District & County Councillor Report

Annual County Council Report 2017

I am pleased to say that Norfolk’s schools continue to improve according to the latest Ofsted figures.

We are very fortunate in having excellent schools in this division of East Depwade which gives our youngsters the best posible start in life. Archbishop Sancroft High School, The Pulhams Primary, Scole Primary and Harleston Primary.

Highways across Norfolk are to benefit from an extra £5m of funding which was recently awarded to us by the Dft. 136 small highway schemes are to benefit through our popular Parish partnership scheme which are funded jointly by NCC, town and parish councils, the most applications were 56 for SAM2 which are the mobile flashing speed camera’s. A big thank you to all of the volunteers that look after the SAM machines and collecting the data from them. Speed is still a major issue through our town and villages, so I ask that all drivers please think about the speed you are doing.

At this years budget I have put forward the plan for a Local members budget of £6,000 each which can only be used for local highways projects.

At NCC we have decided on three major highways projects to be prioritised, they are, The Long Stratton Bypass and Hempnal crossroads, Norwich Western link that will join the NDR up with the A47 and The Great Yarmouth 3rd river crossing Bridge. Good progress is being made on the Northern Distibutor road and it’s due to open in December 2017 and consultations are taking place on a set of improvements on the A47, where work is due to start in 2020, plus we have put forward our plans to dual the Acle straight and East Winch to Tilney also on the A47, so you can see that there is a lot going on now to improve Norfolk’s Infrastucture and a lot being planned for the future. We are also working with our market towns(local knowledge is so valuable) across the County to work up highways strategys so that they can identify current and futue issues, so we are planning for the future.

Norfolk’s re-cycling rates continue to improve, in 2015/16 we achieved our highest ever recycling rate of 45.8% compared to the national rate of 44.3%. We still have much to do to improve our recycling rates, so please continue to recycle/reuse and to compost.

I pay tribute to all of our emergency services for the work they do and their speedy attendence to all incidents The tragic accident at Pulham Market on April 5th where 3 young boys lost their lives, Kyle Warren, Billy Hines and Dominic O’Neil. The Fire in London road Harleston earlier this year was quickly brought under control and made safe for everyone. Also thanks to our local first responders who again carry out vital work helping others in our community. We have an excellent library in Harleston and our mobile library vans are as popular as ever out and about in our communities.

We have a very active Harleston and District Business forum who have monthly breakfast meetings at the Swan, High school and Farmers Kitchen with a topical speakers keeping us all informed about current affairs and business opportunities, in March they visited the House of commons along with students from the high School.

We also have many popular pubs, shops and restaurents, which we can enjoy using, but also they help to attact tourists that come along to the Waveney valley to also visit attractions such as Billingford Windmill which is now being restored and the 100th Bomb Group Museum at Thorpe Abbotts which will gain international recognition when filming takes place for the Tom Hanks production of Masters in The Air

Martin Wilby




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