Manchester Family Names
Many of the old families of Greater Manchester,
Lancashire and Cheshire can trace their ancestries back to the Norman
Conquest of 1066 or earlier. Their names effectively echo the long history
of the region and are imprinted in districts and townships whose streets
and placenames record their passing.

Alphabetical order – continued:

The Bostocks
of Cheshire

Bostocks who lived
Cheshire had their ancestry in one
Osmer, the Saxon Lord or Thane of the Manor of Bostock. Strict puritans
by the time of the Reformation and dissatisfied by the Church’s tolerance
of Catholics, Arthur Bostock emigrated to America around 1640 and
established a large Connecticut-New Hampshire Bostock ancestry. The
Bostocks held extensive lands throughout Cheshire and parts of Lancashire
including at Great Budworth, Warmingham, Church Coppenhall and in
Church Minshull. Broadbottom Hall was built by them in 1680 and up
to the 19th century, Broadbottom Hall and much of the surrounding
land was owned by the Bostock family. The name is sometimes written
as Bostwick or Bostick in America, but has the same root.

The Bradshaws
of Wigan

The Brereton
Family of Cheshire

The Brereton family
tree begins in 1175 with William de Brereton. His family had arrived
from France with William the Conqueror, and that William was named
after him as a tribute – it was to become a recurring name within
the family. Later, another unfortunate William Brereton, along with
four companions, was arrested and sent to the Tower of London charged
with high treason as lovers of Anne Boleyn . Despite protestations
of innocence, they were sentenced to death and beheaded on Tower Hill
in 1536. The Brereton family exerted power and influence over Cheshire
with holdings in Handforth, Malpas, Cheadle and at their country seat
at Brereton Hall. It was a Sir William Brereton who also headed parliamentarian
forces at the Battle of Middlewich and the siege of Nantwich in the
English Civil Wars. The Brereton’s established Handforth Hall when
they became lords of the manor of the Bosden area in the early 1500s.
One Sir Richard Brereton was the last owner of
before the Egerton family took it over.

The Bulkeley
Family of Cheadle & Beaumaris

The Bulkeleys were an important land-owning
family of south Manchester. As early as 1326 part of the Manor of Cheadle
(then worth £30 per annum) was acquired through marriage by one
Richard de Bulkelegh, who inherited the northern part which became known
as Cheadle Bulkeley, and remained so until it was merged with neighbouring
Cheadle Mosley in the late 19th century to become the present district
of Cheadle, (now in the Metropolitan Borough of Stockport). The estate
passed on thereafter to several succeeding generations of Bulkeleys
until, through wastefulness, they were forced in 1756 to sell off the
estate to the Reverend Thomas Egerton.
In another celebrated branch of the family – Sir Richard Bulkeley of
Beaumaris (c.1500-1547), was Chamberlain of North Wales – his great-grandfather
was Sir William Troutbeck, a descendant of King Edward I. His descendants
were made Viscounts Beaumaris. In the 17th century, Humphrey Bulkeley
served in the Parliamentarian army during the English Civil Wars, and
succeeded for a while to the Cheadle estates and died unmarried aged
60. He is buried, along with several other members of the Bulkeley family,
in St Mary’s Parish churchyard in Cheadle.
St Mary’s still displays the Bulkeley Coat of Arms, as well as stained
glass commemorating the marriage of the third Sir Richard Bulkeley of
Beaumaris and Cheadle in 1577. The National Archives hold papers at
the University of Wales in the Bangor Department of Manuscripts &
Archives, relating to the Bulkeley family, dating back to the 14th century.
The Bulkeleys are still recorded in street names in the township and
in the local school which bears the family name. The
Bulkeleys of Beaumaris are today one of the leading families in North
Wales and the family still lives in Anglesey.

The estate of Byrom has existed since
the thirteenth century. Byrom Hall, the ancestral home of the celebrated
John Byrom and was constructed
in the 18th century. A timber-framed 16th century monastic building
in Kersal, known as “the Kersal Cell” had badly fallen into
disrepair so that it had to be demolished, and was purchased by the
Byrom family in the 1660s. Tradition has it that John Byrom wrote the
hymn “Christians, Awake” at Kersal Cell in 1749. The family
had long been prosperous and influential in Manchester from dealing
in linen drapery.

The Byron Family
of Droylsden

The 1950 Arms
of Droylsden incorporate the Arms of the Byron family, to which the
famous romantic poet Lord Byron belonged, who were Lords of the Manor
of Droylsden. The 12th century Clayton Hall, (now part of Manchester),
was an early home of the Byrons and its moat still exists along side
St Cross Church. By 1585 Sir John Byron was living at Royton Hall;
it was here that, during the reign of Charles I, Sir Clifford Byron
had a hand cut off by an intruder that he had disturbed – only a severed
hand remains as (anecdotal) evidence of the event. In fact much of
the district of Royton was held by John de Byron during the 13th century
and remained in the Byron family until the early 17th century.

The Chadderton
family take their name after the district of that name, which is now
in the Metropolitan Borough of Oldham. In medieval times, Chaddertons
fought for the king and were knighted at the Battle of Agincourt.
Later family members were High Sheriffs of Lancashire, and others
governed the Isle of Man for the Earl of Derby. They came into ownership
of the lands of Chadderton under a medieval system of land tenure,
whereby the district of Chadderton was sublet to the powerful de Trafford
Family and in about 1235 Richard de Trafford gave the lands to his
son Geoffrey, who adopted the name of the estate and thereby became
the founder of the Chadderton family. Geoffrey de Chadderton had Chadderton
Hall built and became first Lord of the Manor of Chadderton.
At the beginning of the 14th century other lands were added to the
Chadderton holdings, including lands at Crompton.
By 1367, the Manor had passed into the possession of the Radcliffe
family, who were one of the most illustrious families in England.
It was John de Radcliffe, Lord of Chadderton, fought at Agincourt
in 1415, and was knighted by King Henry V.
The present day Oldham Metropolitan Borough Coat of Arms still bears
the griffin – a device taken from that of the Chadderton family. Chadderton
Hall, the old family seat, was demolished in 1939.

The Charnock Family took their name
from the township of Charnock Richard near Chorley, where they had their
original home – an area now famed as the home of the
Theme Park
. It was Robert Charnock who rebuilt Astley Hall. Robert
married five times, firstly to Isobel
of Speke Hall near Liverpool, and promoted the building of
the first school in Chorley in 1611.
The family had a somewhat chequered history, with Robert’s younger brother,
John, being executed for high treason in 1586 following an abortive
attempt to overthrow Queen Elizabeth I and replace her with Mary Queen
of Scots – the so called ‘Babington Plot’. Robert Charnock himself died
in 1616.
In 1624 Thomas Charnock became MP for Newton-in-Makerfield. Catholics
and Royalists to a man, like many other Lancashire families who followed
the old religion, at the end of the Civil Wars the family was fined
heavily by Parliament for their support of King Charles. Robert Charnock,
the last of the family male line, died in 1653. Robert’s daughter and
sole heir, Margaret, married Richard Brooke from Mere in Cheshire and
thereafter Astley Hall passed into the ownership, through this marriage,
to the Brooke family and thence to the Parkers and in the early 20th
century to the Tattons.

The Cheetham
Family of Stalybridge

The Chorlton
Family of Chorlton

The Chorlton Family
name is evident in areas of Manchester like Chorlton-cum-Hardy and
Chorlton on Medlock and traces its history back to 1546, during the
reign of Henry VIII when George Chorlton is reputed to have been awarded
the family Coat of Arms.
By the late 18th century Dinah Chorlton lived at Withington Old Hall,
whose farmlands extended well over a 1,000 acres. It was allegedly
the only Manor House in Manchester with a moat round it at that time.
In total, the Chorltons held 19 farms – Dog House Farm, Chorltons
Farm, and Catch Croft Farm among them – there may have been many others.
In more recent times, Squire Robert Chorlton had been a technical
author for the A V Roe Company in Manchester, and was a founder member
of The Manchester & Lancashire Family History Society.

are indebted to Sheila D. Turton for providing us with this short
history of the Chorlton family name.

The Clayton
Family of Clayton-le-Moors

The Clayton family
dates from the time when Robert de Clayton came to England with William
the Conqueror and was granted lands known as Clayton-le-Moors for
his important military services during the invasion of 1066. Clayton
Hall dates back to the 12th century and the present-day park is situated
on what remains of the vast estate of the De Clayton family. It is
reputed that the Royalist army were stationed at Clayton Hall before
its attack on Manchester and Oliver Cromwell is said to have stayed
there. Clayton Hall is said to boast three ghosts. The Claytons continued
to own Clayton Hall until one Adam de Grimshaw married Cicely Clayton
and made Clayton his home. It is thought that he took on the surname
of Clayton, while the remainder of the Grimshaw family remained in
their native Crowtree near Blackburn.
Through marriage the Grimshaws acquired the lordship of Clayton, which
eventually became the residence of the Byron family. Later, during
Tudor times, the family had rebuilt Clayton Hall as a moated manor
house, which remained in the Byron family until it was sold to Sir
Humphrey Chetham in 1620 – he died there in 1653.
The Manor of Adlington in Lancashire was purchased by Thomas Clayton
sometime around 1688. In addition to the Manor of Adlington, Thomas
Clayton bought the adjoining manor of Worthington from Edward Worthington.
Thereafter the properties of Adlington and Worthington were passed
by descent to members of the Clayton family, most notable among whom
were Richard Clayton who became Lord Chief Justice of the Common Pleas
in Ireland from 1765 until his death in 1770, and another Richard
Clayton who studied law and served as Recorder of Wigan from 1815
to 1828 and was Constable of Lancaster Castle and British Consul at
Nantes. The latter Richard was created a Baronet in 1774 and died
at Nantes in 1828. Robert Clayton, brother to Baron Richard Clayton,
succeeded to the Baronetcy and estates.
In the 19th century, upon the death of Richard Clayton Browne-Clayton
in 1886, the Adlington Hall Estate was sold. The estates and lands
comprising 129 acres was eventually bought by Wigan Corporation in
1921 for the princely sum of £4000.

The Clowes Family
of Broughton

The Clowes family
emerged as major landholders and in Broughton, Salford in the early
18th century. First significant mention occurs in 1721, when John
and Helen Radcliffe sold Booths Hall to Samuel Clowes, described as
“a Manchester merchant”, who seems to have systematically
bought much land and property in the area, including the Tyldesley
Manor. In 1731 he bought Chaddock Hall. Samuel Clowes died on 5th
August 1773, bequeathing Booths and Chaddock to his grandson, also
Samuel. Samuel seems to have been a regular inherited name in the
Clowes family, as some time after 1722, another Samuel Clowes had
purchased certain rents which were part of the lordship of Tyldesley.
On 25th December 1782, he had also leased two of his farm holdings,
(Grundy’s Farm of 15 acres and Urmston’s Farm of 8 acres) for an annual
rent of £14 14s (£14.73) for 99 years to Warrington School.
Samuel also made a great deal of money out of the building of canals
in the region. Records show a bill and receipt to the value of £257.12s.1d
(£257.60 in modern coinage) for purchase of land in Boothstown,
taken for the Leigh Canal, “…paid to Sam Clowes, Esq., by
His Grace the Duke of Bridgewater”. Another sum of £97.5s.10d
was paid by one John Coupe, for use of the land in Boothstown in Worsley,
for rights to build a canal.
Around 1840
the ‘township’ of Broughton, consisted of 1,004 acres, of which some
870 were owned by the Reverend John Clowes, a notable gardener and
botanist, who thereafter records show as owning most of what became
Broughton Park. Thus the family acquired land by marriage and by wise
purchases. They took the decision to develop Broughton Park for housing
in the early 19th century, specifying that all the dwellings should
be of substantial rateable value. Many of the splendid villas they
built still stand in Broughton Park and Higher Broughton. Through
various land deals, the family clearly grew rich as evidenced in 1836-38
by the building of St John’s Parish Church on Wellington Street, (the
first to be built in Broughton), which was and paid for by the Clowes
family. The Rev John Clowes, who died in 1831, is buried there, having
completed the extraordinary term of 62 years as rector of St. John’s
Church. Later, when a turnpike road was proposed to run from Manchester
through Strangeways, Broughton and on to Bury; bitter negotiations
took place with the Clowes family who owned of most of the land. Their
insistence on Toll Bars was very controversial at the time, but the
eventual completion of Bury New Road, as it became known, added even
more money into the Clowes family coffers.
Great Clowes Street which joins the Higher and Lower Broughton districts
of Salford was named after the family.

The Davenport
Family of Bramhall

The Davenport
family’s original seat was in Astbury, near Congleton in Cheshire,
and family origins can be traced back to one Ormus de Davenport at
the time of the Norman Conquest. He was given the Manor of Davenport
from the Venables of Kinderton, the original Norman feudal Lords.
In 1166 Ormus’ son Richard became the chief forester of Leek and Macclesfield.
Later the family acquired the hereditary status of Magistrate Sergeants
of the Forest of Macclesfield.
The Davenport family developed branches at Davenport, Calveley, Wheltrough,
Woodford, Capesthorne and Bramhall.
Sir Humphrey Davenport, who was Lord Chief Baron of the Exchequer,
was a younger son of the Davenport family of Bramhall and married
Mary Sutton of Sutton Hall (c1590).
Bramhall Hall in Stockport was the grand
home for the Davenport family of Stockport, who resided there for
500 years – today it belongs to Stockport
Metropolitan Borough Council and is open to the public. Bramhall park
used to be the parkland and woodland estate attached to Bramall Hall.
The Hall is one of Cheshire’s grandest black and white timber framed
buildings and dates back to the 14th century. Subsequent owners carried
out substantial refurbishment in the 19th century.
Capesthorne Hall in Cheshire is
stilled owned, and lived in, by the Bromley Davenport branch of the
family, who have resided there since the 11th century.

The de la Warre
Family of Manchester

In 1204, King
John had granted to John de la Warre the Lordship of Bristol and in
1206 he was Lord of the Manor of Wickwar in Gloucestershire. On the
death of Thomas Greddle, or Grelly, the eighth Baron of Manchester,
Grelley Family) in
1347, the vast estates of the family passed, through the marriage
of his sister Johanna with John de la Warre, into the hands of the
de la Warre family. They held the Manor of Manchester for over a century.

In the early 14th century during the reign of King Edward II, John
de la Warre was called to be a member of parliament .
He had distinguished himself in the battle of Cressy, during the Wars
of the Roses.
In 1422, Thomas de la Warre, Lord of the Manor, (1359-1426) founded
a college, granted by royal licence (now “Chets” music school
and Chethams Library) and a
collegiate church (now Manchester
). Thomas was a priest in the parish of Ashton-under-Lyne
from around 1371-72, and afterwards became rector at Manchester, though
he did not inherit the title of Baron until the death of his elder
brother John, who died childless in 1398. De la Warre maintained his
interest and patronage in the collegiate church until his death in
1426. He is buried in the Abbey Church at Swinehead, which had been
founded by Robert Grelley in 1134. There is a statue of Thomas La
Warre on the facade of Manchester
Town Hall
. After his death the line ended and the Barony passed
to the West family through his half sister Joanna.
Later, a celebrated family member, Thomas West, Baron de la Warre,
is recorded as having married Cecilia, daughter of Sir Thomas Shirley
in Virginia in 1596. He was the proprietor of the Virginia Company
and Virginia’s first governor, and he became immortalised in giving
his surname to Delaware Bay, river and state in the USA.
The village of Wickwar, 20 miles south-west of Gloucester, is an ancient
market-town which derives its name from Wick , (meaning “a
turn in a stream”), and War , from the manor having belonged
to the de la Warre family.

Downes Family
of Shrigley & Worth

The Downes family
of Shrigley Hall, Macclesfield, held the estate for over 500 years
until the early 19th century. The ancient estates of Shrigley and
Worth were in the ancient parish of Prestbury, in the Diocese of Chester
and the Downes of Shrigley and Worth was a branch of Downes of Sutton-Downes
and Overton-in-Taxall.
The Shrigley estate dates back to the de Shrigley and de Macclesfield
families of around 1313, and was originally home to the Downes, who
held the estate from the early 14th century, when documents exist
showing William, son of Robert de Downes, in occupation.
Other branches of the family existed at Butley and Tytherington in
Cheshire, and at Wardley and Chorley in Lancashire. Worth Hall, near
Macclesfield, originally the home of the Downes family of Worth, is
now Davenport Golf Club. There is also documentary evidence of a branch
of the Downes Family at Nantwich from 1596 to the early 19th century.
Though the family is now extinct, and the last of the male line of
succession, Edward Downes having died on the 30th December 1819, before
his death he had sold the family estates; that of Worth-in-Poynton
was sold to Sir George Warren of Poynton, and that of Shrigley to
Mr William Turner of Mill Hill, Blackburn in Lancashire. Turner had
built St John’s & Gregory’s Church in Bollington in 1834, and
the church still contains murals of the Downes family.
Edward Downes was survived by two sisters, Bridget Downes (spinster),
and Sarah, wife of John Leach Panter of North End Lodge, Fulham in
Shrigley Hall reopened as a hotel in 1989 and was carefully restored
to retain its original character.

The Duckenfields
of Tameside

The Duckenfield
family were lords of Dukinfield from the 13th century until the mid-18th
century. The most celebrated of the Duckenfields was
of Dukinfield Hall was a man of great Puritan faith.
He distinguished himself in battle for Cromwell’s parliamentarian
cause when in 1651 he commanded the forces which secured the Isle
of Man and in 1653 was appointed to Cromwell’s Little Parliament.
He is buried at the Church of
St. Lawrence
in Denton. The family amassed a great deal of land
and property throughout Cheshire and by the mid-17th century they
owned the whole of Dukinfield, now part of the Tameside
Metropolitan Borough – the district is named after the family.

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This page last updated 17 Nov 11.