Wednesday, 1 October 2014

History of St George's Bells


When St. George's Church was opened for public worship in the year 1832, it possessed only one bell. In 1853 it was replaced by a full peal of eight bells. The new bells, purchased by the proceeds of a public subscription begun which realised £831 9s. 3d. were cast by Messrs. C. and G. Mears, at the Whitechapel Bell Foundry, London; they were then brought to Hyde, along the Peak Forest Canal, and landed at the Wharf in Canal Street. A parade was organised, and on the 3rd of February, 1853, the bells were conveyed up the town on a lorry from the Printworks, which was drawn by a number of splendid horses, and accompanied by the Printworks Brass Band, playing lively music.

The first peal was rung on Palm Sunday, March 20th, 1853, by the Society of Change Ringers from the Parish Church, Mottram. During the ringing of the first peal it was discovered that the bells were placed too low in the tower; it was accordingly decided to re-hang them in a higher position. During the re-hanging, on August 10th, 1853, a serious accident occurred. The sixth bell fell, breaking the leg of Mr. Wilson, the contractor, and crashing through the floor of the tower until it reached the stone floor of the main entrance porch of the church, where it broke into the vault of Captain Clarke, which is situated under the tower; and but for the presence of a second covering stone in the vault it would, in all probability, have fallen upon and broken the coffins lying there. The bell was smashed to pieces, but a new one was cast without delay, and the full peal were then re-hung in a suitable position.

The ringers in connection with St. George's have repeatedly distinguished themselves, and on the walls of the ringing room are three Mural Tablets recording noteworthy feats. The first reads:

The
St Georges
SOCIETY OF CHANGE RINGERS
Hyde
ON THE 24th DAY OF MARCH 1856, EIGHT
MEMBERS OF THE ABOVE SOCIETY, RANG
ON THESE BELLS A PEAL OF GRANDSHIRE MAJOR
CONSISTING OF 9,600 CHANGES,
IN 5 HOURS & 43 MINUTES.
THE BAND WAS STATIONED AS FOLLOWS.
ROBERT BRIERLEY TREBLE
HENRY ROSTRON 2nd
RICHARD AINSWORTH 3rd
EDMUND HOYLE 4th
WILLIAM HARRISON 5th
JAMES WILDE 6th
REUBEN CRAWSAHW 7th
JOHN POTTS TENOR.
COMPOSED BY WILLIAM HARRISON.
CONDUCTED BY RICHARD AINSWORTH.


The second tablet contains the inscription:

The
St Georges
SOCIETY OF CHANGE RINGERS
Hyde
ON THE 29th DAY OF MARCH 1858, SEVEN
MEMBERS OF THE ABOVE SOCIETY, WITH MR
JAMES ADAMS OF ASHTON, RANG ON THESE
BELLS A PEAL OF STEADMAN TRIPLES CONSISTING
OF 5,040 CHANGES IN 3 HOURS & 6 MINUTES
THE BAND WAS STATIONED AS FOLLOWS.
RICHARD AINSWORTH TREBLE
HENRY ROSTRON 2nd
THOMAS SALE 3rd
JAMES ADAMS 4th
JAMES WILDE 5th
WILLIAM BEELEY 6th
WILLIAM HARRISON 7th
JOHN POTTS TENOR.
COMPOSED BY T. THURSTON OF BIRMINGHAM.
CONDUCTED BY WILLIAM HARRISON.

During the summer of 1920 the bells were taken down and a new steel framework was erected and the bells recast. At this time the weights were increased (the Tenor bell weighs 919kg) but the tuning remained the same.


The third Mural Tablet is inscribed:

The
Chester
DIOCESAN GUILD.
MAY 10th 1930. IN 3 HOURS & 5 MINUTES.
A PEAL OF DOUBLE NORWICH COURT
BOB MAJOR 5024 CHANGES.
WILLIAM SHAW. TREBLE.
ARTHUR HAUGHTON. 2nd
JOHN H. BRIERLEY. 3rd
HARRY NORGROVE. 4th
JAMES SHAW. 5th
SAMUEL BOWKER. 6th
TOM WILDE. 7th
ALBERT HOUGH. TENOR.
COMPOSED AND CONDUCTED BY TOM WILDE.
RUNG TO COMMEMORATE THE 20th ANNIVERSARY
OF THE ACCESSION OF HIS MAJESTRY KING GEORGE V
ALSO AS A COMPLIMENT TO MR JAMES SHAW, WHO
HAS BEEN A RINGER AT THIS CHURCH
FOR 55 YEARS.
REV. H.J. GRAHAM.M.A.VICAR.
J.M.SIMON. A. BANCROFT. WARDENS.

Full details of the bells can be found on Dove's Guide for Church Bell Ringers.

The Felstead Database lists 263 special peals rung between 1853 and 2012.

See a photograph of the ladder in the ringing room on Hyde Daily Photo.

Sunday, 28 September 2014

Joseph Artingstoll


This photograph of Joseph Artingstoll is scanned from Thomas Middleton's book on the history of St George's Church. The book gives the following account of him:

Joseph Artingstoll died on February 8th, 1864, at the early age of 25 years, but he had crowded into his short life a record of labour which distinguishes him as one of the most prominent of the bye-gone worthies of St. George's. His funeral sermon was published in booklet form, under the title of "A Sermon preached in St. George's Church, Hyde, on the occasion of the death of Mr. Joseph Artingsioll, on Sunday, Feb. 14th, 1864, by the Rev. Alexander Read B.A. Incumbent." In the publication, Mr. Read states--
"He was, from his earliest days, orderly, serious and fond of reading. He had read the whole Bible through, chapter by chapter, in his family circle, when quite in early boyhood. And when engaged ln his usual work, the Bible, or in later years, the Greek Testament, was a regular companion. He was a young man of strong natural powers , and had practised self-culture with marked diligence and success. ... Though daily engaged in labours demanding constant attention, so continually did he turn every moment to account. that his literary attainments were very considerable, and in such circumstances, wonderful. ... He was placed in charge of the Young Men's Class in St. George's Sunday School and was judged eminently fitted for the important duty. ... ln the course of his sickness I spoke to him of experimental religion and having expressed a fear that I had wearied him in his excessive weakness he at once replied that, "it was his greatest delight to speak on this subject; it was always edifying." And when shortly before his death, I mentioned his approaching end, and reminded him of the Christians' support in that solemn moment-- "Christ," said he, "is my rock, I have no other trust but Christ." He seemed more able to give comfort and instruction at that solemn hour than to need it."
There is a tablet to Mr. Artingstoll's memory on the south wall of the church.


The memorial no longer exists. I traced this information after hearing from Alison Hunt who had written to me saying:
"I am researching my family history. The family were called Artingstoll and had premises in Hyde Lane and Chapel Street. I understand that William Artingstoll 1836-1908 donated money to the building of St George's church and that there is/was a memorial to his brother Joseph in the church school."


Whilst I didn't discover the lost memorial I did find, after thumbing through a programme for a bazaar held in 1896, an advertisement for Artingstoll's High-class decorators, established in 1835.


See a photograph of the inside of St George's church on Hyde Daily Photo.

A contribution to Inspired Sundays.

Friday, 19 September 2014

WWI Memorial in St George's Church, Hyde


The inscription reads:
TO THE GLORY OF GOD AND IN GRATEFUL MEMORY OF THE
MEN OF THIS PARISH WHO GAVE THEIR LIVES FOR US ALL
IN THE GREAT WAR 1914 - 1918

OSWALD ADSHEAD
HARRY ARCHER
HENRY ARMITAGE
JAMES ARMITAGE
W STANLEY BARRY
HAROLD BANCROFT
HARRY BANCROFT
WILLIAM B BARDSLEY
HAROLD BRIDGE
HARRY BROADBENT
JOSEPH BROADBENT
JAMES E BROOMHEAD
FRED CROWLEY
HARRY CULLEN
ROLAND CULLEN
HARRY DUCKWORTH
JOHN DUCKWORTH
ALFRED ELLIS
ARTHUR FAULKNER
CHARLES FOLEY

JOHN FOX
HARRY H GREEN
JAMES H HALKYARD
ROBERT HAMPSON
HAROLD HARDY
JOHN HARDY
JOE HARRISON
HAROLD HILL
JOHN HAUGHTON
ALFRED JACKSON
WILLIAM JONES
BERTIE KIRTON
ERNEST KNOWLES
JOHN KNOWLES
WILLIAM KNOWLES
ERNEST LAWTON
SAMUEL LEE
JOSEPH LEIGH
WILLIAM E LEWIS
HARRY LUNN

HERBERT E MAKIN
THOMAS H METCALFE
PERCY MORLEY
FRED MOSS
FRED MOTTRAM
WILLIAM NAYLOR
FRED OLDFIELD
CHARLES OLDHAM
DAVID ORFORD
WILLIAM OSBORNE
HAROLD PARR
GEORGE PURSSGLOVE
ARTHUR ROBINSON
WALTER ROBINSON
EDWIN SHERWIN
SAMUEL SMALLEY
JAMES SMITH
ERNEST SPENCER
JOHN W STOTT
HERBERT SWINDELLS

ALBERT TAYLOR
J EDWARD TOLSON
JOHN WADDINGTON
WILLIAM WALLBANK
E WORSLEY WESTBROOK
ALAN H WHARAM
FRANK WHARAM
HARRY WHARAM
WALTER WHITEHEAD
WILFRED WHITEHEAD
ARNOLD WILDE
ERNEST WILLIAMSON
HARRY WILSON
JOSEPH WILSON
WILLIAM WILSON
ERNEST WOOD
FRED WOOD

There are two more memorials relating to the Second World War and these can be viewed on Hyde Daily Photo.

Tuesday, 22 July 2014

Flowers outside Abbey National 1999


The Abbey National on the corner of Market Place and Hamnett Street in 1999.

The antecedents of the Abbey National are the National Permanent Mutual Benefit Building Society established in 1849 and the Abbey Road & St. John's Wood Permanent Benefit Building Society, founded in 1874, based in a Baptist church on Abbey Road in Kilburn. In 1932 the society moved into new headquarters, Abbey House, at 219–229 Baker Street, London, which it occupied until 2002. The site was thought to include 221B Baker Street, the fictional home of Sherlock Holmes and for many years Abbey employed a secretary charged with answering mail sent to Holmes at that address. The two soicieties merged in 1944 to form the Abbey National Building Society.

1n 1989 it became the first of the UK building societies to demutualise, and become a public limited company. In 2003 it rebranded itself as simply the Abbey. In November 2004 it become part of the Santander Group.

Santander had also acquired Bradford & Bingley's retail branches and savings business in September 2008.

In January 2010, Abbey and the branch network of Bradford & Bingley were rebranded as Santander and for the next four years both branches continued to operate at the opposite ends of the Market Place.

In 2014 the former Bradford & Bingley branch was closed down and its business merged with the former Abbey branch which is now the sole Santander branch in town.

See how this same scene looks in July 2014 on Hyde Daily Photo.

Sunday, 22 June 2014

Gee Cross Methodist Memorials


Gee Cross Methodists Church stands on land which was once part of Ralph Fold. Originally, Stockport Road Wesleyan Methodist Church and founded in 1882, when the Primitive Methodist Chapel on Joel Lane closed in 1969 the two congregations merged as Gee Cross Methodists Church.


This Memorial Stone was laid by Mrs John Blackwell of Godley July 28th 1888. This is six years after the church was founded and is by the entrance to the Sunday School.


These tablets were rescued from Joel Lane and re-erected here.
1914. THE GREAT WAR 1919.

This Tablet
IS ERECTED AS A MEMORIAL
TO THE YOUNG MEN OF THIS CHURCH AND SUNDAY
SCHOOL, WHO RESPONDED TO BRITAIN'S CALL AT
THE CRISIS OF A GREAT NATIONAL PERIL

THE FOLLOWING PAID THE SUPREME SACRIFICE
THOMAS SAMPSON | HERBERT BRELSFORD
FRED ROBBINS. | HAROLD W WARDLE
JOSEPH J WARDLE | JOHN H WALSH
1939. 1945
ALBERT RICHARDSON

***

THESE FLOWER VASES
WERE ERECTED BY THE
FAMILY AND CONGREGATION
IN GRATEFUL MEMORY OF
ALBERT C. WILSON

BORN 25th DEC. 1874,
DIED 29th DEC. 1947,
WHO FAITHFULLY SERVED THIS CHAPEL
AND SCHOOL FOR 60 YEARS.


This tablet commemorates men from Stockport Road Wesleyan Methodist Church. It reads:

TO THE GLORY OF GOD
IN HONOUR OF THE MEN OF THIS CHURCH,
WHO SERVED IN THE GREAT WAR, 1914-1918.
AND IN EVER ABIDING MEMORY OF THE UNDERMENTIONED WHO FELL
---
HARRY COLLINSON | NORMAN H STAFFORD
GEORGE SHELMERDINE | WILLIAM HILL
FRED BARTON | TOM TWEEDALE
SAMUEL SOUTER | JOHN H BRADDOCK
"GREATER LOVE HATH NO MAN THAN THIS"


IN MEMORY OF
Pte NORMAN H STAFFORD
7th ROYAL WELSH FUSILIERS
WHO DIED AT PORT SAID
25th OCTOBER 1919.
---
RAISED BY OFFICERS AND MEN OF HIS REGIMENT


Sacred to the Memory of
- JOHN BUCKLAND -
WHOSE SERVICE IN CONNECTION WITH THIS CHURCH
AND SUNDAY SCHOOL EXTENDED OVER A PERIOD OF
40 YEARS. DIED AUGUST 4th 1917.
- AGED 73 YEARS -
A GOOD NAME IS RATHER TO BE CHOSEN THAN GREAT RICHES.

WILLOUGHBY WILDE. HYDE.


IN MEMORY OF
ABEL STAFFORD
WHO WENT TO THE HOMELAND - FEB 21st 1910
AGED 58 YEARS
---
THIS TABLET IS A LOVING EXPRESSION OF THE FAMILY AND
FRIENDS OF THE HIGH APPRECIATION OF HIS
UNTIRING DEVOTION TO THE BEST INTERESTS OF THIS CHURCH.
HE HELD FOR MANY YEARS THE POSITION OF SUNDAY
SCHOOL SUPERINTENDENT SOCIETY STEWARD AND SEVERAL
OTHER OFFICES: AND AT THE TIME OF HIS TRANSLATION WAS
STEWARD OF THE WOODLEY CIRCUIT
-----
"He being dead yet speaketh."

Views of the outside of the church can be a found on Hyde DP Xtra.

A view of the inside of the church and its organ can be found on Hyde Daily Photo.

A contribution to Inspired Sundays.


Tuesday, 6 May 2014

Hyde Library


The foundation stone at Hyde Library reads:

THIS STONE
WAS LAID BY ELIZABETH WIFE OF
THOMAS ASHTON OF HYDE
ON THE 3rd DAY OF JULY
1897

It was built on the site of the former Mechanics Institute


A second stone reads:

THIS BUILDING WAS OPENED BY
LETITIA MARY
WIDOW OF WILLIAM MARK ASHTON
OF HYDE
FEBRUARY 18TH 1899

A view of the side of the library can be found on Hyde Daily Photo.

Current council plans involve moving the contents of the library to the Town Hall and then selling off the building.

An e-petition opposed to those plans can be found at http://epetitions.direct.gov.uk/petitions/62460.

A contribution to Ruby Tuesday;
Our World Tuesday;
signs, signs and
Weekend Reflections.

Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Norfolk Arms Disaster Plague


A plaque in Clarendon Square Shopping Centre close to the site of the former Norfolk Arms recalls a disaster that occured on 1st April 1829.

In the summer of 1828, the cotton trade was in such a bad state that the masters announced a reduction of wages. The reduction was firmly opposed by the operatives and a great strike commenced which rapidly spread throughout the district. At Stockport the struggle was extremely bitter, neither side showing any desire to give way. In Hyde a better spirit prevailed and soon the mills in Hyde were all working full-time. However, the harmony did not continue. The operatives of Hyde were contributing each week from their wages towards the support of the people who were out on strike in Stockport, as a result of which their employers issued a notice on 24th March 1829 that the manufacturers, whose mills were working, intended to reduced their wages by 10 per cent every 14 days until the Stockport hands returned to work.

To discuss the threat, a meeting of operatives was held in The Norfolk Arms on 1st April 1829. In its day The Norfolk Arms was the principal hotel in the area and said to be the oldest commercial hotel. The room in which the meeting took place was fifteen yards long and seven yards wide. It was only expected to hold approximately 300 people, but there were nearer 700 present when the accident occurred.

John Dawson, one of Hyde's principal operative orators, was the chairman and was seated in a large chair belonging to a lodge of Oddfellows, placed near the middle of one of the side walls of the room. A man named Tobias Wood then began to speak, insisting on the working classes having a fair remuneration for their work. He had just cried out "It is bread we want and bread we must have," when an awkward crush took place, caused by new arrivals trying to crowd into the room. The chairman was appealing for order when part of the floor gave way and numbers of the audience fell into the gaping gulf which appeared. The weight of the people who fell with the floor broke through the floor of the rooms beneath and the unfortunate victims crashed into the cellar, amongst beer barrels and stillages, heaped one upon another in a distorted state. The portion of the floor which collapsed was only six yards square and the fact that over 200 persons were precipitated down the hole is evidence of the extreme closeness with which the occupants of the room were packed. Many who were standing upon the unbroken part of the floor were actually propelled into the gulf by the thrust of the living mass around them. The chairman narrowly escaped; barely more than a foot of sound flooring separated his chair from the edge of the hole. Seven young women were seated on a bench fastened to the wall and when the floor gave way they found their feet and legs suspended over the gulf, but they managed to hold on to the seat until they were rescued.

The scene in the cellar was dreadful - 29 persons were killed and many injured. When the cellar was searched, after all the bodies had been extricated, over 120 hats and 50 bonnets, shawls and cloaks were found.

The verdict at the inquest was "Accidental Death", but the belief for many years, persistently held by a large number of operatives, was that the disaster was the result of foul play.

The Norfolk Arms closed in 1960 for the redevelopment of the market centre.

Further information can be found on the Tameside MBC website.

See Hyde Daily Photo for a view down Norfolk Street today.

A contribution to ABC Wednesday.
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