Fitness membership

Gym, Swim, Class - we've got something for everyone! Memberships from only £19.50 per month. Joining fee now £10.

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Your Link4Life - great savings on sport, leisure and much more!

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What's On at Middleton Arena

What's On at Middleton Arena

Events for everyone at the Arena - from comedy to live music and theatre

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Heywood Civic Centre

Heywood Civic Centre

Coming soon - Supernaturalist David Holt, Soul & Motown Nites, Chris Connor as Elvis and Joseph and The Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat.

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activ8teme

activ8teme

Low cost fitness classes and sports for adults across the Rochdale borough

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More than Dance

More than Dance

Get active, get fit, get dancing. See our new sessions.

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May Half Term Holiday Club at Rochdale Leisure Centre

Rochdale Leisure Centre has put on an action packed programme of activities for children to enjoy throughout the May Half Term.

With a variety of sports sessions on offer for all ages there truly is something special for everyone!

These activities include: Mini Madness and Trampolining for the 5-7 year olds, Sports Camp and Sport Zone for the 8-12 year olds and Soft Play for the under 5s.

Go4it and Link4Life’s Disability holiday programme Sunsport have joined forces again and will be putting on a joint programme for disabled and non-disabled young people. With fully qualified sports coaches and support workers delivering on the programme, this is a unique opportunity for children of all abilities to come together and have fun - Because You Can in Sport. The session will take place on Thursday 28 May, 10am – 3.30pm, FREE admission (swimming kit and drinks required) with FREE goody bags up for grabs! For more information and to book please contact: Gemma on 01706 924234 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

For full details of the programme and swimming pool opening times contact Rochdale Leisure Centre on 01706 926000 or visit www.link4life.org/go4it.

View or download the digital version of the Rochdale Leisure Centre May Half Term activities programme here.

Memory Wellbeing Café

horse-figurineSaturday 23 May 2015, 1pm-3pm

As part of Dementia Awareness Week, Touchstones Rochdale and the Alzheimer's Society will be hosting a Memory Wellbeing Café Roadshow on Saturday 23 May 2015 in the Education Studio at Touchstones Rochdale.

This FREE drop-in event is for people living with dementia and their carers, family and friends. The event will include the opportunity to take a tour with the curator around the newly opened Jarred exhibition, get involved with some craft activities or just come along and have a cup of tea with Alzheimer's Society staff and volunteers.

Over the past few months Touchstones Rochdale has been working closely with the Alzheimer's Society on a reminiscence project. The project saw objects from Rochdale borough's museum collection being used at three Memory Well-being Cafes in Milnrow, Middleton and Heywood. The project led by facilitator Polly Williams and organised by Resource Officers Karen Heatley and Sarah Hodgkinson, delivered reminiscence sessions based around 'our favourite things.' Objects have often been used to help us remember and we all keep things that mean something special. A memento from Blackpool, a favourite tea cup perhaps too precious to throw away or a keepsake from a favourite relative. The museum brought along a collection of objects relating to 1960s fashion, holidays in the 1950s and kitchen items as well as some of the things that we might keep as mementos on our mantelpiece. These objects were used to trigger discussions and storytelling. Some of the stories collected from these reminiscence sessions can be seen in the new Heritage Gallery exhibition Jarred which runs until April 2016.

Muriel Stretton, Alzheimer's Society Memory Well-being Café Co-ordinator said: "Throughout Dementia Awareness week we will be raising awareness at venues and events across the borough of Rochdale. If anyone has concerns about their own memory, or that of a loved one; please come along to one of our public events during Dementia Awareness week."

If you would like more information about monthly Memory Wellbeing Cafes in the borough please contact Muriel on 0161 342 0797.

Local acts get chance to shine at Feel Good Festival

local-acts-get-chance-to-shine-at-feel-good-festival-battleThe organisers of Rochdale Feel Good Festival have launched their annual search for a local music act to perform on the main stage at this summer's event, supporting pop rock band 'Toploader' and other high profile acts due to be announced.

Rochdale Feel Good – Battle of the Bands 2015 is now open for entries, with organisers looking for local bands or solo artists.

All hopefuls need to do to stand a chance of bagging their own 30 minute set in front of the festival crowds is email a link to a Youtube video of them playing live, along with a short biography to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. .

After the closing date, submissions will be added to the festival's Facebook page before the top six who get the most 'likes' go forward to a judging panel who will decide on who performs on the main stage.

Solo artists must live in the borough, and bands must have at least 50% of their members living in the borough. Entries must be received by the closing date of 26 June.

Last year Rochdale rock band '5ft Fez' won the competition and opened the festival, supporting acts including Scouting for Girls and The Selecter.

Event Manager Susan Ayres said: "Over the years we've had some superb local acts win this competition and the number of entrants we get has increased dramatically. Ever since the festival was announced we have had lots of people asking about this year's competition. It's great news for our local talent and a perfect opportunity for local musicians to raise their profile and play to a big crowd."

Rochdale Feel Good Festival returns on Friday 4 and Saturday 5 September with organisers promising another incredible showcase of entertainment, food and culture. There will be live music across indoor venues, a main stage against the backdrop of the town hall and a community stage. Celebrity chefs will host live cooking demonstrations throughout the event, which will also include the popular food market.

For festival updates via Facebook, go to www.facebook.com/feelgoodfestival  or connect with the festival on twitter @FeelGoodFest.

Issued by Rochdale Borough Council 14/05/15.

Toploader confirmed for Rochdale Feel Good Festival

toploaderPop rock band Toploader are the first act confirmed on the bill for Rochdale Feel Good Festival this summer. With a string of top 20 singles including 'Achilles Heel', 'Only for a While' and 'Time of My Life' they are best known for their global hit 'Dancing in the Moonlight.' The band will be taking to the stage for a free show on Saturday 5 September.

Their triple-platinum debut album 'Onkas' Big Moka' was followed up by 'The Magic Hotel' which reached number three in the charts in 2002 and their total album sales already exceed two million.

In 2013 they released 'This Is The Night' which reached number one in the Radio 2 Airplay Chart and 'Dancing In The Moonlight' re-entered the Top 40 for another three weeks, cementing it as one of the biggest songs of recent times.

Renowned worldwide as a crowd-pleasing live festival band, four times Brit Award nominated Toploader have played all the major festivals including Glastonbury, V-Festival and T in the Park as well as supporting the likes of Paul Weller, Robbie Williams and Bon Jovi, where they became the last British band to play the original Wembley Stadium.

Rochdale Feel Good Festival returns on Friday 4 and Saturday 5 September, for its eighth year, with organisers promising another incredible showcase of entertainment, food and culture. There will be live music across indoor venues, a main stage against the backdrop of the town hall and a community stage. Celebrity chefs will host live cooking demonstrations throughout the event, which will also include the popular food market.

Mark Widdup, Director of Economy and Environment at Rochdale Borough Council, said: "You would be hard pushed to name a song more linked with summer than Dancing In The Moonlight, and we know Toploader are a fantastic feel good band so they are a perfect fit for our festival which gets better every year."

More acts, including the main stage music headliner will be announced soon.

For festival updates via Facebook, go to www.facebook.com/feelgoodfestival or connect with the festival on Twitter @FeelGoodFest.

Issued by Rochdale Borough Council 12/05/15.

Beacon lights the night sky as Rochdale remembers VE Day

beacon-lights-the-night-skyA special beacon was lit in Rochdale on Friday during a service by Rochdale Cenotaph to commemorate the end of the Second World War. Rochdale borough was one of 100 areas around the UK chosen to light a beacon to mark the 70th anniversary of Victory in Europe (VE) Day - when the Second World War in Europe came to an end.

The beacon was lit at 9.32pm, part of a nationwide chain to help recreate the national spirit of elation that followed peace breaking out 70 years ago.

A crowd including Army Cadets, Air Cadets, veterans, councillors, Colour Sergeant Rahees Ramzan from Rochdale Detachment Army Cadet Force and David Forbes, President of Rochdale Royal British Legion were amongst those gathered to observe the service.

Councillor Alan McCarthy, Lead Member for the Armed Forces at Rochdale Borough Council said it was a poignant tribute: "We're here to honour our heroes, to remember their achievements, their courage and their dedication and to say thank you for their sacrifices. Thinking of those who joined us today and those who are here only in spirit, you can't help but feel in awe of the enormity of what we encountered as a nation during the Second World War. Our gathering was one small spark in the flame of pride that burns across our country, as it did 70 years ago."

Local churches rang their bells to mark the lighting of the beacon.

Earlier in the day another small service was held at the Cenotaph in Rochdale. Wreaths were laid and a two minutes silence was observed.

Next month, on Sunday 28 June the council will unveil a memorial stone to mark the centenary of the Gallipoli campaign in Rochdale Memorial Gardens during a special Gallipoli Commemoration Event.

For more details visit www.rochdale.gov.uk/armedforces.

Issued by Rochdale Borough Council 11/05/15.

Borough sets out its stall for Love Your Local Market Fortnight

Shoppers across the borough are being urged to get behind their local market as the nation gears up to mark Love Your Local Market (LYLM) fortnight from 13 to 27 May.

The two week celebration will be marked on Rochdale Market with brass bands and face painting, as well as the chance for visitors to bag themselves a hamper containing fresh local produce and other treats donated by the traders.

The event comes at an exciting time for the market, which has gone from strength to strength since moving into traditional cabins in the heart of the town centre earlier this year.

Gary Green, Rochdale Market Manager, said: "It's a been a period of change for the market since the council took it over late in 2013 to save it from closure, but what we have now is really vibrant and a great addition to the town centre. New businesses, including a musical instrument seller, wood crafting stall and baker, have joined our established traders since the move and we also have some great hot food stalls.

"We've got a packed schedule for Love your Local Market fortnight and I'd urge shoppers to come along and get involved. It's our opportunity to celebrate Rochdale's great market tradition."

Events taking place during the fortnight at Rochdale Market include:

  • Brass band performance from Wardle Academy's 'Junior Blast' - Saturday 23 May, 12noon-12.30pm and 1.30-2pm
  • Face painting - Saturday 16 and Saturday 23 May - 11am-2pm
  • Win a hamper – Shoppers buying goods on the market during the fortnight will be entered into a raffle to win a hamper full of market treats. Other prizes, including Bowlee nursery vouchers, will also be up for grabs
  • Opportunity for growing businesses to test trade – Hire a stall for just £5 a day throughout the fortnight
  • Recycling trailer – Friday and Saturday 15 and 16 May, Monday and Tuesday 18 and 19 May, all day. Find out all about recycling, order a new bin or simply grab some freebies like Love Food, Hate Waste recipe cards, spaghetti measurers and bag clips
  • Link4Life health checks – get a free health MOT and top tips on feeling good from the health trainers at Link4Life – Wednesday 27 May, 11am-1pm

Over at Middleton Market, budding entrepreneurs can test trade on the market, with stalls available for just £5 a day throughout the fortnight.

Also in Middleton, there will also be a day of celebration on Saturday 23 May with the award-winning Rochdale music service offering live music throughout the day, alongside children's entertainment including a Punch and Judy show, balloon making, character walkabouts and magic shows.

Visitors to Heywood's magic market can take advantage of their weekly £50 cash giveaway. To enter, visitors simply need to spend money on the market to receive a raffle ticket, with the winner being announced in the Heywood Advertiser and on the website www.heywoodmagicmarket.co.uk  each Saturday morning.

Mark Widdup, Service Director for Economy and Environment at Rochdale Borough Council, said: "Small independent traders like market stallholders are a long-standing tradition and help to make each of our town centres unique. The council's new offer of free parking for 3 hours means it will be even easier for people to go out and enjoy all that they offer during LYLM fortnight."

To hire stall on Rochdale Market during the LYLM fortnight, please contact Gary Green on 07807 412 438.

To hire a stall on Middleton Market during the fortnight, please contact Ashleigh Franklin on: 07794 374 554.

For more information on markets in Rochdale borough, please visit www.rochdale.gov.uk.

Issued by Rochdale Borough Council 06/05/15.

Rochdale Feel Good Festival - 2015 dates confirmed

rochdale-feel-good-festival-save-the-datesRochdale Feel Good Festival will return on Friday 4 and Saturday 5 September, promising another incredible showcase of entertainment, food and culture.

The annual two-day summer festival, in its 8th year, is funded by Rochdale Borough Council together with sponsorship from local businesses.

Mark Widdup, Director of Economy and Environment said: "Rochdale Feel Good Festival is firmly established as one of the highlights on our calendar, attracting thousands of people into the town centre who know to expect the best in live music, food, arts and entertainment. We have already signed some superb acts as we look to build on the success of the festival. It is always a good opportunity for local businesses to host their own event as part of the festival too, so if you would like to be part of it, get in touch now, space is always in high demand. There's going to be lots more of what has made the festival so popular, together with exciting new developments, aimed at giving all our visitors an absolutely first class experience."

Rochdale Feel Good Festival will include live music across indoor venues, a main stage against the backdrop of the town hall and a community stage. Celebrity chefs will host live cooking demonstrations throughout the event which will also include the popular food market. Performers will be announced from next month onwards. Previous acts have included Scouting for Girls, The Feeling, Fun Lovin' Criminals, Martha and the Vandellas, Badly Drawn Boy and The Lightning Seeds. Celebrity chefs have included Ainsley Harriott, Simon Rimmer, Gino D'Acampo and Brian Turner.

Once again a local band will get chance to open the main stage on the Saturday. Last year Rochdale rockers 5ft Fez kicked off the music and got a fabulous reception. The competition will be launched next month with local acts encouraged to apply to win the coveted slot.

For festival updates via Facebook, go to www.facebook.com/feelgoodfestival or connect with the festival on twitter @FeelGoodFest.

Issued by Rochdale Borough Council 29/04/15.

VE beacon set to light night sky in Rochdale

ve beacon invitationResidents are invited to Rochdale Cenotaph on Friday May 8 for a special service to commemorate the end of the Second World War.

Rochdale borough is one of just 100 areas around the United Kingdom chosen to light a beacon to mark the 70th anniversary of Victory in Europe (VE) Day - when the Second World War in Europe came to an end.

The 100 beacons will be lit consecutively in a chain after sunset as part of a government-organised initiative to help recreate the national spirit of elation that followed peace breaking out 70 years ago.

Val White, Principal Townships Officer at Rochdale Borough Council, said: "I hope residents will come and remember the sacrifices made for the freedom we enjoy today. The beacon in Rochdale will be lit at 9:32 pm and all are welcome to attend."

Those not able to attend are encouraged to hold their own VE Day celebrations and local churches have been asked to ring their bells to mark the lighting of the beacon.

Earlier in the day Lancashire Veterans Association will hold a service at the Heywood Garden of Remembrance at 12 noon.

A small service will be held at 3pm at the Cenotaph in Rochdale. Wreaths will be laid and a two minutes silence will be observed.

Rochdale was one of the first councils in the country to sign the Armed Forces Community Covenant in November 2012, aimed at encouraging local communities to support services that promote and encourage activities that help integrate Armed Forces personnel back into civilian life. It also encourages authorities to work more closely to support those in service and their families, ensuring there is no disadvantage associated with serving in the Armed Forces.

On Sunday 28 June the council will unveil a memorial stone to mark the centenary of the Gallipoli campaign in Rochdale Memorial Gardens during a special Gallipoli Commemoration Event.

For more details visit www.rochdale.gov.uk/armedforces.

Issued by Rochdale Borough Council 28/04/15.

Williams BMW confirmed as partner for Rochdale Half Marathon, 10K and fun run

williams-bmw-supportLeading prestige motor retail centre, Williams Rochdale BMW has been confirmed as a major sponsor for the new Rochdale Half Marathon, 10K and Fun Run, taking place this summer.

The announcement comes just weeks after registrations opened for the event, being staged in Rochdale for the first time on Sunday 23 August. Runners will get on their marks by Rochdale Town Hall and set out on traffic-free courses taking in town and countryside, with all runs starting and finishing by the famous landmark.

As part of the agreement Williams Rochdale BMW, based on Gorrels Way just off the A627M, will be an official partner in the event, providing an exclusive Rochdale Half Marathon branded BMW to promote the three runs as well as having a presence at the town hall during the day itself.

Tony Crolla, Head of Business at Williams Rochdale BMW said: "We are always keen to support the local community and these new high-profile sporting events are a very exciting prospect for the town. As a locally-based business, we are very proud to be part of the event this summer and look forward to showcasing our top-of-the-range branded BMW vehicle to everyone involved."

The 10K route leaves the Esplanade along Entwisle road, before heading towards Milnrow via Albert Royds Street. It then heads up Buckley Hill Lane, turning near its end before returning to the town hall. The half marathon does the same route except the turning point is by Kingsway Business Park, and it's a two lap course. The fun run is a flat mile, heading out along Entwisle Road and turning back just after Rochdale Leisure Centre.

The event is being staged by Rochdale Borough Council in partnership with race organiser Cannonball Events.
Council Event Manager Sue Milne said: "Having a nationally recognised brand and such a respected local business like Williams BMW is a real boost to the event and we are excited about working with the group in the coming months. It's promising to be an incredible event. With a one mile and 10K as well as the half marathon there's something for every ability."

All three runs are available to enter online now at www.rochdale.gov.uk/events.

For more information on Williams Rochdale BMW visit www.williamsbmwrochdale.co.uk

For the latest on the event follow @RochdaleHalf on Twitter.

Issued by Rochdale Borough Council 27/04/15.

What a night – Rochdale celebrates with books!

what-a-night-well-receivedWorld Book Night was celebrated on Thursday as hundreds of people across the borough were handed free books.

From commuters on Northern Rail trains and members of Demesne Community Centre luncheon club to a Community Health Fair at Bowlee Sports Centre, library staff gave out hundreds of free books to brighten up people's days and open their minds to the joys of a good read.

Volunteers from Rochdale Borough Council's library service handed out books to people travelling on trains between Rochdale and Todmorden. More than 130 books were given out and were well received by surprised passengers.

At Touchstones Arts and Heritage Centre, the multi award winning playwright Michael Stewart took part in a thoroughly entertaining 'An Evening With' event, talking about his latest novel Cafe Assassin, discussing its themes of friendship, betrayal and crime.

World Book Night is an annual celebration of reading and books that sees volunteers give out hundreds of thousands of books in their communities to share their love of reading with people who don't read regularly or own books.

The events were arranged by Rochdale Central Library in conjunction with The Reading Agency, a national charity that inspires people to become confident and enthusiastic readers.
Young Persons' Library Worker, Ray Stearn said: "The most rewarding part for me was walking back down through the railway carriages and seeing the previously rather bored-looking commuters getting stuck into their new books!"

Library staff in Middleton area also got involved by taking books to Demesne Community Centre and Bowlee Sports Centre. Tracey Byrne, Senior Library and Information Assistant at Alkrington Library said: "We received a really positive response from the people attending the luncheon club at Demesne. They were celebrating St George's Day, so to receive a free gift in the form of a good book was an extra surprise."

Gemma Bickerstaff, Health in Communities Co-ordinator gave out free books at the Community Health Fair. "Even a few minutes reading reduces stress levels so it was lovely to be able to hand people a free book for them to keep or pass on. Some of this year's World Book Night titles are on a list called Mood Boosting Books, which have been recommended by other readers as feel-good titles."

Books handed out across the borough included 'The Unlikely Pilgrimage of Harold Fry' by Rachel Joyce, 'Assassin's Apprentice' by Robin Hobb and 'Agatha Raisin and the Quiche of Death'. A poetry anthology and authors such as Lynda La Plante and Elif Shafak were also amongst the book giveaways.
To find your local library visit www.rochdale.gov.uk/libraries . For more on World Book Night visit www.worldbooknight.org.

Issued by Rochdale Borough Council 27/04/15.