Four things we learned from Fakenham's annual assembly

The winner of the Mayor cadet award, Phobe Harris (centre), mum Kara Griffiths, and mayor Gilly Foortse

The winner of the Mayor cadet award, Phobe Harris (centre), mum Kara Griffiths, and mayor Gilly Foortse - Credit: Aaron McMillan

Fakenham's annual assembly was held on Wednesday evening, offering townsfolk an update on major projects and local policing - among other things. 

The traditional town meeting is now back to being held in the usual month of May after two years of disruption due to coronavirus. 

The winner of the Mayor cadet award, 14-year-old Phobe Harris, with Gilly Foortse

The winner of the Mayor cadet award, 14-year-old Phobe Harris, with Gilly Foortse - Credit: Aaron McMillan

Here are four key takeaways from the assembly.

Regeneration a top priority

Mayor Gilly Foortse highlighted work done by Fakenham Town Council (FTC) to help regenerate parts of the town such as the library triangle, as well as the fixing of pencil street lights and the Edward VII lamp. 

For their efforts on the latest project - a revamp of the cinema triangle - she thanked Viv Joslin, Fakenham Garden Centre and the Rotary Club.

FTC start work this week for the refurbishment of the cinema triangle garden in the market town, behind Central Cinema.

Fakenham Town Council has started work on the refurbishment of the cinema triangle garden in the market town, behind Central Cinema. - Credit: Vivienne Joslin

Mrs Foortse added that next on the list for regeneration was the library garden. 

No guarantees over new swimming pool

There was a further update on the bid to bring a new swimming pool and sports facilities to Fakenham.

Hopes of obtaining money from the government's £220m Community Renewal Fund were foiled last year, but FTC and North Norfolk District Council have been exploring alternative sources of funding. 

Plans to bring a new swimming pool to Fakenham have been unveiled. Inset, town mayor, Gilly Foortse 

Plans to bring a new swimming pool to Fakenham have been unveiled. Inset, town mayor, Gilly Foortse - Credit: Archant/Everyone Active

Representatives have discussed applying for cash from the £4.8bn Levelling Up Fund, but Mrs Foortse urged people not to get too excited. 

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"I must make it clear that this is a bid only; it is not guaranteed that it will be successful,” she said.

“It does, however, show very clearly the intent of NNDC to work with us to provide much-needed facilities in the town, and also the confirmation of Fakenham as an important hub in this part of Norfolk.”

Police keen to help youngsters

Fakenham police sent a report to the meeting, in which they highlighted crime they have tackled including anti-social behaviour and child protection.

PC 1673 RICHARD DAWSON

Beat Manager at Fakenham, Richard Dawson - Credit: SAM WRIGHT

Officers said they were looking to support communities in regards to increased traffic on the road, while also looking at services that will interest young people to reduce boredom.

Beat manager Richard Dawson confirmed he is working with Fakenham Academy to support the safeguarding of students.

New mayor’s cadet named

Phobe Harris, an air cadet from the Fakenham branch, was named as the new mayor's cadet.  

The winner of the Mayor cadet award, 14-year-old Phobe Harris, with Gilly Foortse

The winner of the Mayor cadet award, Phobe Harris, with Gilly Foortse - Credit: Aaron McMillan

She will assist the mayor during events, such as the upcoming jubilee celebration next month. 

Phoebe, 14, said: “I am very honoured and grateful to have this opportunity to take part in the community and help the mayor."