1800 – 1899


1801 FEB 7 John Rylands born in St Helens.

1803 Warrington Volunteer Infantry (“Robin Redbreasts”) formed.

1804 Runcorn and Latchford Canal opened to link Warrington with Runcorn. It was also known as the Old Quay Canal and the Black Bear Canal and was eight miles long. Work began in 1801.

1805 Lorenzo Dow, American Methodist minister, visited Warrington.

1805 John Rylands began his wire making business in a former mill on Bridge Street.

1808 Warrington Local Militia raised.

1810 The Warrington Dispensary opened in the market place to improve the health of the town.

1810 Town Bell moved from the old Court House in Golden Square to Holy Trinity church tower.

1813 JUN 3 Act passed for Warrington to have town commissioners.

1814-15 Joseph Crosfield opened up his soap-making business (set up 1814, production began 1815).

1815 4th Warrington bridge, Harrison’s Bridge, built of wood at Bridge Foot.

1817 Wesleyan Sunday School built on Buttermarket Street.

1817 JAN 20 Fire in nursery at Bank Hall.

1817 JAN 23 Fire at Bewsey Street Sugar Mills.

1818 MAY 7 Warrington Savings Bank established.

1818 First theatre, later known as the Theatre Royal, opened on Scotland Road.

1819 McAdam (tarmac) roads introduced to the town.

1819 MAR 11 Warrington Ladies Charity founded.

1820 MAR 8 Appleton Hall burnt down.

1820 The original Town Hall (or Sessions House) built in Irlam Street, off Buttermarket Street and Dial Street.

1821 Gas lighting came to Warrington.

1821 Population 13,750.

1822 NOV 27. Old Billy, the oldest horse in the world, dies aged 62. He worked for the Mersey and Irwell Navigation Company and retired to the Old Warps Estate in 1819. The Old Warps eventually became Victoria Park.

1822 DEC 6 Steeple of Holy Trinity church blown down in a storm.

1823 St Albans Church, Bewsey Street, built.

1824 Lymm Dam was formed by the creation of a turnpike road from Warrington to Stockport.

1825 Mechanics Institute (possibly Institution) founded.

1825 A weekly magazine, The Butterfly, appeared (how long it lasted isn’t known).

1827 St Martin’s Church, Woolston, founded.

1827 FEB 24 Fire at Wharf Meadow Factory.

1828 A great flood on the Mersey sees boats floating down Bridge Street.

1828 First fire appliances in the town – six small engines, buckets and ladders.

1829 St James Church, Latchford, rebuilt.

1830 St Paul’s Church, Bewsey Road, founded (St Paul’s Court nursing home now stands on the site). The graveyard still stands.

1830 Stretton Road completed.

1830 APR 4 First Total Abstinence Society in England formed at Warrington.

1830 SEP 30 Bridge Mills, Warrington – burnt down.

1830 DEC 9 Fire at Mersey Corn Mills – burnt down.

1831 JUL 25 Warrington joins the Liverpool and Manchester railway network – from Dallam Lane to Newton Junction.

1831 James Fairclough opened his flourmill at Bank Quay.

1831-2 Cholera outbreak hits the town. 169 died during the summer of 1832.

1832 SEP 3 Warrington to Wigan section of railway opened.

1832 DEC 12 Warrington became a Parliamentary Borough (first representative E.G. Hornby. Liberal won by 203 votes).

1832 Warrington Walking Day founded by the Reverend Horace Powys, Rector of Warrington, to entice people away from the horseracing at nearby Haydock Park. The exact date cannot be confirmed, but it is generally accepted that the year was between 1832-5.

1833 Epidemic of cholera hits Warrington.

1834 National School established.

1834 Musical Society founded.

1834 AUG 8 Poor Law Act passed and Warrington Poor Law Union formed.

1836 DEC 21 Police Commissioners decided to pay the town bell ringer!

1837 Warrington got its first police force: a constable and four assistant constables.

1837 First Bank Quay railway station opened on then site of Aldi and Iceland supermarkets, moving to its current location in 1868.

1837 JUL 4 Grand Junction Railway through Warrington opened.

1837 5th Warrington Bridge, Victoria Bridge, built of stone.

1837 Warrington Cricket Club founded.

1838 NOV 24 Fire at Mersey Street Tannery – burnt down.

1840 JAN 2 Fire at Gibson’s Foundry – burnt down.

1840 Cockhedge Mill purchased by Armitage & Rigby.

1840 James Fairclough & Sons Mersey Mills founded.

1840s Warrington held a Regatta on the Mersey.

1840-55 Shipbuilding industry at Warrington.

1843 Nathaniel Greening (N Greening & Sons) began their wire-weaving factory on Bewsey Road (my dad worked there). The company was established on Church Street in 1799 and the Bewsey Road site closed in December 1980. The site is marked on old maps as Britannia Works.

1843 OCT 18 Luke Fildes, famous Warrington artist, born.

1843 An earthquake hits the town.

1844 Warrington Training College founded by Rector Powys.

1845 Dallam Forge set up for iron making.

1846 Peter Walker moved to Warrington with his son Andrew Barclay Walker and acquired Pemberton’s Old Brewery at Towns End.

1847 APR 3 Warrington received a charter to become a corporate borough after Royal Assent.

1847 William Beamont became the town’s first mayor and chief magistrate.

1847 JUN 1 Warrington held its first town elections.

1847 JUN 9 Warrington Council met for the first time.

1847 SEP 10 Mayor and Council walk new Warrington boundary for the first time.

1847 DEC 1 Warrington lost 6 minutes as it adopted British Standard Time.

1847 First Warrington waterworks built.

1848 JAN 2 John Rylands married his second wife, Martha, at St Peter’s Church, Newton-Le-Willows.

1848 JUN 3 Museum and Library established at Friars Green House.

1848 Warrington became one of the first towns in the country to support a public library from the rates.


1850 OCT 22 Fire at Allen’s factory – burnt down.

1850 Peter Walker leased King Street Brewery, buying it outright in 1883. It closed in 1906.

1850 Thomas Hutchinson & Co, Basket Makers, established.

1850 Bold Street Wesleyan Church established.

1850 Great Oak, Winwick, blown down.

1851 Population 36,164.

1851 St Mary’s Church by Lymm Dam rebuilt with financial help from local family, the Dewhursts. The tower was added in 1890.

1853 FEB 1 Warrington (Whitecross) to Widnes Railway opened (LNWR).

1853 OCT 4 Warrington-built ship Tayleur launched. It was chartered by the White Star Line (who later owned the Titanic).

1853 APR 9 Warrington Guardian newspaper first published by Alexander Mackie.

1853 Warrington School of Art founded.

1853 Heathside Church of England (C of E) School built.

1854 JAN 21 Warrington-built ship Tayleur wrecked off Lambay Island, Ireland, killing all 334 on board.

1855 SEP 20 Foundation Stone for new Warrington Museum building laid by William Beamont.

1855 OCT 25 Foundation Stone for Warrington Market Hall laid by Mayor H. White.

1855 River Mersey freezes over; people skate on it.

1856 Oct 15 Warrington Market Hall opened.

1857 MAR 26 The Borough Cemetery on Manchester Road was officially opened.

1857 New Warrington Museum opens on Bold Street.

1858 Arpley canons from Russia celebrated the end of the Crimean War (see a plaque in the 2004 restored Queens Gardens).

185Roberts Shoe Shop opened on Bridge Street. They run the franchise for Clarks shoes and now operate from Golden Square shopping centre.

1858 9th Lancashire Rifle Volunteers formed.

1859 APR 25 Work started on rebuilding Warrington Parish Church and adding a 277½ft spire, the third-highest in the country.

1859 DEC 25 Foundation Stone for Parish Church restoration laid.

1860 Parish Church reopened.

1860 Rylands Street was built.

1860 The Co-operative society begins trading in Warrington. Frederick W. Monks, a founder member, was the first person to sign the register of members in 1861.

1861 Population 24,050 (Census).

1861 Public Hall built.

1861 Christ Church Latchford consecrated.

1861 Latchford Baptist Church built.

1861 A comet is visible in the sky.

1862 The Advertiser newspaper first published.

1862 St Anne’s C of E School built.

1863 River Mersey floods.

1863 Earthquake in the town.

1863 MAR 10 Holy Trinity clock illuminated for the first time.

1864 Whitecross Co founded.

1864 First Lancashire County Cricket match held at Warrington. Messrs. James Fairclough and John White played in the team. (The Official Lancashire County Cricket Club website says they played their first County match at Old Trafford in 1865.)

1865 Foundation Stone for Warrington Baths laid.

1866 Warrington Baths opened on Legh Street (closed 2003).

1866 Peter Walker opened his Dallam Lane brewery.

1866 NOV 17 River Mersey rose and flooded the centre of Warrington.

1867 An attempt was made to blow up the gas works.

1867 APR 2 George Greenall born at Walton Hall.

1867 JUN 29 Trains collide at Walton Junction, killing 8.

1867 Burtonwood brewery established by James and Jane Forshaw (taken over by Wolverhampton & Dudley Breweries on 3 Dec 2004).

1868 St Anne’s C of E Church built (it is now the indoor rock-climbing venue “The North West Face”, which opened in 1996).

1868 Nov 16 Current Bank Quay railway station opened by the LNWR. The original opened in 1837 on the site of Aldi and Iceland supermarkets.

1868 St James’ C of E School built.

1868 Trinity C of E School built.

1868 Wycliffe Nonconformist School built.

1869 FEB 25 St Anne’s Church consecrated.

1869 The Literary and Philosophical Society formed.

1869 Robinson & Skinner’s Glass Works established at Bank Quay.

1863 Charles Dickens visited the Public Hall on Rylands Street.

1871 OCT 12 Two people were killed at Rylands wire works during celebrations for Emma Rylands’ wedding.

1872 JUN 15 Fire at Cockhedge factory – burnt down.

1872 Thomas Fletcher began manufacturing gas appliances.

1872 The town Corporation buys Bank Hall and surrounding park for £22,000, later to become the Town Hall and Bank Park.

1872 Our Lady’s Catholic School, Latchford, built.

1873 AUG 1 A Liverpool to Manchester railway service was started via Bank Quay Low Level Station.

1873 JUN 20 Bank Park opened.

1873 AUG 1 Warrington Central railway station opened to passengers.

1873 SEP 1 Padgate railway station opened.

1873 Liverpool Extension Railway from Cressington to Glazebrook opened.

1874 MAY Sankey railway station opened.

1874 Monks Hall iron-making business founded.

1874 Pearson & Knowles Coal and Iron Co Ltd formed by the amalgamation of Dallam Forge Co, Warrington Wire Co and Pearson & Knowles.

1874 OCT 24 Fire at Messrs. Parkinson, Manor Tannery – burned for 6 days and 5 nights.

1875 The Warrington Examiner newspaper first published (no longer exists).

1876 Warrington Chamber of Commerce founded.

1877 JAN 24 Warrington Infirmary opened on Kendrick Street.

1877 Oct 4 Art Gallery opened.

1877 The Evening Post newspaper first published (closed 1880).

1877 Silver Street Nonconformist school built.

1877 St Mary’s Church on Buttermarket Street founded.

1877 Gas works bought by Warrington Corporation.

1878 AUG 29 Foundation stone for Warrington Contagious Diseases Hospital laid.

1878 The Observer newspaper (not the national one) first published.

1878 Peninsula Barracks, base for the South Lancashire Regiment, built (known then as Orford Barracks).

1878 Fever Hospital built.

1878 NOV 26 Fire at Wharf Meadow factory.

1879 St Barnabas’ Church, Lovely Lane, opens.

1879 Warrington Rugby League Football Club formed.

1879 Fire station opened on Queen Street.

1879 Emmanuel Free Church of England church founded.

1880 R & J Gartons seed house established at Arpley. Became limited company in 1898.

1880 Castle Rubber Company established in Warrington. Originally in Manchester 1865.

1880 The town received its first steam-powered fire engine (from 1828 they had all been manual). “Major” tackled the first fire in Academy Street on 9 Jun.

1881 St Benedict’s Catholic School built (relocated to Quebec Road – a housing estate is built on the original land behind Orford Lane).

1881 JAN 9 River Mersey frozen solid and winter sports held on the river.

1881 Population 42,552 (Census).

1882 Warrington Slate Company Ltd founded.

1882 SEP 23 Warrington Swimming Club established.

1883 NOV 8 The New School of Art opened on Museum St (opposite the library). The original opened in 1854.

1883 Howley Recreation Ground opened.

1883 MAR 8 Fire at Castle Rubber factory.

1883 AUG 25 Fire at Wright’s timber yard, Edgeworth Street.

1883 Firth Wire Company established in Froghall Lane.

1884 St Mary’s Catholic School built.

1884 Warrington Harriers athletics club was founded and joined the Northern Counties Cross Country Amateur Championship Association. They went on to become members of the Junior Associates of Northern Club circa 1889. The club was the forerunner of Warrington Athletic Club.

1884 Conservative Club on Sankey Street built. Now the site of Hilden House.

1885 NOV 4 New Theatre Royal opened.

1885 St John’s Church, Higher Walton, consecrated.

1885 AUG 6 Manchester Ship Canal Bill finally received Royal Assent (opened 1894).

1885 St Barnabas C of E School built.

1886 Warrington Photographic Society formed.

1887 JAN 31 Hamilton Street National School opened – erected 1886, closed around 1972-3 and demolished after April 1976.

1887 Hodgkinson’s emporium opened on Bridge Street selling drapery, linens, silk and household furnishings. It closed in 1962 and the building was later used by JJB Sports and, until c2011, Nobles Amusements.

1887 St Peter’s C of E School built.

1887 Silver Street Nonconformist School built.

1887 FEB 8 Mr Peter Rylands M.P. died.

1887 JUL 1 Foundation stone for Warrington Training College Chapel laid.

1887 NOV 13 Captain Sylvanus Reynolds, of the Warrington Volunteers, dies in a shooting accident, aged 57.

1887 Ragged school founded.

1887 FEB 6 Fire at Hutchings’ Tannery.

1889 JUN 6 William Beamont, historian and first Mayor of Warrington, died.

1890 Richmond’s gas cooker company established.

1891 SEP 23 St Peter’s C of E church was consecrated. I lived 100 yards from it as a child and was christened there. It closed in 1977.

1891 AUG 4 Warrington Public Library was made free to town citizens (one of the first in the country to do so).

1891 Population 52,742 (Census).

1892 JUL 11 Lord Winmarleigh died. Winmarleigh Street and Wilson Patten Street are named after him.

1892 Thomas Fletcher joined up with W. & A C Russell to form Fletcher Russell & Co.

1893 St Luke’s Church consecrated.

1894 Sacred Heart Catholic Church, Bank Quay, built.

1894 MAY 21 The Manchester Ship Canal, passing through Warrington, opened by Queen Victoria. (River Mersey was diverted).

1895 APR 10 Accident at Latchford Locks closed the Manchester Ship Canal for weeks when the gates were demolished by the “Harold”.

1894 JUL 10 Sir Gilbert Greenall died at Walton Hall.

1894 Edwin Allen art and craft shop established on Buttermarket Street. It closed down in 2014.

1894 The new Theatre Royal opened in Rylands Street (the former Poll Tax House council office stands there now).

1894 DEC 13 Hollinfare cemetery officially opened on Dam Lane.

1895 MAY 10 Fire at Messrs. Skelton, Jubilee buildings.

1895 JUN 28 Town Hall (Golden) Gates donated to the town by Frederick W. Monks. We came by them after they were rejected by Queen Victoria because a statue of Oliver Cromwell stood in front of them. The statue is also in Warrington, at Bridge Foot.

1895 JUL 28 Warrington becomes a member of the Northern Union (Rugby League) when it was formed at St George’s Hotel in Huddersfield. Warrington has been in the top flight ever since.

1895 Parr Hall built. Presented to the town by J. C. Parr of Parr’s Bank (now the former NatWest on Winwick Street).

1896 Sacred Heart Catholic School, Liverpool Road, built.

1896 OCT 30 Death of Susannah, Lady Greenall, of Walton Hall, aged 65.

1896 NOV 9 Warrington Borough Extension Act came into force.

1896 St Benedict’s School Chapel, Orford Lane, opened.

1897 Victoria Park opened in the year of Queen Victoria’s Diamond (60th) Anniversary.

1898 Queens Gardens opened to the public (they were purchased by the Borough Council on 10 March 1897 and dedicated 3 April 1897).

1898 MAR 21 Lever’s Toilet Soap (made in Warrington) goes on sale for the first time.

1898 County Court built.

1898 JUL 17 Fire at Richmond & Co, Academy Street.

1898 Warrington Society founded.

1899 APR 5 Warrington’s old Academy re-opened.

1899 JUL 29 Statue of Oliver Cromwell unveiled at Bridge Foot. Presented by Mr Frederick W. Monks.

1899 AUG 9 Warrington Corporation Act comes into effect after receiving Royal Assent.

1899 OCT 20 Foundation stone laid at new police building in Arpley Street.

1899 Walker Fountain donated to the town by Sir Peter Carlaw Walker (later scrapped for the war effort). It stood behind the ‘Golden’ Gates on the Town Hall lawn.