About Better Barrow

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Better Barrow was formed in January 2012, following a public meeting in the Village Hall the previous December. The purpose of the group is, through community involvement, to improve and enhance the environment of the village and raise awareness of its heritage. 

Better Barrow Community Project is a registered charity, No. 1159794

We have a membership list and invite anyone who supports our aims to get in touch and add their name to it.  It costs nothing apart from a few minutes of your time.We do most of our communicating through email but we also have an address list for those without email access. Contact us at betterbarrow@gmail.com or the secretary can be contacted by at 01652 634748.

Better Barrow committee who act as the charity’s trustees:

Chair Trevor Millum Fern House, High St DN19 7AA
Vice-Chair Steve Johnson Cherry Garth, High St DN19 7AA
Secretary Dee Burney-Jones c/o Fern House High St DN19 7BX
Treasurer Nigel Catley Birchwood House, High St DN19 7AA
Funding Group   Trevor Millum       Steve Johnson   Rob Whitaker   Dee-Burney-Jones   Ann Boulton  


Publicity Co-ordinator Ann Boulton
Events Co-ordinator Trevor Millum
Committee members Bobbie Walkington   Sylvia Millum


 Berny Johnson    Mike Cox              Pam Loxley



Since our formation, we have

  • Gathered views and suggestions from the community. This has included a questionnaire to every household in the village.
  • Liaised with and obtained advice from a wide range of people and organizations, including the Parish Council, North Lincs Council (especially Planning and Highways), VANL (Voluntary Action North Lincolnshire), Barrow Meridian Rotary, English Heritage, the National Maritime Museum, the John Harrison Foundation as well as designers and architects.
  • Worked on fund-raising and awareness raising, including a Wheelbarrow Trail around the village for the Jubilee, cake stalls at the car boot sale and Christmas Fayre and a talk by the John Harrison expert, Andrew King. The 2013 Wheelbarrow Event was even bigger and included Open Gardens. This is now an annual event.

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Thanks to everyone who has helped in any way, from our hard-working committee to those who have baked cakes and decorated wheelbarrows!

How it all began

The removal of trees from the Market Place sparked a lot of interest, not just in replacing trees but in improving the area generally. Following discussions between North Lincs Council, the Parish Council and concerned residents, there was an open meeting to gather ideas from the whole community about what we would like to see in this key area. That meeting was well attended and about a dozen people volunteered to form a working group to take things forward. Chairs, Secretary and Treasurer were agreed and a bank account set up. ‘Better Barrow’ – friendlier and more memorable than ‘Market Place Working Party’ – was agreed as a name and different groups set about looking into areas such as heritage, planning, funding, community and communication.

Following a pilot survey, a questionnaire for the whole village was designed and enough copies for each household printed with funding from the Parish Council. It was delivered with the help of over 20 volunteers. For a summary of responses see ‘Documents’. The results were analysed and used to create some bullet points for architects and designers to consider when coming up with ideas.

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Some FAQs

How easy is it to get other funding? There is money available through funds such as the Heritage Lottery Fund but in order to obtain it, a project must be shown to have broad community support and engagement. Also, such a scheme would be more likely to win approval if it offered more than just the planting of a few trees – i.e. a more general improvement of the Market Place, a celebration of the village’s heritage and some broadly educational purpose.

Why were the trees removed? The tree officer, Colin Horton, explained that the three lime trees were unhealthy probably because when the Market Place was refurbished in the 1990s, the extra paving, together with the compacting of the soil damaged the tree roots and made it harder for them to access water.

Can they be replaced? Yes, but… To enable healthy tree growth, a large tree pit needs to be excavated which is an expensive undertaking and not something for which North Lincs Council had the budget.

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