Change of leadership for successful Aylsham Cittaslow organisation


The Cittaslow Committee, made up 14 people, was formed in November 2004 and is one of five towns in Britain which is part of the international Cittaslow network.

It follows the ethos "living is good" and the original chairman Liz Jones, from Hungate Street, has stepped down for a new chairman – Cathy Warnock.

Ms Jones, who is also an Aylsham town councillor, said: "It was uncharted territory at the time when we signed up to Cittaslow because the only other town in the UK that was Cittaslow accredited was Ludlow."

Other towns which have signed up since are Diss, Berwick-upon-Tweed, Mold, in Wales, and Perth, in Scotland. Ludlow no longer has Cittaslow status.

The Cittaslow network, influenced by the slow-food movement, was started in Italy in 1999.

Ms Jones said some people in the town were sceptical about the Cittaslow committee , which runs on a shoestring, but it has ended up being self-supporting and sustainable.

She added: "I am very proud of what I and the other committee members have achieved in this town. It has raised the profile of Aylsham hugely."

Achievements include making Aylsham a plastic bag free area in May 2008, introducing a car- sharing club and reintroducing the town carnival, among other projects.

New chairman Ms Warnock, from St Michael's Avenue, Aylsham, said: "Cittaslow is good because it is a way to celebrate the old and move into the 21st century."

She added she hoped to revamp the monthly craft market, encourage more recycling and composting and do more to mark Fairtrade fortnight.

For more information visit www.aylsham-tc.gov.uk

Source: http://www.edp24.co.uk

Former long-standing chairman of Aylsham Cittaslow, left, Liz Jones, with new chairman Cathy Warnock. PHOTO: ANTONY KELLY