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Preston poet telling stories of murder and mayhem in rhyme

Posted on - 12th October, 2022 - 7:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Arts, History, People, Preston News, Proud Preston
Jake Jackson
Jake Jackson

A Preston man is telling historic stories in poetry form.

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Jake Jackson is the author of Murder and Mayhem in the Old Priest Town, which is available in the reference library at the Harris.

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Jake has had a varied working life in transport and social care, and was lead singer of band Area 51 for almost two decades.

Jake said: “My stories are about life in Preston going back the odd century.

“They are a mix of fact and fiction so they come across as folklore tales of times in bygone Preston.

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“These include the story of the Babblefat, the Bannister Doll, and Mrs Biscuit, a Pendleton witch tale.”

Jake’s story ‘Bannister Doll’ can be read below.

Bannister Doll

A nineteenth century mill owner
And not an easy man to forget
A hard working family type of man
One who demands great respect

John Bannister was such a person
He owned a mill on Marsh Lane
A high ranking gent about Preston
Though events would soon tarnish his name

To his horror his daughter became pregnant
In those days was looked on with shame
Not to be married, and father unknown
You could say was not playing the game

She had suffered at the hands of a monster
Who had raped her some months before
It is not known why she’d not explained this
To her father who thought her a whore

On Ladywell Street the bannister doll
By far Preston’s most famous ghost
Was whipped by a tyranic father
And she died while tied to a post

The suffering girl met her maker
She went like a lamb to the slaughter
Her father was told, that after she’d died
He had murdered his innocent daughter

Records on the history of Preston
State he never commited this crime
As he ran a house of correction
With whipping a common pastime

Also it’s said, he was once the mayor
A man who has cast many shadows
And the bannister doll still haunts the streets
Did a Preston mayor once cheat the gallows?


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