Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
This article is about the English county. For other uses see Cheshire (disambiguation)
|Status:||Ceremonial & (smaller) Administrative County|
|Region:||North West England|
- Admin. council
- Admin. area
- Total (2002 est.)
- Admin. council
- Admin. pop.
421 / km²
Cheshire County Council
|Members of Parliament|
|Gwyneth Dunwoody, Mike Hall, Helen Jones, Andrew Miller, Stephen O'Brien, George Osborne, Christine Russell, Helen Southworth, Derek Twigg, Ann Winterton, Nicholas Winterton|
Cheshire (or archaically the County of Chester) is a palatine county in North West England. Its county town is the city of Chester. It borders the ceremonial counties of Merseyside, Greater Manchester, Derbyshire, Staffordshire (with Stoke-on-Trent), and Shropshire. It also borders the current unitary authorities of Flintshire and Wrexham in Wales
- Main article: History of Cheshire.
Cheshire in the Domesday Book was recorded as a much larger county than it is today. Its northern border was the River Ribble, and it was recorded with eighteen hundreds, six of which were north of the River Mersey.
In 1182 the land north of the Mersey became administered as part of the new county of Lancashire instead. Later, the hundreds of Atiscross and Exestan became part of Wales. Over the years the ten hundreds consolidated to just seven — Broxton , Bucklow , Eddisbury , Macclesfield , Nantwich , Northwich , and Wirral.
In a local government reform in 1974, some areas near the border with Lancashire became part of the new counties of Greater Manchester and Merseyside, notably Stockport, and the Wirral area around Birkenhead. Also at this time, Cheshire regained Warrington and the surrounding district from Lancshire.
Halton and Warrington became unitary authorities independent of Cheshire on April 1, 1998, but remain part of the county for ceremonial purposes, as well as fire and policing. A referendum for a further local government reform connected with a regional assembly was planned for 2004, but was abandoned, see Northern England referendum, 2004.
Cheshire covers a boulder clay plain separating the hills of North Wales and the Peak District of Derbyshire. This was formed following the retreat of ice age glaciers which left the area dotted with kettle holes, locally referred to as meres. The bedrock of this region is almost entirely Triassic sandstone, outcrops of which have long been quarried, notably at Runcorn, providing the distinctive red stone for Liverpool Cathedral and Chester Cathedral. The eastern half of the county is Upper Triassic Mercia mudstone laid down with large salt deposits which were mined for for hundreds of years around Northwich. Separating this area from Lower Triassic Sherwood sandstone to the west is a prominent Sandstone Ridge. A 51km footpath follows this ridge from Frodsham to Whitchurch passing Delamere Forest , Beeston Castle and earlier iron age forts.
Cheshire is a mainly rural county with a high concentration of villages. Most of the industry is in the North adjacent to the Mersey, notably the center of the British Chemical Industry including ICI at Runcorn (originally sited here because of the proximity of salt mines). Crewe was once the center of the British railway industry and remains a major junction. Towns in the east of Cheshire form Manchester's most affluent commuter belt with some of the UK's highest property prices outside the Home Counties. Cheshire is rich in canals, particularly the east of the county with its strategic importance between Manchester, Stoke and Birmingham. The Rochdale, Ashton, Peak Forest, Macclesfield, Trent and Mersey and Bridgewater canals have been restored for tourism, forming the "Cheshire Ring".
- Gerald Grosvenor, 6th Duke of Westminster, one of the UK's wealthiest residents lives at Eaton Hall near Chester.
- Lewis Carroll was born and raised here, hence the Cheshire cat.
- Writer Alan Garner
- Victorian novelist Elizabeth Gaskell was brought up in the town of Knutsford, which she depicted in her book, Cranford.
- the singer Tim Burgess from the Charlatans.
- Emma Hamilton (Lady Hamilton) was born in the county.
This is a list of the major towns and cities in Cheshire, for a full list of settlements see list of places in Cheshire.
- Acton , Alderley Edge, Alsager, Aldford, Astbury , Audlem
- Barnton , Beeston, Bickerton , Bollington, Bucklow Hill , Bunbury, Burton (Willaston) , Burton (Taporley)
- Chester, Chelford Congleton, Crewe, Cheadle
- Elworth , Ellesmere Port
- Farndon, Frodsham
- Gawsworth, Great Budworth
- Hale, Haslington , Handforth , Helsby
- Kelsall, Kerridge , Knutsford
- Langley, Ledsham , Lower Peover
- Macclesfield, Malpas , Marston, Middlewich, Mobberley
- Nantwich, Neston, Northwich
- Ollerton, Parkgate, Peckforton , Poynton, Prestbury,Runcorn
- Sandbach, Siddington , Stretton , Styal, Swettenham
- Tarporley , Tarvin , Tattenhall, Timbersbrook
- Warburton , Warrington,Warmingham , Weaverham , Willaston , Wilmslow, Widnes, Winsford, Wybunbury
Places of interest
(in alphabetical order)
- Adlington Hall
- Anderton Boat Lift
- Arley Hall
- Beeston Castle
- Biddulph Valley Way , a long distance footpath
- Capesthorne Hall
- Cholmondley Castle
- Dunham Massey
- Ellesmere Port Boat Museum
- Elton Hall , Aldford
- Gawsworth Hall
- Holt Castle
- Jodrell Bank Science Centre
- Lyme Hall, Lyme Park, one of the locations for BBC's Pride and Prejudice
- Lion Salt Works , Marston, an industrial museum
- Little Moreton Hall
- Macclesfield Forest
- Moss Hall , Audlem
- Ness Botanic Gardens
- Peckforton Castle
- Peover Hall
- River Weaver, River Dee, River Dane, River Bollin, River Goyt
- Quarry Bank Mill, Styal, an industrial museum
- Sandbach Crosses
- Shropshire Union Canal
- Tabley House
- Tatton Hall , Tatton Park
- Tegg's Nose Country Park
- Trent and Mersey Canal
- Watermills: Bunbury Mill , Nether Alderley Mill , Quarry Bank Mill
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