infobox UK place
country = England
official_name= Thornton Hough
population= 770 (2001 Census)citeweb|url=http://www.wirral.gov.uk/factsandfigures/census2001/oneward2recset.asp?ref=TS42|title=Wirral 2001 Census: Thornton Hough|work=Metropolitan Borough of Wirral|accessdate=17 May|accessyear=2007]
region= North West England
constituency_westminster= Wirral South
os_grid_reference= SJ303811 Thornton Hough is a
Victorian-eravillage on the Wirral Peninsula, Merseyside, England. Located near Neston, Cheshire, it is roughly five miles from Liverpooland ten miles from Chester. It is part of the Clatterbridge Ward of the Metropolitan Borough of Wirraland is situated in the parliamentary constituency of Wirral South. At the 2001 Census, Thornton Hough had 770 inhabitants of a total of 16,906 people living within the ward. [citeweb|url=http://neighbourhood.statistics.gov.uk/dissemination/LeadKeyFigures.do?a=7&b=5941388&c=clatterbridge&d=14&e=16&g=361442&i=1001x1003x1004&m=0&enc=1|title=2001 Census: Clatterbridge (Ward)|work=Office for National Statistics|accessdate=17 May|accessyear=2007]
Mentioned in the
Domesday Bookas "Torintone", the present name of the village was established when the daughter of local landowner Roger de Thorneton, married Richard de Hoghe during the reign of Edward II.citeweb|url=http://www.scarecrowfestival.co.uk/history.htm|title=Thornton Hough history|publisher=scarecrowfestival.co.uk|work=Gavin Hunter|accessdate=17 May|accessyear=2007]
By the beginning of the 19th century, Thornton Hough formed part of the Neston Estate owned by
Baron Mostynof Mostyn, Flintshire and was a township in Neston Parish of the Wirral Hundred. The population was 165 in 1801, 164 in 1851, 547 in 1901 and 506 in 1951. [citeweb|url=http://www.ukbmd.org.uk/genuki/chs/thorntonhough.html|work=GENUKI UK & Ireland Genealogy|title=Cheshire Towns & Parishes: Thornton Hough|accessdate=17 May|accessyear=2007]
Ownership of a large part of the village passed to Joseph Hirst, who added a church, the first school in the area and built 'Wilshaw Terrace' cottages in the 1860s. The village was largely rebuilt and expanded in the 1880s by the third
Lord Leverhulme, of the then Lever Brotherssoap company, now the Unilevercorporation. His aim was to create as a clean and safe environment for the farm and Manor workers to live in. A similar village was built in nearby Port Sunlight, next to the Lever soapworks, for the Soapworks workers.
Thornton Hough was part of the
Wirral Rural Districtfrom 1894 until it was superseded in 1933 by the Wirral Urban District. Further changes occurred on 1 April 1974, when local government reorganisation resulted in most of Wirral, including Thornton Hough, transfer from the county of Cheshireto Merseyside as part of the Metropolitan Borough of Wirral.
Thornton Hough, along with the neighbouring villages of
Brimstageand Raby, are within an Area of Special Landscape Value, a protective designation to preserve the character and appearance of the area. This is part of the Wirral Unitary Development Plan of the Metropolitan Borough of Wirral. [citeweb|url=http://www.scarecrowfestival.co.uk/Thornton%20Hough%20Final.pdf|title=Brimstage, Raby & Thornton Hough: A Strategy for Change Management|page=28|work=Thornton Hough Community Trust|accessdate=29 August|accessyear=2007]
Thornton Hough's central feature is the
village green, a patch of common ground that includes a cricketpitch and pavilion, tennis courts, and a children's play area.
Thornton Hough has two
churches: All Saints, built in 1867 by Joseph Hirst, has a spireand tower displaying five clock faces; St George's was built by William Lever in 1906 as part of his reconstruction of the village.The local primary schoolis Thornton Hough Primary School located on St George's way. This school building was originally built to serve as a military building, but was turned over for school usage after the Second World War. The original playground has been reduced in size due to the building extensions of decking and garden areas.
The Parish Hall, originally the village school until closure in 1953, is small and has a Victorian exterior, although its interior was recently redesigned to look more modern.
The Village Hall is a large extension to the original wooden structure hall belonging to St George's Church and was built in the 1970s by Collins Construction. It is also referred to as the 'New' Village Hall to set it apart from the Parish Hall which is used for the fortnightly youth club. Since it first opened, the hall has been used for a variety of local events and as a venue for parties. The hall is utilised by the local
badmintonclub, the village play-school and provides a meeting place for the Cubs, Scouts, Rainbows, Brownies and Guides.
Thornton Manor, dating from the 1840s, was occupied by Lord Leverhulme from 1893. The building was rebuilt over the next twenty years in an
Elizabethanstyle. Today, the manor is used as a wedding venue and provides facilities for corporate functions. [citeweb|url=http://www.thorntonmanor.co.uk/history.asp|title=Thornton Manor website|accessdate=1 May|accessyear=2008]
hops and pubs
The village has a number of shops, including a small and very traditional
post office. The counter used to run across the length of the shop, but the interior was redesigned some years ago to maximize space and security.
Next-door to the post office is the
British Legionalso known as "the mens Club" due to the fact that women used to be barred with the exception of 2 days per year; and further up the road are the old Village Stores, which once acted as a key centre for provision for the village. The Village Stores struggled to compete with the bigger and cheaper local supermarkets, and were renamed the Tower Tearooms, before it's closure in 2007.
The village smithy, relocated from its original site in 1905 into a building of
half timberedconstruction, remains in existence (as of 2008).
Just outside the village is The Westwood Grange Country Club, a restaurant/nightclub facility on the border of Thornton Hough and Neston. Also on the outskirts of the village is Thornton Hall Hotel, occasionally used by visiting football teams.
Events and festivals
The Thornton Hough
ScarecrowFestival was held annually between 1999 and 2006. Residents participating made scarecrows of varying designs and quality, which were judged at the end of a week-long open season which attracted visitors from local areas. The festival also included a feteon the village green. The festival was not held in 2007 or 2008 and it is not yet known whether the festival will return in 2009. [citeweb|url=http://www.scarecrowfestival.co.uk/ |title=Thornton Hough Scarecrow Festival website|accessdate=17 March|accessyear=2008] .
* [http://www.multimap.com/map/browse.cgi?client=public&GridE=-3.04750&GridN=53.32260&lon=-3.04750&lat=53.32260&search_result=Thornton%20Hough%2C%20Merseyside&db=freegaz&keepicon=true&lang=&place=Thornton%20Hough%2C%20Merseyside&pc=&advanced=&client=public&addr2=&quicksearch=thornton%20hough&addr3=&scale=100000&addr1= Map of Thornton Hough, Wirral]
* [http://www.online.church123.com/allsaintschurchthorntonhough/ All Saints Church, Thornton Hough]
* [http://www.dfes.gov.uk/cgi-bin/performancetables/dfepx1_05.pl?School=3442212&Mode=Z Department for Education & Skills: Thornton Hough Primary School statistics (2005)]
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