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Irwell Vale residents to hold 180th birthday celebration
RESIDENTS in a tiny hamlet are looking to stage the largest party possible to celebrate their home territory’s 180th birthday.
Irwell Vale owes its existence to the cotton merchant Thomas Aitken, who established a mill near the confluence of the River Irwell and the River Ogden in 1833.
Today the villagers in Aitken Street, and the surrounding areas, are planning to stage a birthday bash to commemorate his achievement.
An Irwell Vale Friends and Residents spokesman said: “There will be stalls, cakes, a tug of war, dog agility, and face painting - lots of good village fun.”
Guests can even take a steam train from either Ramsbottom or Rawtenstall to Irwell Vale’s station to attend the festivities.
They are scheduled to begin around 10am.
Posters have been produced by local graphic artist Caroline Ogden and can be seen around the valley. And already the village is beginning to be swamped by homemade scarecrows and a bar, barbecue, bouncy castle and kids races have also been pencilled in for this Saturday.
And appeals for assistance with a jam jar tombola and handicraft, bric-a-brac and home produce stalls have also been well heeded.
Donations of straw bales and sacks, for the races, are also understood to have been forthcoming. The only remaining evidence of the original mills is the factory building on the banks of the Ogden, which is now home to Sigma Soaps.
Villagers have earned a reputation for their community spirit and have been campaigning to repair a number of local potholes.
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