Eccles Old Road is a special place. Part of the turnpike route from Manchester to Warrington, it was originally an area of large estates with occasional houses, hamlets, estate buildings and bleaching fields. Annual land tax records from the 1780s indicate land ownership and reveal the names of leaseholders but unfortunately there are no rate books in existence to extend our understanding. Later ordnance survey maps show how the area developed in the modern era but generally mapping is sparse so piecing together a picture of the earlier buildings along the road has been supplemented with archive sources, newspapers and wills, for instance. Additionally the absence of a tithe map for the Township of Pendleton impedes understanding of early land occupation.
Initially population density was low along the road but this was to change over the years when the attractive landscape, pleasant aspect and convenient proximity to Manchester’s commercial centre was recognised. During the nineteenth century the road was transformed, resulting in large detached residences, villas and terraces often accompanied with coachhouses, gardener’s cottages, gatehouses and sometimes pleasure gardens. Many of these and earlier buildings have been lost and those that survive have been subject to adaptation and reuse but the footprint of earlier times is still apparent on the ground, indicated by estate walls, the occasional gatepost and Salford’s 68 acre public park at Buile Hill. Supplemented with photographs and the existing sources these enable a picture of this significant element of Salford’s remarkable history.
Analysis of the various buildings along the road is systematic and non-hierarchical. Original and later uses, adaptations and changes feature in these ‘place’ histories in an attempt to establish a thorough understanding of the patterns of development and to link these with the lives of occupants along the road.
Use the contact form to give us any feedback or further information about the places along the road. In the meantime take a look at some of those in the list below.
You can also view places on Eccles Old Road on our Google Map.