The Newsletter of
Pendle & Burnley Branch
Issue no : 2 - May 2001

Editor : Derek Mills


The committee would like to thank the many members who conveyed their appreciation on the production of the first newsletter. One hundred and five newsletters were despatched, each containing twelve pages, so we had to produce one thousand and sixty pages of printed information. We experienced a few teething problems initially and that is why some members received their copies before others. This newsletter will be in a slightly different format to the February issue and will not contain as many pages.

At the A.G.M. held on the 21st March, our Project Officer Peter Harris, our Computer Officer Julie Birchall and committee member Walter Stafford, all resigned from the committee. Mrs Margaret Heap was elected to the committee and will become the Minutes Secretary and Assistant Librarian. An adjustment will be made to one other duty. Ken Lupton will relinquish his duties as Assistant Librarian and will become the new Project Officer. The post of Computer Officer, will be suspended for the foreseeable future.

The practical evening on the 31st January was very well attended and we were overwhelmed by the interest shown. We had two computers and a number of fiche readers in operation and we think that generally, members were quite satisfied with the evening. However, the second of the practical evenings, along with the A.G.M. on the 21st March, occurred on a very wet and miserable night and naturally not as many members turned up. The ones that did, I am sure, found it worth their while.

Included in this edition, is a list of booklets available, or subject to order, at the branch bookstall at Colne library, of the surname indexes for the 1851 Census in our area.


1   Projects
2   The Branch Computer
3   Habergham Eaves
4   Query Corner
5   Leeds, Liverpool Canal
6   Independent Methodists
7   Census


The committee are constantly trying to encourage members to volunteer for the transcription of family history records. The intention is to eventually transcribe the majority of local parish church records into book form and onto computer. This will facilitate research work and will be advantageous to all our members and researchers in general. The perfect method is to have a micro-fiche reader positioned alongside the computer in order to perform a direct transcription, thus eliminating the need to write down the information in manuscript and also to avoid potential errors.

A micro-fiche reader may be borrowed from the society for this purpose. If any member is interested in undertaking any transcription work, would they please contact Ken Lupton or any committee member. Anyone not familiar with the procedure for setting up and operating a data base, can be given instructions and a data base set up for them.

Members are at present, transcribing the baptisms at St Paul's church Nelson, St Bartholomew's church Colne, St Peter's church and St James' church Burnley. Burials at St Bartholomew's and St Peter's Burnley and the marriages at St Bartholomew's church are also being transcribed. The burial record for the period 1852-1896 at St Peter's church has been completed, copies of which, have been deposited at Burnley Central library and Colne library for binding. The print out for Nelson library will commence shortly. A temporary, unchecked copy of the St Bartholomew's burials, 1813-1830, has been presented to the Colne reference library.

The work on St Peter's burials produced some interesting statistical information. The original burial book contains the burials of 1852-1896. The period extends from March 7th 1852 to February 24th 1896 and within that period, there were 3199 interments. Included in that figure, were 161 Roman Catholic burials and 63 burials from the workhouse. The highest figure was 485 burials in 1852, but after the opening of Burnley cemetery in June 1856, there was a dramatic reduction of burials.

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A separate 20 gigabyte hard drive has been installed in the computer in order to accommodate the 1881 Census information. We can now access the information without having to use the twenty four compact discs. The Vital Records index and the Mormon Emigration list have also been inputted. The burial records of St Peter's church Burnley, the burial records of St Bartholomew's church Colne and the baptismal records from St Peter's church and St James' church Burnley, are being continuously updated.

The new National Burial Index that contains over 5.3 million burials has been published. Our branch has a copy on order and will be available for use on the branch computer when it is received. The price of the two CD-ROM set is 30 and can be ordered from various sources. The information provided is taken from parish, non-conformist, Roman Catholic and cemetery registers and includes

Unfortunately, it appears that there are only approximately 29,000 burials transcribed from Lancashire, whereas for example, there are 674.000 burials transcribed from West Yorkshire.

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For a considerable number of people, particularly from outside the immediate area, there appears to be some confusion over the relative positions of the townships of Burnley and Habergham Eaves in the 19th century.

The township of Burnley was encompassed by the river Calder and the river constituted the boundary between the two townships.  The present day areas of west and south Burnley and a large part of east Burnley were part of the township of Habergham Eaves.

Burnley Wood, Finsley, Meadows, Healey Wood, Rose Hill, Wood Top, Rosegrove and Whittlefield, were all districts of Habergham Eaves.  The chief Anglican church in Habergham Eaves was Holy Trinity church, situated at the Mitre and opened in 1837.  This was followed by All Saints Habergham, in 1849 and St Matthew's in 1879.

Over a period of time, large areas of Habergham Eaves were gradually incorporated into the Borough of Burnley.  An act of 1871 added 600 acres to the borough and the Burnley corporation (extension) act passed on July 5th 1889 increased the area of the borough from 1,731 acres to 4,015 acres and included large, but not all sections of Habergham Eaves.  In 1925, 700 acres in Ightenhill and Habergham Eaves were also added and finally in 1974, the remainder of the then parish, was brought under the administration of Burnley council.

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We have received a number of requests from fellow researchers for information on various names. The names are all connected with the local area. If any member has any relevant information and would like to make contact with any of the inquirers, please do so. The names are shown below, together with the names and addresses of the inquirers.

PINKNEY - Mrs Carol Appleby, 10 Beechville Ave, Scarborough, YO12 7NG

MOFFIT/MOFFAT - Linda Entwistle, Walled Garden, Blanere, Edrom, Nr Duns, Berwickshire, TD11 3PL

O'CONNOR/CONNOR - Mr S.J. Whitehouse 10 Church St, Chasetown, Burntwood, Staffs, WS7 8QL

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This year celebrates the bicentenary of the opening of the Leeds - Liverpool canal between Clayton-le-Moors and Burnley. The Gannow tunnel was officially opened on Thursday April 23rd 1801 by the Leeds and Liverpool Canal Co. A party of officials navigated the four and a half miles of the canal form Burnley to Enfield and large crowds witnessed the event.

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The following Independent Methodist Registers for our local area are available for research at the Administration and Resource Centre, Fleet Street, Pemberton, Wigan, WN5 0DS.

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2001, sees the two hundredth anniversary of the Census in England, Wales and Scotland.  The census is one of the most important primary sources of information for both local and family historians and is conducted every ten years.

The census returns from 1801 - 1831 are not much use to family historians and are not generally available for research. However, from 1841 onwards, the census data becomes quite useful and to genealogists in particular.  Statistics on families, migrations and occupations can all be gleaned from the census returns.   A major project initiated by the Church of Jesus Christ and the Latter Day Saints and local family history groups, undertook to transcribe and index the complete 1881 census of the U.K.  This is now available on CD-ROM for easy access via computers.

Copies of local records are usually kept at the main libraries in that particular area.  For example, the records for Thornton-in-Craven, Earby and Kelbrook, can be found at Barnoldswick Reference library on microfilm.  Film readers are available to enable the records to be accessed.

To prevent duplication, the census is carried out on a specific day and this year it was the night of April 29th.  The census is recorded by household and the name of every occupant and the relationship with the head of the household is registered. Researchers are eagerly awaiting the publication of the 1901 census records, which will be available on the internet as well as the usual microfiche format.  The computerised form will be indexed and much simpler to access and use where internet facilities are available.  Unfortunately, there will be a charge for using the service as the Public Record Office has contracted out the job of computerising the records on a commercial basis.

However, a search of the index will be free, but charges will be made to look at the full transcription of the returns of an individual.

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LFH&HS Pendle and Burnley Branch 2001