A MURDERED woman who was killed 256 years ago on the hills surrounding Ramsbottom has been remembered at the site of the world’s oldest memorial to a domestic violence victim.

Campaigners trekked to a remote spot on Holcombe Moor, where Ellen Strange is said to have been strangled and bludgeoned by her husband, John Broadley, to raise awareness of domestic violence.

Ever since Ellen Strange was killed on her way to Helmshore, people passing by the windswept site have left stones in her memory, leaving a cairn to be formed.

Approximately 30 people made the trek from the Church of Emmanuel, in Chapel Lane, Holcombe, to the site to lay a wreath, listen to speeches and remember Ellen Strange and all domestic violence victims.

Social historian Mark Metcalf, one of the people who helped organise the event, said: "The walk went very well and it was a good chance to have a chat to people and get to know each other.

"But it was also quite sombre when we got to the top, as you might expect."

Five dogs also accompanied the campaigners on the walk, in solidarity with the Endeavour Project, which supports women and children experiencing domestic violence and abuse in the North West by caring for pets while women are in refuges, among other ways of helping.

Mr Metcalf added: "One of the ways abusive partners control people is they get to them via their pets, so the project is trying to counter that.

"Projects like this do amazing work and helping victims of domestic abuse but also preventing it in the first place."

Tracey Dewe of the Endeavour Project said: “There was a real feeling of achievement and it was a chance to remember Ellen and all those who have suffered since from domestic violence."

There were also speeches by: Sheila Coleman, from the Hillsborough Justice Campaign; Linda Charnock, also from the Endeavour Project; the Reverend Robert Airey; and church reader Michael Burton.

On the return, tea and refreshments were served at the church.

Following Strange's murder in the 18th Century, local people began placing stones in her memory on the site of her death, a practice that has continued to the present day.

Two women per week in the UK are being killed by their partners or ex-partners whilst thousands of women suffer physical and emotional brutality.

The Ellen Strange Commemoration Committee, which has organised this event, arose from Unite the union’s Rebel Road project.