Marple Local History Society Meetings


The Society generally meets on the third Monday of the month from September to April, apart from December. the meeting is then  held on the second Monday of the month.

Doors open 7:15pm ready for the meeting at 7:45. Access is via the main entrance on Church Lane (opposite Mount Drive) and the meetings will be held in the church itself on the ground floor.

The church includes a hearing aid loop system which is most effective for people sitting near the side walls and in the rear pews of the church.

Venue and Location

The meetings take place in Marple Methodist Church on Church Lane in Marple.  Postcode: SK6 7AY

Visitors are welcome to attend at a cost of £3. But look below for details of our Membership bargains!


The annual subscription for the Society is £10 for 8 meetings,so there's a bargain you can take up !

This also allows participation in the Society's trips.

Membership is available at all meetings.

Use the menus on the right to browse our past and present meeting topics.

To park near to Marple Methodist Church

There are double yellow lines immediately outside the church, but there is limited on street parking further up Church Lane on the right hand side, down Empress Avenue and on Mount Drive.

There is a large car park, Chadwick Street Car Park, (SK6 6BY) between Trinity Street  and Chadwick Street, Marple. Access is from Stockport Road onto Trinity Street and from Church Lane onto Chadwick Street, exit is made via Trinity Street, in the direction of Church Lane. It is a pay and display car park, however, at the time of writing, October 2014, parking is free after 6pm.

The location of the Methodist Church  on Church Lane (red marker) is shown on the map below and you can enter your postcode to get directions there, or to the car park Chadwick Street) nearby (blue marker):


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Summer Walks 2016

16 07 18 img 1366 s480A series of summer walks emerged from the AGM questionnaires, which many members completed. These have proved a successful extension to the Society’s ‘season’, outdoor ‘meetings’ in Marple, Marple Bridge and Hayfield. These four walks, in the months from May to August, were led by Hilary Atkinson, Neil Mullineux and Judith Wilshaw. Proving very popular, they may be continued next year.


Read more: Summer Walks 2016 

MLHS take All Saints for a walk

Through the gate

all saints


Recreating the Apprentice's Walk


In May this year, I was asked by Philip Alston, the Children and Families Worker at All Saints Church, to help with a project about Samuel Oldknow, involving two classes from All Saints school.

Together with Philip we assisted teacher Heather Manning to plan the project for Years 1 and 2. It involved the children recreating the apprentices’ walk from Brick Bridge up to the church, climbing over stile at the back of the Churchyard. The children dressed up as apprentices and as you can imagine, a good time was had by all! The weather was kind and the walk was filmed for the DVD that is being produced as part of the Revealing Oldknow’s Legacy project.

Hilary Atkinson

Read more: MLHS take All Saints for a walk

18th April: AGM & Michael Lambert - History of Brentwood Recuperative Centre, 1937-70

Brentwood on Church Lane with guests relaxing outdoors. We are the Marple Local History Society so you could not have a more local subject than Brentwood – an appropriate end to a memorable season. Brentwood and its residents were an integral part of Marple society for over thirty years and many visitors came to the meeting with experiences and anecdotes to relate. Michael Lambert shared some of his PhD research with us and, in return, we shared with him some of the atmosphere and anecdotes from those days more than half a century ago.

Read more: 18th April: AGM & Michael Lambert - History of  Brentwood Recuperative Centre, 1937-70 

21st March: Ruth Colton – Whitworth Park: Pleasure, Play & Politics

Whitworth Park,Ruth Colton, our speaker, arrived in Marple as a newly minted PhD. That very afternoon she had passed her final oral examination and could now call herself “Doctor.” Although she was not able to advise upon the various aches and pains endured by our members she did deliver a fascinating talk on the development and use of Whitworth Park. Her particular interest was in how the children were supposed to use the park and how they actually used it in practice. She had been part of an archaeological team excavating in the park and a lot could be learned from the detritus lost or thrown away over the years. Describing this in the context of the park history brought the subject to life as it contrasted the “top down” influences of the powers that be with the “bottom up” influences forced on the park by the children. The adults might prefer the bandstand and the meandering pathways but the children congregated behind “the Mound” where they could play out of sight of the grown-ups.

Read more: 21st March: Ruth Colton – Whitworth Park: Pleasure, Play & Politics

15th February: Mike Nevell – Housing in 19th century Manchester

Slum housing was not a unique phenomena of the Industrial Revolution; John Milton had complained about it 200 years before:

“As one who long in populous city pent,
Where houses thick and sewers annoy the air”

However, Manchester in the nineteenth century took slum dwelling to new extremes. No one was more qualified to describe this than Mike Nevell, our speaker. As Head of Archaeology at the University of Salford he has been involved in investigating living conditions across the Manchester region for more than twenty years. With detailed investigations at over 200 sites it is possible to give the human background to the Industrial Revolution.

Read more: 15th February: Mike Nevell – Housing in 19th century Manchester