St. Mary's Church, Eccleston
|Eccleston shown within Lancashire|
|Population||4,263 (2011 Census)|
|OS grid reference|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|EU Parliament||North West England|
Its name came from the Celtic word "eglēs" meaning a church, and the Old English word "tūn" meaning a farmstead or settlement - i.e. a settlement by a Romano-British church. Evidence of the settlement dates back hundreds of years; St. Mary's Church dates back to the 14th century AD. The village was mentioned in the Domesday Book of 1086, the book ordered by William the Conqueror to detail all settlements and farms in England for the purpose of tax collection.
According to the United Kingdom Census 2011 the parish has a population of 4,263.
Since 2010, Eccleston has been in the South Ribble constituency for Westminster elections. Before this, the village was in Chorley constituency. However, Eccleston will soon be re-incorporated into the South Ribble constituency.
Local government consists of councils at county, district and parish level. At district level, Eccleston is part of the three-member Eccleston and Mawdesley ward of Chorley Council, created in 2002; it was previously combined with Heskin and Mawdesley was a separate ward.
In agrarian times the local speciality was fruit from orchards, few of which now remain. The more recent weaving industry has also passed, as the two local textile mills are now closed. The "Old Mill" building is now being used as an antique, collectable and nostalgia retail space called "Bygone Times". The "New Mill" has been converted into a small village shopping centre, recently redeveloped to provide extra space for housing. Consequently the village has developed a more suburban role than some of its neighbours.
The town is served by an hourly bus service to Wigan, Preston, Croston and Chorley (daytimes only) with more infrequent daytime services available to Southport and Ormskirk. The nearest railway stations are at Croston and Euxton Balshaw Lane.
The village has two schools, Eccleston St. Mary's Church of England Primary School and Eccleston Primary School.
There are three churches in the village, the 14th Century St Mary the Virgin Church of England Church to the north of the village (until the reformation this was formerly the Catholic Church), constructed from distinctive Liverpool sandstone, similar to Euxton Parish Church, Eccleston Methodist Church in the village centre and St Agnes Roman Catholic Church to the south.
The village public house scene has consolidated in recent years to two pubs. The Farmer's Arms is predominantly an eatery located at the Northern end of the village and there is another pub at the Southern end: The Brown Cow. The village is also served by the Working Men's Institute Club ("th'insty") and the Eccleston Cricket Club (game days only). The site of the former Blue Anchor pub has been converted to the Anchorfields housing estate. Pubs just outside the village include the Rose and Crown (Ulnes Walton), Farmers Arms (Heskin), Robin Hood (Mawdesley). The village also has a popular children's play area situated adjacent to the football pitches, popularly known as "the rec", an abbreviation of recreation area.
- St. John Rigby, martyr
- Sir Bradley Wiggins, professional cyclist
- Richard Seddon, Liberal Prime Minister of New Zealand, 1893-1906
- "Your Councillors". Chorley Council. Retrieved 13 December 2013.
- "Final recommendations on the future electoral arrangements for Chorley in Lancashire" (PDF). Local Government Commission for England. September 2000. Retrieved 13 December 2013.
- "Bradley Wiggins Biography" (PDF). MTC Management. Retrieved 30 October 2012.
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