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Duckworth, Sir James, MP

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UMFC layman, born in Rochdale, the son of a weaver who died when James was six. After working in a mill and trying several other occupations, including that of lay evangelist, he opened his first shop in Oldham Road, Rochdale and developed it into a substantial firm of provision merchants bearing his name. He took a prominent part in local affairs. He was mayor in 1891 and again in 1910, and was twice Liberal MP: for Middleton, Lancs 1897-1900 and for Stockport 1906-1910. He became a close friend of Jesse Boot, with whom he had much in common, and was a generous benefactor of Victoria Park College. He was one of only two laymen elected President of the UMFC (1894). He was knighted in 1908 and died on 1 January 1915.


  • Who Was Who, 1897-1916
  • M. Stenton (ed.), Who's Who of British MPs, vol. 2 (1978)

Entry written by: OAB
Category: Person

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