Towneley Park

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
  (Redirected from Towneley Hall)
Towneley Hall
Towneley Hall edit.jpg
Towneley Hall from the front
Location Burnley, Lancashire
Coordinates 53°46′26″N 2°13′21″W / 53.7738°N 2.2225°W / 53.7738; -2.2225Coordinates: 53°46′26″N 2°13′21″W / 53.7738°N 2.2225°W / 53.7738; -2.2225
Area 180 hectares
Listed Building – Grade I
Official name: Towneley Hall
Designated 10 November 1951
Reference no. 1247299 (Hall)
Official name: Ice house at Towneley Hall
Reference no. 1005089
Listed Building – Grade II
Official name: Towneley Hall
Designated 1 April 1986
Reference no. 1000954 (Park and Garden)
Towneley Park is located in Burnley
Towneley Park
Location of Towneley Hall in Burnley

Towneley Park [1] is owned and managed by Burnley Borough Council and is the largest and most popular park in Burnley, Lancashire, England. The main entrance to the park is within a mile of the town centre and the park extends to the south east, covering an area of some 180 hectares (440 acres). At the southern end of the park is Towneley Hall, Burnley's art gallery and museum. To the north are golf courses and playing fields and to the south 24 acres of broadleaf woodland. On the southern boundary is a working farm called Towneley Farm with pastures and plantations extending eastwards into Cliviger.

The main entrance to the park is at Todmorden Road. The River Calder flows through the grounds. The local high school, Unity College, formerly Towneley High School, opened in September 2010, moving from its site on Towneley Holmes close to the main entrance to a new site on the east bank of the river. In order to provide a suitable vehicular access into the new school, the course of the Calder was slightly diverted.

Deer Pond in Towneley Park is a Local Nature Reserve.[2][3]


The Towneley family were an important Catholic family and once owned extensive estates in and around Burnley, the West Riding of Yorkshire,[4] and County Durham.

Towneley Hall not only contains the 15th-century Whalley Abbey vestments, but also has its own chapel – with a finely carved altarpiece made in Antwerp around 1525. The hall was the home of the Towneley family for more than 500 years. The male line of the family died out in 1878 and in 1901 one of the daughters, Lady O'Hagan, sold the house together with 62 acres (250,000 m2) of land to Burnley Corporation. The family departed in March 1902, leaving behind a building almost completely empty except for a couple of tables and a few pictures in the chapel. The park was opened to the public in June 1902, and in May 1903 the Great Hall and the south wing of the house were opened for a temporary art exhibition.

In July 2005 the Heritage Lottery Fund granted £2 million to help fund a major programme of restoration of the Park that is still on-going. A previous Heritage Lottery Fund helped to build a museum shop, lecture theatre and offices in the footprint of the old servants' quarters. This new building was opened in 2002.

Towneley Hall

Towneley Hall is a museum that houses a variety of displays, encompassing natural history, Egyptology, local history, textiles, decorative art and regional furniture, together with an art gallery.

The art gallery includes a large collection of paintings, focusing on romantic Victorian and pre-Raphaelite art, with some earlier paintings. Of note are the gallery's Waterhouse paintings (including the original 'Destiny'), works by Poynter and Zoffany, and the ovine-themed paintings of 'Frozen Mutton' Farquharson.

An 18th Century stable at the site has been converted into a cafe and an 18th Century brewhouse has been converted into the museum.


Foldy's cross

Foldys Cross, built in 1520 and restored by Burnley Corporation in 1911. The inscription reads: Pray for the soul of John Foldys, chaplain, who caused this cross to be made in the year of Our Lord 1520.

Towneley Cenotaph


Many annual events in Burnley are held at Towneley Park owing to its size and central location, including a Balloon Festival and a classic cars show.


According to folklore, the hall was said to have been haunted by a boggart. This spirit appeared once every seven years, just prior to the death of one of the residents. The boggart was linked to 'Sir John Towneley', who in life supposedly oppressed the poor of the district.[5] According to writer Daniel Codd, there are later stories of a strange ghostly white apparition that appears by the River Calder.[6]


  • Burnley parkrun takes place every Saturday morning in the park
  • Towneley golf club is located on the site and has a Grade II listed club house


See also


  1. ^ Towneley Park Management Plan
  2. ^ "Deer Pond". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 4 August 2013. 
  3. ^ "Map of Deer Pond". Local Nature Reserves. Natural England. Retrieved 4 August 2013. 
  4. ^ Forest of Bowland official website
  5. ^ John Harland and Thomas Turner Wilkinson (1882). Lancashire Folk-lore. (Reprint E Green Publishing, 1973). p.58-59. ISBN 0854097228
  6. ^ Codd, Daniel (2011). Paranormal Lancashire. Amberley. p.78-79, 149. ISBN 9781445606583

External links

  • Towneley Park - official site at Burnley
  • Towneley Park Management Plan
  • Friends of Towneley Park (Registered Charity Number: 1144988)
  • Historic England. "Towneley Hall (1000954)". National Heritage List for England. 
  • Fiona Bruce's Britain - Towneley Hall (The Telegraph)
Retrieved from ""
This content was retrieved from Wikipedia :
This page is based on the copyrighted Wikipedia article "Towneley Park"; it is used under the Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 Unported License (CC-BY-SA). You may redistribute it, verbatim or modified, providing that you comply with the terms of the CC-BY-SA