COMMUNITY NEWS: Updates from around Saffron Walden

PUBLISHED: 12:00 24 August 2017

Claire Hunnable and Ami Brooking from the Saffron Building Society in front of new sign. Picture: SWFC

Claire Hunnable and Ami Brooking from the Saffron Building Society in front of new sign. Picture: SWFC

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As part of our new monthly community news section, our reporters take a look back over what has been going on in the last four weeks.

Uttlesford District Council is clamping down on failed council tax payments. Picture: SaffronPhotoUttlesford District Council is clamping down on failed council tax payments. Picture: SaffronPhoto

With so much happening in Saffron Walden, this is the place to catch up on the bits you might have missed and what to look out for in the coming weeks.

School students at Saffron Walden County High held their annual sponsored event on July 17, just before the end of the summer term.

All pupils in Years 7, 8 and 9 took part in a five kilometre walk through Audley End Park on a sunny afternoon.

A school spokesman said: “It was a glorious day and English Heritage kindly opened their grounds to the school in support of the event which made a beautiful end to the sponsored walk.”

With school budgets across the nation having been cut, the County High raises money every year to ensure that the school has the resources and facilities needed.

The spokesman added: “This is something that has become increasingly important to us in recent years owing to significant pressures on school budgets.”

Lions Club International is celebrating 100 years of community service, and the Saffron Walden branch is marking the anniversary with a summer party.

The Centennial Garden Party will be held on September 2 in the grounds of St Mark’s College, in Audley End, between 3pm and 6pm.

There will also be musical entertainment, with hits played from the 1920s, as well as a bar, games and stalls.

Tickets are £12 for adults, £6 for children or £30 for family tickets.

They are available from the Tourist Information Centre or on 01799 521697.

Uttlesford District Council has announced it will get tough on council tax debtors who fail to respond to requests for information.

Those who have a liability order awarded at court against them will be asked to provide details of their employer or other sources of income, and this must be provided to the council within 14 days.

Failure to do so will result in a fine of up to £500, and anyone who knowingly gives false information could face a fine of up to £1,000 on conviction, as well as legal costs.

Councillor Howard Rolfe, leader of the council, said: “Uttlesford has one of the highest council tax collection rates in the country and the majority of payers will be unaffected by this tougher approach to recovery of debts.”

He added: “We are committed to providing the best service to our residents and this is another tool that will allow us to protect the public purse.”

The Richard Austin Butler Debating Society will hold its first Summer Social next month.

The group will host the event at The Bluebell Inn, in Hempstead, on September 2 from 12pm to 3pm.

Members and guests are welcome and can enjoy a range of informal debates plus a three-course lunch.

Ticket information can be found at rabdebating@outlook.com.

Saffron Walden Building Society has become the sponsor of the main stand at the town’s football club.

Jonathan Scripps, club secretary, said: “We are extremely grateful for the support that Saffron Building Society has given us.

“Every year we undergo improvements to the pitch and facilities. This year we, and the volunteers, have worked extremely hard on the pitch, the clubhouse and the main stand.

“In my opinion, the pitch and main stand hasn’t looked this good in years, and we have received some great compliments from the players and supporters.”

He added: “Without the support of local companies sponsoring and advertising with us, we would struggle to continue improving our facilities and working towards our overall goal.”

The team at Specsavers in Saffron Walden have become qualified to better understand the needs of customers living with dementia.

The training is part of the company’s nationwide goal to become Dementia Friends – an Alzheimer’s Society initiative.

Kuldip Randhawa, store director, said: “Customer care and support is of paramount importance to us, and we are constantly striving to offer the best service to people in the town.”

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