Photos of Wigan
Photos of Wigan

Wigan Album



Clarington Grove, 1978 approx
Photo: Keith
Views: 3,221
Item #: 27242
A view of Clarington Grove, taken from a cine film in the late 1970’s with my eldest son in the foreground. The background is the reason I posted this photo, simply because the houses no longer exist but the Grove is still there. These houses were in the top half of the Grove while those in the lower half, where my grandmother lived, were in Ince, so when my mother passed her 11+ (in 1932) instead of attending the Girls High she went to the Hindley and Abram Grammar.

Comment by: Carolaen on 16th December 2015 at 08:41

Happy memories. Two of my schoolmates from St Catharines (late 50s early 60s lived here) Graham Shaw and Trevor Rudd. Also ST Cats used to use the canteen on the side of the playing fields for school dinners, but not the playing fields themselves, We played on the Clarrington Brook rec.

Comment by: Keith on 16th December 2015 at 09:10

Carolaen, all my grandmother's family attended St Catharines, as I did (early 50's) - what's "unusual" from my point of view is to see grass growing where my son is standing, from my recollection this area was covered with a dark shale like substance (old colliery waste?) where a number of bonfires would take place on November 5th or several impromptu "tick and pass" rugby games would take place from time to time - this would be in the 40's and 50's.

Comment by: jack on 16th December 2015 at 10:25

Looks like a quality row of terraced house any one know what they made way for.

Comment by: Vb on 16th December 2015 at 10:44

We used to pass here as kids in the mid fifties to play on the fields and jumping across the "by-wash" and I lost a shoe doing that ! My mam went "mad"! Also rode my bike over a pot hole at the side of the canal and ended up in the Infirmary with stitches in my knee - I have the marks on my knee to this day- just like a pitman's scars!

Comment by: watchalot on 16th December 2015 at 10:59

they was sinking when i lived in harper st till 1968

Comment by: Keith on 16th December 2015 at 12:18

Jack, the houses came down a few at a time due, it is said, to erosion caused by the underground culverted Clarington Brook which was the boundary between Wigan and Ince. The Grove now acts as a car park for the St Patricks Amateur Rugby League Club, no further building took place.

Comment by: roy sturgeon on 16th December 2015 at 18:51

there used to be grass between the back pitch or cinder pitch and rugby field in 50s

Comment by: Keith on 16th December 2015 at 19:16

As a youngster I played for St Catharines Primary football team around 1952/3, and although we usually played our games on the "rec" for some reason we once played against St Andrews on the grassless pitch next to the canal, it pretty much resembled an uneven clay tennis court although it did have football posts. PS we won 3-1, I fluked two of them and Eddie Rudd, our teacher, refereed the match - I can't believe that was so long ago - happy days.

Comment by: Josh on 16th December 2015 at 19:58

The top half of Clarington Grove was in Wigan and their road as can be seen on the photo, had tarmacadam, but the other "half" of the Grove, in the Ince Borough, was "unadopted" and consisted of compressed soil and clay.

Comment by: teresa on 17th December 2015 at 11:57

there is a house still standing on clarington grove. i lived in it feom 2003 till 2006. it is joined on the end of terraces on harper street. the above said house is on the right as you turn down from darlington street east. my friends own st pats club n field and live at the other end of harpet street facing club.

Comment by: Keith on 17th December 2015 at 15:14

Teresa thank you, I hadn't realised there was a part of the Grove still in existence. I have an indelible and abiding memory of Clarington Grove - it was May 1944 and as a two and a half year old I was playing outside (it wasn't unknown in those days) my grandmother's house at no.29 on the "unadopted" section. There had been heavy rainfall and small swirls of sand had formed, a source of fascination at that age - when suddenly I looked up as my attention was totally taken by a man (he was 19) jauntily walking down the Grove. It must have been his full naval uniform that transfixed me but I was taken by complete surprise when as he drew level with me he turned and walked into my grandmother's home. I quickly followed to see him leaning on the brass rail that went across the fire range, as he engaged in smiling conversation with my aunt (his 18 year old girlfriend). Now I was an extremely shy child but I had this very strong compunction to speak out, which I did - it was a warning - a warning that had been drummed into me since we were so close to the canal - I said, "Don't go near the water - you'll drown". Many, many years later I reflected on this "coincidence", because the following month Kenneth Guy, Telegraphist, drowned off the Lizard on June 15th - his frigate "Mourne" had been sunk with the loss of 110 souls, torpedoed by German U boat 767 - there were a few survivors. Apparently when the torpedo struck all the support vessels had orders to leave the area immediately - leaving many of the torpedoed frigate's men struggling to survive in the sea. It was not to be until hours later that an American ship managed to save just a handful of the men. The feeling of the need to warn Ken of danger has long intrigued me.

Comment by: Vb on 17th December 2015 at 17:24

Amazing memory-I love hearing stories of wartime. I barely remember starting school at 5.

Comment by: AB on 18th December 2015 at 11:07

Kieith.There was a young man Billy Clayton, from Clarington Grove who was in the navy and was the victim of a german U-Boat and he was buried on Guernsey I recall my grandmother
on his first leave home on joining the navy insisting on touching his collar for luck. She never forgave herself

Comment by: teresa on 18th December 2015 at 13:22

thank you keith for the brief history you have just given. it is a very intriguing tale too

Comment by: Keith on 20th December 2015 at 00:15

Thank you AB for that extra info' - my Auntie who lost her boyfriend Kenneth Guy, later married Doug(las) Clayton but he wasn't from Clarington Grove and as far as I know he wasn't a relative of Billy. However, Doug was also in WW2, as a member of the Parachute Regiment he was dropped at Arnhem but survived - they later lived in Vine Street with their family.

Comment by: Judith Brookes on 26th July 2018 at 19:00

Hi Keith. I am your cousin and my mum was the girlfriend of Kenneth Guy and who married Douglas Clayton

Comment by: Edna on 8th July 2020 at 20:41

I remember the " bywash" Veronica I was frightened to death of falling in.I was once attacked by a dog on the field facing those houses, it was a bull dog and it grabbed the end of my school blazer and was swinging me round.I was petrified, every one around me ran off.I just had a grade on my leg when a kind gentleman got me free.I also remember my annual visit to one of those houses to get measured for my walking day dress with Mrs Connley who lived there..

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