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History Alive - Tameside Local History Forum
Obituaries





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In Memory of Friends and Members no longer with us

Tree Planting in Stamford Park

On 24th March 2022 Tameside History Forum had a Silver Birch tree planted in Stamford Park near the aviary in memory of past members of the Forum. Scroll further down for written obituaries.

Alan Bacon (1939- 2021

The Forum lost a valued member on 8th December 2021 when Alan Bacon of the Friends of Ashton Parish Church died.
Alan was born in Dukinfield in 1939 but became attached to Ashton Parish Church after his marriage. He served on the Parish Council for many years and was very active in promoting the church and preserving its history. He led many of the tours during Heritage Open Days when his comprehensive knowledge of the history and fabric of the church was evident. Thanks to his enthusiasm many people were given the opportunity to experience this wonderful old building. His work with the Friends of Ashton Parish Church led him to the Local History Forum where he represented them. He made a valuable contribution to the Forum's development and could always be relied on to support HODs. His historical and heraldic knowledge were invaluable to the Forum and to Tameside Local Studies and Archives service. Through his efforts the Friends made a financial contribution to the conservation of the 1857 Parish Boundary Book (PR/ASH/3), held at Tameside Local Studies and he was the instigator of the recent transfer of documents from the Parish Chest.

Some Tributes to Alan from Forum members

Thoughtful and diligent. Alan worked so hard for Ashton Parish church (Brian Hartley, Church Preservation Society) Such a stalwart member of Ashton Parish Church Friends group. Sad news
A good friend to all and a loyal supporter of the Forum, will be sadly missed (Julie Fisher) An expert historian about the Church (Jill Cronin)
I remember Alan attending Old Chapel when he was younger (Janet Ford)
Alan will be be fondly remembered as a kind, thoughtful, supportive gentleman willing to share his knowledge. He was always first to offer support at Heritage Open days for the Forum and to pass on his knowledge about the church's history including tours up the tower (Christine Clough, Secretary Local History Forum)
Alan's helpfulness, knowledge and willingness to liaise between the Church and the Local Studies and Archives service will be very much missed. His efforts have led to an important deposit of documents which can now be made more widely available. (Tameside Local Studies and Archives)

Alan Rose B. A. (1937 - 2016)

Alan Rose our Former Chair since our inception

The Lancashire and Cheshire Antiquarian Society has suffered a great loss in the sudden death of Edward Alan Rose (always known as Alan) on March 21 2016. He played an important role in the Society, serving as Vice President from 2013, Chairman of Council 1992 - 99 and 2002 - 07, Treasurer 1988 - 92, 1999 - 2002 and 2008 - 12, Membership Secretary 1988 - 92 and 1999 - 2002 and a member of Council for over forty years from 1975. His contribution also includes numerous articles in the Transactions, displaying his extensive knowledge of Methodist history in our area.

I first met Alan in 1976 when I started work in the newly set up Local Studies and Archives service in Tameside, based at Stalybridge Library. I had to learn about the history of the Tameside area from scratch and was very grateful to him for his help. He always knew the answer to whatever question he was asked, but was also careful not to jump in and take over an enquiry I was attempting to do on my own. Like all good teachers he recognised that sometimes you have to discover things for yourself.

Alan was born 16 May 1937 to Nellie, a printing worker, and Bill Rose, a plumber, in Openshaw, Manchester, apparently arriving so suddenly the midwife didn't have time to remove her hat before the delivery. Surprisingly he was baptised in the nearby Anglican church of St Clement's and attended an Anglican Sunday school, but later transferred to the Methodists as they served better teas! He discovered a commemorative chapel spoon inscribed MNC around this time and his curiosity about it resulted in him eventually becoming a leading authority on the history of the Methodist New Connexion.

He loved books and learning from an early age and won a scholarship to the William Hulme Grammar School in Manchester which he attended from 1948 - 1955. He followed this with a place at Manchester University to study chemistry from 1955 - 1958, but left without taking a degree. He first worked briefly at British Rayon, leaving to do a teaching qualification at Durham University, 1960 - 61, and then studied through the Open University to get a good honours degree in history in 1971. For those of us who knew him in later years when he was so noted for his extensive knowledge of history, and enthusiasm for teaching both adults and children, it's surprising to discover that it took him some years to find his niche. His first teaching post was at Littlemoss High School in Droylsden, followed by seventeen years teaching history at Stamford High School in Ashton (1971 - 1989). He took early retirement, but was soon teaching again, this time as a WEA tutor, running the History On Your Doorstep classes with Jill Cronin. These classes ran for sixteen years and resulted in four valuable publications. Alan's enthusiasm for local history and his democratic spirit welcomed anybody who wished to make a contribution and many active local historians in the Tameside area look back on these classes as their inspiration.

Alan's love of books led to a small business selling books and he often used his knowledge of the second hand book trade to raise money for Methodist causes. His help in building up the stock at the Tameside Local Studies and Archives Centre was invaluable - he always seems to know about relevant new books before anybody else.

Alan was active in the Methodist church serving as a lay preacher and a Circuit Steward, but he will perhaps be best remembered for his contribution to Methodist history. He edited the Proceedings of the Wesley Historical Society for thirty years from 1981, extending its coverage of the non Wesleyan aspects of Methodist history. He was a member of the Lancashire and Cheshire Branch of the Wesley Historical Society, the Society of Cirplanogists, the Methodist Sacramental Fellowship and Oldham Choral Society. After hearing him speak on Methodist circuit plans (with his his Cirplanogist hat on!) I realised how much important information they held and sorted out the collection held at Tameside Local Studies and Archives and made an attempt to collect current plans. Anybody interested in the history of religion in the north west owes Alan a great debt, not just for his published work but for the rescue of Methodist archives which he made sure were safely deposited at Manchester Central Library and the John Rylands Library. His willingness to share his knowledge of sources was invaluable.

Involvement in Methodist research and in many regional local history societies did not mean that Alan neglected his immediate area. He was a very active member and chair of Stalybridge Historical Society for many years and published on many local history topics. He was chair of the Friends of Dukinfield Old Chapel and Vice Chair of the Friends of Ashton Parish Church. In 2000 he became a founder member of the Tameside Local History Forum, an umbrella group set up to bring together local societies and lobby for heritage in Tameside. He chaired the group from its beginning. His expertise was vital for the Forum, especially the knowledge he brought to the borough's blue plaque scheme and to Heritage Open Days.

Although born in Manchester Alan lived in the Tameside area after his marriage to Glenda in 1961, firstly in Fairfield, then from 1964 in Ashton and from 1973 in Mottram-in-Longdendale. Alan and Glenda had two sons, Michael and Paul.

Alan will be remembered for his enthusiasm, sense of humour and his modest willingness to share his knowledge and help researchers. He possessed the ability to calm troubled waters and was always generous with his time and knowledge. He will be much missed.

A comprehensive bibliography of his writings has been complied by Clive Field in the Proceedings of the Wesley Historical Society Volume 60 Part 6 October 2016 pages 296 - 301

Leaflet Commemorating Past Members who Supported our Forum

Download your copy of the leaflet here



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