Clitheroe Civic Society

Caring for the future of Clitheroe

Our Local Paper - Original Copies 1889 - 1975

Late in 2014 we became aware that the Clitheroe Advertiser & Times newspaper had, for many years, retained original paper copies of every edition covering the above years. These were bound into yearly volumes and had been stored latterly at the newspaper offices in King Street, Clitheroe. When the newspaper moved its offices to Fern Court off Moor Lane there was no available storage space and so the archive was moved to the parent company offices at Bull Street in Burnley where they were stacked flat to the floor in a crowded store-room.

The storage at Burnley

The newspaper company had further space problems here and it became evident that, if no alternative home be found for them, they would quite probably have to be destroyed. It is true that all of their content is held, on microfilm, at Clitheroe Library but, unfortunately, some of the microfilming was poorly carried out and the text etc., is virtually impossible to read making the paper copies very valuable for much family and/or local history research.

We therefore spent a good deal of time searching Clitheroe for a permanent home in the town to which they belonged such that they would be fully available to the general public. Finally, Clitheroe Borough Council not only offered us space in their offices but also provided excellent shelving and now, in the third week of September 2015, we have been able to ferry the many volumes from Burnley to Clitheroe and to create a fully accessible and easily searchable archive available to all. Needless to say, we are extremely grateful to the Council for their generosity.

Shirley and John building the archive

To obtain access, please contact

Mrs Shirley Penman 9 Seedall Avenue Clitheroe BB7 2LR

Tel 01200 424462

email [email protected]

Access will be available Mondays to Fridays inclusive between 9.00am and 1.00pm only

Please note that there is no copy service available on site so perhaps bring a camera.

Waddow View Housing - Further Planning Application by the Developers - August 2014

Following a further submission of an application for permission to develop the Waddow View site, the following is the response submitted by the Society. We sincerely trust that all members will agree with the sentiments expressed and will individually do all they can to support the objectors to this development proposal.

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13 Derwent Crescent

                                                                                        Clitheroe

                                                                                                                      BB7  2PW

                                                                                                                       11th August, 2014

For the attention of

Colin Sharpe

Planning Department

Ribble Valley Borough Council

Church Walk

Clitheroe  BB7 2RA

Planning Application 3/2014/0597  Land off Waddington Road

Clitheroe Civic Society is of the very firm view that the planning application for 275 houses on land off Waddington Road must be refused.

We have considered this application in depth and can only see massive disadvantages not only in the development of this site, but also in the indisputable effects this development will have on traffic movement throughout the whole of Clitheroe. Our observations and reasons are set out below.

The Appeal Inspector for the original planning application for this site agreed that 7 car journeys per day per household was a fair assumption. There is no reason whatsoever for this to be changed. For 275 houses at Waddow View, this means 1,925 extra journeys along Waddington Road. This figure must not be viewed in isolation from traffic in other parts of Clitheroe. There is an agreed development at Milton Avenue which would create 350 more car journeys also on Waddington Road, using the same junction with Railway View Road. There are also 300+ houses newly-built or in the process of being built down Henthorn Road and Low Moor which have already generated over 2,000 car journeys of which at least 50% use Edisford Road, Station Road and on to Railway View Road, Waddington Road and the Chatburn Road roundabout. That is a massive 3275 extra car journeys added over the past 2 years going into Clitheroe town from the Edisford side and Waddington Road side of the town if this application is approved. On busy days, the roads in the town are often gridlocked near junctions and zebra crossings with the existing traffic of cars, buses, farm tractors, delivery vans (which have proliferated in recent years with home deliveries) and heavy construction vehicles. This will not go away.

The streets of Clitheroe cannot cope with the predicted huge increased volume of traffic on top of the existing overload of the town’s roads. Clitheroe Civic Society will be making strenuous representations to Lancashire County Council Highways on this matter. The application must be refused on grounds of unacceptable increase in the volume of traffic.

Two years ago, a zebra crossing was created on Railway View Road outside Clitheroe train station. The siting of this crossing means that traffic frequently backs along Station Road in one direction and Railway View Road in the other. Some part of the expected increased traffic from the Waddow View development will inevitably exacerbate gridlocked traffic already on Railway View Road. Similarly, the proposed zebra crossing on Waddington Road will lead to traffic backup and will inevitably affect the bus Interchange.

Also, it should be noted that cars are parked on one side of Waddington Road from the junction of the Church Brow roundabout down past the junction with Railway View Road and along Railway View Road itself. This is to accommodate the cars of householders in terraced property and cannot be avoided but it means that the road is narrowed and not fit for 2275 extra journeys.

From all directions, the high increase in traffic from this Waddow View development will add further chaos in the town and surrounding roads, including Waterloo and the application must be refused on these planning grounds.

A roundabout has been proposed at the junction of Waddington Road and Railway View Road. There is only space for a mini roundabout which is dangerous in this place. Already some drivers from the cemetery end of Waddington Road get frustrated at queueing at the junction under the railway bridge and make risky and dangerous moves to join the traffic. 2275 extra vehicles using this junction at a roundabout will potentially create an accident blackspot and when hundreds of school children will be involved near this junction, safety will be compromised severely.

The extra traffic will produce huge petrol /diesel emissions, more so when vehicles are queueing. In 2013, Clitheroe district had one of the highest CO2 emissions per person in England at 18.4 tonnes which is more than double the national average of 7.6 tonnes. Queueing traffic at peak times will directly affect the health of hundreds of school children who walk to school on this route or catch buses in Waddington Road/Well Terrace and Chatburn Road areas. Their health is at serious risk as the release of nitric oxides are destructive to tissue and a very real cause of chronic obstructive airway diseases. Surely, on health grounds, this application should be refused as this issue is of grave importance.

Nowhere in this planning application is any reference made to providing solutions for the overcrowded health centre currently trying valiantly to cope with a rapidly expanding population; for the schools which are full or for the problem of totally inadequate parking spaces. The applicants are fully aware of these problems for the town’s population yet are prepared to ignore them for their own gain.

Back Commons will be lost if this application is allowed. For generations, the walk from Low Moor to the cemetery and Waddington Road via Back Commons has been a green lung for the inhabitants of Clitheroe. It is well-used by children, dog-walkers and ramblers of all ages. It is an escape from the traffic snarled streets into open and relatively fresh air. Exercise is important to all as the nation generally tries to tackle obesity. But Back Commons is also a special place for valued and old hedgerows and trees and the wildlife that abounds there. A walk through a housing estate holds no charm for anyone but a walk through the countryside is of enormous benefit. If this land is taken for housing development and as more development is allowed down Low Moor, our young generation will have nowhere nearby which is countryside. They will have to go by car….so more car journeys and the circle perpetuates itself. This area of Back Commons must be kept as a green asset to the town and since it is outside the town boundaries there is even more reason for this planning application to be refused.

 

It is clearly imperative for Lancashire County Council Highways to have a thorough and in-depth study of traffic generated in Clitheroe from all directions as they necessarily converge. We would ask, however, that the study does not take place until the first week in September when schools resume and so does the normal level of traffic in Clitheroe, especially at peak times.

We are aware that many young families will have missed the opportunity to comment on this application because it was submitted in the school holidays yet those are the families who will have to struggle with the many problems created if this planning application is passed.

For all of the above sound and important planning reasons, Clitheroe Civic Society finds that there is only one possible conclusion and recommends that this planning application is refused.

For and on behalf of Clitheroe Civic Society

Pauline Wood  Chairman
Communication between Members and the Committee

At a meeting on 21st January 2014, the Committee considered the question of communication with the whole body of members particularly in connection with those more serious matters which demand a formal comment or response from the Society to outside bodies. The production by R.V.B.C. of the Core Strategy and the recent flurry of planning applications to them for large housing developments in particular has illustrated a need for such responses, frequently at relatively short notice.

With this in mind - and in addition to the usual announcements at our monthly lecture meetings – all such matters will, in future, be posted on this page, hopefully giving members every opportunity to contribute within sufficient time. You may do this by email response to the same address as is given on our “Contact Us” page which is

[email protected]

 

Very nearly all members have internet access at home and this is also available, free of charge, at the library but, if this is not convenient, please contact the Chairman, Pauline Wood at Tel: 01200 429187 when alternative arrangements can be made.

Bellman Park Lime-Kilns

Following a talk to Clitheroe Civic Society on 3rd March by Gordon Taylor, a number of people expressed interest in taking some action to preserve the kilns from further decay. Bellman Park Lime Kilns are a scheduled monument, one of three in Clitheroe (the other two being Edisford Bridge and the Castle). A group was set up with Gordon as chairman. The group contacted English Heritage who agreed to come and see the kilns. Gordon met representatives from English Heritage and Hansons and the inspector’s opinion was that the kilns should be placed on the “At Risk” register. There will be no money for this project this year however. English Heritage will carry out a detailed survey of the kilns. In order to do this, the vegetation and young trees will have to be cleared. Hansons can offer some help but Gordon is organising work parties as well.

If you can help in any way, please contact Gordon at [email protected]

At Last - we have an up-dated Town Trail Leaflet

 

Today, 5th March 2014, we have finally taken delivery of the first 500 copies of our new Town Trail Leaflet. Hopefully, as Ribble Valley Borough Council's budget renews in the new financial year more will be printed and these will follow this first tranche into distribution to libraries, Tourist Information offices and hotels throughout the region. RVBC are our financial backer in this venture and this will allow distribution to be on a "free of charge" basis.

Join us at our next lecture meeting on Mon 10th March for your first chance to receive a free copy.

The State of the Town Wells

For some time we have been concerned regarding the neglect of the three ancient wells in Clitheroe - the Heild Well in Wellgate, St. Mary's Well in Well Terrace and the Stock Well between the Wesleyan Chapel in Parson Lane and the Castle Field. There are documented reports of their use as far back as the 17th century and certainly they would have served their purpose for a long period before this -  who knows but that these spring fed wells might have served when the Normans arrived! They were still doing so until the mid-18th century when, prompted largely by the cholera outbreak of 1848/9, the Town Council commissioned the Babbage Report in 1850 which starkly documented the appalling state of the drainage system - or lack of such - and its consequent terrible effects upon the health of Clitheroe's citizens. As a direct result, piped water came to Clitheroe very shortly afterwards.

Not too many years ago, the Heild Well still had a maintained flow of water and all three wells were regularly cleaned by the Council. However, more recently this has been discontinued, not least because of the constrained economic times and we do, of course, understand the need for savings. The down-side of this is that anything not cleaned and maintained inevitably becomes an eye-sore and falls into disrepair.

Some little while ago, we produced schemes for all three wells which could see them renovated and restored and have them, in our opinion, again become attractive central features to their locations. We have presented our proposals to the Engineering Services Department at Ribble Valley Borough Council and are still involved in discussion with them in the hope that sufficient enthusiasm and the necessary funds may be found. We have visited every trader within the Wellgate area to explain our concerns and, without exception, they have expressed their support. The above photos show the Heild Well in mid-September 2011 by which time the self-seeded vegetation was dying back and, in order to make a gesture and to highlight the problem, a small team of Committee members, with equipment and coffee break support from adjacent traders, cleaned out the Heild Well on Mon 26th September. We removed a number of large bags of weeds, plastic bags, broken glass and other material which I will simply classify as "muck"!

 

We took great care to avoid any damage to stonework and in particular to the pointing and no chemicals were used. Vegetation was simply cut away at the surface, this and the "muck" was removed by brush and shovel and the whole was hosed down on completion. We think we made a difference - but it won't last. Growth will start again within days as will the accumulation of rubbish etc.

Our efforts hopefully give some indication of the potential for reclamation of a valuable part of Clitheroe's very identity and the creation of an aesthetically pleasing focus in what is an important shopping street in the town. But what is also revealled is the deterioration of the materials of which the well is constructed. The structure is basically sound but the materials of which it is constructed are suffering and without early intervention the costs can only soar.