 2020, in line

with production costs.


4 Swaffham Climate Action

5 Church News/ School Speak

6 Merle Boddy Centre

7 Swaffham Rotary

8 Swaffham WEA/Hospital LoFs

10 West Norfolk Census

13 Swaffham Lions/ Camera Club

14 Swaffham History Group

15 Museum Matters

17 Mayor's Parlour

18 Town Council


Swaffham Climate Action

We, SCA, have been finding out from

Breckland Council what progress is

being made by them to develop their

own sustainability strategy having

made a declaration last year that there was

a “Climate Emergency”. We have now been told that

a Lead Officer is in post and when the details of the

appointee’s role have been agreed by BDC (end

of February we understand) we will ensure that

appropriate contacts are made.

Whilst there is some evidence that emissions have

reduced due to the pandemic, as conditions return

to a new normal it is likely that they will increase

again. The latest thinking appears to be that office

staff etc are becoming fed up with working from

home and miss the friendships, banter and exchange

of ideas that comes from face-to-face group

working. The development of electric (and other)

forms of propulsion for vehicles is accelerating but

is nowhere near having a large impact as yet.

Also, there is firm evidence about the continued

melting of the polar ice caps and rise in sea

temperature and levels and changes in weather

patterns. It seems that, because of these changes,

the Arctic Jet Stream which has a big effect on

our climate has mostly swung down away from

the British Isles, down through Ireland, but

cutting across Cornwall and is now on a large loop

around North Africa moving back up through Italy

continuing north east. So, it is clear that anything

that can be done to reduce the rate of increase of

Global Warming is still a matter of urgency. One

item of good news is that over 50% of UK electricity

generation on Boxing Day came from renewable

sources, such as wind turbines.

I have mentioned previously the Government’s

initiative known as the “Green Homes Grant”

scheme. This is something a lot of households can

take advantage of in order to reduce their carbon

footprint. With the Government subsidy of up to

£5,000 available (£10,000 under certain conditions)

this suddenly makes the economic cost / benefit of

“going green” by installing items such as air sourced

heat pumps and insulation, much more attractive

than previously. However, because of Covid,

communications are difficult with potential firms

on the approved list of installers (see Government

web site) so let’s hope we are out of lockdown in

the Spring.

It looks as if the long-running saga of the Green

Britain Centre’s future is coming to a conclusion

as it is being sold by Breckland Council to a

manufacturing firm. Let’s hope that the principles

on which the whole philosophy of the Centre was

founded, are continued by the new owners. Overall,

it would be really good if Swaffham became known

as the “greenest” market town in East Anglia.

For the time being our SCA meetings are of course

happening via Zoom only and we are arranging two

meetings per month, one at 10 am on the second

Thursday in the month and the other at 7.30 pm

the following Tuesday. Should anyone wish to

have more details and / or want to join our group

(there is no subscription) please contact either our

Chairman, Dr Colin Abbiss, jancol.abbiss@gmail.

com Tel: 01760 723118 or myself James Dean as

Secretary, jamesdean@uwclub.net. Tel: 01760

720756, for more information. Thank you.

St Peter & St Paul’s Church

Following updated advice from the Bishop of Norwich,

St Peter & St Paul, Swaffham and St Mary, Sporle will

not now be open for Sunday worship for the next few

weeks. Funerals will, however, go ahead, and can

continue to be booked (as can emergency weddings).

Sunday services will be live-streamed from Swaffham

on the Swaffham Parish Church Facebook page, owing

to the licences in place, and subsequently shared to

the Sporle Parish Church Facebook page. It is planned

that St Mary’s will be open for individual prayer 11.15-

12.15 on Sunday 24th January, in place of the service

which would have been held then. Both churches will

open for individual prayer at times when they can be

kept Covid-safe, but this will inevitably be limited.

Swaffham Methodist Church

Our Church remains closed until further notice, but

our thoughts and prayers are with the community of

Swaffham. Updated information can be found on our

website www.swaffhammethodistchurch.org where

messages or prayer requests can also be left. If you're

feeling lonely and would like a chat phone 01760

722611 to speak to Anne or Barrie.

reg no: 277789

In 1724 Nicholas Hamond set up a Swaffham based

charity to promote the education of people under

the age of 21 years who were in need of financial

assistance and who lived in the Breckland District.

The Charity is still functioning with a working title of

the Hamond Educational Trust.

At the start of this pandemic when home learning

became necessary, the Trustees recognised the

impact this could have on some families who might

find it difficult to access the required technology. A

specific fund was set aside to assist these families

with grants to purchase laptops and associated

software to facilitate essential school based learning

at home. To date 40 families in Breckland have been

helped in this endeavour and the Trustees are keen to

expand their project given the severity of this second

major "lockdown". Funding is still available and full

details of our Trust and the Application Form required

to be completed can be found on our website at

www.hamondeducationalcharity.org.uk, keeping in

mind that our Charity Commission registered scheme

only allows us to help families resident within the

Breckland District of Norfolk.

Sacred Heart School

People Who Help Us

In the second half of the Autumn Term the Reception

Class at Sacred Heart School learnt all about people

who help us in our daily lives and how useful their

services are to the whole community. Each week

we introduced a new profession trying to include

every aspect of the local community, from friends to

childminders and from shopkeepers to fire fighters.

The children enjoyed transforming their play bus

into a fire engine and using the hose to put out their

pretend fires. One vital lesson we all learnt was how

to call for help in emergency and practised making

lots of 999 calls. During the armed forces week, the

children had a lot of time for reflection and decided

to write their own prayer as a class:

Dear Father,

Thank you lord and all the people that help us in the

world. Thank you to the armed forces for helping

and keeping us safe. Thank you for risking your

lives to keep us safe. Thank you to the doctors and

ambulance workers for saving our lives, and the

police for catching all the bad people. Thank you to

the firefighters for putting all the fires out.


We ended the term with an exciting trip to the ‘local

pop up post office’ (courtesy of Mrs Hastings and Mrs

Bolton from our office) to send our letters to Santa.

If you are interested in joining our Reception Class we

still have a few spaces left for our September 2021

intake. Due to current restrictions we are unable to

offer school visits but are happy to talk to you and

answer any questions you have. Please contact the

school office to secure your place 01760 721330.

Magpie Centre

Notice Of Annual General Meeting

West Norfolk Riding for the Disabled is to hold its

Annual General Meeting via Zoom, at 7.00 pm on

Tuesday, 23 February.

All are welcome, but to register your interest,

please visit our website: www.rda-westnorfolk.

org.uk, and you will be sent the code which will

enable you to access the meeting.



Home / Away



01553 616200


Helping adults in west

Norfolk get involved

in their community

during the Coronavirus


Telephone support line

Online directory

Help accessing online resources

Community locations*

* subject to Coronavirus restrictions

in association with


Staying safe inside is just

as important as when we

venture out

Careline Community Service, providing

reassurance during these difficult times

Rest assured our installation service adheres to all

Government COVID-19 guidelines. If you prefer, a self

installation postal option is also available.

T: 01553 616200 W: careline-cs.org.uk

E: careline.operators@west-norfolk.gov.uk


Merle Boddy Centre

After the difficulties and disruptions

of last year, the directors decided that

we should reopen in the middle of

January, so if all has been OK, we are

still offering our service every day, Monday to Friday.

This includes refreshments and a specially prepared

lunch. Georgie and the team are continuing to do

a wonderful job keeping everything going, Covid

notwithstanding. Our clients are all vulnerable

people who enjoy coming to the Centre and whose

carers at home are able to have a well-earned respite

break. We have of course been strictly following

medical advice with regard to safeguarding and the

provision of PPE. We do not allow anyone into the

building except for our clients and both carers and

clients are checked for temperature, symptoms etc

as they arrive. Prior to the pandemic, we were able

to take around 15 clients each day, but in order to

have appropriate social distancing in the building,

we are only able to take ten at present. Attendance

can be for one to five days per week depending on

need and space available.

Towards to end of last year, the Centre was given

wonderful support from many generous doners.

This kindness has done much to enable the work to

continue. If you feel able to help us financially this

year, please visit our website at merleboddy.org,uk

for the “Just Giving” set up where one off and regular

monthly donations can be made. Your contributions

can also benefit from Gift Aid where appropriate.

Should you wish to discuss whether a loved one

could benefit from attending our Centre, please

do not hesitate to contact our Manager, Georgie

on 01760 724527 or email, merleboddycentre@

hotmail.co.uk Obviously, visiting the Centre for a

look around is difficult at present but Georgie will

be able describe what we do and can deal with any

queries. We are looking forward with confidence to

a successful 2021!

James Dean (Chairman)

Swaffham 5



President’s Corner

As I sat down to write this

piece it dawned on me that

I had not made any New Year resolutions. Not that

I have ever been a great one for making, or more

importantly keeping, resolutions it is remiss of me

given that the tradition dates back over 4,000 years

to ancient Babylon. The Babylonians are said to

have started the tradition during Akitu, a 12-day

New Year celebration. During Akitu they would

make promises to the gods to pay their debts and

return any borrowed items and believed that if they

kept their word, the gods would look favourably on

them for the year ahead.

Whilst I may not have made any personal resolutions

this year, with other Rotarians in Swaffham, we have

resolved to resume our full programme of meetings

and events as soon as it is safe to do so. This will

require not only the lifting of all Government

restrictions on movement and meetings etc, but

the widespread confidence in all of us that we can

resume life as we knew it before March 2020.

Our current assessment is that this situation will

not be achieved in time for us to go ahead and plan

a Know Your Blood Pressure day for late Spring or

a Summer Tea in early Summer. However, we are

more confident about July onwards and we are

actively planning a Charity Golf day on 19th July at

Swaffham Golf Club.

We are anticipating that Rotary Youth Leadership

Award (RYLA), a one week course at The Grafham

Water Centre which includes a wide variety of

indoor and outside based activities will go ahead

at the end of August /beginning of September.

It specifically caters for 18 to 26 years male and

female candidates from a variety of backgrounds,

the majority are either employed or in the

education system. It gives them the opportunity

to expand their horizons by developing leadership

skills, increasing self-confidence, in addition to

obtaining new skills and developing old ones, and

returning a young person with enhanced attributes

to benefit their employer. Participants learn to

work effectively as a team, discover the benefits of

delegation, and work to tight deadlines. If you know

someone you think would benefit from the course,

please get in touch.

Later in the year we intend to mount our 25th Art

Exhibition at the Assembly Rooms. The venue has

been booked for 29th – 31st October. Many more

details about this, the other events mentioned and

some other ideas we are working on will appear in

future editions of the Newsletter.

We might not be able to do anything now or in the

coming weeks, but I was delighted to see that not

everything has ground to a halt. On my (permitted)

daily exercise I was delighted to spot aconites and

snowdrops about to bloom. It won’t be long before

the purple crocus we planted in the churchyard and

near the A1065 roundabout bloom to remind us

that the fight to eradicate polio continues.

I was also impressed that our investment in Lend

with Care flourishes. Since I mentioned this in my

August piece the charity has continued to make

loans to entrepreneurs in developing countries.

Our donation and the repayments are continuously

re-lent so the “pot” is three and a half times our

investment and has helped 664 entrepreneurs create

552 jobs and help 2424 family members. Amazing,

the borrowers are keeping their resolutions!

If you want to find out any more about our Club, please

visit our website – http://www.swaffhamrotary.org.

uk– or e mail me club_president@swaffhamrotary.


John Wallace



Swaffham WEA

We may be “Not Going Out”

but the WEA in Swaffham has

been very busy adapting their

courses to run online. We ran two

successful courses in the Autumn Term - one on how

the English Language evolved, and the other entitled

“What is Society?” This term we also have two

courses running - “The American Civil War through

film” and “The Soul of Russian Music”. We have

organised a Day School for Saturday 27th March

2021, entitled “Highwaymen vs the Georgian Judicial

System”. We may all have heard of Dick Turpin, but

this course will trace the potent myth of the heroic

“gentleman highwayman” which has grown up over

the last 200 years, in literature, the arts, and the

media. We will also examine how highway robbers

in East Anglia operated and reveal the cat and

mouse games they played with the authorities who

had very limited manpower and resource. The tutor

is Stephen Poulter and the course will run from 10

a.m. until 3 p.m., with a coffee break at 11.30 and

a lunch break at 12.45. The course costs £15. For

further information and to enrol, go to wea.org.uk

Or phone 0300 303 3464 Courses are free for those

claiming benefits, and help is available with Zoom

and Canvas.

Norfolk Libraries Online

We're providing activities and groups you can join in

with online as part of our response to the coronavirus

outbreak. There are also lots of exciting, interesting

and stimulating online resources you can use to help

you stay happy and healthy at home. Discover more

at https://www.norfolk.gov.uk/libraries-localhistory-and-archives/libraries/whats-on

Bounce and Rhyme

Songs and rhymes are an excellent way of engaging

with your little one, no-one is too young. Watch

and join in with rhymes at home through our main

Norfolk Libraries Facebook page every Tuesday

morning at 10am.

Digital Health Hub Zoom


During COVID19 it has been

vitally important to be able

to navigate reliable health

information online. Sign

yourself up, or someone you

care for, to learn how to navigate the NHS website

and GP online services. Sessions are free and will

run on Wednesdays at 12.30pm. Email libraries.

iconnect@norfolk.gov.uk to book your place.


Swaffham Community Hospital L of F's

A short article this month as there is little new to

report. As we start the new year, the hospital remains

under great pressure. At the time of writing the

vaccination process is yet to get fully underway. We

understand that residents and staff will be in the

first priority groups. However, even when vaccinated

it takes a little while for it to become fully effective.

Our NHS colleagues, as ever, are doing a wonderful

job here in Swaffham. The pressure remains as the

hospital has expanded the number of beds available

for extra patients. From talking to senior staff it is

more obvious that the ongoing pressures are having a

visible effect on staff's physical and mental wellbeing.

There is no sign of us being able to commence any

fundraising activities so once more I suggest if you

would like to help, a good way is to participate in our

coin collection. The idea is to ask you all to consider

whether you would like to have a jam jar or tin at

home in which you might donate any spare change

over the coming weeks. It would be a small way of

recognising the fantastic service our NHS colleagues

are providing over this difficult period. If you would

like to do this, donations can be left at the hospital

reception, or if you ring me I can arrange collection.

Nothing further to report at the moment on any

capital schemes.

We are really keen to attract new people to join

our small committee (especially after the loss of a

member) . Do ring me for an informal chat, I promise

it won't be too onerous, so why not give us a try?

It is important that we all follow the latest Government

guidelines, so stay safe and well.

Colin Houghton (Chairman)

01760 336025

Royal British Legion

Happy New Year to all members and supporters

of the Royal British Legion. Swaffham Branch have

been unable to have meetings during lockdown

and this will remain the case until further notice.

Our thanks go to all shops and businesses and

individuals who helped with the Poppy Appeal. As

soon as I know how much was raised I will pass

on the information via this newsletter. One thing is

certain, though. We've not collected anything near

the totals for previous years.

2021 is the Centenary of the Royal British Legion.

We've just got to wait and see what we'll be able to

do by way of celebration.

I do hope that you are keeping safe and well.

If anyone would like a chat, you are welcome to

phone 01760 722611 to speak to myself or Barrie.


Viruses and bacteria

live in your carpet

To improve air quality in your home and to create

a safe environment for your family your carpet

should be cleaned professionally every year

Call us today for a FREE QUOTE

and to find out more on 01760 337762

Covering the whole of East Anglia | www.xtraclean.co.uk

01760 336029

Census 2021

Census Will Provide A Snapshot Of Modern Society

Households across King’s Lynn and West Norfolk will

soon be asked to take part in Census 2021. The census

is a once-in-a-decade survey that gives us the most

accurate estimate of all the people and households

in England and Wales. It has been carried out every

decade since 1801, with the exception of 1941.

It will be the first run predominantly online, with

households receiving a letter with a unique access

code, allowing them to complete the questionnaire

on their computers, phones or tablets.

“A successful census will ensure everyone from local

government to charities can put services and funding

in the places where they are most needed,” Iain Bell,

deputy national statistician at the Office for National

Statistics, said. “This could mean things like doctors’

surgeries, schools and new transport routes. That’s

why it is so important everyone takes part and we

have made it easier for people to do so online on any

device, with help and paper questionnaires for those

that need them.”

Census day will be on March 21, but households

across the country will receive letters with online

codes allowing them to take part from early March.

The census will include questions about your sex,

age, work, health, education, household size and

ethnicity. And, for the first time, there will be a

question asking people whether they have served

in the armed forces, as well as voluntary questions

for those aged 16 and over on sexual orientation and

gender identity.

Results will be available within 12 months, although

personal records will be locked away for 100 years,

kept safe for future generations.

For more information, visit census.gov.uk.

Family Action - Social Prescribing

Many things affect your mental and physical

health and your feeling of wellbeing. GPs tell us

that a lot of people visit them feeling isolated or

lonely; stressed by work, relationships, money

and housing problems. We understand that living

with a long term condition can be stressful too,

and social prescribing has many ways to help you

manage your condition on an ongoing basis. To

find out how Social Prescribing might be able to

help either contact

your GP Surgery, or

Family Action Norfolk

(01760 720302) to

find out more about

Social Prescribing and

how to be referred.


Musings on the Lockdown 2020/21

One of the very few benefits arising from Covid 19

has been the additional opportunity presenting itself

to tidy up at home – something one always seems to

put off for as long as possible. I have a so-called study

which has grown very unkempt and am currently (Jan

6th 2021) cleaning up and throwing out reams of old

papers plus other detritus. Naturally I will regret this

as suddenly I will be asked for the Museum Friends

AGM papers for 2010 or for Age Concern or even

for the Merle Boddy Centre. It’s no use looking on

the computer as that has been cleared too, being

constantly nagged by the system that “my in-box is

full….”. Anyway, this clear-out has revealed papers

long forgotten but having reread them, some seem

worthy of retention. One is The Pedlar Quarterly,

Swaffham Town and Village magazine. I have two

editions, March to May 1984 and then June to August.

I gather the first edition ever was for Jan to March

1984. Does anyone know whether this excellent piece

of work was continued and for how long? Perhaps

Sue, the Manager of Swaffham Heritage knows the

answer? Printed A5 size on good quality paper, but

with black & white text and pictures, it was priced at

30p; the editors were Julie Morris (now Julie Grapes)

and Chris Dawes.

Looking through, first, the March to May edition, I was

pleased to see this photo of Gill and Keith Creed with

their new baby boy, Terry, taken at his Christening

ceremony at the Parish Church in October 1983.

(photo). As most people will know, Gill is the owner /

proprietor of the Just Hair Salon in Station Street; she

tells me that she has been in charge there for more

than 41 years – quite an achievement and as we know

is still going strong. Then in the same edition there is an

interesting article by that great character, Ben Ripper

on Town Crosses, including of course the Swaffham

Market Cross also known as the Butter Cross. There

was an earlier cross in the same area given to the town

in 1575 by John Stapleton, Vicar of Swaffham but by

1780 this was in a dangerous state. So, in 1783 this

was replaced by the Cross we see today, presented to

the town by George, third Earl of Orford and squire

of Houghton. The Earl was related through marriage

to the well-known local family, the Hamonds who

were then Lords of the Manor of Swaffham. The total

cost of the Cross was £400, £200 of which was for the

statue of Ceres, the goddess of the harvest, on the top.

Since then it has of course had several refurbishments

including a very recent one which included the area

round about. Regrettably, this included a new and

rather out of place electricity kiosk immediately next

to the Grade 1 listed Butter Cross. Fortunately, this has

subsequently been partly disguised by the addition of

local information panels.

James Dean

from my friends

At The Paddocks Care Home, we’re not just


carers, we’re friends – and sometimes our friends

need a little help. That’s why we personalise

each day to meet the individual needs of our


residents and their families.

With a little help

from my friends

from my friends

The Paddocks

And hearing their laughter is music to our ears.


With a little help


At The Paddocks Care Home, we’re not just

carers, we’re friends – and sometimes our friends The Paddocks

from my friends

need a little help. That’s why we personalise

each day to meet the individual needs of our


residents and their families.


And hearing their laughter is music to our ears.

The Paddocks

1:58/2:45 WITH 1:58/2:45 A LITTLE HELP WITH FROM A MY LITTLE FRIENDS www.castlemeadowcare.co.uk



At The Paddocks Care Home, we’re not just

carers, we’re friends – and sometimes our friends

need a little help. That’s why we personalise

each day to meet the individual needs of our

residents and their families.

And hearing their laughter is music to our ears.




At The Paddocks Care Home, we’re not just

carers, we’re friends – and sometimes our friends

need a little help. That’s why we personalise

each day to meet the individual needs of our



residents and their families.


At The Paddocks Care Home, we’re not just

The Paddocks

And hearing their laughter is music to our ears.

carers, we’re friends – and sometimes our friends

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need a little help. That’s why we personalise

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And hearing their laughter is music to our ears.


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Swaffham showroom by appointment only

SwaffhamNewsletter_HalfPage_Template.indd 1 05/11/2020 09:21

IT Support for "home learning"

The government has stated that where required,

laptops will be made available to families whose

children now have

to study at home.

Distribution will

take considerable

time and may not

reach every family

in time to really help

in these demanding


Can you help?

If like me you have

an old working laptop sitting unloved in a dark

cupboard at home, why not donate it. The hard disk

will be wiped clean, Windows system re-installed. It

will then be given to a local school for distribution to

an appropriate family to help provide their children

with much needed equal opportunities for "home


Donations through the Swaffham Community

Centre, Campingland. Monday to Friday 9

-3pm. 01760 722800. Make a difference by your

contribution to the learning of our young people -

donate today! Thank you and stay safe.

Swaffham & District Lions

Following a request from

Artichoke, a clothing shop in

Swaffham, to find a home for hats

and scarves that they wished to

donate, the Lions thought they would be good for the

homeless people to receive during these troubled

times. Tony Lakey, the Lions Welfare Chairman, took

the donations to the Purfleet Trust in Kings Lynn

who support the homeless. This follows a series of

donations the Lions have distributed over the festive

season including, a Christmas Hamper, Christmas

handmade goodie bags and over 300 toys.

• Are you interested in

helping in the community?

• Do you enjoy

meeting new people?

• Whether it's helping with

food collections, putting on

events, or enjoying the social

programme, why not join the

Swaffham Lions?

• Membership is open to all

Give John a call on

01760 337403

for more info

Do y

Office currently

closed to visitors,

please contact us

on 07393 981295



befriending only

at present


SINCE 1999

Befrienders & Hospital Buddy Drivers Needed

In the current pandemic it is amazing how many people

have volunteered to help those that have had to shield

due to age or health. Hopefully, lots of you have found

this extremely rewarding and may like to continue as the

restrictions lighten. If you have enjoyed helping others

and have an hour or two to spare a week or enjoy driving,

we would love to hear from you. We need caring

compassionate people like yourselves to join our

fantastic team of volunteers to help elderly people to get

to medical appointments or just to stop an elderly person

from being lonely. Please call us for an informal chat to

see how you could help. Thank you.

We are here to improve the quality of older

people’s lives in Swaffham & the villages nearby

Tel: 07393 981 295

EMAIL: swaffhamsss16@outlook.com


The Community Centre, Campingland, Swaffham. PE37 7RB

The generosity of Swaffham businesses and residents

continues during this festive yet troubled season.

The latest act of kindness comes from Impson the

butchers who have donated a meat package to the

Lions to pass on to a Swaffham family. Tony Potter,

from Impson’s, was very keen to support a local

family during this difficult period.

Swaffham Camera Club

Club activities restarted after the

festive break on 20th January with

a competition evening. With the

copy deadline for the February

edition of this newsletter being

prior to this means we cannot reproduce images of








work in








It is


intended we will be able to re-establish our normal

live Zoom seesion After an evening of adjudging themed ima

practice of sharing some of our work commencing

congratulations with next month's go to issue. Alan Peggs, the winner, with his image

The Club will continue holding its meetings on the

Zoom Platform whilst the Covid 19 restrictions and

concerns persist. As the outlook for being able

to meet in person remains currently in limbo the

Committee has been working on arrangements to

re-introduce regular external presenters speaking

on subjects of photographic interest and enhance

its competitions by the means of external judging in

into the 2021 programme, commencing in February.

The club assists and encourages photographers of all

abilities, and looks forward to reconvening at its new

venue as soon as possible.

For further information please contact us by e-mail

at richardludlow@compuserve.com.



Swaffham History Group

Swaffham's Bridewell was named after a prison

created in 1553 at St. Bride’s Well in London,

formerly a palace of Henry 8th. Over time the name

was shortened to Bridewell and came to refer to

gaols of any size. In 1601 Swaffham also adopted the

name of 'House of Correction', this term was created

after the Elizabethan Poor Law, criminalising begging

and vagrancy and establishing structures where they

would be forced to work and by the 18th century

they were also used to house pre-trial inmates.

Swaffham county prison, which was erected in 1787,

was considerably enlarged in 1844 at a cost of £1500.

It had a residence for the governor and contained

67 cells and 3 hospital rooms. The prisoners were

employed in mat making, sacking, weaving, tailoring,

shoemaking, oakum picking and pumping water

from a well 150 feet deep via a treadmill.

Each of the cells was 12 feet by 7 feet, with an arched

roof 9 feet 6 inches high. It was fitted with a crib

bed, and inmates had straw sacking as mattresses,

two sheets, two blankets and a rug. The cells were

ventilated by a grated window 28 inches square.

The county prison known as the Swaffham Bridewell

was discontinued under the prisons act, and was

pulled down in 1881.

For more details regarding the Group please Phone

01842 879140 or Email jbaz@go-plus.net


Painters and Decorators Est. 1970

Call us today for a free quote and experience the difference.

We offer competitive quotes on all interior and exterior jobs

TEL: 01760 - 722511

MOBILE: 07902 013785 or 07789 906854

52 Filby Road, Swaffham, Norfolk PE37 7SX

Carers Matter Norfolk

Are you helping or supporting someone who is

living with Parkinsons?

If so, contact Carers Matter Norfolk. Covid19 and the

lockdown has been particularly difficult for people

caring or supporting someone with a long term

health problem. You may not have been able to have

family support or support from groups and friends.

Norfolk County Council has commissioned new

enhanced care services from this September which

will hopefully offer more support to carers.

Rather than going through Adult Social Services

Carers assessments are now being carried out by

Carers Matter Norfolk. To get an assessment, you

need to contact the Carers Matter Advice line or

request this through the website or you can ask a

health or social care professional to refer you. The

assessment can offer you advice, information as well

as the help and support you need in your carer role.

If you need more support, you may be referred to a

local Carer Connector who can look in more detail

at what can assist you to continue caring and to

support your health and wellbeing. Unlike previously

the assessment is not a one off thing but an adviser

will contact you regularly to see how things are

going and you can ring as often as you want if your

needs change or you just need a listening ear. An

assessment can lead to you being offered practical

help in the form of a short break, a grant from the

health and wellbeing fund, counselling or help to

access education and training. A short break can

be someone staying with the person so you can

go shopping, a few days for you to recharge your

batteries or even help towards a joint holiday. The

grants can be for anything that may enhance your

health and wellbeing such as funding massage, an

electronic device or a spa day out. The definition of

a carer for this service is wide and you do not have

to be living with the person you support or caring

for them full time. Contact the advice line for more

information. Hopefully this new enhanced service

will give you as a carer some practical support at a

time you need it.

Call our advice line on 0800 083 1148 to have a chat

with our friendly advisers, it is open 7 days a week

Monday-Friday 9am-8pm and Saturday and Sunday

10am-2pm. You can also contact the service via the

website www.carersmatternorfolk.org.uk.

Lindsay Goward

Swaffham Museum, Town Hall, London Street,

Swaffham PE37 7DQ. Tel: 01760 721230

Email: swaffhamheritage@gmail.com

To keep up to date join us on our website:


Below is one of my favourite drawings from the

museum collection. By Max Mueller, a PoW at

Cockley Cley and who later settled in Swaffham, it

is of a young boy during World War II. The suffering

etched on his face echoes the wretchedness we

have all felt during this time.

Who are Carers Matter Norfolk?

Carers Matter Norfolk’s service has gone through an exciting

refresh to provide additional support to unpaid carers in

Norfolk. This ensures they deliver a highly




that enables carers to improve their health and wellbeing and

support them in their caring role.

On behalf of Norfolk County Council, Carers Matter Norfolk

provide Carer’s Assessments, information, support and advice

for unpaid carers in Norfolk. They offer a 7 day a week advice

line, along with one on one community support.

You can learn more about their services by visiting their

website or calling their advice line on 0800 0831 148 (open

Monday to Friday 8am – 8pm, Saturday and Sunday 10am –


What do Carers Matter Norfolk offer?

All about Conflict & Consequences

We have just received permission from HLF to extend

our Military Remembrance Trail until November

2021 and to focus more on that most interesting and

strange year of 2020. Like other museums and media

we are all aware that this was - and continues to be -

a time which will only happen once in a lifetime and

merits recording for the next generations.

Between now and end of April (we hope by then we

will be free!) we are asking for any photos, videos,

poems, drawings, stories and eventually artefacts

to share with us to compile an e-book which will

be on our website and kept amongst our archives.

Adults and children – all ages and people – please

participate so that we have a valued reminder of

how different this time is. There must be fun things

that happened as well as difficult. Can we put

together a recollection of the sunshine, the rain, online

shopping, confusion, u-turns, the empty A47,

home-schooling, zooming, the market – one of the

earliest to come back, the businesses that went all

out to help, those that closed and those that opened,

cancelled holidays and the joy of rediscovering

nature, the sadness of losing friends the happiness

of meeting them...

At the moment please send items either through the

museum door or by email to swaffhamheritage@

gmail.com. There will soon be a dedicated social

media address but you can also send items to the

museum facebook account. Thank you.

For our Conflict and Consequences exhibition we are

displaying a rare grave marker from World War 1 of

Donald Bunting. We are now having the background

painted and the artist would welcome any details

of the Bunting family who were the leading drapers

in the town before and after the war. Are there still

people who worked for them or whose parents

talked of them. Please contact us by note through

the museum door or by email. Thank you

Friends of Swaffham Heritage

100 Club Winning Numbers for December draw:

1st No. 33. 2nd No.70. 3rd No. No. 44

This refreshed service further improves the health and wellbeing of

carers and their capacity to fulfill their caring roles by: –

• Carers assessments

• Carers breaks

14 • Health and wellbeing fund


Even ironing!

Tracy: 01362 820 966

Caroline: 01953 882 154

Mobile: 07927 161 201







building better families


Expert legal help and advice from

Swaffham’s most recommended solicitors


Talk face to face with your local lawyers, at our

London Street office, who are here to help by

giving you clear and practical legal advice.

Divorce and Separation • Employment Issues • Wills, Trusts and Probate

Settling a Dispute • Moving Home • Personal Injury • Commercial Services

01760 721992


Chatteris • Dereham • Downham Market • Ely • Heacham • King’s Lynn • Swaffham • Watton

Mayor's Parlour

Dear All, It’s been quite a roller

coaster since I last spoke to you, we

were in Tier 2 feeling quite positive

about the pandemic, now find

we are in Tier 4 having to adhere

to much stricter rules to prevent

COVID from spreading. This is of course a great

disappointment and I’m sure has made us all feel

very vulnerable, one can only hope the vaccine will

improve things and give us back at least some of

the life we once knew. I must say I miss my children

and grandchildren dreadfully, thank goodness for

Skype, mobiles and TVs although there’s nothing

like a good book.

By the time this is published the vaccines will have

started, questions have been asked as to why the

Assembly Rooms have not been used, this is run by

Iceni, not the Town council. However, it was decided

that the first centre will be at Manor Farm surgery

which will serve seven areas in this part of Norfolk.

They all will have a hand in the distribution of the

vaccine, Manor Farm had the room to accommodate

this. Let’s hope there will be a continuous roll out of

the vaccine, but I don’t really know how this works.

Kurt at the White Hart has come on board again

doing meals for young and those needing this

service, also working with Iceni Partnership to

distribute from the community fridge. A big thank

you to Kurt and all his helpers, without this service

I really don’t know what we’d do. Unfortunately

our main body of volunteers are being told to stay

at home, quite rightly. It would be good to have

something like the Round Table to start up again, it’s

having the time these days to do this I know, anyway,

something to think about. Why I mentioned this

was because there was an article about Dereham

and all the volunteers they have but I suppose their

population is bigger and on average younger. Never

mind when we’ve all been vaccinated we will be up

and running!

As you know by now the GBC is not going to happen

and a global commercial business is moving in,

we don’t know who it is I’m afraid. This is a great

disappointment as the reason to do this was

purely to give this growing town the opportunity

to grow with regard to sport and leisure and to

make it “ hub” for all ages especially the younger

generation. This was recognised time and again in

our Neighbourhood Plan that this was a provision

that was sadly missing, I’m only sorry that having

approached Breckland to do this we weren’t able to

do our Due Diligence. Paul Hewitt from Breckland

spoke to us in the council meeting yesterday and

said there was no difference re monies in the sale

they had, to ours, it’s just that the amount of time it

had taken for the Council to decide was a big factor

as to why they’d gone with someone else. I hasten

to add that it was a small number of councillors that

were against this and were very vocal, others have

spent hours trying to get to at least the point where

we could go out to the public. Back to the drawing

board but I can’t help

feeling deflated, at least

you should have been

the ones deciding.

It all seems a bit

gloomy at the moment

especially not being

able to get into the

garden, I find my routine

has totally changed,

starting with getting up!

I’m sure the situation

will eventually get easier, do look after yourselves

and if anyone wants a chat just pick up the phone.

Very best wishes to you all.


The Town Council

Mayor – Cllr Jill Skinner


Deputy Mayor – Cllr. Judy Anscombe


Cllr. Lindsay Beech


Cllr. Stewart Bell,


Cllr. Wendy Bensley


Cllr. Paul Darby


Cllr. Graham Edwards


Cllr. Brendan Holmes


Cllr. Colin Houghton


Cllr. Shirley Matthews


Cllr. Ian Pilcher


Cllr. Les Scott



In Touch With Your Town

'In Touch with your Town' is put

together by the Town Clerk Richard

Bishop or occasionally by the Deputy

Town Clerk Claire Smith. It deals with

some of the most topical items of

the day and the odd item where the Council want to

share information with the Town.

Casual Vacancy – Swaffham Town Council

In December Cllr Keith Sandle resigned from the

Council, and we thank him for his contribution

during his 18 months as a Councillor, the first year

and few months of his second year, he was serving

as Deputy Mayor. The vacancy has been advertised

for a 20-working day period and there was no call

to hold a by-election, therefore this allows the

Town Council to fill the vacancy by co-option. The

vacancy will be filled at the virtual Council meeting

on Wednesday 10th February 2021. Prospective

candidates are requested to write to the Town

Clerk townclerk@swaffhamtowncouncil.gov.uk with

a citation/background information (of no more

than 200-words) to give reasons/information that

Councillors can take into account when they vote on

the co-option process. If candidates are looking to

get this information circulated to Councillors prior to

the meeting the agenda pack will go out on Friday

5th February. Applications are invited right up to the

commencement of the meeting, and applicants will

have the opportunity of attending the meeting and

reading out their citation, to introduce themselves.

The successful candidate, will be invited to participate

in the remainder of the meeting, following the agenda

item on 10th February. So, if you want to be a Town

Councillor for the remainder of the term, which ends

at the local government elections in May 2023 (two

years and three months to go); then please get in

contact with the Town Clerk, put your name forward

or get someone else to put your name forward.

Green Britain Centre

“They think its all over, it is now!” Where have I

heard that before? The Town Council’s interest in

the Green Britain Centre came to an abrupt end in

January, with the building being sold, before the

final part of the Council’s due diligence could be

completed, just as we get the go ahead to incur costs

to get this work done, Breckland Council ran out of

patience and who can blame them? We obviously

wait with interest to hear the finer details of the

freehold deal, but anything that brings investment to

the Town and jobs for local people, has to be seen as

a good thing. The Town Council’s main task now is

to see that Breckland’s capital windfall is reinvested

back into the Town and into much needed sports and

leisure facilities.

The merits for and against the GBC project were

well aired, if not well informed of all the facts

being discussed behind the scenes. The biggest

disappointment is that we did not get to complete

the due diligence work in progress to get to the stage

where we could hold a meaningful public consultation,

to see what the public really thought, once all of the

detail could be fully shared. It was interesting to note

though, then when questions were invited on the

GBC recently, there were no new concerns raised, all

the issues being raised by the public were similar to

those being raised by Councillors and being worked

on by Breckland and the Town Council. This was a

demonstration of the saying “you can please some

of the people, some of the time, but you will never

please all of the people, all of the time.”

Covid Christmas Tree Competition

Thanks to everyone who shared their beautiful

Christmas tree decorations and entered the Swaffham

Christmas Tree Competition. Congratulations to the

winners: Jane Williams, Aimee Jones, Daniel Burrell,

Eileen Childs, Susan Greer and Leo Williams. Check

out the short video on Facebook, maybe some

inspiration for 2021, only 48 weeks to go! We are

very grateful to Barbara Melnyk of Creative Space

who kindly donated the prizes. The winners will need

to be patient though as the prizes won’t be delivered

until the current Covid-19 restrictions are lifted.

L: Eileen Childs, Traditional tree R: Leo Williams, Patriotic Tree

Swaffham Scarecrow Scavenge

Please note, that this competition has been

POSTPONED until the Easter Holiday, further details

will be published next month. In the Easter half-term,

Swaffham Town Council will be inviting households

to get creative and enter our Swaffham Scarecrow

Scavenge. The theme for 2021 will be COVID

HEROES. You are invited to make a scarecrow to

represent and celebrate the key workers who have

supported Swaffham during the pandemic. Your

scarecrow could be anything from an NHS worker to

your local postman or woman. We will be compiling

a map detailing the locations of all the scarecrows,

so that families can follow the trail over half-term

and decide the best scarecrows. More details of our

Scarecrow Challenge in the March Newsletter!

Time For Nominations – In The Month Of February

Heroes of Swaffham Awards “recognising those

who go the Extra Mile”

The Swaffham Heroes Awards are to honour the

achievements of remarkable people who make the

Swaffham Community a better place. These awards

will recognise people from all walks of life and ages,

that inspire with their determination and selflessness.

Categories will target contributions throughout the

community from the following and will honour both

Adult and Junior recipients:

• Charity Fundraiser of the year

• Neighbour of the year

• Carer of the year

• Sportsperson of the year

• Volunteer of the year

• Outstanding contribution to the Arts,

Heritage & Culture

• Triumph over Adversity award of the year

Heroes Awards Criteria

Nominations are open to any resident in Swaffham,

OR who have committed a considerable proportion

of their time in Swaffham voluntarily and beyond

their work commitments.

• Each category includes an award for both Adults

and Juniors; Junior age group 5-16 years.

• The nominee must be proposed and seconded by

two Swaffham residents or those with an interest in

the town i.e. business or community group leader.

• Proposers cannot be a relative of the nominee or a

Town Councillor.

• Nominations should be submitted by end of

February, using the application form and sent to the

Town Clerk.

• This award is not given posthumously.

• The recipient(s) of the award will be decided by Full


• The Council will actively promote this award each

year to ensure a good number of nominations are


• The awards will be presented annually by the Town

Mayor at a special ceremony in April.

• The recipient(s) will receive a framed certificate.

Victory in Swaffham – CANCELLED

As you know the event planned for the 8th May last

year to celebrate the 75th Anniversary of VE Day was

postponed due to Covid-19. Unfortunately, we have

now had to postpone the event planned for Sunday

6th June too! The uncertainty surrounding Covid-19

and the roll out of the vaccine in particular, has

created a situation that is unmanageable until we are

absolutely sure an event can be delivered that is safe

for all to attend.


Richard Bishop – Town Clerk



Claire Smith – Deputy Town Clerk


Hannah Duggan – Office Administrator


Swaffham Town Council

Tel: 01760 722 922


Town Hall opening times:

Monday 9.30am – 1pm. 1.30pm – 4pm

Tuesday - Friday – 9.30am – 1pm

Town Council Committee

meeting dates

Virtual Zoom meetings

• 2nd – Transport, Access & Environment – 4pm

• 10th - Full Town Council - 6.30pm

• Wed 15th - Market, Events and Tourism - 6.30pm

• Tue 23rd - Planning & Built Environment – 4pm

Your Breckland District Councillors:

Cllr. David Wickerson

01760 725 741



Cllr. Ian Sherwood

07795 236 878



Cllr Ed Colman - also your Norfolk County Councillor

07940 406 356

ed.colman@breckland.gov.uk / ed.colman.cllr@norfolk.gov.uk

Breckland District Council


01362 656 870. For all enquiries regarding: Planning,

Refuse Bins, Housing, Recycling, Licensing & Benefits.

Highway issues

Norfolk County Council – www.norfolk.gov.uk

– 0344 800 8020

For Highway issues & faulty street lights:

- Highways - please give the location of the issue and

a telephone number where further information can

be obtained.

- Faulty streetlights – please give the precise location

of the light and the number on the column.

Alternatively visit the website and search for Highways

or Street Lights to report your concerns.











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