About Us

The building was first opened in the 16th century and has been known as “The Rake” for over 400 years. Where it derives its name from is unclear. It is argued by some that it derives its name from a farmers’ hay rake, but others believe that the name is derived from a nearby track to the moors. It was reported by the Rochdale Observer on 1st September 1860 that the Rake was used for a coroner’s inquest into the deaths of three miners working at Gatehouse Colliery.
During the Second World War, the Rake’s cellar was used as a base for the local contingent of the Home Guard, and concrete blocks were placed on the other side of the road. In recent times, the Rake is possibly best known for its story of the ghost of the laughing cavalier. It is reported that the ghost appears to anyone called Anne who lives in the Inn. In 1967, it was reported in the Rochdale Observer that the ghost had appeared to Mrs. Annie Turton who described him as “a big round fellow with a big red face and his cavalier’s hat held in front of him and wearing a lovely amber brooch”. Further information about the Rake Inn is available in the Local Heritage Department at Touchstones, Rochdale.