Goostrey is an old farming village, located off Junction 18 of the M6 motorway, near the UNESCO World Heritage Jodrell Bank Observatory, the globally-important site in the history of radio astronomy. There are stunning views of the iconic Lovell Telescope, the third largest fully steerable radio telescope in the world, from many lanes and footpaths throughout the parish.
With events including Goosfest, Rose Day and a Gooseberry competition the village has a population of around 2100, across 956 homes. There is a smattering of facilities including a Primary School, pharmacy, part-time post office, newsagent, cafe and a small general store as well as 2 churches and 2 pubs; nearby Holmes Chapel offers a wider selection with supermarkets, library, medical centre and secondary school (although buses tend to be few and far between!).
The original 1220 wooden framed church on the mound was replaced by the present brick one, St Luke’s church, in 1792, which still uses its 15th century font, and features a 1200 year old yew tree outside the entrance. The oldest of the 6 bells was cast in 1606.
[Photos of Goostrey in 1965: http://www.francisfrith.com/goostrey ]
Buildings of historical or architectural importance:
Grade 1: The Lovell radio telescope at Jodrell Bank Observatory. (Six other structures on the site have now been listed in 2017, including The Mark II Telescope which has also been given Grade I listing, the highest form of protection)
Grade 2; Swanwick Hall, Crook Hall, The Schoolhouse, Church Cottages, Blackden Manor, Blackden Hall, Toad Hall, Barnshaw Hall and Brookbank Farm.
Dromedary Lodge, Bridge Farm, Mill House, The Red Lion and Woodend Farmhouse.
The Bogbean (the village green)
Bogbean is a flower, also known as Buckbean or Marsh trefoil [Menyanthes trifoliate]; there used to be a pond known as Buckbean Pit where it grew – presumably it was filled in when houses were built around “The Bogbean” and “Buckbean Way”.
The Bongs: a local derivation of the ‘banks’ of a river – the Red Lion brook.
Stone Age to Space Age:
Stone Age: The area was inhabited before the Iron Age with stone and bronze axe heads found, and Neolithic barrows or lows in the Parish
800’s Yew tree by church entrance
1220 Wooden frame church built
1606 Oldest church bell cast
1792 Brick church built
1856 The village had two pubs, a mill, a blacksmith, two tailors, a shoemaker and a couple of shops
1891 The railway line opened up a station at Goostrey
1945 Jodrell Bank Observatory established
1957 The Lovell 76m steerable telescope completed
1963 The first of three new estate developments was started and by
1970 the number of houses had quadrupled.
2005 Rose Day Centenary
2007 Start of annual Goosfest music and arts festival.
2012 SKA Project Office at Jodrell Bank under construction. The Square Kilometre Array, a collaboration of 20 countries, to be most powerful radio telescope ever built
2013 Goostrey Parish, together with the parishes of Cranage, Twemlow and Swettenham, classed as a Local Service Centre under the draft CEC Local Plan
2014 Developers try and take advantage of lack of Cheshire East housing supply with several outline planning applications through the village.
2015 Goostrey PC decide to produce a Neighbourhood Plan
2016 The Secretary of State decides that the importance of protecting the work of Jodrell Bank Observatory “transcends the housing need”.
2017 Goostrey Neighbourhood Plan formally adopted.
2019 Jodrell Bank Observatory awarded UNESCO World Heritage status.
Did you know? The Lovell’s gear racks, by which the bowl of the telescope are rotated in elevation, came from the 18-inch gun turret racks from the battleships HMS Royal Sovereign and HMS Revenge!
info from Goostrey.info, stlukesgoostrey.org, jodrellbank,manchester.ac