Maghull (/məˈɡʌl/ mə-GUL) is a town and civil parish in Sefton,
Merseyside. Historically in Lancashire, the town is north of Liverpool
and south of
Ormskirk in West Lancashire. The area also contains HM
Prison Kennet and Ashworth Hospital.
Maghull had a population of 20,444 at the 2011 Census. Housing in
the town is almost entirely a 20th-century settlement of semi-detached
and detached housing although remains of the original town do exist.
The town has had an elected council since the Local Government Act
1894 when the government set up a network of local governance across
England. Following the Local Government Act 1974, the council changed
its name from a parish to a town council.
10 Notable people
11 See also
13 External links
The original settlement, consisting of fifty people and six square
miles of agricultural settlement, was established prior to the
Domesday Survey of 1086 where the town is recorded as Magele on a
ridge of high ground, that can be most clearly seen at Red Lion Bridge
towards the centre of the town and the Leeds and
follows it on the plain and the
A5147 on the brow. This ridge marks
the edge of the flood plain of the River Alt, providing protection
from flooding and access to this fertile pasture of the plain.
Maghull may have been derived from the Celtic word "magos",
Old Irish "Magh" and the Old English "halh", meaning "flat land in
a bend of the river". Another theorised origin is Anglo-Saxon
mægðehalh = "nook of land where mayweed grows". A church is known to
have existed in the area in 1100 although it has been rebuilt at least
once and the chapel still stands, in the churchyard of the Victorian
St Andrew's and is the oldest ecclesiastical building in Merseyside
still in regular use for worship but in 1756 the mediaeval nave of
Maghull Chapel was pulled down with a
Roman Catholic dual-purpose
school-chapel opening in 1890 near Massey's Barn.
It is noted that in 1568
Maghull Moss was divided between Sir Richard
Molyneux of Melling and Edward Hulme of Maghull. The boundary of
Maghull was, in the north,
Maghull Brook and to the south, Melling
Brook; the west was marked by the River Alt. At the eastern edge,
however, the boundary was ill-defined on the moorland and due to the
value of turf from the moss as a vital fuel this caused regular
disputes between both
Maghull and Melling Manors.
Maghull Manor House
was built in 1638 and local tradition has it that Charles II slept
there during a visit to the area but by 1780 a new manor house had
been built near the site of the original and it still stands in the
Maghull Homes with part of the original moat.
It is also recorded that by 1667 the population of
increased to 599 with 136 houses and 127 families and by 1770 initial
work had begun on the Leeds and
Liverpool Canal with the first sod
being cut by the Honourable Charles Lewis Morduant. The actual spot
lies in a rock cutting 400 metres to the east of
Halsall Hill Bridge.
Soon after, the Red Lion public house was built in
Maghull to serve
the canal trade. It became a café and general store in the 20th
century and was demolished after the Second World War. Several other
canalside pubs were built over the years; for example, near Hall Lane
Bridge there was the Traveller's Rest (demolished 1936) and the Horse
and Jockey in Melling. In 1774, the canal had reached
provided it with its second connection to Liverpool. The arrival of
the canal created new industry in the area, notably quarrying of
sandstone and clay extraction. It also bolstered the local hostelry
Maghull's first school was founded in 1668 in a small cottage in
School Lane with the headmaster being Humphries Webster, showing the
town's emergence although County Rates from 1716 said of the town
Maghull doth always bear and pay a third less than either Down
Holland or Lidyeat". This shows that
Maghull was a developing
community, but still not as rich as its neighbours
Lydiate. Economic development continued with the Molyneux family
(Earls of Sefton) being significantly active in bringing about the Alt
Drainage Act in 1779 which resulted in many acres of marsh land along
the river eventually becoming good agricultural land. This had led to
the growth of the population to 534, with about half the employment
being in trade rather than agriculture and a rise in 1815 to a
population of 720 people with 71 families engaged in agriculture and
29 in trade, manufactures and handicrafts. There were 108 inhabited
By the 1820s, horse racing was well established on land in Maghull.
Old Racecourse Farm later became the site for the Meadows Hotel; and
Old Racecourse Road, off Sefton Lane, commemorates the sport. Baines'
Lancashire in 1825 provided the first list of specialist
male occupations in
Maghull – 1 blacksmith, 1 cooper, 1 tailor, 1
land surveyor and 1 wheelwright.
By 1840 the agriculture of the area had changed from animal to arable
farming and the 1861 National Census the population stood at 1,222.
Due to this increase in population the railway came to
1849, with a station on the Liverpool,
Ormskirk and Preston
well as the construction of the town's first police station which was
set up by
Lancashire County Council in 1870 and the town got a second
station in 1884, Sefton and Maghull, on the newly built Cheshire Lines
Southport & Cheshire Lines Extension
Southport, the line was an extension of the North
Line. A large section of embankment has been destroyed to make space
for Switch Island. In 1933 Northway (A59 road) was built, initially as
a tree-lined single carriageway but dualled in the early 1960s, which
bisects Maghull, taking travellers from
Liverpool Road'. The arrival of Northway triggered an increased rate
of expansion in Maghull.
In 1939, the IRA blew up the swing bridge at Green Lane on the canal
but the strategic significance of this has never been fully explained
due to Maghull's relative insignificance. In the Second World War, two
bombs landed, one adjacent to King George V Playing Fields, on the
site of the former residential home, and one in Ormonde Drive. A house
that was then 16 Park Lane (now 321, the houses were re-numbered in
the late 1960s or early 1970s), Moss Side, was also destroyed; it was
rebuilt in the 1950s. It served as a refuge for up to 6,000 people a
night from Bootle. American and Polish army units were stationed in
Maghull and it also held several camps for displaced persons. Park
Lane TB sanatorium and a hospital, built to treat shell shock victims,
were combined to form
Ashworth Hospital and one hundred patients
Rampton Secure Hospital
Rampton Secure Hospital with it remaining a secure
hospital to this day, holding such patients as Ian Brady. In 2010,
plans were announced by the Labour government that new housing was
needed and Sefton East – where
Maghull is – was chosen as one of
the locations for the new homes. Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council
showcased the plans at various locations around south Sefton, and were
met by local opposition.
The Leeds and
Liverpool Canal at
Maghull looking towards Leeds from
Maghull is eight miles north-northeast of
Liverpool city centre. To
the northwest is Lydiate, to the east Melling, to the south Aintree
and Netherton and to the west the Mersey Forest and Sefton village.
Maghull is separated from the rest of the Greater
Liverpool sprawl by
a green belt which runs across the
Switch Island motorway junction and
through which flows the River Alt.
In 1912, the
Maghull & District Conservative Club was founded on
Station Road which still stands today. The
Maghull Labour Party was
formed in 1928.
Maghull has been governed as part of the Borough of
Sefton since the Local Government Act 1974, when the boundaries were
Maghull moved from
Lancashire into Merseyside.
had an elected council since the
Local Government Act 1894
Local Government Act 1894 when the
government set up a network of local councils across England.
Following the Local Government Act 1974, the council changed its name
from a parish to a town council and remains the second largest town
council in England.
Maghull has working with the neighbouring parishes
and villages, as well as
Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council
Sefton Metropolitan Borough Council under the
banner of the Altside Business Village, to give businesses in the
areas a united voice and to promote tourism in the area. For this
Maghull works with Aintree, Lydiate, Melling and Sefton
Village; all of which are connected geographically as being near the
River Alt – hence the name Altside, and politically as they are all
in the eastern parishes of Sefton borough. By 1971 the population of
the town stood at 22,794 and gave
Maghull the largest population of
any civil parish in the country.
Maghull also has a town council, established by the 1974 Local
Government Act. The town council is composed of councillors elected
every four years. The council has been under the control of Labour
since the 2011 local elections; the Liberal Democrats previously had
control. There are 19 seats on the council and the current composition
is: Labour 14, Liberal Democrat 5. A by-election took place in north
ward in March 2013 in which Labour won the 3 seats available with 54%
of the vote. Another by-election took place in North, South and East
wards on 25 July 2013 for the seats which had become vacanct due to
resignations by Labour councillors. The results were a gain for the
Liberal Democrats in North and East wards and a gain for Labour in
Maghull town council is made up of four wards: East which
elects five councillors, West which elects four councillors, North
which elects five councillors, and South which elects two Councillors
Education in the town began with William Harper founding the Maghull
School in Damfield Lane, the location of Maricourt Catholic High
School, in 1815 under the terms of his will. In 1839, the National
School, later St Andrew's Church of
England School, was built and the
earlier school, a small cottage, which still stands, became the
headmaster's house. Money for the school, which cost £450 7s 0d
(£450.35p), was raised by local subscription and the school mistress
was paid £5 a year, and each scholar had to pay one penny (1d) a
month towards the cost of a fire, and tuppence (2d) a month for pens
and ink, if they were being taught to write but by 1873 a second
storey was added to the school to accommodate the growing population.
In 1957, the
Sisters of Mercy
Sisters of Mercy created the Maricourt Catholic High
School with all students initially taught in Quarry Brook House with
an initial intake of only twelve girls. In 1982, Old Hall High School,
Maghull Grammar School, was merged with Ormonde Drive High
School to form
Maghull High School, concentrating on Ormonde Drive
Maghull contains several primary schools including State,
Roman Catholic and Church of
England schools. There are also three
high schools which all contain independent
Sixth Form facilities,
working together as part of the
Maghull Collaborative. These secondary
schools being Deyes High School,
Maghull High School and Maricourt
Catholic High School. As well as serving Maghull, the secondary
schools serve pupils from the neighbouring towns in south Sefton, and
the neighbouring local authorities of the Metropolitan Borough of
Knowsley and Liverpool.
Maghull is bisected by the
A59 road and is served by
Merseyrail has also proposed opening a second station Maghull
North, along with bus routes to the nearby areas of Kirkby, Southport,
Liverpool city centre with most running past or near
Maghull Square. The M57 and M58 motorways start at Switch Island,
Aintree and Maghull. The Leeds and
Liverpool Canal runs
through the centre of old Maghull. The Trans Pennine Trail, a long
distance footpath from
Southport to Hornsea, near Hull skirts Maghull,
following the line of the old Cheshire Lines railway.
Maghull is served by the Central Square Shopping Centre, which is
based in the north west of Maghull, which is the original town centre.
Known locally as "the square", it contains several shops, a police
station, numerous banks and nearby is a
Morrisons supermarket. In
Kennessee Green there is a shopping area called Tree View Court. There
are also the Meadows shops near to
Maghull Town Hall and Deyes Lane
shops near the end of Deyes Lane, about five or ten minutes walking
distance from Deyes High School. In 2009,
Maghull Town Hall was given
a large extension costing £8.2million, and which included a library
and sports facilities.
Frozen food shop
Station Road shops
In 1929, the
Maghull Townswomen's Guild was formed. It is now the
Maghull Summerhill Townswomen's Guild and is a Registered Charity. The
Maghull Community Association on Green Lane provides live
entertainment, family fun days and special events such as Christmas
parties and ladies nights.
The main local newspapers are the
Liverpool Echo (evening) and the
Liverpool Daily Post (morning). Both are tabloids published by the
Trinity Mirror group. There are also two local newspapers, the Aintree
Maghull Champion and the
Maghull Star, both of which are free
and are delivered every week either on a Wednesday or a Thursday. The
BBC radio station is Radio Merseyside.
Maghull is also served by
Liverpool radio stations, and multiple pan-North West radio
stations. The ITV franchise holder for the town is ITV, previously
Granada, and the
BBC regional news programme is North West Tonight.
An online radio station,
Maghull Radio, has been running since
February 2014 in partnership with
Maghull Council and Maghull
Community Enterprise. This radio station broadcasts live from Maghull
Town Hall and has a variety of shows that combine music, both
mainstream and niche, as well as talk shows including news and sport
Maghull's sport facilities include bowls and tennis next to the town
Maghull football and cricket clubs playing at Old Hall Field.
Maghull Cricket Club was founded in 1926 and after playing friendly
cricket for the 50 years of their existence started playing league
cricket in the 1970s. After moving through various junior leagues,
they joined the
Liverpool and District Competition in 1999. The 1st XI
gained promotion to the ECB Premier League in 2001 before being
relegated in 2004. In 2005, they won the First Division title for the
2nd time and rejoined the Premier league in 2006. They were relegated
in 2008. The 1st XI captain from the beginning of the 2011 season is
batsman John Ring, who led the team to their 3rd First Division
Championship in ten years in 2011, returning
Maghull to the Premier
League for the 2012 campaign. The 2nd XI plays in the 2nd XI First
Division and is captained by Liam Gibbons. Gibbons led the side to
promotion, and the 1st Division championship, to the 2nd XI Premier
Division in 2010, but the side was relegated in 2011. The club has a
3rd and 4th XI, with Andy Buchannon in charge of the 3rds and Gareth
Barry responsible for the 4th team. In 2007, the 3rd XI won the 3rd XI
First Division championship, and plays in the 3rd XI Premier Division.
2011 saw the 3rd XI win the Embee Trophy and narrowly miss out on the
Premier Division championship. It also saw the 4th XI win promotion to
the Premier Division for the first time in the sides history. In 2005,
the club entered a team in the Sunday 3rd XI First Division
Competition, called the 5th XI. Due to regional boundaries in this
league, the team have moved between the East and West divisions.
Maghull F.C. joined the
Lancashire Combination in 1972. In the
1978–79 season, they joined
Cheshire County League as founder
members of Division Two, while they were founder members of North West
Counties League in 1982–83. In 1992–93, they were North West
Counties League Division Two Champions but were not promoted due to
ground gradings. They left to join the
West Cheshire League
West Cheshire League in
The Beatles performed live on one occasion at the Albany Cinema in
October 1961; the compere was Ken Dodd. The site is now Lidl
John Lennon lived with relatives at Cedar Grove, Maghull, for a short
while, as a result of family issues.
Frank Hornby, of Hornby Railways,
Dinky Toy and
Meccano fame, lived in
Maghull, first at "The Hollies" in Station Road, and later at the much
larger "Quarry Brook". This house is also on Station Road, close to
Maghull railway station
Maghull railway station and is now the
Sixth Form for Maricourt
Catholic High School. "The Hollies" was the first building outside
London to be awarded a Blue plaque. He is buried in St Andrew's
churchyard along with his wife and daughter.
William Vestey of
Blue Star Line
Blue Star Line also lived at "Quarry Brook" before
the Hornby family.
Liverpool and Everton footballers have lived in the area,
including Ian Callaghan, Duncan Ferguson, Brian Labone, Gordon West,
Mick Lyons, Joe Parkinson, Roger Hunt, Tommy Wright, Roger Kenyon,
John Hurst, Peter Thompson, Terry Darracott, Steve Heighway, Tony
Hateley and Ian St John.
Nathan Eccleston – English footballer who played as a striker for
Liverpool, and lives in Maghull.
Jordan Rossiter - English footballer who plays as a midfielder for
Mark Hateley – footballer and
England international lived in Maghull
on Shop Lane, spent two spells at Lambshear Lane Primary School (now
Lydiate Primary School).
Alex Curran-Gerrard – wife of
Steven Gerrard, lived most of her life in
Aintree but attended Maghull
Heidi Range, member of the Sugababes, attended Maricourt High School.
Echo & the Bunnymen – guitarist
Will Sergeant who grew up in
nearby Melling attended Maghull's Deyes High School, as did Les
Pattinson bassist in Echo & the Bunnymen and Teardrop Explodes
Gary Dwyer and keyboard player Paul Simpson who was later
singer in the Wild Swans, as well as the original drummer in the Farm,
David Turner, who attended Woodend Primary School and
School, went on to join SKA super group
Bad Manners and enjoy an
international music and recording career
Clifford Ennis, who attended Woodend Primary school and was allegedly
linked to the fire on the farmers field next to the school, went on to
form goth band Subterfuge, then joined alternative group Ikon and
later formed Razorfade with Mark Tansley of
Suspiria after emigrating
to Australia.
All the original members of the band
Apollo 440 either lived or went
to school in
Noko and James Gardner – lived in Maghull
Old Hall High School (later
Maghull High) and brothers
Howard Gray and Trevor Gray from
Aintree both attended Old Hall High
Other connections include:
James Graham – St. Helens and GB rugby league player, attended Deyes
High School. Currently plying his trade in the Australian NRL for the
David Price – Rugby Union player at
Orrell R.U.F.C. attended
Maricourt High School.
Stephen Darby –
Liverpool F.C. youth player who now plays for
Bradford City A.F.C., brought up in Maghull.
Charlotte Jackson – family of British journalist and television
presenter, currently a presenter on Sky Sports News originate from
Bill Dean – actor who appeared as Harry Cross in the soap Brookside.
Eddie Hemmings Sky TV Rugby League commentator.
Isaac Roberts – astronomer.
Rafael Sabatini – novelist, lived in Station Road, Maghull.
Listed buildings in Maghull
^ "Parish population 2011". Retrieved 3 June 2015.
^ Mutlow, Mick (15 June 2009). "The Birth of The Grand National: The
Real Story". Thoroughbred Heritage. . Retrieved 8 April 2010
^ Esterson, Bill. "Budding
Maghull DJs invited to come forward to be
the voices of
Maghull Radio". Retrieved 18 November 2013.
^ Robertson, Tony. "
Maghull Community Radio – It sounds like a great
idea to me". Retrieved 18 November 2013.
Maghull Cricket Club Website
Wikimedia Commons has media related to Maghull.
Liverpool Canal in Maghull
Districts and wards of the Metropolitan Borough of Sefton
Netherton and Orrell
Ceremonial county of Merseyside
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City of Liverpool
Metropolitan Borough of Knowsley
Metropolitan Borough of Sefton
Metropolitan Borough of St Helens
Metropolitan Borough of Wirral
See also: List of civil parishes in Merseyside
Population of major settlements (with links)
Grade I listed buildings
Grade II* listed buildings