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    ROBERT PARKER'S FOLLY at Swains Plat Clough, Near Trawden.

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    Sunbright57

    Join date : 2011-02-10
    Age : 59
    Location : Nelson - the one in Lancashire sorry to say!

    ROBERT PARKER'S FOLLY at Swains Plat Clough, Near Trawden.

    Post  Sunbright57 on Wed Apr 27, 2011 10:15 am

    Os grid reference SD.909 356. From Nelson head north to Coldwell Activity Centre then carry on north along the road in the direction of Thursden Valley; at the WW2 pillbox on the right turn left for 100 yards. Here a parking place and a footpath (signs telling you to keep dogs on a lead) that takes you west onto the moors. Keep walking along this footpath going through a couple of gates, after a short while reaching Swains Plat Clough and a forlorn looking stone archway surrounded by a flat fenced off area that I will call Robert Parker's folly for lack of any other known name. However, the author Roger Frost in his excellent work 'A Lancashire Township - The History of Briercliffe-with-Extwistle', The Rieve Edge Press, 1982 calls the place 'New House' and says "It was occupied for almost two hundred and fifty years".

    The stone arch / doorway is remarkably intact here on the windswept moor. It stands about 11 feet high and is all that now remains of a large house cum farm built by Robert Parker, a wealthy yeoman farmer, in 1672. We do not know much about who Mr Parker was but he may have been related to the Parker's of Trawden and Extwistle. There was a Robert Parker who was made high Sheriff of Cuerden in 1710 who may or may not be the same person; these Parker's were perhaps related in some way to the famous Parker family of Alkincoats Hall near Colne.


    In 1886 the house on the moor was abandoned and pulled down to make way for the new reservoirs of Coldwell and all that was left was this curious stone archway. It bears a large door lintel with a faint Latin style inscription: OTHOV: OF: MIGHTY: MOST SETHEM: THAT: MADE: COSTY: RP: 1672 referring to the house and date of foundation. Above that a large square stone tablet is embedded into the structure; this too has a long inscription with the names Robert Parker, his wife, and son Robert Henry. Legend says that Parker so loved this house that he forbade anyone to pull down the front door. I don't know whether the archway has a preservation order but it may well have as no one has ever been able to pull it down. And so this structure remains as a lasting memory of the house that stood there. Around the arch if you look closely you can make out earthworks. Apparently, on the south gable there stood a Templer cross which would have been medieval in date - a connection with the Parker's of Alkincoats again?

    References:
    Dixon, John & Mann, Bob., - Historic Walks Around The Pendle Area, Aussteiger Publications, Barnoldswick 1990,
    Frost, Roger., A Lancashire Township - The History of Briercliffe-with-Extwistle, The Rieve Edge Press, Briercliffe - Burnley 1982.


    Last edited by Sunbright57 on Tue Feb 21, 2012 2:46 pm; edited 6 times in total
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    Sunbright57

    Join date : 2011-02-10
    Age : 59
    Location : Nelson - the one in Lancashire sorry to say!

    Robert Parker's Folly, Swains Plat Clough, near Trawden.

    Post  Sunbright57 on Wed Apr 27, 2011 10:43 am

    The Robert Parker Folly on the moors above Thursden Valley.

    Lee

    Join date : 2011-06-25

    Re: ROBERT PARKER'S FOLLY at Swains Plat Clough, Near Trawden.

    Post  Lee on Sun Jun 26, 2011 1:57 pm

    I wonder what happened to the Parker family. Didn't the family have some connection with Extwistle Hall? I will have to visit this Archway Rolling Eyes
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    Sunbright57

    Join date : 2011-02-10
    Age : 59
    Location : Nelson - the one in Lancashire sorry to say!

    Robert Parker's Folly

    Post  Sunbright57 on Wed Jun 29, 2011 9:52 am

    Yes Lee, the Parker's owned Extwistle Hall I think, and probably other famous houses in the area. I think the Parker's of Browsholme, Ribble Valley, may be the same family, or a branch of at any rate. Ray. bounce

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