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Pendle youngsters given £25k to compile witch report
A PROJECT to explore the myths and facts around the story of the Pendle Witch trials has been given more than £25,000 in lottery funding.
The Heritage Lottery Fund has offered Mid Pennine Arts £27,900 to fund a project devised by young people in the area called ‘Lancashire’s Lost Legends; Witch is True?’ The cash means the young people will be able to explore the real story of the Pendle Witches by working with professional artists in visual arts, film and drama.
They will undertake research by visiting heritage sites, interviewing local people, meeting academics at Lancaster University and walking on Pendle Hill.
The youngsters will share their findings in a spooky Halloween storytelling event, take part in a residential weekend and produce a film and visual art exhibition.
Dr Stephanie Hawke, Mid Pennine Arts programme manager for creative learning, said: “This is an intriguing local story, a shared heritage that unites all those who live in sight of Pendle Hill.
“We are delighted that young people will be able to develop their skills both artistically and in the interpretation of historical evidence through this exciting project.”
In 1612, one of England’s largest witch trials led to 10 people — nine from the area around Pendle Hill — being found guilty of causing death or harm by witchcraft and hanged.
The 400th anniversary of the trials was celebrated recently by a world record gathering of 482 ‘witches’ at Pendle Hill and the number ‘1612’ was emblazoned across the hill in huge letters.
The 100ft numbers were the work of Barrowford artist Philippe Handford who, along with a team of volunteers, climbed the hill and spent five hours putting 1,250m of white material in place.
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