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      25.03.2001 18:41
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      Barnoldswick [Background: Barnoldswick (known as Barlick locally) can trace its history back to Roman times, and also appeared in the Doomsday Book as Bernulfsuuic. It is located on the Lancashire / Yorkshire border, with a population of just over 10,000 at the last census. It is also the place I spent the first eighteen years of my life growing up, prior to leaving for University.] Barnoldswick. Never heard of it? That's not surprising really. Barnoldswick is the kind of town you would only visit if you had planned to, or if you had got terribly lost. The main A56 road between the larger towns of Colne in Lancashire and Skipton in North Yorkshire passes the town by, and there are no train links and only very irregular links by bus. Much controversy still rages in the town about which council should run its affairs. Up until a quarter of a century ago Barnoldswick was part of North Yorkshire, but sweeping boundary changes in 1974 handed the town over to Lancashire County Council. Remnants of the previous infrastructure are still apparent, with Yorkshire Water and Yorkshire Electricity still supplying the town, as well as the majority of residents only being able to receive Yorkshire Television, rather than Granada. Residents are split over whether the red rose or the white rose should rule the roost, and it is sure to be a debate that rumbles on. Barnoldswick is wet. Very wet indeed. Its location, close to the foot of Weets Hill (397m), means that it suffers from more than its fair share of relief rain. This has seemingly always been the case as the town was intended as the location for an important monastery way back in Norman times. However the continued poor weather, combined with thieving locals, meant that plans were abandoned. However, the same monks then moved on to the Leeds area and built Kirkstall Abbey instead. Leisure facilities in the town include a swimming pool, a library, and a nine-hole golf course ( Ghyll), and the proximity to countryside means that there is plenty of scope for serious hikers and the casual walker too. Barnoldswick has a place in the record books too. Yes - really! It is the longest town name in the world where none of the letters are repeated. Not much of a claim to fame, admittedly, but you try to think of somewhere else that fits these bizarre criteria. As for other claims to fame, Barnoldswick is on the route of the Leeds-Liverpool canal, and is home to the Greenberfield Locks. Boating is a popular activity in the area with many tourists choosing to spend their holiday cruising down the canal at a leisurely 3 mph. The town once had 13 mills and was extremely dependent upon the textile industry. Bancroft Mill now houses a museum and has many examples of engines that were used to power the mill in its heyday. These days two Rolls-Royce aeronautics factories and the head offices of Silentnight on the outskirts of the town dominate the local industry. These two companies employ many people in the town, and many others from the surrounding area. The town is not famed for its shops, and probably has less than its fair share of retail premises for a town of its size. However, it more than makes up for that with its range of public houses. Drinking is an extremely important activity for the locals, with pubs and working men's clubs numbering over a dozen. Barnoldswick is a pleasant place to visit and is a town with plenty of character and scope for leisure and other activities. If you are ever in this area of the country then it is definitely worth at least half a day of your itinerary to look at. If you have longer, then you could always check out the local hostelries for yourself. Some Links: ----------- Barnoldswick Online: http://www.paget.demon.co.uk/barnoldswick/index.html Background and additional links: http://www.pendle.net/Barnoldswick/ A selection of pubs: http://www.pendle.net/Barnoldswick/barnoldswick_pubs.htm {An original Dooyoo opinion © Blackjane 2001}

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