All Saints Church

Speke, Liverpool, UK


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Would you like to have a look around the Speke Village of the late 1800s, early 1900s?

Have a little stroll with me now.


zy.comNot far from the Church is Greyhound Farm at one time the local pub! Miss Watt did not approve of drinking and took the pub's licence away. This could be due to the fact that her father was a frequent visitor there. At the end of the evening, his horse would find the way home for him, and one version of his death is that he went to sleep one night, fell under the wheels of the cart, and was killed. Another version has him falling overboard from his yacht, The Goshawk in Cowes and drowning, and yet another has him drowning in the Mersey! It was reported in the local press however, that he died after a few weeks illness.


In that photograph,on the steps of the farmhouse can be seen the farmer, Mr Thomas Critchley and his daughter. His son, Mr Harold Critchley, now in his eighties, lives in Tarbock, but still has very fond memories of Speke. 

In this second photograph is the Greyhound Farm three horses, the teamsman and Mr Critchley.

As we move away from Greyhound Farm, we pass the Smithy on the right, which later became the Library and is now sadly, no longer standing. 

We do, however still have the old anvil in All Saints.

We can look back along Speke Church Road now, back towards the Church, before the farm was demolished, and the new houses built on both sides of the road.  The cottages in this photo were replaced by a new shopping precinct called The Crescent.

If we go along Speke Town Lane, now we pass a cottage on the right which  stood for many years as the new estate was built around it. People still  remember calling there for lemonade and an ice cream in the summer months.

At the end of the lane we turn right, past the old cottages to the old Quarry in Delph Lane, from where the stone that All Saints was built from was taken.

Next we come to Speke Town Lane,where Mr Peacop, a warden at All Saints was the farmer. A photograph of him standing in his harvest fields is on the Faces page.

The last farm in this western part of Speke is Woodend Farm.As with most of the farms on the estate at the turn of the century, there is no trace of it left. It was demolished to make way for the factories that run along Speke Boulevard, a huge dual carriageway built to cater for the new estate.

If you ever wandered down to the shore, along Oglet Lane you will probably remember Yew Tree Farm

This photograph was only taken last year, but not much has changed since  the turn of the century here. Mr Charles Cartwright, who was the last farmer here, was a very active member of All Saints. Sadly, he died 3rd May 2001 aged 87 years. He has shared many of his memories with us for which I am eternally grateful.

The cottages at Poverty Nook, were built at the end Oglet Lane where the extension to Dungeon Lane now connects the two. This cottage was built around 1616 and demolished by the Council in the 1970's. John Hulme, who was brought up here now keeps a small holding in the cottages opposite our Church, and many times on a Sunday morning, we hear the geese and the cockerel calling out to us!

John's Mum and Dad, Mr and Mrs Hulme brought up 11 children in this cottage, but two of them had to sleep over at Grandma's house!

The 'new' road, built by the airport connects Yew Tree Farm to Dungeon Lane, and the old Salt Works on the shore. There's nothing left of the Salt Works of course, unless you know where to look for the huge underground chambers! But this part of the River was also used a breakers yard, and many ships ended their days here.

This ship is the Magellan a Norwegian barque in May 1909.

The locals often used old ships cabins as sheds, or even temporary housing! The Irish immigrants that worked on Yew Tree Farm lived in one, and Charles's father built on a chimney for them, and a partition inside to make sleeping quarters. The immigrants came in the spring for planting, and stayed through to the Harvest. Some of them stayed in the cottages at Poverty Nook. When you finished your day out at Oglet Shore and Dungeon Point you would probably return home up Dungeon Lane towards Hale Road. A pause, and a glance over your shoulder would show you this view of the cottages leading back to the shore. These cottages were sadly left derelict and finally demolished in the 1980's.  

The gentleman in this photograph often appears in pictures of the village and surrounding areas. It seems he went along with the photographer to add interest! (Have a closer look at Speke Church Road above)


If you get the chance for a stroll on a sunny afternoon along Dungeon Lane to Yew Tree Farm and Oglet Farm now, you can get a taste of what the whole estate must have looked like, before it was built.

And to finish off, here's one more place you might recognise...
This is the North Lodge at Speke Hall, and thankfully, it still stands today.  If you visit the Hall, you will see the Lodge on your left as you pass through the main gates. This photograph appears to have been taken around the 1920's. 

The last resident here was Billy Symons whose father was one of the gardeners at Speke Hall. We are hoping Speke Hall will protect and restore the house and keep it safe for future generations to admire.


I hope you have enjoyed your little wander around the old Village of Speke.