I LOVE the History of Cheadle Hulme
Traditionally a hamlet of Cheadle, Cheshire, and once part of the Cheadle and Gatley UDC, Cheadle Hulme is now included in the furthest-west part of Stockport Borough, and is now often referred to as part of Manchester. It sits along the Lady Brook valley (sometimes also known as the Micker Brook) which also runs through Bramhall and Cheadle, and eventually joins the River Mersey.
Evidence of Bronze Age, Roman, and Anglo-Saxon life has been discovered around Cheadle and Cheadle Hulme and the area was mentioned in the 1086 Domesday Book – indeed, a stone cross dedicated to the Anglo-Saxon St Chad was discovered in 1873, in an area then known as Chad Hill, near where the Lady Brook meets the Mersey.
Originally owned by the Earl of Chester, the whole area then known as Chedle was acquired by the de Chedle family (taking their name from the land they now owned) before in the early 14th century being split into the areas that would eventually become Cheadle Hulme and Cheadle, and the open farmland began to be transformed into cultivated farmland before being bought by the Moseley family in the 17th century. Thereafter it was owned by John Davenport, who left it to the Bamfords, after which the estate passed to a Robert Hesketh, from whose family the Hesketh Tavern got its name.
The March of Progress
The lack of great industry, or major rivers, kept Cheadle Hulme predominantly rural for many years until railways and then roads from around 1840 to the present day brought an increased population which produced a rural village community, which then simply grew and grew as more people wanted to live outside of the busy towns of Manchester and Stockport. The locale began to become more suburban with a 40% population increase from the 1930s onwards, as Hill Top farm was replaced with housing along with Gill Bent and Higher Bent Farm (now the Woking Road and Pingate Lane areas), and many more houses were built along Hulme Hall Road and Cheadle Road. The Elysian cinema opened in the 1930s, before closing and being replaced by a supermarket in the 1970s. George Bryant now occupies the still cinema-shaped and proportioned building, after a few years in the 1990s as a smart shopping Mall, complete with shoe shop and celebration cake maker. Around the same time, a library was opened – and still stands – on Mellor Road, and the Kings Hall dance hall also opened its doors. The Kings Hall eventually became the River Fortune, a popular Chinese restaurant until 1995, when JD Wetherspoon opened a pub, also called the Kings Hall.
The ever-popular Ramillies and Hurst Head Estates were built on farm land between the 1960s and very early 70s, and new schools created for the burgeoning population. Lane End was named after the Four Lane Ends Farm and Hursthead actually occupies the site of the original Hursthead farmhouse. Shops and businesses then grew up, certainly from the 1960s onwards around the demand of the population. Station Road was widened and straightened in the late 1960s, to pass directly in front of Millington Hall – the ‘loop’ behind Majestic Wine and Tesco Express was the original road. This wider road – along with the lowering of the road under the railway bridges to accommodate larger vehicles – quite literally paved the way for office block developments and increased traffic.
Still a Village Feel
However, Cheadle Hulme is so much more than just another commuter-belt town. There is still a definite community spirit and pride in the area, which shows in the success and reputation of local schools and the ever-growing value and sought-after nature of the houses. So much of our heritage can still be seen – Hulme Hall, Millington Hall, Cheadle Hulme School, Higham Street (the only street in Cheadle Hulme), the Hesketh and countless beautiful big old houses on Hulme Hall Road, Hilltop Avenue, Swann Lane, Park Gates Drive and such, as well as the long established businesses, many of which have been an integral part of the village since the early twentieth century – Pimlott’s butchers, Waterhouse’s grocery, Butterworth’s bakery, Snapes’ hardware shop (originally on Station Road’s corner with Warren Road, complete with petrol pumps outside).
Where else could you be in incredibly easy reach of major towns and cities by road, rail or air, and yet still in such close proximity to unspoilt countryside and wildlife such as kingfishers and badgers? You can take a walk under the almost-iconic Seven Arches, from which stretches out the still mainly unspoilt Ladybrook Valley, along which you can get to Cheadle or Bramhall Park and beyond, through Happy Valley as far as Lyme Park, only ever meeting roads to cross them.
There is far more history than can be gone into here, but we will continue to add more details along with photographs and maps…