Visitor numbers soar at popular Astley Hall

The exterior of Astley Hall lit up during Astley Illuminated
The exterior of Astley Hall lit up during Astley Illuminated

CHORLEY’S ‘jewel in the crown’ is glittering brightly after becoming even more popular.

Folk flocked to the town’s historic Astley Hall last year - many of them from outside the borough.

New figures revealed the number of visitors to Astley Hall and Coach House soared.

Nearly 50,000 people visited between April and December - over 6,000 more than the previous year and the most the Chorley Council-owned attraction has ever seen.

More activities and events all year round, like Picnic in the Park, Astley Illuminated and the opportunity to meet Father Christmas, as well as exhibitions including Brainstorm: The Art of Bryan Talbot and Astley Then and Now, all helped to pull in the crowds.

Additionally, the Chorley Remembers Experience in the Coach House, attracted thousands of visitors in the year the country commemorated 100 years since the start of World War One.

A delighted councillor Bev Murray, who oversees the Astley complex, said: “Astley Hall’s visitor numbers have been rising steadily for the past few years but 2014 has proven to be an absolutely bumper year for the ‘jewel in Chorley’s crown’.

“We know many of our visitors are local and we continue to attract school groups who incorporate the history of the hall into their lessons.

“This past year we have also seen many visitors from outside the area discovering the hidden treasures of Astley Hall and returning again and we’d like to thank everyone who continues to support the attraction.”

Last June, Astley Hall was awarded a certificate of excellence from Trip Advisor for consistently gaining top reviews from visitors.