On the other side of Pendle Hill from 12 Newchurch holiday cottage, the picture-postcard village of Downham is often hailed as the most beautiful village in Lancashire. It provides unparalleled, elevated views of Pendle Hill unspoilt by overhead wires, TV aerials or signage.
Responsibility for the village and surrounding estate belongs to the Assheton family, and none of the properties on the estate are privately owned. Downham Manor has been in the family’s ownership since 1558.
Downham has a car park with information centre and public toilets. It is home to the highly-acclaimed Assheton Arms gastropub, an ice cream shop on the village green (which also offers e-bike hire) and a tearoom at nearby Greendale View.
Although settlers came to Downham around the 8th or 9th century, most of the present stone cottages were built between the reigns of Queen Elizabeth I and Queen Victoria. The oldest Tudor house is dated 1580.
Download ‘A Walk Around Downham’ – a historical stroll around the village of Downham by Elizabeth Wrigley
The village is popular for filming historical dramas. One of the most famous films shot in Downham was the 1961 film ‘Whistle Down the Wind’, shot largely at Worsaw End Farm and involving local children from Downham and Chatburn schools in many of the roles.