HM Queen Elizabeth ll – Book of Condolence

Following the sad news of the death of Queen Elizabeth, the regulation black cloth, photograph and condolence book will be placed in all six churches in the benefice and will remain until the funeral. 

As a mark of respect during this period of national mourning, except for church services, weddings, funerals and baptisms, the following events in the churches are cancelled:

  • History talk at Westhorpe church
  • History talk at Finningham church
  • Coffee morning at Wattisfield church    Saturday 10th
  • Lunchtime recital Walsham  Tuesday 13th

There will be a commemorative service at St. Mary’s Church to which all are warmly welcomed.

The meeting of the Parish Council on 14th September has to go ahead as planned because councillors had already been summoned.

WALSHAM OPEN GARDENS 2022 – 40th Anniversary

Bank Holiday Sunday the 28th and Monday the 29th August

The Committee very much hope that you like the lovely picture, on the front cover of the August Observer, of the Committee’s retiring chair, Robin Newell and his wife Jill, sitting on the new bench in the Churchyard. The bench was bought and presented by the Committee to celebrate Robin’s 40 years of dedication to Walsham Open Gardens Weekend. He will be very much missed now that the mantle has been handed over to Collen Baker.

What can you do to help with this year’s 40th event?

Work is in progress to make this year’s event a special success but help and volunteers are essential to acheive this. For newcomers to the village this is a very enjoyable way to meet people and get involved. Could you…

  • Open your garden? The committee has achieved its ambition for 40 gardens in the 40th year but it is not too late to have your garden included this year. Contact Alison Findlay at | 07704311468
  • Bake some cakes? Help is always needed to provide cakes and help with the catering needed over the weekend. Contact | 01359 259242
  • Help with Art in the Church? Prople always needed for a couple of hours helping in wonderful surroundings. Contact Ian at | 01359 259140
  • Arrange some flowers? If you are a flower arranger then Cheryl would love to hear from you at | 01359 258349
  • Help with Car Parking? People needed for shifts in the car park which is a welcoming role as well as making sure that vehicles are parked to amek best use of space. Contact Grant at
  • Sell Raffle Tickets? Contact Mike Cousins at | 07843052970.
  • Help with setting up and taking down? Contact John Stebbing at | 07831 325610

Open Garden’s Weekend has been a big part of Walsham life since the early 1980’s bringing in visitors from far and wide and raising hundreds of thousands of pounds for the village, half of which has been spent on the upkeep of St. Mary’s and the rest has supported many of the organisations, clubs and societies that go towards making Walsham the wonderful place that it is. Please come and be involved and in a day which never fails to delight.

John Stebbing
Secretary to the Walsham le Willows Open Gardens TrusT
Robin Newell and his wife Jill on the bench commemorating Robin’s chairmanship of the event over the past 40 years.

Redevelopment of Play Area

Walsham le Willows Play Area refurbishment is scheduled for later this year. The play area will remain open for the rest of the summer however it will be closed from Monday October 3rd and this closure is anticipated to last for two weeks. The site will be closed off as it will become a construction site and there will be no permitted access whatsoever.

The good news is that the Play Area is then scheduled to re-open from the Friday before half term and will have the new equipment shown below.

Toddler Multi-Play unit
Toddler Swings
See-Saw Springer
Single Springer
Basket Swing
Zip Wire

Kerbed Gutter Sweeping – August 2022

The kerbed gutters in Walsham le Willows will get their second sweep this year in time for Gardens Weekend.

It has been advised that this will take place on Monday 22nd August. Time has not been advised.

If you keep a vehicle on the road and can move it to another location on the 22nd we will get a better sweep.


red triangle roadworks sign with work person in centre

Suffolk Highways are planning to carry out pre footway resurfacing repairs and footway resurfacing along C555 The Street, Walsham Le Willows.

The works are programmed to take place between 8th and 12th August 2022. The road will be closed each day between 8am and 4pm to ensure that works can be carried out safely.

For the duration of the road closure, traffic will be diverted via Summer Road, Sumner Road, A143, B1113, Walsham Road, Finningham Road, and vice versa. The Street between Summer Road and Wattisfield Road (Finningham Road) will be access only.

Roadworks are planned in advance, with extra days scheduled to allow for bad weather or other delays beyond the control of the contractors. If major changes to the work dates are required, information signs on site will be updated.

When roads are closed Highways put a diversion in place, that is accessible to vehicles of all shapes and sizes. Diversions are made as clear as possible along the route.

Latest updates to works can be found at Temporary road closures for Suffolk Highways roadworks” and on One.Network website.

Please contact Suffolk CC Customer Services if you have any questions: | 0345 606 6171 (option 2, option and hold)

The Black Death – TV series featuring Walsham le Willows

The historian, Lucy Worsley and a BBC film crew visited Walsham in the summer of 2021 to film part of her new series ‘Lucy Worsley Investigates’.

One of the episodes highlights the impact and outcomes of the Black Death in 1348 on people and communities.

Part of this episode focuses on Walsham le Willows because it provides particularly good judicial records (Manorial Court Rolls) surviving from that time, which give insight into this period of history. Between six and seven hundred people died of the plague in Walsham, roughly half of the population, decimating the community as happened across the country and continent. This episode and the rest of the series are available to view on iPlayer.

Festival of Suffolk Torch Relay coming to Walsham 24/05/2022

To herald the start of The Festival and the celebrations to mark HM the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee a symbolic torch is travelling through communities in Suffolk carried by local heroes.

The torch relay started on 13th may 2022 in Brandon then passes through 250 towns and villages, a distance of over 550 miles before reaching its final destination arriving at the Suffolk Show in Ipswich on Wednesday 1st June.

There is a live GPS tracker of the route which will be fun to follow the torch on its journey.  Click here to follow:

It comes through Walsham tomorrow Tuesday 24th May.

View the TorchTracker & Download the Route Card

#FestOfSuffolk #FoSTorchRelay

Community Council AGM – 2022

All village residents are invited to attend the
Annual General Meeting

The Walsham le Willows Community Council (charity number 278321)
Memorial Hall Walsham le Willows (charity number 304950)
Date: Wednesday 29th June 2022
Time: 7:30 pm
Place: Memorial Hall Walsham le Willows
I.Bartholomew – Honorary Treasurer – 1st June 2021

Walsham to be part of the Queen’s Green Canopy

The Wild Wood group are excited to share the news that planning and planting the second phase of the Wild Wood will begin in 2022. The Steering group are extremely grateful to Geoffrey Pollard who offered the tenancy of a 2 acre parcel of land adjacent to the current wood in response to the Wild Wood appeal.

This will allow the Wild Wood group to continue their work of promoting a wider variety of plant species and wildlife in the village. Hugh Reeve, the chair of the Old Town Trust (the charitable owner of the land), confirmed that after harvest this autumn the lease would be granted.

The Wild Wood is a valued village asset which many people used for walking, sitting as well as family and group events and activities. On April 16th over 100 people visited the Wild Wood for easter egg hunting, coffee and hot cross buns, demonstrating the benefit to the whole village of this valuable green space which is home to a wide variety of plants and trees that encourage bird and insect life.

Throughout the summer and particularly during the village Platinum Jubilee celebrations, the Wild Wood steering group plan to involve as many members of the community as possible in the project through the sharing of ideas for the space and practical involvement. The initial outline plan is to create a link with the allotments by creating an area of edible wild planting; to continue the church ride; to create a fritillary and wild flower meadow and to plant wooded areas of the most successful species from the original planting to connect the two areas.

The group look forward to working with the village to develop further green space and
are delighted that they are able to support the charitable aims of the Old Town Trust which include protecting the environment, conservation and heritage.

Annual Meeting of the Parish

Organised by the Parish Council this will take place on Saturday May 21st in the Memorial Hall between 1 and 4pm.

Refreshments will be provided by the Parish Council.

This provides an opportunity for residents in the village to meet and make contact with some of the groups and organisations in the village. Do please come along to meet your Parish Councillors and hopefully your District and County Councillors who may also be dropping in. If you have just moved into the village do come along and say hello.

The following groups have indicated that they will be attending this year (hopefully there will be some more): St Mary’s Church, Community Council and Coffee Shop, Community Lunch, Gardens Weekend Committee, History Group, Horticultural Show, Old Town Trust (village charity), Royal British Legion, Sports Club, Wild Wood, Women’s Institute. The Parish Council will hopefully have more news on the development of the Play Area.

Spring Bulbs in St Mary’s Churchyard

Don’t they look good!

Thanks to Garden Weekend Committee for the suggestion and the work done to pnat the bulbs purchased byt eh Parish Council in autumn of 2022.

The suggestion was also to revive the unpruned rose bushes. It transpires that most of these may now need to be replaced for some summer colour.

The Street – Road Closure 11th – 22nd April

red triangle roadworks sign with work person in centre

Highways are planning to carry out footway improvements along The Street, Walsham le Willows between 11 and 22 April 2022. The road will be closed each day to ensure that works can be safely carried out.

Residents will have both vehicular and pedestrian access to their homes and premises but may need to ask the highways operational team for specific access or to move barriers if works are taking place right outside their house, but this should be made available without undue delay and as practical.

Access to the Memorial Hall will be possible although the understanding of road users will be greatly appreciated by highways as they will have equipment and vehicles on the carriageway throughout, therefore that access at any given time may be via a different route into the village depending on the location of the team.

Traffic will be diverted via Summer Road, A143, B1113, Walsham Road, Finningham Road and vice versa.

Latest updates on roadworks can be found at”Temporary road closures for Suffolk Highways roadworks” and on One.Network website.

Extra days are always scheduled to allow for bad weather or other delays beyond the control of Highways. If major changes to work dates are needed, this will be published on the site.

Hosting Ukrainian Guests

There are currently 3 families in Walsham that are about to host Ukrainian guests.

We have put our names forward via the Royal Air Squadron (RAS) initiative to host displaced Ukrainians.  The RAS are well connected in Ukraine and are trying to fill the gap between UK nationals who are looking to help but who don’t have any specific Ukrainian contacts. The RAS have built up a database of displaced Ukrainians currently in Poland. They have also set up a team of 10 British-Ukrainian professionals in London to help manage the immigration process. The local placement is being coordinated from Great Barton.

We are now expecting to make contact with potential guests in the next week or so and would love to hear from anyone who might be considering hosting Ukrainian guests or who would be interested in helping out in any way.

Richard Winch
07931 709486 |

New Stage for Memorial Hall

The Memorial Hall now has a new stage fitting for the venue. The purchase was funded by the Parish Council from Community Infrastructure Levy grant receipts following a successful bid by the trustees of the Memorial Hall.

Eastern Angles – Booming Voices

Booming Voices aims to capture the magic of the Broads and explore its possible future. From a range of interviews with people living on this iconic landscape, the play fuses real voices, music and science to tell a new, unheard story of the Broads.

In the height of the pandemic, Jen, a young student, is shielding in an isolated cottage on the edge of a watery haven, housesitting for a Professor in the US who is investigating the impact of climate change. Together they explore the iconic wildlife and nature of the Broads, showing us just how vulnerable this seemingly timeless landscape is.

With the songs of acclaimed folk musician Jimmy Alridge, and insights from figures who helped discover the true nature of this wetland paradise (comparable to Ibiza, sang David Bowie), Booming Voices promises to be an evening that both prepares us for the future and gives us hope.

All ticket sales for this event are through EA’s box office | 01473 211 498

Play Area – Notification of Tender

The Parish Council have published a noticifation for tender for the supply and installation of new play equipment. The intended completion date is 31st July 2022.

The full tender notification can be found on the Contracts Finder Website

Completed tenders to be returned BY POST, envelope marked confidential, addressed to the Clerk. Decision on award of contract anticipated to be by 20th April but no later than 11th May 2022.


Social Broadband for Low Income Families

As broadband and mobile prices rise, social tariffs can help people stay connected

Broadband and mobile phone prices are increasing for both in-contract and out-of-contract customers in April. Because these increases are tied to inflation, which is currently at a record high, prices are going to increase by as much as 11.7% this year.

Tariffs cost as little as £15 per month for a fibre broadband connection, and sometimes include a call plan with inclusive calls too. BT, Virgin Media, Hyperoptic, KCOM (in Hull), Community Fibre and G.Network (in London) all offer social broadband tariffs that are available to people on low incomes in receipt of certain benefits.

Choose, a free service, has a full guide to social broadband tariffs that’s kept regularly updated to ensure people have access to the most up to date information.

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