Anyhow, shortly after Neil’s death, we were rummaging…sorry…‘tidying up’…some of the drawers in the Wyre Archaeology office when we came across a few of the above mentioned photographs. Neil had printed them out for an exhibition in Pilling village hall last year. So, naturally, we borrowed them (as I suspect the original slides had been ‘borrowed’ many decades before) so that you (our reader…singular) could have a look for yourself.
All of which preamble brings us to the first of these fascinating titbits, which shows Mr. Sobee himself, complete with camera and tripod, standing in a field in Out Rawcliffe, surveying his domain for whatever reason he had for surveying it.
Our second photograph shows a red deer antler, discovered (as Sobee’s own handwriting explains) at Bradshaw Lane (presumably that’d be the farm and not in the middle of the actual lane itself) at a depth of nine feet. This prehistoric find is mentioned in the book, but the photograph itself doesn’t put in an appearance, so, if you’ve ever lain awake at night worrying about what the ‘Bradshaw Lane red deer antler’ looked like, now you know.
Thirdly we have a Neolithic stone axe discovered at Black Lane Head. A photograph of this axe does appear in ‘The History of Pilling’ but it isn’t this version. The one in the book isn’t held in place by a couple of nails, for a start, and isn’t accompanied by Mr. Sobee’s own calligraphic efforts. Just to add a bit more information here, the axe was found in a field between Cogie Hill and Black Lane Head, measured nine and a half inches in length, and was made from partly polished igneous rock originating in the Lake District. We’re not entirely sure whether it ended up in the Fylde Country Life Museum in Fleetwood, or the Harris Museum in Preston. I’ve got a vague recollection of seeing it in the latter. To be honest, it might be worth our while sending some of these photographs down to the Harris Museum to help them identify the plethora of artefacts they’ve got filling their archive drawers, because, frankly, their cataloguing system is in a right old mess.
Right, four photographs is more than enough for one week. If this article is ‘doing it for you’ (whatever ‘it’ might be) then you might be glad to know that we’ve got a few more of these photographs yet and, most likely, we’ll be posting them here next week.