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Although spoken of as a second edition, the present volume is to all 
intents and purposes a new work, embracing a large district surrounding 
Altrincham and Bowdon, and including the rapidly rising townships of 
Sale and Ashton-on-Mersey, which have increased enormously both in 
population and wealth during the past 20 years. It also marks a con- 
necting link between what may be termed new and old styles, for the 
art of printing has made enormous strides, and by means of modern 
processes illustrations can now be given in greater number and variety, 
the cost of which was formerly prohibitive. And in the latter connection 
I have to express my hearty obligations to Mr. T. Colley, of Altrincham, 
a local artist. I may mention especially the sketch showing the Scotch 
rebels entering the Altrincham Market Place in 1745, also that of Lord 
Strange crossing the Mersey on bis way to besiege Manchester ; a pretty 
view of the Firs in the old coaching days, after William Hull, and the 
old church of Ringway, &c. The sketch of the vertebrate fauna of the 
district, which has been kindly supplied by Mr. T. A. Coward, of Bowdon, 
will be found most interesting to naturalists. I must also thank 
Mr. John Ingham, of Sale, for several excellent photographic views which 
he kindly placed at my disposal ; Mr. Josiah Drinkwater, of Altrincham, 
for a capital photo, of the Free Library and Technical Schools ; to Mr. W. 
Owen, A.I.B.A., for a view of the new Cemetery Chapel at Hale ; as also 
to others who have in any way assisted to make the work both interesting 
and complete. 

It was a source of the deepest pleasure to see the manner in which the 
"History of Altrincham and Bowdon" was received by the public, and 
that pleasure has since been enhanced by the remembrance that a record 
of the traditions and customs of the ancient boro' of Altrincham would, 
inevitably, have been lost but for the record which it was my good fortune 
to be able to make. I trust that my present effort may have as kindly a 
reception, and meet with the same good-natured and friendly criticism. 
I have endeavoured througliout to record facts and not opinions merely, 
and I am in hopes it will attain the object set forth in the first edition, 
and form not only " a book of reference, but also a local history in which 
the progress of the district is depicted from the earliest period to the 
present day." 



Bowdon, a peep at the past, geological, historical, and romantic — 
Boaden Downs — Watling Street, signs of Roman occupation — The 
tumulus in the Park — An old Saxon coin — The Barons of Dunham, 
tlieir position and power— The Crusader's Cedar — The legend of 
the Seven Sisters — " The last of the Barons "... ... ... 1 


The Parish Church, its claims to antiquity — The yew trees, a relic of 
Sa.xon Christianity — The wakes, their origin and use — An old bead 
roll and its record — Description of the old church — Value of the 
living six centuries ago — The ringers' orders — A law suit — 
Another bead roll and its record — Memorials of old families — 
The Brereton monument— The Dunham Chapel, etc 16 


Description of the old church, continued— The tales told by the 
tombstones and the tablets — A curious old stone, etc 29 


The Parish Church, its restoration — Reminders and relics of antiquity- 
Description of restored edifice — Tablets to the Ven. Archdeacon 
Pollock, and to the first Vicar of St. Margaret's — The stained glass 
windows and their donors — A run through the registers — Curious 
and interesting extracts— The Bowdon proverb— Notices of Vicars, 
with list — The ancient rating valuation, or mize, list of benefac- 
tions, etc 38 


Altrincham 600 years ago— The ancient charter— Sanjam Fair- 
Election of Mayor, form of an oath and proclamation — The Court 
of Pye Powder — Importance of the Bellman — A Mayor's wisdom — 
The Earl's Christmas box — Sayings regarding the Mayor — Election 
of Burgesses — Progress of the trust and its disposal — (Government 
enquiries and their result— List of Mayors— Abolition of Sanjam 
Fair 60 



A retrospect— Sundry lawsuits— The first Booth of Dunham Massey ; 
his supposed death at the Battle of Blore Heath — A Booth 
knighted by Queen Elizabeth— Interesting wills— Dame Booth's 
Charity — Contributions to the defence of the Kingdom — Dr. Dee's 
reference to Sir Geo. Booth— Purchase of the town of Warrington ; 
the instructions thereon — Death of William Booth 85 


Birth of Sir George Booth, first Lord Delamer — Description of Sir 
William Brereton — Indictment against Sir George ; his part in 
attempting to pacify the county — Its failure — The siege of Nant- 
wich --Spirited defence— Defeat of the Royalists— Sir George elected 
member for Cheshire ; his exclusion by Colonel Pride's purge — 
Royalist attempts at a Restoration— Sir George's celebrated 
rising — The Battle of Winnington — His betrayal and arrest ; his 
committal to the Tower — Release and re-election — His improve- 
ments at Dunham — Description of the old mansion — His death ... 98 


The second Lord Delamer ; his popularity ; his advocacy of the people's 
rights— Court jealousy— His committal to the Tower on three 
occasions ; his remarkable trial at Westminster Hall ; his eloquent 
defence and justification ; his retirement to his seat in Cheshire ; his 
support of the Prince of Orange ; his subsequent honourable career 
and death ... ... ... ... ... ... ... 107 


The house of Dunham, continued — The Second Earl of Warrington ; 
his character and literary attainments — The union of the House of 
Dunham with that of Stamford — The Honourable Booth Grey — 
" Domestic happiness, a family picture " — The revival of the lapsed 
titles of Baron Delamer and Earl of Warrington — An Africander 
Earl— A romance of the peerage 120 


The Maceys of Altrincham— A rebellious subject— The Bowdon 
family — Disposal of lands— Some old district names— Bowdon free 
school — Bull and bear baiting — Guy Faux at Altrincham — A witty 
Bowdon Curate— The advance on Manchester by Lord Strange — 
The Unicorn Hotel 300 years ago— An Altrincham landlord and 
landlady of the olden time— Sir Peter Leycester's description 
of the town in 1666— The story of the "Bloody Field "—Adam 
Martindale at Dunham ; his duties there — Bowdon Dissenters 
troublesome— Dick Turpin ; his exploits at Newbridge Hollow and 

Hoo Green— Prince Charlie's Troops at Altrincham J 




Indications of growth and enterprise— The cutting of the Bridgewater 
Canal — A few figures — Manufacture of woollen and cotton yarn — 
Obsolete punishments : penance, cucking stool, scold's bridle, public 
whippings at the Altrincham Market place — Executions for 
burglaries at Bowdon— A man hanged for poaching near Altrinc- 
ham — The ancient custom of souling — The entertaining play of St. 
George and the dragon — Wassailing and Christmas carols — The 
barley hump and Dunham Ale — The lions of Dunham — Altrincham 
races — Dunham Parks and the Hall — De Quincy's description of 
Altrincham 139 


Ecclesiastical Altrincham ; The Wesleyan Methodist Churches — 
Wesley's visits to Altrincham— St. George's Church ; its Schools, 
etc. — An Altrincham Centenarian — The Unitarians ; their early 
history ; description of the New Chapel in Dunham Road— The 
Methodist Kew Connexion — The Independents or Congrega- 
tionalists, w'ith some notices of their Pastors and work — St. 
Margaret's, Dunham Massey — St. John's — St. Peter's, Peel Cause- 
way—The Old Downs Chapel— The Primitive Methodists— Baptists, 
etc 147 


More looks into old books — Visit of strolling players — Disappearance 
of town documents — Appointment of town's attorney — Wages a 
century ago — Disturbances in Altrincham — Another Altrincham 
industry — The fire engine — The old handcuffs — A jury list — The 
expenses of the great well— Altrincham highways indicted — Hard 
times ; a display of public spirit — The select vestry — Extracts 
from the books ; a stray parcel of gloves — How the town got a 
sun-dial -Substitutes for the Militia— Disrespect for proclama- 
tions— A worthy overseer— Dread of Hydrophobia, etc 175 


Description of Altrincham and Bowdon 60 years ago — The Old Market 
Place ; its ancient cross, lockups, and Star chamber — Higher Town 
boys V. those of Lower Town— The town field -An Altrincham 
Carnival -The loyalty of the town — The first Altrincham under- 
taker— Altrincham woolcombers and their Bishop Blaize festival — 
Bowdon bull baiters and Altrincham cockfighters — Salt works 
at Dunham— The destruction of small birds— The churchwardens 
and their duties — Formation of the Altrincham Poor La«' Union ; 
the old workhouse and its management — Cutting of the Bowdon 
line — Lloyd's Hospital — Introduction of coal gas into Altrincham — 
Formation of the Gas Company ; negotiations for the purchase 


of the works and their results — Altrincliam and Bowdon Literary 
Institution ; Free Library and Technical Schools — Royal Visit — 
Formation of the Altrincham Parliamentary Division ; its members, 
past and present— The electric light, etc 188 


What Sale was ; a glance at the past ; the Masseys of Sale — a gracious 
permission to marry from the Pope — A reminiscence of the civil 
war ; Lord Strange at Ashton-on-Mersey — Some looks into old 
township books— The official mole catcher — Sale "Vineyards" — 
Constables' staves — The poor law and its administration — 
troublous times — A lady's interest in township matters — A local 
Hampden, Sale township schools— Sale Volunteers, past and 
present — Sale Burial Board, etc 223 


Ashton-on-Mersey and its parish — The beginnings of modern non- 
conformity — Old Cross Street Chapel — Some notices of old Vicars — 
Restoration of St. Martin's— St. Anne's ; St. John's, Brooklands ; 
St. Paul's ; St. Mary's; Wesleyanism ; Congregationalism — Sale 
Local Board — Progress of Sale — Sanitary arrangements, etc. ... 241 


Wythenshawe Hall— Carrington Moss, with an account of Carrington 
fight, a memorable local event— Manchester Ship Canal — A Bishop 
from Partington— Baguley Hall pnd the Leighs— Riddings Hall — 
The Gerrards and the Vaudreys— Edleston's Lepidoptera of the 
Bollin Valley ; ornithology etc. — Ashley Hall, a notable meeting ; 
a little known tragedy— The murder at the Bleeding Wolf, etc. ... 257 


Cheshire County Council— Bucklow Union and Rural District Council — 
Magistrates for Altrincham Division— Altrincham Local Board; list 
of members and contested elections, etc. — List of towns and villages 
in the neighbourhood, with population, acreage, rateable value, 
distances from Chester, Altrincham, etc.— Sale Local Board; list 
of members— Altrincham, Bowdon, and Sale Urban District 
Councils, etc.— Debts of local authorities 29.3 



Bowdon Church, 1858 Frontispiece 

Burying Lane (now The Firs), Bowdon 25 

Bowdon Parish Church— restored 38 

St. Margaret's Church, Dunham 46 

Scolds' Bridles 75 

Earl and Countess of Stamford 91 

Dunham Hall, 1697 62 

The Hall, Dunham Park 86 

Oldfield Hall, Altrincham 102 

Market Place, Altrincham, 1745 131 

Market Place, Altrincham, 1858 198 

Ashley Mill (now dismantled) 214 

Bowdon Wesleyan Chapel 149 

The Old Church, Ringway 156 

Eev. George London 151 

Bowdon Downs Congregational Church ; interior lighted by 

electricity 161 

St. Peter's Church, Peel Causeway 174 

The Old Church, Ashton-on-Mersey 179 

Altrincham in the Jubilee year; visit of the Prince of Wales... 195 

Altrincham Free Library and Technical School 211 

Past and Present Members for the Altrincham Parliamentary 

Division : — Sir William C. Brooks ; the late Mr. John 

Brooks; Mr. Coningsby Disraeli 217 

Lord Strange's Forces Crossing to Besiege Manchester 225 

Eeview of the Manchester and Salford Volunteers on Sale 

Moor, April 12th, 1804, by Prince William of Gloucester 237 

Lych Gate, Ashton-on-Mersey 242 

St. Anne's Church, Sale 247 

St. Mary's Church, Ashton-on-Mersey 253 

Wythen.shawe Hall 261 

Altrincham Electrical Works, Broadheath 271 

Rostherne Church 284 

Altrincham Cemetery Chapel, Hale 286 

Plan of Stamford Park, Altrincham 291 



Ahard winter 182, 183 

Advowson, Bo^ydon 12 

Altrincham, Free traffic granted 13 

Charter 60 to 82 

„ Landlord and landlady of olden time 134 

„ Sir Walter Scott's description of 134 

, , Sir Peter Leycester's description of 135 

,, Indications of progress 139 

Manufactures at 129, 139 

,, Races at 144 

,, Riots at 176 

,, De Quincy's description of 145 

Footpaths indicted 182 

Fire Brigade 177 

,, Sixty years ago 188 

Union 198 

, , Provident Dispensary 204, 205 

, , Introduction of coal gas 208 

Gas Company 209,210 

,, and Bowdon Literary Institute 210 

, , and Free Libraries Act 213 

,, Local Board, formation of 214 

,, List of members (see Appendix) 

,, Contested elections (see Appendix) 

,, Statement of debts, &c. (see Appendix) 

,, Urban District Council (see Appendix) 

, , Cemetery 221 

,, Inti eduction of electucitv 219,220 

Pai lumen tai y DiMSion " 216,219 

Appendix, 293 to 326 

Ashley ... 288 

„ Hall 289 

„ Church 290 

Ashton-on Meisey, Parish of 241 to 254 

Vicars 242 

,, Cross Stieet 245 

Ashton Wakes, incident of 228, 2'29 

Baguley 270 

Bank Hall, Hale 275 

Baptist Chapel, Bow don 173 

Banns, Curious mode of publication 44 

Barleyhump, The 143 

Beeston Castle 100 

Benefactions, Bowdon 59 

Bishop Blai/.e Festival 193 

BloodyField, Stoij of 133 

Booth, Dei l^atIon of 86 

„ John . 86 


Booth, William 86, 87, 88 

„ George 89, 95 

„ William 89 

„ Heniy 'M to 28 

,, Langliam 28 

,, SirGeoige 19, 98, 99 

,, Robeit 86, 87 

,, Sii (ieoige, defeat and cai)tuie of 103 

,, ,, giant by Pailuiment foi distinguiiilied sei vices 104 

death of 105 

„ Nathaniel 120 

Botany, of CotteuU, 4.c 276 

Bowdon, Dei nation of 1 

,, Doonibdaj Enti> 2 

Family of . 128 

Fiee School at 129 

,, Chinch 16 

,, Re-^toiation of 39 to 42 

„ Regivteis 43, 44, 46 

W aUes 194 

,, Li'-t of Vicai-. 58 

, , Notices of ')5 to 58 

Local Boaid 215 

,, Uiban District Council (sec Aiiptndix.) 

Bieieton. 21, 23, 269, 270 

,, Tidditions 21 

Sii William 21, 99 

,, Jane 21 

\\'illiain 21 

Briefs Collected . 54 

British Road 1. 2, 3 

Broadheath 3 

BuU Baiting at Bowdon 194 

Burgesses Election of . .73 

Burying in Linen ... 51 

Carrington Chapel 20 

Mo-^s 264, 205 

Fight 01 Feight 265, 266, 267 

Charities 206, 207, 208 

Chartists at Altiincham 202 

Charter, Altuncham (translation) 79, 80 

Civil War 100 

Congregational Chuiches 159, 101, 163, 164, 246, 247 

Cross Street Chapel 245, 246 

Curious Customs 143 

Court Leet, Altuncham 60 to 82 

,, .Maj oral Oath 02 

,, ,, riochimation . 03 

„ „ Uses of 63,64 

LXDEX. xiii. 


Court Leet, Duties of Members 70 to 74 

, , , , ilayor's Land Charity 7S, 79 

Cock Fighting at Altrincham 194 

Delamer, Lord 117 

Trialof 108toll6 

Created Earl of Warrington 117 

,, His views on Monarchy 118 

Prayers, &c 117, 118 

Destruction of small Birds 198 

Dick Turpin at Hoo Green 137 

Dunham Castle 8 to 13 

,, Doomsday Entrj- 7 

,, Hall, Ancient Mansions 105 

„ Ale 143 

Executions for Burglaries at Bowdon 142 

Extracts from old Minute Books 184 to 187 

Gerrard of Riddings 21 

Grey, Hon. Booth 69, 121 

,, Familj-, Antiquity of 121 

„ Lady jane ' 121 

„. Rev. Harry, Eight Earl, a Romance of the Peerage 123 

, , Pedigree, to face page 127 

Guy Fawkes at Altrincham 130, 134 

Hale Barns 285, 286 

Linen Manufacture 129 

Lloyd's Hospital 204 

Masey or Massey of Dunham 6 

,, Reference to 11 to 15 

Massey of Sale 222 to 227 

Manchester Ship Canal 2(J7, 208, 269 

Minute Books, Disappearance of 175 

Mayor's Land Charity (see Court Leet) 

Manor of Dunham 85 

Manchester South Junction & Altrincham Railway 202, 203 

Martindale, Adam, at Dunham 135, 136 

Methodist New Connexion 159 

Members of Parliament 216, 219 

Mize, or old rate 59 

Oldest Tombstone 33 

Old Tombstones, Inscriptions on 33 to 37 

Old Jury List 177 

Obsolete Punishments 140, 141 

Presbyterianism 173, 249 

Primitive Methodism 174, 249 

Prince Charles at Altrincham 138 

Queen's Jubilee Festivities 215 

Rateable Value (see Appendix) 

Rider, Bishop of Killaloc 269 

xiv. IMiEX. 


Roman Road 9 

,, Remains, Hale 285 

Roman Catholic Church 173 

Salt Works at Dunham 197 

Sale, Description of 222 

,, Family 224 

,, Overseers in 224 

, , Vineyards 228 

,, and Luddites 230 

,, Lady Overseer 231 

,, A \'illage Hampden 233 

,, New township schools 234, 235, 236 

„ Moor 236 

„ Burial Board 240 

,, Local Board 255, 256 

,, Urban District Council (see Appendix) 

St. Anne's, Sale 249, 250, 251 

St. Elizabeth's, Altrincham 172 

St. George's, Altrincham 150, 153, 154, 155 

,, Schools 154 

, , , , List of Ministers 155 

St. John's, Altrincham 171 

St. John's, Brooklands 251 

St. Margaret's, Dunham Massey 165, 166, 167, 168, 169 

Vicarsof 169, 170 

St. Mary's, Ashton-on-Mersey 252, 253 

St. Martin's ,, (see Ashton Parish) 

St. Paul's, Sale 252 

St. Peter's, Peel Causeway 174 

Select Vestry, Altrincham 199, 200, 201 

Sparrows, Destruction of 229 

Strange, Lord at Ashton 129, 130 

Tattons of Wythenshawe 22, 257, 258, 259, 260, 262 

Timperley 273 

Tumili and Urns, Dunham Park ., 3, 4 

Unitarian Chapels, Altrincham 155, 156, 157, 15S 

„ Sale 245, 246 

Vaudrey, Will of 273, 274 

Volunteer Movement, Sale 236, 239 

Vertebrate Fauna 276 to 283 

Watling Street 2, 3 

Warburton 23 

Wan-ington, Mary, Countess of 27 

Warrington, Purchase of 96 

,, Earldom extinct 120 

,, Earldom revived 123 

Wesley's visits to Altrincham 147, 148 

Wesleyan Methodism 147, 148, 149,249 

Wythenshawe Hall, &c 259 to 263 




Bowdon : — A peejj ai the piat, geological, historical, and romantic — 
Boaden Downs — TFatling Street, signs of Roman occupation — The 
tumulus in the Park— An old Saxon coin — The Barons of Dunham, 
their position and power — The Crusader's Cedar — The legend of the 
Seven Sisters — " The last of the Barons." 

BOAVDON, eight centuries ago, was spelled Bogedon, or the 
hill or down by a bog. It was so written in the Domes- 
day Book, and was comprised in the ancient Cheshire 
hundred of Bochelau, whence our modern Bucklow, in the eastern 
division of which it is still included. It has also been written 
Bodon, Bodeon, Bawdon, Boaden, Bauden, Boden, and Bowden ; 
but the modernized spelling of Bowdon now jirevails. This is 
derived from two Anglo-Saxon words signifying Bode, a dwelling, 
and don or dun, a plain upon a rising hill or down. 

Geologists tell us, with the charming uncertainty they always 
attach to their "periods," that Bowdon has little interest for 
them, — that it was once an enormous sandbank, left by the 
receding Avaves of a restless ocean, to be at a subsequent time 
transformed by the God of Nature into a lovely garden, the 
loveliness of which was to be heightened and enhanced l>y the 
ingenuity and art of man. 

It may be very safely assumed that it was not then the 
pleasant place of residence it has since become. It had not the 
same delightful prospects of pastoral scenery, of grassy plain and 


lovely woodland, hemmed in by masses of billowy vegetation. 
The prehistoric Bogedonian — if there was such a creature — 
looking southwards from the hill side, would have seen the waves 
beating at the foot of the vale, where the shingle of the sea beach 
was quite recently uncovered ; later still, he might have viewed 
what is now called Alderley Edge, and the more distant Mow 
Cop, looking out on a vast expanse of moor and morass, studded 
here and there with a consumptive dwarf oak ; but he could have 
formed no conception of the changes to be wrought, as if by fairy 
wand, in future ages. The " proud hill's crest " had not become 
dotted with those stately homes which in so marked a degree 
contribute to set off Nature's beauties. It had not even those 
prim ivy-covered quaint old houses which peep out at the passer- 
by from their nests of umbrageous foliage and over-hanging trees, 
as if very modesty prevented their coming to the front in all 
the boldness of modern paint and stucco. " Sleepy hollow," as 
Altrincham has been termed, was unknown, and that almost 
universal edible the potato did not flourish in unchecked luxu- 
riance on the Downs, and form a special cry in the adjacent 
market of Cottonopolis. All that can, with any degree of confi- 
dence, be relied upon as giving Bowdon a place in early English 
history is the mention of it which occurs in the Domesday Book, 
of which more hereafter, and when among other things, there was 
a Church and a Priest, with his half-a-hide of land, a hide being 
as much as one plough would cultivate in a year, 60 to 120 acres 
according to the peculiar reckoning of the times, and which said 
Priest lived contentedly amongst his meagre and widely-scattered 
flock, and was passing rich on the forty pounds a year of the 

There are, however, evidences of this portion of the district 
having been inhabited long before the Conquest. The British 
road, well known by the name of Watling Street, runs through 
it, and was adapted by the Romans to suit their own purposes. 
The ancient Roman Road, as traced by that eminent authority, 
Whitaker, commences at the ford of the Mersey called Stretford, 


continues to Broadhoath, where the Iloma.n Road keeps the 
middle of the heath, and was discovered on the cutting of the 
Bridgewater Canal which crosses its line. It is then seen in the 
enclosures about Oldfield Hall, and in crossing the Moss is known 
by the name of Ui^cast. It afterwards ascends the hill, enters 
(skirts) Dunham Park, passes on to Street head, and crossing the 
Bollin falls into the modern road at Newbridge Watkins, in 
his work on Roman Cheshire, published in 1886, has with pains- 
taking ability made this particular subject his own. The main 
road remains, so far as this district is concerned, pretty much as 
given above, but he adds, " There appear to have been two small 
roads branching ofl' to east from that between Manchester and 
Northwich at Dunham Park, one which for part of its length is 
now the modernised Long Lane, and seems to have led to a 
village at Hale, and may thence have been continued towards 
Wilmslow, where there is a Pepper Street. It would, before 
arriving at this point, cross the road from Stockport to Kinderton. 
The other, known as Peel Causeway, i.s only traceable as a frag- 
ment, and I am doubtful of its Roman origin." This part -ivas 
comprised in the Roman province of Flavia Caesariensis ; and 
subsequently, in the sixth centvu-y, by a course of events in which 
Britain had passed through the fiery ordeal of Saxon subjugation 
and civil Avar, it became included in the Kingdom of Mercia. No 
doubt, the army of Danes, who are said to have taken possession 
of Chester in the latter end of the year 894 (according to the 
Saxon chronicle), marched through it from Northumberland. 
There are still most conclusive evidence of Saxon and Danish 
occupation in the tumuli or barrows which are to be seen in 
Dunham New Park. One of them is marked on the Ordnance 
Survey Map, and there are also others near Bollington and at 
Baguley, but both these are either more level, or considerably 
reduced in size. These tumuli are the most ancient form of burial 
places known, and were in extensive use amongst the Romans and 
Danes, who probably derived it in their turn from the Greeks, 
for the custom is mentioned by Homer. Some of these tumuli, 


as at Marathon, are very large, and it is said that the higher they 
are the greater must the deceased have been held in esteem by 
their fellows. The tumulus marked on the Ordnance Survey 
Map exists on the north side of the New Park, and is known 
more generally by the name of Beech Mount, being marked by a 
clump of these noble trees, some of which are beginning to exhibit 
signs of decrepitude and old age. In his work, "Britannia 
Komana," published by Horsley in 1732, he refers to this, when 
discussing the place where the Eoman station, Condate, — the 
exact site of which has been the subject of much controversy 
amongst antiquarians — shall lie placed. He says : — " The urns 
which have been found, and the barrows that are in Dunham 
Park, belonging to the Earl of Warrington, and the military way 
near it, render it highly probable that the Eoman Eoad has gone 
directly from Manchester to Chester through or near to North- 
wich, the piece of Eoman Eoad by Altrincbam pointing directly 
towards Chester and Manchester, and not at all towards Congleton. 
It is in the middle of a field near the road which now leads from 
Manchester to Chester and is called the Street. This leaves little 
room to doubt that the military road, and consequently, the iter 
(way) has proceeded this way to Chester, which is also further 
confirmed by the name of Stretford on the Mersey." 

Thus, in a somewhat interesting manner, is related an 
important fact. It is in this road that the Eomans have left a 
mark of their enduring greatness, when all appearances of ancient 
Saxon power have been completely effaced. These urns speak to 
us of Eome in her palmy days ; but the mounds tell a story 
which extends beyond. Imagination pictures a somewhat rugged 
country, studded with the kraals or mud dwellings of the 
aboriginal inhabitants, — a time when, according to Lucian, the 
monk, the County of Chester exported slaves and horses. Near 
the great highroad would be the dwelling of the hardy chieftain. 
At his death, guided by those aesthetic tastes instinct even in 
savage nations, the nearest spot on which nature had greatly 
lavished her beauties would be selected for his burial place, and 


at what would then Ije the head of a mossy dell would his remains 
be laid. There would be the long procession of bearded warriors 
and slaves, headed by weirdly robed priests, who, amidst meanings 
and lamentations, would perform, with mysterious and perhaps 
ghastly rites, the last offices for the dead. The huge tumulus 
would be raised, with nothing but its height to remind the people 
that buried greatness there reposed in its last long sleep ; with 
no image or legendary scroll to record, for the information of 
succeeding generations, the names and deeds of the mighty 
dead ; his very remembrance would in time be blotted out. But 
he would have a grand burial place, not perhaps graced with the 
virtues of consecration, except in the sense in which Nature 
reflects Nature's Deity. There, we may leave him in Nature's 
presence-chamber itself, — and if we could have seen it then, 
standing out like the refreshing greenery of the desert oasis, in 
"the forest primeval," where 

The murmuring pines and the hemlocks 
Bearded with moss, and in garments green, indistinct in the twilight, 
Stand like Druids of old, with voices s:»d and prophetic ; 
Stand like harpers hoar, with beards that rest on their bosoms. 

Another interesting memento of the ancient associations 
of Bowdon may here be mentioned. Several years ago, a 
bystander, who was watching the sexton of the Parish Church 
open out a grave, observed in one of the shovels full of earth 
thrown out, something black and round. This, on rubbing, gave 
out a bright appearance, and, on being placed in the hands of an 
antiquary, proved to be a silver penny of Eadmund, one of the 
early Saxon Kings, and grandson of Alfred the Great. On the 
obverse was Eadmund Ec.r, in the centre being a small cross. On 
the reverse, amongst other things, was the word Ingel || Gar, 
M T., or really Ingelgar Moneyer. Probably the sandy soil 
into which the coin had been dropped prevented corrosion, as it 
was in an admirable state of preservation. The capital letters 
were well formed, and differed very little from our modern ones. 


except the G, which was very square in form, and the M, which 
consisted of two outer stems like capital Fs connected not by an 
inner acute angle like a V, but by a slight curve or festoon at the 
top. This Ingelgar was, during the years 941-945, a moneyer 
to Anlaf, at that period King of Northumbria, who, in the latter 
year, was expelled by Eadmund. Ingelgar, in addition to Anlaf, 
was moneyer to three other Kings ; Eric, also a King of 
Northumbria, and to Eadmund, and his brother and successor 
Eadred. The coin was thought to have been struck at Man- 
chester, on account of its proximity to Bowdon; but as there 
was also a Mint at Chester, there is no conclusive evidence on 
this point. 

We now leave for the present speculation behind, and proceed 
to the consideration of authentic records. With the advent of 
William the Conqueror, and the consolidation of his power in 
England, we see the establishment of a feudalism which was to 
leave its mark and impress on the people to our own time. The 
County of Chester, which was then looked upon in the light of a 
little kingdom, was amongst the last in England to yield to his 
army, and the city did not fall into his hands until 1070. 
Shortly afterwards the Earldom of Chester was given by the 
King to his nephew, Hugh D'Avaranches, son of Kichard Gosse, 
and surnamed Hugh la Loup, or Hugh Lupus, on account of his 
bearing a wolf's head on his shield. The Earl had his Council of 
Barons spiritual and temporal, with all the usual officers of the 
Court and a reigning Sovereign. The County was parted 
amongst the Normans, and the old Saxon possessors turned out. 
Amongst the Normans in the Koll of Battle Abbey, quoted by 
Hollinshed, appears the name of Hamoimd. This again is given 
in ancient charters as Hamund ; and as he was a most important 
personage, it is beyond doubt that he is the same Hamunde or 
Hamo who held the Barony of Doneham or Dunham, at the time 
of Domesday Survey, in 1086, and who dwelt at the Castle, 
which in all probability was founded by a Saxon predecessor. 
These Barons held their Lordships from the Earl of Chester, and 


the tenants of the farms from the barons. In an old poem written 
about 300 years ago, it is said of the first Earl of C'hester, that 

On Hamon Massy he did bestow 

The Dunham Massy barony ; 
To whom there did succeed in xowe 

Five heires of his successively. 
From henceforth 'inongst the female heires 

It scattered was for many years ; 
Yet most part, after ages passed, 

T(i Fitton of BoUin came at last. 

Another version gives it : -- 

Vpon Hughe Massey he did bestow 

the Dunham Massey barronye, 
to M'hom their did succeed in row 

8 (5) lieyres of his successivelye ; 
from thenceforth mongst the femall heyres 

it scattered was for many yeeres, 
yet most part after ages past 

a Bootlic of Du[n]ham came at last. 

The entry in Domesday Book says that Hamon holds 
Doneham ; Eluard held it, and was a freeman ; there is one hide 
of land rateable to the gelt ; the land is three carucates ; one is 
demesne; and there are two neatherds, two villeins, and one 
bordar ; and one acre of wood, and one house in the city (of 
Chester) ; in the time of King Edward it was worth 123. ; now 
10s. It was waste. 

It also states that the same Ilamo " holds JJogedone ; 
Eluard held it and was a free man ; there is one hide rateable 
to the gelt ; the land is two carucates ; there are two foreigners 
having one carucate ; there is a priest and a church to which 
half this hide belongs ; also a grinding mill rendering IG pence ; 
it was waste, and so [the Earl] found it.'' 

It may be well to explain the meaning of one or two of these 
terms. The quantity of a hide, as has been already mentioned, 
appears to have varied considerably. The land rateable to the 


gelt was that which was taxed for the purpose of subsidizing the 
invading Danes, and a carucate, or caroe, or ploughlatid, was 
generally eight oxgangs, or bovates — 224 acres. There do not 
seem to have been any radmen or roadmen in either township, 
although there was one in Hale : but those of a lower order, viz., 
neatherds, etc., are noted. Radmen were those who served their 
superior lords on horseback, and were freemen in a certain sense. 
Villeins were those whose estate of vassallage almost amounted to 
slavery ; neatherds or bovarii were employed in attending to the 
cattle, and in other servile work ; and bordars, or boors, held 
small portions of land, and were probably bound to supply the 
table of the Lord of the Manor with eggs, poultry, &'c. 

That historian and antiquarian imr e.rcellenre, Sir Peter 
Leycester, shrewdly guesses that Hamon the Norman dispossessed 
Eluai'd the Saxon of his lands in this neighbourhood, after 
having had them "given " to him by the Earl ; but in addition to 
these he held Hale, Ashley, half of Owlerton — now Ollerbarrow — 
Bromhale, Puddingtou in Wirrall, and other lands, by military 
service ; he being bound to attend the King in time of war with 
a certain number of horse and foot, and immediately repair to the 
King's summons with his whole posse should an enemy's army 
come into Cheshire, or should Chester Castle lie besieged. An 
engraving in King's " Vale Eoyal" represents the Earl of Chester 
in Parliament assembled, his eight barons seated on each side of 
him, and amongst them, the first on his left-hand side, 
distinguished by his arms — quarterly, gules and or, in the first 
quarter a lion passant, argent, — is to be seen Hamo of Dunham. 
At the barrier which divides the room into two portions, are a 
number of adherents, who appear to be pressing their claims to 
lands, which having been won by the sword, will be so held and 
esteemed good title to them in the future. 

The Castle of Dunham was greatly strengthened by Hamon, 
so as to resist successfully the marauding propensities of 
avaricious neighbours. He was one of the most influential of 
the barons, from the fact of his Castle being situated near the 


giu;it Ifomaii road, it formed a powerful position of defence in 
case of invasion. Tiie counties palatine, says one writer, were 
judged to be in greater danger than the others, and greater 
attention therefore was paid to their defences. The adjoining 
County Palatine of Lancaster was .surrounded by a chain of forts, 
one of which was at Widnes, where a baron was stationed to 
protect that side from the incursions of the Cheshire people ; and 
the jealousy being mutual, opposite to this on the Cheshire side 
was Halton Castle, placed in such a manner as to guard the 
county from any surprise either from AVarrington, another 
Lancashire barony, or Runcorn Ferry. The next barony was 
Newton, erected as well to strengthen "\\'arrington as to oppose 
any passage out of Cheshire, and opposite to this was placed 
Hamon at Dunham. Hamon in his lifetime gave to St. 
Werburgh's at Chester, the village of Northerden (Northenden), 
in the Maxfield or Macclesfield Hundred. He had a son and 
heir, named after him, Hamon, and also Robert Massey, who was 
a witness to the first Randle's charter of confirmation to the 
Abbey of St. Werburgh in Chester, about a.d. 1124. 

The second Hamon had issue, Hamon, a son and heir, and 
Robert Massey, from whom sprang the Massseys of Sale. This is 
probably the Hamon ^lassey who is noticed in one of the ancient 
chronicles as having held the Castle of Dunham against Henry H. 
in 1173, dtuing the rebellion of which Hugh, Earl of Chester, 
was principal leader. He gave the lands of Bramhall, or Bromale, 
to Matthew de Bromale by charter, of which the following is a 
translation : — 

Hamo de Masci to all his friends, both clerical and lay, as well 
present as to come, sends greeting. Know ye all that I have 
granted, &c., to Matthew de Bromale, Bromale and Dokenfeld 
and two parts of Baguley, which his father held of me and my 
heirs in fee [Ijy the service] of a breastplate [meaning that he 
should rendei- or pay for his lands a man armed with a breast- 
jilatc for militaiT defence, or its equivalent in money, at a later 
period, eveiy year] to him and his heirs, to hold of me and my 


heirs freely and quietly, &c., making to me and my heirs the free 
service in fee of one breastplate ; and know ye that I have quit 
claimed the said Matthew and his heirs and the aforesaid lands, 
to me and my heirs, of the service and custom which I, the said 
Hamo, usetl to demand from them, namely, of ploughing, 
mucking, and sowing corn, and of making hay, and doing homage 
of estovers [providing food], pannage, and of all other services 
except the service of the fee of one breastplate. These being 
witnesses : Eoger de Massie, William de Carington, Robert de 
Massie, and Richard de Fitton, and very many others, both 
seeing and hearing the same. 

The third Hamon married Agatha de Theray, and had several 
children, the eldest of whom was a son named after his father. 
He died about the end of the reign of King John, or the begintiing 
of that of Henry HI., and his wife Agatha survived him. He is 
said to have given to his brother John Massey all the land of 
Moreton. He also confirmed to Robert, son of Waltheof or 
Fitz Waltheof, all his father's lands in Bredbury, Brinnington, 
and Etchells, by a very interesting charter, which has been 
translated as follows : — 

Hamo de Masci to all his men, whether French or English, 
clerical or lay, as well in the future as now living, sendeth 
greeting. Be it known to you all that I have regrantcd to Robert, 
the son of Waltheof, all the land which Waltheof, his father, held 
of me and my ancestors for his inheritence, that is to say 
Hecheles (Etchells) with all that appertains to it, to him and his 
heirs, holding of me and my heirs freely, quietly, and peaceably, 
by the service of half a knight's fee. And I [the said] Hamu 
reserve to my own use, stag, hind and boar in Hulreswood, and 
the other liberties shall remain to Robert, the son of Waltheof, 
and his heirs. And I [the said] Hamo, regrant to Robert, the 
son of Waltheof, Bredburie and Brinintone, with their appurten- 
ances, as his inheritence to him and his heirs, to hold of me and 
my heirs, l)y the service of carrying my bed, my arm.'5 or my 
clothing, whenever the Earl [of Chester] in his own pi'oper person 


shall go into Wales. And I [the said] Hauio will fully furnish 
[the said] Robert, the son of Waltheof, and his heirs, with a 
sumpter beast, and a man and a sack, and we will find estovers 
[sufficient food] for the man and the sumpter beast aforesaid 
whilst he is with us in the field, until he shall be returned to the 
said Robert or his heirs. And Robert, the son of Waltheof, 
shall pay aid to ransom my body from captivity and detention, 
and to make my eldest son a knight, and to give my eldest 
daughter a marriage portion, in consideration of which [the said] 
Robert has given me a gold ring. 

The conditions named in this charter were usual tuider the 
feudal system, when the kingdom was really the encampment of 
a great army and military ideas predominated. While the vassal 
was thus bound to render service to his lord, and to attend as 
assessor in his court of justice, the lord in his turn was bound to 
afford him protection in case of his fief being attacked ; but the 
defence of each other's person was reciprocal. 

As freedom broadens down, we frequently find in subsequent 
writings the Barons of Dunham conceding to their squires the 
right that neither they nor their heirs or tenants shall be 
impleaded or brought to trial for any ottence in the Court at 
Dunham, which was a most valuable right, as the barons had 
most extraordinary privileges, on their own estates, and in their 
hands was reposed the power of life and death. So late as the 
year 1597 this right was exercised in the Baronial Court of 
Kinderton, where Hugh Stringer was tried for murder, convicted 
and executed. 

It was probably about this period that Roger de Masci, of 
Hale, son of Geffrey ^lasci (being possessed of one half the lands 
in " Bodeon "), sold them unto Agatha de Massey for the sum of 
£,i 7s. in money, and two robes, one for himself and the other 
for his wife, " rending therefor yearly one pound of camming 
seed at the feast of Saint Martin." These lands, Agatha, by 
another deed, in which she styles herself de Theray, gave to 
Robert her younger son, whom she made heir thereof by the 
consent of Hamon, her eldest son. 


supposed to be the last relic ; ami tradition attirms that a fine 
old cedar, long, long ago killed by the ivy, was brought a sapling 
from the Holy Land by one of the old crusading Barons of 
Dunham, and that it died out with the last of the race ! 
Probably, too, the fact of the last of these barons dying without 
leaving a lawful son to succeed him, gave rise to the romantic 
legend of the " Seven Sisters," in connection with the park at 
Dunham, where there is a clnmp of trees which is known by this 
name. Many people are acquainted with it, and, no doubt, 
lament the tragic end of the youthful heir, who was struck dead 
l)y lightning just as he was passing the " Seven Sisters." 

And each fatal tree was stained with gore ; 

And so was the bloody earth ; 
And the same night saw his dreadful deatli 

That first beheld his birth. 

And the legend closes ; - 

The seven sister trees may still be .seen, 

Though the mortal ones are fled ; — 
And none of that fated house were left, 

When tlie squire himself dead. 

Hamon also reminds us in a most striking manner of 
Jjongfellow's melodious poem, " The Norman Baron." We can 
well picture to ourselves the stately Castle of Dunham. In his 
chamber on Christmas Eve, lies the dying baron. The King of 
Terrors has already laid his relentless hand upon him ; and the 
humble monk, seated by the bed side, mutters the " pra^-er and 
pater noster " which shall usher the fast fleeting soul into 
Eternity. Outside, the tempest thunders, and shakes the Castle 
turret, l)ut the sufterer is unmindful of it. Within its precincts 
serf and vassal arc holding their Christmas festival. As their 
lays they chaunt, the sound rises above that of the tempest, and 
the dying baron turns his weary head to listen to the carol, in 


supposed to be the last relic : and tradition affirms that a 'fine 
old cedar, long, long ago killed by the ivy, was brought a sapling 
from the Holy Land by one of the old crusading Barons of 
Dunham, and that it died out with the last of the race ! 
Probably, too, the fact of the last of these barons dying without 
leaving a lawful son to succeed him, gave rise to the romantic 
legend of the " Seven Sisters," in connection with the park at 
Dunham, where there is a clump of trees which is known by this 
name. Manj' people are acquainted with it, and, no doubt, 
lament the tragic end of the youthful heir, who was struck dead 
by lightning just as he was passing the " Seven Sisters." 

Anil each fatal tree was stained with gore : 

And so was the bloodj- earth : 
And the same night saw his dreadful deatli 

That first beheld his birth. 

And the legend closes ; - 

The seven sister trees may still be seen, 

Thongli the mortal ones are fled ; — 
And none of that fated house were left, 

When the squire himself was dead. 

Hamon also reminds us in a most striking manner of 
Longfellow's melodious poem, "The Norman Baron." We can 
well picture to ourselves the stately Castle of Dunham. In his 
chamber on Christmas Eve, lies the dying baron. The King of 
Terroi-s has already laid his relentless hand upon him ; and the 
humble monk, seated by the bed side, mutters the " prayer and 
pater noster " which shall usher the fast fleeting soul into 
Eternity. Outside, the tempest thunders, and shakes the Castle 
turret, but the sufferer is unmindful of it. Within its precincts 
serf and vassal are holding their Christmas festival. As their 
lays they chaunt, the sound rises above that of the tempest, and 
the dying baron turns his weary head to listen to the carol, in 





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which is heralded the birth of the manger-cradled stranger, 
Christ, who was born to set us free. In an instant, the spirit of 
repentance appears. He thinks of the justice, long withheld, due 
to those under his iron rule, and they are by him freed again. 
As on the sacred missal he inscribes their freedom, death relaxes 
his iron features, and the monk repeats a deep Amen. 

Many centuries have been numbered 

Since in death the baron slumbered, 

By the convent's sculptured portal, 

Mingling with the common dust : 

But the good deed, through the ages 
Living in historic pages, 
Brighter grows and gleams immortal, 
Unconsumed by moth or rust. 


The Parish Church : — Its claims to aiitiquili/ — The i/etc trees, a relic 
cf Saxon Christianity —The wakes, their origin and use — Jn old bead 
roll and its record — Description of the old church — Falue of the living 
six centuries ago — The ringers' orders — A law suit — Another bead roll 
and its record — Memorials of old families — The Brereton monuments — 
The Dunham Chapel, dr. 

IT is not stated precisel\' when the (Jhuich of Bowdon was 
originally founded. It cannot boast a date like that at 
Eostherne, of 1188, although, there is no doubt, Bowdon is 
much older ; neither is it recorded that it had " a priory of 
regular canons of the Order of St. Augustine," like its relation at 
Mobberley, or any of the Pra3monstatensians, such as dwelt at 
Warburton, anciently spelled Wurburgetone ; but it is certain 
that at the Domesday Survey, as already noticed, there was a 
priest attached to the church, munificently endowed, probaljlj- 
with many " fat fallows." It is also certain that the church 
existed a long time prior to the Conquest. The planting of yew 
trees in churchyards, on account of their sombre and funereal 
aspect, is a relic of the Saxon Christianity which had spread over 
the land, and the custom prevailed at Bowdon. There are two 
or three in tiie churchyard, and one in particular is, judging 
from calculations made of the growth of such trees, upwards of 
800 years old. According to one authority, it is even said to 
have been planted in the seventh century. It is a gnarled sturdy- 
looking veteran, but much the worse for its thousand years' 
(supposed) exposure on the hilltop. 

The view from the churchyard is the finest in the district. 
It embraces a vast expanse of lovely scenery, including the 
beautiful valley of the BoUin, backed in the distance by Alderley 
Edge, the hills of Derbyshire and Stafl'ordshiie, and many other 
features of interest. The church is dedicated to St. Mary, whose 


"feast" is kept annually by wakes held in the month of September. 
This feast was formerly celebrated on the 8th September, being 
the nativity of the Virgin, but it is now held on the 1st Sunday 
after the full moon succeeding the Hth September. The event, 
however, now evokes little or no interest. Leycester says that 
the word Wakes or fast day is derived from the Latin Vigilfe a 
Vigilando, because at such times people prayed most on the night 
before such fast day in the churches : "yet we find this primi- 
tive custom abused in the reign of King Edgar, A.D. 967, and at 
last it turned into a feasting and merriment of neighbours." AVho 
will .say after this that history does not repeat itself ? 

From extracts taken from the Bead Koll, A.D, 1298, it is 
shown that " Robertus de ilasci, by ye consent of his wife and 
heirs male of his body, gave and devised unto Adam de Bodon, 
two oxganges (56 acres) of land in Bodon, rending yearly one 
penny upon the Altar of St. Mary the Virgin at Bodon on the 
nativity of St. Mary the Virgin, which is the eighth day of 
September in perpetual alms for the Salvation of the Souls of 
Robertus de Masci, his wife, ancestors and heirs, and for the souls 
of Mathew de Bodon and Hale." Baron Masci, son and heir to 
the fourth Hamon de Masci, gave to God, the blessed Virgin 
Mary, and St. James, and to the Prior and Convent of Birkenhead 
half-an acre of land in Doneham Masci, together with the advow- 
son of the church of our good lady Saint Mary in Bowdon, A.D. 
1278 ; "for in that year was Richard Masci, one of the witnesses. 
Sheriff of Chester." After the dissolution of the Abbeys in the 
reign of Henry VIII , a new Bishopric was created at Chester, 
whereunto was given amongst other things the church of Bowdon. 

The advowson of the Vicarage continues attached to the See 
of Chester. The latter is held by lease of lives by the Earl of 
Stamford and Warrington. The church was valued in the tax 
roll of Pope Nicholas in the thirteenth century at £11 6s. 8d., 
and at £24: per annum in the King's book. In 1666, according 
to Sir Peter Leycester, it was £120 per annum ; two hundred 
years or so later it is given at £900 in the Clergy List. 



A description of the church as it anciently stood will not be 
found uninteresting. The exterior was chiefly in the Xorman 
style of architecture, introducing at the eastern termination, or 
at the Carrington and Dunham Chancels, the pointed and more 
fanciful Gothic. The tower was also in the Norman style 
embattled and quadrangular, and contained a peal of sonorous 
bells. In the belfry is the following : — 

You ringers all, observe these orders well — 
He pays his sixpence that o'erturns a bell, 
And he that rings with either spur or hat 
Must pay his sixpence certainly for that ; 
And he that rings and does disturb the peal 
Must pay his sixpence or a gun of ale. 
These laws elsewhere in every church are used. 
That bells and ringers may not be abused. 

James Millatt, Ferdinand Laughton, George Wright, 
and James Fletcher, Churchwardens : Joseph Drink- 
water, John Pickering, Aaron Eccles, Peter Picker- 
ing, John Dean, John Hobbert, Parish Ringers. 

Formerly, the sixth bell was tolled for a funeral, and after 
being tolled (if for a male) the whole six bells were tolled thrice 
each ; (if for a female) only twice each. The curfew was rung 
on the fifth bell, and the practice is still continued, although the 
day of the month is not tolled as it was up to 1864: or 186.5. 

The interior of the church consisted of a nave, chancel, and 
side aisles with spacious galleries ending in two private chancels 
appropriated and belonging to the Lords of Dunham Massey. 
Kegarding these chancels, it appears that a dispute arose at the 
death of John Carrington, between his executors and the Brereton 
family, as to the right of legal possession of Carrington chapel, 
dedicated to St. Nicholas. The Breretons claimed it by reason 
of being possessed of one-fourth of the lands in Bowdon, and the 
Booth family by heirship. The enquiry in 1557 by the Court of 
Chancery, resulted in the claim of the latter family being con- 
firmed. These chapels were divided from the rest of the church 
the Dunham one by two pointed arches and the Carrington one 


by three, resting on short octagoncal pillars. Connected with 
them were original]}' two chantry priests, John Percivall and 
Henry Tipjjing. 

There was also a liead roll belonging to the chantry to the 
following effect : — 

Pray for ye good estate of me, Sr. Wm. Booth, Maude my wife, 
Lawrence Bishoiie, George sonne and heir apparent of me, ye said Wm., 
Katherine his wife, Vfm. sonne of the said George Bouthe, Richard 
Bouthe, John Boutlie, and Wm. Bouthe, sonnes of me yt said Wm. Geffrey 
Bouthe and Hamnett Boutlie, Gierke?, brethren of yt sd Sr. Wm. Bouthe, 
Lucy late wife of John Chantrill, Ellen wife of Robert Leigh, and Allison 
wife of Robert Hesketh, sisters of me yt said Wm. Thomas Duncalfe and 
James Hall, p'sones of Northen, for ye souls late of my father and mother, 
that is to .=ay, Robert Bouthe, Knt, Jane his wife, Wm. Bouthe late Arch- 
bishop of York, Rafe Bouthe my sonne, Jonet, late wife of Will Holte, my 
daughter Kate Bouthe, Mr. Edmond Bouthe Clarke, Piers Bouthe Clerk, 
and Robert Bouthe brethren of me, ye said Wm , Jonet late wife of Will., 
Mainwaringe, and Margaret late wife of James Scaresbrooke, my susters, 
and especially for all the 

There was formerly an inscription over this chapel : — 

This is Dunham Chapel, repaired by and belonging to the Lords of 
Dunham Massey. 

The arms of the Booths, surmounting with the motto, " Quod 
ero spero " ; and on the other : — 

This is Carrington Chapel, repaired by and belonging to the Lords of 
Dunham and Carrington. 

In the chapel belonging to Sir George Bouthe, " on a faire 
stone of marble with beasts about it," was " the picture of a man 
and woman engraven in brass." The "two recumbent figures 
had clasped hands : the male figure in plate armour, under his 
feet six kneeling figures (infants), and seven under those of his 
wife ; in three angles of the tomb, the arms of Massey of Done- 
ham, quartering those of the Bouthes, and the fourth, those of 
Butler, Baron of Warrington." The inscription translated read : — 

Of your charity pray for the souls of George Bouthe, E.squire, and 
Elizabeth his wife, and of the said Thomas Butler of Bewsey, Knt, which 
George and Elizabeth, had together at the time of the death of the said 
(ieorge Bouthe, three sons, George, Jo, and Robert. 


The Booths, at this time, api)eaf to have uscil the arms of the 
Norman founder of the Birony. 

In the east window were the words ; — 

Wch chapelle and chamber "as erected by Sr ^Vm. Booth, about 
Edn-ard IV. raigne. 

And in Latin the following : — 

Pray for the souls of Will Booth Knt, and Matilda his wife, daughter 
of John Dutton Escjr., and for the soul of Oeorge Booth, son and heir, who 
it is said built this chapel. 

There were other memorials existing in the same chapel in 
the 16th and 17th centuries. Upon an "alabaster stone" this 
monument, engraven with an inscription, about the stone : A 
knight in plate armour, recumbent, his head resting on a helmet, 
the crest of which is a lion passant, on each side a recumbent 
female ; over his head the coat of Mascy of Dunham ; over the 
dexter lady, argent, an eagle, displayed azure ; at her feet four 
children. Over the sinister lady the coat of Fitton, and at 
her feet four children. In Latin were the words : — 

Here lies the body of Sir William Booth, knight, who died on 9th 
Nov., 1519, and Margarete and Helena, wives of the said William : upon 
whose souls God be merciful. Amen. 

There was a little monument to two of the children of Sir 
George Bouthe, Francis and George, who died in infancy. There 
were no arms upon it, but two little children with two torches 
turned downwards. 

In the Carrington chapel were many similar inscriptions and 
arms of the Vawdreys, Baguleys, Leghs of Baguley, the Lords of 
Carrington, i<l-c. On the Carrington side of the chancel there is 
an ancient monument of the Brereton family erected in the years 
1627 to 1637. Although bearing marks of great exposure, suffi- 
cient of it is still to be seen to show that it is a real work of art. 
The husband and wife are recumbent, arrayed in robes and ruffles, 
peculiar to the time ; and underneath, in bas-relief, are their eight 
children in surcoats. The third holds a skull in his hands ; and 
between the sixth and seventh is an infant in swaddling clothes. 
There is impaled beneath a canopy of frieze in the arabesque, two 


escutcheons, Breieton and Warburton arms conjoined. The 
family arms are charged with 27 quarterings (18 Breretons and 
9 AYarburtons) impaling Hugh Lupus, Cholmondeley, Booth, 
Warburton, Egerton, and others : and there is a beautiful Latin 
inscription, of which the following is a translation : — 

Under this monument lie interred the bodies of Wm. Brereton, 
of Ashley, in the county of Chester, Esq., and Jane his wife ; 
the former of whom derived origin and descent from the ancient 
and illustrious family of Lord William Brereton, of Brereton, in 
the aforesaid county ; the latter was one of the daughters and 
coheiresses of Peter Warburton, of Arley, in the said county. 
Esquire, lately deceased. They bore male children, Eichard, 
Thomas, William (peacefully sleeping in the Lord) and Peter ; 
females, Frances, Maria, (also overcome by the bonds of death), 
Ann and Catherine. They enjoyed themselves in conjugal and 
chaste love ; they adhered strictly to and exercised the principles 
of the true and orthodox religion (as Christians ought to do) ; 
and having walked this life righteously and holy, are now awaiting 
the joyful and glorious resurrection by the body of Christ to be 
conveyed to the heavenly abode of rest, unto which they were 
called. Jane, his wife, died March 2nd, 1627, aged G3 years ; 
William died August 29th, 1630, also aged 63. 

There is a tradition concerning this couple that the wife, Jane 
Brereton, was murdered, and that her hands were cut off. There 
are no hands on the female effigy ; but it is just possible that it 
may have been an act of vandalism on the part of some evil- 
disposed persons in former times. 

While on the subject of the ch.iucel, it may bo mentioned that 
in the window in or about the year 1600, were five coats of arms. 
In the first, Tatton impaling Davenport ; second, Tatton impaling 
Booth ; third, the Bishopric of Chester ; fourth, Tatton impaling 
Fitton ; fifth, Tatton, with a label, impaling "Wairen. 

In the floor of the chancel, within the rails of the altai', was 
a somewhat curious inscription, in Latin : — 

In this place is interred the remains of — Gerrai-d, of Riddings tlio first 
and of that name — on the day in the year of our Lord 167-. 


Ill the body of the church, on the south side, there was a 
monument of >Sir William Bagule}^ Knight. It was a full-length 
eflSgy, cut in free stone, and represnted a warrior in mail. The 
surcoat and shield were emblazoned with the arms of Baguley, or 
Bagleigh. As it appeared to be in the way, it was taken out of 
the church, and for several years graced the grotto of a gentle- 
man's garden at Partington. It attracted some attention at a 
later period, and through the instrumentality of the late T. W. 
Tatton, Esq., of AVythenshawe, it ultimately found a more 
appropriate resting place at Baguley Old Hall, from whence the 
original had sprung. 

There must have been many representations on painted glass, 
for which Cheshire churches are famous, at Bowdon. In the head 
of the south aisle was a very ancient coat of arms of the 
Bagulej's ; under which was a memorial of the Leghs of Baguley ; 
underneath was a kneeling male figure with one son and four 
daughters kneeling behind him. In the second window on the 
south side. Sir Thomas Butler, in coat armour, with two sons and 
eight daughters kneeling behind him. In the west window were 
the arms of the Barony of Dunham Massey. In a higher window 
on the south side were certain coats of arms, and an inscription in 
Latin, desiring prayers for James Hall, Rector of Northen, who 
bequeathed the window. On the north side, in the second 
window from the " bell-house," as it is quaintly termed, were two 
kneeling figures, the man habited in a surcoat emblazoned with 
the arms of Ashley, with five sons and four daughters, ranged 
severally behind them. Over them were the arms of Ashley, an 
ashbranch with ash keys dependant. In Latin there was a 
request to pray for the souls of John Ashley and Alice, his wife, 
who caused the window to be erected A.D. 1530. In the next 
window on the north side, were the arms of the Carriugtons, 
quartering the same coat -with a helmet and crest over. In the 
compartment on the dexter side of the shield was a man in armour, 
kneeling, his surcoat emblazoned with the arms of Carrington, 
one son behind him in this compartment and another in the next. 


In the compartment on the other side were two kneeling females, 
their arms severally emblazoned with those of Brereton and 
Warburton. Behind the first was one daughter, and four behind 
the other. This was erected in 1530 hy the Carringtons. In 
another window on the north side were two figures kneeling on 
cushions. The male figure's surcoat was emblazoned with the 
arms of Ashton, and the dress of the female with that of Butler. 
Over them were the arms of Mascy of Dunham, quartering 
Ashton, Stayley, Fitton, and Thornton. Four sons and nine 
daughters knelt severally behind them ; and an inscription 
requested prayers for the good estate of George Bouthe and 
Elizabeth his wife, who erected the window in 1530. 

In another light of the same window were the arms of Mascy 
of Dunham, surmounted with a crosier ; this window being 
presented by John Sharpe, Prior of Birkeahead, in the same 
year. The same coat of arms was repeated in the roof of the 
north aisle, but it has been obliterated, and the marks of the 
chisel which has been used may still be seen. 

In the lowermost window on the north side was another 
memorial to a Prior of Birkenhead, Robert Millington, or 
Millenton. There were the arms of Millington and an ecclesiastic 
kneeling, holding a cup in his left hand. 

In the east window of the north aisle, over against the chancel, 
was a window bequeathed by Hamonis Carrington, and sur- 
mounted by the Carrington arms. 

On a flag in the middle aisle was a memorial to the Eev. P. 
Lancaster, A.M., who died March 7th, 1763 ; but prior to the 
restoration of the church, there was a large number of inscrip- 
tions on stones in the interior to the servants of the Dunham 

In the Dunham Chapel are two large mural monuments. One 
has a shield of 60 quarterings of the Booth family placed against 
a pyramid, and resting on a sarcophagus. At the sides of the 
pyramids are two medallions to the memory of Langham and 
Henry Booth, younger sons of the then Earl of \\'arrington, who 


24 ALTIUyCIIAM AX1> liUirpUN. 

died ill 1724:, and in 1727. The other is divided into two taljlels ; 
the first to the memory of Henry Booth, Earl of Warrington and 
Baron Delamer, who died in 1693-1 ; the second to the memory 
of his Countess, sole daughter and heiress of Sir James Langham. 
In the charging of the siu'coat, Booth has nine quarterings 
impaling six of Langhams. The inscription regarding the Earl is 
as follows : — 


lieth the body of 

the Right Honourable Henry Booth, 

Earl of Warrington and Baron Delamer, 

of Dunham Massey ; 

a iierson of 

unblemished honor, 

impartial justice, 

strict integrity, 

an illustrious example of 

steady and unalterable adherence to 

the liberties and properties of his country, 

in the worst of times 

rejecting all offers to allure 


despising all danger to deter 

him therefrom, 

for which he was 

thrice committed close prisoner to the tower of 


and at length 

tried for his life 

upon a false accusation of high treason, from w hich he was 

unanimously acquitted 

by his peers, on the 1-lth January, mdclxxxv-vi. (16S5-6), 

which day 

he afterwards annually commemorated 

by acts of devotion and charity. 

In the year 


he greatly signalised himself at the 


on behalf of 

the Protestant religion and the rights of the Nation, 

without mixture of self interest, 

preferring the good of his country 

to the favor of the prince 

wlio then ascended the throne, 



having served his generation according to the will of God, 

■was gathered to his fathers in peace, 

on the second day of January, 169| (1693-4), 

in the xlii. (forty-second) year of his age, 

whose mortal remains were here entombed 

on the same memorable day on which, eight years before, 

his trial had been. 

The companion inscription sets forth the many virtues and 
good qualities of IMary, Countess of Warrington, his wife, as 
follows : — 

Also rest by him the earthly remains of the Rt. Honble. ilary. 
Countess of Warrington, his wife, sole daughter and heir of Sir James 
Langham, of Cottersbrooke, in the county of Northampton, Knt. and 
Bart. : a Lady of ingenuous parts, singular discretion, consummate judge- 
ment, great humility, meek and compassionate temper, extensive charity, 
exemplary and unaffected piety, perfect resignation to God's will ; lowly 
in prosperity and patient in adversity, prudent in her affairs, and endowed 
with all other virtuous qualities ; a conscientious discharger of her duty in 
all relations, being a faithful, affectionate, obliging, and observant \Yife, 
alleviating the cares and afHictions of her husband, by willingly sharing 
with him therein ; a tender, indulgent, and careful Mother, a dutiful and 
respectful Daughter, gentle and kind to her servants ; courteous and 
beneficent to her neighbours, a sincere friend, a lover and valuer of all 
good people, justly beloved and admired by all who knew her, who having 
perfected holiness in the fear of God was by Him received to an early and 
eternal Rest from her labours on the 23rd of March, 169i, in the xxwii. 
year of her age, calmly, composedly meeting and desiring death, with 
joyful hope and steadfastness of faith, a lively draught of real worth and 

A pattern deserving an imitation. 
Of whom the world was not worthy. 

mh. xi., 3s. 

Underneath are the words : — 

To perpetuate the remembrance of so much virtue till that great day 
come, wherein it .«hall be openly rewarded, this monument is erected as a 
mark of dutiful respect and affection by the care of their son George, Earl 
of Warrington, who reveres their memory. 

Mottoes : Ero quod spero (Let me be what I wish or profess to 
be) ; and A ma puissance (According to my power). 
On the second monument is the following : — 

This monument is 


to the ever valuable memory of the Honorable 

Langham and Henry Bootli, 


younger sons of the 

Right Honorable Henry late Earl of 


Both of them began their earthly pilgrimage on the 

Loid's Day' 


ufter having fought a good fight 

clieerfully resigned their souls into the mercifull 

hands of their God and Saviour 


finishing their course in ye XL. year of their respective ages, 

the former on the xii. of May, mdccxiv. (1714) 

; latter on the 11 Febr. mdccxxvii., do now rest in hope to receive 

their bodies 

immortal and glorious 

in the great day of the Lord. 

In the sight of the unwise they .seemed to die, but they are in peace 
and their hope full of Immortality, for (iod proved them and found them 
Worthy of Himself ; for Hnble. age is not measured by Number of 
years, but they being made perfect in a short time, fulfilled a long time, 
and pleasing God were beloved of Him, so that living among sinners they 
were translated. — KYs. iii. and iv. 

On a brass which was formerly fixed in a stone at the descent 
to the family vault of the Earls of Stamford and "Warrington, kc, 
was an inscription of which the following is a translatioiL It 
was not replaced at the restoration of the church : — 

Under this monument are interred the remains of George, Lord 
Delamer, Baron of the ancient and noble house of Dunham Massey, wlio 
was distinguished by his piety, fidelity, and nflection to God, King, and 
Country, and who in the sixty-second year of his age exchanged an earthly 
coronet for a celestial crown, and died on the 10th day of August, in the 
year of our Salvation 1684. William Andrews, deploring the death of his 
most honourable Lord (in whose serxice he had continued for upwards of 
30 years, faithfully emulating and partaking in the loyalty which his 
master showed to his King), this monument to his ever-blessed and happy 
memory has been erected, consecrated, and preserved, and a hope added 
that when his life at the same time with his official duty to that noble 
family came to an end, at the entrance to this tomb his ashes might rest, 
until the day when they might rise, together with those of his master, 
into the new and eternal life. Died 25th day of July, 1685. 

In the south-east angle of this chapel is a portion of a piscina, 
much defaced, formerly used for holy water. 

Descnplion of the old church, continued — The tales told h'j the 
tomhstones and the tablets — .J curious old stone. 

THEKE still remains something to be s;iid about the old 
structure, and having described the Dunham and 
Carrington Chapels, we pass on to the other parts of 
the church. The vestry was situated under the belfry, and 
occupied the ancient western entrance, and at the north entrance 
were the font and the gallery stairs and near the south porch the 
organ gallery stairs. The galleries were of fair dimensions. The 
organ gallery was built under a faculty from the Bishop of 
Chester, and the organ was presented by the Eai-1 of Stamford 
and Warrington in 1822. This was afterwards pulled down, 
and a new one built in the Carrington Chapel, which in its turn 
gave place in 1876 to a noble instrument built by Messrs. 
Jardine and Co., of Manchester. The galleries on the north 
side were enlarged and re-built in the year 184], at the sole 
expense of the vicar, the Rev. W. H. G. Mann, M.A. The side 
aisles of the church had handsome carved oak roofs. On the 
south side the roof had remained unfinished for centuries, and 
had become so dilapidated as to render its restoration necessary'. 
This was undertaken by Mr. Kay, of Manchester, and was 
executed by him with such exactness as to preserve its pristine 
efifect. There was some exquisite carving, and the cluster points 
all varied in pattern. The ceilings were divided from the nave 
by five pointed arches on each side, resting on short octagonal 
pillars with capitals. The roof appears to have been taken 
down about 1778, and the walls rai.scd ; at which time John Coe, 
Richard Leather, Thoma.s Ashley, and J<ihn Slater were cburoh- 


There ;ire several monuments in \-arious parts of the church 
which have not been hitherto mentioned. Prominent amongst 
them is a fine mural one to the memory of Thomas and Harriet 
Assheton, of Ashley, and their son, Thomas Assheton Smith, 
descendants of the ancient family of the Breretons of Bovvdon :— 

In a vault near this place were interred 

the remains of Thomas Assheton, of Assheley, Esq., 

on the 9th clay of July, 1759, aged 64. 

Also in the same vault, Harriet Assheton, 

who died at Manchester, Jan., 1773, aged 74 ; 

also, the remains 

of Thomas Assheton Smith, of Asheley, Esq., 

son of the above Thomas and Harriet, 

who died April 16th, 1774, aged 49 years, 

to whose memory \Vm. Henry Assheton Smith, Esq., 

erects this monument. 

Qui< desiderio sit pudor aut modus 

Tam cari capitis. 

Also the remains of 

William Henry Assheton Smith, Es(|.. 

younger son of the above, 

Thomas Assheton Smith, Esq., 

who died at Hailey, in the county of O.vford, 

March 4th, 1839, aged 82 years. 


to the memory of 

Hugh Fitz-Patriok Hall, Esq., 

of Jamaica, and late of Ashley, in this county, 

who died on the 27th day of June, 1788, 

in the 3Sth year of his age : 

also, Martha his wife, 

the second daughter of 

Marsden Kenyon, Esq., 

of Manchester, 

who died on the 14th day of Jan., 1780, 

in the 26th year of her age. 

In a recess at the south entrance to the organ gallery was a 
tablet to the memory of a most unostentatious man, the Eev. 
Thomas Whittaker, sometime perpetual curate of Eingway : — 

What he was as a scholar he desired not to have recorded. 
What he « as as a minister of Christ 
ought ever to bo had in remembrance ; 


and when those who revered him as a guide, 

a counsellor, and a friend are seen no more, 

let this humble memorial testify 

how diligently he instructed the young, 

warned the careless, sought out the neglected, 

comforted the afflicted, and preached to all 

the doctrine of his God and Saviour, 

which he cordially embraced, 

which his life adorned, and whose consolations 

he enjoyed in his last hours. 

he died May vii, mdcocxviii. (1818), 

aged LXiii (63) years. 

God forbid that I should glory save in 

the Gross of Christ my Lord.— C?a^ vi. 5. 

In the middle aisle was a tablet with a Latin inscription to 
the memory of John Baldwin, LL.B. : — 

Who was placed over the parish of Bowdon as Vicar more than 
forty-three years. To him was entrusted the joyful gift of the ministry, 
whiqh he diligently performed ; and at length, having concluded his 
labours, peacefully returned his soul to God in the year of safety, on the 
3rd day of July, 1815, aged 69. 

On the same stone is also an inscription to — 

John Baldwin, junior, his only and much beloved son, who had 
scarcely entered into the sacred office, in which he dutifully pointed out 
the way of the blessed, when he expired, having fulfilled the task imposed, 
on the 16th January, in the year of safety, 1817, aged 2,5 years. Wife, 
husband, mother, son, bewailing. 

There are the following inscriptions in other parts of the 
church : — 

This humble tablet 

in conformity with the unassuming tenor of his mind 

records the death of 

William Harle Nicholls, M.D., 

a native of the city of Durham, 

whose character as a man 

reflects honour upon human nature ; 

visiting at Altrincham upon a tour of observation, 

he was arrested by a call from his Creator 

May 28th, 1830, in the 69th year of his age, 

and was interred in the cemetery 

of this church. 



to the memory of 

the Reverend Daniel Whittle, A.M., 

late of Hollingworth Hall, in this county, 

who after a ministry, short but faithful and approved, 

at Saint George's Chapel, in Altrinchara, 

in the prime of life, in the midst of usefulness 

was by his Master summoned away from his work, 

with him to rest, with him to reign, 

on 22nd April, A.D. 1834 ; 

born 26th Jan., a.d. 1800. 

Looking for that * * Titus ii. 

To the memory of 

Edward Jeremiah Lloyd, 

of Oldtield Hall, 

a magistrate for the counties of 

Chester and Lancaster, 

and a Captain in the Earl of Chester's Yeomanry Cavalry, 

who closed an exemplary and useful life 

on the 3id day of July, 1850, 

in the Gist year of his age. 

Distinguished by the urbanity of his manners 

and the kindness of his disposition 

no less than by his undeviating honour 

and exact sense of justice : 

accessible and benevolent to the poor, 

considerate and attentive to all, 

he engaged in a remarkable degree the affections, 

while he commanded the respect 

of every class of society. 

to testify their appreciation of his worth 

and to record so eminent an example of excellence ; 

the inhabitants of this neighbourhood 

and the members of the corps to which he belonged, 

have caused this tablet 

to be erected. 

Sacred to the Memory of Tliomas Bagshaw, of Altrincham, late of 
Manchester, who died October lotli, 1843, in the 70th year of his age. His 
loss was deeply lamented by all who knew him, for through a long and 
peaceful life he worthily sustained the character of a faithful and sincere 
friend, a truly lionorable man, and a benefactor of mankind. As a grateful 


tribute to his departed wortli, and as a mark of the deep esteem with 
which his memory is cherished, this tablet is erected by his sole surviving 
Niece, S.B. 

" The praise of Man is fluctuating and perisheth. 
The testimony of a good conscience endureth for ever." 

Passing from the interior to the exterior, we enter the church- 
yard to note many points of interest to be discerned there. Some 
of the old inscriptions are rather curious. 

On a stone, on the north side, is the following : — 
The body that this stone doth here embrace, 
So like to Leah, with a Rachael's face, 
Sarah's obedience, likewise Lydia's heart. 
With Martha's care, and Mary's better part. 

This was formerly to be seen under the chancel window : — 
Here lie the bodies of a daughter of John Cooke, of Altrincham, an 
attorney at law, and Sarah his wife, who, though full grown {and a while 
before alive), was born dead the 16th and buried 17th March, 1749. 

Near the old yew tree is : — 

Here lieth the body of John Pixton, of Altrincham, who died 27th 
Sepr., 1843, in the 96th year of his age ; Mary, wife of John Pixton, of 
Altrincham, who died 21st February, 1S4I, in the 9.Srd year of her age. 
Twenty years they lived a single life. 
Seventy-two they lived a married life. 
Three years he lived a widower chaste. 
And now hath left the world and gone to rest. 

On one of the stones is an old heading in Eoman letters LB. 
1633, enclosed in a square ; but the oldest inscription to be found 
in the yard is on a long narrow stone, also not far from the old 
yew tree. Owing to the way in which the words are divided, it 
is somewhat difficult to decipher at first sight, but it reads as 
follows : — 

Here lyeth the bodie of William Artinstall, de Ringey, deceased 
November xxvii, Ac. Do. 1617 ; also the bodie of Laurence Artinstall, of 
Ringey, who departed this life August 4th, Anno. Dom. 1684. 

On the grave of Francis Booth, who was Clerk of the church 
40 years (it is a remarkable fact that there have only been three 
clerks during 120 years, Mr. H. Service l^eing the last, who 



served forty), is an inscription at once unique and suggestive. 

It reads : — 

I oft have viewed the gloomy place 
Which claims the relicks of the human race, 
And read on the insculptured stone 
Here lies the body of . 

but now my own 
Dissolves to native dust, and as you see 
Another here has done the same for me. 

Our life is but a winter's day, 
Some only breakfast and away, 
Others to dinner stay and are full fed, 
The oldest man but sups and goes to bed ; 
Large is his debt who lingers out the day. 
Who goes the soonest has the least to pay. 

On the tombstone of John Bray, of Dunham, who was 81 at 
the time of his death, and his wife Martha, aged 91, are the 
following lines : — 

Our term of life is 70 years — an a£;e that few survive, 

But if we've more than common strength, to 80 we arrive ; 

And then our boasted strength decays, to sorrow turned and pain ; 

And soon the slender thread is cut, and we no longer reign. 

Near the tower is another stone, inscribed to the memory of 
Peter Shaw, of Bowdon, who died in 1825, aged 74 years. He 
was the faithful servant of Mr. Thomas Davenport, of Oldfield, 
"for 24 years and upwards " : — 

Farewell, vain world, I've seen enough of thee, 
And now am careless what thou sayest of me, 
Thy smiles I court not, nor thy frowns I fear, 
My cares are past, my head lies quiet here. 
What faults you saw in me take care to shun, 
And look at home — enough there's to be done. — 
Where'er I lived or died, it matters not, 
To whom related or by whom begot. 
I was, now am not, ask no moi'e of me, 
'Tis all I am, and all that you shall be. 

There are references on some of the stones to the ancient 
family of Vawdrey, frequently alluded to in the annals of the 



There are two siich references which may be quoted as 
possessing great interest : — 

William Vawdrey, of Owlerbarrow, gent., sonne to John Vawdrey of 
Banke, gent, was borne the 20th day of Nov. Anno Dom. 1606. He 
married Mary, the daughter and hi-erotrix of John Massey, gent, and after, 
Alice, sister to Sir Edward Moore of Thelewell, baronet, and had by them 
sixteen sonnes and daughters. Departed this life and was buried the l'2th 
day of May, Anno Dom. 1665. 

On the stone are the arms of the Vawdreys. Also : — 

The mortalitie and death of the sonnes and daughters of William 
Vawdrey of Owlerbarrow, gent., by Alice his wife : 

Alice, second November, 1650. 

Richard, 17th December, 1650. 

John, 23rd January, 1651. 

Thomas, 16th July, 16.54. 

Henry, 3rd December, 1654. 
and William, seventh sonne, likewise departed this life 22nd day of 
January, 1664. 

On a raised tombstone, surrounded by iron'railings, within a 
few yards of the tower on the south-west side, is an inscription to 
the memory of Eobert Kothwell, of Agden, who, with his wife 
and children, who apparently all died young, is interred here, 
having died at the age of 45. 

Beneath this rustic monument there lies 
One whose pure soul beat high in virtue's cause ; 
Religion's favorite child, he was the boast — 
And champion of the poor, blessing and blest ! 
Within the narrow circle of his friends he lived 
Unknown to fame : 
' Unknown he died. 
Alas ! too soon in manhood's prime he fell. 
Say ye who knew him best was not his life 
A perfect model of a Christian's course? 
And stranger whosoe'er thou art whose steps, 

or chance or melancholy this way leads 
If thou dost honour merit, pause ! 'tis hallowd ground, 
Here in the arms of death a village Hambden (?) sleeps. 


On the gravestone of a young girl who died suddenly, is the 
following ; — 

Warned by "my fate be ever on your guard 
Lest sudden death should meet you unprepared 
Innocent and young I saw no danger near 
Stranger both to sickness, pain and fear. 

Inscriptions are to be found to the memory of two infant 
sons of a former Vicar, the Rev. W. H. G. Mann : — 

Bold Infidelity turn pale and die ! 

Beneath this stone an infant's ashes lie. 

Say, is it lost or saved ? 

If death's by sin, it sinned, for it lies here ; 

If heaven's by works, in heaven it can't appear. 

Ah Reason ! how depraved ! 

Revere the Bible's sacred page— the knot's untied 

It died through Adam's sin— it lives for .Jesu's shed. 

On the second boy, which died aged one year, is the 
following : — 

To us for just 12 anxious months his infant smiles were given, 
And then he bade farewell to earth and went to live in heaven ; 
We cannot tell what form is his, what looks he weareth now. 
Nor guess how bright a glory crowns his shining seraph brow ; 
But we know, for God has told us this, that he is now at rest 
Where other blessed infants lie on their Saviour's loving breast ; 
We know too we shall meet our babe through the same Saviour's 

Where God for aye shall wipe away all tears from every face. 

On a raised tombstone on the westerly side is an inscription 
to the memory of an aged lady : — 

The storms of life are now o'er blown, 
Fear, trouble, care, grief, pain are gone. 
And God in Christ will hence display 
The sunshine of eternal day. 

Perhaps the very last of these rhyming inscriptions is the one 
which perpetuates the memory of one who in life was one of our 
worthiest citizens : — 

In affectionate remembrance of .loseph Owen, who died April 4th, 
1866, in his 51st year. 


Yes, he is gone, of parents best : 

A aiaster, kindly, just ; 

His sleep will be the Christian's rest 

Who lived a life of trust. 

Yes, gone ! in life's fair noon removed, 

When all was doubly dear, 

Bat those he cherished — her he loved 

Will commune with him here. 

A notable monument near the centre of the churchyard, which 
bears by its freshness the mark of loving and tender care, is that 
to the memory of David Stott, founder of St. Paul's Sunday 
School, Bennett Street, Manchester, who died February 26th, 
1848, aged 68 years. The inscription runs : — 

He founded this institution in the year 1801, and was permitted in 
the goodness of God to labour in the management of it until the last week 
of his life. His gentleness and devotion amply fitted him for a Sunday 
School Instructor ; his benevolence and discretion enabled him to foster 
this Institution, equally eminent for its usefulness, with success. He was 
also the originator of sick and burial societies in connection with Sunday 
Schools, and was a noble example of what may be effected by the influence 
of christian principles, affection and perseverance, wlien devoted to the 
service of the Saviour. This tribute of affection is erected in veneration of 
his efi'orts and example, by the visitors, teachers and friends of the said 

In the same grave rest the remains of his wife, Jane, who died 
May 11th, 1851, aged 70 years. 


The Parish Church, Us restoration — Bemiiiders and relics of aiitiquit// — 
Description of restored edifice — Tablets to the Fen. ArcMeacon 
Pollock, and to the first Vicar of St. Margaret's — The stained glass 
windmvs and their donors — A run through the registers — Curious 
and interesting extracts — the Boiodon Proverb — Notices of Vicars, 
with list — The ancient rating valuation, or mize — List of benefac- 
tions, &c. 

THE hoary pile which had served the spiritual wants of the 
parish for so many centuries at length fell into irreparable 
decay, and the substitution of an edifice more calculated to 
meet the increased requirements of the age was rendered necessary. 
It is a matter for thankfulness that Bowdon has escaped that spirit 
of vandalism which demolishes while it does not reproduce, and that 
the restoration of its parish church is essentially so both in spirit 
and in fact. As nearly as possible the old type has been adhered 

In 1854 attention was drawn to the state of the church, and 
two years afterwards plans were j)repared ; but these were objected 
to for many reasons, and ultimately, after some competition, Mr. 
W. H. Brakspear was entrusted with the important work. In 
the demolition of the ancient structure the remains of two 
churches formerly existing on the site were discovered. These 
were unmistakably portions of the ancient Norman church, pro- 
bably of the twelfth century, and a decorated church of the 
fourteenth century. The traces of Norman work were, indeed, 
very numerous. A piscina, cusped-headed, having marks of foiu- 
crockets and a finial, was also found ; but whether this was from 
the high altar or not is uncertain. Another feature of interest 
was the stone figure of a recumbent Knight, in armour, greatly 
worn, found in the foundations of the nave pier. 


The first, or foundation, stone was laid on Wednesdaj-, 18th 
August, 1858, in the presence of a large concourse of spectators, 
by the Bishop of Chester. The Vicar (Kev. W. Pollock) on that 
occasion announced that there had been received from various 
sources the sum of £6,000. The Nonconformists had responded 
to his appeal in a way which called forth his warmest gratitude. 
The silver trowel which he presented to the Bishop bore the fol- 
lowing inscription : — 

To John, Lord Bishop of the diocese, and patron of the living, on his 
laying the first stone, in the restoration of their ancient Parish Church, by 
the Vicar and Building Committee, on belialf of the parishioners of 
Bowdon, 18th August, 1858. Reverend William Pollock, M.A., Vicar, 
John Mort, A. W. Mills, John Reid, and John Warburton, Church- 

It has been erected on a more extended scale, but occupies the 
same site, and to some extent rests on the old foundation. By 
the introduction of north and south transepts, the increase in size 
has been made principally towards the east, which consequently 
required a greater height than before existed. Thus the aisles, 
walls, clerestory, and tower have been considerably increased in 
size. All the architectural features of any value have been repro- 
duced, and the north and south aisle ceilings of carved oak remain 
entire, and have been carefully restored. Those portions of the 
old church that had been preserved from an earlier building have 
also been utilized, which will explain why the architecture of the 
middle and third pointed periods are found side by side. The 
general character of the architecture, however, is that of the per- 
pendicular, or third pointed period. 

The arcades of the nave have been somewhat extended in their 
span, and transept arches introduced, otherwise they may be con- 
sidered a restoration. The aisles and chapels being of unusual 
width, they ha\-e Ijeen spanned by two arches of similar design to 
those of the nave. There arc also two arches on either side of 
the chancel, opening out of the chapel. The chancel has a 
massive arch of separation from the nave, in the deep hollow 
moulding of which is arranged, at certain distances, carved 


Houers and foliage, which also with the mouldings to some extent 
return down the pier. There is a lofty arch and stone carved 
screen opening out of the tower and inner porch, which has a rich 
continuous car\ed hollow mould in the arch and piers. Over this 
arch is a circular traceried opening for ventilation, connected -srith 
an exhauster in th* tower above. The whole of the interior is 
lined with finely worked ashlar, with the exception of the Vestry, 
Avhich has since been extended so as to give accommodation to the 
choir and clergy. 

The two chapels, as is well known, were formerly the mortuary 
chapels of the ancestors of the Earls of Stiimford and War- 
i-ington, and under the South or Dunham Chapel is the present 
family vault. To give the true character to these chapels, monu- 
mental arches and copestones have been introdiiced externally 
immediately above the base mould, and above each is a circidar 
window with tracery arranged as a cross. 

The tower, which was only intended to V)e taken partly down, 
was found too dilapidated, and had to be wholly rebuilt. The 
restored one is certainly a striking conception. Its height from 
the ground to the top of the parapet is 91 feet 6 inches, being 31 
feet 6 inches higher than the old one. It is surmounted by eight 
richly crocketed pinnacles, the four corner ones lieing terminated 
with gilt copper vanes. 

The interior is lighted with gas. Foiu- polished brass coronte, 
of eight lights each, are in the nave ; one in each of the transepts ; 
one in the chancel ; three in each aisle, and one in the Dunham 
Chapel, of six lights each. 

•Most of the tablets formerly in the old church are to be found 
in the restored edifice. There are also additional ones, of which it 
becomes necessary to speak. First and foremost is the following : 

This tablet and the monument over his grave were erected by the 
parishioners in loving memory of William I'ollock, D.D., who, tifter much 
and varied pastoral work, diligently and faithfully done, in the diocese at 
Stockport, Macclesfield, St. Helens, and Liverpool, was appointed Vicar 
of this parish in 1856, and subsequently Rural Dean of Frodsham East, 


honorary Canon of Chester Cathedral and Archdeacon of Chester. The 
complete reconstruction of this church, the building of St. Mark's Church 
at Dunham, and the Bowdon and Ashley Parochial Schools, are among the 
memorials of the great influence which the love and respect he inspired 
enabled him to exercise. Born I2th April, 1812: died lltli October, 187.3. 
" Bles.sed are the dead which die in the Lord." 

Also : — 

This tablet is placed by grateful friend-i of the Rev. John Kingsley, 
M.A., Vicar of St. Margaret's, Dunham Massey, to record his f.iithful ser- 
vices while curate of the parish church during a period of twenty years. 
He died in the sixty-fiist year of his age, and was buried in this church- 
yard on the ISth day of November, 1869. "Verily, I say unto you, 
Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye 
have done it unto me."—S(. M-itthew xxv. 40. 

The following is the inscviption on a hniss at the west end of the 
south aisle wall : — 

This church of St. Mary, at first erected in Saxon times, and after- 
wards thrice restored, viz., about the years of grace 1100, 1320, and 1510, 
was rebuilt and enlarged by voluntary subfCriptions, the good work being 
cimpleted according to the good hand of our God upon us, a.d. 1860. 
William Pollock, M.A., Vicar; John Mort, Alexander W. Mills, D. A. 
Clarke, John Reid, JNI. E. Lycott, Churchwardens ; W. H. Brakspear, 
Architect. " ' The place whereon thou standest is holy ground.' 

There are several stained glass windows of great beauty. The 
large east window has for its subject the crucifixion, the centre 
light containing the figure of Our Saviour, and on each side are 
the malefactors, which, however, are not made too prominent. 
The other lights and tracery are filled with pictures of the Ascen- 
sion, the scene on the morning of the resurrection, the Marys 
going to the sepulchre with angels, Abraham offering up his son 
Isaac, and Moses lifting up the brazen serpent, both e\ents lieing 
typical of the Crucifixion. Underneath are the words : — 

In memory of Mary, the Wife of William Neild, Esquire, of High 
Lawn, who died March 16th, 1859. 

The north and south transept windows are the gifts of Lady 
Murray, a descendant of the ancient family of Rigby, of Oldfield 
Hall, and of E. Joynson, Esq., J.P., of Bowdon. One represents 


the Miracles ; the other the Parables of Our Ijord. The window 
of the west end is the gift of John Clegg, Esq., J.P., of Altrincham. 
There is a small chancel window erected by W. D. Nicholls, Esq., 
and his sisters, to the memory of their father. 

Other windows are to the memory of Peter Hartley, late of 
Altrincham, by his children, " in token of their love and esteem 
for their father, A.D., radccclxxix. ; " " to the glory of God and 
in loving memory of Edward Dowling, of this parish, who, on 
the 30th August, 1889, on a mountain in Calvary was called to 
behold the things unseen ; " one erected by Mrs. Sarah France 
in loving memory of her father and mother, ' Mr. and Mrs. 
W. Goulden, who died in 1857 and 1863 respectively; and a 
chancel window " in loving remembrance of Eobert Alsop 
Warburton, of Bowdon, born March 5th, 1820, died December 
31st, 1879," presented by his wife and children. 

The font is a massive octagonal one, richly cut, of Painswick 
stone, and the basin rests on a shaft of Devonshire marble. It 
was the gift of ^liss Joynson. The oak lectern was the gift of 
Miss Pollock. 

The restored church contains 1,16.1 sittings, exclusive of those 
for the private accommodation of the Earl of Stamfoi-d and War- 
rington, being an increase of 359 sittings on the former number. 
The entire cost of the building and works in connection therewith 
was £12,371 16s 7d., exclusive of the sum of £1,748 10s. which 
was allowed by the contractor on account of old materials Of 
this amount £11,447 was contribvited by resident parishes, or 
persons owning property in the parish ; £521 by strangers ; £210 
by the Incorporated Society for the building and enlarging of 
Churches ; and £150 by the Diocesan Church Building Society. 

The Registers of the baptisms, marriages, and burials date from 
the year 1628 ; but there are incomplete copies preserved at 
Chester from the beginning of 1600. Not the least interesting 
feature connected with those at Bowdon is an index which was 
compiled several years ago by Mr. Rushton, a son of the Ven. 


Archde<acon Rushton, formerly of Manchester. The work of 
reference is thus rendered remarktably easy, and ample testimony 
to his painstaking endeavours is borne by the fact that not a 
single error has yet been discovered. The first volume contains 
records under all three divisions, from 1G28 to 16.53. It is 
headed : — 

" A Register Book of all Weddings, Christening.=!, and Burials, in the 
Parish Church of Bowdon, in the year of our Lord, 1628." 

The first entry states that : — 

Robert Tatton, of Withenslinw, Esquire, and Anne Brereton, daughter 
of the Right Worshipful Wiiliain Brereton, of Ashley, Esquire, were 
niarryed the eight day of January, Anno Dom. 1628. 

This is an important event, and is more elaborately set 
forth than the rest. The parchment on which the entries are 
made is very stout but it is obvious that little care has been 
bestowed on its preservation in former years, as damp, the arch- 
enemy of ancient documents, has been at work and succeeded in 
effectually obliterating some of the written characters In 1646, 
the marriages are entered at greater length, as are also the bap- 
tisms. One of the clerks, Thomas Sanderson, was most 
particular. AYe find that — 

Alexander Sanderson, sonne to Thomas Sanderson, clarke of Bowdon, 
was born upon Saint Michael and All Angels daye, between the hours of 
five and six of the clock in the morninge, being the 28th day of 
September, in anno 1636. 

At the foot of the volume it is announced that — 
George Booth, Knit and Barronett, is one of his Matie's justices of pe^.ce 
within the County of Chester, as attested by Peter Drinkwater, clerk. 

The first name amongst the biu-ials is that of " Henry Arstall 
de Ringey, January 19th, 1628." 

A stranger yt (that) plaid on a tabret and whistle. 
There is nothing to indicate where this wandering minstrel 
of some accomplishment died ; but that he found a stranger's 
grave at Bowdon, and went down to it apparently " unwept, 
unhonoured, and unsung," is clear. 


Alexander Owen, clerk of Bowdon, was biiryed ye third day of 
February, Anno Domini 16-28. 

" Margaret Pagett, wife of Mr. Thomas Patjett, minister and preacher 
at Bowdon, Aug. uliimo, 1628." 

Robert Janny, Vicar of Bowdon, departed this life the 8th day of 
January, and was buryed the 9th in anno, 16.36. 

A poore boy out of the Woodhouses was buryed 8th <lay of November, 

Dorrity Smith, daughter to George Smith, being a stranger, and 
another a child that was not baptised of his, March ISth, 1640. 

" Two infants of one Sarah May. 

A poor child of a stranger, 1647. 

Amongst the concluding entries in the first \-olunie is the 
following : — 

Sir George Booth, of Dunham Massey, Knight and Baronett, departed 
this lyfe the 24th day of October, and was buryed the 28th day of 
November, in the year of our Lord God, one thousand six hundred and 
fiftie two, 1652. 

The second volume contains baptisms and burials from 16-53 
to 1681, and marriages from 1653 to 1664, and from 1673 to 
1681, nine years being missing. The latter are, however, to be 
found at Chester for the years 1666, 1668 to 1673, but for 1665 
and 1667 there are no records. On a kind of rider attached to 
the ordinary register is a list of still-born children ; thus : — 

A man child of John Deane's of Altrincham was still born 2flth October 

A man child of Robert Arstall of Hale fields was born dead January 
26th, 1653, &c. 

In 1653, during the Commonwealth period, there was a very 
stringent Act of Parliament passed, requiring marriages to take 
place before a Justice of the Peace. The form usually adopted 
was the following : — 

Publication of banns of marriage was made in our parish church of 
Bowdon three several Lords days between John Yeates of Lime parish and 
Margaret Baxter of this parish, wli. days of publicition were the 4th, 
the nth and the 18th dayes of December in the year 1653, and were 
jjiarried the 23rd day of December within the same year before me. 

Peter Brookes Esquire. 


The following coiiUiius the tiisi referenee to any trade pursued 
in the district : — 

Publication of banns of marriage was made in our parish church of 
Bowdon three several Lords days betwixt Wm. Tippinge, of Hale, woollin 
Webster (woollen weaver), and Katheren Hall, of Ashley, both of this 
parish of Bowdon, wch dayes of publication were the 2'2nd, 29th dayes of 
January, and first day of February, and noe objection being made but that 
they might lawfully proceed in marriage : and were married by me, 
Thomas Standley (Stanley), of Alderley, Esquire, one of the Justices of 
Peace for this County, the 6th day of February, 1653. 

Proclamation was in some instances made, generally by the 
bellman, at the Cross in the Market Place. These proclamations 
usually read as follows : — 

Publication of banns was made in the Altrincham Market, within our 
Parish of Bowdon, three severall Market dayes betwixt Edward Woodall, 
of the parish of Ashton upon Mercey Bancke, and Anne Carrington, of 
this parish, which dayes of publication were the loth, 22nd, and 29th 
dayes of August, in tlie year of our Lord Ood 1654, and were marryed the 
16th day of September, in the year of our Lord God 1654, before 

Tho. Brereton, Esquire. 

Some of the entries state that publication was made between 
the hours of eleven and two in the Market Place, but this does 
not appear prior to the year 1656 to have been a popular mode, 
as three-fourths of the proclamations were made in "our parish 
church." The majority of the marriages took place before Thomas 
Brereton, Esquire ; but it is interesting to note that on one or 
two Occasions Colonel Henry Bradshaw, of Marple, brother to 
President Bradshaw, also officiated. In 1656 and 1657, the 
publications were, with few exceptions, made in the Altrincham 
Market Place, "at the close of the morning," or 12 o'clock. 
In 1658 they were made in solitary instances, but they are 
solemnized by the Vicar, James Watmough, " in the j)resence of 
numerous people." This elaborate style of entering marriages 
then ceases, except in the instances of the principal families of the 
district, when the details arc given w-ith some minuteness. The 
births at this period partake of the same character as the 
marriages in the extent and preciseness of the entries. The wife 


of the Vicar presented him with three or four interesting " olive 
branches," to all of whom due honour is accorded in the matter of 
registering. That the schoolmaster was also a married man and 
similarly situated, is proved by the following amongst the 
baptisms : — 

Hanna, daughter of Peter Hurdes, schoolmaister, (August '24111, 1667). 

The ages are not given, and very seldom the trades, but 
occasionally they crop up. Husbandmen are the most numerous, 
yeomen coming next in order. There were several websters or 
weavers in Bowdon (1657), and at a somewhat later date, black- 
smiths, saddlers, gardeners, "joyners," shoemakers, in Altrincham 
and the neighbourhood. 

John Higginson, of Bowdon, Innkeeper, was buned 24th day of 
Novr. 1657. 

A poore woman wch. was a stranger came by pass, buryed ye 9th 
day of November. 

A poore ould wooman whose name was thought to be Steenson, 
January 12th, 1658. 

A child that was born dead of Tho. Kinge, was buried 15th March, 

Roger Shuttleworth, schoolmaister, buried 7th day of February (1659). 

Thomas Brereton, Esquire, of Ashley, departed this life the 10th day 
of July, and was buried the 19th day of July, in the year of our Lord 
God, 1660. 

Jane Urinkwater, of Hale, a poore woman, buryed 22nd October (1661). 

Edward Leigh, of Altringham, a poore man, buried 23rd November 

Mr. John Lightfoote, vicar of Bowdon, departed this !yfe ye 22tli day 
of December, in ye yr. of our Lord, 1661. 

Mrs. Margrett Vaudrey, of ye Bancke (Bank Hall), widow, was 
buryed in Carrington Chapel by leave and lycense of George Lord Delamer, 
by the interest of Samuel Vaudry, the son, June ye 24th, 1662. 

Charles, son of John Houghton, Schoolmaister, Deer, ye Sth, 1662. 

Robert Tippinge. of Bowdon, gent and steward to George, Lord 
Delamer, was buryed ye 21th day of fifebruary, 1662. 

Isaac Tipping, son of Edward Tipping, of Hale, Dec. 22th, (1665). 

William, son of John Hoyle, of Hale, was buryed Dec. ye 28th. 

The two last mentioned Isaac Tipping and William Royle had not 
xtian buriall, theire friendes contemninge it. Tho: Weston, Vic. 


\Vm. Tippinge, of Dunham, bayliflFe to Lord Delamer, buryed March 
23th, (1670). 

Raphe Thomas, of Altringham, piper, burwd September l'2th, (1672). 

Thomas Sanderson, clark of the church, buryed March ye 13th (1672). 

" William Shuttleworth, servant to Francis Mosley, vicar, April 17th, 

The two succeeding volumes of Registers ai'e very small, 
volume III. containing baptisms from 1682 to 1702, and volume 
IV. marriages from 1683 to 1719. On the title page of volume III. 
there is a memorandum, dated Aitgust 29th, 1697, setting forth 
that : — 

Richard Rogers, Wm. Coppock, Robert Leather and Isaac Eccles, 
churchwardens for the p'sh (parish) of Bowdon in the yeare 1690, did pay 
unto John Lawrinson, Wm. Simpson, Robert Leather and Isaac Eccles, 
churchwardens for the p'sh of Bowdon for the yeare 1693 the summe of six 
pounds eighteen shillings and sixpence (which they had in their hands) 
towards reimbursing them, wch was in full for all moneys they were out 
of purse in the yeare 1093. Witness my hand, 

.Jo : Hyde, Vic. of Bowdon. 

The " baptizings," as they are now called, continue imtil the 
year 1683 in a most orderly manner, when there is a record of 
"John, son of ffrancis Newton, of Altringham, March ye 22th." 
Underneath this is written : " A brave boy ; long may bee live 
to God's glory." It is to be hoped that this pious wish was 
fulfilled. In July, 169G, the handwriting changes, and Altringham 
is spelled Althringham, just as thoixgh the clerk was a native of the 
sister isle. Almost simultaneously we have the first indication of 
dissent in an aggressive form in the parish. 

1696. — Deborah, daughter of Robert Hankinson, of Ashley, was born 
July 13th and baptised July 28th, 1696, by Mr. Dernily, as is said by a 
note sent thereof to ye vicar. 

John, son of George W^arburton, of Hale, born Deo. 3th, 1696 and 
baptised Dec. 23th, 1996, by whom I don't know. Aron Warburton told 
mee of it. 

1698. — Henry, son of Richard Green, of Altringham, apothecary, born 
November 27th, baptised Dec. 13th (1698). 

William, s. of John Taylor, of Timpley, mason. 

John, 3. of Richard Millington, of Althringham, carpenter. 


John, s. ot James Whitehead, Baguley, weaver. 

A female child of \Vm. Norman, of Altrincham, sadler. 

1699.— Josiah, s. of Robert Hankin.son, of Ashley, born May 21th, and 
baptized June 1st ; Timothy, s. of Robert Hankinson, of Ashley, born May 
21th, and baptized June They were twins. Both the aforesaid 
children were baptized at Robert Hankinson 's house, by one Dernily, a 
dissenter, contrary to law, the liousc not being lycensed. He preaches at 
Ringey chappell, a chappell anciently belonging to the Church of England 
and under Bowdon Church. 

Mary, d. of James Mosse, of Dunham, born July 12th, baptized July 
19th by Mr. (Mr. this time) Dernily, the Nonconformist, contrary to law. 

Wm. s. of Theo. Heald, of Ashley, baptized at Heald's house by 
Dernily, the dissenter, contrary to law. 

Geo., s. of James Hardie, of Althringham, born Dec. oth, and baptized 
Dec. 11th by Mr. Dernily, the dissenting minister, at Ringey. 

These would be the " seiwratists" who were said to be about 
this time so numerous and troublesome in the parish. 

Mr. Dernily's name then drojos out of the Kegister, and so far 
as he is concerned the breast ecclesiastical ceases from troubling, 
and its conscience is at rest. How it fares from others later on 
Avill be seen. We proceed with more interesting extracts. 

1699.— March 2nd, baptized John, s. of John Lupton, grocer, 

1700.— James, s. of J.ames Hardy, alderman, of Altrincham. 

This is the first reference to any one holding any official 
position in connection with the Corporation of the town. 

1700.— Ann, d. of John Worsley, glacier ; Nathaniel, s. of Wm. 
Brownhill, of Dunham, born December 23th, baptized January 6th, 1700; 
the father did not acquaint me Avith the birth or baptism till June 8th, 
1701, being Whit Sunday. Mr. Yates baptized it unknown to me. — Jo. 

We no\v hark l.iack to the Ijui'ials in the same \olume, several 
of which refer to the Booth family. There are one or two 
references to trades then being pursued in the district, notably 
that of malting at Altrincham. At the end of the volume, 
amongst the list of the stillborn children, is Margaret Hardey, 
Quaker, probably the same Margaret Hardey, widow, of Bowdon, . 
who i.s referred to in the vohune as ha\ino- lieen " bur\-d at the 


Quaker's burying place in JNlobberley p'sli." Many of the people 
dying at Carrington and Partington were buried at Flixton, pro- 
bably on account of its being more convenient than Bowdon. 

We now take 'i'olume ir., which contains marriages from the 
year 1683 to 1719. There are one or two entries on the title 
page, amongst them one to the effect that — 

" Peter Barber, of .Agden, was married in Cartwright's land, beyond 

The marriages Ijegin to be noted as Ijeing solemnized by banns 
or by licence. The one following, however, was not in " either of 
these fashions." 

Joseph Peirson and Sarah Hurlbut, of Ashley, marryed by Mr. Gooden 
(clandestinely), January 1th, 1697. 

" James C'oe, of Ashley, marryed to a woman in Lane (Lancashire), 
sells meal at a meal house in Manchester, his father lives at Ashley, not 
marryed at Bovrdon, but at Manchester as I am told. 

A reticent individual was 

Thomas Ogden, keeper, at Dunham, and Ann Moulston, marryed 
about Christmas, 1698, but he will not tell where nor by whom. 

This reticency appears to become epidemic at this time, as 
subsequent entries show. 

Isaac Rylands, of Hale, and Elizabeth Hankinson, marryed in July, 
in the year 169S, he will not tell when, where, or by whom ; by Mr. 

This latter name looks as if it had been tacked on at a ven- 
ture. Both the Hankinsons and the Rylands were rather trouble- 
some dissenters at this period. 

John Newton, of Hale, and Elizabeth Drinkwater, marryed in August 
19th, 1699, at Sandbage (Sandbach), as I am told. 

Ellin Warburton, of Dunham, and James Pauden, of Brownley Green, 
in Northenden parish, were marryed Septr., 1699, I know not wn., where, 
or by whom. 

Roger Simpson, of Altringham, smith, and Mary Harrison, of Altring- 
ham, marryed (as is said) about Novr. 21, 1699, but do not tell when, 
where, or by whom. They were marryed, 'tis said, by Mr. John Brown, 
not in holy orders. 


This Mr. Brown was <i sort of Gietna Grcon gentleman who 
lived at Ashton-on-Mersey, and he united se\xral couples in the 
bonds of holy matrimony " contrary to the statute in that case 
made and provided." These storms subsided, and for a long time 
marrying and giving in marriage proceeded in the orthodox 
fashion. Even the Eylands and the Hankinsons saw the error of 
their ways, and went to the Parish Church as in duty bound. 
There is also not the same loose style of entering, but it is 
difficult to withstand the con\-iction that this is rather ungallant : — 

Richard Ai'dern and ye wlioman from Prestbury parish, marryed Octr. 
25th (1708). 

Probably she had the same objection to giving her name as 
ladies are said to have to stating their age. 

The most important entry we come to for many years then, 
is the record of the marriage of the Yicar : — 

August 28th, 1717. — Mr. Peter Lancaster, vicar of Bowdon, and Mrs. 
Mary Edmonds, of this parish, were married at Bowdon Church, by 
Mr. Spencer, curate at Lyrame, by licence from Mr. Allen, of Peover. 

At the end of the volume is the following : — 

October ye 20th, 1709.— At a parish meeting in Bowdon Church it was 
granted and agreed that Augustin Rawlins, parish dark, instead of 
gathering his wages wh. is one lay (rate) he is to have it gathered by ye 
church warden.9 and collectors from henceforth. 

This is signed by Matthew Wood, vicar, the churchwardens, 
and others present at the meeting, including Alderman John 
Higginson, who makes his mark, the said mark resembling the 
figure four made very awkwardly. 

Volume v., which ^ve take next in order, contains l.iaptisms 
from 1702 to 1720, and burials from 1702 to 1717. It was 
provided at the charge of the parish, as testified to by " John 
Millatt, de Dains, of Carrington, George Timperley, of Timperley, 
George Leicester, of Hale, and Aaron Warburton, of Bowdon, 
churchwardens." The children baptised are those of a tanner at 
Hale, a flaxman, gunsmith, horse-jockey, mercer, glover, clothier. 


apothecary, brickmoulder, bricklayer, barber, basketmaker, 
butcher, cooijer, flaxseller, baker, a whitesmith, at Carrington, 
and a miller at Dunham, which tend to show that 200 years ago 
this was a district of some importance. 

There are several baptisms of illegitimate children, one of 
which must have been the offspring of a man of consequence, and 
must have held even the powers that be in awe. After the words 
detailing the usual particulars, there is — "Wch. she fathered 
upon Mr. G C " 

There are some children baptised by JNIr. Waterhouse, who, 
like Mr. Dernily, was a dissenting thorn in the ecclesiastical side, 
and the fact is always precisely stated. In some cases he is 
" dissenting minister," in others " dissenting teacher," and he 
appears to have been in business in a large way. At Carrington, 
" Mr. Orrill," another dissenting teacher, was busy at this period. 

Amongst the burials in June, 1703, there is that of — 

Mr. Robert Whitehead, Curate of Bowdon. 

April, 1708.— Ann Johnson, servant for 40 years at Dunham House. 

In the year 1667, an Act of Parliament was passed for the 
encoTiragement of the woollen and paper manufactures in the 
kingdom. It enacted that no corpse should be buiied in " shirt, 
sheet, shroud, or shift," but in woollen, and an affida^-it made 
made -ndthin eight days of interment that the dead was not 
shrouded in linen. A penalty of £5 was incurred if the law was 
bi'oken. These affidavits are regularly entered in the Bowdon 
Parish Registers as having been made, except in solitary instances, 
which were at once notified to the churchwardens. No specific 
entry of the enforcement of the Act appears until June, 1709, 
when there was — 

" Alice, wife of Thomas Warburton, of Hale, buried in linnen contrary 
to Act of Parliament. He paid ye fine to ye churchwardens of Bowdon 

for ye use of ye poore. " 


Not many years aftcnvards, the fine of £5 was enforced in 
the case of — 

" Mary Leigh, widow, Bowdon, buried in linnen. £2 10s. whereof 
went to the poor." 

In 1728, Nicholas Waterhouse, of Bowdon, a dissenting 
teacher, "was buried in linnen," but there is no note made as to 
whether any fine was enforced. This famous Act was not 
repealed until 1814, and then not without some opposition. 

Amongst other biu'ials are : — 

"1709, Dec. — Mary, wife of George Leicester, gouldBmith, of 

"1710, March. — James, son of Hen. Smith, of Altringham, Alderman." 

1710, March 11th.— A still born child of William Coppock, of Hale, 
clandestinely buried about this time, notice given to ye churchwardens, 
and then Wm. Coppock pd. ye buriall fees and id. churching. — Wit : Tho. 

1711, Dec. — Wm. Hesketh, of Altringham, Alderman. 

171-, Dec. — John I'ritchard, servant to Mr. Robert Orrell, Ashley, 
who drown'd himself. 

1714. — Wm., son of John Royle, of Altringham, flaxman. 
1716, May 9th.— Mr. Matthew Wood, Vicker of Bowdon. 

Volume VI. contains baptisms from 1720 to 1738; weddings 
from 1719 to 1731 ; and burials from 1717 to 1738. We here 
find the first reference to another trade or calling in Altrincham 
and the vicinity not mentioned liefore, in the baptism of — 

Wm., son of Wm. Gai-ner, fuxtian man, and of Elizabeth, his wife, of 

1722, Jan. 20th.— Mary, d. of Robert Leather, Alderman, of 
Altrincham, and of Hanna, his wife. 

1722, Jan. 24th.— Richard, son of Richard Leigh, ale seller, 
Altrincham, and Elizabeth, his wife. 

1723, Aug. 3. — Elizabeth, d. of John Swindells, turner, and Elizabeth, 
his wife, of Baguley. 

1723, Aug. 10th.— Mary, d. of John Yates, bricklayer, and Deborah, 
his wife, of Baguley. 

1723.— Henry, son of John Kinsey (barber), and of his wife, Elizabeth, 
of Altrincham. 

1723, Aug. 30.— George, s. of Joseph Harding, fustian man, and of 
Elizabeth, his wife, at Altrincham. 


There were several ale sellers in Altrincham at this period, and 
we once more notice that the dissenters began again to trouble 
their brethren in the church. Baptisms by dissenting teachers are 
often recorded — notably by Wr. Fletcher. There is also a Mr. 
Robinson mentioned as at Eingey or Ringway chapel. The jjrac- 
tice of recording trades appears to have been most capricious. 
Sindei'land, too, is for a great numljer of years spelled Sunder- 

Amongst the burials at this period was — 

Joseph, son of Peter Melann, a Grecian, and of Mary, his wife. 

One still more noteworthy occurred in 1727 in respect of 

Haiuiah, wife of Robert Orrill, of Hale, — 

She was buried at her own desire without being brought into je 
church or liaving prayer said over her ab ye grave, being a most rigid 

On June 16th, in the same year,— - 

Robert Prasmore, a wayfayring man, from the Bishopric of Durham. 


On the same day, Farmery, son of Mr. Lawton, and of Ann, hia wife. 
" This child was buried in the church without leave from me," says the 
vicar of that period, " or leave ask'd. Agt. wch. I protested at ye grave, 
tho. I did not refuse to bury ye oorijse." 

In 173i there was interred "a travelling woman of the king- 
dom of Ireland, who died at Bollington." The marriages in the 
volume present few features of interest, one excepted, ^iz., that 
on Feb. 22nd, 1725-6 :— 

James Hardey, teacher of a seperate (dissenting) congregation at 
Stockport, and Elizabeth Bentley, of Bowdon, spinster, by licence from 
Mr. Giles. 

Volume Vii. contains marriages from 1731 to 1751, and it is 
pleasing to observe that about the first-named period Bowdon was 
apparently a place to which those from a distance wishful to enter 




00 : 

05 : 



04 : 



04 : 



into the estate of lioly matrimony re.sorted. At the end of the 
volume there is a list of the " brief.s" collected in the 3'ear of our 
Lord, 1751 :— 

£ s. d. 
June Sod, Sliipston Church in com. Worcester Ch. £1,487, 
June 23rd, Knighton Church in com. Radnor Ch. £1,4.36 
July 21st, Netherseal Church, com. Leicester Ch. £2,158 
September 1st, Uptonon Severn Ch. com. Worcest.Ch. £2,015 
Oct. 10th, Stamford Bridge Mill in com. Ebor (York) 

lost by fire, collected from house to house, Ch. £2,8S4 1 : 1 : 7i. 

These " briefs" were letters patent issued Ijy the Crown for 
various charitable objects, such as the rebuilding of churches 
destroyed by fire, or places desolated Ijy a plague. They were 
usually read in the church during morning service, and a collec- 
tion made ; but, as in one of the aboAC instances, it was some- 
times collected from house to house. Volume Viii. is a book of 
stupendous proportions, and brings down baptisms and bm-ials to 
a comparatively recent period — 1769. They are most uninterest- 
ing entries, but about this time Peggy, Betty, Kitty, and Molly 
were favourite names. 

There are other volumes of Kegisters which are to a great 
extent similar to the preceding ones. One point only remains, 
and that is as to centenarians. Owing to the ages not being 
mentioned in the earlier records, it is impossible to say whether 
there were any or not. Altogether it cannot be said that the 
registers form a very useful study, but from preceding extracts 
it will be seen that they are not entirely devoid of interest. 

It would not do to overlook the famous proverl), " Exery man 
is not Ijorn to be Vicar of Bowdon." Sir Peter Leycester, who 
quoted it, appeared somewhat puzzled to account for its true 
meaning, although it is very much on a par with a great many 
other proverbs — self-evident. There are two reasons assigned for 
the proverl). The first is that in olden as well as in modern 
times, it was an appointment that might be sought for. It had a 
good stiijend attached, was placed in the midst of a fertile and 
lovely country, and was as .'i rule fairly free from the interference 


of schismatic controversy such as existed among the neighbom-ing 
churches. The second is that Charles Jones, son of the then 
Vicar, was intended by his father, who had secured the Bishop's 
patronage, to succeed him on his decease, thus debarring anyone 
else from any chance of the appointment. 

A short notice of some of the Vicars and Curates of Bowdon 
may be interesting. At the latter end of the reign of Henry VIII. 
Dus Willus AVright was serving the cure in the pay of Tho 
Eoncorn or Runcorn, Vic. ; Dus Henricus Tipping, a chantry 
priest, was paid by Ralph Massey ; Dus Ric. Warburton by John 
Carrington; and Dus Johes Colior or Collier, was at Ringeye 
chapel. In 1569-70 there was an episcopal enquiry or visitation 
in Frodsham deanery, and under Bowdon, it says (what is 
decijDherable) — 

" . . . . Thome Spede cur sworne, &c., saith they 

paraphr and the first tome of homilies. They had no sermons their iij. 

yeres : he saith he did nev reade the declaration saieth he 

nev had hit." 

Of one we cannot speak with the credit which may have been 
deservedly due to both his predecessors and successors. This was 
Ralph Hovigh, who, according to a note in the edition of 
Ormerod, edited by Charles Helsby, Esij., " married Blanche, a 
widow in Peever or Peover, about 1585." "He lived with her 
about a year, then fled away from her after selling her goods, 
came back to her again, sold her goods, and ran away for good." 
A Vicar of Bowdon not mentioned in the list usually given, is 
— ■ Smith. Walker, in his "Sufierings of the Clergy," states that 
he was sequestered on account of not complying with the solemn 
league and covenant, and he was tiu-ned out liy a committee of 
Parliament without ever being heard. 

During the temporary ascendancy of Fresbyterianism in 
Cheshire in 1648, the ministers of the county, after the 
example of their brethren in London and other places, 
adopted and signed an attestation which had been drawn up by 
JNIr. John Ley, " the present preacher at Astbiuy." It was 


entitled " An attestation to the testimony of our Eoverend 
Brethren of the Province of London to the truth of Jesus Christ, 
and to our solemn league and covenant ; " and was signed by 
"James Watmough, pastor of Bowdon," amongst others. The 
very air, hii\\e\ei', seemed thick with controversy, and disturbances 
arose in his jjarisli between Presbyterians and Independents or 
Separatists. The Act of Uniformity was passed in the year 1662, 
and it would appear that the Vicar of Bowdon conformed, thus 
saving himself from the fate of lutmerous other bi'cthren. In 
1689-90, John Peake, for refusing to take the oath of allegiance 
to King William III., was deprived of his living as a Non-juror. 
Many of the Vicai's of Bowdon have been men of talent and 
erudition, and two or three have figured as authors of learned 
works, such as AVroe, Lancaster, &c. 

It may not be inappropriate to give a brief notice of one whose 
memory will be long revered by the inhabitants, — we refer to the 
late Venerable Archdeacon Pollock, who died at Claughton, 
Birkenhead, on the 11th October, 1873; but whose mortal 
remains are laid under the shadow of the sacred edifice the 
restoration of which was due to his indefatigable eflForts. He was 
appointed to the Vicarage of Bowdon in 1856, having previously, 
as the reader will have gathered already, laboured hard in the 
county, and also at Liverpool. On his appointment he set to 
work to make his parish what it ought to be. After organizing 
ample machinery for the immediate wants of his flock, his next 
endeavour was to get a school built at Hale Barns. He then 
undertook the much needed and tridy Herculean work of rebuilding 
the Parish Church, and he had the pleasure, within four years of 
his appointment, of seeing a dilapidated edifice replaced by an 
entirely new fabric. He gave much active help and warm 
sympathy in the erection of St. John's Church, Ashley-road. 
Another work was the building of a new Vicarage, the old one 
being at a distance from the Church at the foot of the hill in the 
vale. He was also the means of erecting the School Church, at 


Ashley, and through his instrumentality the adjacent village of 
Dunham was accommodated with the pretty church dedicated to 
St. Mark. His next great undertaking was the building of new 
national schools, the old ones having become inadequate for the 
purpose intended. He was subsequently appointed Honoraiy 
Canon of Chester Cathedra], Rural Dean of Frodsham East, 
Archdeacon of Chester, and was presented by his University 
with the degree of D.D., in recognition of his early and dis- 
tinguished scholarshiji. In both local and general work he was 
unwearied ; he was mindful of all things great and small, and 
thought of all other interests before his own. He was also con- 
spicuous, as is well known, for his eloquence and learning. His 
arduous labours had the effect of undermining his constitution ; 
and, disregarding urgent warnings to take rest, he was struck 
down by paralysis on 1st August, 1870, having preached his last 
sermon, on the re-opening of St. George's, Altrincham, in the 
month previous. A little more than three years afterwards he 
breathed his last. His funeral took place at Bowdon, on Thurs- 
day, 16th October, 1873, when the choir sang a hymn which he 
had himself composed, on the subject of " Lazarus." It is sub- 
lime and affecting in its simple pathos, and opens with the 
words : — 

Lord, if he sleep 
He shall do well ! 

Why should we weep? 
Why should a knell, 
Dirging and deep, 
Over him swell, 

He shall do well. 

An appropriate address was delivered by the Rev. Canon 
Falloon, of Liverpool. The funeral was attended by the clergy 
and ministers of other denominations, and the laity was largely 
and influentially represented. 

The Yen. Archdeacon Gore, who succeeded him, is a graduate 
and late scholar of Trinity College, Dublin (18.50), B.A. (sen. 
mod. math) 18.53, Div. Test (First class) 1855, M.A. 1858. He 



was ordained Deacon in 1855, priest in 1856. He was preferred 
to the perpetual curacy of St. Luke's, Liverpool, in 18G2, and in 
1873 was presented to the Vicarage of Bowdon on the death of 
the Van. Archdeacon Pollock. He was honorary Canon of 
Chester 1877 to 1879 chaplain to the late Bishop Jacobson 1877, 
Proctor for the Archdeaconry of Macclesfield 1881, Archdeacon 
of Macclesfield 1884-1893, and Canon residentiary of Chester 
Cathedral, 1893. In recognition of his high attainments, both as 
scholar and divine, he had in 1890 the degrees of B.D. and D.D. 
conferred upon him by the Senate of Trinity College, Dublin, of 
which he was appointed select preacher in 1891 and 1892. His 
latest appointment is Proctor of the Archdeaconry of Macclesfield. 
St. Peter's, Peel Causeway (for description of which see ecclesias- 
tical Altrincham), in addition to the mission room in the Vale, the 
enlargement of the Parish Schools, i^-c, has been the outcome of 
the Archdeacon's special talent in organising and drawing round 
him all classes of his parishioners. 




Gillebt or Gilbert, Sacdos. 

Ricardus de Aldcroft. 


Ranulphus de Torrakl. 


Ricardus de Wever. 


Ricardus More. 


Thomas Spencer 


John Urraeston 


William Minshall. 


Mr. Thomas Runcorne. 


Johes Hanson, M.A. 


Adam Wood. 


Robert Vawdrey. 


Ralph Hough. 


Thomas Warburton. 


Henry Starkey. 


George Byrom. 


Robert Janny. 


Thomas Pagett (minister i 



— Joanes or Jone?. 

1648 James Watmough. 

1660 John Lightfoote. 
1667 Thomas Weston. 
1669-70 Francis Mosley. 
1676 Charles Jones. 

1661 (ante) Richard Wroe. 
1689-90 James Reake. 

1690 (16th Jan.) John Hyde, on 
privation of Jas. Peake. 

1708 Matthew Wood. 

1716 Peter Lancaster. 

1763 Thomas Hopper. 

1772 John Baldwin, LL.B. 

1815 James Thomas Law, A.M. 

1820 W. H. Galfridus Mann, A.M., 
exchanged with Jas. T. Law 
for Lichfield. 

1856 William Pollock, D.D. 

1873 Arthur Gore, D.D. 

Value in 33rd year 

Henry VIII. reign. 


s. tl. 

2 !) 

10 !) 





16 (1 




7 4 


12 10 


G S 

10 9 



Chapelries and Townships in the 
Parish of Bow don. 

A K. r. 

Agden (one half) T 670 

Altrincham C 520 

Bollington (one half) T 400 

Bowdon T 690 

Baguley T 2070 

Carrington C 2070 

Dunham Massey T 3710 

Ashley T 2,390 

Hale T .3540 

Ashton-upon-Mersey (one half) T 670 

Partington T 1220 

Timperley T 1380 

From the above townships there were formerly four church- 
wardens elected annually to manage the affairs of the church and 
to collect the rates, and as remuneration about £20 was allowed 
them to defray any little expenses that might occur during the 
execution of their office. The churchwardens are appointed by 
the trustees of the Earl of Stamford and Warrington. 

The following is the table in the church of " Benefactions to 
the poor of Bowdon Parish, in lands per annum or sums of money, 
the interest for ever " ; — • 

1619, Dame Elizabeth Booth, relict of Sir William Booth, of Dunham 
Massey, Knt., £100. 1691, Edward Leigh, of Baguley, Esquire, £100 
Mrs. Mary Booth, £5. 1714, William Chapman, of Hale, 2 acres of land ; 
Thomas Brereton left to the poor of Ashley £20 ; Mrs. Francis Barlow, 
£10; Dame Meredith, £2. 1721, Rectr. de Croxden in com. Staff, left to 
the poor of Altrincham, £2. 1744, Oliver Bellefontaine gave to buy gilt 
plate for ye Communion table £10o, also, for ye use of ye poor £11. 1766, 
Mr. Joseph Walton, £40. 1761, the Right Honorable Harry, Earl of 
Stamford, £52 : 10s. 1773, George Norman left to the poor of Altrincham 
£40 ; to the School, William Tipping, of Dunham, Gent., £10. 1722, Rev. 
John Ashton, £2. 1807, John Cooper, Esquire, conveyed to Trustees, a 
messuage and lands in Partington, containing altogether, Cheshire 
measure, in trust, 3a. Or. 12p. , for poor householders in Altrincham, of the 
-age of 50 years and upwards. 1816, Mrs. Elizabeth Cooke, of Altrincham, 
left £50 ; Mrs. Sarah Cooke, of Altrincham. left £50 1827, Mr. Robert 
Twamlow, of Altrincham, left £100. 


AUiincham 600 years ago — The ancient charter — Sanjam fair — 
Election of Mayor, form of oath and proclamation — The Court 
of Pye Powder — Importance of the Bellman — A Mayor's wisdom — 
The Earl's Christmas Box— Sayings regarding the Mayor — 
Election of burgesses— Progress of the trust and its disposal — List 
of Mayors — Abolition of Sanjam fair. 

WITH the granting of a charter by the Baron of Dunham, 
upwards of 600 years ago, the town of Altrinchim 
commenced its constitutional existence. At that time 
it was described as being nothing more than a small cluster of 
chimneyless cottages, whose occupants were bound to use the Lord's 
bakehouse of the place, with a wooden shed for its town hall. 

The Cheshire people appear to have been greatly behind in 
the matter of architecture down to a comparatively recent period. 
Smith, in a Treatise on Cheshire, wi-itten about the year 1009, 
remarks that " In building and furniture of their houses, till of 
late years, they used the old manner of the Saxons. For they had 
their fire in the midst of the house, against a hob of clay, and 
their oxen under the same roof ; but, within these forty years it 
is altogether altered, so that they have builded chimneys and 
furnished other parts of their house accordingly." This, it may 
be readily inferred, was a picture of the primitive state of the 
Altrincham people. Such were the comforts of " the good old 
times !" 

Of the derivation of the name there does not appear to be any 
exposition. In ancient documents it is spelled "Altringham," and 
it is so pronounced to the present day, although bj^ many of the 
inhabitants, old ones particularly, the " ing " is given as the sound 
in hinge, which is in all probability the truest pronunciation. As 


a fee of the barony of Dunham, Altrincham derived great 
privileges on receiving its charter. Serfdom was got rid of to a 
great extent, and freedom dawned for the burgesses of the place. 
The arbitrary power of the Lord, giving him complete control 
over the movements of his dependents was relaxed, and that 
time Altrincham has jDossessed the oldest known form of justice 
in the land, namely, that of the Saxon Court Leet. The Hamon, 
of which we have already heard, received a conce?sion from 
Edward the First, in the year 1290, of a market at Altrincham on 
Tuesdays, and a fair of three days' duration, upon which he 
granted a charter to his burgesses, of which a copy will be given 
hereafter. This charter is still preserved, and is the most 
historical and valuable document the town possesses. It was 
enclosed in a peculiarly shaped oak casket or box, two or three 
inches in diameter, fitted with an oval lid. The charter itself 
is a piece of parchment about ten inches by eight, yellow with 
age, and written in the quaint but beautiful monkish Latin of that 
period. Appended to it is the seal of Hamon de Massey or Macy, 
as it is there spelled which has however, been crushed and broken. 
Subsequently, Edward II., in the 12th year of his reign (1319), 
by letters patent erased the grant of Edward the First, of the 
fair named therein, and, in lieu thereof granted to Sir Hamon 
another fair, on the eve, feast, and morrow of St. James's day, 
yearly — which latter continued to be held under the well-known 
appellation of "Sanjam" fair up to April 25lh, 1895, when it was 
abolished by the Home Secretary. There was also a fair held 
in April, but this was a comparatively modern one, as in 1734 
there is an entry in the books of the Leet " that the first new 
fair that ever was kept, or held in the sj^ring in Altrincham, was 
upon Thursday, 18th April, to which fair came very great choice 
of cattle." 

It is believed to have been the practice since the charter of 
Hamon de Massey was granted, to elect a mayor annually under 
it ; but papers and documents proving the fact are only to be had 
for about 200 years past. The Mayor is elected at the autumnal 


Court Leet of the trustees of the Lord of the Manor, the Earl of 
Stamford and Warrington, and a jury of the Leet of the borough, 
which consists of burgesses only, return by their verdict three 
persons for the Mayor, out of whom the Steward of the Court 
selects one, who is thereupon sworn by such Steward in this 
wise : — 

You shall swear, well and truly to serve our sovereign lord the King 
(or Queen) and the lord of this franchise, in the office of Mayor of this 
boro', for one whole year, now next ensuing, or until another be sworn in 
your room ; you shall administer equal justice to all persons to the best of 
your judgment and power; you shall diligently procure such things to be 
done as may lawfully and justly tend to the profit and commodity of this 
corporation, and shall support, uphold, and maintain the lawful customs, 
rights, liberties, and franchises thereof ; you shall, to the utmost of your 
power, endeavour to preserve the King's (or Queen's) peace within this 
borough, and that all misdemeanours and offences committed therein be 
duly punished ; and in all other things you shall faithfully and uprightly 
behave yourself, to the utmost quietness, benefit, worship, and credit of 
this borough and the inhabitants thereof. So help you God. 

In former years, on each fair day in July and November, it 
was customary for a Court of " Pye Powder " to be held before 
the Steward of the Lord of the Leet and the Mayor in the Court 
House, which was styled the Court of Pye Powder of the Eight 
Hon. the Earl, &c., holden for the Boro' of Altrincham before the 
Steward and the Mayor. At this Court none of the freeholders 
or their tenants attended, but the leasehold tenants of the Lord of 
the Leet, and their sub-tenants, and also the rack tenants were 
called to do suit and service. This pye powder or pie poudre, in 
English law is the Court of Dusty Foot, and its jurisdiction was 
established for cases arising at fairs and markets to do justice to 
the buyer and seller immediately on the spot. After the holding 
of the Court, the Mayor and the Steward proceeded to the Market 
Place, where the Bailiff (Crier of the Court) proclaimed the fair 
in the following terms : — 

Oh yea ! Oh yes ! Oh yes ! Draw near and hear the King's (or Queen's) 

proclamation ! I, A B , gentleman, Mayor of the Boro' and 

Corporation of Altrincham, in the name and on behalf of our Sovereign 
Lord the King (or Queen), and in the name and on behalf of the Right 
Honourable the Earl, &c.. Lord of this boro' and the liberties thereof, 


strictly chargeth and coramandeth all manner of persons resorting to this 
fair that they do keep the peace during the continuance thereof, upon pain 
of forfeiting for every assault or affray five pounds, and their bodies to 
prison : 

And that all manner of persons do forbear to carry any unlawful 
weapon or weapons, but that they leave the same at their respective 
lodgings upon pain of forfeiting the same weapons : 

And that all manner of persons do forbear to buy, sell, or exchange 
any horses, mares, geldings, cows or other cattle in any stable or back 
yard, or any other place except in the open fair or market ; 

And that all persons who bring any goods or cattle to sell above the 
price or value of 4^d. do pay the accustomed toll for the same upon pain 
of forfeiting the same goods ; 

And that no town dweller do keep in or about their houses any goods 
or cattle to defraud the Lord of his toll upon pain of forfeiting for every 
such offence 6s. 8d. ; 

And lastly, the said Mayor strictly commandeth all rogues, vagabonds, 
and other idle wandering persons who can give no just account of their 
repair hither, that they forthwith depart this fair and the liberties thereof, 
upon pain of such punishment as is by law appointed for such offenders. 
God bless the King (or Queen), the Lord of this borough, the Mayor, and 
all his (or her) Majesty's loyal subjects. 

Courts Leefc are also said to have held the same relative 
position to the sheriff's tourn or circuit, a court dating from the 
time of the Saxons, as the Petty Sessions now do to the Assizes or 
Quarter Sessions, and "were minor local courts of the same juris- 
diction, but being limited to smaller districts." Their criminal 
jurisdiction, however, became limited in process of time, but they 
were predecessors of the modern Lighting Commissioners, Local 
Boards, Sanitary and other local authorities. The view of Frank 
Pledge, granted by the reigning Sovereign to a local Lord of the 
Manor, is an ancient custom by which every free born male of 
the age of 14, with certain exceptions, was called upon to give 
security that he would be loyal to his Sovereign and true to the 
latter's subjects, and a neighbour was bound to see that he was 
forthcoming when required. h\ case the youth did not answer, 
then the person in whose frank plcdfje he was, had to produce the 
the oflfender within a given period or " satisfy " the Court for his 
The increase of population rendered this very difficult 


to exercise in towns, and it fell into disuse, but in some places in 
Cheshire it was in oj^eration within the past 30 years, and persons 
who had been summoned formally to the Court Leet with view of 
Frank Pledge have been fined for non-attendance, although it was 
well known these fines could not legally be enforced. 

Some of the duties of the Court Leet were interesting. The 
stewards had to enquire if highways or footpaths had been stopped 
or hedged up which had been accustomed to lie open, and the 
jury had to "present" the person who shut it up, "for the King's 
subject must not bee stopped of his lawful passage to church, 
mill, or market." Common bridges which had been broken down 
were to be repaired by the parties responsible. " Also you shall 
inquire of (about) sleepers by day and walkers by night to steale 
and purloine other men's goods, and conies (rabbits) out of 
warrens, fish out of men's severall ponds or waters, hennes from 
henrouse (henroosts), or any other thing whatsover, for they are 
ill members in a commonwealth, and deserve punishment, there- 
fore if you know any such, present them." 

"Also you shall inquire of Eues droppers (Eves droppers) and 
those that are such as by night stand or lye barkening under 
walls or windows of other men's (dwellings), to heare what is said 
in another man's house, to the end to set debate and dissention 
betweene neighbors, therefore if you know any such, present them." 

Evil members of a commonwealth were " forestallers," who 
tried to enhance the price of victuals to their own advantage 
before the sellers got them into the fair or market ; " regrators," 
those who purchased goods and sold them again in any market 
"within foure miles next adjoining thereunto;" and an "ingrosser" 
was one who got into his or her hands, corn growing in the 
fields, or butter, cheese, fish, &c., to the intent to sell the same 
again for profit. These offences were visited with severe penalties, 
and for the third offence persons were to be set upon the pillory, 
to lose all their goods and chattels, and " to bee imprisoned 
during the King's pleasure." Bakers were bound to make good 


and wholesome bread " for man's bodie, of sweet corn and not 
corrupted," to give proper weight ; whilst brewers and typlers 
were to make good and "wholesome" ale and beere, and not put 
out their signe or ale stake until their ales had been "asseyed" 
by the ale taster, " and then to sell and not before." 

We have here also a reminder of a survival of these courts 
in the punishment of drunkenness. The orthodox fine of five 
shillings is well known, and here we have some guide to its origin. 
All drunkards were to be presented, and to pay " if they bee 
able for every time they bee drunke Vs (5s.) tor the use of the 
poor of the parish," otherwise they were doomed to six hours in 
the stocks. An alehouse keeper was to lose XXs (203.) for every 
pot of ale sold that was not a full quart, and Xs (10s.) for 
suffering any townsman to sit drinking in their houses except he 
be brought thither by a stranger, "and then hee may not stay 
there above one houre." There are also regulations concerning 
such as continually haunt taverns, and "such as sleep by day and 
watch by night, and eat and drink well and have nothing." 

The officers of the borough formerly accompanied the Mayor 
and the Steward in a parade of the streets of the town, and these 
perambulations were supposed to extend to the boundaries of the 
borough. Some old verdicts contain orders of the Jury for all 
householders to attend the Mayor with halberts under fine for 
not so doing. The procession then must have had a formidable, 
as well as imposing appearance, and would, no doubt, embrace 
all sorts and conditions of men, from the Mayor, with the 
constables, market lookers, dog muzzlers, and ale tasters, down 
to the humble bellman. 

The latter was a very important personage. The town books 
from an early period bear the stamp and impress of his valuable 
services ; for at a town's meeting held at the Court House, 
. March 1st, 1796, it was ordered — 

That it has been found by experience to be inconvenient to hold town's 
meetings without notice by the bell (bellman) ; therefore, in future, it is 
ordered that notice by the bell shall be given. 




In the year 1699 a most important change took pla 
connection with the Mayoralty of the town, which was destined 
subsequently to render that office one of some responsibility to its 
occupants. Most people are acquainted with the story, which is 
to the effect that the then Earl offered to grant to the Mayor of 
Altrincham a yearly payment of £5, or land of the same yearly 
value, at his option, making at the same time a similar offer to 
the Mayor of Ashton-under-Lyne. The Mayor of the latter 
place took the money ; but his brother of Altrincham thought, 
and thought rightly, that the property could not possibly 
deteriorate, and chose the land. The wisdom of the choice has 
been fully vindicated in modern times. The true version of the 
matter, however, is this : — 

By an indenture dated the 25th November, 1699, made 
between the Right Hon. George Harry, the Earl of Warrington 
on the one part, and John Eccles, of Altrincham, shoemaker, then 
Mayor of the said boro' of Altrincham aforesaid on the other 
part, the said Earl, as well for the goodwill which he had and bore 
" to the then Mayor, aldermen (these, it is supposed, referred to 
the burgesses who had served the office of Mayor, the title being 
frequently recognised in the old verdicts) and burgesses of his 
boro' of Altrincham, and for the further and better defraying of 
the charges and expenses, which the Mayor of the boro' afore- 
said, and his successors for the time being was and were likely to 
be at during his and their Mayoralty, as for divers other good 
causes and considerations moving him thereunto, did give, grant, 
bargain, and sell unto the said John Eccles, his executors, &c., 
certain lands, with liberty to take and hedge in and improve the 
same, for the term of 5,000 years, yielding and paying during 
the said term a rent of twelvepence upon Christmas Day in 
full" — a very handsome Christmas box certainly for an Earl ! 
The deed further recites that this is to be only for the proper use 
and behoof of John Eccles and his successors in the office, subject 
to certain provisos, amongst them being neglecting or refusing 
to pay their rent, or neglecting to pay their proportionate shares 


of enclosing the lands ; also for the re-entry of the Earl if the rent 
should be unpaid for ten days after it became due, being lawfully 
demanded, or if John Eccles should grant, bargain, or sell or 
convert the said premises, or any part thereof or profits thereof, 
in any wise contrary to the use and trust aforesaid. 

Seventeen years afterwards, viz, in November, 1716, another 
grant of land was made in the same form from the said Earl to 
Charles Cresswell, then Mayor of the borough. 

The Mayor's land, as it is called, was formerly waste, and was 
13a. Ir. 26p., statute measure, and consisted of 

a. r. p. 

Farther Moss Mayor Field 2 14 

Nearer Moss Mayor Field 1 1 32 

ThorleyMoor 2 33 

Higher Thorley Moor I 1 29 

Seamon's Moss Mayor Field 6 38 

13 1 26 

It evidently formed a subject of notice at no very recent 
period, as at a public town's meeting held at the Court House, 
June 7th, 1796, it was ordered that Messrs. Worthington be 
authorized " to take such measures as they may think proper to 
procure an administration to be granted to Mr. James Gratrix, 
to empower him to take such legal acts as may be thought 
necessary, respecting the fields belonging to the Mayor." No 
record of any such proceedings having been taken appears ; but 
in 1803 there is a "Memorandum," dated 8th October, which 
gives us some idea of the income then. It is as follows : — 

Mayors field let to Mr. Rigby, at the yearly rent of £18,— who held it 
two years, and gave up possession (not willing to hold it longer) in the 
year 1796 ; holding it from February, 1794. It was in 1796 by public 
auction, at Bowling Green, let for 12 years to Mr. Gratrix, at the rent of 
£18 4s., which lease expires 1808 ; as, also, Mr. Geo. Lupton's lease of Mr. 
Taylor's Townsfield Garden, for 12 years, from 1796, expires year 1808, 
rent £3 3s. yearly. Then follows in a somewhat tremulous hand the 
signature, "Aaron Brundrett, Auctioneer." 


Of the office and dignity of JNLiyor of this borough much has 
been said ; and Webb, in his "Itinerary," written in 1G21, speaks of 
Altrincham, "with its fine little market, and a town of no meaner 
government than the Mayor of an ancient institution to her 
principal officer ; " while King, in describing the market towns of 
Cheshire, says, somewhat enviously, that although " Altrincham 
be none of the chiefest market towns, it hath a Mayor (Major), 
a weekly market, and yearly on St. James' a fair." 

As there is a proverb attached to the Vicarage of Bowdon, 
there are one or two sayings which have contributed in no lesser 
degree to make the Mayoralty of Altrincham famous. In former 
times, the " honour " was much ridiculed, and it was said in an 
old rhyme : — 

The Mayor of Altrincham and the Mayor of Over, 
The one is a thatcher and the other a dauber. 

Sir Walter Scott, too, in the forty-fifth chapter of his novel, 
" The Heart of Mid-Lothian," puts a peculiar apology into the 
mouth of the worthy dame mentioned therein. She has come 
down late to breakfast, and Sir Walter writes : — 

The dame apologised to Captain Knookunder, as she was pleased to 
term their entertainer ; " but as we say in Cheshire," she added, " ' I was 
lilie the Mayor of Altrincham, who lies in bed whilst his breeches are 
mending,' for the girl did not bring up the right bundle to my room, till 
she had brought up all the others by mistake one after t'other. 
Pray, may I be so bold as to ask if it is the fashion for you North country 
gentlemen to go to church in your petticoats, Captain Knockunder ?" 

" Captain of Knockd under, Madam, if you please, for I knock under 
to no man ; and in respect of my garb, I shall go to church as I am, at 
your service. Madam ; for if I were to lie in bed like your Major what-d'ye- 
callum, till my breeches were mended, I might be there all my life, seeing 
I never had a pair of them on my person but twice in my life, which I am 
bound to remember, it being when the Duke brought his Duchess here, so 
I e'en borrowed the Minister's trews for the twa days his grace was pleased 
to stay, &c. " 

That this delicate Cheshire damsel and the ascetic rhymer 
somewhat libelled both the office and the many worthy gentle: 
men who have filled it there can be no doubt ; for there is a long 


and goodly list of the best names in the place, amongst them those 
of Massey, and in 1758-9, that of the Honourable Booth Grey, 
son of the then Earl of Stamford. It was in removing the eflects 
of the present Earl from Dunham Hall, some years ago, that a 
silver medal was found, which had evidently been struck in 
honour of his election. On one side is the inscription, " The 
Honourable Booth Grey, Mayor of Altrincham, 1759 ;" on the 
other, the coat of arms, with the motto, "A Ma Puissance" 
(According to my power). The Honourable Booth Grey was M.P. 
for Leicester in 1768, and Mayor at the age of 19. This was 
presented to the Mayor, Mr. John Astle Kelsall, in 1867-8, by 
whose representatives it was handed over to the Court Leet. It 
was made the basis of an official gold chain, being enclosed in a 
larger silver medal. On the links of the chain to which it is 
attached, are engraved the names of those Mayors who con- 
tributed to it. The chain itself is a beautiful specimen of the 
goldsmith's art, and was designed and executed by Mr. Eustace 
George Parker, himself Mayor in 1890. 

One of its Mayors, so runs the tradition, was gifted with the 
grace of repartee excellent well. The Mayor of Over — for he 
and the Mayor of Altrincham are often coupled, — journeyed once 
upon a time to Manchester. He was somewhat proud, though he 
went on foot, and on arriving at Altrincham felt he would be all 
the better for a shave. The knight of steel and strop performed 
the operation most satisfactorily ; and as his worship rose to 
depart, he said, rather grandiloquently, " You may tell your 
customers that you have had the honour of shaving the Mayor 
of Over." " And you," retorted the ready-witted fellow, " may 
tell yours that you have had the honour of being shaved by the 
Mayor of Altrincham." The rest can be better imagined than 

It is singular that, while anciently the two were on such an 
unenviable footing of equality, the Mayor of Over, by prescriptive 
right, takes his seat as a magistrate both in his own borough and 
at Quarter Sessions, the Mayor of Altrincham does not appear 


either to have been invested with or exercised magisterial 
functions. That Mayors of the town when the charter was first 
granted did so is very probable indeed, but any active adminis- 
tration of justice by any of them has not been known. 

The Court Leet was formerly all powerful in regulating and 
administering the aftairs of the town. In order to do this with 
efficiency there were various officials appointed to assist the 
Mayor ; the principal being — the constables, bailiffs, market 
lookers, burley or byelaw men, assessors, leather sealers, 
scavengers, swine lookers, common lookers, ale tasters, pump 
lookers, overseers, dog muzzlers, chimney lookers, and the bell- 
man. These oflflces were not then sinecures, and all of them can 
be traced at work except the ale tasters — a feature greatly to the 
credit of the Altrincham publican one or two centuries ago. 
The chimney lookers on one occasion had George Twyford and 
Edward Cook each amerced in Is. for neglecting to sweep their 
chimneys, which occasioned Edward Cook's to take fire ; and a 
worthy Alderman, whose name is honourably associated with 
Altrincham (Alderman Cresswell) was ordered to "mussel" 
his dog in pain of 6s. 8d., which he, neglecting to do, had to 
pay, and was further fined 10s. The Overseers had Ann Grantham 
amerced in 10s. for entertaining vagrants contrary to Act of 
Parliament. The pump lookers saw that " no person washed 
potatoes at ye town's pump, or fetched water to degg straw, or set 
any barrel to be ledgined, or watered horses, or fetched water to 
make daub or mortar." The common lookers prevented persons 
gathering dung there, or "fleaing" the common, or "surcharging" 
it, or turning diseased animals on it. The swine lookers had 
Faith Brown amerced in Is. for turning out one swine. The 
leather sealers had John Worthington, jun., fined in 3s. -Id. and 
William Ellam, of Lymm, in 6s. Sd., for selling leather not suffi- 
ciently tanned. The market lookers saw that butchers did not 
bring unmarketable meat, or the bakers give short weight in 
bread. In fact, the Court took care that the officers did their 
duty, or "pained" (fined) them for any omission. Thus the well- 


looker was amerced in 3s. 4d. " for neglecting his office about 
cleaning the town's well ;" and the dog muzzlers in 12d. for not 
doing as they ought to have done. Concerning the Overseers, 
there is an entry 150 years ago, which states :— 

We find hei'etofore yt }-e Overseers of ye poor have been very neglect- 
ful in getting certificates from the interlopers, and for that reason wee doe 
order the sukceeding officers to take care for the future to get certificates 
of those that are in town yt have not given them, or those that may come 
in, if ye deny to remove them, on pain of 6s. 8d. 

The previous Overseers had been fined 12d. each for their 
neglect. But if the Court saw the officers did their duty it also 
protected them in the doing of it, as we find James Berry 
"amerced in 3s. 4d. for insulting the market-lookers in the 
execution of their duty." Some particular persons gave a good 
deal of trouble, just as they do in the present day. Thus Faith 
(Ffaith) Brown was twice fined Is. for gathering dung on the 
common, 2s. for twice turning out her pig, and another shilling 
for not paying or cleaning the well. Eobert Leather, too, was 
well known at court : he was ordered to repair his ovens, to 
make a new and sufficient gate leading into the Town Field, to 
open his part of Timperley brook, was amerced in sixpence for 
ledgining his barrels at the town's pump, and lastly was fined 
6s. 8d. for neglecting to brush his hedge and slance his ditch at 
Timperley. Hedges and ditches were the occasion of a variety 
of orders, parties being required to scour, ditch, slance, breast, 
and cleanse their ditches, and to fall, brush, fence, and back beat 
their hedges. " Muck," as it is always called, gave no small 
amount of employment to the Court. Widow Norman was told 
not to bring hers any further than the stumps from her stable on 
pain of 6s. 8d., James Robinson was twice told to keep his within 
his wall in his fold, while everybody was forbidden to lay " swine 
muck," or "little house muck" in the bank for the future. Mary 
Janson, for committing a great nuisance in this respect, was fined 
10s., and was ordered to lay no more in the public street on pain 
of £01 00s. Od. The houses were mostly thatched with straw, 
and there were sundry regulations respecting " straw for 


thatching." Such straw was not to be wet in the highway, and 
great danger arising from the thatch taking fire, many jjersons 
were fined for not having their chimneys duly cleaned. George 
Twyford was ordered to make up a dangerous hole in the end of 
his brewhouse, on pain of 6s. 8d., and the smith was to prevent 
spai'ks passing out of his smithy under the comparatively heavy 
penalty of £01 OOs. Od. The bakers were ordered not to lay 
their heath, gorse, or other fuel, within sixty yards of any house, 
barn, or outbuilding, and to quench their hot ashes under similarly 
heavy " pains." The public bakehouse was an important 
institution, which was maintained until a recent period. The 
Court regulated the time of "setting in" and "drawing," the 
former at seven o'clock in the morning from May to Michaelmas, 
and eight o'clock from ]\lichaelmas to May, also at such other 
times as "that the inhabitants may have their puddings, pyes, 
and other eatables out of the oven precisely at 12 o'clock," and 
" draw for supper by six o'th' clock in the evening," an hour 
which will be considered rather early in these days. James 
Tipping, the baker, repeatedly kept the lieges of Altrincham 
waiting for their dinners, and no doubt this was the case in 
reference to suppers — for he was frequently fined. The 
pecuniary affairs of the town were well guarded, the officers 
being often amerced for not producing their accounts to the 
assessor for inspection. A most important feature of the work 
of the Court was the preservation of footpaths and the repairing 
of highways, as several of the entries at different periods show. 

Whereas the styles have lately been took up and the footway stopt 
leading from Charles Cresswell's, Wellfield at Sandiway Head, and so from 
thence leading through the upper end of John Smith's higher field, pur- 
chased of Mr. John Eccles, which has been an immemorial foolroad. We 
agree and order that the several owners of the fields through which the 
footroad did heretofore lead, to fix good and sufficient styles through 
their several closes or fields in pain of each £1. 

In 1738, it was agreed and ordered : — 

That George Norman and William Royle do take do\\'n their several 
styles leading from Altrincham to Bowtlon Church, and in lieu thereof do 
place stumps and rails for the better ease and convenience of Churchpeople 
and other passengers, and that within one month from this time on pain of 


This is quite sufficient to show that the Court was a most 
important one, and fulfilled duties very much after the fashion 
of a Corporation in modern times. 

The ancient custom in regard to the election of burgesses is 
still carried out. These burgesses are all freeholders within the 
borough, but must be elected by the Jury of the Court Leet 
before they can be said to be fully qualified. For many years 
the Jury returned one freeholder as burgess at each Court Leet, 
who thereupon usually paid a fine towards the expenses of the 
dinner of the Mayor, Steward, Jury, Constables, &c., partaken of 
after the Court had discharged the very onerous duties devolving 
upon it. This habit of inflicting a fine was not an ancient custom, 
as this election of burgesses was not carried out with such 
regularity 100 or 120 years ago ; and the Jury only elected 
one or two as they thought proper, and no mention of a fine or 
other expenses to be paid is shown by them. It is certain, how- 
ever, that it was long the custom for the Lord of the leet to 
present to the company at the dinner, a certain sum towards the 
expenses of the same and the fines paid by new burgesses were 
added, the remainder being paid equally by the persons present, 
with the exception of the constables, for whom the JLayor paid, 
as well as for himself. No one can possibly remember when the 
custom originated, not even " the oldest inhabitant." 

Occasions have been known when a newly-elected burgess 
has declined to pay the customary fine ; and no persuasion, not 
even that of the " ballivo " of the ancient charter, which is 
supposed to mean the bailiff returned by the Jury, who executed 
their precepts, and the warrants of the steward for levying all 
fines and amercements imposed by them, could induce him to 
part ; consequently, this money has been lost to the company. 
It is said that in the year 1820, and for several years afterwards, 
the Mayor gave no dinners, but only a certain sum towards the 
expenses of the Court Leet dinners, the rest of the funds being 
expended in lighting and watching the town. The practice of the 
Mayor gi\'ing these dinners is, however, an institution which 



cannot have existed from the granting of the charter, as he had 
no public funds to meet the expenses prior to the grants already 
mentioned, nor indeed until the lands comprised in the lease 
became productive. The date at which they are fixed as having 
commenced is 1749 or 1759, and about that time each burgess 
gave one shilling towards the expenses of such dinner. 

With the progress of the town, the value of the Mayor's 
land correspondingly increased. Up to 1863, it had for many 
years been vested in a trustee, upon trust for the Mayors for the 
time being of the borough, during their respective mayoralties, 
and was leased for farming purposes ; the rents, then amounting to 
£70 10s., being received and expended by the Mayor at his 
discretion. This discretion for a long time was not wisely 
exercised, and public opinion was on more than one occasion 
strongly expressed. It was alluded to many years previously at 
the Government Inquiry prior to the formation of the Local 
Board of Health ; and Mr. Rawlinson, who held it, states in his 
appendix that he fully concurred in the recommendations relative 
to the Mayor's property. Mr. Joynson and others named the 
subject, and expressed an opinion that if the rental obtained 
from the land could be laid out for public purposes, much good 
might result to the inhabitants and the ratepayers generally. Mr. 
E. Joynson stated " they had reason to believe that Lord 
Stamford, whose ancestors left the property in question, to the 
Mayor and Burgesses, would have no objection to its being made 
available for the improvement of the town ; " and Mr. I. Turton 
added that " the income from the land was at present of no use 
whatever, for it was spent in eating and drinking." Some 
remarks on the improvement of Altrincham, which were then 
drawn tij) for local use and information, pointed out that the town 
was suffering, as Manchester did for at least a century, from 
having outgrown the feudal usages and regulations under which 
it had hitherto been governed, and also that the main qualification 
which the Jurors of the Leet sought for in a Mayor-elect was 
that he should be disposed to disburse largely of this fund in the 





shape of good dinners and drinking bouts. Some of the Burgesses 
who did not approve of this mode of spending the money, did not 
attend the Court Leet or its dinners. It is pleasant to have to 
record that of late years there has been an absence of that license 
which formerly prevailed, and Mayors have vied with each other 
in publicly and privately helping on local objects, by sub- 
scriptions from the funds at their disposal. Efforts have also 
been made to add greater dignity to the transactions of the Court 
Leet, and perhaps by none more so than Mr. Edward Neild, who 
held the oflSce in 1875-6. During his term he presented two 
splendid chairs for the use of the Court. They are constructed 
out of solid oak grown in Dunham Park. They are in the 
Jacobean style of the 16th century, from designs by Bernard 
Smith, of London, and therefore harmonize to some extent with 
the antiquity of the Court to which they are presented. The 
principal chair stands about seven feet high, and the other, which 
is not quite so elaborate, though not less tasteful in its design, 
is six feet. The principals of both are splendid specimens of 
turnery, and the carving is not less massive and imposing. In 
the back of the chairs is a shield artistically placed on a green 
ground, bearing the coat of arms of the town, with the motto in 
gilt letters " Altrincham en avant." Underneath, on a brass 
plate, is the inscription : " Presented to the Court Leet of the 
Borough of Altrincham, by Edward Neild, Mayor, 1875-6." They 
are vipholstered in leather in olive and gold of antique pattern, 
and the panels are also decorated in the same manner. The 
back of the second chair is ornamented with the coat of arms of 
the Earl of Stamford and Warrington, in silver and blue, 
surmounted with a coronet, and the motto in gilt letters, "A ma 
puissance." A handsome lamp, formerly in the old Market Place, 
bore the legend " Pierson, Mayor, 1851-1852," and celebrates the 
memory of a good man and a worthy citizen in his day and 

Returning once more to the economic consideration of the 
subject, it was mainly owing to the efforts of Mr. W. Devereux 


Nicholls, a former Mayor, that this trust was put on a satisfactory 
footing, legally speaking. He spent the whole of his mayoral 
income in accomplishing the object ; and in his representation he 
pointed out that it was obvious that some parts of the land were 
eligible for building purposes, and that the income would be 
much increased if they could be leased for long terms. It had 
also been for many years considered that the rents might be 
much more advantageously applied than in the manner before 
detailed, and that the inclination of the Burgesses was very strong 
towards such an appropriation. This, JNIr. Nicholls did not do 
with a view to decreasing the dignity of the office ; and 
suggestions were made that the Mayor for the time being should 
receive a definite and sufficient sum for the due maintenance of 
his office, and the remainder be applied for some public purpose, 
as the Mayor for the time being and a committee of Burgesses 
to be chosen by themselves might determine. 

There were, however, many difficulties raised to this course ; 
but the object Mr. Nicholls had in view was ultimately gained, 
and with the consent of the Lord of the Manor and the Charity 
Commissioners, the following gentlemen were elected by the 
burgesses trustees of what has since been legally termed " The 
Mayor's Land Charity " :— Messrs. James Street (Mayor), 
J. Howard, James Southern, Mark Pierson, C. Balshaw, 
S. Barratt, J. Renshaw, and J. A. Kelsall. Of these Mr. James 
Southern only survives. 

Various inquiries have since been held under the auspices of 
the Charity Commissioners, which have changed completely the 
old order of things in connection with the iNIayor's Land Charity. 
The report of the Commissioners of 1876, states that the 
Corporation of Altrincham has no municipal function, and that 
the Mayor elected at the Court Leet has no Magisterial Juris- 
diction. Nothing in the Municipal Corporations' Act of 1883, 
however, prevented the holding of the Court Leet in the ordinary 
way, and the election of the Mayor as heretofore, but it specially 
provided that such Mayor should not have magisterial, municipal, 


or other jurisdiction. The ancient Corporation was dissolved in 
1888, and by a scheme formulated by the Commissioners, the 
sum of £\o was made payable to the Mayor, " to be applied by 
him in his discretion during his term of office for some public 
pui'pose or purposes in the township of Altrincham." The balance 
was to be applied by the Trustees in subscriptions or donations 
in aid of the funds of any "Free Library, Museum, Reading Room, 
Dispensary, Infirmary, Hospital or Convalescent Home, or any 
Technical School in Altrincham." The Charity Commissioners 
further directed that the Mayor's gold chain of ofiice, the chairs 
presented by Mr. Edward Neild, the scales, the brank or scold's 
bridle, weights and measures used by the market-lookers, the 
three silver-headed constables' staves, and the bell used by the 
town crier, should remain in the custody of the Mayor, the 
Chairman of the Local Board, and the Chairman of the new 
Board of Trustees of the Mayor's Land Charity until a Free 
Library is provided. 

The present income of the Charity is, from chief rents 
£296 13s. 6d., from nursery grounds, 6a. Ir. 13i3., £45 ; total 
£34:1 13s. 6d. The nett income is about £325, and deducting 
the £45 payable to the Mayor, leaves a sum of £280 at the 
disposal of the Trustees for one or other of the purposes stipulated 
for in the Act. From 1891 to 1895, inclusive, they have given 
to the Altrincham Hospital and Dispensary £480, and £850 to 
the Altrincham Free Library. The Trustees in 1896 were Messrs. 
Newton (Chairman), Davenport, Siddeley, Hamilton, Bowen, 
Steen, Percival, Boyd, and the Mayor for the time being. 


To ALL FAITHFUL TEOPLE OF CiiKiST, that shall see or hear this 
present Charter, Hajion Massey, Lord of Dunhaji, sexds greeting 
everlasting in the Lord : KNOW YE, that I have given, and by this 
my present Charter for me and my heirs confirm, to my Burgesses of 
Altrincham, that my Town of Altrincham be a Free Borough, and that 
my Burgesses of the same Borough shall have a Guild Mercalory in the 
same Borough, with all liberties and free customs unto such manner of 


Guild belonging, according to the custom of tlie Borough of Maccles- 
field ; and that they shall be quit through all my lands, as well by 
water as by land, of toll, passage, pontage, stallage, lastage, and all 
other servile customs. Also I have granted unto my said Burgesses, 
common of pasture, turbary and bruary, within the limits of Dunham, 
Altrinoham, and Timperley, saving unto nie and my heirs our improve- 
ments, and sa\'ing to me and my heirs the iiiclosure of Sunderland, at 
our free will without the contradiction of any ijersou, whensoever we 
shall think fit, to enclose the same, so that my aforesaid Burgesses 
may have common of [lasture always and everj-where for all their cattle 
within the bounds of Sunderland, so long as the aforesaid place of 
Sunderland shall not be enclosed ; saving to me and my heirs in all the 
time of pannage in the aforesaid Sunderland so that in that time we 
may have power at our will to fence in Sunderland aforesaid, without 
the contradiction of any persons. And when Sunderland aforesaid 
shall be enclosed, m}' said Burgesses shall have their common up to the 
Hay of Sunderland aforesaid, and not beyond. It is also my will that 
all my Burgesses who shall have hogs in the time of pannage in my said 
Borough either after the feast of St. James and the time of pannage, 
shall give a right toll when they pasture within the aforesaid commons, 
and they shall not go from the said Borough with their hogs in the 
time of pannage. Also, I have granted to my aforesaid Burgesses 
housebote and haybote in all the woods of the aforesaid places (except 
my hays and enclosed woods). And also I do grant to my aforesaid 
Burgesses that the3- shall not be impleaded out of the portmote of the 
aforesaid Borough, nor shall they be interfered with out of their 
Borough on account of trespasses done within the Borough, and if any 
of them becomes liable for any oft'ence he shall be amerced by his peers, 
and that according to the degree of his offence. I will also that my 
Burgesses shall grind all their corn growing upon the land of Altrin- 
cham, or expended in the same town, at my mills, for the eighteenth 
of the full measure. I grant also that my said Burgesses may make 
unto themselves Presidents and Bailift's by the Common Council of me 
or of my Bailiffs and of themselves ; and that no plea shall be holden or 
determined in the said Borough but before me or my Bailiff ; and that 
every Burgess shall hold his several burgage of two perches of land in 
breadth and five in length, with one whole acre of land in the field, for 
twelve pence, to be paid to me and my heirs 3'early. at three times of 
the year by equal portions, that is to say : at the Nativity of St. John 
the Baptist, the Feast of All Saints, and the Annunciation of the 
Blessed Mary ; freely, quietly, peaceably, and wholly, with all the 
liberties aforesaid ; and that every Burgess may sell, alien, give or 
assign by will, his burgage to any person or persons whomsoever he 
will (except to the officers of our lord the King and religious men) 
without the contradiction of any person or persons, saving to me and 
my heirs our free bakehouse in the same Borough. I truly, the afore- 
said Hamon, and my heirs, will for ever M-arrant the aforesaid 
Burgages and the acres of land thereunto adjoining, and all the 


liberties above written, unto my said Biu-gesses and their heirs and 
assigns against all people. In witness whereof I have set my seal to 
this present Charter, these being witnesses : 

Sir Reginald de Grey (then Justice of Chester) ; 
Humphrey of Beauchamp, Richard of Massey, 
Knights ; Gilbert of Aston ; Thomas of Aetone (or 
Agden) ; Hugh of Baggelegh ; Matthew of Hale ; 
Henry of Dunham ; John of Bowdon ; and others. 

The above is the best translation of the charter which has 
been made, but it must be remembered that there are numerous 
others in existence. In some instances it is addressed to all 
" Shriften people," and charter is called pax and wrytynge, the 
expression varying with the period at which such translation was 
made. Passage is egress and regress ; tollage is toll paid for 
standing in the markets and fairs ; lastage is liberty to set out 
standings in the markets and fairs ; turbary is liberty to get turf 
or turves ; bruary, heath, furze, or briars ; pannage, which is 
sometimes given as farmage, pession, and passion, is the time 
when hogs feed on acorns and stubble ; housebote is the 
necessary timber for repairing houses and out-houses ; haybote or 
hayhold, wood for hedges ; heyes, glades, and places for game ; 
the free bakehouse was a place to which the inhabitants were 
bound to resort. In some instances president has been translated 
borough reeve, and there is an expression in one regarding the 
grain grown at Altrincham, or expended in the town, " or sold 
at an inn in the same town." 

The exact date of the granting of the charter has not been 
ascertained, but authorities concur in fixing the year 1290. The 
Justice of Chester at that period was Sir Reginald de Grey, who 
continued to hold that important office until 1300; but as one 
Ricardus de Massey acted in his absence for some years, 1290 
may be safely assumed to be the yeir in which the Altrinchiim 
Charter was granted. 

There are many differences in the wording of the translations 
in addition to those already mentioned. The name of Massey is 



given on both seal and charter as Macy. It has since been 
rendered in various ways — Macie, Macey, Mascie, Mascy, Massie, 
Massy, &c. No doubt, in connection with other old Cheshire 
names and the numerous changes in orthography connected 
therewith, it suggested the somewhat ill-natured though cele- 
brated rhyme that in this county — 

Leghs are as numerous as fleas, 

And Masseys as asses. 

FKOM U:y2 TO 1896. 

1452 Edward Massey 
1483 Richard Massey 
1547 Roger Booth 
1552 John Ryle 

1555 John Morris 

1556 John Ryle 

1557 John Ryle 

1558 Ralph Massey 

1559 Ralph Massey 

1560 William Ardi-on 

1561 George Ne'O'ton 

1562 George Newton 

1563 George Newton 
1565 Ralph Massey, senior 
1614 William Rawlinson 
1616 Alexander Vaudi-ey 

1618 Robert Linguard 

1619 Richard Brereton 

1620 Edward Bent 

1621 Randle Wright 

1622 George Birch 

1623 William Rowlandson 

1624 William Hesketli 

1626 William Hesketh 

1627 Robert Parker 

1628 Robert Lingard 

1629 James Leycester 

1630 Randle Wright 

1631 Peter Rowlinson 

1632 George Birch 

1633 Richard Brereton 

1634 Richard Brereton 

1635 Jefl'ery Coe 

1636 George Yaudrey 

1637 Lawrence Leicester 

1638 Richard Wright 

1639 George Ashton 

1640 Robert Lingard 

1641 William Hesketh 

1642 William Rowlinson 

1643 Henry Cartwiight 

1644 Henry Cartwright 

1645 George Parker 

1646 John Bent 

1647 George Birch 

1648 William Leicester 

1649 George Yaudrey 

1650 Richard Brereton 

1651 Richard Brereton 

1652 Richard Brereton 

1653 Henry Bradshaw 

1654 Richard Wriglit 

1655 Peter Parker 

1656 John Ashley 

1657 Robert Hesketh 

1658 Thomas Hesketh 

1659 Henry Smith 

1660 Robert Lingard 

1661 John Paulden 

1662 William Rowlinson 

1663 James Doe 

1664 George Birch 

1665 George Parker 

1666 John Coe 

1667 James Brookes 

1668 George Aldcroft 

1669 George Hardey 

1670 William Leicester 

1671 George Yaudrey 

1672 Richard Wright 

1673 George Cook 

1674 Robert Lingard 

1675 George Parker 

1676 Thomas Doe 

1677 John Ashley 

1678 Henry Hesketh 

1679 William Delves 

1680 Richard Wright 

1681 George Birch 

1682 Henry Smith 

1683 James Brookes 

1684 John Burgess 

1685 James Ashle}' 

1686 Thomas Hesketh 

1687 Joseph Pierson 

1688 George Hardey 

1689 John Leather 



1690 George Parker 

1691 Jeffrey Stockley 

1692 Robert Lingard 

1693 Robert Leicester 

1694 Timothy Taylor 

1695 William Hesketh 

1696 Henry Smith 

1697 James Hardey 

1698 George Alcroft 

1699 John Eccles 

1700 Jeremiah Brundrett 

1701 George Birch 

1702 George Leicester 

1703 William Grantham 

1704 John Bent 

1705 William Higginson 

1706 John Higginson 

1707 Robert Ashley 

1708 George Smith 

1709 James Warburton 

1710 John Smith 

1711 Edward Garnett 

1712 John Cooke 

1713 Thomas Royle 

1714 Robert Lupton 

1715 Robert Frith 

1716 Charles Cresswell 

1717 Robert Leather 

1718 John Ashley 

1719 James Hardey 

1720 Richard Royle 

1721 James Robinson 

1722 Samuel Holt 

1723 John Smith 

1724 George Hardey 

1725 Joshua Grantham 

1726 William Leicester 

1727 Fernando Laughton 

1728 Richard Berry 

1729 William Taylor 

1730 William Royle 

1731 Richard Leigli 

1732 John Birch 

1733 James Fletcher 

1734 George Smitli 

1735 George Warburton 

1736 George Royle 

1737 Henry Smith 

1738 John Worthington 

1739 Aaron Eccles 

1740 Joshua Grantham 

1741 Thomas Royle 

1742 John Smith 

1743 Richard Neild 

1744 Robert Frith 

1745 George Ashton 

1746 George Burgess 

1747 Benjamin Irlam 

1748 John Leigh 

1749 Richard Royle 

1750 George Twyford 

1751 Joseph Grantham 

1752 George Robinson 

1753 Peter Bailey 

1754 Thomas Royle 

1755 James Wainwright 

1756 Samuel Lamb 

1757 Richard Crouchley 

1758 The Honble. Booth 


1759 Isaac Shaw 

1760 Nathaniel Priestner 

1761 Charles Cresswell 

1762 Robert Ashley 

1763 Edward Cooke 

1764 John Birch 

1765 Thomas Moore 

1766 William Rigby 

1767 Thomas Warburton 

1768 Wilham Leicester 

1769 John Walthew 

1770 William Parkinson 


1771 William Taylor 

1772 George Cooke 

1773 Isaac Worthington 


1774 John Ratcliffe 

1775 John Derbyshire 

1776 George Lupton 

1777 William Howard 

1778 Thomas Duncalf 

1779 Edward Barbyshire 

1780 John Austin 

1781 William Pooks 

1782 Vernon Poole 

1 783 Oswald Leicester 

1784 John Clough 

1785 Charles Poole 

1786 Robert Mills 

1 787 John Eccles 

1788 Robert Leicester 

1789 James Staples 

1790 Aaron Brundrett 

1791 Thomas Howard 

1792 James Walthew 

1793 Timothy Brownell, jr. 

1794 James Gratri.f 

1795 William Parkinson 

1796 John Atherton 

1797 Samuel Howard 

1798 Samuel Hardey 

1799 George Burgess 

1800 George Worthington 

1801 Peter Leicester 

1802 Samuel Walker 

1803 William Ashley 

1804 William Smith 

1805 Thomas Royle 

1806 John Postles 

1807 Thomas Carter 

1808 Abner Partington 

1809 William Royle 

1810 Thomas Darbyshire 

1811 John Mitchell 


1812 Samuel Hope 

1813 John Austin 
18U Isaac Davenport 
1S15 John Mitchell 
1816 John Barratt 
1S17 William Ashley 

1818 John Drinkwatei- 

1819 Joshua Ashcroft 

1820 Samuel Bruckshaw 

1821 Samuel Renshaw 

1822 Timothy Brownell 

1823 Samuel Street 

1824 Samuel Clarke 

1825 John Faulkner 

1826 John Hope 

1827 Richard Irlam Grant- 


1828 John Clarke 

1829 John Adshead 

1830 Nathaniel Pass 

1831 Robert Shelmerdine 

1832 John Lupton 

1833 Charles Poole 

1834 Richard Poole 

1835 Isaac Harrop 

1836 Isaac Harrop 

1837 William Hamilton 

1838 Isaac Gaskarth 

1839 Joseph Arstall 

1840 Isaac Gaskarth 

1841 Joseph Bruckshaw 

1842 William Collier 

1843 William Collier 

1844 William Renshaw 

1 845 James Royle 
184C James Matthews 

1847 Joseph Hall 

1848 George Massey 

1849 Richard Broadbent 

1850 Richard Broadbent 

1851 Mark Pierson 

1852 ilark Pierson 

1853 George Berry 

1854 Samuel Barratt 

1855 John Davenport 

1856 William D. NichoUs 

1857 William D. NichoUs 

1858 John Mort 

1859 John Jlort 

1860 John Howard 

1861 Charles Balshaw 

1862 James Street 

1863 Thomas Balshaw 

1864 Samuel Delves 

1865 Samuel Delves 

1866 Samuel Delves 

1867 John Astle Kelsall 

1868 James Southern 

1869 Humphrey Davies 

1870 Joseph Gaskarth 

1871 Joseph Gaskarth 

1872 Matthew Fowden 

1873 John Shelmerdine 


1874 Samuel Burgess 

1875 Edward Neild 

1876 William Greenwood 

1877 William Greenwood 

1878 John Siddeley 

1879 Joseph Gaskarth 

1880 James Byrom 

1881 George Smith 

1882 Henry Balshaw 

1883 Henry Balshaw 

1884 Ben Riley 

1885 George Bowen 

1886 Joseph Gaskarth 

1887 James Hamilton 

1888 Wm. Griffin, Alder- 

man of Manchester 

1889 Eustace G, Parker 

1890 Joel Foden 

1891 Wm. Agar Renshaw 

1892 John Dale 

1893 Wilham Griffin 

1894 WiUiam Griffin 

1895 Da\-id Morrison 

1896 Frederick Raymond 

Barber Lindsell 


A retrospect— Sundry lawsuits — The first Booth of Dunham Masscy ; 
his supposed death at the Battle of Blore Heath — .4 Booth blighted 
by Queen Elizabeth— Interesting wills — Dame Booth's Charity — 
Contributions to the defence of the Kingdom — Dr. Dee's reference to 
Sir George Booth— Purchase of the town of Warrington; the 
instructions thereon — Death of William Booth. 

A BRIEF resum6 is necessary before proceeding further. It 
will be in the recollection of the reader that the last 
Baron of Dunham sold the reversion of his estates in this 
neighbourhood to Oliver Ingham, Justice of Chester. At the 
time of Hamon's death, however, Oliver was abroad, having been 
appointed Steward of Gascony by the King. As has often been 
the case in modern times, the death of an individual, even of 
mean degree, has given rise to much legal contention. In this 
respect history only repeats itself ; for it was about the year 1341 
that "great suits" took place concerning the Barony of Dunham. 
It was only natural that the descendants of the barons on the 
female side should think that they were, in the absence of such a 
notable individual as the aforesaid Oliver, entitled to those broad 
acres, which constituted a most enviable possession. Richard 
Fitton, and the heirs of the other sisters, says Leycester, entered 
into the Manor of Dunham ; but, by the King's command, 
Hamon Masci, of Tatton (after svarda the first Masci of Rixton) 
came and turned them out. The dispute was not settled until 
Henry, Duke of Lancaster, bought out the rights of all concerned, 
and with princely liberality gave it to Roger Lestraunge, or 
Strange, Lord of Knocking, who was descended from Oliver 
Ingham by marriage, and by whose descendants it was held for 
some time afterwards. 


Up to this period no meiition was made of the Booths in 
connection with Dunham Massey, and it was not until the reign 
of Henry V. that they acquired a footing in this district. The 
name Booth is derived from the Anglo-Saxon word Both, a seat, 
or chief mansion house, more usually a village. In the year 1402, 
Richard de Venables, heir to the estate of Le Bolyn, was 
drowned accidentally in the river Bollin, and by this event, his 
two sisters, Alice and Dulcia, or Douce, became co-heiresses. 
These lands were held in trust until Dulcia came of age. She 
was married to Robert del Bothe, or Booth, a younger son of 
Sir John del Bothe, Barton, near Manchester, " the Monday after 
the invention of the Holy Cross," in the tenth year of the reign 
of Henry IV. (1409), at which time she was only nine years of 
age. Twelve years afterwards the whole of the manors and 
estates were divided, Styal and Dean Row, and the mills on the 
river Bollin, with other lands in the County, principally in West 
Cheshire, falling to her share. By what has been described as a 
complicated series of events, this Robert del Bothe seated himself 
ultimately at Dunham Massey. He challenged his right to a 
portion of the land in this manor, which he contended ought to 
descend to him as one of the heirs by marriage through the 
Fittons and Venables from the last Baron of Dunham. Once 
having put his hand to the plough he did not look back, and 
ultimately it was agreed in the year 1433 between the holders of 
the barony, viz.. Sir Thomas Stanley and William Chauntrell, 
sergeant-at-law, that one half of the lands, rentSj and services in 
Dunham, Hale, and Altrincham, should be given him. Thus, 
in brief, was laid the foundation of a family which is generally 
agreed to have been one of the most distinguished and influential 
in Cheshire. 

This Sir Robert had a goodly number of sons and daughters, 
amongst them John Booth, afterwards Bishop of Exeter, and 
Warden of Manchester College. He and his eldest son, William, 
were made Sheriffs of Cheshire for both their lives in the year 
1443 ; and Leycester remarks that this is all the more note- 


worthy, " as being the first patent for life which he could meet 
with in the county." That he took a prominent part in public 
affairs is often noticed in contemporary documents, and for his 
services he had an annuity of £10 per annum granted by Henry VI. 
The time of his death, however, appears to be involved in 
much obscurity. Leycester says he lived in the reign of Henry IV., 
Henry V., and seems to have died about the 29th year of the 
reign of Henry VI. Another authority (Dr. Ormerod) suggests that 
he was on the King's side in the battle of Blore Heath in 1459 — 
which battle is well known to have been singularly calamitous to the 
gentry of Cheshire. It has remained for another antiquarian, 
Mr. Earwaker, by his painstaking research, to throw a great deal 
of additional light on the subject. Dr. Ormerod gives as his 
authority the monument in Wilmslow Church, to the memory of 
Sir Robert and Douce, his wife ; but his rendering of the 
inscription is shown to have been caused by a misreading, and 
his remark that " it possesses considerable interest, and is the 
only inscription now remaining in the county relating to any of 
the warriors who fell at Blore Heath," threatens, says Mr. 
Earwaker " to become a popular local error," from its having been 
so frequently repeated. The description which he gives of the 
brass is also much more complete, and possesses the utmost 
interest for this district. This handsome brass still exists, but in 
a much worn state, and has lost the greater part of its inscription, 
and one of its canopies. It is, however, the finest yet left in 
Cheshire. Sir Robert is represented in the plate armour worn in 
the middle of the 15th century, his head uncovered, showing the 
short cut hair, his feet adorned with the knightly spurs, resting 
on a greyhound, and his sword lying across his body. In his 
right hand he grasps that of his wife Douce, who lies on his left 
side. She is habited in a tightly fitting dress, seen beneath a 
long heavy mantle, which is fastened by two brooches across the 
chest. Her flowing hair reaches down nearly to her waist, and is 
confined at the top of the head by a narrow fillet or circlet, 
probably enriched with jewels. Her little pet dog is represented 


at her feet lying on the folds of the mantle. Over each of these 
figures was a handsome canopy, that over the lady now only 
remaining. There were the shields on which the arms of Booth, 
Fitton, Masey, and Thornton were quartered, and round the edges 
of the tomb, in Latin, was the following inscription : — 

Here lies the body of Sir Robert del Boutlie Knight, formerley lord of 
Bolyn, Thorneton and Dunham, who died in the feast of Saint Edith the 
Virgin (Septr. 16) in the year of our Lord 1460 ; and the body of Douce, 
wife of the said Robert del Bouthe, who died on the morrow of the feast 
of St. Tecla the Virgin (Sepr. 23) in the year of our Lord 1453, on whose 
souls may God be merciful. Amen. 

This account receives corroboration to some extent from 
another source. The Rev. Charles Boutell, in his work on 
"Monumental Brasses," gives a written description, as also an 
engraving of the tomb in question. He says that the height of 
the effigy in the original was three feet. The double canopy is 
entirely destroyed, as also the greater part of the border legend. 

In the absence of the document recording the inquisition post 
mortem, this must now be regarded as conclusive testimony as to 
the date of his death. 

Sir Robert was succeeded by his son William, who, in the 
year 1442, married Matilda, daughter of John Button, of Button, 
Esquire, and had issue, George, son and heir, and also other sons and 
daughters. He died on April Gth, 1477, leaving certain lands in 
trust to provide a chaplain to pray for the health of his soul and 
that of his ancestors and descendants, in a Chantry Chapel 
which he desired to be built in Bowdon Church for that purpose ; 
this was afterwards built, and was said from its spaciousness " to 
be a faire Chappelle." In his inquisition post mortem, or 
inquest after death, which was taken at " Knottesford," before 
Thomas Wolton, Escheator, and a local jury, it is stated that he 
died seised of certain lands, and that he had conceded to him 
lands in Altryncham, &c. His wife, Matilda, married for her 
second husband Sir William Brereton, Knight. 


George Booth, Esquire, was 32 years of age when he was 
declared his father's heir. He married Catherine, daughter and 
heiress of Robert de Montford, lord of Bescote, Staffordshire. 
It has been stated that his illustrious father-in-law was descended 
from Charlemagne, Eniperor of the Romans, and David, King of 
Scotland, and that he was heir by his great grandmother to the 
ancient family of Clinton, of Colchester. By this marriage large 
estates were brought to the family. By her he had issue two 
sons and three daughters. He died the Sunday before the 
Annunciation of the Blessed Virgin Mary, March 25th, 1484. 
In his will he desired that his body should be buried " in the new 
Chapel of St. ^lary of Bawdon." Katherine, who survived her 
husband, re-married. She died on the 7th December, 1498. 

At the time of his father's death, William, the next heir, was 
10 years of age. On attaining his majority in 1494, the necessary 
proof of age was made. In about four years afterwards he was 
knighted. He was t^vice married, his first wife being Margaret, 
daughter and co-heiress of Sir Thomas Ashton, of Ashton-under- 
Lyiie ; by her he had two sons, the heir being named George. 
The manor of Ashton under-Lyne and other large inheritances in 
Lancashire passed by this marriage into the Booth family. His 
second wife was Ellen, the daughter of Sir John Montgomery, of 
Throwley, Staffordshire, and by her he had issue seven sons and 
daughters. In one of the windows of Wilmslow Church there 
was formerly heraldic stained glass, representing Sir William 
Booth, wearing a tabard of arms, and kneeling with six sons 
behind him, and his wife Ellen, a^so kneeling, with five daughters 
behind her. There was an inscription in Latin, desiring prayers 
for the souls of Sir William, and Ellen his wife, and for the souls 
of their children, who caused a window to be made in the year 

The inquest after death, taken at Altrincham, before Sir 
Ralph Egerton, Knight, November 30th, 1519, recites the lands 
he was possessed of and that he died the Wednesday before the 



Feast of St. Martin the Bishoio (November lltli), last past (1519), 
and that George Bothe was son and next heir, and of the age of 
29 years. 

George, the fifth owner of Dunham, married Elizabeth, 
daughter of Sir Thomas Boteler or Butler, of Bewsey, the scene 
of a tragedy the remembrance of which is preserved by tradition, 
when a Butler was ruthlessly murdered by a relative. By her he 
was blessed with several " olive branches " ; and one of his 
daughters, Ellen, was married to John Carrington, of Carrinoton, 
Esquire ; and another, Dorothy, to Robert Tatton, of Wythen- 
shawe. Esquire. He died on the 25th October, 1531, his eldest 
son, George, being then 15 years of age. In his will he states : — 

I, George Bothe, of Donnham Massie, Esquire, &c., bequeath my body 
to be buried in Jhesus Chappell at Bowdon churche, among myn ancestors. 
Alsoe, I give to ye prior of Birkenhed my best horse to praye for me ; 
also at Birkenhed aforesayd ten shillings to say a trentall of masses for my 
soule ; also I give to ye prior and ye freires at VVarington ten shillings to 
say a trentall of masses for my soule. Item to ye same prior of Warington 
towards ye gildying of our Ladie iij? iiij'? (3s. 4d.) Also I will that my 
best gown of velvet and my best dublet shall be made in two vestements, 
and ye one of ye sayd vestements to be given to ye said chappell of Jhesus 
at Bowdon church, and ye other vestement to remene in ye chappell of 
Uunnham for ever. Also I give unto George Bothe, my son and heire 
apparent, my cheine of gold and my signet of gold as heire lomes. 

Also it is my will that my chaplen. Sir John Percivall, or some other 
discrete prist, shall say masse, praye, and do devyn service for my soule 
and myn ancestors and all Xten (Christian) souls by ye space of vij (7) yeres 
nexte after my decese, and he to have for his salarie 3'erely iij'.' xiij» iiij4 
(£3 13s. 4d.) And whereas I by my dede indented berying date ye xviij"' 
day of Julie ye xxiij yere of Kyng Henre ye viij!'' have" infeoffed my 
brother in law John Massie of Podington esquire, John Carryngton 
of Carryngton esquire, William Meyre of Meyre esquire, Richard Legh of 
High Legh esquire &c. in my manor of Dunham Massie and in all my 
messuages, lands, tenements, rents and services in Dunham Massie, 
Stayley, Bolyn, Deyn Roe, Stiall and Wilmeslowe, in trust, &c. as by the 
same dede indented more plenly doth appear. 

Also I bequeth for ye makyng of ye side ile of ye Church of Bowdon at 
such time as it shall be taken down five marks of money. 

His son George, who succeeded him, also contracted an early 
marriage, having at the age of 16 espoused Elizabeth, daughter of 
Sir Edmund Trafford, of Trafford, Lancashire, by whom he had 


issue William, son and heir, and three daughters. He was one of 
the gentlemen who received a letter from the Queen (Jane 
Seymour) dispersing the joyful news through the kingdom of the 
birth of Edward VI. in 1537. 

The letter was in these words : — 

By tlie Queue. 

Trusty and wel-biloved, we grete youe well. And for asmuche as by 
the inestimable goodness and grace of Almighty God, we be delivered and 
brought in childbed of a Prince, conceyved in most lawful matrimonie 
between my Lord the King's Majestye and us, doubting not but that for 
the love and affection which ye beare unto us, and to the commyn wealth 
[common wealth] of this realme, the knowledge thereof shuld be joyeous and 
glad tydings unto youe, we have thought good to certiffie to you of the 
same. To thintent (the intent) ye might not only rendre unto God 
condigne thanks and praise for soo gret a benefit, but also pi'ay for the long 
continuance and preservation of the same here in this lief, to the honor of 
God, joye and pleasor of my lord the king, and us, and the universall 
weale, quiet and tranquillji^y of this hole realm. Gevyn under our signet, 
at my Lord's manor of Hampton cort, the xii day of October, [1537.] 
To our trusty and welbiloved 

Geokge Both Esq. 

He died in 1543, aged 28 years. His widow Elizabeth, 
survived him, and was twice re-married, firstly to James Done, of 
Utkinton, and secondly to Thomas Fitton, of Siddington. He 
appears to have made Wilmslow his place of residence, and in his 
will he desired to be buried there. His raised altar tomb, 
bearing his arms and initials, with those of his wife, remained in 
the Booth Chapel for a long period, but was destroyed at the 
restoration of the church in 1863. 

His son and heir, William Booth, Esquire, was but three 
years of age on succeeding to his father's ample estates in 1546, 
and was ward to Henry VHI. He married Elizabeth, daughter of 
Sir John Warburton, of Arley, and had a family of seven sons and 
six daughters. One of his sons, Robert, distinguished himself as 
a soldier in Holland. In 1571 he was made Sheriff of Chester, 
and seven years afterwards had the honour of knighthood 
conferred upon him by the virgin Queen. He died on the 28th 


November, 1579, and was buried at Bowdon on December 8th 
following, so that he does not appear to have long survived the 
honours bestowed upon him. His will is a most interesting one. 
He bequeaths to his wife " the chain of gold," which he last 
brought with him from London, weighing about xxx"' another 
small chain, a carcanet of gold, one pair of bracelets of gold, two 
suits of borders of gold, one single border of gold, one tablet of 
gold, with all the rings she was accustomed to wear, and certain 
small buttons of gold, enamelled black and white, three little gilt 
bowls, with his third salt cellar, and all the husbandry stuff at 
Stayley Hall. To his son George (his heir) he leaves all the 
rest of his plate (reserving one dozen of spoons " of the worser 
sort," which he gave to his wife), his best chain of gold with his 
signet, and all his apparel, with all his gold buttons except those 
before given to his wife. "To William Duncalf, my cast of 
ffawcons (falcons), my baie trotting nagge and my setting 
spaniells." To his well-beloved mother "my sealinge ring, usuallie 
wore on my little finger ; " to his brother-in-law, Davenport, all 
his hounds ; to his cousin, William Tatton, George Brereton 
(Ashley), and Edmund Joddrell, all his fighting cocks and hens ; 
to his sisters Davenport, Chauntrell, and Done, each a gold ring ; 
and to his brother-in-law, Mr. John Done, his best baie nagge 
and his pied horse, then at Stayley Hall ; to his daughter-in-law, 
Jane Bothe (married to his son George, then a minor), a black 
ambling nag that was Mr. Carrington's, and also a gold brooch ; 
to his brother-in-law Mr. Peter Warburton, his best gray nag 
that he himself was accustomed to ride upon, and also his lute ; 
to his brother-in-law Mr. George Warburton, a young coal-black 
nag ; to Mr. Vicar, of Rochdale, iiij '' ; to William Leigh, his 
long black cloak ; to George Holme his best pair of virginalls, &c. 

His wife, dame Elizabeth, survived him for the long period 
of 49 years, and appears to have distinguished herself by her 
widely diffused charity. Li 1620 she granted to the Mayor and 
citizens of Chester the sum of £400 upon trust for ever, the 


interest of which at five per cent, per ainiuui, is to be iiniuuilly 
paid out by them in certain sums, £5 of which is handed over to 
the overseers of Bowdon parish, amongst others, to be expended 
in weeklj' instalments in purchasing loaves of bread to be distri- 
buted weekly, on every Sunday, for ever, immediately after 
morning prayer in the Parish Church, to 2-t poor aged people. 
It is divided over several parishes, and the distribution continues 
to be made. 

George Booth, the second surnving son of the preceding, 
lived in those critical times when the Protestantism of this 
country first rested on a firm foundation ; when, as one writer has 
eloquently put it. Englishmen performed those brilliant and 
glorious naval exploits, especially the destruction of the Spanish 
Armada, which are unsurpassed in our naval annals ; when the 
majesty of English prose was formed by the hand of Hooker ; 
when the harmony of English verse flowed from the lips of 
Spenser ; when the drama, the surest proof of advanced civili- 
lization, had its first beginnings, and was perfected by the 
immortal genius of Shakespeare ; while Bacon opened up a new 
method of philosophy, whose practical fruits we may be said 
even now to gather. Born on October 20th, 1566, Sir George 
was, on the death of his father, still a minor, and was made a 
ward of Queen Elizabeth. He was married in 1577 to Jane, 
daughter and heiress of John Carrington, he being 11 and his 
wife 15 years old at the time. She was an orphan, her father 
having died only the month pre^^ously. She died without issue, 
and he obtained, by suit, possession of the land of Carrington. 
His second wife was Catherine, daughter of Sir Edmund 
Anderson, Chief Justice of the Common Pleas, and by her he had 
a large family. He was, like all Englishmen of the period, 
seized with the contagion of patriotism, and contributed liberally, 
as also did his mother, towards the armaments which were raised 
for the defence of the kingdom. He was Sheriti' of Chester for 
the first time in 1.597, and he is referred to by the gifted, but 
eccentric Dr. Dee, the then Warden of Manchester College, 


who records in his diary that he received a "viset" from Sir 
George, who had no doubt just been knighted by the Queen, and 
that " after some few words of discourse," he agreed to stand by 
the arbitrement of Mr. Homfrey Damport or Davenport, "a 
Cownsaylor of Gray's Inne," concerning two or three tenements 
in his occupying in Dunham Massey. He also mentions a 
second " viset " he had from Sir George, who " sayed he wold 
yeld to me what he wold not yeld to the bisshop nor any other," 
thereby showing that the worthy doctor stood high in his 
estimation. Sir George was created a baronet by patent bearing 
date May 22nd, 1611, in the ninth year of the reign of .James I., 
being the tenth person who was created a baronet after the 
institution of that order. To entitle him to this honour he was 
amply possessed of all material requisites. Webb, in his 
"Itinerary," speaks of the beautiful seat of Dunham, at that 
time " never more graced than in the present possessor, upon 
whom, and his most worthy son, William Booth, Esquire, the 
world hath deservedly set great love and affection, himself 
bearing a chief sway in the great commands of regiments in the 
country, and his son already giving proof of that wisdom and 
moderation in government which have adorned his ancestors 
before him." 

Of the eldest son William, mentioned above, it becomes 
necessary to speak more at length, as his opening acts, conspicuous 
for great ability, gave promise of a brilliant future. It was by 
his efforts that the family acquired possession of Warrington. 
The instructions which he gave to his stewards on that occasion 
are remarkable, as being probably the last instance of an appeal 
being made on the old principle of feudal benevolence to the 
tenantry for pecuniary aid. The sum which was to be paid for 
Warrington to Thomas Ireland, Esquire, of Bewsey, was £7,000, 
and in his instructions William wishes the tenantry to be called 
together, the amount to be paid signified to them, in order 
that by their assistance he and his father might be enabled to 
finish the purchase. It was an opportunity for the tenants to 


show their loves, such as might never probably occur again, and 
the " desire " was for three years' rent, which, if they would give, 
neither he nor his father would require any more rents or gifts 
of them for their two lives. Failing this, " they might provoke 
him to ' sharpe courses.' " Other landlords in Cheshire and 
Lancashire, he reminded them, had recently demanded three 
years' rent only for spending money which had been readily 
granted, and from the fact of the purchase being rumoured about 
the country, if the tenantry forsook them in this extremity it 
would cause much disgrace. The purchase was afterwards com- 
pleted. William did not live more than seven or eight years 
after this great event, but died on the 26th April, 1636, in the 
lifetime of his father. He had married Vers, second daughter 
and co-heiress of Sir Thomas Egerton, eldest son of Lord 
Chancellor Egerton, and she bore him five sons and two 
daughters. Thomas, the eldest, died at Chester at the 
age of 12. Consequently, George Booth, the second son, 
succeeded to the baronetage on the death of his grandfather, who 
attained the ripe age of 86, October 24th, 1652. 

This Sir George was conspicuous in the political theatre 
during the civil disturbances of the seventeenth century, and a 
sketch of his life and actions may well form the subject of a 
separate chapter. 

chaptp:k Yir. 

Birth of Sir George Booth, fird Lord Jjelamer —Description of Sir 
William Brereton— Indictment against Sir George; his part in 
attempting to pacify the county — Its failure — The siege of Nant- 
wich — Spirited defence — Defeat of the Royalists— Sir George elected 
member for Cheshire ; his exclusion by Colonel Pride's purge — 
lioyalist attempts at a Restoration— Sir Gem-ge's celebrated rising — 
The battle of Winnington— His betrayal and arrest; his comiiiittal 
to the I'ower — Release and re-election — His improvements at Dun- 
ham — Description of the old mansion— His death. 

AT the period of the birth of Sir Greorge Booth, in 1622, 
those aspirations for constitutional liberty inherent in a 
commercial nation were beginning to animate the mass of 
the people, and find vent in the House of Commons. Those 
aspirations, repressed for the nonce by an untoward display of 
regal prerogative, only burst out with greater violence at a subse- 
quent period. It is not to be wondered at that the Booth family 
ranged themselves on the side of the people, and from this fact 
the grandfather of Sir George was looked upon as the chief 
corner stone of the Puritan or Presbyterian party in Cheshire. 
The word Puritan must not, however, be misunderstood. There 
were Puritans of various political complexions in those days, and 
ranked deservedly in the first grade were those who were in 
favour of maintaining the highest principles of civil liberty, apart 
from religious doctrine — not those sour, narrow-minded bigots 
usually associated with the word, and which are popularly 
thought to be such in the present day. The part which the 
Booths of Dunham Massey were called upon to take w;is one 
fraught with danger and perplexity, but one which few have 
succeeded in carrying out with greater honour, and this at a time, 
too, when England had never before showed so many instances 
of courage, ability, and virtue. 


111 illustration of this, there appears the following quaint 
notice of Sir George's grandfather in Uicraft's Worthies : — 

And next to this religious and faithful Lesley, is Sir George Bootli, 
the leader of Cheshire, who, when the troubles first began, stood up for his 
country, exciting his tenants so to do, promising them that had leases of 
their lands from him that if any such did suft'er in person or goods lie 
would make them recompense, and if any had lease by life and should be 
slaine, the life of his wife, rliilil. nr fii. 11(1, should be put in his stead, a 
brave religious resolution, it .ill ihu gentry that had adhered to the 
Parliament had done the like, tlir warn-s could never have lasted so long. 
But this religious brave Booth thought it not enough so to doe, but took a 
jjlace of command himself, and was very active and courageous for the 
preservation of his country, did many gaUant exploits whicli I hope here- 
after to mention at large, and at present give him this character — free, 
brave, godly brave Bootli, the flower of Cheshire. 

When the signal of open discord and civil strife was given in 
August, 16i2, Sir George Booth, and Sir William Brereton, who 
was described by his enemies "as a notable man at a thanksgiving 
dinner, having long teeth and a prodigious stomach," were the 
only two Cheshire gentlemen mentioned by name in the first 
order for arming the county and securing the magazines and 
equipments of the Royalists. The battle of Edge Hill took place 
in October of the same year, and soon after a great Session or 
Assizes was held at Chester, where bills of indictment were pre- 
ferred before the Judges against Sir George Booth and hundreds 
of others for high treason in taking up arms and adhering to 
Parliament in the war ; but this indictment they would not see 
fit to appear in person to answer. In the following year (1643), 
that internal peace was necessary for the good of the country was 
greatly felt; and in July a meeting of the principal perssons in the 
county was held at Bunbury. They appeared to be pretty 
equally divided betveeen King and Parliament, and a treaty of 
pacification was then drawn up, which was signed by Sir George, 
on behalf of the Parliamentarians, and by Lord Kilmorey, Sir 
Harry Mainwaring and others, for the Royalists. This measure, 
however, appears to have been particularly distasteful to 
Parliament, who considered it of such importance a.s to imme- 
diately render it null and void, so far as they wei'c concerned, by 
a special ordinance. 


Military preparations were on this rupture pushed on 
vigorously by both sides, and Nantwich, which was esteemed an 
important garrison, was taken possession of by Parliament. The 
Eoyalists, whose head quarters were at Chester, made several 
unsuccessful attempts to get possession of the town, and in the 
severe siege by Lord Byron in January, 1644, Sir George acted 
a most prominent part. The privations endured by the garrison 
were extreme ; and when the town was greatly harassed. Lord 
Byron sent a message asking him to yield the town into his hands, 
as they were in a low and desperate condition. To this Sir George 
sent a spirited refusal, in which he said that though they might 
be termed traitors and hypocrites, God in his own good time 
would show their unstained and unspotted loyalty towards His 
Majesty as well as their sincerity in all their privations. 

There is a prophetic ring about these words. Sir George was 
evidently animated by the highest feelings of love of country ; 
and events in the latter part of his life strongly confirm this. 
Other papers were also sent to the commander by various parties, 
amongst them one from Captain Sandford or Handford, a man 
" very lavish of ink and big words." 

The suspense in which Sir George and his companions in 
arms were kept was soon to be removed by very unexpected 
means. The rising of the Weaver caused the Roj'alists to with- 
draw, and the "plat" which they had placed over the river was 
swept away. This was taken advantage of by the townsmen and 
soldiers ; and on the same day the Royalists were defeated by 
the combined forces of Sir William Brereton and General Fairfax, 
and they retreated to Chester. 

In 1646 the celebrated fortress of Beeston was ordered to be 
dismantled, and Sir George was on the commission which sat at 
Warrington for this purpose. Two years afterwards, years 
pregnant with eventful history, Parliament was invaded, and the 
celebrated Pride's purge was applied. Sir George was one of 
those members excluded on that occasion ; and at a subsequent 


meeting in Westminster Hall he headed a deputation to the 
House demanding equal liberty to sit. This, however, as is well 
known, was not granted. 

In 1650 he was on the commission of the peace for the 
county, and instructions were afterwards issued when the 
Oommonwealth was fully assured, directing the Sheriff, in con- 
junction with Peter Warburton, Sir George, and others, to meet 
on certain days to enquire into conspiracies and secret meetings, 
to disarm Papists or disaffected persons that had appeared such 
l\v their actions and words, or corresponded with Charles Stuart, 
son of the late King, and to "observe" strangers resorting to the 
County of Chester. By this tribunal ten persons were condemned, 
and five executed. He was again elected a member for the 
county in 1654:, and it was this Parliament which showed such 
little sign of submission to Cromwell's commands that they were 
dismissed in January, 1655. In the succeeding Parliament of 
1656, the county again honoured him with a renewal of well- 
merited confidence. 

His views appeared for some time past to have been under- 
going a vital change. The reasons which caused Sir George to 
become as active a partisan of the exiled Stuart as he had 
formerly been of Parliament are, no doubt, to be found in the 
disgust engendered by the highhanded proceedings of Cromwell, 
the position taken by the Independents, who now regarded their 
former superiors, the Presbyterians, with contempt, and his 
exclusion from the House by Pride's purge. The Koyalists 
made many attempts at Restoration, and in some of them Sir 
George does not appear to have been at all backward in asserting 
his changed principles. An old Royalist song of the period 
says :— 

Young Mainwaring fell by the side of hys sire, 
Stout Booth was revenged for him there ; 

For the foe left his grim trunkless head in the m^-re. 
Bj- the sword of old Dunham's young heir. 

The union between the Presbyterians and the Royalists gave 
additional impetus to the cause in which Sir George was 


embarked. In July, 1659, Sir George proceeded to Manchester, 
and after holding a conference with the Presbyterians and the 
Cavaliers returned to Warrington and fixed a rising for the 1st 
of August. Sir George also entered into correspondence with 
the Earl of Derby and Lord Kilmorey, and such of the gentry of 
Lancashire and Cheshire as desired to assist in the deliberations 
for restoring the monarchy were allowed to do so. These plans 
were, however, revealed to the prevailing powers, and the risings 
in other counties were suppressed. That of Sir George was only 
destined for a feeble continuance. A few of his followers in their 
jubilancy plundered some of the houses of the Cromweliians ; 
but this action, on their part, was strongly condemned by Sir 
George. As showing the great affection still felt for him by 
many of his old acquaintances, one of those who had suffered 
from the exuberant handling of his followers, a relative of 
President Bradsbaw, wrote, warning him that all the other 
counties in England were quiet but Cheshire. Still lie persisted 
in his enterprise, notwithstanding that he complained that he had 
been falsely deserted by a large number of the "best in Kngland'' 
who had promised him assistance. 

Pushing on to Chester, which city he took, though the Castle 
held out, he and his forces rendezvoused at Rowton Heath. An 
old tract of the period says that Sir George invited the gentry of 
those parts to meet him, when he declared " he was for a free 
parliament and a single person, which proved eflectual with the 
malecontented party, and divers sparks appearing in this great 
flame." It appears they had above 3,000 horse and foot, well 
mounted and armed, " with drums beating, and colours flying, 
and trumpets sounding ; " and after they were drawn up on the 
Heath, Col. Brooke and Col. Blackburne divided the horse and 
foot into several bodies, "placing them in sundry warlike figures 
and postures, after which Sir George made a speech showing the 
grounds and reasons of their present engagements and under- 

This speech or declaration had great effect in rousing the 



drooping spirits of his party. Not being able to get possession 
of the Castle, he set ott' ^vith a portion of his forces in the 
direction of York ; but the lapid approach of Lambert from 
Ireland compelled him to return to his former position at Chester, 
Clarendon remarking that Sir George went to meet him with his 
natural impetuosity. 

His misfortunes now appeared to be^t their height. On the 
19th August the decisive battle of Winnington was fought, 
resulting in the complete defeat of Sir George's troops, and his own 
ultimate capture. The troops of the Royalists were quartered at 
Northwich, while Lambert's were at Weaverham. The two 
armies, on this eventful da}-, came into action amongst the 
enclosures at Hartford. The horse were unable to act, and the 
Royalists "retired uninjured from hedge to hedge, and passed the 
bridge withoixt any other loss,' says Lambert, " than that of 
reputation, and discouragement in meeting with those whom they 
found of equal courage, but engaged in a better (?) cause." The 
Roj'alists now endeavoured to secure the bridge, which would 
have given them a great advantage, seeing that at this point the 
river was unfordable, the bridge narrow, and flanked with a 
strong ditch at the far end, and a high hill which no horse could 
pass otherwise than along the side in a narrow path. Those who 
are familiar with the picturesque road which formerly approached 
Winnington Bridge will be fully able to realize the disadvantages 
our ancestors stood at in the way of locomotion, compared with 
our steam and telegraphic times. 

This coign of vantage was not long held by the flagging 
Royalists. "After three good volleys," says Lambert, "the horse 
passing the bridge together with the foot, charged the horse of 
the Royalists, which advanced to cover the retreat." Sir George 
Booth's infantry retired in good order, following their colours up 
the hill, and protected by the gallantry of the cavalry. Lambert 
gives due praise and honour to the English valour of his adver- 
saries, and states that within a quarter of a mile the Royalists 
halted to give battle, but were a second time routed, although 


disputing " the place very gallantly, both parties showing them- 
selves like Englishmen." Such is the description of the battle of 
Winnington, taken from an old tract of the period ; and contem- 
porary historians agree in describing it as very decisive. Sir 
C4eorge escaped with great difficulty, and disguising himself as a 
gentlewoman, left the scene of action. He was, however, 
betrayed, having acted, his part very badly ; and was taken at 
Newport Pagnell, in Buckinghamshire, where he was riding on a 
pillion in the disguise mentioned. He was committed to the 
Tower. The proceedings of this period awakened national 
comment, and several tracts were published relative thereto. One 
of them, in particular, purports to give a dialogue which occurred 
in the Tower between Sir George and an imaginary indi\adual 
named Sir John Presbyter, in the course of which Sir George 
expresses his great repentance at having been connected with the 
parsons in any way, and uses strong language concerning them. 

His confinement in the Tower was not of long duration. 
General Monk having declared for a full and free Parliament 
in which the nation would be thoroughly represented, the 
excluded members and Sir George were released from the 
sequestration under which they had laboured. In 1660, the Long 
Parliament was dissolved : and what was called the Convention 
Parliament, from its not being regularly summoned, was held. 
Of this Parliament Sir George was elected a member, and the 
commission for the Restoration having been made, and carried 
amidst general acclamation, he had the happiness of being the 
first of the twelve members elected to carry to King Charles the 
Second the answer of the House to His Majesty's celebrated 
declaration of Breda. 

Honours were now showered upon Sir George. In the same 
year, the sum of £20,000 was on the point of being voted to 
him as a reward for his services and great sufferings, when he in 
his place in the House requested, with a high-souled patriotism, 
which only those acquainted with the manners of the time can 
fully appreciate, that it should not be more than half that 


amount ; which was accordingly granted by the Commons on 
August 2nd, and confirmed by the Lords the day following. As 
a reward from the Crown, he was ennobled by the title of Baron 
Delamer, of Dunham Massey, the patent bearing date April 20th, 
1661, and at the same time he had the liberty to propose six 
gentlemen to receive the honour of Knighthood, and two others 
for the dignity of Baronet. 

During his eventful life. Sir George appears to have found 
ample time to devote to domestic matters. According to one 
old writer, he greatly improved the Manor house of Dunham 
Massey by building the _north side thereof answerable to the 
opposite part, surrounded it with " a large outward court, with 
brick wall and a faire gate of stone," and made a domestic chapel 
on the south side of the house. It was then, as shown on the 
illustration, what Dr. Ormerod has described as " a large 
quadrangular pile, with gables within and without. The gables 
within the court were indented and scalloped, and large transome 
windows introduced. The exterior front appears to have been 
finished at a later period, with pilasters and ornaments in 
imitation of the Italian style of architecture, and large octagonal 
turrets were placed at the corners. It stood within gardens laid 
out in the stiff taste of the time, and surrounded by an ample 
moat, in one angle of which is drawn a large circular mound, with 
a summer house on the top of it, supposed to be the site of the 
Norman keep tower." The noble avenue of beeches was in its 
swaddling clothes, so to speak, being surrounded with large 
wooden guards, while the landscape is destitute of that sylvan 
beauty which is the admiration, and justly sr>, of modern times. 
He was twice married ; firstly, to Catherine, the daughter of 
Theophilus Fiennes, Earl of Lincoln, who died in childbirth, 
leaving an only daughter, Vere Booth ; and secondly, to 
Elizabeth, daughter of Henry Grey, Earl of Stamford, by whom 
he had seven sons and six daughters, and who died in 1690 at 
Oldfield Hall. 

Sir George died August 8th, 1G84, and was buried at Bowdon 



on the 9th September with great solemnity ; on which occasion 
Mr. Cawdrey, a Presbyterian minister, preached. The Latin 
inscription to his memory was written by William Andrews, who 
had been for thirty years his faithful domestic servant, and whose 
remains were deposited, at bis own request, in the same tomb as 
his master. Clarendon describes Sir George as being of one of 
the best fortunes and interests in Cheshire, then said to be the 
"seed plot of gentilitie;" but his deeds, more than all, entitle 
his memory to be held in veneration and esteem by his fellow- 


The second Lord Ddamer ; his popidaiiti/ ; his adivcaci/ of the people's 
rights — Court jealousy — His committal to the Tower oh three 
occasions ; his remarkable trial at Westminster Hall ,• his eloquent 
defence ami justification ; his retirement to his seat in Cheshire ; his 
support of the I'rinre of Orange .• /;/.',• snhsequenf honnnrnhle career 
and death. 

HEXKV, Lord Delamer, second sou iind heir of the 
preceding nobleman, was Ijorn on the 13 th January, 
1651, and sticceeded to the peerage on the death of 
his father. He had been elected member of parliament for the 
County during the father's lifetime, and was appointed to the 
high office of Gustos Rotulorum in 1G73. He married Mary, 
daughter and sole heiress of Sir Janie-s Langham, Bart., of 
Cotters Brook, Northamptonshire. She died in 1690-1, leaving 
him with four sons and two daughters. He was distinguished at 
an early period of his career hy his ardent advocacy of those 
liberties which were overshadowed and threatened with extinction 
by the movements of the papists. He was particularly anxious 
for the passing of the famous Bill of Exclusion, for which Lord 
Russell, on the morning of his execution, sent him a kindly 
message of I'espect and thanks. 

He also niaile great exertions for securing the piuity of 
Parliaments ; in instituting intpiiries into the corruption of 
the judges, and in recommending the punishment of such 
as might be guilty. Fur his part in promoting the Bill of Exclusion 
he incurred the animosity of the Duke of York, and the Duke's 
influence on the facile King was no doubt increased by the fact of 
the sympathy of this nobleman with the Duke of Monmouth. In 
fact, his name had been returned by the Court spies as one of the 
Cheshire gentlemen who attundeil Moiinioulh when lie visited 
Dunham in IG.S'i. He was ilepused fruui his puljjic pusiliou.s of 


trust, and just before the death of Charles 11. committed a prisoner 
to the Tower. He was released, after an incarceration of several 
months, without any formal accusation being made against him. 
Soon after the accession of the Duke of York, as King James II., 
to the throne, he was committed to the Tower under somewhat 
similar circumstances, but was released on bail. This system of 
petty persecution was still further carried out, and a third time he 
was committed. It was the last straw which broke the camel's back. 
The Lords, anxious for the consolidation of those ancient safeguards 
which had received such severe shocks in previous reigns, interfered 
on his remonstrance, or rather petition, by a demand from the 
Sovereign why he was absent from his attendance in the House. 
Newcome, in his diary, speaks of the unexpected pi-orogations of 
Parliament which took place at this period, and tremblingly 
awaited the issue of these things, if possible, to rescue Lord 
Delamer. Matters were thus brought to a crisis, and he was put 
on his trial on a charge of high treason, " the violent and inhuman " 
Jetteries being appointed Jtidge. Fortunately, he had the right 
of Ijeing tried by a jury of his peers, and although Parliament was 
then existing by prorogation, he was not tried by the whole House, 
but by 27 specially summoned for that purpose. 

This remarkable trial took place in Westminster Hall, on 
January 14th, 1685, his Lordship the previous day having only 
completed his 34th year. The formalities of the opening of the 
Court were gone through with much solemnity. Sir Edward 
Lutwich, one of His Majesty's Serjeants-at-Law, and Chief Justice, 
put in his writ and return, which were read in hcec verba, and the 
Lieutenant of the Tower delivered in his precept, and also brought 
his prisoner to the bar. 

The following Peers then answered to their names, each making 
a reverence to the Lord High Steward : — Laiuence, Earl of 
Kochester, Lord High Treasurer of England ; Robert, Earl of 
Sunderland, Lord President of His Majesty's Privy Council; Henry, 
Duke of Norfolk, Earl Marshal of England ; Charles, Duke of 
Somerset ; Henry, Duke of Grafton ; Henry, Duke of Beaufort, 


Lord President of Wales ; John, Earl of Mulgrave, Lord Chamber- 
lain of His Majesty's Household ; Aubrey, Earl of Oxford ; Charles, 
Earl of Shrewsbury ; Theophilus, Earl of Huntingdon ; Thomas, 
Earl of Pembroke ; John, Earl of Bridgewater : Henry, Earl of 
Peterborough ; Robert, Earl of Scarsdale ; William, Earl of Craven ; 
Lewis, Earl of Faversham ; George, Earl of Berkeley ; Daniel, 
Earl of Nottingham ; Thomas, Earl of Plimouth ; Thomas, Viscount 
Falconberge ; Francis, Viscount Newport, Treasurer of His 
Majesty's Houshold ; Robert, Lord Ferrars ; Vera Essex, Lord 
Cromwell ; William, Lord Maynard, Comptroller of His Majesty's 
Household ; George, Lord Dartmoor, Master General of His 
Majesty's Ordnance ; Sidney, Lord Godolphin ; John, Lord 

Three of the Peers called, viz., James, Duke of Ormond, Lord 
Steward of His Majesty's Household ; Christopher, Duke of 
Albemarle ; and Richard, Earl of Burlington, did not answer to 
their names. 

Then the Lord High Steward addressed himself to the Lord 
Delamer, the prisoner at the bar in this manner : My Lord Delamer, 
the King being acquainted that you stand accused of high treason, 
not by common report or hearsay, but by a bill of indictment 
found against you by gentlemen of great quality and known 
integrity within the County Palatine of Chester, the place of your 
residence, has thought it necessary, in tenderness to you, as well 
as justice to himself, to order you a speedy trial. My Lord, if 
you know yourself innocent, in the name of God do not despond, 
for you ma,y be assured of fair and patient hearing, and in proper 
time free liberty to make your full defence ; and I am sure you 
cannot but be well convinced that my noble lords that ;vre here 
your peers to try you will be as desirous and ready to acquit 
you, if you appear to be innocent, as they will to convict you if 
you he guilty ; but, my Lord, if you are conscious to yourself that 
you are guilty of this heinous crime, give glorj- to God and make 
amends to His vicegerent, the King, by a plain and full discovery 
of your guilt, and do not by any obstinate persisting in the denial of 

110 ALrniSCHAM AXI) noii'Dox. 

it iiinviikr tlic just indignation of your Prince, who has made it 
appi-ar to ilic world that his inclinations ai'e rather to show mercy 
than to intiict punishment. My Lord, attend with patience and hear 
the liill of indictment which has been found against you read. Road 
the 1)111 of indictment to my Lord. 

Clerk of Court.--Henry, Baron of Delamer, IkiUI up thy hand. 

Lord Delamer. — ISIy Lord, I humbly beg your grace would 
please to answer me one question, whether a peer of I-lngland be 
obliged by the laws of this land to hold his hand up at the bar as 
a conunoner must do ; and I ask your Grace the rather, because in 
my Lord Stafford's case it was allowed to be a privilege of the peers 
not to hold up their hands. 

Lord High Steward. — My Lords, this being a mattei' of the 
privilege of the peerage, it is not fit for me to determine it one 
way or the other ; but I think I may acquaint your lordships 
that in point of law, if you are satisfied this is the person 
indicted, the holding or not holding up of the hand is but a 
formality that does not signify much either way. 

Lord Delamer. — I humbly pray your Grace's direction in one 
thing farther ; whether I must address myself to your Grace 
when I would speak, or to your Grace with the rest of these 
noble loids, my peers. 

Lord High Steward. — You must direct what you have to say 
to me, my Lord. 

Lord Delamer. — I beg your Grace would please to satisfy me 
whether your Grace be one of my judges in concurrence with the 
rest of the Lords. 

Lord High Steward. — No, my Lord, I am Judge of the Court, 
but none of your triers. Go on. 

The Clerk of Court then read a formidable indictment to the 
effect that Henry, Baron Delamer, stood indicted in the County 
Palatine of Chester, by the name of Henry, Baron of De la Mer 
of Mere, in the City and County of Chester, for that he, as a 


false traitor against the most illustrious and most excelloiit Prince 
James the Second, by the grace of God, of England, Scotland 
France, and Ireland, King; his natural lord, not having the fear of 
God in his heart, nor weighing the duty of his allegiance, but being 
moved and seduced by the instigation of the devil, the cordial love 
and true duty and natural obedience which a true and faithful 
subject of our said Lord the King ought of right to bear ; did jjlot 
against the tranquility of the kingdom, \c., &c. 

At the reiiuest of his Lordship, the indictment was read a 
second time, whereupon he raised the point that his cause was one 
which should be wholly determined in the House of Peers, Init 
not elsewhere, as in cases formerly brought ; and that as he could 
not be tried during the continuance of Parliament, except in the 
said House of Peei's, he pleaded that he was not bound to make 
any further answer. He disclaimed any distrust of their 
Lordships, and added, "I cannot hope to stand before any 
more just or noble, nor can I wish to stand before any others ; but 
you will pardon me if I insist upon it, because I apprehend it a 
right and a piivilege due to the peerage of England, -which as it is 
against the duty of e^■ery peer to betray or forego, so it is not in 
the power of anyone or more to waive it or give it up without the 
consent of the whole body of peers, every one of them being 
equally interested." 

Attorney-General Sa^^•)•er urged that there was \ery little in 
the plea under the circumstances, whereupon Lord Delamer asked 
to have counsel to put his plea into form and argue it. 

Judge Jefleries ruled against him, and after some further legal 
wrangling on the question of privilege, he was formally charged 
and pleaded "not guilty," agreeing at the same time to be tried 
by " God and his peers." 

The Serjeant-at-Arms having made proclamation, the Judge 
gave his charge to the Peers. The indictment was opened by Sir 
Thomas Jenner, one of His ^Lajesty's Serjeants at-law and 
Recorder of the Citv of London. 


The Attorney -General, in the course of a long speech, explained 
that the prisoner stood indicted for conspiring the death of His 
Majesty, and in order thereunto to raise rebellion in the 
Kingdom. Cheshire was one of the stages where the rebellion 
was principally to be acted, that preparatory to it great riotous 
assemblies and tumultuous gatherings were set on foot by the 
conspirators, and that the late Duke of Monmouth looked upon 
Cheshire as one of his e-hief supports, and my Lord Dehuner as 
his principal assistant there. 

Lurd Howard cif Eskrigge was first called, but he gave no 
e\ idencf coueeriiiiig the prisoner. Lord Grey, who said he had 
been subpoenaed by both sides, also did not know anything of his 
own knowledge against him, but said that Lord Delamer was to 
be applied to in connection with Monmouth's rising. This was 
confirmed by Nathaniel AA'ade, llichard Goodcnough, Jones, and 
Story. Jones was sent to give notice to Lord Delamer (amongst 
other persons) of this rising, the latter stating that he heard the 
Duke of Monmouth say that his great dependence was upon Lord 
Delamer and his friends in Cheshire ; but that he was afraid he 
had failed him or l)etrayed him, or some such word, and that he 
could have Ijcen supplied otherwise but placed his dependency 
upon them. Vaux and Edlin swore that Lord Delamer left town 
under the name of Brown, and that he went into Cheshire to see 
a sick child. Traeey, raunceford, and Thomas Babington 
deposed to llic fact that Lord Delamer was constantly known as 
Brown in that ))usiness by his party. One of these, however, 
admitted in cross-examination there was "a discourse" about a 
Mr. Vermuyden going in the name of Brown. Hope was called 
to prove the frequent journeys into Cheshire to stir up the people 
there, luid that Lord Delamer had said " he feared there woidd be 
many Moody noses lieforo the business was at an end. " 

The most formidable witness, and one on whom the pi'o.secution 
relied, was Thomas Saxon, a tiadesniau of Middlcwicli, who 
sought to persuade the Jury that he had been specially scuL for 


to the huuse of Lord DL-knier, at .Mciu (Dunham) ; and in the 
presence (jf two or three gentlemen whom he named, the question 
of iSIonmonth's rebellion was discussed, and Saxon was selected, 
he being acquainted with the conmion people, to spread 
insurrection amongst them. He e([ui^■ocated grossly in his 
evidence, and was asked by the noble prisoner the name of the 
messenger who came for him : but this he said he did not know. 

As a great deal had been said. Lord Delamer asked for an 
adjournment, but this the Judge would not permit. He then 
proceeded with his defence, and in the course of an eloquent 
address said he could with great comfort and satisfaction say that 
those crimes wherewith he was charged were not only strangers 
to his thoughts, but also to what had been his constant jirinciple 
and pi'actice. He also said that few had more heartily eonfornied 
to the practices of the Church, and urged, (and it must be 
admitted with .some truth) that there was little nv no legal 
evidence affecting him, and ridiculed the idea the particulars 
of such an important adventure should be communicated by him 
to a perfect stranger. He called several witnesses to speak to the 
ill-repute of Saxon. A witness named Hall said that Saxon had 
forged a note to obtain money from him. 

The Lord High Steward acknowledged that the olijection 
carried a great deal of weight, and if fully made out would 
prove him to be "a very ill man indeed." 

Francis Ling said that Sixon had received money in the 
name of Mrs. Willjraham, and Kichard Shaw also said he had 
been guilty of receiving money which was not his own. Peter 
Hough .said he should have given him a bond for £1. but liy 
trusting him he found it was only made out for ffi. Kdw;ii(l 
Wilkinson had been moiv illu.sed .still. He said Saxon hired a 
horse from him for three days at twelvepence a day. liut he had 
neither seen horse nor money since Saxon took it. 

AVilliam Wright said he had had some dealings with him, and 
never found him to perfect his woixl in anything. He added, 

p 3 


" I met him one evening, after evening prayer, and said to him, 
Thomas Saxon, if I cared no more for keeping my worA than thou 
dost, it were no matter if I were hanged, for to bo sure if thy 
mouth open thy tongue lyes ; and he turned away from me and 
would not answer me a word ; and since that he owed me some 
money, and when I asked him for it he told me if I did trouble 
him for money it should be worse for me, whereof all the town 
knows as well as I that I cannot set him forth in words as bad as 
he is." 

Lord Delamer called several other witnesses in this way, and 
also to prove that he was not at Mere at the time deposed to by 
witnesses for the prosecution. 

Mr. John Edmonds, sworn, said : On the 5th of May my Lord 
Delamer did me the honour to come to my house, and he stayed 
there a little while and desired me to be a witness of his taking 
possession txpon a lease of my Lord Bishop of Chester, and we 
went into the house which is next to mine, and there he took 

The Lord High Steward. — Where is your house ? 

j\rr. Edmonds. — At 13oden, in Cheshire. 

Mr. Henry was called and sworn. 

Lord Delamer. — Pray will you give his Grace and my Lords 
an account whether you were not an attorney and delivered me 
possession upon the lease of my Lord Bishop of Chester. 

Mr. Henry. — My Lord, I was attorney by appointment, and 
the 5th May last I delivered possession to my Lord Delamer at 
one of the most remarkable places of the land that belonged to 
that lease of the Bishop. 

Lord Delamer hoped that this was a satisfactory reason for 
his going down at the time, the Bishop being ill, and the lease 
worth £6,000 or £7,000. The next occasion he had to speak to 
was the 27th ^Lay. He said, " I had taken up the resolution 
before to go and see my child, which was not well, but I had not 


taken my journey so soon nor with such privacy but that I had 
notice that there was a warrant out to apprehend me, and 
knowing the inconvenience of lying in prison I was ^-ery willing 
to keep as long o\U of custody as I could, and thoroforc I went out 
of the way and under a burrowed name " 

At his request his Lordship's mother, Avho sat by him at the 
l)ar during the trial, was examined. She said that this child of 
his was more than ordinarily " pretious " (precious) to him in 
regard it was born to him at that time " when he was an innocent 
honest man (as he was then a prisoner in the Tower for high 
treason) above two years ago, and she tho\iglit it had increased 
his affection to that chikl that God had given to him when he was 
in that affliction.' While he was at Dunham, her daughter sent 
word that it had pleased God to \ isit his eldest son in London 
■with a grievous distemper, ami thereupdu he made all the haste 
he could back. 

Witnesses were called to ]>ro\e that persons said by Saxon to 
ha\-e been present on a given date were in London at the time, 
and, altogether, conclusive evidence was forthcoming to sh(^w 
that his testimony was not at all of a reliable character. Amongst 
these witnesses were two brothers of the noble prisoner. In the 
course of some further remarks he denied that he ever wrote or 
sent any message, or h;id had any correspondence for three years 
jjast with the Duke of Monmouth. He pointed out cu-cumstanccs 
in the evidence for the prosecution not liorne out l)y facts, and 
concluded by reminding their Lordships that the eyes of the 
nation were upon their proceedings that day. " Your Lordships 
are now judging the cause of every man in England that shall 
happen to come under like circumstances with myself hereafter : 
for accordingly as you judge me now, just so will inferior coui'ts 
be directed to give their judgments in like cases in time to come. 
Your Lordships know \ery well that blood once spilled can 
never be gathered up again, and therefore, unless the case be very 
clear against me, you will not, I am sure, hazard the shedding of 
my blood upon doubtful evidence. God Almighty is a God of 


mercy and equity. Our law, the law of England, is a law of 
equity and mercy, and both God and the law require from your 
Lordships tenderness in all cases of life and death : and if it 
should be indifferent or donbtfid to your Lordships (which upon 
proofs that I have made I cannot believe it. can be) whether I am 
innocent or guilty, both God and the law require you to acquit 
me. My Lords, I leave myself, my case, and the consequences 
of it with your Lordships, and I pray the All-wise, the Almighty 
God, to direct you in \'0ur dertermination." 

No wondei' after such an eloquent appeal. Lord Churchill, the 
spokesman of the Jury, should declare upon his homiur, with 
imcovered head, and hand upon his breast, that the noble piisoner 
was not guilt}'. Lord Delamer retired to his seat at 1 )unham. 
and abstained for the time being from any active participation in 
public affairs. Scarcely three years passed away, however, ere 
the Prince of Orange, afterwards William IIL, arrived in England. 
Lord Delamer then expressed himself as feeling that the deliver- 
ance of the nation must be worked hj force or miracle, and that 
as it would be presumption to expect the latter, he very wisely 
levied a large force of men. On the 16th December, 168S, he 
took up arms in Cheshire. He convoked his tenants, called upon 
them to stand liy him, and promised that if they fell in the cause 
their leases should be renewed to their children, and exhorted 
everyone who had a good either to take field, or to provide 
a substitute. He appeared at Manchester with ."lO men armed 
and mounted, and his force had trebled before he reached Bowdon 
Downs. So says Macaulay. He soon afterwards joined the 
Prince of Orange, and his forces. On the arrival of the Prince .'it 
Windsor, he despatched Lord Delamer, the Marquis of Halifax, 
and the Earl of Shrewsbury, with a message to King James, 
commanding him to qtiit the Palace. His Majesty was in bed at 
the time of their arrival, it being one o'clock in the morning, but 
they were introduced to him by the Earl of Middleton, then 
Secretarj' of State. This has been justly described as a remark- 
able instance of the vicissitudes of fortune. Bv one writer it is 


spoken of ;is ;ui iiist;iin;i.' uf Divine retribution. Here was a sub- 
ject whom he had seen ;irraigneil, not three years before as a 
culprit at the bar, appearing now with an order, which would 
have the effect of virtually dethroning him. To his honour it is 
recorded that the generous conduct he displayed on that occasion 
made such an impression on the fallen Sovereign that after his 
retreat into France he said the Lord Delaraer, whom he had illused, 
had treated him with much more respect than the other two Lords 
to whom he had l)eeii kind, and from whom he might better have 
exjiccted it 

With this reign ended that great crisis in English history — 
the struggle between King and people ; and the people, led l)y 
those whose patriotism was above reproach, triumphed. 

Amongst the leaders was Lord Delamer, and as a result, he w-ah 
now very fully rewarded. He was made a Pri^y Councillor in 
February, 1689, which office he held for life; in the following 
April he was made Chancellor and Under Treasui-er of the 
Exchequer, and subsequently Lord-Lieutenant ot the County of 
Chester, and Gustos Eotulorum. Li 1690, he was created Earl of 
Warrington, in acknowledgment of his peculiar services, and a 
pension of £2,000 per annum was settled upon him. This was 
only paid for the first half-year, and the arrears are stated in a 
list of King William's debts, drawn up by Queen Anne. Many 
minor honours were also conferred upon him, amongst them the 
Mayoralty of the ancient City of Chester, in 1691. 

His Lordship's works were published in the yeai' 1694, being 
edited from his own MS:, l)y .1. Dela Heuze, tutur tn Jiis son, 
afterwards Earl of Warrington. 

A review of his wi-iiiugs would absorb too much of our space. 
It may, therefore, be sufficient to record some of his sayings and 
opinions. His language, particularly against the Papists, as they 
were termed, is marked in some places by great extravagance and 
warmth of tone, perhaps permissable by the circumstances in 
which he had been placed. The country, too, was unsettled, and 


although not out of place then, it would sound oddly now to hear 
a justice of Chester haranguing the Grand Jury to give informa- 
tion of any plot, if they were acquainted with it, for dethronuig 
the reigning monarch. Most of the charges take a strong political 
tinge, but in others are suggested a consideration of domestic 
matters. We are admitted by them to a peep at the manners and 
customs of that age. In one of his .speeches, when Earl of 
Warrington, he uncourages the magistrates to .strictly inform 
themselves of such as ofl'end in the matter of swearing, " the 
horrible pi-ophanation of God's name," and gi\e them the punish- 
ment which their oflence deserved. He also harangues at length 
against the sin of drunkeiniess, that till then this vice was not 
grown to considerable size. 

He was as a patriot proud of the go\'ernment of his country 
under William III., and jiraised it as beyond all others. He 
shows that while all manner of taxes and impositions are laid 
upon the people at the will and pleasure of the King, in England 
thej' could not be taxed l)ut by their own consent in Parliament. 
Although the King had the sole power of making peace and war, 
" the sinews of war," meaning the money, were with the people, 
and the people were not bound to support every war that the 
King might engage in ; " for methinks it's all the reason in the 
" world that a man should be satisfied with the cause before he 
" part with his money ; and I think that man is very unworthy of 
" honour to serve his country in Parliament who shall give away 
" the people's money for any other thing, l)ut what shall be 
" efl'ectually for the good and advantage of the people and nation." 
There arc few who will not admit that his Lordship's words, 
spoken nearly 200 years ago, hold good in the present day. 

The prayers which his Lordship used in his family bear the 
mark of close application, and breathe a truly devotional and 
earnest spirit throughout. Although he did not die " in a good 
old age, full of days," he possessed '• both riches and honour. " 
His death took place in London, on Jaiuiary ind, 1693, on tiie 
same memorable day on which eight years before his trial had 



been. His funeral sermon was preached in Bowdon Parish Church 
by the Rev. Richard Wroe, Warden of Manchester Cathedral. On 
his monument in the same Church is inscribed a record of his life 
in brief, which is well worthy the attentive perusal of all interested 
" in perpetuating the remembrance of so much virtue till that 
great day come wherein it shall be openly rewarded," For in 
these words concludes the epitaph which a reverent son inscribed 
to a noble father. 


The House of Dunham, continued — The Second Earl of JFarrington ; 
his cliaracter and literary attainments — The union of the House of 
Dunham with that of Stamford — The Honourable Booth Grey— 
" Domestic happiness, a family picture " — The revival of the lapsed 
titles of Baron Delamer and Earl of JFarrington — A Romance 
of the Peerage. 

AFTER the great political crisis through which the house 
of Dunham had passed, it may easily be imagined that 
the quiet repose of a country gentleman's life would be 
most compatible with the feelings of the heir succeeding to its 
now consolidated honours. It is, therefore, to his many literary 
works, completed in periods of uninterrupted leisure, that we 
are most indebted for the character of George, the second Earl of 
Warrington. He was the second son of the first Lord Delamer, 
and was born on the 2nd of May, 1675. He was married in 
1702, to Mary, eldest daughter and co-heiress of John Oldbury, 
of London, merchant, by his second wife Mary, daughter and 
co-heiress of Thomas Bohun, Esq., of Dartmouth, and descended 
from the ancient Earls of Hereford. The issue of this marriage 
was an only daughter named Mary, who was born about the 
year 1703. His Lordship died August 2nd, 1758, and was laid 
in the tomb of his ancestors at Bowdon, having passed the 
allotted "span" of life by 1 3 years. Amongst his contributions 
to contemporary literature, was "Considerations on the Institution 
of Marriage ; " a letter to the writer on " The present State of 
the Republic of Letters," in which he vindicated his father from 
some of the reflections cast upon him by Burnet in the " History 
of his Own Times," and which seem to have been copied more or 
less by the great historian, Macaulay. With his decease, the 
Earldom of Warrington became extinct, and the barony of 
Delamer descended to his first cousId, Nathaniel Booth, of 
Hampstead, Esquire. 


An event had, however, occurred before this, which had marked 
an epoch in the history of this noble house. Mary, the only 
daughter and sole heiress to the estates of her father, had married 
in 1736, the Right Honorable Harry Grey, Earl of Stamford. This 
family, according to Collins, "has been the most ancient, the most 
widespread, and most illustrious in the English peerage, the house 
of Stamford being derived from the most illustrious branch of it." 
Lord Stamford was thus descended from the first Lord Grey of 
Groby, the grandfather of the first Earl of Stamford, who was 
distinguished in 1628 by his efforts in the ranks of the Parliamen- 
tarians, and who was nephew of the great Duke of Suffolk, the 
father of Lady Jane Grey. There are few who have not noticed 
the prominent part the Greys have played in history ; and what 
schoolboy has not melted at the touching recital of the execution 
of the unfortunate lady, whose little attempt at Queendom was 
attended with such fatal results % He was thus placed at the head 
of the younger branch of the house of Tudor, whose claim to the 
throne of England rested rather on the despotic will of Henry 
VHL, than on the inherent right which belonged in failure of 
direct inheritance to the Scottish branch of the same Eoyal line. 
To this may be added the fact that the family, on both sides, is 
of Norman origin, and was first summoned to Parliament in 1446 
in the person of Lord Ferrers of Groby, whose elder daughter-in-law, 
Elizabeth, became the wife of Edward IV. 

Lord and Lady Stamford had a family of three sons and two 
daughters. The eldest, George Harry, succeeded to the earldom ; 
the second. Lady Mary, who assisted the Princess Augusta in 
supporting Queen Charlotte's train at her coronation in 1761, and 
who married, 24th February, 1761, the Honourable George West, 
second son of the Earl Delawar, died March 1st, 1783. The 
third son, the Hon. Booth Grey, was born August 15th, 1740 : he 
was admitted a nobleman of Queen's College, Cambridge. He 
was one of the Mayors of Altrincham, and was member for 
Leicester 1768-1774. He died on the 4th March, 1802. His 
Lordship died at Enville Hall, June 24th, 1768, and was succeeded 


by his eldest son, George Harry, the fifth Earl of Stamford, born 
October 1st, 1737. 

In a curious work published about the latter end of 1700, 
entitled " Characteristic Strictures or Eemarks," is a sketch of the 
family of this Earl. It is headed " Domestic happiness, a family 
picture," and proceeds: "What satisfaction must a sentimental 
artist experience when he has only one unhappy countenance to 
copy in so numerous a family, especially as the varied features 
which express felicity will free his performance from the imputa- 
tion of sameness? The piece not only comprehends the parents and 
their posterity, but the brother and sister of the principal figure. 
The junior members of the family are of too tender an age to be 
distinguished by features that prognosticate either tempers or 
manners, except the eldest youth (Lord Grey) who is the very 
picture of his father, and in neither of whose features is there a 
fault. The father is a perfect example of integrity, filial affection, 
and tender husband ; and the mother, from her prudent, virtuous 
and sweet tempered disposition, every way worthy of so honourable 
a mate. Two brothers make up the group (the Hon. Booth Grey 
and the Hon. John Grey). The elder on a distant view seems of 
a morose and sour temper ; but when you examine the features 
more closely you are agreeably disappointed to find those of 
sullenness not only expand with freeness, but discover themselves 
to be the strongest signification of a solid understanding. The 
younger is in every point of laew a pleasant, lively, generous 
figure, that seems to give spirit to the whole society." This quaint 
picture is only a reflex of a certain school of criticism which 
obtained at that period. The "unhappy countenance " referred to 
is that of Lady Mary West, and is probably an allusion to her death, 
which would have taken place a short time previously. The fifth 
Earl was elected Knight of the Shire for the county of Stafford, 
1761, and at the coronation of George III., was one of the six 
eldest sons of peers who supported the King's train. His lordship, 
on the 20th May, 1763, married Lady Henrietta Cavendish Bentinck, 
second daughter to William, the late Duke of Portland, and had 


issue four sons and six daughters. He was created Baron Delamer 
and Earl of Warrington, thus reviving the lapsed titles of his 
ancestors ; and in addition to his other offices, was Lord Lieutenant 
and custos Rotulorum of the County of Chester. He died in 1819 
at Dunham, and was buried at Bowdon. He was succeeded by his 
eldest son, George Harry Grey, Earl of Stamford and Warrington, 
born October 31st, 1765, married December 23rd, 1797, to 
Henrietta Charlotte Elizabeth Charteris, eldestdaughter of Francis, 
Lord Elcho, and had issue two sons and three daughters. He died 
at Enville Hall, Staffordshire, April 27th, 1845, and was buried 
at Bowdon. George Harry, Lord Grey, his eldest son, died 
November, 1837, in the lifetime of his father. 

With the death of George Harry, the seventh Earl, in 
January, 1883, the Barony of de la Mer and the Earldom of 
Warrington became extinct. The Earldom of Stamford and the 
Barony of Grey of Groby devolved upon his kinsman, the 
Rev. Harry Grey, whose remarkable career in South Africa 
formed a veritable romance of the peerage. In May, 1893, the 
House of Lords Committee of Privileges sat. Counsel said the history 
of the eighth Earl presented undoubtedly some curious features. 
He was a clergyman, and in 1844 he married, at Tiverton, as his 
first wife, a person called Susan Gayden, who was in a humble 
situation of life, and with whom he lived for some years. In 
1854 or 1855 he separated from her, and left England for the 
Cape, where he resided continuously until his death in 1890. 
There was no issue of that marriage, and Susan Gayden died in 
1869. In 1872, Harry Grey, as the eighth Earl then was, married 
at Wynberg a woman named Annie Macnamara, who was also in 
a comparatively humble situation of life, and who died in 1872, 
there being no issue of that marriage either. At the time of the 
death of Annie Macnamara there was living in the house as a 
servant a woman of colour named Martha Solomon, and it would 
seem that Harry Grey subsequently cohabited with her, with the 
result that two illegitimate children were born — namely, a son, 
John, in 1877, and a daughter, Frances, in 1879. In December, 


1880, Harry Grey married this woman, and counsel believed it 
was a matter of common knowledge that, according to the Eoman- 
Dutch law which prevailed at the Cape, the effect of that marriage 
was to legitimise there the offspring previously born. Subse- 
quently to the marriage there was only one child, a girl, who was 
born in July, 1881, and she was, he would submit, the only 
legitimate issue for the purpose of succession in this country to 
this peerage. The eighth Earl succeeded to the peerage in 1883, 
and from that time onwards, being well aware of his position and 
rights, he treated the two children born before his marriage with 
Martha Solomon as illegitimate children, and recognised both by 
his pedigree, which he signed, and also by instructions for his will 
that he regarded William Grej', his nephew, as his inevitable 
successor in the title if no male issue was subsequently born to 
him. No male issue was born, and when he died in 1890 the title 
would have descended to John, his next brother, if he had been 
alive. He died in 1868, and William, the next brother, died in 
1872, and he was the father of William Grey, who claimed the 

Formal evidence was put in as to the creation of the peerage 
and the issuing of a writ of summons to the eighth Earl to sit in 
the House of Lords, but he did not avail himself of the privilege. 
Evidence of the death of Susan Gayden and Annie Macnamara, 
as also of the marriage with Martha Solomon (who remarried in 
1892, Pieter Pieterse, of Wellington, Gape Colony) was given. 
Mr. E. J. Moore, attorney-at-law, practising at Capetown, 
produced a certified copy of the will of the eighth Earl. A certain 
portion of the property was left to one Emma Grey, his natural 
daughter by a woman named Collins. The witness became 
acquainted with the late Earl shortly after the death of the seventh 
Earl in 1883, and from 1887 to the time of his death he was his 
private secretary. They frequently discussed the affairs of the 
family, and on many occasions the late Earl referred to Mr. 
William Grey as the person who would succeed him in the 
Earldom of Stamford. 


The Rev. F. B. Moore, rector of Constantia, near Wynberg, 
stated that he first became acquainted with the late Earl about 
1864 or 1865. He was curate of the parish when the late Earl 
married Annie Macnamara in 1872, and from that time to the 
time of her death in 1874 he saw them frequently. There were 
no children of that marriage. He knew the woman Solomon or 
Simon quite well. She was a servant in the house for about two 
months prior to Annie Macnamara's death, and after that event 
she continued to live in the house. The children, John, Frances, 
and Marjr, were born to her, John in 1877, Frances in 1879, and 
Mary on the 25th July, 1881. This woman Solomon and the late 
Earl were married on the 6th December, 1880. With reference to 
these children and the inheritance of the peerage, he said, " Of 
course none of my children can ever inherit the peerage." The 
woman Solomon had previously cohabited with a man named 
Simon, and had had two sons, so that she was called Solomon 
or Simon indifferently. 

Conclusive evidence was called to show that the eighth Earl 
always looked upon Mr. William Grey as heir presumptive to the 
Earldom, and evidence having been given as to the death of his 
father, and also the birth of the claimant. 

The Lord Chancellor moved that their Lordships report that 
petitioner had made out his claim to the peerage. There was no 
question of fact to raise any doubt in their Lordships' mind. 
Personally, he felt that it was in some sense a hardship upon the 
parties, on account of the expensive nature of the inquiry which 
had been cast upon them, but looking to the South African 
incidents it was impossible that he could of his own motion have 
certified that the claimant had established his claim without 

The motion was unanimously agreed to. 

William Grey was born April 18th, 1850, at Newfoundland. 
He was adjudged to be the ninth Earl and also Baron Grey of 
Groby by the Committee of Privileges above referred to. He was 


educated at Bradfield, and graduated at Exeter College, Oxford, 
where he took his B.A. degree in 1872, and M.A. in 1875. He 
was formerly Professor of Classics and Philosojihy at Codrington 
College, Barbadoes. On his return to England he was admitted into 
the Order of Diocesan Eeaders by the Bishop of London, 1891, and 
his work in the East End of the Metropolis is now well known and 
highly appreciated. He was married, April 18th, 1895, to Miss 
Elizabeth Louisa Penelope Theobald, third daughter of the Eev. 
Charles Theobald, Rector of Lasham, Hants., and Rural Dean of 
Alton. Their union has been blessed with a son and heir, who 
takes rank as the eleventh Baron Grey of Groby, born October 
27th, 1896. 


The Maceijs of Altrlncham — A rebellious subject — The Bowdon family — 
Disposal of lands — Some old district names— Bowdon free school — 
Gui/ Fawkes at AUrincham — A witty Bowdon Curate — The advance 
on Manchester by LM'd Strange — The Unicorn Hotel three hundred 
years ago— An AUrincham landlord and landlady of the olden 
time — Sir Peter Leycester's description of the town in 1666 — The story 
of the "Bloody Field" — Adam Martindale at Dunham ; his duties 
there — Bowdon Dissenters troublesome — Dick Turpin; his exploits at 
Newbridge Hollow and Hoo Green — Prince Charlie's troops at 

THE house of Macey, or Massey, which settled at Dunham, 
in course of time had numerous branches, so much so as 
to give rise to the uncomplimentary proverb already 
quoted in these pages. There is no doubt, however, that their 
connection with Altrincham is as ancient as it is honourable. We 
find them coming into prominence in troublous times of Richard H., 
and they appear to have held the town by military service for a 
long period. In 1397 it is recorded that William Massey was 
the lessee of the King of the beadlery of the Hundred of 
Bucklow, for the year, at the sum of £7. 6s. 8d., he taking by 
his lease all the pleas and profits of all the townships within the 
aforesaid hundred, and in that year he also received a grant from 
the King of an annuity during pleasure of one hundred shillings. 
He was evidently a favourite with the King ; and as a zealous 
supporter must have made his power felt, for in the General Act 
of Pardon which Henry IV. issued in the opening portion of his 
reign, he was specially exempted on account of his adherence to 
the fallen monarch. His offence was not probably very severely 
visited ; as in the year 1399, a William Macey, probably one and 
the same person, was given a protection on his departure for 
Ireland to do service for the King. 


About the year 1400, for reasons best known to himself, a 
Massey assumed the local name of Bowdon, and the Bowdon 
family has been traced by the Lysons down to the reign of 
Elizabeth. It held a fourth part of the lands in the township until 
Urian Bowdon, in 1565, sold to William Booth of Dunham 
Massey, Esquire, certain portions of land in Bowdon, as also in 
Hale and Dunham. In 1569, Thomas Vawdrey, of Bowdon, and 
George his son, sold several parcels of land to Hugh Crosby, of 
Over Whitley, who, in turn, sold them to Sir George Booth at a 
later period for £220. These parcels were in the several holdings 
of Thomas Vawdrey, Robert Massie, Thos. Nelde (or Neild) and 
Alice Hardey. William Brereton, in the reign of James I., 
became, by purchase from Sir Thomas Holcroft, owner of one 
fourth of the lands in the township ; but these, as also all the 
others, have long since passed by gift, sale or lease to the present 
Earl of Stamford. 

The foregoing reference to names prevalent three or four 
centuries ago will make the reader curious to know more. 
There are allusions to a family of Oldtield, no doubt a branch of 
the Massey family, who assumed that name, and from plea rolls 
relating to a few of the lesser holdings in Altrincham, it is shown 
that in the 22nd year of Edward III., Emma, wife of John 
Howell, was against Robert Drake, of Altrincham, for a dower of 
three messuages and three acres of land ; that in the 19th of 
Henry VII., Edward Walker conveyed to Thomas Deyne, and 
Margery, his wife, the fee simple of three burgages of land, " of 
which one was situated between the burgage of Edward Massey, 
and that late of Richard Chadurton, of Tympyrly, called Flax- 
yarde, and two burgages called Tayntre Crofts in the same 
town ;" that in the 13th year of Henry VIII , Stephen Atkynson 
was against Thomas Massy, son and heir of Robert Massy, for 
the recovery of two messuages, five burgages, ten acres of land, 
one meadow, and one dove cote. The names of Birche, Coppok, 
Roylc, Bekke or Beck, Neuton or Newton, Kyncy, &c., are also 
to be found. In Dunham Massey there were Heskeths, Ashtons, 


Hazlehursts, Johnsons, &c., and we believe their descendants are 
to be found there. The allusion to the Flaxyarde shows that the 
manufacture of linen was an old Altrincham industry, quite as 
much as woollen was at a later period. 

A Free School was founded at Bowdon about the beginning 
of the year 1600. In 1640 a "presentment" was made to the 
Commissioners for Pious Uses, against Mr. Richard Vawdrey, of 
the Banck, gentleman, for denying to pay £i per annum, left by 
his grandfather, for the schoolmaster of Bowdon. It is said, in 
G-astrell's Nolitia Cestriensis, that although he may have been pre- 
sented, the endowment was not made by his grandfather, but by 
Edward Janny, of Manchester, merchant, who, in 15.53, devised 
certain lands to his " kynseman, Robert Vawdrey, to keep a ffre 
scole at Bowdon, to instruct youthe in vertue and lernynge." 
This Robert Vawdrey was one of the executors, and it may 
probably have led to his being spoken of as the founder. Janny, 
the testator, had the advowson and lease of the vicarage of 
Bowdon, for a term, and this he also devised to Robert Vawdrey, 
whose family held it for several years. The schoolhouse was 
rebuilt at the expense of the parish in 1670, again in 1806, and 
up to a recent period served for the purpose of teaching the 
young ideas of the neighbourhood, when, on the new National 
Schools being built, it was converted into a showroom for furni- 
ture, &c. 

James, Lord Strange, who by succession became 7th Lord 
Derby, marched from Warrington early on 23rd September, 1642, 
with the whole of the force that he had assembled, 400 horse, 
200 dragoons, 2,000 foot, with 10 large guns. The greater por- 
tion of this muster the Earl commanded in person, and had with 
him Sir Gilbert Ilogliton, Sir Alex. Radclifte, Sir Gilbert Gerard, 
Capt. Windebank, Mr. Farington of Worden, Mr. Tarbock, and 
several others. They marched along the left bank of the Mersey 
to Ashton, where they were detained at the ford by an accident to 
the wheel of oce of the gun carriages. Clarendon, in his 
" History of the Rebellion," describes the Earl's pikemen as 



having no breastplates, a few of the musketeers had swords, the 
front rank of the horse were fully armed, the rear rank carried 
axes in lieu of carbines. On the side of the Parliament among 
the many neighbouring gentlemen who assisted to defend Man- 
chester was Captain John Booth, of Dunham. To him was 
entrusted the defence of the Mill Gate ; during the night fol- 
lowing the second day of the siege he commanded a company 
of 50 musketeers in a sortie, when the head-quarters of the Earl, 
Alport Lodge, was set on fire. On Friday, September 30th, by 
the King's express orders, the siege was raised. This assault 
upon Manchester was the first outbreak of the great civil war. 
Captain John Booth, of Dunham, was the son of Sir William 
Booth; he married a daughter of Mr. Thomas Prestwich, of 
Hulme, and died in 1644. 

We read in one of Harrison Ainsworth's novels that Guy 
Fawkes was carried through Altrincham, on his way to Ordsall 
Hall, after having been wounded " in a little affair " at Malpas. 
This was not long before he attempted that horrible enterprise 
which will ever make his name memorable to the small boys of 
the land. If the enterprise was horrible it has been embalmed in 
still more horrible verse. It was done by a worthy parish clerk, 
who had an insatiable desire to distinguish himself ; and on one 
occasion, when service was being celebrated for providential 
deliverance from this plot of plots, he fairly electrified the con- 
gregation by giving out the following verse: — 

This is the day that was the night, 

When wicked men conspire, 
To blow the Houses of Parliament up, 

With g-u-n-pow-dtVe. 

It is unnecessary to say that this parish clerk was not con- 
nected with Bowdon ; but it may be mentioned that a witty 
curate once gave a most remarkable certificate of publication of 
banns. A worthy couple had been "asked," as the local phrase 
has it ; and the Vicar of Wilmslow, where the woman lived, had 
the following addressed to him : — 


John and Jane Cooper were, 

Thrice in my church announced tliis year 
To tie the knot of beauty. 
So John and Jane I trust hereby, 
May without shame together lye, 
When you have done your duty. 

Jenks, Curate of Bowdon Churoli. 

It is to be hoped thcat the "VVilmslow Vicar did his duty, as 
well as Mr. Jenks, and that this worthy couple lived a long and 
happy life in the married state. 

In May, 1644, Prince Rupert had a rendezvous for his army 
on Bowdon Downs. According to a Royalist, Davenport, 
of Bramhall, " he marcht up to Cheadle, where the parliaments 
forces ran away." In May, 1648, at a meeting of the 
Lieutenancy, held at Bowdon, " it was resolved that three regi- 
ments, consisting each of 600 men strong, should be raised ;" but 
the country people as a rule refused to join. With the Downs is 
associated the story of the " bloody field," the scene of a combat 
between Sir Samuel Daniel, of Tabley, and Captain Robert 
Ratcliffe, of Ordsall Hall. A brawl had ensued at a party ; and, 
according to an old rhyme : — 

The next day Robert out a shooting went, 

And still his mind upon revenge was bent ; 

By accident he met Sir Samuel 

On Bowdon Downs, for so the people tell ; 

And fight he would, and one of them should die. 

Ere they did part, and that immediately. 

Sir Samuel says, " I see how discord ends, 

I never thought but sleep had made us friends." 

" No parley, now," says Robert, " fight I will. 

Or with my gun I here now will you kill." 

" Well," says Sir Samuel, " if to fight I must, 

My sword is not the sword I wish to trust." 

Then fight they did, and on the sandy downs 

Rash Robert fell, covered with blood and wounds. 

He was buried at Northenden, and the inscription on his 
gravestone states that ho was " of illustrious descent, of comely 
appearance, pious towards God, and unfailing in His worship ; 
loyal to the King faithful to his friends, courteous to all, and a 


vigorous combatant. But the age being unworthy of such a hero, 
and heaven permitting it, he perished, strange to say, in a sword 
fight in the presence of a few spectators, ... on the 20th of 
February, in the year of our Lord, 16S.5, in the 30th year of his 

It is a matter for surmise whether Guy Fawkes, after having 
been wounded in the " little aftair " at Malpas, stopped at that 
ancient and still celebrated hostehy, the Unicorn, to refresh the 
inner man. Most probably he did, and drowned the sense of his 
injuries in libations of choicest canary. At all events the Unicorn 
stood at Altrincham for centuries on very nearly the same site ; 
but if we are to believe the traditions which have come down to 
us, it was then a very different place to what it is now. It was 
a delightfully rural roadside "public," environed with a profusion 
of vegetation; and a purling stream, of which there is now only a 
mere trace, flowed past until it joined the brook which has its 
rise on Hale Moss, and which fed the lake and moat at the Hall 
of Dunham. Subsequently, this stream turned the water wheel 
by which the landlord of the old original Unicorn eked out his 
livelihood ; but the wheel is hashed, the stream has long since 
disappeared, and an advancing civilization has caused a structure 
more in accordance with the wants of the age to be erected in its 

It is also believed that Sir Walter Scott, in his " Peveril of 
the Peak," has given the name of the Cat and the Fiddle to the 
Unicorn, when he speaks of Julian Peveril's journey from Liver- 
pool to his ancestral home in Derbyshire. The picture which the 
great novelist draws of that period is an excellent one. Sir 
Walter says : — 

At length near Altringham, a halt Ijecame unavoidable, and a place of 
refreshment presented itself in the shape of a small cluster of cottages, the 
best of which united the characters of an alehouse and a mill, where the 
sign of the Cat (the landlord's faithful ally in defence of his meal sacks), 
booted high as Grimalkin in the fairy tale, and playing on the fiddle for 
the more grace, aunouuL-L'd tliat John Whitecraft united the two honest 
occupations of landlord and miller ; and, doubtless, took toll from the 


public in both capacities. Such a place promised a traveller who journeyed 
incognito, safer, if not better accommodation than he was likely to meet 
with in more frequented inns ; and at the door of the Cat and Fiddle, 
Julian halted accordingly. 

In the succeeding chapter, the narrative is continued, and the 
manner in which the jolly miller and his wife manage the business 
is humorously depicted. 

If the great Scotch novelist had read the quaint description 
given of the town by Peter Leycester, who says in 1666, " there 
are so many cottages erected here by permission of the Lords of 
Dunham Massey that it has now become a nest of beggars; " he 
could not have been nearer the mark. While this character is 
given to Altrincham, Bowdon bore a very different one ; and at 
a somewhat later period, it is spoken of as " one of the most 
remarkable places in the land." Sir Peter mentions that in the 
rental of Dunham Massey in 1402, there were about forty free- 
holders or charterers in Altrincham, the rest of the tenants not 
above eighteen in number being tenants at will. He also speaks 
of the increasing value of land and other commodities ; and adds 
that at the period at which he wrote there were above twenty 
charterers, which would tend to show that the number of tenants 
at will had increased, while the number of freeholders had 
diminished. Of these holdings, Robert Parker's, of Oldfield Hall, 
Altrincham, gentleman, was of the greatest value ; next to which 
was that belonging to William Leycester, of Hale Lowe, gentle- 
man. The rest were very small parcels, " not worth the reckoning 

Adam Martindale, one of the many puritan divines who 
experienced the sad effects of the long political tempest of the 
seventeenth century, found an asylum at Dunham on his ejectment 
from the living of Rostherne, under the Act of Uniformity of 
1662. He was a prominent character of that period, and his 
avowed hatred of superstitious customs, as he thought, brought 
him into most unpleasant collision with his parishioners. In his 
autobiography, he gives us one or two glimpses of Bowdon, which 
show that it was not entirely free from the religious bickerings 


and theological hair-splittings of the period. The Quakers, as 
they were then called, really had sound reason for " quaking " 
sometimes. The " Separatists, " as the Dissenters were termed, 
were numerous and troublesome in the parish, and being a fierce 
ecclesiastical champion, Martindale informs us that he was engaged 
in "a paper scuffle " with their teacher, much in the same way no 
doubt that newspaper controversialists cut each other up now-a- 
days. He tells us that in 1663, the Bishop of Chester, Dr. Hall, 
preached fiercely against non-conformists at Bowdon, and as one 
that had a notable faculty of extracting salt water out of pumice 
upon the words, We are not ignorant of his devices, 2 Corin- 
thians ii. 11., made even the most harmless practices of the non- 
formists, "devices of Sathan, soe farre as his Episcopall authoritie 
would authenticate such doctrine." At Dunham he devoted him- 
self to study, in which he was greatly assisted by Lord Delamer, 
who gave him many excellent books, lent him his choicest manu- 
scripts, and " imparted freely any knowledge he had, which was 
as useful as anything else." 

While chaplain here his salary was £40 per annum, and his 
employment, "besides accompanying my Lord abroad, was family 
duty twice a day, which after dinner was a short prayer, a chapter 
and a more solemn prayer, and before sujoper, the like ; only a 
psalme or part of one after a chapter. When it was my Lord's 
pleasure that the Lord's day or any of the King's days should be 
kept at home, I officiated, and when on the Lord's day we went 
to Bowdon, I catechised in the evening, and expounded the 
catechism in a doctrinal and practical way, so as it was as of 
much pains for me, and as profitable to the auditors as though I 
had preached." A pleasant picture truly of family life at 
Dunham, two centuries ago 

From " pulpit to prig " is a great step downwards, but it is 
the one we now take. Knutsford can boast of a highwayman of 
some celebrity "born and bred" within its limits. Altrincham 
cannot; at all events there has not been one of the "gentlemen of 
the road " who was proud of the place of his nativity, and who 


has made for himself name and fame in history by his so-called 
exploits. As a very efficient substitute we find the renowned 
Turpin — for he has got "renown" in "Kookwood" (though his 
life shows him to have been both blackleg and coward) — often 
taking up his quarters in the neighbourhood and levying illegal 
toll on travellers. The scene of his adventures was principally 
New Bridge Hollow. "What!" no doubt exclaim readers 
acquainted with the magnificent road to Chester, " how could a 
man pounce out on anyone and rob him there?" Wait a little, 
my impetuous friend. There was no wide road then. It was an 
apology for one ; in fact, a mere bridle-path, and then, as now, 
primroses and wild flowers bloomed in bewildering profusion 
around. The river was not spanned by a bridge, but forded at a 
convenient and shallow point. Flanked on each side by tall 
trees and umbrageous foliage, the poet of to-day can draw inspira- 
tion therefrom for his glowing pages ; but then, when dangers 
were thought to be hidden behind every tree, the aspect of the 
road to most travellers would be stripped of its picturesqueness. 
On one occasion the daring Dick had a narrow escape from 
paying the extreme penalty of the law for a robbery committed 
in the hollow, and this escape was attributable, it is said, to the 
legendary speed of " Black Bess." A lawyer was travelling from 
Chester to Manchester, when he was attacked by Dick, and 
relieved of his cash. Turning the head of Black Bess, he put her 
to her extreme speed, and on arriving at the Kilton, Hoo Green, 
he accosted the hostler with " Holloa ! what o'clock is it, my 
cockolorum, eh 1" With a view to receiving a speedy reply, he 
accompanied the question with a sharp blow on the shoulder, and, 
singular to say, he got the required answer. We use the word 
" singular," because a modern knight, " of more breeches than 
brains," would have replied with a torrent of well-selected 
Billingsgate, and summoned him before a magistrate, with a view 
to having him fined. As it was, Dick strolled calmly on to the 
green, where a number of country gentlemen were playing bowls, 
taking care, of course, to remark about the time. An investiga- 
s 3 


tion into the circumstances took place, and Dick found out the 
advantages to be derived from what Samuel Weller's " paternal 
parient" in " Pickwick," chose to call a "halibi." The groom was 
called, and as the difference between the time of the robbery and 
Dick's appearance in the inn yard was so small, only a few 
minutes, although the distance from the place was over three miles, 
the magistrates discharged him, under the impression that no 
horse could carry him in the time that Black Bess did, Turpin 
appears to have gloried in the feat that he then accomplished, for 
it is made the subject of a song, which is given in "Eookwood." 

It was in 1745 that Altrincham had a visit from the forces of 
Prince Charles Edward, prior to the disaster at Culloden. It was 
on Sunday morning early, December 1st, 1745, that a detachment 
from Manchester marched into Altrincham. There was snow 
upon the ground, and we can well imagine, as depicted in our 
illustration, the provost marshal demanding from the bewildered 
landlord of the " Red Lion " quarters for the men who are just 
marching in with the Prince's colours flying, while the local watch 
looks unconcernedly on, for the common people were indifferent 
on the principle of "Fight dog ! Fight bear !" without taking part 
themselves if they could help it, " but feeling very angry with the 
Pretender for coming to disturb the peace of the Kingdom." As 
the troops marched into Altrincham, a resident, standing at the top 
of Well Lane, now Victoria Street, was informed by a " braw 
highlander " that he must give up his brogues or boots. Might 
was right, and the Altrincham man was forcibly deprived of his 
" understandings." A remarkable revenge appears to have been 
taken. There were many desertions, and as the troop marched 
from Altrincham the then host of the Bleeding Wolf (where local 
tradition asserts the last wolf was killed in England) sallied out, 
pulled one of the rebel troopers from his horse and slew him with 
his own sword. Singularly enough this sword remained in the 
possession of a local family, and was carried for generations in 
the demonstrations of the local Lodge of Oddfellows. At Sale 
the Scotchmen did little damage, but it is recorded that they 
stole the Rector's horses, which were at pasture on Sale Moor. 


Indications of growth and enterprise — The cutting of the Bridgewater 
Canal — A few figures — Manufacture of woollen and cotton yarn — 
Obsolete punishments : penance, cucJcing stool, scold's bridle, public 
whippings in the Altrincham ilarket-place — Executions for burglaries 
at Bowdon — A man hanged for poaching near Altrincham — 
The ancient custom of souling—The entertaining play of St. George 
and the Dragon — Wassailing and Christmas carols — The barley 
hump and Dunham ale — The lions of Dunham — Altrincham 
races — Dunham Parks and the Hall — De Quincy's description of 

THE first indication of an era of enterprise in this district 
was the cutting of the Bridgewater Canal, which 
commenced about the year 1760, and its opening six years 
or so afterwards gave a great impetus to the town of Altrincham. 
In 1778 there were in the town 185 houses, which taken at the 
usual average of five persons to a house would give 925 inhabitants. 
In 1801, this number had increased to 340 houses, occupied by 
346 families, numbering 1,692 souls. There were then three 
large factories for the manufacture of woollen and cotton yarn, as 
also a mill for bobbin turning, which were worked by water 
power. Two of these mills were situated on the north-west side 
of the town, near the present Altrincham station. The dam or 
reservoir was only a few yards down Stamford Road, and was fed 
by a stream which flowed hard by. Up to a recent period this dam 
remained ; but it is now filled up, and streets, notably Mill Street, 
occupy its site. An old map of the town shows that at this time 
the houses were clustered about the Market-place and the 
Unicorn. Within fifty or sixty yards on the Dunham side were 
hedgerows and trees of the most approved agricultural type. 
Dunham Lane, as it was then called, was scarcely a cow road, 
and had not even the semblance of a footpath. The social cus- 
toms of the inhabitants were quite as primitive as its appearance. 


Readers of history are familiar with the penance which the 
unfortunate Jane Shore did in St. Paul's, before the people, 
three or four centuries ago. They would be surprised to hear 
that this form of doing penance — not so much from a religious as 
from a legal point of view — was carried out at Bowdon not 150 
years since. Women of light character, or those who had been 
guilty of spreading scandal, were the subjects. A white sheet 
was kept at the Parish Church, the condemned woman was 
enveloped in it, marched along the aisles of the sacred edifice ; 
after which she had purged her offence. One of the last, or about 
the last who did penance was clever enough to make a witty, 
though very indecent rhyme of the circumstance. A much more 
ancient and common form of punishment was the cucking stool — a 
field formerly existing in Altrincham called Cuckstool field. 
This instrument is described in Doomsday Book as cathedra 
siercoris. Scolds, cheating bakers or brewers, and other petty 
offenders, were led to this stool and immersed over head and ears 
in stercorc, or stinking water. The " brydle for a curste queane" 
was fixed in the mouth of the delinquent, and tied behind A^ath 
ribbons. When the punishment of the cucking stool was relaxed, 
the scold's bridle appears only to have been used, and the 
Altrincham Corporation is credited with being possessed of a 
" branck," or iron bridle, of the most simple form known. 
Brushfield, who has written a work on the Obsolete Punishments 
of this county, says : — 

It is the most rudely constructed, primitive-looking, scold's bridle I 
have yet seen ; the workmanship is so rough as to lead one to suppose it 
must have been made by some very ordinary blacksmith ; in form it is 
somewhat similar to the Oxford example ; the gag is a plain flat piece of 
iron, the hook is fastened at the back by a plain hook and staple, and 
there is a separate hook for the leading chain. (Fancy, ye gods ! leading 
a woman with a chain, like a bear !) 

Listen, again : — 

No compensation whatever exists for the adaptation of the instrument 
to heads of different sizes, and as the bridle is a very small one, a great 
deal of additional " scolding " must have been caused during the endeavour 
to fix it to an}' large head. The ascending portion terminated in an 


enlarged flat extremity, the base of which appears as if constructed for 
the purpose of attaching a cord to secure it more firmly to the head. The 
gentleman to whom I am indebted for the loan of this specimen (Mr. Mort, 
of Altrincham) informs me that he saw it used upon an old (?) woman, 
about 35 years ago, who appears to have been a regular virago, and who, 
apparently, abused her more peaceable neighbours, more particularly two 
very inoffensive people on each side of her own dwelling. All means were 
tried in vain, and as a last resource she was ordered to be bridled and led 
through the town. When the instrument was fixed to her head, she 
refused to walk ; the authorities were, however, so determined to make 
her a public example, and carr}' out the punishment, that they ordered her 
to be wheeled through the town. She was accordingly placed in a barrow, 
and, escorted by a great mob, was wheeled through the principal streets 
round the market place, and thence to her own home. It may be as well 
to mention that this punishment was attended with the most salutary 
results, as she ever afterwards kept a civil and respectful tongue in her 

Our country cousins at Carrington were far ahead of us in 
this respect. Their " branck," which is now in the Warrington 
Museum, is designed with greater attention to mechanical details. 
Its " gag " is much more neatly formed ; it has three rings to 
which the hook or chain may be attached, and it is made with an 
adjustment for the difference in the sizes of people's heads. 
Probably it was in greater request at Carrington, and therefore 
greater anxiety was manifested lest it should produce needless 
" scolding," and thus increase the ill it was intended to cure. 

The spectacle of men being publicly whipped for trivial 
oflFences was common, and, generally, the punishment was inflicted 
on the unfortunate culprits on market days. 

In April, 1801, the town was thrown into a state of excitement 
in consequence of some opposition to the public whipping of one 
Thomas Owen. The subject was discussed at a town's meeting 
in July, "convened by publick advertizement and by the bellman, 
by order of the constables," when it was — 

Resolved unanimously, that the constables be and are directed at the 
expense of the town, to prosecute William Coppock, and such other person 
or persons as can be discovered to have beaten the horse in the cart when 
Thos. Owen was to have been wliipped, in Altrincham, on the 28th of April 
last, pursuant to the sentence of the Court of Quarter Sessions, held at 
Chester in and for this county, on the 21st day of April last. 


It may be inferred from this that Mr. Owen had a large 
number of friends who were bent on preventing the infliction of 
the prescribed punishment ; as on that occasion the horse block at 
the Unicorn was so seriously damaged that upwards of thirteen 
shillings had to be spent by the town on its repair. 

On one occasion, probably the last, two men were whipped, 
one after the other. One of them, after having received his portion, 
begged, with a self-abnegation and gallantry worthy of all praise, 
that he might receive his companion's lashes, as he was sure he 
was unable to bear the punishment. No wonder that with men 
made of such sterling stuff', Wellington won Waterloo. No 
wonder that their descendants conquered at Inkermann, and 
clove through the Russian hosts at Balaclava ! The old spirit still 
lives. It is manifested daily in thousands of humble homes in 
our land ; but its humbleness is its truest nobility, and there are 
numbers who are unconsciously saying by their actions, to that 
angel who is inscribing it in a book of gold, 
I pray thee, then, 
Write me as one who loves his fellow-men. 

The dark record of this portion of " the good old times " is 
not yet complete. Executions were common, and it is not 
unusual to read in the papers of the period blood-curdling narra- 
tives of the wholesale way in which our fellow creatures were 
launched into eternity. For instance, on September 25th, 1819, 
there were executed at Chester, Samuel Hooley and John Johnson 
(a man of colour), for burglary at Bowdon. In April, 1820, 
Thomas JMiller was executed for burglary at Bowdon. Some ten 
or fifteen years after, a man named Henshaw was executed for 
poaching near Altrincham. This caused an intense sensation 
throughout the whole district, and is still remembered by a large 
number of the older inhabitants. 

A much pleasanter theme is afforded by an examination of 
some of the old amusements, such, for instance, as " souling " on 
All Soul's Eve, which is not, however, kept up as it used to be 
forty years ago. The observance is referred to Catholic times, and 


is undoubtedly one of great antiquity. Some of the songs which 
are sung by the "soulers," are peculiar, and there is an unaccount- 
able play upon words. One of them opens : — 

Soul day, Soul day, Saul, 

One for Peter, two for Paul, 

Thi-ee for Him that made us all. 

An apple, a pear, a plum or a clierrj'. 

Anything that will make us all merry. 

Put j'our hand into your pocket and pull out your keys. 

Go down into the cellar and bring up what you please ; 

A glass of your wine, or a cup of your beer. 

And we'll never come souling till this time next year. 

We are a pack of merry boys all of one mind, 

We have come souling for what we can find. 

Soul, soul, sole of my shoe. 

If you have no apples money will do ; 

Up with your kettle, and down with your pan, 

Give us an answer and let us begone. 

Of course this is all very well, and no doubt very laudable so 
far as the men and boys of a single village go; but when it comes 
to providing for those of a large town, split-up into numerous 
gangs, it must be admitted that souling is a custom "more 
honoured in the breach than the observance." A more enjoyable 
and artistic amusement is the "Peace Egg," or " St. George's 
annual play for the amusement of youth," which is supposed to 
have an entirely Cheshire origin, St. George, representing in 
some people's ideas, the Baron of Chester. If thii be the case, it 
now obtains little in the county of its nativity ; but in Yorkshire 
it flourishes amazingly. 

The practice of " wassailing amongst the leaves so green " has 
almost died out ; but the singing of carols at Christmas time 
flourishes in its pristine power, and oftentimes unfortunate 
Christians are called upon to awake at most unseasonable hours. 

AVho in this neighbourhood does not remember or has not 
heard of the " barley hump " and Dunham ale ? The latter was 
given on stated occasions to all comers, and its potency was often 
evidenced in those who partook too freely of it. But round the 
"barley hump" cling the tenderest memories, and men and 


women, whose locks are now silvered with age, remember the 
time, when as rosy-faced boys and girls they scampered over the 
breezy downs to Dunham Hall, for this hump, which was a piece 
of barley bread a few inches square, good and wholesome, hard 
nearly as a board, but not proof against the assaults of a vigorous 
appetite. The schools of the neighbourhood were turned out at a 
given hour, and an exciting race for the Hall began. It was first 
come, first served. The boys were ranged on one side, and the 
girls on the other, and down the human avenue, a barrow filled 
^vith these '• humps " was wheeled, and a piece given to each child. 
Sometimes, the number of little visitors was so great that the 
supply ran short, and those who had not yet eaten theirs had to 
divide with their less fortunate brethren. Having had their 
treat — for such it was always looked upon — they betook them- 
selves to their homes, joyful with anticipation of another turn at 
the " barley hump." The " Lions " of Dunham, have even a 
" tradition " associated with them. They are well known to 
visitors, and were once looked upon with awe by the juvenile 
natives. In fact, it is implicitly believed, by lovers especially, that 
at the hour of midnight, when the spirits of the departed are 
attacked with restlessness, these " lions " raise up one paw, and 
put down the other, remaining in this position for twenty-four 
hours, until a change is again considered desirable ! 

Race meetings formerly flourished at Altrincham, but were 
many years since discontinued, except at rare intervals, and then 
they were stripped of their ancient glory. Race-field, now covered 
with stately mansions, serves to perpetuate the fact, but the 
principal races were held on Hale ]\Ioss. An old newspaper, pub- 
lished in 1753, contains an advertisement announcing that the 
races would be held on the 11th day of July of that year, " on a 
good course," and that no person would be allowed to sell liquor 
on the Common who had not subscribed two-aud-sixpence to the 
said races. In this respect the old does not appear to difter from 
the new, however much people may be inclined to lament the 
decadence of modern horseracing. 


A word may now be said of the Parks at Dunham, both of 
which have formed appropriate subjects alike for the brush of the 
painter, and the pen of the poet. In what is called the Old Park, 
the beech avenue, which leads to the Hall, is a most imposing 
object. Of the present mansion, which replaced its predecessor, 
a description of which has already appeared in these pages, little 
need be said, except that it is a large quadrangular brick building, 
and was built in 1730. The collection of family plate was of a 
most extensive and valuable charactei-, and there was also a 
number of family and other portraits by various eminent masters. 

A fitting conclusion to this chapter may be found in the 
reference to Altrincham made by Thomas De Quincy, whose 
fame in connection with every department of literature is well 
known. In his autobiographical sketches, he describes the cir- 
cumstances under which he left Manchester to travel to Chester, 
and he says that on his route (this would be about the year 1814), 
the first town that he reached, to the best of his remembrance, 
was Altrincham, colloquially Aiutrigem. He goes on : — 

" When a child, three years old, and suftering from whooping 
cough, I had been carried for a change of air to different places 
on the Lancashire coast ; and in order to benefit by as large a 
compass as possible of varying atmospheres, I and my nurse had 
been made to rest for the first night of our tour, at this cheerful 
little town of Altrincham. On the next morning, which ushered 
in a most dazzling day in July, I rose earlier than my nurse 
fully approved ; but in no long time she had found it advisable 
to follow my example ; and, after putting me through my 
morning's drill of ablutions and the Lord's prayer, no sooner had 
she fully arranged my petticoats than she lifted me up in her 
arms, threw open the window, and let me suddenly look down 
upon the gayest scene I ever beheld, viz., the little market-place 
of Altrincham at eight o'clock in the morning. It happened to 
be the market day ; and I, who till then had never consciously 
been in any town whatever, was equally astonished and delighted 
by the novel gaity of the scene. Fruits, such as can be had in 



July, and flowers were scattered about in profusion ; even the 
stalls of the butchers, from their brilliant cleanliness, appeared 
attractive ; and the bonny young women of Altrincham were all 
trooping about in caps and aprons coquettishly disposed. The 
general hilarity of the scene at this early hour, with the low 
murmurings of pleasurable conversation and laughter that rose 
up like a fountain to the open window, left so profound an 
impression upon me that I never lost it. All this occurred, as I 
have said, about eight o'clock on a superb July morning. Exactly 
at that time in the morning, exactly such another heavenly day 
in July, did I leave Manchester, at six a.m., naturally enough 
finding myself in the centre of the Altrincham market-place. 
There were the same fruits and flowers ; the same bonny young 
women trooping up and down in the same (no, not the same) 
coquettish bonnets ; everything was apparently the same ; 
perhaps the window of my bedroom was still open, only my 
nurse and I were not looking out ; for, alas ! on recollection, 
fourteen years precisely had passed since then. Breakfast time, 
however, is always a cheerful stage in the day ; if a man can 
forget his cares at any season it is then — and after a walk of seven 
miles it is doubly so. I felt it at the time, and have therefore 
stopped to notice it as a singular coincidence, that twice, and by 
the merest accident, I should find myself precisely as the clocks 
on a July morning were all striking eight, drawing inspiration 
and pleasurable feelings from the sights and sounds in the little 
market-place of Altrincham." 

The " bonny young women " were not, however, sufiiciently 
attractive to keep the youthful De Quincy from pursuing his 
journey. Most of them will by this time have passed away ; 
but their descendants will read with interest of the manners of 
their grandmothers and great-grandmothers in days gone by. 


Ecclesiastical AUrincham : The JFesleyan Methodist ChiDxhes — 
Wesley's visits to AUrincham — Si. George's Church ; its Schools, &c. — 
An AUrincham Centenarian — The Unitarians ; their early 
history ; description of the new Chapel in Dunham Road — The 
Methodist New Connexion— The Independents or Congregationalists, 
tvith some notices of their Pastors and TVorkSt. Margaret's, 
Dunham Massey — St. John's — The Old Downs Chapel — The Primi- 
tive Methodists— St. Peter's, Peel Causeway, i(-c. 

WHEN John "Wesley, with a lofty enthusiasm which made 
the whole world his parish, introduced a new leaven of 
religious fervour throughout the land, Altrincham was 
among the many towns he visited. It is one of the first places 
mentioned in his famous Journal ; and it would appear that the 
date of his first visit was 1738, which is prior to the formation of 
the first AVesleyan Society in London. In 1751 he again came to 
the town, and preached under a pear-tree in Mr. Priestner's 
garden on Oldfield Brow. He also preached in Church Street, 
near the site of St. George's, and in other parts of the town. 
The nucleus of a " church " was thus formed ; but it was not until 
the 17th February, 1788, that the old chapel in Chapel-walk, or 
Chapel Road, was opened by the Rev. Thomas Taylor, even then 
an eminent Methodist minister. The Church of England Service 
was read on that occasion; Abner Partington, a name well 
known in the annals of Altrincham, and who was probably one of 
its Mayors subsequently, officiating as clerk. It is also inter- 
esting to state that Altrincham was one of the first chapels 
settled under the celebrated deed poll, in which they are legally 
specified to be " The conference of the people called Methodists." 
It was more than two years after the chapel was opened that Mr. 
Wesley preached in Altrincham, about twelve months before his 
death. In his Journal he describes the devout and earnest 


demeanour of the crowd both inside and outside the chapel, and 
expresses a hope that henceforth the Altrincham people will be 
less " furious " than they have been. Mr. Wesley, when he 
preached at Altrincham for the last time called the building a 
chapel, and not a "house," as was his wont. Nearly eighty years 
afterwards the elegant structure in Bank Street was built, and 
many were the regrets felt, especially amongst the old supporters 
of the Methodist cause, at leaving what had been their spiritual 
home for so long a period. This chapel is in the Byzantine style 
of architecture, and was erected from the plans of Mr. C. 0. 
Ellison, of Liverpool. Liberal aid for its erection was given by 
both Churchmen and Dissenters, and to some extent it was looked 
upon as a town movement. The foundation stone was laid on the 
22nd March, 1865, and it was opened on the 10th of May, in the 
year following. Its main frontage is to Bank Street, and is of 
freestone with a campanile at one of the angles Its interior is 
of majestic proportions, and the moulding of the arches is most 
imposing. There is accommodation on the ground floor for 600 
people, and 200 in a good gallery across the end of the building. 
This gallery is so arranged that it can be continued, if found 
necessary hereafter, along the sides of the chapel, giving accom- 
modation to 260 additional or in all over 1,000 persons. The 
organ was removed from the old chapel, and built into the new, 
with additions and improvements ; the cost of this, over £100, 
being raised by Mr. John Balshaw who for a long period acted as 
organist. The total cost of the chapel was above £5,000 A 
capacious lecture hall has been erected adjoining the chapel. 

An offshoot of the old chapel was made in the erection of a 
rather cramped edifice off Stamford Road, Bowdon, which, 
although no doubt quite adequate at the time for the wants of the 
congregation was not at all calculated to meet the Bowdon of the 
future. Its arrangements, including its high-backed pews, did 
not at all accord with modern ideas of religious worship, and 
strenuous efforts were made years ago to provide increased 
accommodation of another character. It could not be said 



that those eftbrts were crowned with the success they deserved 
at the time. So far back as May, 187-t, the foundation 
or memorial stones of the new chapel were laid by Mrs. William 
Billing, Mrs. John L. Barker, and Miss Mewburn. The position 


selected is on the brow of the gently sloping hill, which may 
be said to constitute Bowdon proper, and is close to an ancient 
footpath now widened out into a thoroughfare leading from the 
Downs to Stamford Road. The designs were by Mr. W. H. 
Brakspear, of Manchester, and the style the pure English Gothic 
of the 13th century. It has accommodation for 700 persons on 


the ground floor, and for 200 more by the erection of galleries in 
the transepts. The splendid traditions of this energetic body are 
well sustained in the chapels and schools erected at Broadheath 
and the various villages round Altrincham and district. 

We now come to St. George's Church, of which, so far as its 
architecture is[or was] concerned, not even its warmest friends could 
boast. By one writer it was styled the ugliest church within seven 
miles of Manchester Exchange ; but probably he did not look at 
home, as within a stone's throw of that place is to be found 
St. Ann's, which might be placed in the same category as the one 
he so mercilessly criticised. Moreover, we must remember that 
the period at which it was built was not one in which the fine 
arts were fostered or the aesthetic tastes of the people developed 
to the extent they are now-a-daj^s. Public taste in matters of 
church architecture was at a very low ebb indeed. The clustering 
ivy with which it was overgrown, prior to rebuilding, gave it to 
some degree an appearance of beauty. 

It was built as a Chapel of Ease to Bowdon, in 1799, by sub- 
scription, and in 1809 it is stated in the returns of the Bishop of 
Chester to the Governor of Queen Anne's Bounty to be a curacy, 
not augmented or charged, of the annual value of £91 13s. 6d., 
arising from dividend of stock, seat rents, and surplice fees. Its 
first minister was the Rev. Oswald Leicester, an Altrincham man, 
and he continued in the office for upwards of thirty years. He 
was the son of a well-to-do shopkeeper in the town, and from his 
childhood was very religiously disposed. He attended the 
Wesleyan Chapel, and was greatly influenced by a Mr. Samuel 
Bradburn then stationed here. He would in all probability 
have joined this body, had not his father taken the matter 
into his own hands, and had him educated and trained as a 
clergyman. The church was three times enlarged, first in 
1858, when 198 additional sittings were obtained at the west 
end; in 1871, when 268 sittings were added at the east end, 
at a cost of £1,000; thus providing accommodation for 1,180 


The east window was erected to the memory of Samuel and 
Ann Hardey, her parents, George Hardey, her brother, and James 
Holland, her husband, by Sarah Holland, A.D. 1861. 

On a brass let into the wall underneath is an inscription : — 

This memorial window was accompanied by an offering of £1,000 for 
the additional endowment of this church, and £200 to be invested, and 
the interest given in bread to the jioor attending Divine worship therein. 

Other stained glass windows are to the memory of Ann, 
daughter of the Rev. Oswald Leicester, the first incumbent ; to 
Catherine Gardom, to Samuel Barratt, to John Astle Kelsall and 
his wife Ann Kelsall, to Thomas and Elizabeth Blease, and their 
daughter, Amelia Mottershead ; to Rachael Blease, to Georgina 
Isabella London, " by the congregation of St. George's Church, 
as a tribute of their affection and esteem for their pastor, the 
Rev. George London, and to mark the completion of his 25 years' 
increasing and warm-hearted labours amongst them, 1884," and 
also to the Rev. George London, 34 years vicar of the parish. 
The latest additions are those by F. E. B. Lindsell, Esq., to the 
memory of his two children, and in remembrance of a deep and 
bitter bereavement which evoked the greatest sympathy of the 
inhabitants of the whole parish. 

The inscriptions on the gravestones do not present many 
novel features ; but one on the first clerk of the church, George 
Samuel Drinkwater, who filled the post for 33 years, thus records 
the virtues of his wife :— 

She was 

But words are wanting to say what. 

Think what a wife should be, and she was that. 

She left him, so it is said, an annuity of £50 a year ; hence 
this extraordinary eulogy. 

St. George's remained a chapel of ease from 1799 to 1860, 
when it was made into a district church. In 1868, it was formed 
into a separate parish, of which the Rev. George London, who 
was presented in 1859, was made vicar. It has been endowed by 
a grant from Queen Anne's Bounty of £1,000, and up to 1859 had 
an income of £150 per annum. This was increased in 1861 by a 



gift of £1,000 from Mrs. Holland, of Sandiway House, as already 
indicated. Connected with the church are flourishing day and 
Sunday schoo's, the latter being established in 178.3, before the 
church was built. The first day or national school was erected 
to commemorate the fiftieth year of the reign of George HI., 
and from this circumstance received the name of the Jubilee 
school. It was cramped and ill adapted for the required purpose ; 
but singular to say, it continued to be used for 50 years, and thus 
celebrated its own as well as King George's jubilee. The present 
spacious schools were erected in 1860, and have since had to be 
enlarged to meet the increasing requirements of the neighbour- 

The Sunday School of St. George's is reputed to be the oldest 
in the county, having been founded in 1783 by the Eev. Oswald 
Jjeicester, long before the church was built. There are now 
flourishing branches at Oakfield Road and Broadheath, where also 
is a neat daughter church dedicated to St. Alban, which will, 
however, soon be too small for this rapidly growing end of the 
parish. At the time of writing these lines, an earnest appeal has 
been made by the vicar, the Rev. M. Lutener, for funds to rebuild 
the nave of the church, and thus carry out the expressed wish of 
his revered predecessor when the new chancel was built in 1886, 
that this might be considered as the beginning of the great work 
of giving to Altrincham a parish church worthy of the town. 
Messrs. Paley and Austin, the eminent church architects, pre- 
sented a report, strongly advising the building of a new nave 
without galleries, and the opening out of the west end of the 
church, retaining the tower and chancel and east and west walls 
of the nave. The total sum required is about £5,000, to which 
already there has been a liberal response. The church on its 
completion will accommodate 788 worshippers on the ground 
floor, as against 757 on the present ground floor and galleries 
combined. In concluding his appeal the vicar points out that it 
can only be done by an earnest eftort for a great and exceptional 
purpose. " Let us make up our minds," he adds, "to do this work 


enthusiastically, and thoroughly, and quickly ; let us erect for 
our Centenary INIemorial a monument that we shall in after years 
be proud of ; let us give to Altrincham a Parish Church worthy 
of the town, and to God a gift of which each one of us can 
honestly say — "My offering has cost me some self-sacrifice." Let 
it be the offering, not of a few, but of us all. Each Churchman 
and Churchwoman in the Parish should be able to feel of our 
Church — " I helped to build it." 

The register, which begins with the present century, contains 
the names of one centenarian Catherine Holt, of Altrincham, who 
was buried June 30th, 1813, aged 103. 

1799. The Rev. Oswald Leicester. 
1832. ,, ,, George Ranking. 
1834. ,, ,, Wilniot Cave Brown Cave. 
1843. ,, ,, Francis Orton, D.C.L. 
1856. „ „ .John B. Honnywill. 
1858. ,, ,, George London. 
1894. ,, ,, W. Maurice Bonner Lutener. 

Not one of the Dissenting bodies in Altrincham possesses a 
history so eventful or interesting as the Unitarians. The 
Altrincham chapel is an offshoot of the old congregation at Hale, 
which at irregular intervals for a long period had possession of 
the church at Ringway or Ringey. Ringway was then the 
" debateable ground " of dissent, and the battles ecclesiastical 
which were waged upon it were both fast and furious. 

"In Hale," writes Sir Peter Leycester in 1666, " is an hamlet called 
Ringey, wherein is situated a cliappel of ease (far from being an easy one 
to hold, by the way), called Ringey Chappel ; within the parish of Bowdon, 
of which I have little to say save that it was much frequented in the late 
wars by schismatical ministers, and as it were a receptacle for non- 
conformists, in which dissolute times every pragmatical and illiterate 
person, as the humour served, stepped into the pulpit witliout any lawful 
calling thereunto, or licence of authority." 

For a very long period this chapel remained in the hands of 
the Dissenters, and from certain notices which have been made of 
it in various documents, would appear to have been under the 



protection of the powerful families of Booth and Crewe, who were 
at that time strongly favourable to the then Presbyterian cause. 
It was here that William Dearnily, who is so disrespectfully 
alluded to in the Bowdon Parish Kegister, ministered. He was 
ordained at Knutsford in 1692, on which occasion Matthew 
Henry was present. He died in May, 1701, and in the Cheshire 
Minute Book he is described "as a person of great worth, of very 

A ^^ 






good natural parts, a considerable scholar, of sober and moderate 
principles, and a blameless and exemplary conversation." The 
present Hale chapel Avas erected in 1723, during the ministry of 
Mr. Waterhouse, who, being dispossessed of Pingway chapel, 
took along with him the bulk of the congregation. There is a 
tradition that Mr. Waterhouse was forcibly expelled from 
Ringway by a Mr. Assheton, then resident at Ashley Hall. The 
version given is that about the year 1721, John Crewe, Esq., of 
Crewe Hall, inherited the Lordship of Eingway, and declared his 


intention of restoring it to the established Church. The scene 
which followed savours more of a public-house than a place of 
worship. Presuming upon Mr. Crewe's connivance, this resident 
at Ashley Hall, who seldom went to a place of worship, and who 
was reputed to have been a man of very dissolute habits, went to the 
chapel one Sunday, attended by a number of servants, seized Mr. 
Waterhouse by the collar, pulled him from the pulpit, and bundled 
out both him and the congregation, "bag and baggage." Having 
accomplished this operation to his own satisfaction, he locked the 
doors, and no doubt on his way to Ashley Hall was jubilant over 
this gentlemanly (?) action. The dissenters, however, entered 
again the week following, and continued in it without molestation 
until a clergyman licensed by the Bishop of Chester took 
possession of it. His behaviour on going to his new cure was in 
striking contrast to that of his lay brother of Ashley Hall. On 
the Sunday when he first came, the dissenters had begun their 
worship, but instead of displaying his muscular Christianity, he 
bade them proceed with the service, and remained a devout 
hearer to the end. He took possession of the place in form in the 
afternoon. Mr. Waterhouse afterwards preached in a barn at the 
Ashes farm, near the chapel, till a dissenting meeting house was 
erected ; but he did not live long to enjoy it, as he died in 1754. 
Canon Eaines, in his notes to GastreU's Nutitia states that there is 
a bell at Ringway, with G. B. upon it ; the initials of Sir George 
Booth. In 17-17, the minister of this chapel was the Rev. Hugh 
Worthington, jun., and from a diary of Mr. Isaac Worthington, 
of Altrincham, it appears he was minister of Hale chapel from 
1748 to 1767. Mr. Isaac Worthington took great interest in the 
affairs of this chapel, and in 1769 he went to Stockport and 
engaged Mr. Harrop to come to Hale. Mr. Harrop continued in 
it for forty-six years, during thirty-seven of which he held the 
chapel at Sale conjointly with that at Hale. He resigned his 
charge in 1816, at the age of seventy. He lived for twenty -one 
years after, and went down to the grave at the venerable age of 
ninety-one, beloved and honoured by all who knew him. In 


1816, the Eev. William Jevons was invited to undertake the 
pastoral charge of the united Presbyterian societies in Hale and 
Altrincham, but he only held the position for about three years. 
The old chapel in Shaw's Lane, Altrincham, lately used as the 
Salvation barracks, which was built about this period, has long 
been given up ; and on the closing of the burial ground, the 
remains of the "rude forefathers of the hamlet" were taken up 
and removed to Hale. In the pretty chapel in Dunham Eoad, 
there is a good congregation, and the descendants of Mr. Isaac 
Worthington still take a deep interest in the cause. It was 
opened on Wednesday, December 18th, 1872, on which occasiou 
the Eev. Charles Beard, of Liverpool, preached. It is enclosed 
on two sides by a stone wall, in which a handsome covered stone 
gateway leads by a flight of steps to the porch on the south side, 
which forms the principal entrance to the chapel. The interior 
consists of a nave fifty-seven feet long, and one aisle to the north, 
separated from it by five arches with granite shafts, making a 
total width of thirty-seven feet. The east end is apsidal, with 
carved wood pulpit and reading desk, and communion table, all 
upon a raised dais. 

The exterior of the building is plain, but substantia], being 
faced with brick, and stone dressings round the entrance doorway 
and windows, the heads of which are filled with geometric tracery. 
The west end has two gables, and the roof is carried round the 
east end, having a large cross at the apex of the apse. The 
chapel is fitted with pitch pine seats for about 225 adults and 40 
children. An aisle 4ft. Gin. in width leads down the centre of the 
nave, and a passage 3ft. 6in. in width along the north side of the 

The cover of the communion table, beautifully embroidered in 
needlework, was presented to the chapel by Miss Nicholson, 
daughter of the late Mr. Eobert Nicholson, of Bowdon. The 
three apse windows are filled with stained glass, illustrating by 
means of flowers, the emblems of Faith, Hope and Charity. 
They were the gift of Mr. and Mrs. James Worthington, of Sale 


Hall. The large west window of three lights and the double 
lights, which extend along both sides of the chapel, are filled with 
plain diamond quarries. The edifice was erected from the designs 
of Mr. Thomas Worthington, of Manchester. 

The Methodist New Connexion erected a fairly sized chapel 
in G-eorge Street about the year 1821. At one time it was very 
well attended, and the congregation was a most important one. 
The exterior is not prepossessing, but the interior is cheerful and 

In point of wealth and numbers, the Congregationalists or 
Independents occupy one of the foremost positions. They had a 
most humble origin, and it appears from the Church Book of the 
Bowdon Downs Church, that, in the year 1803, the Rev. James 
Turner, of Knutsford, began occasionally to pass through Bowdon 
in travelling to Manchester. During these journeys, states Mr. 
Joseph Thompson, in his contribution to " Non Conformity in 
Cheshire," it occurred to him that some measures might be 
adopted, and ought not to be delayed, for the introduction into 
Altrincham or the neighbourhood of the doctrines and government 
of Independent Churches. The usefulness and propriety of this 
course appeared the more unquestionable on account of the 
frequency with which the members of churches in Manchester, 
even then, were observed to visit and reside In the district. Mr. 
Turner, fully possessed with his project, applied to an aged and 
poor widow of the name of Cox or Coe, a member of the Indepen- 
dent church at Gatley, but resident in Altrincham, and obtained 
her permission to preach at intervals in her little thatched cottage 
near the Market Place. The humble building has long since 
disappeared ; but there, with very slender encouragement, this 
self-denying servant of the Gospel first regularly preached the 
truth professed by the denomination to which he belonged. It 
should, however, be recorded that other excellent ministers 
pursuing a similar "labour of love," were also received into the 
house by this same poor woman. These efforts of Mr. Turner 
were afterwards discontinued for lack of local sympathy and 



support ; and some time iippears to have elapsed before a zealous 
person from Manchester, named Whitwortb, began to visit the 
district, with the like object in view, but with hardly more 
success ; although the assistance of the Chester County Union 
had been enlisted for the benefit of the neighbourhood. 

A few years again passed away before anything permanent or 
regular was attempted towards the establishment of Independency 
at Bowdon. But owing to the liberality of some Christian 
friends, the little chapel at the foot of the Downs, formerly 
occupied by the followers of a clergyman who had seceded from 
the Church of England, was purchased on the Gth May, 1839, 
for £465. The cost of alteration, deed of settlement, i^c, raised 
this amount to £588. The Eevs. Dr. Raffles, of Liverpool ; ' 
S. Luke, of Chester ; and J. Turner, of Knutsford, preached at 
the dedication of the building on July 4th, 1839. In April, 
1840, the Eev. John Earnshaw became the first minister of the 
church, — the first Christian society consisting of ten members. 
We believe that his appointment was the result of the exertions 
of Mr. Ibbotson Walker, to whom also belongs the honour of 
founding and carrying on the Sunday School connected with the 
church. It was then held in a room in New Street, and only about 
40 children attended. In 1844, the Kev. Flavel Stenner became 
the second minister, and the first deacons were chosen in August 
of that year. Mr. Stenner subsequently resigned the charge, 
when it devolved on the Kev. John Wilkinson, who in the May 
of the following year " in the youth of his days," was summoned 
away by death. 

The increase of the population and the growing importance 
of the neighbourhood having rendered needful a larger and more 
commodious place of worship, many generous friends aided in the 
erection of a new church, which is the one now used by the 
Bowdon Downs Congregation, and wliich was opened in June, 
1848. Ill 1868 it was proposed to build another chapel at an 
outlay of £7,000 ; but insuperable difficulties arising in the 
acquisition of a site, it was determined to increase the accommo- 


dation with the means then at their disposal, which was done at 
a cost of about £3,000. The architecture of the enlargement was 
Gothic, of the early perpendicular period, in conformity with the 
style which prevailed in the rest of the building. The internal 
fittings are of stained wood, the pews are open, and altogether it 
is an exceedingly comfortable place of worship. The pulpit, 
which was put in at the time of the enlargement, is most elabor- 
ately and richly carved, and the book rest is supported by the 
figure of an angel with outspread wings. A new organ by 
Jardine, of Manchester, was opened in the same year, 1868, by 
the late honorary organist, Mr. J. Mills. Memorial windows have 
been placed to the memory of Mrs. Haworth, of Ecclesfield, and 
a tablet also records the many virtues of Mrs. William Milne, the 
first deaconess of the church. Referring once more to the pastors, 
in April, 1849, the office was accepted by the Rev. Henry 
Christopherson, from Newcastle-upon-Tyne. During Mr. 
Christopherson's pastorate the church increased both in numbers 
and energy, and it was therefore with regret that the church and 
congregation learnt from him that he had accepted the invitation 
to take the oversight of New College Chapel, London. Mr. 
Christopherson bade farewell to his people at Christmas, 1856, 
In May, 1857, the Rev. H. T. Eobjohns, B.A., Western College, 
Plymouth, accepted the pastorate. In March, 1861, Mr. Robjohns 
resigned his charge, proceeding to Newcastle-upon-Tyne. In the 
autumn of the year the choice of the church was unanimously in 
favour of the Rev. A. J. Morris, of Holloway ; and it determined 
to welcome Mr. Morris by clearing oft' the debt on the chapel 
and schools, which was accordingly done. The pastorate of Mr. 
Morris was, unfortunately, of brief duration. He was succeeded 
by the Rev. H. Giiffith, a man of sound learning and erudition, 
who resigned in 1875, after a pastorate of nearly 11 years. The 
Rev. A. Mackennal, B.A., received a most unanimous call and 
commenced his labours the first week in February, 1877. in 
1886 he was elected to the Chairmanship of the Congregational 
Union of England and Wales, and in the year following the 


degree of D.D. was conferred upon him by the Senate of Glasgow 
University. He is the author of various theological works, which 
display vivid grasp and far-reaching thought and erudition. 

The day and Sunday school had been carried on for nearly a 
dozen years in the old chapel at the foot of the Down.s, which was 
long felt to be most unsuitable for the purpose, the accommo- 
dation being wholly inadequate to the growth of the population, 
and the rooms badly ventilated, small and without class-rooms. 
It was therefore determined that new schools should be built. 
After great difficulty a site was secured in Oxford Eoad, Altrin- 
cham, which was then well-nigh inaccessible, there being no 
highway, and nothing but gardens surrounding it ; and the 
splendid structure known as the British School in Oxford Eoad, 
was erected in 1860, at a cost of X2,600, and was opened free of 
debt in January, 1861. For a long time the road to it was known 
as British School Eoad. Large class-rooms have since been added, 
and a class for adults, quite unique in its proportions, has for 
many years been admirably conducted by Mr. George Wood. A 
tablet in the main building bears the following interesting inscrip- 
tion : — "To the memory of Samuel Butler, for twenty-eight years 
superintendent, and seven years teacher, of the Sunday school 
meeting here ; this tablet is erected by his fellow officers, his 
fellow teachers, and the scholars, all of whom honour his fidelity 
and love to recall his name." Connected with this church, 
formerly only partially, but now entirely, is the North Cheshire 
Eural Mission, which, as its name implies, is carried on in the 
country districts. It has branches at Broadheath, Baguley, 
Hejhead, Mobberley, Partington, &c., and does good work in 
places where spiritual destitution is found to prevail. 

The British Schools were at first opened for preaching, but 
this was discontinued, when the Eev. A. Dewar opened the old 
chapel at the foot of the Downs. This may, strictly speaking, 
be called the commencement of the Altrincham Congregational 
Chapel. He was succeeded by the Eev. \V. B. MacWilliam. 
The desire for a more comfortable edifice was soon felt. The old 


Wesleyan Chapel in Chapel Walk, now All Saints', Regent Koad, 
was accordingly purchased from the Wesleyan body ; and on 
April 10th, 1868, the Rev. C. Aylard was ordained to the pastorate. 
Services are still conducted in the British schools. 

" Beautiful for situation " wrote the Psalmist of one of the 
most sacred spots on earth. " Beautiful for situation," too, are 
many of our own sacred places. Who can contemplate, 
without admiration, the beautiful setting which many a little 
village spire, peeping modestly out from the tufted trees, gives 
to the English landscape ? This may be appropriately applied 
to St. Margaret's. Few travellers as they are whirled through 
the valley on the Dunham side, in that reminder of an advanced 
civilization, the railway train, but turn for a momenb to look at 
that clear cut spire, which appears to be embosomed in a forest 
of vegetation. Few there are, as they have passed along the 
Dunham Road, who have not had their progress arrested for 
even a brief space by one of the most lovely pictures with which 
nature has so lavishly blessed this beautiful land. It is one in 
which pastoral and sylvan scenery are intermingled in one huge 
panorama. Right before us, buried in the valley, is Oldfield 
Hall, formerly the abode of perhaps one of the oldest Altrincham 
families, and under whose roof more than one of the members of 
the noble house of Booth have breathed their last. A little to the 
right we try to make out the ancient hall of Riddings, with its 
moated grange, supposed to have existed prior to the Conquest. 
Further away we see the spire of St. John the Divine at Brook- 
lands peering above the surrounding trees, — again to the left, 
the villas of Asbton-on-Mersey stud the ground, and the pretty 
church of St. Mary Magdalene is distinctly seen. Away again, 
and the Lancashire Hills form a massive and appropriate back- 
ground. Seen on a summer's day, when the meadows are pied 
with daisies, and nature has put on her loveliest apparel, when the 
sun shines down, and by a concentration of its rays produces 
those beautiful tints which throw a glamour over hill and dale, it 
is one which a lover of the picturesque dwells upon, and in its 
contemplation discovers new beauties. 


St. Margcaret's Church is certainly the most beautiful, both as 
regards exterior and interior, to be found in the district. Forty 
years ago or more, the Earl of Stamford and Warrington was 
desirous of having a church erected at Dunham Massey. We 
believe the site originally chosen was in Racefield, but this was 
subsequently changed and the present position decided upon. 
It was contemplated at that time that the church should be built 
of white bricks, with ashlar dressings, but before half the length of 
the foundations had been pat in the design was abandoned. After- 
wards competitive designs were furnished by three London and 
three Manchester architects. Mr. William Hayley, of Manchester, 
proved successful. 

The church which is estimated to have cost £20,000, adjoins 
the turnpike-road leading from Altrincham to Knutsford, and was 
consecrated on the 13th June, 1855, by the Lord Bishop of 
Chester. The style is the perpendicular, which prevailed in the 
fifteenth and the early part of the sixteenth century. The 
extreme length is 130 feet, and the width, exclusive of transepts, 
60 feet, and accommodation is provided for about 700 persons. 
The plan is cruciform, and comprises a lofty nave lighted from 
clerestory windows ; the north and south aisles are lighted by 
three-light windows, the tracery of which is of different designs ; 
and the chancel is lighted by nine windows, varying in size and 
design. The exterior is of Yorkshire stone, from the neighbour- 
hood of Sheffield, with ashlar stone dressings from Hollington, and 
the stone used in the interior is also from the same place. The roof 
of the nave is of oak open framed, with carved ribs and hammer 
beams, dependent from which are carved figures of angels. The 
spandrils are filled in with tracery. The whole of the internal 
fittings are of oak, and the pews have open ends. The Stamford 
chapel is on the south side, and it is lighted by two two-light 
windows, and entered by a private door. A lofty tower and spire 
rise at the intersection of the nave, transepts and chancel, from 
four moulded stone piers, to an altitude of 210 feet. The spire 
has enriched flying buttresses, and is surmounted by a cross. 


At the east end there is a large seven-light window, with 
embattled transoms and bold mullions. This window, which is 
filled with stained glass, is 30 feet by 14 feet, and contains 
beautifully executed representations. In the upper division is 
the Saviour, in the centre of a group of which St. John the Baptist, 
St. Matthew, St. Mark, St. Luke, St. John the Evangelist, and 
St. Peter are the chief figures. In the lower division St. Paul 
is the centre figure, and round him are to be seen some of the 
principal characters of the old dispensation — Moses, David, Isaiah, 
Jeremiah, David, and Malachi. The west window is divided into 
five compartments, filled in with tracery, and on the stained glass 
are depicted many of the prominent female characters of both Old 
and New Testaments. In the upper division are figured Mary 
Magdalene, ]\Iary mother of James, Mary mother of Jesus, Salome, 
and Elizabeth. In the lower division St. Margaret is in the 
centre, surrounded by Deborah, Ruth, Esther, and Dorcas, 
Under this window is a large doorway, with square head over a 
moulded arch. The spandrils are filled in with tracery, and finished 
with crockets, and finial. The other entrance is by means of a 
porch on the south side. The pulpit, reading desk, font, and 
reredos are of Caen stone, and the tracery and carving of all of 
them are finished in a most exquisite maimer. The lectern is of 
fine proportions, standing on four lions of iron. It has a massive 
twisted shaft of brass with a boss of iron, illuminated with vine 
leaves of polished brass ; the head or desk part is of stained oak. 
The reredos is di\dded into seven parts, answering to the seven 
light window above, each part has an enriched canopy, and three 
of the centre compartments project from and rise above the others, 
and are supported by richly traceried buttresses, with crockets 
and finials, the whole being surmounted by an enriched cornice, 
and Tudor flower battlement. At each end of this reredos is a 
niche, with rich canopies, crocketed pinnacles and finials, in which 
are placed splendidly carved figures on pedestals. The panels of 
the communion table are filled in with diapered carving in relief, 
consisting of crosses, Tudor rose fleur-de-lys, &c. The ceilings of 
the chancel and the Stamford chapel are divided into panels, with 


moulded ribs, and the tracery in the chancel is elaborately 
characteristic of the style, having a large boss in the centre com- 
partment and paterae at the intersection of the ribs. In the 
chancel are stained glass windows in memory of the Rev. John 
Kingsley, first vicar of the parish of St. Margaret's, which were 
placed there by the subscriptions of the congregation ; and with 
the surplus, augmented to the necessary amount, the architectural 
beauties of the chancel were enhanced by permanent decorations 
of a costly character. The aisles and the chancel floors are laid 
with polished stone and black marble diamond dots; and the floor in 
front of the altar is paved with encaustic tiles of a chaste design. 
The arrangements for lighting are novel, and have been perfected 
with strict regard to the requirements of the style of the church. 
The standards for the nave rise from the floor, with illuminated 
stems ; from these twisted shafts of wrought polished brass 
support four branches enriched with hammered foliage ; the 
branches again support groups of lights ; and above these round 
a central stem is a corona of metal work, having a circlet of stars 
of lights, The standards are arranged on each side of the nave, in 
advance of the piers, and all are visible, so that they produce a vista 
of light of singularly beautiful effect, in harmony with that archi- 
tectural vista of nave and aisles for which the mediteval buildings 
are so remarkable. From the nave the eye is carried on to the 
chancel, in which are two standards of larger proportion and 
richer detail, rising from solid stone bases The shafts have 
interlacing fretwork, picked out with colour and the branches 
are entwined with leaves of the passion flower and buds formed 
of crystallines When lighted, each standard presents a group of 
20 brilliant stars. In addition to the memorial windows already 
noticed, others have been put in by Mr, Sidebotham, of Bowdon, 
in memory of his father and mother; by the late Rev. R. Hodgson, 
in memory of his mother, Susan Ann Hodgson; by Charles Heaton 
Hinde, Esq., in gratitude to God for restoration from a serious 
illness ; to the memory of the late vicar, the Rev. R. Hodgson, 
and in memory of Mr. and Mrs. Allen, of Oldfield Hall, by 
of the family. 


The tower contains .a peal of ten bells weighing upwards of 
six tons. The tenor bell weighs nearly 28 cwt., and bears the 
following inscription : — 

As Queen of queens, Victoria reigns ; 
I sit as Queen o'er music's strains, 
And may her subjects loyal be 
As mine ! we dwell in harmony. 

The then Earl of Stamford and Warrington, patron of the 
living, for the purpose of endowing the church with a permanent 
provision, in addition to the pew rents, by an indenture dated 
March 30th, 1855, and made between him of the first part, Her 
Majesty's Commissioners for building new churches of the second 
part, and the Rev. George Heron, of Carrington, Samuel Holker 
Norris, David Reynolds Davies, Legh Richmond, of Guilsborough 
Park, Northamptonshire, and the Rev. John Kingsley, of Dunham, 
of the third part, declared his intention to provide £80 per annum, 
to be secured upon a competent part of the Earl's freehold estate 
in Cheshire ; and in satisfaction thereof, with the consent of the 
Commissioners, he had granted to those of the third part two 
several clear rent charges or annual sums of £43 15s. and £45, 
making together £88 15s. ; and to provide for the repiiirs of the 
church a yearly sum of £20, he had by the same indenture con- 
veyed a clear yearly rent charge of £21 18s. 2d. to the said 
persons. It was directed by the Commissioners that 200 sittings 
in the church should continue for ever to be free sittings, subject 
to the appropriation of any part thereof, as the Lord Bishop, for 
the time being, should legally direct. 

The first vicar of St. Margaret's, the Rev. John Kingsley, 
died on the 13th November, 1869, at the age of 60. He came 
to Bowdon in 1833 as curate to the Rev. W. H. G. Mann, Vicar 
of Bowdon, which position he held for about 20 years. On 
resigning, in 1854 the parishioners, as a mark of well deserved 
respect, presented him with the handsome sum of £1,500. The 
Earl of Stamford presented him with the living on the consecra- 
tion of St. Margaret's, and for a period of over 14 years he 



occupied this sphere. Through his efforts the schools attached 
to St. Margaret's were established, while he kept an immediate 
and vigilant supervision over the Albert Street Schools, and that 
at Oldfield. He was one of the leading spirits in connection with 
the Newtown night school, and one of his last acts was to write 
a form of prayer to be used in that school. His death was greatly 
lamented, as in the course of a long and active life he had been 
greatly beloved by all classes of society to whom he had endeared 
himself by his many good qualities. The Rev. E. Hodgson, his 
successor, entered upon his duties in January, 1870, and after 
a quarter of a century of earnest and disinterested labour he died 
March 14th, 1895. No one could fail to be impressed by his 
sincerity and singleness of purpose. There was a manliness 
about all he said and did which gained for him universal respect. 
His private hospitality was only exceeded by his open-handed 
charity in the poorer portions of his parish ; and in this he was 
ably supported by a noble band of workers. Through the liberality 
of Mr. J. H. Grafton the old Wesleyan Chapel in Eegent Road 
was purchased and altered, and licensed by the Bishop of the Diocese 
for divine service under the name of All Saints. Services were also 
commenced and carried on at Dunham "Woodhouses. Mr. Hodgson 
was succeeded in May, 1895, by the Venerable Charles Maxwell 
Woosnam who is M. A. of Trinity College, Dublin. He was ordained 
deacon in 1879 and priest in 1880. He was chaplain of the mission 
to seamen atPenarth, 1879-1880, and on theTyne from 1880 tol881, 
in which year he was appointed Vicar of St. Peter's, Tynemouth, 
which he resigned in 1888. He was Rector of Kirkby "Wiske, 
Yorkshire, and in 1890 chaplain of the Mersey Mission to Seamen, 
which he resigned on his presentation to the lining of St. 
Margaret's. He was appointed Archdeacon of Macclesfield in 
1893. The Patrons are the Trustees of the Earl of Stamford and 
Warrington. The net income is returned at £400 per annum, and 
the population 3,253. 

St. John's Church, which is situated in Ashley Road, was 
built for the working classes, and was originally styled " the 


Poor Man's Church." The movement for its erection took an 
active form in April, 1864, when an influential committee of 
clergy and laity was appointed for the purpose of carrying out 
the object in view. The site was given by the then Earl of 
Stamford and Warrington, and had previously been a farmstead. 
The Senior Curate of the Parish Church of Bowdon, the Rev. F. 
Wainwright, M.A., was appointed its incumbent; and in 1865, 
while the church was being built, services were held in the 
British School, so as to collect a congregation from the district 
around. The school was kindly lent by the trustees, and was 
specially licensed by the Bishop of Chester for the purpose. 
Mr. Wainwright, was a scholar of Trinity College, Cambridge, 
B.A.,1860; M. A., 1861; Deacon, 1861; Priest, 1862. He was curate 
of St. Jude's, Liverpool, 1861 ; Christ Church, Everton, Liverpool, 
1863; St. Mark's, Kirkdale, 1864 ; Bowdon 1864-1866. 

The church, which was designed by Mr. Medland Taylor, of 
Manchester, is in the early English style of architecture. It has 
a broad nave of five bays, with north and south aisles, and north 
south transepts. The seats are of stained pitch pine, and there 
are 940 sittings, of which 470 in the body of the church are free. 
There is a large gallery over the west entrance for the accommo- 
dation of the Sunday scholars. The edifice externally is of free 
stone, and the spire is a very handsome one. The total cost, 
including the endowment, was about £7,500. The living is in 
the gift of the Bishop of Chester ; the gross income £500 and 
house, and the population is returned at 5,952. Near the church 
are erected National Schools, a substantial parsonage, and a parish 
room ; and in Islington Street, Newtown, is an infant school. 

The boundaries of the parish are as follow : — Taking Bowdon 
Station, which is entirely within the parish, as a starting point, 
the boundary line travels up the middle of the Downs for some 
distance, when it turns down St. John's Road, and then up 
Delamer Road, and round by a new road into Ashley Road, thus 
surrounding Albert Square and Culcheth New Hall. It then fol- 
lows the middle of Ashley Road right through Peel Causeway and 


over the railwcay, till it turns aside at a stile and crosses the fields 
into Dob Lane, which it follows up to Hale Road. Then from the 
top of the Hill it comes back by the way of Hale Road, till it 
turns to the right by a road and footpath leading to Hale Moss, 
opposite the end of Broomfield Lane. On the Moss there were 
two stones set up on purpose to mark the boundary line, which 
travels through the middle of the Moss along the bank of a 
brook vrhich formerly ran into Moss Lane. From this last point 
the line goes up Denmark Street, and arrives again at the back 
of the station, where it began, by crossing the Goose Green Bridge. 
The circuit thus traced includes about 330 acres, but it has been 
somewhat modified by the inclusion of Broomfield Lane and Peel 
Causeway in the new district of St. Peter's. 

St. Elizabeth's, Newtown, was erected as a chapel of ease to 
St. John's in 1890. The site was presented by Mr. W. J. 
Crossley, of Glenfield, and another generous gift of £1,000 was 
made by the family of the late Mr. G. Lord, of Ashton-on-^Iersey, 
in memory of their father. The architect was Mr. John 
Macnamara, and the contractors Messrs. W. Lambert and Son, 
Hale Eoad, Bowdon. 

An antiquated structure, nearly facing the Ashley Eoad, 
which had in the first place given the Congregationalists a local 
habitation, if not a name, was destined in 1867, after the removal 
of the Altrincham congregation, to become the temporary home of 
Scotch Presbyterianism, for which good cause was shown by the 
residence of many Presbj'terian families at Bowdon. On the 2.5th 
January, 1869, the Rev. W. T. Johnson, B.A., was ordained the 
first minister. In the following year (1870) his congregation 
began to look about for a site for a new church, which they 
secured in Delamer Road, and which is known to old Altrin- 
chamites as the " Radish field." The site was in every respect an 
eligible one ; and the work of building, which was forthwith 
begun, was completed in 1872. The church, which is called 
Trinity Presbyterian Church, is an ornament to the neighbour- 


hood, is in the Gothic style of architecture, without any of the 
defects which are usually associated with that style. There is a 
tower at the north-west corner 1 20 feet high. The interior has 
a most comfortable appearance, and is well suited to the wants 
of a congregation, which has assumed important dimensions in 
the course of a few years. The total cost of the church, with a 
spacious lecture hall adjoining, was about £7,000. After a 
pastorate of 17 years, the Rev. W. T. Johnston resigned in 1886, 
principally through overwork and ill-health, on which occasion 
his congregation evinced their regard by presenting him with an 
illuminated address and a purse of one hundred guineas. After 
a somewhat long interval he was succeeded by the Rev. R. T. 
Cunningham, whose shockingly sudden death at a meeting of 
the Presbyterian Synod in Manchester, was greatly deplored, and 
created a great sensation in the town and district. The present 
minister is the Rev. AVilson Cowie. Among the agencies con- 
nected with the church is the Victoria Street Mission, which has 
been productive of great good, and is in a flourishing condition. 

In 1872 this old chapel was taken in hand by another religious 
denomination (Baptist), which was introduced by the Manchester 
and Salford Baptist Union. The first pastor was the Rev. H. J. 
Betts, and 26 persons formed the church spiritual. Its con- 
stitution is " Baptist, with open Communion," and the seats are 
free. In 1878, the number of members having increased to nearly 
100, the foundation stones of a new chapel and schools, erected in 
Hale Road from the designs of Mr. William Owen, a rising young 
architect, were laid and carried out under his superintendence, 
the chief contractor being Mr. J. Pennington, of Bowdon. The 
building is Italian in character, and aftords accommodation for 
nearly 500 persons. 

The Roman Catholic Chapel of St. Vincent de Paul, is a small 
Gothic building in New Street, and will seat nearly 400 people. 
There are day schools in connection with it. For many years 
the Rev. H. Aloock laboured most assiduously, but ultimately had 
to retire in consequence of failing health. He was succeeded by 
the Rev. James O'Brien, who has laboured with much acceptance. 



The only other important dissenting body is that of the 
Primitive Methodists, who for several years worshipped in the loft 
over a stable in Newtown. By the exercise of much self-denial 
and energy, they erected the neat little chapel in Oxford Road, 
which is now free from debt. 

St. Peter's Church, Peel Causeway, is intended to meet the 
wants of a rapidly growing district, and the wisdom of the pro- 
moters in erecting an edifice of a suitable and worthy character 
has been fully justified. On June 16th, 1892, the church was 


dedicated by Dr. Jayne, Bishop of Chester; and formally con- 
secrated by the same prelate February 10th, 1897. The total cost 
was £6,155. Towards this sum Richard Hampson Joynson, Esq., 
J. P., and the members of his family were munificent contributors. 
Mr. Joynson also subscribed the sum of £40 per annum as the 
nucleus of an endowment. The Rev. J. R. Brunskill is the minister 
in charge of the parish, and its flourishing condition bears ample 
testimony to his assiduity and loving care. 


More looks into old hojks — Visit of strolling ■players — Disappearance of 
town documents — Appointment of town's attorney — Wages a century 
ago — Disturbances in Altrincham— Another Altrincham Industry — 
The fire engine — The old handcuffs — A jury list — The expenses of 
the great well — Altrincham highways indicted — Hard times ; a 
display of public spirit — The select vestry — Extracts from the books ; 
a stray parcel of glares — How the town got a sun dial — Suhsiitules 
for the Militia — Disrespect Jor proclamations — A worthy overseer — 
Dread of hydrophobia, &c. 

WE have looked at Altrincham in nearly all its aspects — 
social, historical, and romantic. We will now deal 
briefly with some of the more domestic phases of its 
existence as a country town. The general minute book available 
for this purpose commences in June, 1795. This appears to be 
the first kept by the authorities, but there is some little doubt 
existing owing to the fact that a company of strolling players 
once visited the town. They were allowed to place the boxes con- 
taining their " properties " in the little building which then served 
as a courthouse. When they departed they took along with them a 
few of the boxes containing the town accounts, to the extreme 
regret of those who had been entrusted with their safe keeping. 
That the minute book is the first may be inferred from the fact 
that one of the entries at the opening meeting, records " that a 
town's meeting be held in the Court house till further orders, at 
ten o'clock in the forenoon of the first Tuesday in every month, 
without any further or any notice." At the succeeding monthly 
meeting, the town resolved to indulge in the luxury of a lawyer, 
or rather firm of lawyers ; but, it appeared afraid of showing its 
full blown dignity in perfection, for it states "that when an 
attorney is necessary to be employed by the overseer, that 
Messrs. Isaac and George Worthington be employed for Altrin- 


cham, when they will undertake to be so employed." There was 
then no resident magistrate, and the overseer had often to journey 
to Toft and Knutsford in order to lay informations, ask advice, 
and get confirmation of rates ; or as they are invariably called 
in the books, "leys." Soon afterwards we find a prospect of 
employment for the Messrs. Worthington. It was " ordered that 
as Matthew Davies, though he receives eight shillings a week 
wages, refuses to pay one and sixpence towards his wife and 
child's support, that the overseer do apply to the magistrates to 
compel him to pay the above weekly sum, or that he be dealt 
with according to law." At the same meeting, it was " ordered 
that ten shillings be jxiid to Thomas Slater, for his loss of rent by 
the house late held by Wm. Holt standing empty." Those must 
indeed, have been halcyon days for the landlords, and no doubt a 
few in our degenerate age will, in this respect, sigh for a return 
of " the good old times." 

Riots, as minor disturbances were termed, were not frequent, 
but the manner in which Saturday night was sometimes spent is 
illustrated by the fact that informations were ordered to be lodged 
before "John Leigh, Esq., of Oughtrington, against William 
Johnson, of Altrincham, turner, Charles Eov^fbottom, of Altrin- 
chara, shoemaker, William Eoyle, of Altrincham, gardener, 
Josaph Warburton, of Timperley, labourer, and John Ogden, of 
BoUington, wool-comber, for rioting and fighting in ye public 
street in Altrincham, on Saturday, the 30 oh day of April last, 
(1796) and that the constables do proceed accordingly." In the 
minute book the word "chairmaker" is crossed out after Johnson's 
name, and it may be inferred from this that chairmaking prob- 
ably formed an Altrincham industry at that period. The prose- 
cution of these men was not undertaken without due deliberation ; 
and Mr. Leigh, of Oughtrington, advised that they be proceeded 
against, and the constables were directed to take steps accordingly. 
As a further warning, it was ordered that " advertisements be 
printed making public this resolution, that others may be deterred 
from offending in like manner." The handcufls, however, do 



not appear to have been called into frequent requisition, but with 
a view to eventualities, the constables were instructed to have 
them examined " by a whitesmith, and if they can be properly 
repaired, to get them so repaired— if not, the constables are 
ordered to purchase a new pair of handcuffs." The overseers had 
not then an assistant who could relieve them of the drudgery of 
their duties, and at times much difficulty was experienced in 
securing a proper audit of the accouats. The salary usually 
allowed was £20, but in some instances as much as £25 was paid. 
There was a fire engine in the town in 1798, but no regular 
brigade of firemen. It was ordered to be worked four times a 
year, and five shillings was allowed each time to get men to 
assist in working it. At this period we come across a list (the 
only one given) of persons qualified to serve on juries in the 
township of Altrincham, October 1st, 1798, as returned by Joshua 
Ashcroft and Walter Watson, constables. It will form interesting 
matter for comparison at the present time : — 

William Rigby, Esq. 
John Clough 
Thomas Hancock 
Peter Adshead 
J. Brundrett 
Wm. Pearson 
John Darbyshire 
Is. Grantham 
John Atherton 
Robert Twamlow 
Samuel Haslam 
Josiah Garner 
John Burgess 
Oswd. Leicester 
Joseph Goulden 
Samuel Hardy 
Wm. Pownall 
Jos. Burgess 
John Brierley 
Willm. Ashley 
Jams. Brownell 
Jams. Cluloe 
John Austin 
Wm. Smith 
Vernon Poole 

Robt. Mills 
Timothy Brownell 
Thos. Royle 
Wm. Howard 
Samuel Howard 
Geo. Ecoles 
Thomas Slater 
James Broom 
Samuel Royle 
George Lupton 
Wm. Grantham 
Aaron Brundrett 
Thomas Ashley 
.John Newall 
Isaac Birch 
Jlichl. Lupton 
Jams. Walthew 
Frederick Boardman 
John Holden 
James Gratrix 
Peter Bailey 
Samuel Lucas 
David Gatley 
AVillm. Seddon 
James Potter 


For a, long period subsequently there appears to have been 
nothing but routine business transacted at the town's meetings ; 
but la the year 1800 the constables were ordered to "cause three 
painted boards to deter vagrants from harbouring in the town, to 
be fixed upon John Burgess's house, John Pickstone's house, and 
the Unicorn Stables, and that the constables do search and 
examine the lodging-houses, and use their best endeavours to 
prevent their harbouring in the town." This had only a temporary 
effect, and on several occasions various measures were devised 
for ridding the town of the vagrant nuisance, and lodging-house 
keepers were threatened with indictment if they offended. The 
deputy constables were empowered, where necessary, to relieve 
vagrants provided with passes, prevent them acquiring settlement, 
or take them before the magistrates as they might deem necessary. 
At a later period, watchmen paraded the streets in the day time 
to prevent these unwelcome strangers from coming into the town. 
The meetings were convened by the various officials. For instance, 
if the constables required any authority to take proceedings, 
they requested the bellman to convene a meeting, and so with 
the overseers. It is seldom we find the surveyors of highways 
doing this, but it was obvious that at times the inhabitants were 
required to " mend their ways." At a town's meeting held in 
July, 1802, it was " resolved that the surveyors be desired to 
purchase stones to pave the road to Ashley and the Long Lane 
as far as lies in Altrincham division, and that they procure a ley 
of sixpence in the pound to be allowed at a privy sessions, and 
to be assessed on ye inhabitants and owners and occupiers of land 
in Altrincham for the purchasing stones for such paving, and that 
when the said ley is expended, a further ley of threepence in the 
in the pound be assessed and got allowed, and that the remainder 
of the money wanted for the above purpose be borrowed on a note, 
to be signed by some of the principal inhabitants of Altrincham, 
which shall be repaid out of the next money raised for the repairs 
of the highways." It took upwards of four years to do the work, 
and it must have been much more expensive than at first contem- 


plated, several rates having to be obtained for that purpose. 
The accounts of the surveyor at this period contain a list of pay- 
ments "respecting the great well." This was situated in Well 
Lane (now Victoria Street), at the corner of Springfield Road, 
and was a spring of running water, clear as crystal, and from this 
the inhabitants derived the greatest portion of their supply, 
although there were two or three other wells in difi'erent parts of 
the town. The "great well " was, however, of some importance, 
as the amount paid for its repairs to various parties at one time 
was £13 Os. 4d. 

The lands of the poor house were at this time productive ; 
and Mr. Leicester, as trustee, having a balance in his hands " of 
£16, or thereabouts," it was resolved that he be desired to pay 
the same to Mr. Eobert Twemlow, the overseer, for the use of the 
poor of Altrincham. 

In the course of the next few years the entries of disturbances 
in the town are more frequent, and in some cases the constables 
were assaulted. The offenders were invariably ordered to be 
indicted, after the advice of a magistrate had been sought thereon. 
Several cases were compromised on their paying certain amounts ; 
entering into recognizances to keep the peace for stated periods, 
and signing acknowledgments to be "advertised in the public 
papers," the latter fact indicating that nearly ninety years ago, the 
press was beginning to be looked upon as a power in the land. 
Something out of the ordinary course of things occurred in June, 
1814, when a public meeting was summoned in hot haste, with 
the following result : — 

"Whereas, several persons made a great noise and disturbance 
in the town last night, and in several instances did considerable 
mischief, ordered that the constables do use their best exertions 
to discover who the parties were, and that they do prosecute 
them at the expense of the town in case sufficient evidence can 
be obtained ; and the constables are hereby authorized to give a 
reward of five guineas to any person or persons who will come 


forward to give evidence that shall lead to a conviction of the 
offenders — it being understood that such reward shall be in lieu 
of that which has been offered by Mr. Salmon and Mr. Lupton 
this day." 

It was just possible that this was the outcome of a drunken 
frolic in which the participators went much further than they 
intended. There does not appear to be any payment of any 
reward made, so that the perpetrators of the mischief escaped 
scot free. 

In 1815 a presentment was made at the Quarter Sessions on 
the shocking state of the roads in Altrincham A largely attended 
town's meeting directed the Surveyor to appear and submit to 
the presentment, and " that he request the attendance of two of 
the magistrates to view the roads and to approve of the mode to 
be taken for their amendment, and that Mr. Barratt, ]\Ir. Hardey, 
Mr. Gratrix Mr. Hugo Worthington, and Mr. Isaac Harrop, 
with the surveyor, be appointed a committee to meet the magis- 
trates and to advise on the best mode to be taken for the repair 
of the said roads," &c. This would seem to imply an ex- 
haustion on the part of the town which it has not probably 
experienced since. Taxes of all descriptions were oppressive, 
as also were the rates levied for the relief of the poor. 
The succeeding winter was " a hard one," and a meeting 
was specially called in December, 1816, to consider the position 
of affairs. Occasionally it had been found necessary to subscribe 
for periods of scarcity. The Rev. Oswald Leicester, minister of 
St. George's Chapel, as it was then termed, presided, and the 
first resolution affirmed " that the pressure of the times renders it 
necessary that relief should be extended to the resident poor 
within the township of Altrincham, in addition to the usual 
payments from the poor rates." The second resolution gave it as 
the opinion of the meeting that the best mode of affording 
such relief would be to provide as much work as possil)le for such of 
the poor as were out of employ, "and also by purchasing provisions 
out of a fund to be raised by public subscription and selling the 


same to the .aforesaid poor at a reduced price, care being taken 
in avoiding as much as may be those articles of food which are 
the dearest." Other resolutions provided for the appointment of 
a committee to superintend the raising and distribution of sub- 
scriptions for the employment of the poor " in opening the drains 
and making good the roads on Hale Moss," and in the repairing 
of the highways, and each individual in the town was recom- 
mended " to create as much employment for the labouring poor 
as possible." Four years afterwards the canal was frozen over, and 
on that occasion, as the poor could not pay the high price at 
which coals were sold which were carted from the pits, tho Over- 
seer was authorized to purchase such coals as might be necessary, 
a'ld to sell them to the poor "at the price of eightpence per 
hundredweight, taking care that no family do have more than 
two hundred at one time or within the same week, unless under 
special circumstances." It will be seen from this that there was 
no lack of public spirit in the town. 

Although at times the authorities having the management of 
affairs had to be indicted, or threatened with indictment, for not 
having the footpaths kept in proper repair, there are evidences 
all through the book of a desire for progress and improvement. 
Considering the difficulties under which they laboured, it is not 
to be wondered at that progress was slow. With a small popula- 
tion the burthen thrown on the few was heavj', and often the 
funds raised by the leys proved inadequate for attaining the 
object in view. The discretion allowed the officials was such as 
could not always admit of being wisely exercised, and for some 
years prior to the formation of a Select Vestry for dealing with 
the poor, a special committee was appointed to superintend the 
overseer, investigate his accounts, and to regulate the relief given 
to the poor. The overseers were ordered to make up their 
accounts quarterly and lay them before the committee, which 
was empowered to publish the names of all persons receiving 
relief in such manner as might be deemed proper. This was only 
the prelude to a more regularly constituted body, a Select 



Vestry, alluded to in the next chapter, which was formed in 1822. 
Their accounts were settled at different town's meetings. The 
town progressed to such a degree in the course of a few years 
that it was enabled to engage a qualified man as surveyor, and the 
salary of the deputy constable was made up to £30, out of which 
he had to pay an assistant. The latter portion of the book is 
taken up almost entirely by records of the proceedings of the 
Select Vestry, but there are scattered up and down characteristic 
entries which will be read with interest : — 

"7th June, 1796. Ordered that the overseer of the poor with 
John Burgess's assistance do immediately take an exact 
inventory of a parcel of gloves, &c., directed for the overseer 
of Altrincham, and this day produced to the meeting, and that 
the overseer do take care thereof until he receives further 
directions from a town's meeting." 
" 6th December, 1796. Ordered that the overseer do advertise 
the parcel of gloves in his hands suppos'd to be the property 
of Mr. Thomas Taylor, and if not owned, that he dispose of 
them for the town's use." 
" 23rd July, 1797. Ordered that Aaron Brundrctt be directed to 
sell a quantity of gloves now in his hands, supposed to belong 
to Thomas Taylor, now in the poor house, and that he place 
the produce to the credit of ye town in his accounts." 

"29th April, 1802. Ordered that James Potter having in his 
hands as a former constable 16s. Id., he do pay over ye same 
to the overseer of the poor. — Ordered that as the late con- 
stables have applied to John Leigh Esq., respecting their 
accounts, that IMr. Leicester, Mr. Hardey and Mr. Burgess be 
requested to wait on Mr. Leigh to state what they know 
respecting their accounts and do get Mr. Leigh to settle the 
same.— Ordered that in future the constables do not collect 
money by a ley, but that orders be made at town's meetings 
upon the overseer for what money may be propei for the con- 


7th June, 1803. Resolved that the constables be directed to take 
the necessary steps to apprehend any jDerson who may be 
guilty of tearing or pulling from the Court House any procla- 
mations or papers affixed thereto by or by order of the 

" 21st April, 1807. Eesolved that the thanks of the meeting be 
given to Mr. Robert Twemlow for his essential services to the 
township as overseer of the poor for four years past, and that 
he be requested to instruct Thomas Bradbury in the said 
office, and that Thomas Bradbury be allo\Yed for the ensuing 
year the salary of ten pounds, and that it shall depend upon 
his activity and good conduct in his office, whether he shall 
be allowed a further sum of five pounds, or not and that Mr. 
Twemlow is not to have any salary." 

" 8th June, 1813. The overseers having laid before this meeting 
the accounts of the expenses of providing two substitutes in 
the Cheshire militia in the place of Ballantine and Parker, 
to whose families large sums were payable weekly by this 
township, which expenses and the bounty paid to the substi- 
tutes amount to ninety-one pounds and eightpence, towards 
which Mr. Twemlow has advanced the sum of £79 2s. 8d., 
ordered that the overseers be allowed the said expenses in his 
accounts, and that he do repay to Mr. Twemlow the money 
advanced by him with interest thereon until the same shall 
be repaid." 

"15th July, 1813. John Boardman having proposed to make a 
new sundial on the Court House upon a mahogany inch- 
board for two pounds ten shillings, and to be inspected when 
done by any competent judge, and if defective in any respect, 
nothing to be paid for it, ordered that John Boardman's pro- 
posal be accepted." 

" 31st January, 1814. It ai^pearing that one man is wanted for 
this town in the Royal Congleton Regiment of Local Militia, 
ordered that the constable do provide a substitute, provided 


one can lie obtained for two guineas, which the overseer is 
hereby directed to pay." 

' 1816. Agreed at a public town's meeting held this ninth day 
of December, 1816, in the Court House, Altrincham, . . . 
that such persons mthin the said township, who are liable to 
be balloted for to-morrow, to serve in the militia, and who 
shall subscribe ten shillings a piece, to be deposited in the 
hands of Mr. William Ashley, to be applied by him, with the 
assistance of Mr. Nathaniel Pass, in hiring substitutes for 
such of the said subscribers of ten shillings a piece, as may 
then be balloted, shall be freed from any further sums on that 
account ; and that the surplus money, if any, wanted to hire 
such substitutes of ten shillings a piece shall be paid by the 
overseers of the poor, and be allowed by them in their 

oth February, 1822. It hanng been stated to this meeting that 
the surveyors of the highways are repairing with hard material 
the back lane leading from the Navigation Inn to Jeremy's o' 
th' Brook, ordered that the surveyors are hereby instructed 
not to proceed in repairing that road with hard materials." 

•23rd April, 1822. It is the unanimous opinion of this meeting 
that it is expedient to appoint a select vestry for managing 
the concerns of the poor of this township, pursuant to the pro- 
visions of the 59th George the Third, chapter 12." 

' 18th May, 1824. At a public meeting of the inhabitants of the 
township of Altrincham, held in the Court House, for the pur- 
pose of considering the best means of putting a stop to the 
alarming increase of mad dogs in this neighbourhood, and 
which meeting was convened by public notices affixed upon 
public places within the town, and also by proclamation by 
the bellman .... resolved that in the oiunion of this 
meeting that all dogs kept by the inhabitants of Altrincham 
should not be permitted to go at large, but kept confined 
within the buildings or yards of the owners until the first 


September next, and that all clogs found at large after due 

notice subsequent to this day and until first September next 

should be destroyed." 

There are two other volumes of minute books, one of which 
is taken up entirely by the proceedings of the Select Vestry, 
and the other by the operations of the inspectors under the 
Lighting and Watching Act, both of which will be found referred 
to in the next chapter. 


Descrijjtion of Allrincham aiul Boivdon 60 years ago — The old Market 
Place ; its ancient cross, lock-vps, and star chamber — Higher Tmcn 
hoys V. those of Loioer Toivn — The town field — An Altrincham 
Carnival — The loyalty of the town — The first Altrincham under- 
taker — Altrincham woolcombers and their Bishop Blaize festival — 
Boicdon lull baiters, and Altrincham cockfighters—Salt icorks at 
Dunham — The destruction of small birds — The churchwardens and 
their duties— Formation of the Altrincham Poor Laiv Union ; the old 
workhouse and its management — Cutting of the Bowdon line — Lloyd's 
Hospital — Introduction of coal gas into Altrincham — Formation of 
the Gas Company ; negotiations for the purchase of the woi-ks and 
their results— Altrincham and Bowdon Literary Institution; the 
Altrincham and Bowdon Local Boards ; Free Library and Technical 
Schools— Royal Visit — Altrincham Parliamentary Division, members 
past and present ; the Electric Light, dc. 

THIS chapter opens with a sketch of Altrincham and Boivdon 
half a century or so ago. The reader will therefore take 
a walk with us in imagination, while some of their 
peculiarities are described. Meeting, say, in the old ]\Iarket Place, 
we find that it is called the Market Place still, though most of its 
landmarks have disappeared. In the centre formerly stood a 
small " public," known to posterity as the Roundabout House ; 
and almost under its shadow were the old lock-ups, or dungeon, 
through the barred windows of which the prisoners con- 
fined therein could be seen. These unfortunates were objects 
of great curiosity to the children, who, ^rith bated breath and 
timid mien, peered in at them on their way to school ; while to 
their intimate friends they were the olijects of much tender soli- 
citude, as they frequently received, through the medium of pipes 
and straws, surreptitious supplies of beverages, which were sup- 
posed to lighten the gloom of their prison house, and raise their 


sjjirits for the hour of trial. Those more favoured hy wealth and 
position, who might by mischance come within the clutches of the 
local Dogberry, could, by the judicious bestowal of a small sum, 
avail themselves of the privileges of the " star chamber," which 
was an upstairs room in an adjacent publichouse, and where they 
could have the creature comforts they required. Usually, the 
zealous constable removed the clothes of the prisoners while con- 
fined in the " star chamber ;" but they in some cases have been 
kno'\vn to effect their escape in the garb which nature provided 
for man in his state of innocency, to the great consternation of 
the not overwatchful gaoler. Near the lock-uj)s were the stocks, 
an old form of punishment which might be revived to advantage 
in some cases in the present day ; and near this again was the 
ancient Market Cross, which was approached by five or six stone 
steps, similar to those in the other market towns of Cheshire. 
This cross stood for about 100 years after having been "rebuilt and 
made new" in 1730, by order of the Eight Hon. George, Earl of 
Warrington, who gave five pounds towards this object. On pain 
of a fine of 3s 4d., all sellers of cheese and butter were com- 
pelled to bring their produce to the Cross before selling, and 
no shojjkeeper or forestallcr was, in any instance, to buy any 
in his or her shop, and not at the Cross before two o'clock in 
the day, when the townsfolk had supplied their wants. Shop- 
keepers have been fined for breaches of this regulation, and others 
ordered to be indicted at the sessions. But roundabout house, 
lock-ups, stocks, and cross are all gone. The old lock-ups were 
succeeded by a more seciu-e building, in George Street (now used 
as a meeting house) which, in its turn, gave place to the more con- 
venient and conspicuous edifice in Dunham Eoad. 

Church Street took its name from the fact of St. George's 
Church being built in the vicinity ; and a little way down were 
the Town Fields. These fields were then more appropriately 
named, as they were used for a variety of purposes. Here the 
youthful sons of Altrincham mot to settle their little difterences. 
They were divided into two factions — Higher Town boys and 


Lower Town boys — and they were animated with deadly 
animosity, the Ixattles royal which often ensued being long and 
loudly contested. It was in the immediate neighbourhood, too, 
some 60 or 70 years ago, that an outburst of loyalty worthy of 
the good old town took place. It occurred" at a time when Wel- 
lington had dri\en the French out of the Peninsula, and Napoleon 
had been overthrown by the allies at the battle of Leipsic. A 
town's meeting was called, and it was the unanimous opinion 
that a — 

General rejoicing should take place in consequence of the recent glorious 
news and the present state of public affairs, and at the adjournment of this 
meeting it be considered what mode shall be adopted for that purpose, so 
as to give the most general joy and satisfaction. 

At the adjournment it was decided that — 

A subscription be opened for a bon-fire and fireworks, on the evening 
of Monday next, in the Bowling Green field ; and that Mr. Race, Mr. 
Collier, Mr. Reddish, and Mr. Barratt be requested to undertake the 
management of them, with the assistance of the constables ; and that the 
bon-fire be lighted at five o'clock in the evening and be extinguished at ten 
o'clock, and that the fireworks begin at seven o'clock. 

That a public dinner be held at the Bowling Green Inn, on Monday 
next, at two o'clock, for wliich tickets shall be taken at 12s. each, on or 
before Saturday next, and that Mr. Race, Mr. Collier, Mr. Reddish and 
jSIr. Barratt be requested to undertake the management of the dinner. 

That a subscription be now opened for the purposes aforesaid (exclusive 
of the dinner), and be paid to Mr. Barrett, with whom the paper shall be 
left for further subscriptions. 

That the Rev. Oswald Leicester be requested to take the cliair at the 

The town was justly entitled to celebrate this red-letter epoch 
in our coiuitry's history in a manner befiting the occasion. It 
had always done its duty loyally. So early as 179G we find the 
inhabitants meeting in pvu'suance of an Act of Parliament for 
"raising a certain number of men in the several counties in Eng- 
land for the service of His Majesty's army and navy." 
Altrincham had to provide, jointly with Agden, three men ; and 
it was decided that a general subscription should be entered into 
for the relief of any poor man who might be drawn in the ballot, 


the balance required being paid out of the town's rates. Any 
person not entering the subscription was not entitled to any relief. 
In 1803, seven men were required, "five and a half" from Altrin- 
cham and " one and a half" from Ashley. Five men were hired 
at a cost of £25 18s. 6d. each, and two by John Mills and John 
Barratt at a cost of £21 10s. each. Towards the total amount, 
Ashley paid £36 19s. \0U\., John Mills and John Barratt £4;i, 
and Altrincham the balance. In some towns each person had to 
find a substitute out of his own purse, or go to the wars himself ; 
so that in this town a very sensible course was adopted whereby 
the rich came to the aid of their less favoured brethren. The 
lieges of Altrincham thoroughly enjoyed themselves on the occa- 
sion, the ends of several barrels being knocked in, in order that the 
beer might the more readily be got at, and become the means of 
diffusing " general joy and satisfaction." The Bowling Green Inn 
has long since been converted into a private dwelling. 

Eeturning to the town proper, the visitor would have looked 
for Stamford Street in vain. The site was covered with gardens. 
A short cut into Lower Town was eflected by means of a narrow 
roadway near, known as the " Hollow Bonk " or Bank ; but the 
thoroughfare was by Windy harbour (afterwards called King 
Street, then High Street, finally Market Street), and down Shaw's 
Lane. In those days news had to be carried by post chaise, and 
it was no uncommon thing for the shafts of some rapidly driven 
vehicle to be sent into the door of one of the large mansions in 
Market Street in the attempt to get into Church Street. It ■^^•as 
not until a fatal accident occurred that the more direct route into 
Dunham Eoad was made by Brooks' Bank. Pursuing our way 
through the " narrows " and down Shaw's Lane we arri\e in 
George Street, then a cobble or kidney i)aved length, containing 
a number of thatched cottages and two or three farm houses. 
What is now Moss Lane was then styled Ham Lane. Lower 
down was Well Street, so called from a large well which was 
situated near the Literary Institution, and from which the 
inhaliitants pumped a portion of their daily supply of ^vater. 


The Malt Shovels Inn was a barn, and the not very salubrious 
region of Police Street is still familiarly known as back o'th' barn. 

Retracing our steps into George Street, we pass Beggar's 
Square, which consisted of one or two neat-looking white-washed 
cottages. A little higher up was a farm house, the occupier of 
which has some claim to the notice of posterity. He was named 
Michael Drinkwater, and may fairly be set on a pedestal of his 
own as the iirst Altrincham undertaker ! He had three horses — 
Bobbie, Mettle, and Boxer, and he very generously gave the 
services, when required, of one of these \aluable quadrupeds to 
cU-aw the parish hearse, the only one which the town possessed — 
to Bowdon. " Goose green," as the name will imply, was formerly 
the assembling place for numerous flocks of these toothsome 
creatures, which were allowed to roam at large on Hale Moss, 
and the feeding of which formed a very profitable branch of 
business to several of the inhabitants. 

The mention of business leads us to digress a little to describe 
a custom once kept up in Altrincham, but which, like many 
others, has long since died out. This is the festival of St. Blaise, 
or more projjerly Blasius, and it will enable us to realize to some 
extent the meaning of the phrase we meet with in directories that 
" Altrincham formerly enjoyed a considerable trade in woollen 
yarn." St. Blasius was a bishop of Sebaste, in Ai-menia, and 
suftered martyrdom a.d. 316. He is the patron saint of the craft 
of woolcombers, and his name was once considered potent in 
ciu-ing sore throats. There were a large number of woolcombers 
in Altrincham, some of the masters employing as many as 30 men, 
and the Bishop Blaise festival was often celebrated with great 
splendour. The procession was headed by a band of music, and, 
surroimded by guards, were a King and a Queen, Jason, and the 
Princess l\Iedea, the principal figure being the Bishop himself, 
furnished with a pastoral crook, and attended by his chaplain. 
Following these were shepherds, shepherdesses, swains attired in 
bright green, and woolcombers wearing old-fashioned and full- 


flowing wigs of combed wool. At some convenient jioint, a loioce 
WTitten for the occasion was recited to the following effect : — 

Hail to the day, whose kind auspicious raj^s, 
Deigned first to smile on famous Bishop Blaize ! 
To the great author of our combing trade 
This da3''s devoted, and due honours paid ; 
To him whose fame Britain's isle resounds, — 
To him whose goodness to the poor abounds. 
Long shall his name in British annals shine. 
And grateful ages offer at his shrine ! 
By this, our trade, are thousands dail3' fed. 
By it supplied with means to earn their bread. 
In various forms our trade its works imparts ; 
In different methods and by different arts 
Prevents from starving, indigents distressed ; 
As combers, spinners, weavers and the rest. 
We boast no gems, nor costly garments vain. 
Borrowed from India or the coast of Spain ; 
Our native soil with wool our trade supplies. 
While foreign countries envy us the prize. 
No foreign broil our common good annoys. 
Our country's product all our art employs ; 
Our fleecy flocks abound in every vale, 
Our bleating lambs proclaim the joyful tale. 
So let not Spain with us attempt to vie. 
Nor India's wealth pretend to soar so high ; 
Nor Jason pride him in his Colchian spoil. 
By hardship gained and enterprising toil : 
Since Britons all with ease attain the prize. 
And every hill resounds with golden cries. 
To celebrate our founder's great renown 
Our shepherd and our shepherdess we crown ; 
For England's commerce, and for George's s'n-ay. 
Each loyal subject give a loud Huzza ! 

Bishop Blaise is remembered l^y few, and machinery has 
superseded hand combing, and has long had the best of the 

Having disposed of our friends the woolcombers, we pass on, 
and leaving Goose Green come to the Cock Ring near to 
Denmark-street, where on Shrove Tuesday and at Easter the 
people of Altrincham "enjoyed" the game of cock fighting. 
Pinfold Brow is now Lloyd Street ; and Ashley Road was but a 
lane from which an uninterrupted view of the country to Hale 



Can- could be obtained. At tlie foot of the Downs was an old 
white house surrounded l\v a large garden, called the Dog 
Kennels, where a pack of harriei's was kcjit. By way of the 
Downs, where the first houses were built (near the entrance to 
New Street,) by Manchester merchants, who were not slow to 
disco\er the advantages of this suburlian retreat, we pass Turf 
Lane, now St. Margaret's Koad, and reach the aristocratic Firs, 
then familiarly known as " Burying Lane," with its projecting 
trees forming an umbrageous avenue on either side, through 
which the old church of Bowdon could be seen in the distance. 
Up this roadway, which a cart could scarcely pass over, once 
rumbled the old stage coach, the sand trickled down its sides, 
and the children from the town resorted thither for the purpose 
of gathering the blackberries, which grew in tempting profusion 
in the thick hedgerows. One or two of its splendid fir trees still 
remain, but their gradual disajjpearance and the more modernised 
style which prevails has robbed what was once a lo-\-ely picture 
of its arcadian simplicity. 

In a field near the Firs races were held at Wakes time, in 
which women took an active part. A common prize was a 
smock or shift, and in a programme of Bowdon "Wakes published 
in the early part of the centuiy there occm-red the following : — 
" The same day a race for a good holland smock by ladies of all 
ages, the second best to have a handsome satin ribbon. No lady 
will be allowed to strip any further than the smock before 
starting." There must siu-ely have been a good deal of 
competition to ha\-e rendered such a rule necessary, to say the 
least of it. While cock fighting was congenial to Altrincham, 
bull baiting was the recognised pastime at Bowdon. A noble tree 
which formerly stood in front of the Griffin Inn, has at times had 
its branches crowded with venturesome spectators, who gazed 
with great delight on the scene below. There, tied to a stake, 
was the poor animal, and forming a circle round it were men with 
ferocious bull dogs, which were let loose upon it. The dog which 
oftcnest " pinned " the bull, that is gripped it until it went down 


on its knees bellowing with agony, was awarded the palm of 

victory — a brass collar. It was owing to the efforts of one of 

Bowdon's good Vicars, the Eev. Jas. T. Law, that the brutal 
custom was abolished. 

There will be little difficulty in distinguishing Higher from 
Lower Bowdon ; and Stamford Road is still well-known as Sandy 
Lane; but few will remember Heald or Yeald Common, near 
Heald Road, with a sheet of water in the centre, while fewer still 
will recognize Bowdon Moss, as being only a stone's throw of the 
splendid College near Langham Road, and where within a few 
years many specimens of bog oak have been found. These 
specimens are in an excellent state of preservation, and the then 
possessor of a quantity, (the late) Mr. Eli Morgan, of Stamford 
Cottage, had it made up into two neat hall chairs, which were shown 
at one of the exhibitions of works of art, &c., held in Altrincham. 
Rose Hill was then a play-ground for the Bowdon children, and 
Richmond Hill was unknown. Having made a fair circuit, which 
will enable the reader to form an idea of the rustic appearance of 
the place at that jieriod, we proceed to deal ^vith other matters 
associated with its rise and progress. 

Salt works once existed at Dunham Massey, where there is 
probably one of those isolated springs of brine which are to be 
found in some formations in different 2Jarts of the country, and 
which, so far as the brine is concerned, is as strong as that at 
Northmch or Winsford. Those who know the dreary aspect 
imparted to the face of nature by the establishment of these 
woi'ks, leaving out of the question the damage to property by 
subsidence, will scarcely crave for active operations in this district. 

This period, too, was the one when farmers looked upon 
small birds as determined enemies to their crops ; and the small 
boys of the place received a large amount in the way of head 
money the constable awarding certain sums for sparrows and for 


eggs. Sometimes this was done hy proxy, as at one of the public 
town's meetings, — 

It was ordered that the constables do pay out of the constable rates, 
such sums of money as may be paid by Mr. Leicester for sparrows killed 
and brought to him, and that he be allowed to pay such sums for sparrows 
as he may think proper and necessary. 

"While the small boys were busy with the birds, the church- 
wardens on Sundays were busy with the boys, or rather with the 
loiterers, who preferred the public-house to the church. These 
functionaries were often seen Avith their staves of office to issue 
from the sacred fold, and drive any wandering sheep in For 
this purpose they scrupulously searched the public-houses, and 
there are cynics in the jirescnt day mean enough to insinuate that 
this was not their only object. 

The Altriucham Union for Poor Law pm-poses was formed in 
18.35. For a long time prior to this attempts had been made to 
deal with the constantly increasing pauperism of the country. 
The system of out-door relief had led to oppressive poor rates. 
For Altriucham, the workhouse was situated at Broadheath, 
having been built in 1756. This was carried on for a great 
number of years under the direction of trustees, although the 
inhabitants in public meeting appeared to influence their course 
of procedure to a great extent. At times there were sinister 
rumours as to its management, and on one occasion several 
gentlemen were appointed to make an investigation. They 
reported " that the woman who acts as governess says she is well 
acquainted with every article received into the house. She says 
all in the house have great plenty of what is good and useful, 
they have butchers' meat three times a week ; that which was in 
the house was very good, and so also was the butter. The 
bread is very good, and the gentlemen so appointed are fully 
satisfied that the provisions are good and sufficient." In 
1822 a Select Vestry was formed in Altriucham, and the 
administration of the Poor Law progressed another stage. Li 
their first report the membei's express considerable satisfac- 


tioii that they have reduced the amount paid in relief. They 
indulge in a hope that a still further reduction will be made, and 
that the sentiments of honest independence by which the poor of 
this country were once characterised will gradually revive amongst 
them ; and " that their own exertions, aided by the occasional 
advice and assistance of their richer neighbours" (a nice way of 
putting a pauperizing principle) " will always remain their surest 
support in the hour of distress and sickness." This pleasant 
piece of moonshine is concluded by an appeal to the menilicrs of 
the Select Vestry to attend in large numbers for the future. In 
the course of the following year the business of manufacturing 
was commenced at the workhouse at Broadheath, when five looms 
were started, and the net earnings which accrued in this way and 
the labour of one of the inmates reached the sum of £20 15s. in 
about five months. " In a word," continues the report (this was 
the second issued), " the workhouse promises under good manage- 
ment to be a source of profit to the township ; and as none of the 
inmates who are capable of work are sufTered to be idle, but, on 
the contrary, are encouraged to be industrious, the hope may be 
entertained, that should the lumiber of them increase, the advan- 
tage will be augmented in the same proportion." The accounts 
for this period, therefore, show an indiscriminate mixture of warps 
and weft, of healds, and shafts and shuttles, with buttermilk, salt, 
smocks and frocks, and crockery ; but in spite of these glowing 
accounts, there was, not many years afterwards, a rate of three 
shillings in the pound laid for Poor Law purposes, the assessment 
of the town at this time being £3,500. Probably the expenditure 
was greatly reduced in subsequent years ; for in an abstract of 
the receipts and payments concerning the workhouse of the town- 
ship of Altrincham in 1S3I, the expenditure for 30 weeks is given 
at £52 Is. 4d. Another entry shows the average number of 
inmates to have been 14 1-15, the cost of victualling per week 
Is. 6Jd , clothing Is. 8|d. ; and these, with other incidental 
expenses, made a total of 3s, 5id. per head per week. For this 
amount, as wc have already seen, the paupers were allowed the 


luxury of "flesh mate," as butcher's meat is spelled in the 
accounts, three times a week. Speaking of " flesh mate" reminds 
us that on one occasion the visitors appointed by the Vestry were 
directed to purchase a piece of beef, not exceeding 12 pounds, to 
be sent down to the workhouse for a feast on New Year's Day, 
"and that a glass of ale be allowed to such of the inmates as the 
governor may think fit to allow such an indulgence." 

For some time, however, matters did not work smoothly in 
local bumbledom. The governor, notwithstanding his numerous 
privileges and handsome salary (£10 a year) was a man of hasty 
temper, as governors of the old stamp are said by tradition to 
have been. At one of the meetings of the select vestry, Mr. John 
Lupton informed his fellow members that he had been grossly 
insulted by the governer who had threatened to strike him ! Such 
conduct could not of course be permitted. He was ordered to 
appear before them, and produced Mr. John Warren, who, he said, 
was fully acquainted with the circumstances. Mr. Warren, 
however, knew nothing of the matter, beyond that the governor 
was in a state of " extreme intoxication " at the time. The 
tables being thus unexpectedly turned, the governor admitted 
what was said to be correct, and added that " he did not know 
how the thing began or ended," and having apologized, his oft'ence 
was overlooked. 

But this governoi was soon in greater difficulties than ever. 
At a meeting held on the 21st May, 1828, the overseer of the 
poor intimated that the governess of the workhouse had fled, 
" taking her clothes with her, that her husband does not know 
where she has gone, or whether she means to return." The 
vestry was very accommodating. The overseer was directed " to 
keep an eye to the workhouse," the governor in the meantime 
to go in search of his runaway spouse, — if he should feel so 
inclined. Whether he departed on this mission or not does not 
appear ; Init a week afterwards it is reported that the governess 
has not yet returned, " nor is there any probability she will 
return." This was more than the vestry could submit to. The 


governor was instantly discharged, and when appointing a 
successor great cautiousness was evinced, inasmuch as it was 
stipulated that if the new go\-ernor and governess did not come 
up to expectation, they would be expected to quit the house and 
give up the situation in a month. They gave satisfaction ; for 
soon afterwards it was " Eesolved that this meeting is of opinion 
that the governor of the workhouse be allowed to occupy and use 
one of the looms in the weaving shop for the purpose of weaving 
in himself, and that he be allowed to take to his own the earnings 
therefrom, he having requested that such liberty should be 
allowed to him. " 

"We will now draw a veil over the difficulties of the Select 
Vestry in respect of workhouse management ; and on turning to 
the outdoor system, we find it was not distinguished by that 
economy which is usually looked for. The rents of different 
parties were paid, and to such an extent was this carried, that on 
several occasions it became a question of compounding with the 
landlords in a body. This was not, however, confined to the 
town. The overseers had often to go great distances to extricate 
Altrincham men and women, who were unable to meet their 
engagements. The entries, too, are sometimes mysterious. For 
instance, the Government Auditor now-a-days would probably 
require to have the meaning of the following fully explained : — 

Resolved, upon the application of (name given) that a donation of £3 
be made to him to enable him to liberate himself from some difficulty under 
which it appears to this meeting he is at present labouring. 

For some time after the formation of the Union, the meetings 
of the Guardians were held at Altrincham, which place was 
considered the most central and convenient, and from this 
circumstance the Union obtained its name. Difficulties, however, 
arose, more particularly in the acquisition of a proper site for the 
Union Workhouse which was ultimately built at Knutsford. 
Altrincham is represented by five Guardians ; Bowdon and 
Dunham Massey by two each. In March, 1895, the name was 
changed from Altrincham to Bucklow. The Rural Sanitary 


'202 JLTJUXrilAM J XI' liOlVDON. 

Authority was formed in August, 1872, and was created the 
Bucklow Rural District Council in 1895, Mr. Wm. Hough, J. P. 
being the first chairman. 

In 1842, the chartists or " Le\'elicrs " paid a \isit to Altiincham. 
In order to prevent a descent on Dunham Hall, the Earl of 
Stamford of that time ordered several barrels of beer, cheese, and 
baskets of bread, to be placed on the fringe of the Park, near the 
present Green "Walk gate, which good things the rioters eagerly 
consumed. In Stamford Street, where Mr. John Siddeley now 
resides there was a ladies' boarding school, the mistress concealed 
all her valuables and the greatest part of her money, only keeping 
a few shillings at hand ; she dressed herself in clothes which 
belonged to her cook, and when the rioters came to the school and 
demanded money &c., she gave them the trifle she had by her, 
and pleaded that she had a very hard mistress, who gave her but 
scanty wages, and so escaped any further loss, the servants and 
several of the boarders had to turn ont their pockets and contents 
of their boxes. 

In July, 1845, the Act for making the Manchester, South 
Junction, and Altrincham Kailway was passed. It authorized 
the raising of £400,000 (£133,333 by loans) for a length of nine 
miles thirty chains. By this Act the Manchester, Sheffield, and 
Lincolnshire I-ia,ilway Company were authorised to subscribe 
£175,000, and subsequently the same Company, in conjunction 
with the London and North-Western Eailway Company, purchased 
the Earl of Ellesmere's original share in the South Junction and 
Altrincham line— the Earl undertaking to stop the plying of the 
" swift " passenger boat on the Bridgewater Canal, when the 
railway was opened. Hitherto this packet boat had formed the 
only means of " swift " — as it was certainly thought then — 
communication with Manchester, and judging from the remarks 
made at that time concerning the canal, which was described 
as " black and filthy," winding like some huge snake amongst 
the meadows, emitting an exceedingly offensi\'e and noisome 
stench, the formation of the new line woidd no doubt be hailed 


with joy and gladness. The railway is divided into two poi'tions, 
the South Junction line and the Altrincham line. The first-named 
is one and three quarter miles in length, commencing at London- 
road Station, curving from west to east along the south side of 
the town, and connects every railway, having its terminus in 
Manchester, the one with the other. Ground for the construction 
of both lines was broken near Knott Mill, about six months after 
the passing of the Act, but for a period of a year and a half the 
works were paralysed, chiefly owing to want of funds, the 
commercial crisis, and the state of the money market. The line 
was, however, opened on July 20th, 1849, for both goods and 
passenger traffic. The Altrincham line proper, with which we 
are more immediately concerned, commences in Castle Field, about 
200 or 300 yards from the Knott Mill Station. Here it di\-erges 
from the South Junction line, passing through Castle Field close 
to the canal, and goes under the Altrincham turnpike-road 
to Old Trafford by a slightly curved tunnel, the only one on the 
line of 1,144 yards in length. After leaving Old Trafford, which 
is just two miles from Oxford Road, the lines pursues a straight 
and nearly level course until Edge Lane, or what is now better 
known as Strctfonl Station, is reached. Hence the line is carried 
through the level vale of the Mersey ; and Sale, Brooklands and 
Timperley Stations appear in succession. At that time Altrin- 
cham, just eight miles distant from Oxford Road, was the 
terminal station of the line. It was afterwards carried on to 
near the foot of the Downs, and although the station is called 
Bowdon Station, it is really in the Township of Altrincham, and 
nearly one mile distant from Bowdon Church. The first train 
from Altrincham left the station at eight o'clock, July 20th, 1849, 
with 65 passengers, and notwithstanding a delay of several 
minutes at Stretford, reached Oxford Road Station before nine 
o'clock ! The next train, which was the express, left Altrincham 
at 8-40, contained 15 passengers, all first-class, and accomplished 
the eight miles in 18 minutes. The next train, at nine a.m., 
reached Oxford Road within the hulf-hmu' with 40 passengers. 


This was all done in face of the formidable competition of a 
number of omnibusses. Since then, considerable modifications 
have been made ; and the Bowdon line, as it is now familiarly 
called, ranks as one of the best managed in the kingdom. The 
present Altrincham and Bowdon Station was opened in April, 

Prominent among the charities of the town, and probably the 
most beneficial to the inhabitants, although not the most ancient, 
is Lloyd's Fever Hospital. The poor and afflicted we have with 
us always, and there is a large amount of human suffering which 
has to be dealt with promptly, or the common weal might suffer. 
Mr. Edward .Jeremiah Lloyd, of Oldfield Hall, was a practical 
philanthropist. He left by will a certain sum for the purpose of 
erecting and endowing a hospital for the reception and benefit of 
the poor inhabitants of Altrincham and Bowdon afflicted >vith 
fever or other diseases of an infectious or contiigious nature. 
This hospital was erected on a site on Hale Moss given by the 
Earl of Stamford and Warrington, the total cost being £600. 
The land and buildings were vested in 12 trustees, of which the 
Earl of Stamford, for the time being, is one, new trustees being 
appointed as occasion requires. After doing excellent work for a 
long period, it was in 1878 handed over to the Altrincham Local 
Board for a term of 21 j-ears, at a rent of £-50 a year. The 
trustees bound themselves to contribute a sum not exceeding one- 
half the clear income of the said charity in aid of the funds of the 
hospital, this, however, being conditional on the hospital being 
carried on by the Local Board to their satisfaction. The residue 
of the income was to be applied, under conditions, in aid of the 
funds of any well-established Lifirmary, Hospital, or Institution, 
including the Altrincham Provident Dispensary, treating cases of 
accident, or receiving convalescent patients. 

The Altrincham Provident Dispensary, of \\hich notice is 
taken in the preceding paragraph, is a valuable auxiliary to the 
Fever Hospital. It was erected out of funds accruing from the 
Altrincham "Workhouse Charity. This charity arose out of an 


indenture of grant dated 22nd December, 1755, between the 
Right Honourable George, Earl of Warrington, on the one part, 
and various residents of the town on the other part, which recites 
that a certain piece of ground (being part of the waste in 
Altrincham) called Broadheath, belonging to the said Earl of 
Warrington, as Lord of the Manor of Altrincham, and containing 
4^ acres of land, Cheshire measure, or 8J acres, statute measure, 
had, with the consent of the said Earl, been enclosed, in order 
that a workhouse for the said borough or manor might be built 
on part thereof, by voluntary contributions or otherwise, the 
residue of the said ground being improved for the benefit of the 
said poor. The Earl consented to vest this land in certain parties 
for ever, paying a yeaily rent of 5s., upon trust ; the workhouse 
or poorhouse as soon as built to be used bj' the overseers of the 
poor, for the poor of the town of Altrincham. In 1831 these 
premises became by deed vested in John Mort, Edward Jeremiah 
Lloyd, Isaac Harrop, Hugo Worthington, Charles Poole, John 
Barratt, and John Mort, junior ; and a portion of the land, about 
two acres in extent, was sold to the Warrington and Stockport 
Railway Co. for £2,243 10s. lOd , which was invested under an 
order in Chancery in the purchase of £2,343 2s. 8d. Three per 
cent. Consuls. A building had been constructed on the land, and 
was for a long period used as a workhouse for the poor of 
Altrincham, and the rents and profits of the residue of the waste 
ground were applied in accordance with the trust. The premises 
were subsequently converted into cottages, and occupied by the 
workmen employed by the Bridgewater Trustees. Great public 
apathy exi.sted in reference to this Chai'ity and its application, 
but in 1858 a committee of the Altrincham Ratepayers' Associa- 
tion, of which Mr. Thomas Partington was the honorary secretary, 
addressed certain communications to the overseers, and after a 
long correspondence, in which the assistance of the Charity 
Commissioners was invoked, in July, 1860, a scheme was drawn 
up for the application of the income, or a sufficient part thereof, 
to the establishment and maintenance of baths and washhouses : 


the remainder of the annual income not required for these 
purposes to be given for the benefit of deserving resident poor of 
the parish. The Vice-Chancellor approved of the establishment 
of baths and washhouses ; but no such buildings were erected, 
owing to legal difficulties arising, which need not be discussed 
here. Most of the Trustees having in the meantime retired or 
died, new trustees were appointed, who set to work with 
determination, and the result was the erection of the Provident 
Dispensary as being most likely to be of the greatest use to the 
poorer inhabitants of the township. The foundation stone of the 
new building was laid in September, 1869; in a cavity being 
deposited a document, of which the following is a copy : — 

The corner stone of this Dispensary and Hospital, erected by the 
Trustees of the Altrincham Workhouse Charity, under the sanction of the 
High Court of Chancery, was laid by Henry Hall, Esquire, the agent of 
the Right Honourable the Earl of Stamford and Warrington, the Lord of 
the Manor of Altrincham, on Tuesday the 2Sth day of September, a.d., 
1869, in the year of the Mayoralty of James Southern, Esquire; trustees, 
Samuel Barratt, (chairman), Joseph Gaskarth, John Davenport, Matthew 
Fowden, William Greenwood, John Astle Kelsall, William Hill Parkes, 
John Balshaw, John Shelmerdine Mort, ; treasurer, Thomas Riley Knight ; 
secretary, Charles Heaton Hinde; law clerks, NichoUs, Sudlow and Hinde ; 
architect, Peter Pons ; chief contractor, John Douglas ; sub-contractors, 
Humphrey Davies, brickwork, Isaac Drinkwater, stonework, and Charles 
Walton, plumbing, glazing, &c. 

The institution has its main front to Bowdon Road or Market 
Street, and has a most imposing appearance. 

The yearly allowance of £5 from Dame Elizabeth Booth's 
charity has been already noticed. There are two or three other 
bread charities in the district : John Barratt, Esquire, left, by will, 
£200 to be invested, and the dividend to be given in bread to such 
of the poor people of Altrincham as attended Divine service at 
St. George's Church ; and William Chapman, of Hale, in 1714, 
charged an estate in Hale with a yearly rent charge of £2, payable 
to the churchwardens at Christmas, to be laid out in the purchase 
of bread for the poor of Bowdon parish, for ever, respect being 
had to the poor of Hale especially, to be given to the poor 
every Sunday for ever. Robert Twemlow, of Altrincham, in 


1826, left £100 to the Vicar and churchwardens in rathei- a 
different way. He directed that the interest should be "laid out 
in the purchase of threepenny loaves, to be made of sound house- 
hold flour, and to be distributed on each Sacrament Sunday." 
The sum of £267, left by George Norman (£40), Edward Leigh, 
Esq. (£100), Mrs. Mary Booth (£5), River Bellfontaine (£11), 
Joseph Walton (£10), the Earl of Stamford (£52 lOs.), and others 
(£19), was invested in Three per Cents., and the annual income 
is expended in the purchase of bread and distributed weekly, on 
every Sunday, among the poor of the parish of Bowdon, by the 
churchwardens for the time being. Mrs. Holland also gave a 
certain sum for bread to be distributed amongst the poor attending 
St. George's Church. Cooper's charity arises out of a house and 
land at Partington, given in 1807, the clear rent being distributed, 
on every Christmas Day, yearly amongst such of the poor house- 
holders or inhabitants of Altrincham, 50 years old and upwards, 
as the Vicar of Bowdon, the Minister of St. George's, the warden 
or wardens of the said chapel, and the owner of D6lahey's farm 
in Timperley for the time being, should appoint. Each poor 
person was not to have more than 40s. and not less than 20s., 
and it is generally distributed in money to the recipients. The 
Earl of Warrington left in 1754 the sum of £5,000, the annual 
proceeds to be yearly for ever applied in placing out poor 
children, in the parish of Bowdon, apprentices, or for sending 
them to school, or for the clothing of them, or for the clothing 
or other relief of aged or infirm poor inhabitants of the said 
parish. The application is restricted to these charitable purposes 
only, particular regard being had to the township of Dunham, 
and to such chiefly as do not receive relief from the overseers of 
the poor. The sum of £5,610 2s. belonging to this charity has 
for a long period been invested in the Three per Cent. Reduced 
Bank Annuities, and the interest received is distributed by such 
Trustees as the possessor of Dunham Massey from time to 
time appoints. In the years 1813 and 1816, Sarah and Elizabeth 
Cooke, of Altrincham, by will, gave £200 to the officiating clergy- 


man and wardens of St. George's, and to the Vicar and church- 
wardens of Bowdon, to be invested, and the dividends applied 
half to the poor, and half to the education of poor children in 
the Sunday Schools upon a Sunday. If the Sunday Schools in 
Bowdon or Altrincham are discontinued, then the whole goes to 
the poor. The sum of £2 per annum, left by the Rev. John 
Ashton, of Calton Green, Staffordshire, in 1722, is payable to and 
is distributed by the overseei-s of the poor of Altrincham amongst 
the poorest inhabitants of that township. A like rent charge of 
£2 per annum is paid in aid as a subscription by the overseers to 
Bowdon Parish schools for the teaching of so many poor children, 
inhabitants of Altrincham, as the Vicar of Bowdon shall think 
fit. A rather peculiar charity is that by which the interest on 
the sum of £110 is applied as follows : — £1 lOs. to the Sunday 
School at Altrincham ; £1 to the Sunday School at Carrington ; 
£1 to be distributed in religious books in Carrington and Parting- 
ton ; and the remainder in Bibles and Common Prayer Books to 
be given among the poor of Bowdon parish as the owner of 
Dunham JMassey may think proper, pursuant to the will of George 
Cooke, dated 9th November, 1790. 

An important epoch in the town's history was the introduction 
of coal gas, in the year 1844, by Mr. George Massey, the then 
landlord of the Unicorn Hotel, who put down a small works near 
the present bowling green. It must not be inferred, however, 
that there had been no previous attempt at lighting the town. In 
1832 the Lighting and Watching Act was adojjted, and what has 
been derisively called the "Charlie" system came into vogue. 
There had been watchmen before, no doubt, as there had been 
great men before Agamemnon ; but henceforth they were to be 
invested with more official dignity. They were to be provided 
with large "blue coats, with red collars;" they were to cirry 
"lanthorns," and were ordered to call the hours of the night when 
on duty. A public subscription set up oil lamps, and watch 
boxes, in the latter of which it is no fiction to state— for the 
minutes oft record it — the watchmen enjoyed many a comfortable 


sleep. At times the calling of the hours was voted a nuisance. 
It appears to have been finally dispensed with in 1852, the watch 
boxes having been removed four years previously. The first 
public gas lamp was put up outside the Unicorn Hotel ; and Mr. 
William Walton, then a town's constable, but for many years the 
respected station master at Bowdon old station, lighted it amid 
the most intense excitement on the part of the townspeople. 
The superiority of the new light being made manifest, measures 
were taken for supplying gas on a more extended scale ; and in 
March, 1846, the Altrincham Gas Co. was registered with a 
capital of £4,000, in 800 shares of £5 each. This Company 
purchased the existing establishment ; but as it was totally 
inadequate to their requirements, the Directors chose the present 
site on Hale Moss, then nearly half a mile from the nearest 
inhabited part of the town, as being the least objectionable. The 
new works were opened on the 29th May, 1847 ; and the price 
of gas at that time was ten shillings per thousand feet. Three 
years afterwards it was reduced to 8s. 4d., which was said by the 
Local Government Insj^ector, at an enquiry concerning a Local 
Board, to be much above the average charge for gas in other 
towns ; and his report embodied a suggestion that the Local 
Board, when formed, should treat for the purchase of the Gas 
Works, in order that they might be managed for the benefit of 
the ratepayers generally. Efforts were made from time to time 
with this object in view ; but in each instance have they proved 
futile. In 1871 there appeared to be some probability of a 
successful issue, the price named being £57,000 ; but at a town's 
meeting held in July, 1871, a resolution was passed by a large 
majority that no further action be taken. In 1872, several inter- 
views took place between the Local Board and the Gas Company's 
directors, and an offer was made to them of £52,000 or £13 per 
share for 4,000 shares ; the directors offering to sell at £55,000. 
They had, in the first instance, named £60,000 as the sum, but 
subsequently they reduced this to £54,000. The difference of 
£2,000 was the rock upon which the aflair collapsed. Firmness to 


their limits was maintained by both parties ; and ultimately the 
Company intimated that they did not consider themselves bound 
by their offer, having left it open for a certain time for the Local 
Board's acceptance or rejection. The Company obtained an Act 
of Incorporation, which received the Royal assent June 3rd, 1872. 
By this Act they are placed under certain restrictions in regard to 
the supply of gas to the inhabitants of the district ; they are 
amongst other things bound to keep up the quality to a certain 
illuminating power, and the maximum price is fixed by the Act, 
as is also the maximum amount of dividend to be paid. In 1893 
the Gas Company were once more approached on the subject of 
the purchase of the undertaking by the then Local Board. After 
protracted negotiations an understanding was arrived at between 
the Directors of the Company and the Board whereby the works, 
plant, and other rights, privileges, &c., should be transferred to 
the township of Altrincham for a sum of £162,500. The pro- 
posal, however, was unanimously rejected at a public meeting of 

The Altrincham and Bowdon Literary Institution has the 
honour of a mention in the last edition of Ormerod's Cheshire, 
of which it is in every respect deserving. It was established in 
the year 1847 in most humble premises at the top of Victoria 
Street. The promoters intended by " means of a well-selected 
Library, a Beading or News-room, Lectures and Evening Classes, 
to supply, to the young men of the neighbourhood, opportunities 
of mental cultivation and improvement, at a cheap rate, at the 
same time that it affords to the adult inhabitants a rational and 
agreeable mode of spending their leisure hours." It was well 
supported, and was so successful that in 1852 the present institu- 
tion was erected by subscription, atacost, including fittings, of about 
£800. There was then a large news-room, and three good class- 
rooms, land adjoining being left for the future growth of the insti- 
tution ; this was taken up by the splendid lecture hall, which was 
opened in November, 1866, at a cost of £800. Its management 
was vested in a Board of Trustees and Directors, a certain 


number of the latter retiring annually, whose election was in the 
hands of the members. The Lecture Hall was destroyed by fire 
in November, 1878, and was rebuilt on an enlarged basis. 

The time rapidly approached, however, when Altrincham was 
to give an opinion on the Free Libraries' question. In September, 
1889, a poll of the inhabitants was taken, with the following 
result :— For the adoption of the Act, 1,159 ; against, 421 ; giving 
a majority of 738 in favour of the adoption of the Act. In 1892, 
after protracted negotiations between the Altrincham Local Board 
and the Directors of the Literary Institution, the buildings, with 
Library and various classes, were transferred to the town. 
Saturday, October 1st, witnessed the important ceremony of 
opening the Free Library. Temporary premises were found in the 
Building Society's rooms (now Oddfellows' Hall), Market Street, 
where news-rooms were provided, and the Library of about 5,000 
volumes housed. A donation of £300 was made by the Trustees 
of the Mayor's Land Charity — £100 for the purchase of books, 
and £200 for current expenses. A number of gentlemen were 
entertained in the evening at the Town Hall, by Mr. John 
Newton, the chairman of the Free Libraries' and Technical 
Instruction Committee. The Local Board also adopted the 
Technical Instruction Act, and thereupon the Cheshire County 
County Council contributed the sum of £496 to the Building 
Fund of the Technical School, George Street. Meantime building 
operations in connection with the enlargement of the Lecture Hall 
and Technical School were vigorously carried on, the sum of 
£4,000 being borrowed by the Local Board for Free Library and 
Technical Instruction purposes. This amount was largely supple- 
mented by private donations. " The nucleus of the new buildings 
was in the old Literary Institute, and additional land having been 
purchased, they were erected from designs of Mr. Frank 
Popple well, architect, of Manchester. The large hall will now 
seat 700 persons, and its capacity and convenience have already 
been well tested. Indeed what has now been carried out is 
almost entirely on the lines suggested after the building was burnt 


down 13 or 14 years ago, but which want of funds then prevented. 
The library has space for 12,000 volumes. The elevation in 
George Street has been extended to about three times its original 
length, but its appearance would be decidedly enhanced were it 
placed on rising ground, instead of having its first storey practi- 
cally buried. The new gable, however, rises prominently 
above the other parts, with corbelled out pinnacles on each side, 
and a large window with pointed head, which is certainly a 
redeeming feature and decidedly handsome. The surplus land on 
the west and south sides has been tastefully planted by Messrs. 
AV. Clibran and Son, of Oldfield Nurseries. In the Technical 
School are lofty and spacious rooms for the art classes, as also for 
other departments for cooking, laundry, dressmaking, short- 
hand, &c. The principal contractors were Messrs. Wm. Lambert 
and Son, Hale Road, Altrincham ; and the sub-contractors: — 
Mr. R. Campbell, joiner ; Mr. J. H. Holt, mason ; Messrs. H. 
and J. Drinkwater, plasterers ; Mr. Joseph Gallimore, painter ; 
Mr. Thomas Vernon, smith ; and Mr. James Smith, Mill Street, 
heating apparatus. The plumbing work has been carried out by 
Messrs. Josiah Drinkwater and Sons. 

With an increasing population the adoption of the provisions 
of the Public Health Act of 1818 was rendered absolutely neces- 
sary. A Government Inquiry held in 1850 disclosed the fact that 
the sanitary condition of the town was exceedingly defective — 
typhus fever, dysentery, and other complaints of the bowels pre- 
vailing more or less every year ; and that the death rate was 
exceedingly high — 29i per thousand per annum of the population. 
The geographical position and contour of the town were favourable 
to the highest degree of longevity attainable ; but natural advan- 
tages were counteracted by the want of an efficient system of 
drainage and complete sanitary regulation. The want of a proper 
water supply also contributed to it. A Local Board was formed 
consisting of nine members, which held its first meeting on the 
-Ith April, 1851. Loans were subsequently obtained for drainage 
purposes, and a complete system of sewerage laid down. The sewage 


is disposed of by irrigation at the Sinderland farm, at a cost of 
about 5\A. per head of the population. In some towns it is or 
has been as high as 5s. per head. There is no doubt that the plan 
is admirably adapted for such places as Altrincham. In 1890 the 
Altrincham Local Board acquired Woodcote Farm, at a cost of 
£1 1,000, to be repaid, principal and interest, in 50 years. With the 
water supply the Board did not deal so successfully, but private 
enterprise stepped in to fill the gap. The North Cheshire Water 
Company, which was formed in 1857, and incorporated in 1864, 
conferied upon the district the priceless boon of a supply of pure 
water from the reservoirs of the Manchester Corporation. In 
1878 the Board purchased the market tolls from the Earl of 
Stamford and Warrington for the sum of £1,000 ; and in the 
latter part of the same year the erection of a new Market House 
in Market Street was commenced, the sum of £4,500 being bor- 
rowed to cover the cost of the tolls, building, and other charges 
incidental thereto. The building was erected from designs by 
Maxwell Eoscoe, Esq., Mr. M. Stone being the contractor. The 
Local Board ceased to exist in 1894, and became merged in the 
Altrincham Urban District Council. Information as to 
loans, &c., will be found in the Appendix. 

In February, 1864, the Bowdon Local Board held its first 
meeting. Its principal work has been the sewering of the town- 
ship, which was executed under the superintendence of John 
Newton, Esq., C.E., at a cost of £2,493 16s. 3d. In December, 
1865, the lighting by public gas lamps was carried out. Since 
then the same gentleman has laid down a system of sewage dis- 
posal by irrigation, which has been highly successful. 

In 1886 the preparations for celebrating the Jubilee of Queen 
Victoria were begun, the ancient Court Leet and the Altrincham 
Local Board co-operating most harmoniously to make the affair a 
complete success. The year 1887 will stand out prominently in 
the annals of the good old town in having been honoured with a 
visit from Royalty in the persons of T.R.H. the Prince and of Wales, who were guests of Lord Egerton of Tatton, 


at Tatton Park, on the occasion of the opening of the Jubilee 
Exhibition at Old Trafiord, on the 4th of May in that year. 
Triumphal arches of mediaeval design were erected in Dunham 
Road and Station Road, and the toivn was gay with flags and 
bunting. On arriving at the railway station (Altrincham and 
Bowdon), the Mayor, Mr. Joseph Gaskarth, was presented to the 
Prince, and a beautiful bouquet was presented to the Princess by 
Miss Katherine Cocks, daughter of the late Mr. Robert Cocks, 
agent to the Dunham estate. Beautifully bound copies of the 
programme of the day's festivities were presented to the Prince 
and Princess. They were printed in gold, bound in light leather, 
lined with white silk, the production of Mr. S. Butler, of George 
Street, and highly creditable to Altrincham enterprise. After- 
wards the Band of the Third Cheshire Volunteers headed a 
procession of school children to Dunham Park, where refreshments 
were served and games indulged in. The celebration of Jubilee 
Day was fixed for Tuesday, June 21st, on which occasion the 
arrangements were carried out by the Local Board, of which Mr 
John Newton was chairman. The day was observed as a general 
holiday, and a special thanksgiving service was held in St. 
George's Church, where an appropriate sermon was preached by 
the Vicar, the Rev. George London. In the afternoon a grand 
procession was formed in the new Market Place, embracing mem- 
bers of the Local Board, the Fire Brigade, the Sunday scholars 
about 4,000 in number, and the various Friendly Societies in the 
town and district. A special medal was struck and presented to 
each scholar, and special badges were provided for the committee 
and stewards, of which there was a large number. The old people 
of the age of the Queen (68) were entertained to a substantial 
repast in the Market Hall, by Alderman Griffin, J. P., Mayor ; 
sports were held in Dunham Park, and the day's proceedings were 
brought to a close by a display of fireworks. 

The Altrincham Parliamentary Division of Cheshire was 
formerly included in the northern part of the county ; in 1 868 it 
formed a portion of the Mid-Cheshire Division, which then 






covered a wide area, extending to Runcorn in the west, North- 
wich in the south. Sale on the north, and Congleton on the east. 
At the general election of 1885, which took place on the formition 
of the Altrincham Parliamentary Division, Mr. John Brooks 
was selected as the Conservative candidate, and Mr. Isaac 
Saunders Leadam as the Liberal. The contest was lengthened 
and severe, and on both sides exceptional ability was displayed. 
In the aggregate Mr. Brooks polled 4,798 votes, as against 4,046 
by his opponent, a majority of 752 for Mr. Brooks. On that 
cold March day when news arrived of the untimely death of Mr. 
John Brooks, the eyes of the party naturally turned to his uncle. 
Sir William, who had most enthusiastically supported his nephew, 
and he was induced to come forward. He was returned by a 
majority of 583, and at the general election in July, 1886, he was 
returned unopposed. Sir William retired in 1892, and for the 
third time, and last. Mi-. Leadam came forward in the Liberal 
interest. On this occasion he was opposed by Mr. Coningsby 
Rilph Disraeli, only son of Mr. Ralph Disraeli, Clerk of Parlia- 
ment, and nephew of the Right Hon. Benjamin Disraeli, Earl of 
Beaconsfield. He was born in 1867, and was educated at Charter- 
house and at Oxford. Again Mr. Leadam was defeated, this time 
by a majority of 798. In July, 1895, at the general election, Mr. 
Disraeli was returned by a still greater majority, the largest ever 
known in the history of the division, over Mr. A. M. Latham. 
Mr. Disraeli married, March 2nd, 1897, Marion Grace, only 
daughter of Mr. Edward Silva, of Testcombe, Chilbolton, Hants. 
Records of the voting will be found in the Appendix. 

The introduction of the electric light into Altrincham may be 
briefly stated. In the beginning of 1894 a private company was 
formed under the style of " The Altrincham Electric Supply," and 
received Parliamentary powers for supplying electricity through- 
out Altrincham and surrounding places. A large and fully 
equipped works and generating station was erected on land 
adjoining the Bridgewater Canal at Broadheath, and the supply 
was started in the last months of 1894. A year's running proved 
the popularity of the supply and the enterprise of the inhabitants. 


During that period more than H miles of mains were laid and an 
equivalent of 10,000 eight-candle power lamps connected. 
Among the more important installations may be mentioned the 
Downs Congregational Chapel, St. John's Church, the Altrincham 
Conservative Club, and St. Margaret's Institute, as well as a great 
many of the largest houses in the district. The company is now 
extending its mains under the powers of a new Act into the dis- 
tricts of Ashton-on-Mersey and Timperley, which will also be fed 
from the Broadheath centre. On other pages will be found illus- 
trations showing the Electricity Generating Station and also the 
interior of the Congregational Chapel as lit by the electric light. 
It is worthy of note as indicating the increased enteiprise in the 
district that the blocks from which these views are taken have 
been made in Messrs. "Walker and Co.'s Electric Light Studio, the 
Downs, Bowdon, by means of one of the most recent of the now 
very popular "process " methods. The sole contractors for all the 
work done for the Altrincham Electric Supply have been the 
Manchester Edison Swan Co. The buildings at Broadheath were 
erected by Mr. James Hamilton, contractor, of Altrincham. 

For many years, up to 1880, Hale Moss was in a condition 
which constituted a grave danger to the public health. Owing to 
efforts put forth in various quarters, the Earl of Stamford and 
Warrington presented a site for a public park covering about 16 
acres of the best part of the Moss, and this was converted by the 
Altrincham Local Board into a park and recreation ground, with 
large cricket field, football ground, tennis courts, bowling greens, 
ornamental lakes, &c. The grounds were laid out from a very 
tasteful design of the late Mr. John Shaw, F.E.H.S., who was a 
past master in the art of landscape gardening ; and the work of 
laying out and planting was executed by his son, Mr. John Shaw. 
The opening in 1880 was attended with considerable rejoicing, 
and in the evening a dinner was given at the Town Hall by 
Joseph Gaskarth, Esq., the then chairman of the Local Board, to 
which the principal inhabitants were in^-ited. Stamford Park is 
greatly resorted to by the inhabitants, by whom it is highly 
appreciated, and in summer, when the flowers are in bloom and the 


trees in foliage, presents a picture of great beauty. At the time 
of writing these lines, negotiations are in progress between the 
Altrmchana Urban Council, the Bucklow Rural District Council, 
and the Trustees of the Earl of Stamford and Warrington for 
acquiring certain portions of the Moss still unoccupied, and from 
the manner in which they have been carried out up to the present, 
there is every reason to think they will be crowned with success. 
Although the question of additional burial accommodation, in 
view of the rapidly diminishing area at Bowdon, had been 
frequently referred to at public meetings, the first practical step 
in this district was taken at a meeting held in July, 1890, in 
Altrincham, when a resolution was passed requesting the Local 
Board to take the necessary steps to provide a cemetery. A 
committee was appointed, and ultimately a suitable site of about 
ten acres, situate in Hale Road, in the Township of Hale, was 
selected. The decision was fiercely contested by the Township of 
Hale, but the Local Government Board decided in favour of the 
Altnncham authority by sanction to the loan as given in the 
Appendix to this work. The grounds have been laid out in the 
most approved style, and a handsome mortuary chapel erected 
from the designs of Mr. William Owen, A.R.LB.A., Hale and 
Manchester. The cemetery was formally dedicated to the public 
use m 1893, a gold key of handsome design being presented to 
Alderman William Gritfin, J. P., the chairman of the Cemetery 
Committee on the occasion. 

As these pages go to press, preparations are being made in 
Altnncham and district for providing a permanent memorial of 
the Diamond reign of Her Majesty, Queen Victoria. At a public 
meeting held on March 10th, 1897, it was resolved that such 
memorial shall take the form of public baths, and thus meet a 
want which has been long felt. The question of the incorporation 
of the town was also incidentally mooted, but as this is forminc^ 
the subject of inquiry by a Committee of the Urban District 
Council, It is one which will have to be considered and decided 
upon at some future period. 


TFIiat Sale was — A glance at the past— The Masseys of Sale — A 
gracious permission to marrij from the Pope— Lord Strange on the 
march to Manchester — Some looks into old toivnship books — The 
official mole catcher — Sale Vineyards — Constables' Staves — The poor 
law and its administration — Troublous times — A lady's interest in 
township matters — A local Hampden— Sale township schools, <i;c. 

A HUGE moor, in summer yellow with broom flowers, and in 
winter black with the blackness of desolation, such were 
the characteristics of Sale within living memory. Out 
of this it may appear difficult to extract an interesting story, such 
as we might do had we picturesque hills and lovely valleys in 
which, nestled in verdant foliage, were some ivy-covered ruins 
where the lordly baron once presided and held his little court of 
acknowledged sovereignty. "We have no rocky ravines to explore 
or roaring waterfalls to listen to ; yet we could learn had we time, 
that, as the records of a misty past are brought into the light of 
our high civilization. Sale has a history — one in which Roman, 
Dane, Saxon, Norman play their several parts. Here we have 
Cross Street which the Roman legions made not merely for an age, 
but as if for eternity. Who knows but that in the terrible time 
when the fierce Norseman swept over the country, he did not leave 
as a rememl:)rance a bloodstained path to be known in after ages 
as Dane Road. And when the Norman came and the once fiery 
Saxon succumbed to his disciplined onslaught, who knows but that 
Sale may have been the scene of many a stubborn fight ere the 
broad acres and manors of the adjoining country changed hands 
and right gave place to might. 

The whirligig of time whirls us on, and we read of the exploits 
of a Massey of Sale at Poictiers, and of rewards at the hands of 
England's most potent Prince, who won for it never ending glory 


at Agincourfc. It will be our phasant task to set forth a little that 
to the writer invests even this once barren moor with a glamour 
of romance, and which may lead more than one of its inhabitants 
to turn aside from the cares of business and to seek relief in the 
relaxation which a perusal of this chapter may afiord. 

The derivation of the word Sale is involved in so much 
obscurity, and authorities differing, like doctors are said to do, 
no good purpose would be served here by any lengthy dissertation 
on the origin of names in general, or Sale in particular. It is 
enough for our purpose that Sale has been known by its present 
name for upwards of 200 or 300 years, and we may therefore 
safely take it on trust that it was so known for centuries pre- 
viously, although the fact that Sale is not mentioned in Doomsday 
Book shows it to have been then of little importance. The first 
authentic light is shed on its past history by that father of 
Cheshire history. Sir Peter Leycester. He tells us, although 
Sale is not mentioned in the Doomsday Book, that it was a fee of 
the ancient barony of Halton. The events of that period seem to 
point to the fact that at the Conquest the township of Sale formed 
a portion of the vast possessions of Hamon of Dunham Massey, 
a powerful baron who resided in his castle there. It was from his 
second son, who had issue two sons, one of whom was named 
Robert, that the Masseys of Sale sprung in the time of Richard I. 
or King John, A.D. 1189-1199. 

In the year 1216, Robert Massey is traced by Leycester to 
have held the land of Sale, and in 1367 another Robert, who had 
been guilty of outlawry, was pardoned on account of his services 
with Edward, Prince of Wales. The men of Cheshire were 
distinguished for their bravery in these campaigns, and the same 
Robert, who found his former services so useful at a pinch had, 
for his gallantry under the Black Prince at Poictiers, been created 
bailiff of the Hundred of Bucklow, an office of much importance 
and emolument. The lawlessness which prevailed at the period, 
and the value of " a previous good character," are also illustrated 
by the fact that Richard Massey, having caused the death of 


William del Hull, was only pardoned by Kichard II. on the 
prayer of John, Duke of Castile and Duke of Lancaster, the 
famous pretender to the Crown of Spain at that time. In the 
year 1411, a pardon or permission to marry was given to Eobert, 
son and heir of Roger le Massey, of Sale, and Margaret, daughter 
of " the noble man, George de Caryngton, Knight, of the Diocese 
of Lichfield," by Thomas, Bishop of Durham, under the letters 
" of happy memorial of Lord Alexander the sixth. Pope, his true 

Leaden Bull, with after the Roman Court 

bulled sound and whole and free from all voice and sinister 
suspect," &c. The marriage portion of the lady was to be £40. 
In 1556, Hamlette Massey, of Sale, made a will, copied amongst 
those published by the Chetham Society, in which, having 
ordered that his body be buried in the " Channcell of Asheton in 
Mersey Bank Parysh Church," he bequeaths to his bastard sons, 
Henry, Edward, William, and Thomas, certain cattle, horses, 
wheat and rye, silver spoons and to Elizabeth Maseye, "my bastard 
dau'r, one curtail whyte nagge, a black cowe, a bay weninge colt, 
and one silver spone." The Masseys of Sale took a somewhat 
prominent part in the thrilling events which marked the 
fourteenth century, and probably in consequence of the rapid 
increase of the family, a rather unkindly cynic was induced to 
write that in Cheshire 

Masseys were as plentiful as asses, and Davenports as dogs' tails. 
In the reign of Richard IL, as was in many instances the case 
in other townships, the eldest son would assume the name of Sale 
as a surname, and that of Massey would become subsidiary. A 
member of the Holt family from Lancashire, having married a 
daughter and heiress of Thomas Sale, a portion of the land of 
Sale came into possession of the Holts. A partition seems to 
have taken place, and a little over 200 years ago there were 
amongst other owners of land in Sale, Lord Delamer of Dunham, 
Geft'rey Cartwright, William Williamson, Richard Wrenshaw or 
Renshaw, Sir Edward Moseley, Mr. Gerard, of Riddings, 
Edward Legh, of Baggilegh, and Robert Tatton, of Wythen-shawe, 


held certain lands in lease from Mr. Massey. The Massey family 
at Sale appears to have become extinct in 1746, and the Massey 
share of the property passed by marriage to the Nobles and 
Mainwarings, and the Moores. These shares were afterwards 
purchased by the Egertons of Tatton, and the whole of the land 
in the township now divided and sub-divided to an extent that 
to give all the names would exhaust more space than we can well 

We now come to a period more recent, and one which we 
venture to think will present, therefore, more features of interest 
to the general reader. The township books of Sale, which give 
us a fair idea of the manners and customs of the inhabitants prior 
to the time of which we have already spoken, commence in the 
year 1805. The first meeting mentioned therein, over which 
" C. White " presided, has reference to the repair of the causeways 
in Deane Lane, and the providing of a new well in lieu of the old 
one destroyed ; Mr. Mort, probably of Altrincham, furnishing 
the township with a quantity of excellent gravel. In 1806, it was 
ordered that the valuation for the township, which would be 
produced by the Commissioners for the purpose of dividing and 
enclosing the waste lands, was ordered to be the only assessment 
by which the rate for the poors " lay," church lay, constable lay, 
and highway lay, should in future be made after such valuation 
by the said Commissioners was finally arranged and settled. Then 
comes an entry of an important matter which at sundry times 
and in divers manners exercised the powers that were at Sale. 
A special meeting, notice of which had been given at the Parish 
Church two successive Sundays, was held June 30th, 1806, when 
it was unanimously agreed that the sum of =£8 per year should be 
given for mole catching, the time to extend over seven years. At 
the side of the book is written " I, Edward Morris, do agree to 
catch moles in the township of Sale for the term and on the con- 
ditions above named, as witness my hand." This was somewhat 
paradoxical, as Edward could not write, and made the orthodox 
mark instead. Sale then possessed machinery for thief catching 


as well. All necessary expenses incurred by the society for 
prosecuting felons were ordered to be paid by the constable out 
of his general receipts. No property on which the assessment 
had not been made under the bond was to be protected, and at 
the same time the new enclosures made on Sale Moor were to be 
assessed according to the risk of each lot. Many of these were 
distinguished by such names as Adam's Vineyard, Vodry's Vine- 
yard, &c. Subject to the approbation of the magistrates, Ashton 
Kelsall was appointed assistant surveyor at a salary of twelve 
guineas per annum, from which it may be inferred that Sale was 
beginning to assume important proportions, and to recognise its 
responsibilities. This even extended to maintaining the prestige 
of the constable in a becoming manner, a public meeting being 
held soon after at which "it was agreed that a constable's staff 
should be immediately ordered for the said township similar to 
the Ashton constable's staff'. One can imagine these two 
important personages heading the processions, with their staves 
of office shining with the effulgence of gilding and ebony, and 
being as requisite for the proper carrying out of business as the 
Mace is in the House of Commons. What unsophisticated 
youngster, whose ancestors have probably served the honourable 
office, has not gazed on this emblem of departed authority with 
reverential awe, as it has hung from its place on the wall, a much 
valued heirloom in the family ' The modern disciples of Sir 
Robert Peel have very effectually superseded the ancient Dogberry, 
who, in nine cases out of ten, was as great terror to evil doers as 
his modern prototype. 

In proof of this, the author ventures to relate an anecdote 
which he heard narrated by an old inhabitant of Altrinchani. A 
brutal outrage had been committed on a Staffordshire man, who 
had been left for dead. At this time Ashton wakes were in full 
swing. Acting, not exactly on "information received," but from 
his own conviction that a certain Weston was the chief actor, the 
the Altrincham constable, well remembered as " Natty " Pass, pro- 
ceeded to Ashton. He watched the bull baits which took place 


amid the shouts of the crowd, and afterwards entered a public- 
house, which was occupied by a disorderly rabble, gathered from 
all parts of the country. He was a man of portly form, but he 
had a pistol ready for use in case of emergency. Seizing Weston 
he informed him that he was his prisoner. The very suddenness 
of the act seemed to paralyse the onlookers, and before they could 
recover from their surprise, he had his man outside and carefully 
manacled. On the way he made a confession of the crime, and 
was removed to Staflibrdshire to be tried. He was in all proba- 
bility leniently dealt with for those times, as our informant 
suggestively said, " he knew he was neither hanged nor trans- 
ported." This little incident, while imparting flavour to Ashton 
wakes, at the same time records the bravery of an old-fashioned 

At this period the value of small birds to the farmer was either 
not known or appreciated. The unfortunate moles were doomed 
to pressing attention on the part of the duly appointed official. 
It now came the turn of the poor sparrows. A penny a head 
was given for old sparrows, a halfpenny for young ones, a half- 
penny per egg for each sparrow egg up " to the number of five 
01' under per nest, provided also that the old hen be brought 
along with them." In November, 1808, the greatest consterna- 
tion was caused by a great robbery of potatoes, and a reward of 
five guineas was offered for " the discovery, apprehending, and 
convicting of persons or person concerned in the said felony." To 
meet the expenses of this a rate of threepence in the pound was 
ordered to be levied. 

The evils of the poor law system began to manifest themselves. 
Sale does not, however, appear to have indulged in the luxury of 
of a workhouse for some years subsequent, and its administration 
of the poor law was as loose as that which prevailed at Altrincham. 
It must have steeped the population in pauperism, as the system 
of "piecing-out," now utterly condemned, prevailed to an alarming 
extent. The sum of three shillings wa? given to one Scipio Leigh 
as "occasional relief," while the sum of £2 was allowed to Thomas 


Hamnett towards his rent. These entiies are very numerous. 
That Sale felt the "hard times" which were now prevailing, owing 
to continued wars abroad and the unsettled state of home 
industries, is ajjparent from the fact that in 1812 a meeting of 
inhabitants was held. The notice stated that it was called for the 
purpose of taking into consideration the best method of affording 
relief to the honest, industrious poor of the township. It was 
resolved that a subscription be entered into for purchasing 
potatoes, and that every encouragement should be given to the 
cultivation of this now indispensable esculent. The meeting 
sympathized, or, as it is put, "feels" for the sufferings of the jDOor, 
and wished to afford them all proper relief. It, however, highly 
disapproved of asking charity by going from house to house in 
numbers, and that all persons doing so, " or using any expressions 
tending to inflame or make uneasy the minds of their neighbours," 
would be excluded from any benefit in the subscription, in the 
distribution of which regard would be had to the character of 
the applicants. The meeting particularly recommended to the 
publicans in the neighbourhood to allow no improper tippling in 
their houses, but to shut them up at ten o'clock in the evening, 
and " to discourage all conversation tending to inflame the public 
mind, and as it is suspected that evil-disposed persons are 
travelling about the country to excite a spirit of discontent and 
uneasiness, they are requested to be particularly watchful of all 
strangers who may enter their houses." 

This entry refers to the times of our grandfathers Thousands 
living can remember them, and will be able to account for the 
extraordinary precautions which are indicated above. There were 
serious riots in many counties in England. The Luddite.s, or 
"levellers," made a house to house visitation, and it was woe unto 
the householder who did not comply with their demands. In 
Sale, which had then a population under 1,000, it will be readily 
inferred that a great deal of the resolution passed at this meeting 
was directed at the Luddites. There would, no doubt, be many 
unwelcome visitors from Manchester, and, as incendiarism was 


very rife, it would require all the watchfulness of Boniface, 
coupled with the eftorts of the constables to quiet the alarm 
which would be naturally felt by the better-off classes. Greater 
stringency was manifested in prosecuting felons, and Sale became 
a branch association, on the recommendation of the magistrates, 
"for the protection of property and the preservation of the peace." 
One of the rules provided for the calling of the members together 
and the raising of an alarm as soon as possible, the constable being 
provided with a rattle for that purpose. It was recommended 
that every " considerable " farm house should have one where no 
constable resided. At the same time, the principal inlets to the 
township — the public roads and the canal banks — were to be 
"considered as constant objects of attention." At one of the 
meetings held at this period, the name of a lady appears as having 
been present— Sarah Hulme. She signed her name, the hand- 
writing being very neat, and it is all the more worthy of record 
as being the first and last occasion on which the signature of a 
lady is to be found in this book. 

Another proof of the growing importance of Sale is to be 
noted in the fact that in March, 1813, it was deemed beneficial 
to elect a standing officer to conduct the whole of the offices of 
the township, vested interests being considered, Mr. J. Heap, the 
village schoolmaster, continuing " to be secretary to the town." 
Peter Whitehead was the standing officer appointed at a salary of 
£40 and reasonable expenses for journeys, 

We have already referred to numerous entries of the amounts 
granted in the way of relief to the poor. Some of them which 
we now drop across are very interesting. Applications were 
founded on various pretexts. Most are for sickness, but one 
good lady is stated to be "big with child;" John Cotterill wanted 
a new spade ; William Eoyle obtained 10s. as relief, his wife 
being "at lying-in ;" a violin was ordered to be purchased for a 
lame boy, evidently for the purpose of enabling him to earn his 
living ; a person had £1 5s. allowed him for his wife's coffin ; 
Barbary Hulme wanted, save the mark, two shifts, and while we 


would reluctantly draw the line at these sacred articles of ladies' 
wearing apparel, truth compels us to add that Saiah Leigh was 
ordered to be supplied with a "petty coat" towards winter. Peter 
Culcheth applied for a loom, which shows, in conjunction with 
other similar entries, that weaving was a means of livelihood to 
many of the inhabitants. In 1815 it was agreed that a workhouse 
should be built for the township as soon as convenient. 

That in some cases the inhabitants helped themselves is illus- 
trated by what may be termed a peculiar entry : — On Thursday, 
28th day of August, 1817, Thomas Leigh saw Margaret Cotterill 
getting potatoes in John Cookson's field, near the road, about 
ten o'clock, or between ten and eleven o'clock at night. He says 
he saw her getting potatoes and putting them in her pocket and 
run into the wheat, and he ran after her, and took hold of her, 
and called her Peg, and she said ' What ? ' H.e said, ' How can 
thou forshame to pull up the man's stuff?' She said 'Do not tell.' 
He did not say whether he would or would not. He felt at her 
pockets and was certain they were potatoes. He saw her go 
out of the field with them, and she said she only wanted a mess." 
(Breakfast or dinner). There were many others of a questionable 
character resident in Sale at this time. The cause had already 
begun to show the eftect. Another minute states that the poor 
houses " having long been inhabited by persons who neglect their 
work and their families, and are frequently seen going up and 
down in pursuit of game, and complaints having been very justly 
made by Mr. Moore and neighbouring gentlemen, that the said 
poor houses shall be appropriated, it be and hereby is requested 
that the trustees of the said premises take measures to remove 
the said families from the said premises." A meeting subse- 
quently declared that the wanton and malicious damage done to 
the young timber trees belonging to the Earl of Stamford and 
Warrington, and to the young fruit trees belonging to Mr. Heald 
and John Moore, Esquire, was a disgrace to the township and that 
no pains or expense be spared to bring the offenders to speedy 
justice. We must hope that for the credit of the township this 
disgrace was wiped out. 


As time sped on, the absurdity of tbis method of administering 
relief became apparent. The overseers had a lively time of it in 
visiting various parts of the country and arranging for the 
payments of the rents of persons who claimed Sale as their 
birthplace. Extraordinary apathy was manifested by the rate- 
payers. Two meetings were called on this subject. At the first 
no ratepayer attended, and at the second only two. A postpone- 
ment took place, and a sufficient number having been got together, 
it was decided that the payment of rents should be discontinued. 
In 1821, the growing importance of this matter was more fully 
recognised by the appointment of a select vestry for the manage- 
ment of the poor. Under the auspices of this body it was decided 
to draw up a case in order to ascertain what powers the land- 
oivners of Sale had to enclose waste lands adjoining their 
premises, and also as to the right of landowners with respect to 
the herbage of such lands, the advice of Messrs. Nicholls and 
Worthington, of Altrincham, to be taken on the subject. Notice 
of this meeting was duly " cried " two Sundays in the church. 

Meanwhile other matters of interest to the well-being of the 
township received due consideration. A village Hampden, or at 
any rate a gentleman having at heart the interests of the place, 
arose in the year 1826. His name was John Hulbert : he was 
mainly instrumental in obtaining the assessment of such portion 
of the Bridgewater Canal as passed through the township. The 
trustees of the Duke objected to pay, and persons were appointed 
by the overseers to watch the canal in order to ascertain what 
would be the amount received in the way of tolls and the profits 
therefrom. Arbitration was proposed by the trustees, but as the 
inhabitants thought that this was only introductory to expensive 
proceedings in the Court of King's Bench, they stoutly resisted 
it, unless some proposal were made by which their rights should 
be respected. Litigation dragged its slow length along for two 
years, but right prevailed, and the inhabitants were victorious. 
The chief actor in the drama, Mr. Hulbert, the then assistant 
overseer, received his reward. A committee was appointed who 



collected £10, which was expended on a silver cup, suitably 
inscribed, and presented to him at a public dinner at the Bull's 
Head, as some remuneration to him for his laudable and inde- 
fatigable exertions in obtaining a confirmation of the assessment 
in question. 

At a meeting of the inhabitants of the township of Sale and 
such inhabitants of the township of Ashton-on-Mersey as 
contributed to the building of the new school in Sale, held in the 
said school this 31st December, 1810, pursuant to public notice 
given, the following resolutions were proposed by Charles White, 
Esquire, the chairman, and unanimously passed : — 

(1) That the new school in Sale, together with such land, 

buildings, or interests as do now belong or may hereafter 
become attached to the said school, shall be properly 
secured and vested in trustees, to be nominated and 
appointed at this meeting. 

(2) That the Rector and Churchwardens of the parish of Ashton- 

upon-Mersey for the time being, Charles White, Esquire, 

John White, Esquire, Joseph Atkinson, Esquire, John 

Moore, Esquire, Kev. Robert Harrop, Isaac Harrop, Peter 

Heywood, William Leebridge, Joseph Clarke, John Smith, 

John Whitelegg, Robert Newton, be, and are hereby 

appointed Trustees of the said school and its appurtenances, 

and that Messrs. Worthington, Harrop and Worthington, 

Solicitors in Altrincham, be and are hereby instructed to 

draw a deed proper for this purpose, and for conveying and 

securing to the trustees, if necessary, the usual authority 

to execute and continue the trust. 

At the same time Mr. Heap was unanimously elected to fill 

the office of schoolmaster for one year on trial, in place of the late 

Mr. Holt. In 1811 it was considered desirable that a proper 

residence should be provided for the schoolmaster. A few further 

facts about the school and its origin may be interesting. The 

school was really a small thatched cottage situate in Springfield,. 


then waste. This was followed by a mixed school two storeys 
in height, and, be it noted, fronted a country lane now scarcely 
recognisable in School Eoad. 

The great impetus given to building in Sale by the opening of 
the Manchester, South Junction and Altrincham Railway, and the 
increased population thus formed, again rendered the school too 
small ; and we find in 1854, when Mr. James Warren was 
schoolmaster, it was reported to be " very defective." It had a 
flagged floor, very much out of repair, with only one common 
fire-grate in a room 33 feet long by 19 feet 6 inches wide ; it was 
cold and comfortless for scholars in winter, and the school fittings 
were in bad condition. To remedy these defects a wooden floor 
was substituted, a stove introduced, and other improvements made 
internally ; and thus it continued till 1861, when it was found 
necessary to erect an infants' school, 38 feet by 20 feet, and 
schoolmistress' residence to relieve the mixed school, which under 
the teaching of Mr. Henry Dixon, Mr. Warren's successor, had 
become too crowded. The infants' school thus erected was soon 
filled to overflowing— Mrs. Cartledge being the schoolmistress — 
and in 1874 an additional room, 27 feet by 20 feet was added 
to it. 

Still short of accommodation in the mixed school, the school- 
master's house (which for some years had been used as the Local 
Board offices) was in 1876 absorbed by the mixed school and used 
as class rooms ; but even with this addition, under the teaching 
of Mr. Adam Watson, the present master, the building was filled 
with children, and the results obtained at the annual examina- 
tions, as certified by the Government Inspectors, extremely 
creditable to him, considering the difficulty he laboured under in 
having the children crowded together in rooms ill adapted for 
teaching, and on different floors. 

The present buildings have an imposing frontage of one storey 
to School Eoad, and are entered through a large Gothic archway 
surmounted by an open belfry, with a public clock. This archway 


divides the mixed from the infants' school. The mixed school on 
the right has separate entrance porches for boys and girls, with 
convenient and well-fitted lavatories, cloak-room, &c., between. 
The principal room is in form of the letter L, 96 feet long and 
20 feet wide inside, class-room 16 feet by 20 feet, each open to 
the ridge, and with an average height of 18 feet. The large room 
is divided by three moveable curtains into four divisions or class- 
rooms, and heated by three open fires, whilst the ventilation has 
been carefully attended to. Advantage has been taken of the 
inclination of the site to get a covered play-ground under this 
part of the building. The infants' school consists of the room 
built in 1861, 38 feet by 20 feet, a large room 42 feet 6 inches 
by 20 feet, and class-room 21 feet 10 inches by 14 feet 7 inches. 
There is also a room 22 feet by 14 feet 6 inches, with entrances 
from Springfield Eoad and the school play-ground, fitted up as a 
Board-room for the trustees to hold their stated meetings in. 

The schools accommodate 550 children. The architect for the 
new buildings was Mr. A. 6. McBeath, Sale ; the contractors, 
Messrs. Luke Winstanley & Son, Sale ; mason work, Mr. Thomas 
Kirkley ; plaster work, Mr. Alfred Garner, Sale ; plumber and 
painter's work, Messrs. Kobert Collier and Co., Sale. 

At the beginning of the century, and for some years after- 
wards, Sale moor was used as an exercising ground for the troops 
in garrison at Manchester, and a grand review was held there, 
which was attended in vast numbers by the people. Old Sale 
Hall was an ancient seat of the Masseys, and passed to Mr. Moore, 
and afterwards by purchase to the late James Worthington, 
Esq., J.P. There is another seat on the Western side of the town- 
ship called Sale Hall, and formerly the residence of Dr. White, 
whose services to the township are perpetuated in numerous waj^s. 

The volunteer movement in Sale seems to have dated from 
the early part of the century. In June, 1804, the first muster 
roll appears to have been drawn up. Capt. John Moore, junr., 
a name well known in Sale annals, is the first on the list, and 


the other principal officers were Lieut. Robert Say, Lieut. Robert 
Williamson, Ensign Wm. Leebridge, and Surgeon Charles Poole, 
of Altrincham. There are 128 names in all. On the 9th April, 
1804, the " Ashton- on -Mersey -cum -Sale volunteers " were 
inspected by Lieut. -Col. Cuyler, who expressed his approbation 
of the improved discipline of the company, and on the 12th of the 
same month they had the honour of assisting the 5th dragoons 
in keeping the ground at Sale Moor during the review of 6,000 
volunteers, on which occasion Prince William Frederick of 
Gloucester was present. At this review the grand stand, erected 
half way down what is known as Hope Road, fell, by which many 
people were seriously injured, one fatally. Li 1S08, the company 
was disbanded, Napolean's projected invasion of England having 
been abandoned. In discontinuing their services, Lord Castle- 
reagh, in a communication to the Earl of Stamford and 
Warrington, Lord Lieutenant, says, "Your Lordship will be pleased 
to assure them that His Majesty will never cease to entertain a just 
sense of the zeal and public spirit which incited them to come 
forfvard in defence of their country, and it is only for giving 
speedy effect to the views of the Legislature in the important 
object of establishing a local militia, that His Majesty is now 
induced to dispense with their further services." On Sunday 
May 26th, 1811, when their colours were deposited in Sale and 
Ashton-on-Mersey Parish Church, a sermon was preached by the 
Rev. Frances Gardner, curate, from Jer. iv, 6, " Set up a standard 
towards Zion," which was printed, at the request of those 
present, by Haufan and Davies, c, Hanging Ditch, Manchester. 
It is pleasurable to record that the patriotic spirit has not died 
out. In 1859, when rumours of invasion were spread through 
the country, Sale responded as of old. The name of Capt. A. 
Watkin will be long remembered, and it will be seen that he 
did his duty well. Captain A. E. Marsland, Captain Scott, and 
others, will also be long thought of in maintaining the efficiency 
of one of the finest companies in the Third Cheshire Battalion 
Volunteer Rifles. 


Sale Burial Board was formed in 1862, and the Cemetery in 
Marslands Road, consisting of about six acres, was opened. The 
Board solved the religious difficulty very efficiently by providing 
an edifice divided into chapels which could be made use of by 
various denominations. One half of the cemetery was consecrated 
according to the rites of the Church of England. Although 
originally intended to meet the increasing requirements of the 
inhabitants of Sale, the cemetery attracted persons from Man- 
chester and district. The surplus profits were devoted in relief 
of the poors rate, and in this way the sum of nearly £15,000 has 
been realised. The management of the cemetery is now merged 
in the Sale Urban District Council. An additional plot of six 
acres has been added, but although a portion has been consecrated 
it has only been used to a limited extent. 


A shton-on-Merscij ami its parish — Some notices of old Vicars — Restora- 
tion of St. Martin's — The begimmigs of modern nonconformitij — Old 
Cross Street Chapel; JVesleyanism ; Congregationalism, dx. — St. 
Anne's ; St. John's, BrooMands ; St. Paul's ; St. Mary's — Sale 
Local Board — Progress of Sale — Sanitary arrangements, etc. 

THE parish of Ashton-on-Mersey was not an extensive one, 
and at an early period appears to have received spiritnal 
oversight from Bowdon, as, indeed, a certain portion of the 
township is still included in that ancient parish. Ashtown is the 
town of the sacred tree, and mear's-ee or eye (according to Dr. 
Israel Eenshaw) appropriate to the condition of the river Mersey 
before it was banked in to its proper channel. About A.D. 1,300 
its first parish church was built and dedicated to St. Martin. 
Ashton-on-Mersey, in 1402, was held as to one half by Sir George 
Carrington. In 1666 the greater portion of Ashton-on-Merscy 
lielonged to the Breretons of Honford or Handford, and Loi-d 
Delamer, of Dunham Massey, held about an eighth part. After- 
wards it descended by purchase and otherwise in 1749 to the 
Earl of Stamford, and was sold by the seventh Earl to the late 
Samuel Brooks, Esq., who devised it to his son. Sir William, who 
holds a court annually, as already noted, as Lord of the Manor. 
The old church was anciently valued at £13 4s. 7d., and there was 
once a chantry chapel here dedicated to the Virgin. The ancient 
edifice had not many claims to architectural features, and 
was exceedingly plain in its proportions. The interior, owing 
to the arrangement of the pews, was very inconvenient 
and uncomfortable, and in the aisles at one time was placed 
a continuous bench for the Sunday Scholars, which had to be 
stepped over by each worshipper who entered the pews. The 
church now consists of chancel, with organ chamber, nave, 
baptistry, vestries, and a tower containing one bell and a peal of 



13 Harrington tubular bells. In 1884 and 1885, the interior was 
refurnished and refitted with open oak benches, the framing of the 
old pews being converted into panelling for the chancel ^yalls. In 
1887, through the liberality of Su^ William Cunliffe Brooks, Bart., 
the vestries, tower, and handsome lych gate were erected, the 
work being carried out from the designs and under the superin- 
tendence of Mr. F. H. Oldham, F.R.I.B.A., of Manchester, and 
Mr. Truefitt, of London. There is a lengthy list of rectors, curates 


and other ministers commencing in A.D. 1305 with Willielmus de 
Sala, who was succeeded in 1307 by Kobertus Ashton, rector in 
1331, and with whose name is linked that of Thomas de Ashton. 
In 1350 Robert Ashton was rector, and he was succeeded in 1362 
by Jordan de Hulme. He was succeeded by Johannes de Massey 
two years later, and there is also a mention of Matheo de Sale, 
clerico, as having been witness to a Congleton charter dated 
July 3rd, 1381, although Johannes de Massey is named as rector in 
several deeds, notably 1382, 1389, and 1401. In 1409, the names 
of Nicholas de Wynbelegh or Wynkylegh and Roger de Kingesley 


appear, followed a year later by Kicardus Twemlowe. Then in 
quick succession we have Dns Walto Seymor (1412), Robertus 
Lyster (1413), Wms. Bagelegh (1419), H. Downham or Doneham 
(1428), Eic Dokedale or Dugdale (1435), Ranulphus de Ashton 
(1457), who endowed a charity in the parish church with land in 
Sale, on which a barn was built. In April, 1505, John Honford 
presented, and in 1522 Hugh Tippinge was rector, and he had a 
dispute with Mr. Massey in respect of the tithe of a corn mill at 
Ashton-on-Mersey, which was settled by arbitration. In 1567, 
John Robinson, clerk, is named in the will of Thomas Vawdrey in 
that year, although Ric. Shelmerdyne is returned as rector in 
1567. The oldest presentation, now at the Diocesan Registry, for 
this parish is that of Thomas Richardson, in 1582, followed by 
those of George Tipping, in 1613, and Daniel Baker, M.A., in 
1620, whose tragic death on April 1st, 1632, is recorded by 
Hollingworth as follows: — "Anno 1632, Daniel Baker, M.A., rector 
of Assheton on Mercy-bank and fellow of the Colledge, having on 
Good Friday (as it is called) administered the Lord's supper, and 
being, as it is feared, somewhat over-charged with drinke, in 
Salford, was found dead in the morning in the water under Salford 
Bridge ; whether he fell downe of himself, being a tall man, and 
the battlements then but low, or whether hee was cast doivne and 
put over the bridge, it is not certainly known to this day. This 
death of his, as also Dr. Buttes, the Vice-Chancellor of Cambridge, 
hanging himself on Easter day after and some other ministers and 
professors coming that year to an untimely end, as allso the above 
mentioned difference between the ministers, seemed to the 
Papists .... signal evidences of God's anger and wath, 
and presages of the ruine of the Refoniied Religion." 

Ralph Stirrup, M.A., was represented in 1632, and it was during 
the incumbency of this gentleman — so Dr. Israel Renshaw informs 
us — was begun in 1636, the parish Register containing 
Christenings, Weddings, and Burials, within our parish of Ashton 
super ripand Mersey, A.D., 1636. Mr. Stirrup died in 1639, and 
was succeeded in 1G40 by Richard Hcyricke, B.D., Fellow of 


All Souls' College, Oxford, who was also a warden of Manchester 
Parish Church, at a stipend of £70. During the period of the 
interregnum he complied with the requirements of Parliament, 
and was appointed preacher to the town at a stipend of £100, 
when the office of Warden was abolished. At the Eestoration he 
was reappointed warden by Charles II. The next presentation to 
the living was by Sir "William Brereton, and the parish Register 
states that Mr. Jonnsonnsonne (Mr. Johnson's son) was " chosen 
minister of the Word of God at Ashton sup Mersey, the 1st of June, 
1642, free selected by all the people of the parish of Ashton, and 
not by virtue of any prelate or other absurd usm-pation, and was 
possessed by the right worshipful and truly honoured Sir "William 
Brereton, patrone of the same, and for hee preached the 1st day 
of Jiuie being the fast day, in the year of our Lord one 
thousand six hundred and forty two." Although according to 
some authorities, Mr. John Ford was ejected for nonconformity 
the parish Register records " John Ford, minister of the Gospell 
and pastor of Ashton, was buried 16th Oct., 1661." It is difficult 
to reconcile this with the fact that Mr. Ford died before he was 
ejected. Is it possible thai Calamy, a great authority on this subject, 
may have been misinformed ? It may be that the man ejected was 
Mr. Ford's son, as he could not have been ejected after his death. 
On Nov. 6th, 1661, Henry Hesketh became rector on the 
presentation of Sir Thomas Brereton, and in 1663 was succeeded 
by Hugh Hobson, who signed a declaration in the parish register 
respecting the use of the Book of Common Pi-ayer, and the 
unlawfulness of taking up arms against the King. In 1679, 
Robert Brown, M.A., chaplain of Manchester College, was 
presented by Richard Massey, Esq., of Sale, and in 1706, Thomas 
Ellison, who was also rector of Pulford, was ajjpointed. It was 
during his incumbency that the church was rebuilt. In 1717, the 
Rev. Massey Malyn, LL.D., of Sale, was presented, who is 
described on a marble tablet, erected by his sorrowing widow, as 
the most excellent rector of this church, who suddenly, though 
not immaturely, snatched away, rendered his spirit again to God, 


on the Slst day of the month of October, in the year of Scalvation 
1729, in the year of his age 42. The Eev. Thomas Whittaker, 
M.A., who succeeded him on the presentation of the Bishop, was 
rector upwards of 37 years, and died on the 29th June, 1767, in 
his 77th year. Tlu-ee curates meantime ministered in the parish, 
and in 1767, the Rev. John Green, LL.B., was appointed, during 
whose incumbency Mr^. Hannah Smith bequeathed a sum of £20, 
the interest to be applied to the poor. In 1774, Richard Popple- 
well Johnson became rector, and he died in 1835, at the age of 
8G years, having had charge of the spiritual concerns of the parish 
for the long term of 61 years. In the same year he was succeeded 
hj the Rev. Charles Backhouse Sowerby, M.A., who resigned and 
was succeeded by the Rev. Joseph Ray, M.A. The present Vicar 
is the Rev. Abraham ^lendel Hertzberg, who studied at St. 
Aidan's Theological College, and was ordained Deacon in 1888, 
and priest 1889. He was curate of Hilgay, Norfolk, 1888, Vicar 
of N, Petherton, Somerset, 1890, and rector of Ashton-on-Mersey 
(St. Martin's), 1894, of which living he is also patron. The income 
is made up of a tithe rent charge of £700, averaging £519, with 
27 acres of glebe, value £105 ; fees, £20 ; Queen Anne's bounty, 
£5 ; gross income, £649 ; nett, £535 and house ; population 3,700. 
Sale, until very modern times, does not attract much attention 
from a nonconformist point of view. We hear of Ashton-on- 
JMersey, and also of Cross Street, and we read that in the then 
Frodsham Deanery, in 1662, Mr. Ford, of Ashton-on-Mersey, was 
ejected from his living for nonconformity. So it is stated by some 
authorities, but it is just possible that the Mr. Ford referred to 
was a son of the rector who died in 1661. In 1647, the famous 
Adam Martindale, a former Vicar of Eostherne, had been invited 
to become the minister, and in 1662, he stated he had been asked 
to minister at Ashton, at double the salary his people paid him. 
From a list of dissenting chapels and ministers in Cheshire, 
compiled between 1715 and 1729, we find that at Cross Street "on 
ye fund books, Ashton-on-Mersey," one Michael Fletcher was the 
preacher, and that out of a total congregation of 322, which 


included five gentlemen, 30 were voters for the County. This is 
without doubt the " Presliyterian meeting house,' now merged in 
the Sale Unitarian Sunday School, which is referred to by Bishop 
Gastrell, in his Notitia Oestriensis, as being "a place to which 
great numbers resort, anno 1716." The Rev. Robert Harrop, 
whose name appears in the Sale township books, preached at this 
chapel for 37 years, and retired "with the undivided respect and 
affection of his flock." The old chapel at Sale, the exact age of 
which appears to be uncertain, was vacated on the opening of the 
chapel in Atkinson Road. Of its late ministers, the late Rev. 
J. McConochie is perhaps the best known for his scholarly 
attainments and breadth of thought. This chapel was biu-ned 
down December 20th, 1896, and damage done to the extent of 

It was at Cross Street, too, that independency or Congrega- 
tionalism was cradled, to develope into the powerful organization 
it has since become. In the year 1800 services were held in a 
cottage there, and three years after a chapel was built, which will 
be recognized as the Sale Institute, capable of holding about 400 
hearers, and in 1805 a church consisting of 12 members. After 
many \-icissitudes the chapel was closed for about two months. It 
was then that at the request of the Trustees the (late) Rev. 
E. Morris, of Stretford, undertook the pastorate, and in October, 
1812, a second church, consisting of 11 members, was formed. 
The substantial growth which followed, consequent on the rapid 
increase of the township, required the erection of another chapel, 
which is built on a site in Montague Road, presented by the late 
Mr. Samuel Brooks, and opened in 1852. It is in the early 
English style, faced with stone. There are Sunday Schools 
adjoining and all the equipments for a thriving congregation. 
The Rev. E. Morris was succeeded by the Rev. Adam Scott, now 
of Southport, the present minister being the Rev. T. Hallett- 
Williams. The Ashtpn-on-Mersey Congregational Church is situate 
in Cross Street, and contains a stained glass window, designed by 
Sir E. Burne Jones to the memory of Mrs. Catherine Johnson. 


Wesleyanism, at an early date, liegan to be a power for good, and 
Wesley ChajJel, School Eoad, and the handsome Trinity Chapel in 
Northenden Road are substantial evidences of the feeling existing. 
What may be regarded as off-shoots, although really older than 
what may be regarded as the parent churches are Barker's Lane, 
Ashton-on-Mersey, the Egeiton Street Mission School, and flourish- 
ing branches at Partington and Sinderland. The growth of 
Scotch Presbyterianism is shown in the handsome structure in 
Northenden Road, erected in 1874, at a cost of £9,000, with 
manse. The first minister was the Rev. J. Thoburn McGaw, 
B.A., D.D., who was succeeded by the Rev. W. A. Sim. St. 
Joseph's Catholic Chapel in Hope Road is a neat edifice in the 
French gothic style, and for many years past the Rev. Canon 
Crawley has laboured with much patience and self denial. The 
Primitive Methodist Chapel is situate in Northenden Road. St. 
Anne's Church, the first in the township of Sale, was erected on a 
site given by the late Samuel Brooks, Esq. It is a building of 
stone in the early English style, consisting of chancel, nave of four 
bays, aisles, north and west porches, and a north west embattled 
tower, with pinnacles and octagonal spire. To meet the growing 
wants of the congregation it was enlarged in 1864, just ten years 
after it was opened, and again in 1887, furnishing sittings for 
900 people. The first vicar was the Rev. J. Johnson Cort, M.A., 
late Fellow of St. John's College, Cambridge. The interior is 
adorned with a new reredos and communion table, the gift of 
John Kendall, Esq., to the memorj' of his wife, and a brass tablet 
let in the wall states that " in loving memory of Eliza Jane Kendall, 
this sanctuary was beautified and reredos erected, 1893." 

The new three manual organ, 40 stops, by Harrison and 
Hairison, is considered the finest organ in the parish. 

In the Chancel is a marble tablet inserted in wall, to — 

"The Rev. Jonathan Johnson Cort, M.A., Fellow of St. John's 
College, Cambridge, Vicar of Sale. This monument was erected by the 
congregation. Born January 26th, 1827 ; died October 10th, 1884." 



Another marble tablet in the Chancel certifies — 

"In loving memory of George Yardon Ryder. Born 4th Marcli. 

180.3; died '22nd June, 1888." "Sarah Starkey. his wife. Born 2nd 

March, 1804 ; died 26th March, 1889." 

In the Transept is a stained-glass window — 

"In loving remembrance of the late Thomas Byron HoUinworth. 
This memorial is dedicated. Died August 8th, 1867 ; age 34." Subject : 
Christ blessing little children, and in Temple. 

Another stained-glass window — 

"In affectionate remembrance of Williami Wilson. This window is 
erected by his widow and children. Died April 1st, 1875 ; age 58 years." 
Subject : The Epiphanj-. 

ass window — 

" To the memory of William Joynson, of Ashfield. Died December 
27th, 1882." Subject : The Transfiguration. 

In the aisle is a stained window — 

" In memory of Mrs. Cort, wife of the late Yicar of Sale. Erected 
by members of congregation." Subject : Dorcas, St. Anne and B.V. 
Mary, St. Elizabeth." 

Marble tablets — 

" To the memory of Marion, the devoted wife of Charles Samuel 
Evans. This tablet was erected by her husband." 

To "John Wallace Murray, of Fraserburgh, and afterwards of this 
parish, who died at sea, on his way to Melbourne for the benefit of his 
health, October 28th, 1868, aged 30 years." 

To "Charles Samuel Evans. Born September 27th, 1791; died 
September 6th, 1857." A three-light stained-glass window to "Elizabeth 
Hayes, died July 4th, 1888, aged 49 years." Subject : Faith, Hope, 
Charity. Stained-glass window to "Phcebe Nancy Haj-es, died September 
24th, 1882, aged 17 years." Subject : Martha and Mary. 

" In loving memory of our dear parents, John Henry Waltham, born 
March 29th, 1824, died March 21st, 1893 ; also Elizabeth, his wife, born 
May 19th, 1824, died June 10th, 1894, who were for nearly 40 years 
members of this congregation." 

A large east window was erected by J. J. Occleston in 1S63. 
Subject : The Ascension. 

The Rev. John Patchett Cort, the present vicar, is the only 
son of the Eev. J. C. Cort, the first vicar of the parish. He is a 


graduate of St. John's College, Cambridge, where he took the 
degree of B.A. in 1879, in which year he was ordained Deacon, 
taking priest's orders in 1880. He was curate of St. Philemon's, 
Sheffield, in 1879, and curate of St. Anne's, under his late father 
from 1881 to 1884:, when he succeeded him as vicar. He was 
made an honorary B.A. of Owen's College, Manchester, in 1882. 
The living is in the hands of Trustees. The amount of the income 
from the endowment is £40 ; rents, £350 ; fees, £44 ; gross 
income, £434 ; net, £300 ; with a popidation of 5,956. 

The Church of St. John the Divine, in Brookland's Road, was 
erected in 1867. It is built of freestone in the Gothic style, 
consisting of chancel, nave, transepts, north west porch, and a 
turret on the western gable containing one bell. There are 500 
sittings. In the west end is a memorial window to the memory 
of the late John Brooks, Esq., M.P. There is a large Parish room 
in Marsland's Road, and a National School on Baguley JMoor 
connected with the parish, which is ecclesiastically in the township 
of Baguley. The first perpetual curate of St. John's was the Rev. 
Thomas Brooke, and was afterwards first vicar. 

The Rev. Hugh Bethell Jones, who succeeded the late Rev. 
Thomas Brooke, the first vicar, is a graduate of Trinity College, 
Dublin, and took his B.A. degree in 1861, and M.A., 1875; 
University College, Durham, ad eundum, B.A., L.Th. He was 
ordained deacon in 1863, priest in 1867, and B.D. in 1895. His 
first curacy was Whalley Range, Manchester, from 1863 to 1867, 
when he was appointed Vicar of Christ Church, Appleton-le-Moors, 
and from 1870 to 1876 he held the important curacy of St. 
Clement's, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, which he vacated on his preferment 
to the vicarage of St. John the Divine, Brooklands, or Baguley. 
He is the author of " Freces Liturgicce, Lectures on the morning 
and evening prayer," (1873), " Some thoughts on the Establishment 
of the Church of England," (1880), etc. The patrons of the 
living are Sir William Cunlifte Brooks, Bart., and Thomas Brooks, 
Esq. The gross income is £300, and the population 627. 


The growth of population on the westerly side of the 
Bridgewater Canal, necessitated the formation of a new 
ecclesiastical district, and in 1883, the fine church dedicated to 
St. Paul was erected. It is iti early English style from designs 
of Mr. H. E. Price, of Alanchester, and contains 750 sittings, 250 
of which are free. The first vicar was the late Rev. T. A. Livesey, 
whose learning and piety are remembered and appreciated by 
many of the early worshippers at this church. He died after a 
too brief ministry in 1887. Near the church is a Sunday School 
and parish room. 

The Eev. William Edward Chadwick, the present vicar, is a 
scholar and exhibitioner of Jesus College, Cambridge, where he 
graduated B.A. (JEgrot. Math. Tripos), and :M.A. in 1881. He 
was ordained deacon the same year, and was cm-ate of Holy 
Trinity, Coventry, 1881, and took priest's orders in 1882. He 
was curate of All Saint's, Bradford, Yorks., from 1884 to 1887 
when he was appointed Vicar of St. Paul's, Sale. The living is 
in the hands of Trustees ; gross income, £450, with house ; and 
population of parish, 3,126. 

The growing requirements of the parish of Ashton-on-Mersey 
rendered necessary the erection of a Chapel-of-ease, which was 
dedicated to St. Mary Magdalene, and opened in March, 1874. 
The site was given by Sir William Cunliffe Brooks, Bart, who 
also contributed liberally to the cost of the building — about 
£9,000 — raised by subscriptions. The parish was formed in 1894. 
The architecture of St. Mary's is of the early decorated period, 
and was erected from designs of Messrs. Wilson and Oldham. 
The building consists of nave, with north and south transepts. 
The pulpit is in Caen stone, with marble steps, and illuminated 
texts adorn the walls. The ceiling is of dark wood, moulded and 
panelled, and with bosses relieved by black and gold. The tower 
and spire are on the south side of the chancel at the junction of 
the transept with the nave. 

On the division of the ancient parish of Ashton-on-Mersey, in 
1894, the Eev. Christie Chetwynd Atkinson, who had held the 


senior curacy under the Rev. Joseph Ray, a former rector, since 
1882, was appointed by the Trustees the first vicar of S. Mary 
Magdalene. He is a I\I.A. of Keble College, Oxford, where he 
took a fourth class in the Theological School in 1878. He was 
ordained Deacon in 1879, and Priest in 1880. He was assistant 
master of All Saints' School, Bloxham, and curate of Hempton, 
Oxon, 1879 to 1880, assistant master of St. Paul's, Stony 
Stratford, 1880 to 1882, when he was appointed to the curacy of 
Ashton-on-Mersey. The gross income of the living is returned at 
£265 per annum, and nett, £90, with an estimated population of 
3,108. Already schools and a parish room arc liuilt to meet 
the increasing educational and social wants of the parish. 

If the saying be true that happy is the country, and let us in 
the present instance add township, that has no history, then Sale 
may be regarded as being exceiitionally favoured in this respect. 
There is very little to be said as to the proceedings of its Local 
Board from its formation in 1867, which is specially striking, and 
it is chiefly remarkable for the business-like way in which its 
members set about bring the afl'airs of the to wnship up to date in 
the matter of sanitary and general administration. Wm. Joynson, 
Esq., J.P., whose venerable appearance and sound good sense 
inspired universal respect, was unanimously elected Chairman and 
under his able direction the proceedings of the Board were 
distinguished by smoothness and harmony. Under the superintend- 
ence of Mr. A. G. McBeath, the surveyor and engineer to the 
the Board, a complete and efficient system of drainage was laid 
down, and the roads of the township greatly extended and 
improved. This policy, the Sale Urban District Council, on 
succeeding to the inheritance left by the defunct Board, in 189i, 
has continued, and in accordance with the requirements of the 
Mersey and Irvvell Joint Committee, a scheme for the purification 
of the Sale Sewage, has been laid down near Dane Road, where 
about two million gallons per day is dealt with in order that a 
satisfactory etllueut may be passed into the river Mersey. The 
works have been constructed from plans of Air. McBeath. 



Particulars of the increase of the township will be found in the 
apiDcndix, but it should be added that the Free Library and 
Technical classes in Tatton Road are in a flourishing condition, 
and a School of Art adjoining is now completed. 

The total amount borrowed by the Sale Local Board and Sale 
Urban District Council up to and including July, 1895, for works 
of sewage and public improvements amounted to £45,385, of 
which at the end of March, 1896, the sum of £23,219 9s. 4d. had 
been repaid, leaving a balance of £22,105 10s. 8d., extending over 
a period of 30 years, at the low rate of three and a half to four 
and a half per cent, interest. Excluding Bowdon, which has a 
remarkably low district rate. Sale compares most favourably with 
surroundings authorities, having a comparatively low district rate, 
while its death rate, considering the rapidity of increase of 
population is next to Bowdon, as low as can be found in any 
similar area and number. Li 1895, the township was divided for 
electoral purposes into five wards, viz. : North, South,' East, West, 
and Central, each with three members. 


IFythen?hmve Hall and the Tattons—Carrington Moss, iviih an account 
of Carrington fight, a memorable local event— Manchester Ship 
Canal — A Bishop from Carrington — Baguley Ball ami the Leghs — 
Biddings Hall — The Gerrards and the Vavdreys — Edlesion's 
Lepidoptera of the Bollin Falleij ; ornithology, etc. — Ashley Hall, 
a notable meeting ; a lUtle-hnown tragedy — The murder at the 
Bleeding JFoIf, etc. 

THE name and family of Tatton of Wythenshawe have been 
identified with this district for many centuries. Mr. 
Earwaker, the historian of East Cheshire, points out that 
records relating to Wythenshawe are extant for quite 550 years, 
and it is noteworthy as one of the few estates which have been 
handed down in the same family from one generation to another 
since the middle of the 14th century. In all probability the 
descendants of Hamo de Mascy, or Massy, of Dunham, very soon 
obtained possession of the land at Wythenshawe, as there was a 
branch of the Mascies there about 1275. 

Robert de Tatton, of whom mention is first made, owned land 
in Northenden in 1297, and his grandson marrying a daughter of 
William Mascy, brought Wythenshawe into the Tatton family in 
1370. Robert and William seem to have been for generations 
favourite family names. There is one Nicholas, who was Baron 
of the Exchequer of Chester in 1451, but down to the year 1700 
Robert is either succeeded by William, or William by Robert. In 
1747, William Tatton, of Wythenshawe, Esquire, married for his 
second wife, Hester, eldest daughter of John Egerton, Esquire, 
of Tatton Park. She was sister and sole heiress of Samuel 
Egerton, Esquire. The result of this marriage was to cause the 
Tattons of Wythenshawe to assume, by royal license, the name 
and arms of Egerton of Tatton, which was done by William 
(Tatton) Egerton, Esq., of Tatton Park and AVythenshawe, who 

258 SALE, JSHTOX-nX-MEnSEV, dr. 

was M.P. for Cheshire at the time of his death in 1806. By his 
first marriage with Frances Maria, eldest daughter of the Rev. 
John Fountayne, Dean of York, he had two sons and one 
daughter, who retained the old name of Tatton ; those by his 
second wife, Mary, second daughter of Richard Wilbraham 
Bootle, Esq., of Eode, preserving the name of Egerton. Their 
eldest son, Wilbraham Egerton, Esq., of Tatton Park, was the 
father of the late Lord Egerton, of Tatton. Their second 
son, Thomas William, resumed by royal license, dated 9th Januar}', 
1806, the name and arms of Tatton, on succeeding to the Wythen- 
shawe estates. He was High Sheriff of Cheshire in 1809. By 
his marriage with Emma, daughter of the Honourable John Grey, 
a younger son of Harry Grey, fourth Earl of Stamford and 
Warrington, he was brought into still greater contact with our own 
district. He was succeeded by his eldest and only son — there 
being eight daughters — Thomas William Tatton, the late worthy 
and beloved possessor of the estate of Wythenshawe. He was 
born on the 2nd June, 1816, and was married January 25th, 
1843, to Harriet Susan, eldest daughter of Robert Towneley 
Parker, Esq., of Cuerdon, Lancashire. She died in London, 
February 20th, 1873, Their eldest son, Thomas Egerton Tatton, 
Esq., born May 31st, 1846, is married to Essex Mary, second 
daughter of Col. The Hon. T. G. Cholmondeley, of Abbott's 
Moss, near North wich. He has two brothers, Robert Grey Tatton 
and Reginald Arthur Tatton, and one sister, Mary Emily. The 
late possessor of Wythenshawe was well known and highly 
respected throughout the county. Amongst those with whom he 
was brought into immediate contact, not only in the family 
circle, but amongst his tenantry, he was justly beloved. 
Courteous in his bearing and kindly in his manner, the merest 
stranger received a patient hearing at his hands. He qualified 
as a Magistrate for the County on the 17th October, 1842, and 
in 1848 was High Sherift of Cheshire. In his magisterial capacity 
he was Chairman of the Altrincham Petty Sessional Division. 
In all matters relating to the social, moral, and physical well- 


being of the people, he took the deepest interest. When the fear 
of an invasion on the part of our French neighbours^a fear 
happily found to have little or no real foundation— caused a 
national call to arms to resound through the land, Mr. Tatton 
practically recognised his duty as a patriot, and took a prominent 
part in the formation of the Volunteer force in this district. He 
was for many years the respected Colonel of the 3rd Battalion 
C.R.V., which had its headquarters at Altrincham, and his 
resignation was greatly deplored. His latest act of any great 
public importance, was the laying of the foundation stone of the 
Church of St. Wilfrid, at Northenden, on the 11th April, 1874. 
In this work he took the deepest interest, and in addition to 
restoring the north and south chapels at his own cost, he gave £750 
towards the subscription for re-building the main body of this 
venerable fabric. In politics he was a Conservative, but in the 
moderateness of his views he was a pattern worthy of imitation 
by the members of any political party. Indeed we may apply to 
him most truthfully, the lines of Pope, which have already been 
applied to another member of the family : 

A fair example of unblemished worth, 

Of modest wisdom and pacifick truth ; 

Compos'd in sufTrings, and in joy sedate, 

Oood without noise, without pretension, great I 

Wythenshawe Hall, which next claims attention, stands about 
two and a half miles from Sale. Originally, the structure was in the 
black and white style of Cheshire, and surrounded by a fortified 
wall and moat. It has numerous gables, which lend to it an air 
of great picturesqueness, and at various periods it has been the 
subject of many alterations and additions. As will have been 
already seen, the family has been singularly fortunate in retaining 
possession of the ancestral home. Webb, in his Itinerary (1614), 
states that "Wythenshawe, or AVithanshaw, is a goodly Lordship 
and stately house, the mansion of Tattons, men of great worship 
and dignity. A race of them for a descent or two, through the 
variable inconstancy of all mortall happinesse, much eclipsed. 

260 SALE, ASllTOX-ON-MEnSEY, dx. 

And the heir of that house, though a gentleman of rare suffi- 
ciency and parts, answerable every way to the great worth of his 
ancestors, yet by troubles and encumbrances, whereunto greatest 
estates are oft subject, obscured : that he never yet shined in his 
own sphear ; and the chiefest hope now of raising the house 
remains in the Grandchild of his own loyns, a towardly child in 
minority." It will be thus seen that the familj' has passed 
through many vicissitudes. 

Although Robert Tatton was married in 1628-9 to Anne, 
daughter of AY illiam Brereton, Esq., of Ashley, a near relative of 
Brereton, one of the leaders on the Parliamentary side in the Civil 
War, this did not prevent him from warmly espousing the cause 
of King Charles. He suffered greatly in consequence, and Mr. 
Earwaker in his "East Cheshire," states there is preserved at 
Wythenshawe an "Inventory of all the Goods and Cattels of 
Kobert Tatton, of Withen,shaw, Esq., viewed and praysed the 
2 June 19, Charles I., 1613," the total value being set down at 
£1,619 2s. 8d. Soon afterwards Wythenshawe was besieged by 
the Parliamentarian forces under Col. Duckenfield, and for a year 
and a half it was defended by the owner. Amongst the defenders 
were — Edward Legh, cf Baguley, Esquire, Mr. Eichard Vawdrey, 
Mr. John Bretland and his man. Out of Baguley, William 
Hamnett, Eobert Chapman and Nicholas his brother, Thomas 
Hill. Also Eobert Deane of Altrincham, Hugh Newton, Eichard 
Grantham, of Hale, Eobert his sonne, and George Delahey of 
Timperley. Mr. Thomas Gerrard of the Biddings, and Mr. 
William Davenport of Baguley, are also mentioned. The house 
was taken on Sunday, February 25tb, 1613-1, two pieces of heavy 
ordnance which were sent for from Manchester being brought 
against it. Had it not been for this, the besiegers might have 
had to beat a retreat. During this memorable and trying time, 
one of the maid-servants is credited with a most daring act. 
Captain Adams was so bold that he ventured to sit on the outer 
wall. Being seen by the domestic in this exposed position, she 
asked for and was furnished with a musket, and so true was her 

S-ILE, ASHTOX-ON-MEllSEY, c\ic. 263 

aim, that the officer was shot dead. However questionable this 
may be, there is no doubt Captain Adams met his death there. 
Six skeletons were found in the last century lying close together 
in the garden. They are supposed to have been the soldiers who 
fell under the fire of the garrison, and were buried as they lay. 
For his " Delinquencie," he had his estates sequestered by Parlia- 
ment, and although it was stated that he had been "damnified 
since theise troubles by the losse of his goodes, rentes, waste of 
bis houses and tymber," £2,500, and in other ways probably 
£2,000 more, the resolution of a committee convened by the 
Parliament, inflicted a fine of X804 10s. Od. This was subse- 
quently reduced to £707 13s. 4d., a fine heavy enough in all 
conscience to appal the stoutest heart. It is satisfactory to note 
that Mr. Tatton lived to see the Restoration of Charles II. " He 
died," says Mr. Earwaker, "August 19th, and was buried at 
Northenden, August 24th, 1669 ; and it is somewhat strange that 
amongst the numerous monumental tablets to the various members 
of the Tatton family in Northenden Church, there is nothing to 
commemorate the life and character of one who suftered so much 
for his loyalty to his sovereign, at a time, and in a part of the 
country where loyalty was a crime and treason a virtue to be 
highly rewarded." However much we may question the accuracy 
of this sweeping statement, viewed in the light which history his 
unfolded, all will concur in the opinion that there is no record of 
the kind indicated to teach us a lesson of at least consistency and 

Numerous articles were removed from Wythenshawe after the 
siege, amongst them two bells, which appear to have confounded 
historians somewhat. By one it is stated that the old house bell 
was carried off', but afterwards restored by Charles II., with a 
small silver snuft-box, having the donor's initials and medallion 
upon it, as a mark of his esteem. Another has it that this bell 
remained with Col. Duckenfield's successors until the 20th October, 
1807, when Sir Henry Diickenfield, their then representative, 
"gracefully restored this prize of war to the then representative 



of "Withensliaw Hall, in which house it now hangs ; and so a 
trophy snatched in a time of civil war was restored in a time of 
domestic peace, after a lapse of more than a century and a half." 
The inscription on this bell is 

'Gloria in Excelsis Deo.' 

Mr. Earwaker states, however, that the chapel bell, which is 
evidently the one here referred to, after having been preserved 
at Duckenfield Lodge for over 200 years, was recently presented 
by Jlr. Astley to Mr. Tatton, and is now at Wythenshawe. 
Cromwell stayed at Wythenshawe Hall, and the room he slept in 
is still called "Oliver Cromwell's room." The bed which is dated 
1619 is of elegantly carved wood, the furniture and mirrors 
matching it and of the same age. " All's well that ends well." 

A vigorous stride across the country brings us to Carrington 
Moss, and it is very amusing to read in this connection the 
quaintly droll description given by Mr. Leo H. Grindon, in that 
notable and delightful work, "Manchester Walks and Wild 
Flowers." He says, "Should any of our unknown companions 
in these rambles be vegetarians, they will please here take notice 
that Carrington Moss in the summer time is a scene of ravenous 
slaughter, such as cannot but be exceedingly painful and shocking 
to them. It will ajjpear the more repulsive from the high 
character for innocence ordinarily borne by the destroyers, who 
are the last beings in the world we should ex2Dect to find indulging 
in personal cruelty, much less acting the jiart of perfidious sirens. 
Having given this warning, our friends will of course have only 
themselves to blame should they persist in following us to the 
spectacle we are about to describe ; and now it only remains to 
say that the perpetrators of the deeds alluded to are plants." 
Then we are treated to a description of the Sarracenias, and the 
Droseraceaj or Sundews ; the pea green Sphagnum, in the little 
marshes ; the Lancashire Asphodel, which grows very profusely ; 
the Ehyncospora Alba, the Cranberry, the Andromeda, and the 


Cotton Sedge, all in great abundance, with luxuriant grasses 
peculiar to moorlands, and the finest specimens of purple heather 
to be seen within so short a distance from Manchester. Owing 
to its acquirement by the Manchester Corporation, the Moss is 
being rapidly brought into cultivation, and while the advance of 
population has its drawbacks, yet the borders of the Moss and 
the lanes approaching it are prolific in curious plants. " July," 
says Mr. Grindon, " is the best time. Then the foxgloves lift 
their magnificent crimson spires, and the purple tufted vetch 
trails its light foliage and delicate clusters beneath the woodbines ; 
and the tall bright lotus in coronets of gold, and the meadow- 
sweet, smelling like hawthorn, make the lady fern look its 
greenest, while in the fields alongside stands, in all its pride of 
yellow and violet, the great parti-coloured dead nettle, which 
here grows in luxuriant perfection. All the lanes leading to 
Carrington Moss are remarkably rich in wild flowers and ferns, 
the latter including the Royal fern or Osmunda, and in early 
summer show great plenty of the white lychnis, called, from 
not opening its petals till evening, " the vespertina." The pink- 
eyed lychnis, or " Brid e'en," or Bird's eye of our country friends, 
is always open. There is also abundance of blackberries, wild 
raspberries, &c., and nature's gifts are everywhere found in great 
profusion and beauty. 

Carrington Fight, or "feight," as it is termed by the natives, 
occupies a relative position in the annals of this primitive village, 
that the battle of Agincourt does to those of England. It was 
formerly held up to strangers as an overwhelming proof of the 
victoriously pugnacious propensities of their ancestors, and at the 
wakes and other festive gatherings, its recitation, generally by 
one of the " rude forefathers of the hamlet," was a feature in the 
proceedings. It is moreover a reminder of those little neighbourly 
battles which took place something like half-acentury ago, when 
it was regarded as a privilege for the boys of one village to give 
those of another place a thrashing — if they could. It was a 
period, too, when strength amongst the lower orders was a 

II 3 


synonym for brutality, and when there were no neighbours handy 
a little battle was occasionally fought between themselves for the 
mastery. Carrington fight is, in the flowing cups of the 
Carringtonites still both freshly and freely remembered. It has 
been worked into verse by a local " poet," and from this fact and 
the implements used, it may be inferred that the conflict was of a 
more than usually sanguinary character. Pikels, axes, sticks, 
stones, and similar things were brought into requisition, but 
singu'ar to relate, no lives were lost, probably owing to the 
opponents of the Carrington men thinking discretion the better 
part of valour, and disappearing with marvellous celerity. There 
are no fewer than 18 verses in this extraordinary "poem." The 
first is inviting in its character : — 

Good people, pay attention to what I'm going to lay down, 
It is of a dreadful battle that was fought in Carrington town ; 
The Flixton men they did come here, thinking to have some fun, 
But as soon as Carrington lads stept up, they showed how things 
were done. 

We're all true-hearted lads, my boys. 

We all fought in one mind, 
We made Packer with his pikel run 
And leave his troop behind. 

The gentleman alluded to as Packer was evidently a celebrity 
who was engaged in the packing of wool, the combing of which 
was a pursuit in the Flixton district, and was not probably his 
real name. The second verse describes the circumstances under 
which the encounter takes place. It was on Soft Tuesday (Shrove 
Tuesday ?) and at the local races the Flixton men showed their 
vexation that their favourites did not win. A sufficient casus belli 
is found in their determination to take "that hat off Smith," 
when he went to " the Bell " for refreshments. The Partington 
men shouted for fair play, but 

" As soon as the Carrington lads went in 
They made them cut away." 

In the fourth verse the battle rages. Five of the Flixton men 
flew away like lightning, and by the time the fifth verse is reached 


the reverse has become a rout, and the others ignominiously effect 
a retreat by the back door of the "Bell" down to the river side. 
Those who have read the Greek poets are only too familiar with 
the hairbreadth escapes they make their heroes run on many 
occasions. It is thus mth our local Homer : — 

It was at Parson's Sale second fight began, 

These Flixton men came shouting, thinking we were gone, 

" Come out, ye Carrington rebels, we know you've had enough," 

As soon as Carrington lads stepped up, into th' Windy Jlill they flew. 

What they did when they got inside the Windmill Inn is 
vividly depicted — 

Now when they geet in th' Windy Mill, thro' windows they did peep. 
They said to one another, " Lads, up th' chimney let us creep ;" 
The landlord sat in his arm-chair, and cocking up his face. 
He shouted to the landlady, " They're hiding in th' clock case ! " 

Some disappear in various directions. One old blacksmith 
from Flixton, more terror-stricken than the rest, runs into the 
furnace hole. When he gets home his face is covered -with soot, 
and he describes to his wife his actions and feelings very truth- 
fully. Another battle is imminent. The " Carrington lads," 
armed with "axes, swords, and bills," again go forward to meet 
the Flixton men with " loud huzzas." 

The Flixton men they did run oS, feer't lest they all geet killed, 

One of theni shovited out, " I see the savage men, 

I wish I could get Flixton, for I'd ne'er come here again." 

In this encounter four of the defeated party were so badly 
wounded that they had to be removed to the Manchester 
Infirmary, where one of them regrets his visit. 

One said unto the doctor, " JSIy wounds are very sore, 
I'll ne'er go ower Carrington bridge a feightin' any more." 

A magisterial investigation followed, in which we are told 
" two 'tornies " and two justices were engaged for two days at 
the Blue Bell, with what result deponent sayeth not. 

That magnificent feat of engineering skill, the Manchester 
Ship Canal, enters the Altrincham Union at Partington, passing 


through Carrington, Warburton, and Thelwal), d'c, on the way to 
.Eastham. It is not necessary here to go over the vicissitudes of 
this undertaking. For some years it was in abeyance, and 
although Lord Egerton of Tatton was appointed Chairman of the 
Directors of the Ship Canal Co. in February, 1887, it was not 
until November of the same year that the first sod was cut. The 
contract with the late Mr. T. A. Walker, was £5,750,000, but his 
demise caused the work to be taken in hand by the Ship Canal 
Co., with the result that when the Canal was opened in January, 
1894, the total cost amounted to nearly £15,000,000, of which 
the Manchester Corporation provided close upon £5,000,000. 
The formal opening by Her Majesty the Queen, did not take 
place until May, the occasion being marked by great rejoicings 
and a most loyal and enthusiastic welcome. The Canal, which is 
about 35 i miles in length, has been excavated throughout to a 
depth of 2G feet, which is the depth of the large docks at 
Manchester, the smaller docks being 20 feet. 

The bottom width at the full depth of 26 feet is 120 feet, 
with the following exceptions : — 

(rt) At the curve at the Weaver Outfall, the width at the full 
depth is 140 feet, and at the bend at Runcorn, approaching 
the Runcorn Railway Bridge, it is 150 feet, 
(i) For a distance of about 2i miles, between Latchford Locks 
Partington Coal Basin, the bottom width is at present only 
80 to 90 feet, and large vessels are not allowed to pass 
each other on that portion of the Canal. 
(c) From Barton Aqueduct to the Manchester Docks the 

bottom width is 170 feet. 
For purposes of comparison it may be stated that the Suez 
Canal had, until recently (when widening operations were begun), 
only a bottom width of 72 feet, except at the passing places. 
The tidal portion of the Ship Canal from Eastham to Latchford 
Locks (21 miles) is maintained at a level of 9 feet 6 inches above 
mean tide level. When the tide rises above this level it flows in 

SALE, ASHTOiY-OiX-MEnSEY, dr. 269 

and out of the Canal over three tidal weirs and three sets of sluices. 
The fixed bridges across the Canal are 75 feet above the normal 
water level, but as the headway is necessarily a few feet less when 
high tides or floods occur, to avoid detention masts should clear 
the bridges at 70 feet above the water level. The locks and 
swing bridges are all connected by telephone with each other and 
with the Dock Office at Manchester. The Manchester Docks are 
equipped with transit sheds of new design, hydraulic and steam 
cranes, and other appliances for giving quick despatch in loading 
and discharging. The railways of the Company convey traffic direct 
between the various loading and discharging berths at the docks 
and along the Canal, and are connected with all the railway 
systems of the country. The Canal and docks are in direct com- 
munication with the whole of the barge canals of the district. 
The chief engineer was Mr. (now Sir) E. Leader Williams, a 
resident for many years past at Altrincham, and formerly the 
principal engineer to the Weaver Trust and the Bridgewater 
Canal undertakings, the last named now merged in the Ship Canal 

John Rider, Bishop of Killaloe, Ireland, was born at Carring- 
ton in 1.562. He was a graduate of Jesus College, Oxford, and 
after passing through many successful preferments, was made 
Bishop of Killaloe in 1613. He was the author of several 
political and controversial tracts, of a Dictionary (English-Latin 
and Latin-English), printed at Oxford in 1689. His career is 
fully dealt with in Athena Oxoniensis (Bliss). 

Within a few square miles of Altrincham we have the remains 
of halls and other residences, now mostly converted into farm- 
houses, indicating the existence of families, some of whom have 
in a certain degree left their mark on the history of this country. 
For instance, the family of Brereton, so far as this district is 
concerned, has faded from popular memory. It was as ancient 
and honourable as any in the county, and we will briefly sketch 
its descent, and the manner of settlement of one of its branches 
at Ashley. For this purpose, let us look a little way over the 


hill tops of time. The Breretons, like many others, took the 
names of the townships or places in which they lived, and they 
were settled in the township of Brereton about the time of the 
Conquest. In 1632, they claimed a moiety of the Barony of 
Malpas by descent, and their branches spread over the county, 
their connections by marriage being the Leghs of Booths, Meres 
of Mere, the Dones, and Leghs of High Legh, &c. In the reign 
of Henry VIII., Eichard Brereton, of Lea Hall, Middlewich, 
younger son of Sir William Brereton, married Thomasin, daughter 
and heiress of George Ashley, Esq., of Ashley. The estate 
continued vested in the Breretons till the middle of the seven- 
teenth century, when it was left by Thomas Brereton to be divided 
amongst his three sisters who had married into the Tatton, 
Barlow, and Ashton families. 

Baguley, or, as it is anciently spelled, Baggiley, was held 
along with SinderlanJ at the coming of the Normans by Edward 
and Suga, Udeman and Pat, who are described as " gentlemen," 
and later the township gave its name to the family of Baggiley, 
who were seated here as early as the 18th of Henry III. (123-4), 
and in one charter it was granted to one John Baggiley the 
payment of 12d. for all services, saving to Wm. Baggiley, John's 
third best pig when the pig could find mast for itself. After- 
wards, the Leghs, one of whom wrote several historical poems, 
entitled " Scottish Fielde," in the reign of Henry VII., held the 
township for a long period, until the line terminated in Edward 
Legh in 1688. After passing through the hands of several owners, 
the township is practically owned by the Tattons of AVy thenshawe. 
Of great interest to antiquarians, as well as excursionists, is 
Baguley Old Hall, with its ancient oak wood work. Only one 
large apartment of the old hall remains, the greater portion of the 
structure having at some remote period been destroyed by fire. 
Here is still to be seen the effigy of Sir William de Baggiley, 
formerly in Bowdon Parish Church. The tumulus on Baguley 
Moor was opened many years ago, and from the remains is 
supposed to have been the site of an old windmill. 


The Manor of Timperley was held at a very early period by 
a family assuming the local name, and amongst the charterers is 
Thomas Gerard, of Eiddings, gent., Biddings Hall, having been 
purchased from the Vaudreys. Bank Hill (Bank Hall) and 
Biddings were both seats of the branches of the Vaudreys, of 
Bowdon, and in 1567 Robert Vaudrey, of Eiddings, made a 
lengthy will, in which he wills that his "bodie be chested 
decentlye, brought home and buryed at the Parishe Churche of 
Bowdon, in the Chappell, and placed where my parents do lye." 
"Item to sixe of the poorest men of my ten'ntes wth-in the parishe 
of Bowdon, vj. white gownes, desirynge they'm heartfullye to 
praye for me, and to go afore my corps to the churche and buryall 
of the same. And to other vj. of the poorest of my ten'ntes 
wth-in the parishes of Northerden and Ashtou-upon-M'see banck 
other vj. gownes of blacke cotton, desyrynge and bertfullye 
prayinge theym likewise to praye for me in comynge next after 

my corps to the Churche and buryall The testator 

also disposes of his property and manors in Bowdon, Bollington, 
Hale, Ashley, Chester, &c., and to Margaret V. (Vaudrey, his 
daughter) at suche tyme as she shall leave her dishonest and 
uncleane ly vynge for and durynge all such tyme after as she shall 
lyve honestlye V" by yeare." There are bequests to his relatives 
and to poor kinsfolk friends, poor " maydes," poor men, poor 
children, and to the curates and clerks on certain feast days. He 
had a large number of God-children, to every one of whom he 
left iiij* "by estymation xxiiij" viij'." "I do bequeath and forgyve 
my disobedyent sonne Thorn's all such and those sum'es of moneye 
wch he hath wrongfullye recey ved (embezzlement was not unknown 
in these times) and taken from me, and also the sum'e of C' 
xvijsiiij'' wch he alsoe is indebted to me or such p'te thereof as 
shall remayne vulgived me at the tyme of my decease accordynge 
as by a bill of his hand appeareth willynge and com'andyne and 
upone my blessynge chargynge and requyrynge hym to use 
sobrietie, and to leave all evell and drynkynge companye and for 
to say o'r Lordes praier with such other praiers and thankes 
J.I 3 


gevynge to God as he shall gyve his grace and put hym in mynd 
daylye uppon his knees everye mornynge humblye besekyne hym 
to have m'cye nppon all his creatures, and to gyve hym grace to 
lyve honestlye and iustlye in the world uppon my blessynge, 
also willynge hym to say the Articles of o'r fayth, the Crede, 
once everye week, and to be lovynge, kynde, and helpynge to 
his mother, brethren, and sister, exortynge her to repeat her 
evell lyfe, and to lyve honestlye from henceforth, and also to be 
kynde and helpynge in his powre to all his poore cousens and 
friendes and to all the ten'ntes of the landes wch God hath 
lent me and I have left hym, and to take nothynge of theym nor 
of any of theym but only their due rente ande servyce, inasmuche 
as God hath sent hym the landes without labor, and they must 
labor and paye for theym, and to be satisfied wth the same wch 
is much better than was left me, and wuld have byn better to 
hym if he wuld have byn counselled or advysed by me or have 
shewed hym selfe obedient or lovynge toward me, for although 
I wuld not yet I rather desire to have hym dye affore me than 
to lyve to do hurt after me, wch God forbid, and uppon my 
blessynge I warn the said Thorn's from, requryeynge hym to love 
areade and to serve God, to frequent to charitie, &c." For this 
he forgives him his " mysbehayvyor and tresspesses done to me, 
and gyve the my blessynge, besekynge God to do the same, &c." 
There are other legacies of personal effects, including more than 
"one bowe and a shoff of arrowes," and to Cousin "William 
Barneston's two boys "iijsiiij'' to buy theym bookes." "To my 
sister Brook vj' viij'^ and a lambe." He appointed Ales, his wife, 
daring her widowhood only, his sons, John and Richard Vaudrey, 
and the Eev. John Eobinson, his executors. Wm. Arderne, of 
Timperley, gent., is supposed to have been Mayor of Altrincham 
in 15G0, but in the list of Mayors the name is given as Ardron. 
Alexander Vaudrey is said to have been Mayor in 1616, and 
George Vaudrey, also of Timperley, Mayor in 1636. The land 
in this and other surrounding townships came by heirship and 
otherwise to the Earl of Stamford, who in or about 1857 sold 


his possessions in Baguley, Timperley, Hale, Ashton-on-Mersey, 
Carrington, Partington, Sale (that portion known as Brooklands), 
to the late Mr. Samuel Brooks, banker, of Manchester. How this 
large property was developed is well known. The large water 
drain, considered at the time of its construction a perfect triumph, 
extended from Hale to the river Mersey, a distance of over three 
miles, and was made at a cost of £12,000. Mr. Brooks, as lord of 
the Manor of Ashton-on-Mersey, revived the ancient court leet, 
and his views and ideas have been well carried out by his son, 
Sir William Cunlifte Brooks, Bart. 

Bink Hall, Hale, another residence of the Vaudreys is 
supposed to have been a monastic institution, but there is no 
historical evidence, and tradition is only supported by the jtw 
trees planted in the neighbourhood of the house. The "Oaklands" 
at Timperley, formerly the residence of the late Mr. George 
Falkner, the head of the famous Manchester printers, is the scene 
of "Sybilla," a short but interesting story by Mrs. G. Linnseus 
Banks. Christ Church, Timperley, has little pretension to 
architectural beauty. It was opened in 1849, the Rev. Edward 
Bowling, M.A., being appointed incumbent. He was succeeded 
by the Rev. S. Wilkinson, the present vicar. 

Quoting from Mr. Grindon's delightful " Country Rambles," 
we find that on the Cotterill side of Mobberley the country 
resembles that in the ^^cinity of Castle Mill, consisting of gentle 
slopes and promontories, often wooded, and at every turn 
presenting some new and agreeable feature. The little dells and 
and doughs, each with its little rill of clear water scampering 
away to the Bollin, are delicious. The botany of Cotterill is also 
reproduced in its best features ; mosses of the choicest kind grow 
on every bank — Hypna, with large green feathery branches, like 
ferns in minature ; Jungermannias also ; and the noblest plants 
of the hart's-tongue fern that occur in the district. One of the 
dells positively overflows with it, excepting that is, where the 
ground is not pre-occupied by the prickly shield fern. All the 
Spring flowers open here with the first steps of the renewed 


season. Mr. Grindon says the interest of the BoUin Valley is 
quite as great to the entomologist as to the botanist. The late 
Mr. Edleston, whose magnificent collection was then well known, 
states that the meadows near the river Bollin from Bank Hall to 
Castle Mill produce more diurnal Lepidoptera than any other 
locality in the Manchester district, the following butterflies being 
a select list : — Gonepteryx Rhamni, brimstone ; Pieris Brassicoe, 
large white ; Pieris Eapse, small white ; Pieris Napi, green veined 
white ; Anthocaris Cardamines, orange tip ; Hipparchia Janira, 
meadow brown ; Hipparchia Jithonus, large Heath ; Hipperchia 
Hyperanthus, wood Ringlet ; Goenonympha Pamphilus, small 
heath ; Cynthia Cardui, painted lady ; Vanessa Atalanta, Red 
Admiral ; Vanessa lo. Peacock ; Vanessa Uturicoe, small Tortoise 
shell ; Melitrea Artemis, greasy fritillary ; Chrysophanus Phlocas, 
small copper ; Polyommatus Alexis, common blue ; Thanaos 
Tages, dingy skipper ; Pamphila Sylvanus, large .skipper. jMoths : 
Procris Statices, green forester ; Anthrocera Trifollii, five spot 
Burnet ; Anthrocera Filipendulse, six spot Burnet ; Sesia Bomby- 
liformis, narrow bordered bee hawk ; Heliodes Arbuti, small 
yellow underwing ; Euclidia Mi, Mother Shipton ; Euclidia 
Glyphica, Burnet. 

Mr. T. A. Coward has supplied me with the following 
information : — The vertebrate fauna of the district includes a 
larger number of species than might be expected from the 
proximity to the large manufacturing towns, and in spite of the 
rapid growth of the population, there are still a great variety of 
animals and birds thriving within a few miles of Bowdon and 
Sale. The extensive park land of Dunham, the water-meadows 
of the Mersey and Bollin, and the numerous coverts devoted to 
the preservation of game, afford shelter or suitable feeding 
grounds for many of our most interesting species. Five bats 
have been identified in the district, the old timber in Dunham 
Park, Tatton, and elsewhere, supplying their diurnal and winter 
resting places. The long-eared bat, pipestrelle and noctule or 
great bat are the commonest, and may be observed in many 


suitable localities any fine summer evening. The whiskered bat 
is not uncommon, and Daubenton's bat skims over the surface of the 
water on all the larger pools and the straight reaches of the Bollin. 
All the Insectivora included by Bell in his British Quadrupeds 
occur : the hedgehog, mole, and the three shrews — a skull of the 
lesser shrew, one of the smallest and rarest British mammals, 
having been obtained from an owl pellet picked up in Dunham 
Park. Squirrels may often be seen when the trees are bare of 
leaves, and the dormouse has been reported from the Tatton 
estate. Field, bank, and water voles are abundant, the last, 
locally known as the water-rat, must not be confounded with the 
brown or common rat, which often frequents the banks of streams 
and ponds, and lives a semi-aquatic life. The common, and long- 
tailed field mouse are both too plentiful. 

Hares and rabbits are partially preserved, but the former are 
not as plentiful as they were a few years ago. An extensive 
domesticated herd of fallow deer exists in Dunham Park. Of the 
Carnivora, we find foxes preserved for sporting purposes, and we 
have seen them within a very short distance of houses both in 
Bowdon and Sale. The polecat or foumart is practically extinct, 
one of the latest records is of one killed near the shooting grounds 
about six years ago. Incessant persecution has failed to make 
much impression on the numbers of weasels and stoats, though 
it has told upon the otters, which are only rarely seen now. A 
short time since one was killed in Dunham village, and their 
footmarks may still occasionally be seen on the mud of the Bollin 
and Birkin. 

About seventy -eight species of birds breed in the district, and 
many others visit us regulai'ly every winter ; the autumn 
migrants from the far north filling the gaps left by those that 
only spend the summer with us, and also increasing the numbers 
of the resident species. Besides these, there are a large number of 
birds that do not remain with us, but may be occasionally seen 
as they stop to rest on the migration, or are storm-driven from 
their usual haunts, and which may be termed accidental visitors. 


The song thrush and blackbird are particularly abundant, and 
breed freely with us ; the missel thrush is not as common as it 
was a few years since, but its nest in the fork of a tree may still 
often be found. The fieldfare and redwing come to us in autumn, 
and though the latter is notoriously shy, in hard winters we have 
seen it feeding on the holly berries on Bowdon Downs. The 
wheatear is only an accidental visitor on migration, breeding on 
the higher land, in East Cheshire and the Peak. The whin- 
chat and stonechat visit us, the former breeding occasionally. 
The smart redstart is evidently increasing in numbers and 
familiarity, and we have known it successfully rear its brood 
within a few yards of the gates of Dunham Park. The cheerful 
song of the robin is familiar to all, for he sings when all the other 
birds are silent. The whitethroat is far more abundant than its 
smaller relation, the lesser whitethroat, which occasionally nests 
in the district. The songs of the blackcap and garden warbler 
are about the prettiest of our summer chorus. The gqldcrest 
sometimes breeds with us : Mr. Grindon says in the yews in 
Dunham Park, but it is far commoner in flocks in winter, when 
the over-sea migrants have arrived. The chifFchaff, willowwren, 
and woodwren come to breed, and their pretty songs are most 
welcome heralds of spring. The sedge warbler breeds among the 
rank herbage of almost every pond, skulking in the undergrowth, 
and singing a song whioh is a curious mixture of beautiful notes 
and harsh grating sounds. From his habit of singing at night, 
he has been mistaken for the nightingale, a bird which to our 
knowledge has never visited Bowdon. In 1863 one created quite 
a sensation at Wilmslow, and last year we had the good fortune 
to hear one at Eomiley ; but the reported visit of one of these 
wonderful songsters to a plantation near Sale Station some years 
ago requires confirmation. Suspended to the tall reeds round 
Rostherne Mere, the beautiful deep nest of the reed warbler may 
be found, and in secluded spots we may have the good fortune to 
hear the long trill of the grasshopper warbler, though this bird is 
only a very rare breeder with us. The long-tailed tit sometimes 


builds its beautiful round nest of moss and lichen in the planta- 
tions, but is commoner in flocks in winter. The great, marsh, 
cole, and blue tits are resident with us, and in the spring the 
notes of these birds are the commonest sounds in Dunham Park. 
The wren builds its cosy nest under the banks of the rivers, or 
among the roots of fallen trees ; and behind loose bark we may 
sometimes find the home of the tree creeper, that sombre-tinted 
little bird that runs up the boles of trees like a mouse, as it 
searches the crevices for insects. Only two wagtails breed with 
us, the pied and yellow, but the grey wagtail frequently comes 
down from its breeding grounds on the hills to visit our streams 
in winter. The meadow pipit is perhajis the commonest bird in 
the water meadows of the Bollin and Mersey, and in the park 
land its place is taken by the tree pipit, who frequently becomes 
the foster parent of the cuckoo, a bird especially abundant in 
Dunham. The spotted flycatcher is a common spring migrant, 
often building in creepers on houses, but the pied flycatcher is 
only known as an accidental visitor on its migration north, to its 
breeding haunts in the Lake District and Scotland. The swallow, 
house martin, and sand martin are most abundant, the last bird 
digging its holes in gravel pits and the sandy banks of the rivers. 
The monotonous note of the greenfinch is familiar to all, and its 
rarer relation, the hawfinch, is a resident with us, though it is so 
exceedingly shy that it is seldom seen except when it visits the 
market gardens in search of food. The goldfinch does not breed 
with us, but is occasionally seen in winter, sometimes in company 
with linnets, which, also owing to the lack of suitable places, do 
not nest in the immediate neighbourhood. The lesser redpole or 
jitty, as it is locally called, is an occasional breeder. In hard 
winters siskins visit us in flocks, and the same remark applies to 
the snow bunting. The house sparrow is everywhere, and the 
tree sparrow nests in a few suitable spots. The mountain linnet 
or twite formerly bred on Carrington Moss, but probably now 
does not visit the district. The bullfinch is by no means rare, in 
fact the fruit growers complain that it is far too common. 


The wheezy notes of the corn bunting may ha heard in Sale 
meadows, but it is very local, and cannot be called a common 
bird. The yellow-ammer is the most familiar member of this 
family, and the black headed or reed bunting is to be seen near 
most of the ponds. Starlings or shepsters are increasing in 
numbers almost everywhere, and this district is not an exception. 
After the breeding seasons, the birds gather in flocks, and roost 
together in some covert or reed bed ; up to a few years ago a 
plantation in Ashton was monopolised by these birds, and count- 
less thousands used to arrive about dusk, gathering together from 
all the country round, and from an ornithologist's point of view it 
was one of the most interesting spots in the district. The bright 
plumaged jay inhabits the preserved land, and its noisy scream is a 
familiar sound in Duaham Park. Magpies are rare near Bowdon, 
but exceedingly plentiful about Sale and Xorthenden, and when 
the trees are bare in winter, the huge domed nests are most 
conspicuous objects. The old timber in the park supplies plentiful 
nesting holes for jackdaws. Some years ago a pair commenced 
to nest in the spire of the Bowdon Presbyterian Church, and 
have occupied it annually ever since, and now a branch colony 
has been started in St. John's (Altrincham) Church spire, and we 
hope the cheerful birds may long be left in possession. Large 
rookeries have existed for years at Oldfield and Ashley, and 
lately smaller branch rookeries have been started in many places, 
such as the Higher Downs, and Hope Eoad, Sale; and we 
welcome these respectable birds wherever they will build. The 
carrion crow, that bugbear of the game preserver, builds when 
not molested in one or two localities. Skylarks breed plentifully, 
and in winter consort in large flocks, feeding in the fields. The 
swift is another of our birds that has increased within late years. 
It returns to its haunts with gieat regularity every spring, and 
announces its anival by flying backwards and forwards with its 
curious but not unwelcome scream. One of our most noteworthy 
spriag migrants is the goatsucker or nightjar. For years two or 
three pairs have inhabited Dunham Park, and on spring evenings 


the churring notes may be heard ; and the two eggs laid on the 
bare ground have several times been found. The green wood- 
pecker formerly nested in the Parle, and is still an occasional 
visitor a little fuither afield. The starlings occupy most of the 
holes that the greater spotted woodpeckers made. Kingfishers 
are common in winter, and still breed where not disturbed. 
Four owls occur, the barn, tawny, long eared, and short eared 
owl, the first three breeding, the last only as a winter visitor, 
although it formerly nested on the mosses. The barn or white 
owl breeds in the roofs of one or two houses in Bowdon ; and 
often cause alarm by appearing in unexpected places. One made 
its appearance during service in St. John's Church, Altrincham ; 
and a couple were captured in the clock tower of the Town Hall 
in the Old Market Place, after terrifying the man who had gone 
up to clean the clock. The sparrow-hawk and kestrel represent 
the resident hawks, but as breeding birds are far from common 
now, though both have nested near Dunham within the last few 
years. Some of the rarer raptorial birds have been killed in the 
neighbourhood, among them the noble osprey was obtained at 
Eostherne many years ago, and quite recently two were observed 
for several days capturing fish in the mere. 

Many years ago a heronry existed in Dunham Park, but now 
the bird is only seen as a visitor, the nearest existing heronry 
being at Tabley. In the early morning herons still visit the 
old man pool in Dunham Park, and we have often seen them 
flying over Bowdon. Large numbers of ducks and geese pass 
over Bowdon on migration, but the mallard is the only breeding 
species, nesting in the Park and in preserved plantations. 

Wigeon, pochard, teal, and tufted duck, come in large 
flocks to Eostherne Mere in the winter. The last named bird 
may possibly remain to breed, though we have no certain evidence, 
but as the tufted duck is extending its breeding range all over 
England, it is possible that in a few years it may be numbered 
amongst our residents. 


"Woodpigeons or ringdoves abound especially in the neighbour- 
hood of Wj'thenshawe and Sale, and cause great annoyance to 
the farmers in winter. The stock dove breeds in several places, 
and the rare little turtle dove probably nests in secluded spots, 
as we have heard of several in the spring, and obtained a specimen 
in full breeding plumage from Dunham Park. Before Carrington 
was drained red grouse were abundant, but now we doubt if 
more than one or two pairs are left. 

Pheasants and partridges are strictly preserved. The visits 
of the quail are erratic, and for many years none are to be seen 
but in quail years it has been observed in fair numbers, and has 
nested within a few miles of Bowdon. The grating notes of the 
corncrake sound in our fields every summer, and the bird has 
been obtained in the winter at Sale. The water rail has been 
seen on several occasions, and may possibly breed, but its habits 
are so retiring that it easily escapes notice. Waterhens and coots 
are plentiful, the former breeding in the smaller ponds, and the 
latter in large numbers at Rostherne, Mobbsrley, and other large 
waters. The great crested or tippet grebe is one of our most 
interesting birds, many pairs breeding on Eostherne Mere, where 
their wet floating nests are attached to the tall reeds. The 
dabchick or little grebe breeds there, as well as on some of the 
smaller ponds. Lapwings inhabit the fallows, and when they 
congregate in large flocks in winter, golden plover may often be 
seen in their company. Woodcock come as winter visitors, and 
the common snipe, though more frequent in winter, breeds in a 
few marshy spots. The sandpiper frequents the Bollin in summer, 
and breeds on the shores of Rostherne Mere. The curlew 
formerly bred on Carrington Moss. Storm driven or wandering 
gulls and terns, such as herring gulls, blackheads, and lesser 
black backed gulls, and common and arctic terns, may often be 
seen on the meres, or in the meadows when the water is out ; and 
two of the skuas have been obtained in the neighbourhood. It 
is a noteworthy fact that since the opening of the Ship Canal, 
large numbers of blackheaded gulls follow the line of the water, 
and aftord " sport " to the local pothunters. 


The common frog and toad, and two newts, the crested and 
great warty newt, represent the amphibians. AVhen Carrington 
Moss w^as in its original state, viviparous lizards and vipers 
were fairly abundant, and some years ago a ring snake was 
captured near Peel Causeway, but the district is now almost, 
if not entirely, destitute of true reptiles. Most of the coarse 
fish are to be captured in the numerous ponds and streams, 
such as pike, roach, dace, and eels, and we hope now that active 
steps are being taken to prevent the sewage of the manufacturing 
towns from entering the streams, we may soon welcome back to 
the waters of the Bollin trout and grayling, which have been 
almost banished to the clearer waters of the Birkin and 
smaller streams. 

The romantic village of Rostherne also claims attention. At 
the time of the Doomsday survey this manor belonged to Gilbert 
Venables, baron of Kinderton, and was held under that barony at 
a very early period by the family of Rostherne, which ended in 
two female heiresses in the reign of Henry II. In 1320 the 
Venables' share was conveyed by William Venables to the 
ancestor of Leighs of Booths, and Peter Leigh sold it to 
Wilbraham Egerton, Esq., grandfather of the present Lord 
Egerton of Tatton, who, as the descendant of the Massej's of 
Tatton, now owns the entire township. The church, dedicated to 
St. Mary, was carefully restored under the direction of Lord 
Egerton of Tatton, and the interesting features of the ancient 
edifice have been retained. The memorials are not only 
numerous but interesting. There are several monuments to the 
memory of members of the Egerton family, amongst the most 
noteworthy being a fine production by Westmacott to the memory 
of Charlotte Lucy Beatrix Egerton, who died suddenly November 
10th, 184.5, in her 21st year. It represents the recumbent figure 
of the young lady as she was found on the morning of her death ; 
over the body, in a stooping posture, is the representation of an 
angel with expanded wings, with the inscription underneath : — 
" Weep not, she is not dead, but sleepeth." There are also 


memorials to the Masseys, the Daniels, and the Leghs. It was 
currently believed by that somewhat mythical personage, " the 
oldest inhabitant," that Eostherne Mere has no bottom, and the 
old superstition was that it had underground communication with 
the Atlantic Ocean. The legend of the mermaid of Eostherne 
Mere is derived from this idea. This lake, "Eood's Tarn, 
(Eoderstorne), or the Lake of the Holy Cross, points to a long 
antiquity for Eostherne Church. It is supposed that the tower 
was completed and the bells hung in the belfry. An evil spirit, 
however, seems to have possessed one of these bells, which rolled 
down the bank into the Mere, and it sank to sleep — 
Where mortal fingers ne'er dared to creep. 
For ever — evermore. 

On Easter morn the mermaid appears on the floating bell, and 
sings her song. Then — 

The song dies out, and the waves roll on, 
The sunbeams rest where the metal shone, 
The bell has sunii with a sad refrain. 
The Naiad bindeth her locks again ; 
With a mocking laugh she bids adieu, 
Then dives, mayhap, to the deeper blue ; 
For a purple mist enshrouds her fate. 
And the mere rolls drear and desolate. 


Thus sings John L. Owen in his "Lyrics from a Country 
Lane," and they are much more harmonious and to the point than 
a "morning," quoted by an elderly and worthy dame about its 
peal of bells, as follows : — 

Higher Peover pans, 

And Lower Peover kettles, 

And Knutsford sweet roses, 

And Rostherne great drones. 

Hale Barns, in the township of Hale, derived its name at a 
comijaratively recent date from the tithe barns which existed in 
the district for many years, one of which stood until after 1848 
just behind the Mission Church. The smithy and wheelwrights' 
shops were built about 1883 upon the sites of the old thatched 
ones. In the immediate neighbourhood is " vallum field," which 
is supposed to have been the site of a Roman camp or township. 
In support of this view we may quote from Watkin's " Roman 
Cheshire " (pp. 306-7), the author of which bestowed much care 
and research on his subject. "It is probable," he writes, "there 
has been a Roman villa at a place called 'Wall Field,' at Hale 
Barns, near Bowdon. This wall field lies on the western slope 
of a ridge of land which runs between two small streams and 
points to Bowdon. The soil from the eastern or upper part of the 
field seems to have been in a great degree removed to the western 
side, which is all " made ground " for the purpose of producing a 
level surface. The western side still rises for a length of about 
two hundred yards, about six feet higher than the field 
immediately beyond. There is a large ditch, now filled up to a 
great extent, at the boundary between them, and this, which runs 
in a straight line, is exactly parallel to the elevated field above it, 
the surface of the latter, as before said, being level and forming 
a sort of terrace. In the ground to the east of wall field stands 
a house, purchased some years since by the late Dr. Leigh, 
Medical Ofticer of Health for Manchester, with the ground 
around it. This is on the summit of the ridge. Dr. Leigh 
informed me in 1880 that in the previous year in taking down 


a portion of the house, which is an old half-timbered one, ths 
foundations of the walls were found to be formed of red tiles, 
about two inches thick and seven and a half inches square. Many 


hundreds of these were found, and he considered them Roman. 
In digging up the old courtyard to extend the garden, a small 
piece of ' Samiau' ware, embossed with vine leaves was also found ; 
so that with this evidence before us, there seems from the con- 

SALE, ASllTnN-OX-Mh:nSEY, -fv. 287 

struction of the ground, the etymology, the remains found (scanty 
though they may be) a prima facie case that a Roman villa may 
have existed on the ground. I must own, however, that I have 
seen none of the bricks named, which are small in size, though 
we have undoubted instances occurring on Roman sites, and it is 
also well known that bricks of this size and shape were made in 
the middle ages. We must take the evidence for what it is worth." 
Precisely. And the writer of these lines is prepired to offer 
confirmation of the highest character. He was informed by the 
late Mr. Titus Hibbert-Ware, to whom reference is made later in 
this chapter, that in his father's days there were in this field 
distinct marks of the existence of a Roman camp, the vallum 
being exceedingly well defined and distinctly Roman in appearance 
and character. 

Nearly opposite the smithy is the old cottage, where the late 
Mr. John Clarke, who was stricken with physical deformity, kept 
school on old fashioned lines. He did not spare the rod, and 
thereby spoil the child, and it is subject of local comment that 
many of his quondam pupils are now substantial farmers, who 
have also in course of time risen to the dignity of parish 
councillors. The " manor house," now the residence of H. Sowler, 
Esq., has been built to harmonise with the old Cheshire " Magpie" 
style of farmhouse, which has been amalgamated with it. A little 
further on southwards, at an ivy-covered house, Dr. Hibbert-Ware, 
the learned author of the foundation of the Manchester Collegiate 
School, lived for many years until his death in 1848. His son, 
Mr. Titus Hibbert-Ware, barrister-at-law, resided in Stamford 
Road, Bowdon, and with his gifted wife, was the instrument of 
great good. He was the means of mediating amongst neighbours, 
and many sought his advice on legal matters. This was given 
with a kindly disinterestedness which was highly appreciated. 
Mrs. Hibbert-Ware is a novelist of high merit, and her numerous 
works have been well received. Her review of the life and times 
of "Beau Nash," under the title of the "King of Bath," was very 
painstaking and natural, and there are other works from her pen 


which have found a place in contemporary literature. Amonc;st 
her local works we have "The Bleeding AVolf,' a tale of old 
Bowdon Parishj wherein is related the murder about Christmas 
time of a Scotch traveller or packman in the neighbourhood of 
that now locally well-known " public." 

There are many traditions connected with Ashley Hall, more 
or less reliable, the narration of some of which would cause our 
readers to grin "like a Cheshire cat chewing gravel." According 
to Axon, this phrase takes its origin from the unsuccessful efforts 
of some wandering showman whose lions were humorously 
suggestive of the domestic sjiecies, to encourage them into activity 
by a surreptitious long pole. The crest of the Egertons of Tatton, 
" the ruddy lion ramped in gold," as the poet hath it, when over 
the door of a village public, as at Ringway, is better known as 
the " Romping Kitlin," or " 'th Romper," just on the same 
principle that the Legh Arms, at Cross Town, Knutsford, is 
known as " 'th Sword and Serpent," or vulgarly, " Snig and 

Ashley or Asseley Hall was the ancient seat of the Brereton 
family. One tradition affirms it to have been built by King John 
for a hunting seat. However that may be, it is a place of great 
antiquity. Remains of furnaces, ilx., and iron occurring in 
nodides, which have been found, show that iron smelting was 
carried on here by the Romans. Mary Queen of Scots is stated 
to have stayed a night when on her way to Beeston Castle, 
Like many other ancient mansions it is fairly encompassed with 
tragedy and tradition, the spectre of the " White Lady," and a 
blood stained handkerchief retaining their hold on popular 
imagination until a comparatively recent period. It has no doubt 
many secret rooms, and it is even now thought by many that a 
subterranean passage communicated with Bowdon Church, 
whereby the inmates of the Hall might attend divine service in 
troublous times, when, to ha\e gone by road would have been 
a source of danger. A most notable event, and one which has 


historical basis, took place at Ashley Hall in 1715. George I. 
had only the year before ascended the English throne, and party 
feeling ran high. Many of the Cheshire Squires were descendants 
of Cavaliers, while on the other hand there were many powerful 
Whig families who were strongly favourable to the House of 
Hanover. Risings had taken place in the North, and James HI. 
had been proclaimed, and his army had marched to Preston. 
Under the circumstances Squire Ashetoii, to whom the Ashley 
estate had descended, invited fourteen fellow squires to a con- 
ference, which took place one autumn afternoon at Ashley Hall. 
They were equally divided. Seven were for mounting the " white 
cockade," while seven were for joining the Royal forces then at 
Manchester. Squire Asheton, with true Cheshire caution, and a 
keen perception of the trend of events, gave his casting vote in 
favour of the reigning house. Subsequent events showed that his 
prescience was justified, and to celebrate this notable meeting 
those present had their portraits executed in oil and presented 
to Squire Asheton. These portraits, by an unknown artist, 
hung at Ashley Hall until 1879, when they were removed to 
Tatton. About 1730 Ashley was the seat of Sir William 
Meredith, and in 18-11, it was the residence of Mr. Hill, Q.C., 
whose father, Captain Hill, fought at Waterloo, and who is 
immortalised as Captain Brown in Mrs. Gaskell's " Cranford." 

Later on the hall and land passed into the possession of Asheton 
Smith, Esquire, reputed the finest horseman of his age, who sold 
it to the late Wilbraham Egerton, Esquire. The hall and farm were 
afterwards let to tenants, the late Mr. William Whittingham 
being the first ; he was succeeded by his son, who was a quarter- 
master in the Tatton troop of yeomanry, and very popular. He 
left about 1879 and has since lived in retirement near Sandbach. 
The present tenant, Mr. Charles Sherwin, is well known as a 
Judge at Agricultural Shows, and in his hands the farm has been 
brought into a highly prosperous condition, and is a model of 
what good farming should be. He also holds the rank of 
quarter-master of "A" squadron in the Cheshire yeomanry, and 


has also filled various public offices in connection with the 
township most creditably. The schools ,it Ashley were built 
about 1850 by the first Lord Egerton of Tatton, and the new 
church, which is a remarkably neat and well designed edifice, is 
also due to the munificence of the Tatton family, by whom it was 
erected in 1879. The designs were drawn and the work super- 
intended by the Hon. Wilbraham Egerton, M.P. (now Lord 
Egerton of Tatton). The present Vicar is the Rev. Geoflfrey 
Birtwell, whose unostentatious and self-denying labours are 
warmly appreciated by his parishioners. 


First Cheshire County Council — Bucklow Union and Rural 
District Council — Magistrates for Altrincham Division — Altrin- 
cham Local Board ; list of members and contested elections, etc. — 
List of Towns and Villages in the neighbourhood, with population, 
acreage, rateable value, distances from Chester, Altrincham, etc. — 
Sale Local Board — Altrincham, Bowdon, and Sale Urban District 
Councils, etc. — Election Records — Altrincham Parliamentary- 
Division, etc. 

Names and Addresses of the County Aldermen. 



Armitage, William 

Townfield House, Altrincham 

Bates Rvli^h 

Acres Bank, Stalybridge 

Bedell, Alexander 

Beeley, Thomas 

Pole Bank Hall, Hyde 

Collier, Thomas 

Greenall, Edward 

Ashfield, Alderley Edge, 

Grappenhall Hall, Warrington 

Hewitt, David Basil 

Winnington House, Northwich 


Woodville, Marple 

Kay, Christopher 

Davenham Hall, Northwich 

Neild, Henry 

Orton, Robert Oliver 

The Limes, Higher Whitley, 

via Northwich 
Bank House, Tattenhall, Chester 

RiGBY, Thomas 

Sutton Weaver, ^ia "Warrington 

Smith, James 

Dalmorton House, New 

Sykes, Thomas Hardcastle... 

Brighton, Cheshire 
Cringle House, Cheadle, 

Tollemache, The Hon. Wil- 
BRAHAM Frederic 

Tilstono Lodge, Tarporley 

Tomkinson, James 

Willington Hall, Tarporley 

Verdin, Joseph 

The Brockhurst, Northwich 

Webb, Francis William 


Westminster, The Duke of, 

Eaton Hall Chester 





Antkodu.s, Joiix Coutt.-s 

Eaton Hall, near 



Heyscroft, Didsbury, 

Xewton Waid, 

AsHwouTH, John 

Lakes Villas, Dukin- 

Dakinfield West 

Atkinson, James 

Baklow, John Emmott 

Bate, Eoger 

Beckett, Joseph 

Mirion House, Crewe 
Torkington Lodge, 

near .Stockiiort 
Ash Hill, Tarporley 
Belvidere, Wirswall, 

near Whitchurch 

Eastward, Crewe 


Buatt, Henry 

The Poplars, 

Winnington, near 



Brocklehurst, William 

Butley Hall, near 

Division 4, 

BuowNsoN, George 

Cheetham, John 

Gower Hey, Hyde... 

Eastwood, Staly- 

Werneth Ward, 

Division 3,Staly- 


Cooke, George 

Clayley Hall, Hand- 
ley, near Chester 


Crew, Thomas 

Park Villa, Maccles- 

Division 3, 

Davies, Charles 

Eardswick Hall, 
Minshull Vernon, 
near Middlcwich 

Church Conpen- 

Davies, James 

Dix(.)N, (Ieouge 

Hollinfare, near 

Astle Hall, Chelford, 



Dvsi.x, AiiTiin; Kaye... 

Jice House, Sale 


Dyson, James 

Gatley Hill, Cheadle, 



COUNTY COVlsGihhOU^.— Continued. 




Earp, William Richakd 

The Tan nery , Pieston 
Brook, Cheshire 


Eddowes, Staxtox 

Brookfield House, 
West Kirby, 

West Kirby 

Edwards, John 

Haslingtou Hall, near 



Egerton of Tatton, 
Wilbraham Baron 

Tatton Park, Kniits 


Evans, John James 

Brackenwood, Higher 
Bebingtoii, Birken- 


Fentem, Mark 

Beechwood, Staly^ 

Elworth House, 

Bradwall, near 


Division 2, Staly- 


FoDEN, Edwin 

Colonel Charles 


Davenham and 
Church Hulme 

Graham, D 

The Lydiate, Willas- 
ton, near Chester 


Graveson, 1\Iichael 

Hill Side, Rowson 
Street, New 


Green, Peter 

Silver Hill, Hyde ... 

Quarry Bank, Hand- 
forth, Cheshire 

Godley Ward, 


Greg, Edward Hyde . . . 

Greg, Francis 

Turner Heath, 
Bollington, near 


Hazlehurst, Charles 


Runcorn, North 

Hirst, Joshua 

Oaklands, Godley, 








HoDG.soN, William 


Hornby, Albert 

Helmsville, Crewe... 

Broolvlands, Staly- 

Parkfield, Nantwich 

Sea Bank House, 


Manor House, 

Brinnington, near 

Stechford, near 

Agden Hall, near 

Lymm, Cheshire 
Hartford Manor, 

Eavenscroft Hall, 

near Middle wich 
Pvoe Wood House, 

Higher Hurdsfield, 

near :Macclesfield 
Bramall Hall, near 

Churton Hall, near 

Grappenhall Heyes, 

near Warrington 
The Brooklands, 

Ivy House, Weaver- 
ham, Cheshire 
The Mount Higher 

Runcorn, Runcorn 

West Ward, 

Division l,Staly- 



Leigh, James 

Lewis, Joseph Slater... 
Lister, Charles 



Moss, Edward Howard 
Needham, James 

Nevill, Charles Henry 


Division 2, 




Division 1, 

Parr, Joseph Charlton 
Smale John 

Smith, Joseph William 
Speakman, Philip 


Runcorn South 






Tatton, Thojias 

Northendeii, near 


Thompson, John 

Netherleigh House, 

Chester Castle 

Thornycroft, Charles 

Thornycroft Hall, 
Chelford, Cheshire 


Turner, William 

Over Hall, Winsford, 


The Royal Hotel, 
Nantwich Road, 


Wilbraham, General 
Sir Richard, K.C.B. 

Rode Hall, near 


Wrigley, Emor Green 

Victoria House, off' 
Yew Tree Lane, 

Dukinfield East 


Altrincham : 

AV/A Ward... Fullerton, Hugh, Westwood 

South Ward ... Armitage, Mrs. KATHERiNES.,Townfield House 

East Ward ... O'Brien, James, 77, New Street 

West Ward ... Griffiths, Alfred, Normans Place 

Central Ward.. Meadows, Henry, Barrington Road 

Ashley .. ' Sherwin, Charles, Ashley Hall 

Ashtonon-Merscij Hall, William, Hawthorn Villa 

Atkinson, Christie C, Fairfield House 
Aston-by-Eudw'fh HoRNBY, Richard, Aston Park 

Baguley RoGERSON, T., Ashfield Road, Altrincham 

Bollin'tn (I- A'jden Davies, Williaji, Bollington 

BollinFee Norbury, William, Rotherwood 

Prince, Charles H., The Moss, Moss Brow 

Hall, James, The Vale 

Stevens, Henry, Stamford Road 
mm .3 



Carringlon "WAUcnEX, William, Canington 

Dunham Masscy.. Higham, Alfred M., Dunham ^Massey 

GiBB, James, Dunham Massey 
Hale RiDGWAY, Geo. E., Ashley. 

HiGNETT, Rev. Canon, Vicarage, Ringway 

High Legh Cross John Edward, High Legh 

Kmihford Hough, James, King Street, Knutsford 

Garstang, Dr. T. W. H. 
Lymm Smith, J. R, Birch Brook Lodge, Heatley 

Mercer, William, Newfield View 

Maiihall Stanier Charles, JMarthall 

Mere Hough, William, J.P., Mere 

Millington Walkden, Thomas, Millington 

Mobberley Leycester, E. G., Mobberley Old Hall 

Wmihenden Baker, Rev. E. J., The Rectory, Northenden 

Northen Ekhells.. Simpson, J., Northen Etchells 

Ollerton & Toft... Wilkinson, William, Moss Farm, Toft 

Partington Ockleston, Thomas S., Partington 

Peover Inferior ct Tr,„.^„ t..,, n o • 

Peover Superior I^^^^'^^' J^^^' feover Superior 

Pichnere Moreton John, Pickmere 

^XerioV'!^^'^. Hall> H., Tabley Lawn, Tabley Inferior 

Rostherne& Tatt'n Smith, John T., Tatton Dale 

Sale Atkinson, Miss Jane, The Laurels 

Burgess, Henry, 153, Marsland Road 

CORT, John P., The Vicarage 

Lawson, Wm. E., 81, Chapel Road 

Taylor, William, 6, Irlam Road 

Siiial Greg, Robert A., Quarry Bank, Styal 

^'"S2'^'™''.!^' Beech, W., New Road End, Tabley"superior 
Timperley Bell, Wm., Addison Villa, Timperley 

AsHTON, Robert, Charlecote, Timperley 

irarhurton Davies, Peter, Moss Lane, AVarburton 

JFilmdmv Clare, George, Alderley Road 

Dale, John Goodier, Morley 

Jessop, David, Grove Street 



Population 20,3S2. Area 56,199 Acres. 

Rateable Value £192,452. 

Mileage of District Highways. 248 miles, 5 furlongs, 92 yards. 

Toionships. Names of Pepresenfatires. 

Ashlei/ Sherwin Charles, Ashley Hall 

Asion-hy-Budw'th Hornby Richard, Aston Park 

Bagvley EoGERSON, T., Ashfield Road, Altrincham 

Bollingt'ni&Agden Davies, Williajf, Bollington 

C'arrinfiton Walkden, William, Carrington 

Dunham Masseij.. Higham, Alfred M., Dunham Massey 

Gibe, James, Dunham INIassey 
Hale RiDGWAY, George E., Ashley Heath, Hale 

HiGNETT, Rev. Harry A., Vicarage, Ringway 

Hi'jh Legh Cross, John Edward, Metton, High Legh 

Marthall Stanier, Charles, Marthall 

Mere Hough, William, J. P., j\lei-e 

Millington Walkden, Thomas, Millington 

MoUerleii Leycester, E. G., J.P., Mobbeiley Old Hall 

Northcmlcn Baker, Rev. E. J., The Rectory, Northenden 

Northen Ekhclls.. Simpson, James, Northen Etchells 
Ollei ton (& Toft... Wilkinson William, Moss Farm, Toft 
Partington Ockleston, Thomas S., Partington 

Inferior £ j^^^ j^jj^ pg^^.g^, Superior 

Peover bupenor ' ^ 

Pichncre MoRETOX, John, Pickmere 

Plumley & Tahley ^ jj t^jj^ey Lawn, Tabley Inferior 


Rostherne&Tatton Smith, John T., Tatton Dale 

Styal Greg, Robert A., Quarry Bank, Styal 

^"'PeftlT'''™^' '^' ^^^^■^' '^^'•. J^ew Road End, Tabley Superior 

I'imperley Bell, William, Addison Villa, Timperley 

AsHTON, Robert, Timperley 
Warhmtun Davies, Peter, Moss Lane, Warburton 




183G-37 Earl of Stamford and Warrington 

183840 WiLBRAHAM Egerton, Esq. 

184043 Eev. Robert Clowes 

1843-59 Joseph Swinburne, Esq. 

1859-64 Robert Armstrong, Esq. 

1864-67 W. T. PowNALL, Esq. 

1867-69 Charles Balshaw, Esq. 

1869-76 Rev. Tho.m.\s Brierley 

1876-87 John Ambler, Esq. 

1887-93 John Goodier Dale 

1893-94 William Hough, Esq. 

1895 Rev. Canon Hignett 


(Now Riii-al District Council). 

Date of First Meeting, 23rd August, 1872. 

1872-76 Rev. Tiiom.^s Brierley 
1876-83 Nicholas Kilvert, Esq. 
1883-84 William Fair, Esq. 
1884-85 Charles Holt, Esq. 
1885-87 John Goodier Dale, Esq. 
1887-88 Charles Holt, Esq., and 

John Goodier Dale, Esq. 
1888-93 William Hough, Esq. 
1893-94 T. W. H, Garstang, Esq. 
1894 T. W. H. Garstang, Esq., and 

Rev. Canon Hignett 
1895-96 William Hough, Esq., J.P. 



Bazley, Sir Thomas Sebastian, Hatherop ^^''"^^" Q"^iii««''i- 

Castle, Gloucestershire... Uth Aug., 1860 
Allen, BuLKELEY, Esq., West Lynn, Altrincham 19th Oct., 1885 
Armitage, Geo. Faulkner, Stamford, ,, 20th Jan., 1894 

Bellhouse, Walter, Mynshall Mills, ^lanchester 7th April, 1879 

BowEN, George, George Street, Altrincham 1st Jan., 1897 

Brabazon, AVm. Philip, Brook House, Lymm... 1st Jan., 1890 

Crosfield, Ernest Morland, Lymm 7th April, 1896 

Cawley, Hugh, Arclen House, Ashley 2ik1 Jan., 1893 

Clegg, Neville, Oklfiekl Brow, Altrincham ... 2nd April, 1894 
Dewhurst, G. Littleton, Beechwood, Lymm... 7th April, 1896 

*Dyson, Arthur Kaye, Lee House, Sale 1st Jan., 1890 

Gaddum, H. T., Green Walk, Bowdon 21st Nov., 1882 

Gill, E. P., Woodheys Hall, Ashton on-Mersey.. 7th April, 1879 

Haworth, Abraham, Green Walk, Bowdon 15th Oct., 1883 

H.A. worth, Jesse, Green Walk, Bowdon 15th Oct., 1883 

Hogg, Adam, Silverlands, Bowdon 15th Oct., 1883 

JOYNSON, Ed. Walter, Ashfield, Sale 4th Aug., 1881 

Jones-Parry, Admiral John, Thelwall Hall, 

near Warrington 14th Oct., 1895 
JoYNSON, KiciiARD Hampson, Park Rd., Bowdon Gth Jan., 1875 
Killick, Thos. W., Gracemount, Altrincham ... 30th Dec, 1889 

Kendall, John, Moorlands, Sale 7th April, 1896 

Legh, H. M. Cornwall, High Legh 19th Oct., 1877 

Mills, A. W., Green Walk, Bowdon 4th Aug., 1881 

Mothersill, C, Alton House, Buxton 15th Oct, 1883 

Neild, Alfred, East Downs Road, Bowdon 20th Nov., 1883 

NoRRis, T. Potter, Eagle Brow House, Lymm 16 h Feb., 1875 

Platt, John, The Oaklands, Timperley 4th Jan., 1888 

POLLITT, William, Fernlea, Bowdon 7th April, 1896 

Platt-Higgins, Fred (M.P.), Bowdon 17th Oct., 1892 

* Died October 19tl), 1896. 



When Qualifieil. 

KuOKE, George, Moorside, Sale loth Oct., 1883 

SiDEBOTHAM, J. W. (M.P.), The Thoiiis, Bowdon 4th Jan., 1S88 

SiDEBOTH.Air, Ed. John, Eilesdene, Bowdon 7th April, 1896 

Stubs, Peter, Newnhani, Gloucestershire 1st Jan., 1872 

Tatton, T. Egerton, Wythenshawe, Northenden 13th Aug., 1868 

Thornber, Harry, Rookfield Avenue, Sale 4th April, 1893 

Watkin, Alfred, Dane Bank, Lymm 20th Jan., 1891 

WORTHINGTON, Henry Hugo, Feintoii Court, 

Honiton 1st Jan., 1890 


Altrincham Vacant at time of going to press 

Bowdon H. T. Gaddum, Esq. 

Sale J. E. D.wies, Esq. 

AsHTOX-ox-MEn.SEY ... H. V. KiLVERT, Esq. 
Lymm G. L. Welford, Esq. 




R. Broadbent (Chairman) 
Thomas Maksden AV. Milnes Millington 

John Wort P^dward Joynsox 

Samuel Barratt Robert Willl\m Bennett 

■\ViLLL\M Warren Jesse Blew 

Officials : 
Isaac Turton, Surve3or ; 
NiCHOLLS and AVoRTHlNGTON, Legal Advisers. 


James (tRanci 
T. .Marsden 

li. W. rjENNEI 

E. JovxsuN 
AV. Warren- 
John Da\e.\i'( 
S. Barratt 

Alexander H. P 
J. I)a\enpurt 
John Mort 
S. Barratt 

Samuel Barratt 
A. H. Paterson 
Thomas Knight 
J. Daveni'ort 

A. H. Paterson 
Thomas Knight 
J. Daveni'ort 


John Hethorn 
g bowiien 
John Mort 
K. W. Bennett 



R. Broaubent (Chairman) 
J. Mort 
S. Barratt 
\\. Warren 
W. M. Millington 

Ii. Broadrent (Chairman) 

T. Marsden 
R. W. Bennett 
J. Grange 



R. Broadbent (Chairman) 
U'ERSON T. Marsden 

William Warren 
James Grange 
R. AV. Bennett 

R. Broadbent (Chairman) 

R. W. Bennett 
(teorge Bowden 
\X. Warren 
.1. Murt 

R. Broadiient (Chairman) 

\y. Warren 
R. W. Bennett 
George Bowden 

I S. Barratt 


R. Broadbent (Chairman) 
T. Kni(;ht 
AViLLiAM Warren 
J. Davenport 
S. Barratt 


George Bowdex 
"\V. Waruen 
Samuel Barratt 
Isaac Gaskarth 


S. BARRA-n- 
E. AV. Benneit 
J. Hethorn 

John Astle Kelsall 
James Street 
John Mort 
Thomas Knight 

J. Hethorn 


Thomas Knight 


James Southern 
J. Mort 
James Street 



E. Broadbent (Chairman) 

E. W. Bennett 
Thomas Knight 
J. Hethorn 



E. Broadbent (Chairman) 


.Tames Street 
Thomas Knight 
"W. Warren 
E. Broadbent (Chairman) 
S. Barr.vit 
John Hethorn 


E. AY. Bennett 

E. Broadbent (Chairman) 

J. A. Kelsall 
Samuel Barratt 
J. Street 
E. W. Bennett 

Thomas Knight (Chairman) 
J. Hethorn 
John Davenport 
J. A. Kelsall 
S. Barratt 

Thomas Knight (Chairman) 
John Hethorn James Street 

S. Barratt John Astle Kelsall 

John Mort James Southern 

John Davenport G. Bom'den 



Tnf>MAs Knight (Chairman) 
John Da\'enport S. Barratt 

J. A. Kelsali. *Samuel Holker Norris 

George Bow den James Southern 

James Street J. Hethorn 


Thomas Knioht (Chairman) 
Joseph Gaskarth J. A. Kelsall 

James Southern S. H. Norris 

S Barratt George Bowden 

Kobert Burgess J. Hethorn 


Samuel Barratt (Chairman) 
J. Gaskarth James Southern 

G. Bowden J. A. Kelsall 

Thomas Dyson tM. Fowden 

William Armitage K. Burgess 


S. Barratt (Chairman) 
R. Burgess J. A. Kelsall 

G. Bowden T. Dyson 

J. Southern J. (Gaskarth 

W. Armitage .M. Fowdex 

S. Bai;ratt (Chairman) 
M. Fowden AV. Arjiitage 

John Shelmerdine Moirr T. Dyson 

J. Southern J. A. Kelsall 

J. Gaskarth G. Boavden 

* In place of the late J. Mort. 
+ Solely nominated in place of Thomas Knight, resigned. 



RoBEKT Burgess 
J. Gaskarth 
W. Armitage 
J. Southern 

J. A. Kelsall 
S. Barratt 
E. Burgess 
J. Ambler 

R. Burgess 
P. Pons 
S. Barkatt 
J. Ambler 

S. BAiiitAiT (Chairman) 

M. FuwiiEX 
J. A. Kicr.sAr.i. 

(}. lioWDEX 


W. Arjiita(;e (Chairman) 
J. S. MouT 
J. Gaskarth 
II. Davies 



J. Gask.mith (Chairman) 
.1. BviiuM 
W. Akjiitacje 
W. II. Holt 
J. A. Kelsall 


Number increased to Twelve.) 

J. Gaskarth (Chairman) J. BYuo^r 

R Burgess .1. S. .Moirr 

W. H. Holt W. Armitage 

H. Balshaw p. Pons 

S. Barratt Thomas Warrington 

J. Ambler J. Daventort 


J. Gaskarth (Chairman) 

R. Burgess 

J. Bvrom 

J. S. Mort 

S. Barratt 

J. Amuler 


S. I)E[.\i:s 
"W. Armitage 
W. H. Holt 
Thomas Warrlxgton 
Thomas Timperley 




J. Gaskaktii (Chairman) 


J. Amclek 

J. Daxenport 

H. Balshaw 

S. Barratt 

S Delves 


W. Aejiitage 

T. AVarrington 

J. Byroji 

r. Kinsey 


J. Gaskarth (Chairman) 

P. Kinsey 

J. Davenport 

\V. AiiMrrAGE 

H. Balshaw 

J. Ambler 


T. Warrington 

S. Barratt 

S. Delves 

J. Byrom 



J. Gaskarth (Chairman) 

II. P,.\I.SH.\W 

J. Byroj[ 

S. B.\I!R.VTT 


R. Burgess 

H. Kenyon 

P. Kinsey 

J. Ambler 

G. Smith 

J. Davenport 

'S. Delves 


J. Gaskap.tii (Chairman) 

G, Smith 

R. Burkess 

J Hamilhin 

J. BYRO>r 

J. Ambler 

G. Wood 

H. Kenyon 

J. Davenport 

II. Balshaw 

P. Kinsey 

William Smith 


John Ambler (Chairman) 

G. Woon 

E. Burgess 

W. Armitage, Ji 

G. Smith 

P. Kinsey 

H. Kenyon 

J. Byroji 

J. Davenport 

W. Smith 

J. Hamilton 

H. Balshaw 


(* James Cowsill from September, 1S70, vice Delves deceased.) 



Joseph Gaskarth (Chairman) 
J. Ambler 
R. Burgess 
James Byrom 
T. Davenport 


G. Smith 
George Wood 
James Hamilton 
William Smith 
William Armitage, Jun. 
John Siddeley 

Joseph Gaskarth (Chairman) 
John Ambler 
William Griffin 
John Newton 
George Wood 

Joseph Gaskap.tii (Chairman) 
John Ambler 
Eobert Burgess 
George Smith 
George Wood 
William Armitage, Jun. 


John Ambler (Chairman) 
William Ai;mitage, Jun. 
George Bowen 
W. E. Cave 
Charles Estcourt 

A. L. lATE 

R Burgess 
George Sjiith 
William Armitage, Jun. 
John Siddeley 
Ja:^ies Hamilton 

John Siddeley 
John Newton 
William Griffin 
James Hamilton 
George Bowen 
Henry Kenyon 

William Griffin 
James Hamilton 
John Newton 
James Percival 
E. Whitney 
George Wood 


Ambler (Chairman) 

William Armitage, Jun. 
George Bowen 
James Boyd 
W. E. Cave 
Charles Estcourt 

William Griffin 
James Hamilton 
John Newton 
James Percival 
E. Whitney 



J. Ambler (Chairman) 
William Armitage, Jr: 
George Bowen 
James Boyd 
George Brett 
W. E. CxxE 

Charles Estcourt 
Enoch Farr 
William Griffin 
James Hamilton 
John Newton 
James Pei;cival 

John Ambler (Chairman) 
S. E. Armitage 
George Bowen 
James Boyd 
George Brett 
W. E. Cave 

AViijjAM Griffin 
James Hamilton 
Thomas Lewis 
John Newton 
James Percival 
John PtOBsox 

John Newton, C.E. (Chairman) 

John Ambler 

S. E. Armitage 

George Bowen 

James Boyd 

George Brett 

John Newton, C.E. (Chairman) 
John Ambler 
S. E. Armitage 
George Bowen 
James Boyd 
W. E. Cave 

W. E. Cave 
William Griffin 
James Hamilton 
Thomas Lewis 
James Percival 
James Steen 

William Griffin 
James Hamilton 
Thomas Lewis 
E. G. Parker 
James Percival 
James Steen 

J. Hamilton (Chairman) 
S. E. Armitage 
George Bowen 
J. Boyd 
George Brett 
W. E. Cave 

William Griffin 
Thomas Lewis 
John Newton 
E. G. Parker 
James Percival 
James Steen 

J. Hamilton (Chairman) 

S. E. Aumitai:e 

T. Lewis 


E. Neild 

G. lioWK.N 

J. Newton 


E. G. Parker 

W. Griffin 


J. Steen 

W. Griffin (Chairman) 

J. Hamilton 

S. E. Akmitage 

E. Neild 

S. Arnold 

J. Newton 

G. BOA\'E\ 

E. G. Parker 


J. Perch-al 



J. Steen 




J. Hajiilton 

!:?. Arnold 

J. Hill 


J. Newton 

T. J. Farrell 

E. G. Parker 

B. Goodall 

J. Percival 

J. GoTT 


J. Steen 

George Bowex (Chairman) 

J. Ha Jl I ETON 

8. Ai;noli) 

J. Hill 

T. J. Fakrell 

J. Newton 

i;. Gatley 

E. G. Parker 

•T. tldTT 

J. Percival 

W. Griffin 


J. Steen 

George B 



Samuel Arnold 

Joseph Hill 

Thomas J. Faurell 

John Newton 

11. Gatlicv 

Jajies Steen 

James Gott 

J. N. Sidebotham 

William Griffin 

E. Yarwood 

George Bowex (Chairman) 
Saimuel Arnold 
George Bowen 
Thomas J. Farrell 
R. Gatley 
James Gott 

William Gkiffix 
JosEi'H Hill 
John Newton 
James Steen 


E. Yarwood 




(Those marked with an asterisk (*) declared elected ; those marked (1) 
refused to serve. ) 



*WiLLiAM Warren -114 

*john mort 270 

James Grange 150 

George Bowden 98 

*Ed\vard Joynson 466 

*lioiiERT \Vm. Bennett .. 351 

*W. MiLNES Millington 185 

John Davenport 135 

t John AVoollam 36 

* Thomas Maksden 419 

'■■■Richard Broadeent... 332 

*Jesse Blew 171 

JuiLN Barrow 124 


*Edward Joynson 169 * J a mes Grange . . . . 

*Samuel Barratt . 
Charles Balshaw. 

Charles Houtt 120 

Henry Service 137 


Jesse Blew 

. 114 

'Thomas Marsden 

. 119 


*Eighard Broadeent . . 

. 180 

♦Robert Wm. Bennett.. 

. 151 

♦John Davenport 

. 170 

William Dav I Es 

. 137 




William Davies 110 ■■■Tuhx :\Iort 205 

John Bradford lU *Willl4m Warren 196 

Henry Service 110 *Alex. Hy, Paterson... 171 


Henry Service 81 *Thomas Knight 210 

John Bradford 70 *George Bowden 193 

*Samuel Barratt 230 


Henry Service 72 *John Davenport 242 

Joseph Smith 34 *Robt. Wm. Bennett ... 215 

♦Richard Broadbent ... 247 


(No Contest). 


(No Contest). 


(No Contest, Mark Pierson refusing to serve). 


(No Contest). 


(No Contest). 


*James Street 287 William Armitage ... 213 

*JoHN Daa'enport 219 *James Southern 214 

tHuMPHRY Davies 


(No Contest). 


(No Contest). 




* James Southern 322 *Robert Burgess 229 

*JosEPH Gaskarth 242 John Davenport 221 

James Street 206 


John Hethorn 204 *Wili,iam Armitage ... 341 

James Street 121 *Thomas Dyson 378 

*John AsTLE Kelsall ... 242 ((*Mattue\v Fowden 241 

a Nominated solely in the place of Mr. Thomas Knight, resigned. 


*SaiMUEl Barratt 315 *iMATTnE\v Fowden 260 

AViLLiAM Paulden 103 Henry Hough 151 

*CtEorge BowDEN 247 Thomas Partington .. . 202 

John Ambler 239 

MosEni Gaskarth .... 

,. 407 Robert Burgess .. 

.... 310 

'•William Armitage .... 

.. 605 *RoBERT Burgess ... 

.... 413 

Mohn Astle Kelsall . 

.. 398 John Newton 

... 237 

Thomas Dyson 

.. 371 


"■Samuel Barratt 

. . 386 James Byrom 

... 279 

Samuel Delves 

.. 375 *JoHN Ambler 

... 411 

Matthew FowDEN .... 

.. 375 *HUMI>HRY DaVIES ... 

... 433 


Thomas Partington ... 328 

* Joseph Gaskarth 679 

^Peter Pons 676 

Samuel Delves 455 

00 3 

*James Byrom 

James Pearson . . 

Thomas Davison . 
*Wm. Henry Holt 




*JoHX Davexpout 


SAMt'ET, Delves 

.. 862 

*Henry Balshaw 


John Siddei.ey 

... 842 



S.AMUEL Arnold 

... 792 

tWM. Tudor Mabley . . 


^Robert Burgess .... 

... 932 

*J. Shelmerdine Mort. . 


Peter Colliver 

... 700 

*Tho5[As "Warrington .. 


George Hodgkinson 

... 63.5 




*JoHN Ambler 984 Henry Dean, .Tun 826 

John Davenport 808 *Thomas Timperley ... 8-56 

Peter Pons 688 *Samuel Delves 984 



970 *JoHN Davenport 830 

927 James Pearson 659 

963 Wm. Hill Parkes 602 



No Election, owing to the passing of a new Act of Parliament 
relating to Local Boards 

*■ Joseph Gasicvrth 


Mames Byrom 

PiOBERT Burgess . . 


*H. B.VLSHAW 803 

IThom.vs Davison 3 

*Henry Kenyon 719 

*RoBERT Burgess 1175 

Enoch Farr 366 

James Percivai 429 

Jajles Cowsill 714 

Thoslis Jackson 617 

*George Smith 938 


*JoHN Ambler 1143 

'^ James Hamilton 1001 

James Cowsill 686 

*\ViLLL\M Smith .. 
Thomas Davison 
•■George Wood 




*Wm. Armitage, Jtn. 

*j0hn d.u'entokt 

*James Bykom 

*RoBERT Burgess 
George BowEN ... 
Thomas Davison 


968 Joseph Gaskauth 
947 William Clegg .. 
95S *Peteu Kinsky . . , 

987 Henry Kenyon . 
747 *George Smith 924 

.341 *J0HN SlDDEI.EY 1049 

.'J 00 

*Jos. Gaskartii 1109 



*JOHX Amrler 1255 

George Bowen 653 

James Co^vsILL 733 

* William Griffin 829 

John A. Kelsall ... 385 

Henry Kenyon 633 

* John Newton 843 

*George Wood 1234 


*Wm. Armitage, JuN.... 1258 "-"James Hamilton 1323 

*George Bo^vEN 1214 *Henry Kenyon 1060 

James By ROM 890 Peter Kinsey 672 


(No Contest). 


♦John Ambler 1374 Enoch Farr 911 

*J.4MES Boyd 1218 *William Griffin 1004 

*John Newton 1405 

(No Contest). 

(No Contest). 

MoHN Ambler 

.. 813 

John Newton 

. 773 

Wm. T. Ascroft ... 


*George Richards .... 

. 1070 

Jajies Boyd 

.. 894 

George Smith 

. 680 

-Matt. Fowden 

.. 656 

James Steen 

. 701 

William Griffin ... 

.. 777 

Peter Williamson . 

. 619 



*GEORf;E BowEN 968 

George Brett 730 

Thos James Farrell -I-jI 

*James Hamilton 1192 

John iAFilnes 536 

■<"E. G. Parker 903 

* James Percival 965 

Peter Williamson ... 653 

(No Contest). 

*S. Arnold 1154 T. B. Parkes 926 

J Boyd 

104-1: W. Shuttleworth . 

.. 994 


998 *B. GooDALi 

.. 1097 

'W. Grifitx., 

, 1131 *J. Steen 


(No Contest). 


.. 1145 

'Thos James 


1125 *Jos Hill 



1205 Edward Xeild 

.. 1067 


Newton 1454 


*.S. Arnold 984 *J. Steen 1075 

W.Collins 970 J. Drinkwater 889 

m. Gatley 996 *W. Griffin 1034 

G. Arrowsmith 741 

*J. Percival 821 

W. Brooks 463 

T. B. Parkes 527 

*E. Yarwood.. 

*G. Ijowen 1047 

W. Collins 733 

S. Birtles 496 

*J. N. Sidebotham 866 


No Contest — Members retaining office unt 
District Council. 

election of Urban 




George Allan 115 


George Arrowsmith ... 3t 

J. G. B. Barber 105 

*Thomas Henry Y 


tWiLLiAM Griffin 101 

Herbert Congreve ... 42 

t*JoHN Newton 129 

*Charles Pierson 127 

EKNON 148 



Williamson Atkinson.. 
*George Drinkwater... 287 

t*JosEPH Hill 183 

John Edward Meakin.. 101 
*Isaac Watts . . . . 


tSamuel Arnold 82 

♦Alfred Barker 215 

*Thomas Henry Caine.. 130 

James Gregson 67 

Thomas Hildage 23 


t*JAMES Boyd 108 

John Gibbon 71 

t*jAMES Gott 96 

William S. Mainpkice.. 93 
Wm. Agar Renshaw ... 74 


William Pearson ... 94 
Wm. Hy. Pendlebury 55 

t James Percival 105 

Thomas Turner 153 



William Hulme 100 

William Okell 61 

*J0HN Palmer 214 

Chas. Henry Skipper.. 61 

t James Steen 99 


John Robinson 48 

t J. Nasmyth Sidebotham 90 

John Smith 71 

John RichaPvD Ward .. 46 
t*EvERY Yarwood 118 



FIi;,ST ELEOTIUX, \6<db.~Uuntuiacd. 


Samuel BiRTLES 81 *Josiah Drinkwater ... 131 


John Brierley 84 Walter Sydney Scott 50 

Joseph Brooks G7 Jonathan "Woon 72 

In North Ward Mr. Charles Pierson retired through ill he.ihh, 
and was succeeded by Mr. George Allan. 



George Allan 98 *Samu£l 


John Ed\vard Meakin.. 79 Reuren Pearson 

*Isaac Watts 200 


Thomas Henry Caine (withdrew) 3 

WiLLLVM Iln.ME 118 *Mark Pearson 

Joseph Brooks (Unopposed). 


Samuel Biktles 123 ^Geoiuie Bowen 

Jlcmbers marked thus * elected. 
Members marked thus t members of Altrincham Local Board. 



statement of Loans, dc, on taking ouer the affairs of ttie late Local Board. 




1505 14 

2494 6 

260 4 






941 3 2 

1558 16 10 

162 12 






1033 8 2 

1266 11 10 

125 1 






704 10 11 

59.") 9 1 

70 13 






1416 13 4 

1083 6 8 

136 8 






1020 16 8 

729 3 4 

96 10 



,f7727 13 9 
1881 20 1000 441 12 10 558 7 2 73 11 8 1901 

1893 13 1400 1313 2 3 86 17 9 135 17 9 1906 

1894 20 3500 3500 246 5 4 1914 


4 11 






16 11 


3 1 

238 7 







16 7 


o 5 

45 14 












6 6 






17 8 


2 4 

268 10 








19 9 

37 15 




2 1 






15 5 


4 7 

411 8 







17 9 


2 3 

48 6 





i-348 6 10 
3274 16 2 25 3 10 140 13 10 

5246 7 3 103 12 1) 290 17 9 

il28 16 7 
30 4000 3922 10 2 77 9 10 217 9 10 

30 1100 1100 59 16 4 

9 10 

i:57,740 X-42,499 19 6 115,240 6 ■ £3,096 6 1( 

Xorii :— The Loan t.ikeii up durins the year (1S:)1) which will cause an incre 
e is £3,500 for .street improvements, the annual payment being equal 
107 pence in the £. 




Boundaries of North Ward. 

Commencing at the most northerly point of the district, at 
the junction with the Township of Dunham Massey, at Wash way, 
continuing along Timperley Brook (the boundary line with 
Timperley), to its intersection with the Manchester, South 
Junction, and Altrincham Railway, then continuing in a southerly 
direction along the centre line of such railway to Stockport Road, 
then continuing in a Westerly direction across Stockport Road, 
to the centre of Harrington Road, then continuing in a northerly 
direction along the centre line of Barrington Road to Woodlands 
Road, otherwise called Bank Street, then continuing in a westerly 
direction along the centre line of Woodlands Road to Church 
Street, then continuing in a northerly direction along the centre 
line of Church Street and Manchester Road to Oldfield Road, then 
continuing in a westerly direction along the centre line of Oldfield 
Road to its junction with the Township boundary with Dunham 
Massey, then continuing such boundary line in a northerly 
direction to the before-named most northerly point at 
Washway.— ELECTORATE, 454 (1895). 

Boundaries of Soutli Ward. 

The north boundary commences at the end of Ashley Road, 
continuing in an easterly direction along the centre line of Lloyd 
Street to the centre of the Cheshire Lines Railway, then con- 
tinuing in a southerly direction along the centre line of the said 
railway to Long Lane Bridge, then continuing along the boundary 
line with the Township of Hale to near Bath Street, then continuing 
in a westerly direction along the boundary line with the said 
Township of Hale, then along the centre line of a portion of Peel 
Causeway, being the boundary line with the Township of Bowdon, 


then continuing along the bounduiy line of the said Township of 
Bowdon in a northerly direction, and also in an easterly direction, 
to the centre of Ashley Road, then continuing in a noitherly 
direction along the centre line of the said Ashley Road to its 
junction with the commencement of the north boundary line. — 
ELECTORATE, 675 (1895). 

Boundaries of East Ward. 

The most northerl_v boundary commences at the junction of 
the Manchester, South Junction, and Altrincham Railway and 
Timperley Brook, then continuing along Timperley Brook and 
the boundary line of the Township of Timperlej', then continuing 
along the boundary line of the Township of Hale to Long Lane 
Bridge, then continuing in a northerly direction ateng the centre 
line of the Cheshire Lines Railway, and the centre line of the 
Manchester, South Junction, and Altrincham Railway to the 
junction with the most northerly boundary.— ELECTORATE, 559 

Note — This Ward consists of the whole of that portion of 
the District situate on the east side of the centre line of the 
above named railways. 

Boundaries of West Ward. 

The most northerly boundary commences at the Township 
boundary with Dunham Massey, continuing easterly along the 
centre line of Oldfield Road to Manchester Road, then continuing 
in a southerly direction along the centi-e line of JIanchester Road 
and Church Stieet, the Market Place and Market Street to Regent 
Road, then continuing in a south-easterly direction along the 
centre line of Regent Road to Railway Street, then continuing 
in a southerly line along the centre line of Railway Street and 
the centre line of Ashley Road to the boundary with the Town- 
ship of Bowdon at Albert Square, then continuing in a westerly 
direction along the said boundary to its junction with the Town- 


ship of Dunham Massey, then continuing in a westerly and 
northerly direction along the boundary line with the said 
Township of Dunham Massey to the northerly boundary in 
Oldfield Road.— ELECTORATE, 527 (1895). 

Boundaries of Central Ward. 

The most northerly boundary commences at Church Street, 
then continuing easterly along the centre line of Woodlands Road, 
otherwise called Bank Street, to Barrington Road, then continuing 
in a southerly direction along the centre of Barrington Road to 
Stockport Road, then continuing along the centre line of the 
Manchester, South Junction, and Altiincbam Railway and the 
Cheshire Lines Railway to Lloyd Street, then continuing in a 
westerly direction along the centre line of Lloyd Street to Railway 
Street, then continuing along the centre line of Railway Street, 
the centre line of Regent Road, and then continuing in a northerly 
direction along the centre line of Market Street, the centre 
line of the Market Place, and the centre line of Church Street 
to the first-named boundary line in Woodlands Road. — ELEC= 
TORATE, 488 (1895). 



^ o 


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§ PlH 





















,^^ s I § s i i i i i i I 3 


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3 - II I I I I I '^- ^- "- ^- ^- 


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ui s.iiunsici 

SSr, ?5S5§;^sSS?5gSS 





















































































S P g i i S i 1 i 1 g 1. E 



November 1885. 
Result of Poll :— 

.Mit. John Brooks 4798 

Ml!. Isaac Saunders Le.vdam 4046 

Majority 752 

Bye-election, March, 1886. 
Vice, Mr. John Brooks, died March 8ih, 1886. 

Sir W. C. Brooks 4.508 

.Mr. I. S. Leadam 3925 

Majority 538 

General Election, July, 1886. 
Sir Wm. Brooks returned unopposed. 

Bye-election, July 13th, 1892. 

Mr. Coningsry Kai.pii Disraeli 5056 

Mr. I. S. Leadam 4258 

Majority 798 

General Election, July 22nd, 1895. 

Mr. CoNiNG.SBY Ralph Disraeli 5264 

Mr. Alexander Mere Latham 3889 

Majority 1375 



(County Cuuncil Election, January 39th, 1SS9.) 

Mr. Wm. Armitage, J.P 841 

Mr. John Newtox, C.E 723 

Majority 118 

Bye-election, vice Mr. Wm. Armitage elected Alderman at the 
first meeting of the Cheshire County Council. 

Mr. T. W. Killick, J.P 961 

Mr. John Newton, C E 879 

Majority 82 


Bowdon Division .Mr. J. Davies, Hollinfare, nr. Warrington. 

Timperley „ Mr. T. E. Tattox, Wythenshaw. 

Knutsford „ Lord Egerton of Tatton. 

Sale „ Mr. A. K. Dyson. 

Lymm ,, Mr. Ch.vrles Lister. 

Election, March, 1892. 

Altrincham Mr. T. W. Kilijck, J.P. (unopposed). 
Bowdon Di!. E. J. Siderotham (Vice, Jas. Davies). 

Sale Mr. H. Thornber. 



List of Members of Fird Board, elected 1867 : 
Wm Joynson (Chairman). Alfred Watkin 

JoHEi'H Clarke Jameh Worthikgton 

William Butterfield Isaac Hoyle 

James Hodgson Williami Wilson 

William Thornbeu John Morley 

John Henry Storey Joseph Curdingley 


List of Members of First Council, elciicd 1S95 : 
John Edwaiu) Daxies (Chaitman). 
Harry Thornber Joh.n Morley 

William Critchley Tho.mas Foster Wainwright 

SamcelSmith Faulkner Henry I!ro\ynhill 

"William Tayloi; John IJattkrsry 

Matthew AN'ells .Iosicmi Wiijjam Lloyd 

Thomas Kirkley 1;(_)i;i-.i;i' Wright 

John Campbell AVilliam Speed Coppock 


List of Members of Council lS9d-'Jti : 
H T. Gaddim (Chairman). 
J. Hall K W. Trenrath 


F. G. Whittall D. Senior 
J. Alderley a. Haworth 
R. A. Warburton J. Fep.gtson 


Members elected June, lU'dS : 

St. Mary's Ward. 

Alexander Lawson William Hall John Edward Dean 

Mersey Ward. 

Jos. Hughes Slater Wji. Hy. Wai.mslev Enhs Wallwork 

St. Martin's. 

Harry A'eiinon Kilvert (Elfctcd Cliairman). 

Richard Read John Arthur Gilbody Chadwick 





Adams, W. Salkeld, Esq., Ellersdene, Hale. 
Alexander, A. H., Esq., The Hermitage, Hale. 
Allen, Bulkley, Esq., West Lynn, Dunham Massey. 
Armitage, J. Fred, Esq., Heathside, Knutsford. 
AsHTON, T. W. H., Esq., Norwood, Altrincham. 
Atkinson, James H., Esq., Glentwood, 

South Downs Drive, Halo. 
Atkinson, Rev. C. Chetwynd, M.A., Fairfield House, 


Barker, John Lees, Esq., Dunham Road, Bowdon. 
Barton, Edward W., Esq., Holly Bank, Sale. 
Bowland, Jacob, Esq., The Limes, Norman's Place, 


Bowland, James, Esq , 48, Chesterfield Road, 

Montpelier, llristol. 
Bowland, John, Esq., 

BoYDELL, Joshua H. Esq., Dinglehurst, Arthog Road, Hale. 
Braga, a., Esq., Raby Mount, Ashley Heath, Hale. 
Brogden, Henry, Esq., Hale Lodge, Hale. 
Brookes, Wm , Esq., Albert Square, Bowdon. 
Burgess, Mrs., Bowness Villa, Altrincham. 
Burgess, H. M., Esq., Stamford Street, Altrincham, 
Burns, John, Esq., 3, Arrow Street, Lower Broughton, 

Bush, Samuel, Esq., Columbl.i Villa, Burlington Street, 


Clanahan, Hugh C, Esq., Oakfield, Ashley Road, Hale. 
Courtney, Mrs., The Rookery, Manchester Road, 

Coupe, James, Esq., Central Stores, George Street, 

Cowan, William Robert, Esq., 5, Laurel Mount, 

Rose Hill, Bowdon. 
Coy, Dr., Sale. 

Darbyshire, John, Esq., 5, Ra,ilway Street, Altrincham. 
Disraeli, C, Esq., M.P., Hughendon Manor, Bucks. 
Donald, James, Esq., M.B.C.INL, Sutton Lea, 

Ashley Road, Hale. 

Earnshaw, Jacob, Esq., Lindhum House, 

Egekton, Hon. Tatton, Rosthcrne Manor, Knutsford. 

P'arrell, John, Esq., Holly Bush, Market Street, 

FoDEN, Joel, Esq., Church Street, Altrincham. 
Forrest, Rev. James, JLA., 3, Cromwell Terrace, 

Fox, llEV. A., MA., Albion House, The Downs, Dowdon. 

Gaddum, Cii.arles E., Esq., Hale Can-, Hale. 
Gaijdum, Henry J., Esq., J. P., Oakley, Green ^^ allc, 

Galloway, Edward N , Esq., Normanby, Altrincham. 
GiBB, James, Esq , Heyscroft, Bowdon. 
Golland, Dr., Church Street, Altrincham. 
GuEY, W., Esq., Albert Road, Hale. 
Groves, James Grimbi.e, Esq., J.P., Oldfidd Hall, 


Hall, Joseph K., Weston Villa, The Firs, Bowdon. 
Hampson, 11. J., Esq., The Gorse, Priory Road, Bowdon. 
Hardy, Thomas, Esq., Mere Hall Farm, Mere, 

near Knutsford. 
Harrison, James, E.sq., Hope Cottage, Ashley Road, Hale. 
Harris, J., Esq., The Downs, Bowdon. 
Haiisford, J., Esq., Addison Villas, Timperley. 
Haworth, a. W., Esq., Ecclesfield Park Road, Bowdon. 
Hawortii, Jesse, Esq., J. P., Woodsidc, Bowdon. 
Haworth, John F., Esq., Oldfield House, Altrincham. 
Hertzberg, Rev. A. M., St. Martin's Itcctory, 

lIiGHAM, A. .Maushaix, Es.i., Duiiliaiii Town, Altrincham. 
Hill, Joseph, Esq., Fernside, Broomfiuld Lane, Hale. 
Holmes-Poulton, MA.I0R James V. D., The Kims, 

Vale Road, Bowdon. 
Holt, Oliver S., Esq., Sidcot, South Downs Road, Hale. 
HoMAN, Harold, Esq., Claremont, Hazel Road, Altrincham. 
HuwoKTii, George, Es(J., Woodthorpo, South 

Downs Ri 


Hughes, J. Taylor, Esq., Surgeon Dentist, 

Thorleymoor, Ashley Road, Altrincham. 

Johnson, Fredk., Esq., Railway Street, Altrincham. 
Jones, Wm. Owen, Esq., Surgeon, 32, The Downs, 

JoYNSON, E. Walter, Esq., J.P., Ashfield, Sale. 
JOYNSON, R. H., Esq., Chasefield, Bowdon. 

Kershaw, G., Esq., Holm Side, Dunham 
Kennerley, Harry, Esq., Woodcote, South Downs 

Road, Hale. 
KiLLiCK, T. W., Esq., J.P., Gracemount, Altrincham. 
KiLVERT, H. v., Esq.; J.P., The Lodge, Ashton-on-Mersey. 

Leather, J. B., Esq., The Nag's Head Hotel, 

Bollington, near Altrincham. 
Leech, Sir Bosdin T., J.P., Oak Mount, Timperley. 
Lees, Jauies, Esq., Westfield, Chesham Place, Bowdon 
Lindsell, F. R. B., Esq., Cotswold, Groby Road, 

Lord, Miss, Oakleigh, Ashton-on-Mersey. 

McBeath, Robert J., Esq , M.S.A., Birnam House, Sale. 
MacKennal, Alexander, Esq., Beech wood, Bowdon. 
Mason, Fredk. Wm., Esq., Homehill, Groby Road, 


MoFEAT, Arthur, Esq., Belmont Park Road, Bowdon. 
MoRLEY, James S., Esq., V.D., Stamford Street, 

Altrincham (Two copies). 

Mothersill, H. J., Esq., Heathside, Knutsford. 

MOTHERSILL, Major, Knutsford. 

Munro, a., Esq., M.R.C.V.S., Stockport Road, Altrincham. 

Newhouse, Richard, Esq., 4, Ash Terrace, 

Vicarage Lane, Bowdon. 
Newton, James W., Esq,, 2, St Peter's Square, Manchester. 

O'Brien, Rev. Father, New Street, Altrincham. 
Oxley, Arthur, Esq., The Griffin Hotel, Bowdon. 
Owen, William, Esq., A.J.B.A., Ferny Lea, 

Ashley Road, Hale. 

Parker, Eustace G., Esq., Broomfield Lane, Altrincham. 
Paterson, D. R., Esq., Green Bank House, 

Langham Road, Bowdon. 
PiERSON, Charles, Esq., 18, Tib Street, Manchester. 
Pierson, Charles, Esq., Woodlands Road, Altrincham. 
PoDMORE, G., Esq., Dunham Road, Altrincham. 
Proctor, J., Esq., Northendcn Road, Sale. 

Renshaw, Adolph, Esq., M.A., L.R.C.P., Lindenholme, 

Renshaw, Charles J., Esq., M.D., Beech Hurst, 

RiGC, SiBSON S., Esq., Motley Bank, South Downs 

Road, Hale. 
ROGERSON, Thosias, Esq., 53, Ashfield Road, Altrincham. 

Schwabe, Edward, Esq., Claremont House, Cambridge 

Road, Hale. 
Shaw, Charles, Esq., Devonshire Cottage, Ashley Road, 

Shaw, John, Esq., F.R.H.S , Landscape Gardener, 

Ashley Road, Altrincham. 
Sherwin, Charles, Esq., The Hall, Ashley. m 

Shiers, R. Herbert, Esq., Moss Side, Queen's Road, " 

Sidebotham, J. N., Esq., 
Smith, Mrs. Ford, Harrington Road, Bowdon. 
Southern, Jas., Esq., Booth Hurst, Dunham Road, 

SowLER, Harry, Esq., The Manor House, Hale. 
Stamford, Earl of, 2, Whitehall Court, London, S.W. 

(Two copies). 
Stafford, J. H., Esq., Oak Hill, Grob}' Road, Bowdon. 
Steel, James, Jr., Esq., 2, Hawthorn Bank, Stamford 

Road, Altrincham. 

Taylor, William, Esq., Devon Villas, L-lam Road, Sale. 
Thornton, J. E., Esq., Rokeby, Oldfiekl Road, Bowdon. ^ 

Valentine, Miss Anne, The Elms, Hale. ' 

Walkden, Wm., Esq., The Hall, Carrington. 
Walmsley, W. H., Esq., Magdala House, 

Waltham, W. H., Esq., Waltham Lodge, Stretford. 
Warburton, Wm., Esq., South Holme, Bowdon. 
Warburton, H. a., Esq., The Grove, Hale. 
■Warburton, John, Esq., Greenbank, Bowdon. J 

AVare, Hibbert, Esq., Hall Bank, Bowdon. ■ 

A\''aters, Esq., Hawthorn Lea, Langham Road, Bowdon. 
Williams, Frank V., Esq., Braeside, Altrincham. 
AViLLSHAW, Tiios., Esq., Holmrook, Dunham Massey. 
Woodhead, Dr. A. Miall, M.B.C.M., Chisholme, 

Wright, Richard, Earlsleigh, Groby Road, Altrincham. 


PriuWis : Cartwiight aiul Rattray Ltd., 12, lirown Street, Manchester ; and at Ilyile ari.l Loiiilon.