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Remembered Today:

RFA Ardwick Manchester


kevmc
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I am placing this photo here because I tried to insert it in the thread regarding Manchester Blitz 1940. The editor would not allow for image placement. I then put the image in a post as a test - done successfully - so that a link was available in the Blitz thread. A day later that page was removed. So here I am putting it in a Forum section dedicated to memorials which will be linked to the original thread.

Unsure whether I should be concerned about what is happening. No explanation springs to mind other than that a post into Skindles excludes uploading of images and the "test" page only exists for a few days.

Kevin

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You are correct - no images can be placed in Skindles, though a link to another location (website, cloud storage etc.) can be made.

Clive

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May I ask where this is located ? Ralph.

Hello Ralph

The memorial is in the Artillery buildings on Belle Vue Street, Gorton, Manchester (In the main hall).

The picture is courtesy of George Cogswell and Peter Taylor.

Kevin

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Doubly interesting. I've seen mention of an artillery building in Ardwick but didnt know where it was.

John

It was at Hyde Road RA Officer's Mess aka Drill Hall.

The information was originally supplied by George Cogswell who has particular interest in websites traffordwardead greatermanchesterblitzvictims and more recently hayfieldwardead

Kevin

http://www.iwm.org.uk/memorials/item/memorial/43711 according to their records it is lost and the one referred to above is recreated.

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Hello Kevin,

My recollections are of a TA centre at Ardwick Green which had been home to 8th Bn Manchesters (TF) before and during the Great War. A dirty black castellated building, though probably cleaned up nowadays.

After the 1959 infantry amalgamations, during which the Manchesters (and their cap badge) were mixed up with Kings Liverpools, TA formations retained their old titles and badges for a while, so although there was no longer a regular "Manchester Regiment" wearing the Fleur-de-Lys badge, the name and practise survived for some time amongst the reservist formations.

What I recall of TA in Manchester in the 1950s and 60s was the Bell Vue Street TA Centre, which proclaimed itself as Home of the Manchester Gunners. I think in those decades it was a Light Air Defence regiment equipped with 40/70 Bofors. The buildings seemed very municipal, maybe 1930s or later construction.

So was the Manchester TF Gunner unit previously at Ardwick Green ?

Edit: Looks like you answered this whilst I was posting !

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Doubly interesting. I've seen mention of an artillery building in Ardwick but didnt know where it was.

John

This street map from 1935 shows both Drill Hall at the head of Ardwick Green and on Hyde Road. see later posting and description of where it was placed.. #11

Kevin

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Ah - then the Arty Drill Hall seems to have been more or less on the site of the Apollo ? I see the Ardwick Empire there on the other side of Hyde road (later The Hippodrome.)

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The photo below is accompanied with site description from Manchester Library archives:

"In front of Manchester Artillery Officers Mess, called the Drill Hall on Hyde Road between Ardwick Green and Darley Street."

The small map has Darley Street just to the east of the Hall along Hyde Rd.

Kevin

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My old school was in Ardwick, Nicholls Ardwick High School.

Looking at the map, the RA drill hall would have been next to the Apsley pub. We use to walk to the sport hall at the back of the Apollo (Hyde road side) we were told then it was an old TA drill hall.

I had some great times at the 5/8th Kings Bks at the other end of Ardwick Green, this Bks was the home of the 8th (Ardwick) Bn the Manchester Regt, there Monument is in Ardwick Green.

By 1870 Ardwick Green was still a residential district of Manchester but had seen its best days. Wealthy citizens living in and around the Green had taken advantage of the modern developments being created further to the south of the city. Battalion Headquarters of the Ardwick battalion was still an ordinary red brick house of three floors, set back from the road, with iron railings at its front. Adjacent was a large grassed area still retaining a few traces of a very old orchard. This was the site of an ancient hall, which had recently been demolished. Behind the site of the old hall and standing well back from the road was a brand new industrial building with, on the ground floor, the ginger beer and aerated water factory of Messrs Jewsbury and Brown.

This house continued as battalion headquarters until the 1880's when, after inspecting a number of locations, it was decided that the most sensible and practical course was to buy the existing building on Ardwick Green, which had been their HQ for so many years and at the same time acquire the freehold of the site. Rather than carry out the usual methods of raising funds for such a project by soliciting donations and holding fund-raising bazaars, Colonel Rocca, the commanding officer, generously volunteered to provide the necessary funds at a low rate of interest.

The new HQ was opened by the Duke of Cambridge on 30 September 1889. It is still in use by the descendents of the Ardwick battalion in the form of the Duke of Lancaster's Regiment By Robert Bonner

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John

It was at Hyde Road RA Officer's Mess aka Drill Hall.

The information was originally supplied by George Cogswell who has particular interest in websites traffordwardead greatermanchesterblitzvictims and more recently hayfieldwardead

Kevin

http://www.iwm.org.uk/memorials/item/memorial/43711 according to their records it is lost and the one referred to above is recreated.

Interesting photo and intriguing. The Great War heading covers all 3 panels yet the third is headed as 2nd World war. Panel 1 ends with the letter P so it looks like there was originally a 2nd panel covering P to Z. Of the two names on the centre panel, D Morgan would appear to be Dan Morgan who fell in 1915, but the only Gnr CW Roberts I can find are both WW2, all other C Roberts in the RFA have a second initial that does not match.

The link to IWM has the following information

IDENTICAL IN DESIGN TO THE BOLTON ARTILLERY MEMORIAL (NIWM 3185). BENT PLAQUES USED TO RECREATE A MEMORIAL IN THE TA CENTRE AT GORTON (NIWM 16053)

This matches up with the photograph of the Pillar but the names on this memorial do not match the names on the memorial at Bolton.

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This matches up with the photograph of the Pillar but the names on this memorial do not match the names on the memorial at Bolton.

My interpretation of that is that the memorial design matches the one at Bolton, not the content (presumably Blitz damage created difficulty when making the replacement). As you say this is intriguing. I wonder what the story is about making this more modern memorial? Where was it when made and where placed before it made the journey to current location?

Kevin

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My old school was in Ardwick, Nicholls Ardwick High School.

Ah, that was a bit further east was it not ? Just across Devonshire (???) Street from the MCTD Tram Depot where there was a magnificent brass Great War memorial on the south facing wall, on Hyde Road. Always sparklingly polished. I wonder where that is now. Anybody ?

Somewhere very near there was a cemetery where a Mutiny VC was buried, IIRC. Awful fuss made in later years when his grave had fallen into serious disrepair.

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The school playing field was an old cemetery, every now and again a hole would a pier any where on the football pitch or running track.

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ust across Devonshire (???) Street from the MCTD Tram Depot where there was a magnificent brass Great War memorial on the south facing wall, on Hyde Road. Always sparklingly polished. I wonder where that is now. Anybody ?

The depot on Princess Road, Moss Side, had a similar plaque. The building is now demolished but, a few years back, there was an attempt to steal it and Stagecoach removed it to storage. At the time, I suggested to them that they could donate it to the Museum of Transport in Cheetham, which houses a number of Great War memorials. I don't know if they followed my suggestion but I assume the Hyde Road one will be wherever the Moss Side one is.

Here's a photo of the Hyde Road one - http://www.carlscam.com/manchester/tramways.htm

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My interpretation of that is that the memorial design matches the one at Bolton, not the content (presumably Blitz damage created difficulty when making the replacement). As you say this is intriguing. I wonder what the story is about making this more modern memorial? Where was it when made and where placed before it made the journey to current location?

Kevin

Taking another look (at a more reasonable hour) the names on the Bolton Memorial all have links with Bolton, so you are probably correct. The IWM link aslo suggests that the damaged plaques were used elsewhere and I know Bolton plaques are metal, so that adds weight to the more modern theory. I can agree that the damage to the original plaque 2 may have made it unreadable, but would have thought that some explanation would have been shown on a replacement, such as "and to the other unknown RFA men from Manchester"

It is hard to see why after 1945 that a memorial would be created with the full Great War Header rather than placing a header on Panel 1 that matches the other 2 panels.

Glen

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Hello all.

As it goes the Hyde Road depot plaque is still there. To the left of the, in and out entrance as you face the garage.

And to Stagecoach's credit, is cleaned and polished every week.

Pic's to follow.

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My interpretation of that is that the memorial design matches the one at Bolton, not the content (presumably Blitz damage created difficulty when making the replacement). As you say this is intriguing. I wonder what the story is about making this more modern memorial? Where was it when made and where placed before it made the journey to current location?

Kevin

Following up on Glen's point see #13

Looking at the names on the Artillery memorial at Belle Vue Street it is clear that entries are only A-P. Presumably the Blitz damage was severe enough to obliterate the names Q-Z. It seems a shame that those names are now gone. Anyone got ideas about the keeping of data for earlier memorials? Hopefully in some ledger is the detail for this one.

Kevin

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post-49107-0-36970300-1420914133_thumb.jHello all.

And sorry for the delay

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This is the plaque that was damaged during an attempted theft from the Moss Side Depot, Manchester.

It was quite badly damaged and Stagecoach Manchester had it restored with a view to having the plaque errected at there ultra modern new depot at Sharston, near Northendon.

The small spots on the plaque are the names that staff have started to research.

Thanks to Stagecoach Manchester for there help and allowing access to the site.

G.K.

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Following up on Glen's point see #13

Looking at the names on the Artillery memorial at Belle Vue Street it is clear that entries are only A-P. Presumably the Blitz damage was severe enough to obliterate the names Q-Z. It seems a shame that those names are now gone. Anyone got ideas about the keeping of data for earlier memorials? Hopefully in some ledger is the detail for this one.

Kevin

Kevin,

I have looked at this as much as I can and have concluded that http://www.iwm.org.uk/memorials/item/memorial/43711 is the original memorial depicted in post 11 that was damaged in WW2. http://www.iwm.org.uk/memorials/item/memorial/16053 is the memorial depicted in post. Looking also at the Bolton Memorial, the panels on that are metal, so my opinion is that the pillar and plaque(s) were destroyed and only only A-P were readable on the remains. The first plaque is a re-creation of those names and is not part of the original memorial.

I would think that if written records were available then they would have been used to recreate Panel 2 at the time.

Glen

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And this is the plaque at the Transport Mueseum at Bolyle Street Manchester.

In very good condition when this photo was taken.

John.

You must pay a visit. My heart sank when i saw the plaque damaged at the old Moss Side depot, and thought it was gone for ever. It was badly damaged as it bent off it's fixings.

It really is a great restoration piece of work.

THANKS ALL.

Gary.

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