Saffron Walden has a rich heritage of old buildings and it is a pleasure to wander around the ancient streets and market square which is dominated by the library building, formerly the Corn Exchange, with its clock tower and weather vane and the lovely 18th Century Town Hall. A twice weekly market is held here with a great selection of stalls to complement the town’s appealing range of independent shops, including many boutiques and gift/interiors shops, and restaurants.
Saffron Walden has always been very popular with families due to the exceptional primary and secondary schools. The recreational, social and sporting facilities in the town are excellent and it also plays host to a prestigious bi-annual literary festival. In 2013, the award winning Saffron Hall was opened within the grounds of Saffron Walden County High School bringing a world class 730-seat performance space to the town.
English Heritage owned Audley End House, a stunning Jacobean mansion house set in extensive grounds, is a lovely place to visit and a range of family events are held throughout the year. The miniature railway is a great attraction for young children as is the award winning family friendly town Museum which sits beside the ruins of the twelfth-century Walden Castle.
Other attractions include the town’s fine parish church, which is the largest non-cathedral church in Essex and two mazes, one of which is an ancient turf maze (labyrinth) on the Common and the other within the beautiful Bridge End Gardens.
The area surrounding the town is rural with many picture postcard villages, but it still offers easy access to the M11 and Stansted Airport with its increasing number of European and long haul destination. The mainline railway station at nearby Audley End has regular trains to London Liverpool Street and Cambridge so it is an ideal location for the commuter.