Barley is a small village in Lancashire and the township contains the hamlet of Wheatley Booth. It has a small population of approximately 270. The village is made up of farms and small businesses.
Barley earned its livelihood from agriculture starting from a small cattle farm established in approximately 1266, until the 18 century when the manufacturing of textiles began. The brooks around Barley offered an effective source of waterpower which lead to the building of several cotton factories. A small cotton mill was built at Barley Green which was destroyed in a flood in 1880.
Barley is a popular starting point for walkers of the Pendle Way long distance trail which passes through the village. Pendle Way is a recreational path which encircles the borough of Pendle and was officially opened in 1987. The circuit is 45 miles (72km) long and the route proceeds clockwise but can be started at any point
In 2011 United Utilities engineers were called in to survey the land during a construction project when they unearthed a well preserved 17th century cottage near Lower Black Moss reservoir. There has been speculation among historians that this was the home of one of the Pendle Witches sent to trial at Lancaster Castle in 1612, although there is no evidence to confirm this. The building, which was found under a grass mound, contained a sealed room with the bones of a cat bricked into the wall. It is believed that the cat would have been buried alive to protect the inhabitants of the cottage from evil spirits.