Suffolk Village of the Year 2023

Parish Council April Report & May APM

The Parish Council met on Thursday 28th April 2016

Whilst there has been no response from Suffolk Police regarding speeding concerns in the village, the Clerk noted that we now have a new PCSO (Laura Mansell) who will be responsible for Cockfield among a group of other villages. He reported that he has referred the matter to her. It was subsequently noted that a VAS sign has appeared in the village, indicating the speed at which vehicles are travelling.

It was reported that the skip has now been removed from Great Green, strimming has commenced and the flagpole has been reinstalled.

Over the summer the Green will be sprayed and mole drains will be installed. Work to clear vegetation around the pond will commence in the autumn.

Work continues in Earl’s Meadow and it was reported that a visitor had written to Green Links commending the efforts of the volunteers who put in so much effort to the project.

Thanks were offered to the individual who has installed a seat inside the new bus shelter at Mill Corner.

There was an agreement that, now that the refurbishment of the pavilion is virtually complete, we now need to re-establish a Pavilion Management Committee involving the Parish Council, Community Council and user organisations. It is essential that having improved the standard of the building and its facilities we ensure that the standard is maintained.

Cockfield Annual Parish Meeting

The Annual Parish Meeting took place on Thursday 12th May 2016.

25 people attended, including both our County and District Councillors.

Our County Councillor, Jenny Antill reported that the County element of Council Tax increased by 2% in line with Government requirements for adult social care. She then advised us that children’s services in the county are now rated good and that educational performance is improving. A new Community Transport Service will be launched on 13th June and any feedback regarding the service, once it has started, would be welcome. She finished by noting that a contribution has been made towards the installation of an alarm to protect lead on the roof of St Peter’s church.

District Councillor, Clive Arthey, in his role with Suffolk Waste partnership that the County now only sends 1% of its waste to landfill. This is a result of high levels of recycling and the iontroduction of the Gt Blakenham energy from waste plant. He noted that this plant, combined with the installation of solar panels on council houses is making a significant addition to electricity generation in the district. He also added that bottles with aluminium caps can now be recycled complete with caps.

Babergh Council Tax has increased by 3½% and the Council continues to work with Mid-Suffolk on joint services, with the question of HQ and accommodation still to be resolved. Since the 2001 census, Cockfield has increased in size by 34 dwellings and the District Council is continuing to work with the Parish Council and other bodies to provide the affordable homes that the village requires.

Cally Boardman addressed the meeting to explain her role as Local Area Co-ordinator responsible for providing support to people in the area suffering from mental, physical or age concerns.

The Chairman of the Parish Council and the Chairman of the Community Council both presented reports which are published elsewhere in this edition of Green Links.

The Parish Council put forward a proposal to pursue the purchase of the Glebe Land alongside the A1141 to fulfill is statutory duty to provide allotments. It was explained that with the possibility of long term low interest loans and various grants and funding this purchase could be contained within the current parish precept and would represent an additional asset for the village. A show of hands was requested and, as there were no objectors, it was agreed to negotiate with the diocese.

The Headmistress of the School, which currently has 68-70 pupils,  reported a ‘good’ Ofsted rating for which she was congratulated by the meeting. The school has started a programme of updating the fabric of the building which will continue this year. She expressed thanks to FOCSA for its support through the year and reminded us that the School Summer Fair will take place on 2nd July.

CATEY pre-school reported 28 children on the register and is actively recruiting in surrounding villages. There are breakfast and after-school clubs, which are also open to pupils at the school. The last Ofsted report was ‘good’ and plans are afoot to install astroturf on the outside play area.

St Peter’s Church had a good year in 2015 – a curate was appointed in August, together with a  new church warden, there have been 5 baptisms and 1 wedding.The vicar thanked everyone who has supported fund raising events and the County for its contribution to the roof alarm.

The WI reported that in its centenary year it has 71 members.

Cockfield Charity reported that no grants have been made this year.

The village website has been refreshed and can now be viewed on tablets and smartphones. Additionally it is now possible to subscribe to the Community Council mailing list through the site.

The Computer Circle now operates only afternoon sessions to meet demand. Details of upcoming sessions will be published in Green Links.

Green Links reported a circulation of 425 copies per month. The editor noted that the June edition will be her 105th – she thanked her committee, all contributors, advertisers, distributors and readers for their efforts. Congratulations to her for continually producing a high quality, informative village magazine!

There were a number of items raised by members of the public.

  • Dog fouling on footpaths, particularly between Howe Lane and the Church – the Parish Council were asked to consider a bin in this area
  • The whereabouts of the historic milestone on the A134 – Parish Councillors have tried to find out what happened to it without success
  • There is confusion regarding Community Council subs and charges for Green Links. Whilst they are both £3 for the year (plus £3 to join in the Community Council draw), they are separate and in most cases are collected by different people – it is understandable that there can be confusion


The next Parish Council meeting, which will be the annual appointment of officers meeting, will take place on Thursday 26th May 2016 at 7.30 pm.

The Parish Council may be contacted through the Clerk, Doug Reed, on 01359 241009 or by e-mail at

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