Lancashire Best Kept Village Competition

Winners 2021

Lancashire VillageThe Lancashire Best Kept Village Competition held its 62nd Annual Awards Ceremony at the Eaves Hall in West Bradford on Monday 11th October at which 120 guests including 9 Mayors representing many Lancashire towns and villages were present. Vice-Chair Kelly Wood thanked the judges and villages for all the hard work through a difficult year, especially after the disappointment of having to cancel the competition in 2020. Whilst the numbers of entrants was understandably down, it was great to be involved and to see the care and work put in by villages across Lancashire - we can all be very proud of the difference and local improvement that villages looking their best and being part of this competition makes. Kelly hoped that moving forward we could build up the number of entrants to the competition.

An overview of the competition and its history is given at the Presentation event, with an explanation of the judging stages and process over the summer months from June until the end of August. As usual the final stage judging is done by an invited external judge - this year we were pleased to have the services of The Hon. Ralph Christopher Assheton, who in 2020 was High Sherriff of Lancashire, and he joined us at the Presentation to present the awards. All the results are a closely guarded secret until revealed during the Awards Ceremony.

The 9 villages who through to Final Judging this year were:
Grindleton | Halsall | Pilling | Barton | Blacko | Little Eccleston | Whitechapel | Barley | Wiswell.

Lancashire Best Kept Village Competition - 2021 Winning VillagesThe winner of the 2021 Champion Village Class was Blacko. They received a commemorative plaque, along with a trophy, a framed certificate and an oil painting of the Recreation Ground in Blacko commissioned by Lancashire Life Magazine. The artist chosen by Lancashire Life was the winner of their Artist of the Year Competition, Ken Roberts who lives in Lytham.

Other major Whole Village Class awards went to Halsall (Large Village), Barton (Medium Village), Whitechapel (Small Village) and Barley (Hamlets).

There were 15 'Outstanding Features' Awards for features nominated by the villages themselves. This year most entries (27) were for War Memorials & Public Monuments won by Blacko War Memorial (runner-up Freckleton Cenotaph), showing that Lancashire still remembers and honours the men and women who never returned to their villages after war. A popular category was Public Houses (26 entries) won by Moor Hall in Town Green. Featuring highly in nominated categories: Places of Worship & Grounds (23 entries) won by St. James’ in Whitechapel, and Schools (24 entries) won by Ashbridge School in Hutton.

Competition Winners (2021)   [class entrants]

  • Champion Village - Blacko (Runner-up - Grindleton; Highly Commended - Higham, Elswick, Sabden). [13]
  • Large Village - Halsall (Runner-up - Pilling). [12]
  • Medium Village - Barton (Runner-up - Heapey). [4]
  • Small Village - Whitechapel (Runner-up - Little Eccleston; Highly Commended - Haskanye). [7]
  • Hamlet - Barley (Runner-up - Wiswell; Highly Commended - Roughlee, Inglewhite). [10]

Outstanding Features (2021)

  1. Place of Worship and Grounds [23]
    Winner: Whitechapel - St. James' Church
    Runner-up: Barton - St. Lawrence Church
    Highly Commended: Sabden - St. Nicholas Church
  2. Schools [24]
    Winner: Hutton - Ashbridge School
    Runner-up: Halsall - St. Cuthbert's
    Highly Commended: Mawdesley - St. Peter & St. Paul
  3. Public Houses [26]
    Winner: Town Green - Moor Hall
    Runner-up: Little Eccleston - Cartford Inn
    Highly Commended: Lower Adlington - The Retreat, Barley - The Pendle Inn, Bretherton - Blue Anchor, Halsall - The Saracen's Head
  4. Hotel / Guest House [2]
    Winners: West Bradford - Eaves Hall
    Highly Commended: Barton - Barton Lodge
  5. Public Building [23]
    Winner: Grindleton - Pavilion
    Runner-up: Higham - Village Hall Roughlee - Village Centre
    Highly Commended: Mawdesley - Village Hall, Croston - Heritage Centre
  6. Public Playing Field [19]
    Winner: Town Green - William Arnold Silcock Field
    Runner-up: Whitechapel - M.U.G.A. (Multi-use Games Area)
    Highly Commended: Elswick - Village Hall site, Hambleton - Bob Williamson Park
  7. Children's Play Area [18]
    Winner: Grindleton - Playground Blacko - Recreation Ground; Freckleton - Memorial Park
    Runner-up: Croston - Recreation Ground, Hambleton - Bob Williamson Park
    Highly Commended: Haskayne - Jubilee
  8. Industrial / Commercial Premises [7]
    Winners: Bilsborrow - Barton Grange Garden Centre, Sabden - Specialised Automotive Services
    Highly Commended: Walmer Bridge - William Loughran, Freckleton - Threlfall's Transport
  9. Shops [21]
    Winner: Barton - Kopper Kettle
    Runner-up: Blacko - The Hairdresser's
    Highly Commended: Mawdesley - Post Office
  10. Sheltered Accommodation [11]
    Winner: Grindleton - Almshoues
    Runner-up: Blacko - Hillview, Mawdesley - Stocks Hall
  11. Community Notice Board [15]
    Winner: Little Eccleston - inside Bus Shelter
    Runners-up: Blacko - Gisburn Rd/Hollin Fold, Mawdesley - Spar
    Highly Commended: Grindleton - Village Hall, Higham - Hall Rd/Kiln Hill
  12. War Memorial [27]
    Winner: Blacko - War Memorial
    Runner-up: Freckleton - Cenotaph
    Highly Commended: Whitechapel, Sabden, Wiswell, Higham
  13. Bowling Green [12]
    Winner: Bretherton
    Runners-up: Sabden - Sabden Crown Green Bowling Club
    Highly Commended: Mawdesley, Hambleton
  14. Cricket Grounds [7]
    Winner: Mawdesley
    Runner-up: Edgworth
    Highly Commended: New Longton
  15. Accessible Public Garden [16]
    Winners: Elswick - Village Hall
    Runner-up: Shirdley - Hill Village Green
    Highly Commended: New Longton

Download Lancashire Best Kept Village Full Results 2021.

Previous Years' Results

The 2020 Competition was cancelled due to Covid and Lockdowns.

Results 2019 (PDF Download).

Results 2018 (PDF Download).

Results 2017.


News: Latest

The 2022 Competition is now under way. Ahead of which there was further review of our Constitution, entry and judging criteria, and Judges training scheduled.

Following its cancellation in 2020, the Competition resumed in 2021.

Champion Villages in 2021:
Final judged by Ralph Assheton (Sheriff of Lancashire 2020).
◆ Champion Village: Blacko
◆ Large Village: Halsall
◆ Medium Village: Barton
◆ Small Village: Whitechapel
◆ Hamlet: Barley
2021 Full Results

As ever we much appreciate all who take part and support this event, especially our Judges, Committee and sponsors. Good luck to all who take part!

In 2019 the 'Constitution of the Competition' was updated and streamlined, simplifying all paperwork used by villages and judges; the Certificate of Merit part of the competition was overhauled, replaced by a secondary competition called 'Outstanding Features' - villages entering the main competition able to nominate up to 10 Outstanding Features of their village, and certificates awarded to the best in each class.


Other Information

'10 Lancashire villages that you should visit' Lancashire Life (article)

'10 Most Picturesque Villages in Lancashire' (Go Guide). Visit period drama sets, unique hamlets and areas of outstanding beauty…

Did you know there are regional best kept village competitions across the United Kingdom?

Our thanks to our 2021 sponsors: Barton Grange Group, Eaves Hall Hotel at West Radford, Lancashire Association of Local Councils (LALC), Lancashire Life and Lancashire Live.