Mossley painted blue with new history trail

VISITORS FROM far and wide are making special trips to Mossley to see the town’s World War One heritage and history commemorated in a new Blue Plaque Trail.

Locals gather at the start of the blue plaque trail

The route includes nine Blue Plaques dedicated to local people and places which were significant in Mossley during the Great War.

The trail starts outside George Lawton Hall with a plaque to commemorate Victoria Cross recipient Ernest Sykes and finishes opposite Woodend Mill, at the Drill Hall.

Residents and supporters gathered last month for the official launch of the trail, taking in some of the plaques on their short walk from Wyre Street to Market Street.

They ended with refreshments at Mossley Band Club on Argyle Street, which was the first site in Mossley to have an official Blue Plaque.

Paul Dowthwaite, pictured above second left, was inspired by a book ‘Mossley remembers the Great War’ to set up the WW1 trail with Mossley Town Team.

He explained: “Tameside Council wouldn’t give the Band Club a Blue Plaque – so we did, and it’s grown from there.

“This new trail has nine Blue Plaques to specifically commemorate people and places with connections to World War One.

“It’s been there for a few weeks now and it’s getting a lot of interest. People are coming from all over to see it – we’ve even had one couple from Blackpool!

“It’s good as it brings in custom for the local businesses as well as showing off the heritage and history of Mossley.

“In addition, there are five other Blue Plaques around the area marking people and places who have contributed in some significant way to Mossley.”

Applications for other suitable causes to be given a Blue Plaque are still being considered by the committee, which is made up of members from Mossley Town Council, the Town Team, and the Civic Society, some of whom are pictured above with locals at the launch of the trail.

Paul said: “We want the public to think about places or place that are worthy of a Blue Plaque. They don’t need to have any connection with World War One.

“One suggestion is Man’s Wok, which is the oldest chippy in the country!

“Oldham thought they had it, and put up a blue plaque, but ours is definitely older!”

Find out more about the Blue Plaque scheme on Mossley Town Team’s website: http://mossleytownteam.com/blue-plaque-scheme/

 

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