Chorley Historical and Archaeological Society

News and Views


November 2006


Wed 29 Nov 2006

Chorley Parish Church of St Laurence.
Several members of the Society attended the presentation of the Marque of Excellence to the Chorley Parish Church of St Laurence. The presentation was for their work in the Multi Faith Tourist area and the presentation was by Lady Shuttleworth. I can't say I understand just what multi faith tourism is but it was certainly a good do.
Ed Fisher gave an excellent slide presentation all about the history of the Church and the families associated with it. Ed has kindly agreed to give the full presentation to our Society at some future date. A very entertaining item was 'Letter Home' a short drama presentation written by Michael Harvey and performed by Tom Bell. Tom played Myles Standish as he approached the American coast and composed a letter home which told of the trials and tribulations he and his fellow travellers had to face.

Lady Shuttleworth makes the presentation

Ed Fisher gives his presentation

Myles Standish returns in the form of actor Tom Bell


Thu 16 Nov 2006

About 130 people attended the Film Society's afternoon show on 16th Nov. 12 of them being our own members. The afternoon was introduced by impresario Chris Lee, and the grandson of the original director of the films, Mr. Blakeley, was also there.
Frank Randle was born in Standish in 1901. He moved to his beloved Blackpool when he was 16. His first job was a Gymnast, then he joined an acrobatic troupe, performing at the Winter Gardens, Blackpool in 1922. At the time he was also a 'front cloth comic' (warm up man). In 1935 he was placed second on the bill to George Formby, at the Blackpool Opera House, by promoter Jack Taylor. 1940 gave him his own touring revue 'Randals Scandals'. His first film, in 1940, was 'Somewhere in England' followed by numerous 'Somewhere' films, all made during the forties. One of which is missing 'SOMEWHERE IN POLITICS' 1948. If its whereabouts is known please inform; as all the films are hoping to be put on DVD in the future. At the peak of his career in the mid 1940s he was earning in the region of 1000pounds per week, comparable today to David Beckham. Frank Randle died on July 7th 1957. A celebration of his life is planned to be held in Blackpool on July 7th 2007.

Tue 14 Nov 2006

Harry Yeadon came to the Society to talk to us about the history of the motorway network in the north west.
Some interesting facts I didn't know were that there are 18 numbered motorways in the NW, 1 million trees were planted along the NW motorways and Chorley Nab had 2.5million cubic yards of rock removed from the top to be used in motorway fill. So as you drive along the M61 towards Manchester you're driving over the Nab!

Harry Yeadon and Mike Bennett after the talk.

Tue 07 Nov 2006

Yarrow Valley Country Park Advisory Group

Joan and Boyd attended the first of our meetings with this group. We didn't know what to expect but were very pleasantly surprised to be involved with a hard working team who all had something to say and all were doing something positive to extent the activities of the park. We made some comments on how we could contribute and I hope by the time the next meeting in Feb 2007 comes around we will have more to offer from the society.

Mon 06 Nov 2006

Four members of Chorley Society attended the Leyland Historical Society meeting in Leyland. The speaker was Dr Alan Crosby giving a presentation on the 13th Earl of Derby and his estate at Knowsley. Alan will be visiting Chorley to speak to us on Tue 9th Jan 2007.

Dr Alan Crosby, standing on the left,
giving his presentation.

Sun 05 Nov 2006

Joan Dickinson has been busy transcribing the diary of John Winstanley, one of the founder members of the Society. You will find reference to this in the notes by Jack on the history of the Society. Many thanks to Ten Unwin for donating the diary to the Society. The transcript can be seen in full on the 'Notes from the Archives' page. It makes fascinating reading about the early days and many wanderings around the moors.

Wed 01 Nov 2006

Laura, Dot and Boyd attended the Wigan Archaeological Society meeting in Wigan to hear Ian Miller of Oxford Archaeology talk about their recent work on the Roman excavations etc. in Wigan. Ian will be visiting us at Chorley in March next year.
Wigan has recently obtained a grant for new projection equipment. They've got a new digital projector and are about to buy a screen. Unfortunately the rooms they use are not very suitable for winter use as the heating is often faulty. On the night it was off and everyone sat shivering. I stuffed my newspaper up the inside of my jacket. It nearly worked.

Some of the excavations in Wigan.


Ian Miller answers questions after his presentation.