Messenger looks back on the history of a Victorian pub in Altrincham that is being demolished

Messenger Newspapers: Alfred and Sarah Barker, the siblings’ great grandparents Alfred and Sarah Barker, the siblings’ great grandparents

A VICTORIAN pub in Altrincham that is currently being demolished represents a large slice of personal history for one family.

The Bridge Inn, on Moss Lane, is being knocked down to make way for a proposed £100m redevelopment - known as Altair - of the Oakfield Road car park area.

And for five siblings from Sale - Lois Sands, aged 65, Norma Morris, aged 71, Ann Kelly, 76, Jean Roberts, 73, and Harold Higginson, 69 - the destruction of the pub in tinged with sadness.

It was run by members of their family for decades and their mother, Nancie, was born there.

Lois said: “It is sad because it is our family history - it is a bit of us going for good.”

The siblings’ great grandfather, Alfred Barker, is believed to be the first ‘beer house keeper’ of the pub. He ran it with his wife Sarah, pictured, from at least the mid 1870s.

The couple had 13 children, four of whom died in childhood.

One of their daughters, Ann, married Charles Dean - known as Frank - pictured, and they are the siblings’ grandparents.

Their great grandfather, Alfred, died in 1899, and the 1901 census reveals that Frank was now the manager of the pub.

As well as Nancie, the couple also had an older daughter, Annie.

The 1911 census shows Frank and Ann were still the occupants of the Bridge Inn, with their two daughters and two servants, Edith Sanders, aged 20, and Betsy Tates, aged 16.

Frank died in 1921 and Ann died in 1935.

Lois and Norma’s aunt, Annie, took over a corner sweet shop, at 43 Moss Lane. Annie was one of 12 people who died when a bomb hit houses on the corner of Oakfield Road and Moss Lane on December 23, 1940.

Lois and Norma believe these houses were built by their grandmother, Sarah.

Comments (1)

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9:32am Fri 10 Feb 12

Urban Alty says...

Are the people in this town bothered about the historical connection that the Bridge Inn had. I'll be drinking to a new gravel filled car park to meet the demands in Altrincham. Maybe it will attract shoppers to visit the growing amount of empty shops in the town. Do we actually think that Altair will make an impact on the Town. Altrincham is like the Bridge Inn its become a distant memory and people need to accept it.
Are the people in this town bothered about the historical connection that the Bridge Inn had. I'll be drinking to a new gravel filled car park to meet the demands in Altrincham. Maybe it will attract shoppers to visit the growing amount of empty shops in the town. Do we actually think that Altair will make an impact on the Town. Altrincham is like the Bridge Inn its become a distant memory and people need to accept it. Urban Alty
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