Friaries: Austin friars, Warrington

Pages 162-163

A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 2. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1908.

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The date of the settlement of the hermit friars of the order of St. Augustine at Warrington is not known, but it was before 1308. In 1329 some of the brethren were ordained by Bishop Langton. (fn. 1) An old hospital is said to have been taken over by the friars. William le Boteler gave them a meadow in 1332. (fn. 2) In the latter part of the century several of the brethren were appointed penitentiaries or had licence to hear confessions in one or more deaneries of South Lancashire; in one case throughout the archdeaconry of Chester. (fn. 3) A large number of Warrington friars took holy orders. (fn. 4)

In 1362 William de Raby, an apostate friar of the house, was seeking to be reconciled to his order. (fn. 5) Chantries were founded in their church by Sir Thomas Dutton, kt., in 1379 and by Sir John Bold, kt., in 1422. (fn. 6) In 1504 Gilbert Southworth of Croft bequeathed his body to be buryed in the cemetare of the churche of Jhesus belonging to the bredren of Seinte Austen. (fn. 7)

The house was probably surrendered in 1539, (fn. 8) and the crown on 18 June, 1540, sold it with the friaries of Preston and Lancaster to Thomas Holcroft, esquire of the body to the king, for £126 10s. (fn. 9)

Priors Of Warrington

Henry, (fn. 10) occurs 1334
John of Crouseley, (fn. 11) occurs 1368
William Eltonhead, (fn. 12) occurs 1379
Geoffrey Banaster, (fn. 13) S.T.P., appointed 1404
Nicholas Spynk, (fn. 14) occurs 24 June, 1422
Stephen Leet, (fn. 15) occurs 1432
— Slawright, (fn. 15) occurs 1520


  • 1. Lich. Epis. Reg. Langton, fol. 157, 163b. Beamont (Ann. of the Lords of Warrington (Chet. Soc.), 73) conjectures that they were introduced about 1259 by William le Boteler, seventh baron of Warrington.
  • 2. Beamont, op. cit. 168, 189.
  • 3. Lich. Epis. Reg. Stretton, fol. 15, 20, 23, 26b; ibid. Scrope, fol. 127b, 129.
  • 4. Lich. Epis. Reg.
  • 5. Cal. Pap. Letters, iv, 34.
  • 6. Dugdale, Mon. vi, 1593; Trans. Hist. Soc. (New Ser.), v, 129.
  • 7. Lancs. Chantries (Chet. Soc.), 65.
  • 8. L. and P. Hen. VIII, xiv (1), 348, 413, 494.
  • 9. Ibid, xv, 831 (43).
  • 10. Coram Rege R. 297, m. 123 d.
  • 11. Lich. Epis. Reg. Stretton, fol. 15, 20.
  • 12. Dugdale, Mon. vi, 1593.
  • 13. Beamont, Fee of Makerfield, 18. He was already a friar of the house in 1371; Lich. Epis. Reg. Stretton, fol. 26.
  • 14. Trans. Hist. Soc. (New Ser.), v, 129.
  • 15. Baines, Hist. of Lancs, iv, 404. The well-known Friar Penketh (d. 1487), was a brother of the house (Dict. Nat. Biog. xliv, 302).