Buttercross, April 17, 2015: Clubs and firms give good news to Swaffham

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One thing this column must never be accused of is showing any political bias.

Observations and comments made occasionally may have leanings towards a particular party but, be that party red, blue, yellow or sky blue pink with black dots it makes no difference.

Political parties of all colours have produced policies that our country has benefitted greatly from.

In this instance, however, one must comment on the considerable rise in the social membership of the local Conservative Club, so impressive that it has recently been voted the top Conservative club in the eastern region.

We all know of, and have been concerned about, the loss in our town of decent community based locations for socialising, and here there is more of a story of just that.

The loss of the old Ex-servicemen’s Club premises in Ash Close many years ago hit our town hard, particularly when it was then later followed by the loss of the re-located club in Lynn Street.

Similarly, the Sydney Dye Labour Party premises in London Street were also lost to our town many years ago. Now however we have a social club doing really well. It is a sad further fact that the town’s only remaining full sized snooker table, available to townspeople, is situated in these premises.

There was a time when our town had numerous such tables available for the public’s use and there is many a tale to be told concerning matches on those tables.

Keeping with a more positive theme, we can now turn to the businesses that move ahead and put us firmly on the regional map.

The EcoTech Innovation Business Park is home to Edwards and Blake, a catering company which started from very small beginnings in 1997. It now employs some 600 staff.

Apparently there have been, as one would expect, some ups and downs over these past 18 odd years but the overriding general direction is ever upwards. How good to hear such news.

Good wishes go out from this column to its proprietors Shirley Edwards and Caroline Blake. May their kitchens get ever busier and their business ever more prosperous. We all benefit from such entrepreneurs.

Another recent success story concerns our town golf club and particularly the head steward, Samantha Hudson, who has just won the title of Steward of the Year in a national competition.

Again our town’s name becomes better known than perhaps it was before.

Whenever one hears a story like this, one cannot help but think back to those days long ago when if a drink was needed after a game of golf a trapdoor was lifted in the timber floor in the old clubroom bar and from the beer crate hidden below would be taken a bottle of light or brown ale.

However, this would only have been possible if Arthur Rogers, the committee member responsible for such matters, had remembered to replenish stocks.