Kylie’s bra and vegans in the abattoir
Barrowford is one of Lancashire’s most stylish towns but it also has some quirky tales to tell
The people of Barrowford once had a reputation for standing idly on the towpath, just watching what was going on along the newfangled Leeds Liverpool canal. They were called Gongoozlers but that was in the distant past.
Today, the locals have worked hard to ensure that their pretty village is one of the most fashionable in Lancashire, complete with picturesque cottages and a thriving, creative High Street that has apparently even attracted the likes of David Beckham.
That doesn’t mean the locals aren’t proud of their history and,
to be fair, it comprised a lot more than just gongoozlering. When it was mooted, a few years ago, that what is now the Pendle Heritage Centre be demolished, they put their collective foot down and formed a trust to preserve it. As well as presenting the village’s industrial history, it is also a stop on the Pendle Witches’ trail – the visitors book shows comments from Switzerland to Australia.
‘Barrowford is full of history – it’s why we’re based here,’ says David Taylor, Chairman of the Friends of Pendle Heritage which has over 300 members, from teenagers to nonagenarians. Its patron is Lancashire antiques expert, Eric Knowles.
‘Everyone wants to know about the witches, so we make sure that the centre bookshop stocks one of the best collections of books and resources on them anywhere but we do more than that, you know. We are working to restore the 15th century cruck barn and we are involved other activities like gardening and archaeology. We even have a professional archaeologist,’ adds David, an archaeologist himself, who has helped the group to organise events such as Lancashire days, complete with scones eaten the way they like them in Barrowford – with cheese and pickle.
ABOVE: LEFT: The Friends of Pendle Heritage in front of Pendle Heritage Centre; Catherine Rousseau-jones, Jean Hardman, David Taylor (chairman) and Roger Grimshaw
Getting creative at Coffee and Crafts; (from the left) Mrs Mares, Tabitha, Linda Minett, Roxy-louise, Christine Entwhistle holding Milly, Dianne Platt (owner) and Lily-sue