Pendle Hill..


Pendle Hill Witch Trials

Pendle Hill, Situated a few miles outside Skipton in Lancashire,

Stands majestically at 1,827 feet, towering over several hamlets.

It is steeped in history, dating back to the Bronze Age where it was used as a burial ground.

By 1612, it was the site of an enormous limestone tower where two families of peasants lived,

Led by two old ladies named Demdlike and Chattox.

However, these were no regular peasants, it was believed these families had magic powers and were thought to be in league with the devil him self.


CURSES AND RITUALS..

In March 1612, Demdike's granddaughter, Alizon Device,

put a curse on a travelling man who had refused to sell her some pins.

The unfortunate tinker was rendered paralysed.

Other members of the family were known to make clay effigies of people they did not like.

They would then attach human hair and teeth, before slowly crumbling or burning the effigies, causing the intended victim to suffer an agonising death.

Cattle also died without a single mark on their bodies and when they were milked, the milk turned blue. The locals all suspected the families living in the tower but,

Because they daren't venture on the hill,

Nothing was done, King James I was on the throne at the time,

But his paranoia for religious persecution brought harsh penalties for anyone practising the Catholic faith and with this came an obsession with witchcraft.


Witches On Trial..

Eventually, a local magistrate by the name of Roger Nowell,

Decided to take the matter into his own hands hoping to gain favour with the king.

He plucked up enough courage to arrest two of the peasants who he feared were witches.

They were taken to Lancaster Jail to await trail.

The remaining members of the family gathered at Malkin tower and started mixing a magic potion in their cauldron in an effort to blow the gates off the jail.

However,

the magistrate learned of the meeting and within days the remainder of the witches were arrested.

After incriminating statements by a few member of the families,

They were all found guilty under the terms of the 1604 Witchcraft Act,

The prisoners were taken to the moors above the town and hanged.


Ghost Walks..

In the years that followed,

Many people lost their lives on Pendle Hill,

And to this day locals will venture up the hill after dark due to the many sinster ghosts and spirits that have been seen, felt and heard there.

Despite this, visitors still flock to Pendle Hill and tourists gather to take place in ghost walks and hunts, the experience being even spookier and more intense on Halloween.

Apart from haunting the hill, the Pendle witches are also believed to haunt buildings and villages that lie in the shadow of Pendle Hill.

Even though it is four hundred years since the famous witch hunts took place,

It appears people are fascinated as ever.


Contacting The Dead..

In 2004, the television show Most Haunted produced a Halloween special on the story of the Pendle Wtitches and the haunting's that are regularly reported there.

The presenters of the show admitted afterwards that it was the most frightening episode they had ever worked on, and nearly all the crew members reported experiencing feelings of strangulation, of being possessed by an evil spirit and of generally feeling unwell.

They allegedly made contact with Elizabeth Device,

One of the witches who died in jail before she could come to trail.

She told the reporters that they were nine other spirits in the room and they all wanted the team to leave them in peace.


Unwelcome Attention.

In 2009, another documentary about Pendle Hill and its witches was brought to a dramatic halt during production.

The team were filming in a barn on Pendle Hill, and as the seance to contact the witches begun,

three of the production team were struck down by a mysterious illness.

Many speculated that the witches did not want to be bothered and so intervened.


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