Thursday, 6 August 2015

Eagle and Vulcan, 45 Folds Road

Vulcan. Ask anyone what a Vulcan is and their answer will no doubt include a reference to the late Leonard Nimoy’s portrayal of Mr Spock in the television series Star Trek. Vulcan was actually  the Roman god of fire and he appears in many pub names, not just in Bolton, though the town appears to have had more than its fair share. The Vulcan on Junction Road is still with us and is noted in the Dictionary Of Pub Names. [1]

The book also lists three other pubs of that name in Millwall, Derby and Wales. But on Bolton there was also the Vulcan Inn at the junction of Great Moor Street and Derby Street, the Horse and Vulcan off Folds Road and the Eagle and Vulcan at 45 Folds Road.

The Eagle and Vulcan dates back to around the mid-1840s and on the 1848 Bolton Directory it was being run by William Parkinson and his wife Alice. The 1841 census shows the Parkinsons living in nearby Smith Street where William worked as a spinner. The 1851 census has them at the Eagle and Vulcan. William was an umbrella maker as well as the licensee of a beer-house, though in reality it is likely to have been run by Ann.

The family had five children and were living with one of William’s uncles, a servant and a lodger. It must have been a very crowded existence and while the 1853 directory shows the Parkinsons still at the pub, by the time of the 1861 census they had moved a few doors up Folds Road. William was still making umbrellas.

By 1869, the Eagle and Vulcan was under the control of Henry Shuttleworth. In September of that year a change in the law meant that all the beerhouses in Bolton had to re-apply for their licenses. Henry Shuttleworth appeared in front of the magistrates and was told his licence certificate would be granted. But he was back in court again a week later. Two pubs in Bolton were run by different men named Henry Shuttleworth: the Eagle and Vulcan and the Lodge Bank Tavern. But the licence granted the previous week was for the Lodge Bank. The clerk of the court stated that it wouldn’t be right to issue a licence and then withdraw it a week later. The chairman of the bench, Mayor James Barlow, agreed though he warned Henry Shuttleworth as to his future conduct as he had two licensing convictions against him. A huge number of beerhouses were closed as a result of the 1869 hearings and Henry was lucky especially as Mayor Barlow was a lifelong temperance campaigner. [2] The Eagle and Vulcan would most likely have been closed were it not for a clerical error. As it was, the pub continued for another 99 years.

Henry Shuttleworth was gone from the Eagle and Vulcan in little more than twelve months. He was succeeded by George Ryder who remained at the pub until his death in 1879 at the age of just 39.

It became a Magees pub and it was run by the Walkden family for a number of years. In 1901, James Walkden and his wife Ann were running a fish and chip shop on Folds Road. By 1905 they were at the Eagle and Vulcan. James died in 1920 at the age of just 49. Ann took over the pub and ran it until her death in 1933.

Eagle and Vulcan Folds Road Bolton

The Eagle and Vulcan was situated at the junction of Hulme Street and it was the needs of the motor car that led to its demise. St Peters Way was built along the path of the old Manchester, Bolton and Bury Canal and as far as the junction of St George’s Street and Kay Street. That meant the demolition of a number of properties at the bottom end of Folds Road to accommodate a bridge for the by-pass.

The Eagle and Vulcan closed in 1968, by which time it was a Greenall Whitley pub.  It was demolished shortly afterwards.

[1] Dictionary Of Pub Names (2006)

[2] Bolton Evening News, 16 September 1869.

Folds Road in September 2012 (copyright Google Street View). Hulme Street ended in between the motorway bridge and the slip road. The Eagle and Vulcan was situated on the corner of Folds Road and Hulme Street.

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