EDGWORTH Christmas Celebration

Hello all,

It is with a very heavy heart and deep regret that we must announce that Sunday’s Carol Concert can no longer go ahead.

We have done all our planning in accordance with current Covid regulations, and – as part of that-  we have undertaken consultation with Blackburn with Darwen Council. The Council are concerned that an event of this size would potentially lead to infringements of the social distancing rules, and the organisers would be held responsible for any infringements. While we believe we have a robust plan to manage distancing, on arrival, during the event and after, and that those coming would take due care, we know we could not guarantee that everyone would keep fully to the rules – and any infringement could be deemed non-compliance.

We wanted this to be a positive and joyful event, but the risk of heavy fines and negative publicity would make it the opposite.
In discussion with St Anne’s and Edgworth Methodist church we feel we must postpone this celebration till a time when it is possible to do it without worry. We do know how much people were looking forward to this event, we are grateful to all who have helped in the planning, and we are sorry that we cannot continue, but the risk is now too great.

But this is not ALL negative…….what has come out of trying to organise this Carol Concert has been a recognition of the desire for The Barlow, the churches within our community, The Cricket Club, and Edgworth Primary School to work together to put on a truly village wide event, this experience and the relationships built will stand us in great stead for when we are able to celebrate an end to restrictions and we hope we can put on a wonderful village-wide event that will highlight all that is so good in this wonderful area we live in.

Mike Fay



Good morning all,

As you know we had an idea that we might move the village Christmas Tree to the side of the Barlow this year only, for safety reasons both COVID social distancing and to take gatherings of children away from being in close proximity to the main road through the village. I must say a big thank you to all of your well wishes and positive messages of support, over 300 of them with only one in the negative.

However, it proved far too difficult to speak to anybody with authority in moving the tree and so it has now been installed and I’m sure it will look wonderful as usual………..HOWEVER…….. we are still planning to put a Christmas Tree at the side of the Barlow, close to the new walkway and as part of those workings Rory from the Cricket Club agreed to put in electrics for the lights, so a 15 foot Christmas Tree will be installed there in due course and will be joined by 4 x 5 foot trees for children of the village to pin their Christmas Wishes to…..

I think this will be a wonderful focal point where people can gather safely, sing carols, or simply contemplate.

There will also be a real tree in the Reading Room this year (I have been told that I will have to sweep up the needles at the end!) which I think will give a whole new atmosphere for Christmas in our cafe/bar (restrictions permitting of course).

This is, of course, an extra cost that isn’t budgeted for and so we will have a donations bucket for anybody who would like to help out, but donations are very much a second thought.

We are also intending to light the huge pine at the back of the car park in some way as it is such a magnificent tree but unfortunately in the wrong place! ……….. Currently, the big problem that we have is that we don’t have any lights and so we would like to ask if anybody has any large strings of lights that they may be used in Summer that they could lend us for the Festive Season as we don’t particularly want to buy all new before we know if the venture will be a success or not.

The success of the Remembrance Day events centred on the new scoreboard is also inspiring imaginations regarding how we can use it to support Edgworth at Christmas.

Sara is busy organising various specialist food evenings during December and we are looking to have Christmas Market-style activity each Friday, Saturday, and Sunday throughout December.

We are in discussion with St Anne’s regarding an outside Christingle service for all of the village children at some point if a single service cannot be performed in the church….. More details to follow after we know what the restrictions will be on the 2nd of December.

So lots going on, but pretty much everything other than the trees are of course subject to any COVID restrictions we find ourselves under post-December 2nd.



What Remembrance means to us at a time when we cannot gather.

Edgworth Remembers at a time when we cannot gather…

Made by the village for the village. #EdgworthRemembers2020

Thank you to everyone from the village who contributed and supported us. Gathered together are thoughts and feelings from all corners of the village for sharing; at a time when we cannot actually gather to remember. Watch at 10:40 am – for those who wish to watch this and then honour the silence at 11 am on the 11th day of the 11th month.

We hope you enjoy it, please share with others.

Lesley and Nikki xx

Positive Covid19 Result

The Barlow – Covid19 Positive Result

Hello everybody…….we have had a member of staff test positive for Covid19 this morning (feeling a little bit grim but in no danger) and so have taken the decision to close with immediate effect and instigate a deep clean as per BwD guidelines and we will re-open Thursday morning, apologies for the inconvenience…….

Mike Fay – Chair of Trustees



People may be aware that earlier this year the Barlow was successful in being awarded a grant from the Postcode Local Trust to fund restoration works to the 3-acre Barlow Woodlands.  People may also be aware that some footpath and vegetation clearance work had commenced utilising Community Payback teams.  Sadly, the corona virus outbreak has put a stop to the work of the Payback teams.

Also, an Open Day had been planned to take place in March to publicise the proposed works and invite comments but, unfortunately, this event was also an early casualty of the corona virus outbreak and had to be cancelled.

We are still not in a position to get the Community Payback teams back to work or to hold a public Open Day but we are glad to be able to report that we are in a position to make a start on improving the management of the woodlands.

Now that the bird nesting season is over, John Gaffney Tree Services have been engaged to work with the Barlow to cutback invasive and non-native vegetation, remove and chip dead and diseased trees and put in place a plan for the long term environmentally friendly management of the woodlands.

Other elements of our proposals still include the improvement and re-surfacing of the footpath network, improved wildlife habitats and wetland areas, new tree planting, the provision of benches and picnic tables, the development of activity areas for young people as part of plans to see the woodlands become an outdoor classroom, together with producing a walk trail leaflet and erecting new information boards.

As soon as we are able, we will be hoping to get further works underway and we would like to be able to organise volunteer working parties to support the work being carried out by our tree services providers and, hopefully, our Community Payback teams.

If you are interested in getting involved, we would like to hear from you – please leave your name and contact details with the Barlow Office and we will get back to you.


Tel.  01204 852216

Email  info@thebarlow.co.uk

Paul Allen – Barlow Trustee – Woodlands Project Co-ordinator

September 2020

Chairman’s Update 17th August

Hello all,

At a recent Trustees meeting it was decided that the Barlow Institute Charity will not, for the foreseeable future, pursue its interest in securing a Public Works Loan from Blackburn with Darwen, in order to finance a new roof on the Barlow building. The reason for this is very much Community based, we as a community are slowly coming out of Lockdown into a new normal that none of us can accurately define and we are also heading into a potentially long and deep worldwide financial recession and the Trustees feel that this is the wrong time for the Barlow to be imposing any further burden of taxation on members of our community. This does not mean we are abandoning our plans to replace the roof on the building, quite the opposite, as after our overall duty to support the Community, our number 1 priority is to get the building into a state where it is safe and watertight and to get there we are determined to find another way. Work is close to fruition on creating a specification that will pass BwD planning and can be sent out to contractors for proposals, once we have clear and fixed costings for the job we will dig deep into our coffers and find a way to fund it, this will curtail our ability to match fund into the near future but all other works can wait once we have a safe and watertight building.

2020 has been a strange year in many ways but we have been able to fix the crumbling car park, new boilers being installed are imminent, the front fascia of the building will have new double glazed windows hopefully by winter, we have managed to sustain dozens of families within our community with snacks and meals, hundreds of shopping and pharmacy trips have been made by volunteers for folk isolating or shielding, we’ve supported the Cricket Club in creating a wonderful new scoreboard/film screen, we have plans in at BwD for a fantastic new multi-use games arena, and plans are afoot to refurbish the playground area with new and upgraded equipment ……… yes, it’s been a strange year!

A massive effort from so many people over so little time, thank you all!

Mike Fay




Hello all, as you know this year has been somewhat disrupted by events beyond all of our control, our intention at the 2020 AGM was to ask all in our community what they felt the Barlow should be doing to support the community. We will hold the AGM as soon as we are able to fill the main hall.
We’ve changed quite a few things so far this year but we really need to do much more to align ourselves with what the people of North Turton need and want from their local community Charity. So we need you to tell us!!
Please either comment below, send a private message, email info@thebarlow.co.uk, or simply speak to any of the Trustees regarding what you feel is needed.
Many of you are members of the Covid Support WhatsApp group which has provided a base for help and support around the Parish over the last four months or so, we are planning to continue with this group permanently and add other methods of contact as a Group aiming to provide permanent support for those in our community that require it.
In the short term and as soon as we are able we are looking to provide provision for Dance Classes, Martial Arts Classes, and Ballroom Dancing Classes in the main hall on week day evenings, supported by the Reading Room Cafe/Bar. In 2021 we are looking to have at least one major event per week at The Barlow with Private Parties, Weddings, concerts, and theatre/cinema style entertainment etc with an aim to create enough surplus income to subsidise the Community activities such as the Luncheon Club, Memory Cafe, and Toddler Group to the point where no charges are necessary.
We sincerely want to get to the point where the answer is ‘YES’ , and then think ‘how do we make that happen’ ………all views welcome….
Mike Fay – Chairman

Reopening The Barlow

Hello all,

The specific policy and guidelines for a general reopening of the Barlow is currently being written, will be issued as soon as possible, and we will assess and amend each time government advice changes. Each of our user groups and events will have their own journey out of lockdown and we have been conscious not to have a ‘one size fits all’ approach as circumstances are different for each group. We have also taken a conscious decision not to ask anybody in shielding or isolation mode for their plans as we do not want to put anybody in a position where their safety may be compromised or they feel uncomfortable in any way.

As individual groups have pro-actively come to us we have given advice and help dependent on the position at the time and of course nothing is ‘set in stone’. The only function that is up and running is the snooker table which was felt to be a socially distanced pastime in any circumstances so when we were asked if it could be used and after due advice we gave permission. I think the next step will be getting the Reading Room to the point of providing a takeaway service via a one-way system from the main entrance to the corner entrance to the Reading Room, and I know that Sara, Lynn, and Philip are all supportive of opening as soon as it is safe and feasible to do so. At present we are only taking a very small number of tentative forward bookings and only with a strong caveat of our being open at the time and we have no specific target dates to fully reopen. The Singing for fun group have asked if they can resume socially distanced after July 4 and this is being considered at present.

Some of you may have seen the works done to the Car Park during lockdown and this is now in great condition for parking so we would ask if at all possible you could park on the car park and leave the road for those in need of a short route into the building.

We have had huge amounts of work in keeping our community fed and watered during lockdown and coordinating approximately 30 helpers with around 50 recipients has taken up most of our Barlow time in recent months and we have had a number of ‘pop up’ giveaway days for snacks and drinks both at the Barlow and in Belmont.

We have also heavily supported the Scarecrow Festival and the Edgworth Rocks initiative.

Most of the things that we are doing are well known via various social media bulletins but if anybody feels that you need more information then please do not hesitate to contact me whilst we continue our journey out of lockdown.


Mike Fay