guilden sutton












Guilden Sutton was mentioned in the Domesday Book. Legend has it that the parish has always been “off the beaten track”, with Roman Roads running close by. Indeed there is a delightful story that Cromwell’s men were unable to find it when they sought to punish the Royalist settlement, and that missing Chester plate is buried under an unspecified oak tree.Actual historic finds have been few: a bronze coin of Licinius I (AD307-324) found behind the Bird in Hand, a mediaeval lead spindlewhorl, four 17th cent. swords found in a house cellar, and a cannon ball.


A church was probably built in the 12th or 13th cent. The earliest register of births, marriages and deaths dates back to 1595; the Achdeacon’s corrections Books, recording the proceedings of church courts, refer to “Edward Dutton and Margaret his wife” beng absent from church in 1673 and the churchwardens’ accounts reveal that 10s 6d (52.5p) purchased a coffin for Joseph Joynson in 1744.


In the mid 18th cent, the parish consisted of 12 farm houses and eight cottages. Always an agricultural community, the parish had the services of a man to prevent cattle straying. The church was much damaged by a great storm in 1802 and was rebuilt. By 1810, the village was growing and had 24 houses and 120 people, increasing to 42 houses and 234 people 60 years later, including farmers, a blacksmith, a tile and brick maker, two boot and shoe makers, a painter and a bricklayer. The Methodist Chapel was built in 1873, the original village school in 1891, and the present church hall in 1916.



In 1964, the Rev H A Clarke said in his history of the parish “Owing to the mechanisation of agriculture, the proportion who work on the land is very small indeed. It is in fact a dormitory village .... it is still rural but it is no longer an agricultural community as it was for many centuries. It will certainly grow in years to come but let us hope it does not cease to feel like an English village”.


A third of a century on, the same can be said.         



The following miscellaneous historical references have links to, or are about, Guilden Sutton. (Perhaps, somebody, somewhere, may find them interesting....)

Old map An interesting map of Guilden Sutton (circa 1881) can be found here.

from:  The Report of The Charity Commissioners 1836

The Parish of Guilden Sutton :   Annual payment of 6shillings (30p) to the poor out of the parish-rates, which is supposed to be the interest of a legacy of £6 applied to the repairs of the church many years ago.  It is distributed with the sacrament-money in small sums at Easter.        [Donor unknown]


from:  "Cheshire History" No 36 : 1996 - 1997

published by Cheshire Local History Association

'A Poor School' ... Guilden Sutton Church of England Elementary School, 1882 - 1907
an article by Jackie Turton

Roman encampments in Guilden Sutton

Guilden Sutton
Temporary camp, see also Hoole
Philpott, R. A., Britannia XXIX, 1998, pp p341-353
SJ4367 Temporary camp, see also Hoole
Philpott, R. A., Britannia XXIX, 1998, pp p341-353
SJ4467 Temporary camp, see also Hoole
Philpott, R. A., Britannia XXIX, 1998, pp p341-353
Temporay camp, close to the Guilden Sutton group
Philpott, R. A., Britannia XXIX, 1998, pp p341-353

The Early Neolithic of the Carden region (c 4300-3000 BC)

There was evidence of a Neolithic axehead found in Guilden Sutton


Listed buildings

There are only 3 listed buildings in Guilden Sutton:

Hill Farmhouse, Wicker Lane - Grade II

Church of St John the Baptist, Church Lane - Grade II

Sundial in the Churchyard of St John the Baptist, Church Lane - Grade II

The Regional Environmental Sustainable Tourism Plan (RESTP) V2.8 August 2002 developed under European RECITE II, noted in its Appendices that "Hill Farmhouse is the most significant historic building in the parish". 

St John's Church - Registers of Baptisms/Burials/Marriages

The following records are can be read on microfilm in the Archives and Local Studies Section at Manchester Central Library and in the Cheshire Record Office:

Baptisms 1595-1932 MFPR677
Burials 1595-1952 MFPR677
Marriages 1595-1967 MFPR677

GENUKI - UK & Ireland Geneology


  • St. John the Evangelist (C of E) (NB - incorrect dedication!). An ancient parish church, serving the township of Guilden Sutton. Registers of Baptisms 1595-1932, Marriages 1595-1967 and Burials 1595-1952 have been deposited at the Cheshire Record Office.
  • Guilden Sutton, Methodist Chapel (Primitive). Built 1873.


  • South Cheshire (1832-67); West Cheshire (1868-85); Eddisbury (1885-1948); Chester (1949-74)


  • Great Boughton (1837-71); Tarvin (1871-1930)


  • Great Boughton (1837-69); Chester (1870-1937); West Cheshire (1937-74); Chester and Ellesmere Port (1974-98); Cheshire West (1998+)


Destruction of St Johns Church

According to the Grovenor Hotel website (viewed circa 2000), "a fierce storm destroyed St John the Baptist church in 1802, although a 16th-century sundial and 17th-century font and other historic features still survive from the original building.  An ancient yew tree flourishes nearby."


"Soul caking"

I am grateful for the help of Chris Little, a member of the Traditional Drama Research Group who has provided the following (Feb 2004):-

A chapter in Cheshire Village Memories II: being extracts from Thirty-Nine Scrap Books and Jottings of Local History made by members of Women's Institutes refers to winter customs in Guilden Sutton, as follows:

  "...Soul-caking was another occasion which called for much visiting and there was one old character who visited and sang carols at all the local farms on Christmas morning; he was rewarded with 'Christmas spirit' and food"

More about "soul caking" can be found by clicking here


In our neighbouring village of Wimbolds Trafford is the country house known as Trafford Hall.  It was built by George Edward Gerard in 1756, and shortly afterwards his daughter Dorothy and her husband Reverend Perryn, Rector of the parish of Guilden Sutton lived there


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