Wetley Rocks

Extract from Kelly's Directory of Staffordshire, 1896.
Transcribed by Rosemary Lockie, © Copyright 2012

WETLEY ROCKS is a village on the river Churnet and an ecclesiastical parish, formed in 1834 from the civil parish of Cheddleton, 2 miles south from Cheddleton station, on the Churnet Valley section of the North Staffordshire railway, 5 north-west from Cheadle, 5 south from Leek and 7 north-east from Stoke, in the Leek division of the county, hundred of North Totmonslow, Leek petty sessional division, Cheadle union and county court district, rural deanery of Leek, archdeaconry of Stoke-upon-Trent and diocese of Lichfield: it contains the township of Consall and the hamlets of Cellarhead, Armshead and Rownall. The church of St. John, erected in 1834 by Jane, wife of William Sneyd esq. is a building of stone in the Pointed style, consisting of chancel, nave, aisles and an embattled western tower containing one bell: an organ was presented in 1833 by J. Denison Hargreaves esq. of Woodlands, and a memorial window, given by the children of the late William Meakin esq. was erected in 1889. There are 320 sittings. The register dates from the year 1835.

The living is a vicarage, net yearly value £100, including 21 acres of glebe, with residence, in the gift of the Dryden family, and held since 1892 by the Rev. Ernest Henry Nash M.A. of Trinity College, Cambridge. A vicarage house was erected in 1881 at a cost of upwards of £900. There is a Wesleyan chapel, built in 1841. On one side of the village is a ridge of rocks, upwards of 150 feet high extending for three-quarters of a mile. Fairs are held on 3rd May and also on the first Thursday after the 23rd October. Westwood Manor, rebuilt of red sandstone in 1878, is a large building in the Elizabethan style, in park-like grounds, and is the seat of James Meakin esq. Rownall Hall is occupied by Edward John Ridgway esq. J.P. Watley Abbey, in the Florid Gothic style, is the residence of Josiah Hardman esq.

The principal landowners are James Meakin esq. and Josiah Hardman esq. The soil is a strong loam; subsoil, clay. A large portion of the land is in pasture. The area is between 3,000 and 4,000 acres; the population in 1891 was 876.

CELLARHEAD is a hamlet adjoining Wetley Rooks, partly in Caverswall civil parish and Hulme township, and partly in Cheddleton civil parish and Rownall township. Fairs are held here on May 5th and the first Thursday in November.

Parish Clerk & Sexton, John William Wood.

POST OFFICE.- Samuel Naylor, sub-postmaster. Letters arrive from Stoke-upon-Trent at 7.40 a.m.; dispatched at 5.40 p.m. Postal orders are issued here, but not paid. Cheddleton is the nearest money order office & Bucknall the nearest telegraph office

WALL LETTER BOX, Cellarhead, cleared at 6 p.m. week days only

National School (mixed), built in 1841, enlarged in 1885, & further enlarged in 1894, when a playground was provided & a master's house built at a cost of £300; the school will hold 160 children; average attendance, 116; Arthur Edward Jenks, master

CONSALL (or CUNSALL) is a township, in the Leek division of the county, Cheadle petty sessional division, supporting its own poor, and in Wetley Rocks ecclesiastical parish. At Consall Wood the Cauldon canal passes through a deep glen. Consall Hall, the seat of James Henry Meakin esq. is a mansion of brick, erected about 1810, and 6 miles south of Leek. J.W. Sneyd esq. D.L., J.P. and James Henry Meakin esq. are the principal landowners. There were formerly ironstone mines and coal pits, but they are now not worked. The area is 2,133 acres of land and 13 of water; rateable value, £2,430; the population in 1891 was 201.
[Kelly's Directory of Staffordshire, 1896]

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