Pendle Hill, situated in the east of Lancashire is home to England’s one of the most infamous witch trials and several malevolent ghouls of witches who were executed mercilessly. Post death, these ferocious spirits wander around this area, making it count amongst England’s most haunted locations.
History of Pendle Hill Executions
King James I of England hated witches and was determined to stamp out the practice of witchcraft. This led to an era of persecution for those who were rightly or wrongly accused of the practice. In 1612 local magistrates conducted witch hunts. As a result of these witch hunts was one of the most famous witch trails in the history of England.
Alizon Device was arrested accused of putting a curse on a peddler, after he had refused to sell her some pins, which led him to be paralysed. Alizon admits to what she had done and the peddler forgives her, but his son brought it to the authorities’ attention. Alizon incriminates two others Demdike and Chattox. Investigations took place at Demdikes’ home Malkin towers and human bones and clay figures were found which were of people who had died in recent years.
Imprisoned Witches around the Pendle Hill Area
The magistrates continued their witch hunt and arrested 11 in total-
|Alizon Device||Elizabeth Device||James Device|
|Alison Whittle (Chattox)||Anne Redferne||Alice Nutter|
|Katherine Hewitt||John Bulcock||Jane Bulcock|
|Isobel Robey||Elizabeth Southerns aka Demdike|
They were all imprisoned at Lancaster Castle and tried on the 17th August. Demdike died whilst awaiting trail but was still considered to be a witch based on the evidence they had gathered, the others were publicly hanged.
Also besides these there was Jennet Preston who lived just over the Lancashire Border, she was tried in Yorkshire and hanged at York and Margaret Pearson, who was found guilty of witchcraft but not of murder, she was given a prison sentence of one year.
Magistrates wondered why the witches incriminated others, but they found out that Demdike and Chattox used to be friends but fell out over some stolen clothes and this resulted in them and their family’s feuding, and this was probably the reason they did it, to seek revenge and to retaliate against each other.
Demdike had said in her confession that the usual way that they had used to kill their victims were to make an ethigy of the intended victim and then over a period of time would crumble or burn it and this would cause the victim to fall ill and die.
Most Haunted places in Pendle Hill Area
Malkin Tower Farm
At the rear of Malkin Tower Farm there are some ruins of an older building, and a part of it which is still standing as been incorporated into the stone wall, this is widely believed to be where Malkin Tower once stood. Demdikes home is where the great assembly of witches is said to of took place on Good Friday 1612.
It is thought that this is where Alice Nutter once lived; it was built in 1536 and was once a single large dwelling, it as now been divided into 5 cottages.
Moss Head Farm
This site is where the dwelling of John Bulcock and his mother Jane used to stand.
This is where Demdike, Chattox and her daughter Anne Redferne were questioned on the 2nd April on suspicion of withcraft.
This building was probably constructed around 1750, though there was a house before this which was from a far earlier time. This is said to used as a meeting place for the coven of witches.
Lower Wellhead Farm
It is thought that the farm was built in the 1500’s. It is another place thought to of been used by the Pendle witches.
Now the Pendle Witches are said to haunt building and landscapes in and around Pendle Hill, the most affected areas seem to be Tynedale Farm and Lower Wellhead Farm. It is said a feeling of anger and evil is felt by people and strange sounds are heard also locals are reluctant to talk about the witches as they fear what may happen.
Ghastly activities at the Pendle Hill Area
The ghosts of the witches who were executed here can be seen wandering around this area. In the past, many TV shows have been filmed on this area and the crew went through several paranormal experiences.
In one of the few photographs clicked here, you can clearly see the apparition of a woman holding an infant, which is said to be of one of the witches executed with her unborn. Visitors have also complained of feeling uneasy and seeing creepy apparitions in the Pendle Hill area during night hours.