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Cheshire East

Cheshire East
Unitary authority, Borough
Flag of Cheshire East
Coat of arms of Cheshire East
Coat of arms
Shown within Cheshire
Shown within Cheshire
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Constituent country England
Region North West
Ceremonial county Cheshire
Status Unitary authority
Incorporated 1 April 2009
Admin HQ Sandbach
 • Type Unitary authority
 • Body Cheshire East Council
 • Leadership Leader & Cabinet (Liberal Democrat (council NOC))
 • MPs (Anthony) Edward Timpson, Fiona Bruce, David Rutley
 • Total 447.18 sq mi (1,158.18 km2)
Area rank 285th (of 326)
Population (2011 est.)
 • Total 61,300
 • Rank 311th (of 326)
 • Density 140/sq mi (53/km2)
 • Ethnicity 96.7% White
Time zone GMT (UTC0)
 • Summer (DST) BST (UTC+1)
ONS code 00EQ (ONS) E06000049 (GSS)
OS grid reference SJ754610

Cheshire East is a unitary authority area with borough status in the ceremonial county of Cheshire, England. The local authority is Cheshire East Council.


  • History 1
  • Geography 2
  • Demography 3
    • Ethnicity 3.1
    • Religion 3.2
  • Administration 4
    • Wards 4.1
  • Elections 5
  • Local sites of interest 6
  • Twin towns 7
  • References 8
  • External links 9


The borough council was established in April 2009 as part of the 2009 structural changes to local government in England, by virtue of an order under the Local Government and Public Involvement in Health Act 2007.[1] It is an amalgamation of the former boroughs of Macclesfield, Congleton and Crewe and Nantwich, and includes the functions of the former Cheshire County Council. The residual part of the disaggregated former County Council, together with the other three former Cheshire borough councils (Chester City, Ellesmere Port & Neston and Vale Royal) were, similarly, amalgamated to create the new unitary council of Cheshire West and Chester.

Cheshire East has historic links to textile mills of the industrial revolution, such as seen at Quarry Bank Mill. It is also home to Tatton Park, a historic estate that hosts RHS Show Tatton Park.


Cheshire East lies within North West England. It borders Cheshire West and Chester to the west, Greater Manchester to the north, Derbyshire to the east as well as Staffordshire and Shropshire to the south. It is home to the Cheshire Plain and the southern hills of the Pennines. The local geology is mostly glacial clay, as well as glacial sands and gravel.


According to the United Kingdom Census 2011 Cheshire East has a population of 370,127 people.[2]


According to the 2011 Census, ethnic white groups (British, Irish, Other) account for 96.7% of the population (357,940 people), with 3.3% of the population (12,187 people) being in ethnic groups other than white (Asian, Black, Other).[3]


A breakdown of religious groups and denominations:

  • Christian - 68.9% (254,940 people)
  • Buddhist - 0.2% (882 people)
  • Hindu - 0.4% (1,328 people)
  • Jewish - 0.1% (581 people)
  • Muslim - 0.7% (2,438 people)
  • Sikh - 0.1% (279 people)
  • Other Religions - 0.3% (1,065 people)
  • No religion - 23.4% (83,973 people)
  • Religion not stated - 9.4% (24,641 people)[4]



The 52 wards of Cheshire East are:[5]

  1. Alderley Edge
  2. Alsager
  3. Audlem
  4. Bollington
  5. Brereton Rural
  6. Broken Cross and Upton
  7. Bunbury
  8. Chelford
  9. Congleton East
  10. Congleton West
  11. Crewe Central
  12. Crewe East
  13. Crewe North
  14. Crewe South
  15. Crewe St Barnabas
  16. Crewe West
  17. Dane Valley
  18. Disley
  19. Gawsworth
  20. Handforth
  21. Haslington
  22. High Legh
  23. Knutsford
  24. Leighton
  25. Macclesfield Central
  26. Macclesfield East
  27. Macclesfield Hurdsfield
  28. Macclesfield South
  29. Macclesfield Tytherington
  30. Macclesfield West and Ivy
  31. Middlewich
  32. Mobberley
  33. Nantwich North and West
  34. Nantwich South and Stapeley
  35. Odd Rode
  36. Poynton East and Pott Shrigley
  37. Poynton West and Adlington
  38. Prestbury
  39. Sandbach Elworth
  40. Sandbach Ettiley Heath and Wheelock
  41. Sandbach Heath and East
  42. Sandbach Town
  43. Shavington
  44. Sutton (Sutton Lane Ends)
  45. Willaston and Rope
  46. Wilmslow Dean Row
  47. Wilmslow East
  48. Wilmslow Lacey Green
  49. Wilmslow West and Chorley
  50. Wistaston
  51. Wrenbury
  52. Wybunbury


Mayor of Cheshire East, Councillor Mrs Margaret Simon, at Sandbach Transport Festival

At the last Cheshire County Council election in 2005 there were 15 Conservative controlled wards, 6 Labour controlled wards, 5 Liberal Democrat controlled wards and 1 ward controlled by an independent within the unitary authority boundaries.[6]

The first elections for Cheshire East Council took place on 1 May 2008, with the Conservative Party taking overall control. The Conservatives took 59 of the 81 seats with the others being held by the Liberal Democrats (12), Labour (6), 3 members of Middlewich First and one Independent.[7] The first leader of the authority was Wesley Fitzgerald who was elected at Cheshire East's inaugural meeting on Tuesday 13 May 2008. Wesley Fitzgerald is a Councillor for the Wilmslow South ward. Having decided in February 2012 to step down, a leadership contest was triggered. Michael Jones – a relatively new councillor having been elected in the May 2011 elections – was elected as the Leader of the Conservative Group on 17 March 2012.

The administrative centre for Cheshire East Council is Westfields in Sandbach, the former Headquarters of Congleton Borough Council.[8] The site could be expanded if needed as there is space around the newly built centre.[9] Cheshire East is an observer member of the Association of Greater Manchester Authorities of Greater Manchester, which borders Cheshire to the north.

Local sites of interest

The area is home to a large number of sites of public interest:

  • Tatton Park is the venue for a variety of events: classical concerts; fireworks displays; classic car shows; open air theatre and the Country Show (massed pipes and drums, sheepdog trials, competitions, crafts fair, and dancing).[10]
  • Gawsworth Hall is a half-timbered hall, and possibly once home to Shakespeare's 'Dark Lady'. Concerts are held in the grounds, and each summer there is an open air theatre season, featuring Shakespearean classics and light opera, comedy, jazz, and drama.[11]
  • Cuckooland Museum is a reputed museum which exhibits the world's largest and finest collection of antique cuckoo clocks.[12]
  • Arley Hall is a Victorian-Jacobean Grade II listed country house, sometimes used as locations for filming. There has been two Coronation Street weddings filmed here.[13]
  • Capesthorne Hall is a Jacobean-style stately home which plays host to a variety of events.[15]
  • Alderley Edge is a great sandstone escarpment that overlooks the Cheshire plain.[16] The Edge itself has been mined for copper since at least the time of the Roman invasion, and is the centre of the legend of the Wizard of Alderley,[17] made famous by local author Alan Garner's books The Weirdstone of Brisingamen and The Moon of Gomrath. Nowadays it is said that the Wizard was Merlin, but this is an addition that only appeared over the past thirty years. Tours of the mines are available, but should not be attempted without an experienced guide – the Edge is riddled with mineshafts.
  • Knutsford is best known as the site where King Canute forded the Lily Stream, and as the home of Victorian author Elizabeth Gaskell, and the town holds a May Day parade and festival every year.[19]
  • Little Moreton Hall is one of the country's best-preserved half-timbered and moated manor houses.[21]
  • Old Hall Hotel is a Grade I listed building.[23] The Hall is on English Heritage’s Buildings at Risk Register as priority A, this is the highest grading.[25]

Twin towns

The former borough of Macclesfield was twinned with Eckernförde, Germany.[26]

Twinning remains active in the Crewe and Nantwich area. The town of Crewe began twinning with the town of Mâcon in France in 1957. This continued when the borough of Crewe and Nantwich was formed in 1974. The borough added the town of Bischofsheim in Germany in 1991. In 2003 the administration of twinning was passed to CANTA, the Crewe and Nantwich Twinning Association, a voluntary association supported by the borough. The association immediately added Dzierżoniów in Poland as a Friendship Town. The Association has received continuing support from Cheshire East after the borough became part of the new authority.[27]


  1. ^ Cheshire (Structural Changes) Order 2008
  2. ^
  3. ^
  4. ^
  5. ^
  6. ^ Cheshire county council elections 2005. Retrieved 9 August 2007.
  7. ^ "Council and Democracy". Cheshire East Council. Retrieved 26 August 2010. 
  8. ^ Wilmslow Express Council's seat of power is Sandbach
  9. ^ "Westfields to be extended". Retrieved 24 July 2008. 
  10. ^ Tatton Park website. Retrieved 1 September 2007.
  11. ^ Gawsworth Hall website. Retrieved 1 September 2007.
  12. ^ Times Online article; Time for a change: to 600 antique cuckoo clocks
  13. ^ Arley Hall and Gardens website. Retrieved 1 September 2007.
  14. ^ Quarry Bank Mill website. Retrieved 1 September 2007.
  15. ^ Capesthorne Hall website. Retrieved 1 September 2007.
  16. ^ Information site about Alderley Edge. Retrieved 1 September 2007.
  17. ^ Wizard of Alderley information. Retrieved 1 September 2007.
  18. ^ St James' and St Paul's Church, Marton information. Retrieved 1 September 2007.
  19. ^ History of Knutsford. Virtual Knutsford website. Retrieved 1 September 2007.
  20. ^ Lyme Park Information. National Trust website. Retrieved 1 September 2007.
  21. ^ "Little Moreton Hall". The National Trust. Retrieved 27 November 2008. 
  22. ^ Revealing Cheshire's Past: Saxon places to visit,  
  23. ^ a b Images of England: Sandbach crosses,  
  24. ^ Revealing Cheshire's Past:Sandbach Crosses,  
  25. ^ Don't let old hall crumble, crewe chronicle, retrieved 25 August 2008 
  26. ^ Details of twinning arrangements. Macclesfield Borough Official Website. Retrieved 25 September 2007.
  27. ^

External links

  • Cheshire East Council Website
  • Cheshire Market towns
  • CANTA the Crewe and Nantwich Twinning Association
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