Darwen, Over

DARWEN, OVER, a chapelry, in the parish and union of Blackburn, Lower division of the hundred of Blackburn, N. division of Lancashire, 4¼ miles (S. by E.) from Blackburn; containing 9348 inhabitants. Henry de Lacy granted this place to Robert Banastre, in the reign of Henry II., and a moiety of the manor was afterwards held by the Molyneuxs, and the other moiety by the Osbaldeston family; the whole subsequently became the property of the Traffords, of whom it was purchased by Samuel Duckworth, Esq. The township is a considerable and populous tract comprised within the vale of the Darwen rivulet, and surrounded by lofty moorish heights; and is chiefly inhabited by hand-loom weavers and persons employed in the print and bleaching works which are extensively carried on. The village or town is lighted with gas under the provisions of an act passed in 1839, and in 1847 an act was passed for a better supply of water to the town and mills. Fairs are held on the first Thursday in October and the first Thursday in May, for cattle and horses; and a pleasure-fair on Holy-Thursday. A commodious market-house was opened in May, 1847. The Blackburn, Darwen, and Bolton railway runs by the town. The living is a perpetual curacy, in the patronage of the Vicar of Blackburn, with a net income of £150. The chapel, dedicated to St. James, and now a district church, is a low stone building on a bleak eminence, erected prior to 1687. A second church, dedicated to the Holy Trinity, was erected in 1827-8; it is a large building, in the pointed style, and stands upon a hill overlooking a small wood: the living is a perpetual curacy; net income, £150; patron, the Vicar. There are places of worship for Wesleyans and others; and about 2300 children are instructed in Sunday schools.

Transcribed from A Topographical Dictionary of England, by Samuel Lewis, 7th edition, published in 1848.

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