Peldon named Essex Village of the Year for 2019
PUBLISHED: 10:02 17 September 2019
Peldon has been named the Essex Village of the Year for 2019 and here Liz Davidson, from the Village Hall’s Management Committee, explains why she believes the village was a worthy winner
Peldon has won the coveted title of Essex Village of the Year for 2019. At the recent Rural Community Council of Essex's (RCCE) AGM, Peldon scooped the smallest village class with under 500 residents before being named the overall winner and Essex Village of the Year, an annual competition run by RCCE and sponsored by Essex & Suffolk Water and Inkpen Downie Architects.
This was the first time Peldon had entered the competition, which is open to all villages in Essex with a population under 6,000. After two visits, the judges were impressed to see such a small village with so much going on and such a great community ethos.
Located between Abberton Reservoir and the coast, Peldon is the first village you come to on the mainland after crossing The Strood from Mersea Island. Most of the older houses in the village were damaged in the 1884 East Anglian earthquake.
The judges made particular comment of the new Village Hall, which is shared with the two Wigborough villages, and which was noted for not only the wonderful building but all the community activities that go on there, including the pantomime at the start of the year which involves many local children and adults, attracting an audience of more than 500.
These activities also include yoga, table tennis, badminton, dancing, art classes, quilting and a knit and natter group. Then there are monthly coffee mornings, village lunches, gardening, games and kids clubs, the ladies group PAWS and popular live music nights with drummer Crissy Lee and guest performers. The church was also praised for all the events organised too, including the Village Festival, music and history evenings, the bee club and the large, regular congregation.
The judges heard about the Five Parishes Show and a charity summer garden party, while they were impressed with its playground for the children, the Peldon Bloomers' attractive flower tubs and the Litter Warriors keeping the village clean. All of these activities involve many of the enthusiastic villagers.
The valuable support and contributions many other businesses in the village make to this community were also acknowledged including the two popular pubs — the Peldon Plough and the Peldon Rose — plus the local farm shop, Bonners, as well as farming businesses and those at Hosplant`s business park, providing more than 100 local jobs in all. The judges were very impressed by their newest employer, Little Doves, a pre-school nursery, highlighting it as one of the businesses and services that makes the village stand out.
Although the Village Hall's Management Committee lead the entry, everyone involved in village life in any way deserves credit for this success. It's given the village not only county-wide recognition, but also cash prizes totalling £650, which will be put to good use to continue the work within the local community.
To celebrate, there is even a village party at the Village Hall, from 11am to 1pm on Saturday, October 12.