Nelson family set up Pendle Witches T-shirt business

CHILDREN'S FAVOURITE: Jen's cute witch (S)
CHILDREN'S FAVOURITE: Jen's cute witch (S)

QUirky artistic talents are turning a life-long interest in the Pendle Witches into a cottage industry for a Nelson family.

Jen and Jim Blackburn have combined their traditional drawing and screenprinting skills with their son Nathan’s IT flair and come up with T-shirt designs they hope will take Pendle’s name far and wide.

Said Jen: “We both grew up in the shadow of Pendle Hill. We’ve always been interested in the Pendle Witches and the legends of the area, and I’ve always wanted to do something creative, so that’s how Pendle Witch T-Shirts came about.”

Over the year,s trained nursery nurse Jen (40) has discovered tales the wiches. Her mum, Susan Curry, who grew up in Sabden Fold, and her

brother, Noel, lives in Burnley.

A former pupil at Mansfield High School, her interest expanded into the mythical and supernatual world, and the goth and alternative scene as well as horror and the natural world, all of which give her inspiration for her home grown designs.

Husband Jim (41), who went to Edge End High School, works for Sovereign Glass and has a background in hand screen printing.

“We’ve gathered experience along the way,” said Jen. “Even designing our own website, with a lot of help from Nathan.”

“I haven’t any formal art training, I just like to draw, and to come up with designs that fit whatever mood people might be in.”

Jim focussed his expertise on research into the best fabrics and threadcounts for the T-shirts to display Jen’s creations.

The couple, who live in Vicarage Road, are taking their designs to the marketplace, along with personal and bespokee T-shirts, and hope to sell them through local businesses and their website www.pendlewitchtshirts.co.uk to tell the 400-year-old Pendle Witch story and to attract tourists to the area.