Astley, Greater Manchester

Astley, Greater Manchester

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Astley, Greater Manchester

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Astley is a settlement within the Metropolitan Borough of Wigan in Greater Manchester, England, variously described as a suburb or a village. Astley lies on flat land to the northwest of the city of Manchester, and is crossed by the Bridgewater Canal and the A580 "East Lancashire" road. It forms a continuous urban area with neighbouring Tyldesley, and is equidistant from Wigan and Manchester city centre, both away. The Astley Mosley Common ward of Wigan MBC, which covers both settlements, had a population of 11,654 in the 2001 Census.

Historically a part of Lancashire, the name Astley is derived from Old English, indicating Anglo-Saxon settlement. It means "east Leigh" or "east of Leigh", a reference to Astley's location relative to the town of Leigh; or ēastlēah = "eastern wood or clearing". Throughout the Middle Ages, Astley constituted a township within the parish of Leigh and hundred of West Derby. Astley first appears in written form as Asteleghe in 1210, when its Lord of the Manor granted land to the religious order of Premonstratensian canons at Cockersand Abbey.

Medieval and early modern Astley is distinguished by the dignitaries who occupied Damhouse, the local manor house around which a settlement expanded. The newly extended Bridgewater Canal reached Astley in 1795, and the Liverpool and Manchester Railway in 1830. The Industrial Revolution introduced mechanised......
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