Lancashire Legends, Traditions, Pageants, Sports, &c./Part 4/Ducking Stool in the Fylde

THE DUCKING-STOOL IN THE FYLDE.

Different persons now living, says Rev. W. Thomber in 1837, well remember that formidable machine the cuck-stool, once the dread of scolds, standing in Great Carlton. The stool or chair was placed at the end of a long pole, balanced on a pivot, and suspended over a pond of water, in which the offender was ducked. At Poulton, he adds, a few are still living who remember the remains of the chair fixed over the cuck-stool at the Breck, for the punishment of scolds. Poulton must surely have been infested with these scourges of domestic happiness, for no less than three ponds there all bear the name of cuck-stool. It was in use even to a late period; for the last female doomed to undergo this punishment, escaped by the interference of Madame Hornby, who became surety for her future good behaviour.