This site is dedicated to the former

Lane Head (Primitive) Methodist Church at Lowton.

The church closed in June 2010

Address Details for location and Sat Nav

 Lane Head Methodist Church Lowton

Newton Road, Lowton, Warrington, WA3 1HS

In the Metropolitan Borough of Wigan. (NOT Warrington)


Primitive Methodist Magazine, 1843 Pages 430-432

LOWTON is a village in the Warrington circuit, in the county of Lancashire: it
contains many inhabitants, though widely scattered. These were proverbial for wickedness of almost every kind, particularly for drunkenness, lying, swearing, sabbath-breaking, and
fighting. The ungodliness of the neighbourhood was notorious for many miles around, and it
is generally acknowledged that it was dangerous for people to pass through Lowton on
Saturday nights, and at other particular times, as they could hardly do this without being
shamefully assaulted, or barbarously treated, if they even escaped with their lives. Rich and
poor, old and young, were living without Christ, having no hope, and without God in the

But as the missionaries who were employed by Preston Brook circuit, in or about the
year 1827, were visiting places adjacent to the one of which we have spoken, they directed
their attention to this also. A society was formed, and many persons were deeply impressed
by the word of God; but the lack of a suitable place in which to hold meetings caused the
place to be relinquished, and the society to be dissolved. Perhaps it would have been
otherwise had not the preachers lived too far from the place to be able to supply it regularly
with sabbath preaching.

For awhile afterwards persecution raged, wickedness abounded, and hell triumphed. But in
the year 1831, Mr. C. Oliver, a pious zealous member of our Connexion, came from the north
of England on business connected with the railway, and seeing that the inhabitants of Lowton feared not God, he enquired for the Primitive Methodists, but finding none within a distance of five miles he united with another religious body, and it was not till dissatisfaction with his union compelled him to take another step, that he went to Warrington, and requested that the Primitive Methodists would try Lowton again. With difficulty he persuaded the circuit to send a travelling preacher once a fortnight, promising to entertain him during his fortnight’s visits.

After one attempt to obtain a place to preach in had been fruitless, a second was made
to one of the most wicked persons in the township, and this succeeded. Elizabeth Allen took
her stand in the open air to preach, and while she spoke many were deeply affected, sinners
cried for mercy, a society was afterwards formed, and one or two persons were converted.
The society remained stationary for about twelve months, except that one or two persons
joined it in March, 1832. The congregations were large, and the word of God was preached,
in demonstration of the Spirit, and of power. Towards the close of the year a powerful
revival broke out, and many souls were converted to God. At this time persecution raged
furiously; even many who professed to be religious, of other denominations, were sceptical
about our work, and therefore they opposed it. Some persons were deprived of their
employment because they had united with us, and others were otherwise ill-treated; but the
Lord of hosts was with us, and was a wall of defence to Zion by day and by night He watered
the rising plants with the dews of his grace so that in the year 1834 the society had about fifty members. 

Through great depression in trade, however, many had to remove from the
neighbourhood to seek employment elsewhere—some died, and some fell away; and hence
the society was reduced to about thirty members. Notwithstanding this, the preaching house
was generally much too small to accommodate the crowded congregations. Persecution was
meanwhile rife. There were many rude young men who attended the preachings with the
design of playing tricks upon the members and the preachers. These young men became so
annoying that it was often with difficulty that the preachers could proceed with their services.

To remedy this evil, the house was licensed; still persecution was nothing abated.
In the winter of 1833, a meeting was held to devise measures by which to raise a new
chapel, and the quarter day board, which followed this meeting, sanctioned those measures.
An agreement was made for a site of land, and a chapel was built; but, alas! through the
trickery of a certain individual, the society was soon deprived of it. An effort was made to
raise a second chapel, but without success. This caused the enemies of the cross to triumph,
and the society to sigh amidst its trials; but the Lord owned its “work of faith and labour of
love,” by saving souls and increasing its members to about forty.

In the year 1841, Mr. R. Kaye was stationed for Warrington circuit, when another effort was
made to raise a chapel. After many fruitless trials had been made to buy land of different
persons, an application was made to a Roman Catholic, of whom a site was purchased for
fourteen pounds seventeen shillings and a penny. Two hundred circulars were printed, and
sent through the neighbourhood, and ten collectors were employed who succeeded well. A
gentleman who had recently come to reside at Lowton gave five pounds, and this stimulated
others to give. However, on account of numerous difficulties, the building of the chapel was
deferred till April, 1842. Some lime was carted and paid for, but the person who had sold the
trustees bricks would not allow any to be delivered without receiving for them ready money.
Ten pounds’ worth were bought and paid for, and afterwards a few more, as the trustees were able to pay for them; but after a while as their funds had become exhausted, their spirits sunk, and their enemies triumphed, saying, “These people began to build, but are not able to finish.” In their difficulties they wrote to their old friend, C. Oliver, from whom they
received five pounds, which enabled them to buy as many bricks as were needed. An
agreement was made for timber, which cost thirty-one pounds. Slate was then needed, but
the dealer would give no credit. This caused some of the trustees and of the members many
sleepless nights. By and by a member in society, who had a little money, lent the trustees ten pounds, which enabled them to purchase slate and other necessaries.

The chapel was ultimately prepared for opening; and on Sunday, June 12th, 1842, the
opening services were performed; when Mr T. Unsworth preached in the afternoon, and Mr
R. Kaye in the evening; and all things considered, the collections were liberal, amounting to
seven pounds eleven shillings. The timber, windows, slates, and workmanship, still remained
to be paid for. Mr. Kaye therefore, laid the case before the evening’s congregation, asserting
that, unless money could be begged or borrowed, the society must, after all, lose its chapel.
Some of our good members exclaimed amid the congregation—“The Lord knows where
money must come from.” In less than two hours after this, a person offered to lend them fifty pounds, at five per cent, per annum. Glory be to God! the chapel has been completed, notwithstanding all the opposition with which its friends have had to grapple. It is twenty-seven feet long, twenty-two feet and a half wide, and thirteen feet and a half to the square. It has two windows on each side, its floor is of board, and its forms are loose. The whole of its cost is about one hundred and thirty pounds.

The September quarterly meeting of 1842 appointed a protracted meeting to be held at
Lowton, and Brother Kaye and I to attend it. The chapel was filled to excess every evening,
and was nearly filled at six o’clock every morning. The Lord made bare his arm, and old and
young cried for mercy. Some people could not sleep in their beds, some spent a whole night
in reading and prayer, and every evening’s service was attended with mourners seeking “the
consolation of Israel;” and some of the vilest of sinners were converted.
The whole of the
neighbourhood appeared affected, and even infidels were excited to come and see “the
wondrous works of God.” They gazed with astonishment to see some of their old
companions broken-hearted penitents, bent on their knees, and crying for mercy, while others who had found salvation were shouting the praises of God. Some were praying for their fathers and mothers, some for their brothers and sisters, and some for their children. The work was such that infidels gave their testimony that it was of God. The effects of the
meeting are seen yet, and we believe will be seen in eternity; for about fifty souls were
brought to the knowledge of the truth. Halleluia! for ever and ever.

Our local preachers and members laboured until they were thoroughly fatigued; as did
Brother Kaye and myself. Still we are for our toil ; because in the once-benighted and
vicious Lowton light and truth now shine. We have in it ninety-six members and ten local
preachers, all of whom, with the exception of one, are the fruit of Primitive Methodist

About five months since-we commenced a sabbath school, which has two hundred
and five scholars and thirty-five gratuitous teachers; and, thank God! a revival has broken out in the school. On Sunday, June 25th, in one of the girls’ classes, during the time of teaching, the influence of the Holy Spirit was so great, that all-in the class wept. Ere long other classes were visited by the Spirit’s power, and the teachers and scholars were weeping in every part of the chapel.
The school was turned into a prayer meeting, which was held for about two hours, and seven or eight persons professed to find the Lord. Such has been the revival that we have been short of room in which to teach the sabbath scholars, and to accommodate the
congregations. When the chapel was being erected, some said — “What are they building it
so large for?” But now we all say — “Give us room that we may dwell.” To use the
expression of the inhabitants, “we must knock down an end of the chapel, and make it
larger.” We have the enlargement in contemplation, and we believe that, through prudent and diligent exertion, it may be safely accomplished. Praise God for what he has already done! 

May the time soon come when all the people of Lowton shall ground their arms at Jesus’ feet, and yield to his easy yoke, — when every tongue shall praise him, and every heart enthrone him. Amen.

We advise the friends at Lowton not to enlarge their chapel unless they can, beg all the cost, besides reducing the present debt. Seasons of mighty out-pourings of the Spirit are not generally the times for enlarging chapels, but rather for converting sinners. — ED.

Other Closed Churches shown on this map

Church with tower next to words Lane Head, St Catherine's RC congregation noe worship at Croft or Golborne RC Churches

Top left of Map above B and O in word Golborne, Lowton Road (Factory Lane) Primitive Methodist Now a Day Centre for Special needs people

Top left of Map on second blue 8 Golborne Independent Metlodist  Has been used as Joiners Now for sale (Sept 2013)

Just off the map on left of Railway cutting Trinity (Bridge Street) Primitive Methodist Demolished

Just off top left of map Edge Green (Primitive) Methodist Demolished for housing development now completed See Publications Page

Editors Note 2013:

Golborne & Lowton Methodists now worship in Heath Street (Wesleyan) Methodist Church Golborne, They are in the new Sankey Valley Circuit which is in the Liverpool Methodist District. Heath Street is on the extreme Eastern boundary of the Liverpool District

Golborne Independent Methodists now meet at the very active Lowton Independent Methodist Church top right of map in centre of blue square line and just above St. Mary's Church (Anglican)

Other churches in Lowton and Golborne area

3 x Anglican

1 x RC

1 x Independent Methodist LOWTON

1 x Independent Methodist Golborne Closed now a residence

1 x Baptist Closed converted to housing

1 x Congregational (Not URC) Now used by another denomination

1 x Pentecostal

1 x Gospel Hall

2 x Evangelical

Details can be found on the Lowton Website

 The First Chapel in Winwick Lane Built in 1842

Later used as a garage for the Steam Roller and Bin Waggon by Golborne Urban District Council. Has now been demolished

The Second Church on the corner of Winwick Land and Newton Road, demolished and replaced by a house.

 The third chapel was built as the church hall and Sunday School during the time of the second chapel. It was converted into a multi use building on the closure of the second building. It has recently been sold and much building work is taking place (Sept 11)

Looking on the Wigan MBC planning applications site, shows the detailed plans, it is to be converted to a dwelling house with rear balcony. Application number A/11/76049


 Inside of Second Building Circa 1923 prior to re ordering of chancel area

 Chancel area after re ordering Circa 1981

 Centenary Bazaar Handbook 1907 recently sold on ebay

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