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Huyton with Roby








In 1907 the area was described as follows:

Somewhat undulating in the north, but flat in most places. This is quite a residential district with the dwellers in the city of Liverpool, for pleasant country houses with gardens and shrubberies are seen on all sides. Beyond the houses are open fields, some pastures, others where corn, potatoes, and turnips are generally cultivated. The soil is sandy, with a solid base of red sandstone. At Huyton Quarry the character of the country varies; coal mines begin to indicate their presence by shafts and ventilators. The Huyton Quarry mine is the nearest to Liverpool of the South Lancashire mines.




Huyton proper, has an area of 1,819 acres. There was no well-defined boundary between it and Roby to the south-west. On the eastern side it was separated from Whiston by a brook which ran through Tarbock to join Ditton brook. In 1258 Richard de Huyton claimed from Adam de Knowsley one-third of the manor of Huyton, one-third of the church, and a third of the mill, and of two oxgangs of land which Richard when under age demised to him. In 1252 Adam and his wife Godith, probably a relative of the lords of Billinge, sought from Adam de Winstanley 1⅓ oxgang of land in Winstanley. The next step in the pedigree is not clear. It would appear that Adam had several sons—Henry, Robert, and William, whose descendants held or claimed the manor on a title said to be derived from Adam de Knowsley. Henry de Huyton we know was still living in 1307, he died about 1345.



The Red Hazels, Liverpool Road,
Huyton, was built in 1764
The main road from Liverpool to Prescot passed through the northern part of the township, the South Lancashire system of electric tramways running along it from the Liverpool boundary to St. Helens and beyond. The principal road for Huyton, however, was that from Liverpool through Broadgreen and Roby. The London and North-Western company's line from Liverpool to Manchester passed through the centre, and just to the eastward of the village a line branched off towards Prescot and St. Helens; there where stations at the western and eastern ends of the village called Huyton and Huyton Quarry respectively. The Hazels or Red Hazels and Hurst House were in the north-eastern corner of the township; Wolfall Hall was near the northern boundary and Dam House on the border of Roby, and Huyton Hey to the south of the railway near the station.






Lancashire, Huyton Village in the early 1920's



Huyton POW Camp © Trinity Mirror
During the Second World War, Huyton suffered bombing from the Luftwaffe. Some Huyton residents were killed or injured but the scale of destruction was nowhere close to that experienced by Liverpool, Bootle and Birkenhead. Unlike Liverpool, schoolchildren were not evacuated from Huyton but schools and homes were provided with air-raid shelters. Huyton was also host to three wartime camps: an internment camp, a prisoner of war camp and a base for American servicemen (G.I.s). The internment camp, one of the biggest in the country, was created to accommodate those 'enemy aliens' deemed a potential threat to national security. Churchill's demand to 'collar the lot' meant that around 27,000 people ended up being interned in the UK. The camp, first occupied in May 1940, was formed around several streets of new, empty council houses and flats and then made secure with high barbed wire fencing. Twelve internees were allocated to each house, but overcrowding resulted in many sleeping in tents. Initially the camp was only meant to hold the internees until they could be shipped to the Isle of Man. However, largely in response to the torpedoing of the transport ship 'The Arandora Star', with the loss of nearly 700 people, the deportations ended. Most of the internees were released long before the camp closed in 1942. The camp was sited in and around what became known as the 'Bluebell Estate' and many of the streets were given names of the great battles of the Second World War. The prisoner of war camp closed in 1948. Many of its inmates 'went native', stayed in Britain and married local women. Among those in the Huyton camp was Bert Trautmann who later went on to be the 1950s goalkeeper for Manchester City. From 1944, American servicemen were temporarily stationed in Huyton. Older Huyton residents still recall the tensions between black and white G.I.s which apparently resulted in a night known as ‘the shoot out at the Eagle and Child’.

The original township of Huyton was united with Roby to form the township of Huyton with Roby and in 1877 Thingwall was added and also part of the parish of Childwall. The area of the amalgamated townships was 3,054 acres, and the population in 1901 numbered 4,661.





St. Michael's Parish Church, Huyton seen here alongside it the old Wheatsheaf Inn photographed in 1860. The old Cross (of 1819) in the foreground was replaced in 1897 with a replica and its site is now in Blue Bell Lane between Stanley Road and Derby Terrace. The Wheatsheaf Inn was demolished prior to 1900.












Huyton is home to the National Wildflower Centre, which is set in Court Hey Park. There are also another seven parks: Bowring Park, on Roby Road the oldest public park in Knowsley, opened in 1907, Huyton Lane Wetland, Jubilee Park, McGoldrick Park, Sawpit Park, Stadt Moers Park, covering more than 220 acres and St. John's Millennium Green.


Huyton is home to many public houses including The Huyton Park Hotel, The Stanley Arms (named after Frederick Stanley, 16th Earl of Derby), The Crofters, Seel Arms, Queens Arms, Oak Tree, The Old Bank, Longview Social Club and The Swan.



Huyton-with-Roby boasts two 18 hole golf courses: Huyton & Prescot Golf Club (Founded in 1905, it can be found at Hurst Park, Huyton Lane) and Bowring Golf Club (According to a sign at the course, it is the oldest municipal golf course in England. Huyton has its own cricket club, located off Huyton Lane which was founded in the mid-1860s by the Stone family and the town has produced at least one first class cricketer: Reginald Moss. Huyton also had a professional rugby league club from 1968 to 1985. It was formed from Liverpool Stanley (1934–1951) and Liverpool City (1951–1968).










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Sources

British History Online
Liverpool Central Library
Liverpool Records Office
Trinity Mirror
Knowsley History Website
National Archives

Robert F Edwards

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