Pendle’s Hidden Valley – Field Reconnaissance 8th February 2014

Pendle Heritage – Archaeology Group

Pendle’s Hidden Valley Field Reconnaissance 8th February 2014

The third field reconnaissance session for the Pendle’s Hidden Valley project took place on Saturday 8th February 2014 but in the face of dire weather forecasts, understandably, only 4 stalwarts braved the elements. In the end, despite strong winds we were relatively lucky with the conditions. Continue reading “Pendle’s Hidden Valley – Field Reconnaissance 8th February 2014”

Winter Gardens

January can result in dull gardens, excessively cut back and tidied up.  However, at Park Hill, the gardeners, Peter and Elaine, allow the natural forms and colours of winter to come through and to decorate the surroundings of the heritage centre.  There is much beauty for those with ‘eyes to see’ through the dull winter light.  It has been a warm winter, so far, and snowdrops are already popping their heads throught the wet winter mulch.  Click here for some January photos.

Wycoller Monuments Project 1 – 22nd January

The first meeting of 2014 for the conservation group was a rainy affair,  with a lot of time spent chatting away in Pepper Hill Barn with the park rangers. However, the four of us did manage to get out for a few hours to clear more of the trees growing on the archaeololgy at the back of Wycoller Hall.  We also had a nice job seeking out small trees suitable for a monkey sanctuary in Keighley. It turned into a good day as the weather brightened for a while on the afternoon.

Pendle’s Hidden Valley – Field Reconnaissance 11th January 2014

Portfield (3)The second field reconnaissance session for the Pendle’s Hidden Valley project took place on Saturday 11th January 2014 and was well attended with 10 stalwarts setting out from Whalley Golf Club (who kindly allowed us to use their car park).

We set out south along Clerk Hill towards Portfield and it was pointed out that this road  had been artificially sunken as part of the landscaping of the area for Clerk Hill (the house) in order that the view from the house would not be spoiled by seeing people on the road.

At Portfield we assessed the view of the area from a public footpath in the field adjacent to the fort and noted that the fort commanded a 360 deg field of view with a particularly good view back up the Sabden Valley.

Friends January Talk

Wednesday afternoon was the day of our first talk of 2014. Anne Eves stepped into the gap left in our afternoon talk’s schedule, and what an entertaining couple hours we were in for.  Anne’s  talk covered everything  from life during retirement, dog walking in the park, life as a mature drama student, a tale of an elderly lady’s one line put down which I cannot repeat here as we do not have a 9.00pm watershed, and more humorous anecdotes’ including one of her encounter with the Padiham streaker. Our thanks go to Anne and the forty people attended the event…..FW

Queen Street Mill is Listed Grade I

Burnley’s Queen Street Mill has made national news by being given Grade I listed building status.  The famous Harle Syke mill has the highest listing possible, putting it in the top 2% of all listed buildings. Technically at least, the mill is now on a par with Buckingham Palace and Westminster Abbey!  This should be no surprise.  Queen Street is now the only working steam-powered mill in the world and great credit must go to the volunteers and the Burnley and Lancashire Councils for saving the building in the early 1980s and keeping it alive as a museum and visitor attraction.


Harry Moore stepping down at Bancroft Mill Engine

The Bancroft Mill newsletter has been a great companion over recent years and Harry Moore, who has steadfastly kept us informed and entertained, is now stepping down to concentrate on being an engineer!  Harry’s last newsletter is here…  where there is more information.

Thank you for all the hard work Harry and all the best to Ian McKay who is now taking over.

The Bancroft Mill Engine and Museum web site is here…

Harry MooreThe Mayor and Mayoress of Pendle, Councillor Smith Benson and Mrs Margaret Ingham, Mrs. Jamieson with Harry Moore at Bancroft Mill.




Christmas with Friends

Another ‘Christmas with Friends’ event was again enjoyed by all who attended.

Our own Friends ‘All Round Entertainer’ Anne Eves once again kept us all entertained with her version of ‘The Twelve Days of Christmas’. Following the Quiz organised by Andrea we were treated to Christmas Carols sung by the Nelson Civic Ladies Choir. Singing unaccompanied on the balcony the Park Hill Barn was the perfect setting for Carol Singing.

Thanks must go to Anne, Jean and Andrea for organising the afternoon Not forgetting Ronnie our Mulled Wine Waiter and all those who supported us….FW



Richard Matthews lecture on Dunkirk Pit, Read near Padiham, Lancashire.

A total of 33 people turned out on a cold November evening to listen to Richard Matthews describe five years of hard physical work and painstaking research to uncover the secrets of a lost coal mine in Read near Altham.  Richard together with his colleague Brian Jeffreys have uncovered a host of fascinating artefacts, reconstructed the wheel pit and surrounding areas including sections of the old tramways and then pieced together the story of the mine in the 18th century.  Comments like ‘That was the most interesting hour and a half I’ve spent in a long time’ and ‘What an achievement’ were heard afterwards from across the room.  Roger Grimshaw proposed a vote of thanks for such an excellent talk.

Pendle Murders

Pendle Heritage CentreOur October talk looked at the darker side of life in Pendle. “Pendle Murders” was the title of an entertaining talk presented by Fiona McIntyre. What a place Pendle as been! Many murders caused by unhappy marriages and heavy drinking (did one cause the other? I ask). Fiona managed to add a little humour to this grim subject. The last murder mentioned was back in the 1930s.  Fiona could talk of more recent murders but due to the fact that relatives of both the victims and the murderers might turn up for the talk, the 1930’s was the cut-off point.  Anne Eves gave the vote of thanks for a well presented talk….FW