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For further information about the geographical extent of Lancashire visit The Friends of Real Lancashire.

Churches which still retain west gallery features or connections

Altham, St James Organ ca. 1859 by John Lacock occupies the west gallery. [NPOR website]

Astley, near Tyldesley, St Stephen

A small brick-built church rebuilt in 1760; subsequently enlarged in 1834, 1843 and 1847. Very Georgian inside with square pews galleries, coved plaster ceiling with Royal coat of arms. The pulpit, however, is modern. (CEPC)
Blackpool, St John Built 1877, at the west end is a gallery with a bracketed and boldly panelled front. 

Billinge, St Aidan

Church built 1717, with urns on its embattled parapet, gate piers and clock turret over west door. Nave and aisles divided by Doric columns, plastered walls and ceiling, segmentally barrel-vaulted over nave, where hangs a magnificent two-tier brass chandelier. The old pews have gone, but the west gallery remains, with panelling beneath it and all round. (CEPC)
Bleasdale, St Eadmer In 1835 the Elizabethan chapel on this site was rebuilt, and is typical of its time. The west tower is plain, with lancet-form bell openings with hood moulds, and a simplified parapet that is stepped and raised at the corners in a pinnacle-like way. A string course marks the level of the bell chamber. The nave is wider than the tower, and has two small lancets in the west wall to light the west gallery. 

Burtonwood, St Michael

A Commissioners' or Waterloo church, built sometime after 1836. The interior of Sharpe's church is a single, rectangular, undivided preaching space with a west gallery. The latter has a plain front with panels, and is supported on cast iron columns with branched tops and leaves.  

Burtonwood, St Michael

This is a Georgian church, but we have no details of the interior.

Bury, St John

This is a Georgian church, but we have no details of the interior.

Cartmel Fell, St Anthony

A little low roughcast church on the fellside, dating from 1503. It contains two screened pews, and a three-decker pulpit of 1698.

At the west end the church has an unfinished stone tower capped by a saddle-back roof. A three-decker pulpit sits with its back to the south wall. This was remodelled in 1698 and carries that date. A window was inserted at this time to light the reading desk. Parish accounts record "To Thos Seath, 13 days work... 13s. 

At the east end of the nave are two elaborate pews. On the north side is the Cowmire Pew which was associated with the Briggs family of Cowmire Hall. It dates from the early C16, is enclosed and has a screen of single light divisions, tracery and a cornice. Opposite is the Burblethwaite Pew of the C17 (restored in 1810). It also has a screen, this time of Jacobean balusters, a canopy, and a Gothick frieze. 

Clitheroe, St Mary Magdalene The nave is the work of Thomas Rickman, and dates from 1828-9. Galleries along the north and south walls - with traceried fronts and supported on thin iron columns - helped to achieve an  increase in capacity demanded by the town's growth. The galleries are set back from the arcade, and are supported on slender iron columns. 

Eccleston, (Near St Helen's)    dedication not known Church dating from 1838, with a west gallery.   "Doric columns support the oak gallery"  (CEPC)
Edenfield, No known dedication The church was rebuilt in 1778, and contains galleries, square pews lined with red baize, and the overall atmosphere is unspoilt Georgian.  (CEPC)
Fleetwood, St Peter A church of 1841 by Decimus Burton, the planner of the town of Fleetwood.  It is a rectangular sandstone building built by public subscription. The sum of 3,822 was raised, and the dedication of the completed church took place on St Peter's Day (June 29th), 1841.

The interior of the nave is aisleless. The walls are plastered and the ceiling is divided into rectangular compartments by ribs that curve down to short brackets - a quite elegant effect. At the west end is a tall moulded tower arch. Burton's church had galleries on three sides. Only the west gallery remains: those to the north and south were taken down in 1960. One can imagine that the galleries would have significantly reduced the lighting of what is now a well lit space. This may account for the fact that the church originally had windows of clear glass throughout. As is quite common today, the space below the west gallery has been glazed on the nave side to form a room. 

Flixton, St Michael This is a Georgian church, but we have no details of the interior.
Formby, The Ancient Chapelry ofSt Peter Church dating from 1736, with a west gallery.  (CEPC)  

Also visit the church website at

Garstang, St Thomas next to be done
Hindley, All Saints A Georgian brick-built church dating from 1766. It has round-headed windows, and a gallery.  (CEPC)
Hoghton, Holy Trinity A bassoon from the church band is kept in a glass case in the church. (David Welch)
Holme, St John This is a Georgian church, but we have no details of the interior.
Hoole, St Michael Also known as Much Hoole. Most of the church dates from 1628, although the chancel is 1859 and the tower 1720. There are box-pews, west and south galleries, and a "curious" two-decker pulpit dating from 1695.   (CEPC)

The church is also associated with the astronomer, Jeremiah Horrocks.

Kirkham, St Michael The present parish church of St Michael was begun in 1822. design. The roof is supported by very "industrial" looking beams, pierced by quatrefoil and dagger openings. They would not look out of place under a railway bridge, and appear to be of wood, though it would come as no surprise to find that they were metal. At the west end of the nave is a gallery supported on very slender iron columns. The front to the nave has cusped panelling. There were formerly galleries on the north and south sides too, but these were removed in the C20. The area under the gallery has been turned into a room in recent years by the insertion of a wood and glass wall. The nave as a whole reminds one of a Non-Conformist building rather than the Church of England. 

Lancaster, St John This is a Georgian church, but we have no details of the interior.
Liverpool, Toxteth,St James A rectangular brick-built church built in 1774, with round-headed windows and a square embattled tower. There are galleries, but the original pews and pulpit have been removed.  (CEPC)

Now owned by the Churches Conservation Trust, and built with cast-iron columns supporting the galleries as at Lightcliffe Old Church, now sadly demolished.

Liverpool, Aigburth, St Anne Although built in 1837, the style is Norman, and the spacious interior has a west gallery and galleries in the transepts.  (CEPC)
Liverpool, St Anne Street, Holy Trinity Classical design dating from 1792. The interior is galleried, and little altered since its building.  (CEPC)
Liverpool, Childwall, All Saints A mediaeval church, partly rebuilt, the tower and spire being 1810. The Gascoigne pew, constructed in 1740, is now the vestry. Old pews have been removed and now date from 1853, although they all have doors. There is a west gallery, upon which the organ has been placed.      (CEPC)
Liverpool, Edgehill, St Mary A 'Gothick' church from 1812-13. It has a gallery supported in clustered columns, with a cusped front, although the latter has been cut down in size. The pews in the gallery are the original, "but not those below".    (CEPC)
Liverpool, Wavertree, Holy Trinity Built by John Hope in 1794, it is possibly Liverpool's best Georgian church. Outside is an old mounting block. The alterations in 1911 by Sir Charles Reilly, included the present extended chancel with square columns, urns and shallow apse, the present low pews and the removal of the gallery save at the west end where it remains supported on its Gothick pillars. The pulpit is also Georgian.  (CEPC)
Lowton St Luke This 1732 church contains box-pews and galleries.   (CEPC)
Manchester, St Ann Church dates from 1709 - 1712.  There are galleries.   (CEPC)
Manchester, St George Church dates from 1826-1827.  It is galleried.   (CEPC)
Manchester, Ardwick Green, St Thomas Built in brick in 1741, it contains galleries supported on Doric columns. The panelled pews and most other fittings are original untouched Georgian, including the organ by Samuel Green, in its mahogany case.   (CEPC)
Manchester, Cheetham, St Luke A very elegant clerestoried Gothic church dating from 1839. It has a galleried interior, and remains quite unspoilt.  (CEPC)
Manchester, Cheetham, St Mark Another brick-built church, somewhat smaller than others in Cheetham, built in 1794. "It retains much of its Georgian character, with pews and panelling and gallery, all of fine quality and detail." (CEPC)
Much Hoole, St Bartholomew The nave has a single aisle leading to a pointed chancel arch and chancel. The latter, known as the Horrocks Chapel, was added in 1858. A large pulpit with ornate tester, and dated 1695 stands to the north side of the chancel arch. Galleries on west and south sides, added at time the tower was built.

Oldham, St Mary the Virgin

Designed by local architect Richard Lane in crude Gothic style. The parish church was built in 1830 and its interior was painstakingly restored to its original unusual design in 1974.

Pilling Old Church,  St Chad ?

Church 1717. New west and north galleries installed 1812-3.

Poulton-le-Fylde, St Chad

The church was rebuilt in 1752-53, but at the same time retaining its Perpendicular tower. There are galleries with square pews and original candle sockets, reached by a good contemporary staircase. Carved Jacobean pulpit.  (CEPC)

Preston, St Peter

Church dates from 1822-25, having been constructed by Rickman.  "Everything inside is cusped - the iron arcade supporting the gallery . . .  (with Royal Arms) . . . 

Ribchester, St Wilfred

An Early English church which still contains Georgian pews.

A west gallery was built in 1736; a copy of the faculty, the accounts and the gallery all still exist.
Accounts £ - s. - d.
1736-7 Allowed for Gallery 07 - 01 - 08
1742 Nov. 22: Roger Coop for painting Two Cherubims upon two Pannalls on ye Singing Pew 00 - 05 - 00
1771 Singers on 5th Nov. 00 - 02 - 06
1773 To two Hautboys 01 - 01 - 00
To mending and new Basoon 02 - 17 - 00
1780 To repairing Basoon 00 - 03 - 00
1801 Violincello 05 - 05 - 00
The minstrels were disbanded in 1861 when an organ was placed in the gallery. German prisoners of war stationed nearby attended church regularly and sang carols in German from the gallery on the Sunday after Christmas, 1946.

Salford, Christ Church

Church built 1830.  "An unspoiled Georgian church . . . galleried . . .box pews . . . double-decker pulpit, centrally placed."  (CEPC)

Salford, Sacred Trinity (The Parish Church)

"A little Georgian church dating from 1751, now set among great low railway bridges . . . Within there is a rich simplicity of darkened oak and white plaster; like the chapel of some great house. Banners hang from the dark roof, which is modern (flat ceiling removed 1886); the gallery fronts are enlivened by heraldic shields and adorned with a pair of marble tablets to the Drinkwater family . . . and the Royal Arms More coats of arms in carved cartouches on pew-ends ; ; boards and silver-topped staves." Peter Fleetwood-Hesketh in 1959 in CEPC)

"the gallery fronts are enlivened by heraldic shields . . . "   (CEPC)

Salford, Broughton, St John the Evangelist

Church dates from 1836 - 39.  Galleries.

Salford, Pendleton, St Thomas

Church dated 1831, with "sky-lit galleries" and rib-vaulting

Samlesbury, St Leonard

A 16th C. clerestoried nave and aisles; tower c. 1900. No chancel. Original with box-pews and a three-decker pulpit, but the pews have been lowered and the pulpit is now only a two-decker.

Sefton, St Helen

The church contains Lord Sefton's pew.

Stand, All Saints

Church dates from 1822-26.  It is galleried. 

Tarleton, St Mary

Dating from 1719, of brick with a stone turret and cupola. Clear glass to windows, square pews, (one with the name-plate of Geo. Anthony Legh-Keck, who lived at nearby Bank Hall) , old benches, gallery and a black stove. For dark days and evenings, three oil lamps. (Peter Fleetwood-Hesketh in 1959 in CEPC)

Urswick, St Mary

The church has a massive 13th C. tower, box-pews and a gallery. The wall plaster and ceiling was removed c. 1910.   (CEPC)
Warrington, Holy Trinity A town church dating from 1758, in the style of Gibbs, who designed the nearby Bank Hall (see Tarleton). Good plasterwork and woodwork inside, including galleries (behind columns) and a balustraded pulpit.  (CEPC)
Whalley, St Mary A large 13th C. church with 15th C. tower and clerestory The internal carved woodwork includes 15th C. canopied stalls from the adjacent Abbey, screened pews from the 17th and 18th C. and an organ dating from 1729, originally in Lancaster Parish Church (St Mary)
Wigan, All Saints This is a Georgian church, but we have no details of the interior.

Churches which are known to have had west gallery features or connections

Burnley, St Peter The rebuilding of 1533 left the south aisle in its original state, but the north aisle and nave were recast. The church would then have had the characteristic low north country profile. However, in the C18 the growing population required more space, and in 1737 a small west gallery was added. In 1789 major rebuilding took place. The exterior walls were heightened, the nave arcades raised, and a south gallery was built.

Further building took place in 1802 when the tower was raised by 30 feet. This was not just for aesthetic reasons. The original single 19cwts bell had been replaced in 1702 by a peal of four York bells. Now these were replaced by an eight bell peal weighing more than 72cwts! In the same year the last gallery was built over the north aisle.

Major work was carried out again in the 1850s when the arcades were again changed, and the roof reconstructed. It is believed it was at this time that the galleries were removed. 

Cartmel Priory, St Mary the Virgin

Lancashire's greatest mediaeval Parish Church (or it was until it got moved into Cumbria), and originally part of the long-vanished Priory. Chiefly noted for the diagonal setting of the upper stage of the massive central tower, set on the equally massive cruciform building. George Holker restored the building from 1618 when it stood roofless for eighty years.

The 1837 restoration removed the 18th C. galleries.
Hawkeshead, St Michael & All Angels SD 352982 The extensive 17th and 18th century wall paintings were damaged by the erection of a west gallery in 1711.  They were subsequently completely whitewashed over in 1794/95, but have now been restored as much as possible. See further details at
Churchtown, St Cuthbert In 1860 the nave was widened on the north side, swallowing up a transept.  The pulpit was left  in the centre of the south wall, and the original small west gallery of 1730 was enlarged and extended along the north wall. In 1908 Isaac Taylor built the new chancel and placed an organ loft on its north side. He added a pedimented south porch (with a datestone) in the customary position at the west end of the nave. The west and north galleries were removed leaving a very narrow gallery/platform along the west wall. 

Salford, Christ Church

This church was apparently demolished in 1958. It was a Classically built Georgian church dating from 1830, with a "Wren" type steeple. It had a galleried interior with galleries set on Grecian columns, box-pews throughout with mahogany book-rests, and a high mahogany double-decker pulpit placed in the centre of the church.

Chapels which have or had west gallery features or connections

Netherton, Merseyside, St Benet's Chapel


St Benet's Chapel was opened in 1793 and is thus a rare, important example of an early post-Reformation Catholic church. Although the chapel was erected after the Catholic Relief Acts of 1778 and 1791 when Catholics were allowed to worship openly, a measure of concealment was still considered wise and from the road only the presbytery or priest's house is visible. The chapel and presbytery form an integrated building constructed of brick using Flemish bond for the frontage and cheaper 'Liverpool' bond on the side walls.

Some of the interior furnishings have been removed but important items survive including the gallery, the early l9th-century altar finished in scagliola and a "plastered and pedimented altarpiece which has winged cherubs heads, a gloria of rays and Adamesque urns and garlands of the type that many churches of the Establishment could boast before the zealous efforts of 'ecclesiological' restorers" (Bryan Little).

Please visit the Historic Chapels Trust web site at:, to whom we are indebted for this information. 

Asterisks denote churches in preparation

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This site has been constructed by, and remains the copyright of, its authors,
Edwin and Sheila Macadam,

Shelwin, 30, Eynsham Road, Botley,
Oxford OX2 9BP
July 2001 -