A festive concert is coming to Bolton today, Saturday, following the launch of a new network for residents, voluntary groups, and businesses who are passionate about the area they live and work.

During the current council year, the Community Alliance Group formed, and seven wards out of the 20 in the borough were selected as pilot areas, which include Bradshaw and Harwood, Halliwell, Horwich South and Blackrod, Kearsley, Rumworth, Smithills, and Tonge with the Haugh.

And with some help and support from councillors, a free carol concert is being held on Saturday, December 2 from 5pm around its newly erected Christmas tree, outside Bill and Coo in Harwood.

There will be a variety of Christmas cocktails and mulled wine specials inside.

The Bolton News: The group started after Nick Simmons, owner of Bill and Coo wine bar, created a small garden area outside his new wine bar on the Lea Gate, which became the Queen Elizabeth II, Platinum Jubilee Garden.

It is tended and planted by another community champion along with volunteers, including Jane Wilcox who runs two community groups "The Friends of Longsight Park" and "The Friends of Harwood", a keen conservationist and stalwart of protecting the rural environment. 

Cllr Webb said: “Nick contacted Paul Haley Christmas Trees of Pines Farm, at 570 Bradshaw Road, agreed to provide the village with a large tree at less than cost price as it was for the local community.

“Upon the formation of the Community Alliance Group, Jane was a perfect choice to be a member, after a number of initial meetings.

“The group along with the respective council representative, Bradshaw councillors, and group chair former Cllr Jackie Radcliffe, attended its first meeting with the public at the Artisan Fair held at Harwood Methodist Church only on November 4.”  

Founder of the Happy Voices choir in Bolton, Helen Washington, was also instrumental in getting the concert together, after bringing her choir onboard.

After a few conversations with those in the local area, an event was planned within four days.

Cllr Mudasir Dean, who has been a councillor for Bradshaw and Harwood since 2012, said how “wonderful” the new tree was for the area.

Cllr Webb added: “Albeit this is the first year, but it is hoped that this event can become annual and hopefully attracts other local talent to perform Christmas songs in various genres.

“For none Harwood residents wishing to join who haven’t ventured to this part of Bolton before, there is ample free parking at Morrison’s, and a number of traditional pubs with log fires, wine bars, a craft brewery and restaurants, all within one mile of the venue.”

Click here (www.bolton.gov.uk/area-working-1/community-alliances) for more information.

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