PRESCOT, a town, a township, a parish, a sub-district, and a district, in Lancashire. The town stands 2 miles N E of Huyton r. station, 2 N W of Rainhill r.station, and 8 E by N of Liverpool; is a seat of petty sessions; publishes a weekly newspaper; carries on extensive manufacture of watch-movements, watch-tools, and files; participates in the coal trade; contains breweries and manufactories of coarse earthenware and sanitary tubes; and has a head post-office, a town hall, a church, three dis-senting chapels, a Roman Catholic chapel, a grammar school, a public lending library, a floral and horticultural society, a harmonic society, several endowed alms-houses, and aggregate charities £898. The church is ancient, in mixed architecture; comprises nave, aisles, transept, chancel, and porches; has a tower and spire 156 feet high, rebuilt in 1789; and contains a beautiful monument by Chantrey to W. Atherton, Esq., and several other monuments. The Roman Catholic chapel is a fine stone edifice, in the Gothic style. The grammar school is in two departments, lower and higher; and has £197 a year from endowment, and an interest in 7 fellowships and 2 exhibitions at Brasenose college, Oxford. Markets are held on Tuesdays and Saturdays; fortnightly fairs for cattle, from Shrove-Tuesday till the first Tuesday of May; and general fairs, on Ash-Wednesday, 24 and 25 Aug., 21 Oct., and 1 Nov. The town includes all P. township, and part of Eccleston township. Pop. in 1851, 7,393; in 1861, 6,066. Houses, 1,204. The township comprises 270 acres. Real property, £15,224; of which £1,500 are in mines, and £60 in gas-works. Pop. in 1851, 6,393; in 1861, 5,130. Houses, 1,015. The manor belongs to King's College, Cambridge. The parish contains also the townships of Eccleston, Whiston, Rain-hill, Sutton, Parr, Windle, Rainford, Bold, Widnes, Ditton, Cronton, Great Sankey, Cuerdley, and Penketh; and is ecclesiastically cut into the sections of Prescot, Eccleston, St. Thomas, Eccleston-Christchurch, St. Helens, ParrMount, Parr, Farnworth, Rainford, Rain-hill, Great Sankey, and Widnes. Acres, 36,554; of which 710 are water. Real property, £277,878; of which £41,375 are in mines, £472 in quarries, £735 in iron-works, £48,089 in railway s, £199 in canals, and £2,635 in gas-works. Pop. in 1851, 46,527; in 1861, 63,540. Houses, 11,288. The living of Prescot is a vicarage in the diocese of Chester. Value, £1,200.* Patron, Kings College, Cambridge The other livings are noticed in the articles on their own several localities.
The sub-district contains the townships of Prescot, Whiston, Rainhill, and part of Eccleston. Pop. in 1851, 12,762; in 1861, 12,377. Houses, 2,389. The district comprehends also the sub-district of St. Helens, containing the townships of Sutton, Parr, Windle, and part of Eccleston; the sub-district of Rainford, conterminate with the township of Rainford; the sub-district of Farnworth, containing the townships of Bold, Widnes, Ditton, and Cronton; the sub-district of Huyton, containing the parish of Huyton and the hamlet of Thing-wall; the sub-district of Much Woolton, containing all Much Woolton township, except Thingwall hamlet, and all Little Woolton township; and the sub-district of Hale, containing the townships of Hale, Halewood, and Speke. Acres, 56,859. Poor-rates in 1863, £17,811 Pop. in 1851, 56,074; in 1861, 73,127. Houses, 13,052. Marriages in 1863, 553; births, 3,324, of which 169 were illegitimate; deaths, 1,678, of which 803 were at ages under 5 years, and 15 at ages above 85. Marriages in the ten years 1851-60, 4,879; births, 26,568; deaths, 15,256. The places of worship, in 1851, were 20 of the Church of England, with 14,346 sittings; 4 of Independents, with 1,848 s.; 1 of Baptists, with 60 s.; 2 of Unitarians, with 530 s.; 11 of Wesleyans, with 2,757 s.; 2 of Primitive Methodists, with 255 s.; 2 of the Wesleyan Association, with 650 s.; 1 undefined, with 128 s.; 1 of Latter-Day Saints, with 200 s.; and 7 of Roman Catholics, with 3,320 s. The schools were 45 public day-schools, with 5,593 scholars; 65 private day-schools, with 1,929 s.; 67 Sunday schools, with 5,454 s.; and 9 evening schools for adults, with 105 s. The workhouse is in Whiston; and, at the census of 1861, had 155 inmates.
John Marius Wilson, Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales (1870-72)