A COUPLE of weeks ago Burnley historian Ken Spencer asked why Trafalgar Street is always known simply as Trafalgar.

He has since come across a poem which is entitled Trafalgar Fooaks, written by George Hindle.

In his day at the turn of the century, hundreds of families lived in the area, in the row upon row of terraced streets just across the road from the various mill and weaving sheds, which were built from one end of Trafalgar to the other.

Among them was one Thomas Whitham, Burnley’s Victoria Cross hero in the First World War, who lived at 39 Rowley Street at the time.

Do you remember some of the other streets that have now long since disappeared – such as Gresham Place, Patten Street, Whitaker Street, Lydia Street and Keppel Street?

Albion Street led over the railway lines to the houses at Piccadilly, while the 1912 town map also shows Sandy Gate once ran on both sides of Trafalgar.

Did you know that at one time there was the Olympic skating rink, on the corner of Dent Row, at the Manchester Road end, close to the station?

George Hindle, born in 1853, was a mill engineer as well as an author and wrote the first guide to Towneley Hall in 1905 and Tales of the Brun which was published in 1896.

He was an organiser of Burnley and District Engineers’ and Firemen’s Union and did much to raise the status of those trades.

He was also active in politics, the temperance movement and for Rehoboth Methodist Church.

When he died in 1916, he left behind a widow Betsy, five sons and four daughters.

His Trafalgar Fooaks was considered to be one of his most popular poems by local folk, all considered gradely and good, and by his wife, who came from Thorneybank.