Tuatha De Danaan (Fairy Folk)?
There still to this day exists the belief in the Fairy Folk throughtout the three shires, Cheshire, Staffordshire and Derbyshire. One such place where the Fairy Folk are said to have inhabited can be found at the Fairyhough, South of Fools Nook along the Macclesfield to Leek road.
The Fairyhough on the Leek to Macclesfield road, was this the abode of Fairies at one time?
The word hough is old English from hoh, this means ridge, and as you travel out of Fools Nook towards Leek, and if you look to your left you will see a ridge, where it drops steeply at the end this is thought to be the Hough and was thought to be the abode of Fairies, perhaps it still is!
Belief in Fairies is far stronger in rural areas, and in some places in the Peak district farmers still leave a bowl of milk outside at night for the Fairies, if they do not do this they run the risk of their cows drying up and not giving milk.
There is a story which is over one hundred years old and tells of a young lad who spotted some Fairy Folk dancing in a field from Kettleshulme, it is said that he approached them and they either disappeared or they fled, however they left a tiny pipe in the field when they fled and it was still alight and no bigger than a twopence piece.
A Fairy stone found on the side of the Earlsway outside the Coach and horses public house.
In the Dane valley it used to be tradition to leave food in a field the night before it was due to be ploughed by the farmer so as to appease the Fairy Folk.
Looking down into the Manifold valley.
The high rocky sides of the Manifold valley make it difficult for sunlight to reach the bottom in places, it is said that Fairies light the way for the traveller through this ravine, perhaps they are Will O’ the Wisp known locally as Jenny Burnt Tail.
At Ludchurch in the ancient Backforest at Gradbach there is a legend that the Fairies danced at dawn outside this natural cavern, it is said that it was the entrance to the other world, however the cave in question is now blocked from rock falls which have taken place over the years.
Ludchurch, the blocked cave entrance which is said to lead to the the Other World can be found at the Southern end of it.
One of the Christian explanations for the existence of Fairies is that they are fallen Angels seduced by Satan. When the Angel Micheal evicted Satan’s hosts from Heaven they were followed by countless innocents, and when God saw that Heaven was emptying he raised his hand and closed the gates but some had descended to the Earth’s mountains and woods.
The ancient cross at Mottram St Andrew is where the Fairies or “Good People” were said to dance around each year.
Another Christian explanation for Fairies was that Adam and Eve had so many children that they were ashamed. When God asked Eve to bring the children to him she hid half of them, however God knew this and said all those that are hidden should be” hidden from all mankind”; thus they became known as the huldre or hidden people.
Like the cross at Mottram St Andrew, this one at Gawsworth was also used by the Fairy Folk once a year to dance around.
There are those that feel that a connection exists between Fairies and Druids. Celtic lore reveals a long standing belief that Fairies are a kind of spiritual being who retain the otherwise extinct teaching of the Druids.
I have been told by a pyschic that this tree in Windmill wood on Alderley Edge has some sort of connection to the Fairy Folk.