My father William (Bill) Dootson born 1905 was the son of John William
Dootson who at one time was manager of the Leigh Friendly Cooperative
on Atherton Road Hindley Green. My father had two brothers Tom and
Harry (who died in the Spanish Flu epidemic in 1918). My fathers
uncle was T R Dootson and his mother was Martha Ashworth (sister of
Joseph Ashworth the mayor). I think that the family lived at the house
in the attachment which is just near the old school whilst the children
Hindley Common School 1909 William Dootson b.1905
My name is Florence Blyth nee Baxendale
I have sent info to your site before about the factory chimney down
swan lane and the Boggart Houses I thought you may like this photo
of my Grandfather William James Baxendale he is the one standing on
the right next to him his son Mathias this photo was taken behind
the houses in Johnson street down Swan Lane it was before 1925 as
Mathias died of TB in 1925 all the men lived in Johnson Street
Hugh Keany of No 6 Harrison St Hindley Green
Hugh with his wife Teresa and daughter Vin
Hugh Keany 2nd from right, front row.
Hugh Keany front row right
Do you recognise anyone or have further information,
Annie and Christine Davies about 1949 / 231 Leigh Road
Brunswick Methodist Day School 1950's
Jim Hotchkiss - Back row right hand side, at the end
of the row.
Next to me is David Seddon.
Next to back row, fourth from right is Jaqualine Blower.
I was born in one of the houses in the background,
number 9 or 11 Slackey Fould Lane, my grandparents house, their name
My address was 271 leigh road, hindley green.
Where the car park of the mechanics arms pub is now.
You can see that I am the one standing to attention,
as I remember! my mother and grandma were looking over the wall telling
me to stand up straight and put my arms by my side.
St Johns Choir 1930/40s
St Johns Walking Day in late 50s
St Johns Walking Day late 1950's
Green, St Johns School ( Submitted by Neil Shotton )
4th girl from left is Janet Flanegan, 10th l is Christine Bold, 13th
is Brenda Collier (me), 14th is Pat Sherrington, teacher is Fred Hardman.
Second row, 8th boy from left is Christopher Reeve, 14, 15 & 16
are Jim Fisher, Jeff Fisher & Steve Fisher
Third row 5th girl from left is Maureen Porter, 7th is Iris Statham
Bottom row, second boy from left is Dennis Woods, 4th is Robert Holden,
16th is Rodney Brockley.
you regognise anyone else??? Let us know ( Contact
Farm, Hindley Green
by Byron Morris )
Alice Turton, later Rigby, delivering milk from the farm, somewhere
in Hindley Green.
thought you might be interested in this Hindley Green photo - 1950s
Taken at a Sacred Heart (Swan Lane) Catholic Young Mens' Social Evening.....my
Harry Pennington, God Bless him, fifth on the left. Interestingly,
my dad was seemingly
an anti-catholic bigot....but he had a regular night out at the Catholic
Club and often drank
with Fr. Goslin, the Sacred Heart priest. So - one evening, on his
return from his employment
at Norstel, Fr. Goslin popped out from the Presbyterie to say "Harry,
are you coming to the
CYMS Social on Friday night?" My dad, being a totally honest man, replied
"Father, I can't -
I'm not a Catholic!" To which Fr G replied "You can bend your elbow
and sing the first verse
and chorus of 'Faith of our Fathers', can't you?"....to which, I was
told, my Dad replied that
he could sing that hymn all the way through....he'd learned it at the
ceilhdes (is that how you
spell it? pronounced "cayleys") we had on some Saturday nights with
my mother's Irish-Catholic relations....I remember them - they started
with "Mountains of Mourne", "Paddy McGinty's Goat"
and ended with "Faith of our Fathers", followed by a soprano rendering
of "Ave Maria".
my dad went to the CYMS Social - and the photo might well have been
taken by Fr Goslin
himself. Incidentally, fourth from the left might be a chap called
Bill Foster, who lived in Thomas Street.
does anyone know anything about "Stone House"?....coming down Leigh
the Bethel Chapel end, on the left there was the railway station,
with a track alongside the line
- then a little further on there was a track we called Stone House.
It would be nice to hear from anyone who knows anything about the
"Stone House". I lived in Hindley Green from about three
years old to twenty-odd, and I've wondered forever about Stone House.
was just wondering if anyone had any info on this photo. I am not sure
when it was taken
but it's out side the Alexandra on swan lane.
landlord is standing in the doorway his name was Thomas Harrison his
wife was Maggie.
As you can see at the front they are holding trophies and in the window
is a poster with
something final on it.
The picture which was taken outside the Alexandra pub the man on the
right No11, is my dad George Frederick West. The lady, Mrs Hughes No
3, is my Great Grandma. George was married to Annie
Rushton my mum they lived at Speakmans Farm (Brookside Kennels),which
belonged to my Grandad
George Rushton.I know my dad played football for the Alexandra Pub.
below taken around 1920 at the front of the Alexandra pub, Swan Lane,
Hindley Green showing the landlord at that time Matthew Ashurst.
from Wigan Archives Service, WLCT".
John's School Class 1908/09
by Eric Turner
St Johns Class
Young Mens Football Team
Young Men 1934
above photo's are from the old Bethel.
known as " Top O't Sonds Chapel "Photograph's
with kind permission of Eric Turner. ( Eric is the little boy sitting
on his dad's knee)
( Eric's grandfather Fred Turner was choir master)Back to Top of Page
Colliery, Hindley Green.
site was used for the storage of cotton bales towards the end of W.W.2
and for a
few years after. Eric Turner took this photo' from the top of the
slag heap known as the
Aerial Flights when on leave from the Army in 1947. The bales were
stacked, covered with
tarpaulins and corrugated iron sheets until needed.
black building with tower to the top left of photo is Kirkpatrick
the War it had been RAF Depot,Hindley Green, not a lot of people know
road going from Scowcroft's lodge to the left middle distance is now
white building in the centre is Harold Grimes shop at the end of Long
Road. New houses are under construction in Scowcroft Street,(Maple
probably No,13&15. Green's farm is in the field on the right.
above photo's with kind permission of Eric Turner
Below are of Scowcroft Farm, ( Scowies ) Hindley Green
Pictures Submitted by Graham Purnell(
The farm house at the bottom of the photo is where I was born. The Farm
is Scowcroft Farm,Close Lane, Hindley Green, near Wigan.)
hotel stood where the industrial units are in Leigh Rd opposite PPG
The Pawnshop, Organ St, Hindley Green 1904
The Railway Hotel, Leigh Rd, Hindley Green
Landlord and Landlady The Railway Pub. circa 1909
They are listed there on the 1911 census -Daniel and Mary Whittle.
This is a photo taken at the back of the pub of one of their sons and
his wife with their 3 sons.
This couple later became the Landlord and Landlady of
the Leg O Mutton in Hindley.
This information relates to the site on Atherton Rd, Hindley
Green at the top of Leigh Rd
where the Bethel Community Centre stands.
Today it is occupied by the Family
Church @ Bethel.
Bethel United Methodist Church Hindley Green was originally
known in the early days as
Hindley Common Church.
The church began in 1865 and the
Church & Sunday school were offshoots of Brunswick
Methodist Church which was in Leigh Rd, Hindley Green. Today known as
The church was founded in1865
in the house of William Meadows in Coal Pit Lane.
George Elliot offered his small
shop on Atherton Rd for use as a Sunday School.
The floor had no floorboards,
no stone flags the people stood and knelt on the bare earth.
On the 1st Sunday 10th Sept 1865
there were 58 people attended in the morning and 87 in
On the 2nd Sunday, 17th Sept there were a total of 160 persons attended.
Eventually the shop became too
small, so there was an appeal for money to build a new Church.
John Thomason ( Picture below
) appealed on behalf of United Methodist Free Church.
Charles Abbott of Swan Lane
loaned his barn (Above) for Sunday school address.
In 1866, Lomax & Griffiths
of Platt Bridge were employed to do the building
( A small brick building ) and on the 23rd July 1866, the foundation
stone was laid.
The building cost £250 and took 13 and a half mths to complete.
In 1871 72 the school began
to give way because of land movement caused by the
nearby pits. The Church was declared unfit for worship.
Thomas Kirkpatrick and Sons cotton
mills offered a room in the mill in Atherton Rd to be
used as the Sunday School and Church. The Church stayed in this room
for 1 year.
Early pioneers of the
church at Bethel
John Hodgkiss was Lead Singer
Because of the damage, the last
meeting was held in Church at Bethel on June 22nd1873
A legal wrangle took place between
the Bethel trustees and John Speakman, who at first, refused
to accept liability for the damage.
Eventually, after a very expensive
law suit and a 4 day trial in Bolton Town Hall, John Speakman
was forced to accept full responsibility for the damage and erect a
temporary building of wood
( Described as a lovely looking Doric style building, which was eventually
clad with zinc tin.
Because of the many different
buildings that had been used for the Sunday School and Church.
names emerged for the Church, name such as: Noahs Ark, Silver
Chapel, Tea Caddy,
Top-o-th-Sands and United Methodist Free Church.
the church numbers grew, it became obvious that this building was not
sufficient for the size
of the congregation.
the church stewards did a deal and sold the wooden building to Westleigh
Mill for £120
and it was dismantled in 1882.
A new brick church was built ( below ) at the cost of £1,315. 16. 6,
the foundation stones being
laid on 4th November 1882.
Further wrangles with the Swan
Lane Brick and Coal Co took place as a result of damage to
the Church. A shaft was sunk 30 yds from school and caused further damage
to the school.
Finally, after much aurgument and court dealings
in 1896 the matter was settled.
In 1901 a new pipe organ was installed.
The church had many problems over the years.
In 1905 the foundation began to give way again.
On two occasions the building was struck by lightening and on another
occasion damaged by
The church celebrated its Jubilee Celebrations on Saturday
& Sunday 30th & 31st October
The church building was eventually demolished about 1971.
"With permission from Wigan Archives Service, WLCT".
More detailed account can be found in Leigh Library
History of Bethel United
Methodist Church Hindley Green from
1865 to 1915
Hindley Green Railway Station
Leigh Rd, Hindley Green.
The station was opened by the London and North Western Railway on 1
September 1864, in common with other stations on the Manchester to Wigan
The station joined the London Midland and Scottish Railway during the
Grouping in 1923 and passed to the London Midland Region of British
Railways on nationalisation in 1948.
The station closed on 1 May 1961.
Coal deposits were the chief motivation for building a railway in the
area and the railway's supporters included many local colliery owners
One of the first cars to be seen in Hindley Green.
Morris 10 REG 1935 ( Parked outside of above house)
Above is the house during the building.
Below, Notice the row of terraced property
in the background,
these houses would have been where Ingersol Rand now stands.
Florence Blyth nee Baxendale of Hindley Green wrote....
"I was brought up in those houses, there was a long row
then Johnson Street then
a row with 6 houses and a shop at the end I lived in the middle of this
small row the
chimney was Richard Howarths cotton mill".
Further to the right of this row of
houses is Alder Lane, there was some houses known as
" The Boggart Houses " Below.
According to this Census Return for 1841
Boggart House was next to Alder Lane, which originally
was 'Howler Lane'
Boys Brigade Hut to the right ) ( Harrison St top right )
of land next to Thomas St Infants School.
the site of 6 semi detatched houses.
Pictures submitted by
Ronnetts Dance Troupe September 1982
Cllr Stan Simmons presents GMC Lottery Cheque
by Ron Shuttleworth
Fire at Jacob Harworths Factory
11th July 1979
For people that maybe unaware of past events in Hindley
Green, a major fire occurred on the former site of Turner Brothers
Asbestos, Hindley Green on a Wednesday lunchtime 11th July 1979.
A massive explosion occurred causing a towering inferno that sent
smoke and flames up to 200 feet above the factory. Staff working on
site had to run for their lives to save themselves.
The fire started in a two storey warehouse at rear of the site, The
warehouse contained Cotton Bales, Minerals, Plastics and Polyurathane.
It is believed the fire was started by sparks from welding being carried
out in the neighbouring Ward and Goldstone premises.
The building had been sold (leased?) by T.B.A. months before to Jacob
Haworth a Transport and Warehouse company based in Chorley.
The fire burned for 48 hours before it was finally extinguished. The
final damage was estimated at between £3-10 million pounds,
it was so bad that the entire building had to be demolished over the
coming months. We will never know what was contained in the fabric
of the building from its days processing asbestos.
During the event black acrid smoke covered Hindley, Hindley Green
and Bickershaw plus the surrounding areas. That smoke may have contained
toxic ash and gas that settled all over the locality.
It is conjecture that the fire and prevailing winds spread toxic contamination
across a wide area resulting in serious health problems to local residents.
Not only is there a suspicion of toxic waste products being disposed
on land adjacent to the factory but the later fire may have spread
poisonous substances to inhabitants of Hindley and surrounding area.