"This ancient parish was formerly very extensive, comprising no less than fifteen townships, and four chapelries; all the latter are now entirely independent parishes, whilst of the townships there remain only Lanchester, Langley, parts of Greencroft, and Burnhope and Hamsteels. The other townships now form new parishes, or portions of new parishes. The old parish of Lanchester was bounded on the north by Ryton and the chapelry of Tanfield, on the north-west and west by Stanhope and Muggleswick, on the south-west and south by Brancepeth and Wolsingham, on the south by Wilton Gilbert and St. Oswalds, and on the east by Chester-le-Street.
"Burnhope and Hamsteels at one time formed a joint township, containing 2027 acres. Since 1851 the census returns have been taken with Lanchester, and with the exception of highway maintenance this has ceased to be a separate township.
"Greencroft Township, which adjoins Lanchester on the north-west, comprises an area of 3050 acres, and its ratable value is £10,935.
"Lanchester Township contains an area of 4266 acres, and its ratable value is £32,191. The village of Lanchester is eight miles north-west by west from Durham, and is situated amidst beautiful scenery. It is a pleasant village, having improved considerably during the past twenty years, and is now one of the most attractive as well as perhaps one of the most interesting villages in the county.
"Langley Township has an area of 2378 acres, its ratable value being £7998. The hamlet of Langley is about five miles north by west of Durham."
[From History, Topography and Directory of Durham, Whellan , London, 1894]