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St Michael and All Angels church
|Lilleshall shown within Shropshire|
|OS grid reference|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|EU Parliament||West Midlands|
Lilleshall is a village in Shropshire, England.
The village dates back to Anglo-Saxon times, the parish church being founded by St Chad. It is mentioned in the Domesday Book. The Norman parish church of St Michael and All Angels is a grade I listed building.
There is a monument, a cricket club, a tennis club, a church and a primary school clustered around a bracken-covered hill named Lilleshall Hill.
Lilleshall Abbey, some distance to the east of the village, was an Augustinian house, founded in the twelfth century, the ruins of which are protected by English Heritage. After the dissolution of the monasteries the estate was bought by the Wolverhampton wool merchant James Leveson. His family held the site for four generations and, after two owners died without issue, it passed into the hands of the related Leveson-Gower family in the late 17th century.
Lilleshall is surrounded by farmland. The village and surrounds were the site of considerable early industrial development from as early as the 16th century, when Walter Leveson (1551-1602) established a bloomery. In the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries relatively shallow deposits of coal and limestone were mined, with resultant subsidence. The history of the mining of limestone is reflected in the naming of a road called 'Limekiln Lane' in Lilleshall. The former limestone mines are tucked away in treeland at the Newport end of the village, locally known as "the Slang", which is effectively several pits now filled with water, popular with local fishermen and unpopular with local parents of young children - the water is deep and the former minepits area quite dark, abandoned and dangerous.
At a similar time to the mining of limestone an early example of the English canal network was dug, the Donnington Wood Canal and its Lilleshall branch which were connected by an inclined plane, reflected in the naming of a road named The Incline in Lilleshall.
The Leveson-Gower Dukes of Sutherland became one of the richest families in the United Kingdom partly as a result of this industrial development and in the late nineteenth century built a new residence, Lilleshall Hall which lies at the heart of the estate a mile from the village. The Sutherland estate was sold off between 1915 and 1917 and the hall eventually passed into state ownership as a sporting facility. It is now the Lilleshall Hall National Sports Centre, once the site of the Football Association youth academy, and now the home of British gymnastics and archery. Lilleshall Hall Golf Club is also in the grounds of Lilleshall Hall.
Lilleshall Monument/Sutherland Monument
- "Church of St Michael and All Angels, Lilleshall, Donnington and Muxton". British Listed Buildings. Retrieved 28 January 2014.
- Ayto, John; Crofton, Ian (2005). Brewer's Britain & Ireland. London: Weidenfield & Nicholson. p. 663. ISBN 0 304 35385 X.
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