Farnworth was a village in pre-conquest times, and the site of a Helmote court or 'leet'. An important part of village life from the early eighteenth century were the Wakes, a holiday in which various festivities took place. On the first day, usually a Monday, bear-baiting and bull-baiting took place in a field north of the church, where the graveyard is now. The second day was more of a fair, with horses and cattle for sale. Horse-racing also took place. The evening was a time for drinking, dancing, and merry-making in general. It was replaced in 1864 by the Farnworth Agricultural Society's Annual Show, which only ended with the outbreak of World War I.
The picture to the left shows part of the graveyard and the 'bridewell', which was used to imprison offenders.