No. 80 Upton Park
Built 1870/1 originally named Westview
- the name no longer used.
On the 1872 OS survey; Westview is the only single property and the only one not named as a Villa. Ground level of the Park rises towards its northern end and plot 17 may have had a very open view west at that time but exactly why the covenant was rewritten to allow its building is not clear. Plot 17 would appear to have had similar aspects and was still unsold and owned by Pitt.
As built it was a square Victorian house and an adjoining cottage with its own yard wall. The folklore of a dairyman's cottage preceding the house is disproved via deeds and OS survey. The 1871 census records the Beswick family with 8 children but without servants although the adjoining cottage design suggests facilities for servants. Also; William Beswick was a Chester schoolmaster implying his need to commute daily into Chester and yet there was no significant stable and coachhouse. A number of small outhouses shown on the OS survey may have been modest facilities for a horse. The well is unusual in that it is nearly six foot in diameter compared to the usual three to four foot. The large external water tank above the coal store may have been used as a header tank with water handpumped up from the well. The washhouse within the enclosed courtyard is not featured in the 1872 OS survey but appears in the 1898 survey.
On 24 June 1873 the property was conveyed to William Smith and then passed to his daughter Cecilia Pearson and subsequently his granddaughter, staying in the until 1940. The Smiths did not have servants but their lodger the Reverand Miles Towers did have. The family lived in the Park for 80 years and are covered within the account of Smith/Pearson familypeople of the Park
Westview was sold by Constance Pearson for £875 on 15th Oct 1940 to Robert Charles Harris - Chartered Electrical Engineer - of 'Fairholme' Chester Road Poynton and his wife Magdalene Ethel Harris. Their daughter Olwen was on military war service during 1945. Magdalene died on 30 March 1947.
Westview was conveyed on 6 January 1949 to Alexander (Sandy) Brown and moved in from Hoole with his family of wife and three children. Sandy had been a Major, a civil engineer and in 1949 was with the Water Board. During 1951 / 52 he worked in East Anglia following their bad floods. Micheal and Barbara (who were 5yrs & 8yrs when the family moved in) revisited on 13 June 1999 to recount the history of their time at Westview. and their memories of their times in the Park.
Westview was conveyed on 30 September 1960 to Malcolm Kermode and the family moved in from Vicars Cross. They would have prefered one of the post-WW2 Park houses but in 1960 these were much more expensive. Malcolm became Town Clerk of Chester leaving the Park when he retired. The family were his wife Kathleen and three children Judy, Simon and Honor Kermode who spent much of their childhood in Westview. The Kermodes carried out many changes and adapted the house name to Westmead. They cleared the garden beds and many trees to establish an open lawn area marked off as a tennis court. They created a porch with an inner door and relocated the door into the dining room. A downstairs reception room was created by combining a side hallway; a pantry and a small room and adding a french window into the garden. The kitchen chimney blow down during a gale in the mid-1970s and was removed.
With Malcolm Kermode retiring he and Kay moved to Neston selling the house to the current owners on 1 March 1978. Phil and Lynne Pearn moved from Leicester as Phil joined ICI. At the time James was 3 yrs old and Toby just 10 months. Lynne was UPPA secretary for a short period in the early 1980s and Phil became chairman in 2001. Since 1978 they have carried out considerable refurbishment and extension in keeping with the period property.
the back cottage and outhouses as they were in 1978. The green water tank can just be seen on the outhouse roof on the right.
A double garage was built using bricks salvaged in the early 1980s from the demolition of the nearby army mansion - The Firs. The back cottage and outhouse area has been opened out to overlook the garden and a conservatory built. Of the greatest historical interest is that while excavating the outhouse area; early drains and wall foundations enabled a realisation of how things were in the Victorian and Edwardian era. A filled-in six foot diameter well was discovered and reinstated to 12foot depth complete with a working handpump. note photo records old outhouse wall line and drains