Picture: Wheatfield

 

The newsletter editor is always pleased to receive contributions to be considered for inclusion. The views expressed in the newsletter do not necessarily reflect official LCT policy or opinion.

It is expected that anyone who wishes to make use of any material from the newsletter will seek the approval of the editor Michael Farrell, 41 Hollingworth Road, Littleborough. Tel. 70154.

OFFICIALS OF LITTLEBOROUGH CIVIC TRUST

Chairwoman: Betty Pickis, Lightowlers, Blackstone Edge. Tel. 78849

Vice Chairman: Roy Prince, 14 Milbury Drive, Tel. 78883.

Secretary: Judith Schofield, 3 Green Clough, Todmorden Road, Littleborough. Tel. 76015

Treasurer: Geoff Sutcliffe, 14 Buckley Terrace, Wardle, Tel. 40369.

Membership Secretary: Lincoln Jackson, 1 Moorfield View, Shore. Tel. 70542

Minutes Secretary: Margery Hopkinson, 1 Rock Nook.

COMMITTEE MEMBERS

Richard Evans, 8 Charles St.
Mike Farrell, 41 Hollingworth Road, 70154.
Rae Street, Calder Cottage, 76043.
Pauline Hopkinson, Far Hey Head Farm, Calderbrook. 74175
Alf Tortoiseshell, Edgemoor, Blackstone Edge Old Road. 79507
Jill Roberts, 12 Whitfield Brow, Todmorden Road.
Harry Law, 7 Railway Street
David Hall, 6 Nelson Street

Please pass on any suggestions that you have about the Trust and its work to any of the above.

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COACH HOUSE SUMMER FAIR 15th JULY, 1989

This item was from a flyer placed loosely within the newsleter

This year we are having a "CORKY BOARD" as our contribution to this Fair.

For this we shall need some prizes (and if you want to know what a Corky Board is - come and join us on the 15th July.)

We are looking for 8 quality Adult prizes and 8 prizes for children.

In order to acquire these prizes the Trust needs your help in the form of contributions or cash donations and we shall need these as soon as possible.

Please will you take your contribution or donation towards a prize to Lincoln Jackson, Bargain Corner, Hare Hill Road?

Please be generous - it is all in a good cause and we do only ask once a year for this kind of help.

CIVIC TRUST COMMITTEE

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ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING

Our Annual General Meeting took place on Thursday May 4th, at the Coach House. Easily the most disappointing feature of the evening was the attendance of only 18 members. It is difficult to be inspired for the coming year when so few seem interested.

Our Chairwoman Betty Pickis devoted most of her Chairwoman's Report to a review of the Trust's activities. She was pleased that despite her initial scepticism, the revival of the Open Meetings had drawn an encouraging response. The Trust had continued its vigilance on planning matters. The empty property owned by the Co-op in Littleborough Square was highlighted as a terrible eyesore requiring urgent action. The Trust did not favour the idea of levelling the buildings and using the site as a car park.

She then called on Roy Prince, Vice-Chairman, to review developments in the Square. He reported that work on the turning circle and car park was to start soon. The prospect of a supermarket on the goods yard was now remote. So too was the conversion of the ATS site into a car park. Instead, new measures were planned for Victoria Street; these were received with scepticism.

Judith Schofield, Secretary, then gave a report on three major areas of concern. The first of these was the privatisation of water, in particular the threat posed to land access. Members were encouraged to attend the water rally at Rivington. Also of great concern was the prospect of more intrusive pylons on Blackstone Edge. The Trust was in favour of having the cables routed underground and was trying to convert R. M. B. C.to the same viewpoint. Lastly the Council had given assurances that work to resurface roads in Littleborough would begin soon.

Pauline Hopkinson reported on the Federation of Lancashire Civic Soieties A. G. M.

The Chairwoman closed her Report by making the point that it was increasingly difficult to call upon volunteers. We needed more for environment work that was crying out to be done. Trust members needed to become more involved.

The Treasurer, Geoff Sutcliffe, reported that due to sterling fund raising efforts the balances were healthy but subscription income was barely covering revenue expenditure.

The Report on Footpaths was given by yours truly. Disappointment is expressed at the postponement of The Council's Definitive Map Review. Swifter action was necessary to claim paths on Water Authority land.

The Officers and Committee were all re-elected apart from Jack Trickett who did not wish to stand for re-election.

MICHAEL FARRELL

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COMMITTEE NEWS

I would like to begin by thanking everyone who contributed to the Photographic Competition and Environment Week Exhibition to make it a most enjoyable success with over 120 entries. Many thanks to the sponsors, the Rochdale Observer for our prize money and press coverage; the judges who had an unenviable task; Walter Kershaw for presenting, the prizes; all at the Coach House and most of all the entrants. Sorting the entries was a positive delight; it is so encouraging to see that so many people obviously recognise the many virtues of Littleborough.

Roy and Michael provided another enjoyable "double act" with their presentation and questions for the teams in the Environment Quiz during Environment Week, before a very full room - the food organised and provided by members of the Committee and their families was also extremely tasty. You missed a very pleasant evening if you weren’t there!

Rochdale Council is now taking a far more active role in Environment Week, and personally, I like the Environment Week banners. The poles were temporary and if anyone can suggest an alternative site, preferably from an anchorage point up on a three storey building do let us know - don't moan, act.

The Dinner Dance was a great success, again many thanks are due to Jill Roberts, and it raised around £400 which the Committee is putting towards a £500 Littleborough Civic Trust Woodland Fund - watch this space! Of course any ideas from members on such a scheme are always welcome.

The ‘new’ news on the roadworks is that the Council have allocated £100,000 for expenditure on our roads and pavements, over and above the expenditure required by the statutory undertakers. We have again requested that the work be carried out as soon as possible.

The Trust has objected to the reconstruction of the pylons over Blackstone Edge and as Calderdale MBC objected unanimously to the proposal the matter may well go to a Public Enquiry where we will pursue our objection. We have also requested Rochdale MBC's support.

Other planning comments include:

Objection to additional illuminated advertising regalia at Plysu.

A welcome for a medical centre on the site of the former Chemical Works in the Town Square; a potential opportunity to improve the townscape.

Again we have written to the Co-op regarding the state of their building in the town centre and have requested an early meeting. A copy of our letter has been sent to our M.P. Geoffrey Dickens, who has also written to the Co-op

An extract from our letter to Mr. Dickens on the potential impact of water privatisation is printed in this newsletter.

Ideas for Littleborough are now coming through thick and fast – please do spread the word about the work carried out by your Civic Trust. Help and further members are required - so, over to you.

JUDITH SCHOFIELD

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WATER PRIVATISATION

The following is an extract of a letter sent to Geoffrey Dickens M.P. by the Civic Trust regarding the impact of the proposed Water Bill together with its latest amendments:

“The Trust realises that unfortunately the present legislation and proposed recent amendments will not protect the long term established rights of access and enjoyment (which are not necessarily the same as designated rights of access) to the land around Rochdale for the following reasons:

1. The land is not specially protected (as highlighted in the article vwith your letter) - none of the larnd is within a National Park of Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty - even though it is recognised by the Countryside Commission as well as other bodies as being of special value. Therefore the amendment for protected lands will not apply to Rochdale lands.

Photograph: Sign saying no right of way

Times to come?

2. The planning system cannot prevent loss of access resulting from change of use due to land being sold for grouse shooting, afforestation or adventure playgrounds as these uses will not require planning permission.

3. Whilst the very recent amendment to the Bill to extend the commendable Code of Practice on Conservation, Access and Recreation to lands held within subsidiary companies is welcomed, the Code of Practice will not apply to lands sold for which there will be no protection.

The North West Water Authority is the largest Water Authority landowner, much of their lands will be deemed non-operational and in order to achieve maximum return for shareholders, sale of lands on 'realisation of assets' must be expected. Indeed, this amendment will have the unfortunate consequence of compelling Water Authorities to sell their lands to realise an unencumbered (i.e. free of Code of Practice) maximum value in order to achieve the greatest return for their shareholders.

Thus you must appreciate that once again we must state that it is your constituents as present benefactors who potentially have so much to lose.

Any pressure you can bring to provide better safeguards for the long held rights over our moorlands can only bring benefit to your constituents and their economy. Quality of life is now one of the main attractions for new businesses to this trans-Pennine area. Please can you help to ensure that this quality for the majority of your constituents is not eroded."

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FOOTPATH WALKS

The autumn Programme 1989 was drawn up at a meeting in February. We would be delighted to have more members contributing walks and ideas. The winter 1989 programme will be discussed at a meeting at Harehill Park Council Offices on Tuesday 18th July at 8.00pm. Please come along, refreshments are available.

Sunday, JUNE 18th. Leader - GEORGE LEE. Meet Littleborough Square at 1.45pm.
Humber - Lydgate - Higher Calderbrook.

5 miles.

Sunday, JULY 2nd. Leader - GEOFF SUTCLIFFE. Meet Littleborough Square at 1.30pm.
Stoodley Pika - Withins Gate - Swillington.

6 miles.

Silhouette of a walker

Sunday, JULY 16th. Leader - LINCOLN JACKSON. Meet Littleborough Square at 1.45pm.
Shore Circular.

5 miles.

Sunday, JULY 30th. Leader - ROY PRINCE. Meet Littleborough Square at 9.15am.
Edale - Jacobs Ladder - Edale Cross – Hayfield. (There will be an opportunity for those who wish to have high tea in Hayfield before returning to Littleborough).

8 miles.

Sunday, AUGUST 13th. Leader – JOHN HINDLE. Meet Littleborough Square at 1.25pm. Bus to Summit.
Warland Clough - Ramsden Wood - Walsden Station.

6¼ miles.

Sunday, AUGUST 27th. Leader - MICHAEL FARRELL. Meet Littleborough Square at 9.30am.
Belmont Circular.

12 miles.

Sunday, SEPTEMBER 10th. Leader - ALF WARD. Meet Littleborough Square at 1.45pm.
Saddleworth History Walk. (A packed tea recommended).

6 miles.

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WHAT DO YOU KNOW?

The C. C. Yea Bridge over the River Roch was rebuilt in 1931. Where is the bridge located? Does anyone know anything else about the bridge?

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WE WERE THERE.

Up on the topside of Bolton,
Is a landmark called Rivington Pike,
And folk with their soft shoes or boots on
Go there for a stroll or a hike.

Now on 7th of May, a Sunday,
In Rivington Park down below,
Was held a resolute rally.
A thousand had met there to show
They weren't going to give up too lightly
The rights of access they'd enjoyed
To land of the Water Authority.
They were ready to get quite annoyed!

The crowd was most interested
As each speaker answered the call.
There were no fights and no-one arrested.
In fact, no disturbance at all.

But when the proceedings had ended,
Before people set off for home,
They all made it clear they intended
Not to give up the freedom to roam.

Politicians and property hawkers,
Yes, give us clean water to drink,
But don't try to shut out the walkers
Or you're taking on more than you think.

It was estimated that over a thousand people attended the Rivington Rally. There were more than twenty from Little-borough, so that's 2% of the total. If you add on the representatives from Whitworth and Rochdale, the area was well represented.

ROY PRINCE

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LITTLEBOROUGH LOCAL HISTORICAL SOCIETY

All meetings at the Coach House 8.00pm. Refreshments provided. For more details contact Alan Luke, Tel. 79949.

Thursday, 13th July. Film Night. Local Films.
Thursday, 10th August. Open Meeting. Society Collection.
Thursday, 14th September. Mr. Buckley – Yorkshire Coiners.

RICHARD EVANS, Hon. Secretary.

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Subscriptions

Subscriptions for 1989 have been due from 1st January, the rates are unchanged at:

£1.50 Ordinary membership.
£2.50 Family membership

Subscriptions can be given in/sent to Lincoln Jackson at the Bargain Corner, Hare Hill Road, Littleborough, or to any Committee member. The response so far has been encouraging.

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FEDERATION OF LANCASHIRE CIVIC SOCIETIES A.G.M.

This took place on 22nd April in Clitheroe and Betty Pickis and I had the pleasure of attending.

Dr. Rod Hackney, President of the R.I.B.A. was the guest speaker. His talk was entitled "Community Architecture" and whilst it was interesting it was also very amusing and stimulating. Basically he described self-help groups who had built their own houses and learnt building skills by doing so. These had taken place in Stirling and Macclesfield; a project in Burnley is now ongoing. The groups have a resident architect and about four skilled workers from the building trade to guide and teach. Doctor Hackney informed the meeting that women are very good plasterers - obviously they had had practice icing cakes!

Following an excellent buffet lunch the A.G.M. was attended by 13 districts who gave reports on their yearly activities. Darwen had planted a Rare Tree Trail, whilst Rawtenstall had a "back yard" competition; these are just two examples. All the officers were re-elected and the meeting finished at 4.30pm. Betty and I returned to Littleborough quite happy and definitely motivated!

PAULINE HOPKINSON

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Thanks to:
K. Farrell for typing the stencils.
Roy Prince for the printing and cover design.
Pauline Hopkinson for overseeing the distribution.
All contributors and distributors.


Editor: Michael Farrell