Wigan Observer
Wigan Pier

Articles from the Wigan Observer, dates 1900 to 1918.

In July 1900, the Leeds and Liverpool Canal burst its banks.  The crew of the Pattie, David Gill, his wife and son, had moored for the night just before the breach occurred, and narrowly avoided being sucked through the hole.  A flat boat, which had been moored close by, did go through the breach.  "If it had run into us", said David Gill, "it would have smashed us up, and we should have gone through the hole in smither-ends".

In November 1912, the mare pulling the boat Henry was frightened by a motor car belonging to the local doctor, Dr Wilson, which was being driven along the tow path.  The mare's feed bucket, which was on the animal's head, filled with water when it fell into the canal, and the mare was drowned.  Judgement was for the boat owner, John Sutton.

The photograph is of Wigan Pier.

Names from Wigan Observer 1900 to 1918 (54kb)

In November 1912, when asked by the Coroner why so few boatmen could swim, John Vickers replied, "I'm freetened o 't 'watter".

Articles from Wigan Observer 1900 to 1918 (455kb)

Canal Boat Registers

I first found these documents a couple of years ago, and have been unable to access them since.  I aso tried to create a link to them, but was unable to do so.  I have opted to download two of the documents available and reproduce them here.  There are others on the site, so for those searching in the Wigan area, it could be worth checking.

Register of Canal Boats, Wigan Urban Registration Authority 1878 to 1951 (281kb)

A useful website for those with an interest in Wigan and its surrounds is


Rochdale Observer

A few articles from the Rochdale Observer dated from 1856 to 1866.

Names from Rochdale Observer (30kb)


Burnley News

Gannow Wharf

Another small selection from the Burnley News, dating from 1912 to 1929.

The photograph is of Gannow Wharf.  Thanks to

Names from Burnley News (43kb)