Joan’s quest to save historical Cuerden Green

Farington historian Joan Langford wants part of Cuerden Green to be saved. Below, the Mill Street Garden
Farington historian Joan Langford wants part of Cuerden Green to be saved. Below, the Mill Street Garden
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A Farington resident is fighting for a historical meeting place to be saved from development.

Plans are in place to develop land between Farington and Lostock Hall into a new commerce and industrial site, and historian Joan Langford is calling on Lancashire County Council (LCC) to consider the importance of the site in its designs.

The Mill Street Garden in Farington

The Mill Street Garden in Farington

She said: “The ‘Cuerden Strategic Site’ was once called Cuerden Green and it’s so important to us here, but it seems like LCC just isn’t bothered, which concerns me.

“I’ve spoken to a few people at the county council and they don’t even know about the historical significance, yet they’re wanting to develop on the land.

“The development is going to happen whatever we say, but I want them to recognise what it has been in the past and save that green corner.

“I want them to be able to retain some of the medieval features.

“They have survived since the 1400s so we don’t want them destroyed now.”

Joan has written a number of books about Farington’s past, and in one, she says: “The stretch of Stanifield Lane between the roundabout junction with Watkin Lane and south to Lydiate Lane is part of the hamlet known as Cuerden Green.

“The unusually large Green itself was bounded by Stanifield Lane, Lostock Lane, Old School Lane and Stoney Lane, and was for many years the centre of the community’s activities – including markets, fairs and gathering place.

“An example of the Green’s use as a gathering place was in September 1715, during the Civil War, when the resistance in mid-­Lancashire was organised by Sir Henry Hoghton, the Colonel of Militia.

“Sir Henry instructed that ‘those locals well­ disposed to the government are to defend the Ribble crossing and estate workers are to be mustered.

“I mean lusty young fellows, to draw up on Cuerden Green and to bring what arms they have fit for service, and scythes put in straight polls, and such as have not, to bring spades and Billhooks for pioneering with’.”

Joan was one of the community champions behind the popular Mill Street Garden project in Farington, which saw a derelict plot transformed into a commemorative garden marking 150 years since the start of the Lancashire Cotton Famine.

She wants LCC to think about doing something similar at the Cuerden Strategic Site.

A spokesperson for Lancashire County Council said: “We’re grateful to Joan Langford for her comments about the historical significance of the strategic investment site at Cuerden.

“A public consultation has just taken place about our masterplan for the site, which ended on December 19.

“We’ll consider all comments that we receive through this consultation, as part of developing the site to create new jobs and economic growth.”