Backford and Mollington Local History Society

Backford and Mollington Local History Society was formed in 2006. Members, I assure you, are all (fairly) normal people – we just like finding out about how people lived and how events have unfolded, over the years, particularly in our part of Cheshire.

We meet on the first Wednesday of most months, at 7.30pm in the Village Hall. Often there is a visiting speaker, who gives a presentation on some topic of local interest (local is a loose term) and over the seasons we have heard about such matters as the role of Neston in the slave trade, the Mollington connections of the first RAF ace pilot of WW2 and the history of Backford and Mollington Halls.

One of our committee organizes visits/conducted tours of nearby sites of historical interest e.g. Liverpool Town Hall, Gladstone Library in North Wales and sites of historical industrial interest.

We take part in national/county initiatives e.g. research into the lives of local men who took part in WW1 and record events which will be of interest to future history students e.g. Queen’s Jubilee. We also note any (building) developments within our area, recording the changes for posterity. When Cheshire County Council vacated Backford Hall some members produced a DVD of the history of the Hall and its state when vacated. The same team has produced a DVD of the state of the Hall and associated buildings as it is now, after development.

Several members have undertaken individual projects, or have worked with other members, to produce accounts of historical events in local families or at local landmarks. Some of these pieces of work have been published in our two books “Beneath the Surface”, Volumes 1 and 2.

Unfortunately, our activities have been suspended since March 2020 and we do not foresee being able to return to our normal programme before September 2021. By that time the new Village Hall will be built and available for hire.

Contact committee members using the details below:

 Name Position  Telephone  Contact
John Hess  Chairman  01244 390098  Email John
Ann Marie Curtis Secretary  01244 851717  Email Ann Marie
Mike Richardson Treasurer 01244 300628 Email Mike

Update Information 2020

Until we can operate without Covid restrictions, we will have to content ourselves with individual projects which can be carried out in a Covid conscious way. Carl Stagg has phenomenally researched 5 topics, and one of these, the “History of Bache Hall” will be serialised in forthcoming LH Society Newsletters.

We are also researching the origins and history of the Village Hall, which was built in 1950, and hope to produce a mini DVD of the material. If anyone has old photographs, or video material, particularly of the inside of the hall, please send it to Carl. 

The Mollington branch of the W.I. is sadly in the process of closing down. Vivien Ellis has agreed to produce a history of the W.I. in Mollington and she too would be grateful for any photographs or written memorabilia, showing what projects have been undertaken by the W.I. over the years.

I am undertaking a living history project showing how Covid affected life in the local area. To this end, I have collected copies of the Chester Chronicle throughout this year. Sadly some copies have gone for re-cycling, so I am asking if anyone has old copies of the Chronicle for the following dates

Jan 7 and 9, Feb 6 and 13, March 19 and 26, whole of April,

May 7 and 21, July 16 and 23

If you have a Chronicle with one of these dates, please push it through the door of 12 Willow Lea. 

This will be a source of information for local historians in years to come.

There are many operational sites in the area, which could be contacted by one of our members and could perhaps give a report of how they have altered their operations during this pandemic. e.g. Molly B, care homes, Wheatsheaf, Chester University students/staff, Countess of Chester Hospital, Vicar of Saughall, Mollington and Capenhurst, Chester Zoo, Hospice. If you have any contacts with persons who work in these places, or with other relevant organizations, please let me know.

If you would like to take part in any of these activities, or suggest any others yourself, again, please let me know.

Ann Marie Curtis (Hon Sec BMD Local History Society)


Purchase our published books!

Both are of excellent quality, with colour pictures illustrating the articles about local life throughout the centuries and local buildings of historical interest.

Book 1 – Beneath the Surface (red book) has articles ranging from, the Roman Road through Mollington, via the impact of the Railway, to details of a Duel fought at Backford. Local families and events are well documented. Price £12.

Beneath the Surface v1

Beneath the Surface, Volume 2 (green book) delves deeper into the history of important local families, such as the Hunts of Mollington Hall, the Feildens and the Henrys. Humbler, but equally interesting families include the tragic family of the Bennetts of Backford and the Bradleys of Chorlton Hall. Interesting stories include that of Cobber Kain, the first RAF fighter ace of WW2 and the gory tale of Gibbet Mill near Saughall. Price £16.

Beneath the Surface v2

Price of both volumes bought together is only £25!

Contact Mike Richardson 01244 300628