Lillian Mary Flanagan
Research by Anne Matthews
Lillian Mary Flanagan was the widow of William Henry Flanagan, former Conservative MP for the Clayton Division of Manchester.
She was born Lillian Mary Ashley in 1874 in Droylsden, Manchester, and was recorded in the 1881 census as residing at 49 Heywood Street, Moss Side, Manchester with her uncle, Thomas Yates, a mill manager, and her aunt, Sophia, their 5 daughters and her own 2 brothers. By 1891 the family had moved to Clifton Mount, Withington, where her occupation was given as pupil teacher.
In 1899 she married William Henry Flanagan and their early married life was spent in Droylsden, where she gave birth to their three children, Reginald William Ashley, Kathleen and Lillian Moyra. During 1910 they had their first experience of living in St Annes when they took up residence, with servants, at 60 Orchard Road.
Her husband was also born in Manchester in 1871. His father, William, a wadding manufacturer, was a member of Manchester City Council. After leaving Manchester School of Technology, William Henry entered the family business and for many years was Chairman and Managing Director of the Imperial Patent Wadding Company Limited, although he also had business interests in London. This was his occupation when he was first elected to Parliament following a by-election in 1922. He held the seat for a year and was re-elected at the general election of 1931 but did not stand again after the dissolution in 1935 on account of ill health. For this reason he also retired in 1933 from the chairmanship of the Manchester Conservative and Unionist Association. His portrait, by Bassano, can be seen in the National Portrait Gallery.
About the time William Henry was first elected to Parliament the family moved to Ollerenshaw Hall, a splendid Grade II listed building, together with 22 acres, in the Peak District, near Whaley Bridge. They lived there until 1936.
Mr and Mrs Flanagan must have had fond memories of St Annes as they chose to retire here, moving into Ribblehurst, 261 Inner Promenade, soon after the sale of Ollerenshaw Hall. Unfortunately, William Henry died in June 1944, having been pre-deceased by his son and one of his daughters. His obituary draws attention to the family’s long association with several charitable and religious bodies, including the Manchester City Mission.
Evidence points to Mrs Flanagan remaining in St Annes until 1950 when she returned to Derbyshire. She died in Chapel-en-le-Frith in 1966, aged 93.
Link to Amiens Cathedral
Link to Still Life with Dead Game and Fruit