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Portal:Cheshire

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Welcome

Cheshire Plain

Cheshire shown within England

Cheshire is a ceremonial county in the North West of England. Chester is the county town, and formerly gave its name to the county. The largest town is Warrington, and other major towns include Congleton, Crewe, Ellesmere Port, Macclesfield, Northwich, Runcorn, Sandbach, Widnes, Wilmslow and Winsford. The county is administered as four unitary authorities.

Cheshire occupies a boulder clay plain (pictured) which separates the hills of North Wales from the Peak District of Derbyshire. The county covers an area of 2,343 km2 (905 sq mi), with a high point of 559 m (1,834 ft) elevation. The estimated population is a little over one million, 19th highest in England, with a population density of 449 people per km2.

The county was created in around 920, but the area has a long history of human occupation dating back to before the last Ice Age. Deva was a major Roman fort, and Cheshire played an important part in the Civil War. Predominantly rural, the county is historically famous for the production of Cheshire cheese, salt and silk. During the 19th century, towns in the north of the county were pioneers of the chemical industry, while Crewe became a major railway junction and engineering facility.

Selected article

Lovell Telescope at Jodrell Bank Observatory

The Jodrell Bank Observatory, near Goostrey and Holmes Chapel, is part of the Jodrell Bank Centre for Astrophysics at the University of Manchester. The main Lovell Telescope (pictured) was the largest steerable radio telescope in the world on its completion in 1957; it is now the third largest. The observatory's three other active radio telescopes are the Mark II and the 42 ft and 7 m diameter telescopes. Jodrell Bank is also the base of the Multi–Element Radio Linked Interferometer Network (MERLIN).

Established in 1945 by Sir Bernard Lovell to investigate cosmic rays, the observatory has played an important role in the research of meteors, quasars, pulsars, masers and gravitational lenses, and was also heavily involved with the tracking of space probes at the start of the Space Age. A popular tourist attraction, Jodrell Bank has also been mentioned in Doctor Who and The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy. In 2018, the observatory became the UK's candidate for UNESCO World Heritage site status.

Selected picture

White Nancy, near Bollington

White Nancy stands on The Saddle of Kerridge overlooking Kerridge and Bollington, whose logo it forms. The summer house or folly dates from 1817, and celebrates the British victory in the Battle of Waterloo. It is a prominent landmark on the Gritstone Trail.

Credit: Walter Menzies (11 August 2007)

Selected list

Elton Flashes

The 63 Sites of Special Scientific Interest in Cheshire cover a total area of 19,844 hectares (49,035 acres), and are protected by law for their biological, geological or geomorphological interest. Wetland is the type of SSSI best represented in the county, with a range of diverse habitats including mosses, raised bog, swamps, fens, meres and ponds. Flashes, such as Elton Flashes (pictured), originate in subsidence after salt extraction, and contain rare examples of inland salt marsh. Cheshire's largest SSSIs are the Mersey and Dee estuaries.

The higher ground at the foot of the Pennines has two extensive SSSIs containing heather moorland, grassland and blanket mire habitats. The lowland heath habitat is, however, very rare. Ancient woodland is sparse in the county, but is found on the slopes of the Mid Cheshire Ridge, in river valleys towards the north of the county, and around the Mersey Basin. Several sites, such as Rixton Clay Pits, are on former industrial land. The Triassic sandstones of the Mid Cheshire Ridge are exposed at the Raw Head geological site, and geological features are also exposed at railway cuttings.

In the news

17 July: After the driest June in the North West since 1976, United Utilities announces a hosepipe ban to start on 5 August.

3 July: A nurse is arrested in Chester as part of the investigation into a series of infant deaths at the Countess of Chester Hospital.

28 June: The University of Chester Academies Trust, which runs schools in Chester, Ellesmere Port, Northwich, Warrington and Weaverham, announces that it will close.

19–20 June: The Royal Cheshire County Show is held near Knutsford, and celebrates Cheshire Agricultural Society's 180th anniversary.

14 June: The Queen and the Duchess of Sussex open the Mersey Gateway from the Catalyst Science Discovery Centre in Widnes, and later the Storyhouse Theatre in Chester.

23 May: Three guided busways are proposed to connect Handforth with Stockport, Wilmslow with Didsbury, and both towns with Manchester Airport.

15 May: Footballer Jlloyd Samuel, player–manager of Egerton FC, dies in a car crash at High Legh.

Administration

Cheshire West and Chester Cheshire East Cheshire East Cheshire East Halton WarringtonCheshire unitary number.png
About this image

The ceremonial county of Cheshire is administered by four unitary authorities (click on the map for details):

1 – Cheshire West and Chester

2 – Cheshire East

3 – Warrington

4 – Halton

In the local government reorganisation of 1974, Cheshire gained an area formerly in Lancashire including Widnes and Warrington. The county lost Tintwistle to Derbyshire, part of the Wirral Peninsula to Merseyside, and a northern area including Stockport, Altrincham, Sale, Hyde, Dukinfield and Stalybridge to Greater Manchester.

Recommended articles

Places: Bradwall • Middlewich • Runcorn • Widnes

Sights: Adlington Hall • All Saints' Church, Runcorn • Beeston Castle • Capesthorne Hall • Chester Cathedral • Chester Rows • Cholmondeley Castle • Churche's Mansion • Crewe Hall • Darnhall Abbey • Eaton Hall • Gawsworth Old Hall • Halton Castle • Jodrell Bank Observatory • Little Moreton HallFeatured article • Lovell Telescope • Lyme Park • Norton PrioryFeatured article • Peckforton Castle • Rode Hall • St Mary's Church, Acton • St Mary's Church, Astbury • St Mary's Church, Nantwich • St Mary's Church, Nether Alderley • Tabley House

History: Battle of Brunanburh • Battle of Rowton Heath • Deva Victrix • Eddisbury hill fort • Lindow ManFeatured article • Maiden Castle

Geography & Transport: Bridgewater Canal • Chester Canal • Manchester Ship CanalFeatured article • Northern EnglandFeatured article • Peak District • River Weaver

People: Jonathan AgnewFeatured article • Ben Amos • Adrian BoultFeatured article • Thomas Brassey • Neil BrooksFeatured article • Sir John Brunner, 1st Baronet • James ChadwickFeatured article • Djibril Cissé • Daniel Craig • John DouglasFeatured article • Rowland Egerton-Warburton • Thomas Harrison • Reginald HeberFeatured article • Eddie Johnson • Margaret Ursula Jones • Levi Mackin • One Direction • Peter, Abbot of Vale Royal • Plegmund • Joseph PriestleyFeatured article • Mark Roberts • Nick Robinson • Edmund SharpeFeatured article • Robert Tatton • Alan Turing • William Windsor

Lists: CastlesFeatured article • Church restorations, amendments and furniture by John DouglasFeatured article • Grade I listed churchesFeatured article • Houses and associated buildings by John DouglasFeatured article • Listed buildings in Runcorn (rural area)Featured article • Listed buildings in Runcorn (urban area)Featured article • Listed buildings in WidnesFeatured article • New churches by John DouglasFeatured article • Non-ecclesiastical and non-residential works by John DouglasFeatured article

Selected biography

Joseph Priestley by Ellen Sharples (1794)

Joseph Priestley (13 March 1733 – 6 February 1804) was a theologian, Dissenting clergyman, natural philosopher, educator and political theorist. He is usually credited with the discovery of oxygen, which he dubbed "dephlogisticated air", having isolated it in its gaseous state. He also discovered several other gases, invented soda water and wrote on electricity.

He served as a minister in Nantwich (1758–61), and also established a school where he taught natural philosophy. It was here that he wrote the seminal work, The Rudiments of English Grammar. He was also a tutor at Warrington Academy (1761–67).

Priestley's metaphysical writings attempted to combine theism, materialism and determinism; these works are considered to be one of the main sources for utilitarianism. Besides Rudiments, his contributions to pedagogy include the invention of modern historiography. He advocated equal rights for religious Dissenters and helped to found Unitarianism in England.

Did you know...

Widows' Almshouses, Nantwich

In this month

Edward the Elder

July 1538: Dissolution of Combermere Abbey.

July 1804: Runcorn to Latchford Canal opened.

1 July 1869: Statue of Richard Grosvenor unveiled in Grosvenor Park.

4 July 1837: First trains crossed Dutton Viaduct.

4 July 1887: Queens Park, Crewe dedicated.

11 July 1910: Pulp author Hugh B. Cave born in Chester.

11 July 1978: Hybrid elephant Motty born at Chester Zoo.

14 July 1876: Chapel builder Thomas Hazlehurst born in Runcorn.

17 July 924: Edward the Elder (pictured) died at Farndon or Aldford.

17 July 1256: Edward, heir of Henry III and Lord of Chester, first visited Chester.

20 July 1376: Charter of disafforestation of Wirral issued.

20 July 1816: Histologist and ophthalmologist William Bowman born in Nantwich.

21 July 1961: Silver Jubilee Bridge officially opened by Princess Alexandra.

23 July 1403: Sir Richard Venables and Richard de Vernon executed for supporting Henry "Hotspur" Percy in the Battle of Shrewsbury.

27 July 1962: Olympic gold medallist swimmer Neil Brooks born in Crewe.

29 July 1940: Crewe hit by first Cheshire air raid of Second World War.

Quotation

We got to Chester about midnight on Tuesday; and here again I am in a state of much enjoyment ... Chester pleases my fancy more than any town I ever saw. I told a very pleasing young lady, niece to one of the Prebendaries, at whose house I saw her, "I have come to Chester, Madam, I cannot tell how; and far less can I tell how I am to get away from it."

From letter to Samuel Johnson by James Boswell (22 October 1779)

Newest articles

Categories

Topics

 Towns &  Districts CHESHIRE | PLACES | CIVIL PARISHES | Alsager | Bollington | Chester | Congleton | Crewe | Ellesmere Port | Frodsham | Knutsford | Lymm | Macclesfield | Middlewich | Nantwich | Neston | Northwich | Poynton | Runcorn | Sandbach | Warrington | Widnes | Wilmslow | Winsford | Wirral
 Geography &  Ecology GEOLOGY | Cheshire Plain | Geology of Alderley Edge | HILLS | Bickerton Hill | Peckforton Hills | Shining Tor | Shutlingsloe | Tegg's Nose | Windgather Rocks | RIVERS & LAKES | Lamaload Reservoir | River Bollin | River Dane | River Dean | River Dee | River Gowy | River Goyt | River Mersey | River Weaver | SITES OF SPECIAL SCIENTIFIC INTEREST | Cheshire Wildlife Trust | rECOrd | WOODLAND | Delamere Forest | Macclesfield Forest | Northwich Community Woodlands
 History HISTORY | TIMELINE | Ancient parishes | History of Chester | Deva Victrix | History of Middlewich | History of salt in Middlewich | History of Northwich | History of Sandbach | Forests of Mara and Mondrem | ARCHAEOLOGY | SCHEDULED MONUMENTS: Pre-1066 | 1066–1539 | Post-1539 | Bridestones | Chester Roman Amphitheatre | Eddisbury hill fort | Lindow Man | Maiden Castle | Sandbach Crosses | MILITARY HISTORY | Battle of Brunanburh | Battle of Chester | First Battle of Middlewich | Battle of Nantwich | Battle of Rowton Heath | Bunbury Agreement | Cheshire Regiment | RAF Burtonwood | RAF Hooton Park | RAF Ringway
 Sights PLACES OF INTEREST | CASTLES | Beeston Castle | Chester Castle | Cholmondeley Castle | Halton Castle | HISTORIC BUILDINGS | Adlington Hall | Arley Hall | Combermere Abbey | Dorfold Hall | Eaton Hall | Gawsworth Old Hall | Little Moreton Hall | Lyme Park | Norton Priory | Tatton Park | MUSEUMS & VISITOR ATTRACTIONS | Anderton Boat Lift | Anson Engine Museum | Blue Planet Aquarium | Catalyst Science Discovery Centre | Chester Zoo | Crewe Heritage Centre | Cuckooland Museum | Grosvenor Museum | Hack Green Secret Nuclear Bunker | Jodrell Bank Observatory | Lion Salt Works | National Waterways Museum | Quarry Bank Mill | Stretton Watermill | Weaver Hall Museum  | PUBLIC PARKS | Grosvenor Park | Marbury Park | Ness Botanic Gardens | Queens Park
 Architecture ARCHITECTURE | Norman architecture | LISTED BUILDINGS | Grade I listed churches | Non-ecclesiastical grade I listed buildings outside Chester | Chester | Congleton | Frodsham | Great Budworth | Knutsford | Lymm | Macclesfield | Nantwich | Runcorn | Sandbach | Warrington | Wilmslow
 Sport &  Recreation SPORTING TEAMS | Alsager Town F.C. | Chester F.C. | Chester City F.C. | Cheshire County Cricket Club | Cheshire Phoenix | Crewe Alexandra F.C. | Crewe Railroaders | Macclesfield Town F.C. | Nantwich Town F.C. | 1874 Northwich F.C. | Northwich Victoria F.C. | Runcorn Linnets F.C. | Vauxhall Motors F.C. | Warrington Town F.C. | Warrington Wolves | Widnes Vikings | Winsford United F.C. | Witton Albion F.C. | SPORTING VENUES | Chester Racecourse | Oulton Park | County Cricket Club grounds | RECREATION | Scouting | Walks
 Economy ECONOMY | Cheshire cheese | Cheshire Show | Crewe Railway Works | Salt | Silk | Textile mills 
 Transport BUSES | Arriva | CANALS | Cheshire Ring | Bridgewater Canal | Ellesmere Canal | Llangollen Canal | Macclesfield Canal | Manchester Ship Canal | Shropshire Union Canal | RAIL | Birkenhead Railway | Chester–Manchester Line | Crewe railway station | Crewe–Derby Line | Crewe–Manchester Line | Ellesmere Port–Warrington Line | Mid-Cheshire Line | Welsh Marches Line | ROADS | A34 | A41 | A49 | A50 | A56 | A500 | A537 | A556 | M6 | M53 | M56
 Governance  UNITARY AUTHORITIES | Cheshire East | Cheshire West and Chester | Halton | Warrington | PARLIAMENTARY CONSTITUENCIES | EUROPEAN PARLIAMENT
 Education, Health &  Services SCHOOLS | UNIVERSITIES | Manchester Metropolitan University | University of Chester | HEALTH | Countess of Chester Hospital | Leighton Hospital | SERVICES | Fire and Rescue | Police | United Utilities
 Culture &  Media LITERATURE | Cheshire Cat | Cheshire dialect | THEATRE | The Brindley | Lyceum Theatre | NEWSPAPERS | Chester Chronicle | Crewe Chronicle | RADIO | BBC Radio Manchester | BBC Radio Merseyside | BBC Radio Stoke
 Religion RELIGION | CHURCHES | Bishop of Chester | Chester Cathedral | Diocese of Chester | Roman Catholic Diocese of Shrewsbury

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