Gubberford Bridge

Gubberford bridge which is located on Gubberford Lane, Preston is connected to Greenhalgh Castle, in Garstang, Lancashire.

During the siege of Greenhalgh castle in 1644, a soldier from Cromwell’s army, Peter “Hallelujah” Broughton was said to have reunited with his estranged wife at Gubberford bridge.

One evening as the soldier was wondering over the bridge he encountered his wife whom he had not laid eyes on in five years. While the married couple were having a long lost reunion, a cavalier, Rupert Rowton jumps out at the woman and stabs her.

During the separation Mrs Broughton had fallen in love with this cavalier and had bigamously married him.

The reason for her second husband murdering her was because on the evening of her death she was said to be meeting another lover, Cavalier Captain Lord Albin.

The second husband had mistakenly took the woman’s first husband for being her lover and as they uncovered the truth, both men agreed to keep the murder of their wife to themselves and they buried her body along the bank of the river Wyre.

It wasn’t until his death bed that Peter Broughton told the tale of what he did, however Mrs Broughton’s body was never found.

Legend has it that every August the woman appears on the bridge looking for her husbands or perhaps her skeletal remains.

Over the years the tales have told that this woman would be stood on the bridge wearing a cloak with a hood over her head looking for a ride. As the unsuspecting horsemen would help her mount the back of the horse, to which only then she would reveal her true self to the rider – a skeletal figure.

The skeletal ghost of the murdered woman is said to have frightened a lot of people to death as the centuries passed on by, if you were lucky you would come away with only injuries.

Blessed Be )O(

Hutton-In-The-Forest

Hutton-In-The-Forest is a historic house and gardens located in Penrith, Cumbria.

No one actually knows exactly when this house was built but the first historical reference to it was in 1292 when Edward I visited Thomas De Hoton.

Hutton-In-The-Forest was believed to be a medieval stronghold and still includes to this day a Pele tower. Pele towers were square defensive buildings that were situation all along the Scottish/English border, with their primary use as being a watch tower for invading enemy forces.

Over the years the house has been added on, extended and incorporates architecture from multiple centuries. A gallery was added in the 1630’s which was a rare feature for the North of England. The hall was built in 1680 leading to 18th century rooms upstairs, the drawing room dates from 1830 and the library from 1870.

The Pele tower which is the oldest part of the building was turned into the entrance way but not until the late 19th century. Lady Darlington’s room is an 18th century room that was redecorated with green paint and William Morris wallpaper during the arts and crafts period (between 1880 and 1920).

Unfortunately we checked the opening times, as the garden and house are open on different days, but the day we went the house was unexpectedly closed so we only got to walk around the gardens.

The de Hotons lived in Hutton-In-The-Forest until 1605, after that the house was sold to Richard Fletcher who moved there from Cockermouth and was said to be a known entertainer of Mary Queen of Scots.

At this point the house started to resemble that of a mansion rather than a defense castle. Fletcher was knighted by James I and Fletcher’s son Henry was the one that built the gallery. Henry died at the Battle of Rowton Heath in 1645 and his son George lived there until 1700.

Henry had been a baronet and when he died that title passed onto George, even though the estate belonged to him, George died in France in 1712.

After George’s death there was some dispute over the will, but eventually the house was given to his nephew Henry Vale.

Henry, who later went by the surname Fletcher, had a love for trees which lead him to plant over 50 000 of them. He was the creator of the walled garden and the middle pond.

All the gates to the walled garden have a different flower theme.

Henry died unmarried and without children, leaving the estate to his younger brother Walter. Lyonel, Walter’s son, was made a baronet a few days before Walter died in 1786.

After Lyonel died, the house passed onto his son Frederick and after that it was to his son Francis.

Francis extended and renovated the house, leaving it to his son Henry. Margaret whom Henry married in 1870 is the one responsible for creating the arts and crafts decor in Lady Darlington’s room. They died without having any children.

After their death the house remained in trust for a number of years, until a distant cousin, William Vane inherited it in the 1940’s. William married Mary in 1949 and the eldest of their two sons, Richard is the present owner and Lord of the house, which he inherited in 1989.

Blessed Be )O(

Wray Scarecrow Festival

The last few years we’ve been attending Wray scarecrow festival. It usually happens the last week in April. We started going because the festival had a Maypole and it became our way to celebrate Beltane.

However, this year was the first year we didn’t go and I probably don’t think I’ll be going again. Every year there seems to be less and less people participating, then the scarecrows were getting reused and eventually I decided it wasn’t worth the hour drive there to see something I saw the year before.

I did check out a video on Youtube from this year and I saw the same old scarecrows being shown off again.

I actually found another scarecrow festival to go to this year and was sadly disappointed when I saw only about five houses had decorated for it. As I said, I go to these around Beltane to celebrate and have fun, which there’s also a more local scarecrow festival around Lammas time. I like the small village community spirit, keeping the old traditions alive but unfortunately it seems to be dying out more and more.

Anyway, I still wanted to share some of the photos I’ve collected because they are pretty cool and maybe if you’ve never been to a scarecrow festival before you might like to see them.

I always seem to find a cat or two no matter where I go.

Blessed Be )O(

Windermere Cemetery

Bowness on Windermere Cemetery.

Blessed Be )O(

Brockhole Gardens

Brockhole is a garden and activity centre in Windermere, Cumbria.

Brockhole is advertised as a house and gardens, I want to state for anyone thinking of going this is not a house in the traditional sense. When I think of a house, it’s usually a stately home or a historic hall or something along those lines of history but inside this house is just a cafe, restaurant, gift shop and art gallery.

A great portion of Brockhole is aimed at children as it has a large variety of different outdoor play areas and zip wires. There’s also archery, clay pigeon shooting, mini golf, orienteering, nature trails and a craft centre.

However, if your only goal is going for an afternoon walk this place is also for you. Brockhole includes a large garden and woodland area with plenty of path, trails and beautiful scenery.

Brockhole is situated on the lakeside, a short walk will take you down to the water where boat rides are available.

We took a walk along the trail at the edge of the water.

The mini golf course and the trail with all the information boards is centered around the theme of Beatrix Potter.

Blessed Be )O(

Lancaster Canal

This is our walk along a short stretch of the Lancaster canal at Bilsborrow.

We started our walk from Guy’s Thatched Hamlet and went directly along the canal to Barton Grange.

You can find our walk around the river Brock here.

Blessed Be )O(

Greenhalgh Castle

Greenhalgh castle is located in Garstang, Lancashire.

Sadly the castle is now nothing more than ruins, it’s very derelict and unsafe. Unfortunately the ruins are not accessible, as its located on private land which is owned by a farmer.

Greenhalgh castle was built in 1490 by Thomas Stanley, 1st Earl of Derby. He was an English nobleman and politician who helped defeat Richard III at the Battle of Bosworth in 1485. Stanley who assisted his stepson Henry Tudor with this defeat was gifted the land around Garstang for his participation.

Stanley who had a firm grip over the North-West of England, wanted to protect that dominance and in order to provide defence for his estates Greenhalgh castle was built.

The castle is said to be rectangular, built on raise ground with a tower on each corner. The entrance is believed to have been on the East side with a moat surrounding the castle on the lower part of the ground.

Stanley died in Lathom, 1504 and was buried at the family chapel in Burscough priory, near Ormskirk, Lancashire.

The history for the castle doesn’t end there…

Some 200+ years later and the land is now owned by James Stanley, 7th Earl of Derby. He is a royalist and support of Charles I. During the English civil war Greenhalgh castle was garrisoned and was one of the last two Royalist strongholds to be sieged by Oliver Cromwell’s forces in 1644, the other one was Latham. After a lengthy battle of almost a year, the castle surrendered in 1645 and therefore to prevent the castle from being used by military personnel again it was partially demolish.

Thereafter the castle was left to crumble and deteriorate away. By the late 1600’s only the lower portion of one tower remained and the local farming community decided to build and incorporate the remaining stones into their houses. These stones can still be seen today.

Built 1694.

Blessed Be )O(

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