Emotional Night For Suffolk Stars

Friday, November 9, 08.00

There was not a dry eye at Trinity Park as four of the peninsula's finest were honoured at the Stars of Suffolk last night. 

Six-year-old Preston Parker, Jane Gould, Alan Nunn and Shotley Open Spaces were all runners up as all the finalists were presented with prizes.

Ipswich Town managing director Ian Milne presented Preston with a Blues kit, with Parker 7 on the back of the shirt, and tickets for all the family to go and watch Paul Lambert's side play against Wigan, along with his trophy.

 Preston was nominated as Young Person of The Year for voluntarily litter picking down at Shotley Gate, and leading the parish's Beach Clean.

He was pipped by Daniel Jillings, who is profoundly deaf, and has successfully battled to introduce a British Sign Language GCSE.

Jane, Alan and SOS, were all given a bottle of Prosecco, to go with their especially inscribed individual trophies.

Jane was shortlisted in the Community Champion category after being nominated by Cllr Derek Davis, who collected Jane's award on her behalf as she was singing in her community choir and did not want to let anyone down.

Jane  was described as a compassionate and indispensable member of the Shotley Peninsula community.

She has raised thousands for St Michael’s Church in Woolverstone with her innovative ideas. The Monthly Market has become a must visit, with a fabulous friendly atmosphere.

Jane also introduced the Death café, an incredible initiative allowing people to talk openly about a very difficult subject. Jane has organised art exhibitions, including a unique sculpture display.

Number one spot went to Sue Willgoss, who has fought to bring about change for those with special education needs, disability and mental health difficulties.

SOS and Alan Nunn were in the Keeping Suffolk Special category and came behind David Goodlad, who is ‘community personified’ in the village of Rattlesden.

SOS was chosen for its volunteers' working tirelessly to keep a numbers of walking trails, tracks and pathways used by young mums with buggies, disabled vehicles and others, clear by cutting back brambles and other overgrowth. SOS also established the first accredited Walkers Are Welcome area in Suffolk, and have helped other groups to do so in their village. They raise funds through an annual calendar highlighting other community ventures.

Alan has been running the Chelmondiston Recycling Centre for a number of years, totally free of charge. He dedicates all his Saturday, Bank Holiday Mondays and Wednesday mornings in an effort to keep the facility open, since its closure by the local authority. Alan sorts through all the waste, recycles as much of it as possible and keeps costs very low. 

The Overall Stars of Suffolk winners, organised by Parker Communications, in conjunction with the EADT, were the staff at Barking Pre-School who saved the life of three-year-old Annabel Brightwell, who collapsed suddenly while dancing after suffering a cardiac arrest.

 Pre-school team members Shelley Symonds, Ness Hall, Zoe Corbett, Lucy Glendinning and Elsah Thorpe showed no hesitation, performing CPR on the youngster for 20 minutes until paramedics arrived. Annabel was airlifted to Addenbrooke’s Hospital and placed in an induced coma, spending six days in intensive care.

She was later diagnosed with a rare genetic heart condition, which had been unknown to her parents.She is now on medication, but aside from that is living the life of a normal three-year-old. Annabel’s mum Rebecca said the pre-school’s quick actions undoubtedly saved Annabel’s life. Shelley, in particular, was praised for her rapid response.

Annabel went on stage in a tear-jerking moment to personally thank her heroines, on what was her fourth birthday.

* Online Christmas Market 

Another Housing Scheme Floated

Wednesday, November 7, 11.30

A potential 90 new homes could be built in Chelmondistion if a developer's idea for a new housing scheme is accepted. 

Two representatives from Linden Homes spoke to members of the public at a parish council meeting last night to online their ideas.

The developers have an option to buy six acres of land belonging to Hill House Farm, conditional of planning permission being given.

David Hill and James Bay stressed the proposal was very much in the early stages and wanted to ensure full consultation with villagers, in tandem with Chelmondistmon's developing Neighbourhood Plan, and Babergh's new Local Plan, was sought first.

No planning application has been submitted, and no pre-application talks with Babergh, or Suffolk Highways, have yet been held.

Mr Hill confirmed six acres of land, north of the village centre and close to where there were fires during the summer, was under consideration with a density estimated to be between 10 and 15 homes per acre.

The land is in an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and questions over housing need, loss of prime agricultural land, and infrastructure, including access, were aired at the meeting.  

*Remembrance special, online Christmas Market, and more Peninsula News here...

Stars Of Suffolk Champions Shortlisted

Sunday, November 4, 07.00

Community volunteers from Chelmondiston, Shotley and Woolverstone have been shortlisted for the Stars of Suffolk awards. 

Alan Nunn, Shotley Open Spaces (SOS), Preston Parker, and Jane Gould from the peninsula, are among the finalists for the community awards, which will be held at Trinity Park on Thursday, November 8, hosted by BBC Radio Suffolk presenter Mark Murphy.

Jane Gould (pictured right with fellow volunteer Beryl Walker) has been hailed as a tireless volunteer, spearheading the good work done at Woolverstone church with markets, exhibitions and other community events, including the Death Cafe initiative.

Volunteers from SOS spend hours cutting, streaming and clearing overgrown areas around the village ensuring people with buggies, young children and the less abled can navigate paths and tracks without being attacked by brambles and overgrowth.

 The group is also responsible for health walks, formed Suffolk's first Walkers Are Welcome accredited group and have helped the local tourism economy grew, while looking out for locals too.

Both were nominated by district councillor Derek Davis who said: "Far too often the excellent work these wonderful people do is overlooked, or not recognised. 

"More often than not they are happy to get on with it without a fuss, but I believe it doesn't hurt that all our volunteers and community champions should be recognised.

"The fact that so many people from the peninsula reached the finals highlights what a wonderful area we live and reflects on our fabulous community spirit."

Preston Parker was nominated as Young Person of the Year after taking it upon himself to complete litter picks on Shotley foreshore.

Alan Nunn is being recognised for his unstinting work helping at the recycling tip and Chelmondiston, and was also nominated by the parish council. 

The Suffolk awards follow on from the Stars of Babergh last month when Shotley postmaster Manish Patel, and village stalwart Norman Bugg were winners of their respective community categories, Shotley & Erwarton Good Neighbours and Hollingsworths  were runners up.

Full report from Stars of Suffolk here on Friday...

Gamekeeper's Daughter Named Chef of the Year

Friday, October 12, 09.00

Chelmondiston cook Jeessica Noy has been named National Eat Game Chef of the Year. 

Jessica, better known as the Gamekeeper’s Daughter, beat off competition from Michelin starred chefs and celebrities, including Richard Corrigan and Tim Kitchen, to scoop the prestigious award in the 'Best Chef Regularly Using Game' category.

Jessica, who usually works from her home kitchen in Chelmondiston, was stunned to learn of her victory at a glittering awards ceremony at Canary Wharf, London, after voters were won over by her use of game and berries, much of it from the Shotley peninsula. 

“I’m still pinching myself that I won Best Chef," said Jessica

"I was up against such stiff competition, so to get the win was an absolutely amazing feeling.

“I'm a country girl from Suffolk with a down to earth approach to game cooking, I'm not a fan of overly fussy traditional game dishes- I try to create simple modern recipes with big flavours - so it's great to be recognised for my work.”

One outstanding dish which helped win her so many votes was her double stacked sour cream fried Partridge Burger with griddled lettuce chipotle cream and her homemade bacon jam.

The Gamekeeper's Daughter began at Harkstead farmers’ market selling game pies as a way of utilising the game shot from the shoot ran by her gamekeeper father, which launched her into the Suffolk food and drink scene.

Jessica has not looked back and has branched into private catering, created a pop-up restaurant in Colchester's derelict bus station, selling street food and cookery teaching.

Her exciting journey into the culinary world has included: cooking squirrel samosas for CBBC, presenting food critic and writer Tom Parker Bowles with my wild rabbit lasagne on ITV's Food Glorious Food and of course winning Young Chef of the Year in 2017.

 Jessica’s wowed the judges then with a wood pigeon salad with blueberry balsamic compote and an inventive aubergine starter with foraged wild garlic. (Pictured)

“Food has been a lifelong obsession for me,” said Jessica, “hugely connected with my love of the countryside.

“As a child i would go foraging for blackberries in the hedgerows and earned my first pocket money through picking wild field mushrooms for a local pub with my father.

“Knowledge of the seasons and foraging plays an important part in how I create my menus, sourcing seasonally and locally is not only ethical and environmentally friendly but it means that the dishes I create truly reflect the area where live Whether it be local venison, foraged berries, or vegetables sourced from local growers , I love to utilise the best produce Suffolk has to offer.”

Jessica currently caters for private but dreams of find a location on the peninsular for a unique pop up restaurant experience.

Next year she plans to publish a cookery book, full of creative recipes using wild produce, foraged and game for the modern cook.

Keep up to date with Jessica’s game journey by going to her website and blog The Gamekeeper's Daughter.

*See what else is happening around the peninsula...

Head To Leave Primary School 

Friday, October 5, 19.00

Sean Cornish is to leave Chelmondiston primary school at the end of the year to take up a new role in Capel. 

Mr Cornish took over at Chelmondiston in 2015 when it was a Church of England Voluntary Community school and had been rated Good in an Ofsted report two years earlier.

In July 2017 the school joined the St Edmundsbury and Ipswich Diocesan Multi-Academy Trust, and was reincarnated as a Church of England Primary School, maintaining its high standards.

“I will be extremely sad to leave Chelmondiston Church of England Primary School at the end of this calendar year,” said Mr Cornish. “It has been a very enjoyable two and half years and been a real pleasure to get to know so many wonderful children and work alongside their committed parents.

“The school will always hold a very special place in my heart.”

*If you like to pay tribute to Mr Cornish - contact us here...

Customer Service Access Now Available Locally

Monday, August 20, 19.00

Villagers across the peninsula and beyond can now access a Babergh customer service point locally. 

Babergh’s first Pop-Up Access Point saw Babergh staff join Suffolk Libraries at Shotley Village Hall, offers all peninsula residents the opportunity to meet Customer Service staff face to face without visiting the council’s access point in Sudbury Town Hall.

As part of a pilot scheme Babergh staff will be in Shotley Village Hall on Monday afternoons, from 1pm to 4.30pm, until the end of September, with the exception of the August Bank Holiday on 27 August.

The Pop-Up runs alongside the Suffolk Libraries Local weekly session in Shotley, giving residents the opportunity to access both district council and library services in the same place. Anyone dropping by will be greeted by Babergh and Mid Suffolk staff, offering access to services for both councils, with access to online services also offered at the Pop-Up.

Cllr Derek Davis, Babergh cabinet member for Organisational Delivery, said: “Improving customer service access is a top priority for us and I’m delighted this Pop-Up Customer Access Point has come to fruition. We recognise how not everyone is fully comfortable with accessing our services online and appreciate dealing with a human being and this new way to access council services will give those residents a chance to do just that.

“Offering residents the opportunity to access our services in this way will give us a clearer picture of what our residents need and, if successful, will be rolled out in other areas of the district. Babergh is building on an excellent working relationship with Suffolk Libraries and their team are already providing a very popular and useful service, and this will complement the existing facility.”

Adults can bring their children along to take up the reading challenge, join in singing, or take part in a colouring competition, while their Babergh issues are being dealt with by customer service staff.

New Outdoor Gym Installed

Tuesday, August 7, 11.00

Outdoor gym equipment has been installed at Chelmondistion playing fields in Woodlands. 

Five stations, which can work the arms, chest, legs and abs, are free to use for anyone looking to improve their fitness in the fresh air.

The new facility is a culmination of months of hard work by the Playing Fields Committee, chaired by Sam Nunn, (pictured with John Hawkins).

The committee sought views from villagers about how to improve facilities for users of the open space, and the outdoor gym equipment topped the list.

More could follow, along with a zip wire and further down the line replacement play equipment.

Mr Nunn praised the amount of support given to the Playing Field Committee by the community, Chelmo parish council, along with Babergh District Councillor Derek Davis and Suffolk County Councillor David Wood.

 “This outdoor gym equipment, which we believe is the first of its kind on the peninsula, scored highly in what people wanted,” said Mr Nunn. “We hope people will enjoy using this new facility and we strive to continue to bring even more new facilities to what is already a good mix of activities on offer.”

Somerset-based Viridor Credits Environmental Company, which funds community projects via the Landfill Communities Fund, also helped with a large chuck of the initial £7,500 equipment and installation cost.   

“We worked closely with a number of organisations, and Viridor Credits Environment Company were brilliant," said Mr Nunn. "They really came up trumps with advice and funding.

“We want to thank everyone involved in this project, from people who filled in questionnaires to fellow committee members and councillors."

Gareth Williams, Operations Manager at Viridor Credits, said: "On meeting Sam Nunn I was impressed with his vision for Chelmondiston's playing field as an inclusive area for all interests and abilities.

“The steering group had no hesitation in supporting this project." 

Parish councilor John Hawkins, who also serves on the playing field committee, said: “We are delighted to be able this outdoor gym, which will give even more people a reason to come out and enjoy what we have here.

“These are public facilities so we hope lots of people come and make the most of what we have provided.”

Two tennis courts, an outdoor table tennis facility (including bats and balls) are provided, along with a full-size football pitch.

Cllr Davis added: "Babergh’s community team works closely to help parishes like Chelmondiston and it helps when you have people like Sam and John driving project forward like this.”   

* Viridor Credits Environmental Company seeks applications from not-for-profit groups and organisationsand community groups. Applications can be made for projects that fall into one of three categories (below), provided that the project is located within 10 miles of an active Viridor landfill site or Energy Recovery Facility (ERF). They are:

  • Provision or improvement of a public amenity;
  • The conservation or promotion of biological diversity through:
    • the provision, conservation, restoration or enhancement of a natural habitat, or
    • the maintenance or recovery of a species or its habitat on land or water
  • Restoration or renovation of buildings of historical or architectural importance or those used for religious worship.

Viridor Credits is looking for further projects to fund located within 10 miles of active Viridor-managed landfill sites or ERFs. Applicants can visit www.viridor-credits.co.uk, call 01823 476476, or email enquiries@viridor-credits.co.uk.

District Ward To Be Reshaped And Called Orwell

Tuesday, August 7, 08.00

Chelmondiston and Pin Mill are to come under a newly formed Orwell ward in the Boundary Commission review of Babergh district wards.

The village is currently looked after by two district councillors as part of Berners ward, which also includes Shotley, Erwarton, Woolverstone and Freston.

However, the new ward boundaries will reform after the Boundary Commission released its final recommendations, which will go before Parliament when MPS return from the summer recess in September..

Newly named Ganges, Stour and Orwell wards will replace the bulk of the current two-member Berners and one member Holbrook wards and overlap into Belstead and Tattingstone. 

The Local Government Boundary Commission For England (LGBCE) had originally looked at making much of the peninsula a three-member ward, but representations by Holbrook councillor David Rose, supported by Shotley councillor Derek Davis and a couple of parish councils, pointed out that would be unworkable and the panel agreed.

Ganges, named after the former Royal Navy Training Establishment, will comprise of Shotley and Erwarton and be looked after by just one district councillor.

Boundary commissioners took into account of development at the former Ganges site, comprising of 285 new homes, a small hotel, residential care home, a café, retail units and a number of community facilities, which would add to the electorate.

Stour ward, named after the mouth of the river, will also be a one member ward and will now take in Harkstead, Holbrook and Stutton, making it slightly larger than the current ward.

On the other side of the peninsula Orwell ward, will also be a one-member ward but will include Belstead, Wherstead and Tattingstone along with Freston, Woolverstone and Chelmondison.

Brantham will become a one-member ward as expected growth will also boost the electorate there.

The division of those four wards means the same geographical area will lose one district councillor.

In total Babergh district council will reduce the number of councillors from the current 43 to 32, serving 24 wards, with the changes coming into effect at the next district council election in May 2019. 

In its report the Boundary Commission explained how it changed its original recommendation of forming  three member ward to three single member wards after representations were made.

Cllr Davis said: "As a former HMS Ganges boy I'm delighted that the Shotley and Erwarton area will become known as the Ganges ward. I'm delighted the commission took notice of our suggestions and have adopted the three different wards, rather than one huge ward., which I believe would have been unwieldy.

“It is a difficult balancing act in getting the allowed variance in electorate numbers marrying up with geographical areas to comprise the number of wards needed.

“However, while the Orwell ward seems a little stretched with Belstead a bit out on a limb.

“It makes sense for one member to serve the area, rather than three trying to cover everything from Shotley to Belstead, especially if some councilors do not necessarily pull their weight locally.”

Cllr Alastair McCraw, current Alton ward member, added: “The best bit about the new ward structure is that the Peninsula will have four single member wards.

"Brantham & Ganges are two large population centres. There are some compromises in the centre, because equal representation is very important. I like the names of Orwell & Stour.

"The parish groupings follow the roads connecting them and should have similar concerns because of it. But every parish will have one councillor to deal with and to help them."

A little further afield, Capel St Mary, which is subject to some large scale development will also become a one-member ward, while Copdock and Washbrook, will stretch from Bentley to Hintelsham, but new-look Sproughton and Pinewood ward will become a two-member ward.

The LGBCE was tasked to reduce district council members but ensure they improved electoral equality by equalising the number of electors each ward councilor represents. They had to take into account community identity and provide effective and community local government.

Further information can be found on their website www.lgbce.org.uk

Hers & Sirs Relaunched

Sunday, August 5

Nothing makes you feel and look better than a lovey new hair do and a fresh looking Hers & Sirs is happy to oblige after officially relaunching under new management. 

The bubbly flowed as more than 30 regular clients and potential new customers took a look around the revamped hairdressers on Main Road in Chelmondiston. 

Lorraine Page and her daughter Georgina Chelsea Page have taken over at Hers and Sirsbut have retained many of the previous stylists, while adding to the staff.

Although there will be a fresh look, there will be consistency and continuity as new boss Lorraine has worked as a stylist at Hers and Sirs.

 Her daughter Georgina is now the manageress working three days a week while still pursuing her modelling career and being a mum.

Valued and popular stylist Liza Baldry is staying on, also working three days of the week. John and Jenny continue doing a couple of days, and a new stylist will join working on Friday and Saturday while new apprentice Kayleigh makes up the happy, friendly and welcoming salon.

Every body loved what we done," said Lorraine. "A big thank you to staff for supporting me and for my husband Gordon Page for all his hard work doing all the decorating, and more. 

"We had some lovely flowers and from customers and family so thanks to them as well and we look forward to seeing all our old and new customers in the new look salon." 

There has been a hairdressers at the car park next to the car park on Main Road, Chelmondiston, which also serves the post office, Red Lion and butchers shop Hollingsworth’s for more than 45 years, although the styles have changed.

The dedicated team of stylists are expert in ladies styling, but also keep men up to date with the latest fashion, or with traditional cuts, and have a good way with children as they cut their hair.

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