Not a leg to stand on!
234 Andrew Beardmore is expert on all things odd and quirky in Cheshire and he’s written about them in a new book. Here are just a few odd facts Cheshire Life: November 2018
Your quirky facts about Cheshire reminded me of a story my grandfather used to scare me with when I was young. He was in the navy and said one of his friends had been injured and lost a leg. This man later married and emigrated to Hong Kong and after a row over a game of cards he was found beaten to death with his own leg. When my grandfather died, I met some of his old navy pals at his funeral, including a man with a wooden leg who had served in the navy and then lived for years in Hong Kong. Why my grandfather invented his grizzly end, I’ll never know but now I know he might have been thinking of Sir Arthur Aston of Catton Hall!
Witches news to me
Sir Arthur Aston of Catton Hall, near Frodsham, was declared by Charles I to be more feared by the enemy than any other man in his army. However, Sir Arthur met the most ignominious of ends, when fighting gallantly in Ireland in 1649 – for he is said to have been beaten to death…with his own wooden leg!
Shown right is a c.30-ton granite boulder in Macclesfield’s West Park which is actually a glacial erratic, carried south from Cumbria by advancing glaciers around 12,500 years ago. The boulder was presented to the people of Macclesfield in their new public park in 1857, having been discovered during excavations nearby. It took a team of eight horses to move it the 1km to its current location, after which a wonderful brass plaque was affixed to the stone, proclaiming its date of placement and its origin – the latter claiming it had been carried south by ‘an iceberg from Cumberland’ – an interesting insight into how science and English county geography has since changed! As for the origin of the name ‘erratic’, it derives from the Latin ‘errere’ meaning ‘error’ or ‘ wanderer’ – so in this case, a rock that shouldn’t be there as it has totally different characteristics to the rock strata around it. They were once thought to have been deposited by a great flood, which in a way they sort of were. I was fascinated to read about the Chester witch trials (October issue). I had heard of the Pendle Witches, but didn’t know about the three women hanged in Chester. Reading your brief account has prompted me to learn more about them Chester’s history in general. Charlie Hook, email A POIGNANT NOTE Of all the things I have read and heard about the centenary of World War One, none has had the same impact as the story of Edwin Firth (October issue). The fact the band are still using his cornet 100 years after his death was so touching. I’ll be making sure I hear them in concert soon. This is the Pack over the River D Shires Head, wh Derbyshire and all meet. The sp well-known me illegal prize-figh protagonists an hot-foot it over t county border w by officials of ot
Quite let[email protected]life.co.uk THE FINAL LEG ERRATIC SCIENCE “He spell THREE SHIR THE ALDER