Carnegie Library, Wigan

Started by: maryms (8)

In researching Carnegie libraries in Lancashire I've found one in Ashton in Makerfield but no others. From memory I thought there was a Carnegie children's library in Wigan, which I picture as being near where the later Wigan swimming pool was built. My memory may be at fault on this. Can anyone shed light on Carnegie children's libraries in the Wigan area, i.e. where they are or were?

Started: 1st Dec 2020 at 15:10

Posted by: PeterP (8796)

Dont forget the Carnegie Library half way up Ormskirk Road Pemberton.I remember the library at the top of the Weind but do not know if it was a Carnegie library

Replied: 1st Dec 2020 at 15:36

Posted by: Anne (4002) 

There was a children's library in the old part of Station road coming round from Scholes crossing close to the Horseshoe pub. Long gone now along with the Central railway station. I think it was a council run library. Before the Weind library was built, that was a relatively new one.

Replied: 1st Dec 2020 at 15:56

Posted by: maryms (8)

Many thanks to Peter and to Anne. I didn't know about the Pemberton library. I think the library that Anne mentions on Station road is the one I'm thinking of. As I picture it, it was red brick like so many buildings in Wigan and had "Carnegie Children's Library" etched in stone on the front. It seems a shame that it has gone, so I hope the Wiend library is a worthy replacement. I understand that Andrew Carnegie's libraries (worldwide there were over 2,500 of them!) were often built in places with which he had been associated but I know of no link with Wigan.

Replied: 1st Dec 2020 at 16:41

Posted by: cindy (5919) 

Remember the one in Station road called Powells Children's Library.

Replied: 1st Dec 2020 at 18:05

Posted by: maryms (8)

Thank you, CIndy. I will try to find out more.

Replied: 1st Dec 2020 at 21:06

Posted by: peebee (588)

Replied: 2nd Dec 2020 at 21:26
Last edited by peebee: 2nd Dec 2020 at 21:27:21

Posted by: tonker (23935) 

Newton le Willows had one. I think there was uproar when it was demolished.

Replied: 3rd Dec 2020 at 19:47

Posted by: JR (253)

I always thought that the children's library on Station Road was the Powel Library; possibly paid for by Sir Francis Sharp Powell or named after him as he was committed to promoting literature for children. He also was active in ensuring clean drinking water.

Replied: 17th Dec 2020 at 17:41

Posted by: tuddy (1161)

Replied: 8th Jan 2021 at 22:28

Posted by: mollie m (6398) 

Tuddy's link:


I used the Powell Children's Library when I was little, from around age 4/5 if my memory serves.

I started off with my Noddy books, then progressed to Janet & John. I could read reasonably well by the age of 3, but I was too young to go on my own, even though it was a stone's throw from Darlington Street where we lived.

I loved it in there, and I can still smell the beeswax on the varnished floorboards, and the bannister and gallery upstairs.

Sad it had to go.

Replied: 8th Jan 2021 at 23:29
Last edited by mollie m: 8th Jan 2021 at 23:35:11

Posted by: DaveL (20)

Atherton's Carnegie is up for sale:
Tyldesley's future is uncertain.
There are a couple of sites which have covered the country's Carnegie Libraries: and
Leigh put in for one in June 1919, but seemingly failed to get it.

Replied: 13th Jan 2021 at 17:09

Posted by: tonker (23935) 

They wouldn't give library grants to towns that already had a library. Leigh had one from 1894.
Wigan had one from 1878. St.Helens from 1896.

Due to computers, they're a thing of the past. Last time I went in a library you could hear a pin drop. And no wonder. There was only me and one librarian in there. And she was reading something - on her laptop!

Replied: 13th Jan 2021 at 23:14


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