Robert was apprenticed to a painter in Manchester
and came to Todmorden round about 1826/7. He worked for Wm. Smith
and Sons, Painters and decorators of Salford, Todmorden. One story
says that Smith's shop was in what is now the Unitarian Chapel grounds.
He became a Master painter and set up his own business in School
Lane. On 30th May 1830 he married Sarah Brooks