The History of the Wallwork Surname

in Clifton

The name Wallwork is said to derive from Walworth meaning the "holding of the foreigner" but it is popular belief that the local Wallworks in the Clifton area got their name from dry-wall building, an industry requiring skill and a popular method of fencing in Lancashire in olden days.

The family has a long history of working in stone, as instanced in Ringley Chapel, the Woodgate walls to contain the highway, and sinking and tunnelling in the surrounding collieries.

The earliest mention of the name, so far as is known, is in the will of Sir John Pilkington dated 1420, which says that a "William Wallwork owned a pasture called Ringleye".

Another record states that a Peter Wallwork held a hide of land there in 1550, and later the famous Nathan had a brother living in Clifton, so that it is evident that the local family came from there.


A few interesting extracts from Clifton diaries of old:

Peter Wallwork, brother of Nathan the builder of Ringley Chapel, having bought a tenement in Clifton, bequeathed the same to his son Nathan and daughter Sara.
Richard Wallwork was webster to J Ouldham, yeoman of Outwood.
P Wallwork charged with begetting of the bastard child of Elizabeth Asmall.
February 15. Tom Wallwork and Sam Cowcill were killed at Botany Bay while preparing ground for new head-gear. They were buried by bricks and sand and were not found until 13 March.
December 13. Nat Wallwork fought Jos Thistlethwaite at Seven Stars.
July 3. James Wallwork ("Padifield") killed at Botany Bay siding.
July 15. Boy named Harold Wallwork, aged 4, killed by runaway horse drawing coal cart.
November 11. J Wallwork, son of Old Lyal, died aged 80. The Ermen brothers, of Ermen and Robey fame, resided with him in Clifton.

(Extract from The History of Clifton, by Alfred Gaskell)

The WALLWORK Family History