Penwortham, Lancashire, England

Penwortham, a village, a township, and a parish in Preston district, Lancashire. The village stands on the river Ribble. The parish also contains the townships of Howick, Hutton, Longton, and Farington.

St. Mary's Church, Penwortham, Lancashire, England

The proper name of the parish is Penwortham St Mary.

St Mary's Church, Penwortham is located in Church Avenue, Penwortham, Lancashire, England. It is an active Anglican parish church in the deanery of Leyland, the archdeaconry of Blackburn, and the diocese of Blackburn.
The first documented evidence of Christian worship in Penwortham was in the 12th century, when Penwortham Priory was established as an offshoot of Evesham Abbey, although this first church has completely disappeared.
The 14th century Chancel is the oldest surviving part of the Church. The walls are of red sandstone and gritstone, although in 1971 it was necessary to reface parts of the walls with reconstituted stone. The beautiful rough timber roof is ancient. The Chancel windows are all of different dates. The Victorian East window was given by the Rawstorne family, patrons of the church. Other windows are of earlier origin. The oak panelling round the East end of the chancel is a memorial to the men of Penwortham killed in the First World War.

The Nave is the newest part of the Church. Major alterations were carried out in the 19th century to create more space and light. The roof was raised and the galleries in the north and west were removed. Two aisles were built to serve tiered box pews facing into the Nave, and new seating was provided in the centre of the church. The choir stalls which were originally beneath the west gallery were removed and placed in the Chancel.

The 15th century Tower is one of the most attractive features of the Church. The bells of St. Mary's have been an important part of the Church for over 400 years. The entire octave was re-cast in 1965 by the Whitechapel Foundry.

In 1959 a new organ by Jardines of Manchester was installed in the west gallery.

The Nave and the Chancel contain many memorial windows and tablets sacred to the memory of parishioners who have died. Most of the windows are Victorian, but the North wall contains a recently dedicated window designed by Mrs. Jane Gray. On the south wall is a memorial to John Horrocks, founder of the famous textile company and sometime Member of Parliament