Saffron Walden Town Council selects representative for economic development panel

Keith Eden

Keith Eden - Credit: Archant

SAFFRON Walden Town Council has put forward a representative to join the discussion about how to entice more shoppers into the town centre.

Cllr Keith Eden was unanimously chosen by members at a full council meeting last Wednesday (March 13) to be part of an economic development panel known as the ‘town team’.

He will share the council’s views with the panel and feedback any decisions made to his fellow members.

The formation of a panel – a first step in the ongoing attempt to boost town centre footfall – is still in its early stages after traders agreed to work together at a meeting organised by Uttlesford District Council’s economic development officer, Simon Jackson, earlier this year.

The suggestion to put forward a representative was made by Cllr Cliff Treadwell. He said: “The town team initiative seems to be gathering pace and as a town council we need to be represented on this committee.

“Debates are now taking place, surveys are going on and at some point we are going to be challenged to start implementing some of the recommendations, so we need to have someone representing the town council’s interests.”

He ruled himself out of the running for the role, citing a conflict of interests as the owner of Saffron Hotel in High Street, and suggested other members with a business in the town centre should not be selected for the same reason.

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Cllr Doug Perry threw Cllr Eden’s name into the hat, saying he “had a lot of experience in the field of economic development”.

Cllr Eden said: “As a result of this newly formed group we are probably going to have to be even more vigorous as a council in looking at possible improvements, particularly when it comes to street furniture for example.

“Ultimately it would be foolish not to be properly represented.”