The Grove, Lymm
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Lymm (// LIM) is a village and civil parish in the Borough of Warrington, Cheshire, England, which incorporates the hamlets of Booths Hill, Broomedge, Church Green, Deansgreen, Heatley, Heatley Heath, Little Heatley, Oughtrington, Reddish, Rushgreen and Statham. At the 2021 United Kingdom census it had a population of 12,700.
The name Lymm, of Celtic origins, means a "place of running water" and is likely derived from an ancient stream that ran through the village centre. The village appears as "Limme" in the Domesday Book of 1086.
Lymm was an agricultural village until the Industrial Revolution, which brought the Bridgewater Canal and the Warrington and Altrincham Junction Railway to the village. The village played a prominent role within the salt extraction industry, gold beating industry and cotton industry (many of its inhabitants were fustian cutters).
In 2017, Lymm was voted as one of the 'Best Places to Live' according to The Times and The Sunday Times list. In June 2023, the village was voted as one of Britain's 'Most Desirable Towns' according to The Daily Telegraph, and in November 2023 it was voted as the third 'Most Desirable' place to live in the North of England according to the Telegraph.
Lymm currently lies within the parliamentary constituency of Warrington South. The constituency is regarded as a bellwether or marginal seat. As of the 2019 General Election, it is represented by Conservative MP Andy Carter who had a 3.2% majority. Since the 2019 General Election there has been a boundary change and both Lymm electoral wards will be absorbed into the Tatton constituency at the next General Election.
On a local council level, the village is split between Lymm South ward and Lymm North and Thelwall ward within the Borough of Warrington. As of the 2021 Warrington Borough Council election, Lymm South has two councillors, one Liberal Democrat and one Conservative, while Lymm North and Thelwall has three councillors, all Liberal Democrats.
Lymm High School accepts students from Lymm and the surrounding villages and hamlets. It was judged as 'Good' in its 2022 Ofsted inspection with a planned early re-inspection due in 2024 as the school was deemed to be of almost 'Outstanding' standard. In December 2024, The Sunday Times ranked the school as one of the top five secondary schools in the North West and the top secondary school in the Warrington area.
- Oughtrington Primary School (Ofsted rating 'Outstanding', 2020)
- Ravenbank Community Primary School (Ofsted rating 'Good', 2023)
- Statham Primary Schoo| (Ofsted rating 'Good', 2018)
Culture and heritage
Lymm Heritage Centre, which opened in June 2017, is in the centre of the village on Legh Street. It hosts exhibitions related to local history as well as activities for schools and visitors.
Morris dancing was taking place in Lymm as early as 1817, often appearing in the village at Rushbearing time throughout the Victorian era. Morris dancing continues to feature within the village with Lymm Morris dancers frequently performing during Rushbearing and at the various annual village festivals including the Lymm May Queen Festival, Lymm Festival and Lymm Dickensian Festival.
Lymm village centre is a designated conservation area, notable for its historic buildings, both listed and unlisted including the French-style terracotta former town hall, St Peter's Church and Lymm Hall. Another is Oughtrington Hall and Lodge (formerly owned by a cadet branch of the Leigh family) this is now Lymm High School. Foxley Hall, home to a cadet branch of the ancient Booth family before ownership passed to the Carlisle family, is no longer standing, but fustian-cutting cottages on Church Road and Arley Grove do survive.
The parish church of St Peter, Oughtrington, is an example of Gothic Revival architecture. St Mary's Church, Lymm, overlooking Lymm Dam and dating back to 1521, was rebuilt in the 19th century after falling into disrepair.
A “dinosaur” (reptile) footprint was discovered in the Victorian era, in one of Lymm's many quarries, which is thought to be from the Triassic period. It is on display in the centre of the village.
Spud Wood is a recreational area, located next to the Bridgewater Canal, managed by the Woodland Trust. In 2014 the community was granted a licence to run a wood allotment scheme where local residents can coppice and fell wood. There is also a community orchard located in grounds behind Oughtrington Community Centre – run by the same local group.
The M56 (junctions 7, 8 and 9) and M6 (junction 19 and 20) motorways are both within 3 miles (4.8 km) of Lymm. The conjunction of these motorways with the A50 is known as the Lymm Interchange, and hosts a service station known as the Poplar 2000 services, a well-used truck stop. The A56 also passes just south of the village, connecting the nearby towns of Warrington and Altrincham. The CAT5/5A buses to Lymm from Warrington and Altrincham are frequent on weekdays and Saturdays.
The Bridgewater Canal passes through the centre of Lymm. The Manchester Ship Canal passes to the north, and beyond its route lies the River Mersey. To the east of Lymm the River Bollin flows along the village's border with Warburton and the borough of Trafford. A number of small brooks feed the popular tourist attraction of Lymm Dam, built in 1824 to enable the construction of the Stockport–Warrington Road (now known as the A56).
Lymm railway station was on Whitbarrow Road. It opened on 1 November 1853 as part of the Warrington and Altrincham Junction railway. There was a further station at Heatley, on Mill Lane, for salt and lead. To the east, the track ran via Dunham into Broadheath and the Manchester network. To the west, the track used to run into Warrington, via Latchford, and the tar processing on Loushers Lane, then into Bank Quay Low Level.
The line closed to passengers on 10 September 1962; it was officially closed to all types of traffic on 7 July 1985, but lasted a few months. Then it became financially unviable, and the tracks and sleepers were rapidly lifted. Lymm today has no railway station; the closest stations are at Glazebrook, Birchwood, Warrington, Knutsford and Altrincham.
Today the old Railway through Lymm forms a good stretch of the Trans Pennine Trail, with a ranger station at Statham, near the centre of the village. In 2022, upgrade work to certain sections of the trail commenced to provide updated all weather surfaces for users.
Note: statistics expressed as percentages may not add up to 100%. Census data is based on that of Lymm Ward from the 2011 censuses.
- Total population: 12, 700 residents
- Households: 5,300
- Male:female ratio: 47.9%:52.1%
- Average age of population: 46 years
- 95.2% White
- 2.2% Mixed
- 2.0% Asian
- 0.3% Black
- 0.4% Other
Highest educational qualifications
- 10.2% have no qualifications.
- 4.8% have an apprenticeship qualification.
- 33.6% have a level 1, 2 or 3 or qualification.
- 49.4% have a level 4 qualification or higher.
RAF Air Cadets
2137 (Lymm) Squadron formed in 1964 as part of the programme to reestablish units that had been closed following the Second World War. They formed at Park Road in Broomedge with a wooden spooner hut. In 2015 this was demolished to make way for a new £300,000 facility which was opened in 2016. In April 2018 the Squadron lead the Royal Air Force Air Cadets action to commemorate the Royal Air Force centenary by travelling to the first RAF airfield at Saint-Omer in France and parading on behalf of the RAF and Ministry of Defence.
Association football is played in Lymm, there are adult and junior teams playing at Lymm Rovers F.C. and another junior team – Lymm Piranhas J.F.C.. Lymm Rugby Union Club fields four teams on a regular basis.
Lymm has a number of sports facilities, including:
- Lymm Golf Club
- Lymm Lawn Tennis Club
- Lymm Croquet Club
- Lymm Oughtrington Park Cricket Club – whose home ground is in the former grounds of Oughtrington Hall, a former ancestral home of a cadet branch of the Leigh family
- Lymm Leisure Centre, which is next door to the cricket club at Lymm High School – has a swimming pool, badminton court and gym facilities
- Crown green bowling takes place in Stage Lane, the Oughtrington Bowling Club having been established for more than a century
- Elizabeth Pulman (1836 in Lymm – 1900), British-born New Zealand photographer, the country's first female professional photographer, emigrated 1861
- Gerard Dewhurst J.P. (1872–1956), English cotton merchant, banker and amateur footballer, earning one international cap for England in 1895; grew up at Oughtrington Hall in Lymm
- Cicely Fox Smith (1882 in Lymm – 1954), English poet and writer
- Kenneth Carlisle (1882 in Lymm – 1967), English cricketer active from 1903 to 1905 who played for Oxford University
- Robert Westall (1929–1993), author, lived on Woodland Drive in Lymm until his death
- Sir John Stalker (1939–2019), former Deputy Chief Constable of Greater Manchester Police, lived in Lymm
- Alex Timpson MBE (1946 in Lymm – 2016), British campaigner for children's rights
- Andrew Murray (born 1956), English professional golfer, lives in Lymm
- Aiden Byrne (born 1972), English chef who starred in Great British Menu, owns The Church Green in Lymm
- David Strettle (born 1983 in Lymm), Saracens F.C. rugby union player
- Dan Logan (born 1985), English musician, brought up in Lymm
- Harry Worley (born 1988 in Lymm), retired English professional footballer, 140 professional appearances
- Tom Murray (born 1990), English professional golfer, lives in Lymm
In popular culture
The 2011 television series Candy Cabs was filmed in Lymm. The 2015 Sky 1 television series After Hours was filmed in Lymm in 2014. A scene from Paul Abbot's No Offence TV series was filmed in Lymm in 2014.
Lymm has its own radio station, Cheshire's Mix 56, which was created in 2020. It broadcasts 24 hours a day and is run by volunteers.
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Media related to Lymm at Wikimedia Commons