Sandstone Tales

I'm often telling folk tales from the county of Cheshire, and so it was a delight to attend a course exploring Cheshire legends.  It was led by Johnny Gillett, a friend and fellow storyteller.  Johnny has collected tales exploring the landscape and even developed creation myths for Cheshire's Sandstone Ridge, giving it life through the Ridge Wyrm. 

Is this rocky outcrop the dragon like head of the Ridgewyrm?

We explored themes of the Devil's exploits in the area before climbing up to Queen's Parlour, a spectacular and evocative cave high up on the ridge.  A perfect location for listening to stories and for gaining inspiration from the shapes in the sandstone. 

Is this a pensive writer in the rock?

We shared more stories over a lovely lunch in the Sandstone pub. 

Then it was back to Harthill Creative Centre to develop our tales and explore characters.  The workshop helped me give shape to a set of stories featuring bagpipers, which balance happier endings with dark and foreboding warnings.

I'm now packed full of ideas and ready for more storytelling.  And also looking forward to Johnny's forthcoming book 'Cheshire Folk Tales' which is out on 1st June.