Saturday, 6 September 2014

Halliwell Lodge

The Halliwell Lodge existed as a pub for over 90 years.

It was built around 1830 for the Ormrod family and at the time of its construction it was set back from Chorley Old Road and in its own land. The entry to the property is on Lincoln Road, off Mornington Road.

The Ormrods were a prominent firm of local cotton spinners whose firm Ormrod and Hardcastle was founded by James Ormrod and Thomas Hardcastle in 1788. The business began with the purchase of the Flash Street Mills, off Great Moor Street in the centre of Bolton and also owned a number of houses in that area of the town. Ormrod Street, which still runs past the Grosvenor Casino to Moor Lane, was named after the family. 

James Ormrod was one of five Bolton businessmen who founded the town’s first bank in July 1818.

The last member of the family to live at Halliwell Lodge, James Ormrod, died at the house in 1888. His successors were by then living on their own estate on the Fylde (see the entry for the Duke for more details). They decided to sell the property and it opened as a hotel in 1899. 

It subsequently became a Magee’s house and was taken over by Greenall’s when they bought out Magee’s in 1958. But it eventually became known locally more as a pub than as a hotel.

The building was listed as a Grade II building in April 1974 and retains the listing to this day. A full architectural description can be seen here

Halliwell Lodge was put up for sale for £650,000 in 1990. [1] It was bought by Hargreaves Homes and closed as a pub. Hargreaves converted the property into flats while the approach to the property is now a private road known as The Mews.

The flats don’t come cheap – around £250,000 each. But the grounds surrounding the property are well-maintained and this building, which is now over 180 years old, still looks in good condition.

In 2008 local pub chronicler Roy Caswell declared the Halliwell Lodge as his favourite having visited every pub in Bolton. "It was a good local that served the local housing estates well," he told the Bolton News.

The building is rumoured to be haunted.

A female ghost wearing only a nightdress would materialise in the early hours of the morning. It was also said that she had a deep husky voice that could be heard making suggestive remarks to any men still awake. [2]. Others suggest that this apparition appears instead at a nearby fishing lodge. [3]

[1] What’s Doing, the Greater Manchester beer drinker’s monthly magazine. June 1990 issue.

[2] Paranormal Database. Accessed 6 September 2014. 

[3] Haunted Bolton, by Stuart Hilton and Michelle Cardno. 

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