Heritage Group – Flowers and Voices

Our  summer event, Flowers and Voices was held at Pendle Heritage Centre.

Dave from Conservation Services showed us how to make lime mortar. (5 parts sand to 2 parts lime and not much water). He used the mortar on the old garden wall (which is in great need of repointing) and applied it between the stones, not strap pointing.

The garden wall is lime mortared. Attribution: A Hardman

Later, medical herbalist Barbara Wilkinson led us round the beautiful walled garden, stopping beside herbs and explaining their use. Pausing beside loosestrife she commented that yellow flowers attract insects, so wearing yellow clothes invites their attention! Also to stop insects entering the house hang sprays of tansy (the next herb we looked at) by doors and windows.

Meanwhile in the barn Adrian Hartley was playing a keyboard and enthusiastically singing Lancashire dialect songs.

In the afternoon we were entertained by Colne Orpheus male voice choir. Established in 1886, the Orpheus claims to have the longest unbroken history of any English male voice choir. The programme contained “I dreamed a dream”, now associated with Susan Boyle’s performance on “Britain’s got Talent” ten years ago. (How time doth fly), “Bridge over Troubled Water”, “76 trombones” and several others. They are recruiting new members: look at their website if interested.

Colne Orpheus Male Voice Choir. Attribution:A Hardman

During the musical entertainment in the barn people were tucking into tea and cakes.

A beekeeper explained how the hive is constructed. Apparently the smoker, used to drive the bees lower down the hive so that the honey combs can be harvested, is difficult to keep alight using smouldering cardboard, so he introduces a small piece of firelighter is introduced, but care is needed as it could produce a flame thrower instead!

I was introduced to the “Bowland Bard” Mick Neary who recited to me a moving poem about First World War Lancashire soldiers.

There were lots of stalls with an environmental slant including our very own Pendle Archaeology Group. PAG’s stall featured a model of the area of the latest dig- a papier-mâché wonder. The tombola stall was quite popular. A young lad won a bottle of wine which was quickly confiscated by his father!

All in all a very enjoyable day.

Banner Image: Herbalist, Barbara Wilkinson explains the medicinal use of common garden plants in the Heritage Garden.  Attribution: A Hardman