Planning Wycoller Events for 2015

Saturday 1st November was the Friends of Wycoller AGM and planning meeting for 2015, David M. attending on behalf of Pendle Heritage.  It was a good positive meeting with plenty of events being planned for next year. Lancashire County Council were going to renovate Copy House and a new warden, Sarah, will be moving in soon – excellent news! On the heritage front, we discussed the current Pendle Heritage study of sheep folds, and whether some could be restored, and establishing a woollen weavers heritage trail around country park. Hopefully, this could be done by 14th June and the World of Wool event.  The current condition of Bank House Farm was also raised.

Excellent Friday Lecture

Our evening lecture series got off to a great start on Friday with a fascinating talk by Neal Charlton of the Manchester conservation architects Buttress. It was called New Buildings on Ancient Monuments and took a close look at recent new buildings the practice has constructed on well known ancient monuments, including Clitheroe Castle, Wythenshaw Hall, Helmsley Castle and Wentworth Castle Gardens. We were surprised at the great lengths the designer went on these sites and the unusual problems that Neal had to work around, such as medieval wells and hidden archaeological remains that might bring the project to a halt at any moment. An audience of thirty was entertained and informed by someone who is both an expert and an enthusiast for the built heritage.

Last few days to see the famous Ribchester Roman cavalry helmet

Ribchester Roman Museum is celebrationg its centenary this year and showing off the famous Ribchester cavalry helmet and mask. This was found in the village in 1796 near what was the Eastern gate of the fort but subsequently taken to the British Museum. The helmet was voted Britain’s “second best Roman find”, behind the Vindolanda tablets, by the viewers of Time Team.

Those who have gone to see the helmet say that it is much much better than the copy which the museum normally displays.

We understand that the helmet goes back to London at the end of this month, so make sure you see it while you can.

Historic Farm Buildings Group – Lancashire Conference – Sunday

Yesterday, we visited a host of small to medium sized barns but, today, it was time to see two really big ones. However, before we set off in the coach, Jamie Quartermaine of Oxford Archaeology North gave us a fascinating presentation called ‘Flowing through Time: the archaeology of the Ribble Valley’ introducing delegates to the impressive archaeology of the valley, from Ribblehead to Hesketh Sands. Continue reading “Historic Farm Buildings Group – Lancashire Conference – Sunday”

Historic Farm Buildings Group – Lancashire Conference – Saturday

Downham Hall
Downham Hall

The conference got underway at 9.15am at Downham Village Hall with a wonderful talk by Joan Grundy about the development of dairy farming in Lancashire from the 17th to 20th centuries and how history impacted on the design of cow sheds and cattle stalls. Joan gave us a real insight into how barns and cowsheds actually worked and how they grew steadily larger. Continue reading “Historic Farm Buildings Group – Lancashire Conference – Saturday”

Historic Farm Buildings Group – Lancashire Conference Gets Underway

People from as far away as Cornwall arrived at Downham Village Hall this evening for the  Historic Farm Buildings Group  2014 conference. There was a nice relaxed atmosphere as delegates were eager to study the beautiful Pendleside farms and barns over the next few days. Two members of Pendle Heritage were also there.  Continue reading “Historic Farm Buildings Group – Lancashire Conference Gets Underway”

Clearing the Kitchen Garden – Day 1

We began to clear the kitchen garden yesterday. We first removed useful plants, to recycle in the garden, then the weeds and then cut backoverhanging branches from the trees by the little stream. It was a lovely hot day though fortunately for us, we were working in the shade.

The next work day is Thursday (tomorrow).

Wycoller Monuments Project 10 – last meeting before Summer break

Our tenth and final meeting of this season was a rainy affair where we only got going after lunch. We began with a review of the work done this year and last and agreed that the setting of the various monuments and bridges is now much enhanced. We have steadily improved the immediate vicinity of Pepper Hill Barn, Aisled Barn, Packhorse Bridge, Clam Bridge, Clapper Bridge, Wycoller Beck and Wycoller Hall. Continue reading “Wycoller Monuments Project 10 – last meeting before Summer break”

Wycoller Hall Excavation – 17th May

We had a great sunny Saturday, excavating to the rear of Wycoller Hall as part of the Wonders and Mysteries of Wycoller day.  In the adjacent Aisled Barn there was an exhibition of our last dig at Wycoller, the site of the Georgian Hot House plus a collection of prehistoric finds by a member of the Friends of Wycoller. So archaeology was well represented. The weather was almost perfect, just a touch windy for the paper work for the super critical!

Continue reading “Wycoller Hall Excavation – 17th May”

May Garden

The kitchen garden has become a subtle green oasis over the last two weeks.  I have added some photos to the Spring Pinterest Board which I hope you will like.

Many thanks to our gardeners and garden volunteers for all their efforts. If you fancy spending some time helping out in the garden, just contact Angela on 01282 677154  or