Rochdale Borough Sports Awards

Rochdale Borough Sports Awards

It's time to nominate your local sporting heroes

Paul Chowdhry

Paul Chowdhry

It's time to enter PC's World - Friday 19 September

What's Your Adventure

What's Your Adventure

Sailing, Windsurfing, Kayaking, Canoeing, Mountain Biking, Climbing, Powerboating or Archery.



activ8teme is an exciting programme of sports activities for adults – all ages

Monday Movies

Monday Movies

'Saving Mr Banks', 'Bolt' & 'Wreck it Ralph' movies are coming to Middleton Arena

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Lights Out for Link4Life centres to mark First World War centenary

lights-outLink4Life centres will be turning off their lights on the evening of Monday 4 August joining in a nationwide commemoration of the outbreak of the First World War.

As part of this year's centenary events, everyone in the UK is invited to take part in LIGHTS OUT by turning off their lights from 10pm-11pm on 4 August, leaving on a single light or candle.

The event is symbolic of the words spoken by British Foreign Secretary, Sir Edward Gray, in August 1914 when he said, "The lamps are going out all over Europe; we shall not see them lit again in our lifetime"

Hundreds of local authorities, iconic buildings, national organisations including the BBC and the Royal British Legion, parish councils and places of worship are taking part in LIGHTS OUT across the country.

All Link4Life centres that open in the evening will close early at 9.30pm. Customers will be invited to wait outside while all lights but one in the building are turned off at 10pm to help mark the event. Centres taking part in Rochdale are Littleborough Sports Centre, Kingsway Park Sports Centre and Rochdale Leisure Centre. In Heywood both Heywood Civic Centre and Heywood Sports Village will mark the occasion. In Middleton, Middleton Arena and Bowlee Park Sports Centre will also participate.

Rochdale buildings scoop the English Heritage gold standard

deaf-institute-building-church-laneRochdale's position as a heritage hotspot has been strengthened with the announcement by English Heritage that two more structures in the borough have been handed prestigious Listed status.

The former Deaf Institute, in Church Lane, Rochdale, has been Listed as Grade II while the Middleton War Memorial and Gardens of Remembrance in Manchester Old Road, have been designated Grade II.

The former Deaf Institute is described by English Heritage as an extremely rare example of a purpose built institute for the deaf providing social recreation, worship and training for employment. Their report also highlighted the critical role it played in the rehabilitation of wounded soldiers after the First World War when deaf soldiers were taught how to lip read at the Institute, which was built in 1907.

The Institute was associated with Irene Godsack, who became Lady Irene Ewing. Lady Ewing and her husband, Professor Sir Alexander Ewing, were pioneers in the education of deaf people and ran the department of audiology and education at the University of Manchester until the mid 1960s.

English Heritage, who announced the new listings in their annual Designation Year Book, also praised the building's frontage, which is almost entirely intact, and its original features including art nouveau glass and mosaic flooring.

Rochdale Council’s plans to create lasting memorial to Gracie Fields get Hollywood seal of approval

gracie-fieldsNews of plans to erect a statue in honour of Rochdale's most famous daughter, Gracie Fields, has gone global.

The news has been picked up on news websites across the UK and in America following the announcement by Council Leader Richard Farnell.

The coverage, on websites including, and the California-based Sky Valley Chronicle, provides further evidence of the late star's worldwide appeal which continues to endure 35 years after her death.

The project, which is backed by the Gracie Fields Appreciation Society and the Rochdale Rotary Club, would see a statue of the legendary singer and actress go up on the Smith Street/Butts area in the heart of the town centre.

The plans, which went to the Rochdale Township meeting last week, also include the launch of a blue plaque trail to highlight areas of significance in the Gracie Fields story.

These include Milkstone Road, where Gracie regularly stayed while visiting her family and friends when she returned to Rochdale between the 1920s and 1950s, and Champness Hall, where she returned to the stage for the first time after World War II.

Rochdale to commemorate WW1 Centenary with LIGHTS OUT

lights-outAt 10pm on 4 August, Rochdale will be plunged into darkness as council buildings, homes and businesses take part in LIGHTS OUT – a nationwide event to mark the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War.

Councillor Alan McCarthy, Rochdale Borough Council's Armed Forces Lead, said: "August 4 is exactly 100 years since the outbreak of 'The Great War' and it is important that we all take a moment to reflect on the sacrifices that have been made for our freedom. All of Rochdale's public buildings will be taking part in the event and I would encourage all of our businesses and residents to share in this moment of reflection with us."

Everyone in the UK is invited to take part in LIGHTS OUT by turning off their lights from 10pm-11pm on 4 August, leaving on a single light or candle for a shared moment of reflection. People can take part in whatever way they choose, marking the centenary of the outbreak of the First World War either individually or by attending one of the many events being organised around the country for a collective experience.

LIGHTS OUT is the headline project of 14-18 NOW, the official cultural programme for the First World War Centenary Commemorations.

The inspiration for LIGHTS OUT comes from a famous remark made on the eve of the outbreak of war by the then Foreign Secretary, Sir Edward Grey: "The lamps are going out all over Europe; we shall not see them lit again in our life-time". Britain declared war on Germany at 11pm on 4 August 1914 ushering in one of the darkest periods in our history.

Signing up to the LIGHTS OUT initiative is just one of a whole host of commemorative events planned by Rochdale Borough Council for this summer.

Young people invited to 'Get on Track' for skills and work

sports-leaders-get-on-trackFollowing on from their hugely successful Get on Track programme last year, Link4Life are ready to launch a second round of training for young people in the Rochdale borough aged 16-25. Recruitment is taking place now to start in August.

The Get On Track scheme is a personal development programme that uses sport to create pathways for young people into volunteering, training and work.

The programme targets young people who are not in education, employment or training and over a 16 session period each young person will be mentored by a team of Olympic, Paralympic, World and Commonwealth athletes.

New cycle hub set to open for Rochdale

cycle-hubWith the success of the Tour de France passing through Rochdale last weekend there is yet more positive cycling news for the town as a new cycle hub, designed to encourage people to get on their bikes, is set to open next week.

The hub, which is ideally located next to Rochdale railway station and Metrolink stop, has been developed by Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) in partnership with Rochdale Council and the NHS.

The hub has 42 cycle parking spaces, with lockers for storing cycle helmets and other cycling accessories. People who sign up to use the hub will be given a smartcard to access the secure facility which is entirely covered by CCTV.

Rochdale's Cycle Hub is also the first TfGM facility to be powered by an innovative new system which uses the data network rather than traditional electricity, which reduces power consumption, making it cost effective and environmentally friendly.

The TfGM Committee Cycling Champion, Councillor Chris Paul, was joined by Rochdale Councillor Cecile Biant and members of Rochdale Cycling Club for a sneak preview before the hub opens to members next week.