News and Events

Suspicious Activity Around Yelverton Please be Alert

Please share this if you can so that we can reach residents who might not follow this community site.

Today (Sat 17th Apr) a Yelverton resident had a visit from 2 men in an old plain white or grey Renault Traffic van Reg No BK55 RZJ.

The resident was round the back of the house and did not know they were parked at the front of the house apparently looking around and through the windows. A neighbour saw them and challenged them, alerting the resident to their presence.

The passenger was out of the van, wearing a scruffy blue checked shirt, jeans and work boots, unshaven guy about 5’8″ tall, slim build, dark scruffy short hair with an Irish accent. The driver wasn’t seen.

The resident asked if they could help and they said they were looking for Mr Richards in Salmon Road. He showed a scruffy bit of paper with this information on it and the postcode was correct. We said we did not know of any Salmon Road or Mr Richards and they then left rather hastily.

They turned right onto Framingham Earl Road towards Poringland at 12.30pm.

The incident has been reported to Norfolk police on 101.

There was also another incident earlier this month involving a Ford Transit with Tree and Garden Services on it’s side. This van was crawling up and down Framingham Earl Road repeatedly and when approached by a neighbour as it stopped outside his house. It sped off in the direction of Poringland. The neighbour did manage to take a picture of that van:

A van involved in suspicious behaviour on Framingham Earl Road

Wheel Road Reeders Lane Junction Alpington Closed 4-6th May 2021

The Junction of Wheel Road, Reeders Lane, and Burgate Lane, Alpington, will be closed for 3 days 4-6th May 2021.

If you come out of the Wheel of Fortune pub and turn left, then it’s the junction 200m down the road there.

The relevant part of the official notice:

…U76372 Burgate Lane/Wheel Road from a point 30 metres east of its junction with the U76373 Reeders Lane for a distance of 60 metres westwards, and
U76373 Reeders Lane from its junction with the U76372 Burgate Lane for a distance of 30 metres southwards.

The Street Bergh Apton Closed 5-7th May 2021

The Street, Bergh Apton (from Alpington it’s on the way to the recycling centre) will be closed for 3 days 5-7th May 2021.

The relevant part of the official notice:

…Temporary Traffic Order affecting the U76329 The Street from 50 metres south of its junction with U76398 Dodgers Lane for a distance of 20 metres southwards because of Anglian Water new connection works.

Speeding data for Mill Road reported to the police

The latest data from the speed camera in the village shows that there is still a speeding issue on Church Road, with 10% of vehicles over the limit, and the average speeder going 34mph:

While this is worrying, there is in fact a bigger problem on Mill Road, the road to Green Pastures. For example, see this report from June-July 2020:

The Parish Council, supported by a resident who prepares our speed camera analysis reports, have summarised the speed camera results provided by Bergh Apton Parish Council and issued these to the Police.

The headlines over the past 12 months are as follows:

  • Peak time for speeding is between 4-6pm
  • No particular day of the week is noted for excessive speed – it occurs every day
  • More than 1 in 3 vehicles using the route are speeding (34%)
  • There were 328 vehicles travelling in excess of 50 mph
  • 7 vehicles travelling at 75mph, 2 travelling at 70 mph, 13 travelling at 65mph and 30 travelling at 60 mph

These are worrying statistics for anyone using that road, whether in a car or on foot, a resident or not. There are a few footpaths which come out onto Mill Road, so if you’re using them please take care when stepping out onto the road. Pets have been killed on the road during the year, which is made more likely by the speeding.

Armed with these statistics the police have been asked to put an appropriate level of priority on helping us to solve the problem.

We will update you through this website when the Parish Council receives any news.

A Tribute to HRH The Duke of Edinburgh from HM Lord-Lieutenant of Norfolk

Below is a tribute to HRH The Duke of Edinburgh, posted here on behalf of the Parish Council. The tribute is from The Lady Dannatt MBE, HM Lord-Lieutenant of Norfolk, who is the patron of the Norfolk Association of Local Councils.

The Duke of Edinburgh and Norfolk

It was an immensely sad moment for us all here in Norfolk when word of the death of Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, reached us on Friday.  Along with so many others, my immediate reaction was one of profound sorrow for Her Majesty The Queen, and for all the members of the Royal Family.  On behalf of the entire county, we offer them our heartfelt and very deepest sympathy.  Her Majesty and the Royal Family have lost a husband, a father, a grandfather and a great grandfather; as a nation we have lost one of the most remarkable figures of the last century.

At some level, the news was not unexpected of course; we knew the Duke was approaching his 100th birthday and had recently spent a month in hospital. Nevertheless, Prince Philip seemed invincible, indestructible, so deeply was his life and that of the nation intertwined.  We, both the country, and the county where the Duke latterly chose to spend so much of his time, are immeasurably and sadly diminished by his death.

It is no secret of course, how much the Duke adored Norfolk.  Wood Farm, on the Sandringham estate, where he and the Queen often stayed when it was just the two of them here, was his chosen home after he retired from public life in 2017.  He will be mourned deeply by everyone who knew, loved and served him within those small and tight-knit village communities, as well as those working on the arable, livestock and fruit farms the Duke cherished so dearly.  As a knowledgeable and passionate countryman, I am told Prince Philip ‘knew almost every blade of grass in Norfolk’.

Many of us across the county will have our own personal recollections of Prince Philip. He was involved with the Norfolk Wildlife Trust, Pensthorpe Conservation Trust, the Norfolk Nelson Museum and was Patron of The Wherry Trust amongst scores of others.  In the past the Duke had competed in carriage driving at the Royal Norfolk Show and never missed an opportunity to talk to the young, whether they be cadets, school children or young people tending their animals in one of the large sheds provided on the show ground. 

Like all the senior members of the Royal Family, Prince Philip took his responsibilities towards the Armed Forces very seriously, especially the senior appointments he held personally.  Visiting the Grenadier Guards, of which he was Colonel, on exercise in Thetford Forest a number of years ago, he came across a trench occupied by a very junior officer – my middle son – “Getting on alright down there, are you Bertie?” the Duke enquired.  Is it any wonder Prince Philip’s visits were eagerly anticipated and so warmly welcomed to all the units of the Armed Forces to which he was affiliated?

The Duke of Edinburgh

The Duke will also long be remembered for his annual and familiar attendance, with other members of the Royal Family, at the service in the Sandringham church of St Mary Magdalene on Christmas Day.  And as tributes pour in from around the world, it is there, in that small church, that some of those closest to the Duke will gather.  Not necessarily the ‘great or the good’ but ordinary people from every walk of life, who are proud to have served the Duke in his favourite home; and who will bow their heads in respect, deep affection and great gratitude for this remarkable and most honourable of men.  A true friend of Norfolk, undoubtedly.  And beyond that, a distinguished and dedicated servant of the United Kingdom, the Commonwealth and our World.  We owe His Royal Highness so much and greatly mourn his death.

Philippa Dannatt

The Lady Dannatt MBE

HM Lord-Lieutenant of Norfolk

Wheel of Fortune pub reopening on 14th April

Just helping to spread the word here, this info is from a Facebook post on their account (which has more details):

full Facebook post

The Wheel of Fortune will reopen on Wednesday 14th at 5pm.

Here’s a brief summary of what to expect. The Fish & Chip van will be here & you are allowed to queue for your takeaway but not for ordering beer.

Please remember to bring a face covering as you will need it for signing in & using the indoor toilets.

We are still waiting for different card machines that may work in the garden, if you could pay with cash this would speed things up for us. Looking forward to seeing you all soon.

Moorhen chicks on Yelverton pond

If you’ve visited the pond recently have you noticed the Moorhen family? It’s nice to see that the pond renovation hasn’t put them off and they’ve still set up home again. How cute are these little guys? 😃

An adult Moorhen with 4 of its chicks foraging for food

We saw 5 chicks with the 2 adults.

Moorhen chicks by the water’s edge on Yelverton pond

Moorhens can have two or three lots of eggs each year, and the “teenage” kids from the first clutch help out with feeding and looking after the chicks in the second clutch, and so on. It’s pretty unusual.

A moorhen nest on Yelverton pond

The nest is in quite an obvious visible place near the edge, and if we can see it easily then we would imagine it’s visible to predators as well, so our fingers are crossed for the little guys. Maybe it’s far enough from the edge.

We don’t actually know how easily disturbed Moorhens are by people getting close, but they are next to a road after all, so they can’t be too nervous about noise.

Do have a look if you go past, definitely show your kids for example, as it’s really interesting, but we’d hope of course that everyone keeps a respectful distance, just in case they get spooked.

A big thank you to some residents for tidying up around the village

One of our parish councillors John Lain sorts out our litter bins ahead of south Norfolk council collections. He said he can tell that a number of residents have been taking it upon themselves to pick up litter from our streets, hedgerows, and banks.

What a lovely thing to do.

The parish council and this community website would like to sincerely thank everyone who has been doing this.

Every time someone picks up a piece of litter that isn’t theirs, it not only cleans that one piece up, it makes it less likely that other people will drop litter. It’s a known phenomenon. So each piece cleaned up has a bigger impact than you might think. And it’s also known that tidy environments make people happier. All of that added together means that there’s a small group of people in the village that is having a large effect on all of our general happiness, without realising it.

Of course, if you are doing this voluntarily we hope you take care and do it safely.

In normal years, the village holds a litter picking event which is sponsored by South Norfolk Council. For obvious reasons this did not happen last year, but it will be restarted when restrictions allow.

Gardening tasks to do in April

The start of April 2021 looks to be a little cooler than the last week of March but it will still be a Spring month and many of us will be busy in our gardens preparing for the Summer months ahead. It is also a transitional month, bringing unpredictable weather, so it is often the case of getting out to do something whenever the weather permits.

Mowing and edging

We can start mowing our lawns on a high cut if the grass is dry and frost-free and can tidy up the edges by re-cutting them with a half-moon or spade to give a neat edge to the flowerbeds or patio areas. Lawns will also benefit from a dose of lawn feed now.

Clearing up

There may still be some leaves lurking under shrubs so these can be raked out and flowerbeds tidied up, cutting back any perennials which may still have the old growth from last summer.

Sowing Vegetable Seeds

If you are planning to grow some vegetables, now is the time to sow tomatoes, runner beans, green peppers and courgettes which can then be planted on in due course.

Planting up pots and baskets

This is the best time for creating new container displays. If you have the space, pot your plug plants into larger pots as this will be cheaper than buying bigger pot plants later on. Plant up summer baskets and store undercover for putting out in the garden in late May. We can also sow half-hardy bedding plants in seed trays in the greenhouse or indoors by a sunny window.

Maintaining water butts and water features

If you have a pond or water feature, now is the time to give it a little post-winter maintenance. Clear out ponds: lift put any planting baskets and fish, keep in buckets of old pond water, bail out the water, remove sludge and refill with collected rainwater is possible (if you use tap water, let it stand for a week before putting any fish back in).

Check that your water butts are collecting water effectively, that the downpipes are clear and that the taps are working (they sometimes become blocked or sludgy with old leaves).

Protect from frost and wind

April can still bring frosty nights, so be ready to protect tender flowers and vegetables from frosts. Young, upright-growing plants may need some form of support, so stake tall plants to prevent them being damaged.

April can be the most positive month, full of gardening promises. It is wonderful to see the trees and shrubs awaken from their winter dormancy and burst into life. Let’s hope for some warm weather too.

Oystercatchers seen just outside the village

Our post last week about the new birds at the pond got quite a bit of interest, so we thought we’d see what you thought of another one!

After that previous post, a resident (who I now definitely owe a beer when all this is over) contacted us to say that we also get oystercatchers in the fields to the east of the village in spring, and that you can often hear them before you see them. They’ve got a high pitched sort of whistling sound that carries quite far.

No way, we thought. But he was not wrong! The next day we went to have a look, and amazingly we heard and saw a couple and managed to get a picture. Very lucky.

They are a coastal bird that typically would be combing a beach for muscles and other snacks like that, so we wouldn’t have expected to see one on our doorstep. Apparently they can come inland to feed on worms that they can get to in the soil with their long beak.

Ok, what on earth is an Oystercatcher??

Well, here’s what one looks like in Yelverton near the solar panels:

An oystercatcher standing in a field among old harvested stalks of corn

And here’s a couple of photos that are actually good:

Stock photo of an oystercatcher. Image credit
If you see one flying away you’ll notice the white bars across the wing. Image credit

And here’s some more info if you really want to geek up on it, and also to hear what they sound like:

Oystercatcher info from the RSPB SITE

So next time you’re walking round that footpath that goes from the back of avenue farm, north across the fields, coming out at the top of Dranes Lane, keep your ears open for that sound and you might spot one.

What else might I see?

Find out what other wildlife you can see around the village on our wildlife page

our wildlife page