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History

The village of Waddington has for a long time been a favourite haunt of visitors from many parts of the country. Nestling below the shadow of Pendle Hill, with the main road leading from Clitheroe and Brungerley Bridge on the Ribble through the parish to Waddington Fell and Slaidburn.

Many people break their journey to admire the peace and serenity of the village with the stream running by the side of the road.

Dominating the village is the Church of Saint Helen, the tower being clearly visible from all approaches. It was built over four hundred years ago in the local grey stone quarried from Waddington Fell.

Waddington, according to legend, was founded by the Anglo-Saxon chiefton, Wadda, or Wade. The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle, one of the oldest histories in existence, relates that he was concerned in a conspiracy which resulted in the murder of Aethelred the King of Northumbria in 794 A.D.

Four years later, the king who succeeded Aethelred, fought a battle against the conspirators at Billsngahoh (Billington, near Whalley), resulting in great losses on both sides and Wadda's army was defeated, with he himself fleeing the battlefield.His name was given to a knoll in the grounds of Waddow Hall where is supposed to have encamped before the battle and which is known as Wade's Hill.

Waddington was originally in the parish of Mitton, together with the townships of Bashall, West Bradford and Grindleton. in 1220, Robert of Mitton handed over the advowson of Mitton to the Abbot and Covent of Cockersand in Lancashire. No doubt a chapel existed in Waddington in early times, but the first mention by name of a chaplain, or Chantry priest occurs in a deed of 1324.

In 1379 the poll tax was paid by fourteen households in Waddington, twenty one in Grindleton, thirty seven in West Bradford, twenty one in Mitton and twenty in Bashall. By the end of the 14th century, the population in this part of the Mitton parish had grown so that it was considered advisable to form a separate parish. on 17th June 1438, Waddington, West Bradford and Grindleton were severed from the parish of Mitton and constitued a separate parish.

On the dissolution of the Cockersand Abbey in the 16th century, the Tempest family acquired the right to advowson, or patronage. Richard Tempest (of Bracewell) sold this right to his nephew, John Bannester, who resided at Waddington Old Hall in 1601. When the Bannester family left the Old Hall during the 17th century, the advowson was sold to the Parkers of Browsholme Hall and it has remained in the Parker family up to the present day.