THE former Ashton carpet shop that was transformed into the pet shop ‘Hannibal’s Animals’ for the filming of the eight-episode series Netflix series Stay Close, starring James Nesbitt, Eddie Izzard and Richard Armitage, holds a grizzly secret.
Local journalist and historian Mike Pavasovic has revealed the building used to be the Prince of Wales pub, nicknamed the Strangler’s Arms because a woman was murdered there in 1950.James Henry ‘Tish’ Corbett was hanged at Strangeways Prison after being convicted on throttling his mistress Eliza Woods in a hotel room. She was discovered the next morning with the word ‘whore’ written on her forehead.
Corbett was hanged by Albert Pierrepoint and ironically knew his executioner as he was a regular in the Help The Poor Struggler pub in Hollinwood, Oldham, where Pierrepoint was the landlord.
They would sing around the piano together and Corbett called Pierrepoint ‘Tosh’ while the publican nicknamed Corbett ‘Tish’.
At that time, they were common nicknames used between people who were passing acquaintances but who did not know each other’s names. They were also the names of two popular fictional comic characters.
The Prince of Wales is believed to have closed about 1960 after which it had a retail use.