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Tan Yard Cotton Manufactory, Hillock St (Kemble), Prescot


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Hello Everyone,


It's been a while since I communicated with the group although I have had a number of recent email exchanges with Stephen Nulty. As always, he has been extremely helpful.


Currently, I am looking for information concerning the Tan Yard (Shuttle Alley, Long Row, etc.) on the south side of what was Hillock Street, now Kemble, in Prescot. My questions involve

1. The brief period of cotton manufacture in Prescot (about which I know nothing except there was once a sailcloth manufacturer in Prescot), and

2. The tenure of the John and Richard Allen as textile manufacturers in Lancashire, and, of course, Prescot.


Stephen was kind to send me a drop box with number of entries from Pigot's Directories, but it expired and I am unable to retrieve it.

This is what I THINK I know from some of the notes taken from the original drop box:


John and Richard Allen engaged in textile manufacture from about 1818 (possibly earlier in and around Prestwich and/or Warrington) to 1847. They operated first under the name of "James Allen & Sons, manufacturers of fustian, sateen and velvet" (don't know which Pigot's this came from), and later under the name of "John and Richard Allen," according to Pigot's (date?). John and Richard Allen operated 3 factories devoted to cotton manufacture in Manchester (Bailey's Court); Warington (actually Newton-in-Willows); and Prescot (Hillock Street).


I am requesting your help on reconstructing this series of events related to the Allens as well as some general information on the cotton industry itself as it related to Prescot.


Thanks very much. I do appreciate any assistance you can provide.


Warm regards,

Paul Rollins

Atlanta, Georgia


P.S. And, yes, everyone over here is VERY nervous about the upcoming Presidential election just as you folks must have been about Brexit. It's very contentious and family-dividing. We'll be glad when it's over. PR

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Hi Paul, this is all I could find,


Lancashire Directory 1822-3:

James Allen & Sons, cotton manufacturers, Hillock Street.


Pigot's Lancashire Directory 1832:

John & Richard Allen, fustian manufacturers, Hillock Street.


Richard Allen, cotton spinner, Hillock Street.



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Hi Paul - not sure where I was up to the last time we chatted


The firm of John & Richard Allen was wound up in in 1847 - http://www.prescot.org/?page_id=6041


The firm continued to trade as Allen, Houghton, and Brother


John Allen, Henry James Houghton, and Peter Allen Houghton (nephews of John Allen)


Peter Allen Houghton is listed as their agent in the 1848 Slater's Guide


The firm of John Allen and Co was wound up in 1852 - http://www.prescot.org/?page_id=6108





For info you can find the Trade Directories relevant to Prescot here






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noting the comment over hillock st and warrington.in 1817 we had family living in Bank st Warringto with births etc at StElphins.But couldnt track after.Then later moved to hillock st.Perhaps they were involved in cotton?Much later watch industry as we all know well.Wondered how to track in warrington area?

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Manchester: 1822 Lancs Directory, and 1825 Baines Directory:

James Allen & Sons, cotton spinners and fustian manufacturers, 9, Hotel Buildings, Exchange Street.


Manchester: 1832 Pigot's Directory:

James Allen & Sons, Manufacturers of fustians, Exchange Street,

John & Richard Allen, Manufacturers of fustians, 17, New Square, Cannon Street.


1848 O.S. map showing Tan Yard Mf. and Shuttle Alley situated on the south side of the eastern end of Hillock street.



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  • 1 year later...

Hi all,

I apologize for being  a bother. I want to get the facts correct about the Allen family in Prescot and their various cotton mills, and I need help from those of you with better, more accessible resources.

Three questions:

The first is regarding the following entry for James Allen & Sons in Manchester in the1822-23 Lancashire Directory (Pigot's): "James Allen & Sons, cotton spinners and fustian manufacturers, 9, Hotel Buildings, Exchange Street." I do not have access to this Directory online. Would someone kindly tell me what page this entry appears on, what category it is listed under, and what town(s) - Prescot only or Prescot and St. Helen's?

Second: Does the Lancashire Directory for 1822/23 mention James Allen & Sons (or John & Richard Allen) having a manufactory in Warrington (Newton-in-Willows)? The Warrington factory was in operation six years later as it is listed in the 1828-29 Pigot's.

Third and last: The Prescot History page refers to a 24 July 1810 article in the Manchester Courier referring to the auction of Prescot's cotton manufactory on Hillock Street in 1810. See:  http://www.prescot.org/wordpress/?page_id=136&id=107&q=cotton&st=3&h&root=8. Is there any way of finding out for certain whether the Allen family purchased the Hillock Street factory at that time? Otherwise, I have to speculate that they did.

Thank you for your continued help. I hope the answer to these questions will get me over the hump in this section of my book.

Warm regards,

Paul Rollins

Atlanta, GA





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Hi, sorry I've not had much time to search this week and the only things I have found is this directory which I've added a link for so you can search for yourself. It does have the item you mention . Its not prescot at all but Manchester, there is more than one entry for Allens and cotton/ fustian. Hotel Buildings was 12 Exchange Street Manchester I believe.

https://www.dropbox.com/s/idt5u814dbfyjwo/1825 History_Directory_and_Gazetteer_of_the_County Lancaster.pdf?dl=0

I can find no reference to the second directory you require and we have no Library Archives here at present due to alleged damage to the fabric of the building which was supposed to be repaired within 29 weeks, that was May 2017.


3rd question  Newspapers perhaps? I'll have to think on a bit more but you could start by asking at the Lancashire Archives at Preston by email, they may be able to answer you better than I can. See here for why I suggest them - http://archivecat.lancashire.gov.uk/CalmView/Record.aspx?src=CalmView.Catalog&id=DDCS%2f26%2f45&pos=2



Did you find this answer to your previous question?


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