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‘I’MBACKING ACCRINGTON’ her beloved home town and Broadchurch role HESMONDHALGH JULIE EXC L US I VE AN ENGLIShMAN, IRIShMAN, KAShMIRIMAN AND A POLIShMAN we quiz them all on their family values FAMILY


FUNDRAISE for scoreboard

B u s i n e s s h e r o s o f H y n d b u r n | B r e a t h i n g l i f e i n t o b r o k e n b u i l d i n g s | W h a t ’ s o n t h i s w i n t e r

WELCOME to your brand new LIFE : STYLE !

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Welcome to the first edition of LIFE : STYLE magazine - a pilot publication for 2017 - showcasing all that is good about Accrington and its surrounding towns and villages


ommunity wellbeing, education, tourism and the fortunes of the borough are at the heart of this project. Our publisher Murray Dawson, Managing Director of Sco Dawson Advertising, is a Clayton lad who now lives in Great Harwood. LIFE : STYLE is part of his company’s ongoing civic pride initiative which supports and celebrates the people and projects working to improve life for people in the borough. Sco Dawson Advertising has launched the magazine pilot scheme to see if we can engage with the community, retailers, the business and tourism sectors to promote this oen under promoted area of Lancashire. We have had wonderful support fromHyndburn Council, MP Graham Jones and Accrington Stanley Football Club in puing together this publication. This is YOURmagazine and we would like you to share your thoughts, ideas, photographs and suggestions for a beer future for the borough. One of the best-loved figureheads of the area is former Coronation Street star Julie Hesmondhalgh, who I was lucky enough to interview for our cover story. Julie has never swayed from her belief in the spirit of Accrington - and says wherever she travels in the world - someone has always heard of her beloved “Accy”. There is a lifestyle mix of events, recipes, housekeeping tips and a celebration of local businesses and facilities. Some wonderful companies have started their successful journeys from humble beginnings here – so do check out our business section on pages 50-59 – for some really inspirational stories. Finally thank you to everyone who took part in our first issue and we will be back with another bumper read in the spring of 2017. Enjoy your magazine! What do you most love about Hyndburn? Tell us about your favourite beauty spots, and what we can do to promote the area’s many assets and aractions. Inside we hope you’ll find a lively mix of stories fea- turing just a few of the people who work hard for the Borough of Hyndburn behind the scenes.

LIFE : STYLE magazine’s Spring/Summer edition will include features on Warner Street, the first 18 months of Accrington Stanley Football Club under new ownership, and the amazing work undertaken by the Christian and Muslim groups working together for the homeless. We will tackle our second Ethnic Maers feature, bring you all the first exciting news on the Accrington Food Festival and showcase a summer of great events. The business section will display the diversity of services and manufacturing which is alive and kicking in the area. This Magazine will be driven through paid advertising. You can start booking now for the Spring/Summer edition by contacting Sue Lawson –



Julie Hesmondhalgh on her beloved Accy

LIFE : STYLE reflecting what YOU love most about Hyndburn

10 What’s On thisWinter 11 TVresale king JesseMcClure 12 -13 Guide to our much-loved parks 14-15 Gail Knight on the rebirth of the Civic Arts Centre 16-17 We follow the Stanhill HeritageTrail 18-21 Clayton Boxing Club 22 -23 Geing to know . . . MPGraham Jones 25 Competition Page 26-39 OssyMills food heaven, recipes, food features 40-43 EthnicMaers – four men discuss FamilyValues 44-45 Bumble takes a trip downmemory lane 46-47 Why I love Hyndburn – Councillor Clare Cleary 48-49 Where does the name of your town come from? 50-59 Business Heroes – read the inspiring stories of Hyndburn’s entrepreneurs and fund raisers 60-63 Check out the hoest looks for the chilly months ahead –with EXTREME fashion 64-65 Transformyour bedroom 66-67 Jesse turns household trash into cash 68-70 Health and Beauty

Sarah Rigg Editor Email:

LIFE : STYLE magazine is produced and printed by Sco Dawson Advertising Ltd. Dawson Court, Billington Road, Lancashire, BB11 5BW. 01282 426 846.

Left: A riot of autumn colour in Hyndburn.

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LIFE : STYLE exclusive...talking with Julie Hesmondhalgh

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“My dad’s dreamwas to see me managing a building society in Accrington.” Actress Julie Hesmondhalgh on work, family and her beloved “Accy” interview by Sarah Rigg B

orn in Rough Lee and brought up in a two up two down terrace on Elmfield Street in Church - actress Julie Hesmondhalgh will tell you she and her family are as ordinary as they come. Her parents were blue collar office workers – dad at Crown Paints in Darwen, and mumwith Emerson & Renwick - the engineering firm at the end of their road. “We were ordinary,” Julie says. “Me and my brother Dave would come home, watch Neighbours, eat Yorkie bars and my mumwould make tea. “Thursdays mum and dad would supplement their wages by collecting the pools and then they’d come home and we’d all watch a Thursday night disaster movie.” Down to earth maybe. Ordinary – not really. Unless every other house on the street was filled with first edition poetry anthologies, literary classics by novelist Graham Greene and an extensive classical music collection. In fact it wasn’t until Julie’s dad John passed away two years ago that she discovered his own incredible talent for writing poetry. “Dadwas a very spiritual man and hewrote thesewonderful diaries and poetry, aman verymuch in touch with nature. Every day when hewas working in Darwen hewouldwalk

“You’ve just got to try and put some boundaries in. Mine aren’t allowed the phones in their roomand not at the table – and onweek- ends not before 12. Although, that doesn’t always happen if you don’t want to have a huge row!” Perhaps one of themost notable parenting lessons passed down by dad John andmum Maureen is to let children follow their dreams. “Mymumwas and still is someonewho absolutely supportsme and Dave inwhatever we do, and growing up she never got in theway of our dreams. My dadwould have lovedme to be a bankmanager in Accrington – that would have been his dream. Mumwas the onewho let us fly more. Mum’s saying is: ‘You don’t have children to live your life for you. Let themfly.’ “And they ended upwith a professor and an actor for children.They used to laugh and say ‘we don’t knowhowwe got you and our Dave”. If either of Julie’s girls wants to become actors shewon’t stand in their way: “A lot of actors discourage their children fromgoing into the job because it’s a hard life. But really, what isn’t a hard life these days? In acting what you end up doing is meeting the most amazing people, and if you can find a way of coping with the unemployment and the disappointment and develop the resources and the resilience to deal with those - you can have a really amazing life - even if you are not mega successful.”

up to DarwenTower and at theweekends hewould always be in the Lakes or the RibbleValley pounding the hills. Bothme andmy brother have inherited that fromhim, it’s goodmental health to get out in the countryside. I’ve read somuch about it recently and I thinkmy dad had an innate sense that he could heal himself through nature and art.” Through various tragic circumstances in John Hesmondhalgh’s life he had a thwarted education and le school very early.

You don’t have children to live your life for you. Let themfly

Adds Julie: “He passed his 11 plus but wasn’t allowed to go to grammar school – which back then was the only way to get a decent education. “Dad le school very early but always loved books and music, so it was quite an unusual lile terraced house in some ways.” Also under the roof of the unusual lile house was Julie’s brother Dave – seven years older than Julie -and now an Oxford graduate and a professor. “It was just a wonderful moment in my dad’s life when Dave went to Oxford. It was the life he could have had if he’d had a different upbringing. “I was only 11 at the time, but I remember vividly how amazing it was. And what it meant to us as a family and the peace it gave my dad. Being able to go and visit him and hold his own discussing the things they discussed there.” The other side to Julie’s father was playful. “We’d play a lot of games, like amillion ways to catch a ball.We had this game calledNonchalant Ease, which I’ve passed on to my children - and you have to try and catch the ball in themost nonchalant way possible.” Julie has two girls aged 15 and 12, and in an era of smart phones and iPads we both agreed it is amiracle to be able to unglue today’s teens from their screens. But like parents everywhere, Julie and actor husband Ian Kershawdo their best.

Left: Main photograph shot in Accrington by Sally Lord. Other shots from top- 1. Julie with mumMo and niece Rosa. 2. Receiving the Freedom of Hyndburn. 3. Julie’s dad John and mumMo on holiday at Blackpool.

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ulie returns to prime time TV in the new series of Broadchurch which is expected to air early 2017. It is her first major screen role since leaving behind the award-winning Coronation Street character Hayley Cropper. She filmed her last scenes on the cobbles on November 3rd 2014; the same year that dad John passed away at the age of 82; the local church packed to the raers with more than 100 mourners. “It had been such a busy and crazy year, I needed some time out,” says Julie. “I decided to go to the Lake District for a couple of days and hired a coage, just me and my dog. I really just needed to get my head around everything that had happened and look at the next stage of my life, before my Corrie leaving do on the Friday.” Julie took her dad’s diaries along – which spanned back to 1946 and documented his courtship with her mum. She adds: “Coincidentally there was also quite a lot of stuffwhich had been wrien while dad was in the Lakes too – a place which he loved. It was nice to think I was there reading his words in the same place. “So what I thought was going to be a couple of days geing my head around dad and Corrie, turned into a couple of days about really geing to knowmy dad, aer he’d le us - and geing to know him as a young man. It was beautiful. ”The first piece Julie read was a poem her father had wrien called, ‘The Character I Should Love to Have’. “Dad had wrien it when he was 17 and it was about the kind of man he wanted to be. Which was somebody who loves nature, who appreciates the worth of genius, the music of Chopin, the poetry of Robert Frost, it was all this. Really, they were incredible words from a 17 year old.” Julie wrote John’s diaries and poetry into a play. “I did

As beautiful as Dorset is - where series three of Broadchurch was filmed - Julie is always happy to return to Lancashire. “I love Accrington and all of Lancashire. Morecambe is lovely – that entire coast has always been really special to us. My kids have grown up going to St Anne’s and Blackpool. We love the beach café at St Annes - me and my mumwent there the other week. “The Ribble Valley is somewhere our family has always loved. My brother lives in Yorkshire now, we oen meet half way in the Ribble Valley and go for drives around there. It’s absolutely gorgeous, people don’t realise just how beautiful it is – although it’s such a short drive fromAccy. “It’s where my mum used to go on her holidays with her mum. My grandma had a hut on the top ofWhalley Nap, and they would walk up there every weekend. No running water, they would get their water from a running well. Right up until my mum and dad got together they had that hut. “Another special place is Hambledon. My dad’s ashes are spread on the there.”

Dad died the same year I le Corrie - it was crazy

two showings above a pub in Manchester and my mum and brother came –both performances were packed out.” Aer spending last summer in Dorset filming Broadchurch, Julie was glad to get home to spend time with her husband, kids and mumMaureen. “My mum is in her 80s now and is a great Accrington

woman. She is very political, not party political, but has a real sense of justice in her. She is this constantly loving, fierce, brilliant woman, but not as romantic as my dad. She’s the person who is still here, making me cakes and at the other end of the phone when I need her.” Julie laughs: “And the books she reads – hardcore, grim thrillers that have pictures of a knife dripping blood on the cover. Her musical tastes include Meatloaf and Queen. She is brilliant, absolutely brilliant. Quite a cynical soul and amazing spirit. You would never think she was in her 80s at all.” Julie andMaureen meet up every week for a stroll round Oswaldtwistle Mills or for lunch at a garden centre in Clayton. “We also get to the seaside. My brother takes her out every week as well – so she does alright!”

Above: Julie receives the Freedom of Hyndburn from former mayor Coun. Munsif Dad.

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The happy and proud day Julie Hesmondhalgh became Freeman of the Borough of Hyndburn


f you ever spot Julie Hesmondhalgh herding pigs up Abbey Street there’s no need for alarm. This is just one of the many benefits bestowed on the Accrington actress aer being made a Freeman of the Borough of Hyndburn. During the gliering ceremony – which Julie wasn’t expecting – her life and career were celebrated by friends, family, teachers and colleagues from present and past. “I was dead chuffed and really honoured because Accy is really special to me,” says Julie. “I didn’t realise it was going to be such a big deal. I thought the mayor would give me a certificate or something in the council offices.” The evening was arranged by Michael Cunliffe at the council. Adds Julie: “The poor bloke. I kept messing him around with the dates because of work and stuff. I drove him mad. Lile did I know that behind the scenes this huge evening was being planned, where the most incredible things were happening for me.” “They had drummers frommy old secondary school, Moorhead, and dancers from St Christopher’s came and did a whole scene from the Lion King.” “But possibly one of my favourite bits of the night was when some theatre students came fromAccy College and did some bits fromSimon Stephens’ plays.” In a moving tribute to Julie’s late dad; a leer he had once sent to her primary school, Hyndburn Park, was found and projected on to the screen. Adds Julie: “Hyndburn Park had found the leer in their old files that he’d wrien toMrs. Bennet the then head teacher of the infant school. It was emotional to see dad’s writing on this special paper he always used, just saying, ‘Thank you for all the help and guidance you have given to Dave and Julie for seing them up in life.’ Then they got four children fromHyndburn Park; these four absolutely gorgeous kids, to recite the leer in unison and really cute voices.” One of Julie’s most inspirational teachers fromAccrington College was there to watch his former student being honoured in Hyndburn. “Martin Cosgrif was an amazing tutor,” she says. “He taught us everything he knew to make it seem possible for us to be able to go to drama school and lead a different kind of life and become actors. He had so much faith in us all. While I was at the London Academy of Musical and Dramatic Arts, there were five of us fromAccrington at the same time. That is just a testament to his talent.” Julie adds: “Those years between 16 and 18 were formative for me and where I found myself. Siing in Elmfield Street with my new theatre studies friends, listening to Mozart, eating biscuits, puing the world to rights…it was at Accrington College that I met some of my greatest friends, friends for life.” In her speech to guests Julie mentioned some special people in her life including Sylvia Lancaster and all at the Sophie Lancaster Trust for their inspiring work.

Another special mention went toMaundy Relief and the late, inspirational, Dorothy McGregor. Julie says: “I had to thank Dorothy McGregor who was Freeman of the Borough; who as you know, set upMaundy Relief and was a great friend of mine. She taught us all about real love and giving and charity. Their incredible work continues today, led by the wonderful Lucy Hardwick who carries on the legacy to this day.” At the end of the evening Julie told all the youngsters who had performed for her: “Every time you’re creative, every time you sing, or write a song, or dance, or choreograph, or bang a drum, or sketch a portrait, scribble a poem or act a part, you are making the world a beer place. Art is not an indulgence or a luxury. It’s an essential part of living.”

Dorothy McGregor of Maundy Relief was a great friend of mine

Above: Julie becomes a Freeman of the Borough in 2015. Right: Julie back in Lancashire after filming Broadchurch.

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turn your chills into thrills with a jam-packed season of activities for all the family WHAT’S ON


November When: 25th (Friday) – 26th (Saturday) - varying times. What: It’s a Panto Jim but not as we know it!

January When: 3rd-6th ( Tuesday to Friday) What: Activity Club by Just Imagine NW. Option 1: Half Day (10-3pm), 4Day Course: £40. Choose your days: £11 per day. Option 2: Full Day (8.30-5.30pm), 4Day Course: £65. Choose your days: £18 per day. The Activity Club Courses include Arts &Cras, MultiSports, Cooking Classes, Language Lessons, Science Experiments, Zorbing +muchmore! We love introducingThemed Days, Pyjama and Cinema Club and Party Hour too.Teamand Confidence Building also plays a huge part in what we do. Our aim to equip children with crucial social skills as early on as possible andwewill use various techniques andmotivational guidance in order to nurture this growth. A packed lunchmust be provided alongwith a large still drink. Children shouldwear comfortable clothing and pack an old T-shirt in their bags for painting& arts 'n' cras. Where: Civics Art Centre andTheatre, 155 Union Road, Oswaldtwistle, BB5 3HZ.To obtain a booking formplease contact Danielle Smith on: 07714 301530 or email: February When: 18th (Friday). What: Mayor of Hyndburn’s Charity Boxing Match (Black tie/Lounge suit). Raisingmoney forMayorTimO’Kane’s chosen charities, including Clayton Amateur Boxing Club, this gliering event will see Irish Select v English Select bale it out in the ring. Enjoy a reception in theMayoral parlour before enjoying a three coursemeal and entertainment in the spectacular ballroom.The Ballroomboasts two bars; one a speciality cocktail bar with a dizzying birds-eye viewdown on the boxing ring . TheMayoral Charity Commieewishes to thank WhatMore UK (Wham) as themain sponsors of this event. Accrington Pals Cafe and "bun appetite" outdoor cafe AccringtonMarket Hall have helped by donating costs to accommodate the Irish Select. Where: The Ballroomat AccringtonTown Hall. Tickets are: £37.50 or table of 12 £420. Programme advertisement available and tickets by contactingMiles Parkinson 01254 301687

DAFTO in association with the Civic Theatre Present: It’s a Panto Jim but not as we know it! The crew of the Spaceship Centipede, Captain James Nerk, Snoy, Knock and Lieutenant Hula Hoop interrupt their hundred year mission to help the Seven Dwarfs wake SnowWhite and help Cinderella find the man of her dreams. Just another day on the final frontier, give or take an evil Queen and a pair of ugly step sisters! Where: Civics Art Centre and Theatre, 155 Union Road, Oswaldtwistle, BB5 3HZ. Tel: 01254 398 319. Tickets are: £7 for adults, £5 for concessions and £20 a family ticket! (max 2 adults). December When: 3rd (Saturday), 10am – 1pm. What: Eco Group Christmas Fayre. Where: St Christopher’s High School, Queens RdW, Accrington BB5 4AY. The Ballroom in conjunction with Just Imagine presents . . .The Grinch Experience. Join us for a festive musical theatre performance and help The Grinch grow his heart three whole sizes! Where: The Ballroom at Accrington Town Hall, 42 Blackburn Rd, Accrington BB5 1LA. Tickets are: Children £8, Adults £4. Tel: 01254 380293 for tickets. When: 4th (Sunday) 12.30pm - 2.30pm. What: The Chronicles of Narnia Experience With Susan, Prince Caspian, MrTumnus and Jadis, theWhiteWitch. Includes a musical theatre performance; Spell castingworkshopwith theWhiteWitch ; Duelling masterclasswith PrinceCaspian; Faun taleswithMrTumnus andMapmakingwith Susan Pevensie. Also includes cupcake decorating, games, prizes and a photo opportunity. Where: The Ballroom at Accrington Town Hall, 42 Blackburn Rd, Accrington BB5 1LA. Tickets are: Children £8, Adults £4 - Call the Box Office on 01254 380 293 or email for more info. When: 6th (Tuesday) 7pm for 7.30pm. What: Accrington Lions Club Annual 48th Charity Boxing Dinner. All proceeds will go to the Accrington Lions Charity Funds to help people in the community. Where: Dunkenhalgh Hotel, Blackburn Rd, Clayton-le-Moors, Blackburn BB5 5JP. For more information or to order tickets Tel Purves Ali: 07931 756248 or Tony Clarkson: 07779 840282 E-mail: When: 11th (Sunday) Doors open at 7pm. Starts 8pm – 11pm. What: Manford’s Comedy Club. Every month Jason Manford selects four fantastic comedians from the comic circuit and brings them to us! Line up TBC. Age 16+. Where: Civics Art Centre and Theatre, 155 Union Road, Oswaldtwistle, BB5 3HZ. Tel: 01254 398 319. Doors open at 7pm. Starts 8pm – 11pm. When: 3rd (Saturday), 3pm – 5pm. What: The Grinch Experience.

It’s a panto Jim but not as we know it

Above: Jam-packed fun for all the family.

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Fresh from the United States - TV star Jesse McClure in his quest to turn British Treasure into American Gold interview by Lyndsay Dawson L

ancashire’s hoest new celebrity resident JesseMcClure has been churning up the TVratings with his brand new showBritishTreasure, American Gold or #BTAG. Jesse, who shot to fame as themajor breakout star fromaddictive in US reality show Storage Hunters - is back in his brand new series premiering on Quest. Growing up in Canyon County, California, but now living in Lancashire, Jessewas fascinated by the resale trade froman early age andworked for his family’s antiquemall. In his new series, Jesse puts $100k of his family’s hard earned cash on the line. BritishTreasure, American Gold is a vibrant and original take on theworld of antiques and trading. JesseMcClure, self-dubbed ‘Resale King’ heads to the UK completewith his 1978 black Pontiac Firebird (named Lilly) to travel the length and breadth of the country searching for antiques and collectibles. Frombone china vases to Elton John’s gold plated sink, vintage one armed bandits, armouredmilitary vehicles and Britney Spears’s thong! BritishTreasure, American Gold focuses on the unique and unexpected side of British history, shining an American spotlight on the country’s eclectic past. Jesse visits stately homes, collectors’ markets and even car boot sales on the hunt for typically British curios and valuable artefacts to send back to his family’s antique business in Los Angeles. Taking full advantage of everything the UK has to offer, Jesse has beenmaking regular guest appearances all over the United Kingdom including the largestMCMComic Con in Europe. Over 130,000 people aended the event held in London over theweekend of 28th to 30th October and lucky aendees got towatch a brand newepisode of #BTAG a full five days before it aired on Quest. With a packed schedule still ahead, make sure you keep your eye on where Jesse might be next, you never know he could pop up at an event near you!

from Britney Spears’ thong to

Elton John’s gold-plated sink

Above and Left: Jesse on the set of his Quest show British Treasure, American Gold.

Do you have a request for Jesse? Contact

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In 1850 an American tourist strolled through the UK’s first ever public park in Birkenhead – and was awestruck by what he saw. So stunned by the splendour of this British phenomenon, the man took his experience back to the United States. Seven years later the same Frederick Law Olmsted created NewYork’s iconic Central Park – arguably the most famous of all in the world. But thanks to Frederick’s foreign foray you can still spot today its British DNA. Like most parks here, Hyndburn’s were created in the Victorian era. Thanks to millions of pounds of heritage loery funding our parks are now enjoying a renaissance in the face of funding cuts. Hyndburn has eleven spectacular parks for people to enjoy all year round. Here we share the lowdown on some of the borough’s lovely landmark parks . . . Public parks are big, beautiful, and quintessentially British. And Hyndburn boasts some of the country’s best . . .

Oak Hill Park a green flag park Set your sat nav to BB5 2BN and find this stunning space serving both the town of Accrington and the Borough of Hyndburn. It is 8.7 hectares and as the name suggests it is a sloping site with a large war memorial at one of the highest points within the park. Situated between Manchester Road and Hollins Lane in Accrington and can be entered fromHollins Lane. Features/Facilities: • Original mansion (restored) • Disabled patrons' parking facility •War memorial • 2 bowling greens • Tennis courts • Refurbished duck pond and fountain • Multi-use games area; all weather tarmac surface for football, cricket and basketball • Children's playground (suitable for 4 to 12 years) • Japanese rockery with water feature • Pagoda • Bandstand • Mature woodland • Open grassed areas • Bowls and tennis pavilions • Ornamental shrub planting and horticultural display • Dog waste bins • Measured, marked walks with activities Fascinating Fact: Lewis Carroll wrote ‘Alice inWonderland’ for Alice Liddell who was married to Reginald Gervis Hargreaves – owner of the estate in 1889 prior to it becoming a public park.

Lowerfold Park a green flag park Lowerfold, first opened on June 27, 1914, occupies a roughly triangular shaped site of around 2.3 hectares in the angle of Lowerfold Road and Cliffe Lane close to Great Harwood town centre. For its size, Lowerfold Park offers a good range of facilities catering for different age groups and interests. The park has a belt of mature trees running along the perimeter adjacent to Lowerfold Road and Cliffe Lane. Served by four pedestrian entrances there is no car parking within the park but unrestricted parking around it. Features/Facilities: • Tennis courts • Pavilion • An extensive children's play area • A bowling green which is freely available for use by residents of Hyndburn • Dog waste bins • Mature tree cover Fascinating Fact: The park became the centre of social life for local Congregationalists for more than thirty years until aer the SecondWorldWar when it was purchased by the Urban District Council of Great Harwood and became known as Lowerfold Park.

Gay Park a green flag park and golden green apple award Set around 3 hectares, with four entrances and situated to the north of Hyndburn Road in the township of Church. Gay Park is named aer the Gay family that lived in Elmfield Hall. It was officially opened Gay Park on 26 June, 1920. Elmfield Hall and its grounds were donated by the Gay family to Church Urban District Council along with the sum of £500 for the maintenance of the park as a gi for the people of Church. Features/Facilities: • Elmfield House was originally the home of the Gay Family • Children's playground • The Parlour at Elmfield Hall (cafe) • Prospects community nursery • Rockeries

• War memorial designed by famous local sculptureWalter Marsden • Bowling green • Disabled patron's parking within park gates Fascinating Fact:

A well was recently discovered in the centre of the courtyard behind Elmfield Hall and may have been used for early experiments connected with dyeing fabrics. This would require research by an industrial archaeologist to verify, but may shed some further light on the history of the Gay Family.

From top: Lowerfield Park and Gatty Park.

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Peel Park a green flag park Overlooking the town of Accrington, Peel Park occupies an elevated position at the top of Avenue Parade. The land that today comprises Peel Park and the Coppice was acquired for recreational use by the Town Council of Accrington from the Peel family who originated fromPeel Fold, Oswaldtwistle and who are notable for Sir Robert Peel the Prime Minster and founder of the Police force. MrWilliamPeel officially opened the park on 29 September, 1909. There are a number of access points to the wider countryside known as the Coppice. The Coppice is excellent for brisk, variable terrain walks. A number of small forestry planting projects in recent years have added greater interest to the site and in turn a greater diversity in animal species to the area. Features/Facilities: • The formal area of Peel • Children's play area • Bowling green • Tennis court • Bowls pavilion • Multi-use games area catering for basketball, football and cricket • Dog waste bins The wider area: • Mature woodland • Orienteering course • Informal nature study • The grounds of what was Arden Hall and the footprint of the old hall • The footprint of Plantation Mill • The top of the Coppice • Amonument to commemorate the gi of land by the Peel Family on the summit • An extensive area of heathland Fascinating Facts: 1. The Accrington Pals baalion, were reputed to have trained on the Coppice in rough ground to the northeast of the memorial before going to fight in the FirstWorld War in 1916. 2. At trig point the park is 254 metres above sea level. 3. Blackpool Tower is visible on a clear day from the summit. Mercer Park a green flag park Formerly the grounds of Mercer House; an imposing building that occupies a central position within the park. This is one of the only parks in the Borough which occupies a flat site making it easily accessible for people with disabilities. Six entrances serve the park. Mercer House took its name from its most notable occupant John Mercer (1891-1866) who became famous as the father of textile chemistry. Among many achievements he is most remembered for developing a process for the treatment of coon fabric which was to become known as Mercerisation. Features/Facilities: • Car parking for disabled users only • Children's playground • Halfpipe • Multi-use games area • Youth shelter • Sensory garden • 1 bowling green which is freely available for use by residents of Hyndburn • War memorial • Mercer House (authorised use only) • Mature woodland • Shrub beds • Herbaceous borders • Heather bed • Coming soon - Outdoor gym Fascinating Fact: A scheme is available for groups and individuals to help the community and contribute to the development of the park.

Cutwood Park a green flag park Cutwood, the youngest of Hyndburn’s parks, occupies a 9 hectares, roughly square site in the angle of Blackburn Road and Cut Lane, Rishton, abuing Rishton Reservoir. The main entrance is at the corner of Blackburn Road and Cut Lane. The park is mainly flat and is crisscrossed by an adequate network of footpaths, thus offering potential for disabled visitors. The park adjoins a reservoir, which is unique amongst Hyndburn's parks. The land occupied by Cutwood was acquired from the Dunkenhalgh Estate and conveyed to the Urban District of Rishton for use as a public park as a gi to local people in memory of Captain Charles Bernard Petre (1870-1949) by his son, Captain Robert Petre and the trustees of the Dunkenhalgh Estate in 1953. Features/Facilities: • Children's playground suitable for ages 4 to 12 years, in two separate areas for toddlers and juniors • Floral displays at the entrance • Senior football pitch • Mature woodland • Views across Rishton reservoir • Dog waste bins • Opportunity for informal nature study • Measured, marked walks with activities Fascinating Facts: 1. A woodpecker is suspected to live in the park. Listen out for it ‘drumming’ in spring. 2. Tree trunks, fallen branches and logs are oen lewithin the woodland, this encourages fungus and insects which in turn are food for other animals, this practice helps to increase the woodlands bio-diversity.

From top: Oakhill Park, Peel Park and Mercer Park.

For more information go to

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THE ART IS home is where

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Fourteen years ago, and very heavily pregnant, I made a presentation at Oswaldtwistle Area Council...

By GAYLE KNIGHT Creative Director, Civic Arts Centre and Theatre, Oswaldtwistle


he main gist of the presentation was that the space underneath the Civic Theatre, Oswaldtwistle was underutilised and that there was the potential for more local drama and arts provision; particularly for young people. Representatives fromHyndburn Borough Council and local Councillors agreed that there was scope for developing the ideas but at that time it wasn’t taken any further. About ten years ago, with this still in the back of my mind, I became aware that local theatre groups were struggling to cast young people in plays. All young leads were being played by people far older than the parts required. I spoke to the management board of Oswaldtwistle Players and secured funding for seing up a youth group. This became Sparks and is now one of the core projects based at the Civic. The very first Sparks session aracted over 50 young people, many of whom are still involved. Sparks made me even more convinced that there was a desperate need for activities for young people in the area and that the Civic was the ideal space for it. I again approached the Council and was able to secure some Arts Council funding to develop some consultation work to demonstrate the need for creative provision. This led to Hyndburn Borough Council investing in refurbishment of the space underneath the theatre and allowing Hyndburn Arts to be formed to manage that space which is now the Civic Arts Centre (the theatre continued to be managed by Hyndburn Leisure until 2015). Hyndburn Arts has a board of local people and has overall management of the running of the Civic Arts Centre and its finances.

We’ve been able to secure funding for large scale projects like Project Theatre Company, Welcome to Gobbinland andWeather or Not, and we’ve extended our reach substantially beyond Oswaldtwistle, with people travelling great distances to take part in regular events. We work with local schools on a regular basis delivering activities and shows to them. We create outdoor events and were a partner involved in reinstating Oswaldtwistle Carnival in 2014. As our confidence, and staff team has grown, we’ve aracted bigger name performers including sell out performances fromChina Crisis, Cannon and Ball, Forbidden Nights, Navi and Jenny Éclair and we host one of Manford Comedy’s top comedy clubs in the country. We now have an in-house team of producers that are developing, producing and directing shows in-house on a regular basis. We also work with local charities to help them fundraise and this month alone we handed over £700 to East Lancs Hospice and £1,265 to Macmillan Cancer Support.

Being handed the keys in August 2010 was a scary moment because I realised that I had now to prove that everything I said previously was right! Fortunately, since opening the Centre and subsequently taking over management of the theatre it has gone from strength to strength. It now aracts over 1,000 people a week taking part in drama, music, dance and all manner of creative activities. Dramatic Annie, ReAct Academy, St Mary’s Panto, Skoot and other groups deliver sessions at the Civic every day of the week.

I had now to prove that everything I said previously was right!

But it doesn’t just cater for young people as people of all ages have rediscovered their passion for performing, singing and craing through new groups that have been formed at the Civic. It has also become a community hub with things like quiz nights, Murder Mysteries and Escape Room type events being held here. We are currently working on a number of projects, one of them being the Hearts and Cras project with SuperSlowWay and another is a sculpture project with Tesco Bags of Difference funding. There is still a lot of hard work to do and many opportunities for the Civic Arts Centre and Theatre but when I see the smiles on young people’s faces aer a performance, or I hear of someone who has joined two or three different groups and is building a social life here, or I see a comment on Facebook saying howmuch people have enjoyed a show, I know it is all worthwhile and that there is a great future ahead for the Centre. To find out more about the Civic (to participate, watch or volunteer) visit or ring 01254 398319.

Left and above: Funding is a constant drive - the Oswaldtwistle Carnival in 2014 was a great community milestone.

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History comes to life along the Stanhill Heritage Trail review by Sarah Rigg


he rich history of a vibrant village and its remarkable residents has been brought to life in a heritage trail. Stanhill Village near Oswaldtwistlewas home tomany inspiring figures –most notably the inventor James Hargreaves of ‘Spinning Jenny’ fame.The carpenter and weaver’s invention is creditedwith sparking the Industrial Revolution, using superior methods for spinning coon. And nowboth Hargreaves and other ground-breaking people fromhistory will be celebrated on the neweducation and tourism trail. Starting and finishing in the picturesque village of Stanhill, the gentlewalkweaves 3.5miles through luscious landscape overlooking theWest Penninemoors. With the help of £32,300 of Heritage Loery Funding and other locally raisedmoney, the project has installed presentation boards along the trail. Each is linked to a custom built websitewhich visitors can access via their smart phones or computers in the comfort of their homes. The story told is not just of James Hargreaves but also of famous local people such as WilliamBuryWestall, theVictorian novelist who lived at Stanhill Hall;William ‘Parsley’ Peel the famous calico print pioneer and sponsor of Hargreaves; the former PoWcamp at Knuzden and the general social and industrial history of the area. The Stanhill heritage trail was the brainchild of Richard Hooper of the local Residents and Fete Commiee. His co-coordinator on the project was fellowmember Andy Barnes. Andy recalls howhe first became involvedwith the project: “One aernoon Richard knocked onmy door and said ‘I’ve got an idea, but I need your help tomake it work.’ We both felt the story of James Hargreaves was verymuch under told – the industrial textile revolution would not have taken placewhen it did, as it did, without this man.” Richard adds: “It was quite a lengthy process going through the loery funding process. Lots of checks along theway to see if your goal is achievable and that you are a sound and robust organisation.” As we set offon the trail at Stanhill Memorial Gardens, passing James Hargreaves’ former coage, we come to a conservation area of the villagewhere Richard points out some prey 18th century weavers’ coages. “We’ve got census data on all of these,” says Richard. “This first coage housed 11 people, two parents and nine children and all the children would all beworking in themill.” A lile further past the grand Hall and the village school we take a gentle climb towards Stanhill Roadwith and stop to reflect on the stunning vista taking in the Leeds and Liverpool canal. “Right nowwe arewalking on a pathwe laid by some volunteers,” says Richard, “It is standing up really well. Some parts were fairly inaccessible and wouldn’t have been suitable for the trail otherwise.” Richard and Andy hope to put Stanhill on themap aracting schools, coach parties and tourists as amust-see heritage site. Andy adds: “There are six key sites to the tour andwewalked around it all quite a few times to develop the trail.We also held a workshop for all the senior people in the village to see if they could add fragments to the story and gained an insight intowhat lifewas like back in the earliest part of the 20th century in the village.” Richard adds: “We’ve recorded interviews which we are going to put on thewebsitewith leers andmemorabilia. So our next ambition is to build up a picture of Stanhill over the two centuries. But particularly over the past 50/60 years – what it was like to live here, what it was like to eat and go to school.

“If you go back to Hargreaves time it was very, very hard. Oatmeal was themain dish with root vegetables and a lile bit of poultry theymight have reared themselves. People actually starved up in Belthorn throughout thewinter months because they couldn’t get food supplies; so it was a very grimand hard environment for themall back then.” Richardwas a lileworried that younger walkersmight find the trail dull, so the interactive information boards and family friendly stories have beenwoven into the tour. “The children we have had on the trail are amazed by the same things like the fact that nine children would have had to share a bed back in those days – with no iPads!That usually elicits a ‘wow’”. At the former PoWcamp at the highest point of Stanhill Road, Andy reflects. “Looking down at theM65 from this vantage point, if you rewind to 1939/1940 look at the commanding view, you will seewhy it is quite significant. DuringWWII it was where the anti-aircrabaeries were set up for the anti-aircraguns to aack.” When thewar came to an end a lot of the prisoners in Stanhill were repatriated. Some stayed towork and redevelop the towns and villages that had been destroyed.They gradually developed relationships with the local community. “When things had seled down and they were free to leave, many didn’t want to go back home. So quite a lot stayed in the UK andmarried and continued their lives here.” This fascinatingwalk is best taken as a guided tour, which can be pre-booked. For thosewanting to do the full three and a half mile trial allow between one to two hours. Many of the six key points can be reached by car for thosewhowish to knowmore about Stanhill and its history. But for me the jewel in the crown is a working replica of the Spinning Jenny, built to the original design by a local resident in 2016; only two hundred yards away fromwhere Hargreaves built the original in 1764.

Stanhill Village near Owaldtwistle was home

to many inspiring figures

MainPicture: Walking the StanhillHeritageTrail. Insets: Leafletcelebrating the trail.Downloadyoursat

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WINTER WALKS Stanhill Heritage Trail

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Head boxing coach John Brindle and coach Martin Morley.

FIGHTING FOR SURVIVAL The bale begins to save “remarkable” boxing club for youngsters in Clayton

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As the Mayor of Hyndburn TimO’Kane prepares to host his gliering Charity Dinner – we turn the spotlight on one of Tim’s four chosen charities - Clayton Amateur Boxing Club B

oxing coach John Brindle was at home when a police officer knocked on his front door with a troubled-looking teenager in tow. “Can you do anything for this lad, John?” the officer asked, “he’s geing in to a lot of trouble with us lately.” “The lad was having a breakdown really,” recalls John. “It was horrible seeing him in that situation. When he calmed down a bit I said to him, ‘Look I don’t know if you know this, but I’m the head coach of a local boxing club’. He sort of snapped out of it and stopped crying. He’s started coming along to the gym every night now, training with us and coming to matches at the weekend. It’s great to see such a transformation in a short time. It tugged on the old heart strings I can tell you!” John, an Occupational Therapist’s Assistant who works with vulnerable adults by day and an amateur boxing coach by night, is well known in Clayton for helping youngsters to turn their lives around. With more than 70 kids signed up to his boxing classes each week – they are the latest of hundreds who have passed through John’s gym doors. “The kids come in here from a range of backgrounds,” John says. “Some are really shy, wouldn’t say boo to a goose, or they’re a jack the lad. Whichever way they are if they stick at it with us, we can sort them out. Fitness, mental health, challenges and discipline are the key.”

Fellow coachMartinMorley, self-employed joiner and building contractor by day, explained why the club - currently housed in an old garage nearMercer Park – is desperate for funding. “The placewe are in now is an old garagewhich has no heating and a leaky roof.We need a beer place to encouragemoremembers to join.We’re treadingwater in terms of progression and struggling to get fundingwithout a proper venue.” Martin, whose son Kai boxes with the club, became involved aer former coach John Burke was forced to retire through ill health. Alongwith Laura Law, the three coaches are holding training sessions five days a week. Civic leaders and celebrities help John fight for funding! TVresale king JesseMcClure joined the Clayton club kids tomake a short filmwhich will be screened at theMayor’s Charity BoxingMatch on Friday February 18th.The black tie event will raise money forMayorTimO’Kane’s four chosen charities; Clayton Amateur Boxing Club, North West Air Ambulance, Riding for the Disabled and Rough Lee Nursing Home. John Brindle is organising a spectacular boxing display whichwill see Irish Select v English Select baling it out in the ring. To book tickets email Miles Parkinson at or call him on 01254 301 687.

The kids come in here from a range of backgrounds

Many of the so-called ‘tear-away teens’, are inspired by the club’s camaraderie and training, and have gone on to find rewarding careers in the armed forces. “Lots of the kids have gone into the services. Most of them go into the paras,” adds John. “I remember this one kid was so shy, I’d look around the gym and think, I’m sure we’re missing one here. He couldn’t even look me in the eye or say hello, I’d just see a small pair of feet under a punch bag! “This kid came from a challenging

background, was drinking and all that. Now he’s in the Royal Marines, and he still comes back and coaches for us when he’s on leave. It’s brilliant to see – makes it all worthwhile.” Another former club member and success story is Ellis Nuall who was 14 when she began boxing with the club. Ellis went on to win a national title aged 18 and has now opened a boxing club of her own, inWigan. Not all youngsters at Clayton Amateur Boxing Club are from troubled backgrounds. Take 12-year-old Bradley Hargreaves whose mum and dad Rachel andMark sensed their son could head down the wrong path and took him to John. “We weren’t happy with the children Bradley was hanging around with,” says mum Rachel. “We noticed he was retreating into himself a lot. Not really communicating with me or his dad.” Mark adds: “We heard that Bradley was in the park one night with his mates, supposedly playing football, but some of themwere drinking and smoking. We fetched him from the park and brought him down here to John -and he’s never looked back. How Bradley has changed as a person is unreal.” Rachel nods in agreement: “It’s like he’s skipped forward a few years – mentally and physically. “What John and the team here do here for kids is remarkable really.” Mark adds: “They do it for virtually nothing as well - £5 for three sessions a week.”

Main picture: Mayor of Hyndburn TimO’Kane with Council leader Miles Parkinson. Inset pictures left: Children love Clayton Amateur Boxing Club. Inset picture above: Kids meet Jesse McClure in the campaign to save the boxing club.

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...Hyndburn MP Graham Jones

LIFE :STYLE Howdo you take time to relax these days? GRAHAMJONES I love to travel. My gran always said travel was education. I still backpack around parts of the worldwhen I have time. I walk for miles. LIFE :STYLE The challenges of the borough of Hyndburn are fairly plain to see, but what are youmost proud of achieving in your time in office so far? GRAHAMJONES There’s a long list of physical things. Great Harwood health centre, the rail link to Manchester, themaster plan forWoodnook, keeping a promise that Labour would allow new social housing to be built, geing a £1.25million CouncilTax rebate fromDavid Cameron, changing the law to get rid of all metal thieves on our streets, changing Hyndburn's outlook to being business and jobs focused, workingwith young people on various training and back to work initiatives, saving theMary Hindle Centre, seing out our successful policy to save our old buildings, promoting social enterprises across the borough, cut rates for cricket clubs and WorkingMen's clubs, greater public involvement and transparency.That's probably scratching the surface.The biggest achievement is geing people towork together and to believe. A fantastic Hyndburn Labour Party now thrives and the numbers of community groups and social enterprises has increased. People in civic society can see up close the decisionmaking and the outlook in Hyndburn has completely changed. One individual can't change Hyndburn but I hope I have helped to create an atmospherewhere hundreds of people can change Hyndburn. LIFE :STYLE Tell us about your work breathing new life into derelict buildings in the area? GRAHAMJONES This was a big issue. I stopped being Labour leader on the council just as we took power but my successorMiles Parkinson took forward our ideas; to restore some pride and bring back our old buildings. It's a hidden story but I am really

LIFE :STYLE Graham, ifWikipedia is to be believed you had a quite an unusual start to your political career. You studiedALevels at college thenworked in refuse and then as a care assistant? GRAHAMJONES My family broke up, jobs were few and far between and I ended up living in a bedsit on my own. I don’t have any aunties and one uncle in the USA.The brutality ofThatcherism was crushing. I underachieved inmy A levels though I had a place at North Staffs University.Things got worse. I hadmy housing benefits taken away and I became homeless. I slept onmy friend’s sofa but that couldn't last. I slept in places I don't want to remember. I then went to live at my gran's on the condition I took this job in the parks in summer and on the bins in winter. She'd seenme struggle andwasn't having anymore of it. So that's what I did. Aer 18months I not only le, but frustratedwith the lack of job prospects I went travelling around Egypt and Israel for about 5 weeks. I came back home tomy gran. She's someone I will always love. I hadwrien hundreds of job applications, 300 or 400. Nearly all didn't reply.To have been near the top of the class in exams through school it was all depressing. A friend of my dad's offeredme a care home job. I'd been doing some causal part time work for social services. I must have signed on the dole somany times in between, they knewme personally and I could fill in the forms inmy sleep. In such a dark period now someone actually wanted to helpme, so that was that. I took the job and it gaveme a stable platform. I was clearly underachieving but when you’re down at the very boom you accept any offer of help.

I still backpack

around parts of the world when I have time

Top: Graham Jones MP. Top right: At Ramallah, North Jerusalem. Bottom right: In the House of Commons.

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