Author Topic: whit walks  (Read 19858 times)

margaretmakinson

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whit walks
« on: May 22, 2012, 10:58 PM »
Does anyone remember the Whit Walks when they were on Whit Friday.  The number of churches which took part and the fact that Ashton Market was packed with people.  The wonderful sound of the bands on Stamford Street and the crowds of people watching.  Some of them had been there for hours, taking their place on deck chairs with their flasks and sandwiches.  I used to walk with Waterloo Christ Church Sunday School - we would walk all the way into Ashton from Waterloo and we had one of the longest walks.  On the way back the very youngest pupils would be taken back to the school in a coach.  Does anyone remember it as fondly as I do.

Kiwi

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Re: whit walks
« Reply #1 on: May 23, 2012, 02:09 AM »
Hi Margaret, welcome aboard.

There's a large thread on the topic if you click Here

I vaguely remember marching* around Droylsden with the Brussel Sprouts Band and blowing a very off-key bugle, you could possibly have heard it over in Ashton  ;)



*They weren't very good at it, I was the only one in step  ;)
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Fudge

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Re: whit walks
« Reply #2 on: May 23, 2012, 09:09 AM »
Hi Margret hope you have lots of happy hours on this site. As Kiwi says there is a thread going on this site. On the 17th of June I will give my yearly Report on the walks. Fudge

margaretmakinson

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Re: whit walks
« Reply #3 on: May 26, 2012, 08:06 PM »
Can someone let me knowwhen this years walks are taking place.  I last turned up for them was in 2000 (I think) the old memory's not as good as it should be.  I always walked with Waterloo Christ Church Sunday School and was on the big banner from 1961 to 1966.  I became a Sunday School teacher and attended the Sunday School until 1970.  I moved away to Bury and turned up for the Whit Walks every year until 2000.  My daughter was on the big banner 1989 and my son (now aged 23) carried the primary banner in the 1990's.  I used to attend the Whit Friday Band Contests with my friends from Tintwistle Brass Band and also Newton Heath Brass Band.  My dad last did the walk in 2000 at the age of 85 and I have a picture of him at the Sunday School.  He only managed to walk a little of the way but I was proud of him.  His name was Harry Broughton and my mum, Mary Broughton (who died in 1998) was a staunch supporter of the walks.  Mrs. Andrews was one of Christ Church's leading lights. 

Fudge

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Re: whit walks
« Reply #4 on: May 27, 2012, 07:37 AM »
17th of June It is also Fathers day it as fell like this for the last few years. Fudge

Too shy

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Re: whit walks
« Reply #5 on: May 27, 2012, 03:58 PM »
Can someone let me knowwhen this years walks are taking place. 

Also, let's not forget that there are walks in other parts of the district and that, in Mossley, we have the only remains of the Whit Walks tradition, where the churches continue to walk on Whit Friday and haven't bowed to the pressure to break with convention and walk on the Sunday. What's wrong with churches in the rest of Tameside? If it can still be done in a backwater like Mossley (and also in Saddleworth for that matter) then surely the churches in the larger towns like Ashton, Hyde and Stalybridge can muster up sufficient numbers to keep the Whit Friday tradition alive. Some churches should hang their heads in shame. My old church in Dukinfield, Crescent Road Congs, broke away completely some years ago when the minister said that it was an outdated tradition which had no place in the modern church. I don't believe they've walked since - certainly not as part of a united walk of witness. Staying in Dukinfield, this year will be the last year that St Lukes walk, as the church has been deemed too badly in need of repair and at too costly a price so the church is destined to close. This follows rapidly on the heels of St Raphael's at Millbrook where similar problems have led to the closure of a well-attended centre of Christian faith.

When I hear people of no faith referring to Whit Friday as the day of the band contests I politely remind then that the bands are purely incidental and that they are missing the "bigger picture".

chrisandangie

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Re: whit walks
« Reply #6 on: May 27, 2012, 04:55 PM »
There have been loads of road closures today for whit walks, in all the boroughs of Tameside  ;D
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Fudge

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Re: whit walks
« Reply #7 on: May 27, 2012, 05:53 PM »
It is the Policing that as broke the walks up and firms stopping Whit Friday as a days hols. We were given the slot for so many years then we were changing to Trinity Sunday but lots of people in the Churches liked the date as it did not clash with school holidays. Fudge

margaretmakinson

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Re: whit walks
« Reply #8 on: May 27, 2012, 08:12 PM »
Actually Too Shy I was very upset when the Walks moved from Whit Friday.  Didn't quite know the reason but I am pleased to hear that Mossley and Saddleworth are still upholding the true tradition.  The whole procession of witness took place on Whit Friday for a reason and why we used to have to wear white to take a ribbon on the big banner.  Now colours of all hues are in evidence.  When I asked at the Sunday School they admit they cannot dictate what children wear otherwise they would lose even more of the procession.  From what Fudge was saying about the policing and Chrisandangie speaking about road closures I suppose the logistics of diverting traffic and closing roads in Ashton, when processions were coming from various directions were a bit of a nightmare.  However I don't see how much difference it would be from Whit Friday to the Sunday but then I don't have it all to do.

Fudge

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Re: whit walks
« Reply #9 on: May 28, 2012, 09:28 AM »
I use to like dressing up for the walks. But the young ones seem to like casual these days. But I don't think it matters what you were you are showing people that the Church is still alive and some of them young ones are there most Sundays I can speak for Charlestown the young ones  do a lot of things for the Church and the take stick from there mates at school but still come. Fudge

Meg

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Re: whit walks
« Reply #10 on: May 28, 2012, 07:26 PM »
We used to have new clothes every Whitsun. Don't know how my mother managed it with four of us! People used to run out into the procession to pop a few pennies into your pocket ' for your new clothes'. I was asked to pick some flowers for one of the floats in the Waterloo Methodist procession. I picked wild garlic ( well it did have pretty white flowers) and couldn't understand why they were objected to. Used to love Whit Fridays. We walked in the morning , went back to Sunday school for a glass of milk and a raspberry bun, then back in the afternoon for a sports day, sack race, egg and spoon etc
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Assheton

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Re: whit walks
« Reply #11 on: May 28, 2012, 08:42 PM »
Hello Margaret and welcome to the group. I remember very well walking on Whit Friday. In the days before the united procession, the non conformist chapels walked in the morning and the Anglican churches in the afternoon. For both walks the market ground would be full of people for the service and the crowds lining the streets would be five and six deep. I used to love 'walking' and miss taking part now that I live away from Ashton. I can still taste those raspberry buns and I can hear the band playing Onward Christian Soldiers on Stamford St and the people on the pavement singing along! Happy and glorious days!

I am very sad to hear about St Luke's Dukinfield. A lovely building, designed by a local architect in Ashton who also designed the Library if memory serves!
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pamela

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Re: whit walks
« Reply #12 on: May 29, 2012, 07:46 AM »
I too remember the Whit walks, I think the Catholic churches did their walk on a different day ? Whatever day it was I remember Stamford St being full , I was with the maids of Honour 3 times running , from 5 years old to 7 years old . Our dresses were made by a seamstress who lived on Ladbrooke Lane , they were always long , but very pretty we had posies to hold and hair peices made from flowers , we all wore lace cotton gloves which became full of threpenny bits and sixpencies by the end of the walk . Then we would go to mass at St Mary's. We were't allowed to eat anything while we were walking , fasting so we could receive communion , I was starving and nibbled at my crocuses in my posy , then one of the church ladies saw me and gave me a sweet !!!I think they were precious days that should be maintained if possible ...
 The dresses were recycled ,by being shortened and worn at school !!!
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greeny

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Re: whit walks
« Reply #13 on: May 29, 2012, 11:13 AM »
hi it was a big thing the whit walks but it as dwindled away to what it once was , love to walk as a nipper walked with christ church then we made our way  to gather in parish church at the rear for a service , i also remember gathering outside christ church school on oldham road a cannon jhonson would thank us after for a good turn out then we went in the school for our bun and drink of milk , we always went on the sunday after to watch the catholics the use to have pipe bands which i thought were great and the poles and ukraine in  there national costumes ,we always stood on stamford street to watch the walks ,opposite the chapel on the corner of warrington street ,it was like a family gathering happy days

pamela

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Re: whit walks
« Reply #14 on: May 29, 2012, 12:18 PM »
I was once describing our whit walks to my friend who was a Glasgow lass, she mentioned them to her mum who said if the Catholics had been allowed to walk in Glasgow there would have been a riot!!(they were Catholics btw)
Politicians and nappies should be changed frequently...and for the same reason!!!