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The National Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland - 1868

"WORSLEY, a township and village in the parish of Eccles, hundred of Salford, county Lancaster, 6 miles S. of Bolton, and 7 N.W. of Manchester, forming part of the borough of South Lancashire. It is a station on the Manchester and Wigan branch of the London and North-Western railway, and has water communication by means of the Bridgwater canal with all parts of the kingdom. Branching from the trunk canal are a series of underground canals and tunnels, some 180 feet below the surface, cut by Brindley, for the Duke of Buckingham, at a cost of £169,000, and communicating with the extensive collieries. This township includes the hamlets of Newtown, Little Houghton, Boothstown, and Ellenborough Chapel. The population in 1861 was 11,875, many being employed in the cotton mills. The soil is clayey, and the subsoil mostly moss. The manor at the time of the Conquest belonged to Elias de Workedesley, and in the 17th century came to the Dukes of Bridgwater, to whom it still belongs, though the greater bart of the land and the collieries are now the property of the Earl of Ellesmere, whose seat is Worsley Hall, built in 1806 by Blore in the Elizabethan style, and visited by the Queen in October, 1851. From the windows a view is obtained over seven counties, and in the interior are oak panelling, sculpture, and painting, including Landseer's "Return from Hawking." Adjoining the park are the remains of the old timbered seat of the Duke of Bridgwater, and Wardley Hall, said to have been built in the reign of Edward VI. The lying is a perpetual curacy in the diocese of Manchester, value £200. The church is dedicated to St. Mark. The Wesleyans and Independents have chapels, and there are National and Sunday schools. Worsley is the seat of a superintendent register, but is included in Salford New County-court district, and Barton-upon-Irwell Poor-law Union."