New book reveals the more quirky side of Lancashire's illustrious past

Burnley and Pendle Citizen: Miss Whiplash made her election headquarters in a Clitheroe pub Miss Whiplash made her election headquarters in a Clitheroe pub

EVEN Lancastrians can be educated about Lancashire’s rich history of folk tales.

And storyteller David England found exactly that when he embarked on a mission to re-tell some of the most interesting local stories.

A chapter featuring the infamous Miss Whiplash making the Swan and Royal Hotel in Clitheroe her election campaign headquarters in 1991 is just one of 31 featured in Lancashire Folk Tales.

Hoghton Tower, Sabden, Waddington and, of course, the Pendle Witches are also featured in the fantasy journey to every corner of Lancashire, told through the words of characters Lily Battersby and Dr Fred Hibbert.

The Witches chapter opens with the words: “Lancashire, as you may know, is said to be the most haunted county in England and is full of ghost stories from its gory past.”

Mr England, who co-wrote with Jennie Bailey, spent 500 to -600 hours writing and researching.

Part of the research was a trip to the Trough of Bowland and a walk up Parlick Fell for the chapter entitled ‘The Dun Cow of Parlick, Bleasdale’.

And a visit to Pendle Hill saw Lancashire’s weather take a turn for the worse when they got ‘absolutely saturated’.

The book makes mention of the number 54 bus to Clitheroe, a double decker with an outside staircase which is still in existence and brought out ‘on ceremonial occasions’.

Mr England, 75, who hails from Preston but now lives in Berkshire, said: “My heart lifts when I travel north. I love the villages in the Trough of Bowland, the accessible hills and the beautiful scenery.”

And Jennie, 35, who lives in Stockport said: “I absolutely adore Clitheroe with its strange conical hill and the castle.”

l Lancashire Folk Tales is available now in paperback, published by The History Press, priced £9.99.

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