Clegg Hall

Clegg Hall - stone built, about 2 miles NE of Rochdale and within the parish of Whalley. Harland (7) states
On this site was the old house built by Bernulf de Clegg and Quenilda his wife as early as the reighn of Stephen. Not a vestige of it remains. The present comparitively modern erection was built by Theophilus Ashton of Rochdale.... about the year 1620. ... It was in the square, low, dark, mansion, built in the reign of Stephen, that this crime is said to have been perpetrated, - one of those half-timbered houses, called "post and petrel", having huge main timbers, crooks.... the interstices being wattled and filled with a compost of clay and chopped straw. ... gave rise to the stories .. the "Clegg Hall boggarts" ... some time about the thirteenth or fourteenth century.. a wicked uncle destroyed the lawful heirs of Clegg hall and estates... by throwing them over a balcony into the moat... (7)
Boggarts occur in other legends and are referred to in several books that covers the discovery of Lindow Man in a bog in Chat Moss in 1984. A couple of the books are
The Life and Death of a Druid Prince : The Story of Lindow Man an Archaeological Sensation by Anne Ross, Don Robins and
Lindow Man : The Body in the Bog by I.M. Stead, et al.

My thanks to author Brian Clegg, Managing Consultant at Creativity Unleashed Limited for the following pictures taken in the summer of 1974. In the same letter he adds,

I was brought up in the area, just outside Rochdale in Lancashire - as well as the Hall you can still see areas like Little Clegg and Clegg Moor marked on the Ordnance Survey Map. I've seen a longer version of the boggart legend than Harland gives, which says that the wicked uncle came to kill the children through a passage from nearby Stubley Hall. When my late grandmother was a girl around 1910, she said she was shown the entrance to the passage at Stubley. Personally I think this is highly doubtful as Stubley is a good mile from Clegg Hall ... but it's a good story.

BOOKS - references

1. Henry Taylor, Old Halls in Lancashire and Cheshire (1884)
2. Philips, Views of Old Halls of Lancs and Cheshire (1893)
3. Alfred Rimmer, Ancient Halls of Lancs (1852)
4. ??? Ghost and haunted places in Britain??
5. F.H. Cheetham, Lancashire, (1920)
6. F.A. Bruton, Lancashire (1921)
7. J. Harland and T. Wilkinson, Lancashire Legends (1873)
Lancashire Castles, Mansions and Halls

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Created: 2 December 1998
Last Updated: 15 May 2002
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