Kendal Ward

Kentmere Index

Kentmere - Gazetteer

1829: Parson & White Trade Directory p. 651:

Kentmere township and chapelry forms a narrow vale, 2 miles in length, shut in by lofty fells, and distant 9 miles NW by N of Kendal. It is watered by the river Kent, which rises a little to the north, and here forms a Lake one mile long, abounding with trout, perch, and wild ducks, and margined by swampy grounds, so that it cannot be approached, except at one point at the foot of a mountain, where a boat is moored. Between this and Long Sleddale, about 1 1/2 mile eastward, upon the fell, is another large tarn, called Skeggles-water, in which are pike and perch. Here are blue slate quarries, and blue limestone. The houses are all scattered, except the hamlet of Green Quarter, which gives name to that part of the township, on the east side of the Kent, the other division being called Crag Quarter, from the huge broken rocks which divide it from Applethwaite and Hugill, and at the foot of one of which stands the ancient tower-building, Kentmere Hall, occupied by a farmer. C. Wilson, Esq. is owner of the lake and part of the township.

1851: From Post Office Directory, under KENDAL, p. 27:

Kentmere is a township and chapelry, in the parish of Kendal, consisting of a narrow vale, about 4 miles in length, shut in by lofty fells, 9 miles north-west-by-north of Kendal; it is situated on the river Kent, which rises to the north. The river turns several mills, and a large reservoir, covering about 48 acres, has been recently made, to preserve a supply of water in dry weather. The chapel of ease is an ancient building; the living is a curacy worth 70 yearly, with residence, in the incumbency of the Rev. Gerard Hayton. The population of the township in 1851 was 193.

1891: (Gazetteer, British Isles) with census supp. p. 425

Township in parish and 8.5 miles NW of Kendal, Westmorland, on river Kent, 6613 ac., pop 174; has slate and limestone quarries.

1900 (Art. XXII by the late James Cropper from C&WA &AS vol. 1, new series, read at Kentmere Church, Sept 18, 1900.

Few of our lake valleys are so primitive and so unchanged as the Vale of Kentmere, the cluster of houses on the "Greenside Quarter", the church in the centre of the view, and the old Hall which happily has never been restored, but stands as it has stood for some 600 years. Few new houses have been built, and we may believe that in their appearance, in their occupation, and in their talk, the inhabitants are little altered since their noted predecessor, Richard GILPIN, killed the wild boar and won his grant of land and his right to wear as his arms a Boar Sable.

From Kelly's Directory of Cumb. and Westmorland:

KENTMERE is a parish, consisting chiefly on a long narrow valley, about 4 miles in extent, and shut in on either hand by lofty fells; it is 4 1/2 miles north from Staveley station on the Oxenholme and Windermere branch of the London, Midland and Scottish railway, in the Kendal ward and petty sessional division, county court district of Ambleside, rural district of South Westmorland, rural deanery of Kendal, archdeaconry of Westmorland and diocese of Carlisle.

The river Kent passes through the parish, and there is a reservoir, constructed about 1846 in order to ensure a supply of water in dry seasons; the small mere or lake from which the valley in part derives its name has been drained, and its bed is now cultivated land.

On the summits of High Street and Ill Bell, to the north-north-west of the township, are well-constructed cairns, that on High Street being a sort of obelisk about 15 feet high.

The old Roman road on this mountain can be easily traced.

Christopher G. WILSON, who is lord of the manor, and William LITTLE esq. J.P. are the principal landowners. The soil is rich loam; subsoil, gravelly. The chief crops are oats, turnips and potatoes. The area is 6,555 acres of land and 55 of water. The population in 1931 was 128.


BLAND, Birkett, is a farmer at Overend.

WATERSTON, Geo. Fyfe, farmer, Pout Howe, Little Overend, & Brockstone.

Dr. Henry ÃIRAY,, Provost of Queen's College from 1598, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Oxford, and nephew of the noted Bernard GILPIN (by whom he was adopted and educated), was born here in 1559, and died 10 Oct. 1616.

From an unnamed Gazetteer:

Kentmere: A valley running N. from Staveley station, between Kendal and Windermere, formerly containing a lake, now drained. Above Millrigg, 3 m. up the valley, are remains of a "British settlement". The old church, 4 m. from Staveley, finely placed on a hill, and surrounded by mountains, contains a memorial to Bernard GILPIN, the Apostle of the North, born1517 at the Hall close by, which has a ruined pele-tower of the 15th cent. Thence a path goes over Garburn, which see. Three miles up the valley, under Ill Bell (2476 ft), is Kentmere reservoir, an artificial lake finely surrounded with crags, from which a steep path leads over Nan Bield Pass (2100ft.) to Mardale. This part has lately been much cut up by the Manchester waterworks. The river Kent, rising in the head of this valley, passes Staveley, receives the Sprint from Long Sleddale at Burneside, and the Mint at Kendal, then turns south, and after a rapid and fall in Levens Park, passing under Levens Bridge, widens into a sandy estuary, which meets Morecambe Bay at Arnside. 

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