50 best Saffron moments - 20 - 11

PUBLISHED: 11:13 28 December 2006 | UPDATED: 10:05 31 May 2010

22 TOP MARKS Students in the area were celebrating last week as A-level results were announced, with the overall pass rate up slightly from last year (August 24). As well as students at the Saffron Walden County High School enjoying another year of top re

22 TOP MARKS

Students in the area were celebrating last week as A-level results were announced, with the overall pass rate up slightly from last year (August 24). As well as students at the Saffron Walden County High School enjoying another year of top results, those at Newport Free Grammar School and the Friends' School in Saffron Walden also achieved very good grades. One gifted student, Nicole Atack from Langley Upper Green, obtained an astonishing 10 A-levels at grade "A".

21 MEN OF IRON

Three Walden men took part in the UK national Ironman championships held at Sherbourne castle in Dorset (August 24). Phil Dobson, Darren Thomas and Graham Milligan all competed in the prestigious event, which includes a 2.4-mile swim, 112-mile bike ride and 26 mile run. The three men took part in the event, among over 1,200 competitors from all over the world, and completed the event in less than 13 hours.

20 SIGNING FOR CHARITY

Jazz star Jamie Cullum helped two brothers to raise over £2,000 for a children's cancer charity by donating £500(August 31). Justin and Joel Priest took part in triathlon to raise money for North of England Children's Cancer Research in memory of their nephew who died from a brain tumour at the age of six months. The pair who rode 15 miles from Cambridge to Newport where they grew up before a 10,000 metre run and a 15,000 metre row on two Concept running machines.

19 H BEDAZZLES

Pop star H from Steps launched a new performing arts school, Bedazzle, at Newport Free Grammar School (August 31). Bedazzle offers youngsters the chance to learn skills such as tap, ballet and drama. H, real name Ian Watkins, said: "I am sure it will be a huge success and that many stars of the future will learn their trade with Bedazzle."

18 SPECIAL STATUS

STUDENTS who left Stansted Mountfitchet High School for the summer break in July returned this month to The Mountfitchet Mathematics and Computing College (September 21). The renaming of the school reflects its new status as a specialist maths and computing college, a title granted to it by the Department for Education and Skills in August. Headteacher Jo Mullis was thrilled to be welcoming students back to a new and improved place of learning.

17 HOWZAT RONNIE

Essex and England all-rounder Ronnie Irani cut the ribbon at the official opening ceremony of a new Montessori pre-school in Little Sampford (September 28). More than 60 children aged between two and five have been learning at the Westwood School at Spriggs Yard, since September 11 and the cricketer's appearance made it a special day. The cricket star said: "My children have had a wonderful Montessori experience and it's a pleasure to open the Westwood School. I wish the team and pupils all the best for the future." Liz Barclay, school secretary and former teacher at the Little Easton Montessori pre-school which Irani's two children attended, said: "It was a fantastic occasion and got our life at the Westwood School off to a real bang."

16 MUSICAL GIFT

James Gant and Katherine Hembry of Saffron Walden were chosen from thousands of applicants to take part in a musical theatre boot camp (October 12). The musical pair have been selected to take part in the BBC New Talent Be A Musical Performer and were considered for entry into the Voice of Musical Theatre.

15 PUB MAKEOVER

A historic pub in Thaxted has reopened after a £300,000 makeover to give it a contemporary fell (October 19). The Swan Hotel, which has stood in one for or another since the 17th century, was closed for three weeks while it was refurbished thank to investment from owners, Greene King. Guestrooms have now been fitted with flat screens and DVD players and a wine wall centrepiece installed in the pub. Hotel manager, Kylie Esler, said: "We will also be exposing a lot of the original beams and features of the pub, so we hope this makes a real difference to the overall look for customers."

14 100 YEARS HAPPY

ONE hundred years of happiness were celebrated by a Great Chesterford centenarian on Monday (October 19). Bessie Head, who lives in London Road, was surrounded by family and friends as she enjoyed her 100th birthday party. The former Post Office worker has been living in her house since 1934, when she moved to the area from London. Born in Inverness in 1906, Bessie left school to become a Morse code telegraphist and has fond memories of working in branches of the Post Office in remote parts of the Scottish Highlands.

13 PUNTER'S

An award-winning Great Abington pub won a national prize for cask ale quality at a ceremony in Cyprus (October 19). The Three Tuns won the award at the Greene King Free Trade Excellence Awards and has been mentioned in the Good Beer Guide for its ales.

12 SHE'S CONKERS

Saffron Walden resident, Jane Chapman, 26, reached the quarter-finals of the World Conker Championships in Ashton, Northamptonshire (October 26). Jane was up against sixty-four other in the competition which was eventually won by Jane's opponent in the quarter-finals. Around 5000 people watched the event, which has raised £250,000 for charity to date.

11 BASKET CASE

A Saffron teenager who raised thousands for his school to buy basketball nets has been nominated for a Jack Petchey Award (November 16). Basketball-mad Charlie Watts, 14, who plays for London Leopards under-16 team, wrote to local businesses for raffle prizes to raise money for the nets at Saffron Walden County High School.

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