The civil parish of Whittington has a population of 2,490 as of the 2001 census. The village of Whittington is in the centre of the parish, and three smaller villages, Park Hall, Hindford to the north-east and Babbinswood to the south, are also within the parish.
Whittington appears to have been a prehistoric site and may have been a Dark Ages stronghold of King Cynddylan in the seventh century. There was an extensive settlement here recorded in the Domesday Book.
Whittington was granted to William Peverel probably in the summer of 1114 when King Henry I of England invaded Powys. William probably founded Whittington Castle which was taken from his descendants by the Welsh under Madog ap Maredudd of Powys and later granted to Roger Powys by King Henry II. It remained in the Powys family until King John granted it to the FitzWarin family, namely Fulk III FitzWarin(d.1258) whose life is recorded in a mediaeval romance.
In 1221, Henry III gave grudging permission for the castle to be re-built in stone after it had fallen to Prince Llywelyn ab Iorwerth of Wales (also known as 'Llywelyn the Great'). It was recaptured by Llywelyn in 1223 but was handed back the same year. It remained in the hands of the FitzWarins until 1420.
The castle ruins still exist today and were recently renovated. They are open to the public.
Two railway stations once served Whittington. The Shrewsbury to Chester Line (via Wrexham), of the former Great Western Railway, is still an operating route, but Whittington Low Level station on this line closed on 12 September 1960 although there have been numerous campaigns over the years to have it reopened. Whittington High Level station was on the main line of the Cambrian Railways. However, the section from Whitchurch to Welshpool (Buttington Junction), via Ellesmere, Whittington, Oswestry and Llanymynech, closed on 18 January 1965 in favour of the more viable alternative route via Shrewsbury, although Whittington (High Level) station itself had closed earlier, on 4 January 1960.
Part of the Whittington parish includes Park Hall. This was previously an army training camp, but now is residential and farming land.
There is a small amount of light industry based mainly on the 1) Whittington Business Park on the road to Oswestry. 2) A further group of business operate from premises off North Drive, Park Hall. 3) Industry and warehousing is also located at the edge of the parish, close to the main A5 road.
The largest employer within the parish is BT (previously British Telecom) which has premises on the Whittington Road.
- "2001 Census: Key Statistics: Parish Headcounts: Area: Whittington CP (Parish)". Office for National Statistics. Retrieved 2008-07-14.
- Arms of Fulk V FitzWarin, St George's Roll of Arms, 1285, briantimms.com, St George's Roll, part 1, no. E69
- P. Brown, P. King, and P. Remfry, 'Whittington Castle: The marcher fortress of the Fitz Warin family', Shropshire Archaeology and History LXXIX (2004), 106-127.
- Remfry, P.M., Whittington Castle and the families of Bleddyn ap Cynfyn, Peverel, Maminot, Powys and Fitz Warin (ISBN 1-899376-80-1)
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Whittington, Shropshire.|
- Info from Genuki website
- Oswestry website photos of Whittington Castle today
- BBC Shropshire feature on the castle restoration