Major refurbishment planned for Longridge Civic Hall

Longridge Civic Hall.
Longridge Civic Hall.

Longridge’s civic hall is set to undergo a major refurbishment after councillors branded it “not fit for purpose”.

Town council Vision Group leader Steve Ashcroft wants to allocate £10,000 on bringing the centre up to standard.

The group has had the refurbishment of the 45-year-old building on its agenda for some time.

And Coun Ashcroft told a packed council meeting that the hall, erected in the 1970s after a public appeal, required drastic measures to improve its facilities.

He said: “We feel there has never been a better time for this council to show its leadership and make a decision to put money into the building.

“The council does not have responsibility for the hall.

“That’s for Ribble Valley borough council which leases it to Longridge Social Enterprise Company.

“But I propose we allocate something in the region of £10,000 from reserves as a catalyst for launching the restoration of the hall.”

Councillors agreed the civic hall needed to be upgraded but a final decision on whether town council money can be allocated will be made in two weeks time.

Longridge Civic Hall was opened on May 19, 1973 by local businessman David Coulston, chairman of the then Longridge Urban District Council.

He was instrumental in the idea and proposals for the hall, being part of its planning group, CP67, since it was launched six years previously.

The hall was built by Longridge construction company Walter Carefoot and Sons, and the stage backdrop, a montage of the town and its surroundings, was created by local artist Albert Long.

In the early days, it hosted the traditional civic and church balls, has been a popular venue for colourful Asian weddings and for many community events, including dances, shows, concerts, book fairs, fashion shows, theatre productions, pantomimes and many more.