Marford is a village located in Wrexham County, North Wales. The village of Marford sits alongside the "old road,” the B5445 Chester Road, midway between the Welsh town of Wrexham to the south and the English City of Chester to the north. Marford sits among beautiful countryside through which there are good walks. The landscape is essentially flat for some 10 miles to the east and to the north, with the Welsh hills rising almost immediately to the south and west.
Formerly in the ancient parish of Gresford, today it is part of the parish of Rossett. There are two public houses in Marford - one at the bottom of the Marford hill - The Trevor Arms, the other at the top - The Red Lion. There are no shops in Marford or indeed places of worship however the villages of Gresford to the south and Rossett to the north satisfy the spiritual needs of the community, with Christ Church in Rossett and All Saint's Church in Gresford.
Marford is famous for its quaint looking Gothic cottages; some say these were built as part of the Trevalyn Hall estate in nearby Rossett. Others say that the properties reflect a European style of building that came with an influx of refugees in the late 18th Century (nothing changes!).
One of the distinctive features of the properties are the strange roof lines or eyebrow eaves, (similar to Rossett Mill) which give the clue to the original roofing material being thatch. The slate that covers the roofs today is not designed to be layed at such low pitches and I suspect that poorly maintained properties might suffer an ingress of water following heavy wind and rain.
Myths and Legends
Haunted Village of Marford: The village properties are also renowned for an ingress of a less earthly kind. Indeed several of the houses including the Trevor Arms are reputed to have crucifixes or crosses, some in the form of cross-shaped windows, built into the very fabric of the buildings to protect the inhabitants from evil spirits. Lady Margaret Blackbourne is the phantom concerned; her husband cruelly murdered her in the 18th century and her unhappy spirit took to wandering through the village, terrifying the inhabitants. Some say Lady Margaret's ghost is still to be seen...
I have an interesting postscript to the Marford tales. As you may know much of the stuff on the internet has to be taken with a pinch, or should I say a shovel full, of salt. Nevertheless, I do try to verify the information on the www.walesdirectory.co.uk where possible. With this in mind I was talking to a friend from Wrexham, Ray Rodgers, and I mentioned the tales of the gothic house styles and the ghost stories. At first this meant nothing to him but on reflection he was reminded that when he was a young lad, in the early 1960's he was courting a girl from Marford and on walking her home he remembers that "the windows were faced with bayonets or large knives as you found on the front of old muskets".
Well if that is not some sort of verification of the old stories of "cross-shaped windows" I don't know what is! Ray returned to the lane recently, in fact to show the windows to his wife, and sadly the houses had been "modernised" and there was no longer any trace of the crosses in the windows.