Rotary Way 



On 15 March 2024 'The Rotary Club of  Wigan' will be 100 years old.

As one of the oldest Clubs in Great Britain, Wigan Rotary Club has raised, and then donated, hundreds of thousands of pounds to local, national and international organisations and charities – both large and small.

The Club's most notable and significant landmark was that 40 years ago the Rotary Club founded Wigan and Leigh Hospice in 1983, in a vacant manse in Poolstock, Wigan.

To celebrate this centenary landmark  the Club has donated £10,000 towards the development and improvements at Haigh Woodland Park.

The money will be spent on the restoration of a path from the main drive from the Hall to a path near the railway line that leads to a bird hide.

A sincere thanks from all the members of the Club, both past and present, to those of you, who have over the years, made this donation possible through your generosity.

Wigan Rotary Club proudly announce their new President 

Cllr. Eunice Smethurst, the Clubs Centenary Year.

Wigan Rotary Club’s new President Cllr. Eunice Smethurst told members at the
Club’s Handover Meeting that it had been a great privilege to be elected as the next president of the Club, especially in this their Centenary Year. At the Handover meeting on 29th June, she said “As well as being the new President, I am also a local Councillor. 

In that role I have represented Abram Ward for the past 27 years.” She continued, “As an active Wigan Councillor I have been part of nearly all committees within the council, a governor at three local schools. 

I am also a trustee on three local groups, plus a trustee on one Borough-wide group, Dias, which supports residents who are suffering from domestic abuse”.

At present Eunice is Chair of Confident Council which is a scrutiny committee within the council. Most importantly she has also held the position of Mayor of Wigan in 2006- 2007 in that time she got to meet so many community groups within Wigan Borough.

Quite a record to be proud of and now she has another important and taxing role to fulfil. Eunice has been a member of Wigan Rotary Club for the past 16 years during which time she has taken part in many diverse fund-raising activities. There had been marshalling at the Three Sisters cycling events, the many Christmas floats, Community Days, the water stations at fun runs and so many more interesting and exciting opportunities. This new role of Wigan Rotary President is an opportunity to use her knowledge and experience to benefit Wigan Rotary in the coming year.

Up To Date News From Wigan Rotary Club 

Articles created by our press officer Lesley Hargraves 

A Night At The Theatre 

April 23 - Concert Held at Standish Unity Club in Aid of wigan Rotary Raised £592.21

Wigan Youth Brass Band Concert In Aid of Wigan Rotary Club 

March 23- Concert Held at St Stephens Church Wigan in Aid of Wigan Rotary 

Wigan Rotary Club's 99th Annual Charter Night 

March 2023

Past President Santi Nandi (L)

Current President Monica Meehan (ML)

President Elect Eunice Smethurst (MR)

President Nominee Robert Bates (R)


Wigan Rotary Provide Generators for Ukraine

The Rotary Club of Wigan has bought two powerful petrol-driven generators, at a cost of nearly a £1,000 each, and they have recently been sent to the Ukraine.  

The machines are powerful enough to provide heating, light and cooking for a family or support the work of a hospital ward.   The Russians have targeted Ukrainian’s power plants and power distribution, so we are aware many Ukrainians face the onset of a bleak winter without power.

The generators were bought with funds put aside to provide support for future humanitarian projects.  However it was thought that the Ukrainian’s need was greatest at this time.  We are pleased to report that they are now in Ukraine at its eastern front, where the fighting is at its fiercest.  It is hoped these generators will bring some hope and help save lives.

The Rotary Club of Wigan Christmas Quiz  2022   


 Vehicle bumps into domestic animal.                                                                (6)  carpet

Baby gift party.                                                                                                        (6)  shower

 Greek far sight.                                                                                                       (10) television

Offer for alien.                                                                                                          (5)   bidet

Put forward a question or motion in parliament.                                              (5)  table

a British dance-pop group.                                                                                     (5)  Steps / clock

I get involved in advertising house for rent.                                                        (6) toilet

Companion in threesome for Simba and Hermione Grainger?                       (8) wardrobe

Noble treetop is blown about.                                                                               (6, 6) bottle opener

Part of the upper body.                                                                                           (5) chest

Old knickers.                                                                                                             (7) drawers

Tiny surf.                                                                                                                    (9) microwave

Slide beneath the waves.                                                                                        (4) Sink 

Swiss atmosphere.                                                                                                   (5) Chair

Loud mountain crest.                                                                                              (6) fridge

Booby prize in 3-2-1.                                                                                                (3) bin

Somerset city..                                                                                                          (4) bath

Location of blaze.                                                                                                     (9) fireplace

Soft and loud.                                                                                                           (10) pianoforte

Do this to abscond.                                                                                                 (4) bunk / bolt

Hitler rolled tool around.                                                                               (6, 4, 6) toilet roll holder

Small company with most common number.                                                    (7) commode

Throw or kick a ball high.                                                                                       (4) loft

Diplomatic department responds positively to queen.                                    (5) foyer

Mix socially but without those of high social status                                          (3) hob

List to complete before you kick it.                                                                      (6) bucket

Federal investigation agency.                                                                                (6) bureau

All the bets in card game.                                                                                      (3) pot

Betty Boothroyd was the first female in this role.                                             (7) speaker

Large lad.                                                                                                                  (7) tallboy

Clothe the late queen..                                                                                           (7) dresser

Attempt by wild god.                                                                                               (6) pantry

Corn deal goes awry.                                                                                               (8) colander

Former police constable                                                                                         (6) peeler

a coarse grass with long creeping roots.                                                             (5) couch

Super game of American football.                                                                        (4) bowl

Where a lizard may lie about.                                                                                (6) lounge

Mauve car, uncle? That needs a respray.                                                         (6, 7) vacuum cleaner

1966 England World Cup winner loses his head.                                                (5) tiles

From the French short ex-soldier.                                                                         (5) duvet

Card game.                                                                                                                (5) poker

Meerschaum is an example of this.                                                                      (4) pipe

A backwards crucifix.                                                                                               (4) door

Aficionado.                                                                                                                 (3) fan

Search for gold in a river.                                                                                        (3) pan

Recognised in the number of BAs in a school staffroom.                                  (5) basin

Aileen coughs all over the place.                                                                        (6, 6) chaise longue

Section of a sleeveless cloak.                                                                                (11) mantlepiece

Rudely brief introduction to French department.                                               (7) curtain

Without Warrington Wolves.                                                                                  (8) wireless

Put golf peg into place.                                                                                           (6) settee

Short young lady coming out backwards.                                                           (3) bed

Eric Halden is confused.                                                                                       (10) chandelier

Native American signal gives loud warning.                                                   (5, 5) smoke alarm

Sample your doctor may need to test.                                                                (5) stool

Dora brings kit, but it’s all messy.                                                                     (8, 5) skirting board

Knock someone to the ground.                                                                            (5) floor

Spectacles.                                                                                                                (7) glasses

Mid-size SUV.                                                                                                            (6) duster

Tuber isn’t heavy                                                                                                  (5, 4) light bulb

Tommy leaves travel agent for late queen                                                          (6) cooker

Drum type                                                                                                                 (6) kettle / goblet

Victory on Jones stockmarket                                                                                (6) window

The son of Ham has atom with electrical charge                                               (7) cushion

Equipment for Switzerland and UK                                                                      (7) kitchen

Ravished in Alexander Pope’s poem                                                                    (4) lock

Record arrest before court proceedings.                                                            (8) bookcase

Dad’s Army character played by Wigan actor.                                                    (6) sponge

Tablet for shout of pain.                                                                                         (6) pillow

Punch alien.                                                                                                              (6) socket

Mention something in order to promote it.                                                        (4) plug

Taxi for South Korean rapper.                                                                               (5) cable 

Place for reprimand.                                                                                               (3) mat

Little virtual assistance for South East.                                                                (4) vase

Short time out introduced into exciting enjoyment.                                         (5) futon

Wigan Rotary Club's Christmas Campaign 

The annual collection made by members of Wigan Rotary Club in the company of Father Christmas was a great success in the current economic climate. It is a tremendous achievement and continued up to Christmas Eve.

Father Christmas toured the neighbourhoods of Wigan, Orrell, Shevington, Ashton, Standish and Winstanley where his arrival was eagerly anticipated, and on other occasions he and his helpers were singing carols or collecting, at one of the supermarkets.

Wigan Rotary President Monica Meehan said ‘I would like to thank everyone for their generosity, which will enable Wigan Rotary Club to support local, national, and international charities to which we are committed. Your support is a tremendous boost and encouragement to us. We are conscious this festive season has not been the easiest for a lot of people, and as a result we decided not to knock on doors, so we are extremely grateful to members of the public who came out to support us.’ 

She continued ‘We know the year ahead will be difficult for many charities and community groups and I can assure everyone who made a donation in December that we will use the money as carefully as possible. Wigan Rotary Club has been serving the local community for almost 100 years and with the continued help from the residents of Wigan we will keep on doing so.’


Wigan Rotary Club's 98th annual Charter Night 

Past President Rosemary Charles (L)

Current President Santi Nandi (M)

President Elect Monica Meehan (R)



It is a tragic and sad time for the people of Ukraine and the world.

 At Rotary, we are deeply concerned by the deteriorating situation in Ukraine and the escalating loss of life and humanitarian hardship there. Continued military action against Ukraine will not only devastate the region, but also risk spreading tragic consequences across Europe and the world.

 As one of the world’s largest humanitarian organizations, we have made peace the cornerstone of our global mission. We join the international community in calling for an immediate cease fire, withdrawal of Russian forces, and a restoration of diplomatic efforts to resolve this conflict through dialogue.

 In the past decade, Rotary clubs in Ukraine, Russia and nearby countries have transcended national differences and have actively engaged in peace-building projects to promote goodwill and to marshal assistance for the victims of war and violence. Today, our thoughts are with our fellow Rotary members and others in Ukraine coping with these tragic events. Rotary International will do everything in its power to bring aid, support and peace to the region.

Rotary International


The Rotary Club of Wigan Christmas Quiz 2021 


1.        Thrown from the oche. (4) Dart
2.        May be Polymerase chain reaction or lateral flow. (4) Test
3.        Zero consumption. (4) Ouse
4.        Brought people from the Caribbean to England in 1948. (8) Windrush
5.        The job of the title character in Silas Marner by George Eliot.  (6) Weaver
6.        The Road to Wigan Pier author.  (6) Orwell
7.        What George Smiley is hunting in Tinker, Tailor, Soldier, Spy. (4) Mole
8.        The super snipe is one of these classic cars. (6) Humber
9.        Confused as them. (6) Thames
10.     The lady calls with cosmetics.  (4) Avon
11.     Often the centrepiece of a Harvest Festival celebration.  (5) Sheaf
12.     Lives in a holt. (5) Otter
13.     Sound of Liverpool poets’ 1967 anthology. (6) Mersey
14.     Former tall English striker stoops down.  (6) Crouch
15.     Roust about. (5) Stour
16.     Mixes awe and envy.  (7) Waveney
17.     Female bear.  (3) Sow
18.     Cereal crop.  (3) Rye
19.     Cradle in a spin.  (6) Calder
20.     Primary garden.  (4) Eden
21.     Sounds like a question. (3) Wye
22.     Express gratitude very loudly  (4) Taff
23.     Actor Colin who wrote Chariots of Fire and acted in Z Cars.  (7) Welland
24.     Desert dweller. (5) Camel
25.     Symbol of peace.  (4) Dove
26.     English lawn game loses direction. (6) Coquet
27.     Traditional heavy weight Scottish clothing. (5) Tweed
28.     Feminist in a twirl.  (6) Ribble
29.     Change in final direction alters austere outlook.  (6) Severn
30.     Torn after junction.  (5) Trent
31.     The one to tell about British Gas shares.  (3) Sid
32.     Mixed up water bird finds mountain stream.  (8) Wansbeck
33.     Golfers and goal kickers use these.  (4) Tees
34.     Bonnie’s partner in crime. (5) Clyde
35.     Figure created when two arcs enclose a space. (4) Lune
36.     Poetic meadow.  (3) Lea
37.     Level vein of metal ore. (8) Evenlode
38.     Direction indicator comes after road fork. (6) Yarrow
39.     Type of goose.  (5) Brent or Brant
40.     Tail becomes head of Celtic country. (5) Swale
41.     Shortened sea route.  (6) Medway
42.     Formed by taking water from a Cumbrian lake.  (7) Derwent
43.     Ethnic mix.  (6) Itchen
44.     Source for the “Goddess of Pop”.  (8) Cherwell
45.     Beautiful French place.  (8) Beaulieu
46.     Learner on the level.  (5) Leven
47.     Forward. (5) Forth
48.     English county found in Scotland.  (5) Devon
49.     Site of Muhammad's tomb.  (6) Medina
50.     Reversed new maths problem. (6) Wensum
51.     Scottish clan found in Lancashire.  (7) Douglas
52.     Know the world wide web. (6) Kennet
53.     A Scottish a fly-casting technique.  (4) Spey
54.     Swedish/Danish klezmer band formed in 1997. (6) Tummel
55.     Found within areas with ample sunshine and sufficient showers. (6) Witham
56.     New lad is bewildered.  (6) Wandle
57.     Female in St Matthew Chapter 1 genealogy of Jesus.  (5) Tamar
58.     First name of Cagney and Lacey actress. (4) Tyne
59.     Scottish two at sixes and sevens. (4) Tawe
60.     Marks the spot?  (3) Exe
61.     Terrorist organisation.  (4) Isis
62.     Happens in many parks on a Saturday or Sunday morning. (4) Arun
63.     Where it all comes out?  (4) Wash
64.     Originating in the Orient.  (5) Frome
65.     University city loses river crossing.  (3) Cam
66.     Swiss version of the patchwork elephant story? (7) Chelmer
67.     Entrance halls. (6) Foyers
68.     Standard performance leads to neurological syndrome.  (7) Parrett
69.     Alien ruse. (7) Ettrick
70.     Quay in the East. (6) Wharfe
71.     Hot stroll. (6) Hamble
72.     Welsh girl’s name meaning swarthy. (3) Dee
73.     Turkish music loses Arab element. (3) Esk
74.     Rue confusion. (3) Ure
75.     Rocky peak with long narrow hill-top.  (8) Torridge

Sunshine House 

Wigan Rotary Club Collecting for Sunshine House 

Clothes of all kind

Baby necessities




Please Deliver your donations to Sunshine House, Wellington St, Wigan WN1 3SA




Anyone who bought a real Christmas tree this year may be wondering how you might get rid or recycle it in the New Year.

 Locally in Wigan Borough we have a team of local volunteers working in partnership with the charity Just Helping who are willing to come and collect and recycle your tree in return for a donation.

Funds raised will be shared between Wigan & Leigh Hospice who will receive at least 51% of the money after costs, the Lancashire Mining Museum and other small community organisations.

You can register up to the 9th January and the collection of the tree will be made between the 12th and 15 th January covering all post codes in Wigan Borough. The trees will be chipped and used either as compost or for pave trails at Lancashire Mining Museum in Astley and Greenslate Community Farm in Billinge.

The scheme is being sponsored and supported by The Co-op, The Good Estate Agent, Green Crew, and the Rotary Clubs of Astley, Leigh, and Wigan but more volunteers would be welcome to help with the collection. So, if you would like
to get involved and support your local Christmas Tree collection, please get in touch email: and they can point you in the right direction.

President of Wigan Rotary Santi Nandi said, ‘This is a great scheme which is not only helping the environment, but is providing much needed support to Wigan & Leigh Hospice who provide such a wonderful service for the residents of this
Borough’ To arrange a collection please book in at :

Donate your Laptop 


The public request for the donation of old laptops was launched almost a year ago and proved a great success with over one hundred children receiving a refurbished machine. However, there are still children who could benefit from their own laptop and Wigan Rotary Club are asking anyone who has a laptop they don’t need to contact them.

President of Wigan Rotary Club Santi Nandi said ’At this time of year we believe there may be people who will have received a new machine for Christmas and therefore may be in a position to donate their old one. We will take any laptop, and if suitable either arrange for a local IT firm to securely clear the existing data or if not install a new hard drive. If the laptop is unsuitable, it can be used for spare parts.’

He continued ‘ If you haven’t a machine to donate the project would be very grateful for money to cover the costs incurred in refurbishing ranging from £15 to £50 per machine.’
If anyone can help us please either Email 

or ring 07813 471000 to arrange collection.

Christmas 2021



Despite all the odds Santa did it again. The Christmas Santa zoom meetings for Wigan’s tiny tots were great fun!! 

Wigan Rotary Club are delighted. The bookings to meet Father Christmas rolled in throughout December 2021 and under the difficult circumstances caused by the viruses, the club knew this alternative was just what was needed to try to raise the much
needed funds.

 Unfortunately we were unable to undertake any Supermarket collections or sing Carols and various restrictions regarding the operation of the Carol Float had to be put in place.

As in previous years the great Wigan people expressed their delight and pleasure. They gave thanks to us for being there for the children. One collector said “This year, more than others I
have done over the years, this was very special and emotional. We did the right thing to go ahead against all the odds, it was so difficult but so worthwhile, so many grateful parents and children, it was truly a community service.” That sums it all up.

Wigan Rotary President Santi Nandi said ‘ I would like to thank all the parents, grandparents, children and friends who met Santa via Zoom or on the float. Thank you for the generosity in supporting us in this second year of the zoom venture. Along with the takings from our famous float collection this will enable Wigan Rotary Club to continue their support for local, national and international charities to which we are committed. The comments we received along the routes are heartwarming, an amazing testament to the organization put in to bring it all off”.

Santi continued ‘You only have to see everyone’s faces as the float arrived in their street”. We pulled it off and raised nearly £5000, a shadow of our former collections, but with a reduction in the number of nights on the float in dreadful weather why would anyone even open their doors? But people did. Even though there was no leafleting, no extra Santa visits to unusual venues, plus a reduction in volunteers, we can hold our heads high, feel very proud, say ‘WELL DONE’ to everyone one concerned. The Club send good wishes for the New Year to everyone.

Wigan Rotary Club Remembers 

Today the President and fellow Rotarians accompanied the Mayor of Wigan and other distinguished guests to partake in and two minute silence and a wreath laying ceremony at Wigan Cenotaph followed by a Service of Remembrance at Wigan Parish Church.

Two Local Rotary Clubs Host a Young Carers Day Out on 28th October

There was no doubt in the minds of the Rotary Clubs of Wigan and Golborne and Lightshaw that life during the pandemic would not  have been easy for all the young carers in the Wigan area, no clubs to go to, unable to see friends at school, and yet still being responsible for keeping things going at home.  It was therefore such a pleasure, but also a responsibility, to make sure the Club’s Young Carers Day would be as special as we could possibly make it. 

Once again the Clubs joined forces with the Healthy Lifestyle Team. The two Rotary Clubs know how much previous days out at Scotsman’s Flash have meant to these young people, who vary in age from  seven to thirteen, so there was no doubt in every ones’ mind that this 2021 event had to be even better.  A fun Day to remember!

The youngsters arrived at 12.30 and after a warm welcome received a lunch bag with a sandwich, crisps, chocolate bars and drinks.  Then they were split into two groups and the climbing wall and bush-craft were organised by the instructors up to 3 pm.  3pm to 4 pm saw the twilight session being set up by the instructors so we made sure that the youngsters had a hot snack of hotdogs and a hot drink and were occupied until the instructors were  ready! 

All keyed up and ready for the final instalment, the youngsters were able to choose an activity on the Flash to enjoy the sailing which was undertaken with great enthusiasm.  Just before 5.30 when all good things had to come to an end, we finished on a high note of the campfire and the usual toasting of the marshmallows plus a hot chocolate drink to round off the event perfectly.  We feel sure everyone went home tired but so happy.  Thanks were given to the instructors as without their help this event could not go ahead.

The Amazing Life & Times of Rotarian
Graham Wilcock 
1927 - 2021

it is with great sadness that Wigan Rotary Club President Santi Nandi announced the death of Rotarian Richard Graham Wilcock, aged 93 on the 20th July 2021.  He was born on Christmas Day 1927 in Billinge, Wigan. 

He joined Wigan Rotary Club in 1975 and became President of the club in 1986. He received a certificate commemorating 40 years of service in 2015 and achieved 46 years of active membership up to his death.  His personal moto was “Community, Charity, Environment and Culture” which he felt very strongly about and which he felt summed up Rotary today.

Graham married Jean on 2nd June 1954. They had one son Andrew born in 1958. Andrew married Ann and they had two children, Katie and Michael, who were adored and looked after regularly by Graham and Jean as they grew up.   Sadly Katie died, then Jean also died leaving him devastated and quite bereft.  Andrew watched over him very caringly taking him out to lunch daily.

His working life began aged 15 yrs old in 1943 with ICI as a sales administrator.  He later became a very successful Marketing Consultant.  He used his professional knowledge, skills and experience to advise and help the Rotary club at every opportunity.  He was called up aged 18 and after peacetime activity service, training, he was put on a troop train which transported him across Europe to the Middle East.

 After three years active service in the RAF he returned to Civvy Street joining Pilkington Glass in St. Helens.  He and his wife Jean also ran a BBQ chicken take away and delicatessen in Standish.

Along-side his successful career his membership of Wigan Round Table allowed a social whirl with Donkey Derby’s, jumble sales, Charter nights at Rivington Barn, League of Friends, Balloon Races, the Christmas Float.

The next logical move was to join the 41 Club the “rest home” for ex-Round Tablers!  When he became a Rotarian in 1975 he was soon appointed Treasurer. 

He was heavily involved with the fundraising towards the development of Wigan Hospice and Age Concern later to become Age UK.  He received a Paul Harris Fellowship award which the highest award in Rotary for all his tireless involvement with the Club.

He held very high standards, and was always immaculately dressed. Away from Rotary he was on the committee of the Comet Youth Club, Poolstock. 

He and his wife were volunteers at the Wigan Pier “The Way We Were” and the Opie Visitor attractions.  They both took park in the Victorian School Room experience.

He was a Tax Commissioner for many years, a member of Probus, a meeting Group started by Rotary, plus being a member of U3A and he wanted to learn to play the ukulele.  He was a committed Christian and a leading member of Standish gate Methodist Church later to be sold under his guidance as Trust Secretary to facilitate the move to Spencer Road Whitley Methodists.  There he was in the choir and drama group.

Everyone who knew Graham will miss him.  We all appreciate how he demonstrated what a Christian, hardworking, caring and true gentleman he was with his tremendous sense of humour and loving personality.  He will not be forgotten.

Graham Rest in Peace - it was a privilege to know you.

New President takes over the reins for Wigan Rotary Club

At a recent Wigan Rotary Club zoom meeting the handover to the incoming President Rtn. Santi Nandi took place. Retiring President Rosemary Charles said "Well what can I say - wow what a year. Not quite what I was anticipating- but then when I have looked back over the year - it has actually been an amazing year. We have had excellent speakers. Wonderful entertainment supplied by club members. Helped the local community. So, a massive thank you to each and every one of you for your input and support during this past Rotary year- it has made the year a real joy and pleasure for me as President.  I am now delighted to hand over the reins to Santi. He has put together an excellent team to support him and I know that the Club will continue to expand and thrive under his leadership. I am certainly looking forward to enjoying meetings and events that he has planned and that are being organised for the months to come. Santi and your wife Sukla have a wonderful year - I hope that you enjoy every moment of it ". She was presented with the most beautiful handmade Bear as a keepsake to remember her Presidential year by.

After the exchange of the Chain of Office Santi, who has lived in Wigan for the last 36 years, told members he had joined the Wigan, Leigh & Wrightington Hospital Trust in 1985 as a Consultant in Elderly Medicine. He was born in India and came to England after completing his degree in medicine. He worked for the NHS from September 1968 completing further training and gaining higher degrees. After his retirement he joined the Wigan Rotary Club. He told the meeting he was inspired by the late Past President Dr Venk Marni as he observed him at Asda supermarket checking blood pressure and advising people on how to prevent a stroke. Santi then said "I have served the Wigan community as a physician for 25 years, now I wish to continue my service through Rotary focusing on disease prevention, stroke awareness, awareness of deafness, improved sanitation and feeding the hungry. Every winter I distribute blankets to the homeless in memory of my late mother in Kolkata, India. " He continued" I am involved in an on-going project with a local charity in a rural part of West Bengal. A special toilet was built specifically for the young girls in a secondary school with the necessary facilities, in order that they do not have to miss school during their monthly period. I now have great pleasure in accepting the chain of office of Wigan Rotary and look forward to my year of office. My Motto : "We work as one team."

The Club looks forward to the coming year in anticipation of the improving Covid Virus situation and they are vowed in their intension to implement all the plans and new ideas to keep Rotary vibrant by recruiting new members and serving the local community.

Community Day 2021

A vibrant event in the town centre will bring the whole community together thanks to
Wigan Rotary Club. A free stall is available in Wigan town centre on Saturday
September 18th for any local community group or charity as part of Wigan Rotary
Club’s Community Day.

Explained Rotary President Rosemary Charles, ‘ We are providing this free of charge
opportunity for local groups to raise their profile, or make some money, or recruit new
members. You will be allocated a frontage on Standishgate or Market Place for you to
erect table or gazebo to enable your group to benefit.’
She continued ‘The Community Day gives voluntary and community organisations the
opportunity to showcase the fantastic work they are doing in their local communities,
raise money for their organisations and maybe even recruit some more volunteers or
service users.

“ This is the eighth year we have organised this event and each year it becomes more
popular and we get fantastic feedback. We have been helping the Wigan community
since 1924 and this is just one way of us carrying on the tradition.’

More details and Booking Form can be found on Wigan Rotary Clubs website or for more information ring 07813 471000 or email

Charter Night 2021

What an amazing evening.
First and foremost a massive thanks to all who took part; Graham and Josh for their readings; Monica for an excellent toast to Rotary International; Josh for the zoom photographs;

 Tony for managing Zoom without a hitch; Mervyn for organising timing to perfection and of course all the 63 members and guests who attended - everyone looked amazing (from the waist upward at least!) We had Presidents and guests from the Rotary Clubs of Southport, Hindley, Golborne, Howden, South Cave and Wolds. It was a pleasure to welcome PP Keith with Janet, PP Maureen and President Satish, who is of course a regular attendee at our meetings.

District Governor Peter listed many of the Club's achievements during this past unusual year and gave the Toast to the Club.

The incoming Chairman of Rotary Great Britain and Ireland 2021/22 David Ellis gave an inspirational and thought-provoking talk on the forthcoming changes that are going to be made to the structure of the organisation.

I look forward to us receiving more details of these changes hopefully very soon. There was then a lively question and answer session.

So, thank you again to all who attended - it was a very proud evening for me and one that I will treasure the memory of.

President Rosemary


Local charities and Tech firms have joined forces to start a scheme for the public to
donate old or unused laptops which are refurbished and given to local schools.

Adam Vause Chief Executive of Leigh based Express IT Group said, ‘We decided we
would like to do something to help our local schools as people have done elsewhere.

We will take any laptop, and if suitable either securely clear the existing data or if not
install a new hard drive. If the laptop is unsuitable we can use it for spare parts.

Adam continued “Although some schools have already registered on the website with
their requirements, I am sure there are more schools in the borough in need and I
would ask them to resister as soon as possible. All the donated laptops will be given to
schools in the borough”.

The scheme is being supported by local charity Wigan Borough Community Partnership
and both Astley and Wigan Rotary Clubs. Local business Express IT Group, Nemiah
and Leigh Works have been refurbishing the laptops and delivering them to local schools.

If you haven’t a machine to donate the project would be very grateful for money to
cover the costs incurred in refurbishing ranging from £15 to about £50 per machine. A
Crowdfunder with a target to raise £4,000. To make a donation go to

Peter Ratcliffe

At a lunch meeting in October 2017 President Gwyneth Millard had the great pleasure of presenting Rtn. Peter Ratcliffe with his Long Service Certificate to celebrate 50 years of membership of the Wigan Club.

Three years later, 3rd January 2021 with great sadness we now announce his death.  In his memory we now acknowledge how much service he gave to the club during the past 54 years, a record in itself.

 Peter joined Wigan Rotary in 1967 and through his terrific enthusiasm he became a great Rotarian.  In his own words he described himself as having “one good point - if I could only remember what it was – I used to call it youthful enthusiasm, but now I just say enthusiasm!”

On becoming a Rotarian Peter said he was given one golden rule which was “If the President asks you to do something, do it!” which encouraged him to work on many Committees.  He led the Group Study Exchange Team from District 1280 to Japan in 1981. The exchange provided an opportunity for young professionals to experience the vocational and cultural aspects of a different society through living with Rotarians and their families and meeting with a similar team from the other side of the world. The visit made a lasting impression on Peter and his team.  He was one of the members instrumental in setting up Rotaract saying “Here is another opportunity for the Wigan Club to use its expertise in starting other organisations and we intend to start on this one straight away.”  Peter was also a great supporter of the Rotary Foundation. 

He became President in 1979 and his over -riding theme was fellowship within the Wigan Club and District 1280.  Peter said ” I will be content with memories of a year in which we all enjoy our Rotary and our Wigan fellowship, and a year in which we made new and lasting friendships”.  Whilst he was President of the club he offered great support at the OIOM Conference in the Isle of Man to Wigan Rotarian George Merriman, who was the District Governor.

Peter was presented with his second Paul Harris Award by President John Walls in March 2012 as further acknowledgement of his continued dedication and service to Rotary.  In actual fact he was the holder of four Paul Harris Fellowships, some awarded some purchased.  Amazingly, he was also awarded the Rotary Foundation Citation for Meritorious Service by the District,  when  he was active at District and he was understandably very proud of this.

Married to Jean with four beautiful daughters, seven Grandchildren and a great-grandson, he was a great family man.  He retired from Quarrying having created a very ‘large hole’ in Upholland.  He was a very accomplished keen gardener, Magnolias and Rhododendrons being his greatest interests.  He created a wonderful garden with beautiful collections of plants and trees which he “opened” to fellow Rotarians and others twice a year when blooms were at their best.  He acknowledged the terrific support he always had from his wife who backed him up and helped in every way possible through all their married life. 

He was extremely well travelled having visited many countries, one favourite being Japan.  He gave many talks to Wigan and other Rotary Clubs on his favourite subjects and was a follower of Face book and Twitter.  Peter was proud to be a mine of information of most subjects.  The  club  extend their deepest sympathy to his widow Jean and all his family at this most difficult time.  He will be greatly missed.

Sad Passing of Rotarian Krishna Rao Korlipara 

Krishna came to this country in 1964 after qualifying from Mangalore Medical College
South India.

After a House job in Bolton Infirmary,
Krishna joined a GP Practice in Horwich
Bolton in 1970 and Retired in 2008.
In 1977 Krishna started a GP
Cooperative in Bolton District Medical
Services and a year later, in 1978,
together with my local GP Colleagues, I
started a Wigan Co-op. This led to the
Co-op model being adopted across the
UK. Krishna’s role in founding the GP
Co-op model, made a huge difference to
the delivery of Primary Health Services.
In 1984 Krishna was elected as a Member
of GMC (General Medical Council). He
served for 20 years, making him the
longest serving GMC Member.
He joined Wigan Rotary in 2013 and was an active and valued member of the Club.
He leaves his wife Uma, and children, including two daughters, one son and five

Rotarian Derek Burney 
 April 1927 – January 2021

 It is with great sadness that Wigan Rotary Club President Rosemary announced the death of Rotarian Derek Burney aged 93 on the 10th January 2021.  He joined Wigan Rotary Club in 1967 and received his certificate commemorating 50 years of membership in 2017.  He had also been awarded a Paul Harris Fellowship after 40 years of service.  He achieved 53 years of membership at his death. 

Derek was also a member of Wigan Round Table, Wigan Music Society of which he was a trustee, Probus of which he had been a Chair and was also a very keen member of the local RSPB.  He enjoyed other hobbies like photography, and he was musical, playing both the piano and the organ.  He embraced new technology and used his iPad and his computer simultaneously.  He was a very capable, likeable character who was quite the raconteur, enjoying recounting tales of his life at boarding school. 

He was sent as a boarder to Holmwood Preparatory School in Formby followed by Oundle School.  He then joined the family leather business, making handbags, gloves and purses. When his father sold the business and retired to Wales,  Derek re-started the business selling to some prestigious retailers including Boots Salisbury’s handbags and Marks and Spencer and even had a contract to supply purses and glasses-cases to Concorde for them to give to their passengers. His father was a former Captain of Arley Golf Club in 1957.

Derek was a very kind and generous man, always putting others before himself.  He regularly supported a number of charities including Médecins Sans Frontières, RSPB, Redwings, WWF, IFAW and Sightsavers. He was someone you could rely on to lift your spirits with his quiet sense of humour especially when things were a little difficult.  He always seemed to be able to see the bright side of any situation.

He married Audrey, who was a member of Inner Wheel, Ladies Circle and Tangent, who, sadly, died thirty years ago.  He was also a great family man and had two daughters who he enjoyed visiting.  They are married and both live 200 miles or so from Wigan, one in the north east and the other in the south east of England, and he also had two grandchildren and three great-grandchildren.  As a family they were very keen caravanners, travelling all over England and he loved exchanging stories about their adventures with members of the club.

In recent times, before lockdown, health issues meant he could no longer drive making it difficult for him to attend Rotary meetings and several members took it in turns to bring him.  His sense of humour never waned and he kept cheerful under great duress.  He will be greatly missed and will not be forgotten by those who had the privilege to know him.


This year Wigan Rotary is going to bring Santa straight to you from Lapland in an incredibly special way.

We must do things a little differently because it is important to keep everyone safe this Christmas.

You will be able to book an individual visit with Santa.

The booking office will be open from the 23rd November 2020

The donation from your visit will help Wigan Rotary Club to continue its good work in your community.

Tell your friends, family, and pets about this amazing event.

Rotary Club of Wigan Acknowledges 46 years of Service

At a recent Rotary Club lunch the new President Mervyn Reeves, had the great pleasure of announcing that Rtn. John Coupe was to be made an Honorary Member of the Wigan Club.  John has given the club valuable service during the last 46 years and was the recipient of a Paul Harris Fellowship in 2008 as an acknowledgement of his tremendous achievements.  As he will be 90 years old in July it was felt this was now the most appropriate way of celebrating of all his achievements. 

He has held various offices beginning with Speaker Secretary in 1975 to becoming Club Secretary from 1979 to 1982.  He was Junior Vice President in 1983 leading up to becoming President in 1984, followed by Treasurer in 1987.  He has also held various committee positions in Membership, Vocation and is currently on the Fellowship Committee.

During the last 29 years he has organized the local Rotary Town Quiz along with fellow Rotarians who compiles it.  John deals with the administrative side of printing, distribution of the entry forms and collection boxes for the fees.  The money raised supports the Rotary Foundation Charity.

He was one of the members instrumental in setting up a Rotaract Club.  He was, together with fellow Rotarians, responsible for the setting up of the Standish Probus Club in 2001 and was a founder member.  He has held the office of founder treasurer and held the office of Chairman this year in 2013.

John is married to Margaret and their family consists of 5 children, 14 grandchildren, and 7 great grandchildren.  He enjoys gardening, reading, has travelled extensively.

The Photograph shows President Mervyn Reeves awarding Honorary membership to Rtn John Coupe

We need your consent to load the translations

We use a third-party service to translate the website content that may collect data about your activity. Please review the details in the privacy policy and accept the service to view the translations.