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Allerton, a history


In the early 1900s the township of Allerton now a suburb of Liverpool was described as follows:

Allerton is a suburban township containing 1,586 acres, pleasantly situated on the gentle slopes of a ridge which rises on the eastern side to 230 feet above sea level, overlooking the River Mersey across the adjacent township of Garston. There are several large residences with their private grounds set in the midst of pastures and a few arable fields. There are plantations of trees, some of a fair size for a suburban district. An air of tidiness reigns over what remains of the natural features, with neatly kept hedges and railed paddocks, and shrubs grown to rule and measure. The roads are good, and the soil, apparently clay and sand, appears fertile, and is of course much cultivated; good cereals are successfully grown.

Previously known as Alretune, in the Domesday Book it was referred to as  Allerton, in 1306. In the twelfth century Allerton became a member of the barony of  Manchester. During the medieval period the manor of Allerton was held by the Lathom family, throughout her long widowhood, Elizabeth Lathom (née Legh) the wife of Richard Lathom (1563–1602), occupied Allerton Hall. And by her Will and Codicil, both executed in July, 1624, gave her second son, Edward Lathom, the occupation and profit of “this my hall in Allerton," and the houses and lands for three years after her death for the better discharging of her debts and to keep her other sons, Richard and John, until her grandson, Richard Lathom (of Parbold, son of Thomas who died in 1623), then an infant of about two years old, the heir of Parbold and Allerton, "came of age". Richard Lathom, a Royalist, fought alongside his uncles in the English Civil War. Richard survived the war but his Estate was "forfeited in the name of treason" by Cromwell's parliament in 1652. "The commissioners" (of parliament who had confiscated the estate) sold it in 1654 to a John Sumpner of Midhurst, Sussex. for £2,700. Notwithstanding that the Lathoms, father, mother, and children, now dispossessed, were frequently convicted of recusancy, ( a refusal to attend Anglican services), they contrived to hang on to both Parbold and Allerton a little longer. Indeed it was not until 1670 that the Sumpners managed to eject the Lathoms, and only then by increasing the amount of the original purchase price. When assessments were made for the hearth tax in 1666, Allerton Hall was one of the larger houses in the parish of Childwall with eight hearths; this was exceeded only by Speke Hall with twenty-one hearths. The estate was bought in 1736 by John Hardman and his brother James. John Hardman was a merchant from Rochdale and it is likely that the present house on the site originates from this time. In about 1779 the house was bought by the lawyer, philanthropist and abolitionist, William Roscoe. Roscoe completed the building of the house but had to sell it in 1816 when he became bankrupt. During the American Civil War, the mansion was rented by Charles Kuhn Prioleau, an American landowner from South Carolina who financially supported the Confederate States and who married Mary Elizabeth Wright, daughter of the owner of the hall. In the early part of the 20th century the building was owned by the Clarke family who donated it to Liverpool City Council in 1927. The building was damaged by two fires, in 1994 and in 1995.

Major General Sir William Earle
The more recent landowners of Allerton were the Earles of Liverpool, Sir Hardman Earle, of Allerton Tower, who was made a baronet in 1869 and died in 1877. He was succeeded by his son Sir Thomas, who died in 1900, and his grandson Sir Henry Earle, D.S.O. General Sir William Earle, C.B., C.S.I., a son of the first baronet, was killed in the Soudan on 10 February, 1885 and there is a statue to commemorate him in front of St. George's Hall, Liverpool.

Allerton is now a suburb of Liverpool, located 3 miles (4.8 km) southeast of the city centre, bordered by Mossley Hill, Woolton, Hunt's Cross and Garston. Allerton has a number of large houses in the prestigious Calderstones Park area, with mainly 1930s semi-detached housing around the shopping area of Allerton Road. Purchase of the land for Allerton Cemetery was completed in October 1906, the Church of England section was consecrated by the Bishop of Liverpool on 24 September 1909, and the first burial in the cemetery took place on 29 December 1909. It is still in operation.

All Hallows in Allerton
The Church of All Hallows in Allerton, is designated by English Heritage as a Grade I listed building, it is an active Anglican parish church in the diocese of Liverpool, the archdeaconry of Liverpool and the deanery of Liverpool South - Childwall. The church was built at the expense of John Bibby of the Bibby Line in memory of his first wife, at a cost of £20,000 (£1,590,000 as of 2014). It was designed by G. E. Grayson. The foundation stone was laid on 31 October 1872, and the church was consecrated on 10 August 1876 by the Bishop of Chester. During the Second World War the stained glass was removed to Slaidburn for safety and replaced by plain glass. This was destroyed in an air raid and the stained glass was returned in 1946.

Hillside Road off Allerton Road circa 1928.

Notable former residents of Allerton are:

Penny Lane roundabout which is
actually on Smithdown Place, circa 1957

Peter Adamson
Saint John Almond
Bill Kenwright
Paul McCartney
John Power (musician)
John Arne Riise
William Roscoe
Daniel Agger

Hollie Cavanagh

Allerton Road features in the Beatles' song, Penny Lane. The 'shelter in the middle of the roundabout', the barber shop and possibly the bank (whose banker 'never wears a Mac') mentioned in the song are all located on Smithdown Place which is at the junction of Allerton Road, Penny Lane and Smithdown Road. The suburb of Allerton also features in the first episode of BBC Drama 'Spooks', where a bomb exploded outside the home of a family planning doctor. The attack was organised by a group of pro-life campaigners.


British History online
Liverpool Central Library
Liverpool Records Office

Robert F Edwards

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