WINWICK WITH HULME
Winequic, 1170; Winewich, 1204; Wynewyc,
Wynequic, 1212; Wynequick, 1277. The suffix
-quick or -whick long survived.
Hulm, 1276; Holum, xiii cent.; Holm, 1279.
Winwick consists of open country, and is chiefly
celebrated for the beautiful parish church in the village, which stands slightly elevated above the surrounding country. There are many picturesque old houses,
some with thatched roofs. Some little distance north
of the town is St. Oswald's Well, a shallow depression
in a field, and easily overlooked on account of its in-significant appearance. There are still some fine
beech trees around the village, which are particularly
noticeable in a country where timber has dwindled to
apologies for trees. The outlying land is composed
of arable and pasture land. Crops of potatoes, oats,
and wheat flourish in the loamy soil, with clay in
places, over a solid sandstone rock. There is some
marshy mossland, bare of trees, on the south-west.
The geological formation consists wholly of the
Bunter series of the New Red Sandstone; to the
south-west of Winwick and south of Hulme of the
Upper Mottled Sandstone of that series, elsewhere of
the Pebble Beds.
This township, which has an area of 1,440 acres, (fn. 1)
lies on the east side of the Sankey; Newton Brook
bounds it on the north, while another small brook on
the south cuts it off from Orford and Warrington.
The southern end is called Hulme; there is no
defined boundary between it and Winwick proper.
The township was enlarged in 1894 by the addition
of Orford from Warrington; (fn. 2) and it has been
divided into three wards—Winwick, Hulme, and
Orford—for the election of its parish council.
The principal road leads north from Warrington
to Wigan; it is to the east of the old Roman road.
At the church it divides; one branch goes by Newton
and Ashton, and the other by Golborne and Ince, to
The London and North-Western Company's main
line to the north passes through the township, with a
junction for Earlestown near the northern boundary.
The Sankey Canal passes along the western boundary.
A great lunatic asylum has been erected by the
County Council on the lands of the former rectory.
Two encounters took place here in the Civil War;
in 1643 Colonel Assheton routed the Cavaliers (fn. 3) and in
1648 Cromwell overtook and defeated the Duke of
Hamilton and his Scottish force. (fn. 4) This battle took
place at Red Bank, near the border of Newton; and
Gallows Croft, on the Newton side, is said to mark
the place where many of the prisoners captured were
Winwick Wake ceased in 1828. (fn. 5)
The rector of WINWICK having
been from before the Conquest lord of the
manor and owner of almost all the land,
the story of the place is the story of the rectors above
related. The lords of Makerfield enumerated Winwick as a member of their fee, (fn. 6) but the only lay
owners appear to have been the Southworth family,
holding a little land directly of the lord of Makerfield. (fn. 7)
Under an Act of Parliament passed in 1884 the
Ecclesiastical Commissioners became lords of the
manor in 1890, and the hall was sold to the County
In 1086 the church of St. Oswald held two ploughlands exempt from all taxation, (fn. 8) and was given by
Roger of Poitou to the canons of St. Oswald,
Nostell. Under them in 1212 Richard, the rector of
Winwick, held two-thirds of the land, and Robert de
Walton the remainder. (fn. 9) Robert had granted out his
portion—three oxgangs—to Alfred de Ince and three
to Hugh de Haydock. (fn. 10) If Robert's interest were
merely temporary his grants would probably expire at
his death; but similar grants were made by the
rectors, and a few particulars of them have been preserved. All the land seems to have been recovered by
the rectors by the beginning of the 14th century. (fn. 11)
But few incidents are recorded of the township.
The lease of the rectory from time to time by
absentee parsons resulted in the hall being occupied
by the lessee or steward. One of these, Gowther
Legh, founded the grammar school. A later one, Sir
Thomas Stanley, son of Edward, Earl of Derby, made
the rectory his residence. His son, Sir Edward Stanley,
was in 1590 in 'some degree of conformity' to the
established religion, but 'in general note of evil affection' towards it. (fn. 12) From the beginning of the 17th
century the rectors seem to have been usually resident,
and as they had complete authority it is not to be
supposed that expressions of nonconformity were
numerous. (fn. 13) Their rule appears to have been mild
and readily acquiesced in by the people. (fn. 14)
John Launder paid to the subsidy of 1628 as holding lands. (fn. 15) Under the Commonwealth, Thomas
Goulden, member of a recusant family of long continuance in the district, petitioned to be admitted as
tenant of the sequestered two-thirds of his estate. (fn. 16)
Among the miscellaneous deeds preserved by Towneley is an agreement made in 1546 concerning Pagefield, lying between Winwick and Southworth. (fn. 17)