Can you help solve Long Meg mystery?

Date: Wednesday 7th February 2018
Elaine Mahoney examines the name carved on one of the stones at Long Meg
Elaine Mahoney examines the name carved on one of the stones at Long Meg

A MERSEYSIDE woman is looking to Herald readers to shed some light on a name inscribed on the main stone at Long Meg stone circle, Little Salkeld, which she believes might refer to one of her ancestors, William Joseph Scott.

Elaine Maloney, from St. Helens, was visiting the area as part of a quest to trace her family tree after discovering that many of her ancestors were from Melmerby, including William (1800-72), the local blacksmith.

She visited his grave at St. John the Baptist Church and the former blacksmith's foundry, where she was given some horseshoes found under the floor during renovation work. She and her husband stayed at Gate House B&B, also a former family home, where the owners suggested they pay a visit to Long Meg while they were in the area.

It was only when they got there that they came across the name W. J. Scott carved into the main stone.

Elaine said: "I was immediately drawn to Mother Meg, the largest of the standing stones, and admired the carvings on the front of the stone. It was my husband who walked around to the back of the stone and saw the carving of the name William J Scott. To see this after just finding the family grave was stunning to say the least.

"The inscription has obviously been there for a very long time and the font seems similar to the font on the gravestone.

"I have tried desperately to try and find out if this is indeed my great-great-grandfather and, if it is, why is this name carved on the back of Mother Meg?

"William Joseph Scott died in 1872 aged 72. Is there any chance that a reader of your newspaper or someone steeped in the fascinating history of the area might be able to shed some light on this for us?"

Anyone with information can contact her by e-mailing