Links in a Chain - the Mayors of Bolton
Links in a Chain - The Mayors of Bolton
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Jonathan Cowburn

Chairman of Westhoughton Urban District Council: 1939-40 (Independent)

Born: Daisy Hill, Westhoughton 1877

Died: Park Road, Westhoughton 15 February 1944

Educated: Daisy Hill Church Day School


He started work aged 10 at the printworks but at 12 went to Chequerbent Pit, working with the Hulton Colliery Company for 38 years. When the Chequerbent Pit closed in 1927 he was thrown out of work.

Represented Hulton Ward from 1933, he was the only Independent member of the Council. He was a Liberal candidate five times before being elected at his sixth attempt in 1934.

In May 1934 the Horwich and Westhoughton Journal said of him "he will often fight alone and will enjoy it. There are some things to which he is definitely opposed and among them are some of the provisions of Slum Clearance Act. He used to be a Liberal in politics and worked for every Liberal candidate in Parliamentary Elections. In 1906 a large number of Liberals went over to the Labour Party but not 'Jonathan' as he is known to most people in Westhoughton."*

He was a member of the Chequerbent Co-operative Society and the Westhoughton United Industrial Co-operative Committee, a position he had to relinquish when his daughter became an employee.

He was the Hulton Miner's delegate to the Westhoughton Trades Council, of which he was Chairman.

He was a member of the Local League of Nations Union Committee and a prominent member of the Committee of the Westhoughton Property Owner's Association.

He did a great deal of work for local charities, notably the Westhoughton Hospital Saturday Committee and the Bolton Hospital Saturday Committee.

Methodist - he worshipped at Daisy Hill Methodist Church, as had his father before him.

*He had a brother called John, so his name wasn't shortened.

Jonathan CowburnCowburn Family Tree • pdf


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