Magistrates’ role in 1612 Pendle Witch trials outlined

Magistrates Lancashire Witches night
Magistrates Lancashire Witches night
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the role their predecessors played in the trials of the Lancashire Witches was brought to life for a group of magistrates serving on the Bench in 2012.

Organised to mark the 400th anniversary of the trials and executions of the Lancashire Witches, magistrates from the newly formed East Lancashire Bench, formerly Hyndburn and Blackburn with Darwen, met for their first social event. They were welcomed by the bench’s new chairman Mr Michael Emery.

JPs serving on the Burnley, Pendle and Rossendale Bench, including chairman Mr Terry Ferguson, were also invited along to the event held at the Atrium Cafe in the grounds of Clitheroe Castle.

Julie Aspin, a tutor for Lancashire Adult Learning, outlined the events leading up to the trials and JP Ann Siburuth talked about the part Roger Nowell, a magistrate at the time, played in questioning the so-called witches and collecting their testimonies before they were sent to trial at Lancaster and York. All 11 were then found guilty and hanged.

The hosts were assisted by Mrs Maureen Bridge who was the projectionist and the evening was rounded off with a potato pie supper.