A unique new wedding venue is coming to Burnley in a bid to rival businesses in the Ribble Valley which are ‘cornering the market’.

Lindsay Worswick, of Simply Fields Wedding and Events, has submitted a planning application to Burnley Borough Council to change the use of agricultural land off Hurstwood Lane.

Mrs Worswick and her family live at Tattersall Farmhouse in Hurstwood which has been in her family since the early 1900s.

In her application she explained the reasons for having to diversify the farming business.

“Farming is a difficult industry to work in and is in fact a 'way of life' not a job,” she said.

“However, the world of farming is changing rapidly with more farmers looking to diversity to survive, often providing services which are far removed from the core business of the farm.

“Two thirds of all UK farms already use some form of diversified activity to add to their income, according to The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.”

Simply Fields Wedding and Events will offer “a small rustic wedding venue with spectacular views” to couples looking to plan their big day.

A marquee has been erected for previous events
A marquee has been erected for previous events

In her application Mrs Worswick states: “Currently there are no other small unique wedding venues such as this within Burnley, however, there are many similar venues within the Ribble Valley that are cornering this market. This results in revenue lost to the Burnley economy.

“Simply Fields offers a small rustic wedding venue with spectacular views which accommodates up to 100 people ensuring the intimacy of the venue.

“Initially the marquee was erected for every booking and was then removed after each event which amounted to less than 28 days in a calendar year. However, more and more bookings were coming in and the decision was made to operate during the spring and summer and remove the marquee over the winter period.

“Then the first Covid-19 lockdown happened, and the venue had to close, with no events allowed due to national restrictions.

“During the lockdown and following the significant number of enquiries received in relation to the venue, the decision was made to apply for the marquee to be retained on a permanent basis.

"The applicants see the venue as a local community hub and have already secured bookings for weddings, Pendleside Hospice fundraising events and the local Ramblers Club 100-year event, amongst others.”

In a comment submitted to the council’s planning department John Lofthouse of the Burnley and Pendle group of the Ramblers Group said: “Alongside the access track from Hurstwood Lane to the property runs footpath 12-11-FP-41.

“As long as this footpath, now a strip of grass between the track and a wall, is maintained allowing safe access walkers then I have no objections.

“However, the footpath finger post at the junction with Hurstwood Lane, at SD879317, has been broken off and needs to be replaced.”

In the application Mrs Worswick states one noise complaint has previously been made but she intends to clad the exterior of the marquee in upcycled wood planks from around the farm to provide an acoustic barrier for the noise.

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