TWO churches in Leigh are set to close at the end of the month.

Archdiocese of Liverpool has confirmed Our Lady of the Rosary on Plank Lane and Twelve Apostles on Nel Pan Lane, in the parish of St Edmund Arrowsmith, will soon be shut.

The decision has been made following a consultation.

An Archdiocese of Liverpool spokesman said: "For over 15 years we have been discussing how to best to meet the pastoral needs of Catholics in the different parts of Leigh.

"This led to the creation of two new parishes: St Edmund Arrowsmith and St Margaret Clitherow in 2011.

"A recent decision has been made that there will be three priests to serve these two parishes, in order for that to happen two of the seven churches will be closed.

"Such decisions are never easy as churches are not just building but places of sacred memory.

"These memories will be taken with the people to new places of worship.

"This will give us the opportunity to be bold and creative in our pastoral planning and in carrying out the mission of the church."

A Mass of Thanksgiving will be celebrated at Our Lady’s on Thursday, August 29 at 7pm and one at Twelve Apostles on Friday, August 30 at 7pm.

The masses will be celebrated by Bishop Tom Williams, Auxiliary Bishop of Liverpool.