The Masons Arms was situated at 125-127 Turton Street close to the Folds Road end of the street on the corner of Arthur Street.
The pub was founded around 1870 by John Nightingale, who had run a number of the pubs in the town, including the Millstone, which still exists on Crown Street, and the Tippings Arms at Astley Bridge.
But the Masons was very much John Nightingale’s swansong as a pub landlord. He died a few years after opening the pub and was succeeded by Charles Whitehead.
The Masons’ last landlord as a pub was William Adamson. He was a former weaver who took over around 1893. By that time, the pub was owned by John Halliwell and Son and supplied from their Alexandra Brewery on Mount Street about a mile away from Turton Street. But Halliwell’s got into financial difficulties in 1910 and had to sell out to Magee, Marshall and Co.
Magee’s undertook the inevitable review of their newly-expanded tied estate following their takeover of Halliwell’s. A few years earlier, in 1906, they decided to downgrade the Grey Mare, further up Turton Street, from a beerhouse to an off-licence. They came to the conclusion that the Mason’s Arms would benefit from the same course of action. In 1913, the Mason’s closed its doors as a pub and was open for off-sales only.
Later, numbers 125 and 127 Turton Street would be converted back into two separate properties as they were before the Mason’s opened.
The area was demolished in the early seventies. Waterloo Street was later diverted onto Arthur Street to end at its junction with Turton Street. The Masons stood at the corner of that junction (see below, copyright Google Street View).
Turton Street in September 2014. The junction with Folds Road can be seen at the traffic lights in the distance. In the foreground is the junction with Waterloo Street which was re-directed to run via the former Arthur Street in the 1980s. The Masons was situated on the right-hand corner.