Statue plan to celebrate ‘Pendle Witch’ Alice

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A MEMORIAL statue commemorating “Pendle Witch” Alice Nutter, to mark the 400th anniversary of the Lancashire Witch Trials, is looking to attract the interest of national and international artists.

The outdoor sculpture is being commissioned by Roughlee Parish Council, which has been granted up to £10,000 to create a lasting impression which will feature prominently in the village.

The idea was thought up by Coun. James Starkie who put forward the proposal to Pendle Council’s Barrowford and Western Parishes Committee, and sees Pendle Leisure Trust and the Forest of Bowland assisting on the commissioning panel.

Coun. Starkie said: “The vision is to create a lasting memorial for a past resident of our village. I’d been thinking about it for the last two years but started working on the proposal around three months ago.

“I’m excited by it and think it’s a nice feel-good story.”

The statue will be positioned in Blacko Bar Road and will include somewhere for people to sit.

Coun. Starkie said he was keen to raise awareness of the real story of Alice, who, in 1612, was imprisoned in Lancaster Castle on charges of witchcraft.

She had been seen at Malkin Tower, Blacko, on Good Friday in what was deemed a witch’s coven, and later hanged.

“Alice wasn’t a witch in the traditional sense. She wasn’t outspoken and was comparatively wealthy.

“The statue has to show that Alice Nutter did not wear black clothes and had a pointed hat,” added Coun. Starkie.

“This artwork needs to celebrate a resident who was unfairly treated and should be something which residents and visitors can engage with.

“There are lots of possibilities what she could look like – it’s all down to the artist.”

An unveiling would be planned for Saturday, April 14th, 2012.

When Burnley town centre was pedestrianised and the shopping centre was refurbished, a bronze cast was commissioned named Mill Girl and Calf.

For details on the Pendle commission, visit www.creative lancashire.org/html/ArtistCommission_423.html.

The deadline is Wednesday, November 30th.