St Eurgain and St Peter's
Northop is a small village and parish in Flintshire approximately 12 miles west of the city of Chester. The village is situated mid-way between Mold and Flint, and situated just off junction 33 of the A55 North Wales Expressway. At the 2001 Census, the population of Northop was 2,983.
The village is home to two pubs, a cricket club, and a golf course. At the centre of the village stands the church of St Eurgain and St Peter, towering 98 feet above the village. Northop College is also based in Northop, offering horticultural courses for students of all ages, in areas such as Animal Care, floristry, Horse Care, Horticulture and agricultural machinery.
Origin of the name
Another source claims the name originates from North and Thorpe, the latter word meaning village or town in the Saxon language. Written in ancient records as Northorpe, the name Northop was in use after the surrender of Chester to Egbert of Wessex, circa AD 828, when Flintshire was brought under Saxon rule.
St Eurgain and St Peter's Church
There has been evidence of a church in Northop since the 6th century. It is said that Eurgain, a niece of Saint Asaph, passed through Northop and founded the church here on a Celtic mound, upon which it still stands. The Welsh placename for Northop, Llaneurgain translates as "The holy enclosure of Eurgain". Records indicate that there was a stone church erected here during the 12th century, with the tower being completed to its 98-foot height in 1571. The present building was extensively rebuilt during 1840, with further alterations being carried out in 1877.
The churchyard of St Eurgain and St Peter still houses the old grammar school for Northop, constructed during the 16th century.
St Eurgain and St Peter's church is the seat of the ecclesiastical parish of Northop, which comprises the districts of Northop, Northop Hall, Soughton, Halkyn, Rhosesmor, and Flint Mountain. Formerly it also included Connah's Quay. It is a member of the diocese of St Asaph, Church in Wales.
The church is a Grade I listed building.
The village shop also incorporates a one-counter post office. There are two pubs, one at either end of the High Street: the Red Lion; and The Boot, the last remaining coaching inn in the village that served the Chester-Holyhead stagecoach route. There is also a tea shop, hairdresser and an MOT garage.
Northop previously had a larger number of shops and services, but due to retail developments in neighbouring towns these have disappeared, including: butchers; fish and chip shop; cobblers; Smithy; and a working men's club.
Northop Silver Band
In 1892 a group of young men met at Soughton and committed themselves to playing for a year with the newly formed silver band. Within two years they had relocated to nearby Northop. A bass drum, which was in use until fairly recently, has the mark 'Northop 1894' as proof of this fact. Very little is known of the early years as there are no written records but it is known that the bands' first contest success was in 1921 at Flint. The band at that time rehearsed at the Boot Inn which now supplies refreshments after practices.
As a result of its success and professional attitude, the band has been fortunate enough to play at some of the most prestigious venues in the country including, the Liverpool Philharmonic Hall, St David's Hall, in Cardiff and the Royal Albert Hall in London. The 1980s saw the band become 'internationals' with a visit to Menden in Germany where, again, they performed with great professionalism. Recently band members joined forces with Parc and Dare Band from South Wales in a return visit to Germany to play at a Police Festival in Hamburg.
- 2001 Census: Northop, Office for National Statistics, http://neighbourhood.statistics.gov.uk/dissemination/LeadTableView.do?a=3&b=800995&c=northop&d=16&e=15&g=414718&i=1001x1003x1004&m=0&r=1&s=1214862873679&enc=1&dsFamilyId=779, retrieved 30 June 2008
- Black, Adam and Charles (1857), Black's Picturesque Guide to North Wales, p. 19
- Edwards, Thomas (1832), History of Northop, Flintshire, The Cambrian Quarterly Magazine and Celtic Repertory (Google Books), http://books.google.com/?id=w6M2AAAAMAAJ&lpg=PA190&dq=northop+saxon+name+north&pg=PA190, retrieved 10 July 2008
- Northop / Llaneurgain, GENUKI UK & Ireland Genealogy, http://www.genuki.org.uk/big/wal/FLN/Northop/, retrieved 11 November 2006
- Listed Buildings in Wales, Cadw
- Lewis, S A Topographical Dictionary of Wales, 1834
- Edge, Roy. Jones, Rosemary. The Pride of Northop, a collection of stories of Northop, 2000.