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Silk - The Next History Society Event

Is on Wednesday 21st November, at 7.30 in the Parish Room, Church Road, when Richard Humphries, with 50 years experience in the silk trade, will tell us:

  • Why Sudbury today is the UK Silk capital;
  • How the wool trade gave way to silk in East Anglia; and
  • Why it remains the choice of fabric for our Kings and Queens.

Humphries Weaving Company was set up in 1972 by Richard and specialises in exclusive, high quality furnishing fabrics destined for Royal Palaces and National Trust properties, along with specially commissioned design work. With the three existing local silk weaving companies, this makes Sudbury the silk capital of the UK, with an estimated 110 metric tons of Chinese silk coming into the town annually.

To put this into context:

  • Each silk worm cocoon is made of a single continuous thread of raw silk around 1 kilometer long.
  • Between 2,000 and 3,000 cocoons are required to make one pound of silk.
  • One pound of silk unbelievably represents about 1,000 miles of filament.
  • It takes silk from more than 2,000 cocoons to produce a single kimono.

LWHS events are open to all, young or old, members or not, and if you like history, whether recent, ancient or somewhere in between, then you will enjoy our talks. Just £4.00 (or £2.00 if a member), gives access to presentations lasting about an hour, which are followed by tea/coffee, plus biscuits, in the company of like minded individuals.

For tickets please contact one of the following, or simply turn up on the night:

  • Sue Sheppard on 01787 247980, or
  • Diana Langford on 01787 248298

Village Post Box Replaced

Sadly in the eyes of many, myself included, our lovely old brick postbox has been replaced with a red box on a metal stand - no doubt cheaper but not as good looking, particularly in a conservation area such as Little Waldingfield.

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Update on The Swan, from Justin Grainger

Dear Allan

Thank you for reaching out from the Parish Council. I can understand anxiety on the part of the villagers and it must be frustrating when it's such a slow process. However, it is more important to get it right and deliver a viable pub. You may be aware that the Monks Eleigh Swan has recently failed after a substantial refurbishment and is back on the market. Undertaken properly, I think the LW Swan has better potential with more residents and more nearby.

I am not in a position to present plans to the village yet as I reverted to the drawing board with an increased beer garden, having recently agreed to purchase some additional land. As soon as that transaction has gone through I will formalise the plans. My wife and I have deliberated, rejected and altered many sets of plans and recently brought in a very respected consultant who has helped a number of local well known and subsequently successful pub restaurants. This has given us new ideas for the extension and refurbishment that we are now putting to the architect.

Thereafter, the plans will go to Heritage and planning incl. the PC, but this won't be quick as you know, and the promised public meeting for locals.

Kind regards, Justin

Justin Nevison-Grainger
+44 (0)7799 803605     justin@planetprofit.co.uk
The Black Fox, Barrells Road, Thurston, Bury St. Edmunds, Suffolk, IP31 3SF

 

Village Afternoon Tea

On a wonderfully warm and sunny afternoon, the Parish Room looked its best for the 26 villagers who could tear themselves away from the footie, even though England had clearly won by our 3.00 pm start time and the tv coverage was over by 3.30. It was their loss as all guests had a really great time; there was a superb spread, old friends met up again, new friends were made and the conversation flowed, just as trustees had hoped for.

With very many thanks to everyone who helped, whether on the day, baking cakes or making quiches / sandwiches - it was a real team effort. Lastly, £30.00 was raised for the Bridge Project in Sudbury, a charity set up in 1995 to assist disadvantaged adults within the community - a great result all round.

25th June 2018

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What a spread

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Yummy or what?

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Carrots anyone?

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A lovely Dundee cake

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A superb Victoria sponge

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Clear proof that it was great fun

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Two very happy new residents of the village

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An interesting platefull - cream cake on top of scones and sandwiches - it didn't last long!

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Old friends enjoying each other's company

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Clearly a great time was had by all.

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Deep in conversation

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More conversation, even when leaving.

Village Litter Pick

On a somewhat damp and dreary Saturday morning, a surprisingly upbeat band of 11 pickers, plus 2 in the village hall preparing refreshments and another driving round delivering and collecting bags, collectively undertook our annual village roadside clean up. Yours truly thought there would be less rubbish than previously, because it did not seem so visible, but sadly this did not prove to be the case, perhaps due to some fairly serious hedge trimming late last year which may have uncovered rubbish from prior years.
 
More than 20 large bags of rubbish were collected, along with other items unsuitable for bagging, incl. a large commercial fresh water container, a heavy stablising leg from a workman's barrier and what appeared to be long pieces from someone's replaced secondary double glazing framing unceremoniously dumped - it never ceases to amaze.

The village is, for now at least, free from this modern day blight, created solely by passing drivers too lazy to take their rubbish home with them. The volume of empty cans and bottles was unbelievable, along with remnants from take away food and drinks containers, along with the ubiquitous crisp and chocolate wrappers etc, which of course can be so harmful to wildlife. Hopefully the tidy aspect will, at least for a while, deter other lazy drivers from chucking stuff out of the windows whilst driving through, though we all know that sadly it will recur once again, until such time that everyone becomes a bit more considerate to others - here's to less rubbish next year and a great big thank you to all of our volunteers.

Andy Sheppard 24th March 2018

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The Swan Little Waldingfield – Update for the Parish Council, Villagers and SOS 

The Swan closed because it failed for the second time in relatively recent history. I bought The Swan, with no borrowing, on the open market from the receivers for Santander last summer, who had been running it temporarily on a shoe-string budget and temporary manager. The pub was available for sale to any villager, the general public and advertised extensively by respected pub specialists, Christies. Initially, I sought new tenants straight away, and indeed did have two couples very keen on the pub; however, their ideas for the pubs offering would have not been in keeping with the village, or appealing to reasonable expectations, or indeed competitive locally. In view of the previous financial failures and run-down state, there is no point in re-opening as it is, and strong tenants would not be forthcoming. I have further invested in tidying up and securing the property as best possible pending the renovations, in addition to substantial planning and historical research costs.

Therefore, I am going through the complex planning, heritage report and listed buildings process to ensure it has a good chance of gaining the right permissions, and may be renovated and improved to give it a strong chance of viability with new tenants in situ, who will be sought once we get close to renovation completion date. I can’t really give you a reliable timescale for reopening as the planning process is complex and slow, and I want the pub to have the best possible amenities. I can say that once I have some realistic drawings ready for planning, these will be shared with the villagers at an open event at the pub or Nethergate brewery tap – I do hope that will be during the Spring and that villagers will be both excited and their support continue. It is clearly not in my interest to have my investment standing empty for longer than necessary.

However, if you are looking for somewhere relaxing for a drink in the meantime, I can recommend the new Nethergate brewery tap in Long Melford where I am a director and co-owner; which gives me some insight into the pub market, in which my fellow directors/owners and I have interests in 15+ pubs and restaurants. In the meantime, I do understand and very much appreciate villagers enthusiasm to have The Swan re-opened, and must balance that with re-opening something attractive to the best possible tenants, in good order, viable and worthy of the village for the long term.

Justin Nevison-Grainger ACIB BSc(Hons)

13th March 2018

Village Meeting to Discuss BDC Joint Local Plan

Forty plus residents attended a council presentation today on the draft joint local plan, in order to gain a better understanding of the issues potentially facing Little Waldingfield; hopefully they were not disappointed, whilst councillors now also have a better understanding of resident's concerns.

As promised, the presentation may be viewed HERE, with links to the Draft Joint Local Plan highlighted on the penultimate page; n annotated map of the potential LW devlopment sites is also  shown below.

The very strong recommendation, for residents with any concerns about any issues raised in the Joint Local Plan, is to:

  1. Attend the Babergh drop-in session in Sudbury Town Hall, from 2.00 p.m. to 7.00 p.m. on Thursday 12th October; and
  2. Comment on the issues of concern, either through the on-line consultation process (see links in the above presentation), or obtain paper comment forms from Babergh for submission by post. Please remember the last date for submission of comments is 5.00 p.m. on Friday 10th November, so aim for your comments to arrive at Babergh DC by Thursday 9th  ovember or earlier to be on the safe side.

As the life of the plan extends out to 2036, this will affect Little Waldingfield for the next 20 years, and it is your last opportunity to have your say.

October 7th 2017

Annotated LW map showing 3 areas identified for development

 

Village Burglary - Update

Laura Mansell, a PCSO from the Sudbury Safer Neighbourhood Team (SNT) kindly talked to a gathering or more than 30 residents last Saturday, giving copious advice on security and what to do in the event of an incident. She also provided the following information:

If anyone wishes to report anything it’s 101 or via the online reporting tool on our website www.suffolk.police.uk

Reporting should only be done via these two methods or 999 if it is an emergency.

If anyone wants advice or a chat they can contact the SNT on sudbury.snt@suffolk.pnn.police.uk

 She also mentioned an official police security initiative website that provides practical information on securing property: please click HERE

The question of a lack of police presence was mentioned many times by residents, which apparently arises directly from budget cuts which have lead to reducing the hours of PCSOs, who used to work nights but now cannot work past 6.00 p.m.

Both residents and Laura were unhappy with this situation; she is no longer doing the jog she was recruited for and enjoyed - that of dealing directly with the public to provide advice etc - whilst there are also NO RURAL POLICE PATROLS anymore.

All present agreed this was a highly unfortunate outcome of the budget cuts, whilst the only advice the Police can give to us is for individuals to write to the following, describing the fear the lack of police presence is causing, the inability to get through on the 101 number, and asking for an increase in police funding specifically to increase coverage of rural areas, including permitting PCSOs to work well beyond 6.00 p.m.

  1. Our MP James Cartlidge. To contact James click HERE
  2. Suffolk's Chief Constable Gareth Wilson. To contact Gareth click HERE
  3. Suffolk's Police and Crime Commissioner Tim Passmore. To contact Tim click HERE

25th September 2017

  1. Neighbourhood Planning

    Councillors have reviewed outcomes of their recent meetings with Bill Newman (Babergh District Council) and Carroll Reeve (Lavenham Parish Council chairman), held to better understand the process of developing a Neighbourhood Plan (NP).

    Details of council resolutions from the above are noted under Parish Council, Community Led Planning - click Here

    We have a list of voluneers willing to help with this most important and exciting project, which should be of great benefit to Little Waldngfield, but more are always welcome; if you are interested, please contact any parish councillor or the webmaster - click Here.