The newsletter editor is always pleased to receive articles 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 wishing to contrubute material to the newsletter will first seek the approval of the editor.
Chairwoman: Judith Schofield, 4, Bottoms, Crag Vale. 01422 885173
Vice Chairman:John Street, Calder Cottage. 01706 378043
Secretary: Michael Farrell, 41, Hollingworth Road, Littleborough. Tel. 01706 370154
Treasurer: Peter Jackson, 8 Chelburn View, Littleborough. Tel. 01706 373112
Membership Secretary: Lincoln Jackson, 1 Moorfield View, Shore. Tel. 01706 370542
Minutes Secretary: Chris Wilkinson, 3, Fair View, Littleborough. 01706 374020
Editor:Anne Lawson, 81, Todmorden Road. Tel. 01706 379604
Dan Docker, 93 Church Street, Littleborough. Tel. 01706 372001
Don Pickis, Lightowlers. 01706 378849.
Betty Pickis, Lightowlers. 01706 378849.
Jill Roberts, 10 Townhouse Road. 01706 377382
Rae Street, Calder Cottage. 01706 378043
Joe Taylor, 136a Market Street, Whitworth. 01706 344711
Please pass on any suggestions that you have about the Trust and its work to any of the above.
The Editor and Staff wish to thank all those people who have contributed to this edition with a special thanks to those who assemble and distribute the Newsletter and to K. Parry who designed the cover for use on LCT Newsletters in the mid 1970's.
WELCOME to the summer edition of the Littleborough Civic Trust Newsletter! And a big thank you to all who have contributed items of interest. As the new editor, I've been rather over-whelmed by the amount of material, which has taxed my typing skills somewhat, so apologies for any spelling/typing errors you may find!
The Chairwoman's Report gives some idea of the scope of work that is carried out by the Trust, and makes impressive reading. A Group Membership Scheme is a new initiative agreed by the Trust, and has already encouraged three local schools to join. A fourth group, from Greenfields Centre, is looking to become part of the Group Membership Scheme, and the Deputy Manager, Barbara Booth, has kindly sent us an article on the work and aims of the Centre.
The Trust would like to extend their thanks to David Hall, who is no longer on the Committee, but who has given of his time and energy, and continues to do so towards maintaining the Tree Nursery.
The Footpath Walks list contains something for everyone, and new walkers are particularly welcome, so dig out the old boots and thermos flasks and enjoy the company and the sunny weather!
I think the Civic Trust Committee should take a bit of time out to give itself a pat on the back! I think we should all acknowledge and commend the quantity and quality of work carried out by this group.
Too often we are critical of ourselves - it is understandable! We become frustrated when, seemingly, we cannot achieve any great impact on the many things we see around Littleborough that are wrong. This is due to the fact that we do care about Littleborough.
However, when you try to assess the work carried out in the last year, you do begin to realise that a lot has been done and although a lot of our work may not seem obvious, there is a cumulative impact achieved which can make being a Committee member somewhat satisfying - even though it may still be frustrating.
For example, Don Pickis' new links with the local school, whereby three of our local schools have now become associate members of the Civic Trust - nothing overly apparent yet - but Don already has been able to 'rustle up' help with schemes and the name and work of the Civic Trust has thus become known to many more people in Littleborough - there is a great future potential for the Trust's work here.
Then there is Dan Docker's "Letter from America" - actually from the "Foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains" -published in our last Newsletter. Having gone as an arboricultural student, with his wife Julie and their 4 young children to Virginia, he says in his letter, "I realised I owed much of my reason for being here to Littleborough Civic Trust." Another example of cumulative impact making 'being a member' satisfying.
John Street's work at Shop Wood - an excellent Clean-up Campaign, and we planted quite a number of assorted trees -had an excellent buffet, thanks to Peter - worked well with Groundwork Trust - had a further enjoyable evening thanks to Mersey Basin Campaign - and all in all we had a 'right good do' - despite the drizzle!
Throughout the year, members of the Trust have arranged Evening Do's and Morning Do's, have organised Walks and Talks and Quizzes; they've written letters galore to Planning Departments and Engineers Departments; attended meetings and spoken at Town Halls and Township Meetings; been presented with hoes, spades and certificates; made numerous representations to Councillors and Officers - all backed up by advice , opinion and support from the Committee and Trust members - and this is all in the last 12 months.' - Apologies for all the omissions.
And so to 1995, how about pursuing the ideas Rae had for the station as outlined in a recent Newsletter? Or resurrecting Roy Prince's Footpath Signs idea? Or how about nominating small environmental improvement schemes? Do we want to start thinking about a Littleborough Millennium Project? - Anything else???
Greenfields Social Education Centre, George Street, Hurstead (just off Halifax Road), was built in 1963. It is a single-storey purpose-built centre. We provide a day service for 66 adults between the ages of 19-65 years. These include people requiring special needs and people with varying degrees of challenging behaviour.
Greenfields P.T.A. was re-established in 1987. Since then, a small committee, consisting of 4 parent/carers, 5 members of Greenfields staff and 1 user of the service, have worked hard raising funds to make a fuller and more enjoyable life available to the users of the centre. Events include car boot sales, quizzes, craft fayres and fashion shows. From these, several items of equipment have been purchased.
Our overall aim and objective is to provide a quality service, which is NEEDS-LEAD for those less fortunate than we are. The authority's aim was to move away from traditional day services, to an integrated community-based service. We offer 26 options, the current time-table being a compilation of service-users’ priority needs.
Service provision presently provided at Greenfields includes joint work with other providers e.g. Matthew Moss, Littleborough Community, and Oulder Hill schools, plus Strangeways prison provides for sporting activities, the aim being to improve the individual's abilities, enabling them to compete on a more equal basis in sporting events and to improve their confidence and self-esteem. On the education front we have at present 32 people attending various courses with some courses being N.V.Q. accredited, or some other awarding body. On-site education includes a printing section and a gardening section. These initiatives will not work in isolation. It is hoped that people will gain skills in each initiative to move them nearer to gaining employment status.
BARBARA BOOTH (Deputy Manager)
We were very sorry to learn in June of the death of one of our long-serving members, George Lee. George's prime interest was walking and he was one of Littleborough’s keenest, still going into Lincoln's shop to report blockages less than a fortnight before his death.
He walked regularly with the Footpaths Group in the late 70's but switched to the Rochdale Holiday Fellowship Group in 1980. Over the last couple of years, he helped us out by leading the occasional walk, which was much appreciated.
Besides being a good walker, George had a very amiable personality. He was very eager to please, and always did so. We will miss him. Our sympathies go out to his family.
You will have read above of the sad death of George Lee, who led his last walk for us on April 2nd this year. A minute's silence was observed in his memory on the walk of June 11th.
Again, we have no progress to report on the Carriage Drive claim, except that we now have some good photographs proving usage, for which thanks are due to Don Pickis.
The autumn 1995 programme was drawn up at a meeting of the footpaths Group in July. We would be delighted to have more members contributing walks and ideas. The spring 1996 programme will be drawn up at a meeting to be held at Harehill Park Council Offices on Tuesday October 24th. Please come along. Refreshments are available.
Sunday AUGUST 6th: Meet Littleborough Square 9.30am
Leader - John Hindle
Sunday AUGUST 20th: Meet Littleborough Square
Leader - Geoff Sutcliffe
Upper Worth Valley
Sunday SEPTEMBER 3rd: Meet Littleborough Square 1.45pm
Leader - Michael Farrell
Starring - Wardle - High Lee Slack
Sunday SEPTEMBER 17th: Meet Littleborough Square 1.30pm or Thornham Lane 2.00pm
Leader - Tim Dawson
Tandle Hill Circular
Sunday OCTOBER 1st: Meet Littleborough Square 1.30pm or Elbut Lane, Birtle
Leader - Joe Taylor
Sunday OCTOBER 15th: Meet Littleborough Square 1.30pm or Todmorden Market Car Park 1.45pm
Leader - Geoff Sutcliffe
Bride Stones and Orchan Rocks
Sunday OCTOBER 29th: Meet Littleborough Square 1.30pm
Leader - Michael Farrell
Sunday NOVEMBER 12th: Meet Littleborough Square 1.30pm or Nuttall Park, Ramsbottom 2.00pm
Leader - Geoff Sutcliffe
Summerseat - Nangreaves
Sunday NOVEMBER 26th: Meet Littleborough Square 1.30pm
Leader - Tim Dawson
Humber Farm - Lydgate - Leach
Sunday DECEMBER 10th: Meet Littleborough Square 1.30pm or Lawflat 2.00pm
Leader - Geoff Sutcliffe
Stid - Lobden - Healey Stones
Sunday DECEMBER 24th: No organised walk. Members interested may contact M. Farrell (370154) for possible walk.
or Brent Spar and all that
noun: - a desert deriving from natural or unnatural barrenness - that which is thrown away - (useless) by products of manufacture - the act of making ineffectual or extravagant use of resources.
and intransitive:- to bring to a bad condition to allow to run down to squander to expend to no purpose
criminal slang: - to remove, to delete, to render powerless, to kill (i.e. murder)
Talking to a fellow European (national of Portugal) recently, thoughts about drainage from moorland areas around Littleborough and where all the water and what is put into it goes to, led rapidly to Shell's decision to dispose of the Brent Spar storage tank on the Atlantic beyond the Outer Hebrides.
We both agreed that as children, we were conditioned to the simple belief that if you were trained to be tidy and to put all the "waste" in the bin, it would be removed and just disappear: problem, if there was a problem, solved!
Wartime reminders not to waste anything that might be valuable, and to sort paper, metal, cardboard boxes, old socks, string etc., for the war effort did nothing to shift us from the cosy notion that final disposal was someone else's job: it might even end up being dropped on someone else!
In the environmentally conscious seventies and eighties we have been encouraged to look at the whole picture: to use basic commodities responsibly, to recycle where possible, and to impose strict regulations on the where and how of disposal.
Despite the heightened consciousness about being responsible, a large measure of uncertainty remains: is there any convincing evidence that safe, effective measures for dealing with “toxic” substances are being formulated, let alone being adhered to or enforced?
The disposal of the redundant Brent Spar tower has thrown into sharp focus the whole range of reactions to the basic problem - the lack of a coherent policy for the environment. The one really interesting and heartening development coming out of the Brent Spar fiasco is that, clearly, business organisations are susceptible to public pressure.
To avoid a disastrous loss of credibility as a promoter of green issues - Shell Guides to the Countryside and Shell Better Britain Awards - and perhaps an even more disastrous loss of revenue, Shell took the only decision open to it: to dispose of and treat the structure on land. All this, of course, has led to Government anger and embarrassment. As might be expected, Royal Dutch Shell is more sensitive to the Governments "market forces" than Government itself, which had relaxed regulations for abandoning oil rigs "on site" in February, at precisely the same time that Shell announced its dumping decision. A nice case of the ungrateful client, which had been fed a juicy morsel, biting the hand that fed it.
Taking a lead, no doubt, from our local conversation re "where does it all go to?” the European Commissioner for the environment, Ritt Bjerregaard, summed up the problem as follows; "The Brent Spar issue is a symbol of an outdated policy of waste disposal. We cannot go on looking at waste as though it's something that will disappear."
Thank you Greenpeace !
(A little bit of local good news. Waste paper, thanks to the newsprint shortage, is currently fetching £37 per tonne. Littleborough County Primary School will be collecting from specified sites in the autumn. Watch the public notices in the local paper.)
Footnote: the bill for the Greenpeace campaign to bring the Brent Spar issue to the public's attention is estimated at £1.3 million. Public donations are vital to cover such costs - please give generously.
17th June 1995
Anyone who has served on the Committee will know that we receive many invitations to conferences, events and courses during the year. Most have to be declined through lack of manpower, or lack of finance, or more usually, both. However, this one looked like value for money and it being outside of the football season, I volunteered to go!
The Forum was organised jointly by the Civic Trust and the Arkwright Society at their base in Cranford near Matlock. Cranford Mills is a complex of eighteenth and nineteenth century industrial buildings, one of which was the first successful water powered cotton mill in the world. Not surprisingly, the whole complex is a Grade I listed building The Arkwright Society started life in the 1970's with £200 in the bank and a mission to restore a group of buildings devastated by use of a paint company. The work is still going on. As yet there is no museum, as financial priorities have meant the Society has needed to restore the less historic buildings first and let them out to sympathetic tenants.
The Forum was loosely chaired by Philip Beisly from the Bristol office of the Civic Trust, who began by asking the two dozen delegates to introduce themselves. Most were from civic societies in Derbyshire, three delegates attended from Tottington Civic Society and one from Leeds Civic Trust.
The main address to the Forum was given by Christopher Charlton, easily the day's most impressive speaker, and apparently the driving force of the Arkwright Society. He made a number of important points about the way societies like ourselves should approach projects:-
1) Societies should find ways of bringing old and new residents together if a community is to survive.
2) The growing crisis in church funding will mean many historic church buildings will come under threat.
3) In seeking funding, DON'T use the word "heritage", but the phrases "disadvantaged groups" and "employment opportunities".
The Arkwright Society had received £25,000 from the Pennines Trust and matching funding from Business in the Community to convert an old mill building into a young person's hostel, by being professional in its fund raising.
The next speaker was Jean Ashton, the Civic Trust's co-ordinator of the Heritage Open Day events. Last year had been successful with 900 properties opened up and a minimum estimate of 250,000 visitors. The guided town walks had been the most popular events.
We then went next door for an excellent buffet lunch provided by the restaurant which occupies part of the site. We were then given a guided tour of Cranford, Arkwright1s model village for his workers. We were shown the scale of the task ahead for the museum to be created. A visit to the hostel project followed, where it was pointed out that nearly all the materials used had been donated by sponsoring companies, such as Pilkington's Glass.
We then returned to base for a brief address by Mike Kennedy of the English Tourist Board, followed by a discussion of how to manage your area's tourist potential, and how to manage your tourists when they arrive! Christopher Charlton made the important point that little projects do get spin-off benefits from large-scale developments.
You never come away from one of these events without having learned something useful, and there is no reason why the Committee should have a monopoly on attending them. If you feel you might like to attend any event on the Trust's behalf, PLEASE GET IN TOUCH.
ALL ITEMS FOR INCLUSION IN THE NEXT NEWSLETTER SHOULD BE WITH THE EDITOR BY FRIDAY AUGUST 18TH.
Editor: Anne Lawson
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