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9) and, though Blome in 1673 thought it but a small town, he states that 'its market, which is on Tuesdays, is well furnished with yarn and provisions.' (fn.
10) Situated on one of the chief roads to the north, the people must often have witnessed soldiers on the march, but the first recorded act of warfare belongs to the Civil War.
The old Wigan and Lancaster Canal, part of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, goes north through the Blackbrook valley.
In the centre of the town the Manchester and Preston road, there called Market Street, runs almost due north.
On the east side of the town the Blackbrook flows south to the Yarrow, and beyond it, towards Anglezarke and Withnell Moors, is the district called Healey; part of the boundary on that side is formed by Healey Nab, a hill 682 ft. Crosse Hall and Cowling are in the south of Healey and Botany Bay in the north.The township contained 232 hearths liable to pay the hearth tax in 1666, this being the largest number in any township in the hundred.There were several considerable residences: Astley Hall had fifteen hearths, Mrs.The present road was made during the cotton famine succeeding the American [Civil] War.' (fn.3) On the east side of the town another road goes north and then passes through Heapey and turns to Blackburn.