Failsworth is a town within the Metropolitan Borough of Oldham, in Greater Manchester, England. It lies on undulating ground, on the course of the Rochdale Canal and north bank of the River Medlock. It is west-northwest of Ashton-under-Lyne, south-southwest of Oldham and to the east-northeast of Manchester city centre. Failsworth lies within the orbital M60 motorway, which skirts Failsworth's eastern boundary. Failsworth had a total population of 20,555 in 2001.
Historically a part of Lancashire, until the 19th century Failsworth was a small agricultural township linked, ecclesiastically, with the parish of Manchester. Farming was the main industry of this rural area, with locals supplementing their incomes by hand-loom weaving in the domestic system. The introduction of textile manufacture during the Industrial Revolution facilitated a process of unplanned urbanisation in the area, giving rise to Failsworth as a mill town, marked architecturally by several large redbrick cotton mills.
Failsworth's major landmark is the Failsworth Pole—a maypole which occupies the site of several former political poles. Daisy Nook is a country park at Failsworth's southern boundary with Droylsden. The town encompasses the village of Woodhouses, situated along Failsworth's eastern boundary. Notable residents of Failsworth have included the poet and writer Benjamin Brierley, who was born and raised by a weaving family.
In 1954 Failsworth absorbed part of the Limehurst Rural District which was abolished in that year.