Archive for News

Nether Ward Election Results

cllrgrayKnutsford Town Council has a new member following the election of Cllr Christopher Gray to Nether Ward on 13th November.

The by-election, called following the death of Cllr Clive Nicholson, was fought by three candidates with a turnout of 23.29%. The results were:

GRAY, Christopher (CON) – 271
TEMPEST, Julie (IND) – 160
WEBSTER, Graeme (LAB) – 62

Cllr Gray will attend his first meeting as a member of the Council on Monday 8th December. He can be contacted by his ward residents:

8 Glebelands Road
WA16 9DZ

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Lantern Parade

Lisa Benskin Lantern

Deputy Town Clerk, Lisa Benskin, with her Lantern for the parade!

Knutsford Town Council is launching a new Christmas event for 2014 and would love you to be involved! The Town’s first Lantern Parade will be taking place from 4pm on Saturday 6th December starting from St Cross Church. The event ties in with the Christmas Tree Festival giving those taking part an opportunity to enjoy both family friendly events!

The parade will proceed through the Moor, King St, Minshull Street, Canute Place, Princess Street and Church Hill before finishing back on the Moor and will be an opportunity for Knutsfordians to get into the Christmas spirit and fit in some Christmas shopping at the Town’s retailers.

Two free Lantern Making Workshops have also been arranged to accompany the event to get the whole community involved or if you prefer to make a lantern at home, you can find instructions here. The workshops are being held on Saturday 22nd November from 10am to 1pm at Jubilee Hall, Stanley Road and on Saturday 6th December from 10am to 1pm at the Welcome, Longridge. Those wanting to attend either of the workshops must book in advance as places are limited.

Manor Park Primary School and Poppies Day Nursery have already got behind the event and will be making lanterns with their students for them to take along on the night.

Deputy Town Clerk, Lisa Benskin said “this is a fantastic opportunity for families to enjoy a Christmas craft activity and then come along to the parade on the 6th December and show off their fantastic willow lanterns as we light up the Knutsford night sky. If successful the hope is that this could become an annual event for the Town so the more people that get involved the better!”

For more details about the Lantern Parade, to register the interest of your group or school in taking part or to book a place at one of the Workshops contact Lisa Benskin on 01565 653929 or email

Photograph courtesy of the Knutsford Guardian

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Nether Ward By-Election

A by-election will be held on Thursday 13th November for a Town Councillor for the Nether Ward of Knutsford Town Council.

Three candidates have stood for election:

Christopher Robert Gray (CON)
of 8 Glebelands Road

Julie Tempest (IND)
of 5 Hillside Road

Graeme Webster (LAB)
of 7 Branden Drive

Only those living in the Nether Ward of Knutsford are able to vote in this election. You can view the ward map of the town here. If you are not already registered to vote, you can find out more about registering here.

Electors and their proxies should take note that any changes to, or cancellations of, existing postal or proxy vote records and new applications to be treated as postal voters, must reach the Electoral Registration Officer by 5.00pm on Wednesday 29th October 2014 if they are to be effective for this election.

All new applications for proxy voting arrangements must reach the Electoral Registration Officer at the above address by 5pm on Wednesday 5th November 2014 if they are to be effective for this election.

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Trio of accolades for Knutsford

Knutsford received three accolades at the 58th Cheshire Community Pride Awards organised by Cheshire Community Action.

A Little Gem award was presented to Knutsford for the Knutsford Heritage Centre and its courtyard garden which had particularly impressed the judges. The Town also received a Highly Commended plaudit in the Community Website Market Town category for the Town Council Website. Knutsford was also runner up in the Best Kept ‘Village’ Category for parishes with 10,001 to 30,000 inhabitants.

Knutsford Town Mayor, Neil Forbes attended the awards ceremony alongside his wife the Mayoress Jacquelyn Forbes on 9th October at Congleton Town Hall to collect the awards on behalf of the Town.

Cllr Forbes said “it was an honour to attend the Cheshire Community Pride awards on behalf of Knutsford and see the Town receive such recognition for the Heritage Centre, the Town Council Website thanks to the work put in by the Town Clerk, Adam Keppel-Garner and of course coming second only to Sandbach in the Best Kept ‘Village’ category for our population size. Knutsfordians can be very proud of these achievements.”

Neighbouring parishes Mobberley and Plumley with Toft and Bexton also received accolades on the night with Mobberley being Highly Commended in the new “Les George OBE award” Category for the best community Playing Fields for Hall Bank Playing Field which has recently been refurbished sympathetically within the Conservation area and proved to be a popular hub for the community.

Angela Atkinson, Vice Chairman of Mobberley Parish Council said “we are very proud to have been Highly Commended; this area is a peaceful little “oasis” within the village.”

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Neighbourhood Plan Public Meeting

A public meeting will be held in the Cranford Suite, Curzon on Tuesday 7th October at 7pm to discuss the prospect of creating a Neighbourhood Plan for Knutsford.

Organised by the Town Council, which has a commitment to investigate a Neighbourhood Plan for Knutsford as part of its 2020 Vision, the meeting is open to all residents, community organisations, property owners and businesses in Knutsford.

Neighbourhood plans establish general planning policies for the development and use of land in the neighbourhood, such as where homes should be built and what they should look like. The plan could be as detailed or general as the residents of Knutsford want.

Neighbourhood Plans can decide where and what type of development should happen and include policies on aspects such as design standards, providing more detail on existing policies within the Local Plan. The key aspect is that it cannot conflict with the Local Plan prepared by CEC.

The meeting, hosted by the Town Council, will feature presentations from Cheshire East Council and Cheshire Community Action on what can be achieved from a Neighbourhood Plan and how they fit alongside the Local Plan.

“The purpose of the meeting is to enable the community to ask questions to help determine if producing a Neighbourhood Plan is right for Knutsford” said Town Clerk, Adam Keppel-Garner.

Neighbourhood planning must be led by the Town Council, but would involve a committee of representatives from across the town.

“The community engaged thoroughly with the Local Plan process and this is the next step. Other towns and parishes are also embarking on the process and Cheshire East Council is offering support and resources to reduce the costs of its production.”

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Mayor pays tribute to Cllr Clive Nicholson

It was with deep sadness that the Town Council announced the death of Cllr Clive Nicholson; who passed away on Thursday September 11th. The Knutsford flag was flown at half mast on the day of the announcement and will be flown again on the day of his funeral. The thoughts of all members and officers of the Town Council are with Clive’s family.

Town Mayor, Cllr Neil Forbes prepared the following eulogy:

“Clive was a hard working councillor who believed if something was worth doing it was worth doing well, especially when on behalf of the Knutsfordians he represented. Some might consider him a little old fashioned as he much preferred the personal approach of ‘phone calls and face to face meetings rather than the current ‘addiction’ of emails and being ‘glued’ to computer screens.

He enjoyed a robust discussion and would call a spade a shovel before metaphorically burying you with it if your argument was weak in committee or council meetings. However win or lose the debate he recognised it for what it was; politics and would always be happy to share a pint or two afterwards.

Clive’s previous experience as a senior local authority officer meant he had a wealth of experience to call upon as well as from being Mayor’s consort to Jan’. Clive and his sage words will be missed greatly. He will be a ‘hard act to follow’.”

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Great Knutsford Cake Off

Budding Mary Berrys and Paul Hollywoods put their baking skills to the test on Sunday 3rd August and entered the Great Knutsford Cake Off to raise funds for the Mayor’s Charity Knutsford Grow and good cause St John’s Wood Lunch Club!

The event organised by the Town Council raised over £240 both from entrants into the competition and from selling the cakes produced by the adult entrants to the public on a stall at the Makers Market on Sunday.

The Judges; Dave Mooney from New Moon Pub Company, Pippa Orford from sponsors Waitrose and Kane Gunter from Community Spirit and Knutsford GROW praised the quality of the entries particularly from those under 16.

Town Mayor Cllr Neil Forbes said “It was clear from the quality of the cakes entered into the competition that those taking part had spent considerable time and effort producing their creations and I am very grateful to them for doing so to help raise money for such worthwhile causes. I would also like to thank our judges, sponsor Waitrose and our supporters the Makers Market and Monckton Properties for their assistance in making the event possible. ”

There were two judging categories under 16’s and over 16’s and the winners were:

Under 16s

  • 1st Place Bella Manley with a Lemon Drizzle cake
  • 2nd Place Mia Wheatley with a Lemon & Thyme Loaf
  • 3rd Place Ellie Froggatt with a Caribbean Coconut Cake

Over 16s

  • 1st Place Jenny Gough with a Rainbow Cake
  • 2nd Place Stewart Gardiner with a Chocolate & Cola Cake
  • 3rd Place Sarah Flannery with a RHS Themed Victoria Sponge

The first placed winners in each category received a trophy and Waitrose vouchers with rosettes being presented to the 2nd and 3rd place entrants. All under 16 entrants received a certificate for entering the contest. Bella Manley also kindly donated her cake to be sold to help raise funds for the charities.

Photographs featured courtesy of Sam Benskin

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New Town Guide Released

townguideThe 2014/15 edition of the Knutsford Town Guide has now been released. At 56 pages the guide covers all aspects of Knutsford and focuses on introducing what Knutsford has to offer to visitors and new residents.

Produced by Burrows Communications at no cost to the Town Council, it is the 30th edition of the Official Town Guide, the earliest of which was in the 1920’s. It was compiled by Town Clerk, Adam Keppel-Garner with content provided by local visitor attractions, such as the Heritage Centre and Gaskell Society.

“My aim was to make it as comprehensive as possible so for the first time it properly showcases the Heritage Centre, Little Theatre, Brook St Heritage Site and other attractions in the town.” Adam said.

The guide also features an A2 pull-out map of Knutsford as well as sections on Markets, the Moor and Heaths, Churches, Sports and Leisure, history and the town centre.

“The Town Council also decided to include a page on war memorials in the town given the centenary year and increased interest”

“We would like to thank all those who submitted content, the advertisers who fund the guides and local photographers such as Jonathan Farber and Paul Worpole who provided some fantastic photography which really sets the guide apart from previous editions”.

4000 copies of the guide have been produced and are available from a number of areas in the Town including the Library, Heritage Centre and Council Offices. An e-edition can also be viewed here.

“The aim of the guide is to encourage people to visit Knutsford, visiting our attractions eating at our restaurants and shopping in our independent shops”

“Feedback so far has been great, one resident said it was the best town guide they had seen since they moved here in the 1970’s and the Heritage Centre are really happy with their coverage which in previous guides had been little more than a paragraph” Adam added.

“We have so many fantastic features in Knutsford that we can proudly shout about and that’s exactly what this guide does”.

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2014 Town Awards

Winners of the 2014 Town Awards

Winners of the 2014 Town Awards

The 2014 Knutsford Town Awards were presented on Civic Sunday, June 29th at a special awards ceremony following the Civic Service.

The awards scheme, which is run by the Town Council, aims to recognise the valuable work undertaken to the benefit of the Knutsford community. Following the success of the 2013 awards a new category was introduced for 2014 recognising those aged 21 and under with a Youth Award.

The ceremony was presented by Ian Cass representing The Forum of Private Business which sponsored the scheme.

The three Civic Awards, made to individuals or groups of individuals who have worked to the benefit of the Knutsford Community were presented first, followed by the Community Award, Youth Award and Business Award.

The first civic award was presented to Vivienne Pike for her contribution both locally and internationally to the development of young Knutsfordians through Scouting.

The second award went to Kevin Hollins for his dedicated service to the Knutsford Academy and its integration with the wider Knutsford community.

The final civic award was presented to Derek Empson MBE in recognition of his work with a number of community organisations including the Old Folks Club, Town Plan group and for developing the Community Emergency Plan.

The 2014 community award was presented to The Welcome for being the heart of the Longridge community and encouraging interaction through a wide range of activities and community groups.

The 2014 business award was presented to Stefanie Meachin of Gusto for their engagement with fellow traders creating positive spirit for visitors and the community with initiatives such as the Bunny Hop.

The inaugural youth award was presented to Emily May Walker for her work with the 2nd Toft Guides and wider girl guiding movement in Knutsford.

In addition to the awards there was also three commendations issued by the decision panel. The first two went to Val Bryant for her work with the Knutsford Heritage Centre and to Kane Gunter for his work with Community Spirit and other charities; both of whom narrowly missed out on winning a Civic Award.

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Market Transfer Documents Signed

The transfer documents for the Market Hall and rights to hold markets in Knutsford have been sealed by Knutsford Town Council. Following the transfer of the two toilet blocks in 2013, the Town Council have been working on the transfer of the Market Hall, outdoor market and market rights.

The documents were sealed by Town Mayor Cllr Neil Forbes and Deputy Town Mayor Cllr Tony Dean. Cllr Dean, lead member for the transfer of markets said “I am delighted that we have now signed the legal documents for the transfer with completion expected on June 30th”.

“We have plans to improve the Market Hall and promote the use of the market to the community. The Council will also be looking into re-invigorating the weekly outdoor market” said Cllr Dean.

Cllr Forbes added “This is another historic moment as the running of the market returns to Knutsford for the first time since 1974 and I look forward to working with my fellow councillors to improve the facilities just like we did with the public toilets”.

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