Alphabetical Bundles of Papers

Scope and Content

The series comprises bundles of correspondence, plans, legal records, schedules and other papers relating to specific subjects. Each bundle carries an annotation, written in ink on the wrapper, label or outermost piece, briefly describing the contents, and marked with a letter of the alphabet, being the first letter of the significant word in the title, e.g. "A. Altrincham U.D.C.", "B. Bridgewater Canal" etc.

The bundles contain papers relating to a wide variety of topics, reflecting the increasing complexity of estate administration during the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. During this period property was being sold on chief rent for the construction of houses, factories, hospitals and public services, and these transactions gave rise to extensive negotiations and correspondence. A growing number of external factors also influenced the administration, particularly the establishment of local authorities with statutory powers, and the growth of public utilities. The papers bear witness to the relations, at times strained, between the Stamford Estate and local councils, as the latter sought to acquire from the former land for roads, sewerage and drainage projects, housing schemes, hospitals and recreation grounds, while the Estate sought to protect its interests.

The subjects covered include sales and exchanges of land in Bowdon parish to individuals, companies and public bodies (EGR14/15/5-6, /16, /21-23, /38-39, /42, /45, /47, /51-52, /57 & /78); matters relating to property previously sold on chief rent, such as breaches of covenant, bankruptcies and boundary disputes (EGR14/15/21, /28, /34, /53, /55, /63, /66, /74 & /77); drainage, sewerage and the provision of water supplies (EGR14/15/2, /4-5, /8, /13, /18-19, /60 & /69-70); the tenure of farms, public houses, brickyards and railway arches (EGR14/15/12, /35-37, /44, /48, /54, /65 & /67); matters connected with Altrincham and Hale Urban District Councils (EGR14/15/3 & /32); Dunham Massey Hall, Dunham Park and the deer therein (EGR14/15/20, /27, /49-50 & /64); the sale of Carrington Moss to Manchester Corporation, and its subsequent management (EGR14/15/14, /25 & /58); the Bridgewater canal (EGR14/15/10-11 & /71-72); and the wages and employment of estate staff (EGR14/15/46 & /76). Bundle EGR14/15/10 contains earlier material, dated 1766-1777, relating to the construction of the Bridgewater Canal.


The bundles were found in a cupboard in the estate manager's office at the Stamford Estate Office in Altrincham. The cupboard was divided into separate compartments for each letter of the alphabet. The bundles have been arranged in strict alphabetical order, according to their letters and significant words thus: "R. Manchester Ship Canal, section of Red Brook Partington", "S. Sales of Property at Carrington, Altrincham & Bowdon", "S. Manchester Corporation Proposed Smallpox Hospital - Carrington" etc. Several bundles appear to have been held together with string or thread at some time, as the constituent pieces are pierced at the top.