Storeton shown within Merseyside
|Population||150 (2001 Census)|
|OS grid reference|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|EU Parliament||North West England|
|UK Parliament||Wirral South|
Storeton is a small village on the Wirral Peninsula, England. It is situated to the west of the town of Bebington and is made up of Great Storeton and Little Storeton, which is classified as a hamlet. At the 2001 Census the population of Storeton was recorded as 150.
In October 1944 an USAAF Liberator Bomber number 42-50347 from the 445th Bomb Group exploded without explanation over the fields between Little Storeton and Landican with the loss of all 24 servicemen on board. The loss included 15 commissioned officers who were being taxied back to Tibenham after seeing more than 30 successful combat missions. In recent years a memorial stone has been erected by a local man who witnessed the aftermath of the crash as a teenager. The stone is coloured in the USAAF colours blue and yellow, with 24 yellow bricks each representing a life lost.
On the ridge above the village of Storeton are Storeton Woods that are owned by the Friends of Storeton Woods and cover 31 acres (130,000 m2).The woods were purchased in 1989 after a campaign by the local Green Party as there were concerns about the deteriorating condition of the woods and the possibility that the land might be bought by developers. The trust later also attempted to purchase the adjacent Hancock's Wood to extend the nature reserve by a further 25 acres (100,000 m2) but the deal with the Leverhulme estate fell through at the last minute. Although the offer remains open there is the concern that this could lead to the eventual development of the area of woodland for housing.
Storeton Quarries and Tramway
The woods have grown up on the site of a quarry that was present since the times of the Roman occupation. The quarries were up to 200 feet (61 m) deep at the beginning of the 20th century and, from the 19th century, a tramway (a single track, standard gauge railway) was used to transport stone to the quayside at Bromborough. A portion of the tramway embankment still exists as footpath and a section of the rails have been re-installed by the Bromborough Society. Some rails were embedded at a former level crossing on Rest Hill Road until 1979 when they were buried under a new layer of tarmac. The tramway ran along the southern border of the current woods, into Hancock's Wood and through a tunnel under Mount Road. It then ran in a sweeping curve to Bromborough. Much of the route of the tramway can no longer be seen as it has been lost under housing development or levelled for the playing fields of Wirral Grammar School but the present Quarry Road and Quarry Road East in Bebington follow the track of Storeton Tramway and the original tunnel under the Chester to Birkenhead railway line is still in use as footpath opposite the end of Quarry Road East.
Most of the village is built from locally quarried stone from Storeton Ridge. The stone is a creamy sandstone and was also used for cladding the Empire State Building in New York. Stone from the quarry has been used in many other buildings and constructions, including Birkenhead Town Hall (located in Hamilton Square) and Sankey Viaduct in Cheshire. The quarry was filled in with spoil from the excavation of the Queensway Tunnel in the 1920s and the site is currently a tranquil nature reserve enjoyed by walkers.
The quarry was also the site of the discovery of dinosaur footprints, the species was named Chirotherium Storetonese after the site of discovery. Examples of these footprints can be seen in World Museum Liverpool in Liverpool and the Williamson Art Gallery in Birkenhead, and also in Christ Church, Kings Road, Higher Bebington.
- Wirral 2001 Census: Storeton, Metropolitan Borough of Wirral, retrieved 1 September 2007
- Sulley, Philip (1889), The Hundred Of Wirral
- Cheshire L-Z, The Domesday Book Online, retrieved 1 September 2007
- Cheshire Towns & Parishes: Storeton, GENUKI UK & Ireland Genealogy, retrieved 1 September 2007
- Storeton transmitting station
- Storeton Tramway, Friends of Storeton Woods, retrieved 1 September 2007
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