Sunday 17 August 2014

(136) Anderton of Lostock Hall, baronets

Anderton of Lostock
This branch of the Anderton family were no doubt closely connected to the Andertons of Euxton and the stem family of Anderton (Lancs), but the precise nature of the connection has not been established with certainty.  Christopher Anderton (c.1533-92) was a successful London lawyer and Duchy of Lancaster official, and in 1562 he purchased the manor of Lostock (Lancs) and built a new semi-timbered manor house there.  At the end of his life, perhaps after retiring to his estate, he also constructed a large new gatehouse, dated 1591, which still exists.  It could have been intended as the first phase of a general rebuilding, but if so, work was abandoned after his death. Lostock passed to his eldest son, James Anderton (1557-1613), who also succeeded him in his judicial appointment with the Duchy, but retired in 1608.  Brought up in a religiously conservative household, James either always had been, or reverted to being, a practising Catholic, and wrote a number of works defending and justifying the faith, although only one of these was published in his lifetime.  The rest were printed after his death by his younger brother, Roger Anderton (d. 1640), who operated a secret Catholic press at Birchley Hall between at least 1615 and 1621.

James Anderton died without issue in 1613 and the Lostock estate passed to his brother, Christopher Anderton (1559-1619), who was an avowed Recusant. He married late in life and his children were all minors at the time of his death, although his only son, Christopher Anderton (1608-50) had been through a child-marriage to Agnes Preston, which produced one daughter. In the mid 1620s Agnes must have died, for he married again, and his second wife, Alathea Smith, produced a large family. Christopher himself seems to have been ambivalent about the Royalist cause in the Civil War; declaring for the king but refusing to fight, he found himself taken prisoner by Prince Rupert and held at Liverpool and later at Chester.  He escaped into Wales and later to France, but was soon back in Lancashire and was present at the storming and massacre of Bolton in 1644, although he later maintained that he had not borne arms for the King. Despite his protestations, his estates were sequestered for the twin crimes of Recusancy and delinquency, and had not been recovered at the time of his death in 1650. In the 1650s his widow seems to have endured several years of real poverty, during which several of the children were put into service and apparently mistreated.  Two, perhaps three, of the sons, and two of the daughters entered the church, but the eldest son and heir, Sir Francis Anderton (1628-78), 1st bt. made an advantageous marriage into the Somerset family.  In the 1660s and 1670s he was able to increase the family estates significantly, buying the ancestral acres at Anderton from his distant cousins and setting up a marriage for his eldest son to the heiress of the Irelands of Lydiate Hall.  It was perhaps his connection to the Somersets which ultimately led to Francis being granted a baronetcy in 1677, the reasons for which are otherwise obscure.

Sir Charles Anderton (1657-91), 2nd bt. inherited the Lostock estate in 1678 and his wife inherited Lydiate Hall in 1682/3.
Lydiate Hall: a drawing for the Victoria County History, 1911
When Sir Charles died, the title passed in turn to four of his sons.  Sir Charles and Sir James died young, while studying at St. Omer, in 1705 and 1710. The next brother, Sir Lawrence Anderton (c.1680-1724)  became a Benedictine monk, and so the estate passed to the youngest brother, Francis Anderton (1681-1760), who also used the baronetcy title at this time although he did not inherit it until 1724.  He was part of the Jacobite uprising in 1715 and was present at the Battle of Preston in that year. For his part in the rebellion, he was convicted of high treason and sentenced to death, and although later pardoned his estates were sequestered for life. In 1724 his elder brother renounced his vows as a monk and converted to Anglicanism, allowing him to reclaim the estates, but five months later he died and since the title and estates passed once more to Sir Francis Anderton, the state resumed possession. Lostock Hall seems to have become a farmhouse from 1716 onwards; Sir Francis lived at Lydiate Hall, perhaps as a tenant of the Crown appointees who were put in to manage the estates. When he died without issue in 1760, the sequestration came to an end, and the estates passed to his sister's grandson, Henry Blundell of Ince Blundell (1724-1810), whose family will be the subject of a future post.

Lostock Hall, Lancashire

Lostock Hall, from an early 19th century engraving

A half-timbered house said to have been dated 1563 on the entrance doorcase, the year after Christopher Anderton acquired the manor.  The drawing in Philips's Views of Old Halls of Lancashire and Cheshire shows a half-timbered house with four overhanging timber gables in the principal front, the lower portion built in either stone or brick. Another of Philips's drawings in the same book shows three gables only, the large southern one having presumably been destroyed.  The house is said to have been modernised in 1702, which was the date formerly on a rainwater head from the house, but after the estate was sequestered by the Crown in 1716 the hall became a farmhouse, and it was partly demolished in 1816 and completely taken down in 1824.

Lostock Hall in the late 19th century.

The surviving large stone gatehouse (45 x 22½ feet, and 33 feet high) is dated 1591.  It is a three-storey stone building with a staircase tower at its north-west angle, and the main front faces east.  In the centre of the ground floor is a blocked archway, and above it in the two upper stages there are eight-light mullioned and transomed windows, all these features being flanked by pairs of widely-spaced columns: Tuscan on the ground floor, Ionic and Corinthian above. Between each stage are wide strings taking the form of cornice, frieze, and architrave, and breaking out over the columns, the cornices only being continued as strings all round the building. The whole composition shows a far more pronounced Renaissance spirit than is usually found in this part of Lancashire at this time. There were originally no windows on the ground floor, but two sashes have been introduced between the columns, one on each side. Over the large window on the first floor is a square panel with the arms of Anderton surmounted by helm, crest, and mantling, and over the second floor window is a similar panel with a shield bearing the royal arms of Queen Elizabeth, with the date 1591 and the royal initials E.R. The upper cornice is crowned with a scalloped parapet with traces of finials on the alternate crenallations. 

Lostock Hall c.2008. Image: Country Landscapes Ltd.

The other three sides of the building are faced with thin coursed rubble. The west arch of the gateway is also blocked up, but otherwise this face of the building preserves a good deal of its original appearance, having six mullioned windows, the lower ones with hood-moulds. The staircase wing at the north-west corner is built of rough thin-coursed stones and has its original windows; but the top of the tower, which formerly seems to have terminated in an octagonal turret with conical roof, has disappeared, and it is now finished with a plain lean-to roof sloping back from the level of the upper cornice. The original chimneystacks, too, have disappeared, and have been replaced by plain Victorian shafts. There is a range of buildings beyond the staircase tower on the north-west corner of the house extending westward, which was erected at about the time the main house was demolished. The building was used as a farm-house after 1816, and became derelict in the 20th century.  It was restored about 1960 and is now a private house; the interior has few features of interest apart from an original fireplace. 

Descent: sold 1562 to Christopher Anderton (c.1533-92); to son, James Anderton (1557-1613); to brother, Christopher Anderton (1559-1619); to son, Christopher Anderton (1608-50); to son, Sir Francis Anderton (1628-78), 1st bt.; to son, Sir Charles Anderton (1655-91), 2nd bt.; to Sir Charles Anderton (d. 1705), 3rd bt.; to brother, Sir James Anderton (d. 1710), 4th bt.; to brother, Francis Anderton (1680-1760), (later 6th bt.); sequestered following the Jacobite rising in 1715 but in 1724 released to Sir Laurence Anderton (d. 1724), 5th bt.; reverted to the Crown until 1760 when released to Henry Blundell (d. 1810), grandson of the sister of 6th baronet; to daughter, Catherine, wife of Thomas Stonor, who demolished the house in 1816 and 1824.

Anderton family of Lostock Hall, baronets

Anderton, Christopher (c.1533-92), of Lostock Hall. Son of Lawrence Anderton esq., and his wife Sybilla, daughter of Christopher Parker of Colne (Lancs), born about 1533. Lawyer in London. JP for Lancashire; Protonotary of the Court of Common Pleas for the Duchy of Lancaster from before 1573-1592. He appears to have supported the changes in religion, but in 1592 his widow was described as a recusant. He married Dorothy, daughter of Peter Anderton esq. of Anderton, and had issue:
(1) James Anderton (1557-1613) (q.v.);
(2) Christopher Anderton (1559-1619) (q.v.);
(3) Roger Anderton (d. 1640), of Birchley; a recusant who operated a secret Catholic press at Birchley Hall 1615-21 on which among other works were printed those of his brother, James, and his cousin, Fr. Lawrence Anderton SJ (1577-1620); he married Anne, daughter of Edward Stafford esq. of Perry Hall (Staffs) and had a large family including three or four daughters who became nuns; died in 1640;
(4) Elizabeth Anderton (fl. 1598); married Thomas Tildesley (d. 1590); reported to Lord Burghley in 1598 as 'one of the most obstinate recusants';
(5) Ann Anderton; married Roger Bradshaw (d. 1641) of Haigh (Lancs);
(6) Alice Anderton; married John Orrell (d. 1627) of Turton Tower (Lancs);
(7) Isabel Anderton; married 1st, [forename unknown] Langtree, and 2nd, 1589, Gervase Rockley of Rockley (Yorks);
(8) Dorothy Anderton; married [forename unknown] Thompson.
He purchased the manor of Lostock in 1562 and built a new hall there the following year. In 1591 he built the gatehouse.
He died at Lostock, 5 May 1592.

Anderton, James (1557-1613), of Lostock Hall. Eldest son of Christopher Anderton (c.1533-92) of Lostock Hall and his wife Dorothy, daughter of Peter Anderton esq. of Anderton (Lancs), born before 1559. JP for Lancashire; Protonotary of the Court of Common Pleas for the Duchy of Lancaster from 1592-1608, and a farmer of outlaw's goods.  He must have outwardly conformed to the established religion, but he was described in 1590 as 'backward in religion' and his wife as 'a recusant, only lately conformed'; he was reconciled to the Catholic church in later life, and left a bequest of £1,500 for the maintenance of Catholic clergy in England.  He published The Protestant's Apology for the Catholic church, 1604 (2nd edn., 1608) which was read by King James I himself. He married, 1582, Margaret, daughter of Edward Tyldesley, but died childless.
He inherited the Lostock Hall estate from his father in 1592.
He died 7 September 1613.

Anderton, Christopher (1559-1619), of Lostock Hall.  Second son of Christopher Anderton (c.1533-92) of Lostock Hall and his wife Dorothy, daughter of Peter Anderton esq. of Anderton (Lancs), born 1559. Educated at Grays Inn (admitted 1588). A recusant. He married, 1600, Anne, daughter of Edward Scarisbrick, and had issue:
(1) Christopher Anderton (1608-50) (q.v.);
(2) Dorothy Anderton; married Anthony Munson of Carleton (Lincs);
(3) Margaret Anderton; married Henry Turvile (1602-71) esq. of Aston Flamville (who married 2nd, Elizabeth, daughter of Thomas Ravenscroft and 3rd, Grace, daughter of Humphry Berry), but died without issue.
He inherited the Lostock Hall estate from his elder brother in 1613, but two-thirds of his estates were sequestered for his recusancy in 1615 and granted on lease to Patrick Malde and John Gibb.  It is not clear when or how they were recovered.
He died in 1619.

Anderton, Christopher (1608-50), of Lostock Hall. Only son of Christopher Anderton (1559-1619) of Lostock Hall, and his wife Anne, daughter of Edward Scarisbrick, born 10 February 1607/8.  He was a ward of the Crown, 1619-28. A recusant, he was educated at Douai Abbey, 1620-21, but left after eighteen months, being 'not inclined to study'. He paid a fine of £30 to avoid knighthood in 1632. At the outbreak of the Civil War he joined the Royalist cause, but appears to have tired of it, and was later imprisoned at Liverpool and Chester for refusing to act for the king; he then escaped to Wales and fled to France. He married 1st, as a child and before 1619, Agnes (b. c.1607), daughter of John Preston of Furness, and 2nd, Alathea, daughter of Sir Francis Smith of Wootton Wawen (Warks) and sister of Sir Charles Smith, 1st Viscount Carrington, and had issue:
(1.1) Margaret Anderton (fl. 1650); died unmarried;
(2.1) Mary Anderton (c.1626-1702); married William Jones (d. 1667) of Treowen and Llanarth Court (Monmouths.), son of Sir Philip Jones of Treowen, and had issue five children; buried at Llanarth, 9 February 1702;
(2.2) Sir Francis Anderton (1628-78), 1st bt. (q.v.);
(2.3) Christopher Anderton (1629-68); married Anne Anderton of Anderton and had issue;
(2.4) twin, Robert Anderton (d. 1700); perhaps a priest or monk; died unmarried in Rome;
(2.5) twin, James Anderton; married Elizabeth (surname unknown) and had issue a daughter;
(2.6) Fr. Thurstan Celestine Anderton (c.1635-97); ordained as a secular priest, 1646, but later joined the Benedictines; chaplain to Lord Molyneux at Sefton Hall (Lancs); died at Sefton, 12 August 1697;
(2.7) Alathea Anderton (1638-79); an Augustinian nun at Louvain, with the name in religion of Alethea Magdalen (scholar, 1653; professed 1658); died 28 March 1679;
(2.8) Stephen Anderton (c.1640-1711); married Katherine, daughter of Thomas Tempest and had issue at least one son;
(2.9) Elizabeth Anderton (1641-1736); an Augustinian nun in Paris, with the name in religion of Elizabeth (professed 1664; sub-prioress 1702-14); died in Paris, 2 April 1736;
(2.10) Bruno Anderton (1644-1723), born in Wales; a priest;
(2.11) Anne Anderton (fl. 1664); married, before 1655, John Turberville of Penclin Castle (Glamorgans.) and had issue at least three sons and one daughter;
(2.12) Dorothy Anderton (d. 1653);
(2.13) Emeria Anderton (fl. 1664);
He inherited the Lostock Hall estate from his father in 1619, but was a ward of the Crown until 1628. By 1638, two-thirds of his property had been sequestered for his recusancy. His estates were sequestered by Parliament 'for popery and delinquency' and had not been recovered at his death. His widow lived in humble circumstances at Clitheroe (Lancs) during the Commonwealth.
He died in London, 7 July, and was buried 9 July 1650.

Anderton, Sir Francis (1628-78), 1st bt., of Lostock Hall. Eldest son of Christopher Anderton (1608-50) and his second wife, Alathea, daughter of Sir Francis Smith of Wootton Wawen (Warks), born 1628. He renounced the Catholic faith in order to secure possession of his family estates, but appears to have subsequently been reconciled to the faith. Created a baronet, 8 October 1677. He married, 1654, Elizabeth (d. 1706), daughter of Sir Charles Somerset of Troy House (Monmouths.), second son of the Earl of Worcester, and had issue including:
(1) Sir Charles Anderton (1657-91), 2nd bt. (q.v.);
(2) Christopher Anderton (fl. 1691);
(3) Fr. Francis Anderton (d. 1723), a Jesuit priest;
(4) John Anderton (fl. 1691).
He succeeded his father in 1650 as head of the family and, with his mother, petitioned the Crown for the release of the family estates. He purchased the manors of Anderton (Lancs) in 1668 and Lady Hall in Anderton in 1673.
He died in Paris, 9 February 1678, and was buried in St. Edmund's, the English Benedictine church there, where he is commemorated by a monument.

Anderton, Sir Charles (1657-91), 2nd bt., of Lostock Hall. Eldest son of Sir Francis Anderton (1628-78), 1st bt., and his wife Elizabeth, daughter of Sir Charles Somerset of Troy House (Monmouths.), born 1657. He married, 1675, Margaret (d. 1720), daughter of Lawrence Ireland of Lydiate Hall (Lancs) and had issue:
(1) Sir Charles Anderton (d. 1705), 3rd bt.; died unmarried at St. Omer (France), 1705.
(2) Sir James Anderton (d. 1710), 4th bt.; died unmarried at St. Omer (France), 5 October 1710;
(3) Sir Lawrence Anderton (c.1680-1724), 5th bt.; educated at St. Omer (France); an English Benedictine monk at Dieulwart near Verdun and at Lanspey (Germany); renounced his faith to secure possession of the sequestered Lostock estate from the Crown, 21 May 1724; died unmarried in London, 4 October 1724;
(4) Sir Francis Anderton (1681-1760), 6th bt. (q.v.);
(5) Mary Anderton (fl. 1720); married, 1697, Henry Blundell (1663-1711) of Ince Blundell (Lancs) and had issue, including Robert Blundell (1700-73), whose son Henry Blundell (1724-1811) inherited the Lostock estate in 1760;
(6) Elizabeth Anderton;
(7) Anne Anderton.
He inherited the Lostock Hall estate from his father in 1678. His wife was heir to the Lydiate Park estate, which came into their possession in 1682/3 and passed to their children in turn.
He died 30 December 1691 and was buried at Bolton-le-Moors (Lancs), 4 January 1691/2. His will was proved at Chester, 8 March 1693. His widow died in London, 26 August 1720 and was buried at St Pancras (Middx).

Anderton, Sir Francis (1681-1760), 6th bt., of Lostock Hall. Fourth and youngest son of Sir Charles Anderton (1657-91), 2nd bt., of Lostock Hall, and his wife Margaret, daughter of Lawrence Ireland of Lydiate Hall (Lancs), born 1680.  He wrongfully assumed the baronetcy in 1710 in the place of his brother who was a Catholic priest, and was widely known by that title before inheriting it in earnest in 1724.  He took part in the Jacobite rising, was present at the Battle of Preston, 1715, and was convicted of high treason and sentenced to death, but afterwards reprieved; he forfeited his estates for life. He was later described as a 'gallant sportsman', and in 1744 caught a prize perch which many years after was kept stuffed at Lydiate Hall. He married, c.1707/8, Frances (1686-1740), daughter of Sir Henry Bedingfield, 2nd bt. of Oxburgh Hall (Norfolk) but had no issue.
He inherited the Lostock Hall estate from his brother in 1710, but it was sequestered in 1716 for his participation in the Jacobite rebellion of 1715. In 1724 it was returned to his elder brother, Sir Lawrence Anderton, 5th bt. when he abjured his faith, but on his death reverted to the Crown and remained sequestered until Sir Francis' death in 1760. At the time of his death be was living at Lydiate Hall. Following his death the estates passed to his sister's grandson, Henry Blundell (1724-1810) of Ince Blundell.
He died 12 February and was buried at Halsall (Lancs), 18 February 1760.


J.B. Burke, Extinct and Dormant Baronetcies, 1841, pp. 10-11; N.G. Philips, Views of Old Halls of Lancashire and Cheshire, 1822; H. Shaw, Details of Elizabethan architecture, 1839, pl. 7; G.E. Cokayne, Complete Baronetage, vol. 4, p. 92; VCH Lancashire, vol. 5, 1911, pp. 95-99; J.M. Robinson, A guide to the country houses of the north-west, 1991, p.217; A.F. Allison, "Who was John Brereley?", Recusant History, 16 (1982), pp. 17-40; M. Hardman, A kingdom in two parishes: Lancashire religious writers and the English monarchy, 1521-1689, 1998, especially ch.23; C. Hartwell, M. Hyde & Sir N. Pevsner, The buildings of England: Lancashire - Manchester and the South-East, 2004, pp. 243-44.

Location of archives

Anderton family of Lostock, baronets: deeds and a few estate papers, 16th-19th cents are included in the Blundell of Ince Blundell papers [Lancashire Record Office DDIN]. There are also a few relevant documents among the Anderton of Euxton muniments.

Coat of arms

Sable, three shacklebolts argent.

Revision and acknowledgements
This post was first published 17 August 2014, and was updated 17 November 2022.


  1. Thank you for this historic view/timeline of the Anderton family. I am writing my 2nd book and as such researching the connection of the Anderton name with Billinge and the Birchley Hall Printing press. My first book "Lines of Tamar" was launched a few weeks back and since the title may be a bit of a giveaway - I do enjoy genealogical detective stories. Thank you for this...

  2. I found that, from before 1841 to 1861 Lostock Hall, albeit tenanted-out, was inhabited by a long-standing Catholic Farming family of Swarbrick, originally hailing from the Kirkham area on the Fylde, moving to Glazebrook where many of their children were born, before moving to Lostock Hall. in the Censuses, only Jane Swarbrick, a Widow, was left as the head of the family, she farming in her own name, 65 Acres (presumably Cheshire acres, so 140 statute acres) with 4 men employed. Latterly her daughter, Jane, helped to run the farm. Jane Swarbrick died in 1862 aged 86yrs, buried in Tonge Cemetery. He daughter, Alice, married a na also from Glazebrook, William Williamson, and he and Alice moved with the Swarbricks to Lostock, although William Williamson was just a Farm labourer.

  3. My name is Peter Willis. I reside with some of our family in Cairns Australia.
    For my 74th birthday I received a "My Heritage" DNA evaluation and in the process after more than thirty years of mediocre research I now think I am getting on the track of some relatives who I am enthused to hear about anyway.
    Anderton is our apparent connecting name and I am hoping for some enlightenment
    on the family of Lostock, Lawrence Anderton/Sybilla Parker circa 1497 to 1574 (former) and latter circa 1500 to 1574. Parents and before if possible please.


Please leave a comment if you have any additional information or corrections to offer, or if you are able to help with additional images of the people or buildings in this post.