Gower Hey Woods is an area of woodland situated in Gee Cross. It has its own conservation society which does a lot of good work in keeping it clean and safe for everyone to use.
There appears to have been a cotton mill situated in the bottom of the woods ,which was built in approx 1792 by Thomas Howard, son of Joseph Howard of Haughton Hall. Not much is known about the mill but the last known use for it was as a cotton waste bleaching mill run by Obadiah Broadhurst in 1874.
Map from 1836-51 , showing the mill . Note the old spelling !
Top Field known locally as either Shanes Field or Buttercup Meadow depending on your age!
Looks so different here.. hard to imagine it as such.
The Boggert Of Gower Hey
There once lived at Hyde a celebrated Dr. Wylde (an ancestor of the Thornley's), who bore a reputation for astrology. About 1730 a great sensation was occasioned ..... that there was a boggart in Gower Hey Wood, which made awful sounds at night. The inhabitants went in a body to ask the learned doctor to lay the spirit, and this he gladly consented to do. Noticing the direction of the sound he went in broad daylight to the spot which no one else dared approach, and there found that two branches of a tree, rubbing together with the motion of the wind, gave forth the doleful sound that had scared people from the wood. Telling no one of his discovery he quickly sawed one branch off, and then gravely announced that he had laid the spirit. Needless to say, after this, that his reputation for magic was unequalled in the neighbourhood, and for years his powers were firmly believed in.
From The History Of Hyde
By Thomas Middleton