Executions in Cheshire.


This is a list of executions for crimes that took place in Cheshire. The list covers the period from 1600, to the abolition of the death penalty in 1964. Most of the executions took place within the county. After 1914 they took place elswhere.

The list is not complete. It will be extended as information comes to light.

The following were executed in public in and around Chester
1601(a woman) CANDEYfor conspiring to murder her husband [b]
1601(a man) BOONpressed to death for refusing to plead to the above crime [b]
19 July 1679John PLESSINGTONfor recusancy, (he was a Roman Catholic Priest) [h]
1750John CONNOLLYfor murder
1750John MORGANfor murder
1776James KNIGHTfor murder
1777Samual THORLEYfor murder and cannibalism, near Astbury, of Annie SMITH
1778William ELLISfor burglary
1778William LOOMfor shooting at Charles WARREN
1778Sarah JONESfor stealing 28 yards of cloth
1783Resolution HEAPfor burglary
1784Elizabeth Woodfor poisoning James SIMISTER at Bredbury
1784John OAKESfor coining
1786Peter STEERSfor poisoning his wife
1786Edward HOLTfor burglary
1786Thomas BUCKLEYfor burglary
1786James BUCKLEYfor burglary
1786Thomas HYDEfor horse stealing
1789Thomas MATEfor the murder of a constable in Chester
1790John DEANfor the murder of his wife
1791ALLENfor burglary
1791ASTONfor burglary
1791KNOXfor burglary
1791William LOWNDESfor robbing the mail
1791Joseph BOOTHfor shoplifting
1791William ELLIOTfor shoplifting
1796Thomas BROWNfor robbing the mail
1796James PRICEfor robbing the mail
23 Apr 1798John THORNHILLfor the murder, at Lymm, of Sarah MALONE, aka Sally STATHAM
1798Peter MARTIN, alias Joseph LOWTON, for firing at an excise vessel
18 Oct 1800Mary LLOYDfor forgery [g]
1800Thomas BOSWORTHfor forgery
1800William HOLLINGSWORTHfor forgery
1800Alexander MORTONfor burglary
1801Samuel THOMPSONfor burglary
1801John MORGANfor burglary
1801John CLAREfor Burglary
1801Aaron GEEfor passing forged banknotes
1801Thomas GIBSONfor passing forged banknotes
1809George GLOVERfor shooting at an excise man
1809William PROUDLOVEfor shooting at an excise man
1810John DONEfor the murder of Betty ECKERSLEY
1810SMITHfor burglary
1810CLARKfor burglary
1812TEMPLEfor (luddite) rioting
1812THOMPSONfor (luddite) rioting
24 Aug 1812John LOMASfor the murder of George MORREY, his lover's husband, a farmer in Hankelow (b)[e]
Apr 1813Edith MORREYfor the murder of her husband (above), sentence deferred until after the birth of her baby (b)[e]
2 July 1813William BURGESSfor rape, he was from Northwich, the victim from Runcorn [f]
2 July 1813William WILKINSONfor rape, he was from Northwich, the victim from Runcorn [f]
2 July 1813James YARWOODfor rape, he was from Northwich, the victim from Runcorn [f]
1813Simeon BETSONfor burglary
1813William BETSONfor burglary
1813James RENSHAWfor burglary
1814William WILSONfor arson
1815WOODfor burglary
10 May 1817Joseph ALLENfor forgery, Allen was a farmer from Crowton near Northwich
1818Abraham ROSTERNfor burglary
1818Isaac MOORSfor burglary
1818John MOORfor burglary
1819Joseph WALKERfor highway robbery on the Northwich to Manchester Road
1819Samual HOOLEYfor burglary
1819John JOHNSONfor burglary
1820Jacob McGHINNESfor murder
1820Thomas MILLERfor burglary
1820Ralph ELLISfor burglary
1820William RICKLINGTONfor arson at Coddington rectory
1821Samuel HEALEYfor highway robbery
1822William TONGUEfor rape
1822George GROOMfor highway robbery
1822Thomas BRIERLYfor highway robbery
1823Samual FALLOWSfor the murder of his sweetheart
1823John KRAGONfor rape
1823Edward CLARKEfor highway robbery
12 Apr 1824Joseph DALEfor the murder of William WOOD at Disley
1825Phillip McGOWANfor robbery
1829John PROUDLOVEfor highway robbery
1829John LEIRfor burglary
1829Joseph WOODHOUSEfor rape
1829Joseph HENSHALLfor firing at gamekeepers
1832Samuel CUMBERLEDGEfor arson
1834Samual THORLEYfor murder at Northwich
1834John CARRfor felonious shooting
1834Thomas RILEYfor felonious cutting
1834William NAYLORfor felonious shooting
1834James MASONfor attempting to procure a miscarriage
1841Bartholemew MURRAYfor the murder of Joseph and Mary COOKE at Over Peover
1842James RATCLIFFEfor the murder of his wife
07 Aug 1844Mary GALLOPfor poisoning her father
1848William BATESfor the murder of William WYATT
20 Dec 1856William JACKSONfor the murder of his two children
1857John BLAGGfor the murder, in Tilstone, of John BEBBINGTON a gamekeeper
27 Aug 1861Martin DOYLEfor attempted murder (the last execution for attempted murder) [a]
28 Dec 1863Alice HOLTfor the murder of her mother [a]

In 1868, public execution was abolished in the UK. The following were executed inside Chester Goal
02 Apr 1877James BANNISTERfor the murder, in Hyde, of his wife [a]
13 Aug 1877Henry LEIGHfor the murder of Alice HALTON, a child
21 Feb 1881William STANWAYfor the murder, in Macclesfield, of his partner Ann MELLOR
8 May 1883Patrick CAREY aka John WHITEfor the murder, in Smallwood, Congleton, of Samuel CARLAM and Mary MOHAN

In 1866 Chester became a military prison. Knutsford Prison became the County Gaol, the following were executed there.
22 Feb 1886Owen McGILLfor the murder, near Birkenhead, of his wife Mary
17 Aug 1887Thomas H BEVANfor the murder of his aunt [a]
08 Apr 1890Richard DAVIESfor the murder, in Crewe, of his father Richard DAVIES
22 Aug 1890Felix SPICERfor the murder of his two children in New Brighton [a]
1905William HANCOCKSfor the murder of his daughter
27 Nov 1906Edward HARTIGANfor the murder, in Stockport, of his wife Catherine
12 Nov 1908James PHIPPSfor the murder, in Winsford, of Elizabeth WARBURTON age 10
19 Mar 1912John WILLIAMSfor the murder, in Birkenhead, of his wife Hilda Mary Josephine

In 1914 the military commandeered Knutsford Prison. The county's executions had to take place elsewhere.
The following were in executed Walton Prison, Liverpool [L], or Strangeways Prison, Manchester [M]
1 Dec 1915John James THORNLEYfor the murder, in Macclesfield, of Frances JOHNSON his ex-girlfriend [L]
16 Aug 1917William Thomas HODGSONfor the murder, in Wallasey, of his wife Margaret, and daughter Margaret[L]
11 Aug 1920James ELLORfor the murder, in Hyde, of his wife Ada [L]
10 Apr 1923Frederick WOOD, aka Ronald LEE & George WOOD, for the murder, in Bramhall, of Margaret Gilchrist WHITE [L]
8 Apr 1924Francis Wilson BOOKERfor the murder, in Carr's Wood, Northenden, of Percy SHARPE [M]
23 Mar 1926Lock Ah TAMfor the murder, in Birkenhead, of his wife & daughters Catherine, Doris, & Ceclia [L]
16 Nov 1926James LEAHfor the murder, in Over Alderley, of his daughter Louise [L]
9 Apr 1946Harold BERRYfor the murder, near Winsford, of Bernard PHILIPPS [M]
19 Nov 1946Arthur RUSHTONfor the murder, in Birkenhead, of his girlfriend Catherine COOPER
15 Jan 1952Alfred BRADLEYfor the murder, in Wythenshawe, of George CAMP [M]
22 June 1954Milton TAYLORfor the murder, in Nantwich, of his girlfriend Marie BRADSHAW [L]

The death penalty was abolished in the uk on 9th November 1964.


(a) Recusancy - failure to attend Church of England services.
(b) Their bodies were used for disection, a practice abolished in 1832.


[a] Haydn's Dictionary of Dates (1856 - 1895) as quoted in Paul Zwierzanski's web site.
[b] Chester Castle web site.
[e] Chester Royal Infirmary web site.
[f] The Old Mersey Times web site.
[g] The Female Publicly Hanged web site
[h] The Early Modern Chester web site
Darker Side of Vale Royal web site

Carl's Cam