Tatham History



Hornby Castle from Tatham Church 1817-8 by JMW Turner
JMW Turner: "Hornby Castle from Tatham Church" 1817-1818
Image Copyright © V&A Images/Victoria and Albert Museum, London [Museum no: FA.88]
Click the image for a commentary


Tatham parish is in north Lancashire, and stretches nearly 10 miles from Lower Tatham, on the river Wenning, to the wild uplands of Tatham Fells. Most of the parish lies within the Forest of Bowland Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Click here for maps.

The modern civil parish has an area of 15 square miles, but it is thinly populated: the population in 2001 was 393. There is no "Tatham village". Lowgill, which lies roughly halfway along the length of the parish, and Millhouses near Wray, are the only significant "centres of population".

The size of the parish, and the contrast between the landscapes and - in past times - land ownership and management in Lower and Higher Tatham, have contributed to a natural division of social patterns. Tatham has two churches - St. James the Less in Lower Tatham, and the Church of the Good Shepherd in Tatham Fells - and it had two schools, though only one survives today.

In 2008, after carrying out a questionnaire survey of every household, Tatham Parish Council published a Parish Plan. The survey had revealed a great interest - both amongst life-long residents and newcomers - in the history of the parish, so the council helped to initiate a series of local history meetings, which led to the formation in 2009 of Tatham History Society.

The Society's aim is to research the history of the parish and neighbourhood of Tatham in Lancashire, to organise educational events, and to publish materials, both in print and on the web.




Click here for details of

  • latest website additions
  • forthcoming Tatham History Society events
  • reports on past events.


The old school at Tatham Fells, 1875-1961, portrayed from its log books
by Bronwen Osborne

New edition now available

Click image for details