Saturday, 5 April 2014

Flying Horse, Crook Street

The entrance to the Bolton town centre branch of Aldi. While ascertaining the exact site of the Flying Horse is difficult, a good guess would be roughly where the exit road from the supermarket enters onto the main thoroughfare. Image taken in 2012. Copyright Google Street View.


The Flying Horse was situated on the corner of Crook Street and Great Moor Street. Given that Gordon Readyhough states that the Flying Horse was a beerhouse [1] it was probably established in the 1830s following the passing of the 1830 Beer House Act.

A few years later, on Monday 10 July 1839, some of the town’s constables visited the pub along with the Mayor of Bolton. This was probably Robert Heywood, local businessman and reformer who gifted part of his estate to form ‘Bobby Heywood’s park’ and who was the second Mayor Of Bolton in 1839-40.

Unfortunately, the welcome Mayor Heywood and the constables received in the Flying Horse was not a warm one.

As one of the constables stated in his report: “While in the Flying Horse at 10 o’clock the Landlord became very abusive and threatened to take the poker to the Mayor and myself, calling us spies.” [3]

A correspondent to the Bolton Revisited project states that in the twenties the pub was next door to a smithy where horses’ were shoed. [4] 

The Flying Horse closed in 1924 by which time it was owned by the Empress Brewery of Manchester. The premises were later used a Spiritualist Church.

The site of the pub is covered by the curve of Trinity Street close to where it merges into Derby Street.

[1] Pubs Of Bolton, 1800-2000, by Gordon Readyhough. Published by Neil Richardson (2000).
[2] Bolton Mayors website. http://www.boltonsmayors.org.uk/heywood-r.html Accessed 5 April 2014. Interestingly, Robert Heywood, while a teetotaller at home, often drank alcohol while abroad.
[3] Leisure In Bolton, 1750-1900, Robert Poole, 1982

[4] Bolton Revisited. Accessed 5 April 2014.

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