THIS week in Looking Back, we are taking a look at the history of the old Osnath pram works in Warrington.

The Lythgoes Lane firm was home to a furniture shop and has been converted into a nursery.

But did you know it used to be a renowned pram store?

In 1872 William Ashton turned finding the solution to a family problem into a business.

With two young children he needed a means of transporting them in the days before every family owned a car.

His solution was to build a miniature of a horse drawn coach called a ‘brougham’ where the body was carried on springs to stop the toddlers being jolted on the cobble stone pavements.

Further models followed many with wicker work bodies and he adopted the trademark of ‘Osnath’ an anagram of his name.

Later publicity would claim ‘Osnath...a name in baby coach manufacture synonymous with all that is best, in other words, the Rolls Royce of the pavement’.

Osnath prams were soon being paraded in London’s leafy parks by the nannies of leading aristocratic families and even a minor royal.

Osnath’s workshops were relocated to Lythgoes Lane where employees took a pride in their work.

One of their last catalogues proclaimed: ‘All models are hand-built by highly skilled craftsmen. In this world nothing that is fine and good is fashioned without thought and care and that is how Osnath baby carriages are made. In their production there is more than labour, more than craftsmanship, there is that indefinable something’.

Janice Hayes, Warrington Museum heritage manager, said: “Alas quality counted for little when the market changed.

“By the 1960s modern mothers wanted lighter prams and even something which they could fold up and carry in the new family car and by 1965 Osnath’s ceased trading.”

Margaret Hall, from Great Sankey, said: “When my mother’s sister gave birth to her first baby girl in 1952, after 25 years of marriage, my uncle, who was still working at Osnath, offered to get her a pram direct from the factory.

“My mum was given the honour of going to choose it and my uncle Jack was given the job of showing her the range of models.”