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The Manchester Genealogist

Our Quarterly Journal

The Manchester and Lancashire Family History Society’s magazine, the Manchester Genealogist, is published quarterly and sent within your membership subscription free of charge to your home address (primary member only). The magazine contains articles of general interest, meeting and book reviews and up to date information on the latest developments in genealogy.

The Manchester Genealogist also includes sections devoted to each of the Society's Branches, and as such, we are always looking for articles that may be of local interest and will help other Society members with their own research. Have you encountered one ancestor in particular whose story resonates among all others, and that you feel deserves telling? Have you researched multiple avenues? Where did you look? What did you find? Did they have a business or live in a residence that will be well known to Boltonians everywhere?

Please send any submissions by email to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. and marked for the attention of the Journal Editor. Please note that copyright on all articles remains with Manchester and Lancashire FHS unless stated otherwise.

Longer Articles that have not appeared in the Manchester Genealogist

A Bolton Dungeon

The Pembertons of Bolton le Moors and a Coca-Cola Connection

A Bolton Dungeon and Coca-Cola

Foster's Famous Shoes

Fosters were the beginnings of Reebok running shoes.

Foster Family History

Cotton, Culture and Characters

A guided walk around Eagley and Bradshaw Brooks.

Cotton Culture and Characters May 2020

Bolton's Heritage

The Market Cross

The Market Cross is at the entrance to Churchgate, close to the parish church, and was from which John Wesley first preached to the citizens of Bolton, and close to the spot where James Stanley, the 7th Earl of Derby was executed after the Civil War.

One incident noted is that John Wesley was stoned and abused on August 28th 1748. The cross, erected in 1482 of gilded iron in a circular stepped stone base, stood until 1776, when this cross was removed at the request of coachmen who claimed it caused an obstruction.

The market was held in front of the Parish Church, but as Bolton grew in size and population, the market extended along Churchgate, Deansgate, and later “Windy Bank” (Bank Street) and Bradshawgate. These four principal old streets met at the market cross.

By 1826 the market had grown so large that an alternative site had to be found, and an area of land to the south side of Deansgate was designated as a market square.Trading continued in Churchgate for some time after the new Market Square was opened. Churchgate remained as the fish market until the opening of the Market Hall in 1855.

A replacement cross was commissioned and paid for by George Harwood, MP for Bolton, and unveiled by him on November 29th 1909. Three bronze plaques around the base of this cross detail the history of Bolton.

Image: © Bolton Council. A hand coloured postcard from the Museum's Local History collection.