On this page you will find some of the many older news items which show what the society had been up to in the past year or so.

MAY LECTURE - 'THE SCUTTLERS' BY ANDREW DAVIES:

Wednesday 3rd of May 2017 saw a visit to the museum from Andrew Davies, author of a book entitled: 'The Gangs of Manchester', which tells the story of a notorious 19th century Manchester youth cult known as 'The Scuttlers'. Their story was even made into a play which debuted at the Royal Exchange Theatre in the city back in 2015, and which has been touring the country ever since (our thanks to the Royal Exchange for permission to reproduce their image). This was certainly a fascinating look at how such gangs developed and were eventually overcome, and a good warning as to what can happen even nowadays when young people are left without any alternative and positive things to do with their spare time. Our thanks to Andrew for a memorable talk and evening.

Andrew Davies
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May Lecture

APRIL LECTURE - 'PRIDE OF PRESTON' DICK KERR LADIES FOOTBALL TEAM':

Our lecture on Wednesday 5th of April 2017 featured Gail Newsham, who gave us a fascinating talk about the "Pride of Preston", the Dirk Kerr Ladies Football Team. Gail is also the the author of a book on this topic called 'In a League of Their Own', and you can find out more about this and about the Dick Kerr Ladies, on Gail's website at: http://www.dickkerrladies.com/. Our thanks to Gail for a very enjoyable and informative evening. NOTE# The Dick Kerr Ladies finally got a Blue Plaque in May 2017, and details of this can be found here: http://www.shekicks.net/news/view/14494

Gail Newsham
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April Lecture

'BYGONE WHITWORTH':

We're pleased to say that due to popular demand, we will be holding one of our famous film and slide shows again in conjuction with the Hallfold United Reform Church. Entitled 'Bygone Whitworth', and this will be held at the Hallfold Church on Saturday 25th of March at 7.30pm. Ticket prices will be £6, and this will include light refreshments. To obtain tickets please call 01706 344894 for details.

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Film Show 2017

MARCH LECTURE - 'VIRTUAL ROCHDALE':

Our third talk of 2017 took place on Wednesday 1st of March 2017, and featured a talk called 'Virtual Rochdale' by Mr Richard Lord. This was a very enjoyable and unique method of discovering local history, and our thanks to Richard for developing such an interesting new method of showing us how Rochdale looked around 1900, and giving us a chance to virtually walk the streets in the simulation that he had created.

If you were unfortunate enough to have missed this you might like to check out Richard's YouTube channel, which has some videos on there showing how the program looked during it's development, and it is certainly well worth watching them. Check out the following link: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCpvsOQ-a4i8vLEpevLPNXkQ

Richard Lord
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March Lecture

FEBRUARY LECTURE - 'GLENN MILLER, THE MAN, HIS MUSIC AND LEGACY':

Our second talk of 2017 takes place on Wednesday 1st of February, but due to illness our original speaker is unable to attend, but thankfully we do now have a replacement speaker in the form of Mr Brian Furness, who will be giving us a talk entitled 'Glenn Miller, The Man, His Music and Legacy'. The start time will be 7.30pm, and as per usual admission is free, though donations are always most welcome. Raffle tickets and refreshments will also be on sale.

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February Lecture

JANUARY LECTURE - 'A DIG IN THE PAST' BY JIM WHITTAKER:

Our first talk on 2017 takes place on Wednesday 4th of January, and sees a visit from Mr Jim Whittaker, who will be giving us a talk entitled 'A Dig in the Past - the story of Bottleology'. This covers the fascinating and unusual hobby of excavating old bottles, which can turn up some really unusual and historic artifacts. Start time is 7.30pm, and as per usual, admission is free, though of course we always appreciate any donations, which help us to keep the museum running, and the lecture programme free to everyone.

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Jim Whittaker

DECEMBER LECTURE - 'FINE ART, STREET ART' BY WALTER KERSHAW:

Wednesday 7th of December 2016 saw a visit to the society by one of the area's best known artists, Mr Walter Kershaw, who gave us a fascinating talk about his life and work, which not only covered the UK, many other parts of the world, such as New York and Brazil as well. Walter also brought along a number of his paintings for us to see, and even donated a wonderful painting of a steam train crossing Healey Dell Viaduct to the museum, and you can see this being presented to Society Chairman Brian below. Thanks a lot Walter, we really appreciated it. You can find out more about Walter's life and work on his website at the following link: http://www.walterkershaw.co.uk/

Walter Kershaw
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Walter Kershaw

WHS CHRISTMAS EVENT - SATURDAY 3RD OF DECEMBER:

If you are stuck for something interesting to do on Saturday 3rd of December, why not come along to the museum and enjoy our Christmas event. This will run from 11am to 4pm, and as well as lots of mince pies and fruit cakes, you can pick up some gifts from our shop, or some of the books that will be on sale from 'The Book People'. It will also give you a chance to pick up a ticket for our special Christmas raffle, which offers some fantastic prizes such as a lovely big Christmas hamper. We look forward to seeing you there for a lovely Christmas day out. As always admission is free.

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Christmas Poster

NOVEMBER 2ND 2016 - ANNUAL GENERAL MEETING & POTATO PIE SUPPER

Wednesday 2nd of November 2016 sees the society's Annual General Meeting, which will be followed by another of our famous Potato Pie Suppers, all members should try to attend if possible, as we will be electing the new committee for 2016/2017.

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AGM & Potato Pie Supper

OCTOBER LECTURE - 'LIVERPOOL COWKEEPERS' BY DAVID JOY'

For our first lecture of the 2016/2017 season was a cracker, and we were treated to a fascinating talk by David Joy about the history of the Liverpool Cowkeepers. David has written two books, one about the Liverpool Cowkeepers, and the other about his life as a boy in Liverpool in the summer of 1969, details of both books and where to obtain them can be found by clicking on the poster thumbnail below. Our thanks to Dave for coming along and giving us the talk.

David Joy
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Liverpool Cowkeepers

OPEN WEEKEND 2016 - 16TH/17TH OF JULY'

Yes folks, it's that time of the year again, time for our annual Open Weekend, which this year takes place over the weekend of Saturday and Sunday 16th/17th of July. As per usual we will have lot of things going on, and as well as giving visitors a chance to see our Exhibition to celebrate the Queen's 90th Birthday, which took place last month, we will also be having a visit from a vintage Fire Engine again, plus some military vehicles, and for the first time this year, a heritage bus, which will hopefully be giving some rides around the area. We will also have various stalls, and a competition for the youngsters to find the King and Queen for the day, plus a crown colouring competition. We will also have our usual and always excellent raffle prizes, and not forgetting the refreshments, the event runs from 11am to 4pm, and we look forward to seeing you there. You can download a copy of our posters below

Open Weekend 2016
Open Weekend Competition

JUNE LECTURE - 'FRESH AIR AND FUN' BY JOHN DOHERTY'

For our final lecture of the 2015/2016 season we were pleased to welcome John Doherty who gave us an interesting talk called 'Fresh Air & Fun', which covered the creation and history of the famous seaside resort of Blackpool. Our thanks to John for enlightening the audience about a place that we all thought we knew so well, but really didn't!

John Doherty
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June Lecture

DEMENTIA AWARENESS EVENT - MONDAY 16th OF MAY 2016

Dementia Friendly Rossendale will be holding a Dementia Awareness event in the museum on Monday 16th of May at 2pm, there is no charge for this and all are welcome to attend. If you have a friend or relative with this condition, or just want some help and advice, then do come along and watch the presentation. The start time will be 2pm, and a poster showing more information can be downloaded from the link below.

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Dementia Awareness

AFTERNOON TEA WITH THE QUEEN

Since this year sees the Queen having her 90th birthday, and becoming Britain's longest reigning monarch, the Whitworth Historical Society held an 'afternoon tea' on Sunday 15th of May 2016, which proved to be very popular. Our thanks to all who attended and helped to make it a very enjoyable day :


'THE HUNTERIAN MUSEUM, JOHN HUNTER AND THE HISTORY OF SURGERY'

For our penultimate lecture of 2016 we were very pleased to welcome Jane Hughes from the Hunterian Museum, who gave us a fascinating talk about the Museum and the history of surgery. You can find out more about the museum from the following link: http://www.rcseng.ac.uk/museums/hunterian Our thanks to Jane for a very interesting and enjoyable talk and slide show:

Jane Hughes

'THE HUNTERIAN MUSEUM, JOHN HUNTER AND THE HISTORY OF SURGERY' by Jane Hughes

For our penultimate lecture of 2016 we were very pleased to welcome Jane Hughes from the Hunterian Museum, who gave us a fascinating talk about the Museum and the history of surgery. You can find out more about the museum from the following link: http://www.hunterianmuseum.org Out thanks to Jane for a very interesting and enjoyable talk and slide show:

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May Lecture

APRIL LECTURE - "THE ACCIDENTAL ARTIST"

For our fourth lecture of 2016 we were very pleased to welcome the well known local artist Geoff Butterworth, who gave us a very enjoyable and amusing talk about his life as an 'accidental artist'. Many people in the area are familiar with Geoff's work, and this gave the attendees a great chance to hear about how Geoff became an artist, and about his work.

More information about Geoff Butterworth and his fine art work, and how to obtain his paintings can be found on his website at the following link: http://www.geoffbutterworth.co.uk/

Geoff Butterworth

MARCH LECTURE - "THE WONDERS OF WOOD"

For our third lecture of 2016 we were very pleased to welcome back Mr. Ray Ashton, who will be giving us a talk about the 'Wonders of Wood'. More details can be found via the links below:

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March Lecture

"WHERE HEROES FELL"

For our second lecture of 2016 we were very pleased to welcome back Wendy Watters, who gave us a very inmformative and interesting talk about many of the Bacup men who were killed in World War One. If anyone would like to buy a copy of Wendy's book 'Where Heroes Rest The Great War Dead of Bacup Cemetary', copies can be obtained online from Amazon at the following link here:

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February Lecture

"MEDICINE & MAGIC"

Our first lecture of 2016 was a cracker, and we were pleased to welcome Mr Peter Watson, who came along and gave as a fascinating and amusing look back at some of the strange and often used remedies back in the days before the good old NHS. Our thanks to Peter for coming, and yes, we really are now seriously considering selling cow dung and 8 foot lengths of string in the museum shop! :-)

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January Lecture

"DECEMBER MEETING - A BOOKSELLER'S LIFE"

For our lecture on Wednesday 2nd of December 2015, we were pleased to welcome Mr George Kelsall, who is well known to many for his popular 'Antiquarian & Secondhand Bookshop' in Littleborough. George gave us an interesting talk called 'A Bookseller's Life', and told us about how he got started, and many of the unusual things that had happened throughout his career. This was our last talk for 2015, but don't worry, we have plenty more coming up in the new year, and you can find details of these on the 'Lecture' page.

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December Lecture

"NOVEMBER AGM"

The Society's Annual General Meeting took place on Wednesday 4th of November, and saw a new committee elected for for the next 12 months. One new addition was Mr Ken Peel, who has now taken over as Treasurer and our thanks to him for stepping into this vital role. Society Chairman Brian then gave members a rundown of what the society has been up to in the past 12 months, and a demonstration of just how well things are progressing with the digitisation of our archives and collection. After the business was concluded we then all tucked into another of our famous Potato Pie (and Cheese and Onion - thanks Jack!) Suppers, which judging by the empty plates were enjoyed very much by all in attendance. A large number of members also took the opportunity to renew their memberships for 2015/2016 during the meeting, and if you were unable to attend, or haven't yet had a chance to renew, you can still do this anytime when the museum is open. Since we don't charge for admission to the museum, our membership subscriptions go a long way to helping to keep us afloat, so if you would like to support the Society and Museum by becoming a member, we're always happy to have you, and at just £7 per year we think this is very good value for such a great asset to the area.


"LOCAL HISTORY AND ELLENROAD ENGINE HOUSE" by Kyle Wilcock.

For our first lecture of the new 2015/16 season, we were pleased to welcome Kyle Wilcock from the Ellenroad Engine House in Newhey, who gave us an entertaining and informative talk about about the Engine House and its history. Kyle, at just 15 years old, is the youngest speaker we've ever had at the museum, but everyone agreed that he did an excellent job and really knows his stuff, and were very impressed, so a big thank you to to him for a job well done. If you've never yet visited the Engine House it is well worth making the effort, and you will find it in steam on the first Sunday in each month (except for January). It is also open for visitors on the other Sundays, though without the steam and the 'big engine' in action on those days. More information about opening times and special events there can be found on their website at: http://www.ellenroad.org.uk


OPEN WEEKEND 2015

The Society held another of its very popular Open Weekends over the second weekend in August, and many visitors came along and enjoyed the the sights and sounds of the Whitworth heritage Museum. The theme of this year's event was 'Childhood through time'.

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Open Weekend 2015

2014 AGM

On Wednesday 5th of November 2014, the Society held its Annual General Meeting. The new committee for 2014/2015 was elected, and a large number of members renewed their memberships. If anyone still hasn't renewed, but wishes too, you can call in at the museum when we are open, or see one of the committee members at any of the lectures for details of how to go about this. Likewise, anyone wishing to become a new member should do the same, or if you require any more details please contact the Membership Secretary by clicking on this link here. The annual membership fee is £7.00p, and this goes to helping keep the museum running and allowing us to offer our services for free.


A SAD YEAR FOR THE SOCIETY

The last 12 months have been very progressive for the Society in a good many ways, but they have had their downsides too, mainly due to the sad loss of four of our longest served and most senior members. Two of these, the society's Secretary Alan Schofield, and Committee member Joe Taylor, were both founder members of the WHS, and the third one, Ronnie Lord, was the museum Curator for many years. Between them they had a large wealth of knowledge and experience, and whilst we will miss them all very much we will never forget them. Alan and Joe were also instrumental in forming the Whitworth Footpath Group, a group of like-minded individuals who sought to ensure that footpaths in and around Whitworth were defined and remained open for the benefit of those who wished to use them. Also in February 2015, we received even more sad news that another long time member and servant of the Society, Mr Walter Clegg, had passed away. Walter was a great character, and will be greatly missed by everyone that knew him. All our thoughts and prayers are with their families at this sad and difficult time and we will all miss their great input and presence in the Society and Museum.

From left to right: - Joe, Alan, Ronnie and Walter.

Joe Alan Ronnie Walter

2014 MUSEUM OPEN WEEKEND - A GREAT SUCCESS!

The Society held its annual Open Weekend over the weekend of the 2nd/3rd of August 2014, and the theme this year was World War One, and more specifically the role played by Whitworth and Shawforth people during that conflict. The Mayor and Mayoress of Whitworth, Mr and Mrs Jim and Susan Mellor, where in attendance on the Saturday, and the Mayor and Mayoress of Rossendale, Mr Tom Aldred, and Mrs Valerie Sanderson attended on the Sunday. In spite of the inclement weather on Saturday the museum was quite busy, but on the Sunday the place was packed to the rafters at time, and the magnificent World War One display, which had been put together by a number of Society members, has proved so popular that we have decided to leave it in place for another several weeks, so that anyone who was away on holiday, or unable to attend can still get to see it. It was great to see so many Whitworth people able to trace their ancestors' role in the War, and we would like to pass our thanks to everyone who visited and worked so hard to make the event a big success. Below you can find some photographs from the weekend.

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Display Room
Mayor of Whitworth
Display Boards
Mayor of Rossendale

'NEW CURATOR FOR THE WHS'

The Society are pleased to announce that Cornelia Zeh has agreed to become the museum's new Curator and we are happy to welcome her to the Society. Cornelia has great experience, having worked on cataloguing the Sir Walter Scott collection at Abbotsford House in Scotland.


MAYOR'S COFFEE MORNING - A GREAT SUCCESS

On Saturday 15th of March 2014 we were pleased to host a coffee morning for the Mayor of Whitworth, Councillor Karen Ruane, and the Mayors of Rochdale, Rossendale, Ripponden and Todmorden, as well as our local M.P. Mr Jake Berry. The event was very well attended, and everyone had an enjoyable time. Our thanks also to the museum staff who provided the catering for the event, especially Paula and Sheila, who really looked the part in their Maid uniforms. You can see a selection of images from the day below, all courtesy of Mr Keith Marrion.

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Mayor's Coffee Morning Mayor's Coffee Morning Mayor's Coffee Morning Mayor's Coffee Morning

Mayor's Coffee Morning Mayor's Coffee Morning


NEW PUBLICATION - 'HEALEY DELL' BY PHILIP BLACKSHAW

The Society is pleased to announce that the publication 'Healey Dell' by Philip Blackshaw, has now been reprinted (with permission), and is now in stock in the Museum shop. More details can be found by downloading the file below, or by visiting the Museum Shop 'here':

NEW BOOK - 'HEALEY DELL' BY PHILIP BLACKSHAW:
Healey Dell by Philip Blackshaw

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