Robert Balderstone was a Grocer in Broughton and was a Councillor, then Alderman for Salford Council over a period of 21 years.
He was born in the Fylde district of Lancashire on 20th January 1826. He came to Salford in 1849, when he was 23 to commence business as a Grocer at 43, Broughton Road and lived at this address most of his life. He became involved in politics for the Conservatives in 1857, at the age of 31. In 1868 he became the leader of the Conservative Party in the Greengate area and worked hard to ensure the election of Charles Cawley and William Charley as the new Members of Parliament for Salford. In 1877 he took Greengate Ward away from the Liberals to become its new Councillor. In 1880 after a fierce fight back from the Liberals he surprised everyone with an increased majority and for the next nine years he was elected unopposed. In 1892, the Ward boundary changes placed Robert in Trinity Ward and he triumphed again.
In 1895, at the age of 69 he was appointed Alderman and served in that capacity until ill-health forced him to step down in 1899. He was Chairman of the Lighting and Scavenging Committee for some years and a member of the Town Halls and Markets and other committees. He seldom spoke at Council meetings, but was an ardent worker.
In July 1898 Robert had an attack of paralysis which incapacitated him from public work. He died at his residence, 22, Howe Street, Higher Broughton on Wednesday 1st November 1899, aged 73. The funeral service took place at St Matthias's Church on 6th November, where Reverend F. Hodgson-Jones officiated. The cortege proceeded to Weaste Cemetery, the coffin of polished oak with brass mountings being carried by an Alexander funeral car drawn by four bay horses.