Descriptive Gazetteer Entry for BURNLEY

BURNLEY, a town, a township, four chapelries, a sub-d., and a district in Lancashire. The town stands on the river Burn, immediately above its influx to the West Calder, 22 miles N of Manchester. The Leeds and Liverpool canal is adjacent; and railways go in three directions, toward Skipton, Todmorton, and Blackburn. A Roman station is supposed to have been here; a Roman road passed through, from Ribchester to Sack; and Roman urns, coins, and other relics have been found. An adjacent spot, called Saxifield, is traditionally held to have been the scene of a battle in the time of the heptarchy. The town itself is almost wholly modern; has undergone vast increase since the latter part of last century; and owes its character to the rise and enterprize of manufactures. It is built chiefly of freestone; and presents a fair appearance. The town hall is a large building of 1868. The exchange is commodious. St. Peter's church is an ancient structure, early English and later, altered by renovations. St. James' church is a structure of 1835, in the lancet style. St. Paul's church is a structure of 1845. St. Andrew's church is in the decorated English style, and was built in 1868. The Independent chapel in Westgate is in the Romanesque style; and was built in 1863, at a cost of £6,000. There are two other Independent chapels, three Baptist, four Wesleyan, two Primitive Methodist, a Free Methodist, and a Roman Catholic; and the last was built in 1849, at a cost of £15,000. The grammar school was founded in the time of Edward VI.; has £144 from endowment; and had Dr. Whittaker for a scholar "There are ten other public schools and charities £81. The town has a head post office,‡ two railway stations, a telegraph office, a banking office, four chief inns, a mechanics' institute, and a public reading room; is a seat of petty sessions and county courts, and a polling-place; and publishes two weekly newspapers. A weekly market is held on Monday; and fairs on 6 March, Easter-Eve, 10 July, and 11 Oct. Woollens were the first great manufacture; but cottons are now the staple. There are three worsted mills, and about thirty cotton mills. There are also calico printing-works, corn mills, iron foundries, brass foundries, machinery-works, rope-walks, tan-works, and breweries. Much trade is carried on likewise from neighbouring collieries and freestone quarries. Townley Hall, the seat of the Townley family, where the late Charles Townley collected the marbles which were sold at his death to the British Museum, also Ormerod Hall, General Scarlett, and Gawthorpe, Sir J. P. Kay Shuttleworth, Bart., are in the vicinity. The town was enfranchised by the reform act of 1867, and sends one member to parliament. Pop. in 1851, 20,828; in 1861, 28,700. Houses, 5,085.

The township is of less extent than the town, which extends into the township of Habergham-Eaves. Acres, 1,839. Real property, £71,779; of which £10,136 are in mines. Pop., 19,971. Houses, 3,515.-The chapelries are St. Peter, a rectory, St. James and St. Paul, vicarages, and St. Andrew, a p. curacy, in the diocese of Manchester; and they are jointly conterminate with B. township, or exclusive of Habergham. Value of St. Peter, £1,400;* of St. James and St. Paul, each £150; of St. A., not reported. Patron of St. Peter, R. T. Parker, Esq.; of St. James and St. Paul, alternately the Crown and the Bishop; of St. A., the Bishop.-The subdistrict contains the townships of Burnley, Habergham-Eaves, Ightenhill-Park, Dunnockshaw, Cliviger, Worsthorne-with-Hurstwood, Briercliffe-with-Extwistle, and Reedley-Hallows, Filley-Close, and New-Laund-Booth. Acres, 21,448. Pop., 42,702. Houses, 7,805.—The district lies entirely within the parish of Whalley, and comprehends, in addition to Burnley subdistrict, the subdistrict of Padiham, containing the townships of Padiham, Huncoat, Hapton, Altham, Read, Simonstone, Heyhouses, and Higham-with-West-Close-Booth; the subdistrict of Colne, containing the townships of Colne, Barrowford, Foulridge, Trawden, and Little and Great Marsden; and the subdistrict of Pendle, containing the townships of Wheatley-Carr, Old-Laund-Booth, Roughlee-Booth, Goldshaw-Booth, and Barley-with-Wheatley-Booth. Acres, 54,126. Poor-rates in 1866, £22,656. Pop. in 1861, 75,595. Houses, 14,500. Marriages in 1866, 756; births, 2,893,-of which 238 were illegitimate; deaths, 2,151,-of which 1,037 were at ages under 5 years, and 19 at ages above 85 years. Marriages in the ten years 1851-60, 6,073; births, 25,629; deaths, 16,484. The places of worship in 1851 were 23 of the Church of England, with 14,446 sittings; 6 of Independents, with 3,364 s.; 10 of Baptists, with 2,382 s.; 1 of Quakers, with 296 s.; 1 of Unitarians, with 201 s.; 25 of Wesleyan Methodists, with 7,926 s.; 11 of Primitive Methodists, with 2,994 s.; 6 of the Wesleyan Association, with 1,176 s.; 1 of the New Church, with 78 s.; 3 of Inghamites, with 1,086 s.; 2 undefined, with 400 s.; and 2 of Roman Catholics, with 566 s. The schools were 42 public day schools, with 5,309 scholars; 39 private day schools, with 1,265 s.; 85 Sunday schools, with 16,369 s.; and 20 evening schools for adults, with 690 s. The workhouse is in Padiham.

(John Marius Wilson, Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales (1870-72))

Linked entities:
Feature Description: "a town, a township, four chapelries, a sub-d and a district"   (ADL Feature Type: "cities")
Administrative units: Burnley Ch/CP       Burnley PLU/RegD       Lancashire AncC
Place: Burnley

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