Essex charity closes down

PUBLISHED: 12:14 07 August 2008 | UPDATED: 21:32 31 May 2010

A CHARITY which has been serving the people of Saffron Walden since 1947 formally ceased operating on Tuesday. Chairman of the Saffron Walden & District Charitable Welfare Association, Joy Turnbull, said: It is very sad the association has closed, but it

A CHARITY which has been serving the people of Saffron Walden since 1947 formally ceased operating on Tuesday.

Chairman of the Saffron Walden & District Charitable Welfare Association, Joy Turnbull, said: "It is very sad the association has closed, but it was the right thing to do. We haven't had enough young people join to keep it going."

The association was officially brought to a close at a meeting in Saffron Walden Town Hall - the place where it was founded more than 60 years ago.

Established on September 2, 1947, at a meeting chaired by former town mayor Hubert Collar, the association's aim was to raise funds for the welfare of patients at Saffron Walden General Hospital.

At the meeting, current town mayor Mike Hibbs presided over the official closing. Mrs Turnbull presented the last of the association's money to Sir Alan Haselhurst, patron of the League of Friends of Saffron Walden Community Hospital.

Since joining the association in the 1950s Mrs Turnbull, who moved to Saffron Walden in 1945, has seen the difference the charity has made to many people's lives.

"One of the most well-known services was the equipment loan which was available seven days a week throughout the year," said Mrs Turnbull. "We loaned wheelchairs and walking frames and anything that was necessary if you were taken ill at home.

"We've even been called out on Christmas Day!"

The main activities of the association have been passed to the Saffron Walden Lions and Lionesses and the Charity Commission has agreed its assets could go to the League of Friends.

"This reflects the wishes expressed at the first meeting in 1947 that the funds of the association should always support the welfare of the local population," said Mrs Turnbull.

The association was originally called the Saffron Walden & District Hospitals Trust Fund Association, but changed its name to avoid confusion when the NHS created hospital trusts.

The association has raised funds by running sporting competitions for local clubs and from the proceeds of the Alexandra Rose Day collection, which it administered.

Most Read

Latest from the Saffron Walden Reporter