The Old CroftThe Old Croft, Legh Road, Knutsford, Cheshire, WA16 8NR

Richard Harding Watt (1842-1913) was an amateur designer and wealthy glove merchant who transformed the townscape of Knutsford with a series of eccentric buildings which are of considerable importance.

Legh Road contains a remarkable series of his houses, of which the Grade II The Old Croft is of particular interest as RHW lived there from 1895.

Richard Harding Watt used professional architects to realise his plans, and The Old Croft was designed by the architect John Brooke, who with Edwin Hall also co-designed the Manchester Royal Infirmary.

Richard Harding Watt added the tower (to designs by W. Longworth) in 1907.

Watt developed his ideas and the extraordinary range of villas he constructed on Legh Road reflect his Moorish and Italian influences, freely mixed in his totally unique and eclectic style.

This is a rare opportunity for visitors to see some of the interior, exterior and garden as a guided tour.

Opening Times

  • Thursday 7 September: Tour at 15:30-16:00; 16:15-16:45; 17:00-17:30

Booking Details

Pre-booking: Required
Booking opens: 11 August 2017
Booking closes: 4 September 2017


This is a private family home. Pre-booking is essential. Visitors should wear appropriate footwear suitable for indoors and walking across the gardens (no heavy boots/stilettos). In the advent of adverse weather, the site visit may be cancelled. Please note that there is no parking on site.

Additional information

Max 10 people per tour/session.

Steven Spielberg used Legh Road as a setting for Shanghai in his film ‘Empire of the Sun’