A video tour exploring the history of All Saint’s in Siddington

All Saints Church in Siddington 

All Saints Church in Siddington is a standout feature on the A34 between Congleton and Alderley Edge - Credit: James Balme

Our history man visits the village with one of Cheshire's most distinctive churches

Deep in the heart of Cheshire, surrounded by some of the county’s finest dairyland stands the ancient timber-framed church of All Saint’s in Siddington, close to Capesthorne Hall and Redesmere lake. Redesmere was created as a feeder reservoir for the ornamental lakes of Capesthorne Hall during the late 18th century.

Although local legend has it that a Cheshire knight, who believed his lady had been unfaithful, said he would not look upon her face again until the island in the lake was seen to float. A violent storm followed and the island was torn from the bottom of the lake and floated, thus clearing the lady’s name. 

The beautiful black and white church that stands proudly in the landscape has its own wonderful history, dating from as early as the 15th century and is thought to have belonged originally to Siddington Hall.

On the death of Robert Sydington, Siddington itself came into the possession of the Fitton family in the year 1474. The chapel was used as a chapel of ease to nearby Prestbury and consecrated in 1521, meaning that this year it celebrates its 500th anniversary. 

The first building was a timber, wattle and daub construction and much of the church remains this way today but in the 18th century, the frontage had deteriorated so badly it was demolished and rebuilt in brick. 

It is believed the weight of a heavy stone roof added during the 18th century caused the walls to bulge, and because of this, brick walls were added to the outside to support the structure, hiding the original timber frame from view. To the south side of the church, an ancient yew shadows the remains of an early stone cross dating to the early 15th century. 

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 In 1792 it was recorded that all of the church silver plate was stolen and never recovered. The news was recorded in detail and an advertisement was placed in the Manchester Mercury on November the 6th, 1792, which read: 

'Sacrilege, whereas sometime in the night of Sunday 28th October 1792, or early in the morning of Monday following, the chapel of Siddington, in the parish of Prestbury in the County of Chester, was broken open and the Communication Plate, consisting of one silver tankard, one silver salver, one silver cup and cover dated 1596 as well as five shillings and a half penny were taken away.

A reward of forty pounds is offered.' Forty pounds (the equivalent of more than £3,000 today) was a huge sum in the late 18th century, when a labourer's average annual wage was £20, a woman's £8 and a boy's £6.

But the silver plate was never recovered, although the chest was found in a nearby field smashed and the contents long gone, as were the culprits. While the items were never recovered a new set was presented to the church on the 21st of June, 1936, by Mrs Walter Bromley-Davenport and family, replacing the inferior plate that had been in use since the time of the robbery in 1792. 

My film, The Beauty of All Saint’s Siddington, shot at Siddington, can be viewed for free with many other local history films by visiting my channel, youtube.com/Tvpresenter4history

Things to look out for

Early 15th-century stone cross in churchyard 
17th-century pulpit inside church inscribed EM 1633 
Ancient yew tree shadowing the 15th-century cross 
The timber bell tower 

Things to look out for

Early 15th-century stone cross in churchyard 
17th-century pulpit inside church inscribed EM 1633 
Ancient yew tree shadowing the 15th-century cross 
The timber bell tower