Slaidburn and The Hodder Valley
At the heart of the Forest of Bowland
for the community and available to all
Slaidburn Poor'sland Units
The Poor'sland Trustees with Lord & Lady Shuttleworth at the opening of their work units in 2004
Poor’sland Trust is a charity founded in 1621 to compensate those inhabitants of the Township of Slaidburn who lost grazing rights because of the enclosure of commons.
The charity has some farm land and the work units just over and up the river from the village hall. It now supports local people and organisations with a particular emphasis on education, health, community and age related problems.
Writing to the clerk is the first point of contact:
The original land was 60 acres on Champion and Burn Moor but over time it was moved to the parcels of land currently owned by the Trust. In 1852 the Trust invested £190 with J Walker who built a barn for use with the land which was initially farmed from a cottage on the Green and then in 1932 from a new farmhouse on Trust land.
The plaque on the front of the barn was replicated in 2004, the original slate had started flaking but is preserved in unit 9. The wording on the plaque refers to the charity being for the benefit of “the industrious poor of the township of Slaidburn” but the charity supports a wider number of people as per its constitution which was revised in 1891. The original plaque was not erected till 1854 at a cost of £3/15/- or £3.75 in current money. Its replacement cost about 30 times as much!
When the last tenants of the farmhouse and land, Mr & Mrs Stanley Pearson, retired in 1999 the Trustees decided to sell the farmhouse and convert the buildings which were considered obsolete for then current farming methods.
Permission was given to convert the barns into a house with a granny annex but the trustees thought they would better serve the purposes of the Trust as redefined in 1891 if they converted the barns into work space. After an aborted scheme which was far too expensive, the architect David Newton from Waddington produced an affordable design costing some £300,000 which could largely be paid for by various public bodies who were prepared to fund employment. After this lengthy process the barns were converted in 2004 into 9 work units which were all let very quickly after they became available. The businesses are very diverse from a hairdresser to an ecology company which gave two of the bat boxes fitted to the new village hall.
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