Guests had a great time at Lancashire Life’s 75th birthday – and raised thousands for a very good cause

Lancashire Life’s 75th birthday brought together many of the people who have helped the magazine to thrive for so long.

Readers, advertisers and friends of the magazine enjoyed a wonderful celebration at Eaves Hall in West Bradford near Clitheroe.

And the evening raised more than £4000 for the Community Foundation for Lancashire through an auction with fabulous lots donated by businesses across the region.

Great British Life: Chris Eccles bidding on the auctionChris Eccles bidding on the auction (Image: Archant)

All the money raised on the night will go to the Community Foundation for Lancashire’s Red Rose Responding fund which we are supporting in our anniversary year. The fund aims to help charities and community groups across the county recover from the long-term effects of the pandemic.

CFL chief executive Rae Brooke said: ‘We were absolutely thrilled with the amount that was raised on the evening. The money will make a real difference to people who need it all over Lancashire.

‘We identified mental wellbeing as the single thing that would need most ongoing support in the wake of the Covid pandemic. All ages have been affected and many people will need support in the years to come.

‘The money means we now have a pot of £80,000 which will be the first of two rounds of funding from the Red Rose Responding Fund this financial year. The first beneficiaries will be in east Lancashire and we’ll be focussing on older people experiencing social isolation, the mental health of and issues affecting the BAME communities. The second round will look at the west of the county.’

Chipping-based singer-songwriter Joe Martin sang as our 80 guests enjoyed a drinks reception before sitting down for a superb two-course dinner, followed by our birthday cake which was created by Lancashire Life columnist Debby Donnelly-Addison.

The charity auction, which featured 12 wonderful lots, was conducted by James Warren of Leyland auctioneers and valuers Warren & Wignall. When the hammer came down for the final time, the auction had raised over £3000. Other donations on the night added a further £1000.

Great British Life: James Warren conducting the auctionJames Warren conducting the auction (Image: Archant)

Lancashire Life editor Paul Mackenzie said: ‘It was a great evening and we were delighted with the amount we managed to raise.

‘It was good to see people with different connections to the magazine getting together and there was a happy buzz of conversation all evening.’

Great British Life: Will Gallie celebrates a successful bidWill Gallie celebrates a successful bid (Image: Archant)

Great British Life: Lauren O'Brien and Selina EdgertonLauren O'Brien and Selina Edgerton (Image: Archant)

Great British Life: Nina Smith and Will GallieNina Smith and Will Gallie (Image: Archant)

Great British Life: Matt Dixon and Julie SingletonMatt Dixon and Julie Singleton (Image: Archant)

Great British Life: Stewart and Clare Rose with Renee and Chris EcclesStewart and Clare Rose with Renee and Chris Eccles (Image: Archant)

Great British Life: Faye Regan and Tom PridmoreFaye Regan and Tom Pridmore (Image: Archant)

Great British Life: Eileen Winstanley and Catherine HurleyEileen Winstanley and Catherine Hurley (Image: Archant)

Great British Life: Jayne Breare , Joanne Williams, Neil Andrews and Shirley JacksonJayne Breare , Joanne Williams, Neil Andrews and Shirley Jackson (Image: Archant)

Great British Life: Tommy McIlravey and Amanda WilkinsonTommy McIlravey and Amanda Wilkinson (Image: Archant)

Great British Life: Anthony Hurst and Kate HurstAnthony Hurst and Kate Hurst (Image: Archant)

Great British Life: Lee and Samantha Trebble-Shaw with Gail and Robert GodsonLee and Samantha Trebble-Shaw with Gail and Robert Godson (Image: Archant)

Great British Life: Former High Sheriff of Lancashire Ralph Assheton with Olivia Asheton and current High Sheriff Martin AinscoughFormer High Sheriff of Lancashire Ralph Assheton with Olivia Asheton and current High Sheriff Martin Ainscough (Image: Archant)

Great British Life: William Singleton and Jade DeeleyWilliam Singleton and Jade Deeley (Image: Archant)

Great British Life: Rebecca Gomersall and Florina UngurRebecca Gomersall and Florina Ungur (Image: Archant)

Great British Life: Lancashire Life editor Paul Mackenzie with Community Foundation chief executive Rae Brooke and development director Karen MorrisLancashire Life editor Paul Mackenzie with Community Foundation chief executive Rae Brooke and development director Karen Morris (Image: Archant)

Great British Life: James and Dee ParkJames and Dee Park (Image: Archant)

Great British Life: Giles and Susan HepplestoneGiles and Susan Hepplestone (Image: Archant)

Great British Life: Nicola Griffiths and James Warren from Warren & WignallNicola Griffiths and James Warren from Warren & Wignall (Image: Archant)

Great British Life: Nicola and Mark HuntingtonNicola and Mark Huntington (Image: Archant)

Great British Life: Alex and Sarah Buckley with Michelle and Carl TinkerAlex and Sarah Buckley with Michelle and Carl Tinker (Image: Archant)

Thank you

We are very grateful to everyone who supported and attended our event and particularly to the businesses who donated lots for the charity auction, and James Warren of Warren & Wignall who conducted the auction.

Absoluxe – a luxury one-night stay

Ainsworth Jewellers – a ruby and diamond pendant

Blackpool Tower – the chance to light up the Tower

The Bliss Hotel – dinner and a penthouse stay

Bowker – a half-day Porsche experience at Silverstone

The Cartford Inn – dinner and a one-night stay

Dominique Ashford at Dale House – a one-day bread making course for two

English Lakes Hotels- afternoon tea at Lancaster House Hotel

Hepplestone Fine Art – a limited edition print by David Renshaw

Oli Martin at 263 Restaurant – a cookery masterclass and dinner

Prestige Beds – a £500 voucher

Rossendale Adventure Golf – a round for four, an hour on the range and money to spend in the cafe

We’d also like to thank James Places for hosting the party at the beautiful Eaves Hall, Debby Donnelly-Addison for providing the spectacular birthday cake, and singer Joe Martin for performing on the evening.

Great British Life: Eaves HallEaves Hall (Image: Archant)

How to donate

To donate to the Lancashire Red Rose Responding Fund go online to, or to donate by text, text the word ‘Rose’ then your donation amount to 70460. Alternatively, you can send a cheque made out to Community Foundation for Lancashire and Merseyside, to CFLM Head Office, Third Floor, Stanley Buildings, 43 Hanover Street, Liverpool, L1 3DN.

What a life, so far

Great British Life: The first issue of Lancashire LifeThe first issue of Lancashire Life (Image: Archant)

The first issue of Lancashire Life appeared on the newsstands in January 1947 and cost a shilling. It was a slim, flimsy volume printed on plain paper, at a time when rationing was tough and the nation was struggling to pay back its war loans.

It was a particularly harsh winter, made worse by power cuts and shortages of all kinds, including paper for newspapers and magazines. County magazines were taking off all over the country, many of them published by the owners of Lancashire Life and leaders in the field, English Life Publications of Derby.

The launch editor was Lancaster-based Garry Hogg, a freelance contributor to the Manchester Guardian, Country Life and Picture Post and author of more than 70 books. He found some of the magazine’s first writers by approaching Lancastrian letter-writers to Country Life.

His introduction to the launch issue, entitled ‘The Spirit of Lancashire’ laid out the magazine’s editorial aim, ‘… to reveal the county to its natives as well as to those less fortunate in their county of origin.’ That remains our mission today.

Lancashire Life sold out its early print runs (not unusual in a time of print rationing), and advertising started to grow.

In our early days, paper rationing squeezed many famous advertisers out of the national press, and into magazines like Lancashire Life instead. But when rationing ended in 1953, national advertisers returned to Fleet Street, and so the magazine was sold to a Lancashire publisher, C Nicholls, who already had Cheshire Life and Yorkshire Life. The three titles have been stable-mates ever since.

As the years went by and the national economic picture changed, the content of the magazine changed to reflect more affluent times. The pages of Lancashire Life filled up with the finer things in life, such as foreign holidays and eating out.

Possibly the biggest change to the magazine since that first issue came out was the introduction of full-colour printing which allowed us to properly showcase the work of photographers, including our chief photographer Kirsty Thompson and her predecessor John Cocks.

The magazine continues to flourish, reflecting and celebrating life in Lancashire as only Lancashire Life does.

Editor Paul Mackenzie said: ‘The world is a very different place today to the one the readers of that first issue knew and we have changed as well.

‘Not many magazines will reach their 75th birthday and it is thanks to our readers and our advertisers that we have continued to thrive.

‘The last few years have been very hard for a lot of people but we have done our best – and will continue to do so – to support, celebrate and champion the wonderful people, businesses and organisations that make life in Lancashire so good.’