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Remember When: Flashback to hard graft transforming The Moor
THIS week in Remember When we look back at The Moor and how the hard work of generations before us helped shaped the beloved open green and pool we enjoy today.
The earlier photo, believed to have been taken in the early 1900s, shows the men of the town getting to work cutting down the willows on The Moor.
The men are dressed in the traditional clothes of the day, complete with flat caps and waistcoats.
The willows were probably brought into town to be used for basket making. The cutting of the willows is a tradition that continues in town and is currently being undertaken at The Moor.
The rest of the photographs were taken half a century later, in 1959.
That year, the Knutsford Society was formed and one of the civic group’s first projects was the ‘Moor Tidy-Up’ plan.
To mark the start of the project, Jane Laird, aged eight, and Susan Grant, aged nine, helped society members Bruce Grant and John Townsend plant the first tree.
A total of 137 trees and shrubs were planted as part of the project.
This was followed by the ‘clearing of the lake’ in July 1959. Townspeople waded through mud and reeds gathering junk which had been tipped in the lake.
The group found an array of items including nine bicycle frames, a tricycle, two bedsteads, 30 oil drums, 30 tyres, two baths, two gas boilers, three kettles, a pair of step ladders and 12 wheels.
That winter, the society members were back on The Moor, this time concentrating on clearing weeds and undergrowth.
An extract from an accompanying article, featured in The Guardian on November 5, 1959, reads; “The effort, under the direction of local schoolteacher Mr Bruce Grant, is the first step in the society’s ‘eight-point plan’ to beautify The Moor.
“The land cleared will later be consolidated, sown with new grass and planted with flowering trees and shrubs.”
It also reads: “They ranged in age from youngsters of five to an old-age pensioner of 72.
“There was a barrister and a farm worker.
“But they swung their scythes and sickles and used their forks and rakes at will – and now the west side of Knutsford’s Moor looks a much better place for their efforts.”
Do you recognise the faces in the photos? Did you help out with the tidy-up? Email firstname.lastname@example.org and let us know.
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