In 1997 the Town Council introduced the Horwich Civic Award, often called the Horwich Civic Medal. It acknowledges great service, over many years, to the people of the Parish of Horwich in a wide range of ways.
Four recipients received awards in 2003
Betty McCracken is really well known throughout Horwich for her work for the town whilst serving on Bolton Metropolitan Council and Horwich Town Council.
She was elected to Horwich Urban District Council, and than, following re-organisation of local government in 1974, continued to serve on Horwich Town Council being Town Mayor on no less than four occasions.
She represented Horwich on Bolton Metropolitan Borough Council for 16 years serving on Social Services, Leisure Services and the area for which she is particularly well known and respected, Housing.
Betty was a tireless fund raiser for Bolton Hospice and was associated with many and varied local organisations. She was the first Chairperson of Horwich Resource Centre setting the high standards for which the Centre is still so proud.
Ordained on 9 March, 1968, Father Jones served as Curate at St Joseph's, Halliwell before succeeding Fr Pilling as Parish Priest of St Mary's Church, Horwich. Father Jones is the most senior clergyman in Horwich following the retirement of Canon Gatenby.
During his time here he has overseen the renovation of St Mary's Church (including the installation of a new organ) and St Anthony's Chapel, and has always taken care of the fabric of his parish. Under his influence the parish has thrived with many activities taking place including the publication of a weekly newsletter and quarterly magazine.
In his role as leader of Catholic education he has seen the unification of the two Primary Schools to form St Mary's R.C. Primary where he is Chair of Governors. He also serves as Chair of Governors for St Joseph's R.C. Comprehensive School. Noted for his enthusiasm and energy, he is also Dean of St Peter's Deanery (which covers most of Bolton).
Geoff Seddon joined Bolton Mountain Rescue way back in 1969, when it was a little known organisation. Since then he has continued to provide this valuable service to the people of Horwich always taking a very active 'hands on' role.
In the early years, he only attended a couple of calls from people in distress but this number has increased steadily to around 99 calls being answered in 2002, mostly involving incidents in the Horwich and Rivington areas.
He has held the position of Chairman and Team Leader of Bolton Mountain Rescue and is currently Deputy Team Leader, a post he has held for over 10 years. The Team Land Rover has been a familiar sight outside his home on Lever Park Avenue.
Outside the local team he has been involved with both the Regional and National Mountain Rescue Committees.
We were delighted to honour Mr Leslie Fearnhead, a former Chairman of Horwich Urban District Council, by awarding the Civic Medal to him to mark the celebrations for his 100th birthday on Sunday, 2 November, 2003.
Mr Fearnhead was a member of the UDC from 1962 and became Chairman in 1970. When local government was re-organised in 1974, he continued to serve as a Member of Bolton MBC for four years.
The Fearnhead family have a long history of service to Horwich. Both Mr Fearnhead's grandfather and father were UDC Chairman. The naming of Fearnhead Avenue (after his father) is a lasting memorial to his family's great commitment to serving our town.
If you know of anyone who you think deserves the recognition of their fellow citizens, please make a nomination to the Town Clerk giving the fullest possible details of the nominee. Nominations will remain confidential, but those who nominate the successful recipients will be informed close to the time of the award of the medals.
For more information on previous recipients, choose a year when the awards were made: