Wigan Borough Environment & Heritage Network

Meeting minutes

10.30 a.m. 17th October at Tudor House

Present: John O'Neill (Greenheart Partnership Board); Joe Taylor (Billinge History/Heritage Society),) Jackie Roberts & Avis Freeman (ETNA); Richard Sivill (Atherton Heritage); Peter Goodwin (Mirabilis Media), Jan Johnson (Hesketh Meadows Action Group), Glenys McClellan & Margaret Harrop (Leigh & District Family History Society); John Hill (Wigan L& CT) Dave Wilson (Leigh Ornithological Society); Gordon Winnard (Lancashire Irish Heritage Centre), Geoff Jones (Astley Green Colliery Museum); Ken Barston (Stubshaw Cross Residents Group); Mary Pennington (Wigan Archaeology Society); Neil Forshaw (George Formby Society); Tom Price (Wigan Civic Trust); Damien Jenkinson (Wigan MBC)

Apologies: David Shallcross (Leigh Ornithological Society); Jason Kennedy (conservation officer Wigan MBC); Vince Price (Atherton); Peter Taylor (Wigan Civic Trust), Rachel Bryant & Carol Tyldesley Art &(Heritage Services); Brian Parr (Discovery Group); Tony Bishop (Leigh Ornithological Society);

Minutes of the last meeting - true and accurate.

Matters arising:

Hindley Museum

A letter from Jack Topping concerning the future of the museum following the planned closure of Hindley Library, which houses the museum, appears to leading to it's closure. A special meeting has been called for the 14th of November to discuss the matter.

Waterloo Monument:

John O'Neil has been with a structural engineer to look at the Waterloo Memorial at Bispham Hall, who advised further investigation by a specialised company from Warrington. John is perusing that option in view of the 200th anniversary of the battle.

Tom Price reported that the Heritage Open days, 8th - 11th September - were bigger and better than ever

The Network celebration day, 17th November, will start 6.00 with refreshments. Members are requested to be there and to get people to attend. The result of the essay competition will be announced on the night. Jason Kennedy will give a presentation and Martin Purcell will show the latest Greenheart DVD, followed by displays of members' work and the handing out of certificates of membership to local societies.


Tom brought the meeting up to date with progress on the restoration of the Boer War memorial in Mesnes Park and the involvement of the Territorial Army in the project.

John Hill reported that about 70 people attended this year's Cultural Partnership Convention, centered around the Olympic Games as this year's awards for children and young people.

The results of the proposed restructure on the LSP have not been announced yet but it is expected that the Cultural Partnership will continue to exist in some form.

The Network's DVD night was a success. The costs of production have to be recovered and any help in distributing the DVD will, of course, be appreciated.

Our Local Heritage Sites:

Damien Jenkinson spoke about various projects that are occurring, including Britton Tidy's, 'Love Where You Are' which entails King Street and surrounding areas not being cleaned for a week so that people are confronted with the results of casually discarded litter. He handed out a list of the monuments that are linked to the 'In Bloom' initiative and agreed with the chairman's suggestion that a prize might be given to the monuments that are best florally enhanced. There were 17 entrants to North West in Bloom this year and the council's Big Thank You will be held 1st November. The sowing of wild flowers at roundabouts in Bolton has been appreciated by locals and will be considered for Wigan. Damien pointed out that the purpose of the In Bloom project is to get people involved in looking after their neighborhoods and in that regard it has been very successful.

Proposed Workshop Exercise:

Jason Kennedy has agreed to run a workshop with us sometime in 2012 that can be used as a model for local community groups.

Business Items:

Jan wondered if anyone knows someone who can play spoons or bones for a proect she is doing with pensioners and children.
Avis reported that a Pennington - Bedford boundary stone had been dumped in Ince and should be restored..
Neil informed the meeting that on BBC 4 at 9 pm on the 27th of October there is a program about George Formby.
Geoff Jones reported that the museum had visits from Hong Kong students. Tthree film companies are expected in the coming months. They have had 20 visits so far this year.

Next Meeting: 21st November at Tudor House.