Friday, May 23, 2014

Unveiling of Stockport Canal Plaques

Wednesday May 28th saw the unveiling of two plaques marking the line of the Stockport Branch of the Manchester and Ashton-Under-Lyne Canal, known locally as the ‘Lanky Cut’. The first at 2pm was at the side of Nelstrop’s flour mill, Albion Mill at the top of Lancashire Hill. The second at 2.30 was at North Reddish Park Community Centre. The plaques were unveiled by the Mayor of Stockport, Councillor Chris Murphy and his wife Dot and in attendance was Peter Scott of the Manchester & Stockport Canal Society and other dignitaries.
Also present at Albion Mill was one of the directors of the mill.

Unlike the blue plaques around Stockport which are round, the two unveiled are green and oblong in appearance.

Plaque at Albion Mill
The canal was an important trading route into Stockport and its terminus was at the top of Lancashire Hill beyond the mill, where there was a coal wharf and other businesses. Unfortunately it fell into disuse and like so many other canals it became derelict and in 1971 it was filled in.

Over the years the potential for use of the canals for leisure purposes was realised and many were restored by engineers and enthusiasts alike. Most notably locally is the Peak Forest Canal and the branch from Marple to Macclesfield. More recently the Huddersfield and the Rochdale Canals were restored to navigation and along with the Cheshire Ring opening up new routes popular with narrow boat owners with the potential for going further afield all over the country, and the canals are popular with other users such as walkers, cyclists and anglers alike. Unfortunately this popularity came too late for the ‘Lanky Cut’ and what could have been a useful amenity for local people was lost and largely built over in places. The Huddersfield Canal had been built over where it went through Stalybridge and there was a proposal to divert the route via the River Tame and rejoin the original route further along. This was rejected however, and buildings on the original route were demolished. Where the Rochdale went through Failsworth a CO-OP supermarket built over the canal was demolished and rebuilt and the canal and a new basin constructed.

The aim of the Manchester and Stockport Canal Society is to bring back the canal which should never have been lost, and you can look at the society’s web site by typing in Stockport Canal in the address bar of the computer. Anyone can also become a member of the society and receive news about forthcoming events and activities.  Someone once called them a ‘bunch of dreamers’. Looking at the Huddersfield and Rochdale canals shows what can be done if we dare to dream. However, bringing the Stockport Canal back may be a nightmare for some along its route!

Thursday, May 22, 2014

Heaton Moor Window

P. Blagg Ltd. of Heaton Moor Road have been selling
hardware to the area for the last 110 years.

Angela Kenrick has dressed their window on behalf of the Heritage Trust, with a number of vintage items which are bound to stir up the memories of the older population.

Sad News

Jim Clare, Chairman of the Heritage Trust, Town Crier and everyone's friend, passed away in the early hours of Thursday 22nd May, at his home in Woodsmoor.

He was a man with a large voice and an even larger personality.

He will be sadly missed by all who knew him and our sympathy goes out to his wife and family.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Hawk Green Festival

A May festival on The Green has been revived by Hawk Green Residents Association recalling festivals of long ago. 

A king and queen presided over stalls, vintage vehicles and maypole dancing by the brownies. The Green has a long tradition of serving the outlying district of Hawk Green near Marple and was levelled with cinders from Goyt Mill for use as a cricket field in the 1930s. Before that it was common land where horses, sheep and cattle could be grazed by nearby cottagers.

The organisers turned up in costume reflecting a WW1 theme and the sun honoured the day.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Unveiling Blue Plaques in Reddish

On May 28th at 2pm, a new Blue Plaque will be unveiled at Nelstrop's Mill at the top of Lancashire Hill.

At 2.30pm on the same day another Blue Plaque will be unveiled in North Reddish Park to commemorate the site of Stockport's Canal.