Townships: Blackley

A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 4. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1911.

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'Townships: Blackley', in A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 4, (London, 1911) pp. 255-259. British History Online [accessed 19 April 2024]

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Blakeley, Blakelegh, xiii and xiv cents.; this spelling agrees with the local pronunciation. Blackley, c. 1600.

This, the northernmost part of the parish, lies in a bend of the Irk, which bounds it on the north-west, west, and south-west. A ridge over 300 ft. high projects westward through the northern part of the township, the greater part of which lies on the southern slope of the hill. The area is 1,840 acres, having a breadth of about 2 miles from north to south, and measuring somewhat more from east to west. In the southern part a brook runs westward down Boggart Hole Clough. (fn. 1) Barnes Green is on the border of Harpurhey. The population of Blackley and Harpurhey together was 24,501 in 1901.

The principal road is that from Manchester to Middleton, going north. At Blackley village another road branches off west towards Prestwich, and from this latter another runs in a zigzag course through Higher Blackley, formerly known as Crab Lane End, to Heaton. There are various subsidiary roads, and the township is becoming a suburb of Manchester, though most of it remains rural.

To the north of the village is a reformatory.

The soil is sandy, overlying clay.

In 1666 there were four houses with ten hearths each—those of Mr. Legh, Ralph Bowker, Mr. Bowker, and Edward Dawson—but no other dwelling had more than five. The total number in the township was 107. (fn. 2) The old water corn-mill was in 1850 used for grinding logwood. (fn. 3) The woollen and fustian manufactures were actively pursued in Blackley; a fulling-mill at Boggart Hole Clough is mentioned in 1691. (fn. 4) Within the township are a match works, chemical works, a smallware manufactory, and some minor industries.

Blackley was included in the city of Manchester in 1890, and six years later became part of the new township of North Manchester. There is a free library.


BLACKLEY was anciently a park of the lord of Manchester; its value in 1282 was £6 13s. 4d., for herbage, dead wood, pannage, and eyries of sparrow-hawks. (fn. 5) Forty years later its circuit was estimated as seven leucae, and it had two deer leaps; (fn. 6) the pasturage was sufficient for 240 cattle, in addition to the deer and other wild animals. (fn. 7) Leases and other grants of the land and pasture were from time to time made by the lords, (fn. 8) and in 1473 John Byron held Blackley village, Blackley field, and Pillingworth fields, with the appurtenances, at a rent of £33 6s. 8d., then recently increased from £28 1s. a year. (fn. 9) On the dispersal of the Byron estates about the beginning of the 17th century, Blackley was sold in parcels to a number of owners. (fn. 10) The hall and demesne were acquired by Sir Richard Assheton of Middleton, (fn. 11) and sold to Francis Legh of Lyme in 1636. (fn. 12) They descended in this family till 1814, when they were sold in thirty-four lots, William Grant of Ramsbottom purchasing the hall, which was pulled down. (fn. 13) It was haunted by a 'boggart' or ghost, according to the popular belief. (fn. 14)

Among those described as 'of Blackley' in the inquisitions are Daniel Travis, (fn. 15) Francis Nuttall, (fn. 16) Matthew Hopwood, (fn. 17) Abraham Carter, (fn. 18) John and George Pendleton, (fn. 19) Stephen Rodley, (fn. 20) Ralph Wardleworth, (fn. 21) William Chetham, (fn. 22) Patrick Edrington, (fn. 23) William and John Cowper, (fn. 24) and William Heywood. (fn. 25) There were small estates, in most cases resulting from the division of the Byron estate, and held by knight's service.

Humphrey Booth of Salford also had land in the township, (fn. 26) and it descended in the family for about a century. (fn. 27) BOOTH HALL was situated about 4 miles north of Manchester, on high ground a short distance to the east of the old road to Middleton. It is said to have been built during the years 1639–40 by Humphrey Booth for his son, but before demolition, about 1906–7, had undergone many alterations and additions which had robbed it of most of its original architectural features. It was a twostoried house, the oldest portion of which is described as having many gables, and was built of brick, but had been stuccoed and painted over in later years. One addition was made early in the 18th century and another in the first half of the 19th century. On the front of the original part of the house on a wooden beam was carved 'H B: A B: 1640,' the initials of Humphrey Booth and Ann Booth (born Hough) his wife. In 1855 the old part of the house is described as having suffered much at the hands of recent tenants, most of the original mullioned windows on the ground floor having been built up or replaced by modern casements, and on the first floor nothing but the hood-moulds remained to show that such windows ever existed. (fn. 28) The house was pulled down to make way for the Blackley Hospital, but part of the brick farm-buildings are still standing. The house was acquired by Richard Worthington of Manchester, grocer; from him it passed to the Diggles family, and by descent to the Bayleys. (fn. 29) Amselford or Hoozleforth Gate was the name of a farm in the north-east of the township.

The land tax returns show that the principal proprietors in 1787 were Richard Brown, Thomas Bayley, Richard Taylor, Lord Grey de Wilton, John Hutton, Peter Legh, and Robert Jackson. (fn. 30) About 1850 the principal proprietor was the Earl of Wilton, who owned a third of the land, his interest being derived partly by inheritance from the Hollands and Asshetons and partly by purchase. (fn. 31)

The most famous personage connected with Blackley by popular association, if not by birth, is John Bradford, burnt to death at Smithfield on 1 July 1555 for Protestantism. (fn. 32) He was born about 1520–5 and educated at Manchester. Embracing a secular career, he entered the service of Sir John Harrington, paymaster of the English forces in France; a fraud in his accounts at that time, to the hurt of the king, afterwards caused him deep sorrow, being greatly moved to this (fn. 33) by Latimer's preaching. (fn. 34) He became a Protestant, and that of the more extreme type, studied law, and then went to Cambridge, where he was almost immediately elected fellow of Pembroke and made Master of Arts. (fn. 35) He was urged to preach, and was ordained deacon by Bishop Ridley, (fn. 36) but does not appear to have advanced further. He was made prebendary of St. Paul's and chaplain to the king, and preached in London, Lancashire, and Cheshire, without undertaking any parochial charge. (fn. 37) Soon after the accession of Mary he was lodged in the Tower on charges of sedition, preaching without a licence, and heresy. (fn. 38) His first examination took place in the Tower, and he was again examined on 23 January 1554–5, and later days; afterwards he was excommunicated as a heretic. (fn. 39) Fresh efforts to convince him that he was in error were made by various prelates and theologians, (fn. 40) but in vain, and at last he was delivered to the executioners, suffering a cruel death with great courage. He was a zealous and eloquent man, of irreproachable life, and consequently of wide influence. (fn. 41) He was not married, and the only relatives known are his mother, his two sisters, and his 'brother Roger,' who is no doubt Roger Beswick, husband of one of the sisters. (fn. 42)

The water-mill at Blackley was long in the occupation of a family named Costerdine. (fn. 43)

A constable for the township or hamlet is mentioned in 1618. (fn. 44)


There was an oratory at Blackley as early as 1360, (fn. 45) probably the origin of the chapel existing in 1548. (fn. 46) This was rebuilt in 1736, (fn. 47) and again in 1844; it is called St. Peter's. (fn. 48) In 1611 the Byrons sold to John Cudworth, James Chetham, and Edmund Howarth the chapel and chapel yard, and the chamber and garden there, for use as a place of worship for the people of Blackley. (fn. 49) The stipend of the minister was derived from seat rents and offerings. Service was maintained there during the latter part of Eliza beth's reign, (fn. 50) and there exists a plan of the seats made early in the 17th century, (fn. 51) from which time can be traced a succession of curates and rectors. In 1650 the Parliamentary surveyors found the chapel provided with a minister's house and an endowment of 17s. 8d.; the remainder of the stipend came from voluntary contributions. (fn. 52) The same thing was reported in 1707, (fn. 53) but soon after this benefactors came forward, and about 1720 the income was £27 10s. 8d. (fn. 54) The income is now stated to be £500.

A district chapelry was formed in 1839. (fn. 55) The registers begin in 1655. (fn. 56) The patronage is vested in the Dean and canons of Manchester, and the following is a list of incumbents:— (fn. 57)

oc. 1600 Thomas Paget (fn. 58)
oc. 1632 William Rathband (fn. 59)
oc. 1646 James Hall (fn. 60)
1648 James Walton (fn. 61)
1652 Samuel Smith, B.A. (fn. 62)
1653 Thomas Holland, M.A. (Edin.) (fn. 63)
1662 (?) James Booker (fn. 64)
oc. 1668 John Brereton (fn. 65)
1669 John Dawson, B.A. (fn. 66) (Jesus Coll., Camb.)
oc. 1671 William Dunbabin (fn. 67)
oc. 1674 Ichabod Furness, B.A. (fn. 68)
oc. 1677 William Bray, B.A. (fn. 69) (Emmanuel Coll., Camb.)
1683 John Morton (fn. 70) (Magdalene Coll., Camb.)
1705 Nathaniel Bann, M.A. (fn. 71) (Jesus Coll., Camb.)
1712 William Whitehead, B.A. (fn. 72)
1716 Edward Hulton, B.A. (fn. 73) (Brasenose Coll., Oxf.)
1763 Peter Haddon, M.A. (fn. 74)
1787 John Griffith, M.A. (fn. 75)
1809 Richard Alexander Singleton, B.D. (fn. 76) (St. John's Coll., Camb.)
1838 William Robert Keeling, B.A. (fn. 77) (St. John's Coll., Camb.)
1869 John Leighton Figgins, B.A. (fn. 78) (Queens' Coll., Camb.)
1874 William Coghlan (fn. 79)

In 1865 St. Andrew's, Higher Blackley, was built, (fn. 80) and more recently the district of Holy Trinity has been formed, though a permanent church is wanting.

The first school dates from 1710, when money was left for the purpose by Robert Litchford. (fn. 81)

There are six Methodist chapels. The Wesleyans began with a Sunday school in 1801, and built a chapel in 1806. (fn. 82) At Crab Lane Head, or Higher Blackley, the New Connexion began meetings in 1815; Zion Chapel was built in 1830. (fn. 83) The United Free Methodists opened a small chapel in 1836, rebuilt in 1853; (fn. 84) they have two others. The Primitive Methodists have a chapel at Barnes Green.

The Baptists had a meeting-place in 1880. (fn. 85)

The minister of the parochial chapel in 1662, Thomas Holland, was ejected for nonconformity; many of the people also dissented from the restored services, and as early as 1668 a congregation met at the house of a Mrs. Travis, Thomas Pyke, ejected from Radcliffe, occasionally ministering to them. (fn. 86) A chapel was built in 1697, and was replaced by the present one in 1884. The congregation has been Unitarian since the middle of the 18th century. (fn. 87)

Roman Catholic worship in recent times began in 1851 in a chapel formed out of two cottages. The church of Our Lady of Mount Carmel, built in 1855, (fn. 88) has now (1908) been replaced by a larger one. There is a convent of the Good Shepherd, occupying Litchford Hall.


  • 1. This name occurs prior to 1700; J. Booker, Blackley (Chet. Soc.), 115. The picturesque clough has been acquired for a pleasure-ground by the Corporation of Manchester. The name is sometimes derived from a deserted house, said to be haunted, 'Boggart Hall,' but Mr. H. T. Crofton thinks it a corruption of Bowker Hall, which stood in Moston at the upper end of the clough; see Manch. Guard. N. and Q. no. 401. Oliver Clough, with Oliver's well in it, joins the main clough from the north.
  • 2. Subs. R. bdle. 250, no. 9.
  • 3. Booker, op. cit. 112.
  • 4. Ibid. 115. 'Judging by the field names this mill was either on the stream coming from Boggart Hole Clough or its northern tributary coming past Lyon Fold; most probably the latter, north of which is a farm called Dam Head.'—Mr. Crofton.
  • 5. Lancs. Inq. and Extents (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 244.
  • 6. Mamecestre (Chet. Soc.), ii, 368; the value was 53s. 4d.
  • 7. Ibid. ii, 366; the value was £6. The 'fence of Blackley park' is mentioned about 1355; Dep. Keeper's Rep. xxxii, App. 344.
  • 8. See grants to Henry de Smethley in 1343 and to Thurstan de Holland in 1355, quoted in Mamecestre, ii, 439, 445. The latter grant, at a rent of £5, included the pasture of the lord's park at Blackley, the arable land of Bottomley with its meadow, and an approvement of 10 acres in Ashenhurst.
  • 9. Ibid. iii, 484. A grant or feoffment was made in 1430 by Sir Reginald West, Lord La Warre, at a rent of £26; Byron Chartul. 15/295. After an intermediate conveyance the estate was transferred to Sir John Byron in 1433; ibid. 19/296, 21/298. See Booker's Blackley (Chet. Soc.), 13–15.
  • 10. The statements in the text are mostly taken from the work last quoted. The 'manor' of Blackley, seventy messuages, two fulling mills, a water-mill, 1,000 acres of land, &c., in Blackley, Blackley Fields, and Bottomley, were in 1598 sold or mortgaged by Sir John Byron and John Byron his son and heir apparent to Richard and William Assheton; the price named in the fine is £1,000; Pal. of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle. 60, m. 68. Blackley is, however, mentioned among the Byron manors in 1608; ibid. bdle. 71, m. 2.
  • 11. In a fine of 1611 respecting the manor of Blackley, &c., James Assheton was deforciant, and Sir Peter Legh, Sir Richard Assheton, John Holt, and Richard Assheton were plaintiffs; Pal. of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle. 77, m. 51. In a later fine the deforciants were Sir John Byron the elder, Sir John Byron the younger, Sir Peter Legh, Sir Richard Assheton, John Holt, and Richard Assheton; ibid. bdle. 79, m. 34. From the former it appears that James Assheton of Chadderton had acquired Blackley, and sold it to the Asshetons of Middleton. A feoffment in 1612 by Sir John Byron of Newstead the elder, his son Sir John Byron of Royton the younger, Sir Peter Legh of Lyme, Sir Richard Assheton of Middleton, John Holt of Stubley, and Richard son of Sir Richard Assheton, recites a fine levied of Blackley Manor, surrenders of all freeholds for lives, and recovery suffered to the intent that the manor, &c., be sold for the payment of debts, &c.; Mr. Crofton's note. Richard Assheton of Middleton, who died in 1618, held lands in Blackley of the king as of the duchy by knight's service; Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), ii, 107.
  • 12. Booker, op. cit. 17; Ralph Assheton of Middleton, Elizabeth his wife, and Mary his mother were the vendors, over £2,000 being paid. The sale included Blackley Hall, closes called Bottomley, Hunt Green, Ashenhurst, Hazelbottom, &c.; a close called Lidbottom, of 4 acres, was excluded.
  • 13. Ibid. 19, where there is a description of the old building, with a view. There is also a view in James's series, 1821–5.
  • 14. 'In the stillness of night it would steal from room to room and carry off the bedclothes from the couches of the sleeping, but now thoroughly aroused and discomfited inmates'; Booker, op. cit. 20. An account is given of the destruction of the print-shop erected on the site of the hall.
  • 15. Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), ii, 157. At his death in 1617 Daniel Travis held a messuage, 15 acres of land, &c., recently purchased from Sir John Byron and others. The tenement was held of the king by knight's service. His will is given. His son and heir, also named Daniel, was twenty-six years of age. His wife Anne was the daughter of Henry Chetham of Crumpsall; Manch. Ct. Leet Rec. ii, 194. Of the same family perhaps was John Travis, whom John Bradford about 1550 styles 'Father Travis.' Some later members of the family were benefactors to the poor, and concerned in the erection of the Nonconformist (now Unitarian) chapel. John Travis, a dealer in fustians, who became bankrupt in 1691, had an estate of 24 acres; one of the fields was named the Frith field; Booker, op. cit. 116.
  • 16. Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Rec. Soc.), ii, 176. Francis Nuttall died in 1619, holding ten messuages, 60 acres of land, &c., in Blackley, and land in Harpurhey and Gorton; the tenure was of the king, by knight's service. John, the son and heir, was twenty-three years of age. The will of Francis Nuttall is given in Manch. Ct. Leet Rec. iii, 19, 20, notes. From deeds of this family in the Manchester Free Library (no. 55–7) it appears that John Nuttall in 1623 leased lands in Blackley to Edward Holland of Heaton for 299 years; among the field-names are Howgate Meadow, Blackfield, and Gladen Croft.
  • 17. Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Rec. Soc.), ii, 210. Matthew Hopwood had purchased the reversion of a messuage called the 'Deyhouse,' with lands, from the Byrons, held of the king by knight's service. He died in 1613 leaving a daughter Mary about a year old.
  • 18. Ibid. 235. Abraham Carter, described as 'gentleman,' held a messuage and lands of the king by the hundredth part of a knight's fee, and died in 1621, leaving as heir his son John, nineteen years of age.
  • 19. John Pendleton died in 1618, holding 20 acres by the three-hundredth part of a knight's fee; his son John was then nine years old; Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Rec. Soc.), ii, 258. George Pendleton died in 1633, holding a messuage and lands (including the Warping House and Brerehey Field) of the king by the hundredth part of a knight's fee; he left a son and heir George; Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. xxviii, 37. In 1650 'in Blackley near Manchester, in one John Pendleton's ground, as one was reaping, the corn being cut seemed to bleed; drops fell out of it like to blood. Multitudes of people went to see it, and the straws thereof, though of a kindly colour without, were within reddish and as it were bloody'; Hollinworth, Mancuniensis, 123. A John Pendleton of Blackley married Rhoda, daughter and heir of Robert Clough, the son of Thomas Clough of Blackley; and he and his son John Pendleton in 1676 sold their land to Robert Litchford of Manchester, saddler, a benefactor of the old Baptist chapel at Clough Fold. The house at Blackley, known as Litchford Hall, and the estate went to his nephew Litchford Flitcroft, who devised it to other relatives, and it was sold in 1783 to Thomas Braddock of Manchester. On the purchaser's bankruptcy it was sold to his brother-in-law, Richard Alsop, who already resided there, and he gave it to his daughter Marianne wife of George Withington. On her death in 1835 it descended to her only son, George Richard Withington, who owned this and the adjoining Yew-tree estate, purchased from the Byrons in 1611 by one John Jackson, and sold by the Jacksons in 1809 to Richard Alsop. See the full account in Booker, op. cit. 39–46; an abstract of Robert Litchford's will is given. The following field-names occur: Hoose Lee, Red Hill, Moyle Hill, Hagg, Fossage Meadow, Lockitt Croft, and Causeway Field. A number of deeds relating to this estate and others in the township are in the possession of the Manchester Corporation.
  • 20. Some notice of this family has been given under Manchester. Stephen Rodley died in 1630, holding four messuages with land, moor, and moss in Blackley, charged with a rent of 24s. to the lord of Manchester and an annuity of £12 to Leonard Hopwood; Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. xxv, 46.
  • 21. Ralph Wardleworth died in 1623, holding a messuage and land of the king by knight's service; his son and heir, John, was over twenty-seven years old; ibid. xxvi, 19. A John Wardleworth in 1620 sold lands in Blackley to James Hulme; Manch. Ct. Leet Rec. iii, 23.
  • 22. William Chetham died in 1612, holding half a messuage; his son William was thirty-nine years old in 1630; Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. xxviii, 10.
  • 23. The name is also given as Etherington. Patrick held a messuage, &c., of the king by the four-hundredth part of a knight's fee, and dying in 1625, left as heir his daughter Mary, about ten years old; ibid. 45.
  • 24. In 1621 William Cowper made a settlement of his estate—including a messuage, with garden and closes called the Clough, the Shutt, &c.—with remainders to his wife Dorothy, to his heir male, to his brothers Richard and John, to Helen and Margaret Ridgeway, and to the heirs of Ralph Cowper. He died in 1626, holding the estate of the king by the two-hundredth part of a knight's fee. The heir was his elder brother John, then over thirty years of age; ibid. 47. John Cowper died in May 1638, holding a messuage and lands in Blackley of Edward Mosley 'as of his manor of Blackley'; Ralph, the brother and heir, was over fifty years of age; Towneley MS. C. 8, 13 (Chet. Lib.), 242.
  • 25. William Heywood died in 1637, holding two messuages and lands of the king by the two-hundredth part of a knight's fee. His wife Ameria survived him, and his heir was his son Anthony Heywood the younger, nineteen years old; Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. xxix, 17.
  • 26. Ibid. xxvii, 44.
  • 27. A plan of the estate in 1637 is given in Lancs. and Ches. Antiq. Soc. xxiii, 30.
  • 28. a Booker, A Hist. of the Anct. Chapelry of Blackley, 1855, p. 28, where an illustration is also given. The writer further adds: 'The interior presents little to call for remark, the apartments being for the most part small, and exhibiting an appearance altogether modern.'
  • 29. A full account of the descent of this estate is given by Booker, op. cit. 22–38, with wills and pedigree of the Diggles family. John Diggles of Manchester (c. 1717) was a Dissenter; Notitia Cestr. (Chet. Soc.), ii, 82. The Bayleys were connected with Cross Street Chapel, Manchester; see the account of Hope in Pendleton. Thomas Bayley, who died in 1817, left the estate to his sons for sale, and in the following year it was purchased by his son-in-law, Dr. Henry, for £9,000. A few years later it was sold to Edmund Taylor of Salford, whose son Edmund resided there till his death about 1850; Booker, op. cit. 37.
  • 30. Land Tax returns at Preston.
  • 31. Booker, op. cit. 21. At the beginning of the 18th century, Abraham Howarth of Manchester, linen draper, purchased many small estates in the township. Dying in 1754 he was succeeded by his son John, who died in 1786, and whose only surviving child, Sarah, married the Hon. Edward Perceval. The estate was sold in 1808 to the Earl of Wilton. Abraham Howarth, described as of Crumpsall, appears in the Manch. Ct. Leet Rec. in 1684 and 1685 (vi, 214, 235). 'Mr. Howarth's house in [Long] Millgate,' is one of those depicted on Casson and Berry's Plan. Some particulars of the Dickenson and Beswick estates are given by Booker, op. cit. 47, 48. Several deeds relating to the Beswicks of Blackley are among the Raines deeds in the Chetham Library; the dates range from 1611 to 1674. In the Chetham Library also are a few 17th-century deeds of the Sandiforth family.
  • 32. For biographies see Dict. Nat. Biog.; Bradford's Works (Parker Soc. 1848), Foxe, Acts and Monts. (ed. Cattley), vii, 143–285; Cooper, Athenae Cantab. i, 127–9. Bradford described himself as 'born in Manchester' (Foxe, op. cit. vii, 204), and this probably refers to the town rather than to the parish. The family no doubt derived its surname from an adjacent township, and many members of it occur from time to time in the records. In 1473 John Bradford held two closes in Manchester at the will of the lord at 15s. rent; Mamecestre, iii, 486. Thomas Bradford and Margaret his wife sold land in Manchester in 1553; Pal. of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle. 15, m. 123. Thomas Bradford of Failsworth occurs in 1557; Manch. Ct. Leet Rec. i, 39; see also Manch. Sessions (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), 57. There was a John Bradford at Newton Heath in 1585 and 1619; Newton Chapelry (Chet Soc.), ii, 65, 76.
  • 33. On this point see N. and Q. (Ser. 2), i, 125. The fraud did not benefit Bradford himself, but his master, who was quite unaware of it, and he forced Sir John Harrington to make restitution by threat of denunciation to the Council.
  • 34. A fellow student of the Inner Temple, Thomas Sampson, afterwards the Puritan dean of Christ Church, Oxford, also had great influence with him.
  • 35. M.A. 1549 by special grace. The universities were in a very low state at that time, but Bradford had given evidence of study in the previous year by translations from Peter Artopoeus (a Protestant divine) and St. Chrysostom, with prefaces by himself; Athen. Cantab. i, 127, where a list of his works is printed. On the other hand, at his examination before Bishop Gardiner, he was reproved as 'ignorant and vainglorious,' 'an arrogant and stubborn boy'; Foxe, op. cit. vii, 150, 151. At Cambridge he formed a close friendship with Martin Bucer.
  • 36. The new Ordinal was not sufficiently reformed for Bradford, and the bishop had to modify it till it was 'without any abuse'; Foxe, op. cit. vii, 144.
  • 37. In Lancashire he preached at Ashtonunder-Lyne, Manchester, Eccles, Middleton, Radcliffe, Bury, Bolton, Wigan, Liverpool, and Preston.
  • 38. A sermon by Dr. Bourne at St. Paul's Cross, soon after Mary's accession, occasioned a disturbance among the audience, and a dagger was thrown at the preacher. Bradford, who was present, seems to have been at first regarded as the real instigator of the uproar, but he cleared himself by calling Bourne himself as a witness.
  • 39. The fragmentary record of the three examinations is in Foxe, op. cit. vii, 149, &c. The principal judge was Bishop Gardiner, then Lord Chancellor. Bradford was condemned for his rejection of the supremacy of the pope—'the Antichrist of Rome,' as he called him—and transubstantiation.
  • 40. Those who came to argue with him included Archbishop Heath, Bishop Day, Dr. Harpsfield, Dr. Harding, Fr. Alphonsus a Castro, Dean Weston, and (from Manchester), Dr. Pendleton, Warden Collier, and Stephen Beck. The Earl of Derby seems to have taken a particular interest in him.
  • 41. It is stated that the gaoler several times allowed him to go out merely on his promise to return. The fraud above mentioned was referred to at the trial, but nothing else is known against him. In prison 'preaching, reading, and praying was his whole life.' He was 'tall and slender, spare of body, of a faint sanguine colour, with an auburn beard'; Foxe, op. cit. vii, 145.
  • 42. Roger Beswick was present at the burning, and had his head broken by the sheriff for trying to shake hands with Bradford; ibid. vii, 148. The children of Margaret Beswick his wife are mentioned in the will of Henry Bury, 1634; Piccope, Wills (Chet. Soc.), iii, 177.
  • 43. Booker, op. cit. 112, 113. The Sir John Byron who sold Blackley was the illegitimate son of Sir John Byron and Elizabeth Costerdine of Blackley; ibid. 17. The name is also spelt Consterdine and Constantine.
  • 44. Manch. Quarter Sessions (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), 36. It was treated as a separate township in 1620; Misc. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 150. See also Manch. Ct. Leet Rec. iii, 74.
  • 45. The Bishop of Lichfield on 31 Dec. 1360 granted a two-years' licence for it to Roger La Warre; Lich. Epis. Reg. Stretton, v, fol. 4.
  • 46. In the Visitation lists of 1548, 1554, and 1563, appears the name of Robert Fletcher; in the last he is described as 'curate of Blackley' and 'decrepit.' The 'Father Travis' of the Bradford correspondence, called 'minister of Blackley' by Foxe, does not appear in these lists. Perhaps he was a layman who preached occasionally; 'father' seems merely a title of respect or affection applied to an elderly man by a young one. A Richard Travis of Blackley contributed to the subsidy of 1541; Misc. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 139. There is no mention of Blackley Chapel in the accounts of the chantries or the church goods of 1552, so that it was probably regarded as the private property of the Byrons.
  • 47. Booker, Blackley, 59; a view is given on p. 60. The cost (£245) was defrayed by subscription.
  • 48. Ibid. 61–4 and frontispiece. This building was enlarged in 1880.
  • 49. Ibid. 49–51.
  • 50. The warden and fellows of the collegiate church were responsible for the chapels; it is said that Oliver Carter, a fellow, officiated at Blackley; his son Abraham has been mentioned already; Booker, Blackley, 65, 66. In 1581 Joseph Booth was presented for teaching without a licence. In 1598 there was no curate, but the chapel was served by the fellows of the church; Visit. Presentments at Chest.
  • 51. Booker (57, 58) prints plans of 1603 and a little later; the names of the seatholders and the amounts paid are inserted. The pulpit stood near the middle of the north wall; the communion table was at the east end, but some seats intervened between it and the wall. In 1631 Bishop Bridgeman authorized the allotments of the seats and the payments for them; ibid. 53. About 1610 Blackley was returned among the chapels of ease which had ministers supported by the inhabitants; Hist. MSS. Com. Rep. xiv, App. iv, 11.
  • 52. Commonwealth Ch. Surv. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), 9, 10. The 17s. 8d. came from a gift by Adam Chetham in 1625: in 1838 the income from the same property was £7; Booker, op. cit. 82.
  • 53. See Warden Wroe's account (ibid. 72), which states that George Grimshaw of Manchester had left the interest of £100 and the rent of a house after the death of his servant. The house was in Hunt's Bank, and sold in 1837 for £475, the interest of which is part of the rector's income; ibid. 82.
  • 54. Gastrell, Notitia Cestr. (Chet. Soc.), ii, 81–3; the chief part of this sum was £20 a year charged by Jonathan Dawson on an estate in Salford called Ringspiggot Hall, afterwards owned by the Bridgewater trustees; Booker, op. cit. 82.
  • 55. Lond. Gaz. 29 Mar. 1839; 16 June 1854.
  • 56. Some extracts are given by Booker, op. cit. 83–92.
  • 57. The list is taken mainly from Booker. A dispute as to the patronage took place in 1763, particulars of which will be found in the work referred to, p. 74–7.
  • 58. Ibid. 66–8; Misc. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 54. He was a Puritan, cited for nonconformity in 1617 and suspended for the same in 1631. He went over to Holland, but returned in 1646, becoming rector of Shrewsbury and afterwards of Stockport. He died in 1660. See also Loc. Glean. Lancs. and Ches. i, 275.
  • 59. Booker, op. cit. 69. He also was a nonconformist. See W. A. Shaw, Manch. Classis (Chet. Soc.), iii, 444.
  • 60. Plund. Mins. Accts. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 256, 264.
  • 61. Booker, op. cit. 69. In 1650 he had 'manifested disaffection to the present government' in various ways; Commonwealth Ch. Surv. 10. He was ejected from Shaw Chapel in 1662; Manch. Classis, iii, 449.
  • 62. Booker, op. cit. 70; Manch. Classis, ii, 199, 207.
  • 63. Booker, op. cit. 70; Manch. Classis, iii, 433. He had an allowance of £40 from the Parliamentary Committee; Plund. Mins. Accts. ii, 55, 77.
  • 64. Booker, op. cit. 70; 'assistant minister.' The chapel was vacant in 1665.
  • 65. Ibid. 71.
  • 66. Ibid.
  • 67. Visit. List at Chester.
  • 68. Booker.
  • 69. Ibid.
  • 70. Ibid.; two of his children left silver communion flagons to the chapel.
  • 71. Ibid. 72; he became rector of St. Ann's, Manchester, in 1712.
  • 72. Ibid.
  • 73. Ibid.; he was not ordained at the time of nomination; and seems almost at once to have offended the warden and fellows of Manchester, for they endeavoured to expel him.
  • 74. Ibid. 74; he became vicar of Sandbach in 1773 and of Leeds in 1786.
  • 75. Ibid. 78; he established a Sunday school; ibid. 106. He was elected fellow of Manchester in 1793; Raines, Fellows of Manch. (Chet. Soc.), 290.
  • 76. Booker, op. cit. 75.
  • 77. Ibid. 79; he procured the building of the present church.
  • 78. He had been incumbent of Linthwaite, 1835; St. Matthew's, Liverpool, 1837; and St. Clement's, Manchester, 1843.
  • 79. Rector of St. James the Less, Manchester, 1870 to 1874.
  • 80. For district see Lond. Gaz. 29 June 1866.
  • 81. Notitia Cestr. ii, 82; Booker, op. cit. 102–7.
  • 82. Ibid. 106.
  • 83. Ibid. 108.
  • 84. Ibid. 110.
  • 85. Lond. Gaz. 20 Jan. 1880.
  • 86. a Mary Collinge's house was licensed as a Presbyterian meeting-place in 1689; Hist. MSS. Com. Rep. xiv, App. iv, 232.
  • 87. Nightingale, Lancs. Nonconf. v, 30– 36; Booker, op. cit. 92–102. The Rev. John Pope, minister from 1766 to 1791, was a man of some note; he died in 1802. There are copies of the inscriptions in the Owen MSS.
  • 88. Booker, op. cit. 110.