Jan 2008

2008 JAN 1-15 J D Wetherspoon’s pub, The Friar Penketh, held a January sale. It reduced the price of drinks for a two-week period.

2008 JAN 7 Council Tax is set to increase by £50 a year to plug a £10 million gap in council finances.

2008 JAN 7 United Utilities announced pans to improve odours at Gatewarth water treatment works. Residents in Sankey Bridges have long complained about it.

2008 JAN Greenall’s submitted new plans to redevelop their Loushers Lane site, which includes nearly 200 new homes. A previous application in January 2007 was refused.

2008 JAN Priestley House on Sankey Street was renamed Bank Quay House.

2008 JAN The Hatton Arms pub in Hatton, a listed building, was refused planning permission to replace windows and to make internal alterations.

2008 JAN Curtis Jobling, Warrington creator of Bob the Builder, launched Animate IT! 2008, a competition for under 12s to design their own characters for an animated ‘claymation’ film.

2008 JAN Storms battered the town. Flooding hit Hawleys Lane bridge and Densham Avenue, Longford.

2008 JAN 7 A film entitled The Most Important Question You Will Ever Ask was filmed in the Duckegg Bluu restaurant in Culcheth. It was created by Warrington production company Storm56. Check the website www.fuzzyduck.eu and view the film at www.myspace.com/storm56 or search the web for storm56. mywarrington is not responsible for external websites.

2008 JAN 13 Fans and players held a minute’s applause for Mike Gregory during the testimonial match of Lee Briers at the home game versus Wigan Warriors. Read more on Mike in Warrington Wolves page.

2008 JAN (14) The coroner at the inquest of teenager Shafilea Ahmed, who died in Kendal in 2003, concluded she was unlawfully killed but there was not enough evidence to say how she died. Update.

2008 JAN 14 Asda stores in Warrington have started to impose £60 fines to inconsiderate drivers who park in disabled and parent and child spaces.

2008 JAN 16 Three youths were found guilty of murdering 47-year-old Garry Newlove, who was kicked to death on 15 August 2007 outside his home in Fearnhead. Two other teenagers were cleared of the crime.

2008 JAN (17) The new owners of Mr Smiths night club, Nexum Leisure Ltd, announced the new name for the club will be Synergy when it reopens later in the year. Mr Smiths was founded by John Graham Smith, who died on 8 April 2005. He transformed the former ABC/Ritz cinema into one of the most famous nightspots in the North West.

2008 JAN 26 Sky News videoed Saturday nightlife in Warrington. It was described as ‘an ugly picture’ in the press.

2008 JAN 30 The end of an era as the sign for Mr Smiths nightclub was removed in preparation for its new life as Synergy.

2008 JAN 30 The Health Protection agency announced a reduction in superbug infections MRSA and Clostridium Difficile (C. difficile) in Warrington.

2008 JAN (31) The Youth Justice Board announced that youths under 18 years old will no longer be held at Thorn Cross Offenders Centre in Appleton.

2008 JAN It was announced that schools in Warrington are ahead of the national average for GCSE results.

2008 JAN Orford Park received £401,627 from the Big Lottery Fund to update the playground facilities.

2008 JAN Culcheth Methodist Church received a £6,000 grant towards the £17,000 cost of new furniture and rewiring the building.

2008 JAN Adrian Morley took over as captain of Warrington Wolves after Lee Briers steps down from the role.

2008 JAN A memorial to former Warrington Wolves player Mike Gregory was unveiled at Warrington Collegiate Institute on Winwick Road.

2008 JAN Post Office UK Ltd announced the closure of six local post offices in the town from March 2008 – Booths Hill (Lymm), The White Horse (Glazebury), Orford Lane, Church Drive (Padgate), Sankey Green (Lovely Lane) and Myddleton Lane (Winwick). Back to first mention of story.

2008 JAN Local band The White Company celebrated their win in Climb The Tail, a national competition for unsigned bands.

Feb 2008

2008 FEB Plans are announced to transform the former Garnet cabinet works on Barbauld Street and other buildings on Cairo Street into a café, office and retail development.

2008 FEB Warrington Market was runner-up in the National Market of the Year award in Birmingham Town Hall. The award was for the indoor market category.

2008 FEB Teenager Johnny Scotland met the Prime Minister Gordon Brown at 10 Downing Street after campaigning to save Woolston High School.

2008 FEB Warrington Wolves opened a lounge at the ground in memory of former player Mike Gregory.

2008 FEB 1 Champion swimmer and fundraiser Aden Walker received the award for Warrington Sports Personality of the Year 2007 from Warrington Wolves coach Paul Cullen.

2008 FEB 8 The Duke of Kent officially opened the new £2.35 million Broomhead Library at the University of Chester Warington campus. It is named after Steven Broomhead, former principal of the campus, and now chief executive of the Northwest Regional Development Agency. The Duke of Kent also performed the official opening ceremony of the new £27 million Warrington Collegiate on Winwick Road.

2008 FEB 9 Radio One Dance DJ Judge Jules performed at the opening ceremony of Apogaeum, a new store in Golden Square selling Apple computer equipment.

2008 FEB 11 The three teenagers accused of murdering Fearnhead resident Garry Newlove in August 2007 were jailed for life.

2008 FEB 20 BBC TV programme Crimewatch showed a reconstruction in Cumbria into the death of Warrington resident Shafilea Ahmed. Update. Update.

2008 FEB Former Warrington student, Matt Greenhalgh, received the Carl Foreman Award for Special Achievement by a British writer, director or producer at the BAFTA ceremony in London for his work on the film Control.

2008 FEB Staging the giant Ferris wheel at the town hall last December resulted in a loss of almost £30,000. For photos from the top of it, see On Top of the Word.

2008 FEB BBC Celebrity Scissorhands presenter Lee Stafford visited Johnson’s hairdressing salon on Sankey Street.

2008 FEB 25 Champion English Channel Swimmer, Sunny Lowry, died aged 97. She was the first English woman to swim the Channel. Read her profile in Sporting People.

2008 FEB The former Police Training Centre at Bruche was transferred to English Partnerships.

2008 FEB An alcohol expert at Warrington hospital expressed concern over Synergy bosses applying for a licence which would keep the Bridge Foot venue open until 6.30 a.m. on some days.

2008 FEB 22 Granada TV’s Paul Crone attended a fundraising event at the Park Royal Hotel in Stretton for the Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Foundation for Peace in Old Hall. A Harry Potter novel signed by the author JK Rowling sold for £2,200 on the night.

2008 FEB 24 A ceremony to commemorate the Battle of Pieters Hill in the Boer War of  27 February 1900 took place in Queens Gardens, where a statue marks the event.

2008 FEB 25 Work began on an upgrade to Bank Quay railway station. The work was meant to start last September. In the same month it was announced that more carriages will be introduced on the West Coast Main Line and that lifts will be installed at Warrington Central station.

2008 FEB 27 An earthquake hit Warrington, measuring 5.2 on the Richter scale, the biggest in the town since 1984. It lasted for around 10 seconds at 1 a.m.

2008 FEB Campaigners fought to save Warrington Driving Test Centre. Closure would mean drivers travelling to St Helens. The campaign was to no avail as the centre closed on 26 September 2008.

2008 FEB Warrington Borough Council approved the sale of the former Greenall’s land in Loushers Lane. Two hundred homes will be built on the land as the company invests in a new distillery at Risley

Mar 2008

2008 MAR Warrington, Widnes and District Society for the Blind announced they are looking for new premises, as the current venue is unsuitable. They were founded in 1924 and have been based in Museum Street ever since.

2008 MAR 5 The council announced that Woolston High School will be closed in 2012.

2008 MAR 9 BBC religious and ethnic affairs programme The Big Question, hosted by Nicky Campbell, was broadcast live from The Pyramid centre in the Cultural Quarter.

2008 MAR 10 Olympic swimmer Duncan Goodhew attended a Make Sport Your Business seminar at Birchwood Park.

2008 MAR Olympic chiefs announced that three venues in Warrington will be used to train athletes ahead of the 2012 event. They are Halliwell Jones Stadium (football), Birchwood Leisure Centre (indoor volleyball) and Victoria Park (athletics).

2008 MAR Warrington charity JUMP (Jacob’s Unique Memory Pot) receives £9,000 when its patron and Hollyoaks star Rickie Whittle appears on BBC quiz show The Weakest Linkwww.jumpchildrenscharity.co.uk

2008 MAR Staff from Thorn Cross Young Offenders Institute received the Butler Trust Award for Excellence from the Princess Royal at Buckingham Palace.

2008 MAR Da Nico’s Italian restaurant on Lovely Lane was chosen as a venue to film a piece for the BBC Mastermind Final featuring Warringtonian Derek Moody, which was broadcast on Easter Monday.

2008 MAR The council asked United Utilities to sort out the flooding problem on Hawleys Lane, Dallam when the area receives heavy rain. See my photos of it in My Warrington.

2008 MAR Dallam Centre on Dallam Lane celebrated its 30th anniversary. The centre provides care and support to adults with physical difficulties.

2008 MAR Warrington Borough Transport promoted ‘Our Routes Grow Trees’, a scheme to help plant trees in African countries when passengers buy a Savercard.

2008 MAR 14 Synergy nightclub opened. Carley Stenson and Rickie Whittle from Channel 4’s Hollyoaks appeared.

2008 MAR 19 Plans for £400,000 extensions to Winwick Primary School were announced.

2008 MAR 23 Yates’s Wine Lodge on Buttermarket Street closed after 12 years in business. It was built on the site of the former Odeon cinema.

2008 MAR 24 Lymm Duck Race took place at the Dingle to raise cash for local charities.

2008 MARLocal authority workers went on strike in protest about a pay freeze this year.

2008 MAR Bryan Lomax won the best documentary category in the Total Film Short Film Awards for his 10-minute film Far From Home.

2008 MAR Warrington-based British Deaf History Society received a grant of £9,520 from the Big Lottery Fund.

2008 MAR The Right Reverend James Jones, Bishop of Liverpool, laid the foundation stone for the new Fairfield Primary School in Howley. The old school will be taken over by community groups.

2008 MAR The former Stockton Heath home of entertainer George Formby is to be turned into a guesthouse. The property at 143 London Road was known as Hillcrest.

2008 MAR Warrington author Andrea Gouk signed copies of her new book Tales of the Smiling Buddha at Borders book shop.

Apr 2008

2008 APR Warrington Borough Transport managing director Nigel Featham announced he is leaving the company for pastures new at Arriva Buses in West Yorkshire.

2008 APR The council formed a new twin town partnership with Mwanza in Tanzania. This is in addition to Hilden in Germany, Lake County in Illinois, USA, and Nachod in the Czech Republic.

2008 APR The council approved an Auto Training Centre at Great Sankey High School, one of only 47 RAC centres in the country which delivers practical lessons as part of the school’s curriculum.

2008 APR Warrington Primary Care Trust announced plans to upgrade Garven Place medical centre.

2008 APR 6 Snow in Warrington.

2008 APR Warrington Disability Partnership received a £922,055 grant from the National Lottery to renovate their Centre for Independent Living in Beaufort Street, Sankey Bridges.

2008 APR A former doctor at Warrington hospital was jailed for 18 months for withholding information about terrorist plots in London and Glasgow in June 2007.

2008 APR 13 Members of the Sikh community celebrated the festival of Vaisakhi. It celebrates the day in 1699 when Guru Gobind Singh, the 10th Guru of the Sikhs, turned them into Khalsa Sikhs (The Saint Soldiers) to stands up against the brutal oppression practised by the Mughal rulers of the Indian subcontinent, and to uphold the Sikh religious values of equality, freedom of thought and worship for all faiths and peaceful co-existence for all communities.

2008 APR 14 A pregnant woman escaped serious injury when lightning struck a chimney in Chapelford village.

2008 APR The Warrington Guardian was named O2 Newspaper of the Year at the first O2 Media Awards.

2008 APR 14 Conservative shadow foreign secretary William Hague visited The Forge shopping centre in Stockton Heath.

2008 APR 16 Ted Lafferty, the first Liberal Democrat Mayor of Warrington in 2004, died, aged 71. He was a borough councillor for 21 years and also served on Grappenhall and Thelwall Parish Council.

2008 APR 21 The first North West Fashion Week took place at Golden Square Shopping Centre.

2008 APR Swedish furniture store IKEA celebrated its 21st birthday. It chose Warrington as the location of its first UK store.

2008 APR Former US president Bill Clinton sent a letter of praise to Warrington Male Voice Choir in recognition of their efforts to use their music to help promote peace. It coincided with the 10th anniversary of the Good Friday Agreement and the 15th anniversary of the Warrington Bomb. The choir appeared on TV in Ireland.

2008 APR Warrington author Steve Burke published his book Without Wings – The Story of Hitler’s Aircraft Carrier. See his website www.withoutwingsonline.co.uk.

2008 APR Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg visited the Warrington Guardian offices in Bridge Street.

2008 APR Plans are announced to demolish Culcheth High School and replace it with a new £24 million state-of-the-art building.

2008 APR 20 The annual St George’s Day parade and service took place. The event included a procession of Scouts from the Town Hall to the Parish Church of St Elphin where a service was held.

2008 APR 22 A public inquiry began at the Halliwell Jones Stadium into plans to extend Biffa Waste Management landfill site at Risley. The plans were turned down in August 2008.

2008 APR 23 Warrington Borough Council approved plans to rebuild Penketh Methodist Church.

2008 APR 26 Soloist Beverley Knight headlined the finale in North West Fashion Week at the Old Fish Market in Golden Square.

2008 APR Second World War evacuee and widow, Audrey Quirk, published her autobiography Brywes for Breakfast, Pickelets For Tea.

2008 APR 28 The executive board of the council approved a £2.2 million scheme to introduce bigger recycling bins to be collected from doorsteps, starting in September 2008.

2008 APR Bendy traffic bollards are to be trialled by the council. They have a spring on the base so they can bounce back up and save money on replacing the old type when they are hit.

2008 APR Charity JUMP (Jacob’s-Unique Memory Pot www.jumpchildrenscharity.co.uk) receives a £22,500 grant from the BBC Children in Need appeal.

May 2008

2008 MAY 1 40,000 residents voted in the local elections, resulting in a continued power-sharing between Conservatives and Liberal Democrats.

2008 MAY Former Manchester City players Tommy Booth and Peter Barnes helped to raise £19,000 for Leukaemia Research and Manchester’s Christies Hospital in a charity auction at the Park Royal Hotel in Stretton.

2008 MAY Warrington fire station took delivery of a new £140,000 vehicle to replace one of their existing machines.

2008 MAY Former Warrington rugby league player Derek Whitehead became the latest member of the Warrington Wolves Hall of Fame. He is the 28th player to receive the honour.

2008 MAY The council spent a further £150,000 to improve the controversial traffic lights scheme on Cromwell Avenue in Westbrook. The total cost of the scheme has now reached £700,000.

2008 MAY (3/4) Former Editor-in-chief of the Warrington Guardian, Trevor Buckley, died after a short illness, aged 76.

2008 MAY 7 Princess Anne, the Princess Royal, visited Thorn Cross Young Offenders Institution in Appleton Thorn.

2008 MAY Pensioners in Whitecross protested over new £3-a-day charges brought in by the council to travel on minibuses to the leisure centre.

2008 MAY English Partnerships launched a sales brochure inviting developers to submit detailed proposals and financial bids for the redevelopment of the former National Police Training Centre at Bruche.

2008 MAY Plans were announced to demolish Legh Street baths and build a health centre on the site.

2008 MAY The Talking Newspaper for the blind and partially sighted celebrated its 30th anniversary. The service provides audio versions of the Warrington Guardian.

2008 MAY Author Stephen Gerard-Hayden published his book Cobblestone Kids, a book about the results and pitfalls of a deprived childhood.

2008 MAY Warrington Borough Transport launched its own Eau de WBT, its on-board bus fragrance.

2008 MON 12 MAY mywarrington website 3rd birthday

2008 MAY 15 A Navy minesweeper passed through Latchford Locks on its way to Salford Quays to search for unexploded mines around the site of the new BBC Manchester studios.

2008 MAY 16 Comedian Peter Kay filmed scenes for his new Channel 4 TV show at Rixton. It was called “Britain’s Got the Pop Factor…and Possibly a New Celebrity Jesus Christ Soapstar Superstar Strictly on Ice” – a spoof of reality TV shows in which he played a singer called Geraldine McQueen. It was aired on 12 October 2008.

2008 MAY The Ministry of Defence released secret UFO files, some of which include reports of sightings over Warrington. But why do we never see these UFOs during the day? Or before 17 December 1903?

2008 MAY 22 Former Busted band member and winner of I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here, Matt Willis, visited Chicago Rock Café in Barbauld Street.  

2008 MAY 22 Anger erupted as the council approves two controversial schemes in Croft for a chicken farm and a housing development.

2008 MAYPadgate-born former pop-star Kerry Katona was voted the fourth most hated celebrity in the country in a survey for Marketing Magazine. Top of the list was Heather Mills, former wife of Beatle Paul McCartney.

2008 MAY Curtis Jobling creator of Bob the Builder visited the Warrington Guardian as part of Local Newspaper Week. He was born in Blackpool and later lived in Warrington.

2008 MAY Two of the convicted killers of Garry Newlove from Fearnhead were given leave to appeal their sentences.

2008 MAY More than 1,500 council employees shared a £3.8 million payout over equal pay. Each employee received about £2,400.

2008 MAYAn estimated 14 million people have visited Golden Square shopping centre since its redevelopment one year ago, it is reported.

2008 MAY 26 The annual Warrington Horse Show took place in Daresbury.

2008 MAY 27 Paul Cullen left Warrington Wolves ‘by mutual consent’.

2008 MAY Croft Youth Club celebrated its first anniversary. They meet at Christchurch hall in the village every Wednesday and have around 50 members.

2008 MAY 29 Warrington hosted a European Market, giving townsfolk the chance to sample foods from across the continent in a 4-day event.

2008 MAY 30 A wind turbine was installed at Centre Park at Arpley Meadows.

2008 MAY 30 Peaches Geldof, daughter of Sir Bob Geldof, created a reusable shopping bag for Golden Square shopping centre as part of a Bin the Bag campaign.

2008 MAY 31 The War in Warrington, a cage-fighting event, took place at the Parr Hall. The sport, Mixed Martial Arts (MMA), features a combination of boxing, Thai boxing, wrestling, Brazilian jujitsu and judo.

2008 MAY 31 Fourteen-year-old George Sampson from Birchwood won ITV1’s Britain’s Got Talent and £100,000.

Jun 2008

2008 JUN An 1850s billet cutter from the Stockton Heath Forge went missing from ‘safe storage’ for a second time. It first went missing in 2006. See a photo of it in the Stockton Heath section of the My Warrington page. Linking story.

2008 JUN 4 The council voted to remove a controversial bus lane on Winwick Road by Tesco.

2008 JUN 4 Warrington Radio General secretary, Keith Inman, visited the Houses of Parliament and 10 Downing Street as part of the NHS 60th anniversary celebrations.

2008 JUN 5 Irish president Mary McAleese visited the Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Foundation for Peace in Old Hall as part of a two-day visit to the region.

2008 JUN 10 The Berlin Airlift’s 60th Anniversary Exhibition opened at the RAF Burtonwood Heritage Centre in Westbrook.

2008 JUN 10 A fire at three business premises in Bewsey Road caused an estimated £500,000 in damage. A teenager was jailed for three years on 5 December 2008 for a ‘revenge attack’ on one of the businesses.

2008 JUN Latchford couple Mario Marconi and Lisa Appleton appeared in Channel 4’s Big Brother show. Neither of them made it to the final.

2008 JUN 15 Staff and customers from Birchwood Leisure and Tennis Centre took part in a dragon boat race on the River Dee in Chester to raise funds for St Rocco’s Hospice.

2008 JUN Legendary Warrington rugby league star Brian Bevan was named in Australia’s Team of the Century in an event to celebrate 100 years of the sport in Australia.

2008 JUNSt John’s United Reformed Church on Wilderspool Causeway celebrated its 200th anniversary.

2008 JUN The 60th anniversary of the revival of Lymm May Queen took place. The event originally started in 1879 but was halted during the Second World War and revived in 1948.

2008 JUN 18 A banjolele owned by entertainer George Formby sold for £21,600 at a Bonhams auction in London.

2008 JUN 20 Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg visited the town.

2008 JUN 20 More than 1,000 women took part in the 13-mile Starlight Walk to raise £160,000 for St Rocco’s Hospice in Bewsey.

2008 JUN 21 Celebrations took place for the opening of Bewsey Park Community Centre.

2009 JUN A Warrington writer published his action adventure novel The Patent of Mann under the pen-name of George Dixon.

2008 JUN 21 The 44th Thelwall Rose Queen festival took place.

2008 JUN 21 Padgate Walking Day took place.

2008 JUN 21 The annual Bawming of the Thorn ceremony took place in Appleton Thorn.

2008 JUN 26- JUL 6 The annual Lymm Festival took place. Events included a scarecrow trail and a performance of Shakespeare’s Much Ado About Nothing.

2008 JUN 27-29 Burtonwood Art Show took place at St Michael’s Church Parish Hall. 50 exhibitors displayed their work for sale, with proceeds going to supporting the church.

2008 JUN 28 The 40th anniversary of the town’s twinning with Hilden, Germany took place. The last remaining section of Golborne Street was later renamed Hilden Square. See Tour 2 for photos of the area.

2008 JUN Bewsey Lock Bridge received a £56,000 makeover with funding from Waste Recycling Environmental Ltd. Volunteers at Sankey Canal Restoration Society carried out the restoration.

ADD IMAGE AND CAPTION: The bridge after restoration and how it used to look (inset)

2008 JUN Plans were submitted to Warrington Borough Council to extend the former bungalow of Beatle George Harrison in Appleton. He bought the property for his parents in the 1960s.

2008 JUN Warrington Borough Council considered the options for installing a waste incinerator in the town.

Jul 2008

2008 JULPassenger lifts were installed at Warrington Central Station.

2008 JULIce Blok, a synthetic ice rink, opened in Cockhedge Shopping Park. It closed in 2011 when The Skating Academy roller rink opened on Academy Street.

2008 JULPostal workers prepared to strike in protest at the possible closure of the sorting office in Lymm village.

2008 JUL 2 Plans to turn Bewsey Old Hall into a hotel were rejected at a council meeting.

2008 JUL 3 Culcheth Sports Club celebrated its 50th anniversary. It was previously known as Daten Sports and Social Club.

2008 JUL 5 The first Warrington Market Classic Car Show took place.

2008 JUL 5 The annual Croft carnival took place. The event has run continuously since it was revived in 1972.

2008 JUL 6 The annual Disability Awareness Day (DAD) took place at Walton Gardens.

2008 JULWarrington Borough Council approved plans for a new state-of-the-art high school in Culcheth. Once the new school is open, the old one will be demolished (sadly).

2008 JULTrainee carpenters from Warrington Collegiate Institute solved an anti-social problem at St Mark’s Church in Dallam by building doors across a porch at the back where groups of people were congregating.

2008 JUL Pupils from Penketh High School filmed scenes on Sankey Station for comedy film Louise, made by graemePRODUCTION.

2008 JUL The former home of TV writer Richard Curtis in Appleton was put on the market for £2 million. His TV and film credits include BlackadderThe Vicar of DibleyFour Weddings and a Funeral, Notting Hill and Love Actually. 

2008 JUL 10-13 Stockton Heath Arts and Culture Festival took place.

2008 JUL 12 Warrington Music Festival took place in Queens Gardens, Palmyra Square.

2008 JUL 12 Stockton Heath Walking Day took place. The weekend of celebrations concluded with a farmers’ market.

2008 JUL 12 The 80th annual Glazebury gala took place. The event started in 1928 when Ruth Peters was crowned the first queen.

2008 JUL The government considers plans to relocate the fire control centre from Cockermouth in Cumbria to Lingley Mere in west Warrington.

2008 JUL 13 The annual Winwick Carnival took place on Myddleton Lane. An estimated 6,000 people visited.

2008 JUL 15 Pupils from Stockton Heath Primary School dressed up in costumes from 1910 to mark the final week in the school before a new building takes its place. See photos of the school on My Warrington page.

2008 JUL 18 Former Big Brother contestant Michelle Bass visited Total Fitness gym to sample a day in the life of Lisa Appleton, who was in the current series of the reality show at the time.

2008 JUL 18-19 Burtonwood library celebrated its 40th anniversary.

2008 JUL 19 The Amazing Maize Maze returned to Apple Jacks Farm on Stretton Road.

2008 JUL 19 Howley Carnival took place. It started with a parade from Wellington Street and finished at Howley Park where entertainment was provided.

2008 JUL 19 Stretton Walking Day took place with a summer fair afterwards on St Matthew’s Primary School field.

2008 JUL 20 The 11th Westy Carnival took place on Westy Park.

2008 JUL 21 Warrington Borough Transport introduced a new bus service to Chapelford village in west Warrington. The No 17 service will be known as the Chapelford Connector.

2008 JUL Birchwood Park celebrated its 10th anniversary. The business park borders Birchwood Forest Park.

2008 JUL 21 Former Conservative party chairman and Shadow Cabinet Minister Francis Maude MP visited the Tim Parry Johnathan Ball Foundation for Peace in Old Hall.

2008 JUL 26 Hundreds took part in the Cancer Research Relay for Life fundraising event by walking around the athletics track at Victoria Park.

2008 JUL 27 They have the Beast of Bodmin Moor. We have a large black cat in woods near Walton Gardens that is as big as a German shepherd dog, according to readers of the Warrington Guardian.

2008 JUL Three buildings and one structure in Warrington were put on the English Heritage “at risk” register. They are Bewsey Old Hall, the Gate House to Bradley Old Hall in Burtonwood, the north barn at Hurst Hall in Glazebury and the transporter bridge over the Mersey at Bank Quay.

2008 JUL Students from Penketh High School received a Languages and Film Talent Award (LAFTA) – the first of its kind – celebrating the linguistic talent of young film-makers. Sir Trevor McDonald and comedian Eddie Izzard sat on the judging panel.

2008 JUL 31 The council announced plans to close lower Bridge Street to traffic overnight on Fridays, Saturdays and Sundays to cut down on anti-social behaviour. The street would close from 9 p.m. until 5 a.m. each night.

Aug 2008

2008 AUG 9 Operation Checkpoint, a joint initiative between police and licensees, was launched in a bid to make people feel safer in the town centre.

2008 AUG 10 The annual Lymm Rushbearing Festival took place. The tradition remembers the time when villagers used to change the rushes on floors before winter started. Read more about the ceremony here.

2008 AUG 11 Residents in Orford opposed plans to demolish Norris Street Methodist Church hall to make way for a nursing home.

2008 AUG 16 The former Brickmakers Arms pub on School Brow was renamed The Kandi Bar to become the town’s first gay bar.

2008 AUG 17 Warrington rower Richard Egington won a silver medal with the British men’s eight at the Beijing Olympic Games.

2008 AUG 19 Lucy Meacock and Tony Morris from Granada Reports visited Golden Square with the Junior Newsreader Challenge, a roadshow to attract younger viewers to ITV Local shows.

2008 AUG 21 Mark Morris, front man of 90s indie band The Bluetones, opened the first Live in the Square music event at Golden Square.

2008 AUG The Rope and Anchor pub on Manchester Road, Woolston, won August’s Quality Tracker award from brewery industry magazine the Morning Advertiser.

Sep 2008

2008 SEP Warrington Borough Council announced plans to sell off Risley police station building, but the police will remain there after the auction.

2008 SEP 6 The first Farmers’ Market was held in the town centre, attracting produce from a 30-mile radius.

2008 SEP 6 Flash flooding hit parts of Warrington, including Hawleys Lane bridge in Dallam.

2008 SEP 7 The annual Woolston Show took place.

2008 SEP 8 The owners of Fuss salon in Great Sankey helped to prepare Coronation Street stars for the TV Choice awards at the Dorchester Hotel in London.

2008 SEP 8 Work began on a new single-storey car park at Warrington Hospital, which will create 200 extra spaces.

2008 SEP 13 The 60th Hatton and District Show took place on Daresbury Lane.

2008 SEP 14 Warrington police station on Arpley Street staged an open day.

2008 SEP 18 Celebrity Peter Andre visited Chicago Rock Café on Barbauld Street.

2008 SEP 18 Woolston Library celebrated its 40th anniversary.

2008 SEP 20 Home Secretary Jacqui Smith visited the town to talk to constituents in the Orford area.

2008 SEP 20 Bessie Ardern, founder of the Warrington bakery, died aged 101. The Willis Street bakery started in 1932.

2008 SEP 21 The annual Battle of Britain Parade took place at Gulliver’s World, organised by the Burtonwood Branch of the RAF Association.

2008 SEP Proposals for a Titan super-prison on the site of the Omega Business Park in Burtonwood were announced.

2008 SEP 25 Helen Newlove, widow of murdered Garry, launched the Newlove Warrington campaign (New Warrington, Love Warrington) in association with the Warrington Wolves Foundation, to improve the future of the town.

2008 SEP 25 Retired teacher Veronica Millington from Warrington published her first novel Fanny Eliza Johnson, a Thoroughly Modern Headteacher, an insight into one of Bolton High School’s first headmistresses.

2008 SEP Warrington Borough Council said in a letter to Culcheth and Glazebury Parish Council that the likelihood of reopening Glazebury railway station is ‘very slim’. The station closed 50 years ago but trains still pass through it on the Liverpool to Manchester railway.

2008 SEP The Warrington Partnership set out a 30-year vision for the town in its draft Sustainable Community Strategy. Link here to read and download a copy.

Oct 2008

2008 OCT Acker’s Pit in Stockton Heath is reopened after a clean-up is completed.

2008 OCT Peel Holdings announced plans to build Port Warrington at Acton Grange, Moore, as part of their £50 billion Ocean Gateway project. The plan was approved by Warrington Borough Council in March 2010.

2008 OCT Warrington Library closes for 3 months to allow for a £200,000 refurbishment. A temporary facility was opened in the museum while work got under way.

2008 OCT 4 Warrington rugby league legend Harry Bath died in Australia, aged 83. Read his profile on the Warrington Wolves page.

2008 OCT Health bosses consider adding fluoride to the water supply. It comes after a report says the dental health of children in Warrington is worse than the national average.

2008 OCT Arriva reversed a previous decision to cancel the No 6 bus service to Liverpool, which would have left residents in parts of west Warrington without a bus service.

2008 OCT 5 Veterans gathered at the Parish Church for the annual Regimental Sunday parade.

2008 OCT TV Soap stars from HollyoaksBrooksideCoronation Street and Emmerdale took part in a football game at Warrington Town to support Pathways to Work, an initiative to help people on health-related benefits back into employment.

2008 OCT 12 A red triangular-shaped UFO was reported flying over Asda in Westbrook at 9.13 p.m. It was probably taking advantage of the 24-hour opening – well, don’t want to be seen during the day, do they? Following on close behind was Lord Lucan riding Shergar…

2008 OCT 13 Warrington Borough Council agreed to spend £650,000 on repairs at Walton Hall.

2008 OCT 13 A master plan to redevelop the centre of Warrington over the next 30 years was unveiled by the council.

2008 OCT 20 Former Warrington Wolves and Great Britain rugby player, David Myers, died in a road accident on the M6 motorway. He was 37 years old.

2008 OCT 20 The Sikh community in Warrington celebrated the 300th anniversary of the religious movement.

2008 OCT Bewsey Lodge Primary School received the DCSF International School Award at a ceremony in London.

2008 OCT 23 Ed Balls, Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families, visited the town to officially open the new Sandy Lane Children’s Centre in Orford.

2008 OCT 24 Penketh Library celebrates its 40th anniversary.

2008 OCT 25 M People group member Heather Small performed at the Parr Hall.

2008 OCT 29 The owners of Fuss salon on Park Road in Great Sankey helped to prepare Coronation Street stars for the National Television Awards at the Royal Albert Hall. They performed a similar duty at the TV Choice awards last month.

Nov 2008

2008 NOV 8 The Halliwell Jones Stadium hosted a gala dinner for the Newlove Warrington campaign. Bolton comedian Peter Kay acted as MC, and 80s singer Rick Astley led the entertainment. The event raised £64,000.

2008 NOV 8 Warrington singer Kerry Katona launched her own perfume at The Fragrance Shop in Golden Square.

2008 NOV Teenager Becky Arnold performed with the Stage and Singing Express School in a charity version of the musical Hairspray at the Shaftsbury Theatre in London’s West End. The NSPCC benefited from the event.

2008 NOV 9 The annual Remembrance Day service took place. This year marks the 90th anniversary of the end of the First World War. On Tuesday 11th November, there was a minute’s silence in the town centre at 11 o’clock to mark Armistice Day itself.

2008 NOV 10 The council agreed to invest £1.2 million on improvements to the Parr Hall. At the same time they agreed not to remove the historic Cavaille-Coll organ, thought to be one of only two in the world.

2008 NOV 10 The last remaining hangars at the former Burtonwood Air Base were demolished to make way for the Omega Business Park. See photos of the hangars on the RAF Burtonwood page.

2008 NOV Warrington-born immigration officer Kay Lomas featured in the Sky One documentary series UK Border Force, which follows the work of immigration staff at Heathrow Airport.

2008 NOV 13 Britain’s Got Talent winner George Sampson switched on the Christmas lights at Golden Square. He also switched the Birchwood Christmas lights on the following Thursday.

2008 NOV 13 Two of the teenagers convicted of murdering Garry Newlove in Fearnhead last year appealed against their sentences. One successfully had his reduced, but the ringleader did not. The third person convicted of the murder did not appeal his sentence.

2008 NOV 18 Warrington Borough Transport was named UK Bus Operator of the Year for 2008 at a ceremony in London. The bus company also won the Shire Operator of the Year for 2008.

2008 NOV 21 Boxing legend Sugar Ray Leonard visited Bank Quay Social Club for a sportsman’s dinner.

2008 NOV 21 Dignitaries marked the 50th anniversary of hydrogen peroxide production by the auto oxidation (AO) process pioneered by Warrington company Solvay in 1958.

2008 NOV 28 Synergy nightclub at Bridge Foot reopened as Halo under new management. Big Brother contestants Mario Marconi and Lisa Appleton appeared at the opening ceremony.

2008 NOV 29 Culcheth held a Victorian Day, including its Christmas lights switch-on.

2008 NOV 30 One hundred and thirty runners dressed up in Santa outfits for the Santa Dash event at Walton Gardens to raise funds for Birchwood-based charity Families Reunited.

2008 NOV Plans were announced to turn the former airfield of HMS Blackcap in Appleton into a motor sports and advanced driving academy. The plans were put on hold in December 2008 when the application was withdrawn. Read more on HMS Blackcap on the RAF Burtonwood page.

2008 NOV Radio 2 personality, and ‘Voice of the Balls’ on the National Lottery show, Alan Dedicoat hosted a quiz at the Harrow Inn in Culcheth to raise funds for Children In Need.

2008 NOV Warrington Hospital received foundation status. Its name will change from North Cheshire Hospital NHS Trust to Warrington and Halton Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust. As a Foundation Trust it is responsible to the residents rather than the government, whatever that means.

2008 NOV It was revealed that Justice Secretary Jack Straw paid a secret visit to the Omega Business Park site in Burtonwood in connection with a proposed Titan prison. The council and residents were opposed to the idea of a prison on the site.

Dec 2008

2008 DEC Victoria Park Residents Association received a lottery grant of £4,405 to turn waste land behind Enville Street into a nature and wildlife community garden.

2008 DEC 1-10 Warrington Market teamed up with 6 other local authorities to appear in TV adverts promoting the use of markets.

2008 DEC 8 Warrington Borough Council approved plans for the £28 million Orford Park Project to go ahead. The 50-acre site on Winwick Road will be transformed into a sports village.

2008 DEC 8 The council held secret talks about new plans to breathe life into Time Square on Bank Street.

2008 DEC 13 Lymm village held its 23rd annual Dickensian Festival.

2008 DEC 24 A ‘UFO’ sighting over Chapelford turned out to be Chinese lanterns released to celebrate a wedding anniversary.