History of West Derby: medieval manor and consular suburb

Derbei, Domesday; West Derbie, 1177 (VCH Lancs III).

Origin of the name: Old English deor – deer – and place-ending by – enclosure – so this was a park where deer were bred for the purposes of hunting.

Other names: Alt (burn, mountain stream) is a word with a proto-Celtic (ancient British, related to Welsh) derivation; Croxteth is a Norse name.

Image: Croxteth Park, 2009, by Martin Greaney

West Derby was once the centre of administration in the north west of England. As well as the seat of the Molyneux family, the township had its own castle and courthouse. However, as Liverpool grew in importance, West Derby was overshadowed by its near neighbour, and evolved into a wealthy suburb in the 19th Century.

The relative importance of this township can be told from the ‘West’ added to the name sometime after the Norman conquest, to distinguish it from Derby in Derbyshire.

Note: As with other township histories on this website, much of what follows comes from one source. In the case of West Derby it’s the second edition of A History of West Derby by JG Cooper & AD Power (1988), Bellefield Press.

It’s perhaps the longest of the books on Liverpool village surburbs, which might be a reflection of West Derby’s relative importance in south Lancashire history. It also ranges beyond just West Derby, especially in its early chapters. You get the full history of glaciation and how it formed this part of the country, before it slowly homes in on West Derby through the prehistoric, Viking and early Medieval periods.

It’s also got some great sketch maps, which reproduce in the authors’ own pencil lines information which is hard to come by elsewhere. I recommend it to West Derby historians and, more than any other village history, to those interested in Liverpool history in general.


Perhaps the largest local history book for a township, plus an accompanying People of West Derby, this is a great achievement, if perhaps due for an update since it was published in 1987!

Buy the book


The West Derby Society holds regular meetings and outings, and is active in helping preserve the historic character of the village and surrounding area. It’s housed in the historic Lowlands house.

Visit the website

West Derby c.1900

Use the slider in the top left to change the transparency of the old map.

The Landscape of West Derby

The natural landscape of south west Lancashire had an important effect on the origins and development of West Derby. The topography influenced its location, and still leaves clues in the layout of the suburb today.


The land to the north of West Derby was once mossland, reflected in names like Blackmoor Drive, which derived its name ultimately from a large house of that name, and Blackmoor Moss which once covered part of the district.

Blackmoor Moss lent its name to Black Moss Lane, which is now Black Horse Lane. The moss itself stretched from Queens Drive to the Alt north east of Croxteth Hall.


The underlying geology of Merseyside is glacial, where ice carved out valleys from the north west down to the south east. Later wind blown sand and other glacial deposits filled in these valleys, leading to sandstone ridges separated by flat areas. Geological uplift exposed coal measures in Croxteth Park, making it self-sufficient in the fuel (Cooper & Power, 1988: 21).

Queens Drive near the Jolly Miller sits on one of these ridges, and flat land stretches through West Derby to Knowsley.

Streams in the area tend to flow south east to north west (like the Alt) or vice versa (like Ditton Brook at Hale).


Good building stone was easy to get at in West Derby. There were many quarries around here, like those in Sandforth Road and Derwent Road. Demand came initially from individual houses and farms (for things like field walls). Leyfield Road and Derby Lane still have modest sandstone buildings on them. Later, large residential houses needed great amounts of sandstone, and as their numbers increased so did the size of the quarries. But it wasn’t just local buildings that sourced quality stone from this area.

The quarry (later known locally as the Delph) behind the Queens Drive Hotel supplied stone to the first George’s Dock. Mill Bank’s quarry produced material for St. James’ and St Mary’s churches nearby, but also Childwall Church’s tower and Old Swan Police Station quarries].

The quarries around Quarry Road are coloured in brown on this map from 1891 (Reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland)

The quarries have now all been filled in or otherwise landscaped, and haven’t been used since the 1920s. Road names survive as clues to their location, like Quarry Road near Mill Bank, and Rock Mount and Rock Street in Old Swan.

The Social Landscape

West Derby was the ‘capital manor’ of the hundred of West Derby, which stretched from the Mersey to the Ribble in the north.

The village of West Derby grew up around the gates of Croxteth Hall, which remains the centre of the village to this day. The township (distinct to the hundred) of West Derby was much more widespread than this, however. It reached close to the town centre, taking in Kensington and Prescot Road, one of the principal roads out of Liverpool.

The village was on the main route between Hale and Ormskirk and Aughton. This might have made it attractive as a site for the castle, and hunting lodge before it. It also had a supply of wood, the Alt nearby, and was an established centre.

‘Green lanes’ tended to be routes on the edge of villages heading out into the uninhabited areas. In the case of Green Lane this was Tuebrook. Almond’s and Hayman’s Green would have been green lanes leading out beyond the boundaries of West Derby.

In 1533 farms were aggregated and common land was enclosed, turning arable land into pasture. In 1667 the West Derby Wastes were enclosed.

A portion of West Derby was taken into Liverpool in 1835, and another part in 1895. But even by 1907 there were still areas of West Derby which lay outside the city boundaries.


Wells were plentiful in this area, with one near the present Sefton Arms, and another in Meadow Lane. There were other private pumps for houses in Town Row and Hayman’s Green. Holly Lodge had a pump too, as did Lark Hill with its adjoining cottages (three pumped wells in all). A well could be found at the Town Row end of Hartington Road in the south east corner of the grounds of St Paul’s church. Another stood in Old Swan, at the corner of St Oswald Street and Prescot Road.


Some of the well-known roads of today were mentioned centuries ago in legal documents. In 1557 a record of the Halmote Court mentioned “a certain Robert Mercer of Townroe and a Will Mercer of Tubrucke”. Eaton Road North originally shrank down to a lane called Narrowback, which had 24 houses on it sharing a tap.

In the early decades of the 20th Century West Derby was noted as having a long line of houses stretching all the way from the city centre to West Derby village. The area was still relatively green, with wide spaces between the buildings.

South of West Derby Road (once known as Rake Lane) was Prescot Road, another route from the city centre. At Old Swan a traveller could continue on to Knotty Ash and out to Prescot, or they could turn southwards to Broad Green and out of the town that way.


A Free School was mentioned in a document of 1667. One Ann Dwerryhouse donated land on Edge Lane for a new school in the early 19th century. Money was raised by the local community for a schoolmaster, and the school was eventually built, not on the donated land, but near the ancient chapel in 1825. It had 60 pupils, and the older school building became a cottage for the master.

In 1859 the Earl of Sefton gave land in Meadow Lane for a new school. When it opened it became known as the West Derby National School and the previous school became a workshop. In 1974 this school building was largely demolished (except for the bell tower) and a new one built.

The Spring Grove site of St Paul’s School replaced an earlier church school in Bonsall Road. Blackmoor Park was built in 1938 to serve the growing suburb, expanding to a second site (now the infants school) in 1955.


Some of the earliest buildings in West Derby would have been cruck-framed houses, and some of these frames survive into the 21st century. At 54 Town Row the (possibly 16th century) frame was partly uncovered during renovations in the 1970s. At the same time, coins were found in the fireplace dating to 1797 and a little later.

In the 18th century the original cob had been replaced with brick, and the roof raised to a higher level, and tiled. This house was divided into two smaller houses in the 19th century, and the cruck survived in the dividing wall. Cooper and Power (1988: 183) claim that six cruck-framed houses from before 1500 surviving on Town Row. These buildings survived because they were simply fronted in later centuries by brick walls, hiding and protecting the wooden structure.

Buildings on Town Row in 1851. The cruck-framed cottages are in the top left corner (Reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland)

Other houses survived for centuries, but are now gone. ‘Boltons’ in Knotty Ash and Birch Hill Cottage, both now demolished, were built before 1500.

Moss House, which once stood on the corner of Derby Lane and Queens Drive was demolished in 1910 to reveal a 17th century house within. (On a related note, the willow tree at this junction is said to have been in the garden of Moss House. It’s true that the garden of Moss House stretched the far into the junction).

Prehistory in West Derby

A Bronze Age stone axe or hammer was found on Clubmoor Recreation Ground when air raid shelters were built. Flint scrapers were found on the site of Elm House, on the outskirts of Old Swan near Edge Lane. And an adze was found north of Craven Wood, north of Croxteth Brook, in around 1930.

Medieval West Derby

In the years after 1066 the history of West Derby is closely linked with the feudal system which came into force with William I’s reign. At the time of Domesday, West Derby had 6 berewicks, one of which was Liverpool. How many (or rather, how few) people lived in the place called Liverpool at his point will probably never be known.

West Derby emerged early on as an important centre in the north west. As a result, it had several landmarks which set it apart from other suburbs of Liverpool.

Croxteth Hall was originally known as Barrett’s Hall. Barrett himself was a squire of John of Gaunt. The name of the present Hall was drawn from the existing name of Croxteth Park, already in use at the time the Hall adopted the name.

Croxteth Hall was originally built of timber, with plaster walls, in 1575. The estate was given to the Molyneux in 1473 by Henry VI.

See also

The Forest: Croxteth, Toxteth and Smithdown

Roger of Poitou afforested Croxteth, Toxteth and Smithdown in the reign of Henry I. The forest was gradually de-wooded, and Croxteth forest was declared illegal in the 1228 Charter of Forests. In the light of this, all forest planted after 1154 was also declared illegal. This might have been in order to allow the cutting down of more woodland.

In 1461 the forestership of the wapentake of West Derby was given to the Molyneux family. This may have prompted their move from Sefton to Croxteth (the former Barrett’s Hall) in 1548.

The 18th century

The oldest detailed map of the area is a survey of the Molyneux estate from 1769. It shows Town Row with around half a dozen houses on it, with almost all other buildings clustered in the village centre. Although the map stretches to ‘Moss Lane’ (the future Queens Drive), there is little else in the built environment

The early houses

Perhaps the oldest house in the West Derby areas is the Round House (Sandfield Old Hall), which was built in 1635. Other large houses would follow over the next three centuries.

In the 18th century West Derby could generally be considered in four quarters: Town Row, Woodside, Low Hill and Acker’s End. On Perry’s map of 1768 there are 36 dwellings in the whole village; on Yate’s map of 1786 there are 28 houses on Town Row alone.

In 1774 Joseph Jackson Jr. owned Fir Grove (opposite the top of Alder Road) and diverted Black Horse Lane, which ran in front of the house, apparently “for the convenience of the public”. That he diverted it to run further from his front door and cause the public to walk in a wide loop around him gives the lie to that statement. This is why there is a large loop in Queens Drive to this day.

Isaac Greene the lord of the manor (having bought West Derby along with other manors), was the instigator of a lot of the enclosure of the 18th century. He also owned the manors of Wavertree, Childwall, two Wooltons and Everton. He came into conflict with the copyholders of West Derby when he claimed that all the waste lands of the manor were his by right. The subsequent court case found in favour of the copyholders.

Norris Green existed as a rural estate prior to 1774, and a mansion was built by Arthur Heywood in 1830. The name came from the Norrises of Speke who had some land around here.

The house of Larkhill had a grand drive which is now Muirhead Avenue. The gateposts survived into the late 20th century. [MAP of Larkhill]

This drive leading to Lark Hill is now a section of Muirhead Avenue (Reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland)

The residential boom

When the 19th century began, West Derby was on the cusp of a transformation. Large houses would be built, as men and women of wealth moved out of the city centre and inner suburbs, as the latter became crowded with terraces.

As late as 1825 the entrance to Croxteth Park was on Meadow Lane. In 1830 the Earl of Sefton bought two fields from the Marquis of Salisbury (the local lord of the manor by this time, and prime landowner). On this land he created a grand entrance to the park which opened directly into the centre of West Derby village. Part of this land ended up with St Mary’s church on it.

The 3rd Earl of Sefton redesigned the park beginning in 1850, including moving Croxteth Hall Lane away from the house. As part of this, the grand new drive was enhanced in 1856 with the construction of a tunnel under the Lane.

Croxteth Hall Lane, before and after it was moved when the landscape was remodelled c.1850 (Reproduced with the permission of the National Library of Scotland)

The Village Hall was opened in 1913.


Established and modern industries all existed in West Derby. Ropemaking can be seen on the map off St Oswald’s Street in Old Swan. In 1825 a glassworks opened on Edge Lane at the top of St Oswald’s Street. English glassmaking had fallen behind the superior French-made glass, which was flatter and more fit for window panes.

The owners of the factory made the clever decision to hire 40 French glassmakers to improve the quality of their product. Today, the site is occupied by B&Q, but the Glasshouse pub remains a testament to the factory that once stood nearby.

Transport and technology

From the middle of the 19th century the railways cut through the landscape. In 1879 the Cheshire Lines Railway opened, serving West Derby, Knotty Ash. This railway ran to and from Southport, and stopped at Knotty Ash and West Derby stations. The London and North West Company’s railway travelled out from Liverpool Lime Street, via Edge Hill Station to the Crown Street terminus of the Liverpool to Manchester line. The railway had stations at Edge Lane, Tuebrook and Breck Road.

The first horse-drawn trams reached West Derby in 1882. Horses were stabled in depot sheds behind the court house, and a ticket inspector’s hut was built next to the latter, which has been the Flower Pot florist’s for decades. One-horse ‘shuttles’ took people from West Derby to Green Lane, and from Knotty Ash to Old Swan. Here they could switch trams for onward travel to the city centre.

In 1900 the trams bringing passengers from Liverpool was electrified, and the inspector’s office was dedicated to ticket sales.

New technologies crept into everyday life. In 1896 the first telephone exchange was opened. A telephone exchange was built in West Derby, a 3 Town Row, and later at 11 Mill Lane. Eventually it moved to 40 Mill Lane. The 1886 Liverpool directory showed one telephone entry for West Derby. By 1900 there were 56 West Derby numbers.

Electricity was starting to become available to the wider public. A power station was built on Lister Drive, with two more taking over duties subsequently in 1904 and 1926 as demand increased.

A ‘street railway’ was laid through Old Swan from Fairfield in 1861. The tram system from Liverpool served West Derby, terminating at the village. Travellers could alight at a junction at Knotty Ash which linked up with the South West Lancashire tram system. The last tram ran in 1949.

In 1909 Queens Drive was built in Lark Hill, with the Moss Lane section constructed in 1911.

In 1914 Alder Hey hospital was built, in an attempt to give children the benefit of the clean air in the semi-rural district. Originally built for children of the West Derby workhouses, it was also used as a military hospital in both World Wars.

Alder Hey was originally the name of one of the large houses in West Derby, and its estate was bought in 1906 for the hospital. Parts of the house survived in the hospital complex until 1964. The lodge, Alder Lodge, still stands on Alder Road.

Becoming Liverpool

In 1835 a large portion of West Derby was taken into Liverpool, with the rest brought in in 1895. In 1871 the population was 50,681. This was the time when the first large houses were built. The suburb attracted international consuls, who built large houses on Eaton Road from the middle of the 19th century. The houses on Hayman’s Green date from this period, as West Derby changed from a village to a suburb.

The first boom in housebuilding was caused by the demand for domestic labour in these large houses. Domestic staff were unlikely to be able to commute far, and cottages grew up in the West Derby area, particularly on Almond’s Green.

In 1850 Owen Hughes, builder, bought the Wall Hill Farm area (where Hartington Drive meets Town Row) and built houses on the land.

In 1850 Sandfield Park was laid out as an exclusive estate with two lodges, but from 1935 more houses were built. These were initially large residences like the existing Sandfield Old Hall, but later smaller houses joined them later. Sandfield Park can therefore be considered part of the suburban development of West Derby rather than the initial phase of house building.

Sandfield Park

Sandfield Old Hall was already there, and dates at least in part to the 16th century (with some parts of the stable block certainly dating to around 1635). Over the course of the 18th and 19th centuries it changed its name, from the Round House (1768) to Sandfield, Sandfield House, Sandfield Hall and finally, in 1892, Sandfield Old Hall.

There is a rumour that the Old Hall has tunnels leading to Blackmoor Moss (in the direction of Queens Drive). Indeed, the Hall has a bricked up door way in the cellar, but nothing more is known of this.

Bellefield was another of the large houses built in Sandfield Park. The Park had an upkeep charge for residents to maintain the roads and environs, but Sir Edward Bates, the owner of Bellefield, refused to pay. A drive led from his house on Sandforth Road onto North Drive, which made him liable for the payments. Because he refused, the gates were permanently locked shut, and the only gates used were directly onto Sandforth Road itself.

Belle Field had a long driveway into Sandfield Park, but the owner’s refusal to pay the Park’s upkeep costs meant the much shorter drive onto Sandforth Road was used (OS Map, 1891)

The end of the large houses

The large houses which had belonged to consuls and merchants were demolished in the 1920s and 1930s. Oliva, once standing on Eaton Road between Alfriston, Alvanley and Apsley Roads, was bought by the Scarret Brothers, builders, in 1932. Eaton House, to the south east of Oliva, was demolished in 1933 for semi-detached houses, so it’s likely that the Scarret Brothers were the builders of all the houses between Apsley Road and Honeys Green Lane.

The former Cheshire Lines Railway closed to passengers in 1960, and goods in 1965. Trains continued to pass through the station, and use the sidings at Knotty Ash, but in 1972 the whole line shut, and the tracks were pulled up in 1979. Today, the line has a tarmac surface and is used as the Liverpool Loop Line cycling route.

Areas of West Derby

West Derby is a township with several recognisable areas within it.

Broad Green

Broad Green began life as a village around a wide green triangle. This area is now occupied by the Turnpike Tavern and housing estate to the south of Broadgreen Station.

One of the landmarks of the area on Edge Lane was the Oak Vale plant nurseries. This gave rise to the Gardener’s Arms pub which once stood at the end of Broad Green Road. Cunningham Road is named after George Cunningham, the head gardener.

Trees were brought to this part of the city from Ladies Walk, when that lane was cleared to make way for industry in 1778.

Old Swan

The area now known as Old Swan gets its name from the pub of that name, once known as the Three Swans. The swans were those on the coat of arms of the Walton family, who owned land around here.

The pub was built on a sandstone outcrop on the heath, on the pack horse (and later stagecoach) route from Liverpool to Broadgreen and Prescot. The Three Swans itself became a post office, and was a stopping off point for horses and, later, trams.

In 1973, during construction of St Oswald’s Church in Old Swan, 3500 bodies were excavated. It’s been suggested that these were plague victims, but it’s not known why so many were buried here. It could have been that this spot was a safe distance away from the main centres of population on Merseyside, but not too far from West Derby Village itself.

Knotty Ash

Knotty Ash grew up at a crossroads on the route from Liverpool to Prescott, Warrington and Manchester. Roads went north to West Derby and south to Broad Green.

A community grew up around the Turk’s Head pub and other establishments. Literal cottage industries were practiced in the small residences at Little Bongs, and a brewery grew up on Prescott Road.

Further Reading

Blessig’s Stile: a hidden West Derby Path

Radley, G., 1971, Knotty Ash, Parochial Council of St John the Evangelist Church, Liverpool

Radley, G., 1986, Knotty Ash, Old Swan and West Derby, A & R Publications, Liverpool

Cooper, JG, & Power, AD, A History of West Derby, Bellefield Press.

Cooper, John & Power, David, 1988, The People of West Derby, Bellefield Press, Liverpool

35 Comments on “History of West Derby: medieval manor and consular suburb”

  • Jane Fennell


    Looking for a pub called the Whatesheaf at Walton on the Hill. My ancestors (well not that far back) ran that paub in c1731. It may not have been called that at the time but that’s all I have to go on. The name of my ggggg whatever he was is Ellis/Elias (?) Molyneux and his wife was called Martha Cropper. He was the innkeeper at the time. Could there have been that many pubs then??
    nee Heywood


    • I’ve not been able to find any info on a Whatesheaf pub, but thought it worth mentioning that there certainly were a fair number of pubs even back then. The problem is that Wheatsheaf and Whatesheaf are popular pub names even to this day, so narrowing down information is not easy! Good luck with your research, though. I’ll post something on the Historic Liverpool Facebook Page to see if anyone there knows something.



    • Mike Latham


      Ellis Molyneux bapt.16.1.1712 at Up Holland,He was married at Walton-on-Hill (Walton Church) 2nd Jan 1730 to Martha Cropper, daughter of John Cropper, The register says he was ‘ of Everton’. He lived in the Fazakerleyl/Kirkby area and for many years was an Innkeeper. He was landlord of the “Wheatsheaf” in Kirkby in 1777.

      He and Martha had 5 daughters and 3 sons. All baptised at St Chads Kirkby, Ellen 1731, George 1735,Elizabeth 1737, Mary 1740, Hannah 1743, Margaret 1745, John 1747, William 1752-1811.


  • Rowena


    Hello, I was wondering if anyone knows anything about the Barton family who lived in one of the two Waterworks Cottages (I think the Swinnertons lived in the other) on Green Lane, Old Swan. They were there for 2 or 3 generations (John, Arthur, then Cecil Barton) and were pipe layers and pumping engineers. Are the cottages still there? And I’d be really interested to know anything about the history of the waterworks and the importance of the water system to Victorian Liverpool. Thank you.


    • Dot Holden


      Hi Rowena, I’m interested in the waterworks cottage as well as I can remember being taken there as a child as a relative lived there. We had a cousin, a girl a bit older than us – I can only remember her nickname, Tuppence (she had bright copper coloured hair). BARTON is a surname in my family tree – if you see this I would to hear from you


      • AJ


        Hi there Dot/Rowena. Has been a while since your post, but am also interested in the Barton family who lived at the waterworks cottages. John Arthur Barton was the brother of my great-grandfather. I think I know who Tuppence probably was. Best regards. AJ


        • Dot Holden


          Hi AJ – would love to hear further from you – I was beginning to think I had dreamt my connection with the Barton’s at the Waterworks!

          Hope to hear back from you



    • Greetings Rowena, I have just come across your post whilst searching for background information on my wife’s aunt Emmie Swinnerton. It was her and her husband Stan Moore who lived next door. He was a Turncock with the water department for his entire career. The cottages had to be pulled down because they were in very poor condition then Emm was housed in a prefab in Childwall. I have a photo of the cottages somewhere and have been looking for it today. I don’t have any dates for the house moves except that they moved in to the waterworks cottage about 1935.


  • David Raven


    My nan and grandad were married in West Derby, and they lived on Fedora Street. Would you be able to tell me where Fedora Street was?


    • Hi David,

      Fedora Street was just off West Derby Road, between the town centre and Tuebrook. You can see it on this map of about 1955. In earlier maps, when the roads where slightly different, Fedora Street seems to be named Division Street, and lies on the boundary of the City of Liverpool (hence the name). Click the map to see a larger version – Fedora Street is below the B in West Derby Road, six streets west of Sheil Park.

      Edit: I no longer have the 1957 map, so here is a 1891 map instead:

      Fedora Street, 1891



  • Chris collins


    I am trying to do a family tree and have a census for a place called mumford in west derby Liverpool is or was there a place called mumford ? Thanks


    • Hi Chris,

      I don’t know of any place called Mumford in West Derby, but there were a lot of houses with names instead of (or as well as) numbers, for example Lowlands on Hayman’s Green. I suspect it may have been one of these houses. The ones I know of were large houses, so your ancestor might have been either the owner of a very big property, or perhaps one of the house staff, who occasionally lodged with their employers.



  • Linda van der Brug


    Dear sir,

    My mum lived in Lisleholmeroad no 5 west derby Liverpool.
    Her name is Margaret Stone, she has an brother named Norman. She immigrated to Holland in 1963 were she stills lives. Does anybody know her.

    Linda van der Brug


    • Barbara Harrison


      Hi Linda, my parents lived next door to your grandparents at no 3.I do remember your mum coming regulary to visit with her children in the holidays.Sadly both mum and dad passed away several years ago and haven’t been to Lisle Holme for quite a while now.


  • David Gregory


    My grandmother’s maiden name was Blamphin and she came from West Derby.
    That is all I know of her background.
    She married John Walker and they lived in Rock Park, Rock Ferry, Birkenhead after the 2nd World War.
    Any more information on her would be gratefully receiced.


  • C M Hurrelll


    Hello, could you please let me know when West Derby Village Hall was built and the year it opened. I would also like to know if the Hall was used for a village party to celebrate the end of the 1st World war and if so, what was the date it was held on?

    Thank you.


    • Nick Greaves


      West Derby village hall was built in 1912 it has a inscription on the outside of the building commemorating the date. I don’t know about it being used to celebrate the armistice of the Great War as a lot of young men of West Derby were killed as the village war memorial bares witness to.
      Hope this is useful to you.
      Kind Regards


  • David Wardle


    Hello. My family were the Duggans from West Derby. Does anyone have any information on the family?


  • Roberta David


    Hello, i’m researching my family tree and would be interested in any information regarding Elizabeth and Philip D’arcy. They lived in Rock Street Old Swan, which I believe was demolished. My understanding is Rock Street, had a name change from Rock Mount Street North, but no idea when.


  • Oonagh


    Does anybody know of a Cottrell family from West Derby, specifically Winnie who married Alfred Whittaker in the 1920s, please?


  • Patricia Preston


    Hi I’m trying to find out the history of 56 Towns Row. The house has a stone dating 1830s and a name The Willows.
    There is brief information about it on this page.
    At present time my family member is renting the beautiful house. It would be a pleasure to learn about the houses history. Hope you can help.


  • Hi
    Does anyone know anything about beech cottage on the corner of honeys green lane opposite Alder hey. It is marked on the 1883 1913 maps. I used to live in that area and I am curious about its origins.
    Many thanks.


  • Thomas R. Nichols


    My Mother in law’s family (Thomas and Janet Kerr) ran a shop (Breakfast and lunch meals) at 108 West Derby Road for the period from about 1910 to 1935 and I believe they lived at the same address. I don’t see any evidence of this address now. Does anyone have any recollections of what happened or old photos of the area?


  • John Holmes


    My Great-Grandfather, William HOLME was a Cowkeeper from Grisedale in Yorkshire, who moved to Liverpool to establish a Cowkeeper’s business, first in Russian Drive, Tuebrook and then two ‘Cow Houses’ on Mill Lane, West Derby.
    One was at number 11 and the second was 27, neither of which survive today, though I understand 27 Mill Lane was adjacent to the old Railway Station.
    Has anyone any knowledge of these businesses please?


  • Janet Elizabeth Appleby


    I am trying to identify Tillotson Street which I think is in West derby area. My mother lived there until she was placed in a local convent at the age of 13 in 1933 when her mother died. I would also like to identify the convent.
    Any help will be most welcome. The family name is Roche.


    • Ken Treanor


      I think I have the answer. My wife’s grandfather was born in Tillotson St. in 1876 and looked for it today. He soon moved to Earlestown near Warrington so would not have been there in the 20th century.
      The site of Tillotson St is now partly covered by the Sacred Heart RC Primary School, Hall Lane. Tillotson St ran east-west with Hall Lane at the east end. At the west end of Tillotson Street was Mount Vernon Street (now no more) . Across Mt Vernon Street was the Convent of Mercy, the site of which is now occupied by Royal Liverpool University Hospital.
      I found the street on the 25 inch OS map which is free to view on the National Library of Scotland website. Mount Vernon Street can be found by moving practically due east from Liverpool Lime Street Station. You can view the old map side- by-side with modern satellite images


  • Amanda Kay


    I wonder if you’ve ever come across the Jolly Plough Boy pub in West Derby/Knotty Ash, possibly located on Deysbrook Lane. In the 1881 census, William Barnes was recorded as the innkeeper (as well as being a painter).

    I can’t find any reference to the pub so wonder if it’s been misrecorded in the census?

    Thank you


  • Nigel


    My great great grandparents lived at 7 Black Horse Lane, West Derby in 1871. The houses there now look newer. Does anyone have old photos, or know the history of the street over the last 150 years or so?


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