Barnoldswick’s St George’s Day celebration is saved

St George (Richard Akrigg) slays the Dragon (Steve Preston) during the special St George's Day event in Barnoldswick.
St George (Richard Akrigg) slays the Dragon (Steve Preston) during the special St George's Day event in Barnoldswick.
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Barnoldswick’s St George’s Day celebration next Saturday is to go ahead as planned after a resolution was reached between all parties on road closures.

A row over closures of streets and traffic management around Barnoldswick Town Square ignited last week.

The row threatened to overshadow the event’s final week preparation.

There was even the possibility that it could force its cancellation.

Coun. David Whipp slammed “draconian” and “over the top” policy which arose after Lancashire police felt it could no longer support the sheer number of events held across the county.

In Pendle, this had been previously completed under borough council legislation.

Promoters of the St George’s event, Barnoldswick Town Council, were facing employing a third party company to close Frank Street, Ellis Street and Albert Road for the celebration event to take place safely.

Coun. Whipp said that initial inquiries with companies which provide such traffic management would cost “well in excess of £1,000” but a decision has now been struck between Lancashire County Council, Pendle Council and the police.

Peter Atkinson, Pendle Council’s Engineering and Special Projects Manager, said: “We understood Coun. Whipp’s concerns and worked with Lancashire County Council and the police to resolve the situation.

“The County Council has consented to a traffic management plan being produced rather than employing a commercial traffic management company.

“This is because the event organisers are experienced and have been running the event for around 10 years.”

Coun. Whipp had expressed fears that other events during the calendar year could be affected including Bands on the Square in May, Barnoldswick Beach in August, the First World War Commemoration event in September, November’s Switch On event and Remembrance Day and the Santa Fun Run in December.

Coun. Whipp said there may be future battles but was pleased to have overcome the “rather stupid” conditions in the short term.

He said: “Fingers crossed our views have been accepted. We have 10 years experience and ought to be able to deal with these issues without having to pay thousands of pounds to some rip-off merchants.

“We are busy putting flags up around the town and it is nicely dressed. We are confident that the dragon has been slain for the time being.”