Townships: Barton

Pages 127-128

A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 7. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1912.

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Bartun, Dom. Bk.; Barton, 1212 and usually; Berton, 1226.

The surface is for the most part level or slightly undulating, but rises a little more sharply in the north-east corner, a height of about 230 ft. being attained. Barton Brook, formed by Westfield Brook and Sparling Brook from east and north-east respectively, runs diagonally across the area from northeast to south-west, the Old Hall being to the north of it and a water corn-mill upon it; Barton Lodge and Tunsteads lie to the south of it. The township contains 2,707½ acres and had a population of 315 in 1901. (fn. 1) The hamlet of Newsham in Goosnargh was included in the township of Barton in 1894. (fn. 2)

The principal road is that from Preston to Lancaster, running along the western boundary; upon it, near the centre, is the church. The London and North-Westem Company's main line to the north crosses the north-west corner.

The land is chiefly meadow and pasture; the soil is clayey.

A parish council administers the affairs of the township.

There are remains of ancient crosses near the eastern border. (fn. 3)


In 1066 the manor of BARTON, assessed as four plough-lands, was a member of the lordship of Preston held by Earl Tostig. (fn. 4) It was no doubt larger than the present township, which in 1212 is found assessed as only two plough-lands, being then part of ten held of the king in thegnage by Walter son of Osbert, ancestor of the Cliftons of Westby, by the service of £2 annually. (fn. 5)

The Cliftons and their heirs retained the mesne lordship of Barton, (fn. 6) which in 1212. was held immediately by the heirs of Gilbert dt Baiton. (fn. 7) Of this family very little is known (fn. 8); their rent was 8s., being the proportion due for two plough-lands. A mortgage or settlement of the manor of Barton, with lands in Goosnargh, was made by John de Barton in 1323, (fn. 9) and another settlement by a later John de Barton and Denise his wife in 1381. (fn. 10)

Gilbert Barton was in 1496 an outlaw for trespass, (fn. 11) and was succeeded by another Gilbert, who died in 1516, leaving a son and heir Thomas, only four years old. (fn. 12) The manor was held of Sir William Molyneux and Elizabeth his wife, in her right, by a rent of 8s. She was the daughter and heir of Cuthbert Clifton.

Thomas Barton died in 1554 holding the manor by a like tenure, the mesne lord being Henry Halsall in right of Anne his wife. (fn. 13) Richard Barton, the son and heir, then twenty-two years of age, recorded a pedigree in 1567, (fn. 14) and died in 1572, leaving as heir a son Thomas, aged sixteen. (fn. 15) This son lived till 1603, and his son Richard having died in 1600, Thomas's heir was Richard's daughter Fleetwood, born in 1595. The manor was held of Sir Cuthbert Halsall in socage by a rent of 8s. (fn. 16)

Barton of Barton. Argent three boars' heads couped sable armed or.

When four years old Fleetwood Barton was married to Richard son and heir of Sir Richard Molyneux (fn. 17); but this union was afterwards annulled, and she then married Richard Shuttleworth of Gawthorpe in Habergham Eaves near Burnley. (fn. 18) Barton descended like Gawthorpe till the death of Robert Shuttleworth in 1816, when—he having divided his estates—Barton was inherited by the elder son James, the younger, Robert, having Gawthorpe. James Shuttleworth in 1833 sold the manor to George Jacson of Preston, a member of the firm of Horrocks, Jacson &c., Co., whose son Charles Roger Jacson succeeded to it. (fn. 19) Having no issue he directed the manor and lands to be sold at his death, which took place on 3 October 1893, for the benefit of his nephews and nieces. Portions have been sold, but the lordship of the manor is said to be vested in his trustees. Barton Lodge is the manor-house. (fn. 20)

The Charnley family held an estate in Barton in 1415. (fn. 21) A few other families holding land are known through the inquisitions. (fn. 22)

Richard Shuttleworth of Barton being a zealous Parliamentarian and Presbyterian, the township seems to have escaped the attention of the Commonwealth authorities; but William Cardwell, tanner, and some others registered estates as 'Papists' in 1717. (fn. 23)


There was probably a chapel at the hall from an early time, but there are no records of it. (fn. 24) In 1650 St. Lawrence's chapel had neither minister nor maintenance. (fn. 25) In 1723 Richard Shuttleworth, retaining the right of presentation, made it a semi-public chapel and gave some endowment, a grant from Queen Anne's Bounty being apparently obtained. (fn. 26) It was made parochial in 1850, and was pulled down and rebuilt in 1896. (fn. 27) The patronage is vested in the Bishop of Manchester and the representatives of the late Col. Marton alternately. (fn. 28) The following have been incumbents:—

1832 Thomas Duell
1870 John Denby Harrison, Ph.D. (Rostock)
1905 Herbert James Bardslcy, M.A. (Worcester Coll., Oxf.)


  • 1. The Census Rep. of 1901 gives an area of 3,055 acres, including 13 of inland water, and a population of 423; but in these figures Newsham in Goosnargh is included.
  • 2. Loc. Govt. Bd. Order 32199.
  • 3. These are called Barton Cross and Oak Bank Farm Cross; Lancs, and Ches. Antiq. Soc. xx, 179, 180. In the former case a new cross has been placed on the old pedestal.
  • 4. V.C.H. Lancs, i, 288a.
  • 5. Lancs. Inq. and Extents (Rec. Soc. Lancs, and Ches.), i, 46, 139.
  • 6. So in the inquest of 1324; Dods. MSS. cxxxi, i, fol. 39b.
  • 7. Lancs. Inq. and Extents, i, 46.
  • 8. Walter de Barton occurs in 1244 and Grimbald de Barton in 1253, both in Amoundemess; ibid, i, 158,192. Walter de Barton and William his son attested a charter copied in Towneley MS. DD (no. 1835). Ralph de Catterall in 1292 claimed certain land in Barton against John de Barton, but afterwards said it was in Goosnargh; Assize R. 408, m. 34 d. John de Barton appears again in 1297 and 1307; Lancs. Inq. and Extents, i, 289; De Banco R. 163, m. 253.
  • 9. Final Conc. (Rec. Soc. Lancs, and Ches.), ii, 56. John Travers the plaintiff (? trustee) received two-thirds of the manor, with the reversion of the remainder, then in the possession of Alice wife of Richard de Bury as her dower. In 1334 Iseult widow of William son of John, de Barton (and afterwards wife of Adam the Spinner) claimed dower in Goosnargh against William son of Richard de Bury and against Sir Richard de Hoghton, the latter holding by demise of John son of John de Barton, to whom her second husband had granted the messuage, &c.,, claimed; De Banco R. 297, m. 230 d.; 300, m. 143 d. Alice widow of John de Barton made a claim in 1342 against Adam de Waley and Iseult his wife; ibid. 309, m. 289. John de Barton was described as a knight in charters of 1335 and 1348; MS. C 8, 5 (Chet. Lib.), Edw. III, no. 17; Kuerden fol. MS. fol. 387. Sir John de Barton and John his son were witnesses in 1340; DD, no. 1879. Katherine daughter of William de Barton in 1370 claimed the manors of Barton and Bilsborrow against Richard de Catterall; De Banco R. 438, m. 253.
  • 10. Final Conc, iii, 10. The remainder was to Thomas son of John and Denise. In 1443 lands of Thomas Barton of Barton in Amounderness were taken for debt; Pal. of Lanc. Chan. Misc. 1/7, no. 31. Christopher Barton, son and heir of Gilbert, was in 1485 to wed Margaret daughter of William Singleton and widow of—Elston; Kuerden fol. MS. fol. 59. Christopher Barton was living in 1500; ibid. fol. 63.
  • 11. Duchy Plead. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 10. He was no doubt the Gilbert Barton the elder who in 1493 made several grants to his sons and daughters— Anthony, Lawrence, Richard, Hugh, Gilbert, Etheldreda and Isabel; Pal. of Lanc. Plea R. 76, m. 4, 4 d., 5 d., 8. Holmes, Kirks Place and Stokkolhede in Barton are named. This Gilbert died in or before 1508, for William Ireland, who had married his widow Clemency, was then claiming her dower in certain messuages, &c.,, in Barton, held by Lawrence Barton 5 ibid. 104, m. 4.
  • 12. There are three inquisitions taken in this order—Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. v, no. 33, iii, no. 7 (both 1520), v, no. 6 (1521). (1) The first of them relates particularly to lands held by Gilbert's wife Margaret, who survived her husband for over two years. It mentions the abovenamed Lawrence, Gilbert, Anthony, Hugh, Constance, Etheldreda, and Isabel Barton as still living in 1520; also William, Thomas and Christopher Barton, younger sons of Christopher Barton, and Gilbert son of the Gilbert of the inquisition. Thomas Barton the heir had been in the custody of Sir John Warren, and then of his son Lawrence Warren. See Ducatus Lanc. (Rec. Com.), ii, 24. (2) The second document relates to the claim to wardship made shortly afterwards by Sir William Molyneux and Elizabeth his wife, they alleging that Barton was held of them by knight's service, via. by the tenth part of a knight's fee and the rent of 8s. (3) The third inquisition reaffirms the socage tenure of the manor of Barton. It gives field-names in the demesne, including Ovall, Tonstedes, Akame, Flethycrokes and Alpham, and a number of tenants' names. Margaret the widow of Gilbert afterwards married Francis Morley, and was claiming dower in Barton in 1518; Pal. of Lanc. Plea R. 123, m. 4. In 1518, i.e. before the above inquisitions, Thomas Barton had summoned Lawrence Barton to answer for the waste, sale and destruction of houses and woods which Gilbert Barton (grandfather of Thomas, whose heir he was) had granted to Lawrence for life; Pal. of Lanc. Writs Proton. 10 Hen. VIII. The above statements as to the descent are difficult to harmonize. According to the recorded pedigree Gilbert was greatgrandfather of Thomas, which would clear the matter.
  • 13. Duchy of Lanc Inq. p.m. x, no. 50. He held the manor, also twelve messuages, a water mill, a windmill, &c.,, in Barton, and lands in Goosnargh, Bilsborrow and Chipping.
  • 14. Visit, of 1567 (Chet. Soc), 57. This gives the descent thus: Thomas Barton –s. Gilbert –s. Christopher s. Gilbert -s. Thomas -s. Richard -s. Thomas. For a settlement by Thomas Barton in 1599 see Pal. of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle. 61, no. 198.
  • 15. Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. xiii, no. 8; the tenure was unchanged. The inquisition names Richard's uncle Gilbert, mother Maud, sister Elizabeth, wife Anne, and children John, Andrew and Maud. His will is recited in it; his wife was to hold Barton Hall, the demesne lands, &c.,c., till his son should attain full age. For a recovery of the manor in 1573 see Pal. of Lanc. Plea R. 233, m. 13 d. For a claim to the manor of 'Barton Row' in 1575 see Ducatus Lanc. (Rec. Com.), iii, 35.
  • 16. Lancs. Inq. p.m. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 7–11.
  • 17. Ibid.
  • 18. See the account of Gawthorpe. The outline of the descent is: Richard Shuttleworth, d. 1669 –s. Richard, d. 1648 –s. Sir Richard, d. 1687–s. Richard, d. 1748 –s. James, d. 1773–s. Robert, d. 1816 –s. James. A local story relates that 'there was a large forest hereabouts and it contained a wild boar, which played such havoc in the neighbourhood that Barton the elder offered in marriage his daughter, a rich heiress, to the man who would kill it. A great hunt followed, and on St. Lawrence's Day one of the Shuttleworths slew the animal near the house now known as the Boar's Head '; Hewitson, Our Country Churches, 65. A settlement of the manor of Barton was made by Richard Shuttleworth and Fleetwood his wife in 1617–18; Pal. of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle. 92, m. 9. There were others in 1709 by Richard Shuttleworth, and in 1742 by the same Richard and James his eldest son and heir; Pal. of Lanc. Plea R. 490, m. 6; 557, m. 7.
  • 19. There is a pedigree in Foster's Lancs. Ped.
  • 20. Fish wick, Preston, 91, 315. Barton Hall was sold to Alderman William Smith of Newsham.
  • 21. Final Conc. iii, 73. William Charnley was plaintiff and his parents, John Charnley of Erlesgate and Amery his wife, were deforciants.
  • 22. Robert Singleton of Brockholes (1525) held land in Barton of the heirs of Gilbert Barton by the rent of a rose; Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. vi, no. 64. George Medgeall (Midgehalgh) held messuages in Barton in 1557 of Richard Barton by a rent of 2s.; Robert his son and heir was aged thirty-three; ibid, x, no. 22. Robert had a son George who married Ellen Parkinson in 1577 and had a son Robert; and this Robert left a son and heir George, a minor, who died in the king's custody without issue in 1626. His heir was his uncle Edward Mighall, brother of Robert; ibid, xxyi, no. 39. The tenure of Sir Gilbert Gerard's land in 1593 is not stated separately. Thomas Cardwell died in 1633 holding two messuages, &c.,, of Richard Shuttleworth and Fleetwood his wife in socage by a rent of 11s. 9d. William his son and heir was sixteen fears of age; ibid. xxx, no. 59. Nicholas Cross had land in 14.84; PaL of Lanc. Plea R. 61, m. 7.
  • 23. Estcourt and Payne, Engl. Cath. Nonjurors, 139, 95. William Cardwell was a son of Thomas. The other names are—George Calvert, Richard Arrowsmith and George Turner. Among the convicted recusants of the timeof CharlesII was a goldsmith, Thomas Kitchin; Misc. (Cath. Rec. Soc), v, 165.
  • 24. It is said to be named in 1577; Raines in Notitia Cestr. ii, 469. John de Barton in 1348 received licence from the Archbishop of York to have services in his oratories within the deanery of Amounderaess; note by Mr. Earwaker citing Raines MSS.
  • 25. Commonw. Ch. Surv. (Rec Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), 146. The inhabitants desired it to be made a parochial chapel to Broughton. It is not named in the Plund. Mins. Accts.
  • 26. Gastrell, Notitia Cestr. loc. cit.; 'this chapel was built and has been constantly repaired by the family who enjoyed the estate and lived in the manor-howe, to which this seems to have been a domestic chapel.' An advertisement for a chaplain m 1795 shows that he was to be master also of Bilsborrow School; Preston Guard. Sketches, no. 1526.
  • 27. Fishwick, Preston, 145–7. A view of the old building is given. See also Hewitson, op. cit. 64–70.
  • 28. The Bishop of Manchester's right wae formerly that of the Jacsons.