High street shopping in Warrington
PUBLISHED: 15:30 22 February 2013 | UPDATED: 14:21 22 February 2014
A wealth of delights awaits those who shop in Warrington and its surrounding areas. Words by Polly Berkeley photography by David Billington
For both locals and outsiders, the town of Warrington proves a credible alternative to the bigger cities of Manchester and Liverpool, yet it is enhanced by its proximity to less urban locations like Stockton Heath.
There are some shops in Warrington that have passed through several generations of the same family and others that are recognisable as the big players on the high street. It is this retail mix that makes the town something of a shopping magnet.
Key areas like Golden Square and Cockhedge Shopping Park are where visitors can not only soak up the hustle and bustle but find everything from new technology to high fashion. Just off Golden Square is the towns impressive parish church where on many Saturday lunchtimes an hour-long classical musical recital is held. The town serves its community very well indeed.
Its historic background is impressive. It was founded by the Romans at an important crossing place on the River Mersey. A new settlement was established by the Saxons and by the Middle Ages, the town had emerged as a market town at an important bridging point.
Now Warrington in the 21st century is a modern and vibrant place to shop and dine. It has quite an urban vibe which contrasts nicely with its close neighbour Stockton Heath - which has successfully held onto some olde worlde village charm while attracting fashionable shops and restaurants. Deemed a hamlet of little consequence when it first featured at Stoken in a 1739 map of Cheshire, it is now a thriving place to live, work and play.
As well as good shopping, there are other reasons to visit Stockton Heath, such as the lively bar and restaurant scene that includes casual contemporary dining, Spanish tapas and Turkish food.
The town became a hotbed of the English Civil War and the armies of Oliver Cromwell and the Earl of Derby both stayed near the old town. The Marquis of Granby public house bears a plaque stating that the Earl had his quarters near this site.
Where is Warrington?
Warrington stands on the banks of the River Mersey and is 18.5 miles east of Liverpool, 16 miles west of Manchester and eight miles south of St Helens.