Mow Cop, Staffs

March 30, 2013 by  

Mow Cop, Staffs, Mow Cop is an isolated village which straddles the Cheshire-Staffordshire border, and is thus divided between the North West and West Midlands regions of England. It is 24 miles south of Manchester and 6 miles north of Stoke-on-Trent.

The name is first recorded as “Mowel” around 1270 AD, and is believed to be derived from either the Anglo-Saxon MÅ«ga-hyll, meaning “heap-hill”, with copp = “head” added later, or the Common Celtic ancestor of Welsh moel (= hill), with Anglo-Saxon copp added later.

At the village’s summit, men once quarried stone to make into querns, used since the Iron Age for milling corn; this trade ended during the Victorian period. The village also has a long history of coal mining. Mow Cop Castle is a folly of a ruined castle at the summit of the hill, built in 1754. The village was served by a railway station which was opened by the North Staffordshire Railway on 9 October 1848. Mow Cop is known for its Killer Mile, a one-mile road race from the level crossing on the western side of the hill, up to the castle. The race was originated in the early 1980s by John Britton, and sponsored by ICL (Kidsgrove). It continues today, organised by the Mow Cop Residents’ Association. Mow Cop Runners, a local running club founded in 2009, meet at The Ash Inn and organise The Mow Cop Hill Race, a 6.5 mile fell race.

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