​​​ January 1912 | February 1912 | March 1912 | April 1912 | May 1912 
June 1912 | July 1912 | August 1912 | September 1912


After a two year gap the topic “100 years ago” is being resurrected, starting with July 1914.  Life in Blackburn is carrying on as normal, the weather is good, garden parties are being held and, until the end of the July, there is no indication of the carnage to come. The world would never be the same again!
Click on 1915 to read what was happening in Blackburn e​ach month. 


1914 | 19​15

One hundred years ago, January 1912

01 Sir William and Lady Coddington just before her death Dec 31 1911.jpg

The Blackburn Times of 6th of January 1912
We regret having to chronicle the death of Lady Coddington, wife of Sir William Coddington, Bart., J.P. D.L., which occurred on Sunday evening.  Her Ladyship was only ill about a week, starting with bronchitis.  Pleurisy supervened, and on Saturday her condition was so serious that Sir James Barr, the eminent physician of Liverpool, was called into consultation.  All the medical knowledge and skilful nursing could do for the patient was done, but without avail, and Lady Coddington breathed her last about nine o’clock on New Year’s Eve.  It was not until the following forenoon, when flags were put at half-mast on “Wycollar,” the Town Hall, political clubs, and the mills owned by Sir William, that the sad news became generally known.  On all hands the greatest sympathy was expressed with the  bereaved husband, who is in his 81st year.
Sarah Katherine Lady Coddington was the third daughter of the late Mr William Thomas Hall, of Wakefield.  Mrs Wade of Kirkella Hall , near Hull, is her sister.  The deceased lady was in her 70th year.  She was married to Sir William  (then Mr Coddington) in 1864.  They have one surviving daughter, the wife of Mr Arthur Cayley, J.P., D.L., formally of Lovely Hall, Salesbury, and now of Beal, Northumberland, and three grandsons.  Lady Coddington was a great help to her husband during his long public career, both as Mayor in 1874-5, at which time he was a town councillor, and as one of the Conservative Members for Blackburn from 1880 to 1906, a period of 25 years.  Sir William was created a baronet in 1896, this being one of the New Year honours.  After her husband was elected  M.P., Lady Coddington spent a good deal of her time in London, and became a noted hostess in society.  She entertains on a princely scale at 143, Piccadilly, one of the most magnificent mansions in London, which was formerly occupied by the late Baron Ferdinand Rothschild.  The baron, who had excellent taste, had all the principal rooms superbly decorated regardless of the question of expense.  When in September, 1905 H,R.H. the princess Louise, with the Duke of Argyll, visited Blackburn, the former to unveil the memorial statue to Queen Victoria, Sir William and Lady Coddington had the honour of entertaining her Royal Highness from Friday till Monday.
Before proceeding with the ordinary business of the Blackburn Borough Police Court on Monday morning, Alderman E. Hamer (the presiding magistrate) said it was with great regret he had to announce the death of Lady Coddington, who had always played her part as a lady of position in the borough.  She had been ready at all times to assist in everything that had for its object the benefit of the town in which she has lived so long.  He was sure they would join with him in conveying deep sympathy with Sir William Coddington and his family in the very painful affliction that had fallen upon them in the last day of the old year.
The Chief Constable Mr I.G. Lewis, on behalf of the Clerk, the solicitors, and the police force joined in the expression of deep sympathy.  He had known Lady Coddington for a great many years.  During the time her husband  was Member of Parliament for the Borough, he was frequently brought into contact with Lady Coddidngton, and he had always found her exceedingly nice to everyone.
At Blackburn Town Hall Council on Thursday afternoon the Mayor (Alderman Crossley) referred to the death of Lady Coddington, who, he said had played a very important part in the life of Blackburn.  The long and happy union between her and Sir William had at length been broken, and he was sure that, in common with his fellow-townsmen, they would join with him in expressing deep sympathy with Sir William Coddington, and family.
The funeral took place at Blackburn on Thursday morning.  The obsequies were of a quiet character though there were unmistakable evidences of the regret occasioned by the sad event, blinds being drawn all along the route of the procession from Wycollar to the cemetery.
001 Bangor street school opening of Jan 1912.jpg 
From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of 13th of january 1912.
The formal opening of the new Elementary Council School erected in Bangor-street took place on Saturday [6th of January], the ceremony being performed by Councillor J. Higginson.  In spite of the inclement weather there was a large attendance, including the leading educationists of the town, great interest being taken in the school by reason of the special attention devoted by the Education Committee to making it a model building for elementary education purposes.  Surrounded by large open playgrounds and built upon an ample site, the school has been constructed on the most up to-date principles, and the spaciousness and lighting of the rooms, as well as their generally attractive appearance, gained the admiration of the visitors.  It is to provide for a “mixed” school for junior and senior scholars, the former (with infants) on the ground floor, and the latter in the upper rooms.  The total accommodation is for 905 scholars.  The building is well supplied with class-rooms, and senior schools can be conducted independently of one another, making practically two schools.  The architects are Messrs. Cooper and Slater, Richmond-terrace, the contractors Messrs. Thomas Higson and Sons, and Mr William Parker clerk of works.
The severity of the weather caused the usual formality outside to be dispensed with, and the company assembled in one of the upper schoolrooms—a very handsome apartment… Alderman Henry Lewis, J.P. remarked that they were met on a very momentous occasion in the history of education in Blackburn.  Last July many of them met at the opening of the higher elementary school on Blakey Moor.  They were then celebrating the opening of a great school which was necessary for special purposes for the whole of Blackburn.  Now they met for the purpose of opening an elementary school to take the place of certain existing schools, and which would also add largely to the facilities of education in the district.  That school was one of a different character and nature, built on a more spacious design, and would afford larger opportunities than had been previously been possible in the ordinary elementary schools of Blackburn.  For that reason it was not only an addition of a positive character to the educational facilities of Blackburn, but must in a certain sense serve as a standard to which other schools would desire, so far as they could to approximate.
Alderman Lewis went on to refer to the appropriateness of the invitation to the Councillor Higginson to perform the principle part in the opening ceremony, because of that gentleman’s zealous devotion to the interests of education in the borough and his great service as chairman of the secondary and elementary sub-committees.  On behalf of the architects he presented Councillor Higginson with an ornamental Key as a memento of the interesting occasion.
Councillor Higginson expressed his gratitude to the chairman for his remarks and said it was true he had taken part in the educational work of the town for a number of years, but he had done so because he liked the work.  To him it was deeply interesting.  He had derived great pleasure from meeting a number of those who were practically engaged in teaching in the town, and was proud to say he had made many friendships amongst them, besides obtaining much valuable information and knowledge in regard to the practical work of education.  A great many members of the Education Committee who were—should he say “distinguished” or “undistinguished” amateurs readily and gratefully admitted that they had obtained valuable information and help from those who had had a life long experience of teaching.
Dealing with the cost of education in the town, Mr Higginson said when they considered that in a comparatively small town like Blackburn they spent £80,000 per annum upon elementary education and £14,000 on higher education, they would realise that they were not neglecting their duty.  Of that sum they got about £40,000 from the ratepayers.  They had had considerable difficulty with the Board of Education, who insisted that schools should be placed in a sanitary condition, and in other ways fitted for the education of children.  Though he did not always agree with the extent to which the Board went, he thought they did right to insist upon the healthy and good conditions for the children.  As the children were compelled by law to go to school, the buildings ought to be in every way suitable for them.  They ought not to be put in cellars or unsanitary buildings, or rooms devoid of sunlight.  He thought they might congratulate themselves in Blackburn that they had done something both to increase the facilities and improve the buildings.  The Blakey Moor school cost over £26,000; the Bangor-street school, when completed would cost £14,500; they had spent £9,000 in altering Cedar-street school and erecting a new building; £3,600 on the special school at Regent-Street; £4,200 on the extension at Accrington-road—representing a total in round figures of £57,000.  It seemed a considerable sum, but, remembering the annual outlay on education, he did not think the amount was extravagant.  Moreover, he thought they would see they got value for their money.  In that school in particular they had got their full value, and the building reflected great credit on their young townsmen who had been architects.  He was sorry the opening of that school would involve the closing of the Whalley Range Schools.  Those schools had done great and good work.  They were started in 1884 under voluntary management, and continued efficiently by the trustees until the demands of the Board of education pressed heavily upon them, and the schools were taken over as Council school.  Since then the Board had made other suggestions, and the result was that the Education Committee decided to build the Bangor-street School.  He was quite sure the head master and mistress would continue to give their highest service to the new school, and would be ably assisted by the staff.   They were hoping to carry out a scheme which had been in the minds of the Committee for some time, in regard to open-air teaching, especially for the weaker children.  Much had been said about the benefits of such teaching, and they had ample facilities for trying it at Bangor-street.
In calling upon Mr J.A. Watson to propose a vote of thanks to Councillor Higginson, the Chairman mentioned that it was 41 years this month since he left Blackburn as a boy to go to Repton School, and it was exactly 41 years since Mr Watson became a member of the Blackburn School Board.  Mr Watson was the “real old veteran of education” in Blackburn, and he hoped he would long be spared to continue his devoted service in that work.
Mr Watson paid warm tribute to the work of Mr Higginson, and thought Blackburn might congratulate themselves upon having at the head of the committee such men as Mr Higginson and Mr. Lewis—men of progress.  The progress made during the last nine years had been very much more rapid than it was during the thirty years that proceeded that period.  It was very encouraging to those who had taken part in education to see that progress being made.  It was time—there was no doubt about that.  He trusted the school would be a model one, and had every confidence in its being so under the competent staff that had been appointed.
Councillor Nuttall in seconding hoped the public, and particularly the people of that district, would appreciate the value of the school.
Alderman Thomas proposed a vote of thanks to the Chairman and said the town owed a great debt of gratitude to Mr Lewis for his services in the interests of education.
Mr E. Cooper, in seconding, remarked that education was a wide subject, and one upon which it was possible for men of the most divergent views to work harmoniously together.  He looked back with satisfaction on Mr Lewis’s connection with education, and complimented him upon the successful results of his labours, and at the same time like Oliver Twist, he would like to ask for more of the same sort.  He did not think all had been yet realised that some of them expected in connection with education in Blackburn, though Mr Lewis might congratulate himself upon having been largely instrumental in putting an end to the reproach that lay upon the town of being educationally twenty years behind the times.  During the time Mr Lewis had taken an active part in education, considerable progress had been made and did not underrate Mr Lewis’s views in that direction.  But they must see to it that they have as perfect an educational machine as possible.  If it were true that our commercial supremacy depended to a large extent upon the education of the people, then they could not devote too much attention to making their education machine as perfect as they could get it.
In replying to the vote of thanks, Alderman Lewis recalled his early association with Mr Cooper in educational work, and mentioned that he and a few others met at Mr Cooper’s office to protest against Weir-street as a site for the Technical School.  In September 1889, when the old Technical and Trades Schools Council was formed, Mr Cooper and he were amongst the original members, only four of whom were still in existence.  Three of them remained in active educational work, the third being Mr W.E. Bickerdike.  Mr Cooper had rightly remarked that the department of education provided a common basis of work for men of divergent views.  In his (the chairman’s) opinion intelligent hostile criticism was worth a great deal more than undue appreciation, especially if it approached fulsome flattery.  He did not think they were much troubled with the latter in public life in Blackburn.  However the members of the Committee differed among themselves, he honestly believed that the results of their joint labours had for a considerable number of years worked out with profit to the town.
From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of 27th January 1912.
From the annual criminal returns for Blackburn, prepared by Inspector Griffiths, and submitted by Chief Constable Lewis to the Watch Committee on Monday,  We make the appended comparisons:
Total apprehensions...........................1,132.........1,162.
Total summonses...............................2,012........1,825.
Indictable offences................................264...........311.
  “ “     Apprehensions............................157...........227.
 “ “     Summonses..................................13..............4.
Non-Indictable offences.......................2,136........1,887.
 “       “  Apprehensions..........................869..........805.
 “       “  Summonses...........................1,267.......1,082.
*Persons proceeded against for
Ditto for begging....................................166..........141.
*1910;  358 males and 108 females;  1911; 1,326 males and 96 females.
The chief offences under the head of “indictable” were malicious wounding, 1; indecent assult,2; burglary, 3, housebreaking ,17; shop breaking, 6; attempted shop breaking 1; larceny of horses, 3; larceny from persons, 7; larceny as servant, 13; embezzlement, 2; simple larceny, 174; obtaining goods by false pretences, 21; other frauds, 4; receiving stole goods, 1; malicious injuries to property, 2; counterfeit coin cases, 4; habitual drunkenness, 19.  Forty-six persons were committed for trial for these offences, 2 discharged, and 122 persons summarily dealt with.
The following were the chief non-indictable offences; adulteration of food and drugs, 11; aggravated assaults, 14; police assaults, 26; common assaults, 167; betting and gaming, 10; cruelty to animals, 20; cruelty to children, 15; offences in relation to dogs, 41; offences under the Education Act, 30; unlawful possession of game, 2; offences by users and owners of vehicles, 22, under Motor-car Acts,10; cycle offences, 10; permitting drunkenness, 7; breaches of intoxicating liquor laws (refusing to quit licensed premises, &c.), 13; under Factory Acts, 9; malicious damage, 28; under local Acts and by-laws, 9bad language, fighting, &c.), 773; neglect of family, 33, railway offences, 26; offences under revenue laws, (dogs without licenses, &c.), 52; offences under Public Health Act, (diseased meat, &c.) 7; sleeping out, 37; found on enclosed premises for unlawful purposes, 4; frequenting with intent to commit felony, 5; acting as peddler without certificate, 18.
Twelve persons were placed under the probation officer.
Of the foregoing cases, 167 were dealt with in the Juvenile Court, and only 18 were indictable offences.
The applications for married women for separation orders numbered 141, and the orders made 124.
In December unionist workers in the cotton trade had been locked out of the mills in a dispute over non-unionised labour.  By the 20th of January when the meeting of the Board of Guardians, shown below, took place, the dispute was over.

The Knocker Up BT 6 Jan 1912 p8.jpg
From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of the 27th of January 1912.
The fortnightly meeting of the Blackburn Board of Guardians was held on Saturday, Mr C.E. Kenyon presiding… Prior to the commencment of the business, the Chairman said he desired to express his deep feeling of satisfaction at the termination of the dispute in the cotton trade in which he was sure they were all in agreement.  He hoped they would not have another dispute for some time to come; that a better feeling would exist between employers and employees in the future; that the leaders of capital and labour would refer their differences to arbitration, and thus prevent the country from being thrown into industrial disputes; and that the negotiations which were in progress in the colliery districts would prevent a strike taking place.
Mr  Porter said that…He would like to move the suspension of the standing orders, so that he might briefly refer to the question of granting outdoor relief.  He pointed out that, while some people had that and the previous day received relief, others had been re fused it without any reason whatever being given why such a course was adopted.  There was, however, a clause in a Local Government Board Act which provided that outdoor relief could not be granted unless the recipients were in a position to perform task work the following week.  In view of the fact that many of the applicants for relief would have to resume work on Monday, they would therrefore be unable to accomplish task work in return for relief.  It was perfectly well known that those people, even if they recommenced work on Monday, would not receive any wages until the following Friday or Saturday and that , consequently, there would be just as much poverty next week as there had been during the past two or three weeks.  The relieving officer informed him that morning that, if he granted relief without some authority, the Guardians would probably be surcharged by the auditor.  However, the Guardians ought to see that the people had something to eat and fires in their homes, and be prepared to be surcharged.
Mr Michael Brothers seconded the motion to suspend the standing orders which was carried.
A Member; Will the Guardians or the relieving officer be surcharged?
The Clerk sad he had pointed out to the relieving officer that, if he paid relief, he did so on his own responsibility.  The auditor would surcharge, not the Guardians, but the relieving officer.  He did not think the applicants had been told they could not be granted relief; they had, no doubt, been asked to  wait.  He had been unable to speak on the telephone to the Local Government Board inspector, whom he intended to question with regard to position of the Guardians and relieving officer.  The officer and individual members of the Board were anxious to pay relief.  As far as he knew, no outdoor relief had been granted on that or the previous day to able-bodied weavers, who were likely to commence work on Monday.
Mr Porter pointed out that he came in contact the previous day with some persons who informed him that they had that day received relief.
The Clerk replied that the person in question must have received relief before the news of the settlement of the lockout was published.
In pursuance of notice given at the last meeting, Mr Cunliffe moved that two members of the Board be appointed to attend the annual meeting of the Central Poor Law Conference, to be held at London next month and that the expenses of the deputation be paid by the Gurdians.  Mr D. Yates and Mr Pilkington were appointed.
01 Lower Darwen united Methodist church 1912 with the Aspin Clock tower opened 1911.jpg 
Snow scene showing the Lower Darwen United Methodist Church, with the  “Aspin Clock Tower" which was opend in 1911.
Jan. 1  Preston N.E.      H.  W.  3-0  Simpson, Chapman, Aitkinhead.  Gate 36,195.
Jan. 6 Middlesbrough    H.  W.  2-1  Chapman, Aitkinhead.                 Gate 10,167
Jan. 20 Notts. C.          A.  W.  3-1   Cameron,  Aitkinhead, Orr.         Gate  3,000
Jan. 27 Tottenham       H.    D. 0-0                                                   Gate 18,567
F.A. Cup, First Round.
Jan. 13 Norwich C.       H.  W.  4-1  Simpson 2, Chapman 2.              Gate 22,947.
 The Photograph shows Mr. Harry Cash (foreman gardener), left, and Mr Gordon Malthouse, examining the underground 'cavern' in Witton Park, Blackburn.
Harry was born on the 4th of January 1912, and so is celebrating his 100th birthday this month. Every one at Cotton Town would like to wish him a very happy 100th birthday.



 One hundred years ago, February 1912

From the Blackburn Times of 3rd February 1912.
In accordance with the requirements of the Home Office, Mr. H.J. Robinson, the East Lancashire Coroner, has prepared returns of the number of inquests held by him or his deputy, Mr. D. N. Haselwood during the year 1911, in the county borough of Blackburn and Burnley and the hundred of Blackburn.  We are indebted to Mr. Robinson for the following summary of the returns.
Ages of Persons on Whom         County.    B.Burn.    Burnley
Inquests were held                    M.   F.       M.   F      M.   F.
Under 1 year                            3    1         1    0       2   0
1 and under 7 years                  3    2         0    1       0   1
Under 1 year                            9    5         3    3       5   6
1 and under 7 years                  9    9         8    6       7   2
7      “   16                             14    0         7    3       2   0
16    “    25                            13    9         4    2       3   2
25    “    60                            90  33        39  20     42 19
60 and above                         25  28        16  16     18   7
   Total                                166  87        78  50     79   3
                                          County.    B.Burn.    Burnley.
Juries Verdicts                       M.   F.      M.   F.     M.   F.
Manslaughter                        0    0        0    0      1    1
Felo de se                            1    0        0    0      1    0
Suicide whilst insane            25   18       12   6    12    4  
Want, exposure                    2     0        0    0     0    0
Excessive drinking                 0     0       0    0     4     0
Want of attention at birth       0     2       0    0     0     1
Accidental misadventure       73   39      38  24   37   10
Natural causes                    46   25       25  20   20   18
Open Verdicts.
Drowning                             7     2         2   0      1    0
Of unknown causes             11     1         1   0      3    3
Stillborn                               1     0        0    0      0   0
    Totals                          166   87       78  50     79 37
In addition to the foregoing, inquests were held in four males and one female in the county who had been suffocated in bed with their parents or other persons, and in which a verdict of accidental death was returned; two males in Blackburn and one male and four females in Burnley.  There were two inquests in the county on newly-born children (one Male and one female), and one in Burnley (a female).  The aggregate number of inquests held were 511.  There were besides, 350 deaths 131 in the county, 133 in Blackburn, and 86 in Burnley, in which cases the Coroner, after a preliminary investigation, decided an inquests to be unnecessary.  To cover the inquests in the Hundred of Blackburn, the Coroner had to travel 2,836 miles.
Reservoir Feb 1911.jpg 
 From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of 3rd February 1912.
One of the biggest bits of constructional work undertaken and carried out by the engineering department of the Blackburn Corporation is now approaching completion—the new covered reservoir on Revidge, which is intended to supplement the south-western end of that road and the uppermost part of the Preston-road district.  The plan was designed at the Borough Engineer’s Office, and work, which was begun in May 1910, has been carried out by direct labour, an average of 38 men having been employed.  The reservoir, which has a holding capacity of about 3,000,000 gallons, is in length 182 feet and 165 feet wide, and the average depth of water will be 13 ½ feet.  Imagine a vast hall of the dimensions just given, constructed entirely of Concrete—floor of concrete, walls of concrete, pillars of concrete, roof of concrete; everything of concrete save the inlet and outlet pipes, a veritable cavern of concrete so devised and constructed as to ensure the perfection of cleanliness by excluding everything of an opposite nature.  The floor of the reservoir is about 12 inches thick, laid of course on a sound natural foundation; the walls, much thicker at the base than at the top, average 4 feet thick; from the floor spring 176 pillars of reinforced concrete, 12 inches thick, and about 10 feet apart; these support beams and a roof six inches in thickness, all reinforced concrete.  This roof is now being covered with soil, and when properly levelled and turfed or sown, will become to all appearances a hugh grassy mound of the field in which it is situated.  The whole of the interior walls and floor of the reservoir are finished off by a coat, one inch thick, of Medusa cement, a well-known water-proof mixing.  Of this material, 880 bags have been used and also 17,000 bags of Earles cement, during the construction of the reservoir, the other material for the enormous quantity of concrete required being found on the spot.  The “getting” and crushing of the rock for concreting purposes has served the useful purpose of widening the road at this point at Revidge, which it will be remembered was extremely narrow.  There is still a few months’ work to be done in completing and sloping the embankment of this reservoir.  Its Height, when completed, will be 723.87 feet above sea level, and 346.67 feet above the pavement level in front of the Blackburn Town Hall.  We are indebted for these particulars and for the facilities for photographing the reservoir, to the courtesy of Mr. W. Stubbs, the borough Engineer, and to Mr. J.T. Shield, his chief assistant, under whose supervision the work has been carried out.
The purpose to which the roof of this reservoir shall be put has already given rise to some discussion.  It is situated on land belonging to the Corporation, leased to the Golf Club, and there was an idea that it should form one of the putting greens on the club’s course.  Since then, however, it has been urged that the public should have access to it, in the same way that they now have to the Iron Tank on Revidge a little further north—and which, by the way commands an infinitely finer view.  How the matter will end depends upon the arrangement arrived at between the Corporation as landlord and the Golf Club as tenant.
Fire at Darwen Feb 1911 002.jpg 
From the Blackburn Times of 10th February 1912.
Hundreds of people were attracted to the Bolton-road district of Darwen, on Sunday, by the spectacle of a wrecked house.  The damage was caused on Saturday afternoon as a result of a gas explosion, the house affected most being 37 Radfield Avenue, owned by Mrs. Betty Reeling, widow of a prominent Lancashire dog fancier, and occupied by her and her family of one son and four daughters and a son-in-law.  During the afternoon a strong smell of gas was detected, and one of the daughters visited the next door, and asked Mrs. Brown if she too, could detect the smell.  She replied in the negative.  However at the request of the son-in-law, James S. Hindle, a postman, two daughters, Amy and Bessie Reeling, went to report the matter to the gas office, Whilst Hindle turned of the gas at the meter and opened the windows wide.  Had these precautions not been taken, the results would undoubtedly have been far more serious.
No sooner had the daughter’s names left the dwelling than there was a loud report, which was heard over half a mile away.  The defective main had apparently became ignited and before the remainder of the family could make good their escape they had been covered with debris.  The large house situated at the top of the avenue was completely wrecked.  Furniture was scattered in all directions, the stairs and interior walls were demolished, and the doors were torn away.
The escaping gas caught fire, and very soon dense volumes of flames and smoke were issuing from the wreckage.  In the Kitchen, where the explosion occurred, Were Mr. And Mrs. Hindle, and Miss Constance Reeling and the mother. The explosion attracted people from far and near and, there were plenty of people willing to render assistance.
Piles of debris had to be removed before the unfortunate persons could be got out of the house, and one of the daughters had to be rescued through the window.  In the mean time the fire had spread, Mrs. Hindle and Miss Constance Reeling both sustained fractures of the leg, the former a compound fracture.  Mr. Hindle was also  jammed among the masonry, and when released he was found to have suffered internal injuries and from the effects of shock…A pet collie dog, valued at £60, which had won valuable prizes in all parts of the country, was killed by the explosion, as was also a pet cat.  The house was not insured.
The Fire Brigade was summoned, and was soon on the scene.  Under the superintendence of Mr. Stones, they Quickly extinguished the flames and a number of men from the gasworks, in charge of Mr. Smith, cut off the supply of gas.
In the adjoining house of Mrs. Brown, a number of windows were broken, pictures hung from the walls the inner walls and furniture damaged and ornaments broken.
On Sunday…the house was had been barricaded, and special policemen were on duty to prevent people from going to near the wrecked house as it was feared that some of the walls might give way.
Joseph H. Whittaker, weaver, 7 Radfield Avenue, [said] he was in the house when he heard the explosion. The noise was like the discharge of cannon. He rushed into the demolished house and went to see if the gas meter had been turned off. In the kitchen he found Mr. Hindle pinned down calling for help.  It was a pitiable spectacle, which he would never forget ,Mr Hindle was gasping for breath.  All the occupants in the kitchen were covered with debris and they were extracted with the greatest difficulty.
James Fletcher, spinner, of 8 Radfield Avenue said he was in a hencote about 50 yards away when he heard a terrible explosion.  He assisted his father to free the persons from their positions.  Mr Hindle was imprisoned near the fireplace.  Mr. Fletcher telephoned the fire Brigade as the house was on fire.  “The place was full of smoke and soot,” and he was afraid of “being gassed.”
James Fletcher sen., collier, said he heard a noise which was like a gun going of, and on going outside saw the windows of his and neighbouring houses blown out, masonry was thrown in all directions, tongues of flame issued from the building and the people appeared to be in a dangerous condition.  He called for his son, and on entering the kitchen saw Mr. Hindle who appeared to be suffering a good deal.  Mr. Hindle was near the place were the explosion occurred and there were flames near him.  He was afraid of him being burnt.  Owing to the gas, however, Mr. Fletcher had to give up his task.  He was exhausted, and had to get into fresh air.  Other men, however, came on the scene, and Mr. Hindle was extricated.  The wonder to him was that they had escaped with their lives.
Mr. Elijah Brown, next door, stated that he was sitting by his fireside reading, when he heard the explosion.  His sideboard was lifted off its feet, and its glass back and all the other ornaments were smashed.  Alarmed, he naturally ran out of the house into the street, and then saw that all the windows had been blown out of their frames at Mrs. Reeling’s house, as well as the door.  He made his way to the side or kitchen window, and heard cries for help inside the house.  All was a cloud of dust, and the atmosphere was thick with gas.  He reached through the window, and at that moment another man came on the scene, climbed through the window and assisted him to get Mrs. Hindle out into the street
The explosion is supposed to have been caused by a leakage in the gas main, which is about 2ft. 3in. deep, and the same distance from the gable end of the wrecked house.  It is surmised that the gas entered the foundations of the house and came in contact with the fire, the grate of which was badly damaged.  The injured making satisfactory progress.
At a meeting of the Darwen Town Council on Monday afternoon, Alderman Cocker, on behalf of  the members of the Gas Committee, the department and the officials, expressed their regret and sympathy with Mrs. Reeling and her family who had had their house wrecked as a result of an explosion, and expressed the hope that they would speedily recover from their injuries.  Reports had been circulated, he continued, that the officials at the gas works were to blame in not seeing to the gas mains, as they had been warned of the escape of gas.  As a matter of fact, none of the officials had had any such information.  The first intimation they received of the smell of gas was just before three o’clock on Saturday afternoon, when two of Mrs. Reeling’s daughters made a complaint at the gasworks.  Whilst they were at the gasworks the fire bell rang, and news was received that the house was on fire, and that there had been an explosion.  Alderman Cocker had asked one of the daughters how it was the escape of gas was not reported sooner, and her reply was, “How could we report it sooner when there was no smell.”  He had entered the house next door and noticed that the clock had stopped at  2.03 when the explosion occurred.  The escape was only discovered a few minutes before the explosion.  Their servants were no way to blame for the unfortunate occurrence.
10 February 1912
 It is difficult to realise now, when we are back to mild open weather, that at the beginning of the week we were in the grip of hard frost.  The "Weekly Telegraph" camerist was out to take pictures while the frost was on.  The above photographs show the Caledonion Lake, where curling was engaged with great zest, and the Corporation Park, where King Frost, by his magic art, had made a thing of sparkling beauty of the new fountain.  The photographs, now that the weather has changed, became souvenirs of the most severe frost experienced for seventeen years.
From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of 17th February 1912.
Fifty years ago to-morrow [18th February 1862] there died in Blackburn Workhouse, at the age of 84, John Osbaldeston, who patented in 1842 an improved power-loom and claimed to be the inventor of numerous important devices in machinery for cotton spinning and weaving.  He was buried at Tockholes churchyard, and his grave is visited every summer by thousands of people who walk that way from Darwen to Blackburn, and other cotton towns.  A well worn path leads to the grave, which is marked by a panelled memorial stone.
the photograph below shows the grave of John Osbaldeston.  The inscription reads "John Osbaldeston. Inventor of the Weft Fork. 1780 1862"

John Osbaldestons grave.jpg

From the Blackburn Times of 17th February 1912.
Mr. Bruce Joy has now practically completed the full sized Model for the big bronze statue of the late Mr. W.H. Hornby which is to be erected in Blackburn.  The cost of the statue will be defrayed out of a handsome bequest made for the pupose by the late John Margerison who died in July 1907, and who for over 50 years was employed at Brookhouse Mills.
Permission to inspect the model was granted yesterday (Friday) to a representative of  “The Blackburn Times”, who was shown round the studio at West Kensington by the distinguished sculptor who has already had so many successes in reproducing in bronze or marble the features of public men.
The new statue is not likely to disappoint the hope of those who knew Mr. Hornby and appreciated his rare combination of strength and kindly feeling which marked his career.  The figure, which is some Ten feet high, represents the first Mayor of Blackburn standing in characteristic attitude as if listening and waiting his turn to reply.  The sculptor has given great pains to the modelling of the features, and the effect of the whole figure is very striking and dignified.  Modern dress particularly so far as men are concerned, is the despair of the sculptor, and Mr. Bruce Joy who has studied the subject very thoroughly, has managed, by the selection of particular curves and lines to hide, as far as possible its inartistic character.  In the present instance the wearing of an overcoat, open across the chest and hanging well from the shoulders, lessens the inevitable stiffness, and subtle indications of movement give animation and reality to the statue.  The finished casting will be set on a high and carefully designed pedestal of grey granite, and is sure of meeting with general approval when it is unveiled for public inspection in its designated position at the bottom of Limbrick, looking down Northgate.
The model has been seen, we understand, by members of the late Mr. Hornby’s family, who have expressed themselves well satisfied with the likeness and the design.

© LET - terms and conditions
The statue of W.H. Hornby in its position at Limbrick
February 10   Liverpool       H.  W.   1-0 Chapman.               Gate 15,196
February 17   Aston Villa     A.  W.   3-0 Chapman (2), Ore.   Gate 30,000
F.A. Cup, Second Round. 
February 3 Derby C.           A.  W.  2-1 Chapman, Ore.          Gate 22,023.
F.A. Cup, Third Round.
February 24 Wolves.          H.  W.  3-2  Chapman, Aitkinhead.  Gate 45,711.
The photograph below shows Cameron, Smith and Davies hurdle jumping; Davies swining the clubs.

One hundr​​​ed years ago, March 1912

scene of Whitebirk Fire.jpg 
From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of 2nd March 1912
The Blackburn Fire Brigade had a busy week-end, calls to three fires having been received within about twenty-four hours, two of them being mill fires.
Intimation of the first, which was at Mr. Barker Holden’s bakery, Whitebirk, was received shortly after three o’clock on Saturday morning.  Inspector Simpson left immediately with twenty-two men, one hose-tender, and two steamers, and on arrival, found that the bakery, which is a building of two storeys, was well alight.  The roof had already fallen in, and the flames lit up the countryside.  The brigade got to work, and in about an hour had practically extinguished the fire.  The building, however, was gutted.  The cause of the fire is unknown, but Mr. Baker states that he first noticed it through his bedroom window, and at that time the building was alight from end to end.
About ten o’clock on Sunday night passersby noticed that smoke was issuing from the engine-house at Hollinshead Mill situated in the St. James’s-road district.  Mr. Johnson, the manager, was at once informed, and he communicated with the brigade, Inspector Simpson, Sergeant Hall, and nine men being quickly on the spot.  The engine-house adjoins the cloth warehouse and weaving shed, and firemen were successful in confining the flames to the engine-house, the contents of which, however, were badly damaged.  The outbreak was under control in about an hour.
The third fire was at Garden-street Mill, Garden-street, and this occurred about half-past seven on Monday morning in the tape-room.  The fire was confined to a wooden trunk attached to a taping machine, and the fire was caused by the gaslight coming in contact with some cotton fluff.  There was no panic among the operatives, and the fire was soon extinguished by the brigade.  The contents of the tape-room were damaged by smoke and water, and the cloth warehouse underneath was also damaged by water.  No other damage was done.
William Coddington.jpg
Sir William Coddington, New Freeman of the Borough of Blackburn
From the Blackburn Times of 9th March 1912.
Councillor Nuttall moved the Following resolution:
That this council, by virtue of the Honorary Freedom of the Borough Act, 1885, doth hereby confer the honorary freedom of the borough of Blackburn upon the Rt. Hon. The Viscount Morley of Blackburn, O.M., Lord President of His Majesty’s Most Honourable Privy Council, as a recognition by his native town of his great achievements and eminent position in literature, and of his long and distinguished service to the State, in the course of which he has successively held the great office of Chief  Secretary for Ireland, Secretary of state for India, Lord President of the Council and Counsellor of State; and this Council doth hereby admit the Right Honourable The Viscount Morley of Blackburn to be a honorary freeman of the borough of Blackburn accordingly.
In doing so, he said he thought the resolution should meet with the approval of the whole of the citizens of Blackburn.  Lord Morley was a man of whom Blackburn had every reason to be proud; he possessed great ability and rendered noble service to his King and country.  When Lord Morley went to the Upper House he did not forget Blackburn in his title, and Blackburn felt very proud of that fact.  He was sure his lordship would very much appreciate this honour, because when the deputation consisting of the Mayor, Alderman Hamer, and Councillor Nuttall waited upon him and explained the object of their wait, his lordship expressed his high appreciation of the honour, which, it was hoped, would be conferred some time in July.  When they met Lord Morley, the latter referred to his old Blackburn days and many old Blackburn families, and he (the speaker) had no doubt that when the freedom was bestowed it would be a red-letter day in Lord Morley’s life.
Alderman Hamer said it gave him great pleasure to second the motion.  The Council would be doing honour to itself and to the borough by conferring the freedom on such a distinguished citizen.  He appreciated and agreed with all Councillor Nuttall had said, and he was sure the resolution would meet with the approval of the all of Blackburn.  At his interview, Lord Morley did seem very highly pleased and so expressed himself that he should be so well thought of in his native town as to be honoured in this manner, and he also said it would give him the greatest pleasure to be coupled with another gentleman, who should be named in another resolution.  Lord Morley recalled that Sir William Coddington and he (Lord Morley) sat near each other, in adjoining pews, in St. John’s Church, and he said it brought back to his memory many happy days he had spent in Blackburn.
The Mayor, in putting the resolution, said, on a later date opportunity would be given to him to express his approval of the resolution, but he could not submit it without saying he most heartily concurred with it.
The motion was carried unanimously.
Councillor Nuttall next proposed: 
That this council, by virtue of the Honorary Freedom of the Borough Act, 1885, doth hereby confer the honorary freedom of the borough of Blackburn upon Sir William Coddington, Baronet D.L., in recognition of his long and eminent service to the town, extending over a period of 33 years, in the course of which he was for nine years a member of the Council, filled with distinction the office of Mayor, and was on six successive occasions elected to represent the borough in Parliament, where for 25 years he discharged the duties of his high office with conspicuous ability, vigilance and success; and this Council doth hereby admit Sir William Coddington, Baronet, to be an honorary freeman of the borough of Blackburn accordingly.
In doing so, Councillor Nuttall said he thought it was admitted by most Blackburn people that the honour was one which should have been conferred years ago.  Sir William had served the town well, not only as a councillor and Mayor, but as representative for Parliament for over 26 years.  He attended regularly to his Parliamentary duties, and in Committee his knowledge of finance was of invaluable assistance.  He hoped Sir William would long live to enjoy the honour.
Alderman Hamer, who seconded, agreed that the honour had been far too long deferred.  Not like some who made their wealth in Blackburn and spent it elsewhere, Sir William had chosen to remain a citizen and live here.  During the time he was a Member of Parliament Sir William did his duty as well as any man in the House.  He might not have been seen in the limelight of the newspapers, but they knew he undertook a great amount of committee work.  The interests of Blackburn were never forgotten by Sir William when he was in Parliament.  On that account, if no other, after 26 years of honorary service, the Council was only doing its duty in conferring the freedom of the borough upon Sir William.  For nine years he was a member of that Council, during which period he played a prominent part in the administration of the town’s affairs.  Then he was a large employer of labour.  Though it was being paid late in his life, he was sure Sir William would feel that this was a compliment that they proposed to pay him, and that it would be a source of pleasure to him in his old age to know that he was not forgotten by his own townsmen.  He was quite sure that that resolution, like the first, would meet with the approval not only of the members of that Council, but of the ratepayers as a whole.  He had the greatest possible pleasure in seconding it.
The Mayor, with very great pleasure and hearty concurrence with what had been said put the resolution which was unanimously adopted.
From the Blackburn Times of 9th March 1912.
There are many people, not only in Blackburn, but in all parts of the world, who will learn with something like a pang of regret of the death, which occurred on Monday [5th of March], of old “Chipper,” the showman of their youthful days.  “Chipper,” whose real name was Robert Reynolds, was 88 years of age, and had been in failing health for some time.  It is just four years since a sketch of this well-known character appeared in the “Blackburn Times,” and for the benefit of readers who knew the little old man, we reproduce portions of the article here:—
It was dusk when I knocked at the door of No. 1 Rodgett-street, of Accrington-road; not a very salubrious part of town.  An elderly woman opened the door and preceded me along a dark passage used for the storing of “Chipper’s” historic peep-show, of which more anon, into a sparingly-furnished small room, which apparently does duty as a sleeping apartment and living room.  A low fire burned in the grate, casting a ruddy glow o’er the face of a little old man sitting on a chair by an old-fashioned little round table on which were the remains of the evening’s frugal meal.  So much in the twilight one was able to take in at a glance the scene, with old “Chipper” as the central figure, it was one which would have delighted the heart of Dickens.
“Chipper” was born at Cuerden Green, but was only seven or eighty years of age when his parents removed to Blackburn, and settled at Knuzden.
He was greatly fascinated with the stage, but a stern parent disapproved, and threatened vengeance if “Bob” dared to go to the theatre.  A piece called “A chip of the old block” came to the Royal, and our young hopeful determined he would see it.  Someone told his father, whose wrath was very great.  The fear of parental punishment did not deter the lad from going to the theatre.  The father knew that he had gone, and thought to teach him a lesson.  Bribed by a gallon of beer, two cronies disguised themselves as ghosts.  So it happened that, walking home to Knuzden late that night, along Accrington-road—then a lonely thoroughfare, for this is about 65 years ago—two apparitions in white came from behind the hedgerow, and in what was meant to be disguised voices, called upon the boy to stop.  Not at all scared and expecting some trick to be played upon him, the youth paid no heed to the command, but continued to walk on.  Seeing that the trick had failed, the two men burst into laughter, and, recognising their voices, young Reynolds, now some distance ahead called out that he knew who they were.  They went home together.  Ever after that young Reynolds got the name of “Chipper,” whether because he was too sensible to believe in ghosts, and, therefore, was “a chip of the old block,” or because he had been to see a play of that title, I have not been able to ascertain.
“Chipper” is credited with having said that if he could earn five shillings a week outside the mill, he would give up spinning.  Fond of his glass of beer, it was nothing unusual for him to lose his work.  One day about the middle of last century, when out of employment for the reason just given, he conceived the idea of becoming a showman.  Accordingly, he procured a large box, which he mounted on wheels, with two broom handles for shafts; it resembled the old fashioned hand coal-wagon.
Across the tail of the cart he fixed what looked like a kennel for a toy dog; in reality it was his peep-show.  Having got his property he suddenly discovered that he could not “cheek” taking it out.  However, he eventually mustered up sufficient courage to start away.  With head bent and eyes fixed on the ground, he trudged along with his show, never pausing until he came to a part of the town where he thought he was not likely to be recognised.  When he halted, a group of children collected, and when told that for a handful of rags they could see “the mysteries of this great show,” he very soon had quite a respectable lot of customers.  From that day, now over 50 years ago, to this, “Chipper” has continued to tour the town and district, so that he has become a well-known quaint character.  He has found many imitators but “Chipper” is prime favourite with the children of to-day, as he was with their fathers and some of their grand fathers.  Haw many thousands of people have seen his “wonderful” show, it is impossible to estimate, but, as giving some idea of the great number of Blackburnians who remember the little old man, I may mention that from six to seven thousand picture postcards of him either as a showman or in some other character, have been sold, and great numbers of them have been sent to all parts of the world.  So that, if “Chipper’s ambitions to become a famous actor never got beyond the dream stage, he has the satisfaction of knowing that in the popularity of his photographs he as achieved distinction with the greatest of actors.
“Chipper’s” show consists of a few war pictures and a number of toy soldiers, which come into action when he pulls the strings.  A precocious child once startled the old man with the remark: “I say, “Chipper,” which is Wellington?”  But “Chipper” was equal to the occasion.  “Onny o’ em,” he promptly replied.  As a business, “Chipper’s” peep-show is not the profitable concern it was in the early days.  He could then command 3s 6d per score for certain sorts of rags; at the present time the same kind only bring him 8d.  “Chipper” is something more than a showman.  In certain circles he is a well-known reciter of Shakespeare’s poetry.  The habitues of the cosy “pub” parlour know him in the character of a tragedian.  His repertoire is an extensive one, but his favourite pieces are, in tragedies, Macbeth and Othello; in comedies, The Merchant of Venice; and in histories, King Richard the Third.  Blessed with an excellent memory, he has only to here a piece to be able to repeat it, and once he has learnt a poem he never forgets it.
members of the relief ommittee 1861-65.jpg 

From the Blackburn Times of 23rd of March 1912

Considerable interest is attached to the photograph published above, especially in view of the fact that the events which it recalls took place just 50 years ago.  For permission to reproduce the photograph, which was taken by the well known Blackburn photographer Mr. David Johnson, we are indebted to Mr. James Crook, 21 Jessel-street, Mill Hill.  Beneath are the words, “The chairman, vice-chairman, honorary secretary, ward clerk, and visitors, of St. Paul’s Ward, Blackburn, to commemorate the termination of their labours in connection with the Relief Committee during the Cotton Famine in Lancashire, in the years 1861, 1862 and 1863.”  In addition to its general association with a remarkable and painful period in the history of the Lancashire cotton trade, the photograph has local associations of an unusually interesting kind.  Three one-time Mayors of the borough, Messrs. William Hoole (1855-6), John Smith (1867-8-9), and John Lund (1881 2), are included in the group.  Mr. Hoole, it will be remembered, was formerly head of a private school in King-street.  Mr John Robinson was also associated with the government of the town in the capacity of a councillor; Mr. Edward Marwood was the founder of the firm still existing of Messrs. Marwood and Co., cork cutters of King-street, whose offices during the period were used as a distributing centre; whilst Mr. John Mellody, who was in four loom weaving was father of the present vicar of a Yorkshire parish, the Rev. Thomas Mellody.  Mr John Brandwood was Father of the present headmaster of St. John’s C.E. School; and Mr James Mellor, an engineer, at present carrying on business in King William-street.  Mr Mellor is the only member of the group who, as far as can be ascertained, still survives.  His father, Mr Robert Mellor, was formerly Liberal registration agent for Blackburn and his son possesses some interesting mementoes of old-time electioneering locally. Mr Thomas Ashworth, a master mason, it will be remembered, died recently.
From the Blackburn Times of 30th of March 1912
The annual meeting of the Blackburn Rover’s Football Club was held on Thursday night, when the only business was the election of five directors.  The retiring officials were Messrs. T. Gillibrand, J. Forbes, T. H. Forrest, T. A. Leaver, and Edward Wood, and as there were no other nominations, they were declared re-elected.
The chairman, Mr. Lawrence Cotton, J.P., said they could congratulate themselves upon the position the club held.  He need not mention the playing success of the team and at that meeting he could only say the club was in the best financial position it had ever been in its history.  The directors were sorry that a great number of people would be disappointed at bring unable to get to Liverpool for the semi-final [played West Bromwich Albian] on Saturday, through the railway company having failed to provide trains at a reasonable price.  He did not know why the company had taken that step so far as football was concerned, because the sport was responsible for a very large sum of money being placed in their coffers every year.  They had made some efforts to get the matter remedied, but so far they had been unsuccessful.  On Friday, however, they were meeting the railway officials at Manchester, and they would promise the cost of the extra fuel required to run the specials from Blackburn to Liverpool would be defrayed by the club.  The directors considered they were acting rightly in making that proposal for the benefit of the public.
In accordance with the promise, the Rovers directors met the officials of the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway Company, at Manchester, yesterday afternoon, and although the Rover’s chairman, Mr. Lawrence Cotton, made the generous proposal that the club should defray the cost of the extra fuel required if the railway company would only run special trains at excursion fairs, the company declined to fall in with the suggestion.  The Rovers, however, decided to stand by their supporters in the following way:—on every ticket produced up to the number of five thousand the sum of 1s 5d will be deducted from the ordinary charge.  That means the Rovers have decided to allot the sum of £352 3s 4d to help their supporters to see the all-important tie.  As the railway companies declined to sell the tickets at the above terms at the booking office, the Rovers purchased 5,000 railway tickets, and they are now on sale at Mr. John Forbes’s shop in Victoria-street and Mr. Garstang’s shop in Darwen-street.  These tickets are being snapped up with alacrity and on all hands the Rovers are being commended upon their generous action.
March 2   Sheffield U.      A.  D.   1-1  ORR                                                    Gate 25,000
March 16  Bolton W.        A.  L.    0-2                                                            Gate 30,000
March 23  Bradford C.     H.  W.   3-1 Bradshaw (pen), Aitkinhead, Orr           Gate 15,335
March 9   F.A. Cup, 4 Round  Manchester U. A. D. 1-1 Aitkinhead                      Gate 59, 296. 
March 14 F.A. Cup, Replay  Manchester U.  W. 4-2 Simpson, Aitkinhead,Chapman(2)   Gate 39, 286.
March 30 F.A. Cup Semi Finals West Brom *  D 0-0                                          Gate 30,063
*Played at Anfield, Liverpool.

One hundred years ago​, April 1912

Fair from Lord street.jpg 

From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of 13th April 1912.
There does not seem to have been about Blackburn’s Easter Fair this year the incessant gaiety and glitter which have characterised it on former occasions.  Much that gave to it a spectacular interest has been missing.  The booths with their refulgent entrances, within which bedizened women danced gaily, and men in unconventional attire invited you in raucous voice, to see the “greatest show in the world,” and the gorgeous picture “palaces,” were conspicuous by their absence, and the central walk of the fair was not so alluring or entertaining as formerly.  The only show making any attempt at former garishness and ostentation was the menagerie, with its drum beating loudly, and its promise of a “man-and-lion” fight.  This decline, noticeable year after year, caused one to speculate whether this ancient kind of carnival is at last on the wane.  Many have thought it an anachronism, but still it has survived.  “It’s a thing of the past, so far as towns are concerned,” said an old fair hand.  “It offers no variety now like it used to, and every town of any size provides as much amusement every week as people require.”
There is still, however, much on a Fair which makes an irresistible appeal to those of boisterous temperament and exuberant sprits, and this week’s festival yielded merriment to all sorts and conditions of people, including the urchin, the town councillor, and the member of the cloth, and when weather permitted the Market-place was a scene of revelry.  Shying is still popular, and jocose groups might have been found round the cocoanuts, the “Aunt Sallies,” and the “Dandies.”  “Let’s have a go at the cocoanuts!”  Observed one, and the balls were immediately flying from one hand and then the other.  But the triumvirate in the centre, so temptingly arranged as to make believe they will almost topple over of themselves, were not so easily disturbed.  The stallholder encouragingly assured you it was as easy to knock them over as it was to find your way home, but after a shy or two you became sceptical.  You were either just too wide or two high; you might even rattle the cups, but still you would not achieve your object.  But these repeated misses only added to the hilarity of the proceedings.  “Don’t be beaten!”  “Have another go!”  Chaffingly added the onlookers as they noted your determination, and you proceeded until you sent one of the haired spheres topsy-turvy. You were afterwards surprised at your profligacy, and your friends provokingly told you had paid for the cocoanut.  It was the same with the “Dandies,” in evening attire, and as they circled round they eluded you every time you tried to knock of their high hats.  Even when hit, the “Aunt Sallies” sometimes resented to go over.  “Hit them on the top sir!" said the man in charge, with the air of one telling you a secret.  The “sally” on which was written “I wonder why you miss me sometimes” looked at you with taunting persistence, and you were not satisfied until you had had your revenge by bowling it over.  There was, too, a certain fascination about the numerous games and competitions.  Repeatedly the “Hoopla” was circled by people looking interestingly on while some one strained every nerve to “ring” a packet of chocolates, cigarettes or even a watch.  Others watched folk endeavouring to throw “washers” in squares, the reward for which was a canary, which chirped cheerily as it noticed its would be possessor failing in his object.  In these games, as in life, there are few successes and many disappointments, but at the Fair you laugh at your misfortunes and are happy, while the same philosophy is not shown in regard to life.  The roundabouts and swings provided rollicking sport. To those whose nerves were steady and strong, who had a sort of reckless disposition there was an exhilaration in flying in the air, and, as they attained giddy heights, these shouted gleefully to those below, who stood amazed and fearful.  To others, however, it was a different matter.  Enticed by friends to have “just a try,” they soon began to quail.  The colour gradually disappeared from their cheeks, there was a look of nervousness in their eyes, and as they realised haw far they were from terra firma, they clutched grimly to the boat, and the stoppage came as a great relief.  They stood dazed for a few moments, and then, as they gradually recovered their composure, it was with them as with the raven, a case of “Never More!”  People tumbled and tossed on the Joy Wheel, and their gyrations caused both themselves and spectators to laugh uproariously, while the Cake Walk jogged a few people along, though a little less violently, it appeared than hitherto.  The motor cars and scenic railway seemed to capture popular fancy most and to administer more than anything else to the craving for sensationalism which many people who go to fairs possess.  Being whirled round with bewildering rapidity, being run down a decline at exhilarating speed, was delirium to many, and in their intoxication they shrieked and screamed for joy.  Many a Gradgrind might have reproachfully asked what in “the name of wonder, idleness, and folly” they were doing this for; but, then, the Fair is no place for the matter-of-fact man.  The more gentle and graceful evolutions of the horses formed entertainment for others and particularly those anxious to display their equestrian grace.  At the shooting galleries many a man had his reputed skill with the gun put to the test, while lusty youth found diversion in the mallet.  There were present the inevitable character readers, with cap and gown to proclaim their learning.  These men are wise in their day and generation, for they invariably inform their clients of only those characteristics which are pleasing, for they know that flattery never comes amiss.  After profound and penetrating looks, they pronounce something after the following manner:

Excellent for business.
Sincere in friendship.
True loving nature.
Fond of home life.
Thoughtful for others.
A lover of order and neatness.
Tender hearted, &c., &c.
Suggest to the client that “There is nothing in it,” and they will blandly reply that “it’s a bit o’ fun.”  The shows were largely concerned with the freakish, and one might also have seen a collection of snakes, or had one’s senses horrified by representations, in wooden models, of all the awful and ghastly means of torture used in all ages and all countries.
According to some accounts, the money spent at the Fair has not equalled the average.

“We have done badly, and some have barely cleared their expenses,” remarked the aforementioned fair hand.  “The weather has been against us, it is true, but it seems to be the rule that we do not get the patronage we did.  People can now go to the seaside for what they used to spend at the Fair in a day, and if I were like them I would do the same and get some pure air.  When the weather is like what we have been having, folk go to places of amusement, where it is more cosy and comfortable, and the result of it is, many of the people who come to the Fair have little or no money to spend.  They visit us just to look.  Look there,” he added, as he pointed to a long line of people who were gazing languidly on, while the shows and roundabouts were almost empty.

Isabella Duckworth, weaver, of 66 Holly-street, Blackburn, was on the “cake-walk” on the Fairground on Monday, when, through a portion of the woodwork giving way, she received two bruises on the right knee.

Four young women were riding on one “bird” on a roundabout on Monday, when a brass rail was pushed from its fastening, and three of them fell into the street.  Agnes Ainsworth, weaver, 24, Walnut-street, sustained a cut on the head, and Sarah Holmes, weaver, of 2, Sour Milk Hall-lane, on being taken home on the horse ambulance was found to suffering from slight concussion.  Two other females escaped injury.
Frank Woods, basket maker, 37, Adelaide-street, was struck on the head by a wooden pole, which, dislodged by the high wind from the scenic railway, fell a distance of about 20 feet.  The injury was dressed at the central Police Station, and after resting a little while, Woods was able to walk home.
Eclipse over Blackburn.jpg 
From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of 20th April 1912.
The quartets of photographs, taken by “Telegraph” cameris’s at the times named in the corners, shows the progress of the eclipse from the beginning to the time of greatest obscuration at 12.10 p.m. on Wednesday noon.  In common with the rest of the country, and all places where the eclipse was visible, Blackburn took great interest in the phenomenon.  Dotted all over the town, on the outskirts, and in the surrounding villages, were groups of interested observers; and as there was for the most part a clear sky, all that was needed was a piece of smoked glass to make perfect observation possible.  In the schools the occasion was taken advantage of to instruct the children in regard to the eclipse, and not merely to interest them in a spectacle.  The Girls Department of Moss-street Council School may be taken as typical.  Here, under the direction of Miss Geddes, the headmistress, the children, pressing into service bits of smoked glass made some very practical observations.  There was a blackboard out of doors, and they sketched as they saw.  In the afternoon the children of Standards III and IV, the nine and ten year olds, either drew and coloured, or drew, cut and mounted illustrations of their own.  Some of the results were most excellent.  The mysteries of the solar eclipse were unfolded to them, and they are likely to remain with them a living memory for the rest of their lives.
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From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of 20th April 1912.
All the world has been horror stricken this week, by the awful doom that has descended on the White Star liner Titanic, the greatest ship that as ever been despatched to sea.  Only a little over a week ago, on Wednesday, the 10th inst., the Titanic, a monster of 46,000 tons, with eleven decks, palatial appointments, and accommodation for close on 5,000 souls counting both passengers and crew, sailed proudly down Southampton Water upon her maiden voyage to New York.  Today she lies two miles deep on the bed of the North Atlantic, a smashed and splintered wreck, and out of the 2,358 men, women, and children she carried no fewer than 1,600 are dead.
It was in the last hour of Sunday that the appalling calamity happened.  The great ship had entered the most dangerous stretch of ocean lying between England and North America, a point well to the south of the Grand Banks of Newfoundland—dangerous because of its fogs and wandering icebergs; but the night was clear, the storm winds were at rest, and all peril seemed far removed, when suddenly, at half-past eleven an iceberg loomed ahead, the helm was put hard over and the Titanic sheered swiftly off her course.  But it was two late: her bow sped clear, but the hidden fangs of the berg caught her massive hull amidships and crushed in her stout plates just as though they where of egg shell thickness.  Immediately a wireless call for help was flashed into the hidden spaces of the sea.  It was picked up by the Virginia of the Allen Line, by the Baltic, by the Olympic, the Titanic’s own sister ship and by the Carpathia, one of the smaller of the Cunard boats, and at once a madly thrilling race to the scene of the disaster was begun, but the ships were all to far away, and the giant was too sorely wounded, and when the first of the liners, the Carpathia, reached the scene, nothing remained but a mass of wreckage and a flotilla of boats with fewer than 800 people.  One by one the other ships came up and made vigorous search, but it was all in vain, and one by one they departed on their appointed ways, leaving the Carpathia to convey the survivors to New York.
The scenes in the dock at New York as the survivors landed were full of suppressed excitement.  Men were in hysterics, women fainting, and children almost crushed in the arms of those welcoming them.  The number of badly injured was not nearly so large as had been imagined.  Cases requiring hospital attention were few, but the strain of the trial of their lives had left unmistakable signs in the faces of the arrivals.
When most of the passengers had departed, crowds remained about to get a glimpse of the rescuing steamer, and to hear the harrowing stories which had been brought back by the ship.  Among the most affecting scenes at landing was the sight of the women steerage survivors as they came down from the deck, thinly clad and shivering, their eyes red with constant weeping.  In their faces was the drawn look of desperate fear.  They were taken care of at once by members of the numerous charitable organisations who were at hand.
It was learned from survivors that five (some say six) of the rescued died on board the Carpathia, and were buried at sea.  Three of these were sailors.  The other two or three were passengers.  Exposure to the ice and the cold sea where the Titanic had foundered had brought about their deaths.
Mr. Hugh Woolner, of London, one of the survivors, said that after the collision he saw what seemed to be a continent of ice.
“It was not thought at first,” He said, “that the liner had been dealt a dangerous blow.  Some of the men were in the gymnasium taking exercise, and for some minutes they remained there not knowing what was going on above their heads.  After a while there was an explosion; then a moment later a second explosion.  It was the second which did the most damage.  It blew away the funnels and tore a big hole in the steamer’s side.  The ship rocked like a rowing boat, and then careened over on one side to such an extent that the passengers making for the boats slid into the water.  The ship filled rapidly, and as it was evident that she would go down I jumped into the boat as it swung down the side.”
The shock of the collision with the iceberg was scarcely noticeable.  Many people seem to have slept through it.  Emile Portaluppi of Italy, a second class passenger, said that he was first awakened by the explosion of one of the ships boilers.  He hurried up to the deck and strapped on a lifebelt.  Following the example of others, he then leapt into the sea and held on to an ice floe, with the help of which he managed to keep afloat until rescued by a lifeboat.
The crash against the iceberg, which was sighted only a quarter of a mile away, came almost simultaneously with the click of the levers, operated from the bridge, which stopped the engines and closed the bulkheads.  Captain Smith was on the bridge at the moment. Later he summoned all on board to put on life preservers, and ordered the boats to be lowered.  The first boat had more males as they were the first to reach the deck but when the rush of women and children began the “women first” rule was strictly observed.
According to the story published by the “Evening World,” revolver shots were heard just before the Titanic went down.  Many rumours were in circulation in consequence, one being to the effect that Captain Smith had shot himself, and that the first officer, Mr Murdoch, had ended his life; but Captain Smith was last seen on the bridge just before the ship sank, leaping into the sea only after the decks were awash.
The great liner went down with the band playing taking to death all but 775 of its human cargo of 3,340.
Respecting the scene on board the Titanic when the liner struck, accounts disagree widely.  Some maintain that comparative calm prevailed.  Others say that wild disorder broke out, and that there was a maniacal struggle for the boats.  According to sensational stories, told by hysterical persons who would not give their names, Captain Smith killed himself on the bridge the chief engineer took his own life, and three Italians were shot in the struggle for the boats.  These stories could not be confirmed in the early confusion attendant the landing of survivors.
It was asserted that the ship was going at the rate of 23 knots an hour when she struck the iceberg.
Colonel Gracie, one of the survivors, denies with emphasis that any men were fired upon.  He declares that only once was a revolver discharged, and then it was for the purpose of intimidating some steerage passengers.
The most distressing stories are those given by the passengers in the lifeboats.  These tell not only of their own suffering.  They give harrowing details of how they saw the great hulk break in two and sink amid explosions.  It sank stern first, and groups of survivors plainly saw many of those whom they had just left behind leaping from the decks into the water.
The “New York Herald” published a story of the disaster from a correspondent who was on board the Carpathia.  He speaks of the great courage of Titanic’s crew, which however, could not exceed that of Mr. Astor, Mr. Harris, Mr. Futrella and others.  The cabin passengers, many of those with life-preservers on, were seen to go down in spite of their preservers.  Dead bodies floated to the surface as the last boats moved away.  The ship’s band, which gathered in the saloon near the end, played “Nearer, My God, to thee.”
As soon as it was seen that there was real danger it was decided to place the women and children in the lifeboats.  The boats went over the side at 12.15 a.m., but even then those remaining on board did not realise the urgency of the situation, and presumed that the measure was precautionary.  At 2.20 the Titanic suddenly rose and made a plunge downward.  One boat was smashed as soon as it was lowered.  A score of persons jumped overboard.  Some of those were pulled into boats after the disappearance of the Titanic.  The survivors rowed about searching for the remainder of those who had jumped, and those who had embarked in collapsible boats were picked up in this way.
One of the Carpathia’s stewards said:
“Just as it was half daylight we came upon a boat with eighteen men in it, but no women.  Between 8.15 and 8.30 we got the last two boats crowded to the gunwale, almost all the occupants of which were women.  We then started to make straight for New York while the Californian remained to look for more boats.  While we were pulling the boatloads the women were quiet enough, but when it seemed sure that we should not find any more persons alive, and then bedlam came.  I hope never to go through it again.  The way those women took on for folk they had lost was awful. 

Clitheroe has a connection with the ill fated Titanic, Mr Harry Ashe, a brother in law of Mr. T. Rawsthorne, a local watch maker, being a steward on the vessel.
At a meeting of the executive of the Blackburn Conservative association on Wednesday night, Mr. A. Nuttall J.P., presiding, a resolution was adopted on the motion of Councillor Ramsbottom, seconded by Mr T. Isherwood, expressing sincere and profound condolence with the bereaved relatives of those who lost their lives in the Titanic disaster, and also sympathy with the owners of the vessel.
“Jonathan Shepherd, thirty-one years of age, Bellevue-terrace, Southampton, native of Whitehaven, junior assistant engineer.”  Such was the description published in the Seamen’s     Registry Official list of the crew of the ill-fated Titanic of a well known Blackburnian, the son of Mr. J.B. Shepherd, of  London-road, to whom the sympathy of all go out in his loss.  The deceased, who held a first class chief engineer’s certificate, had been in the service of the White Star Company for between five and six years, which had been spent on the Adriatic and the Olympic, prior to his being promoted to the Titanic when she was launched.  There is something most pathetic in the story of how Shepherd left home for what proved to be his last voyage.  Whether it was the proverbial sailor’s superstition or some other reason it is impossible to say, but the fact remains that he was very dejected, and did not want to go.  He could not account for the despondency, and he became more and more “down in the dumps” as the time for him to join the vessel approached.  The whole affair is most remarkable, but more so were his last words at home.  He appears to have been thoroughly upset, and going up to the photograph of his late mother, which hung upon the wall, he exclaimed in a broken voice: “Not long, mother, not long.”  Then he rushed out to catch his train, unheeding the words of some of his relatives, who could not account for his strange behaviour, and who were trying to comfort him.  “What are you afraid of?” asked his father, but he could not give any reply.  “Are you afraid of Death?” he was asked, and answered, “No, I am not afraid of death; but I don’t want to go.”  This statement of events is quite true, and time only showed how correct the young sailor was in his presentment.  A tall, handsome man, over six feet in height, Mr. Shepherd, who was a bachelor, has not been much in Blackburn of late years.  He served part of his time at the Canal Foundry, and completed his apprenticeship at Sheffield.  Afterwards he spent about a year on a coasting steamer, subsequently sailing under the Castle Line flag in a 12,000 ton ship trading between China, Japan, and New York, and left with the highest credentials to join the White Star Line.  He was one of the crew of the Olympic and when that liner was in collision with H.M. cruiser Hawke displayed great presence of mind, for on hearing the crash, he at once closed the water tight doors, although he was up to the knees in water at the time.
Mr Jonathan Shepherd was born on March 31, 1880 in Whitehaven, Cumberland. He moved to Blackburn with his family when very young and served an apprenticeship with James Davenport of that town. He worked for Messrs. Howard & Bullough of Accrington and Hadfields of Sheffield before commencing a seagoing career with W.S Kennaugh & Sons of Liverpool. Shepherd served on ships owned by James Chambers & Co. of Liverpool and joined the White Star line after obtaining his first class marine engineer's certificate of competency. He served on the Olympic before joining the Titanic. He was unmarried.
Shepherd was on duty on the evening of April 14th, 1912. After the collision he helped the other engineers rig pumps in boiler room No. 5 but broke his leg when he slipped into a raised access plate. Leading fireman Frederick Barrett and engineer Herbert Harvey helped him to the pump-room. Shortly afterwards the nearby bulkheads was breached and Shepherd was left helpless as the waters rose around him.


April 6  Manchester City H.    W.   2-0     Clennell, Chapman.             Gate 18,233
April 8  Sheffield W.      A.     D.   1-1     Clennell.                             Gate 15,000
April 13 Everton            A.     W.   3-1    Clennell 2, Latheron.            Gate 40,000
April 15 Oldham A.       H.     W.   1-0     Latheron.                            Gate 7,159
April 22 W. Arsenal       A.      L.   1-5     Ducat o.g.                           Gate 7,000
April25 West Brom        H.     W.   4-1     Aitkenhead 2, Clennell 2      Gate 10,601
April 27 Newcastle U.     H.      D.   1-1     Latheron.                           Gate 10,000
April 29 Manchester U.   A.      L.   1-3     Clennell.                            Gate 20,000
April 3 F.A. Cup Semi Final reply West Brom *  L. 0-1 Gate 20,050
*Played at Hillsborough, Sheffield
The Football season of 1911-12 will be long remembered in Blackburn by all who take an interest in the sport.  Recent campaigns have borne testimony to the steady rise of the Rovers and now they stand forth as the champions.  The honoured achievement is thus gained for the first time in the history of the club, and on all hands it is admitted the Rovers are worthy of the honour, for they have played consistent football for the greater part of the season.  Without wishing to detract from the deeds of the players in the past, it may be said that the season just closed has been the greatest in the history of the Rovers.  They have, for instance, gained more wins than ever before, and for the first time since 1894-95 when only 30 matches were played, have kept their losses down to single figures.  At Ewood Park they have not sustained a single reverse, thus equalling the feats of 1888-89 and 1909-10.  In no year have more points been earned at home and only once have more been gained in away matches: whilst the aggregate number of points reaches 49, which easily surpasses their previous best—45—two winters back
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From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of May 4th 1912
At the monthly meeting of the Blackburn Charity Organisation Society on Tuesday evening, the organising secretary, Mr A. Mercer, reported that 57 cases had been dealt with during the month, 54 being local cases and one each from the Nottingham, London, and New York Societies.  The cases had been dealt with as follows: One not requiring relief, 2 ineligible, 2 false addresses, 2 sent to the Guardians, 7 were dealt with by private persons, 6 were found employment, 4 received recommends to the East Lancashire Infirmary, 4 for Southport Convalescent Home, and 2 Devonshire Hospital, Buxton, 5 received gifts of clogs or parcels of clothing, and 22 received grants in money. 
The hon. Secretary, Mr Malem Brothers, on behalf of the sub-committee appointed to inquire into the question of the provision of a sanatorium for the consumptives of Blackburn, read the following report:  “The sub-committee have had various meetings, and are unanimously of the opinion that the system advocated by Dr. Phillips at the annual meeting of the Society should be carried out in Blackburn.  The dispensaries should be started and maintained by the local authority; but with regard to a sanatorium the committee feel that the Insurance Act, which will come into operation in July next, has placed some difficulty in the way of building and maintaining such an institution for Blackburn by voluntary effort alone.  It seems clear that help towards building and maintaining a sanatorium which may come under the new Act will only be given to an institution which is maintained by the local authority.  Under these circumstances the committee wish to urge upon the local authority the desirability of obtaining, if possible, an institution for Blackburn, or at least for East Lancashire, in which event the committee hope that the site which has been purchased at Grindleton, and which has been pronounced by experts as an ideal one, will be adopted.”
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From the Bl​ackburn Times of May 11th 1912
The accompanying photograph shows the first breach in the wall of the Blackburn Town Hall, in connection with the extensive alterations and additions recently decided upon.  The contractors, Messrs W. J. Woof Cronshaw and Sons, have laid hands upon the building which represents the most substantial work which the late “Dicky” Hacking was ever associated, and workmen are engaged dismantling the outer walls of the projection at the police station end, near Tacketts-street.
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From the Blackburn Times of May 11th 1912
 The tea-house which has been erected as a permanent memorial of the Coronation of King George V, in Sunnyhurst Woods, Darwen, will be formally opened open Thursday next by the Mayor (Councillor John Pickup).  Built upon the land previously occupied by a number of cottages in the heart of the woods, the tea-house is an adaption of the Elizabethan and Jacobean style, and has cost about £600.  The front faces the stream running through the woods, and the building has been designed by the borough surveyor, Mr. R. W. Smith Saville, to be in harmony with the picturesque surroundings.  A large tea-room is provided for the public, and there are smaller rooms for private parties, in addition to living accommodation for the lessee Mr. Ernest Haworth.  Shelters for the public are erected at each end of the building.  A stained glass window in the tea-room bears the following inscription—“To celebrate the Coronation of his Majesty King George V., a sum of £1,590 was raised by public subscription, out of which this building was erected and donations of £450 each made to the Darwen Nursing association, and the East Lancashire Infirmary—Walmsley P. Kay, Esq., Mayor.  Opened May 1912, by John Pickup, Esq., Mayor.
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From the Blackburn Times of May 11th 1912
The Veteran Reserve movement, which exists for organising the men who have served under the national flag is now to have its social side in Blackburn, a new institution called “The United Service Club” being opened on Saturday.  Besides ex soldiers and sailors, the membership will admit those at present serving in the Territorial’s, or army and navy men home on furlough.  For the occasion of the opening ceremony a parade was organised by the National Reserve Battalion of the 4th East Lancashire Regiment.  There was a fine muster of men at the Canterbury-street Barracks, where they were marshalled by Major A. Thomas, Colonel Johnston, took command, and was accompanied by Judge Hans Hamilton, wearing his old uniform of Colonel of the Northumberland Militia Artillery.  The Veteran Reserve Band accompanied the procession from the barracks to the new club.  The lively military airs they played so well quickened the pulse of the veterans and smartened up the old volunteers, and one and all stepped briskly forward.  There were many in the procession who had seen active service and marched to a deadlier rumble than that of the drums.  One of these interesting veterans was Sergeant Hartley Wilkinson, who fought in the Crimea, and was an eyewitness of the dreadful Balaclava charge.  A fine figure of a man, he is still stalwart and straight, and held his head in the ranks as proud as any of the younger men.  Attached to his coat was a Crimean medal with three bars for Sebastopol, Balaclava and Alma; another medal for assisting Turkey against Russia in 1855, a third for the Rhootan expedition, and a forth, most prized of all, for “Long service and good conduct.”  Another veteran was Quartermaster sergeant Fawcett, who fought in the Indian Mutiny, and took part in the engagement in which Lord Roberts won his V.C.  He wore his Mutiny medal and another for “long service and good conduct.”  There also marched Corporal John Rainford, who was in the Canadian Fenian raid of 1866, and who also proudly pointed to his good conduct medal; Sergeant Clarkson, who also fought during the Canadian Fenian raid; and several who went through the South African campaign.  Another interesting figure was that of William Walkden, who was bugler for Sir Harry when he joined the local Volunteers, and also served under Colonel Johnston’s father.
Arriving at Fleming Square, the processionists were joined by Sir Harry Hornby, who had donned his Volunteer uniform for the occasion, and entered the new premises.  The latter building, which formerly was occupied as the Conservative Registration Offices, has been handsomely fitted up for the club, and comprises reading and recreation-rooms, and a billiard-room, a table for which has been given by Sir Harry.  The men assembled in the upper room and the chair was taken by Colonel Johnston, who was supported by Sir Harry Hornby, Judge Hamilton, Lieutenant-Colonel Wesley, Major A. Thomas, Captain Carus, Major Kelly, Captain Steele (Burnely), Regimental Sergeant major F.J. Newing, Councillors A. Nuttall, J.P., and G. Whewell, and Mr. J. Hargreaves, hon. Secretary of the Blackburn branch Incorporated Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Help Society.  Among those present were Sergeant F. H. Brown, the secretary of the new club, and Sergeant James Haworth, (the latter was formerly secretary of the National Reserve Battalion, and was the first to suggest the formation of that body in the town.
Addressing the gathering Colonel Johnston expressed the hope that the club would provide a happy meeting place for old comrades, and that other towns in the country would follow Blackburn’s example until the whole of the Empire was covered with such institutions.  At whatever time or place the men who had served under the colours met together, and whatever their creed or rank, a spirit of good-fellowship sprang up at once, and a new club would foster that spirit in the men of Blackburn, with, no doubt, beneficial results.
Sir Harry Hornby, as President of the United Service Club, briefly declared the premises open.  He added he hoped the club would be the means of drawing together those who had given their service to the country, and prove both a pleasure to them and an advantage to the town.  The Blackburn Battalion of the National Reserve was steadily increasing, and now numbered 870, including Darwen (200) and Clitheroe (40).    He was surprised at the handsome appearance of the building, and the cost of the Improvements must be at least £200.  He would have pleasure giving £25 towards that expense.  He complimented Colonel Johnston upon having the day before received an important appointment, the new command of the National Reserve over the whole of the East Lancashire Territorial Division having been given to him.  He would have charge of 5,000 men and the number could be increased to 20,000.  There was no man more capable of bringing about that result than Colonel Johnston, or of managing the force when it was organised.
Judge Hamilton said that he had read with great satisfaction that a great change was coming over our friend and neighbour France, and the spirit of patriotism appeared to be developing strongly owing to the influence of the ladies.  The women of France were instilling patriotism into the children and into their husbands and brothers.  He would like to see the women of England follow their example, for they could have no better work.  His honour mentioned that the patrol jacket he wore that afternoon was the very same in which he stood up and learnt the “goose step” 42 years ago.
Colonel Johnston urged the need for patriotism, and said no country could exist without having all its men capable and competent to bear a hand in defence of the land.  Those who could not give personal service could help by financial service.  He hoped parents would realise the importance of this question, and instil it into their lads, if they could not see their way to joining the regular service to come into the Territorial Force.  It was their bounden duty to keep the old flag flying over the land of our fathers and secured for the necessity and well being of the mother country.
He was glad to see that they had age and youth coming together for the benefit of their country, age in the grand new force known as the National Reserves and youth in the fine institution of the Boy Scouts.  With this combined in embracing the experience and discipline of the veterans, and well trained and orderly youths, we should crush out that “infernal hooliganism” that sometimes broke out, and should “Improve our own civilisation and fit ourselves better for defending our land.”
The gathering then joined heartily in the singing the National Anthem.  A smoking concert was afterwards held and between puffs old soldiers exchanged yarns and discussed with their Territorial juniors the changes that have taken place since their day, thus beginning what is hoped will result in many pleasant reunions.
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From the Blackburn Times of May 18th 1912
There was published on Thursday the report of Mr. Gerald Bollhouse, a superintendent inspector of factories; Dr. W. W. E. Fletcher, of the Local Government Board, and D. J. Shackleton upon the dangers of disease transmission attending the practice of shuttle kissing in weaving sheds.
Inquiry letters were sent to a number of medical officers of health of Lancashire districts, and replies were received from 58, and it is stated that an overwhelming majority of the medical officers of health are opposed to the present prevailing custom.  A list of diseases and afflictions arising, it is claimed, from the practice of “shuttle kissing” are enumerated, and it is pointed out that it was a remarkable fact that when definite instances of the infection were asked for, only five allegations of such an event were instanced, namely: cancer at Oswaldtwistle, tonsillitis at Rawtenstall, tuberculosis at Bacup, phthisis at Tyldesly, and scarlet fever at Burnley.  With reference to the three deaths from tuberculosis which were stated to have occurred at Bacup, the Committee went fully into the cases, because of the very serious nature of the charge against “shuttle kissing” implied by Dr. Brown’s report, and they say that the evidence shows that the suggestion of origin in kissing the shuttle was advanced without proper or adequate investigation and that it is not confirmed by the careful inquires made at a later date.  The committee add; “We have not found evidence in any instance which would justify suspicion that the shuttles have been the means of transmitting infection.”  With a view to examining into the alleged ill effects of the practice upon the teeth of the workers, dental opinion was sought, and in the face of differences of opinion which had been pointed out it was difficult the committee explained, to form a definite judgement as to the actual source of the inciting cause of the dental cares.  “So far as we are able to come to a conclusion, we incline to adopt the view put forward by Mr. Miller (Preston), namely, that the mischief has commenced before the work of weaving is entered upon.  Subsequently fibre dye-dust, particles of size, etc., are sucked in during the process of “shuttle kissing,” and, impinging on the front teeth, and in the absence of habitual and effective cleaning of the teeth, apt to adhere to the teeth and to lodge in the intestines between them forming together with food masses which ferment and so encourage unusually rapid progress of the decay which has already commenced.”  On this point, Mr. Miller said with ordinary care and cleanliness of the teeth shuttle kissing would not be injurious.  In the general impressions and conclusions of the practice, so far as the medical and hygienic aspects are concerned, the Committee say that they are quite prepared to admit “prima facie” that some of the diseases mentioned, namely, tuberculosis, diphtheria, septic mouth and throat affections, scarlet fever infections, skin diseases, etc., might be transmitted in this way, but they had been unable to trace definitely and clearly a single instance.  Some of the diseases mentioned may be due to the general condition of work apart altogether from the question of shuttle kissing, namely, anaemia, dyspepsia, chronic constipation, rheumatism, bronchitis, etc., while others are due to infection acquired either in the sheds or else where, such as phthisis, infectious mouth and throat disease, and catarrhal conditions.  “Having regards then, to all the facts brought out by this inquiry,” the Committee go on to say, “we conclude that the evils of shuttle kissing are not nearly so serious either in their nature or in their frequency as they have been supposed to be.”  They say, however, that the practice is objectionable.  They hold this opinion on the ground simply of decency and cleanliness of habit.
The report goes on to mention four types of shuttle which have been designed and states that among them are practicable alternatives to the present type.  “Shuttle kissing” no longer is a necessity.  It is not thought, however, that the time is yet ripe for insisting either by regulations or by Act of Parliament on the abolition of the existing form of shuttle, and it is stated that the facts cited do not justify drastic legal action at present.


One hundred years ago, June 1912

From the Blackburn Times of June 8th 1912
At Blackburn Borough Police Court, on Thursday, Sarah Jane Lethbridge, widow, of 2 Hickory-street, was summoned for unlawfully pretending to tell fortunes on the 23rd inst.
Mr J. G. Radcliffe, who prosecuted, said the Chief Constable wanted to stop that kind of thing, and to do so he asked for the co-operation of the Bench.
A female witness who stated that she was married, said that on the afternoon of May 3rd she, accompanied by a lady friend visited the house of the defendant.  She asked defendant if she was Mrs. Lethbridge, and also inquired if they were right for having hands read.  Defendant replied in the affirmative and asked if anybody had sent them.  Witness told her she had been before with her sister.  Defendant invited them into the house, and whilst witness went into the parlour her friend remained in the lobby.  Witness had taken off her wedding ring, and when defendant asked her if she was keeping company she said “Yes.”  Defendant advised her to get married saying, “You have stopped at home a long time, and I think you ought to get married.  I do not want to take you away from your mother, but the young man with whom you are keeping company wants to go abroad and wants to take you with him.”  Later defendant said, “If you get married it will be the happiest day of your life.  Your young man will make a good husband and will get on in the world.  He has great prospects before him.”  Defendant also told her that she would have three or four children and would be contented.  When about to leave the room witness asked what the charge was, and being informed 1s she paid that amount.
The Chief Constable (Mr. I. G. Lewis) said that it was the defendants forth appearance for similar offences.  The first time she was fined £10 and costs in two cases, and in the other two penalties of £25 and costs were imposed.
The Bench imposed a fine of £25 and costs.
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From the Blackburn Times of June 15th 1912

Miss Susie Entwistle of 53 Furthergate, vice captain of the Blackburn Ladies Swimming Club, has created a new record for Blackburn.  She has been successful in swimming a distance of seven miles at the local baths.  She has only been connected with the club for about four years, during which time she has won a number of prizes in open events and has been awarded the Royal Life-saving Society’s certificate and medallion for her knowledge of life saving methods.  She is 21.
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From the Blackburn Times of June 15th 1912

Sir William Leyland Feilden, Bart, of Feniscowles Hall, Lancashire, and Feniscowles House, Scarborough, died at his Scarborough residence at half past four on Sunday morning.  Sir William had been in failing health since about Easter, and for some days he had been in a critical condition.
The Feilden family claim decent from Rudolf of Hapsburg, the placing of the “e” before the “I” in the name denoting the family’s Austrian origin.  They have been settled in Lancashire about four centuries, and Rudolf Feilden, born in 1510, was a governor of the Blackburn Queen Elizabeth Grammar School.  The great-grandfather of the deceased baronet was Mr. Joseph Feilden of Witton, who married Margaret daughter and co-heir to Mr. William Leyland, of Blackburn.  There was issue of the marriage six sons and a daughter.  From Henry is descended the Witton Park branch of the family and from William the Feniscowles branch, with which we are now more particularly concerned.  Mr William Feilden was born in 1772.  He was for some time engaged in the cotton trade with his brothers Henry and John.  In 1798 he purchased the Feniscowles Estate and built a new Feniscowles Hall in 1808.  Shortly before he had acquired the moiety of Livesey manorial estate contiguous to Feniscowles, a portion of which he converted into preserves and a deer park.  He was elected one of the first Members of Parliament for Blackburn, in 1832, when the electors only numbered 626, was re-elected in 1835, 1837, and 1841, retiring in 1847 at the age 75.  In the July of the previous year (1846) he was created a Baronet.  He died in 1850 and was buried in vault beneath the Blackburn Parish Church.  The second holder of the title was his son, William Henry Feilden, who also succeeded to the estate, and when he died in 1879 the title and estate descended to his son William Leyland Feilden, the subject of this sketch, who was the third baronet.
The Feilden's are a race of soldiers.  The late baronet’s father was a captain in the 17th Lancers, and he himself was educated at Sandhurst and served for a time as an officer in the 5th Dragoon Guards.  His young brother, Mr. Henry Wemyss Feilden, C. B., is a retired colonel who served in the Indian Mutiny in 1857-58, in the China War of 1860, in the American Civil War as Assistant Adjutant general in the Confederates’ Army 1862-65, and went with the imperial Yeomanry to South Africa in 1900.  He also served as a Captain in the Royal Navy, and went as naturalist to the Arctic Expedition of 1875-6.  The late baronet’s cousin, the late Lieut-General Randle Joseph Feilden C. M. G., of Witton Park, of the 60th Rifles, served in the Red River expedition of 1870.  At time of the South African War, Sir William and Lady Feilden had four sons at the front, and there were no fewer than fourteen Feilden’s serving with the Forces, all of whom were spared a safe return with the exception of Major Cecil W. M. Feilden, of Scots Greys Witton Park who was mortally wounded in action at Klippan on February 18th 1902.
The subject of this sketch was born on November 5th 1835.  He was married on February 16th 1860 to Miss Catherine Jane Pedder, daughter of Mr. Edward Pedder, of Ashton Park, Preston, and they celebrated their golden wedding at Scarborough in 1910.  Of the five military sons of Sir William and Lady Feilden, three are married, their eldest son, Major William Henry Feilden, late 3rd Battalion Royal Lancaster Regiment, and who succeeds to the baronetcy, to Evelyn, eldest daughter of Sir Morton and Lady Manningham Buller of Dilhorn Hall, Staffordshire, their second son, Captain Edward Feilden, late Highland Light Infantry, to Hon. Marjorie Graham-Murray, youngest daughter of Lord and lady Dunedin of Stenton, and Captain Rudolf Feilden, late 3rd Battalion Durham Light Infantry, to the youngest daughter of the late Colonel Ryder of Richmond, Yorkshire.  Major Wemyss Feilden is Staff Paymaster of the Army Pay Department at Aldershot.  Captain Randal Feilden, Oxfordshire Light Infantry, is at present Assistant Civil Secretary in the Sudan Government.  Of their two surviving daughters one is now Mrs. D’Arey Asherton Grey.
The late Baronet was a good al-round sportsman, a well known rider to hounds, a good shot, a keen fisherman, and an enthusiastic golfer.
As previously mentioned, Feniscowles estate with the old hall was purchased by the first Sir William Feilden Bart., in 1798.  This estate had been in possession of the Liveseys of Feniscowles for several centuries.  Abram, in his “History of Blackburn,” mentions a Thomas de Livesey de Feniscowles, a branch of Livesey, lords of Livesey.  Describing the old hall, the historian says it is a house of some antiquity situated on a high bank near the river Darwen.  It fronts to the south, has a gabled porch, and retains some of the original features.  In a passage near the kitchen are the initials, within a scroll, “T. A. L.” and the date “1726,” showing that the house was restored at that time by Thomas Livesey.  In the wall of the barn are two sculptured stones, one bearing the letters “T. L.—A. L.” (Thomas and Alice Livesey) and the date “1732” and the other has the letters “I. L.” (For John Livesey.
Feniscowles new hall built by Sir William Feilden stands at the foot of a steep bank near Feniscowles Bridge, at the confluence of the Roddlesworth stream with the Darwen.  It is an ordinary modern stone-built mansion.  It contained at one time a gallery of valuable paintings acquired by the first baronet, and a varied collection of objects in natural history made by the second baronet, in whose time the pollution of the river became so offensive that he gave it up as a place of residence, not, however, before he had brought action against both the Blackburn Corporation and the Over Darwen Local Board of Health in the early 1870s.  He obtained an injunction against the Blackburn Corporation, who were directed to erect tanks for the reception of sewage, and on their declining to do so the plaintiff received £1,250 damages.  Shortly afterwards the Blackburn nuisance was entirely discontinued.  The action twice heard against the Over Darwen Local Board of Health, for pollution with the town sewage failed.  A great improvement was affected when the weir was removed by the Rural District Council a few years ago, and as effluents are now purified before being turned into the water, the pollution has practically ceased.  Only the older generations remember the Feilden's living at Feniscowles, which as so long been known as a public holiday resort.  In 1903 a large part of the estate was sold by public auction.  Sir James De Hoghton added to his Hoghton Tower Possessions 103 acres in Higher Feniscowles farm, for which he paid £6,000.  Feniscowles Old Hall was bought for £820, but the mansion which is said, cost Sir William Feilden £8,000 to build, did not find a purchaser, the highest bid being £2,400, at which it was withdrawn.
The remains of the late baronet were laid to rest in Scarborough Cemetery on Wednesday afternoon.  A service was held at St. Martin’s Church, Archdeacon Mackarness (vicar) and the Rev. B. N. Keymen (curate) officiating. All the members of the family were in Scarborough, but Miss Feilden and Mrs. Darcy Gray (daughters) remained at home with the Dowager Lady Feilden, who is suffering from bronchitis and asthma.
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From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of June 15th 1912

 Much interest was manifested in the opening on Thursday afternoon of the handsome new bandstand which has been constructed on a convenient site in Queen’s Park at an expenditure of £1,500.  The new structure, which is very similar to that in the Corporation Park, is of striking design, and affords on its circular terracing accommodation for some sixteen hundred chairs.  Outside the amphitheatre there is a large open grass space, which was utilised on Thursday by the large numbers who could not find room within the well of the bandstand.  The opening ceremony should have been performed by Ald. Green, the chairman of the Parks Committee, but in his absence through indisposition the duty devolved upon the vice-chairman, Mr. J. T. Ramsbottom.  In a brief speech Mr. Ramsbottom stated the facts of the development of that part of the town since it came into the town’s possession.  The land comprising the park, he said, covered about 33 acres, and was originally acquired from the Ecclesiastical Commissioners in 1882.  No money was paid for the land, which was given for the purpose of a park or pleasure ground.  From 1882 to 1887 it was known as the Audley recreation ground, and during that period £7,600 was spent in laying it out, draining, &c.  In 1887 it was decided to open up the ground as a park, to be known as Queen’s Park, in commemoration of the jubilee of Queen Victoria.  Since that time large sums had been expended in developing the park, including the construction of the lake, £2,770; roads &c., £2,330; pavilion, £1,462; and the new bandstand and chairs £1,500.  Altogether the amount spent out of capital was £17,000, and in addition, £2,114 had been expended on bowling-green, pavilions, and laying-out of playgrounds out of revenue.  The annual cost of maintenance was £650, but there was also the interest on borrowed money and the reduction of debt, which absorbed £350, so that the upkeep was £1,000 a year.  He thought that the people would appreciate what the Parks Committee had done on their behalf.  During the afternoon the Band of the Royal Irish Fusiliers discoursed an excellent programme, and in the evening gave other selections.
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From​ the Blackburn Weekly Standard of June 22nd 1912

A very interesting memento of gallant deeds performed by Blackburn schoolboys during the past few years in is in course of preparation.  It takes the form of a roll of honour, bearing the names of schoolboys, who have learnt to swim under Professor J. G. Kay at the Freckleton-street Baths, and who have been concerned in numerous rescues from drowning.  The idea is Professor Kay’s and the work has been neatly executed by Messrs R. Dugdale and Son, of Preston New-road.  In all there are eleven names on the roll, and the lads have been responsible for saving no fewer than sixteen lives at various dates between 1906 and last year.  For their actions most of them have been awarded either the certificate or the testimonial of the Royal Humane Society, and on the roll particulars of their feats are recorded.  The roll at present only goes as far as September last year, so that, as there have been other praiseworthy cases of rescues recently, additions will have to be made.  The roll is a striking is an illustration attending the teaching of swimming to schoolboys locally.
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From the Blackburn Weekly Standard of June 29nd 1912

The ninth annual picnic in connection with this Association was held on Monday, when a large number of members and friends had a pleasant day.  Starting from Railway-road, the party proceeded by waggonettes, via Brindle and Leyland, to Mawdesley, where a good Dinner was provided at the Black Bull Hotel.  Bowling and other games followed, and the party spent an enjoyable time for an hour or so.  They then drove, via Rufford and Tarleton, to Longton, where tea was served at the Red Lion Hotel.  After tea the party made the most of their opportunities of recreation, and at half-past eight started for home, driving via Bamber Bridge Hoghton, and Brindle, to Blackburn, where “good-night” was said after an outing thoroughly enjoyed by everybody
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From the Blackburn Weekly Standard of June 29th 1912

No effort is being spared to ensure the success of the bazaar to be held at the Town Hall next October to financially assist the work among the blind people of Blackburn.  The sum aimed at is £1,000, and there are great hopes that this amount will be forthcoming.  The movement received a decided impetus by a fete and garden Party at “Greystones,” Dunkley, on Thursday evening, through the kindness of Mr. Alf Nuttall, J. P., and Mrs. Nuttall, for, though the weather was dull throughout the afternoon, the event was a great success.  Nothing had been left to chance.  Every detail had been well thought out by the generous host and hostess, who had made provision for all contingencies.  Over 650 tickets had been sold for the fete, and the guests were accommodated in two special trains which left Blackburn shortly after two o’clock.  On arriving at Longhop there was a torrential downpour of rain.  A dozen motor cars were soon in attendance, however, to convey the passengers to Dinkley, a distance of over three miles, the fares collected being devoted with the general proceeds, towards Mrs. Nuttall’s flower stall at the forthcoming bazaar.  Those who placed their cars at the disposal of the organisers were Mr. And Mrs. Alf Nuttall of “Northwood”, Mr. and Mrs. Richard Greenwood of “The Gables”, Mr. And Mrs. Harold Eccles of “Sykes Holt”, Balderstone, Mr. W. W. Wilkinson, Mr. Richard Thompson, J. P., of “Lyndhurst”, and Mr Duckworth, of Wilpshire.
As the rain continued for some time the Kingston Pierrot Troupe entertained the guests in a large marquee, whilst strawberries and cream, ices and other delicacies were distributed by the workers.  As the afternoon advanced the rain ceased and the multitude of side-shows—travelling frogs, aunt sallies, flying pigeons, homing pigeons, races, etc.—were well patronised.  The children were given drives to the river on a jaunting-car belonging to Mr. Harold Eccles, and others had donkey drives in the commodious field adjoining “Greystones,” which were, with the house grounds, placed at the disposal of the visitors.  “Prize drew” tickets were sold in respect of the donkey, but it was stipulated that the fees for these tickets should constitute “purely voluntary subscription.”
Among the visitors were the Mayor of Blackburn (Ald. S. Crossly J. P.), Misses Dug dale, “Claremont,” Canon and Mrs. Pickop, “Winston Hall,” Mrs. Taylor and party from “Crosshill”, Mrs. James Kay, Mrs Geo. Porter, Mrs. Albert Coddington, Mrs Walter Illingworth, Mr. and Mrs. T. B. Lewis, Mrs Winlock Holgate and party, Mrs. John Haddock, Mrs. Harry Mercer, Mrs. Wm Woodhouse, and party, Mrs. Bicker dike, Mrs John Stones, Mr. G. A. Stocks and party, Dr. and Mrs. Greg son, Mrs. Ritzema, Mrs Lavery, the rev. G. R. Pughe (Mellor),Mrs. John Thwaites, the Rev. J. E. and Mrs. Samuel, Miss Harrison, Mrs. Knack, Mrs. R. Y. Aitken, Mrs Tom Robinson, Dr. Jeffrey Ramsay, Capt. McBridges, Dr. and Mrs. Keighley. Mr. John Cartwright, Mrs. Tom Dean, Mrs Tom Hargreaves, and Mrs. Stones (Wilpshire).
The workers present included Mr. And Mrs. Nuttall, Miss Coward, Mr. E. Coward (secretary for the workshop) and Mrs. Coward, Miss Thwaites “Westbank,” Mr. Richard Greenwood and Party, of the “Gables,” Mrs. Sager, Mrs Tom Mercer, Mrs. Harry Backhouse, Mrs. Neale, Mrs. Albert Troupe, Mrs. Jack Wilson, Miss Schofield, Mrs. John Lucas, Miss Walker (Blackpool), Mrs. Gilbert Sames, Mrs. W. D. Ritzema, Miss Phyllis Nuttall, Mr. Nuttall junr., Miss Illingworth, Miss P Illingworth, Mrs. Gerald Greenwood, Mrs. Tom Fielding, Mrs. Lueas, and Mrs. Will Howard.
The projected bazaar will not only assist in extending the workshops for the clinic, for both men and women, but it will help forward the work of the society for instructing the blind.  There are seven blind women engaged in the women’s workshop in Mason-street, and 17 men in the Byrom-street premises.  The manufacturers of the district are supporting the institutions by purchasing all their mill skips here, and at the present time the workshops are crippled for want of additional space.
The series of summer events in aid of the bazaar will conclude on July 11th, when Mrs Richard Greenwood will give an American tea at “The Gables,” in aid Mrs. Coward’s refreshment stall.

One hundred years ago, ​​July 1912

From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of July 6 1912.
The annual picnic arranged by the Blackburn Reform Club took place on Thursday, and like its predecessors, was a pronounced success.  The party travelled first to Lancaster, and thence to Levens Hall.  The climatic conditions were excellent; indeed it would have been impossible to have had a more suitable day, and when the party, numbering 64, left Blackburn by the 8.13 a.m. train for Preston, the morning was cool and pleasant, and the prospects of the day were rosy.  A couple of motor char-a-bancs had been chartered to await the arrival of the party at Preston, and by these they were conveyed via Garstang to Lancaster, this part of the journey occupying just over an hour and a half.  The drive along roads splendidly adapted for motoring was very pleasant, and by the time the party arrived at Garstang the sun was shining with real brilliance, and caused one member to remind some of his comrades it had not rained on the first Thursday in the present month for fifteen years.  Lancaster was reached shortly after 10.45, and here the tourists were met by ten others who had covered the whole journey by road.  It will hardly be necessary to say that after exhilarating drive from Preston every one was ready for breakfast, half of the party dinning at the County Hotel, and the remainder at the King’s Arms Hotel.  At each place a splendid breakfast was served, and after full justice had been done to the meal, the party were left with an hour to spare.  This, however, was made good use of, batches visiting the castle, the Parish Church, Park, Town Hall, and Storey Institute.  At one o’clock they left the County Hotel en route for Levens Hall, where an hour was spent in examining the magnificent gardens.
The return journey was commenced shortly after four o’clock by way of Dalham Park, the beauty of which was much admired, while a stop was also made at St. Michael’s Church, Beetham.  The remainder of the journey was completed without a stop, and the party again disembarked at the hotels previously mentioned shortly after 5.30 for dinner.  Subsequently a vote of thanks to the committee was passed, and the return to Preston was commenced at 7.15, the party joining the 9.16 for Blackburn.  The arrangements for the outing, which were carried out without a hitch, reflect great credit on the secretaries, Mr. J. Kenyon and Mr. G. Halsted. 

Among the members of the club present were: Mr. R. Thompson, J.P. (president), Mr. W. Syrie (vice president), Mr. W. Bury, sen., (Treasurer), Messrs J. Kenyon and G. Halstead (secretaries), Messrs R. Leaver, J. Rowntree, J. Holden, W. Bury, jun., A. Boaedman, J. Ryden, S. Lewis, E. Mercer, J. V. Horrocks, C. Pearce, C. Charnley, R. R. Mumford, T. H. Harchdale, T. Kenyon, E. Bradley. J. Parkinson, J. Boyle, W. Beesley, J. T. Henshaw, T. Halliwell, J. T. Green, and G. W. Blowers.

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From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of July 6 1912
An alarming motor wagon accident resulting in injuries to two men occurred in Montague-street, Blackburn, on Thursday afternoon.  A steam motor belonging to the Blackburn Haulage Company was turning out of Preston New-road to descend the incline, when the wheels began to skid, and, the driver losing control of the vehicle, it dashed down the road at a great speed.  Richard Hunter, of 7 Shackleton-street, who was driving, and Mr George Woolley, 94, Lynwood-road, accompanying him, jumped off.  The motor rushed onto the footpath, damaging the kerbstone and knocking down a street lamp, then partly turned round and backed across the street.  It struck the railing in front of the Congregational Church, demolishing the gateway and one of the stone lamp-posts.  It then came to a standstill.  Mr. Woolley, when he jumped alighted against some railings.  He was seriously hurt, his injuries including a compound fracture of the right leg and upper right arm and bruises to his head.  Hunter received a lacerated wound in the right hand, and several of his ribs were bruised.  Both men were removed in the horse ambulance to the infirmary.
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From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of July 20 1912.
The first communication opened by the Chief Constable of Blackburn, Mr. I. G. Lewis, on taking possession of his new office and headquarters in Northgate on Wednesday was of a most interesting and gratifying character, alike to himself and to members of the force under his command.  It was a letter from the Home office intimating that the King had been graciously pleased to confer the Police Coronation Medal, in commemoration of the crowning of their Majesties last year, upon the following members of the Blackburn borough police force:
Chief Constable I. G. Lewis.
Superintendent C. Hodson.
Inspector W. A. Sager.
Inspector R. Pomfret.
Inspector J. Heyes.
Inspector J. Greenall.
Sergeant J. Clark.
Constable W. Wade.
The conferment of these medals follows upon a request addressed to the Chief Constable to recommend a certain number of officers of all ranks for the decoration, under conditions then set forth, long service being one qualification.  With regard to the Chief Constable, the regulation laid it down that those of ten years’ service in that capacity, or of twenty years’ service in all were entitled to the medal, so that Mr. Lewis’s qualifications more than met the requirements.  Of the other officers on the list, the three last named have retired since the Coronation, but this is no disqualification, and they will receive the medal though no longer in the force.  The medal is of silver, bearing on one side, relief, a representation of the King, and on the other the Royal crown, encircled by the inscription: “County and Borough Police. Coronation, 1911.”  The ribbon is of Royal blue and crimson.

The Mayor, as chairman of the Watch Committee, has been notified of the receipt of the medals, and it is possible that they will be formally presented to the officers named.
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From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of July 20 1912.

The tennis tournament promoted on behalf of the charitable work of the Girls’ Friendly Society has not yet been brought to close, but the ladies competition was decided on Tuesday afternoon, when about 120 people witnessed the semi-final and final rounds on the Alexandra Meadows.
About 170 competitors took part in the earlier rounds, which were played on Thursday last week.  The object of the tournament is to help the branch of the Girl’s Friendly Society’s work, which gives the children of institutions and orphanages a good start in life by training them for domestic service, and afterwards providing suitable places for them.
On Tuesday the tennis was hardly so good as on the previous Thursday, when the delay caused by the rain made it impossible to finish the tournament, though it was generally agreed that those who were left in for the semi-finals thoroughly deserved the distinction.
In the semi-final Mrs. Basil Thompson and Miss E. Eccles beat Misses M. And A Thompson in the first game by seven to five and in the second by six to two.  In the other semi-final Miss Thomas and Miss K. Thomas scratched, so that Misses Amy Ogden and E Haworth met Mrs. Thompson and Miss Eccles in the final.  The latter pair had played consistently well, were again victorious.  The final set, like the semi-final, did not run to a third game, for Mrs. Thompson and Miss Eccles won the first by six to nothing and the second by six to four.  Mrs. Sale, who has taken a prominent part in organising the tournament, presented the prizes to the finalists, and in doing so expressed her appreciation of the good play they had the pleasure of witnessing
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From the Blackburn Times of July 1912.

The land on which the Sessions House and Police Station was built was part of a section of Blakey Moor bought by the Corporation for a “Great improvement Scheme”, the cost was over £80,000.  The Sessions House and Police Station occupied just a fraction the land acquired, and was only the first part of a larger scheme which would eventually include the Public Halls.   After demolition of the old property which occupied the site building work began in February 1910.  The estimated cost excluding cost of site and furnishings was £46,788.  The Times reported that: “The new courts are a substantial stone built square building.  Geometrically it has a greater breadth than depth.  Excluding the passage on the south side and west side, and the outbuilding beyond the west passage at the rear, the building has a frontage of 165ft. and a depth of 118ft.  It is built of stone from Butler Delph [Pleasington].  On the Northgate frontage the structure has an elevation of 54ft, to the top of the balustrades and is an imposing appearance.  Perhaps the most striking features are the four massive Ionic columns, the rustic base and pilasters, the cornice, enriched with modillions, and the two huge figures of Justice and Mercy sit in alcoves over the main entrance.  There are four semi-circular headed doorways in Northgate giving access to the staircase leading from the street to the corridors of the upper ground floor.  Over the two principal entrances is a small balcony from which important declarations can be made.  Above the balcony a carved bulls-eye window shows up prominently.  Then come the cornice and figures referred to.  The sloping roofs at the front are finished with green slates and the flat roofs at the rear are asphalted.  The style of architecture is a restrained Renaissance.
Internally... The two principle staircases have marble dados, and the pilasters in the grand corridor are also of marble.  The grand staircases give access to a suite of five good rooms and the two courts at the rear.  At right-angles to this corridor are two others, one leading to the suite of offices used by the police staff, and the other giving access to the offices occupied by the magistrates’ clerk’s staff.  The two main staircases, the great corridor, the courts, the recorder’s and the magistrates’ grand jury room and common jury room (also to be used as the children’s court0 have enriched fibrous plastered ceilings.
The session’s court is 56ft by 35ft, there are two jury boxes and a gallery for the public...The magisterial bench is semi-circular and space underneath the gallery is reserved for witnesses.  All furniture is of Dantzic oak and the upholstering is in Rexine leather.  The coloured leaded light over the recorder’s chair represents the figure of Justice, and the one at the back of the gallery the figure of Mercy.  The windows on the side contain the emblems of England, Ireland, Scotland, and Wales.  One ceiling light contains the Royal coat of arms and one the coat of arms of Lancashire.  The dock rails are of coinage metal.
The second or small court is a duplicate of the session’s court, but with no jury boxes.
The Chief Constables and his staff are located on the south corridor.  The first room at the head of the staircase is the Chief Constables private office which as one small window looking onto Northgate and a bay window with a south aspect.  Then are the following rooms; Waiting room, the Chief Constables Confidential clerk, superintendent, Clerks, witnesses room, detective inspector and detectives which as a strong room for stolen property.
The lower ground floor is approached through an arched doorway giving access to a broad paved passage which runs down the south side and along the back of the building.  The charge office, a square room with bay window, is placed at the bottom of the passage in such a positions to command complete supervision on all using the lower ground floor.  Prisoners will be taken into the charge office to be “booked” before being placed in the cells.  The master clock regulating all the timepieces in the building is in this department.
In the Town Hall [the old police station] there were 18 cells in three stories, connected by an iron staircase, there was only one way up and down.  In the new building all the cells are on one level.  The walls are of white enamelled brick with round corners.  The wooden beds are of an improved type, and the ventilation and lighting are on the best principle.  Males and females are kept entirely apart on separate corridors which are closed in with iron gates making escape or intercourse between the two sets of cells impossible.  Two or more push bells are in each corridor for emergencies.  There are sixteen cells in total, six for women and 10 for men with association cells for male and female.  The cells are below ground level and communication is maintained by speaking tube.  Prisoners are taken direct from the cells to the dock.  There is also an exercise yard surrounded by high walls.  Adjoining the charge office is the telephone room.  Inter-communication exists between all departments, direct lines connect the sub-police stations and fire station with head quarters and there is communication with the public telephone exchange.
There is a second entrance to the lower ground floor at the back which is for the coroner’s office and children seeking street-trading badges.
The parade room is 71ft. by 27ft; it contains about 150 numbered lockers, one for each man, but no other furniture except a seat and a small desk on a slightly raised platform for the use of the inspector parading the men.  Policemen are not like other men in that when off duty they can associate freely with kindred spirits in political clubs... So there has been provided for them a reading room and recreation room, 41ft by 16ft to which they can repair when off duty for social intercourse, A library is also being established.  On the Northgate side is the tailors’ shop and large stores, fitted with numbered racks containing a complete outfit for each man, and large tables for working purposes.  There is an armoury across the way from the parade room, a storeroom for records not in regular use and a dark-room for photography.
Abutting on the playground side of the Higher Elementary School is a range of one-storey buildings, the most important of which is an up-to-date mortuary.  There are two rooms lined with white glazed brick.  In one are six slabs, in the other an operating table for the conducting of post mortems.  There are then 12 dog kennels, and two large food stores.
The building has been erected from designs and under the supervision of Messrs. Briggs, Wolstenholme, and Thornely, and Messrs. Stones, Stones, and Atkinson, joint architects; the principal contractors are Messrs. W. J. Woof Cronshaw and Sons; and the clerk of works, Mr. J. H. Colmar, of Liverpool.
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On Thursday 25 of July 1912 the new Sessions House, Northgate, was opened  by Sir Harry Hornby.  The Blackburn Weekly Telegraph reported that he was;
“Received with loud applause.”  He went on to say; “This was the second instalment of the big scheme which the Corporation had undertaken.  The first was the school on Blakey Moor, and the third would be the new Assembly-rooms upon which a start had been made.  When they were completed, the transformation of Blakey Moor as a centre of municipal activity would have been effected…Proceeding, Sir harry said there was satisfaction in knowing that the schemes were undertaken by Blackburn architects and Blackburn contractors.  He also referred to the really inadequate accommodation which the police had had to put up with, but he thought that from what he had seen the previous day they would have most commodious premises to work in.  He should like to compliment Mr. Lewis and the police force under his command, for a finer body of men he did not think they would find.  The Mayor [Samuel Crossley] referred to the days when there were only a few constables in the town…he was born in King-street, and he recalled that there was a special constable paid for by the inhabitants of that district.”
On Friday 26 July, the Quarter Sessions for the County Borough of Blackburn were held for the fist time in the new Sessions House.
The Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of July 27 1912 said:
“The Recorder [Miles Walker Mattinson K. C.] said; from one point of view it was an historic occasion as regards the administration of justice in Blackburn.  That Court had met for the first time in the spacious and handsome Court of Justice which the municipality , with just pride in their institutions which did them credit, had provided.  The even of that day recalled to him the occasion of 26 years ago, when the Court of Quarter Sessions sat for the first time in the Town Hall, Blackburn.  He had then the honour to be the first Recorder of Blackburn to preside there, and he well remembered that the Grand Jury associated with him was comprised of leading citizens of Blackburn of the day.  That was in October, 1886.  Many years had passed since then.  He was now senior Recorder for Lancashire, and indeed of the Northern Circuit, and he was grateful that he had been spared for all those years, and that he was able to preside that day on an occasion not less interesting than that on which the first Court of Quarter Sessions was held in Blackburn.  He was pleased to note that, as 26 years ago, he was associated in the business of the day with a Grand Jury composed of everything which was representative of Blackburn.  The Grand Jury represented every shade of opinion or thought in the Borough, and he appreciated the readiness with which he understood all of them, men full of many affairs had responded to the request to participate in the business of the day.  The long lapse of years of which he had spoken had made many gaps amongst the public men of Blackburn.  The mayor, who in 1886 sat by his side, had gone; the Clerk of the Peace, who sat below him—a man of great versatile ability—had gone, cut of in the plenitude of his power; the Clerk to the Justices, the Chief Constable of those days, and great majority of the Justices were not with them.  But he was glad to think that in the present Grand Jury he found not a few who had survived them.  He was glad to see the foreman, Mr. William Thompson, in his place.  That gentleman was foreman of the Grand Jury of the Quarter Sessions of a quarter of a centaury ago …In the last quarter of a century Blackburn had grown in population, trade had grown, and he believed there was diffused and increased prosperity amongst the whole body of the population.  Everything had grown except, thank God, crime, which had not grown.  Not only relatively to the increased population, but absolutely, serious crime which went to the Assizes and the Quarter Sessions had diminished.  He believed statistics showed that minor crimes dealt with in police courts like drunkenness had also substantially diminished…the 25 years of which he had spoken had brought many changes in the administration of the criminal law of England.  Prisoners had been permitted to give evidence on their own behalf, and the effect of that change had been that not a few guilty persons who would have otherwise escaped had received their just deserts.  The Court of Criminal Appeal had been established and the effect had in that case been that not a few persons who would have remained in prison on an ill-found charge had been liberated.   Thirdly, a material mitigation in the severity of punishment had been witnessed, and contemporaneously there had been administrative changes, the effect of which had been to somewhat diminish the rigour of prison discipline, and by an extension of the system of awarding marks for industry and good conduct reduced terms of imprisonment materially.  Hand in hand with the increased leniency had gone a reduction in crime whether the two were connected he could not say.  At any rate it was gratifying that with the increased leniency there had been no increase in crime. It might be that there was a good deal in the outlook of the nation which gave thoughtful men cause to pause.  But there was consolatory reflection that whatever else had happened in the last few years there had been progress in one direction; as far as crime was concerned the prospect was brighter than 25 years ago.

On​e hundred years ago, August 1912

From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of August 3rd 1912.
On the 3rd day of August, 1863 there was solemnised at Blackburn Parish Church the marriage of William Hulme, bachelor, and Christina Thompson, spinster*.  Being happily spared to attain their golden wedding anniversary, the bride and bridegroom, who reside in Langham-road, are quietly commemorating that great event in their lives to-day, and their many friends will unite in cordially wishing them many happy returns.  Born at Bolton, Mr. Hulme came to Blackburn at an early age, and was apprenticed to “Stamp” Wharton, printer and bookbinder, in King-street.  After 27 years at the “Times” office, where he became foreman, he started in business for himself in 1889, and is now proprietor of the Borough Press printing works.  His studious and observant character being brought into close association with journalism, Mr. Hulme began to write and his impressions of country rambles found expression in a series of newspaper articles that revealed the writer's love of Nature and knowledge of her varied works.  In this and in other subjects to which he applied his pen Mr. Hulme achieved the first duty of a writer; he made what he had to tell interesting.  This particular quality was also shown later on, when he contributed to a little personal history of the town under the title “Bits of Old Blackburn.”  Chats with old characters provided a good deal of material form, and so helped to preserve many interesting and important links in the folklore of Blackburn, and facts connected with its social and industrial customs and progress.  In his country walks Mr. Hulme had for many years the congenial companionship of the late Mr. Abram, the local historian, Mr. John Walker, and Mr. David Geddes, curator of the Free Library, and contemporary townsmen.  These rambles have now to be restricted in mileage, for Mr. Hulme is seventy three; though no longer able to take afoot the long out-and-home jaunts in which he found such delight, he finds the cycle a very present help in reaching the more distant beauty spots in this pleasant corner of Lancashire.  One of the founders of the Footpath Preservation Association, he has taken part in several assertions of public right that have involved somewhat militant proceedings.  He is chairman of the North-East Lancashire Association of Master Printers, and a lifelong Oddfellow, being a trustee of the Albert and Victoria Lodge at Blackburn.  His Liberalism was founded in the “hungry forties,” and has never faltered.  A Wesleyan, he has been connected with Trinity for over thirty years.  Of the six children born to Mr. and Mrs Hulme five survive, and their grand children number ten.
*The date of the marriage between William Hulme and Christina Thompson is given here as the 3rd of August 1863.  This must be a misprint by the newspaper; they were actually married on the 3rd of August 1862.
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From the Blackburn Times of August 10th 1912.
Many were the wishes that, amongst these days of continuing rain, Thursday, at least, might prove the exception.  For Thursday was the day appointed for the annual treat to the poor children of Blackburn, and to those who have the arranging and organising of the event, as well as to the young holiday-makers, the weather is an item of great importance.  The event is controlled chiefly by the Blackburn Ragged School and the All Saints’ Ragged school and is made possible by the yearly grant from Messrs. Pearson’s Fresh Air Fund of 9d. per head for 2,000 Blackburn children, supplemented by local voluntary contributions.  For many years the trip has been repeated and it still represents one of the most deserving causes to which the well disposed can lend their support, whether financial or otherwise.  There seems no cause for imagining that the number of Blackburn’s poor children who rely on this for practically their only yearly treat will ever grow less.  This year it is as great as ever, and though the Bent-street Ragged School only receives 1,200 of the ninepenny grants, and All Saints’ 500, both schools take considerably more than that number of children on their respective trips.  The remaining ninepences of the Pearson’s grant are administered by other organisations, such as the Blakey-street Mission, the Blackburn Orphanage, and Crippled Children’s Home.  In each case the money is for the beneficent object of allowing poor children to be taken to the seaside or into the country.  This year Bent-street Ragged School took about 1,500 children, and All Saints’ about 800.  In both cases they were conveyed to their destinations by train, quite an experience to the majority, to judge by their enthusiasm whilst “getting aboard,” which is no means the least enjoyable part of the holiday.  Previously they had been mustered at an early hour at the two schools, and got into what, considering the general excitement was something like orderly.  They certainly represented a section of Blackburn’s children of all others demanding sympathy and assistance.  Though provision is made for so many children, none but those well qualified by poverty were taken, as a glance at the jubilant but pathetic looking little trippers would show.  Tickets are distributed by the school attendance officers and others, on the sole grounds of the recipient’s poverty.  It is needless to say that no considerations of creed or politic enter into the humanitarian work.  In order that the requirements of the town may be well met, the schools mentioned each serve their own particular district, All Saints’ dealing with children from Emmanuel, Christ Church, Park-road, Bartholomew’s, and St. Andrew’s schools, and Bent-street School with the remainder in other parts of Blackburn.  Only the short preliminaries of assembling at the schools and proceeding to the station stood between the children and their enjoyment of the first stages of the outing.  The Bent-street party was accompanied by the superintendent, Mr Chilman, and a band of from 70 to 80 workers, and a couple of Highlanders in full costume added the sound of music to the general rejoicing.  In the case of All Saints’; the “concourse of sweet sound” was produced by the drum and fife band, which headed a party who waved flags, their tickets of permission, their pots for the coffee, and anything which would serve a medium for the expression of joy.  At the station, the larger party was the first away, girls and boys of the Bent-street contingent leaving in two special trains for St. Anne's shortly before nine.  Brungerley Bridge was as in the previous years the destination of the All Saints’ children.  At the seaside the sands furnished an ecstasy of enjoyment, in which donkey riding, boating, and Punch and Judy show were amongst the most highly favoured, if most ordinary of the amusements.  Stone-throwing and unauthorised contests among the boys were less orthodox, but not less appreciated pastimes.  Beautiful weather was the happy experience, and until the time for the return it was the day of the year to each child.  The meals consisted of meat-pie, bun and coffee for dinner, and bun and coffee for tea.  Not a few youngsters made the return with some useful article of clothing added to his or her scanty score, and which had been won at the races held during the day.  At Tucker’s farm Brungerley Bridge, the willing party of helpers in charge of the superintendent, Mr. Rogerson, and accompanied by the Rev. A. C. Duxbury, saw that nothing was left undone which could minister to the delight of their annual guests.  Sports as at St. Anne's occupied the attention of many, there were wading and boating by the banks of the Ribble, and the meals were similar to those mentioned, and quite as heartily eaten.  The return was safely made during the evening, and both parties reported a successful and most appreciated outing.  In addition to the day trip several delicate children are, through the fund, sent into the country at this time of the year for the improvement of their health.
Whilst playing on the banks of the Ribble, a boy named Corbett, of Prince Albert-square, fell in the water.  Mr. J. Stevenson, 15, Avenue-parade, Accrington, secretary for the Blind Society for that district, who was camping in the vicinity, saw the plight of the boy, and without divesting himself of any clothing, jumped into the water and was successful in affecting a rescue.  He was none too soon; however, for it was only after artificial respiration had been resorted to that the lad regained consciousness.  Shortly afterwards, another member of the party fell into the water—which is 6ft. deep—at the same place, and a stranger, who promptly went to his assistance, succeeded in bringing him to the bank.

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From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of August 17th 1912.
At the Blackburn Borough Police Court on Thursday [15 August] Robert Edward Bibby, cotton salesman of  “Edenholme,” Brownhill, Wilpshire, was summoned for driving a motor-car in King William-street in a manner dangerous to the public; and Joshua Cornthwaite, 3 Dale-street, appeared in answer to a similar summons for dangerously driving a motor-wagon.  Mr. J. G. Radcliffe prosecuted on behalf of the police.

In the case against Bibby, P.C. Hartley said that he was on point duty at Sudell Cross on the afternoon of Monday week, when he saw the defendant coming along King William-street in the direction of Preston New-road.  He was driving very quickly, and when he got to Exchange Buildings he could not turn properly and his car ran across the road very near the kerb.  Although he was on his wrong side, defendant did not cross over but drove up past Sudell cross at a furious rate—the constable estimated the speed at twenty miles an hour—and he also disregarded the officers signal for him to stop.

P.C. Dent and another witness named Hepworth corroborated.

Defendant denied travelling at twenty miles an hour, and said he was going at no more than eight.  He had stopped at Town Hall-street, and had to drop into bottom gear to start again.  It was imposable therefore for him to get up to such a speed in a short distance like that.

The Mayor (Alderman S. Crossley, J.P.), the presiding magistrate, said there were many complaints received about furious driving, and one could not walk the streets without seeing how reckless a great many people drove.  The bench were determined that so far as Blackburn was concerned, a reasonable rate would have to be observed by all motor-car drivers.  Before fining Bibby £5 and costs, his worship remarked that defendant could also have been summoned for disregarding the officer’s notice to stop.

Giving evidence against Cornthwaite, P.C. Prescott said that on Saturday afternoon defendant drove a motor-wagon, with trailer attached, down Montague-street. The wagon was coming down in the centre of the road, and was travelling at a furious pace, gaining speed as it came down the incline.  On reaching the house, 144, Montague-street, the wagon swerved to the left on to the footpath, where it ran for a distance of about 10 yards.  Defendant then got the wagon back into the road, but it again swerved, and the front wheels came in contact with the kerbstone.  The trailer, however, swerved completely, and smashed the iron railings and stone jambs in front of one of the houses, a man named William Pickup, of Preston, who was riding on the trailer, being thrown violently against the rails.  He alighted on his head, which was badly cut, and had to be taken to the Infirmary in the horse ambulance.

Defendant said the cause of the accident was the skidding wheels.  He was fined £2 and costs.  The Mayor said it was a question whether motor-wagons should go down Montague-street at all, but if people persisted in driving down they must take their own risks.  If similar cases came before them they would have to consider the advisability of inflicting such a penalty as would lead drivers to take a less dangerous road.

At the Borough Police Court yesterday Joseph Killingbeck, chauffeur, 70 Langham-road, was summoned for driving a motor-car in a manner dangerous to the public in Eanam.  Mr. J. G. Radcliffe prosecuted and defendant was represented by Mr. Rowland, of Accrington.

Detective Constable Cooper said that about a quarter-past five on the 2nd inst. he saw a motor-car driven by the defendant coming in the direction of Copy Nook.  It passed him at a speed which he estimated at over thirty miles an hour.  He had no time to stop the car; it was going too quickly.  At the time the road was fairly thronged with vehicular and pedestrian traffic, and the speed, in his opinion, was dangerous to the public.  The morning after he saw the defendant in the car, and in reply to questions, the latter said that the car was not going at either twenty or fifteen miles an hour, adding “But when I put her on the third clutch she goes very fast for a time, and I have to be done for yesterday you know very little about motoring, and you want to look somewhere else.”

Mr. Rowland: I suggest you made a mistake in the car?—No, sir.

I suggest also that at 5.14 on this day the car was just coming out of the hands of the mechanics at the garage?—I don’t know about that.

If that is true then you must have made a mistake?—It was 5.15 by my watch when it passed us going up Eanam.
Mr. Rowlands said there was only one clutch but three gears and if the officer had made a mistake in that it was possible to have made a mistake in other things.

Detective Constable M’Cartney corroborated the evidence of the first witness, and William Robert Armstrong, a driver, said the passed him at a terrific rate.
Mr. Rowland contended that there was considerable doubt in the case, and his client should have the benefit of the doubt.  It was quite possible that the officers had made a mistake in the number of the car, and that the defendant had been brought there instead of somebody else.

The defendant and two mechanics from the Briscoe’s garage Simmons-street stated that it was 5.14 on the day in question when the car left their hands after undergoing repairs.  Defendant stated that after that he called at a shop up Eanam until about half-past five.

The Bench considered the case proved and fined Killingbeck £3 and costs.
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From the Blackburn Times of August 17th 1912.

Since the word “exodus” was brought into use the fact which it represents has continued unaltered.  Apparently, the periodical “outing” of people from their customary dwelling places is a permanent institution.  Certainly this is so with Blackburn for this year the holiday “exodus” has taken place with quite as much thoroughness as usual.  Memories of the railway strike which ended the holidays so dismally last year apparently have disappeared, so little did they deter the departure of this season’s merrymakers.  From every source the opinions come that no fresh “record” has been set up, the holiday exodus has been at least as heavy as that of last year.  An official at the Blackburn Railway Station told the writer that as far as it was possible to judge, traffic had been, on the whole, somewhat heavier than “the corresponding period last year,” to use that favourite phrase of the statistician, “The South of England and the North-East Coast generally and Bournemouth and Scarborough particularly,” he said, “have attracted a larger proportion than usual,” and Morecambe, too, has been better patronised by Blackburnians.  In other respects the various resorts have claimed about average of holiday makers, and Blackpool still stands easily first in popular estimation.”  That this latter remark was well grounded is shown by the fact that on Saturday and Monday alone no fewer than 34 special trains were sent from Blackburn to Blackpool.  Altogether from Friday, August 9th to Thursday, inclusive, 124 special trains were sent to all parts, but to no resorts in such frequency as to Blackpool.  As far north as Scotland and as far south as Bournemouth did Blackburnians travel by this means.  The following figures show at a glance in what direction and in what numbers the special excursions were run for the week.
Belle Vue……………1    
Eastern Counties……1
London (Euston).........1
London (Pancras)……2
West of England……5
In addition to the above mentioned “specials,” there are every day 360 ordinary trains stopping at Blackburn; whilst during the week the station officials had to deal with 50 special trains, mostly Blackpool specials from Yorkshire, which did not stop at Blackburn, not to mention goods traffic.  The fact that the holidays commenced on Friday [9th August] relieved the pressure of the traffic somewhat, for numbers travelled on Friday evening, where, long distances such as the west of England and Scotland were to be travelled.  Members of the Chapel-street H.S.A. went to Paris, the Parish Church Bible Classes have spent the week at Bournemouth, and a party in connection with St. Matthew’s Church went to the same resort.  The bulk of the traffic however was on Saturday morning, when thousands made their departure and the steady stream of trippers continued to flow out of Blackburn throughout the day.  The habit of the public of obtaining their tickets in advance greatly facilitates matters, for the crush at the booking office is to some extent avoided, and travellers reach their various platforms earlier, and in a state of comparative calm and composure which assists the officials in their efforts to minimise the difficulties and annoyances of holiday travelling.  There is no doubt that the travelling public is becoming educated and experienced.  There is a constantly lessening amount of the noisiness, confusion, and uproariousness for which excursionists are supposed to be famous.  The share which the many officials of the railway have in this transformation is a considerable one, and at Blackburn one can have nothing but praise for the manner in which, from, Mr. J. Mottershead, the stationmaster, downwards, every member of the staff co-operates to ensure the smooth working of the elaborate system.  The small proportion of the inhabitants who were left in the town throughout the week have had the usual tranquil and comparatively uneventful time.  Most of the places of worship were closed, of had only one service on Sunday, whilst united services were held at the James-street and Furthergate Congregational Churches.  The shops were all closed until Wednesday, Market day, after which the majority reclosed until Friday.  Holiday fare at the theatres has been enjoyed by large audiences.  Special facilities had been arranged for by Mr. J. H. Cowell, manager of the tramways, for a five minute service on all sections, but the weather, after breaking on Tuesday night remained so bad that the idea had to be abandoned.  Rain has been responsible for a very unusual reduction in the number of persons using cars and a consequent lessening in the receipts by many pounds is expected.  The usual crop of holiday accidents has been experienced, but amongst those left at home there has been no repetition of the sad fatality which claimed a Blackburn visitor at Blackpool.  The postal facilities, have as usual, been somewhat curtailed, and the authorities report that hundreds of picture postcards “from absent friends,” have formed part of the local delivery.

General Booth, founder of the Salvation Army died on the 20th August 1912 aged 83 years.  William Booth was born on 10th April 1829 at Sneinton, Nottingham.  He married Catherine Mumford on June 16 1855, they had nine children.  He opened the “Christian Revival Society” in 1865 and later renamed it The Christian Mission.  In 1878 it became known as the “Salvation Army” with its own uniform.  He became the General and the other members were to be known as soldiers.  They eventually became a worldwide organisation.  His body lay in state for three days at the Congress Hall in Clapton where thousands filed past.  His funeral took place on the 29th of August, 5,000 Salvationists taking part and 40 bands.   His memorial service at Olympia was attended by 35,000 people.  He was laid to rest next to his wife Catherine at Abney Park Cemetery, Stoke Newington.


One hundred years ago, Sept​ember 1912 

From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of September 7th 1912.
Pulled Up In A Tunnel.
An Alarming incident, happily with no serious consequences, occurred about midnight on Saturday in the Daisyfield railway tunnel.  The 10.45 train from Blackpool to Colne was proceeding through the tunnel, when, through the communication cord being pulled, the train was brought to standstill.  The reason for the cord having been pulled could not be ascertained, but whilst the train was standing some wagons which were being shunted ran into it.  There was good deal of commotion, but nobody appears to have seriously hurt.  A hard felt hat worn by an Accrington passenger saved his head from injury when he was thrown from his seat to the opposite side of the compartment.  No damage was done to the rolling stock or rails, and after a delay of about 15 minutes the train proceeded.  When it reached Accrington Dr. Gorden was summoned to attend a Burnley man, who complained of an injured back, and a man afterwards proceeded to Burnley in another train, which was put on to take passengers to Colne and the intermediate stations.
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From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of September 7th 1912.
Militant Suffragists.
Mr. Snowden On Their Methods.
Mr. Philip Snowden, M.P. in the current issue of the “Christian Commonwealth,” deals with the Woman’s suffrage question, and makes some sharp comments on the policy of the militant section of the suffragist movement.  Mr. Snowden points out that under the terms of the Prime Minister’s offer with regard to the Reform Bill the Woman’s Social and Political Union, who have clamoured for a Government measure, can have woman’s suffrage in a Government measure if they can induce the pledge supporters of it in the present House of Commons to vote for it.
“These Women,” continues Mr. Snowden, referring to the militants, “by their mistaken tactics, have handed over the control of the situation to the very men they say are their enemies, and have enabled them, if they are so disposed, to break their pledges and to put the responsibility upon the policy of the women.  If the Woman’s Social and Political Union had decided to accept the concession of the Prime Minister, although like them I would have liked to see the Government shouldering the responsibility for woman suffrage from the introduction of the Reform Bill and had used all its unrivalled enthusiasm organisation to rouse public support amendment to the Reform Bill and to organise the support in the House of Commons, the chances of the success of such an amendment would have been of the rosiest hue.  As it is, the policy of this body is doing as much to destroy the chances of woman suffrage in the Parliament as the heroic efforts of the reasonable and practical suffragist are doing to make the best of the present unequalled opportunity.” 
Proceeding, Mr. Snowden says that militancy must have the appearance of justification.  “At present there is no apparent justification for it.  On the contrary, to everybody but the W.S.P.U., those tactics at the present juncture are so unjustifiable and fatuous as to take away from them all the element of heroism or even fanaticism, and to give to them the appearance of insanity.

“A discussion has been going on on the question of militant tactics, but it seems to me that the real matter at issue in the present situation is not whether militant tactics, terrorism, insurrection, are good polices to adopt in a reform movement or not.  We cannot lay down the any law on this matter which shall be applicable under all circumstances.  The question is whether certain tactics are desirable and useful in a given set of circumstances.  I can well imagine circumstances under which I should be as militant as the most militant member of the Woman’s Social and Political Union, and it may be that even yet the whole woman’s suffrage movement will have to adopt militant tactics.  But all that has really nothing to do with the present situation.  The only concern we have with militant tactics at the present is to consider whether they are desirable and useful in present circumstances.  And I have no hesitation in giving an answer to that question.  They are not only doing no good whatever, but they are doing more to injure the cause of woman’s suffrage than all the follies and fallacies of the anti-suffragists…

The policy which is calculated to make the best of the situation created by the Prime Minister’s offer to leave the House of Commons free on the question of Woman’s suffrage is that which is being pursued by the constitutional suffragists.  They are planning a great campaign for the autumn, and they are organising Parliamentary support.  If the full vote of the pledged supporters of woman’s suffrage can be secured for the first amendment it will be carried, and that will commit the House of Commons to the enfranchisement of women by this bill in one form or another.  I do not underestimate the difficulties in the way of getting complete unity among the various degrees and kinds of woman’s suffragists in the House of Commons.  To attain that there will have to be give and take.  Men who feel strongly that the political disfranchisement of a whole sex is an injustice which ought to be ended will not stand too much upon the order or the way of doing it.  Mr. Dickinson expresses the view that the most likely form in which the final amendments can be carried will be the enfranchisement of women householders and the wives of men occupiers.  We shall see.    Meanwhile we canvass, deputations, and other means, it is necessary to ascertain the views of all supporters of woman’s suffrage as to the form of amendment they would prefer, and, what is equally important, whether they are prepared to give their support in the last eventuality to any form of enfranchisement which will command a majority, be it the widest or narrowest scheme.  The Committee stage of the Reform Bill is not likely to be reached before January.  But all the intervening time is not too much for the work which has to be done.
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From the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of September 14th 1912.
The annual revision of the voters list for the borough of Blackburn was commenced on Monday at the Police Court before Mr. S. Pope, revising Barrister.  Mr. Riley appeared for the Liberals, and Mr Dowden for the Conservatives.  The Labour and Socialist were represented by Councillor Higham.
Six Ladies Get Vote.
Miss Bertha Bradley claimed municipal votes on behalf of five sisters and herself for the joint tenancy of 387A, Haslingdon-road.  Mr Maxwell (Conservative) said the six ladies were interested in politics, and paid all the rates.
The Revising Barrister, in allowing the six claims said, “They will all be having votes soon.”
The Barrister and his Vote.
George Holden claimed a vote for 7, Franklin-street.  His mother appeared on his behalf and explained that her son was married nine years ago, and with his wife continued to live at home.  In March last year he became the tenant of the house, which was the property of his mother.
Mr. Dowden supported the claim, but Mr. Riley objected, saying that the claim would not have been put in had not the mother’s right to municipal vote been objected to.
The Revising Barrister (addressing the lady); “I am in the same position as your son, but I cannot persuade my mother to do likewise.  I had great difficulty in getting a lodger’s vote, and I am not sure it is a good one.” (Laughter.)  “I will allow the claim because you have given evidence on oath.
Lodger Claims.
On the resumption of the court on Tuesday morning many lodgers’ claims were considered.  Mr Pope remarked on the difficulty of ascertaining the real value of the rooms in respect of which votes were claimed.  In the case of strangers the consideration paid was as good a guide as they could get, but it was not so as between relatives, and the bulk of the cases he had to consider were of the latter Kind.  That was the stupidity of the stupid Act.  “When this lodger franchise was framed,” he added, “I don’t think anyone in Parliament knew what he was doing.”
“I would like to see some bona-fide lodger claims,” said Mr. Pope later; “all these are cases of parents and their sons.”
With regard to joint occupier claims, Mr. Pope said the time was coming when the landlord would have to give evidence as to who was the real occupier.  No matter how many names may be put in the rent-book as joint tenants, the landlord regarded as his tenant the person who owned furniture upon which he could distraint
Joint Tenants.
This question of joint tenancy again arose at the evening sitting the same day, when Hanna and Sarah Jane Corbridge claimed to be put on the list of municipal voters as joint tenants with their mother and sister, who were already on the register.
The Barrister asked Mrs. Corbridge what her idea was in having her daughters as joint tenants.
Mrs. Corbridge replied that they helped to support the home and pay the rates.
Mr. Pope remarked that it was perfectly easy to manufacture votes by an arrangement between landlord and tenants.  He had had cases in which six or seven ladies claimed to be joint tenants of one small house.  He did not see the force of such claims.  He might be in sympathy with woman’s suffrage, but that was another question.  In this case Mrs. Corbridge and her daughter had been for four years the acknowledged tenants, and if rent were owing the mother’s furniture would be distrained upon.  He did not think it looked well when as many as six ladies claimed to be treated as joint tenants simply because they joined in maintaining the home.  Joint tenancy was really a matter of contract with the landlord, and ought to be proved.
Mr. C. Higham said that if joint tenancy was merely a matter of arrangement with the landlord his party had been very slow; they ought to have got a lot more people on the list than they had done.
The Barrister; People seem to think that because they all share in the burden of maintaining a home, therefore they are entitled to be treated as joint tenants.  That may be equity, but it is not law, and my view is that there should be a distinct contract entered into with the landlord, by which the parties are made joint tenants.
Both claims were disallowed.
Purity of the Blackburn List.
The Court sat again on Wednesday, but the time was spent in checking the list.  When this work had been completed, Mr Dowden moved a vote of thanks to the revising Barrister for the courteous manner in which he had conducted the revision.  In cases of doubt Mr. Pope leaned on the side of the claimant, and he (Mr. Dowden) thought that was the right attitude to take up.
In the absence of Mr. Riley, Mr. J. Makinson endorsed what Mr. Dowden had said.
Mr. Pope, in his reply, thanked the agents for the assistance they had given him in making as pure a list as possible.  He was quite sure that in purity of its voters lists Blackburn compared very favourably with other towns.  The accurate information gathered by the surveyors on each side had been of great assistance to him.
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From the Blackburn Times of September 21st ​1912.
Councillor Fritz Hindle, last night consented to be Mayor of Darwen in succession to Councillor John Pickup.  He is the only son of Mr. F. G. Hindle, solicitor, who formerly represented the Darwen Division in Parliament.  Educated at Rockley House School, Southport, and at Charter house, he served his articles with his father and his father’s Manchester agents (Messrs. Sale and Co.), and his London agents (Messrs. Woodcock and Co.)  Whilst serving a portion of his articles with Messrs. Sale and Co., Mr. Fritz Hindle passed the advanced law examination with distinction, and was awarded the first place in the honours list in conveyancing and second in common law and equity.  He won the prize given by the Vice Chancellor of the County Palatine to the most successful law student of the year, and finally he was awarded the Dauntesy legal scholarship, which was open to competition to students of both branches of the legal profession attending law lectures at any of the colleges of the Victoria University.  In May 1899 he passed the solicitors’ final examination.  He was the only one to gain first class honours.  Although the youngest of 14o candidates at the examination.  The result was the more remarkable seeing that the distinction of being first honours man was gained by his father at the same examination in the year 1870—a unique coincidence.  Mr. Hindle, junr., was also awarded the prize of the Honourable Society of Clement’s Inn and the Daniel Reardon scholarship.  This success was a brilliant conclusion to a remarkable successful career as a law student.  Previous to this, he had carried off the first speaking and essay prizes at the Blackburn and Manchester Law Students’ Debating Societies, and three prizes in connection with the “Law Notes” competition.  In July 1899, Mr. Hindle was taken into partnership by his father.
Councillor Fritz Hindle, who is 35 years of age, is the youngest member of the Town Council, and is the first bachelor Mayor of the borough.  Owing to the death of Councillor J. W. Gillibrand, ex Mayor in 1900, a vacancy was caused in the North East Ward, and though opposed to such a strong candidate as Mr. P. G. Holden, Mr. Hindle secured a majority of 89.  This was in January of 1901 and Mr. Hindle had only been a burgess of the town about 8 weeks.  He was returned unopposed in 1903, and continued to represent the Ward untill1906, when he was defeated by 152 votes by Mr. James Lord.  Mr. Hindle was returned to the Council as a representative for North-West Ward in 1907 in succession to the late Mr. Alfred Cooper, since which time he has represented this ward on the local governing body.  In February, 1907 he was returned unopposed as a County Council representative for Darwen, along with Alderman Carus.  For the last three years he has occupied the position of chairman of the Finance Committee, previous to which he was chairman of the Burial Board and vice-chairman of various Corporation Committees.
Hr Hindle is secretary of the Darwen Division Liberal Association, is actively associated with the League of Young Liberals, is president of the Darwen Swimming Club, was secretary of the Golf Club in its early days, and takes an active interest in the local horticultural and agricultural shows.  He is a staunch teetotaller, and attends the Belgrave Congregational Chapel, with which he and his father have been closely associated as day school managers.  He is an expert motorist.
The duties of Mayoress will be performed by Mrs. F. G. Hindle, his mother.  Mr. Hindle married the ex-M.P. for the Division in 1876.  She is a daughter of the late Mr. Thomas Gillibrand of Hollins Grove House.  Since its formation she has taken a keen interest in the work of the Darwen Woman’s Liberal Association.  She has been president of the British Woman’s Temperance Association, and in connection with the Lancashire and Cheshire Band of Hope Union she has annually given a number of prizes for competition amongst day school children for essays on school.
From the Blackburn Times of September 21 1912.
At an early hour yesterday morning damage estimated at £2,000 was done by fire to warehouse of the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway Company, at their East Lancashire Depot, Bridge-street, Blackburn.  The warehouse is a lean-to wooden structure, with corrugated iron roof about 100ft long by 40ft wide, built against the main warehouse, a huge stonework building, which lies behind the passenger station.  There are hundreds of wagons of merchandise of great value always in the warehouse and spacious yard, and the danger of a fire was a serious one.  How it originated is not known, but shortly after one o’clock P.C. 129 Bates was patrolling Mincing-lane when he noticed the reflection of flames in the sky showing that it had got a firm hold before being discovered.  He ran to the fire station in Clayton-street close by, and summoned the Corporation Brigade.  Inspector Simpson, with Sergeant Hall as second officer, responded with hose tender and an engine and 29 men.  A few minutes after the brigade had left an official message was received by telephone.  Owing to having to work from hydrants in Darwen-street and Bridge-street, over sixty lengths of hose had to be run out, the warehouse situated a long way from the street.  The flames were cut off from the main warehouse and prevented from spreading in other directions, but a hour elapsed before the fire was got under control.  Four empty railway trucks, a lurry, a stack of timber, a load of hay, a loading stage and the buildings were badly damaged.  The company sent their Horwich brigade by special train with steamer and other equipment, but their services were not required.

Miss Maude Wensley.jpg

Fom the Blackburn Weekly Telegraph of September 21 1912.

Grange to Morecambe.
A Blackburn Lady’s Plucky Swim.
Miss Maud Wensley, of Blackburn, on Monday accomplished the task of swimming across Morecambe Bay from Grange to Morecambe, a good twelve miles distance, in the record time this season of 2 hours 20 minutes.  The performance is all the more praiseworthy inasmuch as the conditions were against her, the water being the coldest experienced on any swim; indeed, the very low temperature had the effect of deterring a strong swimmer like Bailey, of Ashford, from entering, and the two gentlemen who did compete –Hill and Spence, both of whom have tried before—had to abandon the attempt solely on account of the excessive cold.  When the news went round the town that Miss Wensley was likely to land some excitement prevailed on shore.  From boats and yachts she received hearty cheers, the fishermen joyfully shouting, “Go on my lass, tha’ll do it yet.”  Evidently encouraged, Miss Wensley stuck valiantly to her task although the tide was fast running out, and it was this that she had to face in order to get the proper and official landing-spot.
The last fifteen minutes was a most thrilling period.  She was swimming hard, but appeared to make no headway, for the tide was rushing down like a mill-race.  Miss Wensley did her best, but unfortunately  she was carried out too far, and past the landing spot by a rather long distance.
Despite this struggle she finished quite fresh, dressed herself, and walked up the landing-stage amid applause.  The disappointment was very keen when it became known that she had finished out of bounds.  Still the performance is very meritorious, and is the best this season.
Henry Taylor, of Chadderton, wins the trophy, his time being 2 hours 34 minutes 10 seconds.  The other lady competitor from Blackburn—Miss Crook—hardly did so well as on the last occasion.
September 2 Sheffield Wed.     A.  L  1-2 Simpson. Gate 15,000.
September 7 Derby County      A.   D. 1-1 Bradshaw (pen). Gate 7,000.
September 9  Sunderland        H.  W. 4-0 Simpson 2, Chapman 2. Gate 17,821.
September 14 Tottenham Hot. H.  W. 6-1 Aitkinhead 2, Simpson, Latheron 2, Chapman. Gate 21,837.
September 18 Sunderland       A.  W. 4-2  Latheron 2, Anthony, Aitkinhead. Gate 18,000.
September 21 Middlesbrough   A.  D.  0-0     Gate 18,577.
September 28  Notts County    H.  W.  2-1 Bradshaw 2, (1 pen). Gate 20,104.
The 1911-12 Blackburn Rovers championship side,
Back row left to right; Simpson, Latheron, Chapman, Aitkinhead, Anthony;
Middle Row; Walmsley, Smith, Bradshaw, Middleton (Secretary);
Front Row; Crompton (Captain), Robinson, Cowell.