How long has Tatton Park existed &
what is the Egerton Connection?
Joan replies: Tatton is
probably named after a Saxon chiefton Tata, ton means place
or town, thus Tata's town = Tatton. This was a village in medieval
days around the old hall and the mill.
Although the Egertons first owned Tatton about
1600 they made little impact on it or the neighbourhood until
the mid eighteenth century when family money enabled them to
build a new house where the present one stands now.
map of Tatton dated 1733 shows the whole park area divided up
into small fields, many with evocative names such as 'rushy
field', 'further gorsty field', 'sheep field' and 'barrne coney
(rabbit) greave', though 'the oller shrogs' is a mystery! A
number of the fields have owner's names so it is clear that
the Egertons did not then own the whole area of the park. Nor
does the park stretch to the outskirts of Knutsford and part
of the mere lies outside the park area.
Parkland became a new fashion at the end of the
18th Century and the Egertons engaged Humphrey Repton to design
woodland plantings and gardens. His 'red book', master plan
still exists. Turnmere was water drained at his suggestion,
to extend the gardens but nature reasserted herself and a new
lake - Melchett Mere gradually appeared.