NW Cotton Towns Learning Journey
Your guide: John Mortimer, author of "Industrial Lancashire" (1897)
Step 1: Liverpool to Manchester; Manchester to Stockport; Stockport to Ashton
Step 2: Ashton to Manchester; Manchester to Oldham; Oldham to Rochdale
Step 3: Rochdale to Bury; Bury to Accrington; Accrington to Blackburn
Step 4: Blackburn to Burnley; Burnley to Clitheroe; Clitheroe to Preston
Step 5: Preston to Wigan via Chorley; Wigan to Bolton
Step 6: Bolton to Salford; Salford to Manchester
Click on the steps below to explore.
North West Cotton Towns Learning Journey Step 6
BOLTON TO SALFORD
We follow the path of the Manchester, Bolton and Bury canal back to Salford, a populous town of over 200,000 inhabitants; we could just as easily take a tram car down the ten-mile broad highway that separates Bolton from the Salford Borough proper. Salford is an ancient town, if now in the shadow of Manchester, and it has its own proud history and textile heritage. Salford had a cloth hall in Greengate, and was an important centre for the production of woollen goods as well as fustians before Manchester's cotton industry dominated. Textile manufacturers constructed their mills on the banks of the Irwell and its tributaries, and the coming of both the Bridgewater and Manchester, Bolton & Bury canals (and the coal carried) only increased their number. By 1818 Manchester, Salford and Eccles jointly had 80 cotton mills. Once Manchester and Oldham began to dominate the spinning industry, Salford became a centre for finishing trades and power loom weaving, as well as machine and tool making. The Manchester Ship Canal has had a huge effect, with the Dock complex including offices, the Customs House, various warehouses, stores and grain silos.
SALFORD TO MANCHESTER
From Salford we may travel by the canal, tram, or even walk back to Manchester, crossing the River Irwell, which divides the two cities, back to where we began our grand tour of the Lancashire Cotton District. Here the cycle of trade begins again, and we might once again travel to Liverpool, perhaps this time on the Liverpool-Manchester railway, to again survey this great manufacturing district, the pride of the Empire and truly, the Workshop of the World.
Here, I bid you farewell. I hope you have enjoyed our tour together. Why not read more from the links on each step, or perhaps travel out yourself sometime along the path we have traced together? Who knows, perhaps we will meet along the way ...