Harry Rutherford's
Festival of Britain Mural

Thursday, 23 November 2017

Bandstand Hyde Park

Hyde Parks Bandstand 

Thank you to Maria Slater for this excellent shot of the bandstand, looks very atmospheric in Black and White. 

The bandstand was opened officially in 1922 on the 18th of May. It has played host to many music events and still does. 
In the past such bands as the Band Of The Household Cavalry and the Black Watch have entertained the crowds here. Brass bands from many local works and colliery bands would have played here to large crowds of Hydonians. 

The bandstand is a Grade 11 listed building and as such is on the List of buildings of special architectural or historic interest,where it is described as:

 Bandstand. Late C19. Copper roof on cast iron columns and brick base. Octagonal canopy on columns placed at each corner. Base has ashlar dressings. Elaborate pierced cast iron arches span between the enriched columns which have crocket capitals. Similar pierced eaves brackets. Dome- shaped roof with decorative crown and weather-vane.

Tuesday, 3 October 2017

Hyde Market in the 20's & 30's

I am well aware we have had a few posts on Hyde Market, but I am sure that another one will not go amiss at the time when the latest version is nearing completion.

This little story I obtained from the same source as the Kingston post, but unfortunately there is no author's name attached. It may well be Elsie Hawkins again but I cannot be certain. It describes the market from around the 1920's to the 1930's.

                                          The Market At Hyde

Hyde market was held on a Saturday years ago, just the one day and then in the 1930's we also had a Friday market day.

Through the week there was fruit and vegetable stalls which were permanent fixtures, a sort of cabin affair and the people that kept them were known to all, they never seemed to change.

At the corner, diagonally across from Woolworths was Riley's. They were wholesalers as well as retail greengrocers. They would sell off any fruit that would not keep over the weekend very cheaply, when it was closing time on Saturday night. Mostly it was large bunches of bananas or soft fruit in summer.

Round the corner to the left was Sinnett's and they took pride in selling the best greengrocery. To the right of Rileys was Hollands, who also had a shop on Mottram Road. There were others of course making about six altogether. There was a tripe stall here too.

The market itself was a great attraction. One could buy almost anything there and people came from all the towns around. It was bright and full of interest. 

The stalls were lit with lamps which the traders hired from a shop in Hamnett St, which faced the market.

A lot of traders would auction their goods and they had a patter which would keep people around their stalls.

Mrs Crossley the curtain lady had a shop facing the market. She sold curtains, coat and dress material of a very high standard. She would talk away for hours on her stall while selling her wares and there were lots of people around her stall just listening to her.

Goodwins had a pottery stall and if trade was slack they would suddenly drop a pile of pots to draw attention to themselves. Mr Goodwin had a stick which he used to thump a wooden box as he explained he was not going to charge this or even that but some ridiculously low figure. One would buy a twenty piece tea-set in the 1930's for three and eleven pence in old money (20p in new).
We would all listen to Harry Gilbert who sold watches and clocks, much cheaper than anyone could buy in the shops. They were reliable watches too, and many a Hyde person still has a Harry Gilbert watch. He later opened a jewellery shop next to the Bank of Scotland in Market St, which is now a tailors (Greenwoods).

There was quite a number of drapery stalls selling both men's and women's wear. I remember seeing "long johns" and "combinations" hanging up and of course socks and stockings, a pair of artificial silk stocking could be bought for ninepence (4p) before the war.

The flower stalls were lovely and colourful , very often they were just part of a greengrocery stall.

In the 1930's they started an innovation. They had a large zinc bath and washed the dirt off the celery before it was sold. I used to feel sorry for them on cold winter days. At the other end of the market was a pie and coffee stall 
Barlow's swings and Cookes roundabouts were also here as well. There was also a black pea saloon, but this finished sometime in the late 20's.
In 1927 an indoor market was built. It has since been demolished to make way for the new shopping precinct. I much preferred the old one to the new one. It was light and airy and had  all food stalls, mostly butchers, though Mr Lowe had his grocery stall in there. His son joined Mr Booth's son, the butcher to open the supermarket in Clarendon St.

Nightingales made Godley rock and home made sweets in the market. It was always fascinating to watch them cooking the sweets and pulling the rock on a hook on the side of the stall.
Near this building was a football net and men and boys would pay a few pennies to kick the ball into the net.

The street at the side of the market was Helen Street. If one approached it from Reynold St/Norbury St there was a very nice hotel called the Norfolk Arms. It was pulled down to make way for the new market as was all the property there. There was Meals pawnshop and then the 'Hyde cafe'.

A street ran at right angles here , then came to Ashworths butchers, then to a sweet shop, Cloughs confectioners, Britannic Assurance Co and above these shops Mr Searle had his photographic business. A lot of our old photographs of Hyde were taken by him. next we came to the shop that is still a shoe shop but it was originally Jacksons whose slogan was a Cheshire Cat. They also sold hats:-

"Jackets, hats and caps are fine, Three and six and four and nine".

Facing here in the premises occupied now by Woolworths was Brownsons the tailors. This is a stone building - rather nice. We always made sure we saw Brownsons big window at Christmas. They did a scene that occupied the whole of the window. I well remember Red Riding Hood visiting granny in a cotton wool snow scene. One January about 1926 we had terrible gales and the window was blown in. It was immediately boarded up and a large notice proclaimed "Our windows may not be able to withstand the elements, but our overcoats certainly will".
At the corner of the market near the junction of Market Place and Market Street, opposite Greenfield St, was the Finger Post, a large mastlike village pole with sign boards indicating the directions of the various roads.
Now , on that spot in my day stood a drinking fountain which was used as a meeting place. We would meet our friends from other parts of the town there. It was removed to the park some forty or fifty years ago. It would be nice if we could restore it & put it back on the market place.

The 1920's was the time when women shortened their skirts and cut their hair short so it was no surprise to hear of Dr Marie Stopes disciples speaking on the market of birth control and selling her controversial book "Married Love".

The market itself was much nicer in the old days before the "precinct" was built. We all congregated there on Whit Friday when we had walked in our own parishes. Our Mayor and Mayoress would be on the balcony of the Town Hall and all the banners would be propped up against the railings while we sang our old well loved traditional whitsuntide hymns.

On Sunday evenings the Labour party or Socialists would hold an open air meeting with the speaker standing on a low loader cart. They stopped when they managed to get a labour government together in the 1920's -- previously the candidates had either been Liberal or Conservatives, but this changed after the first world war.

Post was originally posted July 2012

This was one of the many posts where the pictures are not showing up...  it is a long process but we are getting there.. in the meantime bare with us and all picture WILL be replaced eventually 

Friday, 22 September 2017

Hyde Bus Station 1969

 Photograph by kind permission of Claire.

Hyde Bus Station 1969, Showing buses in the livery of S.H.M.D. 

Wednesday, 6 September 2017

Apethorn Junction

Two pictures that brought back many memories for me. This area was part of my 'playground' as a kid. The workmans hut was always unlocked and had a cast iron stove to keep you warm and to make a brew on.  I used it a lot at one time while out and about or when skipping school.. which in my early teens was often..  I'd collect coal from these tracks to help out at home as a young lad, and rode the trains up and down between here and Godley now and then, jumping on the back of the guard vans. The right hand track was also the scene of the Great Cheetham Fold Train Robbery..  which is another story ha!
I was more scared of the farmer and his two doberman dogs who farmed some of the surrounding land than the railway police catching me. The farm is on the right of the bridge, and used to home to a herd of Holstein - Friesian  Dairy and Beef cattle  Alas now no cattle, the farm building is shut up and the farmer lives in a bungalow nearby. The stables and barns now rented out to house horses. I believe the farm and land did belonged to the Ashton Family at one time.  

The arch to the left in the picture is going towards Hyde Central and beyond, while the one on the right did go towards Godley Junction and beyond, but now is part of the Trans Pennine walkway and forms the 3 mile + section from Apethorn to Godley. The T.P.W. trail stops at the bridge on Apethorn Lane and this last section from there to this right hand arch has been allowed to turn back to nature. It was alway a good place to shoot rabbits, must be even better now. '

Reports of a Train Crash that happened here

Dated January 1915

Dated March 1915

Sunday, 9 July 2017

Missing Pictures.

A site hosting some of our pictures as started charging to host our pictures and allow them to be linked to. Instead of paying more for this privilege I will be moving all the effected pictures post by post to somewhere else. This will be on going until the job is done but will take some time.

Monday, 3 July 2017

Horrid Crimes Of Bygone Cheshire

Nice to get this email today... Nancy MorrisDave WilliamsPaul Taylor.
Hello Tom
I promised to let you know when my new Cheshire true-crime book (entitled Horrid Crimes Of Bygone Cheshire) was published. Well, the deed is done. The book is now available though Amazon (also as an e-book) or on order from major booksellers.
Please pass on my thanks to your colleagues at hydonian.blogspot.co.uk for all your help in its creation.
Regards, Derek Yarwood.

Horrid Crimes Of Bygone Cheshire

True-crime writer Derek Yarwood dips into the archives to uncover more dark tales of murder and mayhem in 18th- and 19th-century Cheshire. A retired journalist, he has combined the newspaper man's natural instinct for a good story with his interest in local history, to produce a fascinating anthology that is based extensively on original source material. Drawn from long-forgotten assize court files, judges' notes and inquest depositions — and with contemporary newspaper reports adding flavour to the mix — these are the most comprehensive, authenticated accounts of the cases ever published. The villains featured here include house-breakers and highway robbers; mothers who killed their children and children who killed their parents; murderers of policemen and partners; nearly all whom ended up swinging from the hangman's rope. This is the third instalment of the author's Cheshire true-crime series, in which he has re-visited over 200 crimes spanning four centuries. The others being "A Vintage Casebook of Cheshire Crime" and "Cheshire's Execution Files".

Tuesday, 23 May 2017


New video sent in by Dave.B. a true friend of the blog and Pole Bank

Monday, 15 May 2017

Email from Gareth Irving, can anyone assist with the requests. 

I'm currently researching in to a certain person and wondered if you could assist me?

Last year I purchased a Somme 100 commemorative poppy pin from the Royal British Legion. The poppy pin came with a certificate commemorating the life of a solider who died in the battle of the Somme. I made a promise before purchasing that I would research in to the soldier who gave his life and collate everything together to make sure they were never forgotten for the sacrifice they made.

My certificate commemorates the life of Private Joseph Wilde from the Manchester regiment. From my research I believe he lived at 81 Great Norbury Street, Hyde. Unfortunately this address no longer exists, the large Asda superstore now sits where his home would have been.

I've managed to find an ordnance survey map from 1910 which enabled me to estimate where house number 81 would have been located. This led me to find a grainy aerial photograph from the 1970's showing what I believe to be the house where his parents had lived at the time of his death.

So far I've put together a family tree, found detailed information on his service record, read up about the 16th Battalion and found the location of where he died. In July we are retracing the route of the 16th Battalion through France, finishing at his graveside on the anniversary of Mr Wilde's death.

I think you guys have put together a fantastic website about Hyde and hoped you may be able to assist me with a few things:

1. Do you know of any photos that shows the houses opposite the junction of Railway Street and Great Norbury Street, particularly the houses between Lucas Street (now Greenfield Street) and Boardman Street (no longer exists). I believe this is where number 81 would have been located.

2. Do you know of any photos showing the 16th Battalion, Manchester Regiment. Any group shots in camp, or photos of them serving in France?

3. Is the family name Wilde well known in Hyde?  Do you know of any photographs that exist of Mr Joseph Wilde or his parents?

I appreciate you may not be able to assist with any of the points above but from what I've seen online you seem like the people to come to involving all things Hyde.

I'm based in Huddersfield so can travel to Hyde or surrounding areas should I need to visit certain places to further my research.

Thank you in advance for any help you can provide, it will be very much appreciated.

Kind Regards

Saturday, 1 April 2017

Newton Mill, Bridge Set Information Request.

We've been contacted by a chap called Matthew with a request for help...  hopefully one of our readers worked at the mill and can provide some information.

Over To Matthew

I have been scouring the web and pestering playing card "experts" about this for a week now, to no avail.

I am attaching some photographs.

From what I have discovered since emailing you, it looks like "Romney Series" was a brand of stationery etc. by Newton Mill, produced between the 1930s and 1950s and it looks as if they assembled bridge sets using their own printed score pads and bridge score cards, with playing cards sourced from Waddingtons, Thomas de La Rue and possibly others (they are so obscure it’s hard to be sure).

My notes, which I sent to the playing card museum I am a volunteer contributor to, are as follows:

""Romney Series" was a brand employed by Manchester (Hyde) stationery manufacturer Newton Mill. 

This company produced various items of stationery, playing cards do not seem to have been one of them, however, they did release at least two Bridge sets. One I have is a delightful soft green leather case holding a single score pad and pencil plus two packs of Waddington's cards c1934.

The other is an embossed to look like crocodile skin, maroon, card case with a hinged lid and drop front containing two packs of De La Rue Rajah playing cards, c1934, four score pads each with its own pencil, a bridge score card (anonymous) and a "Bex Moulding" bakelite ashtray.

From the presence of the ashtray we can state, with some certainty, that Newton Mill produced these sets, probably printing their own score pads, bridge score cards, and had cases custom made and assembled them with varying quality cards of the time. The green leather case, obviously high quality, contains anonymised, gilt-edged Waddingtons cards as one finds in the Wills scheme.

The likelihood of two separate finds, both with substitute packs of cards, both from the same era, strikes me as rather unlikely, especially for something as unusual."

Can you provide any information at all about these?
Of particular interest is:
1) Did Newton Mill manufacture their own playing cards, or package another brand in their bridge sets?
2) When were these produced? Circumstantial evidence suggests some time between the 1930s and 1950s.

Saturday, 4 March 2017

Norma's Memories Of Hyde

Todays post is from Norma, 

I was born at 26 Hamnett St in 1941, My name then was Norma Sunderland and I attended Greenfield Street School until 1952 when I passed my 11th plus and went to Hyde County Grammar school until 1957. I was one of the last girls there as Astley grammar opened in, I think 1956.
I can remember crossing the old George Street on Donnybrook, to get to my first job at Dishman's chemist shop, where I worked just before my marriage in 1960. I also worked for a few weeks at the CPA factory, at the bottom end of George Street to earn extra money towards my wedding.

I married a policeman and became Norma Burch and moved to Chester. My parents were rehoused in Gee Cross in 1963. After living and working all over England I am happily retired from a long career in nursing and living with my present partner in Warrington. It would be nice to hear from anyone who remembers me. 

Norma Evens

If you would like to contact Norma please contact me and I will pass on her email address.

Looking down George Street from Newton Street, Spinners Arms on left.

View From The 1930s

Monday, 13 February 2017

Bomb At The Bottom Of The Garden

I was sent this interesting story by Karl Blon.

Karl Digging his garden... note his clogs. 

Over to Karl

The cutting is dated 2nd June 1972 and in those days the paper was called North Cheshire Herald.
That was when Hyde was in the county of Cheshire.
We moved away from Hyde in 1985 to North Devon where we lived for 30 years. Those years were the ‘peaceful area’ days and which Exmoor on our doorstep, it was a pleasure to live there. Also, having 2 grown up sons at the time, we thought it would give them a better quality of life.
During August, 2013 we moved to peaceful Anglesey where we live to this day enjoying a ‘peaceful’ but fulfilling retirement.

However, I still have a soft spot for Hyde as people treated me very kindly. When I lived in Hyde I secured employment with Ashton Bros. and later with ICI Hyde in their marketing Department.