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Marple Local History Society Meetings

Meetings

The Society generally meets on the third Monday of the month from September to April, apart from December. the meeting is then  held on the second Monday of the month.

Doors open 7:15pm ready for the meeting at 7:45. Access is via the main entrance on Church Lane (opposite Mount Drive) and the meetings will be held in the church itself on the ground floor.

The church includes a hearing aid loop system which is most effective for people sitting near the side walls and in the rear pews of the church.

Venue and Location

The meetings take place in Marple Methodist Church on Church Lane in Marple.  Postcode: SK6 7AY

Visitors are welcome to attend at a cost of £3. But look below for details of our Membership bargains!

Subscriptions

The annual subscription for the Society is £10 for 8 meetings,so there's a bargain you can take up !

This also allows participation in the Society's trips.

Membership is available at all meetings.

Use the menus on the right to browse our past and present meeting topics.

To park near to Marple Methodist Church

There are double yellow lines immediately outside the church, but there is limited on street parking further up Church Lane on the right hand side, down Empress Avenue and on Mount Drive.

There is a large car park, Chadwick Street Car Park, (SK6 6BY) between Trinity Street  and Chadwick Street, Marple. Access is from Stockport Road onto Trinity Street and from Church Lane onto Chadwick Street, exit is made via Trinity Street, in the direction of Church Lane. It is a pay and display car park, however, at the time of writing, October 2014, parking is free after 6pm.

The location of the Methodist Church  on Church Lane (red marker) is shown on the map below and you can enter your postcode to get directions there, or to the car park Chadwick Street) nearby (blue marker):

 

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12th December 2016: 'The Old Vicarage, never a Vicarage' - Ann Hearle

Od Vic b'The Old Vicarage, never a Vicarage'
'A strange title for a talk about a house.
Everybody calls my home, the Old Vicarage but it never was a Vicarage. So what is the history of the house?
From a site occupied for 10,000 years! The house was the Church Inn, then a house lived in by the perpetual curate, next to a home for a family, onto a children's home then back to a private house. A small holding then once again a home for a family.
So what is the story of the site, the house and the hill top? How was the history unravelled? Come and hear on December'

Ann Hearle

Read more: 12th December 2016: 'The Old Vicarage, never a Vicarage' - Ann Hearle

16th January 2017: 'Gorton Monastery' - Clare Mount

Gorton MonasteryThe first thing that Clare Mount did was to disabuse us of the idea that she was to give a talk about a monastery. Just because it was called Gorton Monastery didn’t mean that it was a monastery. No. It was a parish church and a friary but never a monastery. Whatever gave us that idea? We were not alone in our misapprehension. When seven Belgians arrived in 1861 dressed in brown robes it was assumed by the locals that they were monks and the Belgians didn’t have enough command of English to correct them. In fact these eight strangers were Franciscan friars.

Read more: 16th January 2017: 'Gorton Monastery' - Clare Mount

20th February 2017: 'The Lyme Missal' - Neil Mullineux

Lyme Sarum MissalThe story of the Lyme Sarum Missal is more than a history trail of its whereabouts during the past 500 years. It encompasses the history of printing, religion and a great house.

What is a missal? I have to admit that I asked Google. A Missal contains the liturgy for Mass and other orders of worship such as daily prayers, weddings and funerals. The most popular version used in England before the Reformation was the version established by Saint Osmond, Bishop of Salisbury (Sarum) in the 11th Century.

Read more:  20th February 2017:  'The Lyme Missal' - Neil Mullineux

20th March 2017: 'Manchester: Shock City' - Erin Beeston

Liverpool Road Station
Manchester can claim many firsts and one of its more unusual names was “Shock City”, a name coined by Asa Briggs in his classic study “Victorian Cities.” Manchester, during the early 19th century industrialised at such a rapid pace that it was literally shocking for the rest of Britain and the world at large. Its shocking, brutal, nature is what inspired Marx and Engels towards their critique of capitalism at large. Briggs, however, was referring to its leading role in the industrial revolution which in turn made it a pioneer in the rapid emergence of new technologies, new social structures and new political configurations. Above all it was a test bed for the interactions between these technical and social forces, the conflicts and the opening of new possibilities.

Read more: 20th March 2017:  'Manchester: Shock City' - Erin Beeston

10th April 2017: 'The Goyt Valley Miner' - Kevin Dranfield

For the grand finale to our season of talks, we welcomed Kevin Dranfield to talk about coal mining in the Goyt valley. This was not a general, analytical talk but a very personal one. The mine had been worked by four generations of the Hewitt family and Kevin’s mother, Phyllis, was the eldest daughter of the last of these miners - Jack Hewitt.

Read more: 10th April 2017: 'The Goyt Valley Miner' - Kevin Dranfield 

Summer Walks 2017

MelandraAfter last year’s successful launch...back by popular request


Three Summer Monday Evening Strolls


15 May 2017 All Saints Churchyard with Hilary Atkinson
19 June 2017 Melandra and Glossop with Neil Mullineux
17 July 2017 Bugsworth Basin with Ian Edgar and Judith Wilshaw


£3 per head per walk payable on the evening

Read more: Summer Walks 2017

Next Meeting

Sue Bailey - ‘A History of Woodsmoor’  - Monday 19th March

Sue bailey 2

Woodsmoor is a little known area situated just one mile south east of Stockport. As Sue Bailey’s talk will show, its appearance today - one of roads lined with houses -belies its long and interesting history. Originally a part of the Bramhall Manorial estate, records show that Woodsmoor was first settled in the 16th and 17th century by tenant farmers. While Stockport grew as an industrial town in the 18th and 19th centuries, Woodsmoor remained exactly as it had been in the late 17th century. It wasn’t until 1895 that the houses started to arrive - the most notable of which was the ‘Black and White Bungalow’ shown here. Sue’s interviews with older local residents revealed their memories of interesting events that took place in Woodsmoor in the last century. All of this, put together in her book ‘A History of Woodsmoor’, shows that even the most ordinary of places has a story to tell.

A Mayor in Chains

Neil Mullineux - ‘A Mayor in Chains’  - Monday 19th February

Thornsett Turnpike

Neil Mullineux investigates the crime, the conviction and the transportation of a Stockport dignitary. Add to that his subsequent rise (and fall) and you have a gripping tale but it is not for the faint-hearted. How did he achieve his position of eminence in the local community and what made him throw it all away?

 (left: Tollgate of the Thornsett Turnpike Trust)

Transportation was a severe sentence and Norfolk Island was the ultimate destination. This was where the worst convicts, the recidivists and the murderers were sent. How did a middle-aged and middle class man survive the harshness, the depravity and the privation of his sentence to rise to a position of prominence once again? And what led to his final fall from grace?

Note

We are not, for one moment, suggesting that all Stockport politicians are untrustworthy and out for their own ends. We have faith that all our representatives are upright and honest.

 

Jan' 2018: Ian Miller - Arkwright’s Shudehill Mill

Arkwright Mill Blitz 1940

Situated on the northern edge of the city centre, the area known as Shudehill was at the epicentre of Manchester’s phenomenal rise to prominence as a manufacturing centre. Much of it was flattened by bombing in WW2 but it is only in more recent times that proposed development by the CWS has allowed any serious archaeological investigation. In 2005, the site featured on the TV programme Time Team and their 3 day excavation confirmed it was the site of Arkwright's mill. Ten years later, when the area was earmarked for redevelopment, Salford Archaeology led an extensive dig/survey of the site, revealing much more information about housing conditions as well as the evolution of alternative methods of powering early cotton mills.

 

Read more: Jan' 2018: Ian Miller - Arkwright’s Shudehill Mill 

Dec. '17 : Anne Beswick - 'Manchester Drunk & Sober'

Drunken

Anne began with an aside - explaining something that has puzzled us for a long time. Green Badge Guides specialise in a particular area whereas Blue Badge Guides cover the north west.
However, Blue or Green, they were all agreed that Manchester was a good place to party. It was ever thus. Edmund Harold, Manchester’s Samuel Pepys, described in detail going out on New Year’s Eve in 1712 and then went into rather more detail about how he felt the next day. ‘Never again’; but the next year he described exactly the same sequence. Will we never learn?

Manchester has a lot of pubs; a lot of very good pubs; and at various points throughout her talk Anne sprinkled it with a series of names (or were they recommendations?)

Read more: Dec. '17 : Anne Beswick - 'Manchester Drunk & Sober' 

Nov. '17 : Judith Wilshaw – ‘Marple & Mellor - A Textile Tale’

Holly Vale MillsJudith has always given us interesting talks but this time she tried something different. Rather than give a detailed analysis of a single topic, she elected to give a broad overview of the rise, the dominance and then the slow decline of the textile industry in north west England. In the process she demonstrated how Marple and Mellor fitted into that history. An ambitious tour de force!

Read more: Nov. '17 : Judith Wilshaw – ‘Marple & Mellor - A Textile Tale’ 

Oct. '17 : Wendy and Barrie Armstrong - 'Arts & Crafts in the Marple Area'

Fencegate & Redcroft (1895)

Wendy and Barrie Armstrong were introduced as giving us “two for the price of one” and they certainly did, as they seamlessly swapped roles during their presentation. They both retired early in order to indulge in their passion - a love of the Arts and Crafts movement and that love was clearly communicated throughout their joint talk.

(Editor’s note: left, Redcroft & Fencegate 1895, Middleton. Redcroft was Edgar Wood's own home. Wood was regarded as a proponent of the Arts and Crafts movement. So busy was he in his attic studio, where he worked on his buildings, created paintings and designed furniture, that he installed a speaking tube to communicate with downstairs.)

Read more: Oct. '17 : Wendy and Barrie Armstrong -  'Arts & Crafts in the Marple Area'