A town council was presented with one of the highest honours during their annual council meeting last night.

Waltham Abbey Town Council has been given the 'Quality Gold Status' as part of the Local Council Awards Scheme run by the National Association of Local Councils.

Cllr Peter Davey, chairman of the Essex Association of Local Councils was given the honour to hand the prestigious award to the council.

The award was given to the council based on "demonstrating that a council is at the forefront of best practice and achieves excellence in governance, community leadership and council development and has excellent business planning processes, ensuring value for money as well as constantly seeking new innovations and opportunities to improve".

Waltham Abbey Town Council, which was one of the first authorities to receive the honourable accreditation four years ago.

The “Quality Gold Status” was re-accredited as part of the Local Council Awards Scheme run by the National Association of Local Councils.

Cllr Davey said there was “no hestitiation” in recommending Waltham Abbey Town Council with the high status.

"Important projects have been achieved because of teamwork throughout the organisation with forward planning and using assets efficiently,” he said. "All projects have been for the benefit of the community, such as the outdoor gym equipment and new changing rooms at Larsens recreation ground achieved by a successful grant application of £20,000 from Essex County Council's Community Initiatives Fund."

Town clerk Kathryn Richmond said: "We are delighted to have achieved this prestigious award once again.

“To be awarded Quality Gold status by our peers is a major achievement by the council, both the members and staff working together.

"The scheme, run by the National Association of Local Councils and administered by the Essex Association of Local Councils, offers councils the opportunity to show that they meet the standards set by the sector, in governance, finance and community.

"The award means even more to councils as it is assessed by their peers."