I grew up in Lowton, living there until the age of 17, I have now worked in Lowton for 10 years and still have close family in the village. So I’ve seen many changes in the area over the years, not many of them positive to be honest, the latest being the demolition of Lowton Civic Hall. It was sad to see it go so easily, I’m glad I managed to grab the video when I did, because a couple of weeks after taking it the centre was no more. The video above was taken using an android phone so please excuse the quality.
Below is a brief history of Lowton Civic Hall later known as the Rose center which was a centerpiece for the area known as HMS Cabbala, Scotia North and Lowton Meadows at various times in it’s history.
In 1939 farmland at the bottom of what is now known as Hesketh Meadow lane, was compulsory purchased by the war department with the intention to be used for accommodation for the munitions factory at Risley Moss and was to be known as Risley Hostels.
Building work began in 1941 on a self-contained village which was designed to house 600 workers but in 1942 before the first resident could move in plans were changed and it was instead used as a Royal Navy signal training centre known as HMS Cabbala.
There were approx 600 sailors and 60 wrens on what was known as a land-based ship until 1946, teaching top secret methods of sending and receiving messages including the Morse code.
After the Navy vacated the site it became an hostel for displaced Eastern European people who mainly worked in the local coal mines.
It was later taken over by the Ministry of Works who used it to house American service personnel and their families from the base at Burtonwood and was called Scotia North.
In 1960 it was taken over by the Golborne Urban District Council and used to house local families becoming part of the council housing stock. It was locally known as The Meadows.
In 1974 Wigan Metropolitan Borough council took over all the local district councils in the area including Golborne, and subsequently decided to demolished the village, re-housing residents on a new council house estate built nearby, now known as Egerton road estate.
However the Civic Hall was retained for leisure purposes up until 2011 when it was sold into private hands, being renamed the Rose Centre, later falling into disuse.
The Hall was demolished in November 2017, shortly after the video above was filmed.