16th June 2014
Living in Lancashire
Burnley Football Club is at the heart of the market town it represents, and can be found lodged deep in the hearts of many local residents. The historic Turf Moor ground, where the team has played all of its home games since 1883, is also the location of the UCFB Burnley campus.
With a population of approximately 90,000, Burnley could be considered small for a football town, but what it lacks in size it makes up for in sporting passion. It’s normal, for example, for matches at Turf Moor to draw as many as 20,000 people. This alone makes it an ideal place for our students to learn the ins and outs of football business, or any other sporting subject for that matter.
The perfect location
Situated on the edge of Lancashire, Burnley is just 12 miles from Blackburn and has the West Yorkshire border even closer. While hugely proud to be part of its own county, the town is popular with people from across the North-West. This convenient location also means the residents of Burnley get the best of multiple worlds – not only do they have a wealth of amenities and leisure facilities already right on their doorsteps, access to those situated in various other towns and cities is easy.
So, once the bustling retail and nightlife areas of Burnley’s town centre have been fully exhausted, a host of bigger cities are ready and waiting to be explored. Manchester, Liverpool and Leeds are all within a 60-mile radius, for example, and the various rail and road options on offer ensure they’re all easy to reach. With all three of the cities above home to airports too, international travel is just as simple.
The convenience stretches far beyond nearby cities. Students looking to escape to somewhere a little quieter have the picturesque Yorkshire Dales, Peak District and Lake District all within easy reach.
Leisure and entertainment
Although Lancashire is known by many for its sleepy villages and woodland tranquility, Burnley and its surrounding areas have plenty to offer in the way of leisure and entertainment. On one side you have countryside filled with windsurfing-friendly reservoirs and perfect trekking routes, whilst on the other you have a town centre awash with all of the big high-street names. Then, when the evening arrives, there are in excess of 50 places to eat, drink and dance the night away.
History is something else that Lancashire – and Burnley in particular – has in abundance. There are numerous heritage buildings to visit, including Towneley Hall and the National Trust’s Gawthorpe Hall. The latter is actually where Burnley Football Club’s first team and academy players train.
Fun, games and drama
Football isn’t the only competitive activity on offer in Burnley. Those looking to pit their skills against friends in a slightly different arena can take part in some ten-pin bowling, go-karting or even laser quest battles without travelling too far. Budding skaters also have the chance to show off their talents at the nearby Blackburn Ice Arena, located just 20 minutes away by car.
Live entertainment takes place regularly in and around Burnley, with the ‘Burnley Mechanics’ a popular venue hosting music, comedy and theatre events. It’s situated on Manchester Road, just across the river from the railway station which shares its name. For anyone looking to get a little more involved on stage, the Burnley Youth Theatre holds weekly sessions, education projects and art-based workshops for people under the age of 25.
Shopping in and around Burnley
Many of the UK’s high streets are similar, with the same shops and buildings occupying cropping up over and over again. This isn’t quite the case in Burnley, however. While all the big brand names are present, the town’s centre has a character all of its own, especially when it comes to appearance. Attractively landscaped features sit alongside glass-covered walkways and atriums, making this pedestrianized bargain-hunting hotspot the perfect place to enjoy some relaxed retail therapy.
If independent eateries and retailers sound more appealing, it’s worth taking the trip to nearby Padiham. Here is where you’ll find unique cafes, restaurants, grocers and butchers – with plenty of local produce on offer.
A place for sports fans
As mentioned previously, Burnley is home to a professional football club with a long and proud history; it’s not, however, the only team in the area. As regions of the UK go, the North West has a better footballing heritage than any, with a number of major clubs based in its towns and cities. Burnley’s rivals and one-time Premier League champions Blackburn Rovers play just 15 miles away at Ewood Park, Merseyside is home to Liverpool and Everton, whilst Manchester has two of the country’s biggest sides in City and United. Football fans also have Bolton, Wigan, Blackpool, Preston North End and Leeds United to consider.
Burnley Cricket Club plays at Turf Moor, on a pitch adjacent to the football stadium. Burnley Rugby Club is another big draw for sports fans, who can watch games take place regularly on the site of Belvedere and Calder Sports Club.
For those who like to get a little closer to the action, Burnley has plenty to offer in the way of public sporting facilities. The state-of-the-art St Peter’s Centre is home to a modern fitness suite as well as a swimming pool and squash courts. The nearby Spirit of Sport complex also has a number of multi-use pitches, both indoors and outdoors. Golfers, meanwhile, can get their fix at the aforementioned Towneley Park.
Simply put, Burnley is a hugely welcoming place with a lot to offer anyone .