Rochdale is reached from the M62
Junction 20 via the A627(M). By rail it is Mid way between
Manchester and Leeds.
The Rochdale Canal is currently undergoing complete restoration which, when complete, will provide a trans-pennine link between Castlefield in Manchester and Sowerby Bridge in West Yorkshire where it joins the Leeds Liverpool Canal and thus the national canal network.
The population of the Rochdale Township is 94,425 (1991 census) while the Borough of Rochdale has a population of some 207,100 (1994). Cachement population is 6.76 million within 30 miles, 12.83 million within 60 miles and 22.96 million within 100 miles.
Now then, I hope you like these pictures of Rochdale. Rochdale is not only famous for the Co-Op but also one of the widest bridges in the world! Gracie Fields was also born here. Rochdale is built on the River Roch 10 miles North East of Manchester and used to be an important cotton-spinning town.
Rochdale is well known as the birthplace of the Cooperative movement over 150 years ago. (21st December 1844) Here you can see the original Co-op shop in Toad Lane, Rochdale which is now preserved as a museum. There is more information here.
Rochdale Town Hall is an outstanding landmark, built in sandstone in a Victorian neo-gothic style. It richly deserves its Grade 1 listed status. It was designed by the Leeds architect William Crossland. The foundation stone was laid in 1866 by John Bright and the building was finally opened on 27th September 1871. The original spire was badly damaged by fire in 1883 and in 1887 the replacement tower, designed by Alfred Waterhouse was completed. Although the tower is 50 feet shorter than the original, it is nevertheless a perfect complement to the main building.
Manchester University Guide to Rochdale
Find Rochdale Rushbearing in the EFDSS Folk Festival Directory