Harry Rutherford's
Festival of Britain Mural

Sunday, 27 December 2015



This is the start of our Groups Campaign is get our Town Hall flying flags in a respectful and working way.

This is an ongoing situation which as been brought to the attention of local town councils a number of times, over the last year or two, and nothing as of yet been done to rectify the disgraceful image of our Union Flag looking like it's hung in a war zone.
It has been stated there is some kind of Health & Safety issue... well then surely the powers that be have had more than enough time to sort this. Tameside advertise Hyde Town Hall on it's webpage along with other civic building under the heading of " Unforgettable Venues "

" Tameside Metropolitan Borough Council has a wonderful wealth in relation to its portfolio of public buildings that have generously been described as being iconic venues "

Seems to me the Flag Pole and the Flying The Flag in a respectful manner as been FORGOTTEN.

Protocol for Flag Flying on Tameside MBC Buildings
(As Approved by the Council in June 1974 and Amended in September 2009)
The Council last formally reviewed its flag-flying protocol in 1974 on the establishment of Tameside MBC. The protocol follows guidance issued by the Department for Culture, Media and Sports (DCMS) and its predecessor Departments. The Union Flag is flown at full-mast all year round on all civic buildings in the Borough which have a flag pole, these are:

Ashton Town Hall;
Concord Suite, Droylsden;
Denton Town Hall;
Dukinfield Town Hall;
George Lawton Hall, Mossley;
Hyde Town Hall;
Mottram Court House; and
Stalybridge Civic Hall

Protocol For Flag Flying

1. The Union Flag is to be flown at full mast on civic buildings all year (together with other flags where in accordance with the protocol, for example the Cross of St George being flown on St George’s Day).

2. Death and Funeral Commemoration

The Union Flag will be flown at half mast (from 8am until sunset) on the following occasions across all buildings unless stated otherwise:

Death of The Sovereign – from announcement of death to day of the funeral except on Proclamation Day when the flag will be hoisted to full mast from 11am until sunset on all buildings.
Death of a member or near relative of the Royal Family or the funeral of members of the Royal Family – subject to special command from Her Majesty.
The funerals of Prime Ministers and former Prime Minister – subject to special command from Her Majesty.
The funerals of Foreign Rulers - subject to special command from Her Majesty.
Death of a Lord Lieutenant or Deputy Lieutenant of Greater Manchester – day of funeral on all buildings.
Death of a serving Mayor, Mayoress, Deputy Mayor or Deputy Mayoress - day of death to day of funeral on all buildings.
Death of a serving Member of Tameside Council – day of death to day of funeral on all buildings.
Death of a former Member of Tameside Council and former Mayor or Mayoress of Tameside – day of funeral on all buildings.
Death of a former Member of a predecessor district or county council (including ex Mayor, Chairman, Mayoress or Chairman’s Lady of one of those councils) – day of funeral at the Town Hall or Council Offices of former Council (or in old county electoral division).
Death of an Honorary Freeman or Hon Alderman of the Borough of Tameside – from day of death to the day of the funeral.
Death of an Honorary Freeman of a predecessor Borough – day of funeral at the civic building in the former Borough.
Death of a serving Chief Officer of Tameside Council – day of the funeral at the Town Hall/Council Offices where they had served.
Death of a retired Chief Officer of Tameside or a predecessor council – day of the funeral at the Town Hall/Council Offices where they had served.
Death of a serving or former Member of Parliament – day of funeral at the Town Halls/Council Offices within their constituency.
Death of armed forces personnel who were residents of the Borough killed on active service – day of the announcement of death and on the day of the funeral.
Death of a serving Chief Constable of Greater Manchester, County Fire Officer or a serving Tameside Borough Police Commander – day of funeral.
On special flag flying days/civic occasions (e.g. St George’s Day) when the flying of flags coincide with days for flying flags at half-mast, the following rules are observed.

Flags are flown at full mast:

although a member of the royal family, or a near relative of the royal family, may be lying dead, unless special commands are received from the Queen to the contrary.
although it may be the day of the funeral of a foreign ruler
3. Civic Occasions

Twinning exchange visits – Union Flag and National Flag of visiting twin town to be flown (or displayed where suitable vertical poles not available) during the period of the visit at the Town Hall/Council Offices in the Tameside twin town and also at Ashton Town Hall when the visitors visit there
St George’s Day (23rd April) – the Cross of St George to be flown from 8am until sunset
Merchant Navy Day (3 September) - the Merchant Navy Flag to be flown at Ashton Town Hall
4. Other Occasions

The Union Flag may be flown at half-mast on other occasions at the discretion of the Chief Executive.


Could some of you write to the local papers about this please

Tameside Reporter
Editor: Nigel Gordon
Quest Media Centre,
Cavendish Mill Rear Entrance,
Bank Street,
Ashton-under-Lyne, OL6 7DN

Tameside Advertiser
Editor: Claire Mooney
Manchester Evening News,
Mitchell Henry House,
Hollinwood Avenue,

We need to let our local councilors know that we are disgusted that nothing is being do to rectify this shameful sight. Tell them we expect them to get behind this campaign and do everything in their power to get this fixed as soon as possible..

Godley (HYDE)

Joe Kitchen
29 Welbeck Road
SK14 5PN
Tel: 366 55781

Jim Fitzpatrick
1 Douglas Street
SK14 1QF
Tel: 368 8813

Betty Affleck
11 Nicholson Road
SK14 4QH
Tel: 366 6372

Newton (HYDE)

Peter Robinson
64 Ash Tree Road
SK14 4EP
Tel: 366 1755

Philip Fitzpatrick
2 Lovell Drive
SK14 4DP
Tel: 368 5006

Helen Bowden
120 Clarendon Road
SK14 2LJ
Tel: 285 1225

Werneth (Hyde)

Raja Miah
26 Syddall Street
SK14 1LB
Tel: 07889 838345

Andy Kinsey
50 Mill Lane
SK14 2DL
Tel: 07932 337961

John Bell
20 Arnold Road
SK14 5LH
Tel: 366 9874


Unfortunately through health issues I am unable to take this all on myself, I think there's enough folk here on the group who feel the same way as I do and if we all did our little bit we would have more of a chance at getting this situation sorted out before the towns is disgraced. Can you imagine if there's a national disaster or god forbid a Royal dies and we have not got a flag flying half mast to show our towns respects. .


Saturday, 12 December 2015


The Methodist New Connexion Chapel was situated on Muslin Street (now known as Talbot Road) in Newton. It was originally known as the Muslin Street Methodist. The original chapel was built in 1815, but due to disrepair it was demolished and the building in the photo was built and opened in 1884. In 1907 the church joined with the United Methodist Free Church and formed the United Methodist Church.
Above picture and information by Paul Taylor

Not seen the above picture before, but it turned up on Ebay last week. if you know anything about the picture let me know.
Anyone with pictures or information on the church, please leave a comment.

Friday, 4 December 2015

Redferns Rubber Welfare Association & Family Picture.

Paul Stone contacted me a while back about an older post we featured on Redferns, and he wondered if we had more information to share. Paul's interest is the Redfern family history, James Arthur Redfern married (21/08/21) his Great Grand Aunt, Gladys Branson (4/7/1889 - 22/11/1951).Paul is seeking any information on the Redferns locally, and wondered if there are an relatives still living in Hyde. 

Paul sent in this picture of Redfern's Welfare AssociationDated 1919
James Arthur Redfern is Top Right  

In 1918
£34,130 Was Raised By Redferns 'Silver Bullet' League
For War Savings Certificates And Bonds 

From the left: Alice Lomas (Paul's Great. Grandmother) - Gladys Marion Branson ( Pauls Grand Aunt) -
Arthur J Redfern - Gladys Branson (Arthur's Wife, whose Paul's Great Grand Aunt) Phyllis Audrey Branson, nee Stone (Paul's Paternal Grand mother.

Paul Believes James Arthur is in the Redfern's Welfare Association

Saturday, 21 November 2015

Holy Trinity Class Pictures 1960 - 1965


Alan Hackney
Alan sent this post in by email, he went on to say..........

I have recently sorted out some old photo's  and thought these would be of interest to a few people.






Alan has tried to name the 1965 group, but struggled, can anyone help

Back Row

Julie Ovens - ??? ??? - ??? ??? - Jill Mellor - ??? ??? - Sheila Ashworth ( Of Ashworths  Leather Goods factory, that was behind the Queen Adelaide in Gee Cross).

Boys Row
Andrew Cheetham - David Howard - Alan Hackney - Shaun McEwan - Terry Smith - Peter Oldham.
2rd Row From Front

Karen Watchem - Janet ??? - ??? ??? - Susan Lascowicz? - ??? ??? - Christine Gradwell? - Gaynor Waterhouse.
Front Row

Gillian Cheal (Cheal's Garage Gee Cross which is now Weir's Garage) - Christine Ovens - ??? ???.
My thanks to Alan for sending this in, if you would like to do a post one week please feel free to send something by email to hydonian@gmail.com 

Thursday, 12 November 2015

WWI Cheshire Regiment Soldiers, & Street Scene from Hyde.

I've once again been sent pictures from Elaine Hallfarm, if you recall it was Elaine who shared a picture of John Street, Hyde where part of the property had collapsed. Through the information that turned up on the face-book group page, Elaine as been able to add that to the back of the picture for future reference.

WW1 Soldier from the Cheshire Regiment with women

WW1 Injured Soldiers in unknown Hospital, One is possibly Elaine's Uncle Arthur 

WW1 Cheshire Regiment Soldier, wear a Mourning Button
DuringWW1 it was permissible in the British army to wear a small square or black crepe or silk wrapped around the second button on the tunic as a sign of personal mourning. Officers wore black armbands.

Procession Walk in Hyde

What a cracking picture this is
Where it is unknown but it is from Hyde
Anyone know the church banner
I will be very pleased if this can be pinpointed and see what it's like today.

These pictures are all shared by Elaine in the memory of her Aunty May

These were Aunty May's pictures, and are now passed on to family members. Elaine says there are more pictures to follow, and that the family sometimes can work out who they are looking at, but more often there are no clues. She hope we enjoy looking at them and better still find something of interest in them.

Wednesday, 11 November 2015

1147930 Sgt Horace Wigley


For this weeks update I've chosen an older post from our archives, one which was told me in full by my 2rd cousin once removed, a man I had never met yet I had lived very close to his family home.  
   I make no apologise in reshowing this post from David Hamilton and what he told me solved a bit of my own family history jigsaw. Not just that but the story that unfolded was very moving, but as carried on being so as I got to know David and hear all about his family              I will now hand the post over to David to tell the story of his Uncle Horace

Your Grandfather, Tom, was the brother of my grandfather, Harry, which makes us 2nd cousins. I noticed that you have a photo of the ICI memorial tablet which bears the names of several employees who lost their lives during WW11, including Horace Wigley, and you say that he may have been related to your father.  Horace and your father, Harold, were in fact cousins, making you and Horace 1st cousins once removed, and Horace my uncle.

I too heard the story about Horace when I was a child, but there wasn't much detail, also looking back it must have still been too painful for the family to talk about. Later on, I gained a keen interest in the RAF generally, and Bomber Command in particular, so it made perfect sense for me to find out more about Horace and his time in the RAF.

1147930 Sgt Horace Wigley Royal Air Force Volunteer Reserve

Horace was born on 28th May 1921, the third child of Harry and Sarah Wigley. Their other children were Tom, Albert, Ivy, Hilda, and Brian. The family lived in Tanner Street, Hyde, before moving to St Mary’s Road in 1935.

Horace attended Greenfield Street School, and was a bright pupil. Due partly to the limited educational opportunities at the time, and also the need to get a job, Horace left school at the age of 14 to work for Mitchell, the coal merchant, putting coal into sacks and chopping firewood.
After this, he started work at I.C.I. in Newton as a calender feeder in a rubber processing plant.

Horace was an enthusiastic sportsman and, despite the heavy work and his slim 5 foot 6 inch frame, he still found the energy to pursue his passion for cricket, at which he was exceptionally talented. He was a member of the Talbot Road Methodist Church Cricket Club, and was also a keen harmonica player. He and other members of the team called themselves “The Harmonica Rogues” and performed in various church halls in the local area.

Horace aged 17

Horace aged 18

On 15th March 1941, 19-year-old Horace signed up for the RAF at No.3 Reception Centre in Manchester, and was placed on reserve, to be recalled on 1st May 1941 and posted to No.4 Reception Centre at Bridgenorth for basic training. His next posting was to No. 6 School of Technical Training where he qualified as an engine fitter on 29th December 1941. He was then sent to RAF Ayr, a Fighter Command station, where he was later recommended for training as a Flight Engineer and sent to No. 4 School of Technical Training. He obtained his brevet on 29th July 1942 and was promoted to Sergeant. Flight Training began at No. 1651 Heavy Conversion Unit at Waterbeach, Cambridgeshire, where he teamed up with F/Sgt W.J. Hannah and his crew fresh from a Bomber Command Operational Training unit. After they converted onto the Short Stirling four-engined bomber, they were posted to 15 Squadron at Bourn, Cambridgeshire on 23rd September 1942.

Three days later, on 26th September 9 1942, Horace married his childhood sweetheart, Monica Foley, who also lived in St Mary’s Road.

Horace and Monica at St. Mary’s Road

Horace and Monica’s wedding day

Horace’s first operation with 15 Squadron was around the French coast, “gardening” (dropping sea mines) in the Gironde estuary on the night of 27th October 1942 in Stirling Mk.1 R9201 coded LS-U. The operation was both successful and uneventful.

His second, fateful, gardening operation was on 6th November 1942 with the same crew and aircraft. That evening, LS-U was the last of three Stirlings detailed for operations over French coastal waters to take off from Bourn, lifting its wheels for the last time at 6pm. 
At 9.45pm local time, still on its outward journey over France, the Stirling was hit by flak whilst flying at low level. According to locals, the aircraft appeared to be attempting a crash landing on the marshes near St Andre-des Eaux, making a gradual descent until it hit a row of trees and cartwheeled into the ground, disintegrating but not catching fire. The crew of eight, four English and four New Zealanders, was killed instantly.
Because the aircraft crashed at a shallow angle, most of the wreckage was left on the surface of the soft ground and was easily recovered, but the four Bristol Hercules XI engines carried on across the marsh, the furthest one was found 500 metres from the main impact point.

Stirling R9201 crashed in the centre foreground of this photograph.

A piece of wreckage from Stirling R9201.

The airmen were gathered for burial by local people, and they were laid to rest together at Escoublac-La Baule War Cemetery on 9th November 1942, Father Robin Moyon conducting the funeral.

Horace’s grave taken in 1948

Horace’s grave in 2000

Horace lies in grave 17, Row D, Plot 2.

The inscription on his headstone reads:

“A silent thought
brings many a tear
for one we lost
and loved so dear”

Horace and Monica had been married for just 41 days.

Having served in the RAF for 1 year and 237 days and paying the supreme sacrifice, Horace was awarded the War Medal 1939-45, Aircrew Europe Star, and the 1939-45 Star.

Horace’s Medals: 
(L-R) War Medal 1939-45, Air Crew Europe Star, 1939-45 Star

The crew of Stirling R9201 LS-U.

NZ412683            F/Sgt W.J. Hannah            Pilot                        Age 24
NZ411369            F/Sgt K.D. Chapman          Pilot                        Age 24
1147930               Sgt H. Wigley                   Flight Engineer        Age 21
1177718              Sgt J.C. Brookes                Observer                 Age 27
1255407              F/Sgt R.H. Drew                Air Bomber              Age 31
NZ411761            Sgt A.W. Jarvis        Wireless Op/Air Gunner     Age 22
NZ41140              Sgt J.M. Burgess                Air Gunner              Age 31
1318591              Sgt S.J Butcher                  Air Gunner              Age 20

Crew graves (R-L): Jarvis, Wigley, Chapman, Hannah, Brookes, Butcher, Burges, Drew.

Escoublac-La-Baule War Cemetery

Thank you David


I was contacted on the 27th July by a Sheila McKellar, from Winnipeg, Canada.  who wrote the following.

   "I just read your blog from 2011 in which you posted the story of Sgt. Wigley, provided by his nephew, David Hamilton.  My mother was engaged to marry one of the other 15 Squadron members, Sgt. Jarvis.  My mom passed away a few months ago, and I have a photo that belonged to her of the crew.  I thought David might like a copy of it.  Would it be possible for you to put me in touch with him, or forward my email address to him so he can contact me?"

Alas I had to inform Sheila that David had passed away suddenly, David would have been so pleased to have had contact with others touched by the events told above.
The next email from Shelia contained her condolences, and indeed the said picture and another, and explained on checking the names on the pictures alas Horace was not amongst them.

Sheila wrote " When I looked at the photos again, I was disappointed to see that Sgt. Wigley is not among those pictured.  However, I hope you can still use one or both of the photos on your blog.  "These are the brave men who perished with Sgt. Wigley and are buried alongside him in France."  

 Left to right, Joe Brookes, James Burgess, Wilf Hannah, Alf Jarvis, Mickey Drew.

 Left to right, Joe Brookes, James Burgess, Wilf Hannah, Alf Jarvis, Mickey Drew.

They are, in order (coincidentally, in both images!) 

Thank you Tom for giving me the opportunity to share this with the world, and preserve their memory.  I'm hoping relatives or descendants will find them on your blog someday.

Best regards from Canada,


Thank you for your reply, Tom. I am so pleased you are honouring these brave men in this way, and have given me the opportunity to be a part of it! You are also continuing your second cousin's legacy and I am sure he would be very proud. I will look forward to your new post later this year and shall appreciate you letting me know when it is ready.

It is a honour for me to to show this again, and with the update of information and picture that Sheila as so kindly shared. I know how thrilled David would have been knowing the story was seen by someone else who was touched by the sad events of 6th November 1942.

So today  "at the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month" I will be thinking of all these brave lads and many many more.

Dedicated to the memory of

David Hamilton