Uncover Towneley Hall’s fascinating history

Towneley Hall
Towneley Hall

What does a renowned scientist, the last man to be hanged, drawn and quartered in Britain, and an antiques collector have in common?

They all lived at the historic Towneley Hall, home to the Towneley family for almost 500 years and the jewel in Burnley’s cultural crown.

Visitors to the hall during the Heritage Open Days weekend, September 7 – 10th, will uncover fascinating stories about Towneley family members and the history of the hall.

They will be able to hear about science boffin Richard Towneley, who was a pioneer of meteorology and co-founded the Greenwich Observatory, and Charles Towneley, whose collection of artefacts led to a gallery at the British Museum named after him.

The eeriest story of the Grade I listed building, set in the award-winning Towneley Park, is perhaps that of Francis Towneley.

Executed for high treason for his role in the Jacobite rebellion in 1745, his head was placed on a pike at London’s Temple Bar before eventually being stolen and returned to Towneley Hall, where it was hidden behind a secret panel in the chapel for over 200 years.

The free guided tours will run from noon – 4pm from Friday, September 8th – Sunday, September 10th. To book a place on a tour contact Towneley Hall on 01282 477130 or email kdarwen@burnley.gov.uk.