At one time Leigh was the name given to the shops and houses around the church although the district actually consisted of three townships :-
* Bedford * Pennington * Westleigh
In 1875 the three old townships were amalgamated. In 1894 a small part of the township of Atherton was also added and the area became the Urban District of Leigh. In August 1899 it was granted a Charter and became the Borough of Leigh. In the local government reorganisation of 1974, Leigh became part of the Wigan Metropolitan Borough.
In Leigh Town Hall there are stained glass windows, on the main staircase, which serve as a reminder of some of the landed families who lived in the area.