The parish of Bolton-le-Moors

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

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'The parish of Bolton-le-Moors', in A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 5, (London, 1911) pp. 235-243. British History Online [accessed 19 April 2024]

In this section


Great Bolton; Little Bolton; Tonge-With-Haulgh; Sharples; Little Lever; Darcy Lever; Breightmet; Harwood; Bradshaw; Turton; Edgeworth; Entwisle; Quarlton; Longworth; Rivington; Anglezarke; Blackrod; Lostock

The ancient parish of Bolton has an area of 33,406 acres. A very large portion of it was formerly moorland, and much still remains in this condition in the high lands in the northern half of the district. Of the formation of the parish nothing is known. The lands within it were in the 12th century held by three distinct tenures, and as Lostock was intimately associated with Rumworth, though the latter township lies in another parish, it would appear that the delimitation of the area, and the adhesion to Bolton of the isolated portion—Blackrod and Lostock—goes back to a remote period. On the other hand there are indications that the township of Great Lever has been separated from this parish to become part of the manor-parish of Middleton.

For the old county lay, fixed in 1624, Bolton, together with the township of Aspull in Wigan, was divided into six portions contributing equally, viz.:— Bolton with its hamlets, Turton with Longworth, Edgeworth with its hamlets, Harwood with its hamlets, Blackrod with Aspull, and Rivington, Anglezarke, and Lostock; each £1 14s. 1½d. when the hundred paid £100. (fn. 1) To the more ancient fifteenth Bolton contributed 21s. 8d.; Turton, 15s.; Edgeworth, 12s. 6d.; Harwood, 12s. 7d.; Rivington, 10s.; Blackrod, 4s.; and Lostock was joined with Rumworth in 14s., out of £41 14s. 4d. paid by the hundred. (fn. 2)

Apart from the history of the town of Bolton, and the manufacturing villages which have grown up around it, there is nothing of historical interest to narrate. With the exception of the Pilkingtons of Rivington, the Bradshaws of Bradshaw, and the Orrells of Turton, the local landowners of the mediaeval period were either non-resident or obscure. 'Lusty lads, liver and light,' from Bolton-le-Moors are in an old ballad said to have fought at Flodden under Sir Edward Stanley. After the Reformation (fn. 3) the district became strongly Puritan, there being very few openly avowed recusants, (fn. 4) and it sided with the Parliament in the Civil War. There was a visitation of the plague in 1623. (fn. 5) Defoe, who visited the district early in the 18th century, 'saw nothing remarkable ' in the town of Bolton, but noticed that the cotton manufacture had reached it; the place did not seem so nourishing and increasing as Manchester. (fn. 6) The later history of the parish has been that of the growth of its trade and the inventions—particularly the local one of Crompton's mule—by which its manufactures were able to develop to their present magnitude.

The townships have (between 1894 and 1898) been greatly altered by consolidations, and the old parish now includes the following: Bolton, Little Lever, Belmont, Turton, Edgeworth, Rivington, Anglezarke, and Blackrod. The new township or civil parish of Bolton includes not only the old Great and Little Bolton, Tonge-with-Haulgh, Darcy Lever, Lostock, and the southern end of Sharpies, but also a considerable part of the adjacent parish of Deane.

The geological formation consists throughout the parish of the Carboniferous Series. For some distance around the town of Bolton the Coal Measures are in evidence; in the townships of Harwood, Bradshaw, and the southern portions of Turton and Sharpies the Lower Coal Measures, and in the remaining portions of the parish the same series intermixed with the underlying Millstone Grit.

The agricultural land in the parish is at present occupied as follows: Arable land, 1,369 acres; permanent grass, 17,003; woods and plantations, 218. Details are given thus:—

Arable Grass Woods, &c.
acres acres acres
Bolton 78
Bolton 1,159 4,124 94
Astley Bridge 6 963 3
Belmont 1 1,147 29
Bradshaw 30 879 7
Edgeworth 11 1,742 19
Entwisle 949
Harwood 18 987
Longworth 1 841 1
Tonge 402
Haulgh 24
Turton 2 2,798 65
Darcy Lever 13 294
Little Lever 29 378
Breightmet 66 709
Quarlton 33 688

Many of the natives of the parish have achieved distinction in one way or another. Of these some are noticed in the accounts of the townships with which they were connected. In addition the following have found places in the Dictionary of National Biography: John Lodge, archivist, author of a Peerage of Ireland; died 1774. Lawrence Holden, 1710–78, was a Nonconformist divine. Moses Holden, an astronomer, was born at Bolton in 1777; he lived chiefly at Preston, and died there in 1864. John Henry Robinson, 1796–1871, was a line engraver. Sir Thomas Bazley, born at Gilnow in 1797, was a cotton spinner at Halliwell, making his factories models of good order; he was an earnest free trader, and represented Manchester as a Liberal in Parliament from 1858 to 1880. He was made a baronet in 1869, and died in 1885. William Lassell, 1799–1880, astronomer. John Clowes Grundy, 1806–67, print-seller and art patron. Abraham Walter Paulton, 1812–76, was educated at Stonyhurst for the priesthood, but became a journalist and politician; he died at Boughton Hall, Surrey, in 1876. Marshall Claxton, 1813–81, historical painter. Thomas S. Mort, 1816–78, was one of the pioneers of commerce in New South Wales. James Christopher Scholes, 1852–90, became an antiquary and genealogist; his book on Bolton Church has been used in the following account of its history.



The church of ST. PETER (fn. 7) stands on a steep eminence rising above the River Croal at the end of Churchgate, about 200 yards east of the old market-place, and is a handsome building in the style of the 14th century erected in 1867–71, at the charge of Peter Ormrod. (fn. 8) The former church, which stood on the same site, then at the extreme end of the town, was a low 15th-century building, consisting of chancel, nave with north and south aisles, south porch, and west tower. (fn. 9) The windows of the clearstory were square-headed, but most of the others had been altered, except that at the east end of the chancel, which had seven lights under a depressed arch. The tower had an embattled parapet, but there were no battlements to the nave. The south porch had been rebuilt in 1694, and the aisle walls bore evidence of work of apparently the same date. The east end of each aisle was inclosed by a screen, forming the Chetham Chapel on the north and the Bradford Chapel on the south side of the chancel, which contained several good stalls with heraldic carving. The erection of galleries in the 18th century, and their extension over the chapels, had necessitated the raising of the walls and roof of the chancel as high as the nave, their distinction being thus lost on the outside. The aisle walls had also been raised, and a second tier of squareheaded windows inserted to light the galleries. The appearance of the church immediately before its demolition was not such as to make its disappearance a matter of much regret. (fn. 10)

The old church was taken down in 1866. During the demolition several pre-Norman stones were found under the tower, including a cross in three pieces. (fn. 11) There were also fragments of two other crosses, part of another cross shaft, and two stones with rude carvings, probably belonging to the 11th century, together with fragments of 12th and 13th-century work, (fn. 12) a sepulchral slab, a stone coffin, and the remains of a recumbent female figure, apparently of the 14th century, showing that at least two stone churches of earlier date had existed on the same site. (fn. 13)

The present building, (fn. 14) which was consecrated in June 1871, consists of chancel of three bays 41 ft. by 31 ft., with north and south aisles, north and south transepts 25 ft. by 22 ft., nave of six bays 114 ft. by 33 ft. 3 in., with north and south aisles and lofty clearstory, (fn. 15) south porch, and tower on the north side forming a porch below. It is a very good example of modern Gothic work, and is built of Longridge stone, (fn. 16) the roofs being covered with green slates. The tower, which is 180 ft. high to the top of the vanes, has a square parapet and angle pinnacles, and forms a fine feature at the end of the main street of the town. The windows have all good tracery, that at the east of the chancel being of seven lights, and that at the west end of the nave of six.

In the chapel on the south side of the chancel are preserved three of the stalls of the old church with misericordes, one with the crest of the Bartons (acorn between two oak leaves), another with that of the Stanleys (eagle and child), and the third with an angel holding a plain shield. The end of the third stall has a poppy head, and is carved with two angels holding a book.

An organ was first erected in 1795; it was greatly enlarged in 1852 and replaced by another, which included some of the old pipes, in 1882. (fn. 17)

One of the tablets in the church was placed there by the townspeople to commemorate the bravery of Robert Knowles, a Bolton man who distinguished himself in the Peninsular War, and fell at the pass of Roncesvalles, 25 July 1813.

The churchyard lies chiefly on the south side of the church, (fn. 18) and since 1903 has been a public garden under the care of the corporation, who raised the ground and put the flat gravestones out of sight. It contains a monument to Samuel Crompton (died 1827), the inventor of the spinning-mule, who is buried there. The oldest stone in sight previous to the recent alterations was dated 1597. (fn. 19)

There is a ring of eight bells, five by Henry Bagley of Ecton, Northampton, 1699, and three by John Rudhall of Gloucester, 1806. The tenor bell has the motto, "I to the Church the living call, and to the grave doe summon all," and all have the name of the founder and date.

The plate consists of two patens of 1710, made by Richard Richardson of Chester, inscribed, 'This with another salver (a.d. 1712) of a chalice given to Bolton church by Mr. John Seede, of London, a.d. 1655'; two chalices of 1711, also of Chester make, inscribed, 'This and another chalice new made 1712 of a chalice given by Mr. Nath. Hulton, of London, to the parish of Boulton, Anno Dom. 1677'; (fn. 20) a credence paten of 1713, with the mark of John Edwards, London-; two flagons of 1716, inscribed, 'Hoc est Alterum Dono donavit Thomas Marsden, Armiger, 1716,' with the mark of John Fawdery; an almsdish of 1870, Birmingham make, given by Eliza wife of Peter Ormrod, in 1871; two silver-gilt chalices and patens of 1883, Birmingham make, the chalices inscribed 'Dedicated to the glory of God for the service of the parish church of Bolton by Henry Powell, vicar, St. Peter's Day 1884'; and a small visiting chalice of 1890.

There is also a beadle's staff with silver envelope and mountings, inscribed with the names of the borough-reeve and constable, 1812, and the arms of the family of Bolton and Bolton.

The registers begin in 1587. There are transcripts at Chester of the years 1573–4. They were in part printed in a local newspaper about 1883.

The tithe maps are kept in the vestry. (fn. 21)

The churchwardens' accounts date from 1656.

Humphrey Chetham left money for a church library, and some of the books are now at the grammar school. (fn. 22)


The church of Bolton appears to have been given by the lord of the manor at an early date to the Gilbertine priory of Mattersey or Marsey, in Nottinghamshire, which was founded by Roger de Marsey before li92. (fn. 23) The prior's right to the advowson was formally acknowledged in 1236, (fn. 24) but a few years later the church was surrendered to the Bishop of Lichfield, the prior and convent reserving the right to present the vicars and receiving an annual payment of £10 down to the Dissolution. (fn. 25) The bishop founded a Bolton prebend in the cathedral of Lichfield, and annexed it to the archdeaconry of Chester; a small payment was also made to the vicars choral. (fn. 26) This arrangement continued until the see of Chester was formed by Henry VIII in 1541; the revenues of the archdeaconry, including the rectory of Bolton, were appropriated to the endowment of the bishopric, (fn. 27) to which the right of presenting the vicar was also given. (fn. 28) On the establishment of the bishopric of Manchester in 1847 the rectory was transferred to the new see. (fn. 29)

On the foundation of the prebend at Lichfield a rent of £10 was reserved to the vicar of the church, who was also to have a suitable dwelling-house. (fn. 30) In addition there were surplice fees, but in 1718 the certified income was only £36. (fn. 31) By a lease of the rectory granted in 1740 the pension of the vicar was raised from £10 to £36, and a sub-lease of the whole estate was made to the vicar. (fn. 32) More recently the Earl of Bradford endowed the vicarage with £100 a year, (fn. 33) and the annual value is now stated to be £770. (fn. 34)

The following is a list of the vicars:— (fn. 35)

Institution Name Patron Cause of Vacancy
oc. 1292 Alexander (fn. 36)
oc. 1302, 1310 Randle (fn. 37)
Ralph (fn. 38)
30 Sept. 1320 Richard de Warton (fn. 39) Prior of Marsey d. Ralph
16 Oct. 1334. Thomas Azari (fn. 40) " res. R. de Warton
Thomas de Prestwold (fn. 41)
12 Oct. 1351 Randle de Bolton (fn. 42) Prior of Marsey d. T. de Prestwold
25 Nov. 1373 Henry de Smetheley (fn. 43) " d. Randle
oc. 1436 John de Coventry (fn. 44)
— Nov. 1469 William Parsyvall (fn. 45) Prior of Marsey res. J. de Coventry
oc. 1474 Giles Lever (fn. 46)
19 Jan. 1503–4 James Smetheley (fn. 47) Prior of Marsey d. G. Lever
c. 1514 James Bolton (fn. 48) "
20 Oct. 1556 Thomas Pendlebury (fn. 49) H. Ditchfield, &c. d. J. Bolton
c. 1560 Edward Cockerell (fn. 50)
7 Aug. 1582 Alexander Smith (fn. 51) Bernard Anderton d. Ed. Cockerell
10 June 1594 John Albright, M.A. (fn. 52) Bishop of Chester d. A. Smith
—1595 Zacharias Saunders, M.A. (fn. 53) res. J. Albright
29 Sept. 1598 Ellis Saunderson, M.A. (fn. 54) Bishop of Chester res. Z. Saunders
16 Dec. 1625 Robert Parke (fn. 55) Bishop or Chester d. E. Saunderson
27 Nov. 1630 William Gregge (fn. 56) " res. R. Parke
— 1644 John Harpur (fn. 57) Parishioners d. W. Gregge
25 Nov. 1657 Richard Goodwin, M.A. (fn. 58) Trustees d. J. Harpur
—1662 Robert Harpur (fn. 59) Bishop of Chester ejec. R. Goodwin
10 Aug. 1671 Michael Stanford, M.A. (fn. 60) " res. R. Harpur
16 June 1673 John Lever (fn. 61) " res. M. Stanford
1 Dec. 1691 Peter Haddon, M.A. (fn. 62) " d. J. Lever
14 Sept. 1721 Thomas Morrall, M.A. (fn. 63) " d. P. Haddon
23 Nov. 1737 Edward Whitehead, M.A. (fn. 64) " d. T. Morrall
4 May 1789 Jeremiah Gilpin, M.A. (fn. 65) " d. E. Whitehead
27 Nov. 1793 Thomas Bancroft, M.A. (fn. 66) " d. J. Gilpin
9 Mar. 1811 John Brocklebank, B.D. (fn. 67) " d. T. Bancroft
23 Sept. 1817 James Slade, M.A. (fn. 68) " res. J. Brocklebank
7 Feb. 1857 Henry Powell (fn. 69) Bishop of Manchester res. J. Slade
— 1887 James Augustus Atkinson, M.A. (fn. 70) " res. H. Powell
—1896 Edwyn Hoskyns, M.A. (fn. 71) res. J. A. Atkinson
21 Jan. 1902 Henry Henn, M.A. (fn. 72) " prom. E. Hoskyns
— 1909 Thomas Alfred Chapman, B.D. " prom. H. Henn

The stipend assigned to the vicarage was a liberal one when it was fixed, but as time went on the income from fees and offerings probably became more important. It was contemplated from the first that the vicar should have at least one assistant, and the later foundations of a chantry at Blackrod and of chapels in other parts of the parish assisted in the increase of the staff of resident clergy. In 1541–2, in addition to the vicar, his curate, and the chantry priest, three names appear on the list. (fn. 73) Possibly there were others, for in 1548 eight were summoned to the bishop's visitation, and the same number in 1554. (fn. 74) The subsequent religious changes were accompanied by a marked reduction in the staff; in 1563 the vicar was absent, as also was the curate of Rivington, the curate of Turton was decrepit, and the only other name recorded is that of the curate of Walmsley. Two years later the vicar was assisted by a 'reader'; the curates of Turton and Walmsley are the others named, the former being ill and the latter apparently on the point of leaving. (fn. 75)

The extremer forms of Protestantism prevailed very quickly in the parish. (fn. 76) In 1592 there was no surplice even, but, in obedience to the bishop, one was purchased and worn by the vicar. (fn. 77) Ellis Saunderson, vicar from 1598 to 1625, was one of the Puritan ringleaders in the district. (fn. 78) He was a preacher himself, and had the assistance of a lecturer paid by the parishioners, and the chapels at Rivington and Turton were both 'well supplied with ministry' in his time. (fn. 79) A further improvement in the number of the staff was shown in 1650, when there were not only the vicar and endowed lecturer at the parish church, but ministers at each of the chapels at Turton, Bradshaw, Blackrod, and Rivington, though Walmsley Chapel was vacant. (fn. 80)

There was probably a relapse after the ejection of Richard Goodwin in 1662, sequestered ' delinquents'' estates having ceased to furnish incomes for a large staff of preaching ministers. (fn. 81) Nonconformity at the same time made its appearance. (fn. 82) In 1691 the vicar, his curate, and the curate of Turton were the only clergy appearing at the visitation; Rivington about that time seems to have been vacant frequently. (fn. 83) During the 18th century the growth of the population and the augmentation of the benefice appear to have been accompanied by a better and larger staff of clergy, (fn. 84) and in the last century great additions were made to the number of churches and their ministers.

The 'chapel of our Blessed Lady' is named in a will dated 1539, (fn. 85) and the 'chapel of Jesus' in 1581; (fn. 86) but there was no endowed chantry at the parish church.

In 1622 a lectureship was partially endowed by the Rev. James Gosnell, who had himself acted as curate or preacher at Bolton for forty years. (fn. 87) He was a decided Puritan, and his benefaction was towards the yearly stipend of £30 of 'a preacher, distinct from the vicar of Bolton, to preach in the parish church upon every Lord's Day and Monday.' Notwithstanding the proviso quoted, the vicar of Bolton has several times been lecturer also. An increase of stipend was secured by a bequest of 8 acres of land by William Hulme, 'the benefactor,' in 1691. The lecturers, who appear to have been usually nominated by the vicar, often acted as curates of Walmsley Chapel. In the last century the value of the 8 acres of the Hulme bequest very greatly increased, and in 1858 the Master of the Rolls sanctioned a scheme by which the salary of the lecturer was limited to £150 a year, the remainder being used for other ecclesiastical purposes. The lecturer is appointed by the vicar and the trustees of the Lectureship Estate. (fn. 88)


The endowed charities of Bolton are numerous and important. (fn. 89) For churches and chapels over £2,100 a year is distributed, the principal charity being the lectureship already mentioned. For schools £7,400 is available, including the grammar schools at Bolton and Rivington and Farnworth High Style School, Dr. and Mrs. Chadwick's Infant Orphan Asylum, founded 1868, with an income of £2,266, (fn. 90) and Eden's Orphanage, founded 1872, with £1,755. (fn. 91) Medical relief and nursing charities have £1,450 a year, the greater part of which is the endowment of the Blair Hospital in Turton. (fn. 92) In addition about £550 a year is given to the poor in money or in kind. In nearly every case (fn. 93) the endowments are applicable to particular townships or parts of the parish. For Great and Little Bolton the principal charities are those of Thomas Greenhalgh, (fn. 94) Stephen Blair, (fn. 95) and John Popplewell. (fn. 96) Mrs Lum's almshouses are for widows and spinsters. (fn. 97) For Great Bolton there are endowments for cloth for the poor and for money doles, (fn. 98) and the same is the case in Little Bolton, (fn. 99) while for Breightmet there is a coal charity. (fn. 100) For the poor of Tonge, Haulgh, and Darcy Lever is the charity of Lawrence Brownlow, founded to secure a supply of corn during scarcity, but distributed in blankets and cloth. (fn. 101) For Rivington's poor Alice Lowe and John and George Shaw have made benefactions. (fn. 102) For Blackrod is the gift of John Popplewell, and there are bread and calico doles. (fn. 103) For Turton are the charities of Abigail and Humphrey Chetham, John Popplewell, and Nathaniel Wilson; (fn. 104) while there are smaller sums for Entwisle (fn. 105) and Harwood. (fn. 106) A number of ancient endowments have been lost.


  • 1. Gregson, Fragments (ed. Harland), 22.
  • 2. Ibid. 18. Exactly the same townships will be found in the subsidy roll of 1332; Exch. Lay Subs. (Rec. Soc. Lanes, and Ches.), 29, &c. It would seem that Bolton included Great and Little Bolton, Haulgh, Tonge, Breightmet, and Sharpies; Turton included Longworth also; Edgeworth, Entwisle and Quarlton; Harwood, Bradshaw; and Rivington, Anglezarke. There seems nothing to show how the Levers were assessed—probably with Bolton.
  • 3. The letters of George Marsh show that there were a number of Protestants in the Bolton district in 1554; Foxe's Acts and Monts. (ed. Cattley), vii, 63, 66, 67.
  • 4. The following in 1630–2 compounded for the two-thirds of their estates which should have been sequestered for recusancy: Turton—Alice Orrell, £20 a year; Blackrod—William Norris, £2, and Margaret Rogerley £4.
  • 5. Baines, Lancs. (ed. 1868), i, 552; the burials at Bolton in that year were nearly 500, or four to five times the average.
  • 6. Tour Through Great Britain (ed. 1738), iii, 180.
  • 7. An award by Lord Stanley in 1478 ordered certain money to be paid 'in the church of St. Margaret of Bolton at St. Margaret's altar'; Lever Chart. (Add. MS. 32103), no. 190. Two of the old bells bore invocations of St. Peter; Ch. Gds. (Chet. Soc), 25.
  • 8. This benefactor was a cotton manufacturer and banker of the town and lived at Halliwell Hall. He died in 1875.
  • 9. The tower was not central with the nave, and was evidently part of an older church, the nave of which had been pulled down and widened about 1480. The tower at the same time had been encased with stone. When the building was pulled down in 1866 it was found that the outer 2 ft. of the tower walls was a later addition which easily came away, but the inner part, 4 ft. thick, was immensely strong, and of older date. In 1693 the vicar wrote: 'Our chancel is at present out of order, the floor upon one level, the communion table standing in the midst and no rails, and thus it has been ever since the late wars'; Scholes and Pimblett, Hist, of Bolton, 158. A description of the church as it was in 1764, with an account of the custom as to the repairing of the building, is printed in the same work, p. 160.
  • 10. Sir Stephen Glynne's description of the church in 1843; Chet. Soc. Publ. (new ser.), xxvii, 103. There is a fuller description of the building, with illustrations, in J. C. Scholes's Hist, of Bolton (1892), 123–213.
  • 11. The pieces have been reunited and the cross erected inside the present church, close to the door in the north aisle. See V.C.H. Lancs. i, 264; Lancs, and Ches. Antiq. Soc. xxii, 144.
  • 12. Four stones with lozenge pattern, one with round billet, one with cheveron (now lost), and part of a double Early English cap (respond) with dog-tooth moulding.
  • 13. All these stones are now preserved in a room in the tower, and are engraved in Scholes's Hist, of Bolton, 125–9.
  • 14. Designed by Mr. E. G. Paley.
  • 15. Height of nave to apex of roof, 73 ft. 9 in.
  • 16. The plain portions of the tower and the lower part of the walls up to basecourse all round the church are of stone from Bradshaw Quarry.
  • 17. Scholes, Bolton Ch. Organs (1882).
  • 18. In 1714 the church was 'surrounded on its south aide by a vista of trees;' Book by 'A Traveller to the North' (no title stated), quoted by Whittle, Hist, of Bolton, 75, and by Scholes, op. cit. 141.
  • 19. Scholes, Hist. of Bolton, 192.
  • 20. The inscription on both the patens and chalices is misleading, in indicating that they were made in 1712, whereas the date-letters are those of Chester for 1710 and 1711. The pieces may have been in stock and given in exchange for the older vessels.
  • 21. a Information of Mr. W. A. Bridson, parish clerk.
  • 22. Old Lancs. Libraries (Chet. Soc), 50.
  • 23. a Dugdale, Mon. vii, 965.
  • 24. Final Conc. (Rec. Soc. Lanes, and Ches.), i, 75; the rector had probably died recently, and William, Earl Ferrers, and Agnes his wife claimed the presentation, as representing Randle, Earl of Chester, who had purchased all the Marsey estate in Lancashire. The name of an early rector has been preserved, 'Henry, parson of Bolton,' being witness to a grant by the Prior of Birkenhead probably near the beginning of the 13th century, 'David, priest of Eccles,' being another witness; Towneley MS. C, 8, 13 (Chet. Lib.), L, 52; Bracton's Note Bk. 130 (1222). A writ to the sheriff De vi laica amovenda was issued in 1247–8; Close, 62, m. 13 d.
  • 25. The grant by the Master of the Gilbertines and the Prior and convent of Marsey, made in 1252, has been printed, with other documents from the Lichfield Registers, by Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 93, &c. For the rent of £10 see Dugdale, Mon. vii, 966.
  • 26. The foundation of the prebend, with the simultaneous ordination of a vicarage at Bolton, is dated 31 March 1253. The archdeacon was to pay to the priory the above-mentioned rent of £10; to the church of Lichfield 100s. a year, in 'augmentation of the daily distribution of the vicar ministering in the same church'; and to the vicar of Bolton, £10. The new arrangement was to come into effect on the death or resignation of the then rector; Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 94. Confirmation was obtained from the chapters of Lichfield and Coventry, and from the pope; ibid. 95, 96. An apparently earlier record of this prebend of Bolton may be otherwise explained; see Dugdale, Mon. viii, 1257, 1258. Accordingly, in 1291, the prebend of Bolton in Lichfield Cathedral was taxed at £13 6s. 8d., as held by the Archdeacon of Chester, and Bolton was omitted from the churches of the deanery of Manchester; Pope Nich. Tax. (Rec. Com.), 244. In 1305 the tithes seem to have been farmed out for £36 19s.; this included 7s. for 'the fourth part of Lever,' per. haps Great Lever, in which township the church had a grant of land; Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 97, 98. The church was in 1341 stated to be untaxed because it was annexed to the archdeaconry of Chester, but the value of the ninth of sheaves, &c, was returned as £8 16s. 8d., viz.: From Bolton, 53s. 4d.; Harwood with Bradshaw, 30s.; Edgeworth with Entwisle, 8s.; Turton, 24s.; Little Lever, 10s. 8d.; Lostock, 5s.; Blackrod, 26s. 8d.; Anglezarke, 2s. 8d.; Longworth, 3s. 4d.; and Rivington, 13s.; Inq. Non. (Rec. Com.), 39. The value of the prebend was estimated at £13 6s. 8d. in 1535, and the £5 paid to the vicars choral appears; Valor Eccl. (Rec. Com.), v, 226; iii, 132, 136. In 1529 the archdeacon, William Knight, agreed to lease the rectory for sixty years to Alexander Lever for £40, the accusome d rent to be paid, but the bargain fell through; Duchy of Lane. Plead, xxix, L 2 (printed by Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 101–3). In 1539 the rectory was leased to Thurstan Tyldesley for sixty years at a rent of £26, the lessee also pay. ing the pensions to the vicar of Bolton and the vicars choral of Lichfield; ibid. 104.
  • 27. Ibid. 106. In 1609 the bishop leased the rectory to James Anderton of Lostock, the old rent of £26 being payable. In 1670 Sir Orlando Bridgeman secured a lease, the full clear profits to go to the vicar of Bolton, and Sir John Bridgeman had a similar lease in 1698; the same family continued to hold the rectory similarly until recently. The Ecclesiastical Commissioners in 1840 came into possession of this and other episcopal estates, and from the expiry of the last lease have had the whole benefit of the rectory. Full details are given by Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 108–22. See also Commonwealth Ch. Surv. (Rec. Soc. Lanes, and Ches.) 30–4, giving the value in 1650.
  • 28. The bishop was patron in 1543; Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 242.
  • 29. That is, the rectory is held by the Ecclesiastical Commissioners for the benefit of the bishopric; and the bishop pre. sents to the vicarage.
  • 30. Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 94. The vicar was to be 'a fit priest'; he was obliged to reside, having entire charge of the parish, and was to have a chaplain and other necessary ministers. The stipend of £10 and 3s. as the value of the house and garden are the only income recorded in 1535; Valor Eccl. (Rec. Com.), v, 226. In 1650 the vicar received about £9 from the sequestrators of the rectory, and £3 from the glebe land and six little cottages thereon, besides having the use of the house; Commonwealth Ch. Surv. 30.
  • 31. Gastrell, Notitia, ii, 6; the amount was thus made up:—House and glebe, £10; pension, £10; chief rents, 15s. 4d.; and surplice fees, £15 6s. 8d. The clear profits of the rectory, which by the lease of 1670 were to go to the vicar, are not accounted for; but a statement drawn up about the same time shows that they were worth over £40 clear; Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 114. Some twenty years later, however, the value is given as £167 10s.; ibid. 116. A terrier compiled in 1696 is printed in the same work, 118.
  • 32. Ibid. 117.
  • 33. Ibid. 121.
  • 34. Manch. Dioc. Dir. 1910.
  • 35. There is au excellent account of the vicars in Scholes and Pimblett's work.
  • 36. Robert de Gidlow was in 1292 nonsuted in a claim against Alexander, vicar of Bolton, concerning certain of his chattels which had been seized; Assize R. 408, m. 54.
  • 37. He occurs in deeds in the Lever Chartul. (Add. MS. 32103), no. 76, 79.
  • 38. He may be the same as Randle.
  • 39. Lich. Epis. Reg. i, fol. 88. He was a priest. In 1334 he became rector of Prestwich.
  • 40. Ibid, ii, fol. 110; a priest.
  • 41. He may be identical with Thomas Azari.
  • 42. Lich. Epis. Reg. ii, fol. 129. He is called a chaplain.
  • 43. Ibid, iv, fol. 86b; a priest. His predecessor had died on the Saturday before All Saints' Day. A Robert de Lostock is mentioned as vicar of Bolton in 1360, but probably it was of some other place of that name; Kuerden MSS. iii, W i, no. 66. Henry de Smetheley was still vicar in 1411; Add. MS. 32104, no. 1209; also in 1419; Pal. of Lane. Chan. Misc. bdle. 1, file 14.
  • 44. Lever Chartul. in an unnumbered deed (14 Hen. VI), between no. 207 and no. 208. In 1445 he was in mercy for various defaulta; Pal. of Lane. Plea R. 8, m. 11. There appears to have been a dispute over his appointment, for a deed of 1461 among the Weld-Blundell muniments states that the Heaton family had received a corrody or livery from Marsey Priory on renouncing their claim to the patronage of Bolton Church, and that on the death of one Robert Heaton the prior had made terms with the heir by which the corrody was resigned and John Coventry was allowed to have the vicarage; Ch. Gds. 1552 (Chet Soc), 29.
  • 45. Lich. Epis. Reg. xii, fol. 104b; a chaplain.
  • 46. He occurs as vicar in a Rivington deed of the year 1474 (?); Towneley MS. GG, no. 1717; also in a WeldBlundell deed of 1486; Church Gds. 29; and in the same year he was a witness to the will of John Hulton of Farnworth; Wills (Rec. Soc. Lanes, and Ches.), 27.
  • 47. Lich. Epis. Reg. xiii-xiv, fol. 53; a chaplain. He was still vicar in April 1513, when he was one of the feoffees of John Barton of Smithills; Duchy of Lane. Inq. p.m. iv, no. 82. James Bolton appears to have succeeded by 1516, when the will was made; ibid.
  • 48. In 1523 it was stated that James Bolton, priest, had been vicar for ten years, having been nominated by the Prior of Marsey; Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 240. His name occurs also in the Valor of 1535 (v, 220), as well as in the lists of 1 541–2, 1548, and 1554. Particulars of his suits of the last date respecting tithes are printed in Scholes and Pimblett, loc. cit. A James Bolton was at Cambridge in 1503–4; Grace Bk. B. (Luard Mem.), 192.
  • 49. Church P. at Chest. Dioc. Reg. The bishop in 1543 granted the next presentation to George Wilmesley and Richard Smith, two of his officials, who next year transferred it to Hamnet Ditchfield of Chester, John Whitby, a vicar choral of St. John's Chester, and Richard Falkner, priest-chanter of the same church; see Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 242–5. Thomas Pendlebury was ordained priest in 1544; W. F. Irvine, Ordin. Bk. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), 56.
  • 50. He was vicar in 1563, but at the time of the visitation was absent, 'with the Bishop of Durham'; Visit. List; see also Ches. Sheaf (ser. 3), i, 34. Ten years later it was reported that he had a pension of £5 6s. 8d. out of the late monastery of Gisburn (Guisborough), and another of £6 out of the late college of Bishop Auckland, and dwelt at Bolton; Ch. Gds. 25. It thus appears that he had been an Austin Canon; Ord, Cleveland, 192. Robert Lever, by his will of Aug. 1 551, bequeathed 'unto the vicar of Bolton, Edward Cockerell, 3s. 4d., to pray for me'; Wills (Chet. Soc. new ser.), i, 221; but the date seems erroneous.
  • 51. Act Bks. at Chester. Smith paid first-fruits on 14 Feb. 1583–4; Lancs. and Ches. Rec. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), ii, 410. He was 'a preacher,' but not 'painful'; S.P. Dom. Eliz. xxxi, 47. He was buried in the church 28 Dec. 1593; his wife followed on 10 May 1600.
  • 52. Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 248. He was of Christ's College, Cambridge, and then of Magdalene; M.A. 1588. He became a vicar choral of Christ Church, Dublin, in 1595, and Dean of Raphoe in 1603; Cooper, Athenae Cantab, ii, 527.
  • 53. He was of St. John's College, Cambridge, and appointed master of Rivington School in 1589; Baker, Hist. St. John's Coll. (ed. Mayor), 1,431. He paid firstfruits 10 July 1595; Lancs. and Ches. Rec. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), ii, 411.
  • 54. He paid first-fruits 17 Feb. 1598–9; ibid. He graduated at Oxford (Brasenose College), M.A., 1592; Foster, Alumni. He was a native of Breightmet, and in religion a resolute Puritan. A full account of his career is given in Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 252–6, where a summary of his will is also given. On 9 Aug. 1607 a licence was granted for the marriage of Ellis Saunderson, vicar of Bolton, and Margery Battersby of Bolton parish.
  • 55. A native of Bolton, and educated at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, he became a Nonconformist, and took refuge in Holland in 1630; he returned to Bolton in 1644 and was appointed lecturer, but expelled in 1662, after which he continued to minister to the Nonconformists of the district; Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 257–61. There is also a notice of him in Dict. Nat. Biog. The institutions from this time have been compared with the list in Lancs, and Cbes. Antiq. Notes from the Institution Bks. P.R.O.
  • 56. He was probably the William Gregge of Brasenose College, Oxford, who graduated as B.A. in 1622; Foster, Alumni. This vicar seems to have been appointed to restore some sort of discipline in the parish, a large number of excommunications taking place in the early years of his ministry. He died at the beginning of 1644. The church was then desecrated, being used as a military store-house; see Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 261–4. For pedigree,Ormerod, Ches. (ed. Helsby),ii,34.
  • 57. He had been lecturer for some years. He was a Puritan, and appointed vicar by the election and consent of the people; he was ' a man of able parts and a godly preaching minister,' constantly preaching on Sundays, &c, but had not observed the fast appointed by Parliament in 1650; Commonwealth Ch. Surv. 30; Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 265–9. He signed the 'Harmonious Consent' in 1648 as 'pastor of Bolton.'
  • 58. He was admitted on a presentation from the Trustees for the Maintenance of Ministers; Plund. Mins. Accts. (Rec. Soc. Lancs, and Ches.), ii, 173, 208. He was of Emmanuel College, Cambridge, and although ordained deacon 'after the Episcopal manner,' became a zealous adherent of the Presbyterian discipline. He refused to conform to the Prayer Book on the Restoration, and as the parishioners refused to pay Easter dues when the Lord's Supper was not celebrated, the farmer of the rectory complained to the bishop. He was expelled from the vicarage in Aug. 1662, and continued his labours undet difficulties among the persecuted Nonconformists; Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 269–75. He signed the 'Harmonious Consent' in 1648 as 'minister of the Gospel at Bolton,' and was described by the 1650 Commissioners in the same terms as John Harpur.
  • 59. He was also lecturer, and seems to have had a troubled course; Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 275, 320.
  • 60. Ibid. 276. He was a fellow of Christ's College, Cambridge; M.A. 1661. He left Bolton for Aldingham in Furness.
  • 61. Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 276–8; he built the vicarage house. At the Revolution he was 'conformable'; Hist. MSS. Com. Rep. xiv, App. iv, 228.
  • 62. He graduated at Oxford (Wadham College and Hart Hall), M.A. 1687, and became vicar of Wolston, Warwick, his native place, in 1680; Foster, Alumni. 'A worthy, pious, and learned man,' according to the entry in the register. He was a cousin of Bishop Cartwright and had acted as his chaplain. In his time two galleries were erected, and other alterations and repairs made in the church; Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 278, 142.
  • 63. He was of St. John's College, Oxford, and then of All Souls; M.A. 1699; Foster, Alumni. The work of restoring the church fabric was continued by him, and a chapel of ease was built in Little Bolton; Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 279. Judith, his daughter and heir, married Richard Rothwell, rector of Sefton, and died in 1756, aged twenty-five; Manch. School Reg. (Chet. Soc), ii, 49.
  • 64. A Memoir of this vicar by James C. Scholes was printed at Bolton in 1889. He was educated at Balliol College, Oxford; M.A. 1736. He had a dispute with the parishioners in 1764 as to the liability to repair the chancel. He was made a justice of the peace in 1766, and a king's preacher in 1780; Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 280, 157; a portrait is given.
  • 65. He was educated at St. John's College, Cambridge; M.A. 1777. He was also curate of Broughton-in-Furness.
  • 66. He was one of the most distinguished vicars of Bolton, and has a memoir in Diet. Nat. Biog. He was educated at Manchester School and Brasenose College, Oxford, but failed to obtain a fellowship; M.A. 1784. He was appointed head master of the King's School, Chester. The story of his romantic marriage, and of his works as author and vicar, is given in Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 283–96, where there is also a portrait. Mr. Bancroft was one of the high churchmen of the time, and controverted the Calvinism of the Evangelical party.
  • 67. He was of Pembroke College, Cambridge; B.D. 1814. He left Bolton become rector of Teversham, near Cambridge, remaining there from 1817 t his death in 1843, holding also the benefices of Melbourne and Willingham in succession.
  • 68. Educated at Emmanuel College, Cambridge, of which he became fellow; M.A. 1807. He was appointed canon of Chester in 1816 by his father-in-law, the Bishop of Chester, and next year exchanged the rectory of Teversham for Bolton with Mr. Brocklebank, and soon after was made one of the king's preachers. He held other benefices, being rector of West Kirby in Cheshire from 1829 till his death in 1860. He was a moderate Evangelical, and an active and liberal man, who earned the esteem of the inhabitants generally; Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 288–307. He published sermons, &c. There is a notice of him in Dict. Nat. Biog.
  • 69. He was educated at the Church Missionary College, London, and was from 1837 to 1844 a missionary in Ceylon. He was vicar of Bispham from 1851 to 1857. The rebuilding of Bolton Church took place while he was vicar. He was appointed to an honorary canonry at Manchester in 1868; see Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 307–10. He became rector of Eaglescliffe, Durham, 1886.
  • 70. He is a son of James Atkins translator of the Shah Námeh of Firdausi and was educated at Eton and at Exeter College, Oxford; M.A. 1856. He was incumbent of Hollinwood, Oldham, from 1858 to 1861, when he was appointed rector of St. John's, Longsight. In 1884 he was made an honorary canon of Manchester. He became vicar of Gedney in 1896 and of St. Michael's, Coventry, in 1900. He has written a biography of predecessor, Canon Slade.
  • 71. Educated at Jesus College, Cambridge; M.A. 1880; was rector of Stepney 1886 to 1896; hon. canon of Manchester 1899; consecrated Bishop of Burnley 1901; translated to Southwell 1904.
  • 72. The date is that of induction. Canon Henn was educated at Trinity Hall, Cambridge, of which he was a fellow; M.A. 1884. Honorary canon of Manchester 1903. Bishop suffragan of Burnley from 1909.
  • 73. Clergy List (Rec. Soc. Lancs, and Ches.), 13; the three were probably chaplains at Bradshaw, Rivington, and Turton.
  • 74. The list of ornaments of the church remaining in 1552, which included five suits of mass vestments, is printed in Cb. Gds. 23. The inscriptions on the old bells are given; ibid. 25.
  • 75. These details are from the Visitation Lists in the Diocesan Registry, Chester.
  • 76. Bolton was one of the places in which John Bradford preached in the time of Edward VI.
  • 77. W. Fergusson Irvine in Lancs, and Cbes. Antiq. Soc. xiii, 59; the only chapel of ease mentioned is Blackrod.
  • 78. Scholes and Pimblett, op. cit. 253, 254; he was in 1605 presented for 'not residing in the parish, for not wearing a cloak or cassock, for not going the perambulation, and for marrying in private houses.'Four people of the town were at the Visitation of 1623–4 presented for killing flesh and exposing the same for sale in Lent; Raines MSS. (Chet. Lib.), xxii, 196.
  • 79. Hist. MSS. Com. Rep. xiv, App. iv, M.
  • 80. Commonwealth Ch. Surv. 30–6.
  • 81. The people of the district remained attached to Presbyterianism. In reply to the Bishop of Chester's inquiries in 1665 it was stated that the church was in 'indifferent good repair,' but the chancel was not evenly flagged, and the communion table was not railed about. There was a chalice with covering (the gift of a Londoner), a flagon, and two pewter plates, but more communion plate was required. There was a stone font. The only vestment was 'a surplice, as is required. The vicarage and churchyard were not in good condition. Interesting are the replies as to the vicar's conduct: 'He doth usually every Lord's Day call upon parents to prepare their children and servants and send them to be catechised. He catechised all that will come and would prepare them for confirmation if their parents would give way. He laboureth to bring sectaries to the true religion. He is orthodox in doctrine and of a blameless conversation.' A list of excommunicated persons is given,and one of those not attending church. No terrier existed. An account of the charities is given; Consist. Ct. Rec. Chester.
  • 82. In 1665 it was reported to the Bishop of Chester that Humphrey Jones, clerk, a Nonconformist, prayed at the house of Richard Heywood in Little Lever; and that Oliver and Nathaniel Heywood, Nonconformist ubiquitaries, preached there; Visit. P. at Chester. In 1666 the Common Prayer Book was stolen from the parish church, torn in pieces, and thrown into the street channel; and a Royalist magistrate like Sir Roger Bradshagh felt it necessary to keep a 'strict eye' on Bolton, as holding 'the same principles they had in the Rebellion'; Pal. Note Bk.
  • 83. Stratford's Visitation List. In 1671 it was presented at the Visitation that the church windows were defective and the great chancel walls decayed; there was only one chalice, so that another had to be borrowed every sacrament; there were wanting a pulpit cloth, a book of canons, and a book for recording the names of 'strange preachers.' In 1724 each of the six townships gave a churchwarden to the parish, the consent of the vicar being required in each election; Gastrell, Notitia, ii, 11.
  • 84. Among the Chester Consistory Court Records is a return concerning Bolton, made in 1730. The church, churchyard, and vicarage were in good condition; a true terrier was safely kept. The vicar was resident, but had a living in another diocese. The curate was licensed, and had £30 a year. There was 'no place in our parish where papists resorted to hear mass. Dissenters were very numerous, but qualified with a teacher' according to the Toleration Act. There were five consecrated chapels, all supplied by curates:—Rivington (patrons, the people), Blackrod (vicar), Walmsley (vicar), Turton (Samuel Chetham), and Bradshaw (Henry Bradshaw). The churchwardens were elected by the joint consent of vicar and parishioners, and made ' due provision for each communion on the first Sunday in every month.'
  • 85. Wills (Chet. Soc. new sen), i, 221. In 1541 Robert Bolton of Little Bolton and others assembled and broke the chapel of Ralph Ashton in Bolton Church, called Our Lady's Chapel; Pal. of Lanc. Writs of Assize, Lent, 33 Hen. VIII. It was that on the south aisle of the chancel, later known as the Bridgeman or Bradford Chapel.
  • 86. Wills (Chet. Soc. new ser.), i, 85; the north chapel, belonging to the owners of Turton—Orrell and Chetham.
  • 87. This account of the lectureship and its founders is taken from Scholes and Pimblett's work, pp. 312–40, where a list of the lecturers is given. Mr. Gosnell, it appears, though' persuaded the religion now [1622] established in this kingdom to be, concerning the substance of the articles of the doctrine of faith and sacraments, the only true religion of God by which men shall be saved,' was quite unyielding in 'the matter of formality,' and had consequently been several times censured by the bishop. In a letter written soon after he settled at Bolton he says: 'Here [in Lancashire] are great store of Jesuits, seminaries, masses, and plenty of whoredom. The first sort our sheriff [probably SirE. Trafford, 1583–4] courseth pretty well. Other good news is that the Bishop of Canterbury has not yet, God be thanked, stung us with his articles, which in the south parts have so great power that, by report, they have quenched the Lord's lights nearly to the number of 200'; op. cit. 323, 324; Raines in Notitia Cestr. ii, 10.
  • 88. a The new scheme for utilizing the lecturer's endowment is printed in Scholes and Pimblett's work, and the End. Cbar. Rep. for Bolton County Borough, 1904, pp. 65–70. About £1,000 a year is distributed from the fund; the gross income is much more.
  • 89. For the older charities see Gastrell, Notitia, ii, 15, 17, 22, 25. The summary and notes here given are from the End. Char. Rep. for Bolton County Borough, 1904, and for the rest of the parish, also 1904; in these reports is reprinted the report made by the Charity Commissioners in 1828.
  • 90. The buildings are situated in Haulgh. The orphanage is primarily for girls, fifty being maintained at once; the religious instruction usually was to be 'upon Protestant principles in conformity with the Church of England'; each girl on leaving receives an outfit costing about £10.
  • 91. Founded by James Eden of Lytham, who died in 1874. The building is in Little Bolton, and provides for fifty boys and about thirty girls; the religious instruction was to be upon Protestant principles.
  • 92. This hospital was founded by Stephen Blair in 1870, but the building was not erected till 1882; it accommodates thirty patients. Bolton Infirmary has some endowments; and £12 a year to it is paid from the Marsden and Popplewell Educational Charity on account of the old dispensary, now merged in the infirmary. From Greenhalgh's Charity £2 2s. is paid yearly to Manchester Infirmary. Out of the Shaw Charities for Rivington £25 is paid for medical assistance, and, in addition, subscriptions are given to various hospitals.
  • 93. For the parish in general are the benefactions of James Lomax, including £1 among forty poor housekeepers attending the Whit Sunday sermon, but now distributed among the poor of Breightmet and Harwood; and of Nathaniel Hulton, 1691, for the benefit of Protestant Dissenters, and for teaching children the Assembly's catechism, or the like; the greater part of the income of £524 is now given to the grammar school and girls' scholarships. The Charity of John Guest seems to have failed, so far as Bolton is concerned. James Gosnell, in endowing the lectureship in 1622, directed that one-sixth of the gross income was to be given to the poor, half to Bolton and the other half to Little Lever; the poor's share is now £11 13s. 10d. The Poor Protection and Benevolent Society has £10 a year, left by Thomas Glaister in 1896. Jane Astley in 1734 left £60 for clothing for the poor attending some Protestant place of worship; £3 is now given in doles of flannel, &c, to persons attending the Unitarian Chapel, Bank Street. Mrs. Mary Ann Briggs in 1883 left part of her estate to the same chapel, and from it £2 12s. 2d. is given to the poor.
  • 94. This benefactor by his will of 1894 left endowments for All Souls' Church and Sunday Schools, and £1,350 for the poor of the district, irrespective of religious denomination, to be distributed in wearing apparel by the vicar and churchwardens. He made similar provision for the poor of the ecclesiastical district of the Saviour.
  • 95. Founded in 1868 for the benefit of St. John's Church, Little Bolton; part of the endowment is to provide winter clothing for poor persons attending the church.
  • 96. John Popplewell in 1820 gave £4,200 stock to provide for the care of his grave, an annual service and sermon in the parish church, and clothing and bread for the poor. The recipients are selected by the Church of England clergy of Great and Little Bolton, and number about ninety men and 205 women; they receive bread to the value of £15, and clothing worth about £140.
  • 97. Mrs. Elizabeth Lum built six cottages in Anchor Street, Little Bolton, and endowed them with a small estate; they were opened in 1839, and were transferred to the present site at Astley Bridge in 1886. The trustees are the ministers and certain members of three Nonconformist chapels in Bolton, and the beneficiaries are to be sixty years of age, preference being given to those who are 'decidedly pious and regularly (if able) attend places of worship where the gospel is preached.' The gross income is £48, and there are twelve occupants, two in each house, receiving 1s. a week, and coal, gas, and water free.
  • 98. Some of the greater benefactions have been mentioned already. Hannah Crompton in 1784 left money for linen for the poor of Great Bolton; the annual dividends now amount to £4 8s. 4d. Thomas Cocker in 1774 made a similar gift; the income is now £4 16s. a year. Richard Aspindell in 1800 left £100 for a like purpose; the trustees of the Wesleyan chapel in Ridgway Gate receive a rentcharge of £5 15s. 2d. representing this charity, and it is spent in doles of drabbet. The benefactions of Adam Mort, 1630, and Thomas Mort, 1732, of Astley, now produce about £7 5s. a year for the poor of Bolton township; it is distributed in money doles. Sums of £5 and £2 were annually received in 1828 in respect of gifts by Ann Parker and an unknown donor; but both ceased on the death of John Albinson, who then paid them.
  • 99. Mary Stones in 1764 left money for an annual sermon, a dole of linen cloth, and a gift of 6d. each to poor widows and others. Down to 1898 at least £3 was paid to the vicar of Bolton from the Harwood Lodge estate, and added to the poor fund for food and clothing. James Greenhalgh in 1780 left money for linen cloth for the poor; the income, now £2 4s.4d., is distributed in doles of cloth by the incumbents of St. Augustine's, Tonge, and St. George's, Little Bolton. Some smaller gifts for the poor and for doles of linen cloth had been lost before 1828.
  • 100. Thomas Seddon in 1894 left money for coal to be distributed by the vicar and churchwardens of St. James's among twelve poor families; the interest amounts to £4 8s. 4d. A linen charity, founded by Mrs. Ann Parker, was discontinued about 1808.
  • 101. Lawrence Brownlow in 1630 gave a granary to trustees, together with £40, to buy corn, which they were to store up and sell to the poor at a cheap rate in times of scarcity. This does not seem to have been practicable, and in 1828 a distribution of linen cloth had long been customary, one-eighth being appropriated to Darcy Lever. The premises belonging to the trust were the inn then called the Starkey's Arms, and formerly known as the Almshouse. The income, which in 1828 was £32, has now reached £134, and is distributed to about 280 persons in doles of blankets, drabbet, and flannel. Little Lever has a share of James Gosnell's Charity, now £3 18s. a year.
  • 102. The Shaw Charities are shared by four townships—Rivington, Anglezarke, Heath Charnock, and Anderton; the available income is about £185. Rachael Charnley's gift of 6s. 8d. a year, formerly distributed with Shaw's Charity, has been lost since 1867, recent owners repudiating any liability. Miss Alice Lowe of Blackpool left a fund for the poor, now producing nearly £16 a year; this is distributed in money, coals, and clothing by the trustees.
  • 103. The Popplewell Charities for the poor are now represented by £1,100 for a bread charity, and £400 for a blanket charity; the recipients must be regular attendants at church. A number of benefactions, chiefly of the 17th and 18th centuries, made up a sum of £190 by 1803, which, with £20 given for cloth by Robert Aston in 1728, and £110 for bread and cloth by John Ainscough in 1812, was in 1815 invested in Government Stock, producing about £15 a year for the poor. An estate called the Bent was also charged with 4s. a year by Edward Pilkington in 1644. Part of the money was in 1828 distributed in sixpenny loaves, but most of it in doles of flannel or linen given on St. Stephen's Day. A new scheme was made in 1857, and of the income 20s. 6d. is distributed in sixpenny loaves on St. Stephen's Day, and the same amount on St. John's Day, while over £7 is on the former festival given in doles of calico. A benefaction of £100 by Edward Holt in 1741, and two smaller ones, were said to be lost in 1828, but at present £5 a year has long been paid to the vicar of Blackrod by the agent of the Leigh estate, Hindley, and is customarily distributed in bread on fifty Sundays in the year. It is supposed this may be the Holt Charity; the earliest recorded payment was in 1788.
  • 104. Abigail Chetham in 1690 left money for the clothing of four poor boys; it was invested in the purchase of Haslam Hey in Elton, and the rent, amounting in 1828 to £28, was then used in the clothing and education of six boys; the rent has now fallen to £8, and four boys are clothed. Canon Raines (Notitia, ii, 25) says that Gervase Chetham, the nephew of Abigail, was the real donor. Humphrey Chetham in 1748 gave certain lands in Turton called Goose Coat Hill, &c, for the benefit of poor persons not relieved from the rates. The income was in 1828 distributed in doles of linen. The estate was sold in 1864 for £1,700, and the capital given to the official trustees; the income, now £49 12s. 8d., is distributed in doles of calico, flannel, blankets, and sheets. John Popplewell in 1820 gave money for a bread charity; shilling loaves were to be distributed to the poor who regularly attended church. The income is now £10 16s. 8d., and is spent on bread, but attendance at church is not regarded. Nathaniel Wilson in 1877 left £200 for keeping the family grave at Walmsley Church in good order, and then for the poor of the chapelry. The vicar receives the interest and distributes it in money doles at his discretion.
  • 105. James Brandwood of Charnock Richard in 1762 left £100 for the poor stock of Entwisle; in 1828 the interest, £4 10s., after being improperly used to relieve the poor rate, was to be applied to the purchase of linen for the poor. The income is now only £2 13s. 4d. a year, and is expended each alternate year in doles of flannel and calico. An unknown donor or donors left £9 to the poor, which in 1828 was used like the last charity. The capital remained intact until 1888, when the trustee absconded.
  • 106. The Rev. Richard Goodwin in 1684 left £5 a year to the poor, afterwards altered to a sum of £50 for Bolton and £50 for Harwood; and the Rev. Samuel Brooks in 1698 left £100. No trace of the charities could be discovered later than 1732. From the foundation of Joshua Lomax £1 is given to the poor of Harwood.