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Heapey - Black Lion Inn

Name: The Black Lion Inn

Address: Blackburn Road, Heapey, Chorley

The Black Lion looking down Blackburn Road to Wheelton

The Black Lion is located on Blackburn Road in Heapey a short distance from its neighbour the Red Lion, which can be seen in the photo above at the bottom of the hill in Wheelton. Like many rural beer houses the Black Lion was originally a working farm. The road on which it stands changed names several times over the years from Black Lion Brow to Lower Lane and finally Blackburn Road. 

On the map below the dotted line shows the boundary between Wheelton and Heapey, passing through the Red Lion Inn.  Other local Inns can be seen in close proximity including the Anchor aka Top Lock (Heapey), Dressers Arms (Wheelton), British Lion (Whittle) and Howard Arms (Whittle Springs).

The earliest recorded landlord of the Black Lion is George Wilson, shown above in the 1825 directory of the Leyland Hundred, which Heapey was part thereof.  Local church records confirm that he died in 1836: -

Burial: 17 Dec 1836 St Laurence, Chorley, Lancashire, England
George Wilson -     Age: 58
    Abode: Heapey
    Buried by: J.S. Master Curate
    Register: Burials 1832 - 1846, Page 96, Entry 761
    Source: LDS Film 93707

Subsequent landlords included his widow Betty Wilson (1836-41), Thomas Waring (1851-1881), Alice Chadwick(1891-1901) and Dorothy Cookson-Thompson (1911-21). 

1841 Census

1851 Census

Derbyshire Advertiser and Journal 06 June 1856

1861 Census

1871 Census

1881 Census

1891 Census

1901 Census

1911 Census

Marriage at St Lawrence Parish Church, Chorley
Thomas Poole Thompson 26 Bachelor Farm Bailiff Black Lion Hotel Heapey
Emily Jane Hawkins 26 Spinster Weaver 13 Livesey Street
Father William Thompson (deceased) Licenced Victualler
George Hawkins Bricksetter
Witnesses: Fred Poole Thompson, Isabella Howarth
Licence Willoughby C. Allen Rector

The Black Lion (2013) now a residential property


  1. Can you tell me from what source the map of Heapy and Wheelton is from. Cracking Blog.

  2. Thanks. I'm pretty sure it was from a book I found in the library by Kenneth Hodkinson called Heapey/Wheelton and District: A Pictorial Record of Bygone Days...he was a fabulous local historian who also wrote others including one on Euxton.

  3. Thank you so much for this information.George and Betty Wilson are my husband's(Alan Wilson),3rd great grandparents.Their son George was landlord and wheelwright at the Alison Arms in Coppull.(On 1881 census)Peter Taylor,his 2nd great grandfather,had The Stanley Arms in 1901.

    1. I'm glad you found it useful Linda. I didn't know of the family links to other public houses in and around Chorley so thank you for those. It's always interesting to see how numerous members of the same family worked in the trade. The Stanley and Allison Arms are also featured in the blog.

  4. When George Poole Thompson married at St Laurence's on 24 December 1921, he gives his address as the Black Lion, Heapey, and his father as William Thompson (deceased), Licenced Victualler.
    It looks like Dorothy took over the licence from her husband. In 1901 William was selling manure and feedstuffs, so not obviously in the trade.