World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article


Article Id: WHEBN0000753472
Reproduction Date:

Title: Farnworth  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Walkden, Ted Goodier, Frank Finlay, Julian Darby, Ken Southworth
Collection: Farnworth, Geography of Bolton Borough, Towns in Greater Manchester
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia



Farnworth Town Hall
Farnworth is located in Greater Manchester
 Farnworth shown within Greater Manchester
Population 25,264 (2001 Census)
OS grid reference
Metropolitan borough Bolton
Metropolitan county Greater Manchester
Region North West
Country England
Sovereign state United Kingdom
Post town BOLTON
Postcode district BL4
Dialling code 01204
Police Greater Manchester
Fire Greater Manchester
Ambulance North West
EU Parliament North West England
UK Parliament Bolton South East
List of places
Greater Manchester

Farnworth is a town and an unparished area within the Metropolitan Borough of Bolton in Greater Manchester, England.[1] It is located 2.3 miles (3.7 km) southeast of Bolton, 5 miles south-west of Bury (7 km), and 9 miles (14.5 km) northwest of Manchester.

Historically in Lancashire, Farnworth lies on the River Irwell and the River Croal, and, according to the United Kingdom Census 2001, it has a population of 25,264 people.[2]


  • History 1
    • Toponymy 1.1
    • Middle Ages 1.2
    • Industrial Revolution 1.3
  • Governance 2
  • Geography 3
  • Demography 4
  • Transport 5
  • Education 6
  • Religion 7
  • Sports 8
  • Community facilities 9
  • Notable people 10
  • References 11
  • Further reading 12
  • External links 13



Farnworth derives from the Old English fearn, fern and worth an enclosure.[3] Farnworth was recorded as Farneworth and Farnewrth in 1278 and 1279 and Ffornword in a land survey of 1282.[4]

Middle Ages

Farnworth was originally a hamlet in Barton. In the 13th century it was held by the Lords of Barton and Manchester. By 1320 Adam Lever, Richard Hulton and Richard Redford held the manor as tenants. Later the manor was acquired by the Hultons of Over Hulton. In 1666 there were 91 hearths in Farnworth liable to pay tax. The commons were enclosed in 1798. There was a watermill on the River Croal.[4]

Industrial Revolution

The town expanded rapidly in the 18th and 19th centuries around the coal mining industry. The collieries were part of an extensive mine complex, the Worsley Navigable Levels whose underground canals stretched from the Delph at Worsley and linked the mines to the Bridgewater Canal. Other industry included iron foundries and cotton mills.

The owner of Farnworth Paper mills, T. B. Crompton, patented a continuous-drying process which contributed to the mechanisation of papermaking in 1821.[5]

The adjoining open land of Halshaw Moor became an area for recreation for the town, hosting the annual Halshaw Moor Wakes that were described as

a saturnalia which was first celebrated in September, 1827, when bull-baiting, badger-baiting, dog fighting, cock fighting, foot racing in almost a state of nudity, grinning through a horse collar, eating a dishful of scalding hot porridge without milk and feeding themselves with their bare hands, and even the more disgusting exhibition of eating a pound of tallow candles, and stripping the wicks through their teeth for wagers, were amongst the orgies on these occasions.[6]


Lying within the boundaries of Lancashire since the early 12th century, Farnworth constituted a township and chapelry within the ecclesiastical parish of Deane.[1] In 1837 Farnworth became part of the Bolton Poor Law Union which took responsibility for funding the Poor Law in that area.[7] In 1863, a Local board of health was established for the township,[8] and in 1866, it also became a separate civil parish.[9] In 1899, under the Local Government Act 1894, Farnworth became a Urban District. In 1939, the district was granted by a charter to become the Municipal Borough of Farnworth.[8][10] In 1974, under the Local Government Act 1972, Farnworth became an unparished area of the Metropolitan Borough of Bolton in Greater Manchester.[1][8]

Under the Redistribution of Seats Act 1885, the Radcliffe-cum-Farnworth constituency was established with one Member of Parliament (MP). The constituency was abolished in 1918 with Radcliffe becoming part of the Heywood and Radcliffe constituency, and Farnworth having its own Parliament constituency. The Farnworth constituency continued until it was abolished in 1983 and became part of the Bolton South East constituency.[11]


Farnworth measures about two miles from east to west, and one from north to south with an area of 1,502 acres (608 ha) on land sloping towards the north-east by the River Croal which forms the boundary. Will Hill Brook forms the northern boundary. The underlying rocks are the coal measures of the Manchester Coalfield. Districts in Farnworth include Dixon Green and New Bury. The town has grown along the Manchester to Bolton road, the A666 and the A575 road to Worsley and Eccles. Plodder Lane, the B6199, goes west past the Royal Bolton Hospital.[4]


Population of the chapelry/civil parish of Farnworth
Year 1801 1811 1821 1831 1841 1851 1861 1871 1881 1891
Sources: (a) Pauline Tatton: Local population statistics.[12] (b) Vision of Britain: Farnworth Ch/CP Total Population.[13] (c) Vision of Britain: Farnworth USD Total Population.[14]
Population of the urban district/municipal borough of Farnworth
Year 1901 1911 1921 1931 1939* 1951 1961 1971
Source: Vision of Britain: Farnworth UD/MB Total population.[15]

* The 1939 population is estimated from the National Registration figures.[16] The 1941 census did not take place because of the Second World War.


Farnworth is situated north of junctions 3 and 4 of the M61 motorway. The main roads run through the town are the A666 (Farnworth & Kearsley By-Pass), the A575 (Egerton St/Albert Rd/Worsley Rd), the A5082 (Buckley Lane/Long Causeway), the A6053 (Bolton Rd/Market St/Manchester Rd), and the B6199 (Plodder Lane).

Farnworth and Moses Gate railway stations are served by Northern Rail who operate services on the Manchester to Preston Line.


Farnworth has nine primary schools and three secondary schools. Harper Green School is home to the Alan Ball Sports Hall,[17] as well as the Peter Kay Theatre.[18] In 2006, Peter Kay filmed a music video at Harper Green with the Scottish band Texas.[18]

School Type/Status OfSTED Website
All Saints' C of E Primary School Primary 105238
St. Peter's C of E Primary School Primary 105239 website
The Orchards (formerly known as Cherry Tree Primary School) Primary 105187 website
Highfield Primary School Primary 105182 website
Our Lady of Lourdes' RC Primary School Primary 105245
Plodder Lane Primary School Primary 105183 website
Queensbridge Primary School Primary 133925 website
St Gregory's RC Primary School Primary 105244 website
St James's C of E Primary School Primary 105208
Harper Green School Secondary 105257 website
Mount St Joseph School Secondary 105263 website
St James's C of E School and Sports College Secondary 105266 website


St John the Evangelist Parish Church

The parish church of St John the Evangelist was consecrated in 1826.


Farnworth F.C. is a youth football that plays its home games at Darley Park, with winter training taking place at Harper Green School.[19]

Farnworth Cricket Club, founded in 1870, plays its home games at Bridgeman Park. It participates in the Bolton Cricket League, as do Farnworth Social Circle.

Farnworth's Harper Green playing field also hosts the home games of Bolton Hockey Club men's section.

Community facilities

Farnworth Library

Farnworth has a market and a theatre (Farnworth Little Theatre). A leisure centre is located on the main street. The A666 by-passes the town. Farnworth Park is a park close to the town centre which has undergone redevelopment as part of Bolton Council's Children's Strategy. The library is a Carnegie Library and celebrated its centenary on 11 April 2011. The Royal Bolton Hospital (formerly Fishpool Institution and then Townleys Hospital) is in Farnworth.

St. Gregory's Catholic Club was used to film television comedy Phoenix Nights.

Notable people



  1. ^ a b c "Greater Manchester Gazetteer". Greater Manchester County Record Office. Places names - D to F. Archived from the original on 18 July 2011. Retrieved 20 June 2007. 
  2. ^ "Census 2001 Key Statistics - Urban area results by population size of urban area", (Office for National Statistics), 22 July 2004, KS01 Usual resident population , retrieved 18 June 2007 
  3. ^ Mills (1998), p. 135
  4. ^ a b c Farrer, William; Brownbill, J, eds. (1911), "Farnworth", A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 5 (British History Online): 34–39, retrieved 19 March 2010 
  5. ^ Ashmore (1969), p. 139
  6. ^ Dyson, Simeon (1881). Rural congregationalism; or Farnworth as it was fifty to seventy years ago: with humorous sketches and anecdotes, illustrating Lancashire manners and customs. p. 81.  
  7. ^ Workhouse,, retrieved 28 November 2010 
  8. ^ a b c Links in a Chain - Farnworth. URL accessed 12 May 2008.
  9. ^ Great Britain Historical GIS Project (2004), "Farnworth CP/Ch through time. Census tables with data for the Parish-level Unit", A vision of Britain through time (University of Portsmouth), retrieved 12 May 2008 
  10. ^ Farnworth UD/MB: Historical Boundaries. Vision of Britain. URL accessed 26 February 2008.
  11. ^ Leigh Rayment's Historical List of MPs URL accessed 19 May 2008.
  12. ^ Pauline Tatton, Local population statistics 1801–1986, Bolton Central Library Archives, Le Mans Crescent, Bolton, BL1 1SE.
  13. ^ Farnworth Ch/CP: Total Population. URL accessed 23 February 2008.
  14. ^ Farnworth USD: Total Population. URL accessed 23 February 2008.
  15. ^ Vision of Britain - Farnworth UD: Total Population
  16. ^ National Registration Act, 1939. URL accessed 8 June 2007.
  17. ^ Harper Green School. URL accessed 22 February 2008.
  18. ^ a b School in tribute to comedian. Bolton Evening News, first published 30 June 2006.
  19. ^ Farnworth F.C.. URL accessed 24 February 2008.


  • Ashmore, Owen (1969), Industrial Archaeology of Lancashire, David & Charles,  
  • Mills, A. D. (1998), Dictionary of English Place-Names, Oxford,  

Further reading

  • Barton, Benjamin Thomas (1887). History of Farnworth and Kersley (sic). Bolton: The Daily Chronicle. 

External links

  • Photos and information about Farnworth
  • GENUKI: Farnworth genealogy
  • St John the Evangelist church
  • Farnworth Little Theatre
  • Chairmen of Farnworth UDC and Mayors of Farnworth 1863–1974
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from Project Gutenberg are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.