Southport Christ Church, Lancashire Genealogy

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Chapelry History

SOUTHPORT, a sea-bathing place, in the parish of North Meols, union of Ormskirk, hundred of West Derby, S. division of Lancashire, 9 miles (N. W.) from Ormskirk, and 20 (N.) from Liverpool; containing, in 1841, 3346 inhabitants. It is situated at the mouth of the Ribble, on the shore of the Irish Sea, opposite to Lytham. Prior to 1792, the site of this improving village was a dreary sand-bank, at the lower end of a bay seventeen fathoms deep, which is now choked up with sand. The foundation of the prosperity of Southport, as a seabathing place, was laid by Mr. Sutton, of North Meols, who, appreciating its local advantages, built the first inn, called the Royal Hotel, in 1792; in a few years symptoms of prosperity began to appear, and some cottages were built in the vicinity of the hotel, on ground considerably elevated above the level of the sea. From this beginning the village gradually rose into importance, attaining its present celebrity from the influence of fashion, the easy communication with some of the principal towns of the county, and a salubrious air from which invalids derive essential benefit. It is now a favourite resort for sea-bathing, and possesses excellent accommodation for visiters. The houses are built of brick, a considerable number of them cemented, and many in the form of villas; there are several large hotels, and a number of good shops. Lords'-street, the principal street, is about a mile in length, very wide, and open, with gardens in front of the houses. The Victoria Baths, erected by subscription, form a handsome range of building with a colonnade in front, facing the sea; and attached is a fine terrace-walk of great extent. An assembly-room, newsroom, and libraries supply means of amusement and relaxation; and upwards of a hundred donkeys, and many convenient donkey-carriages, enable visiters to explore the neighbourhood, and enjoy the breezes on the shore. An act was obtained in 1846, for paving, lighting, and otherwise improving the place, and for establishing a market; and under its provisions Improvement Commissioners have been appointed. In 1847 an act was passed for a railway to Liverpool, through Crosby, 16½ miles in length; the line, being nearly level, is free from engineering difficulties. In the same year, another act was passed for a railway to Manchester, through Wigan. There are two churches. Christ Church, an unostentatious brick building with a tower, was erected in 1820, and enlarged in 1830: the living is a perpetual curacy, in the patronage of the Rev. Charles Hesketh; net income, £107. Trinity Church, in the early English style, was consecrated in November 1837, and enlarged in 1847: the living is a perpetual curacy, with a net income of £150, and a substantial parsonage-house; patrons, Trustees. There are places of worship for Independents and Wesleyans; and a Roman Catholic chapel. The last, dedicated to Ste. Marie-on-the-Sands, was built in 1840 from a design by Pugin, is in the early English style, and cost £1500: a house for the priest and a school-house are adjacent. A strangers' charity provides medical aid and bathing for the sick poor coming from a distance, and a dispensary affords aid to the local poor.

From: A Topographical Dictionary of England by Samuel Lewis (1848), pp. 149-152. URL: Date accessed: 21 July 2010.


Civil Registration

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Probate records

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