Knutsford Town Council News

Pumpkin Path 2017

Knutsfordians and visitors can look forward to lots of spooky family fun as the annual Pumpkin Path returns to Knutsford on Tuesday 31st October 2017 between 4-8pm.

Since its launch in 2013 by the business community, the event has become a firm fixture on Knutsford’s event calendar growing in popularity each year. This year, Knutsford Town Council is leading on the event organisation in partnership with local businesses.

Owner of Mr Simms, Julia Chard, said “It’s been fantastic being involved in organising the Pumpkin Path over the last 4 years and watching it grow into one of Knutsford’s biggest community events.”

“Now is the time to hand over the organising the town council, allowing me to concentrate on being a sweetie lady! We will of course be a sponsor and taking part on the night and look forward to seeing all the scary little monsters, for what promises to be the biggest and spookiest Pumpkinpath yet.”

As per previous years the event will see youngsters and their parents scouring King Street’s shops and restaurants to find the eleven carved pumpkins which spell out “PUMPKIN PATH” before submitting their entries to the Heritage Centre’s spooky post box. Local traders will join in the fun to make Knutsford a truly special and spooky place to visit.

New this year will be the inclusion of Wallwood at the Tatton Street end of King Street.  Wallwood will be specially decorated with the help of events company Events2Scare in true Halloween style with witches and wizards, special lighting and music.  There will also be the chance to take a selfie with one of the characters to enter a #pumpkinpath Twitter competition.

Knutsford’s new Town Centre Manager, Sandra Curties, said “We are enjoying organising this year’s event with Mr Simms and Knutsford’s business community. It is lovely to see the town come together and enjoy this date on the calendar in such a family friendly way.”

Best dressed window competition

Like last year there will be a light-hearted competition to find Pumpkin Path 2017’s Best Dressed Window – Last year this was won by Dexter and Jones with Nicholas Austen as runner up. We’ll post up pictures of the windows on our Facebook page for the public to vote for their favourites! It is just a fun way to get involved in the event and ensure the whole of Knutsford is decked out in a spooky fashion.

Road Closures

To enable the Pumpkin Path to take place safely, road closures will be in place as follows:

  • King Street at the junction with Church Hill to the junction with Drury Lane
  • Minshull Street

There will also be parking pay suspension from midnight Monday 30th October from King Street junction with Tatton Street to junction with Drury Lane to enable two-way traffic to enable residents access to be maintained.

All affected residents will be contacted directly.

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New Events Forum Launched

Cllr James Power and Cllr Andrew Malloy - Knutsford TOB

Cllr James Power and Cllr Andrew Malloy – Knutsford TOB

Event organisers in Knutsford are being invited to attend a new forum hosted by the Town Council. The Knutsford Events Forum is being introduced as an opportunity for those organising public events in the town to share information, skills and experience.

The Town Council recognised that with the demise of the Promote Knutsford Forum in 2016 the town was lacking a regular avenue for event organisers to meet, discuss plans and deliver a more cohesive approach to the town’s events. Convened by the Chairman of the Town Council’s own Events Committee, Cllr Andrew Malloy, the forum is being trialled as an opportunity to provide this.

Andrew said, “Knutsford’s vibrant events calendar contributes greatly to making the town such a special place to live.”

“The aim of this forum is to make it easier for everyone organising events in the town through sharing of experience and knowledge and providing a networking opportunity for event planners”.

Whilst invitations have gone out to a number of community organisations involved in events in Knutsford, such as the Knutsford Promenades, Knutsford Heritage Centre and the Knutsford Lions, the forum is open to both existing event organisers and those with ideas for potential new events in the town.

“We hope that the forum will help take some of the headache out of organising events and signpost organisers to other organisations who can help make their events an even bigger success” Andrew added.

The forum will also help the Town Council as it begins to develop an annual events guide, launching in 2018.

The first meeting of the forum takes place on Wednesday 4th October at 6pm in the Town Council Offices.

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Knutsford long listed for ‘Council of the Year’ award

Knutsford Town Council is in the running for a national excellence award as part of the Star Councils Awards with the long-list for the 2017 Council of the Year award is announced.

Introduced in 2015 as part of the Star Councils Awards, Council of the Year goes to a council which stands apart, raising the bar for the sector with outstanding work across service delivery and which demonstrates excellence in community engagement and communications.

The awards, which are organised by the National Association of Local Councils (NALC), saw Oswestry Town Council crowned Council of the Year 2016 and Knutsford is one of twelve councils on the longlist for the award; which will be whittled down to a shortlist of just three in mid-September. The winners of the award will be announced at the NALC Annual Conference in Milton Keynes on 30th October.

Town Mayor, Cllr Neil Forbes commented on the news stating, “I am delighted that our combined efforts to be a Quality Gold standard council and ahead of the curve on best practice as the council has grown has been recognised – fingers crossed for the shortlist!”

Speaking on the announcement of the long-list, Chairman of NALC, Cllr Sue Baxter outlined how difficult it had been to decide on this year’s list “NALC had to make some very tough and difficult decisions for the long list, because the standard of entrees were so high.”

Knutsford is one of two Cheshire councils to be long-listed, with Winsford Town Council also making the long-list. Both Macclesfield Town Council and Winsford Town Council are also in the running for “Local Council Outstanding Project of the Year – Health and Well-being”.

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Buyer of Memorial House Confirmed

Buyer of Memorial House Confirmed

The British Red Cross has announced McCarthy and Stone, “the UKs leading retirement home developer” as the purchaser of Knutsford War Memorial Cottage Hospital (Memorial House).

The British Red Cross reported that several offers to purchase the building were received and a panel of surveyors considered all the offers, taking into account a range of factors including local housing needs and the bidders’ willingness to honour the historical significance of the site, and fully consult with the local community on plans for its future.

The British Red Cross has confirmed that its share of the proceeds from the sale will fund its work helping people in crisis. The Crown Estate and NHS are also understood to be receiving a portion of the proceeds and the NHS has not responded to a request from the Town Council  to commit to ring-fencing its portion of proceeds for future medical facilities in Knutsford.

McCarthy and Stone have confirmed they will be looking at various development options for the land and have committed to keep the community updated; priding themselves on their track record for consulting with communities.

Ian Wilkins, regional MD for McCarthy and Stone North West said: “McCarthy and Stone is delighted to have been named the purchaser for the Memorial House site in Knutsford and we will ensure that a thorough community engagement programme is undertaken and that local people can feed back into our plans when drawn up”

The Town Council has been in contact with McCarthy and Stone and a meeting is being coordinated with the council’s War Memorial Hospital working group to discuss the future of the building.

Town Clerk, Adam Keppel-Green commented “We will be emphasising the importance of the preservation of this building, the Town’s War Memorial, and providing McCarthy and Stone with the history of the building and its importance to the community.”

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Knutsford Floral Walk – Vote for your favourite!

It’s RHS Tatton this week, which means Knutsford is looking blooming lovely as town centre retailers and businesses pull out all the stops and decorate their shops with an abundance of flowers.

 

Knutsford Town Council would like to recognise the hard work and expense the retailers go to in providing a feast of flowers for residents and visitors alike to enjoy, and are running a Floral Walk competition, where YOU can vote for your favourite display! The winner will be presented with the, new and soon to be coveted, Floral Walk Trophy, alongside a certificate recognising their achievement. There will also be certificates for second and third place.

 

Town Clerk, Adam Keppel-Garner said “The incredible efforts of our businesses over the past few years add something extra special to the Town for when RHS visits. They put on some fantastic displays and this year the public get to say thank you by voting for their favourites!”

 

There are various ways in which you can register your vote:

  1. Tweet the Shop name of your favourite display making sure you use the #knutsfordfloralwalk;
  2. Head to the Knutsford Town Council Facebook page, and comment on the Floral Walk pinned post with the shop name of your favourite display (https://www.facebook.com/knutsfordtowncouncil/posts/865266543629606); or
  3. Call the Town Council offices on 01565 653929 and give the shop name of your favourite display to one of our Town Council team.

Keep an eye out for the pictures of the winning business on our website and in next week’s Knutsford Guardian!

 

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Council supports Credit Union

Credit Union GrantKnutsford Town Council is supporting a local Credit Union in getting its message across to residents of Knutsford. The Cheshire Neighbours Credit Union has received a donation of £200 from the Town Council to fund publicity in the Town.

The Cheshire Neighbours Credit Union is a community bank with the aim of promoting sound financial management by encouraging people to save rather than borrow. CNCU has a range of services from it’s ‘payroll saver’ where you automatically save a little with each paycheque to its clever ‘budgeting’ bank account that helps ensure you never miss paying important bills.

Chief Executive of the Credit Union, John Weir said, “the support of Knutsford TC is very much appreciated and will help the CNCU to promote its services and values with people in the community.”

“The CNCU provides an ethical method for savings, and loans to everyone in the community. It also ensures that residents do not have to use loan sharks, pay day lenders or borrow from those companies who charge exorbitant fees”

For more information about the Cheshire Neighbours Credit Union visit www.cncu.org.uk or pick up a leaflet from the Town Council offices.

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Knutsford Music Festival 2017

The inaugural Knutsford Music Festival took place this weekend (23-25 June) with over forty acts performing across the three days.

The event, coordinated by the Town Council, featured an array of genres and artists performing in bars, restaurants and venues such as the Market Hall and St John’s Church.

Three anchor events organised by the Town Council were supported by the business community who organised numerous performances.

On Friday evening award winning Blues singer Rebecca Downes headlined an intimate set at the Brook St Club with support from Rick Whitehead and Ash Sherlock. Saturday saw 90s stars Dodgy headline in St John’s Church supported by Knutsford’s own Abigail Chetham with Freja Frances and Kye Jones. Sunday saw an evening of classical music with pianist Adrian Lord, Knutsford string-quartet Fiddlesticks and the Knutsford Catenian and Friends Male Voice Choir.

“The buzz and the lovely atmosphere the music created in the town was pure magic.” said one festival goer, whilst another told us ” [There was] so much going on at different venues. It had an Edinburgh fringe festival feel about it!”

We are now working to plan 2018 – and we need your feedback to help us do this: tell us what you thought of Knutsford Music Festival 2017.

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Knutsford Floral Walk

Retailers in Knutsford are gearing up for the annual Floral Walk displays to coincide with the RHS Tatton event being held July 19th to 23rd.

The RHS judges will be visiting the Town Centre to choose their favourite display. No theme has been set but to take part in the RHS competition, retailers must only use natural materials and flowers with artificial plants not being judged. Judges will assess the window displays on originality, colour and wow factor. retailers must contact the Town Council to by June 30th to confirm they are taking part in the RHS competition.

This year two competitions are running in parallel with the public being given an opportunity to vote for their favourite displays. The public vote is more open, with no strict rules and all displays being included without application. Residents will be encouraged to view the displays and then vote online at the Town Council Facebook page to choose their favourites. The winner will be presented with the, new and soon to be coveted, Floral Walk Trophy.

Town Clerk, Adam Keppel-Garner said “The incredible efforts of our businesses over the past few years added something extra special to the Town for when RHS visits. They put on some fantastic displays and this year the public get to say thank you by voting for their favourites!”

Retailers are also being encouraged to incorporate a Sunflower into their display, to tie-in with the upcoming Knutsford Heritage Open Days in September. This year’s KHOD event includes a focus on Alan Turing, with a look at Turing’s Sunflowers – one of his lesser-known theories was that the Fibonacci number series occurred in the petals and seedheads of sunflowers. The results were published last year and proved Turing’s theory, decades after his death.
Sarah Flannery, one of the team behind the Heritage Open Days event said “It would be very fitting – and look wonderful – if the retailers included sunflowers as part of their display in some way”.

If they don’t want to put real sunflowers in their display, they could easily put imitation sunflowers separately somewhere in their window (and keep these in place up until KHOD in September) and for those that aren’t going to have any floral display, this would be a very inclusive option.

For retailers taking part, to find out more information contact Lisa Benskin on 01565 653 929 or e-mail lisa.benskin@knutsfordtowncouncil.gov.uk.

Residents are encouraged to like the Town Council at www.facebook.com/knutsfordtowncouncil or on twitter @KnutsfordTown to be ready to vote!

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Music Festival Gig Guide Released

Over 40 acts have been confirmed as part of the inaugural Knutsford Music Festival with over 20 venues hosting events across the weekend of 23rd, 24th and 25th June. The complete gig guide to the events is hitting the streets this week.

“We’ve been delighted with the reception from local businesses to the town’s first music festival” said Town Clerk, Adam Keppel-Garner. “They’ve gone out and booked some great acts for the festival, visitors will be spoiled for choice and it is great to think this is just our first year of the event”

Confirmed to be performing at the festival include the K-Town Beer Band (Friday, Lord Eldon) performing a unique brew of Celtic folk, country and bluegrass with 80’s pop classics and Being Buble (Saturday, the Angel) with his uncanny voice and buble-esque moves.

Tickets for the three events organised by the Town Council are currently on sale.

On Friday the Town Council has booked award winning blues artist Rebecca Downes to headline an intimate night of blues in the Brook St Club. Saturday sees britpop stars Dodgy headline an evening in St Johns Church and on Sunday the Unitarian Hall hosts an evening of classical music with Adrian Lord, Fiddlesticks and the Catenian Male Voice Choir. Tickets can be bought at www.knutsfordtowncouncil.gov.uk/musicfestival.

For more information on the events check out the gig guide (available from town centre businesses and online) or click here.

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A Night of Classical Music

Adrian LordKnutsfordians are being presented to an evening of classical music as part of the upcoming Knutsford Music Festival. The third key event organised by the Town Council as part of the event will be held at the Brook Street Chapel Hall on Sunday 25th June.

Knutsford pianist and composer Adrian Lord invites Knutsfordians to experience pieces from “Journey – Twelve Romances for Piano”, his debut recording as both composer and performer.  His music reflects his inspirational journey as a composer which culminated in the recording at Crear, Western Scotland.

Also performing is Knutsford based string-quartet, Fiddlesticks. Fiddlesticks have been entertaining at formal concerts and events around Cheshire since 2015.

Commenting on the announcement, Hillary Skinner, celloist with Fiddlesticks said “we are thrilled and excited to be part of Knutsford’s first music festival, what a great event!”.

Completing the line-up for the evening is the Knutsford Catenian and Friends Male Voice Choir.

Tickets costing £10 are on sale now: Buy Tickets Now

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