Battle of Nantwich 1644


Heritage Category: Battlefield

List Entry Number: 1000022

Date first listed: 06-Jun-1995

Location Description: NANTWICH


Ordnance survey map of Battle of Nantwich 1644
© Crown Copyright and database right 2019. All rights reserved. Ordnance Survey Licence number 100024900.
© British Crown and SeaZone Solutions Limited 2019. All rights reserved. Licence number 102006.006.
Use of this data is subject to Terms and Conditions.

The above map is for quick reference purposes only and may not be to scale. For a copy of the full scale map, please see the attached PDF - 1000022 .pdf

The PDF will be generated from our live systems and may take a few minutes to download depending on how busy our servers are. We apologise for this delay.

This copy shows the entry on 19-Mar-2019 at 03:53:31.


Location Description: NANTWICH

The building or site itself may lie within the boundary of more than one authority.

District: Cheshire East (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Acton

District: Cheshire East (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Henhull

District: Cheshire East (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Hurleston

District: Cheshire East (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Nantwich

District: Cheshire East (Unitary Authority)

Parish: Worleston

National Grid Reference: SJ 63565 53515



The Civil Wars of the mid seventeenth century were a reflection of profound political, constitutional, religious and social conflict which was expressed in a struggle for control between King and Parliament.

In January 1644 the Royalists had captured almost all of Cheshire and were intent on securing the North West. The Parliamentarian garrison at Nantwich held out under siege. Anxious to save the town, Sir Thomas Fairfax led a relieving force of 5,000 men intending to join the garrison and break the siege.

Lord John Byron, heading the 3,500 strong Royalist army, intercepted the Parliamentarians near Acton. In a hectic two-hour battle the Parliamentarians, with the help of the garrison from Nantwich, overcame the Royalists, captured their artillery and ammunition, and took many of their senior figures prisoner.

The Royalist defeat ended the prospect of securing the North-West for the King. At the same time, it enhanced the military reputation of Sir Thomas Fairfax and made him an obvious choice as commander-in-chief of the New Model Army a year later.

The landscape of 1644 was one of enclosed pasture fields much as that of today. The Shropshire Union Canal was cut through the field pattern in the late eighteenth century but has not detracted from an appreciation of the battlefield.

AMENITY FEATURES The canal towpath provides a pleasant publicly accessible route through the battlefield area. In a flat landscape, the canal bridges provide good viewpoints. Public footpaths give access to other areas. The landscape contains many historical elements other than the battlefield, such as a medieval moated site and a seventeenth-century almshouse.

OTHER DESIGNATIONS The battlefield area falls within Open Countryside in the emerging Local Plan. Acton is a Conservation Area.

KEY SOURCES Carte, T (ed.), 1739, A collection of original letters and papers found among the Duke of Ormond's papers Dore, R N, and Lowe, J, 1961, 'The Battle of Nantwich, 25 January 1644', in Transactions of the Historic Society of Lancashire and Cheshire, 113


The contents of this record have been generated from a legacy data system.

Legacy System number: 23

Legacy System: Battlefields


Historic England Battlefield Report, accessed 11-JUN-2015 from

End of official listing