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SusanW last won the day on January 10 2016

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  1. SusanW


    Hello to yodude64, and everyone else! Could the Winwick tunnels be part of the Winwick Water Works. I found this online: http://www.warringtonguardian.co.uk/districtuploads/callandss/1720114.A_history_of_water/ which mentions tunnels from Delph Lane to Dam Lane. I understand why people are fascinated by the mystery of underground tunnels, but I'm sceptical. Others have pointed out the difficulties in construction, the time and labour required, and the considerable costs. One has to ask the question, "Why?". Why would anyone want to put all that effort into constructing a tunnel? What was its purpose? I don't understand the story of Oliver Cromwell and a tunnel from the Academy to the Parish Church. The Academy wasn't built until about 100 years after Cromwell's death. Cromwell was only in the town briefly. He had no time, no inclination and no reason for building a tunnel to or from anywhere. Tunnels (or culverts) to manage water courses are common enough, and I wonder if this could explain the structures mentioned by old Warringtonians. The River Fleet and several other London rivers are culverted, and have been for a long time. I read that sections of the Fleet were covered over as early as the 1730s. Nottingham Castle tunnels look fascinating, but its clear that many of them are natural caves rather than manmade structures. It seems that some have been altered, adapted and extended over many centuries, but not built 'from scratch', so to speak. Does anyone have any more thoughts on this?
  2. Well, Franners, I wonder if one of those Cuerden Hall workers you mithered was my Great Uncle Noel? I know that he worked as a nurseryman at Cuerden. I'm not sure how many years he was there, but in 1939 he and his wife were living in Marie Drive so I guess he was still at the Hall at that stage.
  3. Hello Algy, Thank you for pointing out the old spelling of Waste Lane, which indicates the original land use (common land) and the correct pronunciation. The old name appears on old maps and was certainly the spelling used by many locals well into the 20th century. My Dad's birth certificate from 1924 states that he was born at 'Highfields, Waste Lane, Thelwall RD'.
  4. Hello PeterC, I'm not sure about the idea of the old 'Dog' being a converted police station. The OS surveyed between 1873 and 1876 and published in 1882 a map which has the words 'Police Station' to the west of the junction, to the south of Knutsford Road. The same map has the 'Dog & Dart Inn' already there at the junction. According to stories passed down the family, my gg grandfather Levi Bradburn (1839 -1928) had a habit of calling in for a pint or two (or more) on his way home to Lymm after a day working in one of the local tanneries. This would be perhaps late 1880s onwards. His eldest son William (my g grandfather) clearly did not like what he saw and was a teetotaller all his life.
  5. Hello Pommie Lass, Thelwall Station was on Stockport Road and Heatley Station was on Mill Lane, so nothing 'funny' about those names. Lymm's station was on Whitbarrow Road. If you are thinking back to childhood, could it be that the word 'Whitbarrow' sounded unusual, perhaps funny? Where were you living - would you have walked as far as Lymm?
  6. SusanW


    Hello Pommie, Yes, I knew about Old Knutsford Road from my Dad (sadly now not with us) who explained the alterations made to the road on one occasion when we were driving to town from Lymm. He would know the road as it's where the Fir Grove Hotel is (pre-dates the canal) - the venue for my parent's wedding reception in 1949. Funnily enough, I have just this week been engaged in an online conversation with a distant cousin who is interested in the MSC. He doesn't live locally and made a special research visit to Lymm to see where his ancestors lived and worked. He walked down Reddish Lane and got to the banks of the canal and was quite impressed by it all. One of his ancestors, originally from Somerset, came to the area to work on the construction of the 'Big Ditch'. The family resided in Lymm and father and 2 grown up sons were employed in labouring jobs. One son met and married a local girl (she was the daughter of a half-brother of my gg grandfather - hence we are cousins). The bride had a brother who was also a "Ship Canal Labourer" in 1891, so that's probably how she met her future husband. It is just mind-boggling to think of all these men digging away in this huge and very dangerous hole in the ground!
  7. SusanW


    Hello Pommie. I was very happy to help on that one. We all know that the building of the MSC was a huge undertaking, but it really hits home when you look at old maps and think about the construction work required. Looking at the line of the canal after the relatively easy stretch across open country at Lymm and Thelwall, they had to: * construct locks at Latchford * build a railway bridge to get the Warrington/Stockport line over the canal * change the alignment of Knutsford Road so as to put a swing bridge over at Latchford (you can still see the old alignment: Knutsford Old Rd on the south bank matches to existing Knutsford Rd on the north) * construct the Cantilever Bridge to allow the Ackers Road crossing point. * another swing bridge at Stockton Heath for the London Road * a third swing bridge at Walton for the road to Chester * carry more railway lines over the canal at Walton Phew! That's a lot of work, particularly when you consider the tools and machinery then available to assist construction.
  8. SusanW


    For Pommie, just to clarify on names; The original Thelwall Road started from its junction with Knutsford Road in Latchford and ran eastwards, dipping slightly southwards at its junction with Bradshaw Lane and then continuing to Thelwall village. It can be made out quite clearly on the Cheshire Tithe map from the 1830s (http://maps.cheshire.gov.uk/tithemaps/), as well as on early OS maps (http://maps.nls.uk/view/102340999). All was fine until they built the Manchester Ship Canal which cut right through this road close to that junction with Bradshaw Lane. So, they constructed Thelwall New Road on the south running parallel to the Canal to meet Knutsford Road at the swing bridge in Latchford. The surviving part of the original road in Latchford then became Thelwall Lane, running down to Latchford Locks. Hope all that makes sense!
  9. I have a photo of my aunt and uncle from the mid 1930s. It looks as though it was taken in the back garden of my grandparents' house on Kingsway South, Latchford (or possibly one of the neighbours). Two other children appear on this photo identified as George Hulse and Betty Fairhurst. If anyone out there is related to either of these two people, I would be happy to send you a copy of the photo.
  10. Wikipedia states that Orford Hall was demolished in 1935.
  11. Thanks pommie lass and Dizzy for posting that old photo. I took a look at Google Maps (Earth view and street view) and now have a better understanding of the area. It also helps to look at the National Library of Scotland website to view an old Ordnance Survey map (http://maps.nls.uk/view/101104097) of Warrington to see the rail alignment. That view of the street would have been just as my Mum knew it as a child in the 1930s. She spoke of being taken to Orford Park by one of her great aunts (born c.1880) and, as most of the family lived on Winwick Road, they would have walked up Orford Lane, Orford Avenue and then under the railway to get to the park.
  12. Hello Davy51, Yes, I had the same thought about the old road alignment so I looked at the 1938 edition of the OS six-inch series but still could not find the two buildings quite close together and close to the road and on a bend. I think the bottom of Bellhouse Lane would have been where Knutsford Road ended and Cliff Lane started - someone please correct me on this if I've got it wrong. When Uncle Leslie told me about this event, I got the impression it was definitely Knutsford Road and so I was thinking of it being near the Dog and Dart. I think if it had been further south he would probably have referred to Cliff Lane. He moved away from home about 60 years ago (he is 85 now) and would be more familiar with the old road layout rather than the new.
  13. Yes, I think it must have been fairly close to Bellhouse Lane for the news to have spread that far and for Grandmother to have considered it reasonable for them to go and take a look. Their house was at the village end of the Lane - virtually on the bank of the Bridgewater - and it would have taken them a few minutes to get down to the main road, particularly with Grandmother's bad legs! I can't work out exactly where the lorry is. There's a bend in the road and you can see two buildings but I can't make those details match to old OS maps.
  14. Hello, With reference to the Cheshire Museum of Policing photos of WW2 bomb damage, I would like to add a little more information. Included in Dizzy's post was a link to an image of a lorry in a bomb crater on Knutsford Road and I know something of this incident. The link below is another photo of the same event. 11th September 1940, Knutsford Road, Grappenhall http://www.museumofpolicingincheshire.org.uk/Collections/bomb_image.aspx?photo=1S69.jpg My Uncle Leslie told me the story a little while ago, but I hadn't realised that there was this evidence in police records! He was 10 years old and the family was living in one of the Bellhouse Cottages. A bomb had fallen on Knutsford Road and the news spread around the village - a notable event in a rural area not used to receiving the attention of German bombers. It was early in the morning and his Mum insisted on going down to see straight away, so he had to put his shoes on and his coat over his pyjamas (he objected to this, but to no avail) and hurry on down Bellhouse Lane to Knutsford Road. The bomb must have been dropped during the night causing a large hole in the road. The lorry driver, making a journey in semi-darkness (no street lights, of course), hadn't seen the damage done and the lorry fell into the crater! By the time Leslie and Grandmother got there, both driver and driver's mate had been rescued and stood by the side of the road enjoying the attention of the crowd. The driver had hurt his arm in the accident and now had some sort of bandage applied. Leslie thought he was rather enjoying telling everyone the tale and eliciting sympathy for his 'war wound'. His mate, on the other hand, had a slightly downcast look - perhaps envious of all the attention his superior was receiving? As more people arrived, details of the event were repeated over and over again. Locals who had arrived early on heaped praise upon the rescuers who had "worked like Trugans" to extricate the two men from the wreck of their vehicle. Leslie never forgot the event, or the peculiar local pronunciation of the word 'Trogans'!
  15. Notes that my late Mother wrote about her early life detail her memory of this incident. Grace was 15 at the time and the family lived on Forrest Street, Latchford (now Kingsway South). She went to town regularly on a Saturday afternoon to queue at M&S as it was sometimes possible to buy a few custard creams and some tomatoes. These unrationed items were a gift for her mum and much appreciated by the family - quite a noble act on my Mum's part as she had a lifelong aversion to both the taste and smell of tomatoes! From her notes: "Walking down Cairo St towards Sankey St, there was the sound of a low flying airplane. In the split second when I thought perhaps it was a German, and pictures of them machine-gunning refugees flashed in my mind, I was grabbed and pushed into a doorway by a young Air Force man. As we stood there, both saying we hadn't seen anything, he was convinced it was a German plane, there was a terrible 'bang!".
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