In the unitary authority area of Cheshire East lays the town of Crewe. The town, which was named in the Domesday Book as Creu, didn't become the urban settlement it is today until the mid 1800s. At this time Joseph Locke consolidated the surrounding "colonies" to make a planned town. One of the unique things about Crewe is the fact that the town is named for the Railway station that brought the colonies together, an unusual set up since most of the railway stations are named after their towns not the other way around.
While Crewe itself doesn't offer tourists much, it is a great place to stay. If you are interested in railroad history you can learn a lot by being here. But Crewe is located near many interesting sites that are easily accessible by using the railway system.
For those interested in the history of this planned community then head over to the Crewe Heritage Center. This museum was once known as the Railway Age because of its features but it now offers visitors information on the history of the town as well. It is still very much centered on the railway life. While you can see some exhibits on the history you can also enjoy visiting locomotives, a working signal box, and even see their famous miniature railway.
Also if you are interested in taking in a night at the theater, then head over to Crewe's Lyceum Theatre. This theater was built in 1911 and is considered a historical site. It was refurbished in 1994 and is a great place to enjoy dinner and a show. The auditorium was brought back to its Edwardian splendor with carvings and box seating. There are also several bars to relax in as well as a nice restaurant where you can enjoy a three course meal.
Located in nearby Nantwich is Dorfold Hall. This Jacobean country house was built in 1616. With its wonderful paneling and plastered ceilings to take it in is a must see. The walls and ceilings are complementing by an interesting array of pictures and furnishings. Once you've toured the home you can go out to the gardens and view the wonderful array of plants. Since the home and garden are only open to visitors from April until October you will get to see a wide array of flowing plants as well as trees and a rock garden.
While touring the Cheshire countryside be sure to stop over at Rode Hall. Located in Congleton this is an early 18th Century country house that has an extensive ground, a formal garden, a woodland garden and a walled garden. The home and gardens are opened throughout the spring and summer months. The gardens are actually open to the public during the month of February so that visitors can see the snowdrops when they are in bloom. The gardens are also home to plant sales throughout the year.
Also located near Crewe is the Stapeley Water Gardens. Here you and your entire family can see rare plants and animals. Your family can view piranhas, crocodiles, tamarin monkeys, meerkats, and sugar gliders. If you head out on a Saturday then you and the kids can enjoy a "Meet the Keeper" session where you can have a closer experience with the animals.
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