Story shorts - 29/01/13

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A round-up of news in brief from across Lancashire

Snowdrop hall fundraiser

The Friends of Bank Hall in Bretherton have organised ‘Snowdrop Sunday’ events for every Sunday in February. From 12pm to 4pm, families can take in woodland walks through hall gardens. Admission £2.50 for adults and children free. Proceeds go towards hall restoration funds.

Ghostly tours to take place

Hoghton Tower, reputed to be Britain’s third most haunted house, is throwing its doors open for an evening of spooky events. From 7.15pm on February 20 and 21, silent torchbearers will lead guests through the darkened halls of the tower, and into underground passages, said to be haunted by footsteps from another time. The event will culminate in a formal meal. Tickets £25 per person. To book call 01254 852 986.

Housing plans submitted

Asif Neki has applied for permission to convert a house in St Stephen’s Road, Preston, into two self-contained flats. One of flat is to have three bedrooms, and the other would have two. There is no provision for extra parking within the plan. Planning chiefs at Preston Council will make a decision in coming weeks.

Car park costs set to increase

On-street parking charges in part of Lancashire are set to rise by 10p in April, after councillors voted for an increase. Despite Lancaster Chamber of Commerce demanding a freeze in charges, councillors voted for the 10p increase on one hour’s parking. Prices for longer stay parking have been frozen.

Tumble dryer risks

Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service and Lancashire County Council Trading Standards are warning residents to take extra care when using tumble dryers. In 2012 Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service responded to 57 property fires caused by tumble dryers, an increase of 40% on 2011. In the first week of 2013 there were five fires with the same cause. A common issue is that if users don’t clean and maintain their machines, excess fluff can build up on the filter which could then catch fire.

Women meet

The next meeting of Preston Women’s Network will take place from 10am to 1pm on Thursday at Preston Town Hall. It will include speakers from the African Caribbean Community, the Harris Museum and the council. To attend call 01772 906670.

Ideas wanted

Fresh ideas are needed for community fundraisers held at Samlesbury War Memorial Hall. Residents are needed to join a brainstorming group. Email: or phone 07834 515 037.

Have your say on local plan

A residents association is looking for help drawing up a neighbourhood plan. People living in Fishwick and St Matthew’s are being encouraged to have their say on what happens where they live to develop the plan. A women’s only session where people can comment will be held at Fishwick Community Centre on Samuel Street on Thursday, February 14 from 12.30pm to 3pm.

Join rangers for canal walk

Join rangers for a guided walk across canal paths in Preston. The walk, on Tuesday, February 5, will start at the rangers pavilion by the bowling green at Haslam Park, Ashton. It will take in footpaths along the Lancaster Canal and Millennium Link. The event is free and people should meet at 10am.

Take a tour around gallery

A tour will be held around a recently-opened history gallery. Everyone is welcome for the tour of Discover Preston at the Harris Museum on Monday, February 11. There will be a visual description for visually-impaired people. It is free and will take place from 2pm to 3pm.

Join women for networking

The next meeting of Preston Women’s Network will take place this week. Speakers for the even at the Town Hall on Thursday will include Rakiya Lawler from the African Caribbean Community. It will take place from 10am to 1pm. Confirm attendance by calling 01772 906670.

Vehicle repair garage blaze

A car and a van were destroyed in a blaze at a vehicle repair garage on Heysham Industrial Estate. Firefighters were called to the scene, in Middleton Road, at around 5.30pm on Sunday. Officers spent nearly four hours tackled the fire, which they said they believed was started deliberately.