Starting with Red Lion, which is the oldest pub in Winsford, being built in 1763.

But by 1887, the building was suffering from the effects of subsidence and was demolished.

The present one was then built in its place. Once the only pub in Winsford, as those on its left, when looking at it, were in Over and those on its right and in front were in Wharton.

That is until the three villages were amalgamated to become Winsford in 1894.

The George and Dragon pub in Delamere Street was built around 1810 and became the administrative centre of Over.

It was built with a large room upstairs to house civic ceremonies such as the court for the Lord of the Manor.

Winsford Guardian: The Red LionThe Red Lion

Lord Delamere held this title for much of the time and was the pub owner until 1882.

Before 1894 the Mayor of Over was also a justice of the peace, and minor felons were locked in the cellar.

That is until the Over Cross lock up in the form of the stone cross opposite was erected.

This cross is not where the devil carried off St Chad’s church; neither does it have secret passageways or any other strange historical inaccuracies.

Nearby, Saxon Crossway was named after it but only after some poor research by council officials! It was built in 1840 with a door in the back and contained a chamber used to hold those awaiting justice at court or to sober up.

Dawk House, Swanlow Lane is still reputed to be one of the oldest buildings in Winsford, although it was in Over for most of its life.

Winsford Guardian: The George and DragonThe George and Dragon

It was originally three cottages, and the age is dated on an exposed timber beam which reads R H E 1711, being the date of building.

It is timber-framed with rendered brickwork.

St Chad’s church dates from 1307 and was the principal Winsford parish church until later joined by St John’s at Over and Christ Church at Wharton.

It was rebuilt in 1543 by Hugh Starkey of Oulton, a gentleman usher to King Henry VIII. His brass tomb is in the church.

For many years the Blue Bell pub was next to the church; that was the name given to it by locals; its correct name was The Bell.

The pub was owned by Miss Cholmondeley, who bequeathed it to the Ecclesiastical Commissioners in 1900.

Winsford Guardian: Knights Grange before it became a pubKnights Grange before it became a pub

It was later bought by Smiths and Gore brewery and was forced to close in 1923. During the 1960s, it burnt down but was rebuilt to the same design.

The monastic communities of old were owners of land and were quite wealthy.

They set up a system of Granges to provide food and other material for consumption within the monasteries. One of the biggest monasteries in Europe was situated in Mid Cheshire, the Vale Royal Abbey at Whitegate, and it had several granges.

It was Cistercian, and this was the sect that started using the name. In some cases, the landed gentry would use the term.

They were usually farms, and the oldest of them in Mid Cheshire was Marton Grange; as well as agricultural land, it had three ponds to provide fish for the monks.

We will look at Marton Grange in a later Yesteryears. Two of the Over/Winsford Grange’s features below.

Winsford Guardian: Littler GrangeLittler Grange

Knights Grange farm, once belonging to the monks of Vale Royal Abbey, is an ancient building dating from the 16th century and has been a pub since 1971.

Before that, its lands were purchased to build the Grange Estate. A one-time owner was Hugh Starkey, already mentioned as the man who rebuilt St Chad’s church and lived at Oulton Hall.

Littler Grange in Littler Lane dates from the late 16th century; originally, it was a farm, later owned by the Winsford Urban District Council. It is now a Day Nursery.

More to come in this short series looking at notable local buildings.

Winsford Guardian: St Chad's ChurchSt Chad's Church