Saturday, 3 December 2011

The Coalman, the coaltrucks and the firebeater.

Some memories of “The Coalmen, the Coaltrucks and the Firebeaters …. (blog created 3rd December 2011)

It was a regular thing! Certainly monthly during the winter months, you would hear the coalmen draw up in their wagon and lift the coal grate at the front. And then mum would shout, “Count them bags of coal they’re putting down shoot lad and make sure you count ten” You could hear the coal travelling down the stone lined coal shoot, which started its journey by the coalman lifting a metal cover (14ft square) on the floor, just in front of our front door, this is were he deposited the contents of the coal bags, which then made its way down into the cellar below the house.
The noise seemed to be a sort of rumbling thunderous sound has the coal must have caught the sides of the shoot on its way down and then as it reached the existing coal it made a loud thud, and that’s when you started counting, one, two, three and so on, up to five, but sometimes up to ten. I counted them with such concentration, just as though my life depended on it! There always were five or ten, never less and never more.

This is were W.H. Shaws office used to be, the first house in this photo which was on the corner of Spring Lane.

Most of the time, mum gave me the money each month, and I would go along to the coal office and pay the coal bill, I would take the white delivery ticket of about 6” square, showing details of the quantity of the delivery etc, and the ticket was always well smudged with black coal dust.
Going through them big doors into the coal office was just like going back in time, and it felt as though it was like a chapter out of “a Dickens novel”. (see photo above - Coal Office was on Blackburn Road as shown above, later this property was converted to the Islamic Centre, and then much later back to a private property)

“They’re were always at least three gentlemen in the Office, on most occasions they would be stood to their high desk, entering their ledgers. There were chairs for them at their sides, and so high of a chair, just like what “Bob Crachitt” may have been sat on. The gentlemen in that office were always so polite, it was especially such a great pleasure to see the boss, who was such a smart gentleman who always wore a “bowler hat” when you saw him outside, and sometimes you would see him driving his shiny red jaguar car. I never ever saw him going above 20 miles per hour, but that was about the usual speed most cars did those days. But to see him there, stood in front of his high desk with his quill pen. (It was a pen he had made with what I considered to be a very large turkey feather and cut at the bottom of the quill to provide a nib) and you would see him dip the pen into the blue ink, within the pot well, and sign his signature to his letters. His signature was large and probably measured about 2 ½” x 1 ½”. But looked really “classy”. (The Coal firm was called William Henry Shaws and the boss was called Mr. Sidney Jagger JP, and the others in that office were: Mr. Arthur Standley, Mr Aldred (well known Haslingden Cricketer), and later Mr Jagger's nephews joined the company David and Bernard Pickup)

I remember going home from school each day and walking along the side of the railway track. At one point the area was called “The Coal Sidings” and here there were always up to thirty coal trucks parked up on both sides of the sidings. The trucks were large timber oblong trucks sat upon metal bogies (bogies = assembly of four to six wheels forming a pivoted support at either end of a railway coach or truck.) These trucks contained various different sizes and qualities of coal, some for household use (usually larger cobs of around 4” to 8”) and some of the trucks contained smaller coal chippings, and these were used to keep the local factories going.

Daily I would go past the factory “fire holes” (some would call them boilerhouse) and sometimes you would see the “fire beater” shovelling the coal chippings, into the two large hoppers which were elevated at about six foot high at the front of the large boiler. I was also to later have the pleasure of experiencing what it was like to be a “fire beater” for a week or so, whilst the regular chap was off work. (buts that’s yet another story!)

Here are some of the local firebeaters I can remember were: Mr. Dewhurst at Clough End Mill, Alias at Carr Mill, Tom Riley and later Granville Nuttall at Union Mill etc.)

But getting back to the "Coal Sidings", the chaps there could be seen loading up their coal delivery wagons from the content of these trucks (railway trucks as seen in the photo above, and the chaps always seemed to be so strong, lifting and moving the bags of coal around without problem, they made it look so simple, they must have also had the “knack” with doing the same job day in, day out. One guy in particular was a giant, and a really strong chap, his name I think was “Walt” (Walter Green?). And he always reminded me of “desperate Dan” for some reason, he was always black with coal dust and wearing his thick leather padded coalman’s waistcoat. Most times you saw him or the others, you would have thought they were members of the “Black and White Minstrels cast, or maybe members of the Bacup Coconutters. You could just about see their white eyes shining through the blackened coal dust face.

Looking back it was a very busy railway sidings, because hardly a day went passed when you wouldn’t see a train spending most of it’s morning shunting coal trucks from one siding to another, separating the full or part full trucks from the empty trucks. The coal coming on a almost daily basis from various pits out of Yorkshire.

Arrival uh’ Cools (3rd December 2011)

Mum would shairt!,
Count them bags of cool!
They’re putting down shoot, lad!
And mek sure tha hears ten.
but it was five during a lean month
So I stopped all and counted,
One, two, three and moor,
Until a raiched ten.
So conscientious was I,
Tho life depended on it.
Reet again for another month.


A mail received today (6th Feb 2012) from John R. Edwards, confirms that Tom Riley was the firebeater at Wm. Robinsons, Union Mill.

Hi Bryan
When I worked at Union mill, 1958-1965,Tom Riley was the firebeater. Granville Nuttall stood in for him when he was absent. Besides firebeating, Tom carried weft to the weavers and carried their finished pieces to the cloth warehouse (which is where I started work, before moving into tackling).

Also a later mail:"Yes I was talking to Tom yesterday and he told me that he took over clothlooking when Harry Taylor retired.
Joe Southworth was the weaving manager and just before I left Jim Southworth, his twin brother, came to be a tackler.
John Simpson was the spinning manager, and a Blackburn councillor. I used to get lifts off him to go Blackburn college, every Monday night. I remember one night when there was a 'peasouper' of a fog and I spent most of the journey to Blackburn with my head stuck out of the passenger window looking for the kerb and passing the info to John. In Blackburn there were oil lamps lit in the middle of major junctions. At some there was a policeman, helping the traffic."John R. Edwards.

Wednesday, 16 November 2011

The 1960 Floods, Also the 1964 Hailstones & Flood Memories (18th July 1964)

(Here is a photo taken at the bottom of Northfield Road, Rising Bridge. -click over to enlarge)
I was sixteen at the time and remember it as though it was yesterday. It all started around the 10 o’clock mark during the mid morning of Saturday July 18th 1964. It did not start with rain, but large hailstones, and when I say hailstones, by the left they were the biggest I have ever seen, and remain so from that day to this, I know many say “as big as golf balls”, well I certainly would not go that far, but they must have been well above one inch in diameter.

They made a noise like no other noise you’ve ever heard before, such was the downpour against your slated roof, which sounded of a thunderous nature, and wondering if at any minute your windows where going to crack and shatter!. I thought at the time about poor old Donald the milkman from Gibbon’s Farm, who had just gone past our house delivering milk from his horse and cart! Just about the time when the hailstones had started, and thought about what a stinger he and his horse must have received with hailstones like that!. Then after a further ten minutes the hailstones stopped, but this was soon to be followed by thundering and lightening and then torrential rain, so powerful the drains could not take it.

I suppose for us at the top end of Hud Hey it wasn’t so bad, but sadly for people who lived in the bottom or in the direct line of any of the local water courses, it must have been a nightmare to say the least.

I think it may have been about twelve noon or a little later that the torrential rain finally abated.

But the damage had been done, and the lodges at the top of Northfield Road, together with others at Duckworth Clough, Brook Street and elsewhere, had burst their banks and were causing severe flooding further down their watercourses, especially to the houses at the bottom of Northfield Road and also to the shops on Blackburn Road, Rising Bridge.

I remember at Rising Bridge, that the flooding had become so severe that it caused major structural damage to a couple of houses/shops on the main Blackburn Road, in fact, one of the shops was actually built directly above the “torrented stream” and was in part washed away and the property was so severely damaged that it and the property next door had to be demolished.

But far worse tragedy had to come that day, and it happened further on towards Haslingden, with the loss of life, when poor little “Annie Wroe” drowned whilst in her house situated in Back Carr Mill Street (just off Hud Hey near Carr Mill factory). I can remember Annie, who was a very pleasant little lady and she was of about 5ft in height, she had lived there with her brother Frank who was the fork lift driver at the nearby Carr Mill Factory.

Below is a photo kindly sent in by John Sumner of a Yellow Ford Anglia, which was forced under the road bridge and when it came out the other side taking out the keystone causing the bridge to collapse. If you look at the picture of the house collapsing you may spot two people beside the end house. Those two people are my aunt and my grandma.

Also Jackie Ramsbottom has kindly sent in this photo of the same "Yellow Ford Anglia" which by then had obviously moved down the culvert even further.

5th August 2012 - Jackie Ramsbottom, has kindly sent in the undermentioned newspaper cuttings and it also confirms that there was another flood during September 1960. This also goes on to confirm the fact that the boat rescue shown in the photographs above which show Mr. Walter Cockerill being rescued in a small boat must relate to the period of the 1960 flood...

Larry Sagar kindly informs me that in regards to "the rescue of Walter Cockerill, one of his would be rescuers was Walter's youngest brother Alan assisted by Terry Southam who still lives in the village.  There four brothers in the Cockerill family, the other two, Fred and Jim both served in the army during the war and having survived the D-Day landings on the 6th of June. Jim was killed in France on 11th June 1944. Fred survived the War"

(23rd June 2013). Myra Frohnapfel has sent in this photo
 of her dad James Lewis Hall clearing up the freak hailstones
 at Carr Parkers Mill on the 25th July 1964. 
This photo was shown in the local newspapers at the time. 

James Lewis Hall clearing the hailstones at Carr Parkers Mill
on Charles Lane from the freak hailstones on the 25th July 1964. 

Hello Bryan
As it's approaching the 50th anniversary of the “Great Flood” on the 18th July, I would like to add these pictures to your Hailstones and Floods blog.
I have also dug out a Flood Souvenir copy issued by the Telegraph the week following the flood which is in poor condition but I have scanned a few pictures and articles which I don’t think are on your blog. 
Hope this is of some interest.
Allan Bradshaw. (17th July 2014)

Flood damage down at Every Street which was off Grane Road leading to Waterside
(photo kindly sent in by Allan Bradshaw

Another photo of flood damage at Every Street - note submerged car
(photo kindly sent in by Allan Bradshaw)

 flood damage down at Every Street
(photo kindly sent in by Allan Bradshaw)

Another photo of flood damage down at Every Street
(photo kindly sent in by Allan Bradshaw)

Flooding at Coronation Street,
Photo kindly shared to us by Lynda Batty
"Mr Madens shirt left out to dry during the unexpected floods in 1964

Many residents never returned to their houses. The height of the water
 and the mud left behind with its horrible smell was just too much.I also remember
Grane Rd turning into a river as the hailstones blocked the drains
 and the level of water rose. We stood in front of the shop brushing
 the water away to prevent it getting in! It was very scary.
We were very fortunate that the shop wasn’t affected but felt very sorry
 for the people in the Coronation St and Every St houses who were.

  Photo kindly shared to us by Lynda Batty
The backs between Every Street and Coronation Street
during the 1964 floods

Photo kindly shared to us by Lynda Batty
The backs between Every Street and Coronation Street
during the 1964 floods

 Photo kindly shared to us by Lynda Batty
The backs between Every Street and Coronation Street
during the 1964 floods

 Photo kindly shared to us by Lynda Batty
Every Street 1964

Photo kindly shared to us by Lynda Batty
Every Street 1964 with evidence of hailstorms

Floods at Broadway
(photo kindly sent in by Allan Bradshaw)
Here is a scan of the front page of the Lancashire Evening Telgraphs "Flood Souvenir" published on the
25th July 1964 a week after the actual floods.
(kindly sent in by Allan Bradshaw)
Showing small individual photos of the tragedy of Rising Bridge caused through the great floods
(kindly sent in by Allan Bradshaw)
More Rising Bridge flood photos (kindly sent in by Allan Bradshaw)
Photos showing Rising Bridge Road and thats Raymond Clegg there who was then a firemen at Haslingden.
(kindly sent in by Allan Bradshaw)

A photo showing the giant hailstones outside of Cordingleys next to the Bay Horse Pub
(kindly sent in by Alan Bradshaw)
Astonishing daring work being carried out at Rising Bridge
(kindly sent in by Allan Bradshaw)
A gaunt relic of the flood - Rising Bridge
(kindly sent in by Allan Bradshaw)
Flood havoc at Sheperd Brothers Rising Bridge
(kindly sent in by Allan Bradshaw)
More Rising Bridge photos
(kindly sent in by Allan Bradshaw)
Caught in the action of collapse at Rising Bridge
(kindly sent in by Allan Bradshaw)
precision time of collapse
(kindly sent in by Allan Bradshaw)
And a 15 second shot later
(Kindly sent in by Allan Bradshaw)

This piece written below is from Derek Whittaker who gives his recollections of the floods of 1964 from what he remembers from when he was a teenager, and here is a fabulous account of the situation especially around the Coronation St, Every St and Charles Lane areas. (Sent in 21st September 2015)

          On that day I had finished delivering my paper round for Jack Hayton and called at Lynn and Jean Howarth’s house in Peel St. It was quite a normal day and I hadn’t even worn a coat for the paper round and then the hailstones! They came tumbling down the chimney covered in soot and were approaching the size of golf balls. Then the pyrotechnics started - it was late morning but soon became very dark with lots of sheet lightening and thunder. You couldn’t see across the road because the rain was that heavy.
   When it all subsided it returned to a quite pleasant day. I set off down Charles Lane to our house in Coronation St. Every thirty or forty yards there was a fountain shooting up about 20 feet in the air. The pressure of the water pouring down the drain under the road had blown off the manhole covers and created this amazing sight.At the bottom of Charles Lane where the road forked left and right there was a bridge across  what had previously been a gently flowing stream. What I encountered was a poor little chap standing on the parapet of the bridge in what looked like the middle of a lake. His mates, safely three floors up in the mill were leaning out of the window having a great time shouting out things like “Swim for it Paddy, you’ve got your wellies on!!’.
   It was obvious that I wouldn’t be able to get home that way so I went back up Charles Lane, through Prospect Hill and down Grane Rd.
   What had happened at the bottom of Coronation St and Every St was that the railway ran along there on an embankment had a culvert where the stream ran through. The culvert couldn’t cope with the amount of flood water and also became blocked up by dustbins and other things swept up in the flood (I remember a drowned dog flowing past). The embankment became a damn and the water backed up quite dramatically. Coronation St and Every St sloped down to this encroaching new lake.
   We lived at No 18, about half way down and I can remember wading through our back door with the dirty, eerily cold water being about waist high, to see my dinner floating around on the table. There was no sign of my family. I retreated and found them with others higher up the street on the other side making sandwiches and flasks of coffee/tea for those in even deeper water farther down the street. My bother, David and I clambered over the outside toilets and coal houses with these to pass them up to bedroom windows where people were stranded.
   In the bottom house lived three OAP’s who asked us if we would be kind enough to see if we could rescue their television from downstairs. Believe it or not we waded in up to chest height and did! Don’t ask me what use it was going to be having spent a couple of hours underwater. When we got it to the stairs where they could lift it out they asked if we could possibly do anything about their car. We knew they had a maroon mini which was their pride and joy so back through the water, up onto the toilet roof and eventually we spotted about two inch of car aerial sticking up out of the deluge. We gave up on that one.
   Slowly but surely the water started to drain away but the worst was yet to come. The mud left for some reason stunk, and I mean STUNK!! The houses didn’t have cellars but did have a void under the floors of about 2 feet. This was left filled with the stinking slime and repeated injections of disinfectant did little to improve matters.
   A fund was started and I seem to remember my parents receiving £200 from it. Every piece of furniture downstairs was thrown away with the carpets. The decoration was ruined and all the appliances (oven, TV, etc) also ruined. In the “front room” there was a cupboard which held all our family photographs and a full set of Encyclopedia Brittanica that my parents had scrimped and saved for to help their son and daughter (Maureen) through grammar school. All ruined and £200 didn’t go very far to recover the situation.
   In the days following a few mates and I made some good pocket money in the nearby mills sweeping the offending mud out as the water receded. Strangely at the age of 15 I was never scared or worried and I remember it as merely a very interesting event. What I do clearly also remember is the spirit of my parents and others who although badly affected rallied round and immediately started to help others in an even worse predicament. Would other places have the community spirit to be knocking up cheese butites whilst there home has filthy water washing around in it? Haslingden did.

 Derek Whittaker

Thursday, 4 August 2011

Carrs - The Lost Village

 Carrs almost gone! with just a few of the Commerce Street 
houses and Carr Villa left, whilst Jane St, William St and Smithies are gone..
also showing construction of by pass along the old railway track

In a way I suppose what I can remember of Carrs, could be written on a postcard!
No, that’s not completely true, and that would be far less than fair! But to be honest my memories of Carrs are very limited, and I suppose would fall in the category of small is beautiful, because that’s just how it was. Fabulous memories of a little village nestling under the shadow of “Cob Castle”, and the towering Hutch Bank Quarry.

From memory the main street which traversed the full length of the village was called Commerce Street, which ran from the junction with Booth Street at the Station side and all the way down and through the village to the children’s play area (built much later) which consisted of swings and a roundabout.

Looking down Commerce Street from the Booth St entry
some of the houses have already been demolished on the RH side
on the left hand just after the mini shows the houses of Jane Street gable
Photo: thanks to the late Arthur Kirby

Looking up Commerce Street from the Todd Hall side
the area near to were they built the playground area.
You can just see the start of the Jane Street houses on the right
to the back of the photo.
Photo: thanks to the late Arthur Kirby

Leading off Commerce Street on the left hand side (East side) was Jane Street, and following on down Commerce Street perhaps for some one hundred yards you would meet up with William Street adjoining from the right hand side (West side), and then finally the next terraced row of houses again leading off to the right (West side) was Smithies Street.

I can also remember another house quite large which stood alone with a large garden and think it may have been called “Carr Villa”. This house stood out to be a slightly more grandeur than most of the surrounding houses in the area and I would probably have thought it could well have originally been built as the Manager’s House for the local nearby factory - in fact you can see part of the large house in the above photo to the right side painted white.

Jane Street row of houses in the foreground,
by now a lot of the Commerce Street houses had been
Photo: thanks to the late Arthur Kirby

This is another photo showing Jane Street at sad times
bricked up whilst awaiting demolition.
Photo: thanks to the late Arthur Kirby (taken in 1975)

This is a great colour photo of Smithies Street
sadly they had just started bricking the houses prior to demolition
Photo: thanks to the late Arthur Kirby.

The only industrial building I remember was the very large three story white factory, which seemed to have lots and lots of whitewashed windows (see photo below). It also had a very large chimney, which was about halfway along the length of the factory. And also to its West side was a lovely lodge, which would usually have Moorhens or Coots and perhaps Mallard meandering about in its rushy margins… This factory was a cotton manufacturing company that traded by the name of James Lambert and Co. Ltd. Sometimes I would go past the office and shout hello to Mr. Harry Whitaker who was the Manager at that time. I am sure the late Jonas Hindle whose family ran the business for a long number of years was the founder of the factory.

This was James Lamberts Mill which was chiefly known to be a Textile
Manufacturing, but in much later years became Gibbs Bros who dealt in reclaimed

I personally can only remember one shop in Carrs; it was a sort of general provisions, grocery/sweets tuck shop that was on the main street, Commerce Street.

(above) This was Mrs. Robert Collinge outside her
Toffee shop in Carrs - obviously a early period

I would visit the village quite regular to see a couple of pals from school. And we would “act the pig” as they say, or do what boys do, and sometimes would go up past Todd Hall and up the lane and eventually onto the top of the Quarry. I can remember the lane always seemed to have lovely colourful wildflower borders mainly consisting of heather, and sometimes you would smell that sweet honeydew aroma of freshly cut grass from the nearby haymaking fields. There was a time I remember when grass snakes could be found in the Hutch Bank area, but that was the 1950’s, sadly there have not been any reports of them since, to the best of my knowledge.

Ant - the locomotive which worked Hutch Bank Quarry transporting stone from
the quarry rock face to the crushers.
Photo: J. Maynard Tomlinson

I remember the quarry always seemed a exciting prospect to investigate when we where lads, which had by now closed down as a working quarry. But was always especially intrigued by going through the two very dark tunnels, which had cold dripping water running down from above and sometimes on to your head, so you tried to duck and dive, as you fumbled your way through them. The tunnels had narrow gauge railway lines running through them. I suppose these were the very lines that the small locomotive “Ant” must have run on to move stone from one part of the quarry, and onward to the crusher.

Holding the maypole is Susan Entwistle,
Ribbons are Irene Barnes, Irene Handley and Doreen Bell,
Standing are Mary Davison and Doreen Rushton
(Photo kindly shared by Neil Stevenson
 from the late Mary Davison Collection)
Maypole in Smithies Street, Carrs around c1940
same properties demolished 1970s

They obviously loved their Maypole down in Carrs
this photo is showing the dancers in Commerce Street
sometime in the early 1920s.
(Photographer: unknown)

Another strong memory of Carrs, was that all the street’s road surfaces where made up of stone setts (rectangular paving blocks made of stone which measured about 8” x 6” and maybe about 5” in depth), and these used to have tar poured between the nicks of the stones to seal them, and sometimes during the summer months this tar would get warm in the sun and would often soften a little to make a pliable consistency, and children would pick out the tar with their fingers and then roll it in their fingers and hands and make and shape the tar into little balls, which they would chose then to chase and throw the balls at one another. The tar had quite a unique smell, which did not seem too unpleasant at the time.

Besides the stone setts for the road, I remember the pavements in Carrs also had proper stone, which could well have been what they call “Haslingden Flag” which I would have thought came from the nearby quarries or very local to the area. I was told that that similar flags where used to pave parts of Trafalgar Square in London, and it was also rumoured that local stone may have been used for the base plinths of the Eiffel Tower in Paris.

Most days, after school finished (St. James C of E) I would walk down Prinny Hill towards Carrs and after going over the railway bridge, the footpath would sort of turn back on itself, before turning into a small 6ft wide cobbled footpath, and this was sandwiched between on one side, pens where people had chickens and ducks, whilst others I think may have had allotments and growing vegetables or flowers or maybe both., and on the other side of the footpath you ran up against the old creosoted “stood on edge railway sleepers” which placed side by side with the tops chamfered to a point made a ideal boundary fence for the playing fields of our school, St. James (Top Church). I played many an interesting game of football here, changing in the large old wooden pavilion. Could not begin to count the amount of times the ball actually went into the “Swinnel” and had to be rescued before it reached the tunnel.

This shows St. James sports ground (Prinny Hill) with its boundary
made up with old on their side railway sleepers. You see spectators
and also the old timber changing rooms which are to the left of the
old Lamberts factory.

At the bottom of this cobbled footpath, you would then cross over the small Swinnel footbridge which was bordered with iron railings, where you could proceed to go straight forward on a sort of rough single track road, for a couple of hundred yards before joining into Commerce Street or you could do what I did on most days and turn right and follow the footpath which went along the edge of the Swinnel Brook, for a short while, whilst under the canopy of some well matured trees. Soon you reached the railway bridge, where you had to take a sharp left, and you then followed a long ginnel (narrow pathway), which ran alongside the Grove Mill factory, and then at the top of the long ginnel you either continued onward and climbed many steps, with railings on the right side of you, and this way brought you up into Commerce Street.

Or just after leaving the long ginnel and before the steps you could turn right and follow the cobbled road past the lodge and you would also join Commerce Street but further up the road, not far away from where the Haslingden Commercial Mill Company would have their boiler house on the right hand side. For me it was then a straight through journey past the nearby Haslingden Railway Station, and Stations Goods Yard and following the railway to Carr Hall Street and eventually into Hud Hey Road. I suppose I did this walk home from the school on most days.

Without doubt I would expect Todd Hall to have been the oldest property in the village and it still exist today although many some alterations have taken place. I remember hearing tales reporting it to be haunted, and other stories that said there was a sort of “hiding space” built into the walls, to hide escaping priest from the Church on the hill (St. James). Also there was another tale that I find extremely hard to believe of how there was a old escape route which led down from the Haslingden St. James Church on the hill and went underground and led to Todd Hall, so that early day priest could escape when the soldiers came after them.

Carrs today is in the main a Industrial Site and is photographed second photo down from the top of the blog which I took years ago from the Hutch Bank summit...


Ian Edmundson's memories (9th August 2011)

The big house was owned and lived in by Tony Hoyle I believe (Empire and Duke of Wellington). I lived at 1 Commerce Street from until 1957 (when I was four) and still remember our days there. I used to go to Todd Hall Farm to see Jim Robert Sunter and to 'help' wherever I could. I remember hay making in the fields using horses to mow and pull the wagons and later on the horses being taken away from Todd Hall whilst my brother and I looked on from the hay loft. 
Also just remembered that Jim Robert's wife was Elsie Sunter. Another memory is Jim Robert's pipe and the twist tobacco he used to smoke. He used to cut a piece off and then rub it between his palms and fill his pipe.


Prinny Hill Steam Rope Works (from John R. Edwards - 4th Aug 2011)

The works can be seen in the top photo with the long cabin at the side of the old railway.

"I used to go to the Rope Works, on the right parallel with the railway at the bottom of Prinny Hill - just before the bridge over the railway line, as a boy about 9 yrs old. Over the bridge on the right a Mr Goldburn had a henpen, on the other side of the railway track.
It was run by a Mr Senior and his assistant Joe Chappelow (? spelling). The shed was about 120 yds long and 5yds wide with a dirt floor, part stone walls, windows above - on the west side, to provide light, then a wood and felt roof.
The entrance was down a couple of steps to the office down a few more to the engine room on the left, which housed as I remember a 2 stroke diesel engine, which had to be stopped at a particular point by Joe, so that he could easily start it the next day. He used a large piece of cloth to act as a brake on the flywheel to achieve this.
I used to 'help' after school and on Sat. mornings. On a couple of occasions Mr Senior let me go with him in his car, with the boot full on his deliveries to far flung places such as Bolton, selling his clothes lines and balls of different types of string. Occasionally they would make ropes 1" or more diameter, these were made on a twisting machine that started out twisting small threads together, up to 12 at a time, then joining 4 together, making 3 strings which in turn were joined together to make a three strand rope 100 yds long.
The string was made on the spinner in the middle of the room and then transferred to an endless belt system, where the strands were spliced together,to make a loop the length of the building, sized to lay down the fibres or waxed. After drying the string was cut to set lengths and put on a spooler to make balls of string. The same principle was used to make clothes lines. When these were cut to length they were wound round a piece of wood with two pegs at the ends, then wound around; still the same size as today.
Joe also had a henpen alongside the ropeworks, where he kept hens and grew some vegatables.
I remember his nephew worked there for a time, he had been a soldier, and told me stories about his time in the army, whilst whittling on a piece of wood".
John R Edwards 

Residents of Commerce St and Jane St -  (from Carol Roberts - 17th October 2011)

I am Carol and I used to live in Carrs in the 60's. We moved to number 15 Commerce Street in 1962, there was my mother my 2 brothers and sister and of course me, I can remember a few people who lived in Carrs. First as you entered Commerce Street there was a big house on your right which was raised up and it was occupied by an Irish couple, Mr & Mrs Sharkey, and I think they had about 11 children. Then there was the archway, then numbers 1,3, and 5 not sure who lived in these but in number 7 was a young couple Mr & Mrs Kash & Madge Jogojavinsky and their baby son Kash, not sure what nationality Kash was but Madge was scottish. Number 9 was also a young couple, can't remember their name but the wife's name was Carole and they had a baby son. At number 11, was Tony and Lynda Bennet they had also had a son. Number 13 was empty, I heard it was occupied by an elderly couple and when his wife died he hung himself and there was no known relatives found so it was boarded up and earned itself the name " the haunted house" of the street. Number 15 wa Mrs Millicent Stebbings and her four children, John, Carol(me), Douglas and Susan.
Number 17 was Mr & Mrs Anne Trickett and their daughter Anne and their son. In one of the following houses was a young girl who lived with her grandmother. In the end house was a chap named Morris (who drove a Morris van and had a terrier type dog) he used it for storage but came every so often to do items for functions of which I helped to paint for him for a bit of spending money.
Jayne Street opposite not sure who was in the first house but in the second house was a Mr & Mrs Owen Greenwood then further down was Mary and George Horlock an elderly brother and sister, I used to fetch a bucket of coal up from the cellar every day and Mary paid me a shilling a week for doing it, she died around 1966/7 and I believe George died about 1967/8.
Mr & Mrs Greenwood had 2 daughters who lived in the next row of houses in Commerce Street, Hazel lived in either the second or third house with her husband and children,she married a Mr Robinson who's brother married her sister Glyn who lived further down the row nearer the shop. About a couple of doors up from the shop was a house with a fence round and a chap and his son lived there.
The shop which was on the corner of the row was in Commerce Street and William Street, it changed owners a number of times, if you turned left at the top of William Street you would find a few allotments of which people would grow their veg's or like Mr Greenwood rear turkeys for himself and daughters for Christmas, of which I would fetch his turkey food for a bit of pocket money. In Smithies Street about a couple of houses up was another irish family Mr & Mrs Delaney and their children (I think about 9), Mrs Delaney was the sister of Mrs Sharkey(Commerce Street). There was a small park which consisted of a set of swings and a roundabout,it was used on bonfire nights for the village to come and have all the bonfire treats for a couple of shillings.I didn't have much to do with the farm so I don't know who was there. Hope there are some more people who have these sort of memories, as long as we pass on our memories Carrs will never be gone for ever.
I have further memories about Haslingden but will send them in a separate mail.

Photo: shows Carol with top Church and Back Paradise in background

And more memories from Carol

Mr and Mrs Tricket moved out of number 17 and an elderly lady named Trixie with a few dogs moved in.There was a red phone box on the corner of Jane Street up against the wall of the garden which was the big house which seemed to be cut off from the rest of the village,about 1964/5 there was some celebrity visitors to the farm it was Pat Pheonix (Elsie Tanner) and William Roache (Ken Barlow) they both waved as they passed through the village,William Roache was a regular customer in one of the grocers shop up town,one day he was standing by me being served.I used Prinny Hill every time I went to town there was three ways that I used,the one under Paradise Terrace usually got rather muddy so it was better using one of the other ways,over the little bridge by Lamberts mill then up past the football ground and over the railway bridge of which if there was a train we always stopped and waved to the engine drivers,if you carried on up to the right you would come upon a rail in a wall which went round to the top,if you went to the left it brought you out by Paradise Terrace.I knew the people who lived in the first house on the balcony,they were Mr & Mrs James, daughter Susan and son Roy,and their black and white dog called Judy, on the corner was a disused shop with a full glass window and green frame,about half way down in one of the front houses lived an elderly chap, my mother worked as the school crossing patrol (lollipop lady) on the crossing for St. James's school and we used to shelter in the shop doorway when it was cold and wet,the elderly chap used to take in the lollipop save my mother carrying it home every day.I spent my last year of juniors at St.James and was in Miss Holden's class.Further along Blackburn road at the end of the houses there was a gap then Alderton's paper shop for whom I delivered papers after another gap I think the next building was a chemist.My Dad took my photo in Carrs in August 1964 with Prinny Hill in the back ground with it's many allotments and you can clearly see St. James church and the three peaks of St. James school also Paradise Terrace as it all was.
Regards Carol.

(16th October 2012) from Joan Merrill (nee Mead)

Thanks to Carol for the photo taken of Prinny Hill. I lived at 9, Commerce St in the 40's until we moved about 1951 and that was my view every time I came out of the door. Hazel and Glenys Greenwood were leaders of our gang. Besides organising our games they kept the maypole frame in their backyard. They organised the decorating of it and then made us ( the younger ones) practise the song and dance. 

(9th April 2012) Thanks to Angela Hall who lived at No.21 Commerce St. 

for sending in the following: Hi Bryan, I lived at No.21 Commerce Street in 1962/64. I was married to Harry Moore whose mother lived at 48 Blackburn Road, Haslingden. Harry's brother, Bernard Moore and his wife, Barbara lived at No.9. They had a son, Phillip. My daughter, Jackie was born at the same time as Kash and Madge's son. Kash, and we used to walk up Prinny Hill to take the babies to the clinic. Mr and Mrs Robinson lived next door with their granddaughter. I enjoyed reading about the village and reminiscining. - Angela Hall. 

(21st May 2012) from Alan Robinson

Alan has got fond memories of Carrs, where he grew up, and he has kindly sent in four photos shown below of family members etc. The top photo is: Peter and Janice Robinson taken on Commerce Street.  The second down is: Hazel Robinson and son Peter taken on Commerce Street. And the bottom photo is Hazel & Glen at Lamberts Mill and can possibly be presumed its something to do with a Ladies Cricket Team, because they can be seen holding a bat. I will shortly file these photos under the Carrs Blog.

Peter and Janice Robinson on Commerce Street and 
also shows the gable of Jane Street.
Photo: thanks Alan Robinson

Hazel Robinson with son Peter taken in Commerce Street
Photo: thanks Alan Robinson

Hazel and Glen taken at Lamberts Mill and thought
to be Cricket team related
Photo: Alan Robinson

"Kash"  Kaziemierz Jagodinski - Obituary who died on Sept 29th 2010
(4th August 2012 received) 

 Thanks to John Sumner for sending me the link for the following extract of "Kash's" Obituary which was printed in the Lancashire Evening Telegraph. He was for a long time a resident at "Bentwood" in Carrs and was also the owner of the late "Flip Inn". I knew Cash and he was a gentleman in every respect and will be sadly missed, but did not know that he had been through what he had been through.

A survivor of 11 Nazi concentration camps who travelled the UK in the Billy Smart Circus before settling in Rossendale has died aged 84. Kaziemierz Jagodinski, who was known as Kash and the ‘Del Boy of Haslingden’, died of pneumonia on Wednesday September 29.
Yesterday his grandson Kris Flannigan paid tribute to his Polish-born grandad, recalling a number of his ‘colourful’ tales. As a teenager Kash was held captive in 11 German concentration camps, where he was forced to clean and cook for Nazi soldiers. He managed to escape from every one of the camps and, on the final time, he managed to avoid being recaptured. Kris said: “He used to hide in hay bales and sleep in fields.
"Sometime he would wake up being kicked by German soldiers. “He said if he’d been older he would not have been able to to deal with the things he had to endure. “It must have been horrific, but he used to tell the stories and take the mick out himself for getting recaptured.”
Kash arrived in England in 1947 and joined the Billy Smart Circus shortly after. He performed as a clown and an acrobat and was also responsible for transporting 11 elephants between towns. While in Glasgow in 1954 he met his future wife Marjory, who travelled in the circus with him for five years.
He also owned a coffee shop in London, where he got to know the notorious Kray twins, Cliff Richard and Richard Branson. But the couple’s travels led them to Rossendale and they decided to settle at Carrs village, Haslingden, in the 1960s. They owned The Flip Inn and Bentwood, before moving to Helmshore, where Kash worked as a watch and antiques dealer.
Kris, 26, said: “He was a colourful character and one on his own. "Everybody knew him as Haslingden’s Del Boy because he was a real wheeler-dealer. "He had a fantastic life and he will be missed by a lot of people.”
Kash leaves wife Marjory, 75, their son, also called Kash, daughter-in-law Lorrie-Dona, and three grandchildren, Kris, Kaz, 21, and Conor, 18. 

Photo of "Kash" (Kaz)

Photo showing "Kash" when he worked at Billy Smarts Circus

Kash was also brilliant at modelmaking. He built this
old carraige amongst many other things.

Todd Hall - Carrs.  (9th September 2013)

I have just discovered and read your blog regarding Haslingden and in particular reference to Todd Hall.
I am in fact the owner of Todd Hall and have been so for in excess of 25 years. The photo you have posted is one of several that I have and which were taken at a similar period in time. Should you like any of these please let me know and I will gladly supply them.
Best regards
Bill Ramsbottom

9th September: from Bryan Yorke to Bill - I sent a link through to him with my Todd Hall archive photos for his observations.

You already have most of the photos which I have except the two attached which were given to me by the youngest of the 2 boys in the photo showing his family. His father (shown also in the photo) was responsible for lowering Todd Hall from 4 to 2 storeys. Shortly after this photo they emigrated to Australia but the father dies before reaching there. The boys granddaughter who lives in Chester brought him here to see the place once more before he died (that was 17 years ago).
I understand the lady in the other photograph is his grandmother. If you look closely at this photo you will see an etched window in the middle of the bay window. The bay window has long since gone but I still have that etched pane sandwiched between the double glazing in my porch (see photo also attached)
Finally, I have also attached more recent photos (as it is today) for comparative reasons.
Regards, Bill.  - Click over the photos to enlarge.

Email received on 19th January 2014 from Jean Tomlinson:

Hello Bryan
I've been reading about Carrs on your website and thought you might like this photo which was taken at Carrs. I used to visit Carrs in the early 1960s to see "Auntie Doreen" (Doreen Rushton) who lived there. I believe this photo is her dad. I knew him as "Uncle Barnes".
Best wishes
Jean Tomlinson

"Uncle Barnes"
photo: Jean Tomlinson

Email received on 25th January 2014 from Alen Fielding (ex pat Queensland-Australia)
Some of his recollections of Carrs Village:

I remember from 9 years of age fishing for two tiny species of fish ( "Sticklebacks" & "Redbellies") in the small stream that ran by the collection of allotments by the rail line. The stream was also infested by rather large brown leeches with yellow bellies, that would attach themselves to your arms, hands and legs in a flash, given the opportunity!

 The very large house behind the high stone walls in the middle of the village was one of the residences I delivered papers to. It belonged to the owners of Haslingden's two cinema's, the "Palace", and the more up-market  "Empire" (The Hoyles). They had a son who was I believe, a Captain in  the Parachute Regiment during the war, and a survivor of the abortive "Market Garden" Operation, intended to secure the bridge at Arnhem, and commemorated in the film "A BRIDGE TOO FAR". 

The family was devastated a few years later when his mother during a very severe winter (could have been 1947), lit a fire early in the morning to warm the house, unaware that the water pipes throughout the house (including the hot water system) had frozen solid. The poor woman was unfortunately directly in front of the fireplace when the Back- boiler exploded, killing her instantly. I'm sure any past residents of the village at the time would remember this, it was a terrible shock for all at the time. 


More Carrs Photos

Towards top church taken from possibly Sunnyfield (1962)  
 (Click over photo to enlarge)
Is this William Street or Smithie Street, Carrs
Photo: Jean Tomlinson and uploaded here on 9th February 2016


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