Neston Civic Society

Jackson’s Tower Detail

What does the Society do?

We are concerned with:-

– The Local Environment – Planning – Architecture – Conservation

Neston is an important historic town which has been occupied since Saxon times. A town of warm sandstone and mellow brick, with many fine historic buildings. It is a beautiful place to live, work and visit.

Particular areas of concern to the society are:

  • Poor choice of windows and doors, particularly in period properties where design and materials are of great importance to the style of the house.
  • The impact of crude and thoughtless shop fronts and advertising along the most important roads in town.
  • The use of poorly chosen building materials which do not blend in with the distinctive character of the town.

We campaign to bring about improvements in and about Neston with particular emphasis on the Conservation area.

  • Cheshire West & Chester Council consult with us and ask for our views.
  • A Newsletter is published twice yearly.
  • We have talks six times a year at Neston United Reformed Church (see Event calendar)
  • We publish Neston Town Trail, available free in theTown Hall and Library
  • We organised a petition for a Neston Parish Council in 2005, which led to Neston Town Council being established in 2009
  • We adopted Neston Station in December 2006, and organised a mural in the underpass, which won Cheshire Best Kept Station Youth Challenge Award 2008, and new graffiti-style murals in 2010
  • From 2003 – 2013 we planted and looked after the plants around Neston Cross, and Neston Town Hall
  • We entered Neston & Little Neston in Cheshire’s Community Pride competition: in 2007 we were runners-up, and in 2008 we won! In 2014 we were fifth out of five, with a Little Gem Award for the Bushell Fountain, and Runner Up for the website neston.org.uk in the Market Towns category.
  • We joined with other local organisations to launch OURCH64, which asked local people in 2009 how the money coming from the new supermarket should be spent

The Civic Society’s outside interests

The Civic Society is represented by members of our committee on :

  • Project Rural Matters
  • CAN Events Group
  • Cheshire West & Chester’s Sainsbury’s Section 106 group (non-voting member)
  • Neston Town Council Neighbourhood Plan Task Force on Quality of Life & Transport

Registered with the Charity Commission No. 515628

We welcome new members.

Secretary Lindsey Hinks, 24 Henley Close, NESTON CH64 0SQ email 0151 336 6598

Treasurer Janet Griffiths, 25A Hinderton Road, NESTON CH64 9PE email 0151 336 5478

Please visit our website http://nestoncivicsociety.co.uk

Neston’s History

Neston was probably a Saxon settlement, and referring to “The Origins of Place Names” the first syllable ‘Nes’ means headland and ‘ton’ is a Saxon ending for a township – thus ‘a town on a headland’. An old map of the area shows this headland jutting out into the Dee Estuary – however, time and tides have long since eroded that away.

According to the “History of the Hundred of Wirral”, the parish of Neston in its early days, was the largest in Wirral, extending up to 9,000 acres and was values in the county books at £13,600 per annum.

Referring to the Domesday Book of 1085, the survey states that the inhabitants of Neston and Little Neston numbered 16.

The population in Great Neston in 1841 stood at 1,212 and by 1851 the Neston area population had risen to 3,578.

The last vestiges of the old manorial system which had controlled the area vanished with the sale of Mostyn lands, which had been considerable in size, leaving a serious vacuum in local administration. The Local Government Act of 1858 authorised local communities to elect boards, empowered to assume responsibility for certain matters such as water supply, drainage, sewage disposal and street lighting – and furthermore to raise a Rate to carry out these duties. The board met for the first time in August 1867 in the Church School. A Rate of 6d in the £1 was set.

It was subsequently decided that better premises were required for meetings and social events within Neston, and leading local residents decided to form a limited liability company to sell shares to finance the building of a suitable hall.

The site chosen was purchased for £500 and was a garden on which stood the Drill Shed, and used by the Neston Volunteer Rifle Corps – it had previously been the National School. The foundation stone of Neston Town Hall was laid on 6th September 1888 and it was completed in February 1889.

In 1894 the Board was dissolved, being replaced by Neston-cum-Parkgate Urban District Council. This became Neston Urban District Council in 1933.

In 1934, the Neston Urban District Council purchased the Hall from the Town Hall Company and all meetings were held in the Council Chamber upstairs. In further Government re-organisation in 1974, Neston Urban District Council merged with Ellesmere Port Urban District Council and Neston Town Hall and its Council Chamber was no longer the seat of Local Government. The basement, once used as the Drill Hall, houses part of the market every Friday. In 2013 Cheshire West & Chester employees moved from the Town Hall to Neston Library. In 2014 Neston Town Council moved in.