Goldenhill 1870

Goodness me, is it 1870 already?

How time flies when you are reminiscing.

19 years on from our last story, there have been a lot of changes since then.

The population is now 3000, that is more than double what it was in 1851.

There has been a large influx of people from the surrounding areas mainly Cheshire, Shropshire and Lancashire.

Wales and Ireland have also been major contributors to the population explosion.

Stoke on Trent was becoming a major industrial centre for coal mining, iron ore mining, the railway and the pottery industry.

The number of farmers has risen to 8, that too was a good source of employment, particularly for the people who came from Cheshire.

Things are definitely looking up, we have a Lord of the Manor now, Ralph Sneyd Esquire, I don’t know if he existed before 1870 but this is the first time I have come across him.

The name Sneyd brings to mind the Sneyd Arms, Sneyd Hotel, Sneyd Green, Sneyd Hill and Sneyd colliery.

The area of the village was 800 acres and the principle landowners were, Miss Sparrow, J.H.Williamson and Sir Smith Child, Baronet.

The Clock tower in Tunstall Tower Square was erected by local public subscription to honour Sir Smith Child, a Tunstall street was named after him and there is a stained glass window in St John’s church in his memory.

The village elders are, Reverend Frederick Elmer (vicar), Reverend William Warburton (curate), Henry Hargreaves, John Williamson (colour manufacturer), Mrs Mainwaring, Obediah Booth and Robert Shufflebotham the builder.

St John’s church also has a rector, the Reverend Grace.

The Reverend Elmer has 3 young children buried in the churchyard.

The weekly collections must have been very good to support 3 clergymen.

The Wesleyans and Primitive Methodists still have their own chapels.

J.H. Williamson had a disagreement with the Bishop and provided the funds for Christ church in Rodgers Street in 1874, it was originally made of corrugated steel, I always knew it as the Tin Church.

Rodgers street was originally called, wait for it,,, Williamson street.

The church was rebuilt in 1944.

The Williamson brothers are still dealing in coal and ironstone.

To read more on what it was like in Goldenhill, click the Forum Tab at the top of the page and then click the Local Memmories Page to read the rest of the article by David Wood.

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