Bobservation 41: Parish Councillors

Parish Councillors are elected by villagers, on the Register of Electors, every four years. The next election will be in May 2020.
There are five councillors of whom any three may create a quorum for a meeting. On election the councillors appoint a Chair and a Vice-Chair. If a councillor resigns the remaining councillors appoint a councillor for the remainder of the term. At the end of the term all councillors resign but may offer themselves for re-election.
Standing Orders guide councillors on what they may and may not do. Interpretations vary but, in my opinion, it is anticipated that councillors will attend four meetings each year on the second Thursday of January, April, July and October as well as the Annual Parish meeting in May.
Planning meetings are held as soon as possible after the notification of a relevant application and councillors, the opinion of the Parish Council is then submitted to South Downs National Park.
The last, but not least, member of the team is the Parish Clerk who is a salaried employee, is in control of its working and is there to advise and ensure that the law is complied with and the Standing Orders enacted.
A Parish councillor is a voluntary post, is non political and unpaid. This is the primary level of the Democratic process and should be treasured as such. The next elected levels are District Council (Mid Sussex District Council), County Council (West Sussex County Council) and Parliament, these latter three being political and in various degrees remunerated.
I do implore you to consider standing as a Parish Councillor. Although maddening at times, there is a great deal of satisfaction in knowing you have done your bit for the Parish and you will get to know a great deal about the village.
Currently we are being very well served by Miles (an exceptional Chair), Mark, Linda, Michael and our latest recruit Karen. So far as I can remember villagers who ‘have done their bit!’ and are still living in Fulking are Bob, Carolyn, Dave, Jen G, Jen P, Margaret, Mick, Pam, Paula(Clerk), Richard and Sheena.

Lastly, for your diary the Fair on Sunday 29 July will now include an Allsorts Dog Rescue Fun Dog Show , Shoreham Allstars music, Marta Scott dancers, Pony Rides, Punjabi Street Food, Owls about town, Blooming Good Nursery as well as all the old favourites. Updates will be incorporated into ‘Fulking Fair’ on the village web site.

Bobservation 40: Winter/Spring

Bluebell green background - April 2015It seems to have been a long wet dull winter and the ground is soggier than usual, making walking with the dog difficult because of the muddy conditions. The skies seem to have been unceasingly grey and sunshine has been at a premium.  However at times like this the beginning of Spring is all the more welcome. At Furzefield we have primrose, snowdrop, celundine, daisy and crocus in flower, daffodils in bud and hazel catkins hanging from the trees. The winter avalanche of leaves and acorns has passed and the unwelcome amount of rain seems to have encouraged the bluebells whose leaf is well advanced and should lead on to an exceptional year of flowers mid to end of April. I do invite you to come and enjoy the carpet of blue when it arrives.

It is at times like these that, hopefully, a warm and sunny summer will follow. How fortunate we are to live in such a wonderful  environment!  Fulking is indeed a gem and is one of the finest jewels in the crown of the South Downs National Park and deserves all our efforts to preserve it that way.

Plans for the Fair on Sunday 29 July and the Call my Bluff on Friday 27 July are well under way. If you are interested in the latter give me a shout (271). Now is the time to have a look in your wine rack for the Tombola and let Louise & Jay (773) have those bottles someone brought as a gift but you are NEVER going to drink!

Bobservation 37: Migration, Dogs & Maps

Banner with estate agents logosMigration
At the risk of being corrected over omissions I think that over the last seven years, the number of properties sold, for sale or for letting in Fulking has been interesting. A little research shows that the properties involved in migration of any sort were:

Arcadia, Badger Brook, Badgerwood House, Barn Cottage, The Cabbage Patch, 15,21,29 & 41 Clappers Lane, Customary Cottage, Downside, Four Acres, Furzefield, Hillbrook, Hillside, Kent Cottage, Little Down, The Old Bakehouse, Oldwood, The Paddock, Perching Barn, Perching Manor, Pippins, 2 Septima Cottages, 1 & 2 Southview Cottages, 3 Teapot Row, Thatchly,  Timbers, West Dean, West Orchard, Yew Tree Cottage.

That is 32 out of 137 or 23% of properties either sold, let or offered for sale! I find this interesting because in a parish like Fulking there is an old world feeling of permanence of residence which obviously is incorrect. As for Furzefield I think the impossibility of finding a suitable property in Henfield  to move to may scupper any hopes you may have of stopping future Bobservations!
Most recent emigrants are Clive and Kate both of whom  we shall miss. Kate was a very good Chair of the Parish Council at a difficult time. Parking will be easier in the Street!

Fun Dog Show
It has been agreed to hold a fun dog show in the North Town Field as part of the fair on Sunday July 29th 2018. Is there someone who would like to take on the organisation of this lighthearted event with full support from the Social Committee? If you would like to discuss it give me call on 857271 or email bob.pamrowland@btinternet.com

House Map
If you have not already looked at the magnificent Fulking Village web-site I suggest you  take the trouble to look at  ‘About our village’ and scroll down to ‘House Map’. Every residence in the parish has been marked on the map and indeed so have properties adjacent to Fulking. What a lot of amazing information has been put at everyone’s disposal.  Many thanks to Gerald, John and Miles for putting all this together.

Bobservation No.36: Social Committee

Entrance to NTF on Fair DayThe results of this year’s fair were a very creditable profit of £1,450. This was assisted by the generosity of the Shepherd & Dog donating the net cost of the marquee and furnishings after allowing for the Call My Bluff net income.
The fair is organised by the Fulking Social Committee with the vital help of volunteers who are the backbone of the event. Full accounts of the fair are available from Nick Hughes the treasurer.
Dates for your diaries are:
Friday 8th December – Christmas Party in the village hall from 6pm, which I now know clashes with the village ladies pub night at the Shepherd & Dog but hopefully these ladies will be able to call in and say Merry Christmas on their way;
Friday 27th July 2018 – Call My Bluff in the marquee in the North Town Field and
Sunday 29 July 2018 – Fulking Fair also in the North Town Field from noon till 4pm.

The bottom line of all this is to get some more members of the Social Committee. It is only as onerous as you want it to be and you will be welcomed with enthusiasm. We meet about half a dozen times a year generally on a midweek evening at 8pm and have an Annual General Meeting which this time will be in the village hall at 7pm on Wednesday 31 January 2018.
The Social Committee is a great way for new arrivals and their families to meet other villagers and offer new ideas. Please give me a call on 271 or email me at bob.pamrowland@btinternet.com if you are interested in joining us.

Lastly I understand that Harry & Charmayne Diamond have sold Downside and will be leaving us after Christmas. They have been such an important part of the Social Committee and their generous loan of Downside Meadow has meant a big difference in being able to hold the annual fair. I am sure all villagers would want to wish them every happiness in their next home.

Bobservation 34: Village Pulls Together – Fulking Fair Report

Well! with your help, if you did, and without it, if you didn’t, we had a couple of very successful and enjoyable events with the Call my Bluff on Friday 28th July and the Fair on Sunday 30th July. Fortunately, the weather was kind. Financially both events resulted in a good surplus (details will follow). Regarding the Fair, it is interesting that ‘the best laid plans ..’ inasmuch as the scheduled Punjabi Street Food was nominated for the final of the British street food completion on the same day as the fair, the pony lady decided that the available space was not for her, the music guys had a wobble over insurance, Bubble Pop was booked elsewhere and Sussex Wildlife were understaffed and could not come.

It is a great learning curve that something as simple as a village fair requires so much input by quite a few dedicated people to make it successful. Heaven knows what it must be like organising the Chelsea Flower Show. I take my hat off to them! Having said all that, the team put together what was possibly the best Fair we have ever had.

Many thanks to all involved, you were terrific!  Great Teas (and cake donations — over £500 raised!), BBQ, Bar, Food, Music, Stalls, Tombola, Parking, Tug-of-War, Kids Games, Puppets, Steam engine and anything I have left out.

As for the Call my Bluff, the Shepherd & Dog changed their wine supplier a couple  of weeks before the event  which meant a last minute scramble to get wines for the quiz sorted and it turned out they were very good indeed. Dave and Emily, as usual, proved to be the backbone of the evening. Tania was a brilliant first timer on the top table and I enjoyed myself. Louise managed to get £300+ from raffle tickets and Pam washed up all the glasses afterwards. Thanks to everyone who came and proved that this can be a really successful evening without becoming the drunken mess that has sometimes happened in the past. It was one of the best we have had. Long may it continue!

Tombola

tombola
Fulking Fair is to have a bottle tombola and thus we need anything alcoholic (preferably), soft drinks, shampoo, ketchup, deodorant — basically anything new and unopened in a bottle. There will also be a kids’ tombola so sweets, toys, books, etc. will be welcome for that.

You can either drop stuff off at 13 Clappers Lane or call me on 773 and I will collect. All profits go directly to the Fulking village social fund.

Louise