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Thought I ask this again in its own thread


Anyone know the  history of the big house that used to stand opposite povey rd and on school rd. My gran worked there for a short while for an American family who owned the house or rented it. Burnt down in the 80s I am told

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I think it was known as Orford House and I belive I read somwhere it was once owned by Mr Pilling who later moved to the farm opposite. I could be wrong about this but when I was growing up in the area, I always assumed that it was some kind of residential home for the elderly?


Bill :)

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I remembered that Dr Bourhill and his family lived at Orford House, School Road, Orford. His Surgery was near the corner of Orford Lane and Cobden Street.

After browsing 'Dr Bourhill, Orford House, Warrington' the internet came up with a PDF of two pages of a British Medical Journal (Dec 29 1962) where listed, was the Death of Mary Feodora Walsh Bourhill of Orford House, 16 School Road Orford Warrington (wife of Charles John George Bourhill).


Charles John George Bourhill has come up on Ancestry as having been listed at Orford House in Phone Books from as early as 1927 to the mid 1960's. It gave phone numbers for both his Surgery, and his home in Orford.


On the 1911 Census Doctor Bourhill was on the Staff of The Sunderland Infirmary, Durham Road, Sunderland, aged 25, Occupation - Physician - born Kimberley, South Africa.


He died in1970 in Dartford, Kent.  So he lived at Orford House from about 1927 until the mid 1960's.


I remember that Dr Fred Deakin joined the Orford Lane Surgery, and I think he took over when Dr Bourhill retired.


I think that later on, it did become residential home for the elderly.

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The following information is taken from http://www.visionofbritain.org.uk
In 1870-72, John Marius Wilson's Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales described Orford like this:
" Orford, a hamlet in Padgate chapelry, Warrington parish, Lancashire; one and a half mile N of Warrington r. station.
Orford Hall was formerly the residence of J I Blackburne, Esq., the horticulturist and botanist; and is now the residence of J. Litton, Esq.
Orford House is the residence of T May, Esq.   .........................................etc"


                                      *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *    *

I have seen the following Census details for him    ............


The 1851 Census shows Thomas May in Orford and a Coal Merchant - farming 20 acres - 6 men.


The 1861 Census shows him at Orford House, a widower with 3 servants.


The 1871 Census shows him as a Merchant, living at Orford House - aged 64, born in London.

Also listed is his wife (25 years younger), one visitor and a general servant.


On the 1881 Census he is living in Hastings St Leonards - described as a 'Gentleman' and his wife a 'Lady'


He died in Latchford, aged 81. (His wife's brother lived at Arlington House, Latchford Without).

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Orford House was apparently built in the late 18th Century by the Booth family.  They were ancestors of Charles Booth of the Liverpool shipowning family.


....says google anyway :wink:

Google Books has come up with the following info ................  From the book 'A Liverpool Merchant House: Being the History of

Alfred Booth & Co.

1863 - 1959'.  By A H John.

Thomas Booth, the Granfather of Alfred and Charles Booth, arrived in Liverpool in 1767, when the tide of this expansion was running strong.

He was the younger son of a yeoman farmer in Orford, near Warrington, where the family had been established since at least the 16th Century.

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Thought I ask this again in its own thread


Anyone know the  history of the big house that used to stand opposite povey rd and on school rd. My gran worked there for a short while for an American family who owned the house or rented it. Burnt down in the 80s I am told

There is a good picture of Orford House, School Road - later to be known as Chetham House when it became a Residential Home.

It can be found at http://www.hwells.co.uk/    then click on ''Warrington in Camera' - scrolling down to find it.


'Although the listed building was demolished, the gates were retained. April 1974'.


The gates and gate piers are all that remain.


There is a copyright on this picture !!!

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  • 3 months later...

A bit of a postscript. I understand EH has delisted the farm house and buildings. It is a loss of a heritage asset (if it's demolished) but I think only the third or fourth listed building lost in the town in the last 25 years - not counting some that might have merited listing if not already dilapidated. Obviously more went in the 1970s (including Orford House) - I don't know what the justification was for allowing its demolition.


As for Orford House, EH still have the house in their entry (I'm writing to tell them it's gone) - they have "Orford House" but "Chetham House entrance gates". Would anyone disagree that the gates should really be described as "Orford House" gates rather than Chetham House?


List entry: Mid C18 house of medium size, standing in grounds, empty 1973 but apparently in good condition. 3 storeys, brick with stone base and strings, and "long and short" end quoins. New roof, stone eaves cornice with consoles. Gable ends roughcast. 4-panel door in moulded stone surround with pediment. 4 windows on ground floor boarded over, 5 windows on upper floors, lst floor ones 12-paned sashes, top floor casements; stone sills and lintels, and keystones. 2 stone gate piers with vases, and iron gates (all now restored).

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Surely English Heritage must already be aware that Orford House has been demolished as wouldn't 'Listing Building Consent'  etc etc have had to be applied for and being a full demolition surely the council couldn't have just made the decision themselves and it would have involved input/approval from EH... or would it ?

I hope that where you say that you are writing to EH to say it has now gone that you aren't asking for the record and description to be completely removed (do they actually remove records totally?) as the listing entry should, in my opinion, be retained as it's good to be able to look up old buildings and their descriptions regardless of whether they still actually exist or not. To avoid confusion I think they should be updated to say 'now demolished' and a short reason given why and when.

As for the gates well from memory it was originally called Orford House and only became Chetham House when it became a nursing home (or similar) so YES they probably should be listed as being 'Orford House' but I'm guessing the listing may have been done after the name was changed so that's why it says that.  The description does mention 'Orford House' in brackets though.

Blimey... I'm starting to bore and confuse myself now so I'll leave my reply about Orford Farm for another post...... now that one might be very long GRRRR !!  :wink:

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