Programme of Events.

Chadderton Historical Society


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Current Newsletter
Avro History
Chadderton Celebrates
Chadderton Listed Buildings





The Society normally meets at 7.30 p.m. at Chadderton Central Library,

Middleton Road, on the first Thursday of each month, unless holidays, etc. necessitate a change of date to the second week. Membership Annual subscription £10.00 . Visitors' donations most welcome. 

Chairman: Mark Johnson. Secretary: Michael Lawson B.Ed.,M.A. Treasurer: Denis Barrott. Membership Sec: Enid Johnson

Patron Lady Maureen Black (Radclyffe of Foxdenton)

President Councillor Sid Jacobs;

Vice President Councillor Jim Greenwood




Programme of Events

2001 - 2002

Visit to Fairfield Moravian Settlement, Droylsden.

7th June 2001

The Moravian Church traces its origins to 1457, when it was founded in Moravia, now part of the Czech Republic. Its official name is Unitas Fratrum, Or Unity of the Brethren, and it was the first to be formed during the Reformation period, preceding Martin Luther by sixty years. Following persecution, the Church was 'renewed' in 1727, and spread to other countries, including England. A Moravian Church exists at: Westwood just over the Chadderton boundary, but this evening we have a guided tour of the historic settlement at Droylsden.

[Meet at Victoria Street Car Park at 7.00 p.m.1


5th July 2001

Visit to Portland Basin Museum, Ashton-under-Lyne

The Portland Basin, refurbished and re~pened in 1999, is the centrepiece of the Ashton Canal Warehouse, now looking much as it did in 1834, when it was first built. Here we have the opportunity to walk back in time and learn about Tameside's history, whilst we experience the lifestyle, industries, crafts, and trades of hygone ages Call at the Bridge Inn, chat in the chippie, pop in the grocer's, visit the doctor - discover just how times have really changed!

[Meet at Victoria Street Car Park a: 7.00 p.m.]


9th August 2001

"Broadway Central to Firwood Park"

The local history rarnble this year commences a: the Broadway/Middleton Road junction and proceeds down Middleton Road as far as Ferney Field Read in the district known as Nordens. The route then continues down Ferney Field and along the public footpath through Firwood Park Estate. After reaching the Rochdale Canal the route continues to Foxdenton Lane which is followed for a short distance until a public footpath takes us hack towards Ferney Field Farm. From there the disused rallway line is followed along the new linear park to Hunt Lane and back to Broadway. This raanble takes in a variety of interesting features and is sure to be as enjoyable as our many previous local walks.

[Meet at the Car Park outside St. Herbert's Parish Centre a: 7.30 p.m.]


6th September 2001

Visit to the Weavers' Triangle Visitor Centre, Burnley

This evening we take a walk through the Weavers' Triangle - a well-preserved Victorian industrial landseape. While Chadderton was an important town in the cotton spinning area of Lancashire, Burnley led the world in the weaving of cotton cloth. The opportunity is offered to examine various buildings weaving sheds, spinning mills, warehouses, foundries, domestic buildings and a school. See a weaver's cellar dwelling from the turn of the l9/2Oth century, and inspect a fine canal-side wharf, before ending the evening with tea and biscuits in the Wharfmaster's Victorian parlour.

[Meet at Victoria Street Car Park a: 7.00 p.m. prompt. 'l'he tour is booked for 7.45 p. m.]


4th October 2001

"History and Mystery Walk!"

Such walks are now popular in many towns throughout the country, and members may have taken part in them. This year we have our very own 'ghost' walk led by our 'Man in Black'. The walk goes from the town centre towards Busk and on to Cowhill, and returns by way of Stockhrook. Along the way authentic tales of doom and gloom will be recounted as mernbers visit some of the places where sad, tragic, and macabre happenings have taken place in past years. A strong constitution, together with a vivid imagination, are the order of the night! [Meet at Victoria Street Car Park for 7.30 p.m. start. Garlic cloves not provided!]


8th November 2001

Rochdale Canal Restoration Update

Once more we welcome Brian Holden from the Rochdale Canal Society, who will give us the latest news on the restoration of our local waterway. Opened in 1799-1804, the 'Rochdale' was the first trans-Pennine canal and the most successlul in terms of tonnage. During the 20th century it gradually fell into dereliction and became closed to through traffic. In recent years plans to reopen it for its bicentenary in 2004 have gone ahead, and in Chadderton a new lift bridge is to be constructed this summer to carry Foxdenton Lane over the canal.


6th December 2001

"From Heathens to Red Devils"

Our 'Red Rose' county is home to many famous soccer clubs, but without doubt the most successful is Manchester United. Two of our members, Reg Lord and Matthew Butterworth, trace the historv of this world-famous club. Our near neighbours were once even closer when, in 1878, they were formed at Newton Heath in north Manchester. In 1885, they turned professional, seven years later were admitted into the Football League, and in 1902, were renamed Manchester United! The move to Stretford was made in 1910, and their new ground was named Old Trafford - the present 'Theatre of Dreams' and home to the 'Red Devils'.

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3rd January 2002

Annual Party: Theme "The Georgian Era".

This year's party takes as its theme the Georgian period. The accession of George I in 1714, ushered in the Hanoverian Dynasty, and the opening of a new era in British history. Commercial and industrial prosperity increased but the period also produced a mental and religious revolution. On the home scene the Hortons were lords of the Manor and maintained their residence, Chadderton Hall, at its most magnifcent. Once again Society member, Christine Dennis, has undertaken to provide a full and apprcpriate menu. Costume is optional!


7th February 2002

"In the Steps of the Brontes"

The Brontes were an extraordinary literary family who came to live in Haworth, in the West Riding of Yorkshire, in 1820. All six children died from illness while young but during their short and sad lives the three youngest sisters, Charlotte, Emily and Anne, were to leave the world a priceless legacy of novels, poems, songs, and short stories. This evening Margaret Curry, returning to Chadderton for her seventh visit, takes us on a journey through the area so well loved by the Brontes, and whose history and natural beauty gave the sisters the inspiration for their literary masterpieces.


7th March 2002

"Fairs, Feasts, and Festivals"

Celebrations are an important part of life for most people. In Chadderton we used to have 'Cowhill Wakes' which was a fair held each August from 1886, to about 1960. Many of us remember well the May Day entertainments with their homemade 'maypoles', whilst the doggelel verse of 'cob-coalin', prior to Bonfire Time, still haunts those of us above a certain age. This evening we welcome fbr the first time Ray Rush fiom Macclesfield, Cheshire, who describes some of the celebratory customs of Britain which mark the passage of the seasons.


11th April 2002

"The Radclyffes - Family of Distinction!"

In his 'Book of the Radclyffes' Charles Hampson makes the statement: '"No family in England has played a more intimate part in shaping the nation's destiny; none is more closely interwoven with every phase of England's history, artificers of its glory, workers in the tradition" The family first entered into Chadderton's history about 1367, when John de Radcliffe married the heiress to the Manor, Margery de Chadderton, In 1454, at the division of the Manor, Elizabeth Radcliffe married her cousin, Robert Radcliffe of Ordsall, and they built the first Foxdenton Hall. This evening Society members Michael Lawson and Mark Johnson consider the influence, locally and nationally, of the various branches of this family.


2nd May 2002

Twenty-Seventh Annual General Meeting

The Annual General Meeting provides the opportunity for members to consider future policies and the way they would like to see the Society progress in the future. We have commenced our project to create a 'Chadderton Heritage Centre' and this will he one of the major issues under discussion, All members are asked to be present at this important meeting at which the election of Trustees and various officers will also take place.

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 Year 2000 to 2001

8th June 2000

Visit to Chetham's Library, Manchester.

Chetham's Library, founded in 1653, is the oldest public Library in Britain. It was formed under the will of a wealthy Manchester merchant, Humphrey Chetham (1580-1653) who also endowed a hospital school for poor boys - now the equally-famous Chetham's School of Music. The Library and Hospital occupy a building dating from 1421, which was originally built as a college of priests to serve the nearby collegiate church of St. Mary, now Manchester Cathedral. The library holds more than 100,000 volumes of which about 60,000 date from before 1851. There are documents dating from the 12th century, rich collections from the 16th and 17th centuries, and a wealth of material on the Manchester region.

{Meet at Victoria Street Car park at 7 p.m. or Chethams Library at 7.30p.m.}

6th July 2000

Visit to Rochdale Museum Archives Storage.
This archive storage building, which was only opened in recent years, stands on the site of the former Thomas Robinson milling machinery makers. The complex comprises a number of controlled environment rooms in which the Rochdale Museum Service stores an impressive collection of documents, clothes and artefacts. The archives are not normally open to the general public and this evening's guided visit promises to be most interesting as members browse through the various collestions of memorabilia.
[Meet at Victoria Street car park at 7.10 p.m.]

 10th August 2000

"Nimble Nook to Whitegate"

This month's local history ramble commences at Nimble Nook, at one time one of the many hamlets within our township, but now not so clearly defined. Historically it was centred around its inn which dates back to the late 18th century and was known as the Gamekeeper, and the Green Man, before settling for its present name of the Sportsman. The area through which the walk is made was developed mainly during the past century, with parts being significantly altered in recent years. However, there are still a number of features of note whilst other buildings now demolished, such as Chadderton Power Station at Slacks Valley, once added an element of prestige, if not necessarily beauty, to this locality.

[Meet at the Car Park outside Gorse Bank/Foxdenton Schools at 7.30 p.m.]

7th September, 2000

 "Chadderton Swimming Club and Henry Taylor"
Chadderton Swimming Baths was opened by the Urban District Council in 1894. The swimming club dates from this period and throughout its history has enjoyed a reputation for excellence. Among its many notable members the name of Henry Taylor is perhaps the best known. His unofficial title of "Britain's greatest -ever amateur swimmer" is well deserved for during his career of half a century he won numerous trophies including four Olympic gold medals, a record long unbroken. This evening Bernard Edge, former secretary of the club, invites us all to share in the triumphs and tribulations of this impressive aquatic organisation.


5th October, 2000

"Curiouser and Curiouser"

Returning for her sixth visit to Chadderton Margaret Curry is assured of a warm welcome as always. Over the years she has invited us to share her journeys throughout the length and breadth of the country as she covers such diverse topics as water mills, Derbyshire well dressings, and Lady Anne Clifford's fight for her rightful inheritance. This year her subject is not quite so obvious but should be just as entertaining as we are shown some of the oddities to be found in the English countryside - from the unusual or bizaare, to the downright gruesome!

9th November, 2000

 "Looking Back at Royton".

Francis Stott, community librarian at Crompton, and local author and historian, talks about our neighbouring town of Royton and its people - our country cousins? While it shares with Chadderton many of the aspects of growth associated with the Industrial Revolution and the cotton industry, its general development was somewhat different. The Victorian town evolved from its ancient hamlet centered on Royton Hall, former home of the Byrons, Percivals and Pickford-Radcliffes. By 1910, with the erection of its public baths, Royton had all the facilities of a small northern industrial town, and a population that had reached 15000.


7th December, 2000

"Heraldry at Lancaster Castle"

As the county town Lancaster held its own assize courts and on several occasions inhabitants of Chadderton, charged with a whole series of offences, were taken there to await trial and verdict. The castle, a place to be feared by many, had a special place in the lives of the High Sheriff of Lancashire and on six occasions between 1591 and 1775, Lords of Chadderton and Foxdenton held this important position. At the end of his year of office a ceremony was held at which the sheriff's coat-of-arms was hung in the shire hall of the castle, and the heraldic devices of our local lords may still be seen on display. Alick Hadwen, from Preston, visits us for the first time to give an illustrated talk on this fascinating subject.

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4th January, 2001

Annual Party - Theme "The Forties"

The theme of the society's annual party this year is the nineteen-forties. The first five years of that decade were preoccupied with the Second World War, while the years that followed, comprised a period of austerity and reconstruction. Whether viewed from a military or civil perspective, the "Forties" should provide plenty of inspiration for those members who wish to add to the festivities by coming along in period costume. Many thanks to Christine Dennis who once again, will be responsible for the catering-based on Forties Food!


1st February, 2001

"Sixty Years of Spinning Yarns - Part Two"

 Ken Brough, who visited us two years ago, continues his tales of life in the local cotton industry. With the news of the impending closure of Chadderton's last mill actively engaged in cotton spinning - by a strange co-incidence named the "Chadderton Mill" - the choice of subject seems most appropriate. At one time the town had nearly 60 cotton mills covering the landscape. Today only 15 of these industrial giants survive, each bearing mute testimony to the industry that once placed our county of Lancashire at the centre of the world stage.


1st March, 2001

Visit by Oldham Local Studies Archive Officer

This evening we welcome for the first time Maria Sienkiewicz, Oldham's Archive Officer. She will give us an insight into the resources and working of the vast Archive Department of the Local Studies Library, and it is planned that she will bring along several items associated with the history of Chadderton.


5th April, 2001

"The Life and Times of Bishop William Chadderton"

William Chadderton, who was born about 1540 at Nuthurst in our neighbouring township of Moston, was a direct descendant of Geoffrey de Chadderton, the first Lord of the Manor of Chadderton and Foxdenton back in the 13th century.. Embarking on a career in the church he held the office of Warden of Manchester Collegiate Church (now the Cathedral) before becoming Bishop of Chester and then of Lincoln. Society members Michael Lawson and Mark Johnson give an illustrated account of the life of Bishop Chadderton setting it within the wider context of the turbulent religious changes of the sixteenth century.


3rd May, 2001

Twenty-Sixth Annual General Meeting

All members are asked to attend this important meeting at which the election of Trustees and Officers will take place. The AGM provides the opportunity for members to discuss the future direction of the Society and to put forward their views on any aspect of the Society's policies.

Special Visit-December 2000

Christmas Market at Skipton

On Sunday 10th December 2000, it is proposed that Society members and friends visit the market town of Skipton for the day. The trip will include visits to the castle, the church and the famous Christmas market. The visit will be by coach and interested members should contact Christine Dennis, as soon as possible, for further details of cost, etc.

The Society normally meets at 7.30 p.m. at Chadderton Central Library,
Middleton Road, on the first Thursday of each month, unless holidays, etc. necessitate a change of date.
Membership subscription on application. Casual visitors donation of £1.00
most welcome. 


Chairman: Mark Johnson. Secretary: Michael Lawson B.Ed.,M.A.

Treasurer: Denis Barrott. Membership Sec: Enid Johnson

Patron Lady Maureen Black (Radclyffe of Foxdenton)

President Councillor Sid Jacobs; Vice President Councillor Jim Greenwood


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Home Page | The Town and its People | Chadderton Hall | Foxdenton Hall | Chadderton Mills | Heritage Centre

Favourite Links | Membership | Henry Taylor | Peterloo Massacre | Lydia Becker | Current Newsletter | Avro History

Chadderton Celebrates | Listed Buildings

Last Modified: 31/4/2001 Copyright Chadderton Historical Society 1999-2001