Turner (1777-1842) originally of Mill Hill in Livesey,
Blackburn, owned a calico printing mill. He was Member of Parliament
for Blackburn from 1832-1841 and High Sheriff for Cheshire. He
married his first cousin Jane Turner. He bought Shrigley Hall (right)
shortly before the death in 1819 of Edward Downes, and there
were Turners there until 1929. William substantially rebuilt
the Hall and also gave land for the building of St John’s Church
Bollington (built 1834) and the original St.
Gregory's church in Chapel Street. The Turner's
Arms Inn was built on his land and named in his honour - it
was a shame that the name was changed in the late 1990s, but we
are very pleased to see in 2016, after a re-furbishment, the name
has been reprieved as The Turner's!.
Perhaps we should name the area in front of the pub Turner Square;
the refurbished toilet block in this area is called Turner Lodge!
of Mill Hill (and Shrigley Hall) and his wife Jane had only one
child, a daughter Ellen, born 1811 (below right). She was famously
abducted aged 15 by Edward Gibbon Wakefield in a plot to secure
her wealth. The marriage was annulled by Act of Parliament.
court case was the talk of the nation for months. A
tale of anguish, deceit and violation of the domestic hearth,
this gripping story is expertly told in the book, The
Two years later in January 1829 Ellen was married to Thomas Legh
of Lyme (1793-1857), the first born of the seven illegitimate children
of Thomas Peter Legh. Ellen died in childbirth in January 1831
aged 19 and was buried in the Legh family vault at Winwick. The
child, Ellen Jane Legh, survived.
William of Mill Hill’s father was Robert (1734-1811), and Robert
had a brother William (1727-1782). This latter William had six
sons three of whom had cotton mills in Blackburn and three had
woollen mills in Martholme. William’s daughter Jane married her
first cousin William of Mill Hill. The brothers bought land in
Helmshore for further mills, and William’s grandson, another William
(1793-1852) operated Whitaker Mill in Helmshore and built Flax
Moss House in Helmshore. He had 11 daughters and no sons. On 13th
July 1841 his daughter Mary Ann married Richard
Gaskell (1816-1849) in Haslingden. Richard Gaskell
of Tower Hill, Rainow, was born at Ingersley
Hall, son of Thomas
Gaskell and brother of John
Ellen Turner, later Legh, and Mary Ann, wife of Richard Gaskell,
were first cousins once removed. Thus the Gaskells and the Leghs
became related by marriage.
Acknowledgements | Your historic documents
I am very much indebted to Bridget Franklin who carried out the
research for this page and wrote the text.