All Saints Church
Speke, Liverpool, UK
Village to Estate
Would you like to have a look around the Speke Village of the late 1800’s, early 1900’s?
Have a little stroll with me now….
Not 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.
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.
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!
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.
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...
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.