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Have you ever been to Wigan? It simply comes from the fact that there are loads and loads of pie shops - and i mean loads. Wigan is one of the few places that isnt awash with Greggs or Hampsons (although it does have some). It has lots of really really good small independent bakers.
I suppose it goes back to the time when there was lots of coal mining and heavy industry. Lancashire towns always had loads of pie shops -it just seems Wigan has held on to theirs.
I think Hollands once had a factory in Wigan but i think they are all made in Bolton now.
Wiganners do love their pies (and i like em too) !
I believe you are right with the idea that the name comes from the strike breakers of Wigan returning to work and eating humble pie.
Anyway, whatever the origin of the term, Poole's pies are the best and I was upset to find their shop in Wallgate closed and boarded up last time I was in town.
The reason that Pooles Pies was closed down (along with every other small outlet they had) is because of Dave Wheelan.
He purchased the Pooles Pies company, and it's factory on Eccersley Mill industrial estate behind the Wigan Pier, and teminated the sale of the pies to the high-street.
Pooles pies can now only be found in a very few places. One of which I know is a cert ... the JJB Stadium. Every pie sold at the stadium is a Pooles Pie.
So the next time your in town, get yourself to the Rugby match. Even if Wigan lose, you can be safe in the knowledge that a Pooles Pie awatis you!
P.S. Another two bakeries that are family bakers and have been producing tip-top nosh for donkeys years are Twists' Bakery (Located across from the TeleWest building) and Edwards' Bakery located in Platt Bridge. Edwards has two shops in Wigan and one in Platt Bridge, and sells to many small shops. One of Edwards' shops can be found in the indoor market, and the other at the rear entrance of BHS (directly across from the Market Tavern). So go on, have a pie and a pint .... the Wigan way!
I love meat & potato pies (now known as Potato & Meat due to pollitical correctness!)
http://www.bakeryinfo.co.uk/news/fullstory.php /aid/3516/Wigan_pie_firm_invests__pound;12m_in _production_site.html
The Pie Eater comes from the Black Scabs who let down their fellow miners during the strikes. Remmber PADDY McGuinness in Wigan would not let anything from wigan pass his lips?. Rory mcgrath won the Wigan Pie eating contest!!!.
The only good thing about the place was Wigan Casino which many thousands of us miss more than anything in the world, Keep the Faith