Photos of Wigan
Photos of Wigan



Wigan Album

Millgate

18 Comments

PHOTOGRAPH 1960'S
Photo: RON HUNT
Views: 1,274
Item #: 33346
A LOT OF EMPTY SHOPS. I REMEMBER, AS THOUGH IT WAS YESTERDAY, GOING TO ASHCROFTS FISHING TACKLE SHOP FOR MAGGOTS, FLOAT,S HOOKS LINE, ETC FISHING TACKLE SHOPS ALL HAD THE SAME SMELL

Comment by: Veronica on 23rd September 2021 at 10:44

The buildings there are in a very poor state. They look better these days on that side. I remember buying a three piece suite from the Ribble Cabinet in 1969 it was a mustard coloured leatherette with tweed cushions. Also the living room and stairs carpet. They were quite good quality. Looking at the shop like that nowadays there would be no way I would go in! Taste changes the older you get.

Comment by: CJAlan on 23rd September 2021 at 12:38

A lot of empty shops in the 1960s.

Fast forward fifty odd years, and Wigan has probably three times as many empty shops, units and stalls in 2021!!!!

Comment by: Cyril on 23rd September 2021 at 18:02

I don't seem to remember those shops being empty, though if you never went in them I don't suppose you'd notice when they'd closed. I remember bamboo canes outside the tackle shop for making rods, wasn't there another tackle shop on the Wiend?

I remember Radio Wigan being in one of those shops either in the late 1970s/1980s, with Dick Hatch walking around town with a tape recorder talking to folks about current topics to be played over the radio later.
Didn't realise it was so long ago since he'd died.

https://www.theguardian.com/theguardian/2012/may/14/dick-hatch-obituary

Comment by: irene roberts on 23rd September 2021 at 20:40

Cyril, I didn't know he'd died. I had a request played on there once for my birthday!

Comment by: WN1 Standisher on 24th September 2021 at 07:23

Park Patrol, now that brought back memories. The times we've legged it on Ashfield front lawns from " Parkie "

Comment by: Mick LD on 24th September 2021 at 09:12

The first five shops in the pic were empty and awaiting demolition in the summer of 1977.
I had just been posted to Wigan as a PC, and seemed to spend most of my time dealing with thieves ripping lead pipe and cable out of them.

Comment by: cindy on 25th September 2021 at 12:56

Was there a cafe called Thurstons (Thowd mons} further back up slightly off the picture.

Comment by: A.W. on 28th September 2021 at 10:00

Cindy there was a cafe in the vicinity, can't remember who kept it, a middle aged bloke used to do the waiting on, used to eat there regularly, that would be around late 60's early 70's.

Comment by: RON HUNT on 28th September 2021 at 11:23

There was an excellent chip shop just about where the camera man was stood when taking the photo.

Comment by: cindy on 28th September 2021 at 12:25

A W I Think the bloke that served was named Harold,The kitchen was downstairs in the cellar in the early days & later moved upstairs, Ron are you thinking of The Borough cafe.

Comment by: A.W. on 28th September 2021 at 12:54

Ron, you are thinking of the Boro Chippy, closed down when the Grand Arcade was built.

Comment by: RON HUNT on 28th September 2021 at 18:52

Yep that's the one.. Sometimes I would go there for my dinner when I was at the TLS early 60's.

Comment by: Cyril on 28th September 2021 at 20:11

Cindy, there's a café called Kelly's on Millgate mentioned here in Stuff
https://www.wiganworld.co.uk/stuff/mem10.php

Dave Cockrell in the same discussion writes of his childhood days spent in the Millgate baths where his grandfather was manager, it seems it was far more extensive than I remember seeing, all I remember is the two pools - ladies with cubicles around the pool and gents with cubicles on a balcony above the pool. Never knew about the side entrance reached through an alley and yard behind a shop called Dewhurst's which led to an upstairs ballroom. The other memories are excellent to read also except the one by Alan Spacer. He should read The Road to Wigan Pier before negatively commenting as it's a truthful, interesting record of life in Lancashire and Yorkshire during the 1930s. The writings of George Orwell's time in the Wigan lodging houses are in parts quite amusing.

Comment by: CJAlan on 29th September 2021 at 10:26

Ron

The Boro chippy on Millgate was on the opposite side of the street, so the camera person would have been stood with their back to the chippy.

Tom Whalley's pet shop was located down an alleyway beside the chippy as I recall.

These premises were closed around 2004/05, to make way for redevelopment of the Grand Arcade.

CJ

Comment by: c on 29th September 2021 at 12:52

Cyril Have looked on link & yes it was Thurstons as some people pointed out. Many Thanks

Comment by: Cyril on 29th September 2021 at 13:19

I would say the Boro chip shop was further down from where the photo was taken, the flower bed would be the one in front of the Civic Centre and the Parks van would have been going down the road that was once another entrance/exit of the rear car park, so likely the photographer was stood on the steps of the Civic Centre.

Comment by: RON HUNT on 29th September 2021 at 13:40

Cyril you are way off mark with your presumption The Civic centre is about 50 yards away going down the hill towards Chapel Lane / Rodney street The BORO CHIPPY would be withing 10 yards of where the cameraman was stood

Comment by: Cyril on 29th September 2021 at 19:49

Ron, the Civic Centre was almost next to the shop that was Avaroot and before that it was Liz Elastic with the Boro being two doors down, but the two shops got badly damaged by a fire and were demolished leaving the Boro standing alone. See photos on Album in links:
https://www.wiganworld.co.uk/album/photo.php?opt=4&id=32644&gallery=Millgate&page=1

https://www.wiganworld.co.uk/album/photo.php?opt=5&id=1555&gallery=Millgate&page=1

There was another entrance to the car park besides Stairgate, and this was down the road between the Civic Centre and Liz Elastic which can be partly seen on photo, but new offices got built and this road became blocked off where the passage way under the building was. I still assume that the photographer took the photo close to the flower bed from the steps of the Civic Centre, though I suppose we'll have to agree to disagree. §:¬)

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