Wigan Borough Environment & Heritage Network

Meeting minutes

10.30 a.m. January 23rd 2017 at Museum of Wigan Life.


Derek Wilde (Wigan Family History Society), Allan Roberts (RSPCB) Peter Fleetwood (Save Wigan), Peter Goodwin (Tradition Films), Mary Pennington (Wigan Archaeology Society), Avis Freeman (Leigh Soroptimists), Neil Forshaw (George Formby Society), Richard Sivill (Atherton Heritage), Joe Taylor (Billinge History Society), Tom Price (Civic Trust), Ken Barston (Stubshaw Cross Residents Group) John O’Neill (Greenheart), Guest Speaker - Lynn Calderbank (Wigan MBC)

Glenys McClellan (Leigh Family History Society), Peter Taylor (Civic Trust), Lynda Jackson (Wigan MBC), David Shallcross (Leigh Ornithological Society), Alex Miller (Wigan MBC), Eileen Walsh & Eileen Bithel (BETA)

Minutes of the last meeting (19th September): Accepted as a true record.

Matters Arising: None arising from September meeting. No minutes from last two meetings - the visit to Damhouse and the awards presentation event.

Presentation of Asset Transfer by Lynn Calderbank (officer responsible).

Lynn gave a comprehensive description of Council’s current position regarding asset transfer to community groups and individuals, with details of several specific instances, which illustrate how each application needs to be considered in isolation. One cap does not fit all. She outlined the process whereby applications are considered for approval or otherwise, various funding opportunities and her own role in providing support for applicants. She answered specific questions for network members and responded to general comments

More details of asset transfer are available at https://www.wigan.gov.uk/Council/Strategies-Plans-and-Policies/Community-asset-transfer.aspx

Lynn offered to attend future network meetings and was warmly thanked by the chair for her valuable contribution to the meeting.

Greenslate Community Farm:

The E&H Network is a member/shareholder of Greenslate Community Farm. An organisation can nominate one of its members to represent the organisation at the Community Farm AGM. It was decided that Joe Taylor is authorised to represent E&H Network at the Greenslate Community Farm AGM and other general meetings of that organisation.

Planning for 2017:

Looking ahead to the upcoming year it was decided that meetings will be held 6th March, 22nd May, 3rd July (a visit to a yet to be determined venue), 14th August, 25th September, 6th November and 18th December (awards day).

It was decided that we will try to get a speaker for meetings and John suggested a number of possibilities. We have a speaker arranged for the next meeting. John will try to arrange speakers for subsequent meetings. He also recommended we look at www.communitybook.org

Members Reports:


A full programme has been arranged for 2017. In January Alex Miller gave a talk on “WW1 Leigh Tribunals”. February the talk will be “Mrs Gaskell” and March “The terrace gardens of Lord Leverhulme”

In 2016 the Group received 5 major awards, Gold and Special Achievement from NW IN BLOOM, Special Achievement from WMBC and Wigan & Leigh Homes, Best Community Group.

The volunteer group have done an excellent job in the Central Park.

See note circulated.

The plans for the expansion of facilities at the mill have been accepted. This consists of housing and heritage centre at the existing retail outlet.

Despite vigorous protests from residents WMBC have approved plans to demolish Formby Hall in Atherton and Lowton Civic Hall

The re-scheduling and routing of buses between Atherton and Wigan means that journey times can be an hour or more, this is extremely frustrating for residents.

Avis thanked everyone for attending and closed the meeting.

Next Meeting: March 6th Discovery Room