Let’s Go To … Pendle Hill for Halloween

Johanna Derry, The Guardian, October 30, 2015

Why go now?
Tranquil-looking Pendle Hill, in the Forest of Bowland, is an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. But at this time of year people visit less for the scenery and more to pay tribute to the area’s dark past. In the days when Lancashire was a lawless and wild place, Pendle Hill was known for its witches, and the most notorious coven was rounded up for the 1612 Pendle witch trials, one of the largest in British history.


Walking on Pendle hill.

Walking on Pendle Hill. Photograph: Alamy

Every witch way …
Take in the story at the Pendle Heritage Centre in Barrowford, and then walk part of the route the 12 witches were taken on to their trial at Lancaster. There are also shorter trails exploring the hill, starting and ending at Barley, and for kids, the Pendle Sculpture Trail and the Pendle Witches Murder Mystery Treasure Trail. If you’re less interested in being spooked, a short drive away Samlesbury Hall has plenty of Tudor-related activities for kids and adults, as well as some witch-y ones. Visit Lancashire has listings of all local activities and events.

Get this down th’ole
Track down a handmade Malkin Pie from SanWitches Deli in Sabden. The layers of lamb, leeks, beef and bacon, topped with a wicca dumpling crust, was created by Christine Turner to recreate the feast the witches ate at Malkin Tower before their arrest. For dinner, the award-winning Northcote restaurant is on the west of the Hill at Langho, and The White Swan at Fence has chef Tom Parker, protégé of that restaurant, serving a simple but well-executed seasonal menu.


Pendle Sculpture Trail.

The singing ringing tree on Crown Point, overlooking Burnley, on the Pendle Sculpture Trail. Photograph: Alamy

Fancy a pint?
Local brewers Moorhouse’s make a series of witch-y ales, including Pendle Witches Brew, Black Cat, and Blond Witch, on tap at Blacko’s Rising Sun.

Anywhere to stay for less than £100?
As close as you can get to the path up Pendle Hill is the newly refurbished Barley Mow pub (doubles from £80). There’s also B&B accommodation at the Trevelyan Guest House in Padiham (doubles from £55).

Lancashire travel tips

This article originally appeared on guardian.co.uk


This article was written by Johanna Derry from The Guardian and was legally licensed through the NewsCred publisher network.