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We are now going to take you on a tour of Woolton Road, and to include Salisbury House which was sadly demolished to make way for a housing estate. The grand building had stood the test of time which included World War 2 but sadly, the upkeep on a large building was to be too much. You will also learn of the Childwall Cross and how it wasn't always in the same place as it is now. With the cross nearly being lost, and only a handful of crosses in Liverpool, it is a worthy place to stop and take in the history. Furthermore, there have been more losses in Childwall with Childwall Cottages and Childwall Tower, both demolished under CPO. However, these were captured in pictures for future generations to see what was in the village of Childwall.
Liverpool Orphanage started its existence in the 1830's and was housed at the time in Myrtle Street. In 1934, a new building was opened in the 'clean suburbs' of Childwall and the Liverpool Orphanage was moved here. The orphans remained there until the outbreak of the Second World War when they were evacuated to the Lake District. The use of the building then having been requisitioned by the Government was used as a Ministry of Pensions Hospital for wounded servicemen. By 1952 the building had been reclaimed and at the start of 1953, the ground floor was given over to be used as a Day School where both the orphans and day-school children were educated.
In 1964, the Trustees had the Trust altered so that the building could house boarders, principally for the children of diplomats and Service Families on duty overseas. The building took on a new name of Salisbury House, and was a title used long after the boarding side had closed down in the summer of 1977.
On a sad note, there was very little income to maintain the upkeep of such a large building so plans were drawn up to sell the land, demolish the school and build a smaller school which would be completed from the proceeds of the sale of the land. In 1987, the Foundation Stone had been laid by Lady Holmes, Lady President of the Trustees of Salisbury House.
On Tuesday, April 19th, 1988, the new School was opened and subsequently dedicated by the Right Reverend David Shepherd, Lord Bishop of Liverpool. The school was always cold in the winter. Not surprisingly for such an old school, with stone floor and no double glazing but the space certainly made up for it. Three playgrounds in total, a massive main hall and stage, the immense dining room and of course the opportunity to explore upstairs on very rare occasions. Upstairs was a rare treat to go exploring and a few of us usually did when the teachers backs were turned!
As it was a 3 story building, the top two floors were exactly the same as that below (apart from certain area's which was single level only like the Hall/Dining room) so you really couldn't get lost. But being small and having been fed many ghost stories, going upstairs was something you never did on your own! There was the story of the ghost in the lift or dumb waiter, the Sewing Machine room where the story of the sewing machine turning by itself, the large room that was used when it was raining and football came 'inside' the building. It was even possible to see the original baths/shower area left from when the school was used for the above purposes.
Childwall Cross, one of only half a dozen ancient monuments Liverpool possess at all, lay in ruins in a field off Childwall Lane until 1935. When it was decided to widen Childwall Lane, it was agreed that the cross should be re-erected and set in a 15' recess not far from its original site.
It was amazing luck that it had survived for so long. The images are the rebuilding of 'Our Cross' as it says in the family archive. Alex Finlason provided these fantastic images! His Grandfather, David Stewart Finlason who was the husband of one of the Hale daughters of Lower Farm, Well Lane. He is the chap with the suit and the Homburg Hat stood up in the centre.
The cross was discovered on their land (and left in the hedgerow at the side of the field) until it was rebuilt at their own expense.
Both Childwall Cottage and Tower Cottage were subject to a CPO (Compulsory Purchase Order) and were demolished to make way for a new school. They were situated off Childwall Lane and ran parallel to the entrance road to the School.
On a note regarding the school, this has now been demolished and subsequent building works may reveal remnants from Childwall Hall gardens. It is such a shame that both these properties and that of Childwall Hall have disappeared from the area.
In 1937,the ancient Score Lane at Childwall became a thoroughfare for public use. The top part of the 'Bloody Acre' was gifted from the Marquis of Salisbury as a public car park for those visiting Childwall. The 'Bloody Acre' is a field next to the Graveyard, as an overspill for the Church Graveyard. There was talk, and plans, to put a new Church Hall on this site but thankfully these plans fell through.
The field possibly takes its name from a skirmish during the Civil War of the 1640's or even the Childwall 'Riot' between new land owners and adherents of the church, following Henry VIII's dispossession of Church Land as cannonballs were found during building of new houses on Score Lane.
However, the Acre would have once been part of Score Lane park so there is little to suggest that this acre was previously used for a specific purpose. When the field is freshly cut, the grass in the summer months gives off a reddish look hence the local name given.
1 - Classic view of the 'gate'.
2 - A view of the church from 1810.
3 - Undated church service.
4 - Laying of the foundation stone of the north extension in 1907.
1 - This picture was taken in the 1950's and is of the Boys Brigade at the rear of the church.
2 - Image was taken in 1956 and shows Childwall Church Choir.
3 - This picture was taken in July 1989 of Childwall Church Choir.
4 - A black and white image of All Saints Church from the 1960's.
THE HISTORY OF CHILDWALL
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