Former mayor’s final fundraising push for Clitheroe Parish Church

Val prepares for her Easter Extravaganza fundraiser with Clitheroe Parish Church in the background.
Val prepares for her Easter Extravaganza fundraiser with Clitheroe Parish Church in the background.
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An Easter Extravaganza showcasing the renovation work which has so far been completed at Clitheroe Parish Church and raising further funds is being staged later this month.

The event is former councillor and Mayor of Clitheroe Val Cooper’s final fundraiser and will be held in the church on Tuesday, March 27th, at 7pm.

“It’s going to be my final fundraiser for the church,” said Val, “and it will showcase some fabulous local talent.

“It will also give people the opportunity to see the renovations which we’ve all worked so hard for raising the money.”

Clitheroe Pop Choir and Arthur Geldard will be entertaining, along with Wrong Direction, who will provide a very old style of song with a new twist.

And, if that wasn’t enough, the Clitheroe Ukelele Orchestra will also be providing entertainment.

The evening will be particularly poignant for Val as it would have been her and her late husband Gary’s Golden Wedding Anniversary.

With this in mind the pop choir are allowing Val to sing one song with them.

It was following Gary’s death in particular that Clitheroe Parish Church offered Val unstinting support and this made her determined to give something back.

Val, whose husband Gary was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease in 2015 and died in March last year, explained: “The church has always been very important in my life – especially recently when I lost my wonderful husband, the love of my life, my soul mate of 49 years.”

Val (71) therefore set herself a “workathon” challenge to raise funds towards the church’s refurbishment – raising £1.5k to help breathe a new lease of life into the Clitheroe church.

Through her workathon, Val went on to work for half a day in 22 shops and businesses around Clitheroe.

And during the challenge Val served breakfast in a local hotel, was a waitress in local cafes, shampooed hair in a local hair salon, pulled pints in a pub, sold shoes, gifts, cards, gents clothes, furniture, electrical goods and much more.

Throughout the challenge, Val took a photo diary of her adventure and asked people to donate whatever they could to support her work on behalf of the church.

And now major redevelopment work has been carried out to breathe new life into Clitheroe Parish Church.

The £250,000 internal transformation of St Mary Magdalene’s has improved the heating system, lighting and access for wheelchair and pram users.

The revamp follows restoration work on the church’s iconic spire, which was completed five years ago and cost over half a million pounds.

Despite hopes that work on the parish church would have been completed by now, it is still ongoing after a problem was discovered with the pipes when the new heating system was installed.

This means another £25,000 is needed to carry out the extra work.

Supper at the Easter Extravaganza will be provided by Pendle Catering and is included in the £10 ticket price.

Tickets are now available from the St Mary’s Centre, Attire Gents Outfitters, Urban Sheep or by calling Val on 01200 422452.