Oldham  Lancashire


In 1887, John Bartholomew's Gazetteer of the British Isles described Oldham like this:

Oldham, parl. and mun. bor., market town, and township, Prestwich par., SE. Lancashire, on river Medlock, 6 miles NE. of Manchester and 190 miles from London by rail - mun. bor. and township, 4730 ac., pop. 111,343; parl. bor. (partly in Ashton under Lyne par.), 12,310 ac., pop. 152,513; 5 Banks, 7 newspapers. ...

Market-day, Saturday. Oldham is one of England's great modern centres of manufacture. In 1760 it contained only about 60 dwellings, mostly thatched huts. Its rapid progress is due chiefly to its proximity to the Lancashire coal fields. These coal fields give employment to a considerable section of the population. The great majority of the people, however, are engaged in the staple mfrs. with which the name of Oldham is familiarly associated. The factories are said to number 250, and it is estimated that there are about 1,000,000 spinning spindles and 650,000 twining spindles in the town and its neighbourhood. The goods produced are principally fustians, velveteens, velvets, silks, cotton cords and yarns, sheetings, shirtings, drills, sateens, &C. Works for the mfr. of weaving machinery are very extensive, one especially employing between 6000 and 7000 hands. Foundries and engine works show great industrial activity, and during recent years a considerable and increasing trade has been done in the mfr. of gas metres. There are about 70 churches and chapels, and numerous institutions and charities, but the public buildings as a rule do not call for special remark. Oldham was enfranchised by the Reform Bill of 1832, and received its charter of incorporation in 1849. It returns 2 members to Parliament.

Oldham through time

Click here for graphs and data of how Oldham has changed over two centuries. For statistics for historical units named after Oldham go to Units and Statistics.

How to reference this page:

GB Historical GIS / University of Portsmouth, History of Oldham in Lancashire | Map and description, A Vision of Britain through Time.


Date accessed: 27th October 2021

Not where you were looking for?

Click here for more detailed advice on finding places within A Vision of Britain through Time , and maybe some references to other places called " Oldham ".