Cheadle Hulme

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History - 1540-1840 AD



Timeline - Manors


Stockport History

Stockport Heritage


The Manorial Halls Today

Halls (Click here for details)


1800 map (Click for more details)
Stopford's 1800 Map

During this period the lordship and manor of Chedell Holme passed to John Savage 8th who was Mayor of Chester (died 1597), John Savage 9th (High Sheriff of Cheshire in 1607) and his second son

Cheadle Savage Hall (Moss, 1894)
Cheadle Savage Hall

Thomas Savage (John Savage 10th died as a boy), created Viscount Savage by Charles 1 (1626) who died in 1635, and then to his daughter Joan (married to  John Paulet, Marquess of Winchester). She died in childbirth aged 23, ending 250 years of the Savages lordship, and the manor passed to the Marquess (a catholic). After confiscation in 1643 it was purchased by the Moseley family and became Cheadle Moseley. (The family line ran from Sir Nicholas Moseley, Rowland Moseley, Sir Edward Moseley [died 1660], cousin Sir Edward Moseley, to Anne Moseley [died 1734]).

Regionally, much land was being sold off to tenants during this period. For example, Bradshaw Hall estate was now owned by the Kelsall family (bought from the lord of Cheadle Moseley in 1550) and passed on to the Prescots in 1817. By 1671 Cheadle parish had 21 freeholders and enclosed fields were now becoming the norm. Handforth Hall was also established in the mid 1500s for the Brereton family and is still standing.

Handforth Hall (Moss, 1894)
Handforth Hall

Manufacture and trade, especially textiles (wool, and later cotton and silk), became important in the Stockport Borough in the 15th & 16th centuries, to be followed by hatting. By 1780 Stockport had clearly seen the effects of the industrial revolution, a water-powered silk mill had even been built as far afield as Cheadle (1771). Home weaving was probably Cheadle Hulme's first industry (with 5 spinning jennies, and possibly carding engines, recorded here in 1777 in one of the larger works) whereas finishing mills began to appear in other parts of the region. Even coal mines appeared just a few miles south at Poynton. In Cheadle Hulme, tenant farmers occupied humble dwellings and often kept their own horse and a cow. They would often sell produce at Stockport. In 1672 Macclesfield market included stallholders from Cheadle Hulme.

Earnings were around 3d per day for a labourer, 6d for a ploughman, and about 1 for a large landowner.


Population Increases
Despite a number of famines and plagues in the 1580-1670 period, the populations of Stockport (308 households or 1400 people in 1664), Stockport area (3500) and Manchester (4000) had risen significantly. In the same period the population of Cheadle and Prestbury had tripled.

Many manorial halls were extensively altered or rebuilt during this period becoming rather decorative externally (eg Bramall Hall). Moreover, a number of  large houses/ halls were built by the wealthier freeholders, for example Stanley Hall (1662) in Stanley Green (bought by the Society of friends in 1786, extant),

Stanley Hall
Stanley Hall

and Cheadle Moseley Hall (1666) or Moseley Old Hall (restored 1926, extant) close to Cheadle Green (off Cuthbert Street).

Moseley Hall in 1894 (Moss)
Cheadle Moseley Hall

Even Brick buildings began to appear, Woodford New Hall (1630, extant), Adswood hall (1659), and Millington Hall (1683).

Millington Hall
Millington Hall

A number of farmhouses and yeoman houses were also constructed and some still survive. The Savages (lords of the manor) may have lived at the Brookside Farm area which lay just west of Wilmslow Road about a mile south of Cheadle village centre (until it was replaced by houses in the 1930s). Cheadle Savage Hall probably lay close to School's Hill. It was sold to William Fowden in 1762 for 32. Cheadle Bukeley Hall was near Cheadle parish church (close to Massie Street).

Legal systems were based around the manor courts (barons & leets), parishes and townships, and county justices. 'Poor laws' providing work and assistance for the unemployed and sick, and charitable donations from the wealthy helped form a community spirit. However, the Civil Wars of 1642, 1648, and 1649 embroiled the Stockport and Manchester areas with the taking of sides for King or Parliament. Notable local figures in the wars included Brereton (Handforth Hall), Humphrey Bulkeley (Cheadle Bulkeley), Siddall (Bramhall yeoman). Bramall Hall also featured in the local turbulence and troops often stayed there. In 1643 general taxation was introduced and a number of manors were sequestered (including Cheadle Moseley) or their owners fined because landlords had taken sides with the King.

Farms in and around Cheadle hulme

The last Moseley of the half-manor (she inherited in 1695) was Anne (married to Sir John Bland in 1695, who along with his son John squandered the estate). Lady Ann Bland who was responsible for the building of St Anne's church in Manchester died in 1734. The estate was then sold under an Act of Parliament in 1754 and purchased by John Davenport (brother of William - of Bramhall) who left it to the Bamfords upon his death in 1760. In 1806 the estate passed to Robert Hesketh (who became Robert Hesketh Bamford Hesketh), who died in 1894 and on to his (?grand-) daughter Winifred, Countess of Dundonald, and eventually it was reunited with Cheadle when the Civil Parish was formed in May 1877. An important site at this time was the Horse & Jockey Inn which later became replaced by the Hesketh Arms Hotel. Few major buildings were constructed in the area in this century, an exception being Cheadle Hall (1756) in Cheadle Bulkeley built by the rector and sold to John Harris in 1773. (By 1810, Cheadle manor was owned by John Worthington.)

The Hamlets
Rather than being centred around a parish church Cheadle Hulme at this time was based around a number of separate hamlets (Lane End [several cottages and three farms near to Millington Hall], Smithy Green, Gill Bent, Grove Lane, Hulme Hall [a manor house, Old Cottage and a market square]) with intervening common land and farm land.

Hamlets Comprising Cheadle Hulme

The farm lands included Orish Mere Farm, Hill Top Farm, and Hursthead Farm [described by Fletcher Moss as a very bleak and lonely place with no roads]. Indeed, Burdett's 1777 Cheshire map shows only 18 buildings (including The Pump) in Cheadle Hulme, mostly in the Swann Lane area. Stopford's 1800 map showed hardly any difference. However, land enclosures were now becoming the norm in the area (Hulme Common, where the war memorial is now, was enclosed in 1810) and fertilisers (lime, bone meal) were being used.

In addition to farming, cottage industry loom shops for silk-weaving were becoming important in the area, (silk-weavers comprising a large part of the population in 1826) and lasted into the next century.

Hand Loom Weaver

Small rows of brick cottages began to appear. Many locals travelled over 8 miles on foot to the Macclesfield silk factories to exchange their goods. John burrows was a manufacturer of check gingham in 1833 and calico in 1850. The big change - the railways was yet to come. However, the region was still described in 1890 as 'beautiful lonely country'. From the 1830s until1879 the area was governed locally by the Select Vestry, an ecclesiastical institution.

Continued below:-
Stockport -
population, cotton
Transport -
canals, roads, 1745
Religion & Society
population, cotton
Transport -
canals, roads, 1745
Religion & Society

book1.gif (323 bytes) See Arrowsmith 1997 book1.gif (323 bytes) See Squire 1994





1700-1840 continued (Related Areas & Topics)

Stockport's Growth

Transport 1

Religion & Society

Transport 2

Cheadle Hulme (4 miles Southwest of Stockport) became increasingly influenced by Stockport's continued growth industrially and expansion physically during this century. The Stockport population rose dramatically (1731 - 2250, 1754 - 3144, 1765 - 3713, 1779 - 5000) making it the 3rd largest town in Cheshire after Chester and Macclesfield, although still being dwarfed by neighbouring Manchester (1773 - 24,000). Although the town was based on silk and later cotton mills, surrounding areas were now beginning to supply produce and some of the workforce. However, even with over 100 shops (and over 30 inns!) in Stockport   by 1750 the Cheadle and Cheadle Hulme area had only one shop. By 1801 Stockport's population had risen to nearly 15,000 and by 1841 had doubled to nearly 30,000. However, by now another 20,000 people lived in the neighbouring villages.

As in Manchester, cotton- spinning factories based on machinery, including powerlooms,* dominated Stockport in the late 18th and early 19th centuries until hit by a depression around 1840 and stagnation of industry until the 1920s. Samuel Oldknow was particularly famous for muslin production in the township. In Cheadle two calico printworks are recorded along the Micker Brook and may have simply replaced the earlier cornmills.

Cheadle Village although the largest in the borough, largely escaped industrialisation and was frequently described as 'neat and pleasant', 'remarkable for the beauty of its situation', and 'in a respectable farming district' (1790-1823).

Although many rivers were made navigable or canalised during the 1700s including the Mersey, none were constructed within or affected the Cheadle Hulme area (despite a number of attempts to build one from Cheadle to Macclesfield via Poynton to shift coal for Sir George Warren !). Waterways Map

Turnpikes were instituted to provide local income for road upkeep encouraging the use of wheeled horsedrawn traffic.

Turnpike Roads (Click to enlarge)

Following the (1725) Manchester-Stockport-Bullock Smithy (now Hazel Grove) to Buxton road (now A6), an early approved road in the Cheadle area was from Manchester (Ardwick) to Wilmslow via Didsbury and Cheadle (1753). Stone bridges were constructed over the Mersey (Cheadle ford 1777) and Micker Brook at Cheadle and the road wound its way between the farms, up Schools Hill and on to Long Lane (now subsumed within Heald Green), Hurlbote Green, Handforth and Wilmslow - leaving Cheadle Hulme as a quiet backwater. Today this road is packed daily with congested traffic - the 'Cheadle Crawl' (estimated at 24,000 cars per day in 1974!). Road Map

In 1745 the Scottish forces of Bonnie Prince Charlie visited the area, crossing the Mersey at Cheadle ford, and revisited on the way back north later in the year. Many of the bridges had been torn down to halt their advance and had to be rebuilt.

Later Turnpike Acts (1820, 1824) produced a road from Stockport to Altrincham via Cheadle and a Stockport western bypass (Wellington Road A6) bringing more development to the western part of the borough.

Arrowsmith (1997), notes that local noncomformist groups or 'dissenters' (Quakers, Congregationalists, Presbyterians) were particularly strong in the Stockport area and met regularly in houses and barns, later erecting meeting houses and chapels during the 1700s. Anglican worship was in decline, despite fines imposed for absenteeism! The second half of the century also saw the rise of Methodism and towards the end of the century Catholicism rose due to Irish immigration, although the latter declined after the anti-Irish riots of 1852. An important aspect of the religious communities was the early provision of schooling.

A number of strikes, riots, and insurrections had taken place in the area during the period 1775-1829, the most famous ending in the Peterloo Massacre of 1819. During government reforms of the 1830s, Stockport became a parliamentary borough (1832) which included Cheadle Bulkeley and Cheadle Moseley, had a town council (1835), and introduced a number of measures to improve education* and housing which was particularly poor in the area. Police, courts and public services (refuse collection, gaslighting) were also introduced or extended and the upper class rulers were replaced by radicals. Eventually the town took over from manorial rule. Richard Cobden, a famous campaigner for reform, was MP for Stockport from 1841-1847. Eventually shorter working hours provided opportunity for leisure and amenities and parks thrived.

A number of earlier proposals (1820s) to link mineral resources and later general freight services to Stockport were abandoned until the successful introduction of the Manchester-Liverpool Railway in 1830. Stockport and the area then became a focus for a Manchester- Birmingham link culminating in the great Stockport Railway Viaduct of 1840 (26 arches and 11 million bricks!).

Railway Lines (Click to enlarge)

Thus began the growth of the suburbs. Railway Map

*Local riotous opposers to these technologies were known as the Luddites


*Higher Education comprised the Mechanics Institute (1825), the Stockport Institute for the Diffusion of Useful Knowledge (1834), and Robert Owen's Hall of Science / Lyceum (1841)