Heaton Moor is a thriving residential and commercial suburb of Stockport, located about 2 km north-west of the town centre and containing its own busy neighbourhood shopping centres.
Heaton Moor was historically part of a larger district called Heaton Norris that was included in the Salford Hundred and held by the Manchester barony of the Grelley family in the twelfth and thirteenth centuries. This period witnessed an increase in population and land clearance for agriculture in the area. Heaton Moor developed as the main mossland (or peat bog) of Heaton Norris with rich agricultural land supporting a mixed farming economy of pigs, cattle, cereal, and, from at least the sixteenth century, domestic weaving.
In spite of the nearby industrial development in the Mersey Valley, Heaton Moor remained an agricultural area until the mid-nineteenth century. It contained scattered farmsteads, such as Shaw Farm (now demolished), that were linked by a network of lanes, many of which are still traceable today, including Heaton Moor Lane, Shaw Lane, and Green Lane. The building of Heaton Chapel railway station in 1852 prompted a momentous change in the character of the area. The first section of the Manchester to Crewe line had opened in June 1840 as one of the first passenger lines in the country, linking Heaton Norris to Manchester. The railway promoted the growth of extensive middle class housing developments for commuters which was, from the 1870s, also served by buses operated by Manchester Carriage Company, and later by trams.
By 1892, the greater part of Heaton Moor Road as far as Green Lane, had become built up. Houses of grandiose scale in generous gardens were built along Heaton Moor Road, side by side with public and amenity buildings. These included Heaton Moor Methodist Church, the Reform Club, St Paul’s Church, the United Reformed Church, shops and public houses. An imposing and clearly defined frontage to Heaton Moor Road presented itself as the centre of an affluent and confident new suburb. New residential roads were laid out and developed, such as Peel Moat Road, Derby Road and Broomfield Road. The area was progressively infilled with housing which, whilst retaining the qualities of scale, proportion and generous gardens, were generally of semi-detached forms rather than the detached housing of earlier developments. By the 1920s a wide range of leisure and sporting facilities were available in the area, from tennis courts, cricket grounds, croquet lawns and bowling greens as well as the development of Heaton Moor Park.
Before the opening of the railway, Heaton Moor was agricultural land in Heaton Norris. The land supported pigs cattle and cereal. Heaton Norris was part of the Manchester barony of the Grelley family, but between 1162 and 1180 it belonged to William le Norreys. In the early 13th century, Heaton Norris was a sub manor of Manchester, it encompassed all of the Four Heatons. It was escheated (i.e. reverted) to the manor of Manchester around 1280. In 1322, there were 32 dwellings suggesting a population of 150, the ten freeholders of the escheated manor had the right to graze on common pasture and to cut wood. Evidence of this pre-railway existence can be seen from the name Shaw Farm, Shaw Fold farm, and the road pattern Heaton Moor Lane, Shaw Lane, Shaw Fold Lane, Pin Fold, Green Lane. Parsonage Road and Cranbourne Grove follow the lines of ancient tracks.
The opening of Heaton Chapel railway station marked a turning point in development of the area. Land was acquired, and streets were planned. The houses and new buildings along Heaton Moor Road were of a grandiose scale with generous gardens. They are set back from the road, and have imposing stone gate posts. The new residential roads such as Broomfield Road, Derby Road, and Peel Moat Road which were built when agricultual land was acquired, have the same characteristics. The building and infilling continued into the Edwardian era. There were a wide range of sporting facilities, such as crown green bowling, tennis and golf. A substantial terrace of shops was built on Heaton Moor Road,with glass and cast iron awnings. Intellectual life was provided for when the Reform Club was built in 1886 by Alfred Darbyshire.
On the border between Manchester and Stockport, The Four Heatons have been part of both Lancashire and Cheshire over the years. The name seems to originate from a Lancashire family, granted land around the River Lune during the time of King John.
The Heaton family gradually enlarged its possessions over the following two centuries; Heaton Moor, Heaton Mersey and Heaton Chapel were their most southerly lands. On the death of William de Heton in 1387, the lands in Lancashire were inherited by his two daughters and the lands passed out of their hands leaving only the names.
As Stockport expanded during the industrial revolution, more and more of the Heatons passed into Cheshire with the final part of Heaton Norris gained from Lancashire in 1936. Its suburban affluence makes the area very popular with commuters and young professionals, resulting in high house prices. The area has numerous parks, shops and amenities. Cafe culture is now part of the area with the opening of numerous bistros, following the trend of other localities such as East Didsbury.
However popular it may have become, the area owes its existence to the industrial revolution and in1834, there were nearly 120 firms in Stockport and Heaton Norris engaged in different branches of the cotton business. Around the same period, Heaton Norris boasted nine day schools with 481 scholars and four Sunday schools with 1141 scholars - a reflection of the lives of families working in the area's mills and factories.
Following the opening of the railway station in 1852, this area developed as one of the first 'rail commuter' neighbourhoods in Stockport. Later tram and bus services along Wellington Road North amongst others boosted the suitability of the Heatons as a place to live.
The first houses were larger detached and semi-detached Victorian villas, followed by other semis and terraces built in the later decades of the 19th century and the early part of the 20th century. Many of these buildings are architecturally or historically significant, being either statutorily listed or acknowledged to be of major local interest. The landscaped gardens with mature trees and planting to many of the houses and other buildings, together with the street trees, give this area a residential character reflective of early suburban development.
Heaton Mersey's development was influenced by its settings partially on the valley side, on higher, more level ground and by its situation on either side of Didsbury Road. The late Victorian and early 20th century houses and shops around St. John's Church came after the opening of Heaton Mersey station in 1880. The majority of the buildings date from the 19th century, but there are two late 16th century half-timbered cottages.
The Heaton end of Mauldeth Road has some of the earliest Victorian villas in this part of Stockport and they were originally separated from one another by countryside. The conservation area has been extended to include Mauldeth Hall, a Listed Grade II mansion built in 1839.
Also, in Heaton Moor is a Scheduled Ancient Monument - Peel Hall.
(Source Stockport Express)
The Savoy Cinema
The Savoy Cinema opened 1923, built in the Baroque Style in red brick with white terracota dressings. The Savoy Cinema had announced its closure due to low audiences. This caused an uproar amongst locals, especially when it was announced it could be replaced by a Varsity bar. Much of the uproar was concerned around the owners of Varsity, the Barracuda Group. A campaign entitled 'Save Our Savoy' was launched.
A historic Stockport cinema could re-open as early as this autumn.
The Savoy in Heaton Moor has been closed since November while a buyer was found, but now, a family-run business is hoping to give the venue a new lease of life.
A new website is live and says the renovation could be complete later this year. The company behind the work have already successfully renovated two similar cinemas, The Ritz in Belper and the Regal in Melton Mowbray.
A statement on the website said: "We want to do to the Savoy what we have done to The Ritz and Regal. We see real potential for an independant, luxury cinema with a varied programme, comfortable seating, sofas and a bar, catering for the whole community."
They say the first phase of the development will see a single screen re-open using two-thirds of the current auditorium.
There will be a selection of standard seats, luxury Pullman chairs and eve sofas for couples, each with their own table for drinks and snacks. The latest digital projection and satellite equipment will also be installed to beam in live events.
Courtesy of Manchester Evening News
UPDATE : The Savoy has been recently renovated - please visit http://www.savoycinemaheaton.com/
Key Historic Buildings
St Paul’s Church:
Built in 1876-7 to a design by Bird and Whittenbury. The nave was extended by two bays in 1896 and the octagonal south east tower was added in 1900. Listed Grade II. First World War Memorial: In front of St Paul’s Church and unveiled in
1921, is a bronze life-size soldier in battledress by John Cassidy.
Listed Grade II.
The Virgin St Mary and St Mina Coptic Church and Sunday School:
Formerly the United Reform Church.
Built in 1896 by Darbyshire and Smith.
Features a slender south-west steeple with gables containing prominent clock faces.
Listed Grade II.
31 Parsonage Lane (the Old Parsonage):
An L-shaped range of buildings. The first phase is a mid to late eighteenth century, two
storey, three bay building of brick with a slate roof.
Listed Grade II.
Heaton Chapel Railway Station: Built in 1852.
A two storey building with variegated brickwork, segmental brick arches to windows and yellow brick string courses.
Square in plan with a hipped slate roof.
Heaton Moor Reform Club:
Constructed in 1886-7 by Alfred Darbyshire in brick with stone dressings. An unusual asymmetrical elevation with a triple entrance arcade, oriel windows, turrets and roof.
Heaton Moor Conservative Club:
School, Derby Road:
Single storey, in brick with a steep pitched roof.
Public house rebuilt in 1881 in Gothic Revival (Jacobethan) style, predominantly in sandstone. Inscription above ground floor reads ‘A merrie heart goes all ye day. A sad tires in a mile’
Shops with canopies, Heaton Moor Road:
Late 19th century row of shops; nos 52 and 54
have original shop fronts.
Corner of Heaton Moor Road and Shaw Road
Cottages at 27-37 Derby Range:
Early 19th century row of cottages, with a central namestone - ‘Market Place’
Drakelow, Parsonage Road:
An eighteenth century, two storey cottage adjoining an early nineteenth century, two storey, three-bay house of hand¬ made brick and a slate roof.
86 and 88 Heaton Moor Road:
Two storey, three bays, built in hand-made brick. Remains of late 19th century shopfront.
Heaton Moor Methodist Church:
Rebuilt 1980s retaining earlier stone tracery to the west window
A large early twentieth century Baroque building in red brick, terracotta and red sandstone banding featuring Manchester
Opened in 1923 and constructed in Baroque style, of red brick with red and white terracotta dressings.
Unity Church, Kings Drive:
Built between 1891 and 1904, now a Girl Guide Hut.