South Ribble Museum and Exhibition Centre
The Leyland Free Grammar School was established by Henry ffarington in 1524, and the present building was probably erected on this site about 1580. Although extended a century later most of the structure has been changed very little. The building is a three-bay oak framed structure in typical sixteenth century local style, located in the NE corner of the Leyland Parish Church grounds.
In the 1790s a small but typical 'handloom weaver's house' was added to accomodate the school master and his wife. Among the many locals educated here were Richard Jackson (alias Dr Kuerden one of the fathers of the History of Lancashire) and the RC martyr John Woodcock. The school survived here until 1874, when a local industrialist safeguarded it for the use of the local community.
After various church-based uses it was acquired by South Ribble Borough Council in 1978, restored, and opened as the Borough's Museum & Exhibition Centre. The school room is used for art exhibitions and Saturday events of all kinds (Origami to Clocks!) and the unchanged upper rooms house our small but interesting museum collection. The Centre is staffed by our army of over 60 volunteer attendants, and we are at the heart of the local community - as the school has thus been for nearly five hundred years.
See D.Hunt (1990) A History of Leyland & District
Tues Fri 1000-1600
Christmas Period Closed
Closed: Christmas Eve to New Year
Good Friday, Easter Saturday, Easter Monday
No admission charges: donations
We are a small timber-framed largely Tudor building. Our main floors are all on different levels and the upper floor is approached by a steep staircase. Direct wheelchair access is thus restricted to the entrance room. Notwithstanding our best efforts, progress beyond this area is not accessible for wheelchairs.
To offset this difficulty, a film is shown on continuous loop describing the areas of the building which are not accessible. Specific items can usually be made accessible for viewing.
Includes finds from E.E.Pickering's 1946-58 excavations on the Roman supply base at Walton-le-Dale. Small economic and socisl history collections reflect the South Ribble district's economic development (textiles/cloth bleaching etc). Large photograph collection pertaining to the Leyland area. Well balanced, but very small, town museum collection, but this means that most items can readily be viewed given reasonable notice.
Archaeology, Industry, Social History
Key artists and exhibits
- Broadfield Bleach Works sample books
- Walton-le-Dale Roman finds
- Kathleen Ferrier memorial Civic Address
- Leyland photograph collection
- Local geological collection
The spade speaks ...of Roman, Viking and Norman discoveries in South Ribble
- 7 July — 29 August 2015 *on now
The exhibition includes the finds from Ernest Pickering's Roman excavations at Walton-le-Dale in the 1950s: Charles Hardwick's dig at Penwortham Castle in the 1850s, and coins fronm the discovery of the Cuerdale Hoard in 1840, courtesy of the Harris Museum, Preston.
Early Lancashire maps
- 30 July 2015 2-3pm
Illustrated lecture by Diana Winterbotham, former LCC Local History Librarian.
Exploring the findspot of the Cuerdale Hoard
- 2 August 2015 2-4pm
Walk and discussion to commemorate the 175th anniversary of the discovery, with Matthew Ball, Curator of Numismatics at the Harris Museum and Dr David Hunt. The walk is three miles and strong shoes are required.
Meet in the car park of St.Leonards Parish Church, Cuerdale Lane, Walton-le-Dale.
The Worden Hoard: lost or binned?
- 8 August 2015 11am-12pm
Short lecture by Matthew Ball, Curator of Numismatics at the Harris Museum, and short walk to the findspot with Dr David Hunt. The Worden Hoard is currently on loan at the museum from the Harris Museum, Preston.
Services for Schools
Our aim is to provide historical materials to boost the strictly local themes which may be developed in the National Curriculum History modules. This rolling project produced information sheets covering our area's input into The Romans, The Dark Age, and The Tudors.
We have also produced packs of local history materials for each of our Borough's principle urban areas, based around walks and classroom friendly DVDs of interesting local places.
- Dr David Hunt
How to obtain
Contact the curator on email@example.com or call 01772 422041.
South Ribble Museum and Exhibition Centre
The Old Grammar School