Visit Macclesfield and the surrounding villages and stay in bed & breakfast accommodation:
Macclesfield, Cheshire. The emergence of Macclesfield as one of the leading silk manufacturing towns in England has given it an interesting architectural legacy of good 18th-and early 19th-century mills. They contribute to the town's character. Macclesfield is mentioned in the Domesday Book as having formed part of the demesne of Edwin, Earl of Chester, before the Norman Conquest. In 1261 a charter granted by Edward, Prince of Wales and Earl of Chester, constituted Macclesfield a free borough. In 1278 Edward I and Queen Eleanor founded the Parochial Chapel of Macclesfield, dedicated to All Saints. At some unknown date in the 18th century the church was re-dedicated to St Michael and All Angels. Very little remains of Queen Eleanor's chapel, the church having been rebuilt twice, in 1739 in the Classical style and again between 1898 and 1901. St Michael's may either be entered from the level of the wide market place or by climbing 108 steps from below. The newly pinnacled west tower rises high and contains in its walling many carved fragments from the medieval foundation. Over the south door is a stone anointed by the bishop conducting the first service 700 years ago. There is a fine hammer-beam roof to the chancel, a superb clerestory, and among the multitude of scenes depicted in the windows is aglorious Ascension designed by Burne-Jones and made by his friend William Morris. On the east wall of the Legh Chapel, which survives from the earlier building, there is a tablet to the memory of John Brownsword, a grammarian and poet who is believed to have been a master at Stratford-upon-Avon at a time when William Shakespeare could have been one of the pupils. The epitaph of another master of the school, William Legh, is inscribed on brass in the church and dated 1630. The Savage Chapel was built by Thomas Savage, who became Archbishop of York in 1501, with the intention that it should serve as a college, but instead it became the mortuary chapel of his family. Of special interest here is the Legh Pardon Brass of 1506, encased in a wooden frame. It shows Roger Legh kneeling with his six sons below the vision of Pope St Gregory, the inscription recording that, as a reward for good works and prayers, pardon had been offered to him and his family for 26,000 years and 26 days. The Savage Chapel is reached from the south aisle through a doorway guarded by two unicorns and an angel, and from the south tower below a delicate oriel window. Marble tombs and effigies fill the church.
Macclesfield's Town Hall is a good Georgian building. The market cross, now removed to the West Park, once stood in the centre of the market square, and it was from here that proclamations were read out to the townspeople, as when the yeomen and archers of the borough mustered to march to Bosworth Field and again to Flodden Field in 1513. In West Park can also be seen some old iron stocks in an excellent state of preservation and a 30-ton boulder believed to have been brought from Cumberland by Ice Age glaciers.
Macclesfield Forest, 5 miles East of Macclesfleld, on the A537, is a tiny village on the edge of a wide stretch of wild country presenting magnificent views across crags and narrow valleys towards the Peak District. The Forest Chapel here, originally built in 1673, was largely rebuilt in 1834. Two miles further along the road is Cheshire's most famous inn, the Cat and Fiddle, 1,600 ft up and one of the highest licensed houses in England. From this remote point close to the county boundary the vista is remarkable. Whetstone Ridge, 1,795 ft high, rises to the South directly in front of the inn, with many other summits of over 1,000 ft on every side. In the past this was a region of turbulence to match the rugged grandeur of its scenery. The Davenports of Capesthorne were the hereditary sergeants of the forest, whose duty to the king was to keep the 4,000 acres in readiness for hunting parties and prevent bands of outlaws from killing for the pot deer that were meant to provide royal sport. Lawlessness thrived until well beyond medieval times. Gangs of robbers, poachers and cut-throats made travel so hazardous that merchants dared only cross the area in the often questionable protection of professional guards. The wildness of Macclesfield Forest is reflected today in some of its names: Cat's Tor, Wolf's Edge, Dane's Moss, and Wildboarclough.
Nearby cities: Manchester
Nearby towns: Buxton, Chapel-en-le-frith, Congleton, Knutsford, Leek, Stockport, Wilmslow
Nearby villages: Adlington, Alderley Edge, Allgreave, Bollington, Bosley, Bramhall, Bramhall, Disley, Flash, Furness Vale, Handforth, Kerridge, Macclesfield, Poynton, Rainow, Ringway, Rushton Spencer, Styal, Swettenham, Taxal, Whaley Bridge, Wincle
Have you decided to visit Macclesfield or the surrounding villages? Please look above for somewhere to stay in:
- a Macclesfield bed and breakfast (a Macclesfield B&B or Macclesfield b and b)
- a Macclesfield guesthouse
- a Macclesfield hotel (or motel)
- a Macclesfield self-catering establishment, or
- other Macclesfield accommodation