Category Archives: Medieval Lancashire

Newburgh Cross, near Lathom, West Lancashire

At the highest point of Newburgh village green stands Newburgh Cross. The cross itself is modern, but its socket base and steps are much older. Some sources have suggested a 17th-18th century date but others go as far as suggesting … Continue reading

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St Leonard the Less Church, Samlesbury near Preston

The church of St Leonard the Less was originally built by Gospatric, lord of the manor of Samlesbury as a chapel-of-ease for his family and staff. Local tradition has it that he persuaded two visiting Irish bishops to consecrate a burial place by the church, … Continue reading

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St Michaels on Wyre Church

St Michael’s Church is old enough to be mentioned in the Domesday Book as ‘Michelescherce’. Bounded by the River Wyre, it has been called St Michaels-on-Wyre since the 1100s. The earliest parts of the present building are Norman, as can be evidenced by the … Continue reading

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St Helens Church, Churchtown near Garstang

The oval shaped graveyard of St Helens  is a key indicator that a  very early ‘Dark Ages’ Saxon church stood once in this place. The name  ‘Churchtown’ was at one time called Kirkland, with ‘kirk’ being the Viking word for a church.  The earliest parts of the present building … Continue reading

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Smithills Hall, Bolton

In 1335 William de Radcliffe acquired the manor of  Smithills. During the early years there would only have been the medieval Great Hall on the site, which  still exists there today. It is a large rectangular stone building and in here the family and … Continue reading

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Dalton Castle, Dalton in Furness

Dalton Castle is a 14th century Pele tower and was owned by the abbot of Furness Abbey. From here he would administer the law in the region of the Lordship of Furness, Lancashire North of the Sands. There would have been … Continue reading

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Radcliffe Tower, Radcliffe near Bury

After the Norman Conquest of England, Nicholas FitzGilbert de Tabois was given confiscated Saxon manor land in the present day Radcliffe area. He took the name ‘de Radclyffe’  (which means            of Radcliffe) and his descendants continued to live in the area for hundreds of years. … Continue reading

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The Lost Leper Hospital of St Mary Magdalene, Preston

The site of St Walburge’s church is believed to be the location of a Medieval leper hospital, dedicated to St Mary Magdalene. Nothing now remains of this building, but what evidence do we have that it was located here ? The … Continue reading

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Brindle Churchyard, Brindle village, near Chorley

Brindle church’s oldest features can all be seen in the churchyard at any time of day. These include four cross bases, two of which are definitely medieval, three  decorated grave slabs and a stone coffin. There has been a church … Continue reading

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Bury Castle, Bury

In 1469 Thomas Pilkington received a ‘license to crenellate’ from the king, which gave him permission to fortify his manor house. He built the structure that we know today as Bury Castle. It had castle like features-  a moat, an outer … Continue reading

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