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Saffron Walden Local Information: 10 top things to know... more

  • 1. History of Saffron Walden

    Saffron Walden is a medieval market town with many timber-framed buildings. It has an outstanding Conservation Area and here you can see many examples of architecture ranging from the 12th to the 21st century. The name Walden developed from a Saxon word meaning Valley of the Britons. By the late 1300s the saffron crocus was being grown around the town of Walden and by the early...Read more 1500s the area was at the centre of the country's saffron industry, hence its name today. Read less

  • 2. Now in Saffron Walden

    Saffron Walden's market dates back to 1141 and is still at the heart of life in the town today. It is a pretty town in north west Essex with its history on display through its buildings and streets. It sits in a rural area and has plenty of its own open spaces for residents and visitors to enjoy.

  • 3. Events in Saffron Walden

    The Thaxted Festival celebrates music and dance and takes place in the village of Thaxted, on the outskirts of Saffron Walden. The Saffron Walden Carnival is a highlight in the town's annual calendar and includes events taking place over eight days in July. A variety of themed activities take place at Saffron Walden Museum over the year, including a chance to help decorate the ...Read moreChristmas tree in December. Family events and activities take place throughout the year at Audley End House and Gardens, including bug safaris and a chance to take a trip back in time. The Saffron Walden Mazes Festival is a celebration of the town's maze heritage and includes a variety of events and activities for all the family. Read less

  • 4. Attractions in Saffron Walden

    Audley End House and Gardens gives visitors a chance to glimpse Victorian life with hands-on activities and demonstrations. The parklands were designed by ‘Capability' Brown. Bridge End Garden is a series of Grade II listed gardens from the 19th century and have been carefully restored in Victorian style. There is a hedge maze in the gardens, which are free to visit. The Fry ...Read moreArt Gallery displays artistic talent from north west Essex and has changing exhibitions. Saffron Walden Museum is a family-friendly museum with a wide range of exhibits from mummy cases to woolly mammoths. The remains of a Norman castle can be seen in the grounds, which is also a spot for picnics. Read less

  • 5. Things To Do in Saffron Walden

    The town's common is the oldest of Saffron Walden's open spaces and on its eastern side is the largest turf maze in Europe. People of all ages enjoy following the path. Debden Antiques and Interiors sells antiques in a 17th century barn and includes a popular courtyard café. The One Minet Skate Park has three deep bowls and a street section for over 10s as well as a mini skate...Read more park and rail area for beginners. Read less

  • 6. Business in Saffron Walden

    The town's market is open on Tuesdays and Saturdays and sells a wide range of goods including food, clothing, jewellery, household items and tools. A country market takes place on Fridays selling cakes and savouries, preserves, fresh produce and craft goods. Farmers' markets take place on Saturdays in surrounding villages. There are many independent shops, cafes and restaurants...Read more in the town. The Rows are the original medieval shopping streets of the town and smaller businesses are found in these. Read less

  • 7. Transport in Saffron Walden

    Saffron Walden is easily reached from the M11, which links directly to London and Cambridge. The A11 links to Norwich in the east. Audley End train station is two miles from the town centre and has good services to Cambridge and London. Saffron Walden is 14 miles from Stansted Airport, which is easy to access by car, train or bus.

  • 8. Entertainment in Saffron Walden

    Audley End House and Gardens is a venue for open-air concerts. Big names such as Tom Jones have played there. Saffron Screen is a not-for-profit independent cinema that shows a wide range of films as well as international cultural events. Open-air concerts often take place at The Bandstand in the town's Jubilee Garden. These events are free.

  • 9. Famous Landmarks in Saffron Walden

    St Mary the Virgin Church is the largest church in Essex, and is nearly 200ft long. It was built in 1430.

  • 10. Interesting Facts about Saffron Walden

    Oliver Cromwell had his headquarters in Saffron Walden and he would have visited old buildings such as the Cross Keys.


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  • Festival includes Bollywood and Gromit

    Street dance, Bollywood and model making were just some of the popular activities on offer during the first weekend of a film festival. The Saffron Walden Film Festival began on May 12 with a weekend of film inspired events. Visitors enjoyed a Bollywood...

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  • Gardening award for school

    Green fingered pupils have won a top certificate for their school. Dame Bradbury’s School, in Saffron Walden, has been given the Level 4 Certificate in the RHS Campaign for Schools Gardening. The campaign encourages and supports schools to...

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  • Skateboarding opera celebrates the torch

    A skateboarding opera and a parade of colourful characters were part of celebrations to mark the start of the Olympic Torch relay in the UK. The Sparks Will Fly event took place in Saffron Walden on May 19 and included performances from schools and...

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  • Residents join big dig

    A prehistoric arrowhead and pottery from medieval times were among the findings at a special archaeological dig.The mass dig took place in a field in Clavering and was led by Dr Carenza Lewis, known for her role on Channel 4’s TimeTeam. Members of...

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