Letters: Snettisham Common, February 9, 2016

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Please would you give me this opportunity to respond to a letter printed on January 26 “Leave common in natural state”.

Well done to the person who compiled this letter, l wholeheartedly agree with every word. The issues raised are very valid and of great concern to many of the parishioners of Snettisham. These are related to the expense and increased maintenance that the parish council has now created.

Village commons should be maintained and in the past at Snettisham, this was done annually free of charge by the Woodland Trust, using their members who had the expertise to keep the correct balance of trees and vegetation for the habitats and food sources they provide for wildlife. People visit woodlands for what they are – natural. They do not expect to see picnic benches, shingled paths, green fencing! This common is of great historic significance to the village of Snettisham dating back to the Enclosure Acts of 1762 which resulted in villagers fighting to save their one source of heating fuel, many imprisoned for their actions. May l suggest that Snettisham Parish Council takes time to reflect on future projects it is planning, i.e. enhancement to Lodge Park play area, which their current estimate of cost is in the region of £20,000. To offset this cost the PC have allocated £11,500

received from the Solar Farm Company, which was agreed to help cover the cost of the new street lighting installed in the village. Also another sum of £2,300 which was charity money belonging to the Towns Lands Charity removed from its account during the fraud, and has not yet been returned to the charity. The questions to be contemplated by the PC are, do we need three play areas in the village? Is such a cost justifiable? Should the PC be forever creating projects which result in increased maintenance expense? Perhaps the planned Open Day in March should be for the parishioners of the village to choose how the Queen’s Commemoration of 65 years reign should be marked.

I am aware that not all councillors are in agreement with this type of expenditure, and want the PC budget kept to a minimum, and l say long may they live!

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