The largest municipality in Cheshire, Warrington started out as a British settlement on the River Mersey, fortified by the Roman occupiers for military purposes; it was later mentioned in the Domesday Book as of the most prosperous towns in the region. Warrington was affected by power struggles such as the English Civil Wars and the Jacobite Rebellion of 1745, preserving After the Second World War, Warrington was declared a New Town and underwent a phase of powerful industrialisation; although most industrial activities have suffered a serious decline since, their legacy still remains.
The town enjoys a fair share of Cheshire's tourist interest, as there is plenty to see and do there. A must see, Warrington Museum and Art Gallery displays permanent and temporary exhibitions ranging from prehistoric archaeological discoveries (including a dinosaur found locally) and Egyptian vestiges to contemporary art. The museum opened its gates in 1857 and amassed valuable items from remote parts of the globe.
Besides the museum, Warrington prides itself in its historic buildings, such as Holy Trinity Church, which dates from 1758, Old St Ann's Church, built in 1869, and the town's oldest pub, The Barley Mow, opened in 1561. In terms of family attractions, among the most visited is Walton Hall and Gardens, a complex zoo supporting a very diverse fauna, and children's chief attraction, known as Gulliver's Theme Park, which promises unforgettable days out for children of all ages. Warrington is also one of the few settlements which still preserve a handful of half-timbered constructions.
As the county's largest city, Warrington hosts a range of popular festivals and carnivals particularly during the warm season and around the winter holidays. Among the most popular are the carnivals held in the villages of Birchwood, Penketh and Westy, events with a long tradition and a high yearly attendance.