Rowell Fair

The King James Charter of 1614 was first granted to William Cockayne, the Lord of the Manor.  This made Rothwell a Market Town with certain rights.  No-one can take it away except the Monarch or if the Monday market ceases.

This ancient Fair begins on the stroke of 6a.m. outside the West door of Holy Trinity Church on the Monday after the Feast of the Holy Trinity, (known locally as  Rowell Fair Monday) with the first reading of the Proclamation by the Bailiff to the Lord of the Manor.

He is mounted on horseback & accompanied by a bodyguard of Halberdiers, local dignitaries & the Rowell Fair Society Band. They process around the Town, with the Proclamation being read outside all past & present hostelries.

After each reading a hearty cheer is given of, "God save the Queen & the Lord of the Manor", the National Anthem is played & a drink of rum & milk, or beer, is offered to the Bailiff & Halberdiers by the Landlord/Landlady.  A whistle is blown & a scuffle ensues to try & get a halberd from the Halberdiers. After about a minute another whistle is blown to stop the scuffle & the party moves on to the next location, where it all happens again.

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The Bone Crypt

Rothwell has one of the few Bone Crypts, or Ossuaries, in the Country.

Deep under the floor of the church, near the south door exists Holy Trinity’s crypt or Charnel House.  Local legend suggests that little was known about its existence until the day a hapless gravedigger fell into the crypt whilst working in the church many years ago.  Falling some twelve feet through pitch darkness into a mass of bones was too much for the individual to bear, and it is reputed that he lost his mind through the incident, remaining that way until the day he died.

More latterly, the crypt has been re-organised such that the skulls are now displayed on shelves around the walls, and the thigh bones displayed in two large square piles in the centre.  A favourite pastime of guides on Sunday afternoons is to enter the crypt in front of visitors so that they can witness the gasps of sheer amazement as visitors first enter!

The 13th century crypt contains the remains of around 2500 individuals.  For more information, please visit:

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