Richard Jay (Later Richard Jay Ltd)

Richard Jay was born in Suffolk (Wetheringsett according to the 1881 Census or Eye from an article in the Rochdale Observer dated 1941) but had moved to Norden by 1871. He worked in the Textile trade in Norden but on securing employment at Broadfield Mill in Littleborough he removed there with his family. In 1901 Richard was recorded in the census as an Insurance Agent and Poultry Dealer.but by 1903 he was advertising his services as a Carrier - see here

Early in 1910 Richard obtained approval for a new property, Caldermount on Calderbrook Rd and in September of that year advertised

PARTIES Requiring Cars, Landaus, Waggonettes are invited to apply for terms to R Jay, CALDERMOUNT, LITTLEBOROUGH

In 1914 his advertising had taken a different direction



Enquiries receive prompt attention

Tel 65                  LITTLEBOROUGH

What coaches he operated in 1914 is unclear but it could be that their waggons had detachable bodies able to be substituted by a passenger carrying body.or simply a Char- a banc.

Richard Jay constructed his garage on the corner of Calderbrook Road and Hare Hill Road adjacent to Caldermount on Calderbrook Road as pictured top right.

In early 1920, Richard Jay advertised “Engagements are now being booked for our NEW 28 SEATER CHAR-A-BANC FOR OUR 1920 SEASON” By May 1920 the adverts referred to “BOOK YOUR SEATS AT ONCE TO AVOID DIS-APPOINTMENT BY OUR NEW LEYLAND 28 SEATER ‘THE CALDER QUEEN’”. 1921 Advertisements referred to “THE CALDER QUEEN MOTOR COACH” which may well be the vehicle pictured right. Another picture shows a Roger Jay Coach in Torquay in 1921. Which route the coach took is unknown but it may well have stopped in Newcastle under Lyme and Cheltenham Coach stations, quite famous ‘comfort break’ stops with the A38 followed almost to the final destination. A rather lengthy trip at the time.

1926 saw many adverts in local pages including the one pictured far right.  Newspaper adverts continued during the late 1920s and early 1930s (by the latter date being shown as Richard Jay Ltd) but ceased during the period of the Second World War.

Richard Jay died in 1941 very closely followed by his widow with both being buried in St Barnabas Cemetery in Shore on the same date.

The business of Richard Jay Ltd continued by his sons and family for some 20 years with adverts for its coach business appearing in numerous booklets. No photographs were included but the drawings pictured right were provided.

In January 1961 the company of Richard Jay Ltd went out of business with the coaches being purchased by Littleborough Motors Ltd when the two modern coaches they had previously purchased were added to by the four obtained from Richard Jay Ltd. Also in January 1961 the premises used by Richard Jay were put up for sale. The buildings have been used by various companies since but they still show R Jay Ltd on the top corner of the building (2024).

Whilst published books about Yelloway coaches state that Yelloway acquired the excursion licences of R Jay Ltd in either 1969 or 1970, in fact the licences must have been transferred to Littleborough Motors. Ellen Smith also had some interest in the 1969/70 acquisition because it left Yelloway with an overwhelming majority of excursion work in the Rochdale area.  Subsequently, it seems that Yelloway and Ellen Smith came to an agreement to share the work arising out of the acquisition. Probably the new 1961 owners of R Jay, Littleborough Motors Ltd, continued to operate with the licences of Richard Jay Ltd until selling out to Yelloway in 1969/70.  It is recorded that no vehicles were involved in Yelloway's acquisition.

Compiled with the grateful assistance of Ian Holt

 Above - Richard Jay Coach trip outside the Summit Inn

Above - Richard Jay Coach in 1921

(Source and location unknown)

Right Richard Jay Advert

August  1926

June 1951 Advert above

1958 Advert  - right