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1827-1890Below is the Blue Plaque recently unveiled September 1999 to the Suffragist and Campaigner Lydia Ernestine Becker. Further information can be found by accessing the approprate page.
Foxdenton Lane, Chadderton
The Foxdenton heritage started in the early 1400's when Elizabeth Radcliffe married her cousin Robert Radcliffe and they built the first Foxdenton Hall as their home. William Radcliffe, the "Foxdenton Redhead", rebuilt the Hall in 1620. He was killed together with his son and heir, Robert fighting for his country at the Battle of Edgehill in 1642, and it was Alexander (Radclyffe) who was responsible for rebuilding the hall in 1700 as it is seen today. The last of the Radclyffes was Charles Robert Eustace who died in 1953 and brought to an end the long line of Radclyffes, who had lived in Foxdenton Hall.
During the turbulent times of the Civil Wars, when the Cavaliers were very vulnerable, it would have been expedient to have a quick means of escape, and it was widely rumoured to have a tunnel from Foxdenton to Chadderton Hall. This was never really proved except when Chadderton Council were renovating the Hall in 1965 they found a large stack of bricks under the new stone terrace. Albert Halkyard claims to have found evidence of this tunnel through the use of a revealer' a sophisticated piece of equipment and supposedly the tunnel' ran for about 20ft before it was blocked by a brick wall.
In recent times the Hall has been used for various private function. In October 1989 the Cappio Historical Dance Music Group presented "A Barogue Assembly". It was presented complete with period costume and instruments, dancing minuet, suites and country dances recreating the atmosphere of the Barogue extravaganza.
More recently Chadderton Historical Society in 1992 held its own Jacobean Festival, during which Lady Maureen Black (Radcliffe of Foxdenton) and our Society's Patron planted a tree. Last year (1999) as part of the Oldham Borough 150th Anniversary, the Society staged a major exhibition of photographs, documents, maps, memorabilia and artefacts. During the day illustrated talks were given by Michael Lawson, who has written several books on 'The History and Heritage of Chadderton'
One of the well cared-for Bowling Greens at Foxdenton Park
Foxdenton Lake with Fountain.
Front of Foxdenton Hall
In July 2000 a Sensory Garden was created in Foxdenton Park. It uses features such as wood, water, and the path has been made of natural stone which feels and sounds textural.
The garden is the result of joint cooperation between the Oldham Council Departments and Foxdenton and Gorse Bank Schools and has taken many months of hard work to achieve.
It combines cascading water feature made up of three boulders, an oak pagoda and a selection of plants to stimulate the senses.
It was opened July 2000 by Councillor Sid Jacobs as part of the Millennium celebrations.
Green Flag Award Foxdenton Park.Great excitement was aroused when it was confirmed that Foxdenton had been awarded the prestigious Green Flag Award . This award is based on the following criteria.
Photograph with kind permission of the Oldham Chronicle.
1. A welcoming Place.
2. Healthy, Safe and Secure.
4. Well Maintained and secure.
5. Conservation and Heritage.
6. Community Involvement.
Awards are given on an annual basis and winners must apply each year to renew their Green Flag Status. The unveiling ceremony took place on September 12th 2007, by the Mayor Cllr Ann Wingate and her consort, Steve Smith , Manager, Park and Open Spaces, and representative , Gill Stevenson, Friends of Foxdenton, and Michael Lawson, Secretary of the Chadderton Historical Society, and Mark Johnson, Chairman of the Society.
Foxdenton has an excellent cafe, well maintained bowling green, childrens play park, sensory garden, tennis courts. The grounds and gardens are well maintained by the Authority. Additionally, focus for children and adults is provided by the Chainsaw artist, Richard James who recently Tree Sculptured the Heron aesops fable.
The Award Ceremony was held at Leeds Armoury on 26th July, attended by officers of the Council and four members of the Friends of Foxdenton Park.
Family portraits of the Radclyffe family were officially unveiled at Chadderton Town Hall; on 7th October 2002, by Nicholas Radclyffe grandson of the last Lord of the Manor of Chadderton and Foxdenton, Major Charles Robert Eustace Radclyffe.
There are seven portraits in all,
(1) Sir Richard Radclyffe of Newcroft and Foxdenton, - painted 1569, artist unknown.
(2) Sir William Radcliffe of Foxdenton - painted c. 1640, artist unknown.
(3) Sir Alexander Radclyffe of Ordsall - attributed t Van Dyck
(4) Robert Radclyffe of Ordsall & Wythenshaw - attributed to Sir Peter Lely
(5) Alexander Radclyffe of foxdenton - attributed to Sir Peter Lely
(6) Charles James Radclyffe of Foxdenton and Hyde - painted in 1829
(7) Charles Robert Eustace Radclyffe of Foxdenton and Hyde
The Chadderton Historical Society would like to thank the following:
Nicholas Radclyffe for his generous gift of photographic slides of the family portraits, and for so kindly agreeing to unveil the portraits.
Chadderton Area Committee for their interest and support, and for so generously providing financial assistance for the project.
George Barrie , of Summit Studios, for his excellent production of the framed portraits.
Oldham Metropolitan Borough Council for organising the display of the portaits.
Members of the Chadderton Historical Society who played a part in bringing the project to a satisfactory conclusion.
There is a booklet published by Chadderton Historical Society , 'The Radclyffe Family Portraits', 'on display at Chadderton Town Hall,' Biographies compiled by Michael Lawson, which is available for members of the public at a nominal cost of £1.00 to accompany these portraits. Copies available on request or from Chadderton Library, Middleton Road, Chadderton, telephone 0161 665 2225
For further information of events at Foxdenton Hall, please access their site: Friends of Foxdenton Hall & Park
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Date Last Modified: 13/06/2010 Copyright Chadderton Historical Society 1999-2010