Bebington & Bromborough

The name Bebington is derived from the Anglo-Saxon meaning the "Village of Bebba", probably a Saxon chief or landowner. The area is thought to be the site of the "Birth of England" at the Battle of Brunanburh in 937, an English victory by the army of Æthelstan, King of England, and his brother Edmund over the combined armies of Olaf Guthfrithson, King of Dublin, Constantine II, King of Alba, and Owain ap Dyfnwal, King of the Cumbrians. Though relatively little known today, it was called "the greatest single battle in Anglo-Saxon history before Hastings." Michael Livingston claimed that Brunanburh marks "the moment when Englishness came of age." The Brackenwood golf course was cited in 2004 as the most likely site for the Battle of Brunanburh. Mention of the battle is made in dozens of sources, in Old English, Latin, Irish, Welsh, Anglo-Norman and Middle English, and there are many later accounts or responses to the battle. A contemporary record of the battle is found in the Old English poem Battle of Brunanburh, preserved in the Anglo-Saxon Chronicle.  The Church of St. Andrew, on a site occupied since Saxon times, dates from the 14th and 16th centuries.

In 1801, Bebington was a small country hamlet with a population of only 273, situated on the main road connecting Chester and Birkenhead, and then via ferry to Liverpool. Up to 30 horse-drawn coaches would pass by each day. By 1840, the Birkenhead to Chester railway was running and in 1844 the New Chester Road opened and Bebington lost its coaching traffic. In 1838, the footprints of an archosaur later called the Chirotherium storetonese were found in a sandstone bed at Storeton Quarry. Examples can be seen at the Liverpool Museum and at Christ Church within the parish of Higher Bebington. Also a small example can be seen at Higher Bebington Junior School, in their reception area.

Stone quarried at Bebington was used for the construction of Birkenhead Town Hall, some of the villas around Birkenhead and Rock Park and most famously of all the Empire State Building in New York City. The stone is considered to be a high quality sandstone which is creamy in appearance. The quarries were eventually filled in with debris removed during the construction of the two Mersey Tunnels.

 


Bebington  (higher centre)

Bromborough Church

Bebington Old Hall 

Bromborough Cross  and below, from the other side!

WW1 wounded in Bromborough formed a band
 
   
Bromborough Pool
 

Clatterbridge Hospital 
 
Bromborough Station
 
 
Junker 88 crashed on Bromborough side of Mersey (click link for my WW2 page)
 
Brunanburh - the battle that shaped England
 Not so long back I received an email asking about an incident at the Bromborough Fuel tanks in 1941. Luckily I was contacted by a gent called Paul Burks who provided me with the following newspaper cuttings. Many thanks Paul.

I gather from the articles that many locals were discussing the possibility of german spies, sabotage and other such rumours. Apparently the accident was literally just that, a tragic accident. But the coroner reported that the cause was unknown.

The case was heard 'in camera' as per the second article, but that would be normal given the circumstances.

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