Following months of hard work, Whitworth’s Memorial Gardens on Market Street will be officially re-opened on Sunday 20 May at 2pm.
The Gardens have been completely refurbished and transformed over an eight-month period from a tired, overgrown space into something resembling their original glory. A new hard-standing has been introduced, providing valuable performance space, flowerbeds have been redesigned and restocked, and railings have been reinstalled around the perimeter of the Gardens (they were removed for the Second World War effort and never replaced until now). Memorial trees dedicated to much missed Whitworth residents have also been purchased and planted through donations from loved ones.
The project has been spearheaded by the Whitworth and Healey Horticultural Society, which successfully bid for a £50,000 grant from the Community Spaces programme, managed by Groundwork UK as an award partner to the Big Lottery Fund.* Other project funding came from Rossendale Borough Council and Whitworth Town Council grants, and donations from previous Whitworth Mayors Councillors Marie Gibbons and David Chorlton and from County Councillors past and present, Sean Serridge and Peter Steen. The project has been managed by Rachael Marsden from Bacup-based Proffitts and Anita Farrow from the Horticultural Society, with Rossendale Borough Council providing in-kind support through manpower and officer assistance. The Horticultural Society volunteers have also spent considerable time planting out the gardens.
The re-opening ceremony will include entertainment from the Whitworth Vale and Healey Band and light refreshments will be served across the road at Riverside. It will be attended by the Mayor and Mayoress of Whitworth and all members of the public will be made most welcome. The young people of Whitworth have been encouraged to leave a message on a label to remember someone, or something, special to them which, on the day, will be attached to the Memorial Gardens railings as a temporary monument to Whitworth’s collective remembrance. Extra labels will be available on the day for anyone to use to add their thoughts and remembrances to the display.
For further information, please contact Anita Farrow from the Horticultural Society on 01706 853768 / email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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