Warrington

Warrington is a former County Borough, formerly in Lancashire, but now in Warrington unitary authority.

Table of contents
1 History
2 Arts and entertainment
3 Shopping
4 Buildings
5 Transport
6 Sports

History

In roman times, Warrington was a centre of industry: some remains have been found at Wilderspool.

In mediaeval times Warrington's importance was as a bridging point on the River Mersey, and it was a fulcrum in the English Civil War. By the 1890s when it acquired County Borough status on reaching a population of 75,000, it was a centre of steel, textiles, chemical and wire industries.

Heavy industry declined in the 1970s and 1980s but the growth of the new town around Warrington led to a great increase in employment in light industry, distribution, and technology.

On the 20th March 1993, the IRA exploded two bombs in Warrington Town Centre. The blasts killed two children, Three year old Johnathon Ball, aged three died instantly, and twelve year old Tim Parry died five days later in hospital. Their deaths provoked widespread condemnation of the Irish terrorist organisation responsible. The blast followed an unsuccessful bomb attack on the gas storage plants in Warrington.

Tim Parry's father has founded a Peace Centre in Warrington as part of a campaign to reconcile communities in conflict.

Arts and entertainment

Warrington has a theatre (the Parr Hall), a new arts centre (the Pyramid), a museum and public library (the first rate-supported library in the UK), and a Victorian swimming bath (closed in July 2003, its future uncertain).

Shopping

It has a shopping mall (Golden Square) built in the 1970s, with a bus station attached. The mall is to be extended, and a new bus station provided. There is an indoor market. The old Cockhedge textile mill has been converted to another shopping mall.

Buildings

The most interesting buildings are the Town Hall (formerly Bank Hall), the Academy, the so-called "Cromwell's Cottage" (17th century), and the 14th Century Parish Church of St Elphin, largely a Victorian rebuild, with its 280-foot spire. The impressive Cheshire Lines railway warehouse is currently derelict but may be restored.

Transport

The town has two railway stations, Bank Quay on the London to Glasgow line, and Central on the Liverpool-Widnes-Manchester line. The town is close to the M62, M6 and M56 motorways and midway between Liverpool and Manchester airports.

Sports

The town's premier sports team is Warrington Rugby League club. It is about to move to a new stadium from its former home at Wilderspool.


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