- Writing for the VCH
- VCH Explore
Staffordshire Volume XI nearing publication
20 February, 2013 (All day)
Published by Boydell & Brewer (www.boydell.co.uk) the new volume is the fourteenth in the Staffordshire set and covers the parishes of Audley (including Talke), Betley, Keele, Madeley, and Trentham (including Blurton). It provides a wealth of new information culled from original research on such topics as: the medieval lords of Audley with their castles and architecturally important 14th-century church; the medieval borough of Betley and its timber-framed houses; the origins of Trentham priory; the ‘lost’ manor house and gardens of Wrinehill in Madeley; the founding of 17th-century schools at Audley, Madeley, and Trentham; the hitherto barely-known early history of coal mining, including a rare woman ‘coal mistress’ in the 18th century; the development of iron working from the middle ages, with the change from charcoal-fuelled furnaces to those using coal; the career of the early 18th-century entrepreneur Richard Parrott of Audley; the rise to wealth of the Leveson-Gower family of Trentham, as reflected in a series of halls and ever elaborate gardens, still partly preserved in the present major visitor attraction; the fortunes of the Sneyd family of Keele Hall and the creation of an ‘estate’ village in the mid 19th century; accounts of the first medical practitioners in the area, along with the opening of the 19th-century children’s home at Hanchurch; and the origin of Britain’s first ‘campus’ university (Keele) and how the present building fits into the 19th-century landscape.
The volume will be published in late February 2013 and can be pre-ordered here