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The Parish of Goosnargh
in the County of
-- Lancashire --

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The parish of Goosnargh includes the small villages of Inglewhite and Whitechapel and Beacon Fell Country Park.

The Village of Goosnargh. Photograph supplied by and © of Brian Young
The Village of Goosnargh
Photograph supplied by and © of Brian Young

The village is very old and was shown as Gusansaghe in the Domesday Book, going through many variations of this spelling until the current version was reached. In 1066 Goosnargh with nearby Threlfall and Newsham were held by Earl Tostig as part of his lordship of Preston, though Newsham eventually became part of the barony of Penwortham.

There is a market cross at Inglewhite Green which dates from 1500. It was here that two fairs for cattle and sheep were held—on the Tuesday before Ascension Day and on 5 October with a sheep fair on 25 April. The fairs were stopped in the 19th century by the vicar who was opposed to bull baiting. The workhouse formerly stood near the green.

Most of the population is now employed outside of the village though previously the main occupation was agriculture; formerly there were silk and cotton manufactures.

The name Goosnargh is synonymous with good food. Goosnargh cornfed chicken and duck are highly regarded by many top chefs, five of the ten Lancashire Cheese dairies listed on the British Cheese Board's website in 2009 are located in Goosnargh parish. The well known caraway seed and shortbread biscuits known as Goosnargh cakes add to this tradition.

Dr. William Bushell, Vicar of Heysham, died 1735, provided by his will that if his daughter (Elizabeth, 1727-45) died before the age of 21 without issue, the whole of his estate should be devoted to the founding of a hospital at Goosnargh, at or near the dwelling house of his late father, for ‘maintaining, supporting or providing for decayed gentlemen or gentlewomen, or persons of the better rank ... of the towns or townships of Preston, Euxton, Goosnargh, Whittingham, Fulwood and Elston, being Protestants .’ In 1824 there were thirteen persons in the hospital; each had a separate room, but they dined together, and one of them read prayers to the rest; they were supplied with clothing, and each received 10s. a quarter for pocket money. They were all advanced in life, of the class designated by the founder, members of the Church of England and required to attend the services in the church at Goosnargh, wherein the trustees had built a special gallery for them. The income at that time was £855 and the expenditure considerably less. Continuing in the same tradion it is now a private care home.

The Grapes with the church in the background, Goosnargh. Photograph supplied by and © of Brian Young
The Grapes with the church in the background, Goosnargh
Photograph supplied by and © of Brian Young
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