Something For The Weekend LXXVI

Do you fancy visiting a museum or art gallery, joining a guided walk, discovering some Amazing Women by Rail, catching some organ music, sampling local ales or ‘Making a Beeline for the Station’? Then look no further.

Brookhouse, Blackburn, John L Chapman – Blackburn Museum.

Every Tuesday – Clitheroe Country Market, in the United Reformed Church Hall on Moor Lane, Clitheroe BB7 1AZ, 09:30 – 12:00 – a country market with quality home baked, hand made and home grown produce. A wide selection of goods from a co-operative of local producers. Home made cakes, pies and jams also handicraft items such as cards, knits and textile gifts. More details on

Third Saturday of every month – Clitheroe Piano Meet Up, would you like to meet fellow players, share knowledge and develop your skills on a Bechstein grand piano? All abilities and styles welcome, no experience required, no pressure to play or just come along to listen! These are free events held in Clitheroe Library between 13:00 – 15:30.

Last weekend of every month – Ormskirk Speciality Markets, great family days out with free entertainment, activities and demonstrations – visit for full details. Fancy a stall at one of the events then ring 01695 571328 or email to book a space.

Now and going forward for 2019 – The Longitude Gallery Clitheroe, The 45s, a new gallery concept for 2019 and beyond. A showcase of great North-Western artistic talent each displaying two pieces of work exactly 45cm by 45cm when framed – more details on

Now and until Thursday 30th May 2019 – Artists at The Larder, an exhibition by local artist Norman Long, Local Colours, Culinary Still Life, Preston Landscapes & Cafe Scenes visit for more details of this social enterprise cafe in Preston and check the Facebook page for events

Now and until Saturday 8th June 2019 – Blackburn Artists’ Society Open Exhibition 2019, Blackburn Museum hosts the annual exhibition and this will open at 14:00. Full details on

Saturday 18th May 2019 – Colne Farmer’s Market, A small monthly farmers market which runs alongside the main town market. 09:00 – 14:00 Market Street, Colne.

Sunday 19th May 2019 – DalesRail, the 2019 season starts with four guided walks – full details of this iconic service on

Tuesday 21st May 2019 – CRL Guided Walk, an easy 8 mile walk starting at Bamber Bridge (10:09) and finishing at Pleasington. Full details of the route etc. can be found on Community Rail Lancashire Guided Walks

Wednesday 22nd May 2019 – Lunchtime Organ Recital, Blackburn Cathedral hosts Peter Morris (organ & piano) and Jane Eminson (flute) who will be giving a recital. Entry is free but a donation of £3.50 is welcomed to cover costs. 13:00 – 14:00.


Click the link above to see a host of interesting places to visit that are close to CRL’s community rail stations.

Make a Beeline for the Station

‘Make a Beeline for the Station!’ is a community marketing project, that combined the vital elements of local education and wider group engagement with tourism attractions and professional marketing. The project, funded by an Arriva Rail North Seedcorn grant, is designed to encourage use of Northern’s hourly weekday service from Preston to Ormskirk and then on into Liverpool using Merseyrail services.

The project is supported by a video that can be seen on this link: Make a Beeline for the Station and a leaflet that can be downloaded here: Beeline Leaflet

Discover Amazing Women by Rail

Discover Amazing Women by Rail is a project initiated by the Mid Cheshire Line CRP and invites people to leave their car at home and use the train (along with buses and trams) to explore the fascinating, and often hidden, histories of women who lived and worked in areas along the Mid Cheshire and Calder Valley railway lines, including the Blackburn to Manchester via Todmorden route.

The project is supported with a website ( by an A5 booklet available from local stations, tourist information offices and libraries. The booklet can also be downloaded using this link: Amazing Women by Rail

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Make A Beeline For The Station!

‘Make a Beeline for the Station!’ is a community marketing project, that combined the vital elements of local education and wider group engagement with tourism attractions and professional marketing. The project was launched in the spring sunshine today at Preston and Croston stations.

The West of Lancashire lines were in need of revitalisation and promotion; in partnership with Northern, Merseyrail, Merseytravel, Network Rail, local schools, the National Trust, Aintree Racecourse and the Liverpool Museums Group, vibrant artwork, clearing and planting has taken place to enable tourism promotion through traditional and online methods, especially by families, with the centrepiece of the campaign being an innovative advertising film.

The pupils of Rufford Church of England Primary School and Rice Lane Primary School were vital to the project; producing all the fantastic nature-themed artwork whilst learning about the environmental benefits of using the train.

This artwork has been displayed along the line, to highlight various key locations, as well as used in the line poster.


Travelling from vibrant Liverpool into historic Lancashire, or vice versa, you can experience a wide range of exciting family activities, where a regular service with both Northern and Merseyrail provides hassle-free access.

For more information you can download the a leaflet here: Beeline Leaflet, and to view the film see below:

For further details, contact Daisy Chapman-Chamberlain, Project Manager, at

This project was funded by a grant from Arriva Rail North’s Seed Corn Fund.

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Free Refills At Bentham Station

The Friends of Bentham Station (FOBS) are constantly looking for ways to improve the facilities at the station and have just installed a water fountain in the waiting and information room.

Their recent well-supported coffee morning, held in Bentham Town Hall, raised sufficient funds to cover the cost of the fountain, the associated plumbing materials and more.

FOBS treasurer and secret plumber, Richard Wilson, made the final connections recently and Adam’s ale now flows for the benefit of passengers and station visitors. Whether it be for a swift drink or for drinking bottle filling, chilled local Dales water is available to refresh parts that other waters can’t reach.

This a local group supporting a local idea with funds raised locally, topped off with materials from local suppliers and an in-house tradesman. That makes for a great community-based initiative!

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25% Discount On Off-peak Travel

Northern are offering 25% off off-peak train travel across a number of routes in Cumbria and Lancashire.

This discount is automatically applied to all off-peak day return fares and is valid from Monday 4th March until Saturday 6th April 2019. Railcard and child discounts can be used in conjunction with this offer, representing great savings for all.

Where is this offer valid?

The offer is valid on the lines of route shown below and is inclusive of all intermediate stations.

Blackpool North – Preston

Blackpool South – Preston

Barrow-in-Furness – Carlisle

Barrow-in-Furness – Lancaster

Oxenholme – Windermere

Ormskirk – Preston

Journeys can be taken on these lines of route only. This offer is only available on the above journeys and cannot be used on multiple lines of route (i.e. Lancaster to Carlisle or Oxenholme to Lancaster).

Where can this ticket be purchased?

Tickets can be purchased from ticket offices, online and ticket vending machines from 4 March.

Terms and conditions

25% saving is already applied to the Promo Off-peak day return fare.

Offer dates: Monday 4 March – Saturday 6 April 2019 inclusive.

Time: Valid on trains timed to depart after 0900 weekdays and at any time at the weekend.

Discounts: Normal Railcard and Child discounts apply.

Refund: Normal refund conditions apply.

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Make A Beeline For Rufford

Rufford is an attractive village with much to offer the visitor from canal side walks to Rufford Old Hall and a variety of pubs and cafes.

Its name derives from the Old English Rough Ford which was the crossing point over the River Douglas. The village is on the attractive Preston to Ormskirk line and enjoys an hourly train service on Mondays to Saturdays with the first train to Preston at 07:11 and the last at 23:20, not bad for a community of around 1500 people.

It also has a handy, free, park and ride for commuters travelling towards Preston, Ormskirk or even Liverpool from the village or from nearby communities such as Eccleston or Mawdesley.

The station is very close to the Rufford Branch of the Leeds – Liverpool canal and some lovely towpath walks can be enjoyed. The canal has given rise to a number of marinas and cafes which are very close to the station.

For those wanting to explore further then close by is Rufford Old Hall. This fine building dating back to the Tudor period is today owned by the National Trust and is open to the public but check its website: Rufford Old Hall as it is not open every day. Also close by is the Mere Sands Wood Nature Reserve which is looked after by the Lancashire Wildlife Trust and is home to a number of exciting species such as red squirrels. To find out more about the reserve and how to access it from the station click this link: Mere Sands Wood Nature Reserve

The station also has a friends group who keep it in good condition. Rufford Village Society have adopted the station and maintain a number of very attractive flower tubs on the platforms, which also double up as seats, as well as landscaping the park and ride. Pupils form the Rufford Church of England primary School’s Gardening Club also lent their green fingers to help tidy up the station.

The Preston to Ormskirk line has been formally designated by the Department for Transport as a community rail line and service and is looked after by the West of Lancashire Community Rail Partnership (CRP). The CRP brings together representatives from the local community, the railway industry and local government.

Essential information:

For train times and live running boards go to

For more information about the line, the work of the West of Lancashire Community Rail Partnership or Rufford Village Society go to: or email on:

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Community Food Hub Café Opening In Preston

Community food hub The larder is opening a café in what was Ham and Jam on Lancaster Road, Preston. The Larder Café, which opens on Friday 22nd February, will be used to share the food hub’s message about healthy, local, seasonal and waste free food.


The Larder on Lancaster Road – David Toase

Founder of The Larder, Kay Johnson, said: “We’ve been discussing opening a café space for a lot of years. We wanted it to be long-term and sustainable so we’ve spent the past 12 months getting funding organised and finding the right location.

“Now we’re opening, we want The Larder café to be an experience for our customers, not just a place to eat.

“When people come in they will experience sustainable food that is ethically and locally sourced. We can trace where all our ingredients come from, so if people want to know more about what they’re eating we can provide the information.

“We want to help people understand what sustainability means and why it’s important. We’ll highlight issues around food waste and food poverty, and provide a place for like-minded people to meet.”

All food served at The Larder will be cooked from scratch and made on site, except the bread, which will be sourced from a baker in Much Hoole.

Kay said: “We’ll start simply with the menu and build from there. We want to get local producers in, do tasters, and see what people prefer. Our customers will be able to choose what they like best and it will go on the menu.

“We’ll cater for different dietary requirements but keep everything inclusive, so for instance we’ll always have a vegan option but we’ll call it ‘meat and dairy free’. Food will also be seasonal so salads at this time of year will feature things like beetroot and carrot but no tomatoes.

“Once we’ve found our feet we’ll be looking to do pre-theatre meals.”

Inside The Larder

The café will also be a venue for talks, events and training. An International Women’s Day event organised by Preston Labour Party and UCLan is taking place on Friday 8 March, and a Middle Eastern-themed night is also in the works.

Accredited catering courses will be available, and there are plans for work experience to be offered at the café and with other local businesses.

All profits from the café will fund the work The Larder does in the community.

Kay continued: “The café is almost like the face of the operation, because there is a lot going on in the background.

“If successful we will no longer need to rely on grants and instead we’ll use our own funds to continue to go out and do things like pop-up cafés in community centres.”

The café is a worker cooperative, with four members running the project. Six jobs have been created, and the café will pay the real living wage. The café is still looking for a manager, and anyone interested should get in touch with

The Larder opens at 50-52 Lancaster Road on Friday 22 February. Opening hours will be 8am to 5pm during the week, and 9am to 5pm on Saturdays. The café is about a ten minute walk from Preston railway station.

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A Warm Welcome To Bamber Bridge

Even on the coldest of days there is now a warm welcome to Bamber Bridge station.

Today has seen the next element of a long term project at the station completed with the installation of additional running in boards.

The Friends of Bamber Bridge Station group have been working over the last two years to improve the look of the station with a project that has seen recycled plastic planters installed by local firm Ark Plastics and colourful artwork by primary school children from the local Cuerden Church School displayed on the station.


Helped by Dan Richardson & Mike Baines from local firm Baxi Boilers along with Sue Simpson from South Ribble Borough Council, CRL’s Simon Clarke was on hand to capture images and assist with the installation of the running in boards that reflect the four seasons.



The Friends of Bamber Bridge Station is a partnership with members from the South Ribble Pensioners Association, South Ribble Borough Council, Baxi Boilers, Community Rail Lancashire, The Brothers of Charity, South Ribble Scouts, Arriva Rail North (Northern) and Network Rail.


The project has been sponsored by contributions from ACoRP’s Small Grants Fund, Northern’s Station Adoption Fund, South Ribble Borough Council, Baxi Boilers and Community Rail Lancashire.

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Bentham Station Joint Venture Day

Bentham station was busy this morning with people on a ‘joint venture day’.

Managers from Northern and staff and managers from ISS, Northern’s maintenance contractors, along with members of the Bentham Line CRP, members of the Friends of Bentham Station and volunteers form the town all came together to give the station an autumn spruce up.

The work included cleaning moss and other vegetation from the platform surfaces, tree pruning, strimming and clearing embankments, washing down poster cases and other surfaces, realigning poster cases in the waiting shelter on the Morecambe bound platform and much more.

The Friends of Bentham station would like to thank everyone who turned out on the day and are grateful for all the help.

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Lancashire Day 2018

Lancashire Day is the county day of historic Lancashire in England. It is held on 27 November to commemorate the day in 1295 when Lancashire first sent representatives to Parliament, to attend the Model Parliament of King Edward I. Lancashire Day was first held in 1996.

Curated by the Friends of Real Lancashire, it is observed with the loyal toast to “The Queen, Duke of Lancaster”, and is celebrated from everywhere within the county palatine. The day is marked throughout the historic county by town criers announcing the Lancashire Day proclamation which declares the historic regions boundaries of the county, and finishes with “God bless Lancashire, and God save the Queen, Duke of Lancaster”

The day since has been widely publicised, including reports from the BBC website and in the local press. The day receives support from both district councils and Lancashire County Council; both Wigan Metropolitan Borough Council and Bolton Metropolitan Borough Council has resolved to support the day every year. Many towns throughout the historic county host events on the day, most notably readings of the Lancashire Day Proclamation. At formal occasions on the day, “Long live our noble Duke”, an unofficial Lancashire anthem variant of “God Save the Queen” is often used in respect to the Duke of Lancaster who is always the reigning monarch.

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New Planters For Squires Gate

Yesterday, 14 November, CRL working with Ark Plastics and the Friends of Squires Gate station installed some new planters at the station.

The planters are paired and include a bench with a back rest and are made locally in Accrington from recycled plastic and are very durable, aesthetically pleasing and fit in well with the rest of the station furniture and fencing.

More details of the work of the Friends of St. Annes & Squires Gate Stations can be found on a blog run by one of the members and this includes a short video of the planters being installed. The blog can be found on this link and the video here.

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