Buildings of Interest

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  • Hawksnest
  • Hawksnest
  • Hawksnest
  • Hawksnest
Grade U


95, Dicconson Street, Wigan

Listed Date: 00/00/0000
Part of Group:
At Risk: No


Built around 1879, at the time when the Swinley area was being developed.

Once the home of Arthur John Hawkes who came to Wigan following the tragic death of Henry Tennyson Folkard, the first Librarian of the Wigan Free Public Library. Folkard was, killed by a horse-drawn milk float driven by a 14-year-old boy, on his way back to the Library after lunch at his home.

AJ Hawks began his career at Bournemouth Libary around 1900 and afterward at the Leeds Reference Library, then on to National Library of Wales, as senior Assistant, before arriving in Wigan in 1919.

On his appointment as Chiel Librarian, Arthur was awarded a salary of £350 per year rising by annual increments of £25 to £450.

He would become an authority on the history of Wigan and published many books and pamphlets. Probably, his most important work was "TheClockmakers and Watchmakers of Wigan from 1650 to 1850". Linkoriginally priced at 8s 6d.

Some other examples of his work:-

Such was his knowledge and microscopic research he identified the first record of the sale of potatoes in Wigan in 1680, discovered in the Court Leet records.

He was Borough Librarian from 1919 to 1950, also the Past President of the Lancashire & Cheshire Antiquarian Society, and the Hon. Editor from 1938 to1949.


1885 Arthur John Hawkes born 21st February in Bournemouth to Charles and Elizabeth

1891 Aged 9 yrs living in Christchurch, Hampshire with his large family

1901 Aged 16 Assistant Librarian at Bournemouth Library

1909 Moved from Bournemouth to new position at Leeds City Library

1911 Boarding at 6 Belmont Grove, Leeds

1913 Married in Leeds Annie Elizabeth Hirst 26th August

1918 Son Joseph Simmonds Hawkes born 27th June, 1918 in Aberystwyth

1918 Joined British Royal Airforce attested 3rd August

1919 Appointed to Wigan Library from National Library of Wales, Aberystwyth

1921 95 Dicconson Street, Borough Librarian, Wigan Corporation

1939 95 Dicconson Street, Borough Librarian

1944-45 President of Lancashire & Cheshire Antiquarian Society

1950 Retired from Wigan Library

1952 Died 12th December, buried 16th December in Gidlow Cemetery, leaving £3,501 gross £3,445 net

Other Occupants of 95, Dicconson Street

1879 William Strickland 1st occupant?
1881 William Strickland
1886 William Strickland moving advert for sale of furniture
1891 Wilding family
1901 McCurdy family
1911 Douglas & Munro’s
1921 Hawkes
1939 Hawkes

Rita Fell 2022