Plumpton

HERE COMES SUMMER: Forget not that the horticultural society will hold its Summer Show tomorrow (Saturday) in the village hall starting at 2pm. Go along to witness the summer colours in the flowers and plants with what will be some amazing entries in the vegetable sections. Then there will be flower arrangements, cookery, wine, handicrafts and several stalls including cakes to enhance the afternoon. At the end there will be an auction of many of the entries. Meanwhile the tombola stall will offer the chance for a bonus win and refreshments will be available to facilitate relaxation and a chat to round off a real social occasion in our community.

LEVEL CROSSING: At the last meeting, the parish council confirmed that, reflecting the opinions of a large majority of residents gathered over a period of several years, it opposes the replacement of the crossing gates with present day barriers. However, it acknowledged that safety must always be a prime consideration. Network Rail has applied for planning consent for the replacement of the gates and Plumpton Parish Council Planning Committee will meet in the village hall on Sunday at 11am to consider the application. It must be emphasised that this application is for alterations to a listed building only and must be judged solely on the appropriate criteria that the proposals are justified and beneficial in all the circumstances. The deliberations will not relate to regulations governing normal planning applications because as such approval is not required. The deliberations will focus on whether alterations to a listed building are necessary and beneficial to such an extent as to justify the project.

MORE UNDESIRABLE ACTIVITIES: Reports have been received that people have been using the playing field for golf practice. A fine sport it may be but the stray golf ball can easily pose a great danger to an innocent passer-by and divots that are thrown up damage proper playing surfaces. Young people also seem to be practicing their own informal forms of archery that include firing arrows at each other as well as posing threats to others. Neither of these activities is authorised or desirable in an unsupervised and safely controlled manner. We have a village archery club and there are numerous golf clubs around. If you wish to practice one of these enjoyable but potentially lethal sports, please do so in safer environments than our public playing field and recreation ground.

PARISH COUNCIL: Those chairing the various committees and groups have now been confirmed as Finance Paul Nicholson, Planning Catherine Jackson, Transport and Environment Nick Beaumont, Village Hall Chris Thompson, Playing Field Reg Stone, Neighbourhood Plan Steering Group Paul Nicholson. Leader of Policing and Communications Groups Reg Stone. Full details of councillors and their roles are now available on the website www.plumptonpc.co.uk. The council already has its own Facebook page and a Twitter account is to be established to ensure that as many people as possible can be informed of the council’s activities. The printed word will, of course, continue through notices on the boards and the Parish Magazine.

LITTLE POSITIVE ACTION: East Sussex Council Highways Department appears to be dragging its heels again. The parish council has heard that promised progress on marking out the bus stop near the village shop continues to be absent, although it was approved ages ago to improve safety in the area. There is no progress in relation to imposing buffer speed limits in Station Road and Plumpton Lane and now no date can be given for remedial work to last summer’s dreadful effort at applying a dressing to our main thoroughfare. The latter was supposed to have already taken place at no cost to the council taxpayer, so should we assume that if anything is now done it will be at the expense of the council taxpayer? In the meantime ESCC is pursuing its attempts at making cuts in services in a relentless manner, this time targeting another vulnerable group by planning to withdraw transport subsidies for 16 to 18 year olds to attend further education. OK so some families may be able to afford the fares, but many others will not. Social justice and fairness does not, in my opinion, appear to form part of the agenda for ESCC. The council has to make cuts that are forced upon it by central government, but why does it persist in targeting the most vulnerable who are often ill-equipped to fight back? Young people in Plumpton in that age group have to travel to Lewes or Haywards Heath for further education. Otherwise it would be Ringmer, Brighton or Crawley with a very limited chance in Burgess Hill. Central government imposes requirements on youngsters to take part in further education (with some options) and ESCC attempts to abrogate its responsibilities to assist yet again. I do not play the game of party politics as I look for all politicians at all levels of whatever political persuasion to apply a degree of fairness to all, but I see little evidence of this attitude with ESCC.

NEW PAVILION: The parish council welcomed news that a new method of construction for a new pavilion at the playing field has been suggested and is being investigated. On the basis of preliminary advice construction costs could be considerably reduced thus making this important project more easily achievable.

PLUMPTON WI: A good attendance at this month’s meeting saw us entertained by Sharon Lewis also known as Forget Me Not her cabaret character. Her special interest is music from the 1920s to 1950s especially songs that would not have been approved by the BBC. Our August meeting on Wednesday August 12 will welcome Diane Page and Vegetarian and Vegan Cooking. Visitors are always welcome. (Marilyn Nye).

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