Food Hygiene Rating 5

Eagle and Child

History of the Eagle and Child
Written by Administrator
Wednesday, 27 October 2010 14:51


In April 2001 Sue and Clinton Borders purchased the Inn and soon realised that they could not cater for the volume of customers and parties that wished to visit the Inn and needed to move forward. This along with the changing times due to the revamp of the Licensing Act in 2003 and introduction of no smoking in Public places meant the only way forward was a major refurbishment. As such Clinton spent many months designing the extension, putting schemes in place and seeking planning permission.



Work started in mid January 2007 and was practically complete for the may 2007 bank holiday. During this time the Inn was open continuously serving food and drink to its customers. This was due to the pre-planning, phasing of the work and co-operation of the main contractor Henry Jones & Son.


All work was undertaken sympathetically to retain the Inn's olde world charm and beautiful picturesque gardens that the Eagle is renowned for. Despite there being a few hi tech environmentally friendly additions incorporated.

The refurbishment included a new patio, hard & soft landscaping, external smoking area, two new dining areas, new cellar, new toilets including a disabled toilet facility, bar and kitchen improvements. To keep the environmental impact of the new extension to a minimum we employed local specialist, Concept Engineering, to reduce our carbon footprint. This was achieved by installing a state of the art heat recovery system that not only provides a climate controlled environment for our customers, it also re uses up to 80% of the heat that would normally be extracted (ie cooking, refrigeration plant, etc) and uses it to control the filtered air temperature to provide a comfortable, fresh environment no matter how busy we are.


The Inn now boasts gardens that can seat 160, a marquee facility than can hold 70, Lower dining area that seats 60/70, Upper dining area that seats 36, the original snug seats 14 with the original dining area seating 26 and also providing an informal comfortable retreat on the sofas. The two main bar areas are also retained.



Many legends exist about the origin of the Eagle and Child crest of the Stanley's which was probably taken from the crest of the Lathoms.


One account tells of a Sir Thomas Lathom who greatly desired a male heir, but his wife was advanced in years and their only child was a daughter. One day, he and his wife were walking in Tarlescough Woods, a wild section of his estate when they heard an infant crying. Servants were sent to investigate and they returned with a young male child which they had found lying in the grass below an eagle's eyre. In another version, it was discovered in an eagle's nest. The child was well dressed, and Sir Thomas and his wife decided to bring it up as their own son, naming him 'Oskatel'.


The tradition of a child being found unharmed in an eagle's nest is very old and exists in folklore in many parts of Europe, notably in Norway and France. King Pepin was said to have discovered a child in similar circumstances, and another tale exists that King Alfred the Great found a child after hearing it crying while he was out hunting. When his servants investigated, they discovered a male child in an eagle's eyre, dressed in purple with gold bracelets on its arms (the mark of Saxon nobility).


The King named it 'Nestingium' and had it baptized and educated. It has been suggested that these old tales gave Sir Thomas Lathom the idea in the first place, when despairing of a son by his wife, he is said to have had an intrigue with a young gentlewoman whom he kept in a house nearby. She gave him a son, and his problem was to get it recognized and accepted by his wife in such a way that her mind would be free of jealousy. He thereupon arranged the whole thing, and the child was brought up as her adopted son and made heir to part of his estate. However, on his deathbed, Sir Thomas confessed that Oskatel was his bastard, and his daughter, being his only heir, inherited the whole estate. However, he made provision for his natural son by settling upon him and his heirs, the Manors of Islem and Urmston near Manchester, and Oskatel is said to have been the founder of the Lathoms of Earlham. There is a stained glass window in St Wilfred's Church at Northenden bearing the name of Oskatel de Lathom and his crest.


The original Lathom crest was an eagle, head turned back as though looking for its prey. Sir Oskatel adopted a similar crest of an eagle looking away from a child as if it was defying all that might harm it. The only daughter was said to have been Isabel de Lathom who married Sir John Stanley. However, Isabel's father had three sons and had no need to resort to a device to adopt an illegitimate son in order to keep his estate together.


Continuing on the Eagle & Child was adopted by the Earls of derby during the fourteen century and bore the family motto "Sans Changer". (Without Change).

At the beginning of the First World War, Lord Derby raised four battalions for the "Kings of Liverpool Regiment" known as the "Pals regiments". In order to show the special relationship between himself and his battalions, he allowed the soldiers to wear his Eagle & Child family crest on their caps..

This of course meant a break in tradition, since 1716 the White Horse of Hanover had adorned the caps of all Kingsman.

Lord Derby himself presented over 3000 solid silver replicas of his family crest to the men of the new regiments. The Liverpool jewellers Elkington & Co were given the prestigious order and each badge was hallmarked and dated 1914.


However, most badges were destined to be quickly converted into very attractive and valuable broaches and given to the mothers, wives and sweethearts of the soldiers. Most men wore a brass version of the insignia when going into battle.

Last Updated on Wednesday, 26 April 2017 09:07