Chorley Historical and Archaeological Society

News and Views

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Mar 2017

Wed 29 Mar 2017
Rosemary Boyd


It is with great sadness that I have to report the death of our friend Rosemary Boyd on Wed 29 Mar 2017. She had been a member of Chorley Historical & Archaeological Society for as long as I can remember.
She was a special person that investigated our history and heritage with a passion that I have not seen in anybody else. She was the head administrator at Astley Hall for many years and knew more about the hall and families that lived there than anyone.
The opening of the Leyland/Clayton-le-Woods Reservoir to the public in 2013 before demolition was entirely due to Rosemary’s efforts. Over 20,000 people visited in a 2 week period.

Rosemary unveiling the Reservoir Heritage Monument in Clayton Green with Dr David Hunt On Wed 20 May 2015

Sun 03 Nov 2013
Last one out turn the lights off.
On Sun 03 Nov 2013 the underground reservoir at Back Lane, Clayton-le-Woods was closed
to the public for the last time at 4pm.
Harrison, Hannah & Rosemary Boyd are the last to leave before being closed to the public. They were also the first members of the public to enter the reservoir on Fri 18 Oct 2013



Saturday 15th July 2017
Visit to Goodshaw Chapel and Gambleside 15 July 2017
We are booked to visit Goodshaw Chapel at 11am on Saturday 15 July 2017.
The Chapel is one of only four English Heritage properties in Lancashire and the
only non-conformist place of worship in the country. This atmospheric Baptist
Chapel has a complete set of Georgian box pews, galleries and pulpit. Pevsner’s
guide describes the interior as “wonderfully unspoiled.” It is a listed grade 2*
There is no charge but donatons would be appreciated.
Click here for full details
Sunday 30th April 2017
In the 1840s the Chartists was a mass movement of political protest, demanding radical change. In Lancashire mass open-air meetings of thousands of people took place across the county. Our local one was on Denholm Hill near Brindle. 170 years ago a meeting took place on Blackstone Edge, above Littleborough, on top of the Pennines. That meeting has been commemorated for the past 10 years.
This year’s gathering will be on Sunday 30 April, starting at 12.30. All are welcome. No Booking; no charge. You are invited to walk up to the rocky outcrop on Blackstone Edge to picnic and sing and remember the great Chartist gathering there. The gathering is a mix of individuals, small groups and choirs. There will be some singing of Chartist and other songs, some people may read poems, others may speak about the Chartists. You can join in or just listen. Groups and choirs may bring banners and flags. Afterwards they repair to the pub!
Click here for full details.

Tue 14 Mar 2017
Barrie J Walters M A  – We Are Stardust.


Barrie, a retired engineer with a life-long passion for the Universe, was making his first visit to the society.

At first sight Barrie’s talk’s title seemed to have little connection with history but he explained his talk would touch on 13.7 billion years of it, the accepted age of the Universe.

Supported by some wonderful images of the night sky he also explained some everyday effects of it on our lives. For instance, night and day, the seasons and the phases of our moon.

Barrie J Walters MA

The Solar System 

A practical demonstration was carried out to help comprehend the scale of our solar system, a tiny speck in the Universe. In our minds’ eyes he asked us to think of a grapefruit as the sun. Other, much smaller items, of food, such as a poppy seed for Earth, represented planets. Barrie paced out the length of the meeting room to put the great distances between said objects into perspective.

His attention then turned to the stars, of which our sun is just one of billions in the Universe. He highlighted several of the constellations that are common to us, why their positions in the sky change by the season and urged us to seek out dark skies to discover more.

He concluded by explaining why everything on Earth was formed in a star and why we are all stardust.

Peter Robinson