Difference between revisions of "Oldham"
Revision as of 22:29, 19 September 2011
Oldham is the chief town in the Metropolitan Borough , of the same name, in Greater Manchester. It is located high in the Pennines and at it's peak ,in the 19th century, was an international centre in the textiles industry.
Manchester International Airport (IATA: MAN) (ICAO: EGCC).  in South Manchester is the nearest airport to Oldham. Nearly 100 operators fly to and from hundreds of locations worldwide, including most major cities in Europe.
Direct trains run from the airport station to Manchester Piccadilly run throughout the day while travelling by car is only 30-45 minutes away via the M60 and M56 motorways.
At the moment, there is no train service from the Town Centre of Oldham. The only Train Station in any of the borough is in Greenfield, which is about a 15 minute drive out of the town centre or around 25 minute bus journey on First Manchester services 180 and 184.
There once used to be an every 15 minutes Monday-Saturday daytime train route, but the line has since closed from 3rd October 2009, to make way for a new Metrolink Tram service, due to be opened for use between Manchester and Oldham in Autumn 2011, with further connections to Shaw and Crompton in Spring 2012, and finally being completed to Rochdale in about Summer 2012. There will also be a Town Centre route (meaning there will be two routes taken by trams through Oldham) - this will operate via Union Street, King Street, and then rejoining the normal line at the Oldham Sixth-Form Centre.
Oldham is located close to two motorways, with the town centre 15 minutes away from both the M60 and M62 motorways. Oldham can be accessed via J22 (A62 Hollinwood) and J21 (A663 Broadway) of the M60 and J20 (A627(M)) of the M62 motorway. The M60 and M62 provides Oldham with links to several other towns and cities within a short drive of the town, including Halifax, Huddersfield, Leeds, Liverpool, Rochdale, Stockport, The Trafford Centre and Warrington.
Manchester is a 25 minute drive from Oldham town centre with the two places linked by the A62, which continues on to Huddersfield and Leeds.
Places that are within 2 hours of Oldham include Blackpool, the Lake District, the North Wales coast, the Peak District and the Pennines.
National Express  is the major coach operator running several services to places across the country. Coaches depart from the main bus station, located at Cheapside.
Transport in Greater Manchester is overseen and co-ordinated by the GMPTE (Information: 0870 608 2 608) . GMPTE sells a number of tickets which are valid for multiple operators, such as the any bus day ticket or the Wayfarer. If you are planning to do a lot of travelling in one day, these might be your cheapest option. Information can be also obtained from the GMPTE Travelshop located next to the Civic Centre at Oldham bus station.
The main bus operator in Oldham is First Manchester , whose main headquarters are based in Oldham. They provide frequent bus services to Manchester with the 82 and 83 routes  providing a 5 minute frequency service and the 180 and 184  providing a 10 minute frequency service. The services are usually distinguished by their Overground route branding, which is similar to London's Underground network. Buses 82 and 83 are the Orange Line service while the 180 and 184 are the Purple Line service.
There are several buses serving all areas of Oldham. They include the following (Service destinations in brackets):
Other places outside of Oldham are served by buses from Oldham bus station:
Northern Rail provide the train services in the Oldham area (although not to Oldham town centre, with the line being replaced by Metrolink), running trains to Manchester Victoria. From there, passengers can transfer on the Metrolink to Piccadilly, which they can travel on services to the south of the country or to Scotland.
From Mills Hill (Catch bus 56, 58 and 59 from Oldham town centre):
From Greenfield (Catch bus 180 and 184 from Oldham town centre):
Oldham Coliseum theatre has a full programme of repertory theatre and an annual pantomime. The theatre enjoys an enviable reputation for ambitious productions and excellent performances with appearances from many famous actors. The Coliseum is located within a short walking distance from the shops in Oldham town centre down Yorkshire Street.
Oldham Museum is situated in a former 'Friends Meeting House,' on Greaves Street. The Museum has a programme of changing exhibitions as well as a permanent display, "Going up Town" where visitors can step back in time to the days when the town was dominated by the cotton industry. The museum is a 5 minute walk from the town centre, with plently of bus services heading into Oldham town centre stopping nearby on Union Street.
Tandle Hill Park is a mixture of magnificent beech woodland and open grassland with a wide panorama of the surrounding countryside. There are several walks around the park and links to Crompton Moor. The 409 service provide frequent links from Oldham via Royton with the park a short walk from the main road, the A671 Rochdale Road.
Alexandra Park is located to the south of Oldham town centre. It is a vital link between town and countryside for both people and wildlife. The visitor centre contains displays and information on the history of the park as well as countryside events. These are held both in the park and in other areas. The centre is open by prior arrangement. Please contact if you would like to visit. The 408 is the closest bus service to the park running hourly from the bus station. The 425 service runs close to both the north and south sides of the park. Services heading from Oldham towards Holts Estate will serve the north side of the park, while services towards Fitton Hill serves the south side.
Daisy Nook Country Park is a beautiful area offering people of all ages the chance to enjoy a peaceful walk looking at wildlife amidst varied countryside. The park includes beautiful woodland areas, a lake, a canal and flower filled meadows with bridleways and footpaths, which link to other countryside areas. At the John Howarth Countryside centre there are activities for children and a souvenir shop. There is also a cafe and toilets with access for wheelchairs and pushchairs. The 409 provide frequent links from Oldham travelling towards Ashton-under-Lyne.
Saddleworth Museum and Art Gallery is housed in a former textile mill in the village of Uppermill, which is now part of the Oldham Metropolitian Borough but was part of the West Ridings of Yorkshire. Exhibitions feature local archaeology, handicrafts and customs, from the Romans the present day. There are preserved looms and other items of textile machinery, from some of the many mills in the area. The museum gallery features work by contemporary artists and travelling exhibitions. Guided tours are available by prior request. A shop and Tourist Information Centre provide an opportunity to acquire a souvenir of the visit. The Museum can be reached by bus by the 184 from Oldham, the 350 from Ashton (or from Oldham via Delph, which is a longer route than the 184 which runs via Lees) and is a 10 minute walk from Greenfield train station.
The Huddersfield Narrow Canal runs through the Saddleworth area of Oldham. It re-opened in May 2001 following a £30 million restoration project funded mainly by the Millennium Commission and English Partnerships. It is more than 50 years since the waterway was last open to through navigation. The waterway runs for 20 miles between Ashton-under-Lyne and Huddersfield - passing through the scenic Saddleworth villages of Greenfield, Uppermill and Diggle - before entering the Standedge Tunnel through the Pennines. The 180 and 184 provide a 10 minute frequeny towards Saddleworth from Oldham with the 184 running near to the canal through Diggle, Marsden and Huddersfield.
Hollingworth Lake Country Park and Visitor Centre is a popular location for visitors. It is located outside the Oldham area but is visited by plently of Oldhamers. It was known as the "The Weighvers' Seaport". Now once again visitors can enjoy many outdoor attractions and an excellent Visitor Centre. Spanning 118 acres with the dramatic backdrop of Blackstone Edge, the lake is on of the most popular days out in the area. With boating, nature reserve, trails, events, guided walks, visitor centre, community arts, environmental exhibitions, play and picnic areas. The car is the best way to travel there but parking is limited. The 452 service runs an hourly service from Rochdale via Milnrow. The 452 can be connected with the 409 at Rochdale or the 58 service at Milnrow.
Oldham has two main shopping centres, Town Square Shopping Centre and The Spindles. The two centres are connected together to form one big shopping centre but were until recently run by separate companies. There are several big name shops based in the two shopping centres.
In Town Square shopping centre, there are:
The Spindles has:
Other stores are located on High Street, including Gamestation, Home Bargains, Poundland, Primark, Sports Direct and Top Shop. There is a Sainsbury's and a TK Maxx located on Union Street and there is also Tommyfield's market, which located to the north of the town centre, offering an indoor modern market hall and an outdoor market, which is steeped in history, character and tradition. Tommyfield is Oldham’s best known market and was established over 140 years ago, Tommyfield prides itself on being one of the largest open air markets in the North West. It is also a highpoint among English markets, as it’s literally the highest market in the country, nestling in the centre of Oldham amidst the impressive back drop of the Pennines.
For those who find that Oldham doesn't offer everything they need, a short trip to Manchester and The Trafford Centre provide more options.
The best chips and gravy from the historic SlowBoat Chinese Takeaway located in Yorkshire Street
Millies' Butties, a small cafe just opposite the Travelodge hotel on Manchester Street (or is it Manchester Road?), does great cheap fried breakfasts.
By far the best spicy chicken wrap is to be had at virginia fried chicken on union street, but stick to the wrap chicken wrap. The chicken pieces and wings and burgers are not so good.
You can also get really good food at the Litten Tree pub in the town centre (a main course and dessert should cost about a tenner).
There are several locations scattered around Oldham town centre with the majority of pubs and clubs located on Yorkshire Street, which is located between Oldham town centre and Oldham Mumps.
Travelodge hotel (a nice hotel which is still being finished: you might get a bargain!)
Oldham, like many other areas in Greater Manchester, has its rough bits and more rundown areas where crime is higher. Avoid drug dealers and users as there is a gang war in Oldham mostly in Glodwick and St. Maries and rival drug gangs are carrying out "Hits" and it is best to avoid this as you may get caught up in this.