No sooner has Kirkham enjoyed a spectacular weekend of Jubilee celebrations than the final preparations begin for the joyous return of Kirkham and Wesham Club Day on Saturday 11 June.
Last weekend, the shop windows of Kirkham high street were home to jolly little clay figures, the Kirk’ums and Wes’ums made by the local community, and five large crown sculptures made in workshops facilitated by artists Andy Shaw and Sharon Kelly took pride of place in front of Kirkham listed buildings. These artworks were made over a period of months by people from the Melting Pot Theatre Workshop, Visage Academy of Performing Arts, St Michaels Cubs, and the wider community, and featured references to local heritage such as the textile industry, the local RAF base, and the fish stones. Youngsters from the Tree Tops Nursery, along with pupils from Pear Tree, St Michaels, Kirkham and Wesham, and St Joseph’s schools decorated hundreds of wooden crowns which were hung from the Jubilee decorated railings in the town centre.
Mayor of Kirkham, Cllr Elaine Silverwood, said of the wonderful displays: “The artwork our community have created is fantastic, and everyone involved should feel very proud of what they have achieved. It’s also great to see local heritage celebrated in such a unique way. I would encourage everyone to visit to come along and enjoy the spectacle as the artwork will be on display until the end of June.”
Historic England’s Tamsin Cooke said: “It was lovely to see local people enjoying this special Jubilee celebration as part of Kirkham’s High Street Heritage Action Zone programme. Many more memories and stories will have been created to pass on to future generations.”
Now, Kirkham and Wesham residents are ready to welcome back Kirkham and Wesham Club Day for the first time since 2019 with the customary parade procession, annual fairs, and fun day.
A tradition over two hundred years old, the Kirkham and Wesham Club Day has its roots in the worker’s clubs and ‘friendly societies’ of the nineteenth century and has become a beloved feature of community life sorely missed over the past three years.
Organisers from the Joint Churches’ Committee have worked hard over the preceding months to prepare for the return of Kirkham and Wesham Club Day, and each of the local churches will be represented by their rose queen as is custom.
The Kirkham and Wesham Jubilee art project was funded by The Community Foundation, Arts Council England and Historic England, and was facilitated by Kirkham Cultural Consortium.
It forms part of an ongoing cultural programme developed by Kirkham Cultural Consortium to bring alive and celebrate the towns heritage. To find out more visit www.kirkhamtreasures.co.uk
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