The Bravest Little Street in England

An exciting new book on Chapel Street hits the bookstores and libraries on 15 August, just in time for some excellent summer reading.

‘The Bravest Little Street in England’, written by  Trafford Local Studies Staff and Volunteers, charts the full story of Chapel Street, Altrincham, from its origins in the late 1700s through to its demise in the 1950s and looks at the valiant role it played in the First World War.

Chapel Street’s fame was widespread throughout England and was recognised by King George V, who himself dubbed it the ‘bravest little street in England’ and congratulated it on its ‘patriotism and fighting spirit’. From just 60 or so terraced houses, 161 men had enlisted, with many killed on the battlefield, never to return to their Altrincham homes. Newspapers as far away as Australia reported on the heroism of such a small street in which so many men had enlisted.

Councillor Kevin Procter, Executive Member for Communities and Housing at Trafford Council, said: “So often the lives of ordinary working class people are missing from the history books. I am humbled by the courage and patriotism of the brave men of Chapel Street, many of whom paid the ultimate price for their country. With the centenary of the end of the Great War just three months away, this book is a fitting tribute to the heroism of those who served their country.

The book, which has taken more than four years of research, includes all the names of the soldiers listed on the Chapel Street Roll of Honour and tells the stories of the men and their families, many of whom were of Irish descent and looks at their origins and family background. There are stories of bravery, desertions, and the loss of loved ones, a wartime romance and, in, one memorable incident, even the rescue of a future Prime Minister.

In addition, the book looks at the highs and lows of family life and, in some cases, the struggle to keep their families together. The book is a must for anyone interested in the social conditions of working class people in the late 19th and early 20th Century. It uses statistics to look at whether social mobility was affected by the outcome of the First World War.

Retail price £14.99

Publication date 15th August 2018 

Copies of the book will be available from 15 August in Trafford Libraries for loan or to buy and through bookstores and online at.

Posted on Wednesday 15th August 2018