Kirkham is a small town about half way between Preston and Blackpool, in an area called the Fylde (an old Scandinavian word for field).
In the 1970’s the remain of an elk were found nearby. It had two harpoons embedded in, which is evidence that the area was inhabited about 8,000 years ago.
In the Middle Ages, it was a small market town, but in the 17th centre it became a thriving textile centre, concentrating originally on sail-cloth and flax, and later on cotton. At one time, the town had 11 textile miles, and the last one finally closed in 2003.
Kirkham Grammar School was founded in 1549, originally as a chantry school attached to St Michael’s Church. In the 17th century, it was put in the trust of the Worshipful Company of Drapers. The partnership between the Company and the school still exists, although the school became independent in 1944. Originally only for boys, it became co-educational in 1979.
As a child, I went several times to the annual gala, known as Kirkham Club Day, when there were processions by the local churches, with banner, biblical Tableau floats, and ‘Rose Queens.’ One of my friends was chosen as the Rose Queen in the mid 50’s and I remember being very envious of the beautiful white dress she wore that day!