Drunken Sailor in Rooftop Drama

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The Barrow Naturalists’ Field Club celebrated its 140th anniversary in 2016 so a look at what was happening 140 years ago featured in a talk to members on Having Fun in Barrow presented by Evening Mail Memories Page writer Bill Myers.

Barrow was still a very new place in 1876, with much of the town centre still to be built.

On February 25 in 1876 a house in Lower Ramsden Street, Barrow, sold for £280 and another in Smeaton Street for £220.

On March 25 in 1876 it was noted that two houses in Sutherland Street, Barrow, sold for £150 and £156.

On May 6 in 1876 it was announced that Noble and Company had formed the Graving Dock Shipbuilding Works to build iron ships on a two-acre Furness Railway site close to the Graving Dock at Barrow.

There would be five launching slips, each about 430ft long.

May 6 also brought news of a roof-top drama in Carlisle Street, Barrow, which drew a large crowd of people.

It noted: “It appears that a foreign sailor who stayed at one of the three-storey houses in that street, for some reason not explained, took his exit through the skylight and perched himself beside the chimney pots on the roof of the house.

“The large crowd below, who appeared to be under the impression that the man intended suicide, attracted the attention of police constables McPhail and Larkin.”

They took off their boots and went through the skylight to creep across the slates to bring him on.

It was said he was under the influence of drink and had only a few words of English.  The police handed him over to the captain of his ship.

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Source: North West Evening Mail

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