OS Grid ref:- SJ304826
The small, pleasant Wirral village of Brimstage is situated at the heart of the Wirral peninsula and has been variously recorded over the centuries as Brunstall, Brunstath and Brumstache.
Red sandstone Brimstage Hall (pictured left) which is believed to be one of the oldest buildings in Merseyside, was built between the twelfth century and fourteenth centuries. The hall was for a long time the family home of the Domville family, and most likely of the later generations of the Troutbecks. Originally the site was enclosed by a deep moat and a high embankment. The moat varied from 14 to 20 yards in width and was fed by the small stream which flowed through the village. Attached to the hall is an ancient square tower, of considerable height, the only remains of a building which has evidently much greater in extent.
The building's first recorded occupants were Sir Hugh Hulse and his wife Margery, the Domville heiress, who were granted the right to construct a chapel in 1398. According to tradition the Chapel was located in the vaulted chamber that stands at the base of the tower. Within the Chapel is a small carved stone corbel depicting a smiling cat. The cat is believed to be the original idea that Lewis Caroll (1832-1898) used for his children's classic 'Alice in Wonderland'. Carrol wrote in his memoirs that he "saw a Cheshire cat with a gigantic smile at Brimstage carved into the wall". Margaret, the only daughter and heiress of Sir Hugh Hulse and Margery Domville, married Sir John Troutbeck (Lord of Durham on the Hill), by which union the hall passed into the possession of the Troutbeck family. Sir John became Sargeant of Brunstath but was killed at the battle of Blore Heath (1459) during the War of the Roses.
At Brimstage Hall Craft Centre (right) the visitor can step into twelfth Century surroundings to find an abundance of gifts and visiting crafters. The shops include ladieswear and jewellery in Eclipse; children's shoes in Shoebedoo; gifts and collectables in Recollections; ethnic fashion and gifts in Saquerra; beauty therapy in Hidden Gems; crafts in Voirrey; original artworks in the Stables Gallery; bridal wear in Bellissima Brides; Warhammer models in the War Games Store ; food and drink at The Country Mouse.
Brimstage Maize Maze, located just behind Brimstage Hall Courtyard, offers a great day out packed with family friendly fun and adventure for all ages. The maize maze is an interactive, three dimensional puzzle which takes between 60 and 90 minutes to complete. There are clues to discover and puzzles to solve as you find your way through the growing field of maize.
Just before and during the second World War, Brimstage and its surrounding area were converted into a well hidden but highly fortified defensive position. Some remains of the defences set up during this period survive to the present day.
Nearby places of interest
The National Waterways Museum at Ellesmere Port, is situated at the northern end of the Shropshire Union Canal where it enters the Manchester Ship Canal. It contains the largest collection of canal boats in the world. With its fascinating displays housed in a fine collection of Victorian buildings, the museum makes a great day out whatever the weather.
The Blue Planet Aquarium at Ellesmere Port is the largest aquarium in the UK, and boasts two floors of interactive displays and exhibits. The Blue Planet holds more sharks than anywhere else in Britain, holding more than ten different species from around the world including sand tiger sharks.
Brotherton Park, a nature reserve, is a one of the finest examples of ancient woodland on the Wirral and once formed part of the Royal forest of Wirral dating back to the end of the last ice age. Other habitats on the reserve include wildflower meadows, reed swamps and historic parkland. Brotherton Park and Dibbinsdale comprises of 47 hectares of semi-natural countryside along the valley of the River Dibbin.
Eastham Country Park is situated on the banks of the River Mersey, the park covers a hundred acres and contains some of the finest mature trees to be found on the Wirral. The park offers excellent views across the estuary and the cliffs at provide superb sites for viewing the flocks of waders and ducks on the estuary. Much of the Estuary is now designated a Site of Special Scientific Interest.