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Middleton’s Golden Cluster set to sparkle this September

Press Release   •   Aug 29, 2014 16:08 BST

Visitors are invited to enjoy a grand day out in Middleton as part of a month-long celebration of the town’s stunning heritage this September.

People can discover 600 years of Middleton’s history as part of Golden Cluster Month, which celebrates a collection of four treasured historic buildings; the Edgar Wood’s Arts & Craft Church, the Olde Boars Head, Queen Elizabeth I Free Grammar School and St Leonards Church.

All four buildings will be opening their doors for free during the Heritage Open Days weekend from 11 to 14 September and every Tuesday and Friday between 1pm and 4pm throughout the month.

And on Saturday 13 September, the Middleton Grand Day Out will see a special land train take visitors from the town centre to the Golden Cluster buildings.

During the journey, travellers will be told tales of old Middleton and meet the character of its famous son, the architect Edgar Wood, who is responsible for some of the town’s most impressive buildings.

There will also be family activities in the town centre with Victorian themed activities including a Merlin’s Magic Show, vintage fire engine and children’s craft workshops. A teenage market will take place in Middleton Gardens with fairground rides, a bouncy castle and more.

Visitors who would like to find out more about the Middleton radical Sam Bamford can also enjoy a guided tour on the day starting at 2pm at St Leonard’s Church.

The celebration is part of the Edgar Wood and Middleton Townscape Heritage Initiative (THI), a project by Rochdale Council to protect and promote Middleton’s heritage using a Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF) grant of almost £2m.

And prospective visitors can get a taste of what’s on offer ahead of time by viewing the short film, Middleton Symphonia, which was created by award winning international photographer and Middleton native Andy Marshall.

The film, which can be viewed at, features beautiful montages of old and new Middleton to encourage people to see the town in a way it’s never been seen before.

Andy Marshall is also leaving a treasure trail in and around the Golden Cluster buildings of collectable, hidden art prints waiting to be found by people who visit during the Grand Day Out. People can pick up clues by following #discovermid hashtag or Andy Marshall on twitter at @fotofacade . Andy will also be giving visual clues out via his instagram account at

Councillor Daalat Ali, Cabinet Member for Culture and Tourism at Rochdale Borough Council, said: “Middleton has a unique heritage which is so outstanding, we need a whole month to celebrate it. I’d encourage people to take their opportunity to explore these wonderful buildings during September and find out what a special place Middleton is.”

More information about Golden Cluster Month, Heritage Open Day Weekend and The Grand Day Out can be found at  

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