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Haverhill town centre benches receive much-needed make-over




Visitors to Haverhill town centre in recent days may have noticed that nearly all the public benches, 22 in total, have received a much-needed make-over.

Haverhill Town Council is committed to making the High Street and Queen Street a nicer place to visit and so embarked on the refurbishment project that has seen all manner of improvements made, including replacing grimy wood, painting chipped metal work, and substituting worn out fixings.

The street furniture is owned by West Suffolk Council but Colin Poole, Haverhill Town clerk, explained why the town council was happy to get involved.

Steve Betteridge, Patrick Sneezum and Ben Prickett from Haverhill Town Council at work on a bench in Queen Street. Submitted picture
Steve Betteridge, Patrick Sneezum and Ben Prickett from Haverhill Town Council at work on a bench in Queen Street. Submitted picture

“Our town councillors recognise that there are always competing calls on West Suffolk’s budgets, and never more so than in the midst of a pandemic.

“Town councils have a specific remit to look out for their own community, improve wellbeing, and make Haverhill a pleasant place to live, work and visit.

“The benches may not be ours to maintain, but they are ours to sit on, so I support the judgement of our town councillors when they decided this was a project worthy of our attention.”

One of the new-look benches in Haverhill town centre. Submitted photo
One of the new-look benches in Haverhill town centre. Submitted photo

Aaron Luccarini who represents Haverhill on West Suffolk Council as well as being the member for Haverhill Central on the town council added: “The improved benches have made a huge difference to the street scene and I look forward to seeing them being enjoyed in the nicer weather.

“Haverhill Town Council staff have done a fantastic job in repairing them. The staff truly deserve all the praise they have received both in person and through social media.”

Ben Prickett, who under normal circumstances works in the technical department of Haverhill Arts Centre led a team of town council employees, some of whom are furloughed, on the renovations.

He said: “Our team mostly had no experience of this type of this work but we went out with a can do attitude, got stuck in, and it really paid off.

One of the old time-worn benches in Haverhill
One of the old time-worn benches in Haverhill

“We’re proud of the result and hope it will make a difference in Haverhill for years to come.”

Haverhill company Bradnams supplied the wood and work continues to finish all the benches.

Read more: All the latest news from Suffolk

Read more: All the latest news from Haverhill