Built as a Waterloo church in 1826, St John the Evangelist, Farnworth has been extended and modified over the years.  

The original nave was a "preaching box", which was extended in 1873 with a traditional neo-gothic chancel and three sided balcony.

The Church has a number of elegant Victorian stained glass windows, the finest being the great east end window, portraying the life and ministry of Christ, dedicated to the memory of the paper manufacturing pioneer Thomas Bonsar Crompton. Recently a new window was commissioned to replace a blank window, dedicated to the Mothers Union, and given in memory of Gladys Lees.

At the east end, the original high altar sits within a carved wooden reredos, and is used on Easter Sunday and Christmas Day. All other services are at the nave altar, which was commissioned as part of the renovation works.

Between 1991 and 1998, a series of restoration projects were undertaken, the last of which involved complete closure of the church building for 8 months.

Our parish covers a diverse area south of Bolton.  The parish formerly had 4 church buildings but now has just one – St. John the Evangelist – which is a beautiful Grade 2 listed building and a lovely place to visit.

Enjoy reading A History of St. Johns 1826 - 1976 

Click HERE to download the pdf

Appearance and Location of St. John's Church 

Please click on THIS LINK to read this fascinating article taken from the April 2018 issue of St. Johns Magazine

A History In Photographs

Picture Gallery of the outside of St John's Church kindly submitted by Marcus Castle.

Click here

Why not visit Marcus' website at


At the rear of the church above the entrance is the bell tower. Click here details of the bells and a slideshow of some breathtaking views from the tower taken by Mr Derek Gee and Mr Vic Gethin.

Click here to take a tour of our unique stained-glass windows - photos taken by Mr Phil Scowcroft...

To view a slideshow of the Church as it was going through restoration in 1998 as taken by Mr Derek Gee, click here

St Johns featured in the 2009 BBC Drama "All the Small Things".
The church was renamed St Cecelia's, and moved magically to Glossop! Click here for more....


A timeline History of St. Johns, by Arnold Cragg

Please click HERE to download the excel spreadsheet


Vicars of old:Courtesy of V Gethin 

Snippets - A History Of St John's from Newspapers and Other Journals.

A Timeline History of St John's from 1758 to present day, archived by Mr Arnold Cragg.

The St John's War Memorials

Part 1

Part 2

Thankyou to Mr Arnold Cragg for this documentation.

Souvenir Centenary booklet 1826 -1926 about the church. Copied from an original.

Thankyou to Dorothy McGlynn.

There are around 40 pages, including some interesting advertisements.

Click here for thumbnails or click here to download images of the complete booklet.


Vicars of St John the Evangelist

Parish Church of Farnworth with Kearsley

from 1826 to present day

Archived by Arnold Cragg



Please click on THIS LINK to download and read Arnold's fascinating document.

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