Published February 17, 2016 at 10:51
Rossendale Borough Council is working with local community groups and Newground to revitalise Stubbylee and the Moorlands Park, Bacup.
The Council has been formulating the masterplan for Stubbylee with the Park’s Friends Group, Bacup Pride, Newground, Stubbylee Community Greenhouses and local ward Councillors, to come up with a prosperous plan for this wonderful community asset.
Newground carried out consultation on the park in May 2015, supported by Bacup Pride, as well as at Bacup and Stacksteads Carnival in June 2015. Responsive have been taken on board and have been used to formulate the Masterplan.
The ambitious and stimulating plans will be delivered in various stages over the next two years, covering all areas of the park.
Stubbylee Park is a fantastic community space, which already encompasses many serene woodland escapes and wildlife. The improvements scheduled in the masterplan will vastly increase the strong community, recreation and healthy lifestyle offer.
The park has a rich history, previously being owned by the Holt family and then local mill owners the Maden family, who’s son James went on to be a high ranking politician in the House of Commons. Their former home, the prominent Stubbylee Hall, Grade II listed, stands as a proud reminder of the park’s rich, historical past.
Permanent gym equipment and a play area has already been developed in the South of the Park, and following on from the Council’s successful Up & Active Project there will be a 1 mile routed walk for people of all ages and abilities to enjoy, bringing an enhanced healthy lifestyle aspect to the park.
The Council’s successful Up and Active project is also funding work to the East and West entrance of the park, clearing the paths and making them safer, restoring the gates, introducing new seating, cleaning and repairing the walls and planting work as well as cleaning lighting columns across the park.
To further this work and bring the masterplan to life the Council has been working hard to co-ordinate funding opportunities to deliver many aspects of the plans, which it sees as a key focus in the regeneration of Bacup, whilst also using resources from the Parks team, Section 106 money, the park’s friends group and Bacup Consortium.
Landscaping and planting improvements will be seen across the park, creating picturesque recreation spots and thriving wildlife habitats. The Council and its partners on this project aim to revitalise what is already in the park and present an enriched community offer, where people can come the park as an enjoyable, relaxing and entertaining space.
Working with partners at the Community Greenhouses in Stubbylee the Council will be working in the Summer on improving the wooded area at the Southern tip of the park.
The Council is using funding secured from developer contributions on the new RTB Housing Development on Burnley Road, Bacup, to develop climbing boulders to the North of the park near the bowling green, which will see an innovative new recreation space introduced into the park.
This funding source is also being used to develop The Dell part of the park on restoring Victorian features such as historically accurate planting, bridges, pools, rock edges and sculptures. As part of this work the Grade II listed Maden Memorial Fountain will also be renovated and reinstated, all demonstrating the Council’s commitment to the preservation of history and heritage in the Borough, This heritage restoration work will also compliment the £2m Bacup THI project that is taken place on shops and buildings in Bacup town centre.
The Council’s annual park budget will see the work on the sunken gardens come to fruition, planting fruit trees and a forest garden as well as adapting to allow for a performance space, to really add to the community environment of the park. It will also see improvements made to the middle entrance with new signage, planting, and improved access arrangements.
The Council’s Capital Programme is funding work on the restoration of the heated wall to the Rose Garden and footpath improvements, making them even and creating posts that link to established walking and cycling routes.
The new Rossendale to Rochdale Cycleway, part of the £2m of development for Rossendale into the Valley of Stone Greenway, will also pass through the West of the Park.
The Council has applied for funding from the Reap Moss Fund for improvements to the Duck Pond; hopefully replacing the railings, seats and bins, improving the planting, creating better access and improving signage.
The Council currently has an application for funding in to the Tesco community Fund bit to realise the plans for the Rose Garden, hoping to improve the planting, making it more bee friendly, and match the planting to old photographs, keeping the heritage element to park.
The Council has also submitted an application to the Lancashire Environment Fund to secure work on the Masterplan on new Pump Track adjacent to the skate park, which would link in with the Valley of Stone Cycleway.
Stubbylee Community Greenhouses are working on funding opportunities which hopes to see a new café come to the park, which will focus on local, unemployed, young people, helping them get into employment.
The parks sheer size means it can encompass a variety of different spaces for different needs meaning it will have a much wider offer to all residents and tourists alike.
The aim of the masterplan is to heighten the offer of the park so that more residents from Bacup and beyond use it to its full potential.
The Grade II listed gateway will remain and will be refurbished and cleaned to really announce the park from the East entrance.
Bacup Councillor Barbara Ashworth commented; “I’m delighted that the plans are coming together and that funds have been identified to complete the work. Several local residents have contacted me to say that they already see a difference in the park, and that they’re looking forward to enjoying the facilities, which will be a great attraction in the area.”
The launch of masterplan work will be marked by an organised walk, as part of the Up and Active scheme, on February 19th, where all are welcome. Meet with masterplan developers from the Council and its partners and fine out more about the exciting plans.
The Council will continue to provide updates through this exciting period of work for the park.