Burnley’s Towneley Hall and Park is a treasure trove of architecture and art. In place since the thirteenth century, the site has absorbed the remains of 15th-century Whalley Abbey, and a chapel with an Antwerp altarpiece of 1525. The house and its sixty-two acres have been run as a public amenity by Burnley corporation since 1901. You’ll find an amalgamation of turrets, battlements, and eccentric architectural caprices across the extensive house-and-park complex.
The recent recipient of a Heritage Lottery Fund grant of several million pounds, the Park has been restored into a fine location for a family day out. Rooms are dressed in period style, making this a great learning experience for kids. The complex includes Burnley’s official art gallery featuring masterpieces by Victorian and Pre-Raphaelite artists. You’ll find paintings by Burne-Jones, Waterhouse, Alma-Tadema and Zoffany.
You’ll find an amalgamation of turrets, battlements, and eccentric architectural caprices across the extensive house-and-park complex
The extensive outdoor spaces include the Deer Pond, an important local nature reserve. The woods are graced with a sculpture trail and pleasant walking spots.
And if you’re really lucky, you might spot the local boggart, a sinister paranormal entity supposed to appear once every seven years, prophesying the death of one of the hall’s occupants. Allegedly this is the result of a curse placed on Sir John Towneley who oppressed the poor.