Middleton's 600th and 60th anniversaries
Date published: 08 May 2012
This year the townsfolk of Middleton will be celebrating two important anniversaries, namely the Diamond Jubilee of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II and the 600th anniversary of Middleton born Cardinal Langley rebuilding the Parish Church in 1412.
Thomas Langley was born in Middleton, the third son of Alice and William Langley.
In 1412, in his first visit to his birthplace since 1385, he completed an early rebuilding of Middleton Parish Church, adding a new wooden tower and a chantry for use as a school for local children, and reconsecrating and rededicated it to St Leonard, in 1412. The same year he also founded a school related to the church (which survives as Middleton Grammar School, known as Queen Elizabeth's Senior High School, now named St Anne's Academy, it being the oldest founded school in Greater Manchester).
There is a royal connection because Cardinal Langley, one of the most important men in the country in medieval times, was Chancellor to kings Henry IV, V and VI of England.
Local groups and societies who meet regularly at the Township Culture, Leisure and Tourism working party decided to arrange a programme of events to celebrate the ‘600 and 60’ anniversaries on the Bank Holiday weekend of June 1-5 2012.
The Parish Church will be the focal point for a flower festival by the Middleton Floral Art Club from 1-4 June.
On Saturday 2nd at 7.30pm the Musical Society will give a concert in the church.
On Sunday 3rd the Middleton Band will play in the bandstand in the park between 2 and 4pm, and in the evening at 7pm there is a Celebration Service in the Parish Church.
On the Bank Holiday Monday at 10.45am there is a Medieval Pageant starting in Long Street Methodist Church (M24 5UE). The pageant will work its way to the Parish Church through the park, with dramatic happenings on the way. At the Parish Church ‘Cardinal Langley’ will arrive to dedicate the church. After the Pageant there will be a hawking demonstration.
All the events are free, although donations are welcome.
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