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Photos of Wigan
Photos of Wigan

Photo-a-Day Archive
Photo-a-Day Archive

Photo-a-Day  (Monday, 28th August, 2023)

No 1 Wigan Pier

No 1 Wigan Pier

Photo: Mick Byrne  (Panasonic DMC-TZ100)
Views: 1,480

Comment by: PeterP on 28th August 2023 at 07:45

Looks nice and tranquil in the sunshine. Once went on a works do on the Kitewake in winter and it sailed from the Pier to Crooke and back. They had already done the run once to break the ice but the barge was bounced all over the canal trying to get through the ice and it was freezing in the barge. Never again in winter.

Comment by: Helen of Troy on 28th August 2023 at 08:03

Good photo Mick but you are a man of few words when it comes to description. So... what I see is a narrow boat moored up, another one parked in the tunnel, so I feel no one is going anywhere any time soon. Is the tunnel open for traffic or is it blocked at the other end ? For a few of us that don't know some information would be nice.
PS. This is the sort of thing that might attract visitors to Wigan...if the council would spend some money to promote the town's history & industrial heritage, instead of wasting it on white elephants.

Comment by: Sandra on 28th August 2023 at 08:36

Is it a narrow boat or is it a converted barge. It looks very long and wide.

Comment by: Veronica on 28th August 2023 at 09:52

I’ve never been on a canal boat only on a river boat in Germany which was fantastic and fast- also in Paris around Notre Dame Cathedral. I think it would be too slow for me on a canal boat I’m a person ‘fleet of foot’ so if I did go on one of these it would have to be in very warm weather sat atop with a good book at hand.
Nice photo though!

Comment by: Wigan Mick on 28th August 2023 at 10:07

Helen, I don't say much because when I do I'm constantly laughed at by other people because of a few spilling mustakes.
And another thing, I like to leave the details of the photo to Cyril, he will tell you all about it later on when he gets out of bed.

Comment by: Simon on 28th August 2023 at 10:10

Can anybody tell me we're No 1, Wigan Pier is at.

Comment by: Irene Roberts on 28th August 2023 at 10:12

Helen, when the Pier opened as a Tourist Attraction with "The Way We Were" Exhibition, parties of schoolchildren were taken on school visits and a sail up and down the canal on The Kittiwake was a part of the experience. I remember going twice in the 1980s when my children were at Abram Primary School. There were the children , teachers and a few Mums who went along to help, and we all dressed in Victorian clothes. Like PeterP, I too went on a little party on board The Kittiwake from Wigan Pier a few years ago for my brother-in-law's 80th birthday. We just sailed up the canal and back and had drinks and a little buffet.

Comment by: Arthur on 28th August 2023 at 10:25

It looks very much like a converted barge, Sandra.
I'm sure someone like David Rev Long will know.

Comment by: Rev David Long on 28th August 2023 at 10:48

HofT - they're both barges - built new for the job, not converted working craft. The building is a former warehouse - under which boats could be unloaded in the dry. The Council has been spending time and money on this area - after the 1980s restoration work was undone by Government cut-backs, so Schools could no longer afford trips out to such places... and by the change brought in by Labour to Museum charges - the big Museums became free again, and smaller ones, such as The Way We Were at Wigan Pier, which still had to charge, became uncompetitive.
Simon - it's South-East of Wigan Pier - where the canal does a right-angle turn under Pottery Road - the warehouse stands in the angle between Pottery Road and Wallgate.

Comment by: Veronica on 28th August 2023 at 11:22

Cyril is very informative and interesting and humorous with it and he can take a joke. Nowt wrong with that. As is the Reverend in his field.
I know nothing at all about long boats and short boats or barges -but I am learning bit by bit…I still prefer rivers and lakes for boats though. Lake Windermere is lovely on a summer day …what bliss.

Comment by: Wigan Mick on 28th August 2023 at 11:33

Rev, do you know anything about the crooked stone slab which sits at the side of the towpath in Appley Bridge.
Ive noticed that the towpath team has written in paint on the tarmac, Re site Stone, I was wondering if this stone was originally an anchor for some kind of line that run from the quarry.
There is another same kind of stone at the side of the towpath in between Appley bridge and Parbold that is in line with Parbold quarry.
What ever it is it must have some history if they are going lift it and re site it.

Comment by: Sandra on 28th August 2023 at 11:36

Thank you for your expertise, Rev David. Purpose build must be very expensive, hope it pays for itself over the years. Looks great.

Comment by: Big ben on 28th August 2023 at 11:39

Helen it's only certain folk who pull people up for very slight spelling mistakes.

Comment by: Helen of Troy on 28th August 2023 at 12:43

Thats nice to know the area is being looked after. Very interesting to know of the warehouse & tunnel unloading David. Re museums, some time ago we went to the Canal Museum at Stoke Bruerne, what a place.

Comment by: John Holmes on 28th August 2023 at 13:40

Simon, you are No 1, Wigan Pier is at.

Comment by: Irene Roberts on 28th August 2023 at 14:08

I can spell and I am quite good with grammar, but I can't add up, swim, change a plug or drive a car, things that I am sure most Wigan Worlders can do easily. We all have our strengths and our weaknesses and I have never laughed at people who can't do what I can do, either on p-a-d or anywhere else, nor would I expect them to laugh at me for the things I can't do. Some people revel in being slighted so they can feel sorry for themselves and elicit sympathy, and so how hard you try to reach out to them it is a waste of time because they actually ENJOY being a martyr. You just can't win. Thanks to Cyril and Rev. David for the many interesting facts we have learned through them on this and many other photos, and thanks too to those such as DTease and Garry who give us a laugh.

Comment by: Cyril on 28th August 2023 at 14:38

Mick, I've just got back from doing the 'White Water Rafting' along the river Douglas from Tesco to Gathurst, I didn't see you anywhere about, anyhow, David's explained about the former warehouse bays and the barges or boats which thankfully he knows far more than I do, the only thing I know about boats is the comical tale of Three Men in a Boat by Jerome.
Gibson's Warehouse was bought by Len Gibson when it had deteriorated and was a wreck, and he did so good a job of rebuilding and renovating it in the early 1980s that it actually won a Civic Trust Award for architect Michael Stroud. It was advertised as being a prestigious address 'No.1 Wigan Pier' and was for a while being used as offices, problem being there isn't anywhere to park and though there are car parks nearby, there's still the problem of busy roads on either side to be crossed.
Some more info on the building: https://www.geograph.org.uk/photo/5676665

Comment by: Veronica on 28th August 2023 at 15:29

I actually like seeing the mis- spelt words because they make me laugh out loud! They remind of those comedians who mis- pronounce their words. It’s not laughing at the person it’s the sentences that are comical…I honestly see the funny side of things like that.. Those who do mis spell unwittingly PLEASE keep it up.. .
( I know it’s not the done thing literally and I shouldn’t say it but a laugh a day is good for us… well me anyway.) It can change a dull sentence into something hilarious!

Comment by: Cyril on 28th August 2023 at 16:20

I've no idea for what purpose the stones are for Mick, I've had a google and nothing came up, though these Ramblers have written a good informative write up about their walk from Gathurst to Parbold, I never knew that Appley Bridge was once famed for the production of bricks and tiles and also that coal was once mined and transported from there on the canal, also that it was once a very busy canal wharf with workshops and stables for the fly boats' running horses, as far as I know I've never heard of Ashurst Hill being referred to as Drumlin, though it isn't something that crops up in everyday conversation. Appley Bridge when being conversed is always remembered for its Linoleum or the Glue and Fertiliser or Bone Works, it should make more of its other history.



**Fly boats, which were worked round the clock, were operated by three men, two of which were always awake. All three would work the boats through flights of locks but on long pounds a set distance was allowed for each man to get some rest. They would catch up on their sleep when the boat stopped, if they were not needed for unloading.**
Copied from here: https://www.leedsandliverpoolcanalsociety.co.uk/boats-of-the-canal/

Comment by: Irene Roberts on 28th August 2023 at 16:43

Agreed, Veronica, and I say that without fear of contraception, as the late Hylda Baker would have said., (but she said it on purpose!) It's lovely to have a laugh. Which reminds me....where is DTease? Is he on holiday?

Comment by: Veronica on 28th August 2023 at 20:50

He’s probably working on his book of Rhyming Riddles in his attic Irene.

Comment by: DTease on 29th August 2023 at 10:15

Irene Say's

At swimming I'm useless, a complete belly flop
I can't keep my head up over the top
Get me out! I just have to yell
But I'm good at grammar and I can spell

At adding up I'm equally bad
That sort of thing I just left to my dad
You think I'm a dumbcluck that I can tell
But I'm good at grammar and I can spell

At driving a car I'm the worst you could meet
My instructor tells me I have two left feet
He says he'll be back soon if he gets well
But I'm good at grammar and I can spell

At changing a plug I beg to excuse
I can't tell a live wire from which is the fuse
I can't get a spark from a single brain cell
But I'm good at stammer and I can smell.

Just a bit of fun Irene

Comment by: Irene Roberts on 29th August 2023 at 13:29

Thankyou DTease.....I am honoured indeed to have a poem written about my spelling! I thought you'd hibar/ hybern/hibranat......gone t'sleep! Lol! xxxxx

Comment by: Veronica on 29th August 2023 at 14:09

You’ve excelled yourself there Dtease.
You can come out of the attic now if you please!

Comment by: DTease on 29th August 2023 at 14:42

Thanks for that Veronica. It’s really creepy up theer tha noes, little critters with lots of legs running hither and thither.
I found some old games while I was up there, one called “Ker-Plunk”, I wonder what tortured soul came up with that name for a child’s game? Another called “Buckeroo”. They must have been up there for years.

Comment by: Veronica on 29th August 2023 at 21:39

Keep them for a few more years Dt in the original boxes and we might see you on Antiques Roadshow! “Ker-Plunk ‘’ I think my grandkids had that one! I use to end up with all that stuff then after a while I took them to the Charity Shop..after they had forgotten about them. I still have a big box of “Who Wants To Be A Millionaire”! Another trip to the Charity Shop is due….

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