Wrexham Timeline from 43AD

Early 1900s Yorke Street. (Wrexham Museum Collection)

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43AD – 410AD Roman activity in Wrexham. Holt and Plas Coch were large farm settlements. The earliest mention of the town name, Wrexham appears in ‘The Pipe Roles’, as ‘the castle Wristleham’.

410 – 655AD Early Saxons.

656 – 865AD Middle Saxons.

865 – 918AD Vikings invade.

918 – 1066AD Late Saxons.

1066 – 1086 Doomsday.

12th Century Wrexham is a small village.

1220 The first reference to Wrexham Parish Church.

1282 Edward I visits as part of his conquest of Wales.

1284 Edward I visits as part of his conquest of Wales.

1285 A charter was originally granted to Holt.

1290 Chirk Castle, home to Marcher lordships, is built.

1295 Edward I visits again as part of his conquest of Wales.

1391 Wrexham is given the right to hold weekly markets and annual fairs. Afterwards Wrexham becomes a busy little town.

1411 Charter to the burgesses of Holt. This is later confirmed by Elizabeth I conferring town status.

1492 The Church of St Giles is built.

1506 The Steeple of St Giles Parish Church was completed. It is now one of the seven wonders of Wales.

1563 Queen Elizabeth I grants Holt charter.

1584 Richard Gwyn, the Welsh Catholic School Master and the first Welsh Martyr to the Papal Cause is persecuted and executed.

1603 A grammar school is founded in Wrexham.

1619 Morgan Llwyd born.

1642 Charles I visits Royalist Wrexham.

1643 During the Civil War a parliamentary army captures Wrexham. In the little town there is an industry weaving wool.

1643 Wrexham suffers when one quarter of the town is destroyed by fire during the Civil War.

1645 The Royalists are defeated at Rowton Moor, near Chester and the Roundheads take over Wrexham.

1645 The Father of non-conformism in North Wales, Morgan Llwyd is installed as the vicar of Wrexham.

1645 George Jeffreys born, 1st Baron Jeffreys of Wem, PC (15 May 1645 – 18 April 1689), also known as “The Hanging Judge”

1655 Dissenters Burial Ground, Rhosddu was aquired.

1659 Morgan Llwyd died.

1661 The Pentice is built in Penybryn.

1684 – 1687 Erddig Hall was built for Josiah Edisbury, the High Sheriff of Denbighshire.

1720 Tanneries founded at Wrexham. The Cambrian Leather Works would later supply the leather for the binding of the 11th edition of the Encyclopaedia Britannica, which needed nearly a million skins!

1721 The benefactor of Yale University, USA, Elihu Yale, dies and is buried in Wrexham Parish Church.

1750 Wrexham is a small town with a population of about 2,000. It is known for its leather industry.

1762 ‘Iron Mad Wilkinson’ opens Bersham Iron Foundry.

1792 John Wilkinson bought the 500-acre (2.0 km2) Brymbo Hall estate for the sum of £14,000.

1793 Brymbo works was founded by John ‘Iron Mad’ Wilkinson who built a blast furnace.

1800 John Kenrick III develops his great-uncle’s chandlery at Wrexham into a bank.

1800 William Jones establishes a grammar school at Wrexham.

1801 The population of Wrexham is 2,575

1801 Opening of Chirk aqueduct.

1805 Pontcysyllte Aqueduct is opened, the tallest and longest in Britain, built by Thomas Telford.

1808 Construction of the Horseshoe Falls on the River Dee by Thomas Telford.

1819 The Hymn ‘From Greenland’s Icy Mountains’ was sung for the first time in Wrexham Parish Church.

1820 A National Eisteddfod is held in Wrexham. This was to be the first of many.

1827 Wrexham gains gas light

1833 The first Wrexham Hospital, the Dispensary, is founded.

1834 Border Breweries (Wrexham) begin operation at the Nag’s Head public house.

1836 The Philanthropic Order of True Ivorites is established in Wrexham by Thomas Robert Jones, it is Wales’ first friendly society.

1837 Queen Victoria becomes queen aged 18.

1837 Wrexham Poor Law Union was formed on 30th March.

1838 Wrexham Union workhouse was built.

1838 Wrexham Infirmary opens on Regent Street.

1839 Richard Kirk died 13th September aged 92.

1840 Richard Mills – Founder of the Rhos Herald was born.

1840 Queen Victoria marries Prince Albert of Saxe­Coburg­ Gotha.

1840 Hugh Price and Co., of the Bridge Street Tannery founded.

1841 Wrexham population: 5,854

1842 Mines Act – no woman, girl or boy under 10 allowed to work in the mines.

1844 Factory Act – no child aged 8­-13 to work more than 6½ hours a day.

1846 Shrewsbury & Chester Railway Co. opens Ruabon – Chester line.

1848 Wrexham gets its first newspaper.

1846 Leased signed by Brymbo Co. on Moss Colliery Summerhil pit 1 & 2

1848 Moss Colliery Pit 3 & 4 sunk.

1848 Ruabon to Shrewsbury railway line opens.

1849 George Clark reports on the health & sanitation problems in Wrexham.

1850 Nant y Ffrith Hall built by Thomas Fry of Liverpool.

1851 Brymbo Blast Colliery exhibited a large lump of coal weighing around 15 ton at the International Exhibition at Crystal Palace, they were awarded a bronze medal.

1851 Improvement Bill – first serious attempt to improve the quality of life in Wrexham.

1851 The first sewing machine was produced.

1852 First fire brigade in Wrexham.

1853 St. John’s Parish Church, Rhosllannerchrugog is built.

1857 Wrexham is constituted a Municipal Borough by Charter granted by Queen Victoria.

1857 Thomas Edgeworth becomes 1st Mayor of Wrexham.

1857 St Mary’s Catholic Cathedral is built.

1858 Town granted commission of the peace.

1858 Wynnstay Hall, Ruabon was destroyed by fire.

1859 Thomas Painter becomes Mayor of Wrexham.

1861 Prince Albert dies of Typhoid.

1863 Volunteer fire brigade was founded.

1863 29, Rhosddu Road was built by J. C. Gummow, later to become the Abbotsfield Priory Hotel.

1863 Wrexham Waterworks Company was first established.

1864 Wrexham Waterworks provided the town with piped water.

1864 No boy under 10 to work as a chimney sweep.

1864 The Football Association of Wales is formed in the Wynnstay Arms, Wrexham.

1866 Cholera outbreak in Wrexham.

1867 The first piped water in Wrexham.

1868 Overton Arcade is built.

1870 A large network of railways is completed.

1870 Education Act – elementary school education for children introduced.

1870 Cae-llo Brickworks opens.

1871 Wrexham population: 8,537

1874 ‘Ten Hour’ Act finally limits the working day.

1874 Terrible Disaster on the Great Western Railway – Christmas Eve 1874

1875 PUBLIC HEALTH ACT, Brook Street and the River Gwenfro.

1876 The first cemetery in Wrexham opens.

1876 Horse drawn trams ran in the streets of Wrexham from Johnstown.

1876 The National Eisteddfod of Wales held at Wrexham.

1876 The first telephone.

1876 Tramway built between Caello Brickworks and the Smelt Pit.

1877 The Official Headquarters of the Royal Welsh Fusiliers is established.

1878 The first public library opens in Wrexham.


1880 An explosion in Bersham Colliery kills 9 men.

1881 The population of Wrexham is 10,903

1880 First lager brewery in Britain is built at Wrexham by a German immigrant – Ferdinand Graesser.

1881 Welsh Sunday Closing Act.

1882 Railway extended into Wrexham town centre.

1883 Nant y Ffrith Hall enlarged by Mr Richard Henry Venables Kyrke.

1884 Rhos Silver Band is formed.

1886 first motorcar.

1887 first gramophone.

1888 The National Eisteddfod of Wales held at Wrexham.

1888 Evan Morris becomes Mayor of Wrexham.

1889 Queen Victoria visits Wrexham for her Diamond Jubilee.

1889 Queen Victoria Knights Mayor Evan Morris.

1891 Central Arcade is built.

1891 The Pentice, Penybryn is demolished.

1891 SS Ruabon is built.

1892 Wrexham Illustrated – It’s History, trade and commerce was published.

1892 Rhos drunks upset the Chapel goers.

1892 A meeting was held at Penrhos Baptist Chapel, Pearson Street, Rhos.

1893 Smallpox epidemic locally.

1893 Rhos fights for it’s own railway.

1894 All houses in the town had flushing lavatories connected to sewers.

1895 Grove Park county school for boys opens. Girls’ school opens in 1896.

1900 First public swimming baths opens.

1900 Brynkinalt Cottage Hospital created.

1900 Electricity is first generated in Wrexham.

1901 Queen Victoria dies.

1901 Wrexham population: 14,996

1904-5 The Welsh Revival

1905 Russian passenger/cargo ship “Nord II” was bought by Great Central Railway in Grimsby and renamed S.S. Wrexham.

1907 Parciau becomes a public park.

1907 Electric trams run in Wrexham.

1907 The Wrexham Municipal Jubilee 1957-1907 published. Fifty years of progress.

1908 The National Eisteddfod of Wales held at Llangollen.

1910 The first purpose – built cinema in North Wales opens on 23rd September in Wrexham.

1910 The Empire Music Hall converted to movies (silent) on October 31.

1911 Gresford Colliery opens.

1911 The Wrexham Rink and Pavilion (otherwise known as the Majestic in Regent Street) became a picture house on May 1st.

1912 The National Eisteddfod of Wales held at Wrexham.

1913 Mines Rescue Station, Maesgwyn Road, was opened on 1st November in response to the 1911 Coal Mines Act.

1913-1917 Garden Village was built in Wrexham.

1915 Brynkinalt Auxiliary Military Hospital established at Chirk.

1916 S.S. Ruabon was sunk.

1916 Four young girls from the same family died after a German bomb brought home by a returning solider exploded when he accidentally dropped it and killed four children.

1918 S.S. Wrexham was sunk.

1920s – 1930s A new council house estate was built at Acton Park.

1927 Buses replace trams

1930 Brymbo Hall was largely unoccupied and gradually fell into disrepair.

1930s Plas Maelor Public Assistance Institution and most of the old workhouse buildings were demolished.

1930s Council estates were built at Spring Lodge and Maes Y Dre.

1931 The population of Wrexham reaches 18,567

1932 Wrexham Council begins a program of Slum clearance.

1933 The National Eisteddfod of Wales held at Wrexham.

1934 May. HR.H. Edward, Prince of Wales paid a visit to the Ponciau Banks.

1934 Gresford Colliery explodes on September 22nd. 266 people lose their lives.

1937 Odeon in Brook Street opened its doors on March 13th.

1939 Royal Ordnance Factory was built.

1940 Luftwaffe bombs mountain decoy.

1940 Bomb lands on Osbourne Street, Rhosllannerchrugog. August 30

1945 National Eisteddfod of Wales held in Rhos, it was interrupted to announce the end of World War II.

1945 Workers protest at the closure of the Royal Ordnance Factory.

1946 Freedom of the Borough is given to the Royal Welch Fusiliers.

1950s Council estate was built at Queens Park. Another was built at Bryn Offa.

1951 Brymbo Steel Works Ltd was nationalised under the Iron and Steel Act; became part of the Iron and Steel Corporation of Great Britain.

1953 Queen Elizabeth II visits Wrexham as part of her Coronation. Coronation Walk is named in honour of this.

1958 Discovery of skeletal remains, known as ‘Brymbo Man’, in a Bronze Age burial at Brymbo

1959 The Hippodrome closed for the first time in November 1959 for a redevelopement.

1960 The Glynn Picture House closed on 4th November.

1960s Acton Park estate was extended.

1961 The National Eisteddfod of Wales held at Rhos.

1970 The Town Twinning partnership with Kreis Iserlohm, Markisher Kreis, Germany, is inaugurated.

1972 Richard Gwyn, the Wrexham Catholic School Master and the first Welsh Martyr to the Papal Cause is declared a Saint.

1973 Gresford Colliery closes.

1973 Brymbo Hall was demolished when open cast mining was carried out on the site.

1974 Plas Madoc Leisure Centre opened, phase 2 added the swimming pool.

1974 Caello Brickworks closed.

1975 North East Wales Institute (NEWI) is founded including Denbighshire Technical College and Cartrefle.

1975 Wrexham Football Club win the Welsh Cup for the twentieth time.

1977 Queen Elizabeth II visits as part of her Silver Jubilee.

1977 The National Eisteddfod of Wales held at Wrexham.

1983 Bersham Heritage Centre opens.

1985 The Duchess of Kent opens the first phase of the Maelor Hospital.

1986 Bersham Colliery closes.

1990 Brymbo steelworks was closed. 1,100 jobs were lost.

1991 Princess Diana opened the restored Visitor Centre of Kings Mills.

1992 Queen Elizabeth II visits Overton for the 700th anniversary of the Overton Charter.

1996 The Duchess of Gloucester opens Nightingale House Hospice.

1998 Wrexham Baths are refurbished and renamed Waterworld Leisure Complex.

1998 The Duke of Kent opens second phase of the Wrexham Maelor Hospital.

1998 Queen Elizabeth II accompanied by the Duke of Edinburgh opens Waterworld Leisure Complex.

1999 Henblas Square and Island Green Shopping Centres open.

2000 Bryn Estyn Abuse report into the scandal, headed by retired High Court judge Sir Ronald Waterhouse.

2001 The Prince of Wales visits Wrexham to launch the Rural Community Helpline 2002.

2001 Märkischer Kreis entered a Twinning arrangement with Racibórz (Ratibor), a county in Poland

2002 As part of the Queens Golden Jubilee Wrexham bid for City Status.

2002 Celebration Town for the Commonwealth Games Jubilee Baton Relay

2003 Queen’s Park Riots. In June, a large disturbance took place in the Caia Park estate, which has become known as The Caia Park Riots.

2004 Wrexham FC placed into financial administration.

2008 Eagles Meadow Shopping Centre opens

2008 Wrexham becomes a University town with the formation of Glyndwr University.

2011 Wrexham FC were served with a winding up order from HMRC.

2011 The National Eisteddfod of Wales held at Bersham, Wrexham.

2011 Wrexham Lager was revived in October to serve the pub trade and is now available in various pubs throughout the county.

2012 Wrexham again bid for City status as part of the Diamond Jubilee, it went to St, Asaph.

2012 Olympic Torch visits Wrexham.

2013 Wrexham FC’s first visit to Wembley stadium in their 149 year history.

2013 Conference National play-off Final, Wrexham FC and Newport County on 5 May 2013 at Wembley Stadium. It was the first ever Wembley Final to feature two teams from Wales.

2013 Mines Rescue Station, 100 years old, it was opened on 1st November 1913

2013 Part of the Grove Par School is demolished.

2013 Brymbo Heritage was formed to preserve the remains of the former Steelworks.

2014 Plas Madoc Leisure Centre closes. Opened 1974.

2014 The Remploy Factory in Rhosddu is demolished to make way for housing development.

2015 Three Storey Building collapes in Penybryn

2015 Plas Madoc reopens as ‘Splash Magic’

2015 August – The RedCow, Penybryn is demolished.

2015 Wrexham set to host Tour of Britain stage one finish.

2015 October – Wrexham Council unveils it’s master plan for the future of Wrexham

2016 Former Sgt. Peppers Nightclub demolished.

2016 Grove Park School for Girls earmarked for demolition.

2016 23rd June WREXHAM VOTES LEAVE the EU total votes 70,407 total Remain 28,822 Leave 41,544

2017 Grove Park School for Girls Grade II listed

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