Lord John FitzRichard
6th Baron of Halton (from 1171)
Died aged unknown
Commemorated on 1 plaque
The Runcorn Ferry. There has probably been a regular ferry service in Runcorn since the Norman Conquest, but a permanent service was introduced formally around 1178 by John FitzRichard, the 6th Baron of Halton. The earliest charter for a ferry dates from this year, and belonged to Richard de Mora (of Moore). This charter is extant and is held in Halton Borough Council's archive. The original ferry service operated from an area at the bottom of Mersey Street known as the Old Gut or Boat House Pool, to Woodend in Widnes. The construction of shipbuilding yards in this area at the beginning of the 19th Century necessitated a change in location for the ferry, and so about 1803 a new site was established downriver in front of Runcorn Parish Church (replaced in 1849 by All Saints' Church). The building of the Runcorn Railway Bridge in 1868 with its pedestrian walkway, led to a decline in passenger traffic for the ferry, and the service finally ceased in 1905 with the construction of the Transporter Bridge. This building was once a public house called The Ferry Boat. It became the Boat House Inn in 1825, and it stands close to the site of the original ferry crossing. The building was used concurrently as a packet house, possibly from as early as the late 18th Century, following the completion of the Bridgewater Canal around that time. The Runcorn Ferry was immortalised by Stanley Holloway, with his tongue-in-cheek song of the same name, which included the famous line 'Per tuppence, per person, per trip'.
The Boat House, Mersey Road, Runcorn, United Kingdom where they founded (1178)