A Timeline of St Helens

By Tim Lambert

1552 A chapel dedicated to St Helen is mentioned for the first time. The town takes its name from the chapel.

1670 John Lyon leaves money to build a school next to the chapel. The town is growing rapidly boosted by the growth of nearby Liverpool.

1746 A turnpike road is built to Liverpool

1762 A canal is cut. Coal mining in the St Helens area booms.

1773 The British Cast Plate Glass Manufacturers opens. Glass making in St Helens booms.

1780 A copper foundry opens in St Helens

1798 An iron foundry opens in St Helens

1801 The population of St Helens is 7,570. With the Industrial Revolution St Helens booms.

1826 William Pilkington founds a glassworks in St Helens

1828 Josias Gamble sets up a chemical works in St Helens

1832 St Helens gains gas light

1833 The railway comes to St Helens

1839 St Helens Town Hall is built

1840 St Helens gains a police force

1845 A body of men is formed with powers to pave, clean, and light the streets of St Helens

1849 St Helens suffers an outbreak of cholera

1851 The population of St Helens is about 15,000. The Market Hall is built.

1853 St Helens gains its first local newspaper

1854 Cholera strikes again

1868 St Helens is given a corporation and mayor

1876 A new Town Hall is built

1881 Horse drawn trams begin running in St Helens

1884 The Providence Hospital opens

1885 St Helens sends its first MP to parliament

1892 St Helens Museum opens

1893 Samuel Taylor gives Taylor Park to the town

1899 The first electric trams run in St Helens

1901 St Helens has a population of about 84,000

1911 The first cinema in St Helens opens

1946 The last trams run in St Helens

1971 St Helens has a population of about 98,000

1974 St Helens is made a metropolitan borough

1982 The Hardshaw Centre opens

1986 St Helens Transport Museum opens

1998 St Mary’s Market opens

2000 World of Glass opens