Author Archives: Gordon Batty (1927 - 2018)

Gordon Batty Collection – Parish Church of St. Chad, Rochdale.

Church from Broadfield Park
St. Chad's Parish Church, Rochdale

There is a tradition that the Parish Church of Rochdale was intended to have been erected down by the river, but that when the foundations were being laid, overnight they mysteriously disappeared, to re-appear at the top of the hill near the present site of the church. Several attempts were made to build in the valley, but each time the same thing occurred, and the materials would mysteriously be moved over-night, so eventually it was agreed to build the church on its present site, and no further trouble was experienced. This in not an unfamiliar tale and St. Chad’s is not the only church to which it has been ascribed.

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A Short History Of Tim Bobbin Lancashire Author, Poet & Artist

Tim Bobbin
Self Portrait

Self portrait of John Collier (Tim Bobbin)

As a Mancuniun, I came to Rochdale some thirty odd years ago, knowing nothing of  this northern textile town. Coming from the big city I inevitably felt I was  moving into the back of beyond, until my wife took me in charge and began my re-education.

 

She began by taking me to the parish churchyard to see the grave of Tim Bobbin’.

“Tim who?” I said.

“You’ll see!” said she, and we did.

 

As we stood there in the sunshine at the eastern end of the lovely grey church, beside the great slab of granite lying on top of poor Tim and his wife, I peered through the wrought iron railings protecting the grave from vandals to read the epitaph reputed to have been written by the incumbent just twenty minutes before his decease and decided that I had to find out more.

 

” Here lies John and with him Mary,

Cheek by jowl and never vary,

No wonder they so well agree,

John wants no punch, and Moll no tea.”

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