The oak is mentioned in almost every official reference to the village beginning with Bagshawe’s Directory of 1850 where it is described as ‘an ancient oak’.
The watercolour depicts the tree standing at the end of what is today an unmade lane leading to Bostock Green Farm and appears to be in the garden of Grange Cottage, allowing for the artist’s perspective and view point; this is probably the building just shown behind the tree. The small figure on the right appears to be walking down the unmade lane towards Sheep’s Green. The figure on the left is heading down Brick Kiln Lane. The man on the horse seems to be heading along London Road towards Davenham. In the original picture, the spire of St Wilfrid’s church in Davenham is clearly visible.
The oak tree today still planted in the hearts of locals as the centre of Cheshire.
Abridged text extract from A History of a Village and its People by Jane McLellan and Tony Bostock. The 1795 Kenyon watercolour is depicted on the front cover.