Barnoldswick’s memorial gardens renovation plan

Councillors Claire Teall, David Whipp and Ken Hartley in Barnoldswick Memorial Gardens which they would like to see renovated before the diamond jubilee.'Photo Ben Parsons
Councillors Claire Teall, David Whipp and Ken Hartley in Barnoldswick Memorial Gardens which they would like to see renovated before the diamond jubilee.'Photo Ben Parsons

Barnoldswick’s Memorial Gardens are set to receive a major renovation, and councillors want ideas for the project to tie in with the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee next year.

The gardens on Kelbrook Road were opened 60 years ago as a memorial to those killed in the Second World War.

Now councillors in the town are calling for them to receive a make-over to return them to their former glory.

Following a site visit last month, Pendle councillor David Whipp proposed that the West Craven Committee earmark £8,000 towards renewal and refurbishment of the gardens. The town council’s General Purposes Committee agreed to support the project at their meeting last week.

Coun. Whipp said: “It’s 60 years since the Memorial Gardens were opened and 50 years since the sensory garden was developed. The flower beds are well looked after, but the area is showing a lot of wear and tear to walls and paths. The area was created to commemorate those who died in the Second World War and it’s important to keep the gardens a place we can all be proud of.

“Renewing and improving the Memorial Gardens seems an ideal project to complete for the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee. It would be a good way to celebrate the jubilee in a lasting way.”

Before Barnoldswick’s War Memorial was relocated in the town centre, the gardens were the venue for Remembrance Day services.

Councillors are asking residents to comment on the proposals and suggest improvements to the area before a detailed scheme of improvements is drawn up.

Coun. Whipp said: “The work should include renewal of benches and crumbling paths and rebuilding walls. An option may be to provide railings to the Kelbrook Road frontage which would open up views of the flower beds to passers-by. Another possibility is creating a new focal point on the central raised paved area.”

Coun. Whipp has also suggested the possibility of using Queen Victoria’s Diamond Jubilee memorial as the centre piece of a giant sundial to mark the current Queen’s jubilee. To help with plans, councillors are looking for any pictures of or information on the sensory garden area. Most of the plaques, which include descriptions in Braille, have been lost.

Dennis Cairns from Barnoldswick History Society welcomed plans to revive the gardens.

He said: “There were renovations made when the old loggia was removed because of the vandalism and graffiti it attracted. A lot of improvements were made then but that was years ago and it hasn’t had much since.

“I think it is a very good idea, The history society has its committee meeting next month and I am sure we will pledge our full support to the project and see if there are any other ways in which we can help.”

Residents can email any comments or information to Coun. Whipp at david.whipp@dsl.pipex.com or call 666777.