Kings Road Farm

Kings Road Farm (by George Walker)

The farm was accessed from Audenshaw Road via a private road named Kings Road on the Manchester Corporation Water Works estate.
The farm was situated on the east side of Kings Road on a narrow strip of land beneath the side of No.3 reservoir.
The property consists of an imposing farm house standing on the edge of Kings Road, and the farm buildings formed a courtyard design.
Kings Road was built as an access road to Debdale at the time of the construction of the reservoirs before the building of Kings Road Farm.
The farm was built around 1890, and appears for the first time on an OS map of 1895. The house was a large family house with two large rooms at the front and a large kitchen, with a large scullery /cellar at the rear.
There were four large bedrooms and a bathroom on the first floor, and on the second floor two more medium size bedrooms.
The rear of the house has a walled yard with a wash house, coal store and outside toilet.
Behind these outhouses lay the very long stable, shippon barn building.
This is a narrow building, approximately 20 feet wide and over 200 feet long.
At the left end of the building were the stable for the horses with four horse stalls, and a large loose box for sick animals.
There was a brick dividing wall separating the stable from the shippon section, and this part held 40 standings (stalls) for cattle, and ran the whole length of the building in a continuous line, broken only by the corn, proven store with a large pit for brewer’s grains to be stored, this being in the centre of the building.
In the corn store was the staircase leading into the lofts above,
The lofts stretch the full length of the building, and when filled with hay would hold between 60 and 70 tons of hay for winter fodder.
This building was not a natural Lancashire barn building, and some opinions have been that it may have had a different use by the MCWW before it became a farm property. The top of the yard was squared off with a brick garage, and facing the long barn an open ended storage shed. Alongside was a midden store with concrete base and next to this a double yard pig sty. The boiler house stood next to this, and an open fronted vehicle shed, which were all of brick and slate. Finally completing the courtyard rectangle was the dairy building which contained the facilities for milk processing.
There were some 70 acres of land to the farm, of which 22 acres were reservoir embankments, these were for grazing only.
In the 1930's Mr John Bradley and his family tenanted the farm, by 1943 Mr George Walker and his family took over the tenancy.
A major setback for the Walkers occurred in 1961 when Manchester Corporation Water Works took 50 acres of land from the farm and allocated the land to Fairfield Golf Club for a 9 hole golf course, because Fairfield had lost a 9 hole course when the Wright Robinson School was built on it.
This left the Walkers with no option but to look for another farm, as Kings Road Farm could no longer sustain a milking herd.
Mr George Walker Jnr. remained at Kings Road still managing the milk rounds in Audenshaw, and utilising the remaining 20 odd acres of embankments grazing beef cattle. In 1995 he relinquished his tenancy with United Utilities, as the M60 Manchester Outer Ring road began to swallow up the remaining land at Kings Road Farm. Thus ended 52 years of occupancy by the family, and in 1997 the farm was demolished.

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