Harry Rutherford's
Festival of Britain Mural

Thursday, 30 September 2010

Great Uncle Bill.

This fantastic photo was lent to us by Mark James .It is of his Great Uncle Bill and Marks older brother,Paul , when he was a baby. The photo was taken outside the petrol station that his Great Uncle Bill had at the top of Matley Lane . It is circa 1952-3.
I wonder why places were called Milk Bars? Did everyone drink milk in there?


I love the old signs in the window.... "Drink Vimto" and "Book for Blackpool Illuminations"...

Thanks Mark!

Wednesday, 29 September 2010

Various items of interest.


A jug decorated with St Georges Church.


A plate celebrating the 1931 Ox roast in Hyde.

A tin that used to contain Barlova malted drink. Barlova was a company that produced malted drinks for export. It was situated on Cheapside in Hyde.

Tuesday, 28 September 2010

George Ibbotson


George Ibbotson

Here is another picture sent to us by Harry Smith, he say's
"I have no idea how this came into my possesion but it could be of interest to someone. On the back it says he was killed in June 1944, maybe local newspapers reported it at the time."
When I see such a picture I am left wondering what George Ibbotson was like, where did he live, and which schools he went to... I'm sure he must have relations in the area... and if so and they did not have a picture of him .. they do now thanks to Harry.



Maureen very kindly sent in the above the above picture and the 'Quoted test below:

The only Death I can find registered of a George Ibbotson in 1944 is one registered at Edmonton in April/May/June so this could tie in with the “Flying Bomb” mentioned in the comments by Dave.
He is on the Screen Wall at Stockport Borough Cemetery (above) and I think he is on the Carlscam site for memorials at St Georges, Hyde


Thanks to carlscam for the above link.

Sunday, 26 September 2010

Coach Trip From The White Hart

We recently received an email from Harry Smith... he said he stumbled across the blog by accident, well we are happy to welcome Harry to the blog no matter how he found us.. and that goes for many of you who stop by and look in here.


Name over the door says Charles Percival Wheawill 

Harry sent these pictures which I'm sure will go down well. he said that even though his mother and some of her friends are in the pictures he dose not know much more about them. He says one of the pictures shows who the landlord was at the time and another contains a Mrs. Howard Mother of Cephas Howard who played with the Temperence seven he believes. She went on to become the landlady of the Grapes Hotel in Gee Cross.


I can see a few beer crates on the top of the coach... and nice to see it's from Gee Cross Motors.. We'd like to see more of their vehicles.  In the back ground is Fletcher Millers which became Castrol.


White Hart Street


I do like this picture, and though I do not know anyone on this picture I see faces from my past... maybe daughters and sons who have the same features... I would love to put names to these and hear from their relations.. maybe someone knows where this trip ended up.. I bet they had a great time where ever it was. I am pleased we have these pictures and more so because it shows the White Hart... which as now been pulled down and rebuilt as flats.

Douglas Street


A modern Map showing the Douglas Street area.

Queen Street looking over to the Douglas street site of James North.The wall to the Recreation Ground (Rec) borders the grass verge.This wall still stands and separates the new Greenfield Primary school from the Rec.
Douglas st
Douglas Street after the demolition of James North and Sons. The lamp to the right is on the corner of Douglas Street and Queen Street. The photo is taken from behind the fencing of the Recreation Ground or "The Rec" as it is more commonly known..

This shows the new housing estate that was built on the derelict land - a vast improvement ,I think.

Hyde In War Time (1914-16) Page 33

Patriotism Of The Police Force
Splendid Loyalty Of The Police Force

We have already referred to the immediate calling up of two members of the Hyde Police Force, Constables Howland and Wilkinson, as Army  Reservists. On Monday, 9th November, 1914, eight members of the Force, having decided to enlist in a body were paraded before the Borough Magistrates in the new Court Room in  Corporation Street. 

The eight members were :

  1. Acting Sergeant Smith, who had put in eight years’ police service, and who had two brothers serving with the colours.
  2. Constable Wood, no less than 14 years’ police service, but in spite of this fact insisted on going.
  3. Constable Allen, three years’ police service.
  4. Constable Lilley, who had five brothers gone.
  5. Constable Lambert, who in the words of the Chief Constable, “thought his family ought to be represented.”
  6. Constable Dickenson, who was “in a similar position.”
  7. Constable Bradbury, who had two brothers gone.
  8. Constable Butler, who had one brother gone

It was intimated by Alderman Sherry Chairman of the Watch Committee, that the positions of the men in the Force would be kept open for them.

Hyde Policeman’s Stirring Story.

We have already stated that among the Hyde Reservists to be called up at the beginning of the war was Bombardier Wilkinson of the R.F.A., a member of the Hyde Police Force. Wilkinson was in some of the early severe fighting in Belgium and Northern France, and his description of what he saw, and of thrilling incidents in which he figured, are worth recording in permanent form. His story was contained in two letters addressed to the Chief of Hyde Police Force, Mr. J. W. Danby. The first was dated October 10th, the second October 23rd, 1914. In the first, Bombardier Wilkinson told of advancing over ground they had already fought on (presumably in the retreat from Marnes; of seeing heaps of dead  on every side; of tables spread out in a garden, with broken bottles and glasses littered about the ground in confusion. Every house had been looted by the Germans in their first onslaught, when attempting to reach Paris, an attempt that failed just at the moment it looked likely to succeed, when the Huns had got within a very few miles of the French capital. All the furniture, the Bombardier stated had been thrown on the streets. The Germans were retreating so rapidly that they did not have time to bury their dead, whose bodies were lying in ditches by the roadside, the French people burying hem after the British Forces had passed through. “We came across some of the graves of our men; one had a cross over the head, made out of a biscuit box, and bearing these words, “Eight English Artillerymen buried here.’ The grave was nicely arranged, with fresh flowers which had been placed there by peasants.”. The gallant Bombardier further related that the British had just taken a town which the Germans had held for three days. “We were  shelling it for a whole day, and covering the advance of the Yorkshire Regiment, who, at eleven p.m., had the order to take it at the point of the bayonet, which we did, without  a great number of casualties. When  we arrived in the town the people cried for joy, but the sight was terrible. All the windows were smashed, and doors had been burst open by shells. Dead and wounded were all over the place. Only one part of town was damaged; the other part was left after the enemy had demanded a very heavy ransom, which they were obliged to pay. We had a very good half-day in the town. The people give us jugs of beer, wine, biscuits, fruit, tobacco, and bread and butter in plenty.”

A Gruesome Discovery

In his second message dated October 23rd, Bombardier Wilkinson related how he and his comrades had had to stand to their guns under heavy rain of German missiles. What they dreaded most, he said, were the Krupp guns. Only the previous day the enemy located his Battery, and commenced firing shells weighing 120lbs. Apiece. One of these shells, he observed, “creates a hole large enough to hold a Maypole wagon.” Sixty shells were fired by the enemy, and one dropped only yards from Wilkinson, who was covered with dirt and smoke, but was not hit by a pieces of the shell. On another day, while the Bombardier was sitting in a ditch, resting and enjoying a smoke, close by a horse with a nose-bag on, he quite unsuspectingly commenced to pull at some straw under him, when he found his fingers on the face of a dead German. On further investigation, he discovered that the ditch was full of the enemy’s dead. 

Bombardier Wilkinson, with the exception of one or two brief  periods, has been in the zone of fire since Sir John French’s original Expeditionary Force set foot on French and Belgian soil, and at the end of 1915 he was still there.

Saturday, 25 September 2010

Hyde Park Gates

Hyde park gates

This photo shows Hyde Park gates taken from Park Road ,probably before it existed in the form we know it today. It looks like the park was still under construction as the lodge has no roof on it. Hyde Park Opened on May 21st 1904.

In Thomas Middleton's History Of Hyde it states: 
In 1898, the Misses Ashton, of Little Onn Hall, Staffordshire, presented the Newton estate to the town, and this is shortly to be converted into a Public Park.

Enfield Street School Gee Cross

Enfield Street School Photo's

I've reposted this again as more picture and a few names have been added.. we might be able to get them all named soon... just need one of us who are in the pictures to still have a good memory.. ;o)

I think this is taken in 63-64... as my older brother John is on this... he is the 4th from the right on the 3rd row. Coming back towards the right is Brian Howarth, and Mick Gee.. Sat down on the end of the front row .. far left.. is (Baby) Nigel Pattison... and 3rd from the right is Phil Ratz. I would be pleased to know the names of any others on this picture.


This would have been around the same date as the picture above.. this is the infant class.. The teacher on the left is Mrs Cliff.. and on the right I think she was called Mrs Lucas. The 3 lads on the right of the back row are David Gee, Steve Mitchell, and Roger Jones (RIP). Next row down I'm 3rd for the end on the right.. The other two who's names I can remember are sat at the front.. 3rd from the right looking very smart is Steve Taylor, and on the very end (right) is David Ogden. If you know any other let us know please.


I think this was taken 66-67 Thats me on the left end of the back row... Steve Michell is next to me.. move six to the right and thats David Gee. I know part of the names of most on here but not 100% so again please fill me in on this. I remember going through these pictures with my mum just before she died in 1991... I came across this on and noticed I was wearing a boy scout jumper.. complete with badges.... I told mum I could not remember ever being in the boy scouts.. she chuckled and told me that was correct.. I'd never been in the scouts... but Eddie Piper who lived on Farm Lane had, and his mum used to pass Eddies old cloths on for me... ha!

Back Row: Chris Douglas, Richard Platt, - Valentine, Nigle Bowden, Ronnie Smith, Steve Gee, and David Richardson.
3rd Row: -?-, - King, Dave Gee, - Hitchcock, Tom Wigley (me), Ian -, -?-, David Billinge, Mike Sherstone, Roger Jones R.I.P., Billy Howarth.
2nd Row: Head Mistress Miss Hall. Julie Cliff, -? -, Linda Curtis, Janet Dumbar, Julie Walker, Deborah Booth, -?-, -?-, Diana Wood, -?-,
Front Row: -?-, Wendy Simpson, Susan Ollerenshaw, Judith Buttery -?-, Gillian Robertson.
My thanks to Stephen Whoolley for helping with the above names.... it would be great if the rest could have there names included.... I recall them all from my childhood but alas their names escape me now.

More info .. this time names and more pictures from Wendy Johnson(Simpson) who now lives in Canada.. thanks Wendy for sending the three pictures below.


Can you put names to any of the above in Picture 1


Can you put names to any of the above in Picture 2


Can you put names to any of the above in Picture 1

Thanks again to Wendy for sending in these... no all we need to do is fill in the names ha!

Friday, 24 September 2010

Albert Hopwood

This article appeared in Ashton Brothers quarterly publication A.B.C Magazine at Christmas 1920. It features a photo of John Hopwoods Grandad , Albert Hopwood.. John , as you may be aware, is a large contributer to this blog , supplying us with endless excellent photographs and ephemera.


Up until the World War II Albert Hopwood had a barbers shop which was located next to the Shepherds Call pub on Market Street. This was destroyed by the Tower Street bomb which claimed the life of two small boys Harold Leah, aged 3 and his Brother Thomas Leah aged 5.

Thursday, 23 September 2010

Onward Chambers



Onward Chambers is next to Barclay's Bank, the signage over the door could easily be missed... anyone got any ideas about what this building was?

The building with the arched doorway facing and the square bay windows is now Barclay's, the doorway to Onward Chambers can just be made out opposite the tram.

Wednesday, 22 September 2010

Blue Window Club

The Blue Window Club was a club situated on Smithy Lane and Lumn Road. It was a very nondescript looking building but great nights were to be had here with cheap beer and even cheaper acts! After it closed in the late 1980's - early 1990's it reopened for a short while as the "Irish Club".
This club is no longer in existence.


Tuesday, 21 September 2010

Hyde In War Time ( 1914-16 ) Page 29-30

Recruiting Schemes


A great recruiting rally, the last notable effort made under voluntary, system of enlistment, took place during the latter half of September and the early part of October, 1915. It culminated in a very impressive demonstration on Saturday, October 2nd, with a semi-military procession, and a meeting in the Market Square in the afternoon, and a further meeting in the Public Hall at night. The procession passed through some of the principal thoroughfares of the Borough. There were two brass bands in the procession - Hyde Borough and Bredbury and Romiley, - and stirring martial music was discoursed. The procession included a fairly large contingent of the 66th (Welsh) Divisional Cyclist Company, a few men of the 3/6th Cheshire Territorials, and members of the Hyde Volunteer Training Corps ; also Hyde St. George’s and Bredbury St. Mark’s Church Lads’ Brigades, the 1st Hyde Detachment of Girl Guides, and numerous Boy Scouts. A notable feature of the turnout was a Zeppelin model, twenty feet long, which had been constructed at the works of Messrs. Jacobsen, Welch and Co., Ltd., Newton, and a lorry load of dummy shells. In the rear of the procession were seven motor cars, containing several ladies and a number of gentlemen. Among these were Alderman Thos. Perrin, J.P., Councillor A. M. Fletcher, J.P., Rev. H. E. Dowson, B.A., Alderman J. Mirfin, Mr T. Owen Jacobsen, J.P., Rev R. M. Moore (at that time Hyde St. Thomas’s curate, who had been working on munitions for some months), Mr. And Mrs. Tom Smith (Burnley), Mr. Walter Gee, Mr A. Williamson, J.P., Mr. W. Ardern, Councillor W. Pope, Alderman and Mrs. H. Brooke, Councillor Amos Winterbotham, Mr. J. T. Cartwright and Mr. Tom Bennett (Matley). Several small flags were displayed in front of each car. The Mayor and Mayoress (Councillor and Mrs. Welch), and Miss Welch, were in the last car, his worship wearing the civic robes. The meeting in Market Square was addressed by the Mayor, Mr. Jacobsen, Mr Tom Smith and Councillor Pope, and it was followed by the performance of the Maze Drill in the roadway in front of the Town Hall by fifty-two members of the Hyde Volunteer Training Corps. The night meeting in the Public Hall was attended by probably not less than a thousand persons. On the following day there was a ‘recruiting service’ at St. George’s Church, with a stirring sermon by the vicar (Rev. J. Alaric Davys), to a congregation that included the Mayor, members and officials of the Corporation, and representatives of a number of military, semi-military, and civilian institutions. As a result of the recruiting rally, there was a considerable addition to the ranks of local men serving with the colours


About the end of November, 1915 two local bodies were appointed to adjudicate upon applications for exemption from military service. The main duty of the Advisory Committee was to obtain information and advice in reference to persons for whom appeals were made, and this committee’s work considerably relieved the Tribunal. There was much work for both bodies. The Advisory Committee consisted of Alderman T. Perrin, J.P. ( Chairman), Alderman H. Brooke, Mr. W. A. Aspland, Mr. A. Williamson, J.P., and Councillor W. Pope. It was a thoroughly representative body. Both Mr. Perrin and Mr. Brooke had held the office of Chief Magistrate of the Borough, while Mr. Perrin was chairman of the Stalybridge, Hyde, Dukinfield and Mossley Joint Tramways and Electricity Board. Mr. Aspland was a director of the Slack Mills Company, Ltd. Mr. Williamson was secretary of the Hyde and District Operative Spinners’ Association.
The Tribunal comprised the Mayor ( Councillor Stanley Welch ), chairman; Mr. Oliver Hibbert, J.P., Mr. John Hall Brooks, Mr Samuel Knowles. Mr Walter Gee and Councillor Ebenezer Bury. The Mayor was the managing direct of Messrs. Jacobson. Welch and Co. Ltd., manufacturing stationers, Newton Mill. Mr. Hibbert was chairman of Messrs. Edward Hibbert and Co. Ltd., Greencroft Mill cotton spinners and manufacturers. Mr. Knowles was secretary of the local Hatters’ Society, and Mr. Gee secretary of Hyde and District Cardroom Operatives’ Society. Mr. Bury was a member of the firm Messrs. Bury and Hopwood, chamois leather manufacturers; also chair of the Hyde Borough Education Committee, and a member of the Joint Tramways and Electricity Board.

Front Row: Messrs. W. Baker, W. Hibbert, J. McGinty, Mrs. Danby Mrs. Mirfin (P.L.G.), Miss Quinn, Miss Wilkinson, Miss Mattin, Mrs. Stafford, Mr. John Charlton.
Back Row: Councillor A. Shaw, J.P., Messrs William Robinson, S. Etchells, T.H. Whitworth, Richard Cragg, Harry Knowles. T. Bennett, A. Ward, T. Wilson.


Immediately the war started, many employers in Hyde, realising the seriousness of the situation, encouraged their male workpeople of military age to respond to the call of the King for the defence of the country. The largest local firm, Messrs. Ashton Bros., cotton spinners and manufactures, Flowery Field, set a good lead, and the movement was splendidly backed up at Slack Mills, Kingston Mills, green croft Mill, Newton Bank Printworks, Newton Mill (Messrs. Jacobsen Welch and Co.’s). the Godley Margarine Works, and many other local factories and workshops. It was soon found, on the other hand, that all the ironworks in the town and district would require not only all their regular men, but others also, for munitions-making, a task that, as war proceeded, turned out to be of supreme importance.


Front Row: Messrs. F. Gregory, G. Whyatt, J. W. Wooliscroft, F. Molly, H. Secker, (C r.) E. Bury, C. Duxbury, E. B. Charnley, (Cr.) T. Worrall, H. W. Denton.

Back Row: Messrs. J. Carr, T. Horrocks, H. C. Buttery, S. Shepley, Jos. Heginbotham, J. Marshall, J. Horsfield, O. Hibbert, C. Morris.

Photo by A. E. Searle, Hyde.

Monday, 20 September 2010

James Johnson

We recently did a post on St. Georges Parish Magazine, which showed a picture of the church on the cover. We had a comment posted today off Rachel Walker (Australia) about her great grandfather James Johnson. James it turns out was a gymnast of some renown, and astounded crowds of on lookers by preforning on top of the old Gasometer on Raglan Street.. and even scarier than that by climbing the flag pole on the top of St. Georges Church and balancing upside down on one hand. Rachel tells us that her great grandfather also preformed in front of Royalty 3 times..


Jame and his brother Sam

James Johnson was born in Hyde in 1878, he enlisted in the Lancashire Fusiliers in 1896 and became a sergeant. He was a member of the army gymnastic team and appeared before royalty three times as Rachel said, as a gymnast. Much of his time in the forces was spent as a musketry, drill, physical training and fencing instructor, James was considered a master in the art of bayonet fighting. He was an outstanding runner and won many professional handicaps. He served in the Boer War and the First World War and even attended Queen Victoria's funeral. When he was 61 he volunteered to join up when the Second World War broke out but he was turned down as being too old.


James died September 17th 1965 aged 89

"It's not the coat that makes the man but the things that God gave him."
James' favourite expression

An Aerial view 4


This Aerial shot shows St Georges Church which is overlooking the municipal rubbish tip that used to be here. If any child ever wanted a bike, they could be found here scavenging for wheels and frames which they would then take home and make up their own style of bike. Mothers everywhere had heart failure as non of the Home-made bikes possessed any form of brakes! Harndens can be seen middle of the photo ,complete with chimney! Top left to middle is the "Rec" which was a green oasis in the middle of much industry, Queen Street and Slack Mills or James Norths as it was later known. Next to James Norths coming further right you can make out Redferns Rubber Works. The Railway lines off Osborne Road , now the "Pennine Trail" can be seen top right.

Friday, 17 September 2010

Aerial Views continued

Here we have another in the series of Aerial views over Hyde supplied as always by John Hopwood. As before this dates from around 1987.


This one shows Byles DIY centre, Hyde Caravan Sales, Hyde Furnishing Company (now Oaklands) ,Hyde Sports (now a household goods shop), Jolly Carter pub and Andrews Gift shop which stood for many years on the corner of Hoviley Brow (now renamed as an extension of Clarendon Place). To the left of Byles you can see the Royal Albert (?) pub ,now the Bike and Hound and the Onward Pools betting shop ,later Fred Dones. In the background you can see Ashton Brothers or Carrfield Mill to give it its proper name. In the far distance you can see the Spire of St Stephen's Church in Floweryfield.

Thursday, 16 September 2010

Much Ado, A George Wain Film from 1947

The late George Wain was an art master at Hyde Grammar School, he made this film in 1947, it is just one of a few of his films to be found on You Tube.. This one show Green Street, Dowson Road, and Knott Lane... Knott Lane looks about as nice a place as any around this area... as I grew up on the Cheetham Fold estate this film awakes many memoris of the train lines and level crossing near to farm lane.. and the foot paths towards the canal and Gib Row.. ENJOY .. I did.

Gee Cross Mill.

A nice photo of the reflection of Gee Cross Mill in the canal - taken by my Mum :)

Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Poem By James Leigh

O'er The Heights Of Werneth Low

I'M a captain in the army, and a famous man I be,
And in all the British Army there's no braver man than me;
But of my warlike deeds, without a doubt you know,
I once marched with my regiment o'er the heights of Werneth Low.


We there endured great hardships amongst those rugged rocks,
My men were seized with a disease the doctor called smallpox,
So we built a wooden shanty down in the plains below,
A temporary hospital, to put them in, you know.

We had them vaccinated, at least the doctors had,
But, dear o' me, the nasty stuff it almost drove 'em mad ;
With arms as thick as sugar loaves their very hair they tore,
'Twas just a month before my troops were on the march once more.

The anti-vaccinators were loud in their protest
Against this vaccination, and vowed they'd never rest
Until 'twas non-compulsory, for every rank and station,
They said that vaccination was enough to vex the nation.

Now, anyone who disbelieves the story I have told,
Just take a walk o'er Werneth Low, and there you may behold
That grand and noble structure at the foot of yonder hill,
An everlasting monument of architectural skill.

We then besieged the palace of King Frederick the Great,
That tumble-down old building on the Back Bower Estate,
But not a "Godl(e)y" soul we found in that ungodly place,
So we razed the building to the ground, and left of it no trace.


We then marched through the city of Gee Coss, but, strange to say,
The city's ancient glory has long since passed away ;
The only ancients that we saw, beside old Freddie's whims,
Was Robin and his brother Jam, the famous Gee Cross twins.

We halted on Mount Pleasant, and as we gazed around
We felt that we were standing upon historic ground,
For at the foot of Treacle Hill stood gloomy, dark, and grim,
The ruins of a temple, His Majesty's first Whim.

Each warrior bowed his crested head above the Stone Pit wall,
And thus each one soliloquised upon the city's fall.

Oh, city of the ancients, we gaze upon thee now,
Shorn of thy former glory how desolate art thou ;
Thy Market Hall, without a roof, is crumbling to decay,
Thy public park and pleasure grounds have long since passed away.


But soon we noticed that the sun was sinking in the west,
And whether it was time or not, of course the sun knew best,
But we ourselves were weary, though only half-past nine,
The heat is so oppressive in that Oriental clime.

We sought a refuge for the night at Doorbar's famous inn.
The grapes upon the vine without told of the wine within ;
The landlord, though a Doorbar, said we might rest secure,
Against such gallant soldiers he'd never "bar his door."


Next day we marched through Bredbury, and over Haughton Green,
And there our scouts reported some Zulus they had seen ;
My men became quite frightened, and their duty tried to shirk,
But the Zulus turned out colliers that were coming from their work.

We then kept on advancing till we got to Apethorn Sound,
We there embarked on board a ship that was for England bound;
But as we lifted anchor, and were sailing from the quay,
One of old Bennie's boilers burst, and blew our mast away.


We had to put in for repairs at Gibraltar Rocks,
A sort of place that I should call old England's sentry box ;
When our repairs were finished, they fired a great big gun,
In honour of the glorious deeds my regiment had done.

When out upon the open sea a gale began to blow,
The vessel soon went mountains high, and then went mountains low ;
The captain cried, "Put on more steam, for we are sorely pressed,"
When the driver shouted from the shore, "The horse is doing its best."

When we got into port that night Old Joss was striking ten,
We all were proud to set our feet on English soil again ;
My men were all fagged out, and hungry, too, as well,
So we ordered beds and supper at "Isaac Eyre's Hotel."!

My army I've disbanded now, I've had enough of wars,
I am resting on my laurels, like a valiant son of Mars ;
My men now wear a medal each, for deeds of great renown,
They were struck off by a friend of mine, a currier in town.

But now, my friends, I'll say adieu, I've said enough forsooth,
And some of you, no doubt, may think I haven't told the truth ;
However, be that as it may, if you'll be honour bright,
You'll say I'm not far wrong if you but understand me right.

Another Aerial Shot.

Here is another great aerial view given to us by John Hopwood. 

Woolworths is pictured - instantly recognisable by "Brownsons Tower", sadly gone from all high streets everywhere. Next to Woolworths is the Albion pub which still pulls in a good crowd. Babyland and DER Electronics which are on here are both long gone. Some of this row is now "The Cotton Bale" ,or Wetherspoons as it's better known. The old Supermarket is on here also - It was still operating as the old Supermarket when this shot was taken circa 1987. To the left of the Old Supermarket you can see the Halifax Building Society which was replaced by Curleys the greengrocers ,then renamed Strawberry Gardens ,when the Halifax moved to its present location which is opposite Wetherspoons. To the top right you can see Flowery Field Church Tower, and Ashton Brothers. Behind Woolworths is a car park which now houses the Post Office sorting office. Top left is Greencroft Mill which was demolished to make way for B&Q. Ahh..happy days !

Thanks John.

Tuesday, 14 September 2010

The Queens Trees

A Postcard from where Werneth Low Road meets Cowlishaw Road or "Brow" as it's referred to - the grass triangle known locally as the "Queen's Trees", as Queen Elizabeth II planted trees here on the occasion of her visit in 1967 ... A favourite picnic area of many over the years.

This area is also known as 3 lanes end... I thought we had a picture of some cottages that were around here but cannot find it..

The Queen on her 1967 visit to the area... I think she was doing what most of us do when standing near to the 'Triangle'.. and that is admiring the view.

From The Book
A History Of Hyde
Thomas Middleton

Prominent amongst the Gee Cross characters were the Corbishley family, who got their living by carrying coal, for which purpose they kept twenty donkeys and a pony with crooked legs. There is a small triangle piece of land near the ‘finger-post’ at the top of Cowlishaw Brow on the summit of Werneth Low. Just behind the wall on the Hyde side of the main road, fronting this triangular piece, stood the cottage of the Corbishleys. The family and donkeys shared the same rooms during the day, and at night the animals occupied the lower rooms and the family the bedrooms. Their train of donkeys carried coal in panniers and packs from the local coalpits to Hyde and the neighbouring towns. The best known members of this family were two brothers, Sam and Jack. Death claims everyone in time, and at last Jack died, leaving Sam as sole survivor. Whilst the corpse lay in the house, and Sam was out, some of the Gee Cross farmers got into the house, dressed the corpse, placed it upright in a chair, and put a pipe in its mouth. When poor Sam returned he at first thought that his brother had come to life again.. But on touching the body it fell to the floor.
Jack Corbishley, in spite of his queer habits, had always shown kindness to William Wych, one of the Wych’s of Gee Cross Fold Farm: and ’Billy’ Wych undertook to bury his old friend at his own expense. The funeral took place at Mottram, and after the custom of the time ’Billy’ and the funeral guest called at the Mottram inns and drank heavily before returning to Gee Cross. The interment was on the Friday preceding Mottram Wakes’ Saturday and on this day there was a great pot market held. Primed with good ale, ’Billy’ Wych was seized with a mad freak, and mounting the hearse he drove the horse right through the pot market, smashing pots right and left… and scattering the crowd in all directions. He then paid for the damage, satisfied that there had been “a good finish to Jack Corbishley funeral”.

The Corbishleys had a friend who lived at Mellor, and was known as “Besom Ben,” on account of him being a ’besom’ maker.

Lady using such a Heather Besom

He went on the moor lands for the heather, made it into besoms, which he then slung in bundles pannier-like over the donkey’s back, and conveyed them into Hyde and other places for sale. There is a painting of him and his donkey in oils preserved in Hyde Public Library... I wonder if it is still there.... can anyone let us know please.

Monday, 13 September 2010

Brewery At Matley



I know nothing at all about this place, where it was or what the brewers were called... if you have any information I'd be more than pleased to add it to this post.

Sunday, 12 September 2010

JOSEPH BRADLEY (1857-1935)


JOSEPH BRADLEY musician and music teacher, was born on 28 February 1857 at Newton Hyde, Cheshire, he was the son of Matthew Henry Bradley, later publican, and his wife Mary, née Heywood. Joseph was trained by Dr Frederick Bridge of Manchester Cathedral, and at 12 he was appointed assistant organist of St Paul's Church, Stalybridge. In 1873 he became a fellow of the Royal College of Organists, then to New College, Oxford in October 1874 and graduated Bachelor of Music the following year. As organist in 1876-80 at St Thomas's Church, Heaton Norris, Stockport, he formed and conducted a fifty-piece orchestra. On 8 August 1877 with Anglican rites he married Catherine Mary Pickering at Manchester; they had two children.
Bradley's first major post was as deputy conductor and organist for the Hallé Orchestra of Manchester in 1881-87. There he once conducted Handel's Messiah seven times in a week. As chorus-master and conductor of the Glasgow Choral Union in 1887-1908 he controlled over 400 members; the leader of its orchestra was Henri Verbrugghen. Bradley opened the organ at the International Exhibition
of 1888, Glasgow, and in 1890 applied unsuccessfully for appointment as city organist of Sydney.
Appointed conductor of the Royal Philharmonic Society of Sydney in 1908, Bradley arrived with his wife on 23 March in the Somerset. With the Philharmonic Choir and the new Sydney Symphony Orchestra, which he also conducted (always without a baton), in 1908-14 In Bradley's twenty years in Sydney he conducted 126 performances including 29 of the Messiah, 8 of Mendelssohn's Elijah, 5 of Haydn's The Creation, 4 of Berlioz's La Damnation de Faust and 4 of Elgar's Caractacus. Conforming with the style of the society, his performances were safe rather than adventurous.
Verbrugghen was chosen in preference to him as first director of the new State Conservatorium of Music, but Bradley philosophically accepted the professorship of theory and later also taught solfeggio. He published A Solfeggio Manual for Teachers (1919) and A Manual of Musical Ornamentation (1924). He was one of three conductors for the opening concert of the conservatorium in 1915 but, being bald, rotund and impassive, he seemed stodgy compared to Verbrugghen. Though dreaded by students as something of a martinet, he was recognized by all as peerless in theoretical and practical musicianship.
When Verbrugghen resigned, Bradley was on the committee which governed the conservatorium in the interregnum, then in 1924 went on a short visit to Europe, partly to introduce Gladys Cole, a favourite singing pupil, to the musical world. Soon after his return his eyesight began to fail. Pugnaciously proud and reserved, he told nobody, not even his wife, conducted from memory as long as he could and resigned without explanation only when faced with a new score. The Philharmonic Society was angered and gave him only a lukewarm farewell and a meagre cheque. He returned to England in January 1928 to join his son Julius who had spent years in China. An operation for a cataract left him blind. Aged 78, he died of cerebral vascular disease at Harrow, Middlesex, on 3 March 1935.

An Aerial View

Here is an excellent aerial view looking over towards Union Street . It was taken circa 1987.
See the Bricklayers (bottom left) when it was still operating as a public house. On the middle-left of the picture is the "Tin Mission" church hut which was so named as it was literally a Tin Hut. This has long gone and is now a car lot. Also on here is the Crook Street Central Methodist Church (middle) and the Old Central Methodist Church building on Norfolk Street behind it. The latter has now been demolished. The bottom corner of Crook Street/Reynold Street where the shops stand are now flats.
The photo was given to us by John Hopwood who has given us many great photos which we will show you in the not so distant future. Thanks John!

Saturday, 11 September 2010

St. Georges Church Hyde. (postcard)


There seems to be plenty of postcards out there of Hyde, and certainly enough to make up a great collection.. This one is on Ebay at the moment... trouble is the prices can be quite steep at times... but you can still get bargains for £1 or £2... plus P&P. The one above is from Valentines.

Valentine & Sons Limited was started by John Valentine, an engraver, he started the company in 1825, with his son James, who became a partner five years later. Valentines became a limited company in 1896, and then a public company in 1907. Valentine used a large number of artists including Louis Wain and Mabel Lucie Attwell. Among Valentine's noted series are Disney, Bonzo, Chloë Preston and the Nipper series by Brian White. Barribal, noted glamour artist, was also published by them. Among the landscape artists contributing to the "Art Colour Series" are Brian Gerald, E.W. Haslehurst, Geo. Melvin Rennie, E.H. Thompson and E.W. Trick. This post card is one of a series from aroud Hyde and worth looking out for. If you have any post cards you would like to share with us here please do so... you can scan them and send us an email with them attached... It would be good from all Hydonians to have then in one place where they can be viewed at will..