HISTORY: Conservation group fights to save Cliviger landmark

Asbestos which has been dumped in the grounds of The Holme in Cliviger (s)
Asbestos which has been dumped in the grounds of The Holme in Cliviger (s)

A CLIVIGER conservation group which is trying to save one of the village’s most iconic and historic landmarks said it fears the building could go up in flames at any moment.

The Friends of the Holme group which is seeking to buy the 17th Century grade-two listed property, said tyres and asbestos have now been dumped at the site causing a health risk.

Campaigners are calling on the Environment Agency and the receivers to help clear the waste before it becomes a target for arsonists.

Friends of the Holme, which was founded last year, is trying to raise £200,000 to buy the building from Manchester-based receivers Begbies Traynor Group.

But Mrs Paula Riley from the group said they would like more help from the authorities. The group has held a series of fund-raising events and has been collecting donations from past and present Cliviger residents from as far away as Botswana.

But Mrs Riley said more help is needed to allow them to buy the Holme, which was hit by a serious fire in 2005, and bring it back into use for the benefit of the community.

The group, which has 154 members, needs to raise the £200,000 before it is eligible for any grants or funding to restore the building, although it has received the backing of English Heritage.

Cathy Tuck, heritage at risk project officer for English Heritage, has written to the receivers listing a series of steps needed to be taken to ensure the building’s safety. These include providing a security fence, CCTV, lighting and patrolled visits, removal of dumped vehicle tyres and refuse from inside The Holme, seeking the advice of a structural engineer, over-roofing of the building to prevent any further damage, boarding of all ground-floor windows, removal of fly-tipped refuse and skip from the driveway and preparation of a schedule of urgent works for the building by a conservation accredited architect.

Mrs Riley said: “I’m very worried that it could fall victim to another arson attack. Now there is a health hazard too with the tyres and asbestos. Something needs to be done about it. We just want some help from the authorities.”

She has also been in contact with Burnley MP Mr Gordon Birtwistle, Burnley Borough Council leader Coun. Julie Cooper and Burnley Mayor Coun. Charles Bullas.

The group plans to increase its funds by asking residents in Cliviger who have not yet done so to make a donation.