The Ribble Valley has some of the most beautiful countryside in England, and together with great restaurants, hotels and pubs, the region draws artists and audience alike to an increasing number of live music events.
In addition to the pubs, clubs and theatres, and the annual events such as Beat-Herder Festival and the Ribble Valley Jazz Festival, there is an emerging quality live music centre bringing national names and top regional performers to the area all year round, and all in the cause of raising money for long-term heritage projects.
The Chatburn Music Events started at Christ Church in 2009 to help raise money for a new church organ, which was installed two years later with an inaugural concert performed last year by Nigel Ogden, from the popular BBC radio series “The Organist Entertains”, together with The Haslingden Choir.
The music events have gone from strength to strength attracting audiences from around the UK, filling the church and raising money for various charities.
Last year saw further development of collaboration with businesses in the area, and with performance groups including the renowned Stage Two Drama Group, who produced sketches and readings to amalgamate with the live music. Chatburn Music Events was the first in the region presenting poetry with live music, and the first to use the applauded big screen video fusion with live music, all of which adds to the enjoyment. As the shortest distance between two people is laughter, the additional element of comedy is now added in 2014.
To meet the demand for more of these quality events, the number of concerts has increased throughout the year and there is an additional venue in the intimacy of the Methodist Church, Chatburn. Proceeds from events at the Chatburn Methodist Church will go towards the upkeep of this church. This is in addition to music continuing in the marvellous acoustics of Christ Church Chatburn.
All proceeds from Christ Church concerts now go towards the £74,000 development to provide a kitchen, toilet and vestry to meet the increasing use of the church for community activities.
Approaching £10,000 has already been raised by The Chatburn Music Events, in addition to bringing people together through music. Canon Rodney Nicholson and the Parochail Church Council express their appreciation for the support through attendance and for the additional donations.
The man behind it all is Events Organiser Clive Greenwood – an avid supporter of live music. Having established the benchmark of a wide range of real quality jazz music when creating the first Ribble Valley Jazz Festival in 2010, and successfully leading it to achieve a prestigious award in only its second year, Clive has since concentrated on a full range of music events that also provides a valuable benefit to the long-term heritage value of the venues.
Clive commented: “There are few things better than bringing people together through music and the valuable interaction created from that.
“This is an essential element in any community. The additional unique feature with the Music Events that I am now organising in the Ribble Valley and beyond is that people have the satisfaction of knowing that the money they pay for their ticket goes towards worthwhile projects from which future generations will benefit.
“I am grateful to the church members for their valuable support and for the generous donations from our sponsors of Christ Church Music Events, Keenans Estate Agents and Roy Porter Butchers throughout the 2014 season of concerts.”
The 2014 season starts with a Spring Concert at 7-30 pm on Friday March 7th at Christ Church Chatburn, starring TV and Royal Variety show comedian Jimmy Cricket... and there’s more! The Sparkle Sisters swing songs in The Andrews Sisters style, and The Flat Cap Pack put Lancashire into Las Vegas songs, plus a wide range of music performed with youthful eagerness by students from Stonyhurst College.
It will be a night with a breath of fresh air to put a spring in your step and smile on your face.
The harmony of the Burwain Singers performing various styles of songs will start the season of live music at the Methodist Church on Friday April 11th and in the jazz month of May, performers from across the North of England come together to celebrate one of the most significant journeys of music from the rhythmic beats of Africa to the jazz cellars of New York, with lots of foot tapping, knee patting and head nodding to the pulsating rhythms of this popular music.
The Chatburn Summer Prom season starts in June and the music plays on for the rest of the year.
Details of all the 2014 music events can be found in the leaflets available from both churches. Tickets for the Spring concert at Christ Church Chatburn are £8 including light refreshment and can be obtained from Roy Porter Butchers, Chatburn or calling 01254 384893 or 01200 441624.