Berden named as an Essex Village of the Year

Berden Fete. Picture: Robert Talks

Berden Fete. Picture: Robert Talks

Robert Talks

An Uttlesford parish has been named as one of the Essex Villages of the Year for 2017.

Berden, between Stocking Pelham and Rickling, won in the class 4 category of the competition – for villages with a population of between 4-700.

It was also named as fourth overall in the Essex Village of the Year competition, run by the Rural Community Council for Essex.

Commenting on Berden, population 600, the judges said the village boasts an amazing annual fete which started in the 1940s and is run by more 100 volunteers – and attended by more than 1,000 people, consistently raising around £10,000 for local facilities and organisations.

They also praised the ‘Bus stop shop’ which sets up twice a year in a bus shelter, selling local produce with profits going to village organisations, and the “very successful” Social Club described as the main organiser of village events and which – since the pub closed – provides a bar on Friday evenings manned by volunteers.

Meanwhile Great Bardfield, Ashdon and Manuden were all given merit awards by judges.

The top prize went to Terling.

The winners were announced at a ceremony held at Chelmsford City Racecourse last night (Wednesday, July 5).

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