Barnoldswick picks up town centre prize

Penny Mordaunt MP with Coun. David Whipp and Richard Milner of the Barnoldswick Town Centre Action Group. (S)
Penny Mordaunt MP with Coun. David Whipp and Richard Milner of the Barnoldswick Town Centre Action Group. (S)

Barnoldswick has been honoured at a prestigious ceremony in London when a party travelled down to pick up its Great British High Street award.

Coun. David Whipp and Richard Milner of the Barnoldswick Town Centre Action Group made the journey down to the Houses of Parliament to pick up the award from High Streets Minister Penny Mordaunt MP.

More than 135 entries from across the UK where whittled down to winners in seven categories, who were chosen because of their ability to innovate, collaborate and adapt to changing consumer habits.

Barnoldswick beat off competition from Brighton and York to be named as winner of the local centre category, and was one of seven alongside Norwich Lanes (city), Colwyn Bay (coastal), Broxburn (village), Wantage (town centre), Kingston (London) and Belper (market town).

The national competition, launched by the Future High Street Forum, celebrates the achievements of local people in making their town centres great places to live, work and shop.

Mr Milner said: “It was a quick trip down on the train to Westminster, but it was nice. It was good to do a bit of networking with other winners there to share ideas.”

The judges attributed Barnoldswick’s success to the outstanding collaboration between local partners, coupled with a huge sense of community pride.

Also highlighted was the use of the market space for multiple events including Bands on the Square and for efforts in halving Barlick’s shop vacancy rate.

And judges have been left so impressed with the level of high quality ideas and innovation in the winning entries that a booklet has been compiled and published so other areas can adapt and use these tips to boost their own high streets.