Bacup, Lancashire Genealogy

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England Gotoarrow.png Lancashire Gotoarrow.png Lancashire Parishes

Bacup St John contributor Alexander P Kapp.jpg

Chapelry History

Bacup (or Bacop) St John th Evangelist is a chapelry created by 1788 from, and lying within the boundaries of Whalley Parish.

'Th'owd Parish Church' (The Old Parish Church), the original building was the first Anglican Church in Bacup and dated from 1788. The present building dates from 1881 after the partial collapse of the earlier chapelry building in 1871. The sloping floor of the present church hints at some of the earlier problems on the site.

Bacup was a chapelry linked with the parishes of Whalley and Rochdale, and divided between the townships of Newchurch[-in-Rossendale] and Spotland in the hundred of Blackburn.

Here is part of a 19th Century historical perspective by the famed topographer, Samuel A. Lewis:

"BACUP, [or Bacop] St John the Evangelist, a consolidated chapelry [by 1788], in the townships of Newchurch [which is distinctly different from Newchurch (Culcheth, near Leigh Parish)] and Spotland, parishes of Whalley and Rochdale, union of Haslingden, Higher division of the hundred of Blackburn, N. division of Lancashire, 7 miles north and west from Rochdale.

There were two places of worship for Particular Baptists, and two for Wesleyan Methodists."[1]


Civil Registration

Birth, marriages and deaths were kept by the government, from July 1837 to the present day. The civil registration article tells more about these records. There are several Internet sites with name lists or indexes. A popular site is FreeBMD.

Online index of Lancashire Births, Marriages and Deaths Lancashire BMD

Lancashire Online Parish Clerks

An extremely useful resource for research in Lancashire Parishes

Church records

Online Records

Bacup chapelry's registers of christenings, marriages and burials, along with those of the ancient parish of Whalley to which it is attached, have been mostly transcribed and are displayed online at the following web sites and ranges of years:

AC = (£)
FMP = (£)
FREG = FreeReg
FS =
LOPC = Lancashire Online Parish Clerk

BACOP ST JOHN THE EVANGELIST Chapelry  (1788) Indexes
Baptisms Marriages Burials
FS 1788-1849 None None
LOPC 1788-1846 None 1788-1853
LBMD None 1838-1950 None
FREG 1816-1818 None None
BACOP ST SAVIOUR Chapelry  (1866) Indexes
Baptisms Marriages Burials
FS None None None
LOPC None None None
LBMD None 1866-1946 None
WHALLEY ST MARY AND ALL SAINTS PARISH (1538) Indexes (ancient parish containing BACUP)
Baptisms Marriages Burials
FS 1538-1888 1539-1837 None
LOPC 1538-1601, 1605-1845, 1848-1860, 1862-1875 1539-1601, 1605-1647, 1653-1900 1538-1601, 1605-1840, 1843-1891
LBMD 1837-1937 None 1837-1937
FMP None 1539-1627 None
AC 1538-1601, 1605-1653
1538-1601, 1605-1653
1538-1601, 1605-1653
FREG 1538-1631 1539-1651 1538-?

For a full list of all those chapels surrounding Bacup and comprising the whole ancient parish of Whalley to which it was attached, be certain to see "Church Records" on the WHALLEY PARISH page.

Census records

Census records from 1841 to 1911 are available online. For access, see England Census Records and Indexes Online. Census records from 1841 to 1891 are also available on film through a Family History Center or at the Family History Library.

Poor Law Unions

Haslingden, Lancashire Poor Law Union

Probate records

Records of wills, administrations, inventories, indexes, etc. were filed by the court with jurisdiction over this parish. Go to Lancashire Probate Records to find the name of the court having primary jurisdiction. Scroll down in the article to the section Court Jurisdictions by Parish.

Maps and Gazetteers

Maps are a visual look at the locations in England. Gazetteers contain brief summaries about a place.

Web sites


  1. A Topographical Dictionary of England by samuel Lewis  (1848), pp. 124-128. URL: Adapted. Date accessed: 25 June 2010.