"BOWDON, a parish in the hundred of BUCKLOW, county palatine of CHESTER, comprising the market-town of Altrincham, the chapelry of Carrington, and the townships of Agden, Ashley, Baguley, Bollington, Bowdon, Dunham-Massey, Hale, Partington, and Timperley, and containing 7442 inhabitants, of which number, 433 are in the township of Bowdon, 1 mile (S. W. by S.) from Altrincham. The living is a vicarage, in the archdeaconry and diocese of Chester, rated in the kings books at £24, and in the patronage of the Bishop or Chester. The church, dedicated to St. Nicholas, is an ancient structure on an elevated site, the churchyard commanding an extensive and pleasing panoramic view or the surrounding country; it was annexed to the See of Chester, by Henry VIII., on the dissolution, of Birkenhead priory, to which it had been given by Hamon de Massey, the fifth of that name: the rectorial tithes are leased by the bishop to the Earl of Stamford and Warrington, who, as lord of the ancient barony of Dunham-Massey, appoints four churchwardens for the parish. Mr. Edward Vawdrey, about the year 1600, gave £4 per annum toward the endowment of a grammar school: the school-room was rebuilt at the expense of the parishioners, about 1670, and again in 1806, with a convenient house for the master. A charity school has also been built, and is supported by subscription. The Earl of Warrington, in 1754, gave £168. 6. for educating and apprenticing children, and for the relief of the poor. There is also a school for boys at Scamons Moss, and another for boys and girls at Littleheath, founded and endowed by the late Mr. Thomas Walton. A Roman road passed through the parish." [From Samuel Lewis A Topographical Dictionary of England  (1831) ©Mel Lockie]

  • Bowdon, also a township in Bowdon ancient parish, Bucklow hundred (SJ 7586), became a civil parish in 1866.
  • Since 1974 it has been an unparished area in the county of Greater Manchester.
  • It includes the hamlet of Rosehill.
  • The population was 340 in 1801, 1164 in 1851, 2788 in 1901, 3529 in 1951, and 6079 in 2001.

Civil Registration

  • Altrincham (1837-98)
  • Bucklow (1898-1974)
  • Trafford (1974+)

Court Records

  • Bucklow (1828-74)
  • Altrincham (1874-1974)
  • Trafford (1974+)

Description & Travel

You can see pictures of Bowdon which are provided by:



The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland - 1868

"BOWDON, a parish in the hundred of Bucklow, in the county palatine of Chester, 8 miles to the S.W. of Manchester. It is a station on the Manchester, South Junction, and Altrincham railway. The parish, which lies on the border of Lancashire, on the south bank of the river Mersey, where the Bollin falls into it is of great extent, and comprises the market town of Altrincham, the chapelries of Carrington, St. Margaret's, Dunham-Massey, St. George's Altrincham, Ringway, and Timperley, and the townships of Agden, Ashley, Baguley Bollington, Hale, and Partington. Part of Agden and of Bollington are in the parish of Rostherne. The Bridgwater canal passes through the parish Since the opening of the railway, many good residences have been erected in the vicinity, which are occupied by Manchester merchants and manufacturers. The living is a vicarage* in the diocese of Chester, of the value of £600, in the patronage of the bishop. The church, which is dedicated to St. Mary, and formerly belonged to the Priory of Birkenhead, has been rebuilt and enlarged at great expense in 1860; the present church being the fifth which has occupied the same site. It is in the perpendicular style, with a mixture of the Tudor in the aisles and clerestory. The glass is stained through out, and there are several fine subject windows. The building is entirely lined with stone; and upon the whole it is one of the most beautiful and imposing of modern parish churches. It was annexed to the see of Chester at the Dissolution. It stands on high ground, and commands from the tower an extensive prospect over the surrounding level country. In the church are many handsome monuments of the Booth family, and among them one to the first Lord Delamere, who espoused the cause of Charles II. and took arms for him, but was defeated by the parliamentary forces under Lambert. Here is also a monument by Westmacott to Thomas Assheton, who died in 1759.


Historical Geography

Places associated with Bowdon ancient parish with separate pages


  • 1883 March 25 — Gained a detached of Bollington (near Lymm) (less than 1 acre, pop. 0 in 1891)
  • 1894 — Lost the former detached part of Bollington (near Lymm) (less than 1 acre, pop. 0 in 1891), which became a separate unnamed parish in Altrincham Rural District under the provisions of the Local Government Act, 1894
  • 1936 April 1 — Regained the whole of the unnamed parish which until 1883 formed part of Bollington (near Lymm) and gained further parts of Bollington (near Lymm) (2 acres, pop. 0 in 1931) and Dunham Massey (240 acres, pop. 85 in 1931), and lost parts to Altrincham (2 acres, pop. 29 in 1931) and Hale (near Altrincham) (less than 1 acre, pop. 0 in 1931)

You can see the administrative areas in which Bowdon has been placed at times in the past. Select one to see a link to a map of that particular area.



You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SJ763882 (Lat/Lon: 53.389703, -2.357426), Bowdon which are provided by:


Politics & Government

  • Bowdon Local Board (1864-75)
  • Bowdon Urban Sanitary District (1875-94) *
  • Bowdon Urban District (1894-1974)
  • Trafford Metropolitan Borough [Greater Manchester] (1974+)

* The former detached part of Bollington (near Lymm) which was transferred to Bowdon in 1883 remained in Altrincham Rural Sanitary District until it became a separate parish under the provisions of the Local Government Act, 1894.


Poor Houses, Poor Law

  • Altrincham (1837-95)
  • Bucklow (1895-1930)

Voting Registers

  • North Cheshire (1832-67)
  • Mid Cheshire (1868-85)
  • Altrincham (1885-1945)
  • Bucklow (1945-48)
  • Knutsford (1949-74)