Story shorts - 08/11/12

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A round-up of news in brief from across Lancashire

Former hospital plans

A Grade II listed former hospital in Lancaster is to be converted into homes in a deal worth nearly £68m. The Lancaster Moor Hospital building on Quernmore Road will be restored and 440 homes will be built in the surrounding woodlands. Designed by architect Arnold Kershaw, Lancaster Moor was built in 1882 as an annexe to accommodate mental health patients. It was used by the NHS and closed in 1999.

Joe blogs on Treasure Island show

The director of Lancaster Dukes Christmas spectacular, Treasure Island, is keeping an online diary of the show’s rehearsals. Dukes boss Joe Sumsion aims to give an insight into what goes on behind the scenes of a festive performance. The blog can be found at Already he has described the first day of rehearsals and a trip to local beauty spot Sunderland Point. The play runs from November 23 until January 5.

Leyland soldier on parade

Soldiers from the Kings Royal Hussars will march through Leyland on Saturday, November 10. Exercising their right to parade through the town, some 250 servicemen and women will march on the streets at 11.30am. They will meet at the Civic Centre at 11am to begin the procession.

Hillsborough rep to speak

A member of the group which fought for justice for victims of the Hillsborough disaster is visiting Preston next week. Sheila Coleman, a spokesman for the Hillsborough Justice Campaign, will speak at the event at the University of Central Lancashire next Wednesday.

Northern Soul event in city

An event celebrating Northern Soul music takes place in Preston next month. The Preston’s Got Soul event takes place at 53 Degrees in the city on Saturday, December 1. For further details, visit

Talk on Islamic tensions

A talk on Islamophobia will be held at the Salvation Army headquarters in Preston later this month. Dr Chris Allen will speak on ‘Islamophobia, myth or reality? Understanding the problem to find a solution’ in Harrington Street on Thursday, November 22. The event is part of Guild Interfaith Week. Dr Allen is a research fellow in the Institute of Applied Social Studies, School of Social Policy at the University of Birmingham. He has been at the forefront of academic research into the phenomenon of Islamophobia - prejudice against or the hatred or irrational fear of Muslims. He has worked with the likes of the House of Lords Select Committee on Religious Offences and the All Party Parliamentary Group on Islamophobia and Anti-Muslim Hate Crime. Doors open at 9.45am.

Go climbing with festival

Preston Youth Climbing Festival 2012 goes ahead next weekend. The two day event, on Saturday and Sunday November 17 and 18 at West View Leisure Centre, from 9am to 4pm each day. Dedicated to climbing for young people aged eight to 15, whether they have climbed before or not, the weekend features climbing related workshops for all skill levels on Saturday. Then participants get an opportunity to put their new found skills into action on Sunday in a friendly competition. Entry to the festival is £29 for the full weekend. For more information, contact Gill Peet on 01772 796788.