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Origins of Eshton - By Keith Baker

During the 2nd world war Bentham Sch. was relocated to Eshton Hall and then in 1949 forming an independent public school was realised and so Eshton was born, as a co-ed initially.

The main building was burnt to the ground in the late 1500,s leaving only the old wing and arch, the new main building with its impressive tower was built in the early part of the 1600,s by the Wilson family there is said to exist an old tunnel that runs from the cellars below the Marble Hall to Flasby, this was probably built during the reformation as a glorified priests hole, if you look carefully in the end cellar that used to be the chapel you can see evidence of a small bricked up arch, whether this tunnel went as far as Flasby is doubtful, it probably came out somewhere in the bushes allowing an escape route.

Where Fairfax comes into the history of Eshton is a bit of a mystery and without further research I have only the word of mouth of evidence, we know that Robert Fairfax, a Royalist commander in Yorkshire and a General in the Parliamentry forces, and commanded the New Model Army in the north of England. The Wilson family who lived at Eshton were Royalist sympathisers. Where Fairfax was killed I do not know, his ghost is said to walk the old wing and Marble Hall on the 22 nd of the month and that he was killed on the 22nd of October, circa 1644, so there we have it truth or legend? Wilson, Robert Willson 1324 Wakefield Yorks; Robert Wilson 1341 Kirkstall Yorks; John Willison 1366 Subsidy Rolls Lanes. Son of Will, surname derived from.Fairfax, Nicholas Fairfax 1195 Pipe Rolls Yorks; William Fairfax, Faydex 1208 Curia Regis Rolls Yorks, 1219 Assize Rolls Yorks. Old english, fager meaning fair and feax meaning hair.