The name 'Willaston' translates today from the Anglo Saxon term meaning ' The settlement of Wiglaf'ss
people'.  The earliest reference to this ancient settlement is in the Domesday Book where it is noted as
'the hundred of Wilaveston' which later became the word Wirral.  There is a great deal of debate on
this subject but many experts believe that a possible explanation for Willaston's large green is that it
was formerly the place of assembly for the
hundred of Wirral.  This would have been the meeting
place where the 100 families would gather to debate legislation, law and agriculture.  To strengthen
this argument the name 'Edelaue' also appears in Domesday Book, which is preserved in Hadlow Road
and several field names in that area.  

The actual word 'Willaston' first appears around 1230 where it is conveyed along with the manors of
Upton and Frankby by Fulco de Orreby.  From then it passed by marriage to be held by the famous
Mainwarings of Warmincham.  From there it passed to another well known family, the Stanleys and
then again by marriage to the Veres, the Earls of Oxford.  Then during the reign of Queen Elizabeth it
was sold by the Earl and carved up amongst several wealthy freeholders.  The principal and most well
known of these freeholders is the Bennet family who built Willaston Hall in 1558.  

By the turn of the 20th century the village was owned by 21 separate freeholders some with titles and
Lords houses.  The upkeep of the village was divided equally amongst the freeholders where upon
once a year the court crier would shout..

"Hear Ye, Hear Ye, Take notice that Willaston court Leet and Baron will be held at (location) by
(name), Lord of the Manor, on the (day) of the (month)".  

When the day arrived the sitting is held at the place appointed.  The court appointed two 'burlymen'
who's duty it is to assess any damages that may arise through the year by destruction of hedges,
ditches etc or any encroachment or trespass of cattle resulting from them.  Following this the court
then collects the dues of fees form each of the Lords or freeholders which was then followed by a
magnificent feast paid for by that years lord.  The feast always took place at a local inn with the lords
and freeholders upstairs and the labourers and cottages beneath.  Should anybody be attending the
feast for the first time they are required to submit a fee in order to join the festivities.  There is written
evidence that in some cases a red hot poker was taken to the festivities in order to help persuade the
new comers to part with their money.  The festivities usually lasted for several days and included a fair,
races, sports and rural games.   

Mortimer describes the village as being in the centre of the hundred and as containing several
excellent and substantial farm houses.  The village today still appears to be built around the  surviving
old buildings.  In many of the old books written about Willaston, the authors draw much attention to
the centre, also known as the green, and its beautiful surroundings.   The village centre also contains a
large copper beech tree which was planted in 1935 to mark the silver jubilee of
King George V.  

The centre consists of several old building each with architectural value and a historical interest
centred around the previously mentioned Green.  These buildings include the old windmill which has
now been refurbished and transformed into a residential dwelling.  The old hall built in 1558 still
commands the centre grounds, whilst opposite stands the half-timbered
Red Lion, an old public house
which closed in 1928.  Close by is the
Nag's Head built in 1738 which sits near another old public
house.  The stone built 'Pollard Inn' lies at the south west corner of the Green and contains many
architecturally interesting features including a rough representation of Saint George and the Dragon
carved over one of the chimney pieces with the date of 1632.  This building is an integral part of the
village and was formerly known as
Corner House Farm having been built originally as a manor house
for one of the lords.  Other old farm building in the village include
Ashtree Farm and Home Farm.  
Another famous farm in Willaston is '
Pear Tree Farm' having taken its name from the old pear tree
which used to grow in the garden as high as the third floor.  The building has a date stone inscribed
167 and the initial I.W.E.  

Willaston's Anglican church was built in 1855, but until 1865 the village was one of the eight townships
in the ancient parish of Neston. The present Methodist chapel, in Neston Road, dating from 1889,
replaced an earlier one built in 1838 on land behind Cherry Brow Terrace.

The first real village school in Willaston, originally consisting of only a single room, was built in 1859 on
the Green. The present school in Neston Road was opened in 1930. The old school was then
demolished, and on 6 May 1935, on part of its former site, the copper beech tree was planted to
commemorate the Silver Jubilee of King George V and Queen Mary.

A branch railway line from Hooton to Parkgate was opened in 1866, but it was eventually considered to
be uneconomic, and it was closed to passengers in 1956, and to goods trains in 1962.  The track was
later taken up, and the linear Wirral Country Park was opened in 1973. Hadlow Road Station has been
refurbished as one of the places of interest in the park.  Also worth a visit in the village is the old
railway station which has been transformed into a small museum having been mummified from when it
was closed back in 1952.  The station was shut by Lord Beeching who axed the British Railway line
from Hooton Junction to West Kirby.  The former owner was the well known Cheshire Lines Company.  

Two buildings worth mentioning lie just outside the village proper. One is the old mill, which is the
largest of Wirral windmills, which dates from 1800 and once provided substantial employment for the
village.  In 1930, when the sails were damaged in a storm and sawn off, work at the mill stopped. It is
one of its millstones that now forms the main feature of the village sign on the Little Green. The second
building is the Lydiate, a mansion erected near Birkenhead Road by a wealthy Victorian merchant.
Did you know?

The earliest archaeology
found in Willaston is that of  
Neolithic axe heads made
some 4,000 years ago.  
Although found, though they do
not prove the existence of a
settlement in the area.