Bolton Library and Museum Services

The Chapel

The Chapel There is evidence for a chapel on or near this site for centuries. In the 1950s, human bones were found under the floor of the withdrawing room, perhaps part of a cemetery attached to the chapel in the early medieval period.

The current chapel was first built here by Andrew Barton in the early 16th century and extensively refurbished by the Byroms in the 18th century. In 1856, most of the interior and the roof were destroyed by fire. The chapel was rebuilt in 1858 by Peter Ainsworth, who included memorials to his family as part of the rebuild. The raised pews at the back of the chapel were the private seats of the Ainsworth family and designed to reinforce their social status as lords of the manor. Here, there are some fine examples of Victorian and Tudor stained glass.

Given pride of place in the centre of the top row is the Tudor royal coat of arms. It was quite common at that time for distinguished families to show their loyalty and gratitude to the Crown by displaying the royal symbol in their homes.