The First 200 Years

The cottages were called Dandy Row when the first ones were built in 1823/24, and named after the dandy looms operated by the handloom weavers living there.
They appear to have been built in 3 groups, with a covered ginnel under number 34 for access front to back. When all the random stone buildings were complete, a space was left opposite a small coal pit in the field across the Roman Road on Shaw Fold Farm. In the 1870s, the space was filled with 4 Victorian-style terraced houses, leaving a lower ginnel.

Yates’ Map, 1786
Yates’ Map 1786 – Roman Road 1″ : 1 mile

Roman Road runs from the top to the bottom of Yates’ map. It shows a field between the label ‘Darwen Chapel’ and Roman Road which is where Dandy Row was begun, about 35 years into the future.


Greenwood’s Map, 1818
Greenwood 1818 - DR - labelled

Greenwood’s Map shows several buildings at Pothouse, Pothouse Lane, Holden Fold, Moor Lane, Chapels, Eccleshill Fold, Shaw Fold and Harwood Fold but the site of Dandy Row is still a field without any buildings. The marked track is shown going into land at the bottom end of where Dandy Row will be built, probably leading to the coal pits there where Moorland School later had its playing fields.

Ordnance Survey Map, surveyed 1842, 1″

This is the first map we have found that shows the cottages at Dandy Row. The buildings are in three groups with a gap where 30, 32 and 34 have yet to be built and another gap where numbers 18, 20, 22 and 24 were built by Andrew Heap after 1878.


1841-53 Ordnance Survey

Numbers 30-34 have now been built but there’s still a gap for numbers 18-24. This version shows the track leading from what became known as Dandy Steps at Holden Fold, across the patch of land behind the cottages and past the coal pits until it reaches Roman Road opposite the coal pit in Shaw Fold meadow.


The Tithe Map of 1844
1844 Tithe Map labelled with field names

The tithe maps were drawn to a large scale. The numbers refer to the key on the schedule that lists the owners and occupiers of the lands and buildings. Also included is the acreage of the properties, their state of cultivation and the amount of rent payable. On this map, Dandy Row has two separate labels for the top and bottom groups of cottages, 72 and 73.

For more information on the tithe map and the people who lived on Dandy Row in the early 1840’s, see The Tithe Map and the 1841 Census

Ordnance Survey Map of 1888
1888-93 Dandy Row and Chapels 2000px
1888-93 Dandy Row to Chapels

All the cottages had been built by the time this map was surveyed.

Documentary evidence
1839 Lots 1-4 Dandy Row, for sale

The earliest mention we’ve found of Dandy Row in our local newspapers is from October 1839. Four lots were to be sold by auction and the advert describes the lots as ‘dwelling houses with weaving-shops and conveniences’ and lists the current occupiers of the cottages.

Lot 3 also includes a building that was ‘formerly occupied as a warehouse, and now as a dwelling house by John Marsden.

In Lot 4 is mentioned a plot of building land adjoining the dwelling houses.  This could be either the gap that was soon to be filled by numbers 30,32 & 34, or the larger gap where numbers 18,20,22 & 24 were built in the 1880s.

Completing the Row
1869 Five cottages for sale – “first class investment”!

The advert from 1869 seems to refer to the same dwelling houses as Lot 4 in the 1839 advert. No mention of weaving-shops by then – had hand-loom weaving ended in Dandy Row?

Andrew Heap (Eileen’s great, great uncle), was landlord at the Handel Arms between 1875 and 1883. In 1878 he purchased a plot of land in Eccleshill – Dandy Row. We found this from an Indenture of Assignment by 8 men – James Gillibrand, Thomas Bates, Thomas Bury, Elijah Holden, Thomas Walsh, William Henry Ratcliffe, Edward Bury, John Lightbown.

Andrew moved to number 2 Dandy Row and built the four houses, numbered 18-24, and handed them over to his daughters. He also owned numbers 4 and 6.

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