Hazel Grove

Hazel Grove

infobox UK place
country = England
latitude= 53.3754
longitude= -2.1119
official_name= Hazel Grove
population= 15,265 [http://neighbourhood.statistics.gov.uk/dissemination/LeadTableView.do?a=3&b=5941556&c=SK7+4JQ&d=14&e=46&g=354810&i=1x1003x1004&o=233&m=0&enc=1&dsFamilyId=891]
metropolitan_borough= Stockport
metropolitan_county= Greater Manchester
region= North West England
post_town= STOCKPORT
postcode_district = SK6, SK7
postcode_area= SK
dial_code= 0161
os_grid_reference= SJ925865


Hazel Grove is a village within the Metropolitan Borough of Stockport, in Greater Manchester, England. It is located close to the Peak District national park.

Historically a part of Cheshire, until 1836 the village was known as Bullock Smithy, however this name was unpopular with its residents and so the settlement was renamed Hazel Grove, possibly due to the large number of hazel trees found in the locale, though more probably from a small hamlet towards High Lane called Hessel Grave.


Early history

Hazel Grove is made up of three separate townships, Norbury, Torkington and Bosden-cum-Handforth. Norbury (Nordberie) being mentioned in The Domesday Survey, 1086. Each of the townships were manorial lands. Until the 17th century the area was known exclusively by each of the respective townships.

In 1560 Richard Bullock built a smithy on the corner of what is now Torkington Park. This building later became the Bullock Smithy Inn and gradually the whole area became known as Bullock Smithy.


There was no church in the area until the end of the sixteenth century. The church consisted of a very basic Chapel, without communion. It was a favoured hotbed of the north-east Cheshire Non-conformist movement. After the Restoration in 1662, it was forbidden for ministers to preach without The Book of Common Prayer. The minister of Norbury Chapel, John Jolie, went to preach, but found that the door was locked. He and his followers broke down the door and he preached as usual. Subsequently, he was tried for Non-conformity, but it was decided that Norbury Chapel was not a consecrated place. In 1750, John Wesley preached in Bullock Smithy describing it as "...one of the most famous villages in the county for all manner of wickedness."


By 1833, the village had grown to over 3000 people and it was decided the area should have its own parish. In July 1834, the Church of St. Thomas was consecrated at Norbury.

Name change

The village elders began to tire of the jokes surrounding the name Bullock Smithy. The Manchester Guardian had carried a humorous story about an auctioneer trying to sell a rare book. No bidders were coming forward, so in an act of encouragement he told the crowd "Come on, Where's tha al from? Bullock Smithy? because tha don't know a book from a brick."" In 1835, it was decided that the village would be known as Hazel Grove. The name Hazel Grove had been used in the village previously. An area called Hassel Grave near High Lane appears on a map of 1674, and an area near Poise Brook was locally known as Hazel Grove. The present Grove Inn had been called The Hazel Grove Inn since it opened, however on the 26th September, 1836, the name was officially changed.


The village was part of the civil parish of Norbury which was included in the Stockport Rural District of Cheshire from 1894 to 1900. From 1900 to 1974 Hazel Grove was part of the Hazel Grove and Bramhall civil parish and urban district. Hazel Grove and Bramhall was abolished in 1974 and its former area was transferred to Greater Manchester to form part of the Metropolitan Borough of Stockport.

Though the constituency of Hazel Grove is named after it, the western part of the village actually lies in the Cheadle constituency. Its current MP is Andrew Stunell of the Liberal Democrats.


Notable features of Hazel Grove include the A6 road - a major thoroughfare running from London to Carlisle which passes through the centre of the village. There have been many attempts and plans to build a by-pass for the large amount of heavy traffic which uses the A6 on its way into and around Stockport and South Manchester, but so far none has been built. The village is served by Hazel Grove railway station which is on the Hope Valley and Buxton lines from Stockport.


Hazel Grove has a number of primary schools and Hazel Grove High School, the local high school. Some do decide to go to other local high schools, such as local Marple Hall, in neighbouring village Marple. The main primary schools in the area are, Hazel Grove Primary School, Torkington Primary School, Norbury Hall Primary School and Moorfield Primary School. There are two local Catholic primary schools, St Simon's and St Peter's.


Most village residents work outside the village. The village is also home to Adidas who have their main warehouse on the edge of Hazel Grove, and the nearby Stepping Hill Hospital which is the main Maternity and A&E hospital serving the Stockport and South Manchester areas.

NXP (Formerly Philips, Mullard) have a Semiconductor manufacturing plant (wafer Fab) located in Hazel Grove off Bramhall Moor Lane. The site has been there for over 25 years and currently employs in the region of 650 people. Prior to that the site was at School street.


The 3rd Hazel Grove Scout organise a long distance hike every September called the Bullock Smithy Long Distance Walk. It takes place on the first full weekend in September and is a challenge to complete a 56 mile route starting and finishing at the Scout HQ in Hazel Grove in 24 hours. The hike follows a route through the Peak District, around Buxton and goes over climbs on Chinley Churn, Kinder Scout, Mam Tor and Brand Top.

Speedway racing was staged at the greyhound stadium in Hazel Grove in 1937 although details of the meetings are quite sketchy. The site of the stadium has since been redeveloped as a Carpet World store.

Hazel Grove has several recreational centres. Hazel Grove Leisure Centre, in the grounds of Hazel Grove High School, Hazel Grove Pools and Target Fitness and Torkington Park which provides crown green bowling, tennis courts and football pitches.

There are also a tennis club, a cricket club and a bowling club, each with their own facilities.

There is also a Gym opposite Stepping Hill Hospital.


Hazel Grove is well known for its local nightlife and "The Magic Mile". On a 1 mile stretch of the A6 road there are 11 pubs, 4 bars and 1 nightclub. Famed for it's famous 'Pub Crawl'; Stag Do's, Hen Parties, and revelers in general attempt to complete a long evening that involves a visit to all 15 pub/bar establishments.




*Coutie, H - Hazel Grove: A Village History Trail: Hazel Grove or Bullock Smithy? Stockport Historical Society 1982 ISBN 0-905164-75-X
*Speak, R - The Story of Hazel Grove and Bramhall, The Crescent Press, Stockport 1964

External links

* [http://www.hgbc.org.uk Hazel Grove Baptist Church]
* [http://www.hazel-grove.co.uk/gallery/ Photos of Hazel Grove]
* [http://www.nhs.uk/england/hospitals/showHospital.aspx?id=RWJ09 Stepping Hill Hospital]
* [http://www.norburypc.org The parish church of Norbury, St. Thomas]
* [http://www.3hg.org 3rd Hazel Grove Scout Group]
* [http://www.1hgscouts.co.uk 1st Hazel Grove Scout Group]
* [http://www.hazelgrovehigh.com/home.htm Hazel Grove High School]
* [http://www.stockport.gov.uk/ Stockport Borough Council]
* [http://www.hazelgroveconservatives.com/ Hazel Grove Conservative Association]
* [http://www.norburyscouts.btik.com 1st Norbury Scout Group]
* [http://www.hazel-grove.com/History/history.htm The history of Hazel Grove]

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