Authors return ‘To Market, To Market’ for book signing
Thursday 7th December 2017 08:00 Ashton Business Community News Tameside Posted by Nigel Skinner

The authors behind the highly acclaimed history of Ashton Market return to the market themselves tomorrow (Friday) to sign special offerings of their title.

To Market, To Market, penned by brothers Philip and David Williams, was a complete sell-out within eight weeks of its first publication in 1994 – necessitating a rapid reprint which in turn also sold out.

A further special limited edition published in 1998 continued the trend.

Ashton’s Market has always occupied an important place in the day to day life of local society and has provided a focal point for the community even when faced with formidable competition.

Entering the new millennium the market still maintained its status as a major shopping attraction.

This edition originally published in 2009 continues the story from 1998. The 21st century saw new forms of retailing emerging creating new challenges for local shops and Ashton’s traditional markets.

The greatest challenge was to arise in May 2004 when the Ancient Market Hall was destroyed by fire.

Read how this event affected the traders many of whom lost their livelihoods – the repercussions felt by the outside market and other businesses and the town itself.

The book covers the aftermath of the fire and the rise (and fall) of the Phoenix Market and of the rebuilding and reopening of the ‘new’ market hall.

The authors have also took the opportunity to include additional material to the book’s earlier chapters which were not available for previous publications – plus the addition of many more photographs and illustrations.

‘To Market, To Market’ traces the history of Ashton’s outdoor and indoor markets from the very beginning near to St Michael’s Square up to present day.

It is a volume packed with facts and interesting stories spanning over hundreds of years. The market has always attracted attention just as this enlightening and entertaining book will do as it reveals the story of one of the North’s most popular markets.

With the Tameside Christmas Market concluding this weekend, the brothers say this is the time of year when they field most questions about availability of their book.

To Market, To Market also carries a Foreword written by the late Coronation Street actor Bill Tarmey, who played Jack Duckworth in the Street (pictured above with the brothers), and who as a young lad worked on the market roundabouts.

The authors will be signing limited edition copies of their books in the indoor market this Friday only.

“Obviously, people want them as Christmas presents, and as the books are no longer available in the shops, (and actually the hardback has never been offered through shops), people tend to contact us direct to see if we can help them”, said Philip.

Therefore they have made available a limited number of their books, which they will be signing in the Market Hall on Friday, December 8.

As well as a paperback version a rare hardback edition can be purchased, which carries one extra chapter and is presented in a traditional Ashton Market Carrier Bag with two Community Art Postcards produced by local artist John Kimpton, plus a 6”x4” photo reprint of a vintage Market Scene.

In addition there is also a special supplement ‘So, how much is that in old money’ containing a ‘keepsake’ genuine un-circulated pre-decimal 1966 halfpenny – with brief comments from Ashton market shoppers in 1971 regarding decimalisation.