Marshall (Will o’ Jackey’s) was the first leader of
the services of the Primitive Methodists, or “Ranters”
as they were called, and the services were held there until the
school and meeting house were built in KNOWLWOOD in 1826.
the mill passed into the hands of the Fielden Bros., of Waterside,
who purchased it from the Laws, and ran it as one of their outside
mills, an extension of four bays being made at the higher end,
and a manager’s house being built by the main road side
about the year 1836-8.
Soon after the new road was made past this point, Abraham Scholfield,
of KNOWLTOP FARM, built four cottages at Clough holme, the name
of Thistle Hall being given to the latter, and two more were later
built at the Gauxholme end of the row. About this date, James
and Abraham Fielden, stone masons of Walsden, built four cottages
at the higher end, and shortly after built some back-to-back cottages
closer to the river side. One of the houses in front was made
into an inn whilst the railway works were going on. Clough House
and cottages known as Rose Cottages, were built by Samuel Fielden
and his cousin John Fielden (John 0’ William’s) respectively.
House in 2003
Directly after this new branch of road was made in 1825, John
Crossley a confectioner and sweet-maker, from Winwick, built the
block of houses opposite to where the RAILWAY INN stands now.
The block consisting of the house and shop with two cottage. He
occupied the shop up to the time of his death some time before
the railway works were commenced, and it then passed into the
hands of John Smith of Knowlwood who kept it as a beerhouse during
the time that the railway was being made. And it was afterwards
converted into the railway booking and other offices. Somewhat
later a row of five back-to-back houses was built by James and
Robert Fielden, picker makers, and Joseph Woodhead. There were
no further buildings until the Inchfield-bottom school and preaching
rooms were built.
INCHFIELD CORN MILL, which was demolished many years ago, used
to occupy the corner plot of land at the bottom of Inchfield-road.
A number of shops and houses are now built on its site. The mill
was run by John and James Bairstow, who also owned the miller’s
house opposite, and its last tenant was Richard Smith.
old NIP SQUARE, higher up, has passed through many hands,
and during the time of the railway works there used to
be two public houses there, one of which was kept by Abraham
Fielden, the miller’s man, whence its name of Dusty
Miller. The other house was next door, and was kept by
Abraham Law, a clogger.
on, about the time that that portion of the line was nearing completion,
Law removed to the opposite side of the new road, which the company
had made, and built the Cloggers’ Arms and four cottages.
The name of the house being afterwards changed to THE CROSS KEYS when Walsden Church was consecrated as ST. PETER'S CHURCH.
Cross Keys in 2002
small brick houses were built by the railway company at the entrance
to the old Winterbutlee farm road, but they have since been allowed
to fall into disrepair. There were also three cottages on the
left, and one on the right at New Bridge, built by the Brooks
family of Strines Barn farm. The higher New Bridge cottages, opposite
the mill, mostly date from the period when the road was made.
in the Ramsden Wood road, the houses are mostly of old date,
but their identification by name would be impossible now.
Ramsden Wood mills and houses have passed through many hands
since the time when they were in the possession of the Laws
and Bottomleys, and until lately they have never attained
the prosperity which they enjoyed in those times.
and left: Ramsden Wood original cottages in
Bottoms, the oldest house now remaining is an old low building
at the higher end of the Waggon and Horses, and at the entrance
to Allescholes Rake, close by the old road side. The old “Cherry
Tree Beerhouse” at Moverley was afterwards rebuilt, and
made into a farmhouse for William Greenwood, and after his death
it passed into the hands of Mr. John Wade, retired druggist who
lived there until his death. The place has since gone by the name
of MOVERLEY COTTAGE, the old “Moverley” being up on
the hill behind Allescholes clough, where there were four old
cottages with accommodation for hand looms, the cottages having
been allowed to fall into ruin. At Bottoms there were many old
landmarks, which have since been removed. The district having
altered completely since the time of which we are writing.
The SUN INN, on the left hand side of the road is probably as
old as the road itself, but the making of the railway played havoc
with the small farm holding which is attached to it. Upon part
of the land, which used to be attached, a mill has been built,
so that is some compensation.
the Sun Inn is a private house
At the Deanroyd farm lived “Tummy” Law, one of the
firm of Law Brothers, of Lower Ramsden mill. He was the trading
partner of the firm, and the cashier, and was well known all round
the district for the way in which he carried the firm’s
pay-money to the works on pay-day – on the top of his flat
topped hat. Whilst he lived at Deanroyd, he bought a plot of land
and built four cottages on it, together with a stable, which was
so built that it could accommodate a fully laden lurry. This place
was much used by lurries returning from Manchester and other places
as a place of call, and as a resting place over night.
somehow got the name of “Temple” during the
time that Mr. Law lived there, and he, like the rest of
the brothers, was well endowed with this world’s goods,
though much of the money of the family was afterwards squandered
in various lawsuits between different members of the family.
railway works in this part of the valley gave a great fillip to
the liquor trade, and John Thomas, who had formerly been a farmer
at Top-o’-th’-Fold, occupied two of the houses at
the end of Deanroyd lane as an inn, and for a time he did a roaring
trade amongst the navvies, the village constable being frequently
occupied in this place. There was also on the Deanroyd land a
block of four or five cottages called Lightbank, which had been
built before the canal was made. The only road for carts to these
cottages is by the towing-path, but there are two footpaths to
them from the Sun Inn and Deanroyd lane. In one of these cottages,
in old times, lived Ambrose Brook, the well-known temperance advocate.
These cottages after having been derelict for a very long time
have recently been renovated and re-occupied.
Before the new turnpike road was made, the way down the valley
was by way of a foot path which ran through the fields below the
Sun Inn, and this path was afterwards closed, a number of old
inhabitants protesting against its extinction and for a time they
continued to use the path in preference to the new road.
footbridge over the river on the footpath
below the Sun Inn in 2003
Smales, in the valley bottom, was a small place consisting of
two small dwelling houses and two small fields, these being the
property of Samuel Law, of MOORSIDE, Todmorden, on whose death
the land passed to his two sons, John and William, who built other
cottages on the land, and effected considerable alterations in
the cottages already built.
The next place on the right hand side of the road was the “Throstlenest,”
or Watering Trough, a small farm in the possession of William
Crowther, better known as “old Will o’t’ Watering
Trough.” The farm buildings consisted of dwelling house,
barn and shippon. At Top-o’th’-Close, where the road
rose over a slight elevation in the ground, stood a row of cottages
on the right hand, and on the left a smithy. In the railway construction
era there were also two inns at this place, kept respectively
by Thomas Newell and Harry Earnshaw, the latter being an extensive
breeder and keeper of pigs, from which occupation he derived his
by-name of “Pig Harry.”
The main road has been considerably altered at this place, as,
instead of its being carried along by these houses, it was diverted
over the tunnel end, so that it came more into line with the road
from Rochdale near the Stonehouse (river and canal) bridges. The
old “Firwood farm place” was entirely obliterated
by being used for a tip for the debris from the tunnel, the farm
being the property of a family of the name of Crabtree. The long
row of houses known as Lanebottom Fold was built by Robert Dawson
of Stonehouse Farm some time after the canal was made. There were
also three houses at the Fold, which were not disturbed when the
railway was made, besides an old house, now in ruins, which stood
back to back with the old Lanebottom canal lockhouse.
the canal bridge stood the old WESLEYAN SCHOOL & MEETING HOUSE, which had been built in 1818 mainly by the efforts
of John Fielden (“Little Quaker”), of Bottomley,
and one or two others. The place was later given over to
the Todmorden School Board, after the Wesleyans had built
their new chapel and school on the main road opposite to
Throstle Nest. |
by kind permission of Frank Woolrych
the steep lane or old highroad is BOTTOMLEY, which has a most
interesting history attaching to it. In the early part of last
century, the village or rather cluster of cottages at Bottomley
was occupied by a number of hand weavers, who kept abreast of
the times, and at various periods were makers of cloth, fustian,
and calico, as the needs of the times demanded. From 1815 to 1826,
there would be about thirty hand looms in the place, all engaged
in the then remunerative occupation of weaving, the prices for
cuts being at that time at a high figure.
The history of Bottomley dates back to the time of Elizabeth.
On the 24th of September 1561, the Earl of Derby sold to Edward
Crossley and Robert Fielden, six messuages and tenements called
Bottomley, which are held in fee of the Queen by suit of services
and the Manor of Rochdale, of ten shillings and twopence per year.
The history of several of the old families of the Todmorden and
Walsden districts connects in one way or another with the family
of the Robert Fielden mentioned in this deed. One of the descendants
of the family was the Rev. Richard Clegg, vicar of Kirkham, one
of the founders of the TODMORDEN ENDOWED SCHOOL in 1713.
The Bottomley Fieldens were also united by marriage with the family
of Fieldens who came from Bradford to the HORSEPASTURE FARM,
afterwards being the tenants under George Travis of the Magatholme
and Top-o’th’-Fold farms.
This Nicholas Fielden made a will in 1624 in which he left a considerable
amount of property in the Shore and Mercerfield districts to his
sons, whilst the son Abraham, who married one of the descendants
of the Bottomley Fieldens, had the Inchfield farm besides the
right of Bottomley farm through his wife.
second son, John, was afterwards the farmer of Lower CLOUGH FARM, and Joshua Fielden was the farmer at WARLAND FARM,
where he built a new house in 1665, the house now bearing
his initials and date, still clearly visible. From these
two families sprang the “Quaker” family with
whom so much of our local history is connected. They were
afterwards one of the most influential families in the district,
and also one of the most generous.
last of the descendants of the Bottomley Fieldens, were John and
Thomas Fielden, the form of whom was known as “Little Quaker.”
He sold the Bottomley farm in 1835 to Mr. John Fielden of Dawson
Weir, and he then removed to Wadsworth mill so that his children
might be nearer to the fatory. “Tum o’ Jossey’s”
was the last of the family to remain at Bottomley. He was carrying
on to the end his occupation of hand weaver and working for the
Fieldens of Waterside.
On the left hand side of the canal and river is Stonehouse farm,
or rather farms, the places having probably derived their distinctive
name from the possible fact of many of the other houses in Walsden
at that time being built of wood. The valley being exceedingly
well timbered at a former period.
Coming back over the bridges there stands on the opposite side
of the road a row of seven or eight good houses, which are, however
of recent date. Continuing on the main road we come to the Bell’s
Arms inn, which used to bear until quite a recent period the name
of “THE WOODCOCK INN.” This house is connected by
tradition with Nicholas Fielden as his last home, and fields in
the neighbourhood bear the name of the Holme.
The “BIRD IN HAND ” Inn used to stand on the road beyond
Steanor-bottom before the new road was made over by the Summit
Inn, but it was taken down and rebuilt in its present situation
when the new road was made. The traffic now being diverted completely
from the old road to the new.
WARLAND GATE END houses were probably built about the same date,
(1824), by John Scholfield who also added another cottage at the
end, and the two cottages by the canal side about the year 1840/
Steanor-bottom farm is a very old place, and the building has
much quaint handiwork about it, including the inscription:
“By many hands this work was done,
which could not be performed by one.”
“No man on earth can tell,
The torments that there are in Hell.”
In 1836, this farm was bought by Joshua Fielden of Waterside,
and was much improved by re-fencing and re-trenching the land.
The Fielden family at one time had a number of employees in this
district, and built a new “taking-in place” for their
hand weavers to bring their cuts to. At one time the Steanor-bottom
farm had been in the possession of Cyril Scholfield, who lies
buried in the graveyard of the old church at Todmorden.
CALF-HOLES was the last place on the Walsden side of the boundary,
but the property was entirely demolished by the tipping from the
railway tunnel. The materials from which it was built were removed
by the company, and rebuilt near the Gale Inn on the Little-borough
road with a new and up-to-date front.
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