Introduction

Hi and welcome to my site.
Cheshire is full of weird and wonderful stories of the supernatural, local heores and the mysterious.
I will take you on a tour as I look deep into the Cheshire that lies underneath the wonderful countryside and find the secrets that still hide there.
What magic and long lost secrets will we find?
So, sit back and enjoy my journey. This is a land of Magic, Knights, Dragons, Wizards, Witches, Boggarts, Murder, Ghosts and Old Forgotten Knowledge.


I would love to hear your stories as well. So if you have anything you would like me to look into and find information out, please let me know.

Sunday, 23 January 2011

DELAMERE FOREST




DELAMERE FOREST

The present day forest is far smaller than what it use to be. It is what is left of two grest forests -- MARA and MONDRUM. They originally extended from the Mersey to Nantwich.



This map shows Delamere Forest between 1277 - 1536.

F= Frodsham, T= Tarporley, U= Utkinton,

VR- Vale Royal Abbey, W= Weaverton.




This area used to have three lakes (Meres) called HATCHMERE, OAKMERE and LINMERE (which has been since drained). Also inside this area is Hunger Hill which is one of the oldest parts of the forest, Eddisbury Hill which has a large Iron Age Hill Fort at the top. This fort was partly destroyed, perhapees by the Romans but rebuilt by the Anglo Saxons in AD914. In Oakmere, there are earthworks of an ancient settlement.

This whole area was once the exclusive hunting ground of the Earls of Chester and the Royal Family.
In 1812, what was left of the medieval forest was offically deforested by Parliament. The Crown retained some land (which was leased out and farmed as Crown property). The rest was allocated to private owners. Some of the Crown's land was reserved under the Surveyor of Woods and Forest (now the Forestry Commission) and planted with conifers. Also during this year, the new parish of Delamere was created by an Act of Parliament which received the Royal Assent on the 9th June 1812.

In 1819, the parish was divided into four :- KINGSWOOD, EDDISBURY, OAKMERE and DELAMERE.

In 1856, a further act was passed authorising the cultivation for farm land in parts of Delamere.
The main route through Delamere was the Roman road leading from Chester to Manchester. A secondary track was also the path of a Roman road to Middlewich, this later became the A54. Of course there was many other tracks that ran throughout the forest, these have now been forgotton or used as footpaths but years ago these such areas were the haunts for highwaymen. They were ideal as the cover of the forest gave them an easy escape route. It is said that this is how THIEVES MOSS gained its name. So did GALLOWSCLOUGH get its name from having a gallow here for a while?

Delamere has also been long associated with Gypsies and travelling people staying here for a while during their search for work or just passing through. During the early part of 1815, a woman came to live in the forest. She had travelled from Germany and this is the legend of her.

THE WOMAN WHO LIVED IN DELAMERE FOREST

Maria Hollingsworth claimed to be the daughter of a Lutheran Clergyman of Leuwarden in West Friesland, where she had been born in 1765. She had married an English soldier of the 22nd Regiment and under the command of Lord Cathcart, they travelled through Germany. Her husband died in 1814, leaving her with two children. Maria came to England with her daughter after obtaining a small pension from Queen Charlotte, leaving her son to finish his apprenticive as a carpenter in Hanover.

Maria obtained permission to live in the forest. She found two whale ribs on a bank near Oakmere (Philip Egerton of Oulton had left these here). She used them to build a rough hut. This hut is said to have measured 8ft by 10ft and 5ft high. She lived of the land and taught her daughter and childred from the neighbourhood to read and write in English, French and German.

In 1820, Maria received a letter from her son saying he was joining them. Marai and her daughter waited everyday on a raised area overlooking the road her son ould have travelled on.

After a while, Maria saw a man whom she beleived to be her son. But this man is said to have stopped and asked for directions to Maria's home from another man of bad character who lived in a cottage nearby. The next day, Maria and her daughter saw the neighbour and his son carrying a large, heavy sack and throwing it out into the mere. But it didnt sink, so they took it out and disappeared behind their cottage carrying spades. Maria tried to follow them but lost them. Maria went to the authorities the following morning believing her son had been murdered. Mr Wilbraham of Delamere House tried to help Maria but the mystery was never solved.
Another traveller came after claiming to be her son and Maria accepted him, but it is said, without any enthusiasm.

During 1832, Maria was nominated to fill a vacancy in one of the Dutch Almshouses in London and she left quickly leaving behind her daughter and "son".

It is said that the ghost of a young man and an old woman are amoung the spirits that roam the forest.

CIVIL WAR

Another ghostly tale associated with the forest is that of fighting Roundheads and Royalists from the Civil War.

Delamere Forest saw one fairly small skirmish on January 24th 1644. In a chance meeting of the Parliamentarians lead by Thomas Fairfax and the Royalist army lead by Lord Byron. The Parliamentarions were leading to Tilston Heath from Manchester before moving onto Nantwich. The Royalist army had sent a patrol out and after this meeting they lost about 30 men as prisoners. The skirmish is said to have taken place near the A49 near Nunsmere.

But this would not have been the only skirmish in the forest. Romans, Saxons and Welsh have all been in this area over time, so including the Civil War, probably many a life would have been lost here.

Other paranormal sightenings have included strange lights, a woman in white and a large black dog.

3 comments:

krobinson said...

Very informative post!Delamere forest is must see place in the north west and is also one of my favorite attraction! It offers a great evergreen forest, open grassland and wetlands along with numerous species of wildlife to take photograph, admire and enjoy. If you love mountain biking then this is the ideal place for an easy ride. Besides Mountain there are various sporting events being held like bike races, time trials, strong man and woman plus race for life and more and so on.

Unknown said...

I have seen an old carriage cross my path in Delamere & when I arrived at the point the carriage passed there was no crossing road, so the carriage had gone through the bush at the side of the road. This was witnessed by myself & my partner

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