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News & Sport for week commencing Saturday: August 08

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Residents can soon have a commemorative bench installed along River Walk, in James Cooke Wood, or at the Whetmead Nature Reserve to leave a lasting tribute to their loved ones. Residents can choose to have a wooden or cast-iron bench installed, which cost up to £1,100. The fee also includes three year's maintenance.

Multimillion pound plans to install a new road between Braintree and Chelmsford have been announced to ease congestion in Chelmsford and provide direct access to the new Beaulieu train station. The £252m 'North Chelmsford Bypass' will link the Deres Bridge junction on the A131, near Great Leighs, with junction 19 of the A12 at Boreham.

Construction work on the 8km bypass could begin as early as 2022, with the first half of the scheme completed by 2024.

A series of 34 “shovel ready” projects across north Essex will receive a share of £85million from the Government’s Getting Building Fund that supports economic recovery and will create more than 9,000 jobs across the region.
Successful schemes include:
A £1.97 million grant for a new covered market in Jaywick that is hoped will create 86 jobs in the deprived area.
A grant of £7 million goes towards the new 'innovation and entrepreneurship' hub in Braintree that could create 450 jobs.
And a sum of £1.82 million will go towards the rollout of full fibre broadband to remote and rural parts of Essex creating a further 300 jobs.

Leisure centres across the Braintree district will start a phased re-opening this week after Braintree Council agreed £480,000 of emergency funding for the Fusion Lifestyle centres in Braintree, Witham and Halstead.

Leisure Centres will re-open for gym and group exercise on Monday. Adult lane swimming will start at Witham on August 10 and at Halstead and Braintree Swim and Fitness on September 7.

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