A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 5. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1911.
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THE HUNDRED OF SALFORD
This parish, originally the northern half of the parish of Eccles, takes its name from the dean or narrow wooded valley, on the edge of which the church stands. (fn. 1) A little brook runs down the valley northward to the Croal. The whole was held of the lord of Manchester, in part directly and in part under the mesne fee of Barton. (fn. 2) The district measures about 8 miles from north-west to south-east, and has a total area of 20,102 acres. The geological formation consists of the carboniferous rocks, the Coal Measures in the southern and central parts, the Gannister Beds and Millstone Grit in the northern—that is, in Heaton, Horwich and Halliwell. The church stands as near as may be to the centre of its irregularly-shaped district.
For assessment purposes it was divided into four quarters—Rumworth, Farnworth, and Kearsley; Heaton, Horwich, and Halliwell; Westhoughton; the three Hultons. Each quarter contributed£ 1 14s. 1½d. to the county lay of 1624, when the hundred had to raise £100. (fn. 3) To the fifteenth Rumworth, together with Lostock in Bolton, paid 14s.; Heaton with Halliwell, 13s.; the three Hultons, 10s.; Westhoughton, 15s. 1d.; Horwich was not reckoned, and Farnworth and Kearsley were included with Barton-onIrwell. (fn. 4)
The church of ST. MARY is picturesquely situated on high ground above a small stream that flows past it on the west, and consists of a chancel 28 ft. long by 19 ft. 6 in. wide, nave 71 ft. 6 in. by 20 ft. 9 in., north aisle 13 ft. wide, with organ chamber at the east and vestry at the west end, south aisle 15 ft. wide, south porch and west tower 9 ft. square; these measurements being all internal. With the exception of the tower the building belongs to different periods of the 15 th and to the beginning of the 16th centuries, with modern additions. The tower is of 14th-century date, and probably belongs to an older church which the 1 5thcentury building replaced.
The church is built of rough wall-stones, and has battlemented parapets to chancel, nave, and aisles, with three crocketed pinnacles on the east end, and leaded roofs. The details are poor, the windows all being late in style, with rounded uncusped heads to the lights, the clearstory consisting of an almost continuous line of square-headed three-light windows.
The church appears to have been originally a small 14th-century building, the nave covering the area now occupied by the two westernmost bays of the present nave, probably without aisles and with a chancel and western tower. Early in the 15 th century the church was extended eastward by the addition of two bays forming a new chancel, probably built round the formerly existing one and taking up the space now occu pied by the third and fourth bays of the nave. The next alteration to this 14th-century church, which had a steep-pitched roof, the line of which was revealed against the east wall of the tower in 1878 and is still preserved in the plastered face, seems to have been the pulling down of the north side of the new chancel in the 15 th century and extending it northward to the width of the present aisle. The two arches on this side are the oldest in the church, and are of different section from the others. Later the chancel and its northward extension were further extended by a bay, and the south side rebuilt with three arches opposite those on the north side. The original 14th-century nave appears to have been standing till the beginning of the 16th century, (fn. 5) when it was pulled down and the present nave arcade constructed and the clearstory added, leaving a small portion of the 14th-century walls on the west end immediately to the east of the tower. The area of the original building and these three extensions now form the extent of the nave and aisles, a later extension of the chancel having apparently taken place shortly afterwards, early in the 16th century. The chancel was lengthened a further 10 ft. in 1884. The organ chamber north of the chancel was added in 1887.
The chancel has a large seven-light pointed window on the east with central transom and plain perpendicular tracery in the head. The lights have rounded heads and are uncusped. On the north side is a modern arch to the organ chamber, and the south wall has a five-light flat-pointed window with double transom and rounded heads to the lights. The chancel is open to the nave, and is only less in width by the projection of the chancel walls in front of the nave piers. Both chancel and nave are under one continuous flat-pitched oak panelled roof of modern construction (1884), but following the old lines.
The nave has an arcade of five pointed arches resting on octagonal piers, with moulded capitals, the arches of two plain chamfered orders, except to the earlier third and fourth bays on the north side, where the chamfers are hollowed. The second pier on the north side shows the junction of this earlier work with the later 15th-century work of the nave in the clumsy thickening out of the pier and the awkward way in which the western arch springs from it. The capitals of the first pier from the west on the north side and those of the later half of the thickened pier are carved with rude stone heads. The nave is lighted by an almost continuous row of square-headed clearstory windows, each of three lights with rounded heads, The aisles have lean-to roofs and wood and plaster ceilings, lighted by a double row of square-headed windows of three and four lights, the walls apparently having been raised and the upper windows intro duced to light the galleries. The galleries were put up in 1849 and removed in 1884. The aisles extend the length of the nave, but the north aisle now terminates at the east with an open arch to the new organ chamber. There is an ancient piscina in the south-east corner, and a good pointed doorway of 14thcentury date at the west end of the north wall opposite the first bay. This doorway, however, seems to have been originally on the west side of the tower and to have been removed to its present position when the new western tower entrance was constructed. The south aisle has a five-light transomed window under a flat-pointed arch at its east end. The south porch is modern.
The tower, the ground floor of which is used as a vestry, has walls 4 ft. thick and opens to the nave by a pointed arch, above which, within the line of the old roof, is a doorway 4 ft. 6 in. high and 2 ft. wide. The ringing chamber above is gained by a ladder, there being no vice, and the upper part of the arch is filled by a glazed screen. Externally the tower is very plain, with diagonal buttresses and a new west doorway and a window above. There is a clock in the south side, and the upper stage on each face has a square-headed two-light louvred belfry window, the lights with trefoiled heads. The tower finishes with an embattled parapet and angle pinnacles.
The fittings are mostly modern, but there is a good 16th-century black oak pulpit with back and canopy, the renaissance detail of which is rather elaborate. (fn. 6) The interior of the church is plastered and painted, the walls of the chancel and nave having a series of figures of great English churchmen, principally leaders of the Protestant Reformation. In a glass case at the end of the nave are preserved the works of Bishop Jewell and other 16th-century Protestant books.
The churchyard is very extensive and lies on the north, east, and south sides of the building, being entered from the road on the south through a stone lych-gate erected in 1903. It has been extended at different times, the last extensions being in 1876 and 1893. The ancient yew tree on the south side is now dead, but the trunk and branches remain with a picturesque covering of ivy. On the same side is the base of a stone cross which formerly stood in Junction Road, before which it is stated that George Marsh spent a night in prayer before he gave himself up at Smithills. A new shaft has been erected on the old base with an inscription recounting the tradition. (fn. 7) There is also a pedestal sundial on an octagon shaft with the name of the maker (W. Leigh, Newton) and the latitude and longitude. In the churchyard there were formerly effigies of a knight and a lady, but these have disappeared. (fn. 8)
The plate consists of a chalice of 1607; a chalice of 1655, incribed 'The guift of Mr. John Aynsworth unto the Parish Church of Deane in Lancasheire in the yeare of our Lord, 1655 '; a cover paten of the same year, inscribed 'The guift of Mrs. Judeth Hulton unto the Parish Church of Deane in Lancasheire in the yeare of our Lord, 1655,' and with the arms of Hulton of Hulton; a credence paten of 1729, inscribed 'Ex donatione Annae Kenyon Viduæ Georgii Kenyon, nuper de Peel in Com. Lanc. Armigeri 1729,' with the arms of Kenyon impaling Egerton in a lozenge, and the mark of William Atkinson; two patens of 1782, with the mark of Daniel Smith and Robert Sharpe (fn. 9); two small flagons of 1801, inscribed 'Presented 1st January 1828 to the Parish Church of Dean, by Jane Daughter of Peter Brooke, Esqre. of Mere Hall, Cheshire, and Relict of William Hulton, Esqre. of Hulton Park, who Died 24th June 1800'; a credence paten of 1846, given by the parish in that year; and a paten of 1901, Birmingham make, inscribed 'The gift of Mrs. Elizabeth Marsh unto the Parish Church of Dean, in Lancs., on the Coronation of Ed. VII, June 26, 1902.'
Although St. Mary's, Deane, is mentioned in 13th-century deeds, and its chaplain described as 'parson,' (fn. 10) it was not until 1541 that an independent parish was assigned to it. Until that year the chaplain had been nominated by the vicar of Eccles, within whose parish Deane was included, and had received from him £4 a year as stipend. (fn. 11) Henry VIII, having after the suppression of Whalley Abbey constituted Deane a parish by letters patent, assumed the patronage, which till recently remained in the Crown, the vicar being appointed by the Lord Chancellor. The present patrons are Simeon's Trustees, by purchase in 1877. (fn. 12)
Inquiries made in 1546 and 1549 showed that apart from the glebe the vicar had no fixed income beyond the £4 paid by the vicar of Eccles. (fn. 13)
In 1650 the vicar of Deane received, besides an old stipend of £10, (fn. 14) a share of the rectorial tithes, sequestered from a 'delinquent,' Mr. Anderton of Lostock. (fn. 15) Bishop Gastrell recorded the income as £18 19s., of which £5 was from surplice fees and £10 was paid by the impropriator of the tithes; but in 1714 money and lands to the value of £700 were given in augmentation. (fn. 16) The value of the benefice is now stated as £400 a year. (fn. 17)
In 1724 there were eleven churchwardens, each hamlet choosing one by house-row. (fn. 18)
|Institution||Name||Patron||Cause of Vacancy|
|20 Feb. 1541–2||William Rothwell (fn. 19)||King||d. last inc.|
|oc. 1563||Richard Ormishaw (fn. 20)||—||—|
|15 Oct. 1575||David Dee, M.A. (fn. 21)||Queen||d. last inc.|
|31 Mar. 1593||Lancelot Clegge (fn. 22)||—||—|
|—1597||James Pendlebury (fn. 23)||—||—|
|1 Mar. 1636–7||Richard Hardy, M.A. (fn. 24)||King||—|
|Aug. 1643||John Tilsley, M.A. (fn. 25)||—||—|
|19 Nov. 1662||John Angier, M.A. (fn. 26)||King||—|
|2 June 1663|
|22 Nov. 1673||Richard Hatton (fn. 27)||"||—|
|4 Dec. 1673|
|13 Jan. 1712–3||James Rothwell, B.A. (fn. 28)||Queen||d. R. Hatton|
|29 May 1767||Thomas Withnell, M.A. (fn. 29)||King||d. J. Rothwell|
|13 June 1776||Robert Lathom, M.A. (fn. 30)||"||d. last inc.|
|16 April 1818||Thomas Brocklebank (fn. 31)||"||d. R. Lathom|
|6 Feb. 1830||Edward Girdlestone, M.A. (fn. 32)||"||res. T. Brocklebank|
|7 April 1855||Francis Henry Thicknesse, D.D. (fn. 33)||Queen||res. E. Girdlestone|
|May 1868||William Bashall, M.A. (fn. 34)||"||res. F. H. Thicknesse|
|7 April 1877||Henry Sheridan Patterson (fn. 35)||Simeon's Trustees.||res. W. Bashall|
There does not seem to have been any regularly founded chantry at Deane, but in 1522 Richard Heaton stated that he had caused an aisle to be built in the church, which he calls a 'parish church,' and paid most of the charge; and had, in addition, edified a chapel of timber' in the aisle, wherein was an altar, with images of the Holy Trinity and St. Anne. (fn. 36) In 1552 Lambert Heaton claimed a chalice and suit of mass vestments in Deane Church as heirlooms. (fn. 37)
The Clergy List of 1541–2 shows that there were, in addition to the vicar, two priests whose stipends were paid by two of the squires; (fn. 38) there were probably at least two more attached to the chapels at Westhoughton and Horwich, for in 1548 the vicar and six others were recorded in the bishop's visitation list. There is no entry in 1554. The staff had dwindled to three by 1563 (fn. 39) —the vicar and the curates of the two chapels; and two years later one of the curates had gone, the vicar, Richard Ormishaw, and the curate of Horwich, Peter Makinson, being those recorded. (fn. 40) In 1592 it was reported that the curate did not catechize, and that the annual perambulations were neglected. (fn. 41)
In the 17th century some improvement was effected, but the normal staff does not seem to have risen above three, even under the Commonwealth. (fn. 42) From the account of the vicars it will be seen that clergy and people were of the Puritan school, one of the chapels after the Restoration being held by Nonconformists for many years. Here, as elsewhere in South Lancashire, the growth of the population has led in recent times to the erection of many new churches and the subdivision of the parish.
Reports on the charities of Deane have been made in 1828 and 1902. (fn. 43) For the whole parish there is a small endowment supposed to be part of a greater sum; the interest has been added to the church poor's money. (fn. 44) Farnworth shares in several charities. (fn. 45) Kearsley also shares some. (fn. 46) A special benefaction for Little Hulton has been lost. (fn. 47) The poor of Horwich receive £84 from the legacy of Joseph Ridgway, and there are some other charities. (fn. 48) For Westhoughton there are no endowments for the poor. (fn. 49) Middle Hulton has a share in two Worsley gifts. (fn. 50) Rumworth receives £60 a year from a farm given by Ralph and James Crompton. (fn. 51)