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    church walking days

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i walked with st marys standishgate 1956 to 65 and relatives used to put chairs n stools out the night beforein greenough st facing wigan rugby club to get good vantage points to see us go past . i miss those days sandra stone nee browitt, wigan, england
1966, The Saints had just beaten Wigan at Wembley. We watched the prossession in Caroline St., when suddenly a big gap appeared in the walks. apparantly a band from St.Hellens stopped the prossession out side Central Park, and played When the Saints Come Marching In! Joan Withington (nee Hodgkinson), Wigan, England
I lived in Landgate,Bryn as a child and I went to St Peters sunday school and church. I remember very vividly the annual church walksAny one remember the walkiing day at St Peters church, Bryn Mary Lovell- nee joyce Pennington, Lees, Wedt Yorkshire
i remember being in my nans house at almond grove worsley hall and hearing them coming down ormskirk road we used to run to the bottom of the street and wait near the butchers for them to come sam, wigan, lancashire
me and my sister julie walked every year with st pauls we had new dresses which my mum used to make new shoes and a little bag which we used to collect money in of friends and neibours after we used to have a party with jellies and ice cream them were the days dianne, ashton in makerfield, england
I remember walking day, me and my sister used to walk with Belle Green, Ince. We used to love it when we were young getting dressed up, and the lovely flowers and we used to get money from people as we walked, we put it in our little money bags which were made from the same material as our dresses. We used to have our dresses made especially. We used to walk a couple of days. When it was over we used to take our boquets to the cemetry Zoe, Wigan, England
I joined Hindley Band just to do the walking days and play marches and hymns. Remember St.Pats. Wigan with the pipe band behind. They always agreed to play uphill and we didn't mind at all. Remember Platt Bridge being upset when we forgot to take the hymn Deep Harmony and we had to play Abide With Me. Every Saturday and Sunday from Whit to the start of the holidays. Alan, Plymouth, U.K.
I remember walking with St George's in Wigan gathering on the market square afterwards.Getting lost and seperated from my mam and dad and being taken to a home in Frog Lane Wigan.When dad found me and was taking me home I cried because they were getting ready to give me my tea.Wonderful sites the walking days beautiful flowers and dresses happy happy memories.The public houses in Scholes used to put out forms on which we could sit and watch they went on all day with parties after. \\\\\\\wigan Kath, Wigan Lancs, England
Iremember whilst serving in the Wigan Borough Police force the build up to the walk when all the chairs were lined up in Scholes the night before to get a vantage point.I found it an honour to be leading up a church in full uniform and white gloves and was one of the few times you felt respected by the Wigan Public.It was always better if you "led up" a church with its own catholic club for afterwards it was as much free drink as you could manage. Unfortunately if you missed the walks being on night duty it was one of the busiest nights of the year as the rowdyness and drunken revelry was inevitable.Most of it I would add was taken in "good spirit". Alan Moorcroft, Bolton, England
I'm originally from Suffolk, where we don't have this tradition, so when I moved here it was all new to me. Tomorrow will be my third Walk of Witness, with my little girl - the dresses are lemon & lime this year - all neatly pressed and hung up, and we have both been to the hairdressers!Photos will go down to Suffolk for a proud nanna & grandad, its such a lovely tradition not just for the churches but the whole community - lets hope with the enthusiasm I have read about on this site we can keep it going Jane Tighe, Aspull, UK
I remember st. christophers little mission it was always the band when it started to play that I remember so well it got your feet tapping Lynn Dean, Wigan, England
I always walked with St John the Evangelist church in Hindley Green. We walked from the school yard along Atherton Road to Long Lane then along Woodlands Avenue (where the banners would get caught in the trees and telephone wires LOL)to Swan Lane. Then we walked along Atherton Road down to Heath Gardens, Carr Common Road was where we had a short break, then back along Atherton Road into the church grounds. The church followed the same route every year and we all enjoyed it. Each banner had a certain fabric that the dresses were made from and at one point they were even the same pattern. Nowadays it's just whatever they turn up in!!! My biggest memory of Walking Day was the year that I was Rose Queen (I think it was 1989). As we passed the old Dunlop factory (which is now Kwik Save) we heard the sound of sirens and everyone ran to get out of the way of the fire engine that came. Unfortunately for me, I had a train being held by 8 little girls who went the opposite way to me LOL!! There were a total of 3 fire engines came through the walk and we spent the rest of the day listening for more sirens!!! Vickie Withington (nee Santus), Hindley, Wigan, England
does anybody remember little st.christophers mission at the top of caroline st,we used to walk with ince parish,when we had finished our walk we used to finish at the rec. rita carruthers, wigan, england
I remember All Saints (Hindley) walking days and yes Mrs Grundy was in charge, she always insisted that all the girls on the banners wore long white dresses, & had white buckskin shoes that went on for a few years and the first year we were allowed to wear short white dresses I was priviledged to be given the longest ribbon and so led up the procession, (each year the Hindley churches took turns as to which church led the walk & on that day All Saints were the leaders) I even remember the lady who made my dress it was Mrs Halliday who lived off Ladies Lane who was an excellent dressmaker....fond memories of wonderful days spent at All Saints Day & Sunday school and of great times with the Church Girls Brigade....... maureen waters (griffiths), aspull, England
I went to st josephs in wallgate.iwalked everyearthroughout the infants.iloveditallmeetingup at market square.irememberoneyearwehadlemondresseswiththemost awfull hats u will ever see julie dymitrow nee mor, wigan, lancs
Ince Parish Walking Day, Girls in matching material dresses for which ever banner they had a ribbon on. Boys in White shirt tie and shorts. Dads, Grandads and Uncles carrying the banner. Various brass bands. Waling up Belle Green lane and down into lower Ince, down ince green lane. Starting at Ince Central School. Great Memories and Great Times!!!! sharon jackson (darby), wirral, uk
....and who remembers St Johns Morris Dancers in the mid 30's? We were trained (rather drilled) by Joe Coghlan in St Johns Hall in Dicconson Street.Charlie Gormerly and Frank Forshaw were the 'Leaders' in my day and to this day whenever I hear a brass band strike up ' A Hundred Pipers' I'm taken back to the time when dressed in red velvet knee pants and wearing a green velvet jacket and a tasselled cap we started to shake our sticks of bells to perform the simple ,but , to the spectators at least, a rather clever and intricate routine. Joe, Southport, Merseyside
I remember walking day with All Saints Hindley. One year I had thelongest ribbon on the banner. I remember you had to go to one specific shop to buy the material for your dress. I think the lady in charge of the sunday school was named Mrs. Grundy. she always said we had to have white dress I think one year we where allowed to have a red sash. everyone lined the streets and older ladies you to take wooden chairs to sit on to watch the walks. I remeber having white lace gloves and putting money given to me inside them Linda Jones(nee Baxter), wigan, england
I remember in the nineteen fifties,I used to walk with Saint Marys at Lower Ince.Never held a banner but always in the line with the other girls.I think the girls that went to Sunday school and did'nt miss a Sunday got to hold the banners.Always enjoyed getting a new dress for it. carol ramsden, Caloundra QLD, Australia
I loved Walk Day Hindley, we used to gather at Castle Hill school (Gone now) and walk down castle hill Rd, then gearge st Atherton rd. round the Birs then up Market St, The Brass band was my greatest Excitment, it filled every dimention with deep rich sound, brilliant, Iv been trying to get pictures ever since, very hard to find!, all ours are gone? Ray mclaren/Banks Ray mclaren, Sydney, Australia
The biggest thing Ill never forget is the ride to southampton from WIGAN to catch the ship to australia' As an orphan from Nazerth house Ditton we were usherd to the bus waiting t o take us on a holiday I was 8 years old a child stolen from my country to work the fiels of the harsh land in western australia we were lied to by the Church now at 63 im just remanising of my home in liverpool were I left family behind as australia needed young lads to breed from and work the land. that was in 1952 OH I long to see the place once more before my last sun shines as liverpool was the land I left all my pals behind. not long after the infamuse movie was made THE LEAVING OF LIVERPOOL anthony ryan, northampton, australia
I remember walking with St. Josephs school 1956-1963. It seemed to last forever but everyone had a great time. Loved the pipe bands and still get transported back to those days whenever i hear bagpipes played. Brian, Eccles, Gtr. Manchester
St. Joseph’s 1953 ish. I remember being in the “Crowning Group” one year with my cousin James Stockley also of Caroline St, Wallgate. We wore white uniforms and assembled at the church to walk the route ending up on the Market Square. Faith of Our Fathers playing as a finale. Collecting all those coins our relative would throw at us during the walk. If I can find that old photo I will upload it. Joe Bell, Sandbach, UK
I have so many memories of Walking days. It was the Methodist Chapels in Platt Bridge. The first one after the war was especially memorable. The banners were all hand painted, the girls who were "on the banner" wore dresses of identical material. The brass bands (three of them), and hoping you would meet someone a group of spectators who would give you a penny. They took place over a weekend and on the Saturday there would be a social event on the Wesleyan sports ground. I had many photos of these - dating bakc to the early 20th. century, they are all lodged with the Heritage Centre. margaret Rowden, Bath, U.K.
How can I forget the Catholic parishes in Wigan walking on Whit Monday? Faith of Our Fathers on the Market square, brass bands, bag pipes, banners etc. We were told we were walikg to show our faith but I suspect most of the girls just liked to be seen in their new dresses with white socks and shoes, white gloves and wreaths of flowers in their hair. I walked with Sacred Heart in the 50s. Anyone else from there remember? Elizabeth Chadwick (nee Harrison) Elizabeth Chadwick, Wigan, England
i went to st francis's church from the age of 5 to the age of 15, i never bragged about it at school but it was never frowned upon like it probably would be today. i walked every year and it was a big event in our street alone, all the girls with their rollers in their hair waiting to get ready and put on their lovley new dresses and our dorothy bags which we used to put our money in as we walked round. i loved it ,it was great but things change and slowly over the years since i have grown up and have had children of my own the walking days are sadly a thing of the past. i know i am not old but the kids of this generation will probably never know about walking days unless they have read it in a book or been told about it. tracey collins, wigan, lancashire
myself and my 3 sisters and 2 brothers walked with castle hill sunday school every year when we were young. i remember the brass band starting up, the lovely dresses and floweres, and the races afterwards on in the school yard. it was a lovely time. I would love to see any old walking day photos others might have from the 50s and 60s. both my granddad and dad were bandsmen long ago. mary yates ( nee mclaren), hindley nr wigan, england
Most years when I was a child I joined the walking days of St Mary's, Lower Ince but some years I walked with St Catherines where my mother and the Rose family attended. I remember feeling like a queen in the beautiful dresses my Auntie Florrie who lived in Chestnut Avenue, Whelley, always made for me. Myra Tomkinson (nee Clayton), Greenwood, Western Australia
I'm curious about this. My mom, who was born in 27 and grew up in Pemberton, talked about this. When did this practice stop? Over what time period was it common? I grew up in the US, but use to visit the UK and Wigan area in particular growing up and I love this site. Kevin Price, Houston, TX, USA
St Joseph's 1952-1956. What a wonderful day we usually had. Walking past the convent and all the nuns waving and trying to see your favourites. Meeting up at the market square, my grand-dad bringing me a bottle of lucazade to settle my tummy because of excitement. Lovely memories. Eils, Wigan, U.K.
Iwalked with st michaels swinley during the 70s.I played in the scout band and was as proud as punch marching past bystanders.Nowadays it saddens me to see the uniformed organisations walking instead of marching and downgrading the uniform to sweatshirts and baseball caps.what do you say ? andy sixsmith, wigan, england
i walked many times with st catherines c of e church always finishing on the rec for tea and biscuits always managed to get a new suit for the occasion having outgrown my old one brian unsworth, sandside cumbria, england
I went to National Blue Coat and All Saints school. I led out All Saints senior banner in 1947. It was the first walking day after the war. If anyone has any pictures of this it would be lovely to see them. Doreen Lythgoe (Hurst), Wigan, england
It was always an Honour to walk with St. Benedict's in Hindley. Not only did we walk but we were also informed the rason behind this and the origin for the walk in our village . we came out from the school grounds , up Market st , Bridge St., Chapel St then onto Atherton Rd prior to returning for outdoor Benediction. I always wanted to jion the Children of Mary but sadly that also disbanded together with our beloved walking days. Oh happy memories. Joan Wright nee Whittle, Hindley, Wigan, Lancashire
Whitmonday walking with St.Johns along Greenough St passed Central Park with the Redgate Boys Band from St Helens behind us.They played WHEN THE SAINTS GO MARCHING IN Joe, Wigan, England
I went to St Annes in Beech Hill, I remember going down to the allotments and getting flowers to carry, one year I even had a ribbon on the banner! Margaret Hegan (nee Dawson), Elmswell, Bury St Edmunds, Suffolk
I remember walking day like it was yesterday, i walked for All Saints Church and it was the best time of the year where i got all dressed up in dresses that my aunty made for me every year, i also remember getting my basket filled with pennies. But what i remember most is my Nan, Rachel Bennett she made me feel really special on the day....God rest her beautiful soul. Walking day will always be special to me even though not many towns bother anymore deborah lowe, Hindley, uk
the smell of carnations reminds me of walking day.i use to love getting my basket filled with carnations and getting dressed up ,when the sound of the drums in the band vibrated right through you it was a wonderful time shame its not like that anymore.i used to walk for st benedicts hindley. carole, hindley, england
I remember the St Andrews walking days of the 70's as if it were yesterday. I was dressed in pink and had beautiful pink lace gloves on. My hair was all curled up in a bun and I was lucky enough to be carrying my mum and dads best friends small wedding posie. I felt so very grown up. It was a blazing hot day and as we stopped marching for a moment outside the Springfield Hotel (THE PUB THAT MY MUM AND DAD HAD AT THE TIME) all the customers where lining the street waiting for me with money for me. I remember, I had that much money thrust at me, I had to stuff it all down my beautiful lace gloves. I was grinning from ear to ear. The one thing I was grateful for as recall it was the big glass of lemonade I was handed as we waited to move off again. Things just aren't the same any more and walking days just aren't what they used to be!! Nicki, St helens, UK
I only need to hear the "skirrrrl" of the bagpipes and there I am in Hardybutts around St Pats. Banners and streamers blowing in the summer breeze the pipe bands getting ready for the off and everyone who walked in the procession dressed in their finery. The reason for the walks was to witness the faith of us all.... hence the grand finale on the Market Square and singing Faith of Our Fathers...Great times! Whit Monday was when the traffic came to a standstill and crowds would come to Wigan just to see these walks. Veronica, westhoughton, england
Come on now....somebody must remember Church Walking days !!! I lived at Holland Moor & remember the large procession gathered in Back Lane by the school. All the girls wore white & carried baskets of flowers. All the little tots went in front, followed by the older girls, then the banner. Much older girls would walk behind & hold streamers fixed to the banner. I have a picture of me with my white dress & basket of flowers...never really knew the reason this festival was held...anybody out there know ? Helen West, Binham, Norfolk

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