Prestbury, Cheshire

Prestbury is a village and civil parish in Cheshire, England. About 1.5 miles (3 km) north of Macclesfield, at the 2001 census, it had a population of 3,324,[1] increasing slightly to 3,471 at the 2011 Census.[2] Alongside fellow "Cheshire Golden Triangle" villages Wilmslow and Alderley Edge, it is one of the most sought after and expensive places to live outside London. The ecclesiastical parish is almost the same as the former Prestbury local government ward which consisted of the civil parishes of Prestbury, Adlington and Mottram St Andrew.[3]


Norman Chapel, Prestbury
Location within Cheshire
Population3,471 {2011}
OS grid referenceSJ904773
Civil parish
  • Prestbury
Unitary authority
Ceremonial county
Sovereign stateUnited Kingdom
Postcode districtSK10
Dialling code01625
AmbulanceNorth West
EU ParliamentNorth West England
UK Parliament


As Prestbury was initially settled by priests its name derives from Preôsta burh, which is sometimes thought to mean priests' town, but more correctly means a priests' fortified enclosure.

History and geography

Prestbury lies between Macclesfield and Wilmslow, for the most part on elevated ground above the flood-prone River Bollin. The ancient Forest of Macclesfield is to the east.

There is no evidence of a settlement before Saxon times, although a cemetery nearby which had been excavated in 1808 contained pottery cremation urns and signs of sacrifice and was presumably pre-Christian.

As a result of being initially settled by priests they chose an enclosure with a defensible location on the River Bollin where there was relatively high ground close to the river on both sides so that crossing was easy. From there they could travel to all parts of a parish which was extensive, though thinly populated, in part because the countryside was wild and barren and in part because the forest was reserved for hunting.

The parish

At the time of the Norman conquest, the parish consisted of thirty-five townships:

Prestbury township was not mentioned in the Domesday Book, perhaps because information was not supplied or because Prestbury was only a church, not a manor.

Twelve of the other townships are mentioned. Butley was valued at 2 shillings at the time of the Domesday Survey, compared with 30 shillings at the time of Edward the Confessor, Adlington and Macclesfield were both worth 20 shillings and Siddington 5 shillings. The other eight townships were valued "Waste".

The church administered the civil as well as ecclesiastical affairs of the parish until the Local Government Act 1894 created rural districts and civil parishes. Three of the townships, Butley, Fallibroome and Prestbury, constitute the present civil parish of Prestbury.


The school, smithies, the mill, inns and the stocks centre on a village street called "The Village", which is broad enough for cattle fairs and the like. Until the 19th century the village street was connected to Pearl Street, the main street of Butley, by a ford.

In about 1825, a bridge of two arches was built, linking the village street to a new road ("New Road") passing behind the cottages and the Admiral Rodney pub[4] on the southeast side of Pearl Street. In 1855 the bridge was replaced by the present bridge with one arch.[5]

During the 19th century Prestbury became an important center of the silk industry. The parish accounted for around a third of the total number of males employed in that branch of textile manufacturing in England and Wales in the early 19th century.[6] Swanwick's factory operated and cottages were built for the workers ("Factory Cottages" or "Irish Row"). Weavers' cottages were built on both New Road and the village[7] with upper storeys for weaving.

In the 20th century, improved communications made it possible for Prestbury to develop into a residential community.

Prestbury Mill[8] was destroyed by fire in 1940.

Conservation Area

The Conservation Area includes areas neighbouring the village street, the east side of Macclesfield Road as far south as the Methodist church,[9] and New Road as far north as Butley Cottage[10] and its garden.

Many of the buildings and structures in the Conservation Area are listed by English Heritage, four of them, The Bridge Hotel,[11] Priest's House,[12] Horner's[13] and Prestbury Hall[14] being regarded as "Focal Buildings". Other buildings are considered to be of townscape merit. Trees and even some hedges are important landscape features.

The Manor House[15] was shown as the vicarage on the 1831 map.

Brooks Cottages,[16] marked with a plaque reading "Rodger Brooks and Ellen his wife erected this house in the 24 years of his life Ano Dom 1686" are among the listed buildings on the Butley side of the Bollin.

Other areas

Smithy Cottage, built on the site of a former smithy, is just outside the conservation area.

Butley Hall[17] is shown on the 1831 map but is outside the conservation area, as are the Butley Ash Inn and Spittle House, which was probably built between 1300 and 1450 as a leper hospital.

New estates were built during the 20th century to accommodate commuters.

The defining characteristic of 21st century development has been the replacement of quite sizeable houses by large mansions, such as that built for Wayne Rooney.[18]

Adlington Hall[19] with strong connections with Prestbury is nearby.

Suburban development

Since the 1970s, there has been quite a lot of new build development in the village. Packsaddle Park is a good example of this. It is a suburban development built on the grounds of Packsaddle House. In addition to this, there has been a lot of redevelopment of existing houses in the village.


Prestbury is situated in Cheshire East, a unitary authority area with borough status in the ceremonial county of Cheshire. Prestbury falls within the UK parliament constituency of Macclesfield, a strongly Conservative constituency represented by David Rutley, who gained office in the 2010 United Kingdom general election. The area is also represented in the European Parliament, the directly elected parliamentary institution of the European Union, by being part of North West England (European Parliament constituency).


St Peter's Church[20] which is one of the oldest parish churches in the country and houses a Saxon cross in its churchyard.[21] The parish's memorial to the dead of the two world wars is in the west porch.

St John's, Adlington, a daughter church of St Peter's[22]

Prestbury Methodist Church[9]

Prestbury falls within the Catholic parish of St Gregory's, Bollington.


Prestbury Church of England Primary School[23]

Sporting facilities

Badminton club

Bowling club

Cricket club

Football clubs

Golf club[24]

Macclesfield Rugby Club[25]

Livery yard with indoor arena for hire

Squash rackets club

Tennis club[26]


Because of the lay of the land, the village is a natural traffic hub.[27]

The road from Macclesfield to Altrincham (A538) carries traffic between Macclesfield and Wilmslow through the centre of the village. The Macclesfield to Hazel Grove road (A523), built in 1810, goes through the parish in a north–south direction, passing to the east of the village.

Buses 19 and 19X, Prestbury to Macclesfield

Prestbury is served by the Manchester to Macclesfield to Stoke-on-Trent railway line. Prestbury railway station was opened on 24 November 1845 and refurbished in 1986. The south entrance arch to Prestbury Railway Tunnel is grade II listed.[28] The village centre is a few minutes walk from the railway station.

Notable people

Numerous stars of sport and entertainment have lived in Prestbury for various lengths of time, including:

1977 bank robbery

In February, 1977 the village made national headlines when two employees at the local branch of Williams & Glyn's Bank were murdered during a robbery. Whilst the sub-branch was closed for lunch 22-year-old senior cashier Ian Jebb was repeatedly stabbed and his assistant 19-year-old Susan Hockenhull kidnapped. As the branch was only manned by the two staff the alarm was only raised when customers were unable to enter the bank after the lunchtime closing period .[40] Miss Hockenhull was later discovered on moorland, where she had died from hypothermia.[41]

In October 1977 David Walsh, 30, who was employed as a contractor to service adding machines at the bank and who was known to the victims, was found guilty at Chester Crown Court of their murders and sentenced to life imprisonment. He also received 15 years' imprisonment for the robbery which netted £2,445.[42][43]

See also


  1. Official census figures Retrieval Date: 10 June 2007
  2. "Civil Parish population 2011". Neighbourhood Statistics. Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 15 March 2016.
  3. Ward Population Figures. Archived 27 September 2007 at the Wayback Machine Macclesfield Borough Website. Retrieval date: 20 August 2007
  4. English Heritage: Images of England, accessed 27 October 2007
  5. Prestbury Cheshire Website Archived 8 January 2008 at the Wayback Machine, accessed 20 October 2007
  6. Sugden, Keith (2016). "The Location of the Textile Industry in England and Wales, 1813–1820". Textile History. 47 (2): 219. doi:10.1080/00404969.2016.1211440.
  7. English Heritage: Images of England, accessed 25 October 2007
  8. Prestbury Cheshire Website Archived 29 June 2007 at the Wayback Machine, accessed 17 October 2007
  9. Prestbury Cheshire website Archived 29 June 2007 at the Wayback Machine, accessed 20 October 2007
  10. Prestbury Cheshire website Archived 28 November 2006 at the Wayback Machine, accessed 20 October 2007
  11. English Heritage: Images of England, accessed 25 October 2007
  12. English Heritage: Images of England, accessed 25 October 2007
  13. English Heritage: Images of England, accessed 25 October 2007
  14. English Heritage: Images of England, accessed 25 October 2007
  15. English Heritage: Images of England, accessed 25 October 2007
  16. English Heritage: Images of England, accessed 25 October 2007
  17. English Heritage: Images of England, accessed 4 October 2007
  18. The Independent, accessed 14 February 2008
  19. English Heritage: Images of England, accessed 5 October 2007
  20. English Heritage: Images of England, accessed 4 October 2007
  21. St. Peter's Church Official Website, accessed 20 August 2007
  22. Prestbury Cheshire website Archived 30 September 2011 at the Wayback Machine, accessed 29 May 2008
  23. School Portal, accessed 8 November 2007
  24. Prestbury Golf Club website, accessed 2 December 2007
  25. Macclesfield Rugby Club website, accessed 2 December 2007
  26. Prestbury Tennis Club website, accessed 2 December 2007
  27. Prestbury Cheshire website Archived 6 July 2009 at the Wayback Machine, accessed 29 June 2008
  28. English Heritage: Images of England, accessed 8 October 2007
  29. "Man Utd's Angel Di Maria house targeted by burglars". BBC News. 1 February 2015. Retrieved 2 February 2015.
  30. Noddy Holder
  31. Stan Pearson
  32. Wayne Rooney & Carlos Tevez
  34. Wes Brown
  35. Owen Hargreaves & Robbie Savage
  36. Andrew Flintoff
  37. "Flintoff sells to crouch: Cheshire pad built for cricketer sells to footballer". PrimeLocation.
  38. Mike Yarwood
  40. The Times, London, Saturday 26 February 1977, page 1
  41. The Times, London, Monday 28 February 1977, page 1,2
  42. The Times, London, 21 October 1977, page 1


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