Special celebrations on cards to mark 150th anniversary of historic Padiham church

A Padiham church is pulling out all the stops this weekend to celebrate a very special anniversary.

2019 marks the 150th birthday of St Leonard's Church in Padiham
2019 marks the 150th birthday of St Leonard's Church in Padiham

This year marks the 150th anniversary of St Leonard’s and two events this weekend will pay homage to it.

On Saturday the Great Padiham Birthday Bake Off will be held. Competitors have been asked to produce a show stopper birthday cake with a technical challenge to produce a batch of cheese straws.

Among the judges will be the Bishop of Blackburn the Rt Rev Julian Henderson who will also be preaching at the church on the Sunday in a thanksgiving service to mark the anniversary.

The present St Leonard’s isn’t the first church to stand on the site. The first was built in 1451 and then a second in 1766. This second church had a rather unhappy end as the town’s Victorian forebears decided to demolish it in its 100th anniversary year in 1866.

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The ‘new’ St Leonard’s was built in 1869 in response to Padiham becoming a boom town as the cotton industry flourished.

Vicar, Canon Mark Jones said: “There are no plans to demolish our beautiful church in this special anniversary year.

"Instead we’re making this a year of special invitation to everyone in Padiham whether they belong to the church or not, all are welcome and we would love to see you at your parish church.”

For more details go to www.padihamparish.org.