Filed: ABC Wednesday

V is for Victorian Viaducts

No matter how much progress we make in the modern world, it is impossible to escape our Victorian past when all around us are monuments to the golden age of engineering which is why this week I’m looking at Victorian viaducts. Above is a photo of the most recognisable landmark in Stockport — the Edgeley Viaduct. It was completed in 1840 to carry the main railway line from Manchester south into Cheshire as it still does today. Read more ›››

U is for Universe

If I was a pre-Copernican, I would believe that the Earth was at the centre of the universe. More specifically, I would imagine that Tameside was at the heart of everything. Of course it isn’t, but it did once boast a Mr Universe.

John Lees was born in Stalybridge and was crowned the Overall Winner of the Mr Universe competition in 1957, having taken part in the competition since 1950. Read more ›››

T is for Tattoos

Time was that tattoos were a bit of a rarity. You might have an uncle who had been in the navy with one or two on his arms, or know an ex-Teddy Boy with LOVE and HATE indelibly marked on his fingers, but that was about it.

Today it seems most people have a tattoo somewhere on their body, so I’m in danger of offending the majority with this post, but that is not my intention. It is just an observation. Read more ›››

S is for Statues

There are lots of statues of the great and the good, mostly in typical noble poses, but I found a few works locally that are a little bit different. Click for larger images.

The first statue is an all action recreation of Eric Evans Mee who captained the England rugby team from 1956 to 1958. It stands on Ashton New Road, Audenshaw, outside Aldwinians Rugby Union Football Club, Eric’s first club and where he was president from 1960 to 1966. Read more ›››

R is for Riddle

I suppose I could have written about a royal engagement given the the ravings of the media retinue this morning, but I find the rites of the royals a rather ridiculous racket so I shall write about riddles instead.

My love of riddles started innocently enough with my grandmother who used to test us with conundrums of the: “When is a door not a door?” variety. But it was the start of the slippery slope into riddledom. Read more ›››

Q is for Queen of Cotton

I’ve raided the Tameside Image Archive for ABC Wednesday to find these photos of Frances Lockett who was voted Hyde’s first Cotton Queen in 1930 and went on to become the first Cotton Queen of Britain.

The contest was a major event held annually between 1930 and 1939 to promote the cotton industry. It was organised by the Daily Dispatch and held in Blackpool over a three week period.  To be eligible, the contestants had to work in the cotton industry and be aged between 16 and 26. Read more ›››

P is for Pub

There are pubs to be found all over Tameside and Stockport, as there are in other towns and villages in England. They used to be a focal point for local people and are as much a part of the history of the industrial revolution as the mills and factories.

As the industrial towns grew in the 19th century, so did the number of pubs and with little else by way of entertainment, the workers found that cheap ale was one of the few pleasures they could afford. Lax licensing laws meant that landlords opened pretty much when they wanted which offended the church and the middle classes. Read more ›››

O is for Orange

It is safe to say there will be no rhymes this week because nothing rhymes with orange. Lozenge is about as near as you can get with an online rhyming dictionary.

Left is the Prince of Orange pub on Warrington Street and Wellington Road, Ashton, named after the man who was to become William III of England and William II of Scotland and who also gave his name to the College of William and Mary in present day Willamsburg, Virginia and briefly to New York which was renamed New Orange in 1673 after the Dutch recaptured the city. Read more ›››

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