Historic Features in Walton

Walton-on-the-Hill has always been a very large township, containing some of the familiar suburbs in north Liverpool. At the north of the township is Warbreck, on the border with Aintree. The Guildhouses were also to the north. Spellow, Anfield, Walton Breck (also known as Cabbage Hall after an old pub) and Newsham run from the north west to south east.

The old village originally surrounded the church, and Rake and Cherry Lanes ran east to West Derby.

The church at Walton (like that at Childwall) has a circular churchyard, suggesting it was part of a settlement in existence before the Norman Conquest. It was certainly the mother church of a medieval parish. As such, it may have had its name changed to a ‘British’ one, perhaps through a grant of land from the church to someone else.


The Walton-on-the-Hill History Group are active in publishing their own books, and this is the one to go for to start your Walton research. It has plenty of images, and the history is sound.

Buy the book


The Walton-on-the-Hill History Group have a full website where they sell their books and give details of their activities. There’s everything from photos to articles on local history.

Visit the website

Walton c.1900

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


The principal road through the township is that running from Liverpool to Ormskirk, known as Rice Lane as it descends the hill.

The Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway ran through the township, with Walton Junction station lying on the Liverpool to Preston route. The line to Bury and Manchester branched off, as did a smaller line to serve the docks. The London and North West Railway ran from Edge Hill to the docks, Walton and Spellow. The Cheshire Lines Committee Railway from Manchester to Southport ran through the district, with a station at Walton-on-the-Hill from 1870 (which closed in 1918), and a branch to the docks. A tunnel is the only remains of this line.

In‭ ‬1905‭ ‬the train lines were electrified.

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By the end of the 19th Century, Walton was already expanding as a suburb. There was a large Welsh presence here, and Liverpool itself was often jokingly referred to as the Capital of Wales. The Welsh community was heavily involved in timber, slate and stone trades, and would often retire back to Wales.

Their involvement in such ‘home trades’ resulted in the spread of the ‘Welsh house’, a solid, quick-to-build six room house. A famous father and son partnership of William Owen Elias and son built many of the streets in Walton, and if you look to the names of the streets beginning at Oxton Street, opposite Goodison Park, the initials spell out the names of these two men, with the exception of the final N, a victim of more recent demolitions in the area. Between 1919 and 1939 council housing was built up in out of town areas, and Walton was one such district.

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Walton-on-the-Hill was for a long time the centre of Christian organisation in this part of Lancashire. In fact, until 1699 Liverpool parish came under the control of Walton parish church before it was made independent.

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Walton Prison

Walton Prison was built by the Liverpool Corporation,‭ ‬who had purchased land for it in May‭ ‬1847.‭ ‬It was built between‭ ‬1849‭ ‬and‭ ‬1854-5‭ ‬by Messrs Furness‭ & ‬Company and John Weightman esq,‭ ‬and although there are rumours that it was built by French prisoners of war, it’s been pointed out (see comments) that such men were probably no longer held in Britain such a long time after Waterloo (34 years).

The prison opened in‭ ‬1855‭ ‬with‭ ‬300‭ ‬cells alongside dwellings for a whole host of staff:‭ ‬governor,‭ ‬matron,‭ ‬chaplain,‭ ‬gatekeeper,‭ ‬turnkeys and more.‭ ‬Women were housed in addition to men until‭ ‬1933,‭ ‬with facilities provided for the children of female prisoners.‭ ‬In a sign of those times,‭ ‬the women were employed in washing,‭ ‬cleaning and sewing for the staff.‭ ‬This may be even more ironic considering that there were Suffragettes amongst the inmates.

Hangings took place in front of large,‭ ‬sometimes noisy crowds who packed stalls like a theatre.

Walton Park Cemetery

Burial grounds in Walton were often co-opted for use by St.‭ ‬Nicholas’s church in central Liverpool when the pressure was high.‭ ‬For example,‭ ‬in‭ ‬1361‭ ‬an outbreak of plague meant that Liverpool itself quickly ran out of space its dead,‭ ‬and by the middle of the‭ ‬19th century the growth of slums and the population explosion caused further problems.

Therefore in‭ ‬1851‭ ‬Walton Cemetery was laid out.‭ ‬There were both free and paid-for plots,‭ ‬with the latter placed closer to the footpaths and employing large monuments to the interred.‭ ‬These plots were,‭ ‬of course,‭ ‬only available to the richer members of society,‭ ‬like mayors and the governor of the local jail.‭ ‬In fact,‭ ‬the free plots were often shared between many people‭ ‬-‭ ‬what we might refer to now as paupers’s graves.‭ ‬All people buried on the same day would be placed in the same grave.

Robert Noonan‭ (‬who,‭ ‬under the pen-name Tressell,‭ ‬wrote‭ ‬The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists‭) ‬is buried in the cemetery,‭ ‬as he died while waiting in Liverpool for a ship to take him to Canada.‭ ‬His is a pauper’s grave,‭ ‬where he was buried alongside‭ ‬12‭ ‬others,‭ ‬although since it was rediscovered it has been marked with a memorial stone.‭ ‬‭

When St Peter’s in Church Street was demolished in September‭ ‬1922,‭ ‬several of the graves were moved from there to Walton Cemetery,‭ ‬demonstrating the continued importance of this northern suburb to Liverpool’s spiritual make-up.‭ ‬In the‭ ‬20th century Dutch war graves were added to the burial ground,‭ ‬tended to by the Fazakerley branch of the British Legion.

Zoological Gardens

The Monkey House was a half-timbered building like the restaurant and concert hall which graced the centre of the park.‭ ‬Great effort went into these pieces of architecture,‭ ‬with cement moulding,‭ ‬red tile roofs and copper details.‭ ‬The restaurant block was built to a polygonal bandstand-like design,‭ ‬and included a restaurant,‭ ‬dining hall,‭ ‬cloak rooms,‭ ‬service apartment and a garden quadrangle for open air concerts.

The architect responsible was William Sugdens‭ & ‬Sons of Leek,‭ ‬with landscaping by John Shaw of Bowden in Cheshire.‭ ‬A number of companies came together to build the Gardens,‭ ‬including W.‭ ‬Rummage of‭ ‬42‭ ‬Old Broad Street,‭ ‬the Everton Quarry Company,‭ ‬Messrs Wards of Limerick Foundry,‭ ‬Tipton and Robert Hird of Shipley.

The only remains today are the gate house buildings which were used by the Dunlop factory.‭ ‬Until at least‭ ‬1985‭ ‬the wall of the elephant enclosure also still stood.

Walton Workhouse

In‭ ‬1834‭ ‬the Poor Law Act united parishes‭ (‬who had previously cared for the poor separately‭) ‬into a Union.‭ ‬This prompted the need for a workhouse to deal with the area’s needy. The foundation stone for the Walton Workhouse was laid in‭ ‬1864,‭ ‬and in the April of‭ ‬1868‭ ‬the institution was opened.

The workhouse taught sewing,‭ ‬knitting,‭ ‬weaving,‭ ‬woodwork and maintenance skills to both boys and girls‭ (‬although the tuition was divided along traditional gender lines‭)‬.‭ ‬There was a nursery for the youngest.

The food for the workhouse inmates was far from luxurious:‭ ‬bread,‭ ‬gruel,‭ ‬scouse,‭ ‬soup,‭ ‬potatoes,‭ ‬porridge,‭ ‬milk and broth were the norm.‭ ‬It would have been blind scouse‭ (‬without meat‭) ‬most times,‭ ‬with meat added perhaps once a week.

As well as teaching practical skills‭ (‬and probably to help pass them on‭) ‬the workhouse had its own blacksmith,‭ ‬cobbler,‭ ‬stables and joiner.‭ ‬As well as those,‭ ‬there were a laundry,‭ ‬gasworks,‭ ‬bakery,‭ ‬chapel and burial ground.‭ ‬It was a fairly self-contained community‭!

At its peak the workhouse admitted‭ ‬90‭ ‬people were weak,‭ ‬which goes to show the extent of the poverty problem in Victorian Liverpool

By‭ ‬1930,‭ ‬however,‭ ‬times were changing,‭ ‬and the Poor Law Guardians who were responsible for the workhouses were abolished.‭ ‬Chronic illnesses such as tuberculosis were a more pressing problem than terrible poverty,‭ ‬underlined by the‭ ‬1918‭ ‬influenza pandemic,‭ ‬which affected staff as well as inmates.‭ ‬What by this time was known as the Walton Institution became Walton Hospital,‭ ‬and the current Walton Hospital still retains some of the buildings it inherited in the‭ ‬1930s.

Progress continued under the eye of Dr.‭ ‬Henry McWilliam,‭ ‬who was Resident Assistant Medical Officer from‭ ‬1913‭ ‬until‭ ‬1952,‭ ‬by which time he had become Medical Superintendant.‭ ‬He changed the working conditions of the Hospital,‭ ‬such as the introduction of the‭ ‬112‭ ‬hour fortnight for nurses,‭ ‬who until then had worked even longer hours than this.

Walton Hall and the Walton Family

The manor of Walton was given to Gilbert‭ (‬or‭ ‘‬Waldeve‭’) ‬of Walton by King John in‭ ‬1189,‭ ‬on the condition that he become the bailiff of West Derby.‭ ‬Thus began the family line of the Waltons.

Walton Hall Park is now the only remains of the Walton Hall estate,‭ ‬and the best known incarnation of Walton Hall is actually the second building to take the name.‭ ‬Parts of the previous version,‭ ‬dating to the‭ ‬12th century,‭ ‬were found when the more recent hall was demolished in around‭ ‬1900.

By the time the second hall was demolished,‭ ‬the Walton family had long died out,‭ ‬and the structure had been falling into disrepair for some time.

After the Walton line came to an end,‭ ‬the next record we have of the Hall is once it came under the ownership of one Robert Brere,‭ ‬who bequeathed it to his son.

In‭ ‬1746‭ ‬it was owned by the influential Fazakerley family,‭ ‬specifically Nicholas Fazakerley,‭ ‬an agent of John Atherton.‭ ‬The Athertons were the last family to live in Walton Hall,‭ ‬putting it up for sale and moving on in‭ ‬1804.

Thomas Leyland,‭ ‬privateer,‭ ‬lottery winner,‭ ‬merchant,‭ ‬slave trader and mayor of Liverpool on three occasions,‭ ‬bought the hall from the Athertons.‭ ‬He had lived in Houghton Street and Duke Street previously,‭ ‬and clearly wanted a slice of the rural gentlemanly life‭!

In‭ ‬1827‭ ‬Thomas died,‭ ‬and he passed the house onto his nephew,‭ ‬Richard Bullin,‭ ‬who took on the Leyland surname at that time.‭ ‬Richard never married,‭ ‬and so his sister Dorothy inherited the Hall from him,‭ ‬before it passed into the family of John Naylor upon her death.

It was at this time that the building deteriorated,‭ ‬and a decision to demolish the house was made at the turn of the ‬20th century.

In‭ ‬1907‭ ‬a triangular plot of land,‭ ‬formerly part of the Walton Hall estate,‭ ‬was bought by the Corporation for use as a recreation ground.‭ ‬Then in‭ ‬1913‭ ‬a further‭ ‬120‭ ‬acres were purchased for‭ ‬£51,000‭ ‬to create Walton Hall Park.‭ ‬The design of the park was done by H.‭ ‬Charlton Bradshaw,‭ ‬although the First World War meant that the space was requisitioned for a time as a munitions depot.

Finally,‭ ‬in‭ ‬1924‭ ‬the land reverted to the Corporation,‭ ‬and in‭ ‬1934‭ ‬Walton Hall Park officially opened to the public.‭ ‬On the‭ ‬18th of July King George V conducted the opening ceremony,‭ ‬before moving along to open the Mersey Tunnel later the same day.

St Mary’s Church

The site of St.‭ ‬Mary’s Church,‭ ‬and it’s use as a religious centre,‭ ‬are both very old indeed.‭ ‬The circular shape of the churchyard,‭ ‬still evident on the‭ ‬1893‭ ‬Ordnance Survey map,‭ ‬suggests that it could be early medieval in date,‭ ‬or possibly pre-Christian.‭ ‬There have been suggestions made that there was even a henge‭ (‬a roughly circular bank and ditch monument‭) ‬here,‭ ‬but no firm evidence exists for such an ancient origin.

However,‭ ‬the shaft of a cross was discovered under the foundations of the building during some construction work,‭ ‬and so some medieval activity is certain.

A later episode in St.‭ ‬Mary’s history is its use for holding prisoners after the battle of Worcester‭ (‬c.1651‭)‬.‭ ‬Such was the damage caused by these prisoners that a tax on West Derby was requested in order to pay for the damage,‭ ‬though this request was turned down.

With all the evidence to hand,‭ ‬it looks like St Mary’s was first built in‭ ‬800,‭ ‬with new buildings replacing the old in‭ ‬1326,‭ ‬1724‭ ‬and‭ ‬1941.‭ ‬In addition,‭ ‬the tower alone was rebuilt in‭ ‬1829,‭ ‬and the churchyard was extended beyond those old circular boundaries in pieces up to‭ ‬1958.

Landmarks‭ ‬and Trivia

Winestan held the manor of Walton when the Domesday Book was compiled.

Much of the terraced housing‭ ‬in Walton‭ ‬was built for workers on the railway.

In‭ ‬1884‭ ‬Northcote Road School was built opposite the York Villas.‭ ‬The school had originally occupied a building at‭ ‬33‭ ‬Rice Lane in‭ ‬1885.

St Nathaniel’s Church,‭ ‬designed by Frank Rimmington,‭ ‬was to be built in the early part of the‭ ‬20th century.‭ ‬The Second World War intervened,‭ ‬however,‭ ‬and only a church hall was put up,‭ ‬opening on the first day of October‭ ‬1949.

There was a lime pit adjacent to‭ ‬what became the‭ ‬Dunlop‭ ‬factory‭ ‬site.

In the book‭ ‬Pictures and Thoughts on Walton’s Past History,‭ ‘‬A Group of Locals‭’ ‬report that the‭ ‬area‭ ‬around the workhouse‭ ‬was once covered in allotments,‭ ‬stables,‭ ‬orchards and a coaching inn.‭ ‬Quite a rural feel‭!

The Evered Avenue Library,‭ ‬funded by Andrew Carnegie,‭ ‬was opened in‭ ‬1911‭ ‬by the Earl of Derby.

Dunlop‭ ‬had its UK head office and a manufacturing plant in the Cavendish Drive area.‭ ‬This operated for much of the‭ ‬20th century,‭ ‬despite a devastating fire in September‭ ‬1980,‭ ‬but‭ ‬the building‭ ‬finally made way for a housing estate in‭ ‬2004.

A rumour persists that there are tunnels running from the Jewish cemetery to the Littlewoods offices,‭ ‬and that caves stretch from Walton Hall Park to the church of St Mary’s.

Dairies were once a common feature of Walton,‭ ‬such as Heygarth’s and Williams’s.

Haggerston Road takes its name from Haggerston,‭ ‬a town in Northumberland.‭ ‬This town was once part of the Leyland estate‭ (‬see Walton Hall and the Walton Family below‭)‬.

A stone bridge was replaced with a box girder bridge when Walton Hall Avenue was expanded into a dual carriageway.

Walton became part of Liverpool in‭ ‬1895.

Walton Grammar school was built in or before‭ ‬1613.

Walton Town Hall was built in‭ ‬1893,‭ ‬and nothing now remains of it except a part of the stone facing,‭ ‬which stands in one wall of the Queens Drive flyover.

Public Houses and Bars

The Brown Cow stood opposite the Town Hall on the corner of Rice Lane and Church Lane. The Rice Lane pub,‭ ‬named after the road,‭ ‬was demolished in‭ ‬1968‭ ‬to make way for the flyover,‭ ‬as were many other buildings. Standing opposite the Queens Drive Baths,‭ ‬the Herb Shop sold soft drinks like Vimto,‭ ‬Sarsparilla and Dandelion‭ & ‬Burdock.


Rice Lane gets its name from Rice House,‭ ‬belonging to the family of that name in the‭ ‬18th century.‭ ‬William Rice was an‭ “‬allottee of the common lands‭” ‬in‭ ‬1716.

Further Reading

A Group of Locals, 1985, Pictures and Thoughts on Walton’s Past History, W.E.A West Lancashire and Cheshire District

Recommended links

Walton on the Hill,‭ ‬Liverpool,‭ ‬in the‭ ‬1950‭’‬s and‭ ‬60‭’‬s

Liverpool Zoo,‭ ‬Rice Lane,‭ ‬1975


103 thoughts on “History of Walton: ancient church to modern suburb

  • Hello. What are the present boundaries of Walton and have they recently been changed? Fazakerley used to start by Barlow’s Lane, but a new sign has been put up making Hall Lane the boundary. Any information on this. The area between Walton Vale and Fazakerley station is sometimes called Walton, Warbreck, Aintree and/or Fazakerley. A mystery.

    • Hi Roy,

      If Hall Lane is the new boundary, then it’s certainly changed from its historic shape. A good source for the parish boundary is on http://maps.familysearch.org/. Here you can click through a map of Lancashire, then select the option to list all the parishes. This will take you to a map. The parish of Walton-on-the-Hill stretches further north than Hall Lane. Also, on my own site you can see the rough outline of the old townships (which are generally larger than parishes). Again, the historic township stretches further north than Hall Lane. See the Map of Walton Township.

      I’m not sure exactly if or when the boundaries changed, as these areas are historical. I thought perhaps the Boundary Commission might be making changes, but their map of Liverpool North does not have a boundary at Hall Lane either (though it’s not far off, near Aintree Rail Station). See http://rr-bce-static.s3.amazonaws.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/08/Liverpool-North-BC.pdf?9d7bd4 for a PDF of a map of the local authority and wards. Either way, the Commission’s decisions are not yet final (they’ll be published in March).

      Hope this is of some help.

  • Janis Baggott says:

    I am trying to find out more about St. Thomas’ Church which was in Walton on the Hill. I think it must have been demolished but would appreciate any information.

  • my aunty lives in hall lane n shes classed as aintree, i lived in the sparrow hall estate n as far as anyone living in the areas concerned, fazakerley goes from the east lancs frm the crown down to copplehouse lane, from the crown to long lane in the other direction, long lane down to higher lane, up higher lane to longmoor lane n then down longmoor to copplehouse, forming roughly an l shape

    • Dave Bridson says:

      The original (pre-1845) boundary of the township of Fazakerley is quite difficult to describe using street names because the area was mainly open fields and much of the boundary follows streams.

      Beginning near junction of Sandy Lane and Higher Lane the boundary runs along Higher Lane, across Longmoor Lane and about one third of the way along Seeds Lane it turns north-east across the fields to meet the side of Aintree Racecourse opposite the end of Barlow’s Lane. From here it runs alongside the Racecourse (following the line of Becher’s Brook), past the end of Signal Works Road and then turns south-east to the bend in Sherwood’s Lane. It runs north-easterly along Sherwood’s Lane then turns south-east just before the junction with Aintree Lane before turning south-west to meet the corner of the Cottage Homes.

      The boundary then runs along the eastern side of the Cottage Homes, crosses Longmoor Lane and turns north-east towards Copplehouse Lane but then turns roughly south about 20 yards before Copplehouse Lane to follow a small stream which joins Fazakerley Brook near the junction of Copplehouse Lane and Field Lane. It then runs roughly alongside Stonebridge Lane to the original stone bridge where it turns south-west to follow the course of Sugar Brook across the former sewage works, under Lower Lane, then under what is now the East Lancs Road and under that corner of Norris Green as far as Scargreen Avenue Playing Fields. The playing fields are where Sugar Brook starts. I say starts because it’s still there in a culvert.

      From the playing fields the boundary zig-zags under Norris Green before passing under Strawberry Lane (now Road) near its present-day junction with Townsend Avenue. Turning north-west it then runs under Scarisbrick Road and the old railway before meeting the Tue Brook under the playing field on Richard Kelly Drive.

      The boundary then follows the course of the Tue Brook alongside Richard Kelly Drive, around the edge of what is now Walton Hall Park, around the back of the old Dunlops site on Rice Lane and continuing northward under Rice Lane Recreation Ground to the back of St John’s Church on Rice Lane. The brook (and the boundary) then turn north-east under Chapel Avenue, under Archbishop Beck School and its playing field before emerging across Long Lane alongside Durley Road. It meanders alongside the Liverpool-Kirkby Railway line, crosses under the railway and through Higher Lane Allotments and passes under Higher Lane to the point at which this description started.

  • Hi. I am trying to find out about walton in the 1700’s and was wondering if anyone could tell me of any directories of history books of the area. I have an ancester, Richard Vose who is listed as being an inn keeper in walton in 1732 and am trying to fnd out about him.

    Thank you

    • Hi Julie I have just read your post concerning Richard Vose and was wondering if you were able to find anything out about him? His daughter Margaret Vose married into my Welsby family.

      Look forward to hearing from you


      • julie savage says:

        hi Susan i have just seen your reply. Other than I think Richard married a mary guy and that is father could be hugh Vose. I haven’t found much out

        Good luck with your research


  • Michelle Donovan says:

    Hello – I am just wandering if anyone has any history information on 45a Chapel Avenue. I am lead to believe it used to be an old railway house but has been used more recently for a commercial building. Thankyou

    • Hi Michelle,

      Looking at the early Ordnance Survey maps, 45a was built at the same time as the surrounding houses, and first appears on the 1908 edition. Unfortunately I’ve not been able to find out anything else about the building, although it all looks exactly the same on that map as it does today.

      However, there were three railway lines passing each other in that area, and so the function of the building may very well have related to that. The land to the north east (where Renwick Road now stands) was still a field, and so some enterprising individual may have built what you might think of as a mini farm or other commercial building which could take advantage.


    • Dave Bridson says:

      45a Chapel Avenue was built as a house and dairy. Like many small dairies around Liverpool at that time it kept a small number of cows to provide fresh milk and the owner was known as a cow-keeper rather than a dairy man. This was one of several in the Liverpool that were owned by the Capstick family, in this case John Capstick. There’s a bit more info here – http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-merseyside-14855763

  • Does anyone know of a road called 54 Tonville Road, Walton, this is perhaps my family’s last known address given by my Great Grandad as he applied for money from the Poorhouse register in 1926, General Strike time. Another address was from the microfiche in Liverpool temporary library. They said my Mum’s family also lied in Commercial Road. Apparently, quite a bit of it is gone. The number given was 90. I’m coming down from Kilmarnock in August to try and find these addresses. Anybody give me a landmark to look for? Thanks.marilib.Ayrshire.

    • Angela O’Donnell says:

      Hi Sara,this answer is very late for you. Anyway there is a small church in Mill Lane just off West Derby village. It was called St.James but two or three years ago the name was changed. My great grandmother was baptised there in 1864. The church is still there but looks closed up, regards Angie.

    • As someone else has stated, that ‘Walton on the Hill covered a very large area in days gone by. There is a St James RC Church in Chesnut Grove, Bootle. (By Marsh Lane).

  • sara osborne says:

    Also has anyone heard of a Brookfield farm in that area around 1866 or know where i can find out about this , thanks

    • Dave Bridson says:

      Until at least 1915 there was a Brookfield Farm (with Brookfield House next to it) on Long Lane, Fazakerley, opposite Hartley’s Ham Factory. The farm later became the site of the Schweppe’s factory, probably in the 1930s.

      • I have Henry Lafone living Brookfield House 1859 an article in the local newspaper about a lad having an accident Lawrence Hall

    • Brookfield Farm was owned by my great-grandfather Edward Lunt. He and his 5 children are listed in the 1891 census as living at the farm. I don’t know when he bought the farm as 10 years earlier he is listed as a labourer living at 23 Sandy Lane Walton on the Hill. My grandmother Alice was born at the farm in 1887 and I have a photo of her feeding the chickens in the farmyard, Unfortunately it does not show enough of the farm buildings to be able to date them and my grandmother died when I was 12 so I did not get much information about it. It was sold in about 1932 for industrial development along with Mittons Farm (not sure of the spelling or the exact location) belonging to Edward’s brother Robert which stood on the other side of Long Lane.

    • there was a brookfield farm on the edge of what is kirkby.i remember as a kid thhe farm was on Little Brookfield Lane. brookfield school was built on the on the site

  • Sally Montgomery says:

    Hi I’m researching a family who lived at and ran the Queen Vicoria pub at 57 Rice lane in 1911 the oldest photo I’ve found was taken in 1960 though have seen one for the Rice house pub from 1911 which is very similar. Any help would be appreciated.
    Thank you

  • Some older residents of Walton may remember Kelly Brothers, who built & leased many houses in the area. The family lived in Walton by 1777 and by the 19th century successive generations were bricklayers and stonemasons. During the life of Richard Appleton Kelly (1809-1865) the family began to build and offer houses and shops for lease, and by the late 19th century their portfolio included many hundreds of properties.

    In the 1870s Kelly Brothers came into being as the partnership of Richard’s four sons : Richard, James, William and Benjamin. They took on many large contracts, including Fazakerley Cottage Homes (1887-89), Toxteth Park Infirmary (1892), Ogden’s Tobacco Works (1899-1901), Walton Board Schools (1894), and perhaps most famously, Goodison Park (1892).

    The brothers were community-minded and served in many public offices. Richard (1839-1918) became an alderman of Liverpool after holding a position on Walton Local Board. Youngest brother Benjamin (1854-1918) was involved in Everton Football Club from its beginnings as a Director and also Chairman at one stage.

    • Hi Brian,

      Thanks for your contribution. I’m really interested in details of who built Liverpool, from all eras. It’s always interesting when they dealt with big landmarks like Goodison too.


    • Shirley Borsa nee Kelly says:

      My great grand father was William Kelly, and his son William jnr my grand father he and his brothers put up the hoardings ,tolls and stands in 1915, they also built alderhey hospital in 1915. I am now 88years but remember their house in walton park also their houses off walton vale and shops they built there.

  • Hello, I’m looking for any kind of information about the past of one house in Walton. It’s adress is Walton, Breeze Hill L9 1DY. I would like to know what is the age of this house and also it would be interesting to know about the previous owners of this house. Can you help me? Is it possible to get such kind of information?

    • Hi Catherine,
      Those houses on Breeze Hill are almost all Victorian, with the roads around the modern flyover first appearing on maps of 1891. You can indeed find out information about former inhabitants of houses, but you’ll have to find your way around censuses, which I’m not much of an expert on. If you know anyone with access to the likes of Ancestry.com, then they will probably know how to help you.

  • Can anyone tell me when the copplehouse pub fazakerley was built, and any information about the Railway Pub which was on the site that is now the Chaser,longmoor lane.

    • Hi Bill,

      The Copplehouse Pub was built at around the same time as the surrounding houses, between 1927 and 1937, while the Railway pub was built some time in the last half of the 19th century, first appearing on the 1893 map, but not present on the 1850 edition.


  • ste latimer says:

    Some really interesting stuff on here, do you have any info on exact position of the cottages near walton hall, I think they may have been roughly were the intersection of wally hall ave and stanley park ave north is.
    Many thanks, Ste.

  • Rose Ledsham says:

    When I was a child in the 1930’s I remember the Rectory in Walton Village being burnt down. Can you tell me more about it.

  • please settle an argument re the building of the sparrow hall council housing estate. wnen was work started and in which order were the roads built

  • mary mcloughlin says:

    Please can you tell me where the church of St James was in Walton on the Hill and if it still exists or if not a picture of it.

    Many Thanks

  • Hi there! I am in Canada having emigrated from Liverpool many years ago. l was watching ” Our Zoo” and a Lady Catherine Longmoor is a character in the episode and it occurred to me that perhaps our Longmoor Lane, Fazakerley, was named for the Longmoores of Upton Cheshire. l tried to find out by myself and stumbled across this web site! Hope you can answer my question. l was born in Walton, family Irish lmmigrants. They lived around the Throsttles Nest pub in Walton. my great grandparents were farm labourers on the Sefton estate. I was brought up in Fazakerley, mixed marriage, very confusing. Ha ha!

  • I used to live in a somewhat confusing location as to place names in North Liverpool. The road I was brought up in was Cornett Road off Longmoor Lane,now in Fazakerley these days,( as advised by an earlier contributor the Fazakerley boundary was close to Barlows Lane and Fazakerley Railway station) however, the other end of Cornett Road junctions with Hall Lane in Walton.
    Many addresses in this area are described as in Aintree for example ‘Aintree Baptist Church’ not far from Walton Vale. My family and many of our neighbours addressed their letters as from Aintree Liverpool 9
    Aintree, of course, is about three quarters of a mile away along the A59 to the north and is located in the Borough of Sefton.

    • It seems that north Liverpool had a bit of a confusion of boundaries! I’ve always thought that people tend to put their address as where they ‘feel’ they live, so perhaps your family felt allied to Aintree even though the maps would tell them they lived elsewhere.


  • I am interested in anything anyone can tell me about a young lady called C. Jenkins who lived at 2 Euston Street, Walton. I know that she was at that address in 1913. I would love to know her full first name. She was an expert in the planned language Esperanto, and passed the Advanced exam of the British Esperanto Association in 1913. She even became a Fellow of that organisation. I was tol;d that she emigrated to the United States that year or early in 1914, weither to get married or as a resulyt of a marriage. Any information would be very welcome. Dankon! That’s “Thanks” in Esperanto.

    • What an interesting person! It would be fascinating to hear why she moved to the US, especially as she must have been something of a Europhile! Not much call for Esperanto use across the pond I would have thought… 😉


  • William Fawcett says:

    Hi, can anyone tell me anything about the blacksmiths that used to be opposite Walton Church. I remember it from my childhood being where The Lifestyle Gym is now. I think the care home named ‘Smithy Grange’ is named after it.

    • Hi William,

      I can’t find a smithy marked on the old maps, but up until the 1950 maps (at least) the road called Walton Village is called Smithy Lane for a short stretch up to Queens Drive.

      The Lifestyles Gym seems to have replaced a public baths, which were already there in the 1920s. However, there’s a ‘Glebe Farm’ further south on that street, so perhaps it was part of that? I’d welcome any memories from others here!

      Here’s a map (click for larger version):

      • William Fawcett says:

        Hi Martin
        Thanks for that, Queens Drive baths was still there in the late 80s. I seem to remember the Smithy being where Moores House Care Home is now situated next to the Lifestyle Gym. I used to watch the blacksmith at work when on my way home from infant school.
        Cheers. Bill

  • My grandfather Alf Fawcett had a Dairy at 19 Breeze Hill in Walton.He kept a herd of cows there for many years.He moved from Bellerby in North Yorkshire along with many others to set up dairies in Liverpool.The Hogg family opened a number of dairies in Liverpool and in Hough Green near Widnes.My grandfather retired in the mid 1950,s
    I wonder if anyone remembers him or the dairy?

    • Peter… I am researching a headstone in Everton Cemetery. It is for Thomas Read Mansergh. In the 1911 census it shows him owning the dairy at 19 Breeze Hill after moving there from another Dairy in Queens Road / Bootle. By 1918 Thomas had retired to the Wirral. do you have any information, previous to your grandfather owning the Breeze Hill Dairy… Many thanks… Mal (Everton C, Historian)

    • Hi Simon,

      The original street was a straight road of terraces, and appears on the 1890s Ordnance Survey map, but not the 1849 edition, so the houses date from between those times. The current houses were built to replace the terraces, which were deemed unsuitable for modern habitation and were demolished in the 1960s and 70s. I think the houses were built in the 1980s.


      • Thank you for providing this information, Martin. It was actually the original terraced houses I was interested in learning about, so I’m grateful for the confirmation that they were Victorian.
        Best wishes,

  • Hello, I’m currently taking part in a project which requires information on the environmental conditions in places I have lived during my life. So I am starting with my very first home which was at 33 N. Parade, Walton Park, Liverpool. Can anyone tell me what was the source of domestic drinking water for homes in Walton Park between 1943 & 1946, and what kind of home heating was commonly used? Any information will be much appreciated.


    • Hi Sue,

      I’m not much of an expert on domestic heating, but coal fires would have been the most common source of heat. Also some oil heating might have started making its way into the home by the 1940s, at least in the larger houses, so radiators might have been present. As for the water source, the reservoir at Lake Vyrnwy has been supplying Liverpool with water since the late 19th century, so the most likely source is that. There were also some more local water storage sources, though I’m not sure of the specifics for the Walton area.


      • Don’t know what happened to my first (& incomplete) reply–it vanished on me, so I’m starting again.

        Hi Martin,

        Thanks very much for your reply which narrows down the possible types of heating & the water supply sources my grandparents might have used in their rental home (possibly a semi-detached house) at 70 Rawcliffe Rd. in Walton. This is interesting and helpful information.


  • Apologies~I think the address of my home in Walton Park was 70 Rawcliffe Rd. Those of you who know the area will likely recognize the correct address!


  • Anyone know anything about the army barracks that was in Walton on the Hill in 1851? I have a census entry for a regiment stationed there and would like to know what the area was like at that time. Thanks

    • Ian Farrell says:

      There was a militia storehouse around the back of Notre Dame school in Everton Valley and also the barracks on Rupert Lane off Heyworth St, at the time they may well have been part of Walton at the time.

  • Hi Charlie

    I too am seeking information on these barracks as I have just discovered that my great, great grandfather Henry McCawley (from Carrickfergus,Antrim) was stationed there in 1851, before getting married and moving to Scotland.

    Hope someone can enlighten us!

  • Peter curlett says:

    Hi everyone,

    If there is anybody on here who is interested in the local Walton Labour party or who knows they have had family who were members I have a number of books from the labour club which include meeting minutes ledgers members and a many other ledgers from the local club. I think they were to do with the labour club on Hale road. Some of the books go back as early as 1900 and there are a number covering the war years both first and second world war. They include ledgers about ration distribution and many other things if anyone is interested please contact me as they are gathering.dust at my house and I think they will be of real interest to some people. There isabout 30 ledgers and notebooks in total I think.

  • Patricia Shirley Loveridge. says:

    My uncle Eugene/iny/ernie Brennan with his father and brothers, Worked/owned a slaughter house in Cherry lane and allowed travelling fairground people to stay on some of the land with their caravans when not attending fairs. He had a Bungalow in Grove st, but his mother lived in a Wooden bungalow in Cherry Lane, In the 1920_1930s. I would love to know more if anyone can help, at least 7 of them are buried in Anfield cemetary. I am 80 this year so have left it a bit late to seek information. lol

  • Has any one got any photographs of railway Cottages Walton junction station Rawcliffe Road Liverpool as my Great Grandparents lived in no 2 railway cottage Rawcliffe road in the early nineties.

  • Hi, I am interested in finding information about the history of Walton Lane Liverpool 4. Particularly around 221 Walton Lane, which was demolished to make way for Evertons car park extention.

  • Dawn J. Galletly says:


    I am researching 2 Cemetery Cottages, Rice Lane Cemetery, Walton. I am trying to find information about the occupants during the period 1938-1946. One of the people I am looking for was probably a gravedigger, called Thomas O’Brien. I am also looking for Patricia Elizabeth (nee Webster) and Mary Elizabeth (born 1940). Are there any records of people coming from S Ireland to Liverpool to work as labourers, gravediggers etc? Thanks

    • Hi Dawn,

      There are definitely histories of people from Ireland coming to work in Liverpool at manual jobs. For the period you’re looking at, the census’s aren’t available yet (they’re confidential for 100 years). If anyone has records (e.g. electoral register) for those cottages then it will be the local archives: http://liverpool.gov.uk/libraries/archives-family-history/ They should be able to help, or at least point you in the right direction.


  • Joan Warburton says:

    Hello, I am researching the Warburton family history of Walton. 1912 William Joseph Warburton lived in Idris Street but I cannot find this street name anywhere. We are aware the Warburton’s had a diary of some sort in Leta Street around this time. Any information would be greatly appreciated.

    Thank you and love this forum which I have only just found today.

    Joan Warburton
    Perth, Western Australia

  • Does anybody recall a grocer’s/general store on City Road (I think?) that may have been called Wilcoxsons? It was run by a Joseph Wilcoxson. My mum, who lived in Nimrod Street, started work there aged 14, sometime around 1941. Thanks.

    • Joyce mciver says:

      Yes you are right about the name,Wilkies for short,owned by father and son ,my brother used to deliver people’s shopping on the bike with a basket at the front in 1957 ish. The shop became The Mace and later moved a few streets away which used to be called Pegrams

  • Could anybody tell me if there was a tintern abbey pub on county rd ? ..i remember going in a small pub further dwn from the fountains abby pub with a big bubble top juxbox ..i think it was wer the houses are now and the medical centre ..if anybody could name all pubs from the halfway house up to spellow lane something might jolt my memory …thanks

  • I am trying to find the high school my mum attended. We found a book, about Liverpool which was given to all school children in 1957, which has been stamped. The school was Walton Park School. I cannot find any reference to this school and all that I know is that it was a public school.
    Any help would be much appreciated

    • Hi Dawn,

      I’ve not been able to find any references either. The only thing that might be a clue is that there’s a Walton Park near Rice Lane station, and I wonder whether there was a school in one of the buildings on that street. There were a couple of very large houses, with plenty of room to house a small school. It might be a red herring though.


  • Does anyone have any information or photographs of Arnold’s Confectionery Works, Cherry Lane, Walton? The factory was owned by my grandfather, but I have very little information as to when he bought the old sweet factory, or when he ceased trading.

  • Brian Rowlands says:

    Do you know the origin of the name in The Cabbage Hall pub? Is it simply that it was built on fields that used to be a cabbage patch or is it named after a dignitary in Walton or after the builder ? I am just intrigued . Brian Rowlands

  • leslie Stockley says:

    Hi I find one of my ancestors died at Clubmore infirmary in 1717 has anyone information on this institution would be very gratefull

  • Eileen Cochrane says:

    I was a pupil at Walton CofE School in the late 1940s and early ’50s. I distinctly remember visiting 100 Walton Village with a schoolfriend. It was a sort of workhouse, but I can find no reference to it anywhere. My family thinks I’m making this up, but I remember it distinctly. Does anyone know anything about it?

  • Hi Eileen. I remember this building was used as a day centre for adults with special needs as far back as late 70s/ 1980. Always wanted to know history of this building myself. Now it has been turned into small flats within the original building. Hopefully someone may have photos or an old map of the village.

  • In 1871, I had ancestors living in ‘Throstles Nest’ in Walton on the hill. Can anyone help me as to the location of this building. It must have been a substantial building as many families lived there.

    The only ‘Throstles Nest’ I have found is an hotel in Scotland Road. I am not sure if that area was part of Walton on the hill at that time.
    Any help would be appreciated.

    • Hi David,

      It’s certainly possible that the Throstles Nest was recorded as being in Walton on the Hill. For centuries that was the mother parish of the whole area, right into Liverpool. Although that wasn’t really officially the case by 1871, I think some records might still have recorded it as such.


    • Robert Howgate says:

      There was a Throstles Nest behind the Atlas cinema, Walton. It ran between what was Beaconsfield Road and came out on Rice Lane by The Plough Inn. I believe there where a couple of houses there. There was an alleyway that went through, from Throstles Nest to behind the Stanley Pub, on Rice Lane and I believe there were dwellings on either side of it.

  • Tony Sumner says:

    I am in possession of a football team photo which I believe to be Walton Amateurs FC who played in the Liverpool League Division 1, the photo was taken in 1946-7 and includes my late father (Leslie Sumner). I would like to confirm the photo is definitely of Walton Amateurs and if so some knowledge of the clubs history.
    I can of course email or bring a copy of the photo to the Library, if you think you can help please advise.



  • Does anyone remember the name of a car parts (motor factor) shop near Warbreck Moor? It was between the park and the railway bridge near Heswall Road

  • Hi David, I am 80 and I am pretty certain The Throstles Nest used to be on the corner of Church Lane and County Rd, where the Lifestyles Gym is now.

  • David, please ignore my previous comment, I have just remembered that it was The Brown Cow on the corner of Church Lane & not The Throstles Nest. My apologies.

  • Glynis Purland says:

    Can anyone tell me what 176 Rice Lane originally was. Part of it is now Didis Gate House Pizza. The left part is old sandstone and there is lovely white designs above the pizza sign?

  • I was just thinking of my time at Northcote Road School (1969-1975) and wondering if there is a web site anywhere where old boys/girls from the school can post? I recall that the head at the time was Mrs Culshaw who always seemed formidable but was probably a really nice old lady. My favourite teacher was Mr Foy, I wonder if he is still around. I contacted a couple of my old classmates via the old FriendsReunited website some twenty years ago but since that closed down there doesn’t seem to be an old Northcote Road almuni site anywhere, not even on Facebook unless I am missing something. Would be interested if anyone had any more information. Cheers, Dave Carey.

  • Catherine Kelly says:

    I am researching my husband’s family tree. On his mother’s side he is descended from the Rice family who originally came from Walton and after whom Rice Lane is named. His grandfather Rice died when he was only 42 and my husband knows very little about him or his family. Any information about the Rice family would be gratefully received.

  • Marcella Goodge says:

    I am trying to find out who lived at 100 Rice Lane in circa 1918 and if indeed it was a house?
    Any information on where I can trace records for this address will be much appreciated, my father is trying to find his father’s father from this address.
    My father does not have his true surname as this was never given as his grandmother was not married to the gentleman who lived at 100 Rice Lane and back in 1918 this was unacceptable!
    Thankyou, kind regards Marcella

  • I am trying to locate my history. James Forshaw born 03.10.1790 illigitimate and baptised at St Mary’s Walton on the Hill son of Ellen Forshaw. Found an Ellen was buried at St John’s Old Haymarket 03.10.1790 died in the workhouse. This James became a blacksmith. He married an Elizabeth and they had a child Robert Forshaw baptised at St Peter’s in 1819. So who adopted him presumably someone who was a blacksmith and gave him an apprenticeship. If his mother died in the Workhouse near St John’s why would they take him to Walton on the Hill to christen him noticed there are quite a lot of illegitimate children baptised at St Mary’s. Explaination would be good.

  • andrew wood says:

    I’m puzzled about this section:

    Walton Prison
    Walton Prison was built by the Liverpool Corporation,‭ ‬who had purchased land for it in May‭ ‬1847.‭ ‬It was built between‭ ‬1849‭ ‬and‭ ‬1854-5‭ ‬by Messrs Furness‭ & ‬Company and John Weightman esq,‭ ‬and there is the possibility that many of the workmen were French prisoners of war.

    Britain and France hadn’t been at war since 1815 and were in fact allies by the time of the Crimean War which started in 1853. It’s highly unlikely that French prisoners were still held here 34 years after Waterloo.

    • Hi Andrew,
      I think you might be right! I’ve just looked up the source for my statement and in hindsight, despite their best intentions, this sounds more like a local myth than solid research. I know too little about European history at the time to know better, so thanks for taking the time to point out the inconsistency !
      It looks like this page could do with a bit of a rewrite as it’s pretty piecemeal, and when I do I will be sure to tidy up that part of the article.
      Thanks again,

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