SABDEN: Official appeal to stop any more new homes

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Winners - The monthly draw winners for November at Sabden Bowling Club are: £30 S. Wray, £20 K. Goss, £15 N. Harrison, £10 J. Nicholson, £10 D. Beesley, £5 E. Mitchell. A meeting has been called to ask for volunteers to join the committee to help run competitions and ensure the future of the club. It will take place on Wednesday, November 30th, at 7 p.m. in the clubhouse.

Bonfire - Dozens of families turned out to enjoy Sabden’s bonfire night celebrations. The bonfire on the Lower Holme was followed by a fireworks display and best-dressed Guy competition, winner being Ruby Islam and runners-up were Raya Verity and a group of young people, Reece Farnhill, Marcus Fortuna, Alex Knowle and Max Turner. The collection for the fireworks, which cost £1,000, raised £590. Sabden Beavers and Cubs ran the refreshment stalls.

Council - Sabden Parish Council’s November meeting was held in the new Sabden Link room, formerly St Nicholas’s Institute. It was chaired by Coun. Michael Calvert and attended by Couns John Shorter, Bernard Parfitt, Dean Lindsay, Marion Procter, Ricky Newmark, Tricia Newmark, Tony Howarth, the clerk and three members of the public.

Plans: The council had received a planning application for changes to the proposals relating to the former Sabden Methodist Church from one residence to two apartments. The council said as long as there were no changes to the exterior of the building they were happy for their original comments on the proposal to remain. There were no objections to plans for a proposed barn to store feed and machinery at Whittakers Farm, Back Lane, on the border of Sabden and Read. Residents commented the owner did not farm the land so were surprised at the application, but the application stated the occupier intended to start keeping stock.

The council is to put together a welcome pack for occupiers of new housing proposed for the village. Coun. Tony Howarth had put together a draft document which councillors welcomed and, with additions, it will be printed and given to new residents.

A debate followed on proposals by the Government to change the parliamentary constituency boundaries. It was generally felt they would like to keep the status quo and voted to write saying they did not support the proposed changes and want the boundaries left as they are.

Highways – Councillors had had a site meeting with a representative from Lancashire County Council Highways Department and showed him problem spots around the village and gave him a wish list of jobs required to reduce speeding and improve safety. One major issue was the number of HGVs that come through the village. Even along the single road system where the major rebuilding of Padiham Road is taking place HGVs still go through the narrow space and are clipping and damaging the new path. The parish council would like to see a weight restriction to prevent these HGVs coming through Sabden. PC Sally Biggar also attended and pointed out her concerns about safety around Sabden Primary School. The parish council will monitor the situation and, if nothing is done, contact LCC again before Christmas and put highway safety on the January agenda.

Landscaping – Councillors were concerned that promised landscaping around the new flats in Clitheroe Road had not been carried out by Adactus, the housing association which runs the properties. A neighbour had raised the issue and said the association had to look after the garden for five years as part of planning conditions. The clerk is to contact Ribble Valley Borough Council about the issue. The parish council is to look at areas of Sabden that need brightening up with flowers, planters, tubs etc. and want residents to contact them with ideas. Following the village’s success in the best-kept village competition where it was highly commended, they want to keep the focus on the village looking good and brighten it up where possible. Residents with suggestions of areas that would benefit from attention can e-mail chairman Coun. Michael Calvert, at michael.calvert6@btinternet.com The project will be part of Sabden Action Plan to improve the village and increase the sense of community. Members will report back to the December meeting. The council is also looking at the issue of sponsorship of planters by local organisations or companies to offset the cost.

Reports – Coun. John Shorter reported that the playground equipment is in good order, although someone commented that the safety surfaces are slippery. The lengthsman will be asked to look at this. The incidence of graffiti in the Watt Street bus shelter had reduced but there is now some in the gents’ toilets even though the toilets are opened and shut by electronic timer. It was reported grass cutting has improved slightly but has not been as good since it was contracted out to a private company this year by the county council. The parish council is to ask for details about how often and when contractors come to the village and what their remit is. Coun. Ricky Newmark told members that, contrary to a report at the previous meeting, Ribble Valley Council had strenuously denied they sold land between Padiham Road and Mount Pleasant to Ribble Valley Homes. The plot is now subject of a planning application for one large detached house, by a private individual. The proposal for new allotments in Sabden was still going ahead and was now at the legal stage of securing the land before it could proceed, but details will be given to those who have put their names down for an allotment as soon as possible. The scheme should go ahead before the end of this financial year. Bushes growing over the path in Clitheroe Road were causing problems and would be looked at and a tree was leaning over the brook at Heyhouses. The proprietor of The Deli in Whalley Road attended and asked to be allowed to keep the fixed sign he has erected at the crossroad in the village centre as he said it was vital to let passing traffic know about his business. However, the council reiterated its previous decision that the sign had to be removed from parish council land but had no objection to an A board being attached to a post nearby. Mr Keith Turner said a previous A board he had placed there had cost £120 but had been removed when someone complainted to the authorities. Councillors were sympathetic and said they wanted to support him as much as possible, but the sign was in an inappropriate place, could be seen as a distraction to traffic at a busy junction and partly blocked the Padiham Road signage.

Houses - Work was beginning to demolish part of Victoria Mill off Whalley Road to make way for 70 new homes. Coun. Ricky Newmark said demolition proper was to begin soon and would take two weeks. Although one part of the site and the original mill chimney will remain, most of the complex, formerly occupied by Marbill Developments which has moved to Simonstone, will be razed to the ground.

Coun. Newmark added the occupiers of businesses on the nearby Cobden Mill site have been given notice to quit by Christmas to make way for a development of 44 homes, and Ribble Valley Homes had completed the purchase of land at the wetlands off Whalley Road and in the New Year were to begin building eight social housing properties. Sabden Residents’ Association has now officially asked Ribble Valley Council to put a cap on any more housing in Sabden. Sabden Parish Council is looking at names for the new Victoria Mill development.

Meeting – The parish council will do its annual budget planning in private before the December meeting which is on the 6th at 7 p.m. and is open to the public in the Sabden Link offices in St Nicholas’s Hall.

St Mary’s - Pupils in Years 5 and 6 and staff enjoyed last week staying at an outdoor activity centre in Lockerbie, Scotland. They had an exciting week undertaking activities ranging from abseiling to archery to disco dancing. The school recently held a clothing collection through Funds4School and 280kg of clothing has raised £140 for school funds.