Saturday, October 20, 2007


It’s time for a mid-week posting, or rather a mid-Saturday-morning posting because we’ve got a couple of important announcements to make.

The first, unfortunately, isn’t a pleasant one. We heard yesterday that our old friend and colleague, Headlie Lawrenson, had passed away. This, as anybody involved in our local history scene will acknowledge, is a major loss.

Headlie was a genuinely smashing bloke, quietly spoken but always fascinating. Over the years he was involved in some of the most important and prestigious excavations in the district, from the ruins of Newers Wood, the pile settlement at Nateby and the Roman road at Street, to the discovery of Cabus Cross and the preservation of the old church in Pilling.

When Michelle, Neil and I first established Wyre Archaeology, despite his commitments as President of Pilling Historic Society, Headlie was one of the first to join our burgeoning group. And to every meeting he brought some previously unseen document or map for us to cogitate over, along with his lifetime of invaluable knowledge.

His encouragement for our often times outlandish speculations was always welcomed, not least because he was recognised as such a distinguished figure in the field.

It was Headlie who showed us the Devil’s hoof print on Stakepool Bridge, the gravestones on the beach (or at least their location beneath the new sea defences). He managed to secure us access to the infamous Reverend Potter’s pulpit and the Chapter House at Cockersands Abbey, amongst many other locations. His relentless enthusiasm for the Wyre and its history never faltered, right up until the end.

To put it bluntly, we’re going to miss him.

On a slightly more upbeat note…hopefully…some of our readers might have noticed the new link in the right hand column for the ‘Fylde and Wyre Antiquarian Chat Room’. Anybody who’s interested might like to join us on our test run on Sunday evening (that’s Sunday the 21st of October) at 7.00 p.m. There’s nothing to download, you can remain anonymous if that sort of thing bothers you and, of course, it’s free.

Future meetings will be announced over at the forum (the link for which is also somewhere in the right hand column). So, hopefully we’ll meet some of you there.


John said...

I'm sorry for your loss. A guy like that is worth more than a shelf full o fold books as far as knowledge goes, and personally, of course, absolutely priceless.

Perhaps in his honor you could share some of his favorite stories? Personally, I'd love to see a photo of this 'devil's hoofprint', and any lore behind it. Especially as it's Halloween here in the states. :0)

There's going to be so much to see when I visit: I'll have to stay a week. :0)

JOHN :0)

Brian Hughes said...


That's a good idea. Headlie wrote and produced a lot of stuff for the Over Wyre Journals so I might have a trawl through some of them and see what I can put together at some point.