Townships: Musbury

Page 150

A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 5. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1911.

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Musbury, 1329.

This township, which lies in the hundred of Blackburn, has three portions called Musbury Park, 904½ acres, Musden Head, 398½ acres, and the Trippet of Ogden, 410½ acres; the total area is nearly 1,713 acres. The northern boundary is formed by Ogden Brook, flowing east and south-east to join the Irwell. From the west and south two spurs of the hills project into the township, called Musbury Heights, 1,268 ft., and Burnt Hill and Tor Hill. The valley on the northernmost slope is called Ogden, that between the spurs Musbury, the head of it being called Musden Head, and that on the south Alden. Musbury Park is on the southern spur.

The principal road is that from Bury to Accrington, from which another to Blackburn branches off. The Lancashire and Yorkshire Company's railway from Bury to Accrington crosses the eastern corner.

There are several mills beside the Ogden and Alden, and some quarries on the hills. The Ogden Valley contains two reservoirs of the Bury Waterworks.

Musbury has ceased to be a township since 1894, when the borough of Haslingden was made a civil parish. (fn. 1)


A licence for free warren in Tottington was granted to the Earl of Lincoln in 1294, (fn. 2) and the park at Musbury appears to have been formed shortly afterwards. (fn. 3) There is little to be noted of this district, (fn. 4) nor does there seem to be any record of the manner in which it became attached to the hundred of Blackburn. Possibly as being a park it was included in the Forest of Rossendale. (fn. 5)

The only places of worship in the township are Sion Chapel and another Methodist chapel.


  • 1. Local Govt. Bd. Order 32291.
  • 2. Chart. R. 87 (22 Edw. I), m. 11, no. 23.
  • 3. By a comparison of the De Lacy Compoti (Chet. Soc.) of 1295–6 and 1304–5, the 'newly made park' is seen to have been formed about that time; pp. 5, 100–1. The accounts for the park palings are given; ibid. 98, 115. 'The whole land of Musbury' had been granted to John de Lacy (before 1241) by Lewis de Bernavill; Whitaker, Whalley (ed. Nicholls), i, 316. Henry de Lacy in 1307 granted to Adam son of Adam de Holden part of the waste in Tottington adjoining Musbury Park, at a rent of 5s.; ibid. 191, quoting Raines MSS. (Chet. Lib.), xiv, 54. The park, with its herbage and agistments, was said to be worth 13s. 4d. in 1311; De Lacy Inq. (Chet. Soc.), 19. Trespasses in Queen Isabel's park of Musbury are recorded in 1329 and 1330; Cal. Pat. 1327–30, pp.435, 566. In 1334 Adam son of William de Radcliffe and many others, including the rector of Bury, broke and entered the park and took and carried away venison; Coram Rege. R. 302, Rex, m. 6 d. William de Tonge was parker in 1346; Cal. Close, 1346–9, p. 50.
  • 4. In 1485 the king leased the herbage and pannage of his park of Musbury to Lawrence Maderer; Duchy of Lane. Misc. Bks. 21, fol. 9, A/54. Notes of other leases and the following list of parkers are given in Whitaker, Whalley, loc. sup. cit.:—Nicholas Brownlow, 1413; John Barlow; John Kay, 1463; Lawrence Maderer. The Tippet (Trippet) of Ogden or Ugden was the subject of several disputes in the time of Elizabeth. It was stated to be within the manor of Accrington; Ducatus Lanc. (Rec. Com.), ii, 385; iii, 56, 78.
  • 5. From the Compoti above referred to it is clear that Musbury was within the manor of Tottington in 1305. The references in Queen Isabel's time are vague, but suggest that it had become independent, though perhaps not included in Rossendale. There are references to Musbury among the inquests of the Forest of Rossendale in the court rolls of the manor of Accrington preserved at Clitheroe Castle and the Public Record Office. For instance, in 1518 the greave of Rossendale surrendered a corn-mill in Oakenhead Wood, with its water-course and the soke of all the tenants and inhabitants in Rossendale, Musbury, and New hall Hey; see also the roll of 1514. In 1538 Richard Duckworth of Musbury was found to have died holding a house and land; John Duckworth was his son and heir (see also Ducatus Lanc. (Rec. Com.), ii, 317). A messuage and lands in Musbury Park in the Forest of Rossendale were in 1546 surrendered to the use of Lawrence son of Lawrence Taylor; the fine, 32s. 6d. was the same as the annual rent, and this seems to have been the rule in such transfers. Alexander Entwisle of Edgeworth held two messuages in Musbury in 1603; Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. xviii, no. 13.