Horse Buses
Walkden’s first public transport was the horse bus service that started in the early 1870’s, “Old Gartside's Bus”, which ran between Walkden and Black Horse, Farnworth, was the first. A small bus, drawn by two mules, it had no regular schedule but was run anytime there was likely to be a chance of trade.
This was followed by “Owd love’s cab”, run by Mr Abraham Lloyd who lived at Old Pole.
Next ,John Cook, a coal carter, started to run a wagonnette, mainly in the evenings and on Saturdays. Later, Charlie Howard and Harry Unsworth of Whittlebrook began to run waggonnettes.
Finally, in 1885, Messrs. Holden of Bolton started a regular horse bus service between Walkden and Farnworth.
All these buses were open topped, a fact reflected in the fares, 3d (1½p) inside and 2d (1p) on top. They had solid iron wheels, and as the roads were either paved with large stone sets or cobbles it must have been an uncomfortable ride.