The Bache

It is difficult to separate the Bache from Upton as both are bound up together in their history and their interests. With Upton to the North and East, Newton and Hoole on the East and South East, the Parkgate Road to the West, and the city boundaries on the South, it is the doorway from Upton to Chester.

The name has aroused a great deal of interest and there are several possible meanings of the work:-

1.      The Bache is mentioned In the Charter of Randle II 1095 as Bachia.

2.      In Saxton's Map of Cheshire 1577 it is referred to as The Baits; and in a map dated 1605 as both the Baits and the Baites.


Other names include the following:-

3.      From a Dutch word "bac", a cup or vessel, referring to the fact that the Bache lies in low ground.

4.      Baich – a strip of land.

5.      Batch - a sandbank or patch of ground near a river. This is a likely origin of the name as the Newton Brook ran into the Dee just under
the Bache in a sort of bay, and a large portion of the Bache land was once the actual river beach.

6.      Bach - (Teuton) a brook.

7.      Bache - Saxon denomination of a valley.

8.      Other meanings given are - a beach, strand or ford.

9.      Lastly from the Welsh word Bach - -little hook. These hooks were fixed in the sandstone of the small ravine passing through what is now the Bache Hall estate. To these, packmen from Parkgate tethered their loaded mules while they went to the Northgate to get permission to enter the City of Chester. The Bache was on the city boundary line and mules were not allowed in the city without permission, as previously criminals had been smuggled out in sacks or on mules. This explanation, while interesting, does not seem so probable when we remember that the Bache was referred to in the charter of Hugh Lupus, long before the above could have occurred.

We hear first of the Bache in connection with the flint flakes and cores found in the Bache Pool. This pool is frequently mentioned in old Charters in the defining of the city boundaries. It is referred to in the Black Prince's Charter to Chester 1355; and again in the Vestry Orders of St. Oswald's, Chester. In the Vestry Orders we find the Bache Pool mentioned several times "in the preambulatlon to the boundaries" of St. Oswald's in 1656.

Another reference includes a description of the estate:-

"The manor of Bach lyeth without the Citty Libertyes 'and is in the Hundred of Broxton, it is but one maner house where the owner or his tenent is a perpetual constable for that place”.

"Chantrells was possessors of it for many descents. William Chantrell  sould it to Edward Whitby, recorder of Chester. But the Pool is the boundery of the Liberty of the Citty of Chester upon which is a water milne; and all along the banks of the said pool from Ston bridg to the said pool and so along the side of the rivolet to Flokersbrook."                        From a note by R. Holrne III.


The Bache Pool took the place of the village green, and was the meeting place of old for the villagers of Upton and the Bache. On May 9th 1751there was held at the "Bach Pool" a meeting to settle the accounts of the Overseer of the highways. All the business of the village was conducted there for many years. It was a centre of social life too, and skating was carried on there whenever possible until the pool was filled in about 1883. One old lady, a former inhabitant, still remembers skating on the pool as a child. (16)

The Bache Mill no longer exists.

In 1095 there was a mill at Bachia or the Beche and this became the property of the Abbey of St. Werburgh in the twelfth century, together with the Pool and fishery. After the Reformation it became, the property of the Dean and Chapter of the Cathedral. Shortly before 1816 the Dean and Chapter sold the mill to Mr. Brodhurst of Bache Hall. In 1825 this mill, adjoining the Bache Pool, was tenanted by Mr. Dodd, a skinner.