Stone beacon marker. Square base rising to pyramidal stone spire surmounted by weathervane.
Ashurst Hill takes its name from a 17th century family who owned the site, one of whom became High Sheriff of Lancashire. It was the site of an ancient beacon, but the present structure probably dates from the late 18th century. The land including the beacon was acquired by Thomas Meadows, editor of the Wigan Observer, during the 1920s.(1) He restored the structure twice at his own expense.(2) The beacon and the surrounding 17 acres were donated to Wigan Corporation in December 1962 by his widow Florence. Mr Meadows had, she said, always intended to hand over the land on condition that it remained a public park and was not built upon. At the time of the donation the Corporation promised not to use the site for slum clearance or as part of the proposed new town of Skelmersdale. A plaque commemorating the donation was added in 1966, shortly after the death of Mrs Meadows.(3)
Plaque: Presented to the Corporation of Wigan on 12 December, 1962, by Mrs. Sophia Florence Meadows, in memory of her husband, Thomas Meadows, journalist (1877-1956), whose desire it was that this land should remain for ever a beauty spot for the enjoyment of the people of Wigan.
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