Project to transform neglected Bickershaw Colliery site into a country park launched with family fun day

21 August 2017

With a history of toil and hard labour, the site of Bickershaw Colliery is being transformed for a family fun day.

The fun day signals the start of creating a country park on the land which has been neglected for decades.

With support from City of Trees, Lancashire Wildlife Trust will launch the Bickershaw Project with the fun day at Fir Tree Flash in Westleigh from 11am to 4pm next Saturday, August 26.

The event is free and aimed at local families who want to learn about the project and have some fun, with crafts and activities including woodcrafts, tug-of-war and an assault course.

Visitors will also be able to meet a variety of animals on the day. Project officer Hamish Jeffreson said: “This is an exciting new project for the communities around Bickershaw and the former colliery site.

“The site has been neglected for a long time. The project aims to improve the quality of the location and raise awareness of the benefits the site can bring to the community and surrounding areas.

"The former Bickersaw Colliery is part of a wider network of ex-mines being transformed into nature havens under the Greenheart project. Greenheart aims to improve the connection between communities and their local environment by enhancing the quality of spaces and access to them.

Hamish added: “Access to the site will be improved and key habitats, such as meadows and wetlands, will be developed to ensure the wildlife on site can flourish. Picnic tables and seating areas will be installed for the public to enjoy the beautiful views Bickershaw has to offer.

"There will be a big effort to reduce the amount of off-roading on site to protect the public and wildlife from harm, and importantly there will be a lot more opportunities for members of the community to get active on site."

The Bickershaw Project has been funded for three years by The Deal in partnership with Wigan Council and Manchester City of Trees.

Lancashire Willdlife Trust will be hosting regular volunteering days every Thursday from 10.30am so people can help to improve the site. 

In addition City of Trees is organising tree planting and hedge TLC events from November, where members of the community are encouraged to come along.

To volunteer or for more information about The Bickershaw Project contact Hamish on 01942 726214 or e-mail hjeffreson@lancswt.org.uk.