A descendant of the Langley family descends on Middleton
Middletonia was delighted to welcome a descendant of the Langley family who came all the way from Ireland to visit Middleton during the weekend's Heritage Open Days. Peter Langley from County Cork has a firm paper trail back to Richard de Langley (or de Langeleghe) who was born at Langley in about 1320. This Richard married well and his wife inherited the manors of Prestwich and Pendlebury. Peter's painstaking research into the very long history of the Langley's first brought him to Middleton in the Autumn of 2009.
During this visit, he happened upon the stone in the grounds of St Leonard's Church which is believed to be a cider/fruit press that came from Langley Hall. Fascinated by this stone, and also having a keen interest in coat of arms and family crests, he took photographs back home with him to try to decipher exactly what was once carved into this mysterious object. Using various techniques in computer programmes combined with his knowledge of the Langley crests, his findings are somewhat remarkable. Peter kindly sent me details to include here on the site which can be seen here.
Having kept in touch ever since, Peter was keen to include coming back to Middleton during his latest UK visit last week, so a friend and I met him up at St Leonard's Church on Saturday morning. As this visit coincided with this year's Heritage Open Day events, as well as having another look at the stone, we were all able to view the inside of the church in all its glory and enjoy the interesting information available from helpful guides including well known local historian Geoff Wellens.
The not so promising weather held out nicely and a walk across Jubilee Park led us to the Long Street Methodist Church, an architectural gem designed by Middleton's own Edgar Wood. Here guides were also available to share information and we were able to tour the grounds, also taking in the school buildings attached and pleasant court area, as well as taking plenty of pictures.
We couldn't end the afternoon without taking Peter to our historic Olde Boar's Head for a sit down and some liquid refreshment (and a big plate of chips) before he headed off to Prestwich for more Langley-connected sight-seeing. What a thoroughly delighful gentleman Peter was, and a real pleasure to meet! Peter continues in his research of the Langley family and told us about a book he has begun writing....so watch this space for more on that!
Peter has since kindly sent us the info on the Langley family found via the link above this article.
The editor, March 2012