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Help and advice for Whaley Bridge

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Whaley Bridge

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Archives and Libraries

The Whaley Bridge Library (The Mechanics Institute on Market Street) is normally closed on Wednesdays and Sundays, but they have a Local Studies and Family History section to help you in your search.



  • The parish was in the Rainow sub-district of the Ecclesfield Registration District in Cheshire until 1936.
  • After 1936, the parish was in the Chapel en le Frith sub-district of the Chapel en le Frith Registration District.

Church History

  • The original Anglican parish church was St. James in Taxal parish, about a mile away from Whaley town centre.
  • Holy Trinity Church in Fernilee opened in 1905.

Church Records

  • The web page author believes that the church was in the rural deanery of Buxton.
  • The Roman Catholic Church of the Sacred Heart serves the surrounding communities.

Civil Registration

  • Civil Registration began in July, 1837.
  • The parish was in the Rainow sub-district of the Ecclesfield Registration District in Cheshire until 1936.
  • After 1936, the parish was in the Chapel en le Frith sub-district of the Chapel en le Frith Registration District.

Description and Travel

The parish sits on the banks of the River Goyt 16 miles south of Manchester and 7 miles north of Buxton. There is hourly rail service to the village from Manchester. There is limited service to Buxton.

Visitors should check out the Whaley Bridge Town website.

Roger KIDD has a photograph of the Whaley Bridge station on Geo-graph, taken in September, 2014.

You can see pictures of Whaley Bridge which are provided by:





Ask for a calculation of the distance from Whaley Bridge to another place.

Click here for a list of nearby places.


Historical Geography

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



There are bronze age standing stones in the Whaley Bridge Area.

Neil THEASBY has a photograph of The Goyt Inn (the blue door) on Geo-graph, taken in June, 2015.

Al PARTINGTON has a photograph of the Navigation Inn on Geo-graph, taken in February, 2007.

Jon CANTRILL offers this list of names from the Coroner's report written up in The Manchester Guardian of Oct 21 1905, pg 14:

The Whaley Bridge Accident
Verdict of the Coroner’s Jury

  • Richard WALKER
  • Samuel Mosley WALKER
  • Harry WOOLLEY
  • John WALKER
  • Mr STOKES (inspector of mines for Derbyshire)

Toddbrook Reservoir stands behind Whaley Bridge Primary School in the village. Heavy rains in August, 2019, caused part of the face of the dam to collapse and 1,400 people were evacuated from the village until the dam could be declared safe.


Military History

The parish has a War Memorial cross standing on a stepped base.

Peter BARR has a photograph of the Old Drill Hall on New Horwich Road on Geo-graph, taken in March, 2014. In 1908 the building was the headquarters of ‘H’ company, 6th Battalion, of the Sherwood Foresters regiment.


Military Records

Visit the Roll of Honour website to see the names listed on the above War Memorial.


Names, Geographical

The name of Weyley or Weylegh appears in many 13th-century documents and is derived from the Anglo Saxon weg leah meaning a clearing by the road. The name "Whaley Bridge" was adopted when the first local government board was formed in 1863 and the area became an urban district.


Politics and Government

  • This place was an ancient Township in Cheshire and it was incorporated as a separate, modern Civil Parish in December, 1866.
  • This parish was in the ancient Macclesfield Hundred (or Wapentake).
  • The joint townships of Yeardsley and Whaley were transferred from Cheshire to Derbyshire in 1936.
  • In April of 1836, this parish was formed from 474 acres of Chapel en le Frith Civil Parish. Another 314 acres was taken from Disley Civil Parish and 860 acres from Fernilee Civil Parish. The parish also got 31 acres from Kettleshulme Civil Parish in Cheshire and 573 acres from the abolition of Taxal Civil Parish in Cheshire. 1,227 acres also came from the abolition of Yeardsley cum Whalley Civil Parish in Cheshire.
  • These actions in 1936 also placed the new parish firmly in Derbyshire. But researchers should be aware that some records they seek may be in Cheshire county.
  • You may contact the Whaley Bridge Town Council regarding civic or political matters, but they are NOT funded to provide family history searches for you.
  • District governance is provided by the High Peak Borough Council.

Poor Houses, Poor Law etc.

  • Bastardy cases would be heard in the Chapel-en-le-Frith petty session hearings once each month.
  • This parish was a member of the Macclesfield Poorlaw Union when the Civil Parish was formed in 1866.


Whaley Bridge Primary School provides education for local schoolchildren. For secondary education children travel further afield.