Lancashire

Visitors to England’s Red Rose county of Lancashire in the north west will find a landscape of natural beauty, rolling hills, forest and countryside in which to relax and explore. The wealth and industrial heritage of the region is evident in a number of attractions for all the family to enjoy.

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Lancashire Overview

Welcome to Lancashire

The Red Rose county of Lancashire is in the north west of England, bordered by Cumbria, North Yorkshire, West Yorkshire, Greater Manchester and Merseyside with the Irish Sea running along it’s expanse of coastline.

Lancashire has a population of around 1,500,000 people. The county town is Lancaster with other large populations at Preston, Blackpool, Blackburn and Burnley.

The landscape of Lancashire combines great areas of outstanding natural beauty, forests, west facing coastline and the landmarks of an industrial heritage.


History

Lancashire was established in the 12th century – later than many other counties in Britain.

The 18th and 19th centuries saw Lancashire become a hotbed of industry as the Industrial Revolution gathered pace. Wealth in the county was generated from industries such as coal mining and textile – principally cotton – manufacturing. The ports of Preston and historically Liverpool provided significant access to trade routes for the county.

Today many of the historic mills have undergone renovation and are home to visitor attractions, restaurants and cafes.


Places to Visit in Lancashire

Lancashire has a wide choice of great of days out to keep all the family entertained. For those looking for traditional seaside entertainment, a trip to Blackpool, a most lively part of the west coast will be on the agenda. Visit the Blackpool Tower with its panoramic views and enjoy the entertainment of the Golden Mile – donkey ride anyone?. Clitheroe Castle has marked the skyline for over 800 years in the Ribble Valley – take a tour to explore the history of this landmark museum.

Two Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty including the Forest (or Trough) of Bowland, make the countryside and moorland of Lancashire a great place to relax. Enjoy the walking, hiking and cycling amongst the pretty villages and if you are feeling energetic then you can take on Pendle Hill – of Pendle Witches fame.

Mountain bikers will love the trails at Gisburn Forest.
Lancashire has a number of important houses, stately homes and glorious gardens open to the public. Lytham Hall is a red brick house dating from the 17th century standing in 78 acres of parkland on the edge of Lytham St. Annes. Hoghton Manor stands in a hill top location with views across the countryside; inside you can tour a number of rooms, view ornate panelling and the doll house collection. Gathorpe Hall is a stunning Elizabethan house with a stunning interior and some small formal gardens surrounded by woodland. Other houses in the county include Brownsholme Hall at Clitheroe, Leighton Hall where you can explore the 19th century informal gardens, Smithills Hall and Samlesbury Hall. Garden lovers will enjoy Gresgarth Hall Gardens, a colourful sloping garden that incorporates a crossing of the Artle Beck, a tributary of the River Lune.

The county plays its part in the north west hot bed of football with teams representing Blackburn, Burnley, Blackpool, Morecambe, Fleetwood Town, Preston North End and “Accrington Stanley – who are they?!” immortalised in a mid ‘80s advertising campaign. Lancashire County Cricket Club has enjoyed success over the years with James Anderson, Andrew “Freddie” Flintoff and former England captain Michael Atherton amongst its famous sons. Archery, wrestling and rugby league are also popular in the county.
Looking for some retail therapy? Then head to Preston – the main shopping centre in the county to take in individual boutiques or the St. George’s Shopping Centre. If you fancy some history then visit the Chorley Markets which date back 500 years, with a range of over 100 stalls. Elsewhere in Lancashire you will find Pendle Village Mill Outlet Centre and a range of farmers markets.

Lancashire’s famous names include Dame Thora Herd, Eric Morecambe, former Prime Minster Robert Peel, comedian Peter Kay, footballer Tom Finney and actor Ian McKellen.

Lancashire has a large range of annual events including, Vintage Festival by the Sea, Clitheroe Food Festival and the Great British Food Festival at Stonyhurst.

Lancashire is famed for its contribution to British cuisine and traditional food includes Creamy Lancashire Cheese, Butter Pie, Courting Cake, Chorley Cake, Aughton Pudding, Vimto, Black Peas, Black Pudding, Ormskirk Gingerbread and of course the famous Lancashire Hotpot – the list is seemingly endless!


Getting There

Lancashire is very accessible by road with the M6, M65, M61, M55 and M58 among the major roads running through the county linking to the large conurbations of Liverpool, Manchester and beyond.

The county is well served by train with mainline links into Preston and Lancaster on the West Coast Main Line.



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What to see and do…

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The Blackpool Tower Dungeon

The Blackpool Tower , The Promenade , Blackpool , Lancashire , FY1 4BJ

The Blackpool Tower

The Promenade, Blackpool, Lancashire , FY1 4BJ

Lancaster Castle

Castle Parade, Lancaster, Lancashire, LA1 1YJ

Lancaster City Museum

Market Square, Lancaster, Lancashire, LA1 1HT

Madame Tussauds Blackpool

Madame Tussauds Blackpool, 89 Promenade, Blackpool, Lancashire, FY1 5AA

SEA LIFE Blackpool

SEA LIFE Blackpool, Promenade, Blackpool, Lancashire, FY1 5AA

Blackpool Pleasure Beach

Blackpool Pleasure Beach, 525 Ocean Boulevard, Blackpool, Lancashire, FY4 1EZ