Sandringham Parish Council News

Butlers Cross

Butler’s Cross The monument includes the remains of a standing stone cross located at the junction of the B1439 to West Newton and the A149. The ruins of St Felix's Church and the site of the medieval village of Babingley lie 1km to the west. The cross is medieval in date and constructed of stone in two parts, a socket stone and a shaft, standing on a platform of post-medieval bricks surrounded by a stone kerb. The basal platform stands 0.2m high above the surrounding surface and is square in plan with dimensions of 1.5m on each side. The socket stone which forms the lower part of the cross measures 0.5m in height and c.0.65m square at the foot, with chamfered angles in its upper parts, so that the upper surface is octagonal. At the centre of the upper surface is a square mortice into which the foot of the cross shaft is set in lead, and above this the weathered stump of the shaft stands to a height of 0.2m. The cross once marked the boundary of Rising Chase and is shown on a map of the Chase dated 1588. The name `Butler's Cross' derives from the de Botelers who held the manor of West Hall, Babingley, from the mid-13th century. The cross is enclosed by low iron railings which are excluded from the scheduling, although the ground beneath them is included. Attached to the railing is a cast iron plaque with an inscription recording the name of the cross and the boundary which it marked. It includes a 1 metre boundary around the archaeological features, considered to be essential for the monument's support and preservation.

Butlers Cross images

January Sandringham Parish News

The Parish Council met on zoom on 13th January with five Councillors present. There was no significant new business, instead it was mainly a series of progress reports on other matters which had been raised earlier. A149 speed reduction and safety improvements – County Councillor Stuart Dark gave an update on progress on the scheme.

We were aware that James Wild MP has been contacted by a local resident expressing concerns at the dangerous right turn from the main road towards Wolferton when coming from the direction of Dersingham. The MP had taken the matter up with Norfolk County Council which said that it would improve the road markings there, but almost certainly not include lighting in any scheme. The latest proposed Plan was circulated to Councillors who noted that it included the speed limit remaining at 60mph and the junction changes mainly improving existing signs and introducing cats-eyes. However, the emphasis appears to be on better control of traffic emerging from the side roads onto the main road – difficult enough already – whereas our contention has always been that the safety issue is main road traffic turning into the side roads. The Parish Council will give a considered response to the County Council.

Councillors took a vote on whether we remain of the view that the speed limit between Babingley Cross and Dersingham Roundabout should be reduced to 50mph as has been the County’s earlier proposal. The meeting was unanimous that the speed limit is reduced.

Parking at Wolferton – this continued to get worse during the third lockdown, with cars parked on junctions, three point turns being made close to a junction and blind bend, despoiling verges and even parking across entrances to private properties. It has been suggested that the issue needs to be considered across a wider range of interests, including Sandringham Estate, Natural England and the owner of the Royal Station, for they all have some responsibility for increasing the number of visitors and therefore for finding an acceptable solution. It was confirmed at the meeting that a virtual stakeholders meeting is to be held imminently, including the Parish Council to consider options to lessen the impact of visitors to the village and Dersingham Bog.

Raising a Precept – a Precept is a method of raising money at parish level to finance spending by the Parish Council. It is levied for the parish by the Borough Council as part of the Council Tax demand and the law requires parishes vote each year on whether to raise one, and if so, how much. Sandringham is one of four parishes in Norfolk not to raise a Precept, and we are fortunate that Sandringham Estate carries out many of the tasks at its own expense, therefore not costing the parish residents anything. On the other hand, having its own funds theoretically allows the Parish Council greater independence. After a discussion, a vote was taken and it was unanimously decided not to raise a Precept for the year starting in April.

Crime – fraud – one of the consequences of the pandemic has been a significant rise in the crime of fraud and scams. This area is not immune to them and the Police ask us to be extremely vigilant and work on the simple basis that if a letter, email or phone call doesn’t seem quite right, then it isn’t right. Don’t take any chances, don’t answer your mobile phone if it is from an unknown or withheld number (if it is genuine, the caller will leave a voicemail message for you), delete any suspect emails straight away and certainly never open attachments, and if you get a call on your landline phone just replace the receiver. The Police also ask that you contact their fraud line straight away so that it is recorded for evidence purposes. You also need to be vigilant regarding postal and van delivery fraud – treat with extreme caution.

Useful information on Scam protection and action