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Newton in Makerfield

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NEWTON-IN-MACKERFIELD, a town, a parish, and a sub-district, in Warrington district, Lancashire. The town stands adjacent to the Liverpool and Manchester railway, in the neighbourhood of the junctions northward to Wigan and southward to Warrington, 1½ mile E N E of the magnificent railway viaduct over the Sankey valley, 5½ N by W of Warrington, and about midway between Liverpool and Manchester. It is some-times called Newton-le-Willows, or Newton-in-the-Willows; it is a borough by prescription; it sent two members to parliament from the time of Elizabeth till the passing of the reform act in 1832, and was then disfranchised; it was the scene of a defeat of the Highlanders in 1648, by a part of Cromwell's forces; it is near the spot where Huskisson was killed in 1830, at the opening of the Liverpool and Manchester railway ; it is a polling-place, and the place of election, for the S division of Lancashire; and it has a head post-office, designated Newton-le-Willows, a railway station with telegraph designated Newton, several inns, a constabulary station, two churches, an Independent chapel, a Roman Catholic chapel, a mechanics' institute, national schools, and charities £77. The parish church, or church of Emmanuel, is a recent stone edifice; and consists of nave, chancel, and porch, with tower and spire. St. Peter's church was recently rebuilt; and serves for a section which was made a separate charge in 1845, and had a pop. of 2,122 in 1861. The Roman Catholic chapel was built in 1865, after designs by Mr. G. Blount, at a cost of £4,000; and is in the decorated English style. The national schools were built in 1860, at a cost of more than £2,000; are in the early decorated English style; consist of centre and wings; and have a bell-turret. A weekly market was formerly held, but has fallen into disuse; fairs, chiefly forhorses, cattle, sheep, and pigs, are held on 17 May and 12 Aug; and there are an extensive foundry, a large sugar refinery, a paper mill, a printing establishment, and extensive railway waggon-works of the Northwestern company. The parish and the town are regarded as co-extensive; but the new large village of Earlestown, adjacent. to the Warrington junction, is included. Acres, 2,692. Real property, £17,061; of which £1,126 are in iron-works. Pop. in 1851, 3,719; in 1861, 5,909. Houses, 1,048. The increase of pop. arose mainly from the extension of trade. The manor belonged to Edward the Confessor; passed to the Langtons and others; and belongs now to W. J. Legh, Esq. The head living is a rectory, and that of St. Peter is a vicarage, in the diocese of Chester. Value of the rectory, £240; of the vicarage, £114. Patron of the former, the Earl of Derby; of the latter, W. J. Legh, Esq. The sub-district contains also the township of Haydock, and comprises 5,054 acres. Pop. in 1851, 5,713; in 1861, 9,524. Houses, 1,649.

John Marius Wilson, Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales (1870-72)


Archives and Libraries

Some records are held at Newton Library, but not much...they also have a large selections of newspapers there too. The rest of local records are split between St.Helens and Wigan Archives.


Civil Registration

The Register Offices covering the Newton in Makerfield area are St.Helens and Warrington.


Description and Travel

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1868 - The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland

  • "NEWTON-IN-MACKERFIELD, a parochial chapelry and township in the parish of Winwick, hundred of West Derby, county Lancaster, 5½ miles from Warrington, 47 S. by E. of Lancaster, and 192 N. by W. of London. It is a station on the Liverpool and Manchester section of the London and North-Western railway, which here forms a junction with the Grand Junction, Wigan, and Bolton lines. In the Saxon times the manor belonged to Edward the Confessor, and after the Conquest was given to the Langtons. In the civil war of Charles I. a party of Highlanders were defeated here in 1648 by Cromwell's troops, and hanged in an adjoining field still called Gallows Cross. The township, which is extensive, is situated on the turnpike road between Warrington and Wigan, and near the Sankey viaduct of the Liverpool and Manchester railway. It was formerly a market town and the head of a barony, and returned two members to parliament from the first year of Elizabeth until disfranchised by the Reform Act. It is now an election and polling town for the southern division of the county. The petty sessions are held monthly at the Legh Arms. Meetings are also held by the Newton Improvement Commissioners every three months. Courts leet and baron are held twice yearly, under William John Legh, Esq., who is lord of the manor. The town consists principally of one broad street. There are an ancient timbered court-house, market cross, assembly rooms, savings-bank, mechanics' institute, race-stand, and good hotel adjoining the Liverpool and Manchester railway station; also an extensive foundry, zinc and glass works, a printing-office, and sugar refinery. The London and North-Western Railway Company have extensive premises for making trucks, railway carriages, &c., giving employment to a large number of hands. The living is a rectory in the diocese of Chester, value £240. The church, dedicated to Emmanuel, is a newly erected stone edifice, with a spired tower containing one bell. There is also the district church of St. Peter, the living of which is a perpetual curacy, value £114. It is a stone structure, and has recently been rebuilt. The burial-ground has recently been increased in extent, and enclosed with a stone wall. The parochial- charities produce about £77 per annum.

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Historical Geography

In 1835 Newton in Makerfield was a township in the parish of Winwick.

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


Probate Records

For probate purposes prior to 1858, Newton in Makerfield was in the Archdeaconry of Chester, in the Diocese of Chester. The original Lancashire wills for the Archdeaconry of Chester are held at the Lancashire Record Office.


You can also see Family History Societies covering the nearby area, plotted on a map. This facility is being developed, and is awaiting societies to enter information about the places they cover.