My Burnley: Clarets fan and former pupil at St Theodore's RC High School for Boys on his love for his hometown
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Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
I am a Science teacher, I am 58 and currently live in Abingdon, Oxon, with my wife Nikki and we have two children, Jess (29) and 26-year-old Liam.
How long have you lived/worked in Burnley?
I lived and went to school in Burnley up to the the age of 18 when I left to go to university in Bristol.
Why did you choose to live/stay/work in Burnley?
Several generations of my family had lived in Burnley going back to the 19th century and beyond. I still have brothers and a cousin living in or near the town.
What do you think are the best parts of the town?
Burnley has some wonderful parks, grand stately homes such as Towneley Hall and Gawthorpe Hall and some fabulous local walks. I spent many happy hours in the local parks, playing sport, exploring and playing on the play equipment with mates (no soft absorbent surfaces to bounce off then!) or pootling around the boating lake in Thompsons Park. It was a brilliant place to grow up in as a kid.
Is there anything you dislike about Burnley?
How some of the grand old municipal and civic heritage buildings have largely gone and been replaced by non-descript buildings lacking character. I also very much dislike how Burnley is perceived by many people who don’t know the town and rely on the lazy stereotype of a faded cotton and coal town with dark satanic mills and rundown terraced streets as their impression of it. Yes there are areas that urgently need investment and rejuvenation and poverty is criminally too common in some areas of the town, but that is true of many towns, particularly in the North.
How would you describe Burnley to a visitor who has never been here before?
Warm and welcoming populated by people with generous hearts, a fantastic sense of community, some great pubs and restaurants and with a proud industrial and sporting heritage with some of the most beautiful countryside in Britain on its doorstep. Come and visit it and have your eyes opened to what the town has to offer.