France may hold link for new wealth

STOWMARKET'S new town clerk is looking across the Channel for inspiration to inject the town with prosperity.Themed markets selling products from France is one idea from Malcolm Clark as the town undergoes expansion by nearly a third from 14,000 residents to 19,000 by the end of the decade.

STOWMARKET'S new town clerk is looking across the Channel for inspiration to inject the town with prosperity.

Themed markets selling products from France is one idea from Malcolm Clark as the town undergoes expansion by nearly a third from 14,000 residents to 19,000 by the end of the decade.

New houses continue to be built, and the town's new clerk sees a great opportunity to create a prosperous community.

The town is twinned with Verneuil, in Normandy, and Mr Baker believes French produce could prove popular in Stowmarket's market.


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Malcolm Baker officially takes up his new role as town clerk on May 1, but is already working at the town council offices as manager after former clerk Maurice Cansdale, who had suffered from ill health, retired.

Mr Baker, who lives on the Chilton Hall estate in the town, said: "Long term I want to create a climate of prosperity, I see a lot of potential for smaller businesses, specialist businesses, and we want to attract them in to the town.

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"I want to see the town council doing all we can to promote the town to the business community that are not here already, promote the town centre. Stowmarket is in the centre of Suffolk, has the A14 and a railway line to London.

"We also need to promote our market more, it has been here hundreds of years and I would like to see that as a very attractive feature for towns people. We could perhaps have themed markets, French markets, we are after all twinned with a community in France.''

Mr Baker wants to make the town more attractive too, adding more flower baskets, support existing initiatives to improve Stowmarket, and create a climate for prosperity.

Qualified accountant Mr Baker, 53, worked for the former Eastern Electricity for nearly 30 years, predominantly in the firm's management, accounting and IT administration areas.

He is a qualified accountant and established his own practise in the town, "Baker and co'', in 1997.

Mr Baker has lived in Stowmarket for about 25 years and is married to Heather, also 53. The couple have four children, Kate, 18, James, 20, Michael, 26 and Richard, 30.

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