Pedlar power brings city story to life

Phil Smith, Simon Persighetti and Katie Etheridge of Wrights & Sites looking for Signs & Wonders during a research trip to Lancaster.
Phil Smith, Simon Persighetti and Katie Etheridge of Wrights & Sites looking for Signs & Wonders during a research trip to Lancaster.

THREE ‘pedlars’ will visit Lancaster and set up stall in Market Square this August, to mark the 400th anniversary of the Lancashire Witch Trials.

Signs & Wonders, a four-day event in Lancaster and Pendle, takes place almost 400 years to the day of the trials at Lancaster Castle.

Part of the Lancashire Witches 400 project, Signs & Wonders is performed by Wrights & Sites.

The event begins on August 16 at the Ashton Memorial, close to where the witches are said to have been hanged.

Simon Persighetti, Katie Etheridge and Phil Smith will tell of the various ‘signs and wonders’ they have collected during research trips to places linked to the witches.

Simon said: “Our starting point was the signs and symbols that would be looked for when people were accused of witchcraft. We will list the kinds of evidence used against the witches, and mix that with signs and symbols we’ve collected from the 21st century.”

This free event takes place from 6-7pm.

The trio will be dressed as pedlars throughout the four days, to reflect the story of the pedlar who allegedly was cursed by one of the witches.

On August 17, they will visit four locations in Lancaster associated with the witches.

The Visitations are at 10am in Williamson Park car park at Golgotha, off Wyresdale Road; noon at the Golden Lion pub in Moor Lane; 2pm in Market Square, Lancaster; and 4pm at Lancaster Castle.

They return to Market Square from 10am-4pm on August 18, when they will exchange pamphlets, objects and conversations.

The Signs & Wonders finale is a performance walk in Newchurch. The 1.5-mile walk is repeated three times during August 19, and features key sites in the 1612 story.

For more information, contact Green Close Studios on 015242 21233 or info@greenclose.org.