The site of the school was originally acquired in the 1960’s by Lancashire County Council – who were the Education Authority at that time. Originally a girls school, it was opened on 7 March 1964. It has been remodelled and extended since changing to a comprehensive in 1976.
The school site is assembled from four separate acquisitions:
Freehold – Acquired from Reverend G H Ormerod 10 May 1962
Freehold – Acquired from Lord Lilford 30 June 1964
Freehold – Acquired from Tyldesley Urban District Council 8 May 1963
Leasehold – Acquired from Hargreaves Hamilton 15th March 1963 (999 years from 7 June 1962).
The school is situated close to the centre of Tyldesley, a town of over 34,000 residents, approximately nine miles west of Manchester.
Tyldelsey appears on maps dating back as far as 1786, but evidence of settlements appear from much earlier. It prospered as both a cotton and mining town. This is a description of Tyldesley in 1795:
“The Banks of Tildesley, in the Parish of Leigh, are about one mile and a half in length, and command a most beautiful prospect into seven counties : the springs remarkably clear and most excellently adapted to the purposes of bleaching. The land is rich, but mostly in meadow and pastures, for milk butter, and the noted Leigh cheese. The estate had, in the year 1780 , only two farm houses and eight or nine cottages, but now contains 162 houses, a neat chapel, and 976 inhabitants, who employ 325 looms in the cotton Manufactories…………………”(Source: J. Aikin : A Description of the Countryside from 30 to 40 Miles around Manchester)
The first mills were erected to provide a local supply of carded and spun cotton. Tyldesley became a mining and cotton spinning town. At its height twelve cotton mills and twelve pits have been identified in the town.
Tyldesley was ideally situated. It benefited from an abundant supply of coal which powered the steam driven mills and a proximity to the great commercial centre of the cotton industry, Manchester, and the port of Liverpool. To both cities it was connected, first by the canal at Astley, a branch of the Bridgewater Canal opened in 1800, and later by a branch of the London and North Western Railway. Hindsford Brook and numerous springs supplied sufficient water to fill the lodges and feed the Lancashire boilers. Most of the mills huddled together at the west end of town, close to both coal and water.
Although the industry had been in decline since the 1920’s the last of the towns great spinning mills was not demolished until 1993. There is also a coal mining museum just down the road in the village of Astley.
Just south of Astley is Chat Moss, a wide expanse of open country incorporating streams, rivers, woodland, marsh and farmland extending almost 6000 acres south to the M62. This area is a wonderful haven of wildlife and countryside just on our doorstep and it is here that the country’s first ever successful railway designed to carry passengers and cargo – the Manchester to Liverpool Railway – built by George Stephenson, travels.
Daniel Defoe, author of Robinson Crusoe, also traveled through the area for his book, Tour through the whole island of Great Britain 1724-26.
If you want to find out more about Tyldesley, past and present, try some of these sites which you may find interesting: