COCKERHAM, a township and parish in the barony and division of Lancaster, and the south of the sands portion of the Hundred of Lonsdale, the sub-divisions are Cockerham and Ellel, both in the polling district and poor law union of Lancaster, and Forton with Cleveley, both in the polling district and poor law union of Garstang. The amount of acreage is 13,930 statute. The village is 7 miles S. of Lancaster. A court leet and baron is held. There was a priory here in 1275, not a vestige of it remains. The church was existing in 1160, rebuilt in 15th century, and 1814, living a vicarage, annual value £655, patrons lords of the manor. There are 3 episcopal chapels, Ellel existed 1180, rebuilt 1808, annual value £94; Shirehead, in Cleveley, rebuilt 1800, annual value £93, and Dolphinholme, date 1839, patron vicar of Cockerham. There are Catholic, Independent, and Methodist chapels, the first near Cockerham, the others at Forton. There was a market here about 1300, and a fair is yet held, March 24th. Silk spinning and weaving prevails at Ellel, and in 1838 employed 127 hands. The Lancaster canal and railway pass Ellel. Ellel and Galgate are villages 4 miles S. of Lancaster. The population of the parish 1801 was 2,283; 1811, 2,676; 1821, 3,211; 1831, 3,456; of whom 2,217 were in Ellel. There are schools at Cockerham and Ellel slightly endowed: in 1833 there were 6 daily and 3 sunday schools. One-third of the land is arable, average rent per acre £1. Good stone is obtainable – there is much peat moss. Annual value of property 1815, £18,799; 1829, £15,009.
“A Statistical Sketch of the County Palatine of Lancaster (1841)”, by Edwin Butterworth, facsimile reprint 1968, by the ‘Lancashire & Cheshire Antiquarian Society’. With grateful thanks to the Society.