Poynton East: Heritage Assessment
A Study undertaken for Poynton Town Council In April-June 2013 by Prof. Emeritus. N. J. Higham BA, PhD, F.S.A.
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Extract from Bagshaw's Directory 1850
'POYNTON, township, chapelry, and compact village, situated 5 miles S.S.E. from Stockport, near the Macclesfield branch of the London and North Western Railway, in 1841, contained 152 houses, and 854 inhabitants. Population in 1801, 432 : in 1731, 747. The township comprises upwards of 2,400 acres of good land, and mostly well drained, but its subterranean wealth far exceeds that on the surface. Lord Vernon is the owner and lord of the manor.
The Poynton and Worth Coal Mines, the property of, and worked by the Right Hon. George Warren Lord Vernon, are numerous, and spread over a compass of two miles. The coal is of good quality, and the mines are very prolific, having seams of coal varying from 2 to 7 feet in thickness.
A railway about a mile in length, on a self acting incline, worked by a wire rope, conveys the coal to the Macclesfield branch railway, which is thence forwarded to Macclesfield and Stockport in very considerable quantities.
It is said that the mines were thus discovered :- "An old tenant of one of the farms was obliged to procure his water from a considerable distance, and frequently petitioned sir George Warren to sink a well for him; but his request not being attended to, he gave notice to quit the premises. This induced Sir George to pay more deference to the man's desire, and the well was begun. The spring lay at a great depth : but before they found the water, they discovered a large vein of superior coal."
The Chapel is a small stuccoed fabric, dedicated to St. Mary. There appears to have been a chapel here in 1312, at which period the Abbot of Chester granted to Nicholas de Eaton and Joan his wife, that he should find a chaplain in the chapel of Poynton for ever. The living is a perpetual curacy, returned at £85 in the gift of Lord Vernon, and enjoyed by the Rev. Robert Littler.
The Methodist Association have a spacious school, erected by subscriptions among the colliers, in 1846, in which divine service is performed. Lord Vernon gives £20 per annum towards the support of the school. The free school, a substantial building, a little east of the church, is supported by Lord Vernon.
Poynton Hall, 1/2 mile N.E. from the church, a handsome stuccoed mansion, situated in a beautiful park, ornamented with a fine sheet of water, is the seat of Samuel Christy Esq., M.P. Poynton Towers is a castellated residence, the seat of Isaac Hawden Esq.
Poynton Green is a hamlet 1/4 mile East from the church. Midway is a hamlet partly in Worth and partly in Poynton. Here is a railway station, and the Primitive Methodists have a Sunday School which is also used for a preaching room.
The poor of Poynton are entitled to yearly sum of 5s left by Roger Holland in 1604. They also participate in the benefit of Warren Bulkeley's charity noticed with Worth.'
Churches and Charities
The ancient Chapel of St, Mary formerly stood near the Hall. A new Church was erected in 1787 by Sir George Warren and was Rebuilt in 1859; the church is dedicated to St. George. It is an edifice of stone in the Early English style, from designs by Mr. Crowther, architect, of Manchester. The tower with spire was erected in 1885 by public subscription as a memorial to the late Lord Vernon. It contained a clock with chimes and 6 bells. In the chancel is a marble reredos presented in 1891 by Lady Vernon, with a carved panel, representing "the Lord's Supper". There is a memorial window to William Alfred Turner esq. who died in 1886.
There was a Baptist chapel erected in 1867, and a Primitive Methodist chapel, built in 1846. There was also a Methodist Free Church.
There was a Poynton with Worth news room near the church , a red brick building, erected by Lord Vernon, and contains a spacious reading room and a library of 4,000 volumes.
In the 1892 Kelly's directory, mention is made of Lady Warren Bulkeley's charity of £50 yearly as interest on about £1,889. This was applied to the general use of the poor of Poynton with Worth and to educational purposes.
In 1914 there was also a charity of about £5 annually called the "Merttens Funs" in the hands of the Parish Council. This fund provided a holiday for sickly and delicate poor children residing in the village.
Extract from Kelly's Directory 1892
' The Poynton with Worth collieries, belonging to and worked by Lord Vernon, extend over a large area: Lord Vernon is lord of the manor and sole landowner. The soil is clayey; subsoil gravel. The chief crops are wheat, oats and potatoes. The area is 2,966 acres; rateable value £14,324 ; the population in 1891 was 2,166. The National school was built in 1856 and since enlarged for 550 children. Average attendance, 156 boys, 145 girls and 117 infants.'
'Attached is an old postcard with a picture of Newtown Poynton. The postcard is from my grandfather's family who emigrated to the United States in 1915. It does not have a date on it, or price. It is most likely from the time period of 1913-1915. ' 'Our family worked in cotton mills and as general labourers around Stockport, prior to their emigration to the U.S.
It is possible that one or more of them worked for some period in the coal mines. In the information we have obtained thus far, none have lived in Poynton. Perhaps Connie's grandfather, my G-grandfather, worked on a short term basis there ( or one of his older sons ).'
Shawn Worsencroft (many thanks)
Photo taken April 2003