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Historic ‘£1m’ farmhouse is close to getting a new owner

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An historic five-bedroom farmhouse with connections to the Roman Catholic post-Reformation past could soon have a new resident.

The delapidated building in a secluded area of Clayton-le-Woods has been on the market for more than a year with an asking price of “£275,000.

It is under offer - and could potentially be worth “one million” with work completed on it.

Crumbling Hawksclough Farmhouse is of architectural and local historical significance as it was a place where Mass was held after the reformation and prior to the opening of St Bedes RC Church in 1824.

The Grade II Listed building contains a number of intriguing and historical features and fittings.

It has exposed wooden beams and includes a small priest’s robing room with ecclesiastical carved wooden panels.

The house was occupied in early 18th century by the Burgess family - descendants of the 16th century bailiff to Townleys of Burnley.

Some historians believe William Shakespeare helped to shelter Roman Catholics when he lived for a time at Hoghton Tower just over four miles away from Clayton-le-Woods.

The Hoghton family, who lived at the Hoghton Tower for hundreds of years, were staunch Catholics.

The property is being marketed by Peter Gilkes and Co, Market Street, Chorley.

They said “a good £100,000” could see it restored to its former glory and turned into a seven-figure home for the lucky buyer.

“I’d be disappointed if we didn’t get quite a few people interested because this is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity,” said estate agent Peter Gilkes, when the farmhouse went on the market.

Hawksclough, tucked away down a secluded track off busy Preston Road, was last lived about two years ago.

It was owned by a Mr and Mrs McCann and sold on following their deaths.

It has stood empty since then and is in urgent need of repair.