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The Parish of St Luke's, Halliwell
in the County of
-- Lancashire --

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From the Bolton Journal, January 23 1886, reproduced here by the kind permission of the Bolton News.

St Luke's, From a drawing by Mr. R. B. McColl
St Luke's, From a drawing by Mr. R. B. McColl

The foundation stone for the above church was laid by the late Mr. Peter Ainsworth, J.P., of Smithills Hall, on November 6th 1869. Previous to that time, mission services had been conducted by the Rev. T. A, Lindon, M.A., vicar of the mother church of St Peter's, in the year 1860, and continued by several ministers until 1867, when the Rev. Hugh Falloon was appointed curate-in-charge, and it was during his ministrations that the subscriptions for the church were mainly obtained. The land for the church was given by Messrs. Musgrave and made freehold by the original proprietor, Mr. Richard Lowndes, Liverpool. In June 1871, the church was opened by licence, the arrangements for consecration not being then completed.

The building is mainly of the rough rubble stone of the district, with coign, arches, etc., of red brick. The main entrance is by the north west porch. The baptistery is at the west end of the south aisle. The apse window is filled with stained glass by Messrs. Lavers, Barrend and Westlake. The accomodation is for 800 worshippers and the cost was about £5,000. The architects were Messrs. Medland and Henry Tailor, of Manchester, and the contractors were Messrs. J Robinson and sons of Hyde.

In January 1872, an organ built by Messrs. Nicholson, of Worcester, and costing £230, was opened. The cost was defrayed by subscriptions collected by Mrs. James Ormrod, Halliwel Lodge, and a sale of work by the ladies of the congregation held in the school. There was a surplus of £40 at the close of the collections and this was expended on Communion plate and chancel furniture.

For some time, the services at the church were conducted by the Rev. W. Kirkman, the Rev. D. S. Hodgson M.A., the Master of the Grammar Schooland the Rev. W. J. Cundey, M.A., Head Master of the Church Institute.

The church was consecrated on St. Thomas's Day, 1874, by the late Dr Fraser, Bishop of Manchester.

An endowment of £60 per annum was made up as follows: Mr. James Ormrod, £30; Mr. R,H. Ainsworth, £15; Mr. W. Taylor, Westbourne, £10; and Mr. T. H. Rushton, £5. A debt, which had been left on the church, lad accumulated in August, 1875, to £2,800, Mr. Ormrod then offered to add £50 [might be £30] to the endowment as a benefaction on condition that the other original trustees, Mr. W. Taylor and Mr. R.H. Ainsworth, would join him in wiping off the debt, and this offer was agreed to and carried out. The endowment has since been raised by means of the offertory and the Ecclesiastical Commissioners to £300 per annum.

Since the erection of the church a boy's school has been built at a cost of £1000, and also an excellent Parsonage House on a site given by Mr. James Ormrod, and erected from designs by Mr. John Morris, architect, at a cost of £2,800. The present Incumbent is the Rev. J. H. Gibbon, B.A., the churchwardens are Messrs. William Smith and George Temperly, and the sidesmen Messrs. C. Page and George Webster.

The population of the parish is now 4,000, which, in consequence of the opening up of the Mortfield estate, and the formation of streets adjacent, is nearly double what it was a few years ago.

Sadly, the original church was destroyed by fire in the early 1970s. The building below replaced the original St Luke's Church on Chorley Old Rd.

St Luke's Church
St Luke's Church
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