Backford, Mollington & Lea Villages


The township of Backford is the centre of the parish and appropriately contains our Church and Village Hall as well as Backford Hall, home for so many years of the Gleggs, a leading family in the area. That family, indeed at one time owned much of the township.

The accepted date of Backford's present Hall is around 1863, though a date around 1848 is probably more correct. However, there have been at least two other buildings on the site, the first being 15th century, if not earlier. It was Edward Holt Glegg who built the Hall seen today.

By the early twentieth century, however, the estate had lost its old prosperity and the owners had no male heirs. Birkenhead Glegg died unmarried in 1914, and his brother, Edward Maxwell Glegg, who inherited, had no children. Parish Reminiscences tells of the eccentricity of later members of the Glegg family.

The Hall was rented out in 1936 as a country club. Unfortunately the then tenant, Mr Woodhouse, was found to be making forged Irish Lottery tickets, and left in a hurry.

An attempt was made in 1934 or 1936 to sell the Hall to the Salvatorian religious order. Unfortunately this did not work. It seemed that members of the family objected to the sale to a Roman Catholic order; and the Order subsequently moved to Christleton Hall. In 1946 the Hall was sold to a Liverpool company, Dock Services Ltd., then in 1946, to Cheshire County Council.

A strange story from Backford Hall tells of a young servant girl, who met a violent death there many years ago, and whose ghost remains to haunt the mansion. The ghost was sensed at the time of the Salvatorians, and was the subject of an attempted, but apparently unsuccessful exorcism in 1936.

Backford school was opened in 1844. In 1944 it became known as Backford C.of E. Aided Primary School and in 1996 it closed, all the pupils being transferred to the new St Oswald's School in Mollington