Towneley’s Green Heritage

map of the Towneley demesne in 1661

THE DEMAINE OF TOWNLEY as it was Surveyed Anno Domini 1661by James Hamilton

Towneley Park is listed on the English Heritage Register of Parks & Gardens as Towneley Hall Park and Garden. Owned and managed by Burnley Borough Council, it is the largest and most popular park in Burnley. An HLF supported £3.2 Million programme of parkland restoration was implemented between 2005 and 2010. Towneley Hall, a Grade I Listed Building, dating from the 15th century provides the central focus for the entire park. Fundamental to the future at Towneley is the integration of the Hall and Park and their management as a ‘country estate’, emphasising their integral linkage. A Towneley family rent roll of 1536 records the hall lanes, garden and orchards and names the fields at Towneley including names still in use today. Detailed maps starting from 1661 display the development of the park prior to its opening as a public park by the Corporation of Burnley in 1902. The most influential member of the family was Charles Towneley (1737-1805) who created a number of new buildings, improved the drainage and diverted the streams. The changes he made to the grounds, particularly the footpaths around the woodland, have left a lasting mark. Today, the park provides a wide range of formal recreational facilities including golf, football, cricket, tennis, bowls, a varied events programme, three children’s playgrounds plus an extensive network of footpaths, bridleways and a cycle route.