Infobox UK place
country = England
population= 14,134 (2001 Census)
population_density= Pop density mi2 to km2|5218|precision=0|abbr=yes|wiki=yes
City of Manchester
region = North West England
constituency_westminster= Manchester Withington
postcode_district = M20
london_distance= 160 mi (256 km) SE
static_image_caption=Withington village centre viewed from
Withington is a suburban area of the
City of Manchester, in North West England. It lies convert|4|mi|km|1 south of Manchester City Centre, about convert|0.4|mi|km|1 south of Fallowfield, convert|0.5|mi|km|1 north-east of Didsbury, and convert|1|mi|km|1 east of Chorlton-cum-Hardy, near the centre-to-south edges of the Greater Manchester Urban Area; in the Manchester Withington parliamentary constituency. Withington is a dormitory village consisting of a resident population slightly over 14,000 people.
In the early 13th century, Withington occupied a feudal estate that included the townships of Withington,
Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Moss Side, Rusholme, Burnage, Denton and Haughton, ruled by the Hathersage, Longford and Tatton families, [cite book |last= Sussex & Helm |title= Looking Back at Withington and Didsbury |pages=45 |publisher= Willow |date= 1988 |id= ISBN 0-946361-25-8] and within the historic county boundaries of Lancashire.cite web |url=http://www.gmcro.co.uk/guides/gazette/gazframe.htm |title=A select gazetteer of local government areas, Greater Manchester County|author=Anon|publisher= Greater Manchester County Records Office|accessdate=2008-03-16|date= 2003-07-31]
Withington was largely rural until the mid-nineteenth century, in which it experienced rapid
socioeconomicdevelopment and urbanisationdue to the Industrial Revolution, and Manchester's growing level of industrialisation. Introduced into the inner boundaries of Manchester in 1904, [cite web|url=http://www.withington.net/history.htm|title=Withington history|publisher=Unknown|accessdate=2008-03-16|date=2001] Withington was integrated into the city forty-five years after it gained city status.
Today, Withington comprises a mixture of families, university students and "young professionals" — often themselves former students. [cite web|url=http://www.bbc.co.uk/dna/h2g2/A3895491|title=Withington, Manchester, UK|publisher=BBC Editorial|date=2005-06-06|accessdate=2008-03-17] This is in a large part due to its education links—particularly the close proximity to the
University of Manchester, which has the largest student population in the United Kingdom, and Manchester Metropolitan University. As a consequence, Withington is predominantly an area of mixed affluence. It is also a centre for clinical excellence with the one of the largest cancer treatment centres in Europe— Christie Hospital—and Withington Community Hospital.
The first recorded description of Withington dates from 1186, calling the area a willow-copse farmstead, and giving rise to the Anglo-Saxon name "Wīðign-tūn", with withy meaning "willow branch used for bundling". [cite book |last= Cooper|first= Glynis| title= The Wharncliffe Companion to Manchester | pages=168|publisher= Wharncliffe books |date= 2005 |id= ISBN 1-903425-74-3] In the early 13th century, the Manor of Withington covered a wide area including Withington,
Didsbury, Chorlton-cum-Hardy, Moss Side, Rusholme, Burnage, Denton and Haughton. The first Lord of the Manor of Withington is thought to have been William, son of Wulfrith de Withington.cite book |last= Sussex & Helm|first= | title= Looking Back at Withington and Didsbury | pages=45 |publisher= Willow |date= 1988 |id= ISBN 0-946361-25-8] Withington was one of the townships of the ancient parish of Manchester in the Salford Hundred of Lancashire, and a sub-manor of the Manor of Manchester. In the 13th century, Robert Grelle (sometimes Grelley), [cite web|url=http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=41434|title=Townships - Heaton Norris|publisher=British History|date=2007|accessdate=2008-03-17] Lord of the Manchester Manor, granted free warrenin Withington to Matthew de Hathersage (or Haversage), son of William, in exchange for one knight's fee. Little is known of the Hathersage family, except that they descended to the Longford family, and are connected with the manors of Hathersageand Longford, both in Derbyshire.cite web|url=http://www.british-history.ac.uk/report.aspx?compid=41425&strquery=withington|title=Township - Withington|publisher=British History|date=2007|accessdate=2008-03-17] The lordship of Withington remained in the Hathersage/Longford family for over 300 years.
At the end of the 16th century, Nicholas Longford sold Withington to the
Mosley's (originally Moseley), an influential and Anglo-Irishfamily of wool merchants who subsequently became wealthy landowners in Staffordshire. Nicholas Mosley later became Lord of the Manor of Manchester. Hough End Hallwas built by Sir Nicholas Mosley in 1596 as the new Withington Manor–the original medieval manor was situated south-east of the modern junction of Mauldeth Roadand Princess Road, which was surrounded by a moat. In 1750 it was demolished to make way for a farm building, but some of the moat was left. An 1845 Ordnance Surveymap shows it as "Withington Old Hall", and it later came to be known as "Chorlton's Farm" or "Old Hall Farm". Today, the site is occupied by [http://www.streetmap.co.uk/streetmap.dll?G2M?X=383989&Y=393651&A=Y&Z=1 Eddisbury Avenue] and no trace remains of the old manor. [cite book|last= France & Woodall|first=|title= A New History of Didsbury|pages=203|publisher= E.J. Morten|date= 1976|id= ISBN 0-85972-035-7] There are still today some remnants of this moat underneath Old Moat Primary School, on Old Moat Lane. In the early 18th century, the Withington Manor was once again sold, this time to the Egertons of Tatton.Fact|date=March 2008
Withington as town developed around Wilmslow Road, a Turnpike Road, administered by the Manchester to Wilmslow Turnpike Trust which was the only direct route between
Manchesterand Wilmslowat the time. Farming still dominated the area, although there is evidence in maps of a substantial cotton house on Cotton Lane, which later appears to become Withington Hall. Some historians dispute the cotton house as there is little record of it, and claim " Cotton Lane" comes from land in the area which was a co-township owned land by Withington, Didsburyand Burnage, a relic of the mediaeval open field system. This area was the old town centre however, showing some significance, although the only relic of this significance is the small flower display on the corner of Wilmslow Road and Cotton Lane.
The trade, and subsequent thoroughfare on Wilmslow Road, increased steadily as the city of Manchester flourished in the 1800s. Turnpike roads subsequently became increasingly unpopular, and were abolished completely in 1881. Wilmslow Road as a Turnpike road would have been abolished as soon as 1861 had the Manchester to Wilmslow Turnpike Trust not agreed to build a new turnpike road to Northenden, named Palatine Road. Cheaper transport in and out of Manchester became an important factor in the growth of the area. In 1880 a tramway was built along Wilmslow Road and Palatine Road to meet the newly opened West Didsbury and Withington Railway Station, run by
Midland Railway. The horse trams ran until 1 December 1902 when the first electric tramscame in to operation. The Withington and West Didsbury Station ran a service to Manchester Central Station until its closure in 1967.
Withington Parish Church was opened in 1841, and many other chapels and churches proliferated, including
Methodist, Presbyterianand Roman Catholic. Withington has also been home to Spanish and Portuguese Sephardi Jews, with synagogues opening in the late 19th century.
A large aerodrome was built in 1917/18 on the westerly edge of Withington, to the southwest of the junction of Mauldeth Road and Princess Road, on what is now the site of Houghend Playing Fields. The official name was
Alexandra Park Aerodrome, but it was also variously referred to as 'Withington' and 'Didsbury'. Closure came in autumn 1924 when Lord Egerton of Tatton would not agree to the site's continued use for flying. The large hangars were then demolished and Princess Road extended southwards through the eastern edge of the site.
On 28 April 1910, French pilot
Louis Paulhanlanded his Farmanbiplane in Barcicroft Fields, Pytha Fold Farm, on the borders of Withington, Burnage and Didsbury, at the end of the first powered flight from London to Manchester, with one short overnight stop at Lichfield. Paulhan beat the British contender, Claude Grahame-White, winning a £10,000 prize offered by the Daily Mail.cite web|title=London to Manchester|publisher=Skypark|url=http://www.skyparksecure.com/cheap_airport_parking/manchester/airport_history.php|date=2007|accessdate=2008-03-17] Two special trains were chartered to Burnage Station to take spectators to the landing. Paulhan's progress was followed throughout by a special train carrying his wife, Henri Farmanand his mechanics. A house in Paulhan Road, is marked by a blue plaqueto commemorate his achievement.
Withington was anciently a township within the parish of Manchester and Hundred of Salford. Under the
feudal system, Withington had been governed by its own court leet, and this tradition continued well into the 19th century.Fact|date=March 2008 The court used to meet at the Red Lion public house on Wilmslow Road until 1841.Fact|date=March 2008 Following the Public Health Act 1875, Withington Town Hall was built in 1881 on Lapwing Lane, which was originally built to house Withington Local Board of Health, then later resided by the Withington Urban District Council, under the Local Government Act 1894. In 1904, Withington formally became part of the City of Manchester. [cite web|url=http://www.withington.net/history.htm|title=Withington history|publisher=Unknown|accessdate=2008-03-16|date=2001]
Manchester Withington is a Parliamentary Constituency which encompasses Withington village,
Chorlton-cum-Hardyand Didsbury(East and West). Manchester Withington became the first constituency in the City of Manchestersince 1929 to elect a Liberal (Democrat) MP upon John Leech's gain in the 2005 General Election, when the constituency also experienced the largest swing of that election, taking the previously 11,524 majority Labour safe seatby 667 votes - a swing of 17%. [cite web | url=http://www.guardian.co.uk/politics/2005/oct/10/houseofcommons.uk | publisher=The Guardian | date=10 October 2005 | accessdate=2008-03-23 | title=Class of 2005] This was possibly attributable to the constituency's large student population. [cite web |url=http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/uk_politics/vote_2005/issues/4520847.stm | title=Who Deserted Labour? | date=7 May 2005 | accessdate=2008-03-23| publisher=BBC News | author=Cowling, David] The previous encumbent of the seat, Keith Bradley, had held the seat for Labour for 18 years; Lucy Powellwas chosen as the successor candidate to Keith Bradley in March 2007, [cite web|url=http://www.labourhome.org/tag/Lucy%20Powell | title=Lucy Powell Wins Mcr Withington Selection | publisher= labourhome.org | first=Mark |last=Colburn |date=1 April 2007|accessdate=2008-03-25] to try to regain the seat at the next general election. [cite web|url=http://www.hazelblears.com/wp-content/uploads/2007/06/building-our-majority.doc|title=Building our majority|publisher=Labour Party (Hazel Blears)|date=June 2007|accessdate=2008-03-26|format=doc] Historically, Withington was a much larger area than today. Since the district was absorbed into the City of Manchester in 1904, the three city wards of Didsbury, Fallowfield, and Withington took on their own identities and are now seen as distinct areas.
Today, the name Withington tends to refer to the areas roughly defined by the modern council wards of Withington and Old Moat, although fluctuating local government boundaries sometimes make these distinctions unclear.Fact|date=March 2008 Withington ward is currently represented on Manchester City Council by three Liberal Democrat councillors: Alison Firth,
Audrey Jones(notable as the first Liberal Democrat Lord Mayor in Manchester) and Simon Wheale.
According to the
*White British - 74.13%
*White Irish - 5.05%
*White Other - 3.60%
*Mixed Race - 3.25%
*Black - 2.34%
*Asian - 9.76%
*Chinese or Other - 1.86%
At coord|53.433|N|2.229|W|type:city, Withington is located immediately below the midpoint of the
Greater Manchester Urban Area, convert|4|mi|km|1 south of Manchester City Centre.
Withington today retains some grade II listed buildings, including
Hough End Hall(1596), Nell Lane, Chorlton-cum-Hardy - Withington Manor
* the Red Lion Inn (17th century)
* Manchester and County Bank (1890), Wilmslow Road - now a National Westminster Bank
* St Paul's Parish Church, Wilmslow Road (1841)
* The White Lion Public House, Wilmslow Road (1841)
The Victoriapublic house.
Other places of historical interest in Withington include:
Christie Hospital- founded in 1892, the hospital moved to Withington in 1932. It is one of the largest cancer research and treatment centres in Europe. Christie's pioneered the therapeutic use of X-Raysin 1901, and in 1944 the world's first clinical drug trial was carried out here.
* The Scala Cinema (1912), Wilmslow Road - this was the oldest cinema in Manchester. Later renamed Cine City, it is now demolished and the site is awaiting redevelopment.
* The Water Trough (1876), now on Copson Street - a stone drinking trough for horses, inscribed with an Old Testament passage: "that ye may drink, both ye and your cattle, and your beasts." (II Kings III:17).
* The Old Forge, Wilmslow Road (1881) - now private flats
* Milestone, Wilmslow Road - outside the fire station, inscribed "8¼ miles to
Wilmslow/ 4 miles to Manchester to centre of St. Anns"
* Withington Library (1927), Wilmslow Road, designed by Henry Price
* Withington Methodist Church, Wilmslow Road (1865)
* St Cuthbert's Roman Catholic Church, Wilmslow Road (1881)
Withington has excellent bus links into the
Manchester City Centrebecause of its position on the Oxford Road corridor which is served by buses very frequently and has been said by some analysts to be the busiest in Europe. [cite web |url=http://www.eyeonmanchester.com/oxford-rd-manchester-buses/|title="Busiest bus corridor"|publisher=EyeOnManchester|first=Aidan|last=O'Rourke|date= 2006-10-26|accessdate=2008-03-17] Under the Metrolink plans for expansion, a tram line following the former train-track from Chorlton-cum-Hardyto Stockportwas due to run though the south end of Withington (near the West Didsburyborder) [cite web|last= Williams|first=Tony|title=Manchester to Chorlton and East Didsbury|publisher=Light Transit Association|url=http://www.lrta.org/Manchester/didsbury.html|format= HTTP|date= 2007-05-30|accessdate= 2008-03-12] however these plans have been shelved, for the time being at least. It is thought they were rejected by the government due to escalating costs. [cite web |title= Fight for Metrolink will go on | publisher= South Manchester Reporter| first=Andy| last=Cronshaw| date= 22 July 2004| url= http://www.southmanchesterreporter.co.uk/news/s/377967_fight_for_metrolink_will_go_on | format= HTTP| accessdate= 2008-03-17] New plans were drawn up in 2007, with at least some of the money required for the construction of the line planned to come from the proposed Manchester Congestion Charge, [cite web | title= Bigger bang plan | publisher= South Manchester Reporter |first=Nick |last=Towle | date= 3 May 2007 | url= http://www.southmanchesterreporter.co.uk/news/s/527337_bigger_bang_plan | format= HTTP| accessdate= 2007-10-04] which was initially not expected to be put into operation until 2010, [cite web|url=http://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/s/189/189227_congestion_charge_trial_to_hit_city.html|title=Congestion charge trial to hit city|publisher=Manchester Evening News|date=2005-11-28|accessdate=2008-03-17] but this has been delayed further, possibly to 2012.
The village does not have a named or direct
railway station—instead it has rail links on the eastern edges, served by Mauldeth Road railway station.
Withington Girls' Schoolwas established in 1890 and provides private education for girls aged 7 to 18. Notable alumni include Judith Chalmersand Amrita Mishra.
In the 1930s, the
Manchester Grammar Schoolmoved to new premises in Fallowfield, from its original position near the site of the present Manchester Cathedral. Although seen to be in Fallowfield, its location could be argued to be within the boundaries of the Withington locality. The school has been attended by actors such as Sir Ben Kingsleyand Robert Powell, cricketer Michael Atherton, and writer and broadcaster Martin Sixsmith.
Withington is served by the following local primary schools:
* St Cuthbert's Roman Catholic Primary School
* St Paul's Church Of England Primary School
* Mauldeth Road County Primary School
* St Kentigern's Roman Catholic Primary School,
* Old Moat School Withington
Withington is one of the few areas in the City of Manchester where its most notable residents are thought to have been a result of the city's main industries. [cite book| last = Williams| first = Gwyn| title = The Withington Report| publisher = Withington Association?| date = 1973| pages = Estimate - 500]
Lindsay Bury, a footballer who helped the Old Etonians win the FA Cupin 1879 and made two appearances for England in the 1870s was born in Withington on 9 July 1857. Academy Award-winning actor Robert Donat, was born in Withington in 1905, making his most acclaimed starring in the 1939 film, "Goodbye, Mr. Chips". Dame Kathleen Ollerenshawwho was a Conservative councillorfor Rusholmefor 26 years and a post-graduateof the University of Oxford, was born here in 1912.cite web|url=http://www.withington.net|title=Did-you-know's for Withington|publisher=Unknown|date=2007|accessdate=2008-03-17] Ernest Rutherford, who pioneered the orbital theory of the atomthrough his discovery of Rutherford scatteringoff the nucleus with his gold foil experiment, once lived in the village between 1898–1910. Richard Madeleyand his wife, Judy Finnigan, once lived on Old Broadway during the 1990s. Actor John Mahoney, who became known for his role in " Frasier", lived here until 1959. Stephen WhittleOBE, PhD (b. female 29 May 1955) is Professor of Equalities Law in the School of Law at Manchester Metropolitan Universitywas resident and attended Withington Girls' School.fact|date=October 2008
Grade II* listed buildings in Greater Manchester
Manchester (ancient parish)
* [http://www.manchester.gov.uk/localdemocracy/councillors/withington.htm Withington Ward Councillors]
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