Author Archives: Ray Hutchings

The Worden Park Obelisk

Now situated at Churchtown, Southport, Mersyside this 18 century commemorative obelisk was formerly at Worden Hall, Leyland. Following the fire at Worden Hall the obelisk was sold around 1948 to Colonel Roger Fleetwood Hesketh of Meols Hall and placed here in 1950. It is made from dressed gritstone blocks, of square section. The pedestal is c. 2m high, with a chamfered base, one broad band and a cavetto-moulded cornice with a worn inscription running round the east, north and west sides: Rebuilt in Commemoration of the Glorious illegible.

The Preston Workers’ Memorial

At the north end of Lune Street just south of the modern ring road is this striking memorial. It is dedicated by the trades union of Preston to the memory of all workers worldwide who are killed, injured, suffer ill health or detriment as a consequence of work. Remember the dead, fight for the living.

In Lune Street, Preston, four workers were shot and killed by the military during the general strike of 1842. Several thousand Preston workers were demonstrating against wage cuts , and for the ‘charter’ of democratic rights.

Bronze tablet on memorial.

Remember, Remember, People of proud Preston that progress towards justice and democracy had not been achieved without great sacrifice.

Remember, Remember, People of proud Preston defend vigorously the rights given to you. Strive to enhance the rights of those who follow.

Second bronze tablet on memorial.

Lucas Green Bofors Installation

There were originally over 1,200 such anti-aircraft gun sites built during World War 2, with only about eighty now surviving. This site was rediscovered in 2013 during investigations carried out for Redrow Homes prior to starting house building on the site.

It comprises a light anti-aircraft gun emplacement, a static Bofors 40mm gun, with an attached pillbox. It was built to defend the nearby Royal Ordnance Factory on Euxton Lane.

The site has been preserved and can be accessed via the modern housing estate.

Anti-Aircraft Installations

I’ve been told there are a few anti-aircraft installations around Hall Lane, Wheelton Lane, and Centurian Way. They were built during World War 2 to protect the various factories in the area. This one is in the fields at the bottom of Hall Lane.

A ruined anti-aircraft installation in the fields at the north east end of Hall Lane.
A ruined anti-aircraft installation in the fields at the north east end of Hall Lane.
A ruined anti-aircraft installation in the fields at the north east end of Hall Lane.
A ruined anti-aircraft installation in the fields at the north east end of Hall Lane.

Ministry of Supply Tank Factory Test Track

The Test Track

Little evidence remains of the Ministry of Supply tank factory in Leyland. However, following a tipoff and while reviewing information about Lower Farington Hall we discovered that part of the test track surface can still be seen today.

Located at the north end of Hall Lane, most of the original track has been lost to the development of industrial units, but the road structure still follows the route of the original track. At the north west end, the original track surface can be seen behind large gates.

The location of the test track can be seen clearly in the two images below.

Barnoldswick, St Mary le Ghyll

The parish church of Saint Mary le Ghyll. 6 bells; 630 kg in Ab.

The Bells

The church of St Mary le Ghyll is situated close to the Lancashire & Yorkshire border. It has a pleasant sounding ring of six bells in the key of A flat. The second, third and fourth were cast in 1723 by Abraham II Rudhall with the treble cast in 1870 by John Taylor & Co. and the fifth and cast is 2007 and the sixth cast in 2009 by Taylors, Eayre & Smith. There are almost no neighbours which make the tower popular with peal bands.

Getting There

Withdrawn Peals

I have rung in the following “peals” which have been withdrawn.

Performance 1

Non Association
Minster-in-Sheppey, Kent
Phildene Lodge
Friday, 29 July 1977 in 1h 28 (15 in C)
5,040 Plain Bob Minimus

1–2 Raymond A Hutchings
3–4 Phillip R J Barnes (C)

This peal has been flagged as not complying with the Central Council Decisions. Handbell peals of Minimus were not recognised by the Central Council.

Performance 2

Carlisle Diocesan Guild
Shap
, Cumbria
St Michael and All Angels
Thursday, 1 August 2019 in 2h 38 (7–2–19 in G)
5,040 Surprise Minor
One extent each of Queen Mary Surprise, King Edward Surprise, Norwich Surprise, Dylan Thomas Surprise, Kelvinbridge Surprise, Cambridge Surprise, and Primrose Surprise.

  1. Clarissa J E Carol
  2. Jane Holland
  3. Andrew J Holland
  4. Raymond A Hutchings
  5. Kevin M Price (C)
  6. Andrew W Gordon

Rung in memory of The Revd. Stanley E Ablewhite, Vicar of Brough and President of the Cumbrian Association during the 1980’s, who died recently.
Peal withdrawn: Dylan Thomas Surprise, Kelvinbridge Surprise are false in a 720.

Performance 3

Lancashire Association
Rainhill
, Merseyside
St Bartholomew
Friday, 30 August 2019 in 2h 38 (2–2–6 in F)
5,040 Surprise Minor
One extent each of Norwich Surprise, Bourne Surprise, Caithness Surprise, Dylan Thomas Surprise, Kelvinbridge Surprise, Cambridge Surprise, Primrose Surprise.

  1. Nicola J Galton
  2. Andrew W Gordon
  3. Andrew J Holland
  4. L Martin Daniels
  5. Raymond A Hutchings
  6. Kevin M Price (C)

100th peal of Seven Surprise Minor – 2
Remembering Kenneth Daniels, Martin’s Father, who died on 30th August 2012).
Peal withdrawn: Dylan Thomas Surprise, Kelvinbridge Surprise are false in a 720.

Performance 4

Carlisle Diocesan Guild
Thursby
, Cumbria
St Andrew
Thursday, 9 January 2020 in 2h 39 (6–2–22 in A)
5,040 Surprise Minor
One extent each Bourne, Hull, Dylan Thomas, Kelvinbridge, Cambridge, Primrose and Norwich.

  1. Ruth M Gilbert
  2. Jane Holland
  3. Andrew J Holland
  4. Peter H Gardner
  5. Kevin M Price (C)
  6. Raymond A Hutchings

Remembering Nigel Gilbert, whose 50th Birthday would have been today.
Peal withdrawn: Dylan Thomas Surprise, Kelvinbridge Surprise are false in a 720.