The Hapton Inn

The Hapton Inn
2 Accrington Road,
(junction of Accrington Road and Manchester Road),
Burnley BB11 5QL
Tel: 01282 771152

This is a CAMRA pub - need we say more?

For more information contact:
Angela Newman,
Tel: 01254 236620

The Pendle Witches - speaking of the Pendle Forest area of Lancaster County, England, in 1612: "On Good Friday in April, with a week after the women had been imprisoned in Lancaster castle, Old Demdike's daughter, Elizabeth, called a meeting of her family and that of Old Chattox to discuss a plan to free them. The meeting took place at Malking Tower, the forest home of Old Demdike, and was attended by about 21 persons, 18 of them women. The group devised a plan in which they would kill the jailer and blow up the castle with gunpowder. Following the planning, the group had a feast that included stolen mutton, and bacon and beef. When the justice, Robert Nowell, got wind of the meting, he had arrested and sent to the castle nine of those involved: Elizabeth Device and her son, James Device; Anne Redfearne, daughter of Old Chattox; Alice Nutter; Katharine Hewit; Jane and John Bulcock, mother and son; Isabel Robey; and Margaret Pearson. Others involved managed to flee.

"In all, 20 persons were brought to trial in August. They testified against each other. The principal witnesses were Elizabeth Device's children, Alison, James, who was in his twenties, and Jennet (also given as Jannet). Jennet said that Elizabeth had an Imp named Ball, which she dispatched to murder anyone who displeased her. James said he had seen Ball in the shape of a brown dog and also had seen his mother making clay images. With the testimony of her children, Elizabeth then confessed. Jennet then implicated James, saying he used another Imp in the shape of a dog, Dandy, to bewitch persons to death. James confessed.

"Anne Redfearne was acquitted on charges of bewitching Robert Nutter to death. This verdict was so unpopular that Redfearne was retried for bewitching Nutter's father, Christopher Nutter, to death. This time, she was convicted. Alice Nutter, Christopher's wife, was charged with killing one Henry Mytton and was named by the three Devices.

"Ten persons were sentenced to hang: Old Chattox, Elizabeth, James, and Alison Device; Anne Redfearne; Katharine Hewit; Jane and John Bulcock; and Isabel Robey. Old Demdike died in prison before her trial, and Margaret Pearson was sentenced to a lesser punishment of the pillory and a year in jail. The rest were found not guilty."

(Extract from The Encyclopedia of Witches and Witchcraft by Rosemary Ellen Guiley 1989.)

As a result of this history, one of the world's best Halloween parties occurs at Newchurch-in-Pendle each year - the same Newchurch-in-Pendle which sits astride the top of the dreaded Pendle Hill, where a Nutter family grave next to the church wall is popularly called "the witches' grave", and where a lifesize mannikin of Alice Nutter in witches' garb fills a glass case at the local pub.

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