Chadderton Mill, off Fields New Road, Chadderton

An Absolute Beginners’ Architectural Guide to Oldham Cotton Mills

A potted guide for beginners about a dwindling part of Oldham’s landscape

Ever since my formative years, the cotton mills in Oldham and Tameside have been a source of fascination for me. What piqued my interest was the sheer size of the buildings. Also how the early cotton mill architects predated Mies van der Rohr in building such vast structures for commercial usage.

Continue reading “An Absolute Beginners’ Architectural Guide to Oldham Cotton Mills”

Reality Estates That The Heroes Got: 4. Primrose Bank and Crete Street Tower Blocks

Montrose House and Primrose House: Partington’s short lived twin towers, on opposite sides of Ashton Road

Montrose House, Oldham
Montrose House, Hathershaw: a black and white view of the tower block. Image © 1974 Paul Thorpe.

Throughout the United Kingdom, local authorities were given incentives to build taller tower blocks for slum clearance schemes. As well as heights, there were incentives to adopt experimental building systems. For example: Sectra, Bison, and Jespersen. As well as speeding up the slum clearance schemes, a lot of builders made a packet. Continue reading “Reality Estates That The Heroes Got: 4. Primrose Bank and Crete Street Tower Blocks”

Oldham and Saddleworth Bus Service Changes, April 2016

Not-so-light tweaks order of the day with curtailments and contract changes

  • 415 reverts to Oldham – Middleton only service;
  • Operator changes for 408 and 412 services;
  • 425 evening changes and service cuts;
  • 81A evening journeys replaced by revised and renumbered 343 route.

First Greater Manchester Volvo B7RLE MX05 CJZ, Mumps Bridge, Oldham
Curtailed and split after 7pm: along with the 415 service, the 425’s evening journeys will be split at Mumps Bridge. There will also be a change of operator along its easterly section to Holts Estate.

For Oldham and Saddleworth bus passengers, a case of few changes in number though with each one having a more tremendous impact than those affecting its Tameside neighbours. Whereas many of Tameside’s changes are brought about by Manchester’s traffic and some tender changes, Oldham’s will have more of an effect on its overall network. Continue reading “Oldham and Saddleworth Bus Service Changes, April 2016”

Oldham and Saddleworth Bus Service Changes, Summer 2015: Reconstruction Time Again

Simplification order of the day for local services

  • X80 buses revert to 180 journeys;
  • Cuts to 81, 81A and 425 services;
  • S&S Travel Services loses 418 service.

Enviro400 First Greater Manchester SN12 AHD, Mumps Bridge, Oldham
Soon to be the ex-X80: First Greater Manchester’s flirtation with the X80 limited stop service ends on the 19 July. Thankfully with the 180 reverting to being a full time service.

For Oldham and Saddleworth bus passengers, could the impact of the Metrolink be more profound than we expected? Changes to the frequencies of the 81, 81A and 83 could ascertain this hypothesis. Continue reading “Oldham and Saddleworth Bus Service Changes, Summer 2015: Reconstruction Time Again”

Enviro 400s Reach 409 Route

In pictures: First Greater Manchester’s latest addition and review

First Greater Manchester, Enviro 400, SN12 AOH, Ashton-under-Lyne bus station (rear view)

Prior to disbandment in 1969, Manchester Corporation tried most of their innovations (trams, tram replacement and one man operation) on the 53 route. It was claimed that ‘if it worked on the 53, it would work anywhere else’ within the Manchester Corporation boundaries. Over the last 16 years, First Greater Manchester has had a similar maxim with the 409 route from Ashton to Oldham and Rochdale. This February saw the route as its guinea pig for their new livery. Continue reading “Enviro 400s Reach 409 Route”