An evening of celebration (photos)

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(The website link that was here no longer works) A packed Public Hall enjoyed an evening of celebration as Audlem launched its Parish Plan; the Parish Council received its Quality status award; and glasses were raised to toast the village's success in winning the national Defra award for 'Building Community Life' and gaining the Calor 'Village of the Year' award for the North of England.

 

The evening was chaired by Richard Furber, Audlem Parish Council chairman, who introduced the many guests from around the county. The Mayor of Crewe & Nantwich, Councillor Maureen Grant warmly congratulated the village on its many achievements and added that her previous visit to Audlem only a few weeks earlier, when 600 gathered around the Christmas tree singing Carols, was one of the real highlights of her Festive season.

(The website link that was here no longer works) Eddisbury MP, Stephen O'Brien added his congratulations and described how proud he had felt for Audlem when he attended the ceremony in London when the village won its Defra and Calor awards last month. He referred to other less known achievements and there was hearty applause following his congratulations to Jack Nield on his 100th birthday earlier this month.

(The website link that was here no longer works) Neville Price, Vice Chairman of Cheshire County Council, said the county would do all it could to help Audlem deliver the ambitious plans in the Parish Plan while Sylvia Batty, from Cheshire Community Council, and the county organiser of the Village of the Year competition, described how well the village had done and set the scene for another big competition this year.

The Quality Council award, the first received by a council in the area, was made to Parish Council clerk Jean White by Roger Parkin, chairman of the Cheshire Association of Local Councils.

County Councillor Alan Richardson received a loud round applause when he spoke of unfortunate planning decisions and how the one problem with success is that everyone wants to live in Audlem and developers can buy up land and put up inappropriate housing. Everyone present knew exactly who he meant!

(The website link that was here no longer works) The evening was completed by chairman of the Parish Plan steering group, Bob Cartwright. He thanked the 30 volunteers who had worked on the Plan and updated residents on progress. The teenshelter had just been installed; trees and thousands of bulbs had been planted by ADAS; the Audlem Traders' Association was meeting for the first time next week; The Lord Combermere was re-opening after a £400,000 refurbishment and would be a great boost to the village. He reported that there was to be a meeting next week with Cheshire Community Council to discuss projects and funding while some achievements such as the new Tourist Information Centre, the revamped Parish Council newsletters and this website were all well established.

Other guests included Alan Warburton, deputy Chief Executive, and Jenny Cross, Head of Finance for Crewe & Nantwich Borough Council and Louise Hare from Cheshire Community Council.

It proved to be a great evening and it was wonderful, many said, to see the Public Hall so packed and to have so many achievements to celebrate.