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The 1800s murder of a Ribble Valley landlady that shocked the nation

Posted on - 19th May, 2024 - 7:00pm | Author - | Posted in - Longridge, Preston News, Ribble Valley News
Now called Setters Farm, it was once a ‘beer house’ and home to Ann Walne. Pic credit: Blog Preston

To those who pass Setters Farm these days, it just looks like a derelict farmhouse on the side of the road between Ribchester and Longridge.

But it has a dark and gruesome past, as a new video by Youtubers Explore the UK finds out.

Entitled ‘Brutal Murder of an Old Lady: Ribchester Murder and Hangings‘, the Youtube video, delivered in the style of a podcast, delves into the murder of landlady Ann Walne back in 1862.

Now called Setters Farm, back in Victorian times the building was home to a ‘beer house’ called the Joiner’s Arms which sat by the roadside about a mile outside of the Roman village of Ribchester.

Beer houses catered for travellers who made their way along the country lanes, either by foot or on horseback, and were often supplementary enterprises that sat alongside another business, for example a farm or smallholding.

Within striking distance of the old workhouse, which sat where the Asturian Gate housing development now is, the Joiner’s Arms was overseen by Mrs Walne.

However, in the late autumn of 1862, Mrs Walne was the victim of a particularly brutal and savage murder.

With the video delving into how the murderers crept in through the rear of the property and tied up Mrs Walne, it explores a crime that captivated not just the Lancashire newspapers, but also got mentioned in The Times of London.

It is an incident that was explored last year on the Ribchester Facebook group, Ancestry Search Services, with archive material giving a glimpse into a crime that would shock even today’s readers.

A report from the Manchester Examiner and Times. Pic credit: Ancestry Search Services.

Without giving too much away, the 30 minute Youtube video provides an illuminating glimpse of Mrs Walne’s life, her gruesome death, and the hunt for her killers.

The Explore the UK videos are produced by narrowboaters Elliott and Sue and feature several snapshots of Preston’s history and heritage.

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