Middleton has been since 1974 a town within the Metropolitan Borough of Rochdale, in Greater Manchester, England. It stands on the River Irk, 5 miles (8.0 km) south-southwest of Rochdale, and 4.4 miles (7.1 km) north-northeast of Manchester city centre. At the time of the United Kingdom census of 2001, Middleton had a population of 45,580. The town lies on the northern edge of Manchester, with Blackley to the south and Moston to the south east.
Prior to 1974 Middleton was located in Lancashire and took its name from being situated in the centre of several circumjacent settlements. Its early history is marked by its status as an ecclesiastical parish of the hundred of Salford, ruled by aristocratic families. The Church of St Leonard--a Grade I listed building--lay at the centre of this community for centuries. In 1770, Middleton was a village of 20 houses; during the 18th and 19th centuries it grew into a thriving and populous seat of textile manufacture, so much so that Middleton was granted borough status in 1886.
Varyingly agreed divisions and suburbs of Middleton include Alkrington, Bowlee, Boarshaw, Cheapside, Greenhill, Top of Hebers, Hollin, Hopwood, Jumbo, Langley, Middleton Junction, Moorclose, Rhodes, Stake Hill, Stanycliffe, Thornham and Tonge.
For more information, see the EN Wikipedia article Middleton, Greater Manchester.