Lancashire: Local History Resources

Lancashire is famous for its historic role in the Plantagenet War of the Roses, its cotton mills which dominated the world’s cotton manufacturing industry of the Industrial Revolution, and famous foods such as the ‘hotpot’ and ‘Lancashire cheese’ which are still enjoyed today. 

The ceremonial county of Lancashire is found in the region called North West England and people from Lancashire are called Lancastrians.

Local History On Facebook 

Local history groups on Facebook are normally very popular and are a great place to find old photos, videos and memories about an area.

The Facebook groups that have been set up about the past places and people of Lancashire include:

  • Blackpool & Fylde Historical Society – Home | Facebook
  • Great Harwood Genealogy and Local History Group
  • Old Blackburn, Lancashire Photo’s
  • Rochdale Local History
  • Westhoughton Local History Group
  • Whalley Local History Group
  • Wyre Archaeology

Local History Resources

The extensive UK local history resources can give great insight into Lancashire’s past. In addition, there are a number of organisations and societies which focus on the history of the county and its immediate neighbours:

  • Astley Hall Museum and Art Gallery
  • Audenshaw Local History Society
  • Bacup Natural History Society Museum
  • Bancroft Mill Engine
  • Barnoldswick Pendle Technology
  • Belmont Local History Society
  • Blackburn Local History Society
  • Blackburn Museum and Art Gallery
  • Blackpool Civic Trust
  • Blackpool & Fylde Historical Society
  • British Commercial Vehicle Museum
  • British In India Museum
  • Brooks Collectables Toy Museum
  • Burnley & District History Society
  • Bury Archives & Local History
  • Bury & District Local History Society
  • Cartmel Peninsular Local History Society
  • Chadderton History Society
  • Chipping Historical Society
  • Chorley Heritage 
  • Chorley History & Archaeology Society 
  • Clitheroe Castle
  • Clitheroe Civic Society
  • Clitheroe Genealogy and local history group
  • Colne Heritage Centre
  • Crosby and District Historical Society
  • Dalton Historical Society
  • Darwen Research Group
  • Denton Local History Society
  • Earby & District Local History Society
  • Ellenroad Steam Museum Society
  • Ewecross Local History Society
  • Fleetwood Museum
  • Friends of Bank Hall
  • Friends of Helmshore Textile Museums
  • Friends of Lancashire Archives
  • Friends of Marsh Mill
  • Fylde Country Life Preservation Society
  • Fylde Gallery
  • Galgate History Group
  • Garstang Historical and Archaeological Society
  • Garston & District Historical Society
  • Gawthorpe Hall
  • Great Harwood History Society
  • Grundy Art Gallery
  • Halliwell Local History Society
  • Harris Museum, Art Gallery & Preston Free Public Library
  • Haworth Art Gallery
  • Helmshore Mills Textile Museum
  • Heysham Heritage Centre
  • Historic Society of Lancashire & Cheshire
  • Hoghton Tower
  • Holcombe Moor History Group
  • Hyndburn Local Historical Society
  • Images of Burscough
  • Judges Lodgings, Lancaster
  • King’s Own Royal Regiment Museum
  • Knutsford Heritage Centre
  • Lancashire Archaeological Society
  • Lancashire & Cheshire Antiquarian Society
  • Lancashire Family History & Heraldry Society
  • Lancashire Infantry Museum
  • Lancashire Parish Register Society
  • Lancashire Place Name Survey
  • Lancaster Archaeological and Historical Society
  • Lancaster Castle
  • Lancaster City Museum
  • Lancaster Maritime Museum
  • Leigh Local Studies Collections
  • Leighton Hall
  • Leyland Historical Society
  • Liverpool History Society
  • Liverpool & SW Lancashire Family History Society
  • Longridge & District Local History Society
  • Lytham Hall
  • Lytham Heritage Centre
  • Lytham History Group
  • Lytham Windmill Museum
  • Manchester, Bolton & Bury Canal S 
  • Manchester Region Industrial AS
  • Mere Brow Local History Society
  • Mourholme History Society
  • Museum of Lancashire
  • Norden & District Local History Society
  • North Meols (Southport) Family History Society
  • North West Catholic History Society
  • Ormskirk & District History Society
  • Pendle Forest History Group
  • Pendle Heritage Centre
  • Peter Scott Gallery
  • Poulton Le Fylde Historical & Civic Society
  • Poulton & Wyre Railway Society
  • Preston Historical Society
  • Queen Street Mill Textile Museum
  • Ramsbottom History Society
  • Ranulf Higden Society
  • Record Society of Lancashire & Cheshire
  • Regional Heritage Centre – Lancaster University
  • Ribble Discovery Centre
  • Ribble Steam Railway
  • Ribchester Local History Society
  • Ribchester Roman Museum
  • Rooley Moor Forum
  • Rufford Old Hall
  • Ruskin Library
  • Salford Local History Forum
  • Samlesbury Hall
  • Sankey Canal Restoration Society
  • Skelmersdale U3A History Group
  • South Ribble Museum and Exhibition Centre
  • St Helens History Society
  • St Johns LHG (Waterloo)
  • Stockport HS
  • Tameside Local History Forum
  • Tameside Local Studies and Archives Centre
  • Tatham Historical Society
  • Towneley Hall
  • Turton Tower
  • Urmston & District Local History Society
  • Victorian Society – Manchester Region
  • Warrington Historical Society
  • Warrington History Society
  • Weaver’s Cottage
  • Weavers’ Triangle
  • Westhoughton Local History Group
  • Whalley Local History Group
  • The Whitaker
  • Whitworth Museum
  • Whitworth Historical Society
  • Wigan Archaeological Society
  • Wigan Archives Service
  • Wigan Family & Local History Society
  • Withington Civic Society
  • Woodend Mining Museum
  • Wyre Archaeology
  • Yorkshire Dales Mining Museum 

Towns In Lancashire

The ceremonial county of Lancashire has an area of 1,189 square miles (or 3,080 square kilometres) and is home to roughly 1.5 million people. Following the 1974 boundary changes, there are no longer any cities located in Lancashire.

Preston is the administrative centre of the county, and is the biggest town closely followed by Blackpool which has a similar sized population.

  • Accrington
  • Bacup
  • Barnoldswick
  • Blackburn
  • Blackpool
  • Burnley
  • Burscough
  • Carnforth
  • Chorley
  • Clayton-le-Moors
  • Cleveleys
  • Colne
  • Darwen
  • Earby
  • Fleetwood
  • Garstang
  • Haslingden
  • Kirkham
  • Lancaster
  • Leyland
  • Longridge
  • Lytham
  • Morecambe
  • Newton le Willows
  • Ormskirk
  • Oswaldtwistle
  • Padiham
  • Poulton-Le-Fylde
  • Preesall
  • Preston
  • Rawtenstall
  • Skelmersdale
  • St Annes on Sea
  • Standish
  • Waterfoot
  • Whitworth

The 1974 Changes To Lancashire

Throughout the centuries, the borders of Lancashire have moved, culminating in the local government reorganisation of 1974 when the cities of Manchester and Liverpool were moved out of Lancashire and the county lost 709 square miles of land, which had been about two-thirds of its territory. 

Following the 1974 changes, Lancashire shares borders with the following counties

The 1974 reorganisation causes some confusion in the minds of the British public and for those researching family history from overseas because the same community may have belonged to Lancashire or not depending on the year in question.

Is Greater Manchester part of Lancashire?

Greater Manchester, which was created as a county in 1974, contains the city of Manchester, several towns and a lot of villages, and shares a border with the county of Lancashire.

Is Liverpool in Lancashire? Is Merseyside in Lancashire?

Liverpool is a city in the county of Merseyside, which was created in 1974, so it is no longer in the county of Lancashire.

Does Lancashire still exist?

Lancashire does still exist, although it became much smaller in the boundary changes of 1974 when large parts of the county moved to the newly-created metropolitan counties of Greater Manchester and Merseyside.

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