The History of Great Boughton Parish Council.

Boughton is a suburb of Chester located a mile to the east of the city on a bend in the River Dee. Boughton has a long history stretching back into Roman times. Natural pure water springs were tapped and water transported to the Roman fortress nearby. Important Roman roads into the fortress were lined with cremation burials and possibly monuments. Traces of a Roman Temple were discovered near Boughton Bars. In the middle ages Boughton was a place of execution and the housing of the sick. Much of Boughton was destroyed in the English Civil War.

In Roman times Boughton was well outside the Roman Fortress. A number of Roman cremation urns have been discovered dotted throughout the area. Suggesting that the three Roman Roads that converged in the area may have had burials and cremations along them. The most surprising find to come from Boughton was a large Roman Altar standing almost four feet high. It was discovered by workmen in 1821 toppled over almost in situ in a field now lost called ‘the daniels’. This was thought to be located somewhere behind the Cherry Orchard Pub. The altar was damaged by pickaxe before it was discovered what it was. The altar marked the position of the well head for the springs for the Roman Fortress. And is dedicated to the ‘Nymphs and fountains of the twentieth legion (Valeria Vitrix)’. The inscription is on both sides and it was designed to be seen from two viewpoints.

The Council was founded in 1894 and you can read all about its earlier days in our published Parish History written by local historian, Cecil Wright.

Great Boughton (pronounced Baw-tun) was a township in St. Oswald’s ancient parish, Broxton hundred (SJ 4266), which became a civil parish in 1866. It includes the hamlets of Boughton Heath, Butterbache (part), Piper’s Ash (part), Tarvin Bridge and Vicars Cross (part only until 2015). The population was 544 in 1801, 1164 in 1851, 1034 in 1901, 3164 in 1951, and 8682 in 2001.

It is ironic that issues raised over a century ago are still causes for concern today – speed of traffic, lack of facilities for young children; and the hazards of the canal.

Today, the parish council is made up of 15 local volunteers who give up their time and energy to make the areas of Boughton Heath, Vicars Cross and part of Caldy Valley, a pleasanter place to live. The council owns and manages Vicars Cross Community Centre,
Queens Road Field, Pearl Lane Allotments, Thackeray Drive Field and play area, Vaughans Lane play area and Old Laundry Corner on Heath Lane. It also has a part in managing the Caldy Valley Neighbourhood Centre, having been a major funding partner when it was built in the early 1980’s.

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