A Comprehensive List of All Pre-1851 Manchester Parishes and Chapelries

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Go to the Lancashire Parishes page.

Return to the Manchester Our Lady, St George and St Denys, Lancashire page.

Manchester is one of the largest township (population-wise) centres in the whole of England. The parish (the cathedral) is the largest parish in all England! It's comprised of the parish, that is, the Collegiate Cathedral and (by 1880) over 150 chapelries within its boundary!

During the height of the Industrial Revolution, numerous additional smaller churches called chapelries or chapels of ease, or district chapels (a district within an ancient parish but lying out in more remote areas within its boundary, and assigned to a chapel) were created to handle Manchester's massive populations. These chapelries kept church registers of baptisms and burials (and in but only a few cases, marriages during the era, 1754-1837), many of which are ancient in origin.

Below is a comprehensive list of all the chapelries associated with the Cathedral (parish) of Manchester Our Lady, St Denys and St George as of 1851. By far the vast majority of the church registers (of which a few are now transcribed and available online at the following two key web sites:

  • Lancashire Online Parish Clerk project - an outstanding website for online transcriptions from hundreds of chapels and some parishes in the county; already over a million entries published online at no cost. 
  • FamilySearch about 10 million entries ofr baptisms, marriages and burials from 1538-1912
  • Ancestry.co.uk - has nearly 3 million published online entries from various parish and chapelry registers from 1538 to 1900
  • LancashireBMD - about a million-plus marriages for post-1837 

Original parish (and chapel) registers are held mostly at the Manchester Central Library. Most of these are also microfilmed and available at The Family History Library and its 4,600 satellite Family History Centers worldwide.


Recognizing that all authoritative treatises on Lancashire's ancient and civil parishes differ from one another--some much more than others--in their data regarding all Manchester [ecclesiastical] districts and townships with chapelries, of necessity several key reference publications and resources have been used here to compile a more comprehensive list of Manchester parishes and all its associated chapelries.

The chapelries listed below also subdivided the ecclesiastical boundary of  Manchester Cathedral (ancient parish) and were considered to be in the ecclesiastical jurisdiction of the Parish of Manchester:


For finding additional chapelries and district churches built after 1851, we strongly recommend the following online reference aids and sites:

  • Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales. Wilson, John M. London [1870] - one of the best aids for identifying chapelries or district churches from 1851 to about 1868, and the civil [and ecclesiastical] parish to which they were attached.
  • Lancashire Record Office website:  click on "Church Registers" - search under name of ancient parish to find the names of all associated or attached chapels of ease or district church names.
  • Cassell's Gazetteer of Great Britain and Ireland. London: 1900 - gives the township chapels and district churches for each ancient parish in Lancashire. Somewhat helpful aid; this published work does not always provide--from an ancient parish perspective--the names of each chapelry and when commissioned or built; it is rife many omitted ones.

Helpful Links: 

Some of the chapelries of Manchester and their christening, marriage and burial registers have also been indexed and posted online at the Lancashire "Online Parish Clerk" project.

The website, "A Church Near You" provides some information on some chapelries (and parishes): www.achurchnearyou.com


Guide to the Local Administrative Units of England, by Youngs, Frederic A. Pub: The Royal Historical Society, London 1991

Topographical Dictionary of England. Lewis Samuel. Pub: Samuel A. Lewis & Co. London 1841 &1831

A Comprehensive Gazetteer of England. Bell, James. A. Pub.: Fullarton & Co. Glasgow 1836

Imperial Gazetteer of England and Wales. A. Fullarton & Co. Glasgow and London ca. 1869 

Atlas & Index to Parish Registers. Edited by Cecil Humphrey-Smith. Pub by Phillimore & Co. Ltd.Chichester, Sussex. 2003.