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Help and advice for St Chad, Rochdale, Church of England

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St Chad, Rochdale, Church of England

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This site provides historical information about churches, other places of worship and cemeteries. It has no connection with the churches themselves. For current information you will need to contact them directly.

St Chad,
Sparrow Hill,


The church has/had a graveyard.

Church History

It was founded before 1170.


The mother church of the parish is of great antiquity, and stands on a commanding eminence, the ascent to which is by a flight of 124 steps. The church was erected in the 12th century, and has undergone various changes, alterations, and renovations. The local legend is, that the site of the church was, in point of fact, the place chosen by spirits and fairies for the purpose. On several occasions, as the story relates, the materials brought together for the erection of the church, on an entirely different site, were removed from the place originally selected to the hill or eminence on which St. Chad's stands. That this removal was the work of superhuman agency, was the firm belief of our forefathers in those far-distant days; and we should be sorry to do or say anything which could in the remotest manner interfere with this time-hallowed belief, which has been handed down to us, and which, with vast numbers among us, is received with the greatest deference and respect.

The site ultimately adopted, under such supernatural pressure, led, of course, to the formation of the celebrated church steps; to ascend which is always considered a necessary piece of work to be performed by all visitors to our good old town. To come to Rochdale and not mount the steps is considered a breach of good manners, as well as a serious deprivation of a very agreeable exercise. The steps, in fact, are among our most cherished possessions; and they form a most important thoroughfare, with which it would be very unwise to intermeddle to the great prejudice of the inhabitants. [more follows on the churchyard, events associated with the church, its rectors and vicars]

'Rochdale Past and Present, a History and Guide' by William Robertson, 2nd edition, Rochdale: Schofield and Hoblyn, 1876 (pages 97-105)

This site provides historical information about churches, other places of worship and cemeteries. It has no connection with the churches themselves. For current information you should contact them directly.

Church Records

Whilst every effort has been made to record exact details of record office and library holdings you are recommended to check with them before visiting to ensure that they do hold the records and years you wish to examine. Similarly check with transcript publishers to ensure they cover the records and years you require before making a purchase.

Copies of Original Registers


Copies of Bishop's Transcripts


Register Transcripts





It is located at SD8965013140 (Lat/Lon 53.614704,-2.157924). You can see this on maps provided by: