Ashton's local history

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Town Green

In the 1845 and 1906 maps Town Green is shown as the area on Bolton Road between Captain's Lane and Bryn Road South. The 1810 baptismal register of St Thomas church gives the abode of many as 'Town Green'.

- David McKendrick

Town Green

"It did cover Bryn Road South but most of it went from Captains Lane along Bolton Road up to Golborne Road and stretched all the way back to approximately Charity Farm. After houses were built and as old town greeners will tell you it ran from Captains Lane to what was Cottom's shop. It's on my deeds and my family have lived on the town green for centuries."

"On the old map dated 1835 which was in ashton libary our house was the only thing on it. Our house was one of Lord Gerard's farm cottages and our deeds start in 1734. We know it's older than this because Lord Gerard only needed deeds if he sold the property, which he did to Mr Rosbottom, and the same family lived here till 1985."

- Ann Rampling

Gillacre

"I was brought up in Town Green, which we regarded as roughly the area between Bryn Road South and Bryn Road. The next bit of Bolton Road area was always called Gillacre (pronounced Jillicker). Its boundaries, which overlapped with Town Green a bit, were from just south of Bryn Road up to Stupshie. On some old maps, Gillacre Lane is shown, and it seems it could have been what people used to call the Bolton Road end of Bryn Road/Long Lane, or a lane just off it. In the period approx 1880 to 1970, many Gillacre residents were of Welsh origin."

- Phil

Gillacre

"Gillacre was called thus because old farmer Pimblett was too tight to pay his workers in money, so he paid them with a gill of ale. As most of the workers lived there the name stuck. I know this is true because Pimblett was my husband's great-great-grandfather."

- Ann Rampling

Welsh community

"For about 100 years, up to the 1970s, there was a sizeable Welsh Community in the Bolton Road/Bryn Road area. Apart from the two now-converted chapels are there any vestiges of that community left? And do any descendants of those Welsh families still live in the Bolton Road area? Or have they all, like me, abandoned the leeks in favour of the pies..."

- Phil

Welsh community

"There are still some of us around. My grandfather brought his family over from Flintshire in 1898 when my father was only 1 year old. He was a miner at Mains and my father was also a miner until the No. 9 disaster, when he came out and never went back. I am one of nine kids: six are still alive. Proud to be Welsh and proud to be a Stubshier... "

- Ray Davies

Welsh community

"Gwlad to hear it. My grandad came from Bethesda to Ashton in 1902. I think he would have called where they lived in Bryn Road, 'Gillacre', though his brother later lived in Stupshie. I was brought up closer to Town Green, opposite the Cally. There are a couple of good photos in the book 'Around Ashton in M and Golborne'...one of the opening of Carmel Chapel (now a furniture shop) and another of a Welsh group on an outing to Caernarfon."

- Phil

Old George's Pond

The land where the Manor Park estate now stands was fields until 2000. The footpath that runs through the estate from Walford Road to Edge Green Street is known as Rigby's Lane, named after George Rigby who farmed in that area. The pond in the centre of the Manor Park estate, known as Old George's pond, used to have water voles until it was drained when the estate was built. The pond was in danger of disappearing in the development, but concerned Ashton residents and fishermen lobbied the Council and ensured its survival. This marked the beginning of a number of environmental projects started by local residents.

- David McKendrick

Uncle Joe's Mint Balls

"I am 72 now and my grandparents lived in Bolton Road, and I remember hearing the tales of Uncle Joe from my mother and her sister. They lived in Bolton Road where he used to make the mint balls in his back yard.

My mother and her siblings used to go round watching him making the mixture. One of them asked what he was putting into the mix but he said it was a secret."

- Mrs S Wilson, letter to the Wigan Observer.

AiMi - Ashton Community Information The contents of this site contain contributions from local people and due acknowledgements are given where requested. The site is sponsored by AiM.i.
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