It's a wet Friday in June and my goal today was to find a subject for our blogs that did not appear on the surface as one of our standard community posts. Lots of our blog post are product based but here on ValvesTubesFittings.com, our products are listed over and over again and so likely to appear on the Google horizon. So, thinking outside the box here is a community blog, to point out all the Facebook selfie opportunities available in Ashton-under-Lyne. One of our recent blogs on our main website covered the Hidden Pathways of Ashton under Lyne. This piece is in some ways an extension of that, while at the same time giving you plenty of chances to explore Facebook Selfie opportunities.
I suppose many that live in Ashton-under-Lyne would say, where is this guy coming from; Ashton-under-Lyne isn’t the prettiest place on earth. Maybe their language would be a little more colourful about the town of Ashton-under-Lyne, but give it a chance you may be surprised. If by any very slim chance you have read my previous blog on hidden pathways you will realise that Ashton-under-Lyne is full of Facebook selfie opportunities. If you love to shop, then the two shopping centres here in Ashton will give you a wide variety of opportunities to pick up clothing, jewellery and even sports fashion. Personally, though I would leave the shopping and explore the rest of the town.
For those looking for more eclectic images, a quick walk through the Ladysmith shopping centre will bring you to Old Street. At first glance, it doesn’t look much, but right in front of you is the once sparkling Odeon Cinema. This relic from the days when there was one screen showing the same movie for a week or a fortnight is a classic. It is, in fact, a piece of local history and why would you not stand in front of this building with your friends or partner and have a Facebook Selfie.
Looking at it now, many suggestions of why not may come to mind; but look past this tatty façade and consider what it once was. The Odeon opened in 1920 as the Majestic Cinema, later the Gaumont: the first movie shown here was The Forbidden City. Starring Norma Talmadge and Thomas Meighan, directed by Sydney Franklin; this was a silent movie made in 1918. Opportunities for images in front of a modern Art Deco building like this will disappear, try to see past the grime for this Facebook Selfie.
For our next selfie, a walk down Delamere Street and across Stamford Street in what is now oddly referred to as Ashton-under-Lyne' old town. Keep walking until you reach the car parks and just before the final car park entrance is Church Street. Turn left and keep walking through the back streets of this sometimes dingy town until you reach a real gem. Saint Michaels and All Angels Church the parish church of Ashton-under-Lyne; it stands on the town’s earliest history. The original church to stand here was built in the 13th century and then rebuilt in the 15th and 19th centuries.
If you venture inside this beautiful building, you will find stained glass windows dating back to the year 1497. As for taking Facebook selfies inside the church, I believe you should seek permission, but a smile in front of this marvellous Victorian edifice should not be missed. It is a building many of us pass in our cars as we speed away from Ashton-under-Lyne on the bypass. Only those seeking a place to park pass the front of the Church and very often we don’t see what is right in front of us.
Although there is no photo opportunity concerned with this next fact. In the past as if to mock the established church, the wealthy residents of this small town financed a building on Church Street. A replica of Solomon’s temple, the Church of the Christian Israelites in Lancashire brick with only two glass domes for windows. This short-lived religious cult in a town renamed at the time as the Jerusalem of the North; came and went in a breath compared to Saint Michael’s stone walls. In memory of the gullible with money, a Facebook selfie with the full length of Church Street in the background could be done.
Moving away from Church Street and back towards the town centre of Ashton, we bypassed the once main shopping street of the town of Ashton. Many years of building in ever smaller areas of Ashton under Lyne has isolated this once buzzing street. Stamford Street, Ashton-under-Lyne runs from the centre of the town to its boundary with Stalybridge and continues all the way to Mottram Road. Once upon a time the street was full of shops still recognisable today, Burton the Taylor, The Co-op Department Store, Cordon Bleu, Littlewoods, Comet and Woolworths. All these stores we once part of a thriving town centre that stretched from Old Street via the Market to here.
From the perspective of younger generations, this is where your parents were dragged around as children by your grandparents. Forced to shop in the 1960s and 70s before that promised ride on the roundabouts still located in the Market Square; albeit a little updated from those times. A mass of Facebook selfie opportunities in these last paragraphs, a memory of what Stamford Street once was. An image by the rebuilt Ashton market hall or a pic with the old fashioned roundabouts in the background; reminding us all of our childhoods. As the town of Ashton-under-Lyne is buried in concrete from new developments. It is worth considering that opportunities for images now will be lost due to the mark of supposed progress.
We may repeat this theme and extend the possibilities of Facebook selfies elsewhere in the town of Ashton-under-Lyne. We haven’t covered Old street and its history of public houses and tobacconists from days gone by. If you enjoyed this piece of writing please tell us; and if you can point us towards parts of the Ashton community you would like us to include, please tell us. We write about Ashton-under-Lyne because it is our base of operations and for that reason, we are duty-bound to support our town. Any feedback is greatly appreciated and as always we are grateful for the assistance of the Tameside Image Archive. If you have stumbled across this looking for ValvesTubesFittings.com and would like the sales team; please follow the link.