A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 5. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1911.
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COWPE, LENCH, NEWHALL HEY, HALL CARR
Lenches (xvii cent.).
This crescent-shaped township occupies the northern slope of the ridge which divides the hundreds of Blackburn and Salford, being included in the former, though the manor and parish to which it belongs are in the latter. The northern boundary is formed by the Irwell and a tributary stream. Cowpe forms the eastern corner with the hamlet of Boarsgreave; Lench lies on the north-eastern slope of the hill, opposite Newchurch in Rossendale; Newhall Hey (fn. 1) and Hall Carr occupy the western slope, in which lie the hamlets of Townsend Fold, Wood Top, and Longholme. The area of the township is 1,499 acres, composed as follows:—Cowpe 569½, Lench 396, Newhall Hey and Hall Carr 533½.
The principal and practically the only road is that from Bury to Rawtenstall and Bacup, which runs near the Irwell on the north-western side of the township. Near it runs the Bury and Bacup branch of the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway.
There are numerous quarries on the hills, while cotton-mills line the banks of the Irwell.
Horse-races formerly took place near Cowpe. (fn. 2)
A catastrophe known as Cowpe Flood occurred in 1838, due, it is said, to a 'cloudburst' on the hill at the head of Cowpe Valley. (fn. 3)
The township has now ceased to exist, being part of the borough of Rawtenstall, which was made a civil parish in 1894. (fn. 4)
There is practically nothing to record of this township. It may have become attached to the hundred of Blackburn through its proximity to the Forest of Rossendale, in which it was long included. (fn. 5)
In connexion with the Established Church, St. James's, Waterfoot, was opened by licence in 1863 and consecrated in 1865.
A small building, said to have been a pre-Reformation chapel, formerly stood at Rough Lee in Lench. (fn. 6)