Caton with Littledale, Lancashire Family History Guide

Caton with Littledale is an Ecclesiastical Parish in the county of Lancashire, created in 1737 from Lancaster St Mary Ancient Parish.

Other places in the parish include: Littledale.

Alternative names: Caton, Caton and Littledale

Parish church:

Parish registers begin:

  • Parish registers: 1585
  • Bishop’s Transcripts: 1673

Nonconformists include: Independent/Congregational and Wesleyan Methodist.

Adjacent Parishes

Parish History

A Topographical Dictionary of England 1848

CATON, a parochial chapelry, and a township, in the parish of Lancaster, hundred of Lonsdale south of the Sands, N. division of the county of Lancaster, 5 miles (N. E. by E.) from Lancaster; containing 1195 inhabitants. The manor was a possession of the Gernets, the ancient foresters of Lancaster: there was also here a family named Caton, who held the manor by homage and service; and in connexion with the place, are mentioned, successively, the families of Curwen, Chorley, Stanley, Dalton, Riddell, Rawlinson, and Edmondson. The chapelry comprises four districts or quarters, viz.: Brookhouse, Caton Green, Littledale, and Town-End; and contains by measurement 8373a. 2r. 16p., whereof 600 acres are arable, 3300 meadow and pasture, 400 woodland, and about 4000 moorland. It lies on the road from Lancaster to Hornby, and on the eastern bank of the river Lune, which is here crossed by a bridge, with a road from it leading to Halton. The beauty of the diversified scenery elicited a warm eulogium from the poet Gray, in a letter to Dr. Warton; and Dr. Whitaker, in describing the beauties of the Vale of the Lune, says, “Immediately on approaching Caton, its character as the first of northern valleys is established by the beautiful windings here of the river, the fruitful alluvial lands upon its banks, the wooded and cultivated ridge that bounds it on the north-west, the striking appearance of Hornby Castle in front, and above all the noble form of Ingleborough, presenting an assemblage of features not united to compose any rival scenery in the kingdom.” On the top of the moor are several freestone-quarries, and an inferior stone is found on the surface. There are two silk-mills, two cotton-mills, and a flax-mill, in operation, employing in all 400 persons; and at Grassyard Hall is a corn-mill. Scarthwaite, on the bank of the Lune, is the seat of Adam Hodgson, Esq., commanding the whole extent of the vale, and the winding course of the river; the precise spot selected by Mr. Hodgson for his house and terrace, under the auspices of Mr. Gilpin and Sir John Nasmyth, has long been distinguished as “Gray’s Station,” and shares in all the exquisite scenery that gives celebrity to the vale. The Elms, and the land around it, are the property of John Walmsley, Esq., of Richmond House, near Lancaster, who is also owner of Caton mill. John Edmondson, Esq., is lord of the manor.

The living is a perpetual curacy; net income, £140, with a house erected in 1844; patron, the Vicar of Lancaster. The ancient chapel was built about the year 1245; of this structure, the beautiful Saxon gateway and the font alone remain: the present edifice was erected about 300 years ago, and has a square tower. There are places of worship for Wesleyans and Independents; and a national school supported by subscription. The interest of £250 was left in 1838, by Richard Sparling Berry, Esq., for parents who educate their children without parochial relief: four cottages are free of rent for poor persons; and about £5 are annually distributed to the poor. In 1803, a Roman mill-stone, eight feet long, was found in Artle beck, bearing the name of the Emperor Adrian; and subsequently a stone with consonants on it, which, when supplied by the vowel e, form an ingenious monitory couplet.

Source: A Topographical Dictionary of England by Samuel Lewis 1848

Parish Records

Lancashire Archives

Lancashire FH & Heraldry Society

Manchester Archives and Local History


Lancashire BMD

England, Lancashire, Parish Registers 1538-1910

England, Lancashire Non-Conformist Church Records, 1647-1996

Catholic Parish Registers of Liverpool 1741-1773

St James’ Cemetery Burials Liverpool

Manchester Burial Records

England, Lancashire, Oldham Cemetery Registers, 1797-2004

England, Lancashire, Rusholme Road Cemetery 1821-1933

Oldham Burial Records

Tameside Burial Records

Chorlton Upon Medlock Burials 1821-1933


Lancaster Convict Database 1800s

Lancashire Fusiliers

Lancashire Infantry Museum

Loyal North Lancashire Regiment

Lancashire Roll of Honour

St. Helens Roll of Honour

Lancashire Police Records

Lancashire Lantern - archive of local old photographs, postcards and other images

Manchester Local Images

Records for England

Births and Baptism Records

England Births and Christenings, 1538-1975

Great Britain, Births and Baptisms, 1571-1977

England and Wales Birth Registration Index, 1837-2008

United Kingdom, Maritime Births, Marriages, and Deaths, 1787-1933

Marriage Records

England Marriages, 1538–1973

Great Britain Marriages, 1797-1988

England and Wales Marriage Registration Index, 1837-2005

United Kingdom, Maritime Births, Marriages, and Deaths, 1787-1933

Death Records

England Death Records, 1998-2015

England Deaths and Burials, 1538-1991

Great Britain Deaths and Burials, 1778-1988

England and Wales Death Registration Index 1837-2007

United Kingdom, Maritime Births, Marriages, and Deaths, 1787-1933

England and Wales, National Index of Wills and Administrations, 1858-1957

England and Wales, Prerogative Court of Canterbury Wills, 1640-1660

Non-Conformist Records

England and Wales Non-Conformist Record Indexes (RG4-8), 1588-1977


England and Wales Census, 1841

England and Wales Census, 1851

England and Wales Census, 1861

England and Wales Census, 1871

England and Wales Census, 1881

England and Wales Census, 1891

England and Wales Census, 1901

England and Wales Census, 1911


United Kingdom, Merchant Navy Seamen Records, 1835-1941

War and Conflict

Great Britain, War Office Registers, 1772-1935

United Kingdom, Chelsea Pensioners’ Service Records, 1760-1913

United Kingdom, Royal Hospital Chelsea: Discharge Documents of Pensioners 1760-1887 (WO 122)

United Kingdom, Maritime Births, Marriages, and Deaths, 1787-1933

United Kingdom, Militia Service Records, 1806-1915

United Kingdom, World War I Service Records, 1914-1920

United Kingdom, World War I Women’s Army Auxiliary Corps Records, 1917-1920

Newspaper Archives

British Newspaper Archive, Family Notices

British Newspaper Archives, Obituaries


  • County: Lancashire
  • Civil Registration District: Lancaster
  • Probate Court: Court of the Bishop (Consistory) of the Commissary of the Archdeaconry of Richmond Western Deaneries - Amounderness
  • Diocese: Manchester
  • Rural Deanery: Amounderness
  • Poor Law Union: Caton Gilbert Union
  • Hundred: Lonsdale
  • Province: York