Eastham (St. Mary)
EASTHAM (St. Mary), a parish, in the union, and Higher division of the hundred, of Wirrall, S. division of the county of Chester; comprising the village of Ellesmere-Port, and the townships of Eastham, Hooton, Nether and Over Pool, Great and Little Sutton, Thornton-Childer, and part of Whitby; and containing 2377 inhabitants, of whom 372 are in the township of Eastham, 9½ miles (N. N. W.) from Chester. The manor was given by Randal de Gernon, Earl of Chester, to the convent of St. Werburgh, as a compensation for the ills he had done to that house. After the dissolution of monasteries, Henry VIII. gave the manor to the Dean and Chapter of Chester, from whom it was obtained for certain annual rents, about 1553, by Sir Richard Cotton, who a few years afterwards conveyed it to Sir Rowland Stanley, ancestor of the Stanley family, of Hooton. The manor of Plimyard was purchased by the Stanleys about the year 1590. The parish is intersected by the Chester and Birkenhead road, the Ellesmere canal, and the Chester and Birkenhead railway, and is situated on the river Mersey. In the township of Eastham are 1205 acres, of a sandy soil. About a mile from the village is a ferry on the Mersey, where is an hotel of recent erection, with pleasure-grounds attached, an agreeable place of resort during the summer, the vicinity affording beautiful scenery. Sir William Massey Stanley has lately appropriated about 100 acres of land for building purposes; the land is divided into suitable plots of an acre or two each, after the designs of Mr. Clark Rampling, architect, of Liverpool, and villas are in progress of erection, which will add greatly to the importance of the locality. The living is a discharged vicarage, valued in the king's books at £12. 13.; net income, £240; patrons, the Dean and Chapter of Chester; impropriators, Sir W. Stanley, and the families of White and Edwards. The great tithes of the township of Eastham have been commuted for £150, and the small for £135: the vicar has a glebe of 14 acres. The church is a large and handsome edifice of red stone, consisting of a nave, chancel, and aisles, with a tower and elegant spire; the north aisle terminates in a chancel belonging to the house of Hooton, in which are many monuments to the family. At Ellesmere-Port is a second incumbency. A national school is supported by Sir William Stanley, aided by some small bequests for the education of children.