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St Elizabeth's Church, Scarisbrick.JPG
St Elizabeth's Church
Grid reference: SD382130
Location: 53°36’36"N, 2°56’2"W
Population: 3,554  (2011)
Post town: Ormskirk, Southport
Postcode: L40, PR8, PR9
Dialling code: 01704
Local Government
Council: West Lancashire
West Lancashire

Scarisbrick is a village and civil parish in Lancashire. The A570, the main road between Ormskirk and Southport, runs through Scarisbrick, and much of the village lies along it. As a result, it does not have a traditional village centre, though the junction with the A5147 is close to the geographic centre.


Scarisbrick literally means "Skar's slope" and comes from the Old Norse Skar (a personal name) + -es (possessive) + brekka ("slope"). It is thought that the personal name is Danish, though the second element suggests Norwegian settlement. The "slope" may refer to a slight incline between two streams near the site of Scarisbrick Hall. The name was recorded as Scharisbrec c.1200, Skaresbrek in 1238, and finally Scarisbrick c.1240.[1]


World War II pillbox at Heatons Bridge.

In its early history, travellers tended to avoid Scarisbrick township. Martin Mere, a large lake with associated marshlands and peat bogs, made the immediate area quite difficult to cross. Much of the flat land between Southport and Liverpool is polder reclaimed from marshes and the lake. The modern-day hamlets of Barrison Green, Bescar, Carr Cross, Drummersdale, Hurlston, Pinfold, and Snape Green were formed from the early farms and settlements that did arise in the area.

Scarisbrick still contains many structures and artefacts from its past. The Old School House, constructed in 1809, has served several roles in its history and now contains two residences. A pillbox constructed during World War II can be found near a bridge over the Leeds and Liverpool Canal. It was from Pinfold, where the canal is closest to Southport, that William Sutton picked up waterway passengers for transport to his "Original Hotel", known better as "Duke's Folly" - the foundation of Southport. The canal now is used for recreational purposes. The only Catholic church there, St Elizabeth's, was founded by the Marquis of Casteja and was named after his wife. There are many other churches there as well.

"Wheelwrights House", a former workshop located on Southport Road, is another of the many listed buildings in Scarisbrick.[2]


Scarisbrick is situated on the A570 road, which runs north-west through the parish between Ormskirk and Southport for a distance of approximately five miles. The A5147 road, which runs north from Maghull through Halsall, terminates at its junction with the A570 at Scarisbrick. There are also two B roads, the B5242 which leads towards Burscough, and the B5243 which provides an alternative route into Southport. The nearest motorway links are junction 3 of the M58, just over four miles to the south-east at Bickerstaffe, and junction 27 of the M6, which is about eight miles due east at Wrightington.[3]

Bescar Lane railway station, which opened in 1855,[4] is situated on the Manchester to Southport Line. As of May 2015, trains generally operate eight times a day Monday–Saturday in each direction, travelling westbound to Southport (12–15 minutes) and eastbound to Manchester stations via Wigan Wallgate (65–70 minutes). There are no train services at Bescar Lane on Sundays.[5]

Heathey Lane Halt, a station on the Barton branch of the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway, was situated on the boundary between Scarisbrick and Halsall, just to the north of the B5243 road bridge. The station was in operation between 1907 and 1938, and the line itself closed in 1952.[4]

Notable people

  • Derek Acorah (real name Derek Johnson, born Bootle 1950), spirit medium and television personality known for his work on the series Most Haunted, lives in Scarisbrick.[6]
  • Michael Hastings, Baron Hastings of Scarisbrick, CBE (born 1958), life peer educated at Scarisbrick Hall School.[7]
  • John Lennon (1940–1980), singer-songwriter and co-founder of the Beatles, employed as a labourer at Mill Brow waterworks in 1959.[8]
  • Johnny Mitchell (born 1971), former professional American football player, coaches American sports at Scarisbrick Hall School.[9]
  • Samuel Nevill (1837–1921), first Bishop of Dunedin in New Zealand and former curate of Scarisbrick.[10]
  • St John Plessington (c.1637–1679), priest educated at Scarisbrick Hall, canonised as one of the Forty Martyrs of England and Wales in 1970.[11]
  • Will Sergeant (born 1958), musician and guitarist with Echo & the Bunnymen, lives in Scarisbrick.[12]
  • James Valiant (1884–1917), cricketer formerly of the Morris Dancers public house, died of wounds during World War I.[13]


  1. Mills, David (1976). The Place Names of Lancashire. B. T. Batsford. ISBN 0-7134-3248-9. 
  3. "Election Maps". Retrieved 11 April 2015. 
  4. 4.0 4.1 Gell, Rob (1986). An Illustrated Survey of Railway Stations Between Southport & Liverpool 1848–1986. Heyday Publishing Company. ISBN 0-947562-04-4. 
  5. "Timetables - Bescar Lane". Retrieved 11 April 2015. 
  6. "Ormskirk is home to the world's most haunted house - says Derek Acorah". Ormskirk & Skelmersdale Advertiser. 19 March 2009. Retrieved 11 April 2015. 
  7. "Michael John Hastings, Hastings of Scarisbrick". Retrieved 19 April 2015. 
  8. Bowman, Jamie (23 January 2014). "John Lennon's lost summer building Scarisbrick waterworks revealed in new book". Ormskirk & Skelmersdale Advertiser. Retrieved 15 April 2015. 
  9. "NFL legend takes up role coaching US sports at Scarisbrick Hall School". Southport Visiter. 17 November 2011. Retrieved 15 April 2015. 
  10. {{#invoke:citation/CS1|citation |CitationClass=encyclopaedia }}
  11. "The martyr whom King Charles II did nothing to help". Catholic Herald. 16 July 2010. Retrieved 13 April 2015. 
  12. "Win tickets to see Echo and the Bunnymen at Liverpool Olympia". Southport Visiter. 28 May 2010. Retrieved 11 April 2015. 
  13. "Flannels—Now Khaki". The Ormskirk Advertiser: p. 5. 18 November 1915. 


  • Duggan, Mona (1996). A History of Scarisbrick. Carnegie Publishing. ISBN 1-85936-040-8. 
  • Edwards, Margaret (1987). Scarisbrick in Times Past. Countryside Publications. ISBN 0-86157-267-X. 

Outside links

("Wikimedia Commons" has material
about Scarisbrick)