Coming from a coal mining family (both by grandads were miners and two of uncles as well) I’ve long taken an interest in it and not so long ago I picked up a fascinating Knowsley Council information sheet (in Kirkby Gallery) about mining in the Prescot area.
It seems that mining in the area commenced as early as 1510 but the first solid evidence comes from a court roll in 1552.
Prescot was above some very rich coal seams that were near the surface so easy to access. Seemingly a new shaft was sunk each year but each one had to be abandoned after it became flooded and this meant mining in winter was not really a possibility. This problem was not of course unique to the Prescot area and it was the invention of the steam pump which made year round coal mining possible. Whiston Mine had one of the first such pumps from 1719.
The coal dug was going to the nearby port of Liverpool but when the Sankey Canal was opened in 1757 everything changed as collieries further away from the port could now more easily get their coal to Liverpool. This led over time to the demise of pits at Prescot Manor (mid 1800’s), Whiston (1897) & Halsnead (1900). Interestingly Halsnead was effectively reopened during the First World War but under the name of Cronton Colliery – it was finally closed by the National Coal Board in 1984.
The scans of the information sheet which forms the basis of this posting are at the head of and below:-
Click on the scanned document to enlarge for reading
A while back I posted about proposed plan to build a safe cycle path/route from the M58 at Ashworth alongside Prescot Road and into Kirkby. Here’s the relevant post from May 2018:-
Well things are starting to move and the photos in this posting shows the scene on 27th October. The shot immediately above is looking back towards the M58 junction and you can see where the present highly dangerous end is to the cycle path around the junction. I say dangerous as it’s just past the end of the bend where someone thought it would be great place for cyclists to rejoin the road with them being unsighted of vehicles doing high speeds around the junction. Suffice to say that having tried to do the right thing a couple of times on my bike and seen how dangerous it was I have since continued along what is actually pavement a while longer before regaining the road. I would add that this is the only section of pavement I cycle on locally but it seems I won’t have to now.
My understanding is that the first section of new cycle path is being constructed by the contractor who is building the M58 slip roads. The remainder of the cycle route will be constructed in the next financial year (2020/21) once the legal agreements have been completed for the land transfers.
My thanks to Sefton Council highway engineers for the update.
Click on the photo to enlarge it.
This fascinating exhibition opens at Kirkby Gallery on Monday 23rd September and runs until 16th November. I blogged about it back in August and here’s a link to that posting:-
As I mentioned in my original piece the Frank Hornby Heritage Center, which is based within Maghull’s Meadows Leisure Centre, has loaned some items to the Hornby/Meccano part of the Made on Merseyside Exhibition. Indeed, this is the first time we have loaned out items to another exhibition.
The preview opening was yesterday evening and I went along to have a look taking my Merseyside Maritime Museum Assistant Curator daughter with me. We were genuinely impressed with what had been done with the Hornby/Meccano items loaned to Knowsley Council and of the wider exhibition which covers a number of historic and more modern day companies operating in Knowsley Borough and across Merseyside. Here’s a few photos of some of the other displays:-
These photos cover less than half of what’s included in the exhibition I might add.
One of its the aims is to teach local school children about the things that were once made locally and in some cases still are so bookings are available for school visits. All in all a great piece of work by Tina Ball of Knowsley Council and her volunteers.
And to close this posting another Binns Road, Liverpool Meccano factory product photo:-
Yes, it really is my old Meccano set which I donated to the Frank Hornby Trust a few years back. To find it on display at a public exhibition was a strange feeling when all I wanted to do was get into the case and start making something.
If you can get along to this great local exhibition to learn more about what was ‘Made on Merseyside’ then I hope that, like me, you’ll think it was time well spent.
Please click on the photos to enlarge them
I’m always happy to promote local history events and this looks to be one to check out between the 23rd September and 16th November:-
Poster for Made on Merseyside Exhibition at Kirkby Gallery
Click on the poster to be able to read the text on it.
And here’s a map showing how to access Kirkby Gallery:-
The Frank Hornby Heritage Center, based in Maghull’s Meadows Leisure Center, is pleased to be lending some items to Kirkby Gallery as one part of this exhibition will cover the Binns Road Meccano Factory in Liverpool and its products.
When I first saw the headline (see link below) I wondered how a council could ‘buy’ a town but then realised the headline had ‘center’ missing from it.
I then wondered if it was Sefton Council buying Maghull Square but the photo did not look right.
Of course it’s Kirkby town center that the Echo article is all about, a saga that goes back many, many years indeed.
And then I thought back about Maghull Square and the long promised refurb’s that go back many, many years via different owners and wondered what it will take…………..
This is Maghull Square in the 1970’s but the buildings are still pretty much as was. It was built in the 1960’s. Photographer unknown.
Well it seems so as Sefton and Knowsley Councils are planning to construct one.
It will effectively run from the site of the new Maghull North railway station, over the Ashworth Junction of the M58 (where there’s already a short section of cycle path taking cyclists around the busy motorway junction) and on down Prescot Road towards Kirkby. The photo below shows the end of the present cycle path as you go around the junction heading towards Melling Mount:-
Sefton and Knowsley Councils are still developing proposals for the cycle track but the project has funding secured. Construction is scheduled for 2020 as I understand it. However, construction of the first section adjacent to the junction will take place soon as part of the contract to build the new westerly slip roads to the M58 junction. This move should alleviate the cyclists problem on the Kirkby side of the junction which I have previously identified.
I’m also told that on the Maghull side of the motorway junction, there will be a requirement on the developer/s of the proposed business park and housing development to continue the cycle path across the whole of the north of the site alongside School Lane. What is being referred to here is Maghull’s urban extension on the Maghull East site. The map below may assist in understanding the geography of what i an blogging about:-
The large red area is the ‘Maghull East’ urban extension. The M58 Junction 1 is in grey – with Prescot Road running north to south on the right of the map. School Lane runs across the northerly edge of red area. The yellow area is the presently being constructed Poppy Fields, Pavilions housing developments and new station site
More news when I have it.