London Road

Owen’s Corner
On the south side of Acton Avenue in Appleton there used to be a public house here. It is mentioned as the Shovel and Broom on the 1875 map. The house is still on the 1910 map, but not as a pub. On the north side there was a smithy built between 1846 and 1875.  The ‘Owen’ in Owen’s Corner was Lawrence William Owen, a wheelwright born in 1887. The smithy eventually became a garage and Lawrence died in 1949.  In more recent years the cross roads has become a roundabout but the name still remains – even if the apostrophe is missing. 

Stork House /Cottage (485 and 487, London Road)
The tithe map shows the land owned by Thomas Lyon and occupied by John Gibbons and Edward Gleave.  The Gleave family remained there from 1841 for at least twenty years. The second house was occupied by Edwin Ratcliffe and family in 1861.

Stork House 1874
Stork House 1874 Reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland under the of the Creative Commons Attribution licence

The 1891 census records that the first cottage was occupied by Thomas Cooper and family, and the second by Joseph Smith and his family. The former was the estate gardener and the latter the gamekeeper for the Appleton Hall estate. Thomas Cooper was still living at Stork Cottage in 1901 aged 64 working as an odd-job man at Appleton Hall. Next door was Alfred Holland, a saddler who was born in Stretton.

The cottages were rebuilt in 1904, and the 1911 census shows that the Cooper family had moved to Dingle Lodge in Appleton. Meanwhile Tom Cotterill and family, and John Claydon and his family were resident. The former was an estate woodman – presumably for Thomas Lyon at Appleton Hall. Tom Cotterill was married to Clara whose mother Hannah lived in Common Lane. They had two children – Fred and Frank. There is a photograph of Frank taken at the village school around 1913.  The family were still there in 1920 but had moved away by 1930.

In 1920 Leonard & Mary Ann Duncalf and James Johnson were living at Stork Cottages. Leonard Duncalf died a couple of years later and Mary Ann married Peter Lafferty in 1924 and moved to Shepcroft, Appleton. In 1930 the cottages were occupied by the Broady and Jennings families who remained until the 1960s. William Starkey Broady was a gamekeeper and Thomas Jennings was a gardener. William Broady died just a month or two after the Register in December 1939, but his widow and children remained.

The Shant
This first gets a mention in the 1911 census when the Weir family were living there. Frederick senior was an out of work farmer, together with his wife Elizabeth and four children. Frederick the eldest son was killed in the first World War. The family remained in Stretton until the death of Elizabeth in 1927.

Wicken House (491, London Road)
This house was built  between 1901 and 1911. The Rose family were first recorded as living there in 1911 having moved to Stretton from Warrington in the previous year. John Rose was a manager at a soap factory. The family remained at Wicken House past 1920 until John’s death in 1929. By 1939, the Register shows that John and Robertina Price were in residence. Rev John was a retired vicar and the couple remained in the house until 1962 when Eva Unsworth had moved in, followed by John and Marjorie Johnson.

Stretton Police House (493, London Road)
This was built around 1935 to replace the older police house near the Cat and Lion along Tarporley Road. Walter and Mary Herrity were the first occupants, with Walter being a police constable. The couple remained until the late 1940s when Arthur and Doris Smith moved in for around twenty years.


SAM_9294 - Copy
This is dates 1896, made of cast iron., and triangular in shape. The cast lettering  reads CHESHIRE COUNTY COUNCIL 1896

521- 551 London Road
During the 1930s there were a number of semi-detached house built south from Owen’s Corner at Primrose Hill, these are those houses currently numbered 521 – 551 London Road.

Primrose Hill
The tithes map of 1846 shows five cottages and gardens owned by Thomas Lyons and occupied by: James Allen;  Thomas Cliffe;  Thomas Dakin;  William Pemberton and Richard Wainwright. Thomas Dakin, Richard Wainwright, Thomas Cliffe and William Pemberton had been living in the same houses for at least the previous five years.

In 1861 Richard Wainwright was still living at Primrose Hill with his family. His neighbours included Thomas Eyes; Joseph Ellison; John Walker and Mr James. Ten years later Richard’s widow was still living at Primrose Hill alongside Thomas Eyes, Joseph Ellison and Joseph Bostock.

Primrose Hill 1874
Cottages at Primrose Hill 1874 showing the Post Office. Reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland under the Creative Commons Attribution licence

By 1901, the cottages were occupied by James Lightfoot; Robert Kerr; Joseph Bostock and George Bostock.

Joseph Bostock was a farm labourer from Whitley. He married local girl Mary Ann Holland and moved to Stretton around 1879.  Together they had 12 children of whom four died at a young age. His eldest son George married Mary Alice Cotterill in 1894 and by 1901 was living next door to his parents.

By 1911 both Bostock households were still at Primrose Hill although Joseph, Mary Ann and son John would all be dead within three years. Tragedy would strike again in 1918 when the eldest son of George Bostock (Jack) died at the end of the first World War. George Bostock and the remainder of his family moved away from the village within a few years. The only remaining male member of the Bostock family was George’s brother Frank who lived at Primrose Hill with his wife Alice before moving to Roadside Cottages, Hatton Lane in the 1930s. Next door was Ann, the widow of Robert Kerr and Thomas Dooley and his family.

By 1915 Thomas Dooley had died at the young age of 43 and Amy was left a widow with a young family to raise. Next door was Frank Bostock and further along was his sister Emily, who married Tom Bate.

Primrose Hill 1908; published 1931
Primrose Hill 1908; published 1931. Reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland under the Creative Commons Attribution licence

By 1939 there were new occupants at Primrose Hill cottages: John and Harriet Davenport; Edward & Annie Lafferty and their children; John and Mary Lawson, and Henry and Harriett Smith. In 1945 all families were still there but sadly one of the children had been killed. Ann Lawson, the two year old daughter of John and Mary Lawson was killed in a bombing raid in September 1940. Despite the tragedy John and Mary, who both had their sight severely affected by the blast, remained until their deaths in the early 1990s. In 1947, Edward and Annie Lafferty had moved on.

The post office was originally at Primrose Hill and is clearly shown on the map of 1874 above. It later moved to the Beehive, Tarporley Road.

Road Side Farm
This is one of the oldest farms in Stretton. According to the Land Tax Returns of 1780 the farm was owned by Thomas Eaton and occupied by Isaac Thomason. The land ownership then changed to Samuel Okell, as did the occupiers from 1787 when the Woodward family farmed until just after 1810.  Following ten years of occupation by Joseph Okell the Bolland family moved in James, Sarah and two children: John and Mary. The Bollands and the Okells were related through marriage.

At the same time, Thomas Lyon from Appleton Hall was increasing his land ownership in Stretton. Around 1829 Samuel Okell sold his farm but the Bollands remained in occupation. In 1834 and 1835 respectively James and Sarah Bolland died.

The 1841 census shows John and Mary Bolland were farming at Road Side Farm. Also living at the farm was Martha Okell (one of their cousins) and Edward Marsden the unmarried curate at St. Matthews.  According to the tithes map of 1846 it was owned by Thomas Lyon and occupied by Mary Bolland.

Edward Brocklehurst, who farmed at Appleton Cross, married Mary Ann Ditchfield in 1875 and the couple moved to Road Side Farm. They had at least eight children. Edward continued farming until his early death in 1895, aged 45, when his second eldest son, Herbert, took over. Herbert married Bertha Whitlow from Hatton and they had two daughters.  Herbert’s elder brother Charles moved to Winwick in 1901, but according to the Elector’s Register he was back in Stretton by 1920. Meanwhile Herbert had moved from Roadside Farm to Mosswood Hall.

Charles Brocklehurst and his wife Mary (née Winstanley of Dorothy Farm) remained at Roadside Farm until their death in 1954 and 1957 respectively. The farm then passed to John and Brigid Radcliffe.

The farm was put up for sale in January 1959 with just over 60 acres and a further eight acres along Hatton Lane. In the early 1960s Mr Eric Parr and family moved into the house, and according to the Christine Anderton (née Parr) below, the farm and surrounding fields were owned by Harry Winstanley of Whitley. Mr Parr worked for the Prudential and is fondly remembered. The Parrs stayed at Roadside Farm until 1982, after which part of the house was used as the doctor’s surgery.

29 thoughts on “London Road”

  1. I would like to add to this that there was a Company called ( Maddock and Sons Ltd, London Road, Stockton Heath. as this Company were involved in making the arrangements of Buriel of my Great Grand Mother ( Mrs Sarah Ellen Savage ) the widow of Mr James Savage of Stone Cottage, Hill Cliffe,…Born 20th November 1880 Died 15th May 1968,………….Buried at St Thomas Church, Stockton Heath, Conducted by The Rev.A.C.Davies.

  2. Even though i have no connection to Stretton i have found this page very interesting and a good insight into the past.Having said i have no connection,i suppose i loosely do now as was researching because i`ve just bought a silverplated large condiment set with an inscription on the front reading `presented to Mr Joseph Broady by the Stretton church choir ,on the occassion of his marriage 1899`.Thank-you for the info,great to put some history to me piece.

  3. I am keen to know any news about Arthur and Doris Smith’s family.
    As a little girl, I stayed with them at the police house in Stretton while my mother was in hospital.
    I remember being bridesmaid to their daughter (Joyce?) and Roy (?).
    Many happy memories of my stay! I remember a granny and a puppy and some chickens and
    a farm at the back of the house.

  4. Regarding Roadside Farm my father Eric Parr and family moved in to the house between 1961 and 1962 previously living at Stockley View, Higher Whitley. The farm and surrounding fields, buildings etc. were owned by Harry Winstanley of Whitley.

  5. Christine I new Harry Winstanley Lived next door to my Grandmother was that the father or son both Harry ?

  6. Primrose Hill 1939 , Henry and Harriett Smith are my Granddad and Grandma, their children were Thomas, Charles, Ronald, Harry, Robert, Nellie (my mother), Edith, Margaret, Anne.

  7. I would like to know more about the houses across the road from the police house? When we’re they built? and whether there are any old pictures of the road and police house?

  8. Hi – just to check these are the houses on the left heading down the hill towards Stockton Heath? If so, I believe they used to be called Bennett’s Houses and are actually in Appleton. The boundary is confusing as the houses on the right are in Stretton. If you want to see further details, the best place to look for the maps is:

    We don’t have any photographs of the old police house, but maybe others do? If so, please get in touch

  9. Message for Fleur
    In reference to the village police officer Mr Mrs smith and there daughter Joyce ,Joyce married my mothers twin brother Roy Read , my auntie Joyce and uncle Roy had two children David and Linda who are still alive

    1. Hello Anthony
      I just found this message again and I can’t remember if I ever replied. If I did I’m sure I must have mentioned that I have a lovely wedding photo of Joyce and Roy.
      It must have been around 1952?
      Are David and Linda still in the Stretton area?

  10. Hi,
    I have names of residents 521 to 551 London Road in the late 1950’s and early 1960’s. Are you interested??

  11. In the late fifties and early sixties.
    521 London Road……the Carstairs……two older sisters.
    523 London Road….the Taylors…MrsTaylor, son Nigel, and Grandmother
    525 London Road…my family Joe Redfern, Lily Redfern, sons Michael and Peter, and daughter Lillian. Our family live there around sixty years
    527 London Road…Mr and Mrs Evans then Lyn and Ruth George
    529 London Rd It was a police house…Mr and Mrs Gordon and two sons
    531 London Road the Maguires..they had two daughters
    533 London Road the Hopwoods they had a son and daughter
    535 London Road the Woodcocks with two sons Alan and Geoff
    537 London Road Mrs Washer with two sons Terry and Tony. Mrs Washer had the paper shop (opposite Behive stores) for a short time.
    539 London Road Mr and Mrs John Cross (Butcher in Warrington Market)
    541 London Road Mike Butterworth and wife.
    543 London Road Mr and Mrs Bibby
    545 London Road Mr and Mrs Lawson and daughter
    547 London Road Mr Arthur Bridge (Insurance agent)
    549 London Road Mr and Mrs Buchanan
    551 ?? I cannot remember who lived here.

    1. I lived at 531 from sometime in the mid 70’s until 1988. Remember Lyn and Ruth George, Joe and Lily Redfern were still there. Roger and Sheila Foster lived at 529 while we were there and Eddie and Margaret Horrigan close to the Redferns. The last house in our time was lived in by Yoke and Ian Jeffries.

    2. Did you actually know the Washer family number 537? I am trying to trace them or their descendants as I’m doing a family history. Tony and Terry are my first cousins.

      1. I did reply but didn’t see the post. The last I knew was Terry lived in Stockton Heath. I called him up after finding the phone # in the “BT phone book” Online..This was a couple of years ago.

  12. Hi
    Does anyone remember or have any information about Road Side Farm and whether or not there was a Road Side Garage or Roadside Garage in Stretton in the late 1920s and early 1930s please?

  13. My Grandfather Arthur Vernon lived on Owens corner most of his garden was taken for the roundabout he died in 1967 .His son Gilbert then lived there for a few years before moving to Orchard st in Stockton Heath .Our family lived in the Stretton area going back 4or 5 generations .my aunt Mabel worked at Moss Hall and for the author AW Boydwho lived in Frandley I have a copy of his book The Country Diary of A Cheshire man.

  14. In reply to the question about a Roadside Garage I remember there was a large garage on Hatton Lane backing on to the Cat and Lion Pub car park owned or worked in by Mr Walton, sorry cannot remember his first name. He used to own a large Traction Engine which he would take to various Steam Fairs around Cheshire. I don’t think it was known as Roadside Garage but could have been. Although locally it was always referred to as Walton’s Garage.

      1. Thanks Clare and Christine

        I’ve just come back to this after visiting Stretton and if the garage backed on to the Cat and Lion Pub then it was more or less opposite Road Side Farm.

        It would be great to know if anyone had recollections of either Harold or Herbert Brocklehurst or their descendants in relation to motorcycles.

    1. Peter Walton who was a great supporter of the Cat and Lion pub and lived further up Hatton Lane on the left hand side.

  15. I found some information that suggests an H Brocklehurst was at Roadside Garage in 1929 – could have been Herbert or Harold perhaps. Maybe there is some confusion in the records with Roadside Farm.

  16. Re. Mrs Washer, Tony and Terry, they are my cousins. Mrs Washer was married to Ray, my Mums brother who died quite young. Does anyone have any idea where they all are now?

  17. I lived at 529 London Road from 1960 to 1968 with my mother and father Ann and Peter Harrison and from 1963 my sister Joanne, who was born in the house during the terrible winter of that year. We were best friends with the Hopwoods and their children – Linda, my age and John a bit older, playing in the fields out the back (now houses). My father Peter worked as a butcher for his father John in Walton Road, Stockton Heath.

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