Page 1

Wigan North Edition

Apr/May 2014

Wigan’s King Coal - Joe Gormley Taste Test - in Roby Mill Jack’s Tracks visits Crosby Where Are They Now? - June Croft Class From The Past - Woodfold Primary

WIN!A Portrait by

GARETH DOE . p h o t o g r a p h y .





Local. Valued. Trusted.

King Coal

In this issue

1984 is seen by many as Year Zero for the UK’s coalmining industry, the exact point when the most hardest and honest of working class professions was brought to its knees. However, as our feature on pages 24-26 shows, the Lancashire coalfield was more affected by the disputes of the early 1970s, when the miners were led by Arthur Scargill’s predecessor as President of the NUM, Joe Gormley.

24 Pitting His Wits - Joe Gormley 33 Class from the Past – Woodfold Primary 38 Planning Matters 50 Taste Test - The Star Inn at Roby Mill 54 Where are They Now? – June Croft 58 Competition - Win A Portrait 60 Jack’s Tracks visits Crosby 64 What’s On 66 Garden Diary 70 Test Drive - Jaguar F-Type 73 Puzzle Corner 74 Your Pets 76 Recipe – Butternut Squash & Ginger Soup 77 Home Services 85 Puzzle Corner Solutions 86 Total Bathroom’s Useful Numbers

Born in Ashton, Gormley was King Coal between 1971-1982 and seen as the embodiment of Lancashire’s mining community; solid, hardworking but also moderate. He went down the pit when he was 14, and he experienced the pain and poverty of mining communities first hand. He led his men out on industrial action a number of times in the early 1970s, leading to power cuts, the notorious three day week and, in 1974, the downfall of the Heath government. But, to the men he led, Joe Gormley was a hero who brought them truly significant wage increases for dark, dirty and dangerous work. It’s said Wigan councillors refused to bestow the title of Alderman on Gormley when he was alive on the basis he’d ‘sold out’ by accepting a peerage in 1982 – Baron Gormley of Ashton-in-Makerfield. But 21 years on since his death, maybe it’s time for them to think again. Perhaps a posthumous honour for a man who put the town on the map at a time when coal really was king?

Publisher: Local Life 247 Ltd, Unit 8, Hewitt Business Park, Winstanley Road, Orrell, Wigan WN5 7XB T 01695 627 999

@ W

Sales: Chris Pearce Design & Production: Peter Bretherton Accounts & Distribution: Sally Boon Editorial: David Sudworth

Local Life is published every month. The magazine will be distributed into the following edition areas on an alternate monthly basis. The Wigan West edition is delivered to over 13,000 private homes and businesses in Orrell, Billinge, Winstanley, Up Holland, Highfield, Marus Bridge, Roby Mill and parts of Pemberton. The Wigan North edition is delivered to over 13,000 private homes and businesses in Standish, Shevington, Whitley, Appley Bridge, Standish Lower Ground, Parbold, Newburgh, Wrightington and Hilldale. You can also pick up a free copy of Local Life at Sainsburys or Tesco Extra in Wigan.

Local Life is also published in the West Lancashire, St Helens and Chorley areas.

Next issue - May

Advertising deadline - Monday 7 April Published - Thursday 24 April Local Life Media


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Standish Art

First Anniversary

Children in Standish are being urged to get involved in a community art project. Standish Community Centre, on Moody Street, would like youngsters to draw or paint a picture on A4 size paper that is linked to the theme of ‘community’.

The ladies at Standish Women’s Institute have just celebrated the branch’s first birthday. Officials say the WI has gone from strength to strength since being set up in March 2013 and finished the year with 73 members. As well as a monthly speaker, members have enjoyed a variety of trips out and involved themselves in the branch’s walking group, singing group and baking group.

Woodfold, St Wilfrid and St Marie schools are being invited to take part but any child not at these schools can also take part. The age range is up to 11 years. A spokesman for the centre said: “We would like pictures to link in with the theme of community. This, for example, can be the street where you live and play, the village shops, the churches, the community police. We would love parents and grandparents to get involved with the project to help the children with their idea for the pictures. We will then organise an Art Exhibition Open Day where everyone can come in for a cuppa and a browse all of the children’s work.”

Standish WI meets at Ashfield House Hotel on Ashfield Park Drive, Standish, on the second Thursday of each month starting at 7pm. If you are interested in joining, simply go on the night or telephone the branch president, Diana, on 01257 494078 for more information.

Pictures must be delivered to the centre by Thursday, May 1. For more information call 01257 421048.

Shevington Bowling Green on Forest Fold, Miles Lane, will be open daily as of Saturday, March 29. The facility will open at 8am and close at sunset.

Flower Arranging

These arrangements will stay in place until Tuesday, September 30.

Go along to Standish Library on Cross Street for a fun flower arranging event on Thursday, April 17, from 1pm2.30pm. The cost is £7 and spaces are limited. To book a place, contact the library on 01257 400496.

Individual membership is £15 and an application form can be picked up from Shevington Library, the bowling green itself or from the clerk to the parish council on 01257 473022.

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Tribute to Alan A charity fundraiser in memory of a much-loved Standish man is being held precisely one year and a day since his death. Alan Carr, of Edale Drive, passed away on April 10 last year as a result of myeloma, a cancer of plasma cells in bone marrow. He was 72. A charity event is now being held at Standish Unity Club on Cross Street, which Alan helped establish and where he held the position of club treasurer for over 10 years. Alan’s wife of over 50 years, Rita, is now helping to organise the event on Friday, April 11, which will feature the star of TV’s Cash In The Attic, Paul Hayes, who will also be fronting his rock ‘n’ roll band The Paul Hayes Collection. Tickets are £6.50, including a hot pot supper, it starts at 7.30pm. All proceeds go to Myeloma UK. Call Standish Unity Club for tickets on 01257 424007.

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Beating A Path...

A number of walks are being planned in the Standish and Shevington areas this April. WLCT’s Active Living Team has unveiled a series of events which includes the following:

Wednesday, April 2: Learn how to do Nordic Walking. Meet at Ashfield Park car park on Wigan Road, Standish, at 6pm.

Tuesday, April 1: Meet at Standish Cricket Club, on Green Lane, at 11am for a one hour walk.

Thursday, April 17: One hour stroll at Worthington Lakes. Meet at 11am at the main car park off Chorley Road, Standish.

Tuesday, April 1, 8, 15, 22 and 29: Meet at Shevington Methodist Church car park, Houghton Lane, at 10am for a one hour stroll.

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That’s Cricket

Christian Aid

Newburgh Cricket Club extends a warm welcome to new players of any standard. The club has thriving junior and senior sections with teams playing in the Southport and District Amateur Cricket League. Junior nets take place on Saturdays from 10.30am to 12.30pm during the season. Contact Andy Coomber via email or call 07846 172328 for more information.

Wigan Community Choir will be giving a varied concert at 7.30pm on Saturday, May 17, at Trinity United Reformed Church, Milton Grove, Wigan, to mark Christian Aid Week 2014. Tickets are £7 with £5 concessions. For further information and tickets, email, call 01942 223575 or buy them on the door.

Going Swimmingly Parent and child swimming lessons are available at St Wilfrid’s Academy on Rectory Lane, Standish, on Mondays and Tuesdays. The Aqua Tots sessions are for children up to four years old and there are different time slots available. A seven week block costs £21. For more information, call Mrs Flynn on 01257 423992.

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Shop and Dine at Derby House It’s the biggest thing to happen in Wrightington since Katie Price (remember her?) visited in 2007, but it’s no less exciting for the village! Derby House, based on Mossy Lea Road, was once an equestrian centre, but times have moved on, and this impressive 10,000 square foot building is now a leisure development where you can shop and dine in comfort, seven days a week. The range of businesses on the site includes; Derby House Food Hall Surely the place to go for staples such as fresh fruit and vegetables, bread and eggs. There’s an excellent delicatessen and also a wide range of local produce available too, along with artisan beers and a worldwide wine selection.

The Paddock Restaurant Overlooking the beautiful countryside, The Paddock is a great place to meet up with your friends, and enjoy the excellent quality of food on offer. Like the rest of Derby House, The Paddock is open 7 days a week, and whether you fancy lunch, a coffee and a cake or a Thursday night treat, The Paddock is the place to go! See the advert opposite for more details.

Taylors Butchers Contained within the Food Hall is Taylor’s Butchers, run by Graham Mulvaney (pictured). The butchers offer fresh beef, lamb and chicken from Taylor’s farm at Lathom, along with other products sourced from local farmers. Unlike the main farm shop at Lathom, Taylor’s at Derby House opens seven days a week.

Kiddiroo You will love the Kiddiroo section at Derby House with its large selection of toys, books, posters, arts, crafts, clothes & shoes (adult’s & children’s), furniture and lots more. Why not visit Teddy Mountain, where your child can make a bear of their own on site? There is even a selection of clothes for the bear too and it’s great fun!

The company also host Teddy Mountain parties on site, where your child can bring along their friends and build their very own teddy bears to take home. Pictured is owner Kirsty Kenyon with her special friends Sooty and Sweep.

Rose Boutique The Rose Boutique sells a range of real and artificial flowers, and also sells thoughtful little floral gifts. Owner Sarah Crookston (pictured) has over a decade of experience in the florists’ trade. The company makes bouquets and also handles weddings and funeral flowers too.

Applejax For those finishing touches which make a house a home, browse through Applejax’s range of home accessories and kitchenware. Applejax also stocks a range of giftware, including oil burners and Bomb cosmetics. Pictured is sales assistant Zoe Crompton from

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Dragons’ Den

Last year, 12 groups were successful and ranged from over 60s to mother and toddlers.”

Wigan Rotary Club is again looking to donate cash to local community groups with a Dragons’ Den-style event. Following the success of the last few years, groups based in postcode areas WN1, WN3, WN5 and WN6 are invited to submit their request for up to £500. Following initial consideration, those groups selected will be invited to put their case to the Dragons in a three minute presentation.

Full details and an application form are available either at or by ringing 07813 471000. The closing date for entries is Monday, April 14.

Wigan Rotary Club President Terry Hogan said: “In these difficult times, I am sure there are local groups who could really use a donation of a few hundred pounds to help them with a project or event they wish to undertake. “We don’t expect the presentation to come from a person trained in public speaking, we want to hear from members of the group who are looking for the money.

Spring Concert Parbold Chamber Choir is holding a concert entitled Sacred Spring, on Saturday, April 5, at 7.30pm in St Michael’s Church, Higher Lane, Dalton. Directed by Jim Cooke, the evening aims to combine sacred songs from Salzburg with music from Monteverdi. Tickets at £10 are available from 01704 821303 or 01772 491121, via or on the door.

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taking place, including making and decorating Easter baskets. Places are limited and booking is required. Under 8s must be accompanied by an adult. Meet at the Ranger Station, Beacon Lane, Up Holland. Call 01695 622794 or email Wednesday, April 16 Mesnes Park, Mesnes Park Terrace, Wigan Make your own Easter basket, decorate eggs and play Easter-themed games in the park from 1pm-3pm. For children aged 5 and above, and they must be accompanied. Cost £3.50. Call 01942 828271. Sunday, April 20 Haigh Country Park, Copperas Lane, Wigan

Egg-citing Events! It’s Easter soon, and a host of seasonal events are being planned in the area. Here’s a round-up of some of being held locally: Tuesday, April 8 & 15, and Thursday, April 10 & 17 Museum of Wigan Life, Library Street Go along to Bunnies and Bonnets from 1pm-2.30pm and learn how to make some Easter-themed crafts. The cost is £2.50 a child and spaces are limited. To book, call 01942 828128.

Search for hidden eggs in this Easter Egg Trail. Turn up anytime from noon-3pm. This family-friendly event costs £1.

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Tuesday, April 15 Shevington Library, Gathurst Lane Egg Decoration takes place from 2pm-3pm. Admission is £1. To reserve a place, contact the library on 01257 252618. Beacon Country Park, Beacon Lane, Up Holland This free Easter Eggstravaganza, aimed at five to 12 year olds, starts at 2pm. Arts and crafts activities will also be

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In Gear

The Friends of Mesnes Park are looking for volunteers to help set up and run an exciting programme of events this year. The group offers free training and hands-on experience in event management. If you are interested, please contact Allan Foster 01942 703251 or email allan.

The next Bolton & Wigan Group of Advanced Motorists course is being held in May, with a further two taking place in August and November. Each course provides one to one guidance in all aspects of driving. Further details can be obtained from Annette Gamble on 0161 797 1084 or by accessing the website at www.boltoniam.

Little Saints Little Saints Mum and Tots Group meets every Thursday during term time from 9am-11 am at All Saints Church, Finch Lane, Appley Bridge. The cost is £1 per family including tea and toast. Contact Shelley Spence on 07779 933309 for more details.

Write On! Standish Writers welcome anyone wanting to join them to get in touch. They meet at The Crown Hotel, Bradley Lane, Standish, every third Wednesday of the month from 7pm-9pm. For more information, contact

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Hot Stuff!

Memorial Project

The temperature is definitely rising at one Standish ‘hot spot’!

Research into the men who died in combat during the two World Wars is to be undertaken by Shevington Parish Council and a group of students from Shevington High School. Together, they will try to piece together the stories behind all 16 names inscribed on the parish council’s War Memorial.

Yogatown, based at 234 Almond Brook Road, holds hot yoga classes each day of the week. But these are class with a difference as they’re performed in temperatures of up to 37 degrees Celsius! The purpose-built radiant panel heaters at Yogatown specifically heat soft tissue rather than the room itself, making it a more pleasant environment to practice in. The activity is catching on fast across the UK, with number of top sportsmen and women said to be practising hot yoga as a way of keeping in trim. For example, Premiership footballer Ryan Giggs, Elite Mixed Martial artist Jonny Hendricks and Wimbledon tennis champion Andy Murray have all been extolling the virtues of Hot Yoga in the media. Paul Martindale, of Yogatown, said: “More and more professional athletes are using hot yoga. Going to hot yoga once a week will make you feel calmer and less stressed. Going 3-4 times a week will aid weight loss, build strength, improve balance and flexibility, creating relaxation.” Full details on class times and prices can be found at, by emailing or by calling 01257 426074.

If you have any information about any of the men mentioned on the memorial, please email shevpc@ or call 01257 423342.

Youth Club Call Shevington Community Centre is looking for some new people to run its Youth Club. If you think you have the right qualifications and experience, call 01257 423342 or email

Getting Hitched? Are you planning to tie the knot this year? Holland Hall Hotel, on Lafford Lane, Up Holland, is holding Wedding Open Evenings from 5pm on Thursday, April 3, and Friday, April 4. For more information, visit www.

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Standish Homes Bid

Plans for over 200 new homes across two separate sites in Standish have been submitted to Wigan Council.

In a separate application, Wainhomes (Developments) Ltd is seeking outline approval for up to 100 homes on land off Langham Road.

of (the) Wigan Core Strategy. The applicant envisages a mix of two to five bed units with 25% of the units being affordable. The development will be constructed on a phased basis with development anticipated to commence in 2015 and take around two to three years to complete.”

In their submission, agents on behalf of Wainhomes say: “The need for the delivery of housing with associated open space in Standish is supported by national and development plan policy following the recent adoption

The Rectory Lane application has prompted objections from local residents and councillors. Among the issues raised include current traffic problems in Standish and worries about lack of infrastructure.

The HIMOR Group Ltd has submitted an outline application for up to 150 homes on land north of Rectory Farm, Rectory Lane (pictured above).

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One representation, from an Essex Road resident, claimed: “The current schools, doctors and dentists in Standish would not be able to cope as there are no plans in place to increase numbers.” However, in a report lodged by the developers, it is claimed the site is “in a highly sustainable location with excellent links to public transport services, existing community facilities and the local services and amenities in Standish.” It adds: “The site provides an excellent opportunity for a development of this scale in close proximity to existing services and facilities to maximise walking, cycling and the use of public transport.” A decision on both applications will be made in due course. To read the official documentation, visit http:// Rectory Lane application reference is A/14/78972 and the Langham Road application reference is A/14/79018.

Spring Walk Parbold Wildlife Group’s next outing is a Spring Wildlife Walk at Rufford on Sunday, April 27. Non-members are welcome to go along to the walk, which meets at 2pm in the Mere Sands Wood Nature Reserve Car Park off Holmeswood Road. For more information on the Group, including details about how to join, contact the treasurer Gabrielle Hardman on 01257 462153.

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Eagle-Eyed An appeal has been launched for the owner of an escaped Eagle Owl to come forward. The non-native bird was recently spotted at Haigh Country Park. Graham Workman, biodiversity manager, said: “We believe the bird must belong to somebody as we obviously would not normally see this species living in the wild in our local environment. If any members of the public do see the bird I would ask them to be cautious and not approach it as it is a big bird with rather long talons.” If you have any information about the lost bird, please contact Graham on or on 01942 828238.

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Social Nights

Young Musicians

Wigan Rambling and Climbing Club holds social nights every Tuesday at 8.15pm at Wigan Cricket Club, at Bull Hey, Parsons Walk. New members welcome.

The cream of the area’s finest young musical talent will be taking part in a special showcase at Parbold Village Hall. Douglas Music is staging the event at The Green facility on Saturday, April 5, at 7.45pm. Tickets are £6. To book visit or call 01257 498452/462382.

Contact secretary Jill Shilladay on 01257 421926 or email for more information.

Plans Taking Root A Mini Spring Fete will be held at Shevington Methodist Church, Gathurst Lane, on Saturday, April 12. It will be opened at 1pm by the Mayor Cllr Billy Rotherham and includes games, stalls, refreshments and plant sales.

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Easy Peasy Sweet Peas for Everyone is the subject of the talk being given by expert Tom Atherton at Tunley United Reformed Church, Mossy Lea Road, Wrightington, on Sunday, April 6. This illustrated presentation will show you how to grow sweet peas, the different types available and how to get the best from them.

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A sandwich and cake lunch will be served at 1pm followed by a slideshow at 1.30pm. Tickets are £3, including refreshments, and are available by calling 01257 425330/463407.

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Beginners Welcome Yoga classes are held every Wednesday from 7.30pm-9pm at the Britannia Hotel, Almond Brook Road, Standish. Beginners welcome but booking is recommended. For more information, please call or text 07790 470567 or visit

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Trekking Talk

Girls Allowed!

Newburgh Women’s Institute meets on the third Monday of the month at 7.30pm to chat over a cup of tea and listen to a wide range of speakers. The WI branch also arranges outings and theatre visits. The topic for next meeting, on Monday, April 14, is Trekking to Machu Picchu. On Monday, May 19, the talk is entitled The Other Black Beauty. For more information, contact Jackie Kindon on 01257 463838 or Patsy Hey on 01257 463171.

The 1st Shevington St Anne’s Brownies are looking for new girl members aged between seven and 10. The group currently has space for up to 10 girls. It meets on Thursdays at 5.15pm at St Anne’s Parish Centre, Church Lane, and subs are £1.50 a week. Call 07527 603741 for more information.

Under Pressure? Free blood pressure tests will be available at Tesco Wigan on Saturday, April 26. The event, between 10am4pm, is being organised by the Rotary Club of Wigan as part of Stroke Awareness Day. All welcome.


Floral Art Wigan Floral Art Club meets every third Wednesday of the month at 7.15pm in St Michael’s Church Hall, Shaw Street, Wigan. Flower arrangements are done by qualified demonstrators and a raffle is held where the lucky winners take home a beautiful arrangement. All welcome.

Anything Goes Wigan Musical Theatre Group’s latest production Anything Goes by Cole Porter - is being staged at St Michael’s Parish Church hall, Shaw Street, Swinley, from Tuesday, April 8, to Saturday, April 12. Tickets are £8, concessions are £7 and available from 01942 706106.

Blue Bins West Lancashire residents are being reminded that their new blue wheelie bins can only be used for plastic, cans and glass. West Lancs Borough Council chiefs say there is no change to the collection arrangements for other materials. They say residents should continue to use blue bags for paper and card, clear bags for textiles, green wheelie bins for garden waste and grey wheelie bins for household waste that cannot be recycled.

The programme to provide blue bins instead of blue boxes for recycling plastic, cans and glass started in October and so far almost 28,000 households, including many in Parbold, have received the new receptacles.

Poignant Tale Wigan Little Theatre’s latest production, My Boy Jack, is now showing until Saturday, April 5. The play charts the story of Jack, the son of literary great Rudyard Kipling, who is determined to fight in the Great War but the army and navy both reject him because of his extremely poor eyesight. Kipling uses his influence to land Jack a commission in the Irish Guards, sparking off a bitter family conflict. More information, including availability and ticket prices, can be found at


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32 Pimbo Lane • Upholland • Skelmersdale • Lancashire • WN8 9QQ Located off junction 5 of the M58

Relax in style @ Rigby’s Coffee Shop

rigby’s Coffee Shop

Relax in our light and spacious Coffee Shop where you can enjoy a wide range of delicious homemade foods and mouthwatering freshly baked cakes.


Pitting His Wits… David Sudworth examines one Wigan-born leader’s tussles with Arthur Scargill in the run up to the 1984 Miners’ Strike. Anyone who calls their autobiography Battered Cherub has to have a degree of wit and self-deprecation. With Joe Gormley, he had it by the bucketload. Written shortly before the 1984 Miners’ Strike – which began 30 years ago this month - the book charts the rise of Wigan-born Gormley from the backstreets of Ashton to the very top of the then all-powerful National Union of Mineworkers (NUM). By the time Gormley had put pen to paper, he’d stepped down from the post of NUM President. But his battles with his successor, Arthur Scargill, who was getting ready to do battle with Margaret Thatcher, led him to pen a number of not-so-thinly veiled attacks on the Yorkshire-born firebrand. “Arthur may have made a lot of promises about how he will never change his philosophies, but he will find out soon enough you can’t be fighting battles all your life,” warned Gormley. “There comes a moment in negotiations when you have to say to yourself: ‘This is all we’re going to get, and there’s no sense in pushing for any more’.” Born on July 5, 1917, at 10 Duke Street, Ashton-in-Makerfield, the young Gormley went to St Oswald’s School before going down the pits aged 14. His first job was at Wood Pit in Haydock, where his dad Johnny worked. At the time, it was owned by the Richard Evans Company, which ran a number of mines in the area.

no for an answer. The window was the trade union cabin, which was just outside the pit gates, because the owners wouldn’t allow the union branch secretary to have an office on the premises. Joining was voluntary and cost threepence a week. It seemed a hell of a lot to me at the time.”

“As soon as I got paid (ten shillings and threepence a week), my father said: ‘You see that window over there? Go and get joined up in the union.’ He wouldn’t take

Shortly afterwards, he got a job at Stones Pit in Garswood and, following a brief interlude in Staffordshire, went to work at the famous Bold Colliery


in St Helens. At this time, he started getting actively involved in politics and in 1954 was elected onto the rock solid Labour domain of Ashton Council. In 1956, he was also elected as Bold Colliery’s delegate to the Lancashire Miners’ Meeting. His star was beginning to rise and six years later, he joined the NUM’s National Executive. This national role eventually catapulted him to become NUM President in 1971. Gormley was generally seen as non-confrontational in his approach. It’s perhaps therefore ironic that soon after taking up his post in 1971, he led his men into the first industrial action since 1926. The strike, which came about after the Government’s offer of a 7.9% pay rise was rejected, left homes and businesses without power for up to nine hours a day as a three day week was imposed. A state of emergency was declared during the seven week-long action. They eventually returned to work having agreed a £95m pay package along with extra concessions from the National Coal Board. However, the outbreak of harmony was short-lived and by 1974, the NUM had once again locked horns with Prime Minister Edward Health and his Conservative Government. Exasperated by the running battles with the NUM, Heath called a snap General Election by posing the question of ‘Who Governs Britain?’ His answer came when the voters returned Harold Wilson and a Labour Government, albeit with a wafer-thin majority. Although Gormley was credited with bringing down the Heath Government, it wasn’t a label he wore comfortably and at one point even tried to get the planned strike called off until after the General Election. However, upon taking office, the threatened four week stoppage was ditched anyway when Wilson met the miners’ demands.

Arthur Scargill

But as a member of the Heath cabinet, Thatcher was determined not to allow the NUM to bring down her own Government, and she ordered the mass stockpiling of coal to prevent a re-run of the early ‘70s power cuts. It’s now widely accepted that Scargill overplayed his hand when, in March 1984, he led members out despite not holding a national ballot. Indeed, Gormley observed: “Any fool can lead men out on strike, but it takes a leader to get them back.’ But by this time, the Wiganer was watching from the sidelines, having retired from the NUM presidency in 1982. He was elevated to the House of Lords in the Queen’s Birthday Honours List. Despite living in Surrey, his official title was Baron Gormley of Ashton-inMakerfield. However, some were quite sniffy about this

Gormley told the press: “We have proved that when the spirit and willingness is there, a settlement can be achieved in one day rather than the long drawn out exercise we have been involved in unnecessarily.” But privately, Gormley was worried about creeping militancy in the NUM, and he was often at odds with his own Executive Committee which he admitted left him feeling “hamstrung” at times. The amount of victories chalked up by the NUM – largely as a result of Government capitulation – is widely seen as the reason why the left-wing Scargill, a much more combative figure than Gormley, later on believed he could take on the Thatcher Government and win.

Joe Gormley sat alongside Tony Benn


working class lad’s new found status. There were reports that Wigan Labour Party councillors refused to make him an Honorary Freeman of the Borough during the 1980s on the basis that he’d “sold out” by accepting a peerage. After a series of strokes, Gormley died in May 1993 and was buried at St Oswald’s Church on Liverpool Road, Ashton. It was later reported in a BBC documentary that Gormley was a Special Branch informer who passed on details of Scargill’s and other miners’ plans for industrial action in the 1970s. In response, Scargill said: “The history of our movement is littered with people in leadership positions who were either connected with Special Branch or connected with the State.” Joe Gormley’s passing prompted national press coverage. One lengthy piece, published in The Independent, noted: “He was one of the last of a breed of union chiefs who had enough industrial muscle to change the course of political history. In the mining communities he will be remembered with love and affection - as a man who gave them the glimpse of the good life.”

Victoria Pit Standish

Going Underground Despite the growing power of the NUM under Joe Gormley’s leadership, local pits had been in steady decline since the 1950s.

John Pit Standish

By the time of the 1984 strike there were only a handful left in the Wigan area. Among them were Bickershaw, Wigan (1877-1992), Golborne (1890-1989), Parsonage, Leigh (1912-1991) and the private Quaker House, Billinge (1950-1991). Among those which closed before 1984 included: Wigan Junction (1887-1962), Victoria Pit (1904-1958), Summersales, Wigan (1937-1966), Standish Hall (1949-1961), Park Colliery, Wigan (1887-1960), Old Meadows, Haydock (1860-1969), Old Boston, Haydock (1884-1952), Moss, Wigan (1873-1962), Maypole, Wigan (1898-1959), Mains, Wigan (1880-1960), Lyme, Haydock (1876-1964), Long Lane, Wigan (1893-1955), Landgate, Wigan (1874-1960), John, Wigan (18351954), Garswood Hall (1887-1958), Giants Hall, Wigan (1880-1961), Bedford, Leigh (1886-1967), Alexandra, Wigan (1875-1955), Albert, Wigan (1939-1965) and Wood Pit, Haydock (1866-1971).


John Pit brow lasses

Pit brow lasses at Moss Colliery

Photos courtesy of Wigan World

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Are you looking for a new independent financial adviser? Due to changes introduced by the Financial Services Authority there has been a reduction in investment and pension advisers. Consequently, there are now even more “orphan” clients than ever that need to seek out a financial adviser that they can trust to look after them over the long term.

Orphan clients? “Orphans” are those investors that have invested capital into pensions and investments a number of years ago who are no longer receiving ongoing advice/guidance.

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• Your adviser has now retired and sold out resulting in you becoming a client of a much larger firm with typically no local presence. • High Street Banks no longer offering financial advice • Advisers moving offshore i.e. Cyprus, to avoid the new tougher regulatory regime.

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RNLI Fundraiser A coffee morning takes place on Friday, April 4, from 10am-noon at Orrell Post Methodist Church hall on Orrell Road. There will be a raffle, cake stall and Bring and Buy sale in aid of The Royal National Lifeboat Institution (RNLI) Orrell and District Branch. Tickets can be purchased on the door for 50p each. All welcome.

Music Call Calling all music lovers - the Museum of Wigan Life is looking for objects and footage for its next exhibition, which will celebrate the borough’s diverse and colourful musical history. The main part of the exhibition will showcase the breadth of musical talent and history in Wigan including brass bands, jazz, northern soul, music venues and festivals, and local talent including the Beat Boys, Thomas Burke, George Formby and The Verve.

The exhibition is due to launch on Saturday, May 3. If you would like to get involved, contact the museum on 01942 828128 or e-mail museumofwiganlifebookings@

All Talk Organisers are promising some fascinating speakers at forthcoming Parbold, Newburgh and District U3A’s regular Tuesday afternoon meetings. On April 22, Harold Birtwistle talks about jazz music while on Tuesday, May 27, the Speaker will be Gordon Medlicott and he’ll give a presentation on The Last Lighthouse Keeper. Non-members are welcome to go to a taster session of Horizons at the Hut on the Hill, Parbold Hill, from 1pm3pm and find out more.. More information is available at or by calling 01257 400254.


Hospital Help New volunteers are being recruited for Wigan Infirmary and Wrightington Hospital. Wrightington, Wigan and Leigh NHS Foundation Trust is offering a variety of positions, including Ward and Reception Desk Volunteers, as well as roles within departments and hospital guides. You need to be able to spare a minimum of half-a-day each week at any time between 8.30am and 4.30pm. WWL’s head of public engagement, Andrea Arkwright says: “Our volunteers find volunteering a great experience. You must be good at listening and want to help with patients, carers and the public.” Contact Nadia Koriba, Interim Voluntary Services Manager, at Wigan Infirmary on 01942 822509 or email for more information.

Choral Performance Give it Some Welly! Standish St Wilfrid’s Church lads’ and girls’ brigade are taking part in a Welly Walk on Saturday, April 5. Starting at the Parish Hall on Church Street, all families and dogs welcome. Walkers can set off anytime between 9am10am and it costs £1 to take part. Refreshments will be available afterwards in the Parish Hall until lunchtime.

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Wigan Choral Society will be performing Ein Deutsches Requiem by Brahms, and Magnificats and Nunc Dimitti, by Stanford, on Saturday, April 12, at Trinity United Reformed Church, Milton Grove, Wigan. The concert will start at 7.30pm and finish at 9.30pm. Tickets are available on the door and priced at £8 for adults, £7 for concessions and £3 for children. Call 01942 830766.

Reading Software

Spring Market

People with visual impairments can now benefit from free screen reading software at all Wigan borough libraries. Leisure and culture provider WLCT has worked with Wigan Access Committee for the Disabled to introduce the use of the NVDA (NonVisual Desktop Access) equipment, which allows computers to talk to visually impaired people and enlarges screen information. It can also be useful for people with dyslexia.

A Wrightington church is holding a spring market on Saturday, March 29, from 11am-1pm. All are welcome to the event at Tunley United Reformed Church, on Mossy Lea Road, which is set to feature crafts, a tombola, raffle, homemade cakes and pies, plants, bric-a-brac and a Guess the Name of Tunley’s Easter Chick Competition.

Joe Healen, of Wigan Access Committee for the Disabled, said: “The service will give access to the computer services at libraries to blind and visually impaired people who already have some computer ability.

Comedy Night Live II takes place at Black Bull pub on Market Street, Standish, on Sunday, April 6. It features four acts, Bill Woodland, Bobby Murdock, Clarence Frank and Barry Meaden. Tickets are £5 each and are available from the pub bar. For more information, visit www.

“We are hoping that it will also encourage people who have not yet experienced using a computer.”

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Probus Call

Pensioner Club

The Probus Club of Standish is looking for new members. The membership is made up of retired and semi-retired men and women who meet on the second Tuesday of each month throughout the year at The Crown at Worthington, Platt Lane, Standish. The meeting starts at 10.30am, although members like to arrive earlier for a chat, and it ends by noon. Further information can be obtained by contacting the secretary on 01257 424994.

Appley Bridge Pensioners Social Club meets every second Wednesday at 2pm at the Village Hall on Appley Lane North. For more information, contact Mrs Freda Roby on 01257 255856.

Car Volunteers Lancashire Community Car Scheme is looking for volunteer helpers in the local area. If you have a car and an hour or so to spare each week, they need your help in assisting people in the community. For further details call Julie on 01772 516208.

School Memories Did you go to Newburgh School from the 1960s onwards? If you have any memorabilia which could be part of the school display from July 7-11, such as photos, certificates, school work, then the school would very much like to borrow it. They hope to record everything in an archive attachment to the school website so it can be used afterwards by school pupils or anyone interested in village or family history. All material will be returned. Contact Rebecca Richardson 01942 463942 or email

Easter Sunday Lunch Sunday 20th April 2014 12pm till 4pm

3 course Carvery and an Easter Egg Hunt Holiday Inn Haydock M6, Jct23 To book call: 01942 868 330 or visit Terms and conditions apply


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Class from the Past - Woodfold Primary School, Standish

This month’s photo shows pupils of the 1973, 2nd year junior class at Woodfold Primary School, Standish. Names provided are as follows… back row from left Mrs Hilton, Eric Turner, David Schofield, Johnathon Hart, Timothy Williams, Peter Williams, Brian Heaton, David Priestley, Damian Benson. 3rd row from left - Jacqueline Green, Sandra Gibbons, Andrew Sutton, Micheal Bennett, Clare Vigar, Alan Freeman, Jayne Gorman, Sharon McMahon.

2nd row from left - Mark Chapman, Kevin Ashurst, Stuart Wilson, Andrew Langton, Barry Taylor, Judith Rollins, Deborah Peters, Lee Bakewell, Alan Parks. Front row from left - Martin Frollick, John Green, Deborah Dawber, Debbie Roper, Mark Rigby, David Ross. Don’t forget we are always on the lookout for old photos so if you have any you’d be happy to share, drop us a line at

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Business Profile We’ve spent the last five months tucked up under a blanket watching TV, but now Spring has sprung, and we are all clambering out of hibernation and into the garden. One of the first jobs on the ‘To Do list’ is seeing how our homes have withstood the winter’s excesses, and evaluate what needs to be done to get through another winter.

HomeSafe owner John with Rav Widing on set of the BBC’s Crime Scene Rescue

Choosing from various tradespeople to achieve this task is always difficult, but a company called HomeSafe Improvements Ltd, based in Hindley, have made that choice easier by offering you a one-stop shop for all your windows, doors and roofline requirements. You might have seen them on TV recently when they helped out in the BBC’s security programme Crime Scene Rescue. Managing Director John Jones, makes a convincing case for readers to contact him when considering the purchase of windows, doors, gutters and roofline. Having been involved in the home improvement industry for over 12 years, John is very aware of the sales gimmicks used by some businesses in the industry and is keen to let readers know that Homesafe Improvements is opposed to such tactics: “I am sure that most people aren’t fooled by the ‘buy one get one free’ gimmicks. Nor are they fooled by salesmen who supply a hugely inflated initial quote only to whittle it down to make it look like you are getting a bargain. Here at Homesafe Improvements we give


one price, which is our best price. All of our windows are ‘A’ rated and feature fantastic thermal & security properties.

Conservatory roof conversions are a popular choice with home owners who want to transform their conservatory to a room that they can use all year round. If you’re spending your home improvement budget on this innovative idea, then HomeSafe can talk you through the process. Their popular tiled tapco slate conservatory roofs, with Velux window options, will delight any discerning householder. As with all HomeSafe improvements, all products are backed with a 10 year insurance backed guarantee, and John himself will inspect and approve each and every installation. For a FREE, no obligation quotation & design visit, give him a call today on 01942 522283 “John gave me great advice, carried out the work in a timely manner and to a high standard of workmanship. I would have no hesitation in recommending HomeSafe Improvements to others” Mr Steve Thomas

Hindley Business Centre, Hindley, WN2 3PA


OAP Help Christ Church in Parbold has started a new venture with Age UK to help meet the needs of older people who feel isolated and lonely. If you have a neighbour who is unable to get out and would love to meet other people of a similar age, or who you think may have a need, you are invited to take them along on any Monday to Coffee Etc on Station Road, Parbold, between 1pm and 3pm. for a chat. A member of Age UK team is often around on the day so if you need any information regarding help or entitlements you feel you need, they will be there to give advice. For more information contact Simon on 01257 462350 or send an email to simonglynn@christchurchparbold.

WI Meetings Volunteer Appeal The Manacare Foundation charity shop on Gathurst Lane, Shevington, is appealing for volunteers and donations. Since its formation in 1994, the charity has provided help and support for those most in need, particularly children and the elderly in 12 countries around the world. To volunteer or donate to the Shevington shop, call 01257 252260.

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Appley Bridge Women’s Institute is inviting locals to its regular meetings. The organisation meets every second Wednesday of the month at Appley Bridge Village Hall, Appley Lane North, at 7.30pm . A spokesman said: “The meetings are friendly with some good speakers and lots of interesting things going on. There is also a monthly walking group, a book club, an open garden scheme and the occasional trip out. So do come along, a warm welcome awaits you.”


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Branches: Coppull 01257 793880, Beech Hill 01942 829200, Standish 01257 422011, Scholes 01942 820526, Leigh 01942 261415, Bryn 01942 271392, Tyldesley 01942 887312, Upholland 01695 622099

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How can you protect your home and savings? • Are you prepared to lose your home to pay for longterm care fees? • Would you be happy for your grandchildren to lose 40% of your estate to Inheritance Tax? • Do you want your finances to be subject to Court of Protection control? • Have you protected your children’s inheritance from family divorce? • Are all your beneficiaries capable of managing their inheritance?

If you have answered ‘no’ to any of these questions, please join us at our free seminar on Tuesday 29th April at Wrightington Hotel and Country Club to discover how to protect your assets. Over the centuries, the UK’s richest people have written and supported laws to guarantee that their wealth will pass down through generations safe from divorce, remarriage, illness and tax. How can you do the same? Come to our seminar and discover how to protect your wealth for your children and grandchildren.

Call us today on 01257 463672 to book your place.

Did You Know? Making a will is important, but is rarely enough to protect your home and savings properly. Come along to our seminar to discover how to protect your estate properly. If you are unable to attend the seminar, please call us on 01257 463672 for a free consultation.

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Tuesday 29th April @ 10am Wrightington Hotel and Country Club, Moss Lane, Wrightington, WN6 9PB

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Planning Matters Shevington with Lower Ground 248 Miles Lane: Extension of dwellinghouse, two storey to side and single storey to rear (ref: A/14/78959). Final decision pending. 4 Longbrook: Extension of dwellinghouse single storey to rear (ref:A/14/78965). Approved with conditions. Speckled Holly, Wood Lane, Standish: Extension of dwellinghouse, two storey extension to side and rear, and new door with canopy to side following demolition of lean-to at rear. Creation of new access (ref: A/14/78981). Final decision pending.

22-22C and garage site to rear, Preston Road: Erection of seven dwellings and one retail unit with selfcontained flat above together with access, parking and landscaping following demolition of existing shops and garages (ref: A/14/78942). Final decision pending. Unit 7-8, 82A Preston Road: Change of Use to dog grooming salon (ref:A/14/78958). Final decision pending 64 Southlands Avenue: Pitched roof over existing garage and canopy to front (ref: A/14/78996). Final decision pending. 6 Greenland Avenue: Pitched roofs to existing flat roof extension and front bay window together with canopy to front (ref: A/14/79006). Final decision pending.

16 The Beacons, Appley Bridge: Certificate of Lawfulness for replacement rear extension (ref: A/14/79027). Final decision pending.

11 Hillbank: First floor addition and veranda to east gable and single storey side extension to west gable (ref: A/14/79019). Final decision pending.

Calico Wood Farm, Houghton Lane: Prior notification to erect agricultural building for use as hay store (ref: A/14/79035). Final decision pending.

Former Edwards Jones Investments, 1 High Street: Change of use to yoga studio (ref: A/14/79020). Final decision pending.

10 Churchfield: Extension of dwellinghouse single storey to side, first floor to rear and construction of new porch following demolition of existing (ref: A/14/79046). Final decision pending.

The Jays, Langtree Lane: Erection of detached garage to front (ref:A/14/79021). Final decision pending.

144 Gathurst Lane: Erection of two storey detached dwelling and outbuilding following demolition of existing dwellinghouse (ref: A/14/79071). Consultation deadline: April 1. 5, 7, 9 and 11 Church Lane: Change of Use of ground floor of 5 and 7 Church Lane to cafe with office accommodation above (5 Church Lane) together with single storey extension to rear (ref: A/14/79078). Final decision pending. 30 Wigan Road: Extension of dwellinghouse two storey to rear (ref:A/14/79105). Consultation deadline: April 7. Land adjacent to Home Farm, Cripplegate, Standish: Certificate of Lawfulness for continued use of land for open storage of vehicles, materials and containers, Class B8 (ref: A/14/79112). Consultation deadline: April 10.

34 Arbour Lane: New house type including extensions and raised balcony to front (ref: A/14/79044). Final decision pending. Land at Stars Brow, Preston Road: 1) Importation of inert material to complete former landfill, including infilling of void and creation of raised capping layer. 2) Regrading of land to create landscaped and wetland area on land to the South of Public Footpath Standish Number One. 3) Construction of new vehicular access to Preston Road. 4) Temporary diversion and improvement of Public Footpath Standish Number Three and creation of new public footpath. 5. Restoration of site for equestrian purposes (ref A/14/79059). Final decision pending. 9 Boyd Close: Proposal to retain conservatory to front (ref: A/14/79075). Final decision pending.

Standish with Langtree Ward

46 and 48 Wigan Road: Proposal to erect replacement dwelling with attached double garage to serve 46 and 48 Wigan Road following demolition of existing dwelling at 48 Wigan Road (ref: A/14/79087). Final decision pending.

10 Rudyard Avenue: Erection of detached garage to side together with widening of existing driveway and laying of hardstanding. (Re-submission of A/13/78695). Application approved with conditions.

17 Fontwell Close: Extension of dwellinghouse, two storey to side and single storey to rear together with canopy to front (ref:A/14/79090). Final decision pending.

395 Gathurst Road: Single Storey rear extension (ref: GPD/14/00087). Consultation deadline: April 1.



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Injury Time! As spring struggles to break out, Wigan is basking in the nice warm glow of a return to Wembley for an FA Cup semi-final against Arsenal on 12th April.

a psychiatric injury as a result. However, if you witness your sibling, grandchild or lifelong best friend involved in the same accident, you will have to prove that you had a sufficiently close tie before you might possibly be awarded damages.

However, there will be a sombre note to the occasion, falling as it does almost 25 years to the day from another semi-final where 96 people lost their lives. The efforts of the Hillsborough families to obtain justice for those who died have been much in the news with a new inquest which is due to open later this year.

This distinction may seem a little old fashioned these days – what about long term co-habitees or civil partners? – and another difficulty with the law as it stands concerns geography. A secondary victim has to be close enough in time and space to the incident in question to have perceived it with his or her own unaided senses.

In the meantime, Hillsborough is a subject of more technical interest for personal injury lawyers regarding recovery of damages for psychiatric injury by injured people.

The Association of Personal Injury Lawyers has recently called for reform, describing the law in this area as “archaic and inflexible”. APIL president, Matthew Stockwell, a Barrister based in Liverpool, told MPs at the House of Commons recently:

More than 700 people were injured at Hillsborough, many suffering serious psychiatric damage. The case of Alcock v Chief Constable of South Yorkshire Police defines the law in relation to people who suffer psychiatric injury (post-traumatic stress disorder or reactive depression for instance) after witnessing the death or injury of others (so called “secondary victims”). It established that those with a “close tie of love and affection” with the primary victim might be awarded damages as a secondary victim. What is a “close tie of love and affection”? Parents, children, spouses and fiancés are said to have that close tie. In other words, if you witness your parent or child, nearest and dearest or intended being involved in a serious accident then it is accepted that you might suffer

“In almost every case people have to prove they had a close tie of love and affection with the person who was killed or injured, which is extremely intrusive, especially when someone is distressed or grieving. They are also expected to be physically nearby when the death or injury happens before they can be judged to have suffered psychiatric harm when it’s perfectly obvious that you don’t need to actually see someone you love killed to be deeply affected by it.” Law reform moves a lot more slowly than the Arsenal counter-attacks Wigan will have to watch out for next month but hopefully a rather more rounded and logical system may emerge. Good luck Latics! Mark Richardson

Wigan Office The Old Bank, 47 King Street, Wigan WN1 1DB

01942 243 281 Standish Office 11 Preston Road, Standish, WN6 OHR

01257 402 430


Swap Shop! A local, independent optometrist is on a mission to get people reading and raise money for eye health charities at the same time. Suzanne Dennis’s four practices in Standish, Parbold, Coppull and Eccleston will be hosting a Big Book Swap throughout April. During that time, people are encouraged to take in their unwanted books. In return people can call in and browse the selection and donate 50p for any book they want to take home and read. Monies raised will go towards Galloways Society for the Blind, The Macular Society, RNIB and RP Fighting Blindness. Books can be donated to any of the four practices. For further details visit www.suzannedennisoptometrist.

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Money & Investments - by David K Barton APFS Cert CII(MP)

Choosing Your Financial Adviser A good financial adviser is like gold dust. Like your most influential teacher at school, they will inspire as well as reassure you in order that you can enjoy a better financial future. A poor adviser will put their interests before yours and will sell you a product you don’t really need and have no interest in your future. It’s about them, their ego and their sale. Worryingly both advisers will be FCA registered, both have at least a Level 4 qualification (it is now the minimum standard to trade as a financial adviser ), and both will sound plausible. So how do you select the right adviser for you? 1. The right qualifications You want an adviser who takes professional knowledge and development very seriously and is completely independent. Look for an adviser who is a Chartered Financial Planner or a Certified Financial Planner- or is actively working towards these qualifications. These are Level 6 qualifications - equivalent to a university degree and are the “Gold Standard” amongst financial advisers. 2. A clear plan A good adviser will ask challenging questions and map out a plan to achieve your goals. They will spend considerable time listening to you and asking smart questions to help you define your short, medium, and long-term objectives, to determine your desired future lifestyle.

Your adviser will create a David K Barton financial plan to meet your APFS Cert CII(MP) objectives, ensuring that account is taken of tax-efficient planning such as pensions, and considering estate planning too, if that is a priority. A financial plan is a living plan. We can be pretty certain that events won’t turn out exactly as the plan indicates and your adviser will review and update the plan on a regular basis. 3. Relationships count Your relationship with your adviser is also a very important consideration. They will become an important professional person in your life so it is important that you get on well. Ask yourself whether the adviser really cares about you, genuinely wants you to reach your goals, and is willing and able to challenge you along the way. 4. And finally, fees Fees should be open, transparent and fair. You should feel you are getting good value for money. Given that a good adviser could potentially make a difference of many thousands of pounds to your financial position over time, we suggest that you base your decision primarily on qualifications, approach and relationship as opposed to price alone.

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Newburgh Old Post Office Farm House, The Green, 2 The Green & 1 Ash Brow: Conversion and extension to two residential units and alterations to one residential unit (extension to replace existing previous extensions) Ref: 2014/0101/FUL. Final decision pending. Duttons Barn, Back Lane: Widening of existing hardstanding by 1,250mm. Removal and replacement of front boundary fence (ref: 2014/0051/FUL). Planning permission granted.

Parbold 11 Bradshaw Lane: Demolition of existing conservatory and erection of two storey rear extension (ref: 2014/0209/FUL). Final decision pending. 52 The Common: Single storey side extension with additional living accommodation in roof space (ref: 2014/0053/FUL). Final decision pending.

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Newstead, Stoney Lane: Two storey side bay extension and first floor extension to existing detached garage to create additional living space (ref: 2014/0127/FUL). Final decision pending.

Wrightington Tunley United Reformed Church, Mossy Lea Road: Retention of area edged with paving stones, prepared re-surface and re-Tarmacing of the surface area (ref: 2013/1363/FUL). Final decision pending. Huws Gray, Ainscough Business Park, Mossy Lea Road: Retrospective application for the erection of two security CCTV cameras (ref:2014/0188/FUL). Final decision pending. 4A High Moor Lane: Demolition of existing porch, chimney and utility room. Erection of first floor front extension and single storey rear extension (ref: 2014/0171/FUL). Final decision pending. Land adjacent to 1-4 and 5-8 Mossfields, Mossy Lea Road: Change of use from grassed open space to car parking. Laying of kerbs, stone base, tarmacadam road surfaces and footpaths as on plans. New road crossings to highway (ref:2014/0059/WL3). Final decision pending. For more information on the Standish and Shevington applications, visit Details of the Newburgh, Parbold and Wrightington plans can be viewed via

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Accountancy - by Chris Alcock ACMA

Accountancy Guide to Online Accounting CMA is a firm of Chartered Management Accountants based in Appley Bridge. We provide all the usual services such as annual accounts, business tax and personal tax planning. We look to work with you on a companies and individuals on a close level and look behind the numbers to give you a comprehensive view of your business and help you achieve your long term goals. No matter how large or small your business is, tracking your business accounts is vital in today’s economic climate. Whether you are just starting out in business or have been trading for a number of years, it is vital that you have a firm grasp of your numbers. This is best achieved by using accounting software to track your finances. CMA are experts at helping businesses implement and use online accounting systems. We support clients using both the Xero and Kashflow accounting systems. The following are just some of the benefits to a business of an online system: • Simple and Easy to Use – By cutting out the accounting jargon you don’t need to be IT savvy or an accountant to use them. • Secure Access on PC’s and Tablets – The system is always accessible from anywhere in the world. • No Installation or IT Maintenance Required – You can be up and running in a matter of minutes. • Low Cost on a Pay as You Go Basis – There are no lengthy contracts involved as you just pay a small

monthly fee to access the software. Costs start from around £15 per month. • Real-time Collaboration with CMA – We can help you with your finances on a real time basis and advise you using the latest financial information. • Smart Reports – There is a range of simple but effective reports to help you manage your finances.

Special Offer If you would like to arrange a free demonstration please contact our office and we will show you the full range of benefits this could bring you. If you decide to switch to an online solution we will give you the software for free for 6 months!! Tax Tips of the Month – How Much Tax Could You Save • Check your tax code for 2014/15. The personal allowance increases to £10,000 from 05 April and you may pay too much tax if your tax code is not right. • Don’t forget the kids! Children are entitled to the same personal allowance that is available for adults, so they can receive a certain amount of income tax free . • If you own a rental property don’t forget to register with HMRC as you will need to complete a tax return and declare you income. HMRC are currently running a Let Property Campaign to allow landlords to bring their tax returns up to date. To see how we can help you please get in touch:

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Taste Test - by David Sudworth

Out of This World The sight of a country pub fills me with joy and trepidation in equal measure. Too many of them tend to trade on the beauty of their surroundings but fail to deliver on the food and drink front. So I take word of mouth commendations seriously – and there’s no shortage of them when it comes to The Star Inn at Roby Mill. I’ve heard plenty of positive comments about it, so on a sunny Monday afternoon, my colleague Chris and I hopped over there for a bite to eat. Built in 1830 to serve the workers of the old tannery opposite, the Star oozes rural charm in a part of West Lancashire which has no shortage of picture postcard views. Inside, its mixture of traditional décor with a modern twist complements the location perfectly. No tired old tables with beer soaked drinks mats here – it is classy and welcoming but not stuffy.

becoming dry. In this case, the meat, encased in a rich, slightly sweet sauce, fell off the bone. As one famous Colonel might say – finger lickin’ good! For the main course, I decided it was time to switch tack to some good, honest British fayre – the Star Inn’s steak and ale pie. At this point I confess that although born a Wiganer, I’m not actually that fond of pies. Does that count as treason in this part of the word? If so, then I plead guilty m’lud. My biggest complaint is that the meat is usually dreadful. The Star however uses prime cuts of steak in its pie, over which lies a golden layer of handrolled pastry. In other words, it’s a ‘proper’ pie, complemented by a choice of seasonal veg. Top tip – pour some of the pie filling over the roast potatoes, it’s a treat.

Starters came promptly; pan seared piri-piri and lime marinated king prawns on crostini for me and baby back ribs for Chris. One thing which struck me about the prawns was how the Star managed to pack so much taste into them. Bitter experience taught me that overcooking prawns even by a minute can kill the taste stone dead. Not these babies though, I couldn’t get enough of them. It was hard to get any sort of feedback from Chris as he was too busy tucking into his ribs, which were smothered in a tantalising barbecue sauce. Like prawns, ribs also have a ‘cook by’ point otherwise they end up


As it happened, Chris was also ready to throw down the gauntlet by choosing the chicken stroganoff.

When Chris’s pavlova arrived, a lady sat at the next table remarked how it would be a shame to ruin such a masterpiece by starting to cut into it. I tend to agree, it was an explosion of colour and texture which would have made a wonderful subject for a watercolour class.

Apparently, Mrs Chris does a mean stroganoff which is so far unsurpassed. He was ready to be impressed. When the dish arrived, it did so in a mini shower of sizzles, the sauce bubbling away in a mixture of flambéed chicken strips, mushrooms and onions, accompanied by rice and some deliciously large potato wedges. By this stage the room was starting to fill up with hungry diners whose eyes were firmly fixed on this showpiece dish. Having been to the home of stroganoff, I can say for certain that the Star’s version of this dish, named after Russian diplomat Count Pavel Stroganoff, is probably as close to the original as I’ve ever tasted. The verdict? Well, Chris duly embarked on some diplomacy of his own by revealing that the contest between Mrs Chris and the Star had ended in a score draw. A rematch seems likely in the not too distant future… For dessert, I opted for a personal favourite, orange cheesecake with Chantilly cream, while Chris veered towards the pavlova topped with a raspberry compote and strawberries. Cheesecake comes in various guises but this one had a light, creamy texture and sat snugly on a delicious biscuit base. Small flecks of orange zest gave it a distinct fresh flavour – such a simple trick and yet so effective.

I can see why people speak highly of the Star, which I’m told has come on leaps and bounds in recent years. Good food, friendly atmosphere, fabulous location. The menu represents good value; for instance the ribs, pie and cheesecake were all off the Early Diner Menu (£10.99 for two courses or £13.99 for three courses). The Star had always been one of the venues I’d also meant to try but never found a good enough excuse. After this trip, I think I’ve discovered several… The Star Inn 60 Bank Top, Roby Mill, Up Holland, WN8 0QQ 01257 253355

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Believe Again! Don’t stop believing – that’s the message from Wigan Council as it backs the borough’s latest bid for sporting glory. The council has re-launched its successful Believe campaign to coincide with Wigan Athletic’s defence of their FA Cup title. A good luck message appears from the authority on page 2 of this edition. The campaign began last year when the Latics reached the FA Cup final. Now, with their remarkable cup run continuing, the council is calling on the borough to Believe again. Latics play Arsenal in the FA Cup semi-final on Saturday, April 12. The tie is being played at Wembley – the scene of the club’s historic triumph in the same competition last May. It will be the fourth time the Latics have played at the home of English football in 12 months. The Believe campaign attracted international attention, and the council hopes it will persuade people to support their local clubs and have pride in their borough.


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Distributors Wanted

French Exchange?

Local Life requires distributors (must be aged 13 and above) for this Wigan North edition of our magazine. Distributors will typically work for 2/3 hours every 8 weeks. The areas where we currently require distributors are as follows:

Are you looking for a French pen pal? Maybe you’d be willing to host a visitor from Wigan’s twin town of Angers? If so, the Ambassador Office wants to hear from you. Wigan and Angers have been twin towns since 1988 and each has an Ambassador to encourage interaction between the two towns. For more details, phone 01942 489193 or email

• Shevington – Gathurst Lane, Vicarage Lane, Edgewood, Runshaw Avenue and Hullet Close. • Whitley – Spencer Road, Whitley Crescent, St Clements Road and Westfield Grove. If you are interested, please email your name, address, landline number and date of birth to sallyb@

Allotment Society Shevington’s Allotment and Horticultural Society meets at St Anne’s Parish Hall, Church Lane, on the second Monday of the month at 8pm. For further details contact Eileen Longmore on 01257 402097.

Credit Due Unify Credit Union is now based at Shevington Library on Gathurst Lane. Volunteers are on hand on Saturdays from 10.30am-11.30am to give you more information on the services they provide. For more information, visit or simply go along.

Let’s Do Lunch Shevington Luncheon Club meets at the Youth Centre on Wednesdays, 11.30am-3.30pm. All welcome. For more details call Rosemary Woolner on 01257 402158.

Improve your home in 2014 Vale of Wigan can replace or modernise your existing staircase with a traditional oak staircase with wooden spindles, a more contemporary staircase with glass and chrome or a bespoke design of your choice. Call Vale of Wigan now for a free no-obligation survey. • Add instant value to your home • A typical install takes 2/3 days • Fully guaranteed for 10 years • Family run business est.1998 Rear Mill, Wood Street, off Chapel Lane Wigan WN3 4HL

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Where Are They Now? - by David Sudworth

June Croft GB Olympic Medallist (1980 & 1984)

It’s seemingly a long way from the Olympic winners’ podium to the dole queue. But for 1980s Wigan teen swimming sensation June Croft, it was a case of needs must: “There was no money in swimming during my time. Every time I went away for competitions, I had to sign off, and when I returned I’d sign back on again. It was a lot easier then, there were only about three lines to fill in, not a whole booklet like now!”


Of course, June is best remembered for scooping a silver medal at Moscow Olympics in 1980 at the tender age of 17. Little has been heard of her since she retired from swimming 24 years ago. We catch up with June, now a 50-year-old mum of two, at her home in Penwortham, near Preston, where she’s resided for almost 20 years. Born in 1963, June grew up on Jennet Hey, Bryn, near Ashton-in-Makerfield. As a child, she went to nearby St Peter’s Primary on Downall Green Road before going on to Ashton Secondary Modern, now Cansfield High, on Old Road. “I started swimming because mum was frightened of water and she didn’t want me to be the same. That was when I was about eight years old. By 10, I was

training about three times a week. I joined the Wigan Wasps swimming club at 11 and would train at the old Wigan International Pool. The manager was Olympic swimmer Haydn Rigby and he persuaded the council to take on Keith Bewley, who also competed in the 1956 Melbourne Olympics. Keith was my trainer all the way through my career.” As her natural ability in the water started shining through, training became a priority: “I missed a fair amount of school. Usually it was Fridays and Mondays because I’d be away competing at the weekends. I wasn’t really interested in school work and looking back I do regret that.” June won a place in the Olympic’s team, for the Moscow games in 1980. Among her Great Britain swimming team mates were a young Duncan Goodhew who shot to fame by winning gold in the 100m breast stroke. The Moscow games were controversial due to the amount of countries which boycotted them in protest at the Soviet Union’s invasion of Afghanistan. But the heightened political tensions surrounding the event didn’t immediately register with a young June: “To me, it was just very exciting to be part of the team and it was so much fun getting to the Olympic Village. It didn’t seem dull or oppressive to me. However, when I went to Los Angeles in 1984, that was where we had all the razzamatazz if you like, so I suppose when you compare the two it was different.”” June’s performances in Moscow received rave reviews and ensuing press coverage. But she points out that, back in 1980, celebrity culture was nowhere as full-on as it is today: “When we got back there wasn’t a big deal or anything. We’d just pick up our bags and go home. You might get 10 minutes on Look North West and that was about it! “Regarding money, the only thing I got was a grant from the Swimming Foundation and after that I signed on the dole. There wasn’t any money to be made out of swimming then. It wasn’t really until Sharron Davies that

people started making money but even then that was through her TV work.” June singles out 1982 as her best year when she brought home three golds, a silver and a bronze from the Commonwealth Games in Brisbane. Two years later, she headed to Los Angeles to see if she could go one better than her previous Olympic performance. However, she concedes that by that time, the expectations weighed heavily on her shoulders: “I went to Moscow as an unknown so there were no expectations. In LA, it was different and I could feel a bit of pressure but I still got a bronze.” After 1984, she moved to London and then onto Australia for a couple of years. By the time the Seoul Olympics came round in 1988, she’d been out of swimming for a few years. Although she trained hard, she didn’t manage to bring home a medal. She returned


two daughters, Carly, 21, and Georgia, 19, who are both at university. Admittedly, June rarely takes to the pool these days – instead she prefers a bracing dip in Lake Windermere when on holiday up there. However, although her Olympics days are now behind her, she still keeps in shape. “I get bored doing the same thing but I still exercise by doing running and walking. I’ve been active since being very young so for me it’s just normal. I may be 50 but in my mind I’m still that 17-year-old”. She credits her swimming success down to her supportive parents Derek, 79, and Rita, 76, who now live on Upper Dicconson Street: “Both mum and dad were brilliant, they really encouraged me but weren’t pushy. They were the ones who took me to training, waited around for hours and took me home afterwards. Without them I wouldn’t have been able to do it.” But does she consider herself to be famous? “Not really, I’m just a normal person just working for a living like everyone else. People used to recognise me at first but I can’t remember the last time someone stopped me in the street… it’s probably 10 years ago now. I really enjoyed swimming, I had a natural talent for it and worked hard. I’ve got the tapes of me in Moscow and it’s funny watching it because it looks old fashioned. It’s so long ago now - a different world.”

to form for her final senior appearances at the 1990 Commonwealth Games in Auckland, coming home with a silver and a bronze. It was to be her last major competition, she retired from swimming that year. But romance was in the air as around that time she met her future husband, Adlington-born Fraser Boon. “I got to know him through a friend of a friend situation. I said I wanted to marry him just so I’d be called June Boon!” They tied the knot in 1992 at St Michael’s and All Angels Church on Duke Street, Swinley. Initially, they went into the pub trade, managing premises in Lancaster before coming back to Wigan as live-in mine hosts of the Belle Vue Inn on Woodhouse Lane. They moved to Penwortham in the mid-1990s after Fraser got a job at the local golf club. June has worked for St Helens Council for the past 18 years and together they have


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Win A Portrait! In this month’s Local Life magazine you can win a 20 x16 framed portrait, or one of ten runners up prizes of a portrait shoot and free/money off coupons at Gareth Doe Photography, based on Park Road in Wigan. Gareth, who specialises in portrait photography and wedding photography, has worked as a professional photographer for over 20 years. His new company, Gareth Doe Photography opened on Park Road in Wigan late last year. The new studio on Park Road has two fully equipped studios open six days a week catering for all types of photography, but Gareth is known locally for his fantastic portrait photography. He explains “We provide a fun and relaxed atmosphere at our photography sessions, and this helps people, especially children, to lose their inhibitions and just behave naturally with the camera”.

planning is paramount at weddings, “I’ll sit down with the happy couple prior to the event and plan what pictures they want for the family, but I’ll also throw in a lot of suggestions too. There isn’t a venue in the area that I haven’t photographed at one time or another, and as a result of that experience, I am confident that I can produce the perfect wedding album for any Wigan couple. To win either a large 20 x 16 framed portrait or a portrait shoot and free/money off coupons, simply answer the question below and email or Facebook Gareth with your name and your contact phone number. What is the name of the road that Gareth Doe Photography is located on? The competition expiry date is 30th April 2014 and the name of the winning entry will be published in our June edition.


Looking after repeat business takes up a big chunk of Gareth’s time, and he will often photograph different generations of the same family for posterity, from grandparents and parents through to new born babies, and Gareth’s pictures now adorn thousands of Wigan homes.

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Jack’s Tracks

Crosby & Hightown

We used the free Burbo Bank Road North car park, directly facing renowned artist Antony Gormley’s 6ft 2ins Iron Men statues, officially called Another Place. Ironically, they were actually in another place when we arrived as the tide was right up to the sea wall, thus submerging these pieces of modern art under the choppy foam.

This Jack’s Tracks marks a mini milestone – the first one this year where we’ve had to don shades for the occasion. Yes, the sun (finally) got its hat on and came out to play on the day we headed over to the Sefton coast. At 5.5 miles long, it’s a fair distance for the casual walker but can be tailored to suit your own tastes. There’s even the option of hopping on a train for part of it, strongly advised for those with children or dogs. It’s Jacks ‘Tracks’… but not as we know it!


More of them later though as we made our way past the coastguard station and straight down Hall Road. Walking down a residential street usually doesn’t prompt much comment but the vast array of architecture on display make this a fascinating start to walk. Everything from 1890s to the present day can be seen, all of them done to the highest standard. Indeed, some of them wouldn’t look out of place on Kevin McCloud’s Channel 4 programme Grand Designs.

Hall Road is bisected by a rail crossing and station. From here you can get the train to Hightown; highly advisable if you don’t want to tackle the busy, footpath-free country road which lies ahead. Right at the end of Hall Lane, we took the public footpath continuing eastwards over the fields and in the direction of Little Crosby. Suddenly we were away from the seaside and

Moss Lane, which we were now on, leads onto the Hightown Bends, a rural route with a distinct lack of pavements. The traffic is also quite heavy at times as people use it as a cut through to Crosby. I’d strongly advise not to take children or pets along this route. Instead, after enjoying the splendour of St Mary’s, there’s the option of heading back to Hall Road

into a rural idyll. The path was in reasonable condition for the time of the year and we didn’t have to play Dodge Puddle Hopscotch too much.

Station and catching one of the regular services up to Hightown.

Eventually, we arrived on the residential part of Dibb Lane with the pretty, 167 year old St Mary’s Church directly in front of us. Admittedly, despite its grandeur my eyes did wander to the advertising billboard to the left for the Courtyard Café. I rarely pass up the opportunity for a sit down snack (it was Afternoon Tea time I hasten to add!) but even I couldn’t convince myself I’d burned enough calories at this stage to warrant such an intake.

For the purposes of this walk, we continued up Moss Lane until we reached Gorsey Lane. To be honest, it was a blessed relief to be off Moss Lane and back onto the tranquil rural route to which we are accustomed. We carried on until coming to a large barn and cottage on the left hand side. Directly opposite was a green sign denoting Sandy Lane footpath, we went down here and through the fields until arriving at Sandy Lane itself. We took a right and head past the football and cricket pitches, beyond which is the main settlement


Lower Alt Road




Sa e




Blundellsands Sailing Club


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Brick Tipping M e




The Courtyard CafĂŠ lph

De Rd





Saint Mary's Catholic Church

ll Ha

H M Coastguard


Hall Road West

Postcode: L23 8SY

Iron Men Sculptures







Little Crosby

of Hightown. Pacing left turn at Alt Road, the railway bridge became almost instantly visible. Once over the bridge, we headed across the War Memorial roundabout to our right and followed Lower Alt Road down to the bottom where we discovered a boat yard on the right and the Alt Centre on our left. Down the side of the centre is a public footpath which runs adjacent to the River Alt. Once over some boggy marsh land, we came across possibly one of the most bizarre sights I’ve ever witnessed on a Jack’s Tracks walk – piles and piles of bricks acting as a buffer between the sand dunes and the open beach. It was a bit like being a kid again as we hunted out names showing where the bricks came from. Once we’d finished our Famous Five adventure, we made our way across this large expanse and found our way onto the main pathway heading south. By this time, the tide had gone out so the Iron Men were now visible. The sun was also starting to set, creating atmospheric, almost eerie, silhouettes as 100 Iron Men looked out towards Liverpool Bay. It certainly makes you stop and look… a welcome opportunity after two hours of toil. Once I’d been wowed by the Gormley statues, my mind wandered back to the eatery in Little Crosby I passed up on earlier. So as recompense, I allowed myself a minor luxury, a good old 99 from the ice cream van conveniently parked within staggering distance of the Local Life charabanc. It may not have been the civilised afternoon tea I was hankering after, but boy it didn’t half taste good! Please ensure you wear appropriate clothing and footwear whilst walking. Whilst every care has been taken to ensure that the walk is accurate, neither the publisher or its editorial contributors can accept, and hereby disclaim, any liability to any party to loss or damage caused by errors or omissions resulting from negligence, accident or other cause.

Tipping The Balance Brick tipping started on the beach in 1942 in a bid to stem coastal erosion. Initially, debris from bomb-damaged buildings in Liverpool was used. Tipping continued up until the early 1970s when spoil from the construction of the second Mersey Tunnel was used. Over the years, the sea has smoothed out many of the bricks but the merchants’ names are still visible, including Huncoat Plastic, Accrington; Rock Brick Co, Buckley, Wales, and R.P.B (Ralph Platt Barker) of Blaguegate Colliery, Lathom.


What’s On in the North West Monday, April 7, to Saturday, April 12 Let It Be Relive The Beatles’ meteoric rise from their humble beginnings in Liverpool’s Cavern Club, through the heights of Beatlemania, to their later studio masterpieces. Performances at 2.30pm and 7.30pm most days. Liverpool Empire Theatre, Lime Street, L1 1JE. Tickets £23.40-£43.30 plus £2.85 transaction fee. Telephone 0844 871 3017

Tuesday, April 8

Sunday, April 13

Julie Fowlis

Cedar Farm Vintage Fair

Brought up in Scotland’s Outer Hebrides, Fowlis has been a proud standard bearer for Gaelic music Her new album 'Gach Sgeul’ (meaning ‘Every Story’) is out now. Starts at 8pm.

Your chance to buy all things vintage: beautiful clothes, old furniture and other objects brimming with character. All under cover, free parking with a £1 entrance fee. From 10am-4pm.

The Lowry, Pier 9, Salford Quays, M50 3AZ. Tickets are £24.50 plus £2 booking fee. Telephone 0843 208 6000

Cedar Farm, Back Lane, Mawdesley, Lancashire, L40 3SY. Contact Jill Brindle on 07711 318466 or at for further details.

Saturday, April 12, to Sunday, April 20

Wednesday, April 16 to Saturday, May 10

Craft Weekends

Separation & Duet For One

Get creative with the Get Ready for Easter craft weekends on April 12/13 and April 19/20 from 10am-4pm.

These are two of Tom Kempinski’s finest plays in which he looks deep into his own heart and explores the courage with which people can face their pain and despair to find meaning and purpose in their lives.

WWT Martin Mere Wetlands Centre, Fish Lane, Burscough, L40 0TA. Prices £11.80 for adults, £8.70 concessions and £5.75 for children Telephone 01704 891220

Bolton Octagon Theatre, Howell Croft South, BL1 1SB. Tickets are from£24 - £9, discounts available. Telephone 01204 520661


Saturday, April 26 Clever Peter This awardwinning comedy sketch group have been going since 2008 performed and three critically acclaimed live shows at festivals and venues all over the UK, including the Edinburgh Fringe. Ormskirk Civic Hall Southport Road, Ormskirk, L39 1LN. Tickets £12 adults, or £10 for students and OAPs.

Tuesday, April 22 Hot Flush Meet Myra, Sylvia, Helen and Jessica in this hilarious show. Share in the friendships, the secrets, the tears, the laughs and ups and downs of four ordinary women - and one man living extraordinary lives. Starring Lesley Joseph from Birds of a Feather. Starts at 7.30pm. Southport Theatre, Promenade, Southport, PR9 0DZ. Tickets between £15.50 and £21. Bookings can be made on 0844 871 7660

Monday, April 28, to Saturday, May 3 The 39 Steps Chorley Amateur Dramatic and Operatic Society’s take on a play loosely based on John Buchan’s novel, and inspired by Alfred Hitchcock’s film. 7.30pm10pm. Chorley Little Theatre, Dole Lane, Chorley, PR7 2RL Tickets from £6 to £8. Group Bookings: Buy 10 tickets, get 11th free. 20 or more: £1 off per ticket (Mon-Fri only). Telephone Malcolm's Musicland 01257 264362 or the theatre on 01257 264362.

On until Sunday, June 1 Turner: Travels, Light and Landscape Featuring some 30 watercolours, paintings and prints, this exhibition is drawn from National Museums Liverpool’s own JMW Turner collection, one of the most outstanding in the country.

Lady Lever Art Gallery, Port Sunlight, CH62 5EQ. Call 0151 478 4136 aspx Free entry.


Garden Diary - by Angie Barker

The Garden Awakes!

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If there is one piece of advice I can give at this time of year, it is to get outside into the garden because the more time you spend now getting the garden into shape, will mean you have more time for relaxing in it when summer comes – and after all that is what we all long for. The lighter days coupled with warmer weather and April showers mean there is an incredible surge of growth in the garden. You can almost hear the perennial shoots pushing up through the soil and the leaves unfurling on the trees. It’s a fabulous time of year to be outside in the garden so don’t miss a moment of it. Even Hubby has been known to poke his head out of the conservatory doors come April. If you’re not sure where to start and this is the first time your thoughts have turned to the garden since winter, it can be helpful to make a check list of some simple jobs which will help to transform your garden from a dismal winter space to a vibrant spring garden. • Pick up the last of the winter debris, leaves and twigs which have fallen onto borders, lawns and paths • Cut back and tidy dead perennial leaves to reveal new growth • Prune out frost damaged shoots and stems

Angie is a qualified award-winning garden designer who will plan your garden to your needs from start to finish, supplying reputable contractors and the ideal plants.


• The taller grasses such as Miscanthus sinensis will have started growing now so if you haven’t already trimmed away last years dead stalks, this is your last chance • Give the lawn a hair cut and tidy up the edges to give a crisp finish • Lightly fork over the borders and lay a mulch of compost or bark chippings between shrubs and emerging perennials • Pop down to your local garden centre to get some spring bedding to add instant colour to borders and pots by your back door. Don’t be tempted by any summer bedding that may be appearing in the garden centres now unless you are prepared to keep it under protection until the end of May I hope this inspires you to get out into your garden – when you admire your efforts you’ll be so glad you did!

Call Angie now for your free consultation! Author: Angie Barker Dip GD (Inst GD) BA (Hons) Garden Design For All Seasons Tel: 01942 522 405 Mob: 07857 008 383

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Test Drive - by Tim Barnes-Clay

JaguarF-TYPE The jaguar is the third-largest feline after the tiger and the lion. The flesh and blood big cat has a compact body, a broad head and powerful jaws – and this describes perfectly the attributes of the new F-TYPE from Jaguar Land Rover Ltd. Indeed, in the automotive world, the latest Jaguar is leading the pack.

The feeling you get when you accelerate is similar to that of an aeroplane hurtling down the runway before take-off. You’re literally pressed into your seatback, and the smile it induces could only ever be outdone by a small child on Christmas morning. And just when you think the Jaguar F-TYPE couldn’t possibly release any more endorphins into your bloodstream – you come across the sports car’s active exhaust system. With just a touch of a button you can

The two-seater convertible embodies a return to the company’s heartland, focusing on athleticism, dexterity and behind-the-wheel involvement. What’s more the F-TYPE is a continuance of a sporting lineage stretching back over 75 years. The engineering philosophy fortifying the F-TYPE is focused on Jaguar’s expertise when it comes to aluminium. The metal is lightweight, so its use in the car’s architecture helps provide a perfectly balanced weight distribution. That permits the Jag’s rear-wheel drive dynamics to be exploited to the max. Three types of the Jaguar model are available: the F-TYPE, F-TYPE S and F-TYPE V8 S. Each is distinguished by the power output of its supercharged petrol engine, with all of them featuring stop/start technology to increase efficiency. My press car was the F-TYPE S, powered by a new 3.0-litre V6 lump. Producing 375bhp and 338lb/ft of torque (pulling power), the car has more than enough horses and grunt to get you moving rapidly. The freerevving, willing nature of the engine encourages you to be, shall we say, enthusiastic – and I certainly tried to sample the full extent of the car’s abilities. The 0-62mph sprint comes in just 4.9 seconds and the top speed is 171mph.


change an already throaty sounding exhaust note into one that builds to a thrilling crescendo at the red line. Driving the F-TYPE isn’t rocket science though. It has a set of eight closely-spaced gear ratios in its Quickshift auto transmission, giving you superior control. The V6-powered S model also includes a Dynamic Launch feature, which optimises acceleration from rest. Taking cues from cockpits of fighter aeroplanes, the switches are grouped by function. Further aeronautical inspiration can be found in the joystick-

shaped SportShift selector controlling the gearbox. Additionally, the air vents on top of the dashboard will only deploy when you instruct them to, or by complex control algorithms, staying tucked discreetly out of sight in other circumstances. The concentration on driver passion and performance in the F-TYPE is highlighted by the ‘one plus one’ layout of the asymmetric cabin. This is confirmed by the grab handle which races down the centre console on the passenger side, delineating it from the driver’s side. The F-TYPE is, without doubt, a car that delivers precisely the key sporting characteristics that Jaguar intended. It’s definitely a big toy for big boys and girls – and it’s available from only £58,500 for the entry level, rising to £67,520 for the F-TYPE S, on to a price-tag of £79,950 for the F-TYPE V8 S.


Max speed: 171mph

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Guess where? Photo courtesy of Wigan World.


Find all the types of cat. Ragamuffin Burmese Bombay Toyger Persian Somali Abyssinian Siberian Ragdoll

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Answers are on page 85 of this magazine



wYour Pets - by Dr Shams Mir


There is more to dog faeces than an unpleasant mess Scientific studies suggest that as many as one to four percent of adults in the country could be infected with dog worm Toxocara without showing any symptoms. This figure could to be much higher for children as one study reported that of the cases of clinical disease diagnosed each year nearly all of them are children, mostly between 18 months to 5 years of age. Eye disorders are the most commonly reported conditions in humans infected with the dog worm Toxocara. This is caused by the immature stages of the worm reaching the eye through the blood vessel supplying the retina, the image producing membrane within the eye, leading to detachment of the retina, growth of localised tumours and potentially blindness. The human infection has also been related to flu-like symptoms, vague aches, nausea, dizziness, asthma, epileptic fits and paralysis. As some of the symptoms can be non-specific, it is quite likely that a number of Toxocara cases go unrecognised and unreported. A surprising fact about the human infection is that about half of the most serious cases of Toxocariasis, such as blindness, occur in families who have never owned a dog or a cat. Infection develops by unknowingly swallowing Toxocara eggs, which are microscopic. The infection is transmitted through hands, but also with the dogs themselves or through objects like wheels of toys and shoes etc. A single mess of an untreated dog can contain as many as one million worm eggs and that of puppies between 2-6 weeks of age can contain many times more. These worm eggs are resistant to freezing and disinfectants and can survive up to two years or even longer. As the faeces degrade, soil and sand continue to harbour the worm eggs.


The most infected soil samples are found in the vicinity of children’s play areas, sports grounds, public parks, even though dogs are often banned from these areas, and on streets or street sides. It is noteworthy that Toxocara eggs cannot cause infection until they start to develop to embryos, which is usually at least 2–3 weeks after they have been deposited by a dog. Therefore, freshly deposited faeces can quite safely be cleaned up after the dog. In the interest of our family and public health it is important that we treat our dogs regularly for worms with reliably effective medications, try to keep them away from public spaces meant for children and most importantly always clean up after our dogs. Dr Shams Mir BVSc&AH,MVSc,DrMedVet,MRCVS Veterinary Surgeon Sunrise Veterinary Surgery 6 The Common Parbold WN8 7DA Tel: 01257 463 142

Dog Days A local volunteer is appealing for like-minded people to put their best foot forward and help elderly or ill pet owners. Andrea Buxton, from Billinge, has helped out with the Cinnamon Trust for the past four years. The Trust is made up of volunteers who look after the pets of older or ill people who are having either short or long-term issues with animal care. Examples include taking a dog for a walk for a housebound owner, temporarily looking after pets when owners need hospital care or even cleaning out bird cages etc. Andrea (pictured opposite) wants to raise the profile of the Trust locally to attract volunteers and also make eligible pet owners aware that support is available. She told Local Life: “Volunteers can walk the dogs for as little as half an hour once a week or as often as the owner and volunteer agree is feasible. “It’s a great way to get more active by walking regularly, fun for the dogs and a relief for their owners. It’s truly rewarding all round.” For more information, contact the Cinnamon Trust on 01736 757 900, visit volunteers or email

A well trained dog is a happy dog! Jo Pay is a fully qualified Dog Trainer who offers:

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Recipe of the month

Butternut Squash & Fresh Ginger Soup When winter is looming, there is nothing more warming to the heart and soul than a bowl of freshly made soup. This one is no exception. Eat with a chunk of soft bread and butter, put your feet up and savour every mouthful.


Serves: 4

• 50g butter • 2 large diced onions • 1 good sized butternut squash, peeled and cubed • 50g fresh ginger root, peeled and sliced • 300ml Greek yogurt • 300ml vegetable stock • 1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon • Salt & pepper • Handful of chopped parsley

Equipment Wand blender

Method Melt the butter in a large, heavy bottomed pan. Add the onions and cook until soft. Add stock, butternut squash, ginger and cinnamon. Cook for 20 minutes or so, until soft. Set aside to cool for a few minutes then blend until smooth with a wand blender. Stir in the Greek yogurt. Season to taste. Gently heat to serving temperature and garnish with parsley.


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The picture is looking towards Appley Lane South in Appley Bridge


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sponsored by Total Bathroom Restoration

Medical Boston House Concourse Walk-in Centre Linacre Centre Ormskirk Hospital Parbold Surgery Shevington Clinic Shevington Surgery Standish Clinic Standish Medical Practice Beech Hill Medical Practice Wigan Infirmary NHS Direct Emergency Dental Repairs

01942 482000 01695 554260 01942 244000 01695 577111 01257 463126 01942 483100 01942 483777 01942 481380 01257 421909 01942 821899 01942 244000 0845 4647 01695 623334

Police Greater Manchester Police Wigan Policing Team Lancashire Police West Lancs Local Team

0161 872 5050 0161 856 7124 01695 566134 01257 462239

Libraries Parbold Library Shevington Library Standish Library

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01942 375 201 0800 988 7778

Councils and Councillors (Wigan) Wigan Council Wigan Council (out of hours) Cllr Collins (Shevington) Cllr Crosby (Shevington) Cllr Edwardson (Shevington) Cllr Gareth Fairhurst (Standish) Cllr George Fairhurst (Standish) Cllr McGurrin (Standish) Cllr Davies (Wigan Central) Cllr Hunt (Wigan Central) Cllr McLoughlin (Wigan Central)

01942 244991 01942 404040 01942 487684 01942 486860 01942 487674 01942 487671 01257 407078 01942 486861 01942 486864 07766 478296 01942 487686

Councils and Councillors (West Lancs) West Lancs Council Cllr Pope (Newburgh) Cllr Blake (Parbold) Cllr Whittington (Parbold) Cllr Baybutt (Wrigh’ton & App. Bridge)  Cllr Evans (Wrigh’ton & App. Bridge)

01695 577177 01704 894540 01257 463636 07786 806239 01257 255501 01695 624683

Local Life Magazine Advertising & Editorial Accounts & Distribution

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Crows Nest, Ashton Road, Billinge, WN5 7XX (Near Windy Arbour)

Design and production by Local Life 247 Ltd Publishing • Design & Print • Leaflet Distribution

Local Life - Wigan North - Apr/May 2014  

Lancashire's FREE local magazine

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