At the bottom of New Road, Radcliffe, once stood St John the Evangelist Church, an imposing structure with a high steeple, which due to its prominent position dominated the Radcliffe skyline. It was consecrated in 1866 and many Radcliffe people still remember the Church.
Unfortunately, due to it ‘being unloved’, it closed its doors in 1974 and was demolished in 1976. In the late 1970’s the area was landscaped by a team of local lads working on a scheme under the supervision of Rev. Barry Newth, Vicar of St Thomas Church, Radcliffe, who I remember taking assemblies at St John’s Primary School when I was a pupil. A former Radcliffe inhabitant, who now lives in Germany, worked on the scheme and contacted Radcliffe Litter Pickers with this information. The graveyard remained and over the years it became very overgrown and a target for antisocial behaviour. The good news is that Radcliffe Litter Pickers have been awarded a grant from Bury Council’s ‘Let’s Do It’ Health Improvement Community Fund to renovate and transform the church yard into a park for the local community to use. The aim of the project is to get people working together after the Covid pandemic and help alleviate depression, anxiety, and social isolation in all parts of the community, irrespective of age or cultural background. To date dead trees and overgrown areas have been cleared by Bury Council, and Radcliffe Litter
Pickers in combination with other voluntary groups have made good progress in uncovering large sections of the cobbled paths and clearing vegetation.
We have volunteers from several groups who come together under the ‘Growing Together’ umbrella to work on this project, but we always need more people and would welcome anyone who would like to help. Also, if anyone has any photos or memories of the church and churchyard that they would like to share, please contact:
Radcliffe Litter Pickers on Facebook or email: firstname.lastname@example.org