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PRESTWICH, a small town, a township, and a sub-district, in Manchester district, and a parish partly alsoin Oldham and Bury districts, Lancashire. The town stands 1¼ mile E N E of the river Irwell, 1½ E by N of Clifton-Junction r. station, and 4 N N W of Manchester; contains numerous good residences; and has a post-office under Manchester, two churches, two Wesleyan chapels, a Jewish cemetery, a national school, a British school, a workhouse, the Lancashire lunatic asylum, and charities 164. St. Bartholomew's church is later English; consists of nave, aisles, two terminal chapels, and a chancel, with a tower 85 feet high; and contains a fine reredos erected in 1865, and several handsome monuments. St. Margaret's church was founded in 1848, by the Duchess of Cambridge. One of the Wesleyan chapels was built in 1867 The national school was built in 1866, at a cost of about 2,800; and is in the early English style, with high-pitched roof and brick tower. The lunatic asylum stands in the centre of extensive grounds; is a range of structures in brick, with stone facings; underwent enlargement about 1862; and has accommodation for about 1,000 patients. The workhouse is one of three for Manchester district; and, at the census of 1861, had 66 in-mates. The township comprises 1,906 acres. Real property, 21,725. Pop. in 1851, 4,096; in 1861, 5,288. Houses, 973. The sub-district contains also Great Heaton and Little Heaton townships, and comprises 3,281 acres. Pop. in 1851, 5,046; in 1861, 6,285. Houses, 1,168. The parish contains also the townships of Pilkington, Oldham, Chadderton, Tonge, Alkrington, Royton, and Crompton; and is ecclesiastically cut into the sections of Prestwich, Hollinwood, Ringley, Prestolee, Oldham, St. Mary, O., St. Peter, O., St. James, Chadderton, St. John, C., St. Matthew, Coldhurst, East Crompton, Glodwick, Werneth, Waterhead, Royton, Shaw, Unsworth, and Tonge-with-Alkrington. Acres, 21,625. Pop. in 1851, 94,470; in 1861, 117,961. Houses, 23,039. The living of Prestwich is a rectory united with the chapelry of St. Margaret, and all the other livings are p.curacies, in the diocese of Manchester. Value of the rectory, 1,230.* Patron, the Earl of Wilton. The other livings are noticed in the articles on their own several localities.

John Marius Wilson, Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales (1870-72)

Archives and libraries

Local studies information is held at Bury library.



Details about the census records, and indexes for Prestwich.

Church History

Church Records

You can also perform a more selective search for churches in the Prestwich area that are recorded in the GENUKI church database. This will also help identify other churches in nearby townships and/or parishes. You also have the option to see the location of the churches marked on a map.

Civil Registration

The Register Office covering the Prestwich area is Bury.

Description and Travel

You can see pictures of Prestwich which are provided by:


Ask for the gazetteer for a calculation of the distance from Prestwich to another place.

Historical Geography

In 1835 the parish of Prestwich contained the townships of Prestwich, Pilkington, Unsworth, Little Heaton, Great Heaton,


A description of Prestwich in the 19th century.


View maps of Prestwich and places within its boundaries.

You can see maps centred on OS grid reference SD817033 (Lat/Lon: 53.526034, -2.277525), Prestwich which are provided by:

Poor Houses, Poor Law

The Workhouse site has an interesting description of Prestwich workhouse.

Probate Records

For probate purposes prior to 1858, Prestwich was in the Archdeaconry of Chester, in the Diocese of Chester. The original Lancashire wills for the Archdeaconry of Chester are held at the Lancashire Record Office.


You can also see Family History Societies covering the nearby area, plotted on a map. This facility is being developed, and is awaiting societies to enter information about the places they cover.