Notice Board

Lost / Found / Announcements / Letters /Acknowledgements / etc.

Email the Messenger to post a notice.






Can you help Mrs Katherine Stratford looking for Mary Dunton?

Can you help me find Mary Dunton?
I am a close friend but have lost touch. She lived at 11 St. Johns Close, Oxborough.

Could you me advise if you have any contact details you can let me have. Or if you know of her.

Katherine Stratford
Phone: 01209899088

Thank You


Time limits to be enforced at Swaffham car parks in 2018

Breckland Council has confirmed time limits are to be enforced at car parks in and around Swaffham's town centre to make enforcement of on-street and off-street parking restrictions in the area more consistent.

Due to be introduced on a six-month trial basis next year, the two-hour waiting limits are expected to be enforced at Market Place Car Park, Peddars Car Park and Pit Lane Car Park.

The change will bring the Breckland Council-owned car parks in-line with nearby on-street parking limits, which are already enforced by Norfolk County Council - the body responsible for town centre roads.

It is expected that the trial will be implemented around mid-2018 and further details will be announced in due course.

Click below for full story

Stoke Ferry & District Ladies Group
Programme 2018
For more information call Janet on 01366 328666

Dave Watkins charity cycle ride in support of the East Anglian Air Ambulance.
Special thanks must go to you, the residents of Oxborough.

On 10th August 2017, my cycling club (the West Norfolk Branch of Cycling UK) undertook a charity ride in support of the East Anglian Air Ambulance (EAAA) organisation. For those who don’t already know, the EAAA provides helicopter emergency medical services across Norfolk, Suffolk, Cambridgeshire and Bedfordshire and operates two helicopters from its bases at Cambridge and Norwich airports. The service is wholly funded by charitable donations and operates 365 days a year, covering over 5,000 square miles and serving a population of approximately 3.5 million.

On the day, I rode just over 111 miles with two club colleagues. Other members rode shorter distances according to taste/fitness and in the evening we had a barbecue supper at The Anvil in Congham, conveniently close to the club President’s home. The Anvil was also the start and finish point for the various rides.

Because we wanted to publicise the club and also acknowledge The Anvil’s participation, we deferred paying our accumulated sponsorship to the EAAA until 4th October 2017, when we were able to organise a presentation photo shoot with one of the EAAA’s volunteer fund-raisers. We raised £520.00 pounds altogether, but special thanks must go to you, the residents of Oxborough, for supporting me so generously. Your contribution was £220.00 – more than 40% of the total. This is a magnificent effort and I think you can be enormously proud. Thank you.

Dave Watkins


Flint Masterpieces returned to Brandon

The flint panel masterpieces, created by William Carter in the second half of the 19th century have found a new home at the Brandon Heritage Centre where they will help tell the fascinating story of Flint in the Brecks.

The Breaking New Ground Landscape Partnership team was made aware of the existence of the Brandon Library flint murals as a result of research carried out by the scheme’s ‘Flint in the Brecks’ project being delivered by the Breckland Society. The 7 panels were made by Master flint knapper William Carter (1857–1904) of the Gun & Building Flint Manufacturers, in Brandon, and donated to the Brandon Library by five of his descendants.

Darren Norton, Brandon Heritage Centre Manager said:

“These panels represent what an expert Brandon flintknapper could achieve, simply using hand tools and an expert eye for how flint flakes apart, and will be key for the centre in telling the story of Brandon flintknapping. When you view the panels, look at the intricacy of the horse ears and legs, and also how each shape interconnects with the next.  Then look to our recreation of a flintknapper’s shed and see how basic it is. This will show you how skilful the knapper was.”

They were flagged up by members of the Breckland Society as potentially under threat because the old library was expected to be demolished at some point, and their future was unclear.

Following discussions between the BNG team, Suffolk County Council and Brandon Town Council as well as the family of William Carter, a rescue plan was hatched. With money from the Heritage Lottery Fund, made available through the BNG ‘People’s Pot’ grant scheme, specialist contractors engaged to excavate the built-in panels from the wall, and put into storage until a new home could be found.

This week, Mr Norton announced that the centre has secured funding to refurbish its flint display, including housing the flint panels in dedicated units, which it is hoped will be completed by April next year.  For now, the panels are in temporary displays at the centre, in the popup display room, which is open every Saturday and Sunday, 10am to 4pm, until the end of October, with free admission.  The centre not only tells the story of flint but also Brandon's rabbit fur industries, the connection to the forest – important even before Thetford Forest; and the town’s social history from medieval to present day, via the World Wars.  To get a taste of what is happening at the centre just visit its website,



 The Breaking New Ground Landscape Partnership
Brecks Building Skills
Do you own, work with or just love historic buildings?

Following on from three years of successful Heritage skills, art and conservation courses, the Breaking New Ground Landscape Partnership Scheme, funded by the Heritage Lottery Fund, will be working with Orchard Barn Environmental Education CIC to deliver two more FREE Heritage Building Skills workshops aimed at owners and managers of old buildings and anyone interested in keeping traditional building skills alive.

Hosted once again at West Stow Anglo-Saxon Village, the workshops will provide a fascinating background on the use of heritage building skills in the Brecks and learn how to look after heritage buildings through presentations, demonstrations, and hands-on activities. From timber frames to using earth as a building material the day schools will be led by heritage experts in the historical surroundings of the West Stow Anglo Saxon Village.

The feedback from participants on previous workshops has been fantastic. A short film celebrating the first year’s courses has even been made (available on the Breaking New ground YouTube channel

Thanks to the Heritage Lottery Fund, places on these day schools are free, although booking is essential (details below).

Dates and Workshops
23rd September 2017
10am-4pm Vernacular Building with Trees An introduction to using locally sourced trees for small scale timber frame construction.
27th October 2017
10am-4pm Vernacular Building with Earth Explore the historic use of earth as a building material.

Through the day schools ‘Orchard Barn’ aim to connect participants with the historic landscape, through an exploration of where their built heritage came from and how best to preserve it. They will encourage the utilisation of locally sourced materials for repairs and maintenance work, and techniques that are sensitive to both the building and the wider environment.

For more information visit or phone 01842 815465.

To Book visit Eventbrite:

Aviation runs through the veins of artist Colin Mason of Oxborough, Norfolk. When old enough he joined the ATC, and then when he left school, he joined the RAF. After leaving the RAF and too young to retire, he worked for a couple of civil airlines until he was old enough to retire.
Over those years, he developed his natural talent of sketching and painting in oils and acrylics, exhibiting his work in various galleries in London and overseas. Out of all the commissions he has undertaken, the one that stands out above all others is the montage that he painted for the Royal Air Force Benevolent Fund when he was a Battle of Britain artist of the year in 2010. The painting was of a Spitfire and Hurricane flying over Bentley Priory and was a tribute to “Stuffy” Dowding and all those who fought and died to protect this Country in its greatest hour of need. The painting was auctioned in 2010 at the Gala Dinner held in the Guildhall, London for the 70th anniversary of the Battle of Britain in the presence of His Royal Highness the Duke of Kent and a wonderful group of Battle of Britain pilots who fought and came through those terrible times. It was a memorable evening and a great honour that the painting went for a very large sum. All of the proceeds from the painting was donated to the RAFBF, after being purchased by none other than Piers Dowding himself, who is a direct descendent of “Stuffy” A fabulous honour for the artist and the painting, side by side in his London home.
Although aviation art is his passion, Colin does also paint other subjects that include seascapes, landscapes, and figurative art. Last year he was commissioned to paint a seascape which was presented to the President of the Ocean University in China by the Vice Chancellor of Norwich University. The painting was called The Yacht School and depicted six yachts sailing in the evening sunset, with the reflection of the sun setting colours bouncing off the sea. It was truly a lovely painting and was very well received.
In 2014 Colin and his wife Elizabeth opened the Arts Lounge Gallery in the centre of Swaffham where prints of the painting “Wings Over Bentley Priory” were sold out, but one of only two very special montage prints can be seen. The only two in the world containing the whole story, priceless is what has been told and it can be seen in the Arts Lounge Gallery in Swaffham.
As a professional artist and teacher you can view some of Colin’s work and those of other very talented artists in the gallery. If you wish to learn to paint, come along and enjoy one of his classes and have great fun while you learn.


Report to Oxborough Parish Council AGM May 2017

The Oxborough Speedwatch group was formed in March 2016 under the leadership of Cathy Warnock and I subsequently took over as village coordinator in February of this year.
We now have a group of eight trained volunteers who, working in teams of three, usually carry out two one hour sessions per week. Earlier this year Oxborough was selected to be one of the first Norfolk Speedwatch groups to receive a new, more modern radar device. Our selection was a result our commitment to the scheme measured by the number of sessions carried out. In March we took delivery of the new device and can now be seen around the village with our ‘hairdryer’.
An additional sixth site at Church Farm Drive was approved by the constabulary and we continue to concentrate our efforts on the sites along Swaffham and Stoke Ferry roads where we see the heaviest traffic.
Over the last quarter we have recorded an average of 72 (50 – 100) vehicles per hour of which an average of 3 (0 – 10) were recorded speeding at over 35MPH and reported to the Norfolk constabulary. This compares with an average of 85 vehicles and 1 – 12 vehicles speeding over a similar period last year. Our perception as a group is that there are fewer cars speeding through the village when we are out although we do sometimes still see vehicles travelling at speeds approaching 50MPH.
The SAM sign is now operational in the village and, earlier this month, I had a very useful discussion with David Hotchkin regarding the data from the first month of its use. For June I have incorporated the information regarding number and times of speeding vehicles to fine tune the timing of our sessions around the village. I hope to continue to receive regular monthly updates as the SAM sign moves round the village so that I can better target the Speedwatch sessions in terms of both time and location.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank all the volunteers for their support, hard work and good humour over the last 14 months. We are always keen to attract more volunteers to the group. If anyone is interested please get in touch with me or come and speak to us if you see us operating around the village.

Frankie Watkins Speedwatch Coordinator, Telephone 328 366


Update 20th July
A note of thanks to his sponsors and letter from The Leonard Cheshire Organisation . Click

 Dave’s sponsored bike rides

Dear Friends,
Normally I cycle for pleasure but, once in a while, there can be an additional purpose.
On 18th June I have ridden 75 miles (yes, it was very warm) in support of the Park House Hotel at Sandringham, part of the Leonard Cheshire Disability organisation.
I have raised £25 so far and now I am asking for your support to raise at least another £25. Please let me know if you are able to help.

Later in the year (September) I will be doing another sponsored ride, this time for the Norfolk Churches Trust. 50% of my sponsorship will be channelled back to St John’s in Oxborough to help towards the church roof refurbishment fund.

So if you would like to support me in only one event this year and would prefer your donation to help with issues closer to home, save your sponsorship until September.

Thank you.
                David Watkins
                The Stables
                Hall Farm Barn

Friday Lunch Club

For many years the Iceni Partnership has organised a Friday Lunch Club
for those who want to mix a good meal with good company.

A Main Meal, Desert and either tea or coffee for £6 in Swaffham
Community Centre and a chance to make friends, spend time chatting or
doing a bespoke crossword.

Recently we bid for a grant to work in partnership with Swaffham
Community Transport to offer free transport to those people living in
the villages surrounding Swaffham for a limited period of time.

If there are people in Oxborough who would like to take up this offer  please contact Don or Jonathan on 01760 722800.
Don Saunders
Manager - Iceni Partnership

Letter from a past resident.

Dear editor
Thank you for continuing to manage the Oxborough website. Since we left Oxborough I realise even more how important it is in informing everyone of life in the village both residents and those of us who are ex-residents but still have an interest in events. We lived in the village for 29 years so are obviously still interested.

It is very sad that some elements are not kept up-to-date i.e. news on the church, which was obviously our first interest. This beautiful building is the centre of the village and attract visitors from all over the world and in our time we were contacted by many people who had read about the terracotta screens for example. Where is the information, the accounts which should be made public as so many people help with fundraising ?

Hewars Charity – Charity Commission website is complete but no information has been added to the website for some time although this is a village charity and I am sure making the accounts visible will be of general interest.

There are so many things that go on in the village that people, looking to buy particularly, would be interested in as would people from nearby villages such as the village hall and gardening club activities.

It is such a shame that much of this useful facility is ignored, we still look forward to keeping up to date.

Valerie O’Dwyer

Message from a resident for the Oxborough Messenger.

Some years ago when the Bedingfeld Chapel and the church was re-roofed an offer was made to protect this in the form of alarms and lights, but the PCC declined quoting the cost that some £400 was to expensive for a state of the art system.
What now that the lead has gone and all that fund raising,what for, not a lot.
How short sited can people be and what is the cost now???

Colin Mason

This message was recently received be the Messenger from Diane Hazel Sullivan
Email: Phone: 07799403003

Subject: Family History

Message: I am a descendant of the George family; my Great Great Grandfather was the son of Thomas and Elizabeth and was born 1.1.1838. I am wondering if you could shed any light on why he left Norfolk in the 1850s and moved to Kirkleatham (in Redcar now) from my research I believe most of the family remained in Norfolk.

Diane will be grateful for any help you may provide.


The rock that shaped a region

Still nobody knows exactly how it is formed though it is thought to be the remains of sea creatures such as sponges being squashed under immense pressures inside limestone rock that create it’s tough and glassy surfaces. Flint can be seen all over the Brecks, it has gone from being used to make fire and various tools, to building homes and being used in guns. It has truly shaped the modern landscape of the Brecks and you can find out how by visiting Ancient House Museum in Thetford.


 Bill Basham’s flint alphabet. Photo copyright Ancient House Museum

Alphabet of capital letters, made from 26 individual flint flakes by Bill Basham of Brandon in the 1920s; extraordinary skill used - it took him over two years of his spare time; each letter about double the size of a postage stamp; each letter sewn onto a single piece of card'
 Over the last 11 months, the museum has hosted Breaking New Ground’s Heritage Lottery Fund supported ‘Flint Rocks’ exhibition, an interactive exhibit charting the timeline and usages of flint in the Brecks. It has been seen by 6000 people so far. There is one month left to go of the exhibition so come and visit while you still can and see fascinating items like the flint alphabet and flint necklace, expertly and painstakingly knapped by master flint knapper Bill Basham from Brandon. There also flint tools, a recreation of a Grimes Graves flint mineshaft and one of the great collection of flint masterpieces, a horse, knapped by William Carter. Due to the importance of this wonder material to the local area, a roaming exhibition has been created to go out to the community and allow more people to learn about this unique aspect of Brecks heritage, which will begin touring in January 2017.

One outstanding additional element that came out of the museum working on the flint exhibition was a relationship that was struck up with the Obsidian Museum of Okinawa in Japan due to the similar properties and usage of flint and exhibition. Grimes Graves is not officially twinned with the Obsidian Museum and pupils from Thetford and Okinawa have visited both countries to learn more about their linked heritage.

Nick Dickson, Breaking New Ground Project Manager said “The craftsmanship and skill with which has flint has been knapped away with for thousands of years in the Brecks is truly something to behold. Breaking New Ground is very proud to have worked with Ancient House to allow so many new people to learn more about their local heritage”.

Museum Curator Oliver Bone from Ancient House Museum said “we have been really pleased with the reaction to the Flint Rocks exhibition with some people travelling long distances to come and see. Flint is such a strength of the museum collections and a distinctive part of local Brecks tradition that it is great to shine a light on this fascinating story.”.

Ancient House Museum Learning officer Melissa Hawker commented “it has been great working with a variety of community groups and schools on Flint Rocks included Thetford Academy who were able to show some of the art work created by their pupils inspired by the theme of flint.”

For more information on this and our other 36 projects, click on or find us on social media by looking for TheBrecksBNG.


                                           UK Youth Parliament (UKYP).

This is an independent national body which is run for young people by young people.

"Kieren Buxton is currently on placement as a trainee Youth Worker at The Benjamin Foundation. Kieren is currently a youth parliament member as is Emily Fox one of the Breckland YAB young commissioners. Please if you have any questions for them or have young people who may be interested in this opportunity get in touch with them, Kieren’s email is
Full details click.


    Wildlife Recorders of Tomorrow - Call for Volunteers

Are you interested in monitoring wildlife? Live close to the Brecks or visit regularly?

Norfolk’s Environmental Records Centre (Norfolk Biodiversity Information Service - NBIS) is looking for new volunteers to help record the distinctive biodiversity of Breckland, which studies have already shown is a nationally and internationally important hotspot for rarities.

The “Wildlife Recorders of Tomorrow” project is part of the “Breaking New Ground Landscape Partnership scheme” (supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund) and will provide wide-scale monitoring of wildlife which is important for detecting underlying changes to the biodiversity of the area.

Whether you’re a complete beginner or a seasoned surveyor, there are plenty of opportunities to get involved with lots of support and training.

Biodiversity Information Officer with NBIS, Sam Neal said: “All you need is enthusiasm! We can provide training in species identification, or you may just want to tell us what you’ve seen whilst out walking in the area.”

Volunteers can choose from three levels depending on their interest, time availability and expertise:
1. beginners will be given training and encouragement to get started;
2. species surveillance volunteers will help with monitoring at a number of important wildlife sites in the Brecks;
3. river corridor volunteers will survey a stretch of the Little Ouse river for invasive non-native species

To find out more, please register your interest by email, or visit the NBIS stand at the Charles Burrell Centre Open Day on Sunday 6th September from 10am – 3pm, Staniforth Road, Thetford, IP24 3LH.

Breckland is one of the driest places in England with sandy soils and a ‘continental’ climate which experiences extremes of temperature. Previous studies by the University of East Anglia have shown that the area is a hotspot for biodiversity with a huge variety of species identified. In 2010 the university and a team of 200 naturalists collated nearly 1million records with over 12,000 species represented, of which over 2,000 are priorities for conservation in Breckland. The study showed how fragile their survival is, with habitat fragmentation, climate change and nitrogen deposition all risk factors.

New monitoring by Wildlife Recorders of Tomorrow will play a key part in developing strategies to ensure the long-term survival of all components of this unique ecosystem. We do hope you can help.

    Click for poster 1.           Click for poster 2.           Click for poster 3.

  Come and join   

Oxborough Village Social Evening

 Thursday evenings from 7.00pm onwards.     Venue Oxborough Village Hall

 We have a number of activities running including darts, dominos and cards with many others being considered but do bring along any ideas or games you might like to introduce.

Open to all residents; drop in, even on casual basis and join in the range of social activities.

 There is a £1.50 per evening charge to cover overheads but will include the various refreshments provided.

 Open to all residents; drop in, even on casual basis and join in the range of social activities.
   Just turn up and enjoy a friendly evening and
if you want to, participate in some of the activities.



The Recycling Revolution is coming.

You’ll soon be able to put even more in your black recycling bin. From October 2014, Breckland residents will be able to recycle a range of new materials, helping to cut down on waste sent to landfill.

The new items that can be accepted for recycling from October include clean plastic food pots, food tubs and trays, food and drink cartons, clean foil and foil trays, and glass jars and bottles. These will be in addition to the materials you can already put in your recycling bin.

The first black recycling bin collection in Breckland under the new arrangements will be on 6 October.

Breckland Council will be sending out more information to residents nearer the time but, if you want to know more, why not come along to one of the Breckland Recycling Roadshows? They will be held:

Mon 29 September                11am to 2pm             Watton, Tesco
Tues 30 September               11am to 2pm             Thetford, Sainsbury’s
Weds 1 October                    11am to 2pm             Attleborough, Sainsbury’s
Thurs 2 October                    11am to 2pm             Dereham, Morrisons
Fri 3 October                        11am to 2pm             Swaffham, Waitrose

The improvements to the recycling service are the result of Norfolk councils working together as the ‘Norfolk Waste Partnership’ to negotiate a new county-wide recycling contract. When the new service launches in October, all Norfolk residents will benefit from these new arrangements that will save council taxpayers’ money whilst enabling us to recycle even more.

For more information, look out for your leaflet delivered with the bins during the week commencing 22 September. You will also be able to find details on the Breckland website ( or Recycle for Norfolk website ( from the end of September.


PLEASE continue to use the recycling bins at the village hall.

All monies raised from these recycling bins (£1000) remains within Oxborough.

It is used to support maintenance on our village hall.


WEDNESDAY 5.30 -6.30pm. £4

Please wear loose clothing & trainers, bring an old towel
(for time on the floor) and a bottle of water

Let’s get fit for Summer 2014!

Tel: Susan 07900 587825


Why does someone believe you when you say there are four billion stars, but check when you say the paint is wet?