Magna Britannia: Volume 4, Cumberland. Originally published by T Cadell and W Davies, London, 1816.
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DACRE, in Leath ward, lies about five miles from Penrith: it contains the townships of Dacre, Great-Blencowe, Newbiggin, Soulby, and Stainton. These townships collectively contained, in 1811, 147 houses and 763 inhabitants. Bede, in his Ecclesiastical History, speaks of a monastery at Dacre, of which we have no later mention: it was probably destroyed by the Danes, and never restored. We are told by William of Malmesbury, that Constantine King of Scotland and his son Eugenius King of Cumberland met King Athelstan and did homage to him at Dacre.
This parish gave name to the ancient baronial family of Dacre, who had their seat at Dacre Castle, in this parish. Their posterity became by marriage lords also of Gilsland and Greystock. On the death of Thomas Lord Dacre without male issue, in 1454, his next brother, Ralph, succeeded to the baronies of Gilsland and Greystock, and he and his successors were called Lords Dacre of the North. Sir Richard Fynes having married Joan, the only daughter of Thomas Lord Dacre, was, by the King's patent, the same year, declared to be a baron of the realm, by the title of Lord Dacre of the South. Margaret, the sister and heir of Gregory Lord Dacre, married Sampson Lennard, Esq. of Chevening, in Kent, whose posterity inherited the title and the Dacre estate. Thomas Lennard, Lord Dacre, who was created Earl of Sussex (fn. n1) in 1675, left two daughters, coheiresses, who, with their mother, sold the manors of Dacre and Soulby, in 1715, to Sir Christopher Musgrave; the latter conveyed them the same year to Edward Hasell, Esq. of Dalemain, grandfather of Edward Hasell, Esq. the present proprietor.
Dacre Castle, a quadrangular building, with four turrets (fn. n2), erected about the reign of Henry VII. is now occupied as a farm-house.
Dalemain, now the seat of Edward Hasell, Esq. belonged, in the reign of Henry II. to the Morvilles. In the reign of Henry III. it passed to the Laytons, of whose coheiresses it was purchased in 1665 by Sir Edward Hasell, ancestor of the present proprietor.
In the parish church is a monument of one of the Dacre family: there are memorials also for some of the Hasells (fn. n3). The figures of bears in the church-yard, and the Dacre monument, have been already spoken of.
The townships of Dacre and Soulby have been inclosed by an act of parliament passed in 1806, by which lands were given in lieu of tithes to Edward Hasell, Esq. the impropriator, as lessee under the Crown, and to the vicar.
At Great-Blencowe is a free grammar-school, founded in the reign of Queen Elizabeth by Mr. Thomas Burbank, or Bowerbank, and endowed with lands in Cumberland and Northamptonshire, now let at 220l. per annum. The trust is vested in eight feoffees, who nominate the master.
DALSTON, in Cumberland ward, lies four miles and a quarter from Carlisle, which is the post-office town, and eight miles from Wigton. It comprises the townships of Dalston, Buckabank, Camdevock, Hawkesdale, Ivegill, Raughton, and Gateskale, which in 1811 contained collectively 423 houses and 2,369 inhabitants.
Ranulph de Meschines gave the barony of Dalston to Robert de Vallibus (brother of Hubert lord of Gilsland), which Robert took the name of Dalston. After Cumberland had been ceded by King Stephen to the Scots, this family appears to have been dispossessed; and the lordship having been given to a Scot, was seized by Henry II. as an escheat, and continued in the Crown till the year 1228, when King Henry III. gave the manor of Dalston to Walter Bishop of Carlisle, and his successors in the see (fn. n4). Michael Hercla claimed this manor against the Bishop in a writ of right in the reign of Edward I. as descended from an heiress of the elder branch of Dalston, but without success.
King Henry's charter disforests the manor, and gives the Bishop and his successors authority to make parks, and to possess the manor as a forest of their own, with all the privileges of a royal forest, forbidding all others to sport within its limits, under penalty of the payment of ten pounds. A subsequent charter empowers the Bishops, or others sporting in the manor of Dalston, with their permission, to follow their game and take it in the King's forest without molestation. On failure of male issue, the daughters of tenants of this manor inherit equally as coparceners.
Rose Castle, which is situated in a beautiful valley, watered by the river Caldew, is supposed to have been the principal residence of the Bishops of Carlisle ever since the grant of the manor. King Edward I. appears to have been at Rose Castle in the month of September 1300 (fn. n5). In the year 1322, Rose Castle was burnt by Robert Brus (fn. n6). Bishop Kirkby, in 1336, procured the King's licence to castellate his manor-house at Rose, which had then lately been injured by the incursions of the Scots (fn. n7). It is said to have been again attacked and burnt by those hostile invaders the following year (fn. n8); probably the fortifications had not then been completed by virtue of the patent.
Before the civil wars Rose Castle formed a complete quadrangle; it had five towers besides turrets, and was encompassed with a wall, which also had several turrets. One of the towers was built by Bishop Strickland, who was promoted to the see in 1400, another by Bishop Bell, who was appointed in 1478, and a third by Bishop Kyte, who became Bishop in 1521. The north side of the quadrangle contained the constable's tower, with three rooms in it; the chapel, with three chambers under it; Bell's tower, at the back of the chapel, with two rooms in it, besides the clock-house; next to the chapel, the Bishop's chamber, and another chamber under it; a large chamber called the council-chamber, and one chamber under it called Great Paradise; and Strickland's tower (fn. n9), which had three chambers in it, besides the vault: in all seventeen rooms. The east side contained the great dining-room, with a cellar underneath; a large hall and a buttery, with a cellar under each, a turret and one chamber near it; a large kitchen with two chimnies, and a place for a cauldron or boiler; a lodging below for the cooks, and a large cellar or vault: in all, six rooms. The south side contained a long gallery, leading to the hall; a storehouse and larder, and a little turret or two near the same; over the same, a granary for corn, and underneath, a vault or wood-house; also a brewhouse, bakehouse, and offices, and over them another granary: in all, ten rooms. The west side contained Pottinger's tower, in which were three lodging-rooms and a vault, a wash-house and a dairy, one chamber below, and three above; adjoining to these, Kyte's tower, with two chambers: in all, twelve rooms. In the midst of the court, was a fountain, which conveyed water to all the offices in the house.
In the month of June 1648, Rose Castle being held by a garrison of royalists, consisting of 40 men, was attacked by a detachment of General Lambert's army, and taken by storm, after an assault of two hours, the governor having refused two summonses (fn. n10). A few weeks afterwards, the Duke of Hamilton's army was joined by Sir Marmaduke Langdale's forces at Rose Castle (fn. n11). Mr. T. Denton, in his MS. History of Cumberland, says, that Rose Castle was burnt down by order of Major Cholmley; it had previously been made a prison for the royalists. (fn. n12)
The survey of Rose Castle made by order of parliament in 1649 or 1650, describes it to be in a state of great decay, and values the materials for sale at 425l. Mr. Heningham, who possessed a moiety of the manor during Cromwell's time, fitted up the offices for his own residence (fn. n13). When Bishop Rainbow came to the see in 1664, no part of the house was habitable: he built a few rooms for immediate use, and was obliged to rebuild the chapel, which had been insufficiently built by his predecessor (fn. n14). Bishop Smith built the tower adjoining the staircase, and by him and his immediate successor the house was again rendered a comfortable habitation. Bishop Lyttleton repaired Strickland's tower, built a new kitchen and other offices, and made great improvements in the habitable part of the house. The late Bishop made several alterations conducive to comfort and convenience, and much improved, by various repairs, the external appearance of the castle.
In ancient times, every Bishop of Carlisle was obliged to leave for his successor a certain number of books of divinity and canon law; 104 oxen, 16 heifers, and other live stock in proportion. (fn. n15)
The manor of Little-Dalston belonged, from a very early period, to the ancient family of Dalston, descended by a younger branch from Robert de Vallibus, to whom the seignory or barony of Dalston had been granted by Ranulph de Meschines. Sir William Dalston, the immediate descendant, a zealous royalist, was created a baronet in 1640; the title and the male line of the elder branch of this ancient family became extinct by the death of Sir George, the fifth baronet, in 1765. Four years before his death he sold his estate at Dalston to Monkhouse Davison, Esq. after whose death it was purchased (in the year 1795) by John Sowerby, Esq. the present proprietor.
The old mansion of Dalston-Hall, built in a castellated form, is occupied as a farm-house; the chapel is now used for some of the purposes of the farm. Dalston Hall was the head-quarters of General Lesley during the siege of Carlisle in 1644 and 1645.
The manor of Hegheved, (or High-head,) in the township of Ivegill belonged in the reign of Edward II. to John de Hercla, who was attainted for being concerned in rebellion with his brother the Earl of Carlisle. In 1342 William L'Angleys, or English, had the king's licence to fortify his mansion at Hegheved, yet it appears that there had been a castle there before, belonging to the crown, for in the year 1326 Ralph Dacre had a grant of the custody of the castle of Hegheved for ten years, and the next year the custody was granted for life to William L'Angles, or L'Engles, who possessed himself of it under that grant, whereupon Ralph Dacre in 1330 petitioned parliament to be reinstated during the remainder of his term (fn. n16). In 1358 the son of William above-mentioned, had a licence from the bishop to build a chapel there, and to have a chaplain to officiate in it. About the year 1550 High-head Castle was purchased of the family of Restwold, by John Richmond, Esq. in whose posterity it continued for several generations. This castle and estate are now in moieties, one moiety belonged to the late John Gale, Esq. maternally descended from the Richmonds; the other is the joint property of several persons descended from Mrs. Baines, who was a Richmond. The half of the mansion, which belonged to Mr. Gale, has been many years uninhabited: his estate devolves to his son Wilson Braddyll, Esq. of Conishead priory; the other part has been occupied by the tenants of the estate.
The mesne manor of Cardew belonged at an early period to a family who took their name from the place. In the reign of Edward I. it became the property of John Burdon, who in default of issue from his son of the same name, entailed it on John Denton and his wife Joan, the heiress of Kirkbride, and their heirs. This John Denton is said to have distinguished himself in the service of Edward Baliol, who gave him the crest (fn. n17), afterwards borne by his family, for defending a castle in Annandale, against Robert Bruce. In 1686 George Denton, Esq. sold the manor of Cardew to Sir James Lowther, Bart., from whom it has descended to William Earl of Lonsdale, the present proprietor; Cardew-hall, the old seat of the Dentons, has been long occupied as a farm-house.
The manor of Gateskale (fn. n18), or Gateskell, and Raughton, belonged to one Ughtred (fn. n19), whose posterity took the name of Raughton: the last of that name having settled it upon his wife Margaret Stapleton, it passed to her family, and from them to the Hayton branch of the Musgraves: it is now the property of Mrs. Jolliffe.
Hawkesdale Hall, many years the property and residence of the Nicolson family, is now in a dilapidated state. Holme-hill, many years the residence of the family of Holme, on the extinction of that family passed to George Holme Sumner, Esq. M. P. and having been since sold, is now the property of Colonel Salkeld; it is occupied as a ladies boarding school. "The Oaks" is the residence of Mrs. Blamire, widow of William Blamire, Esq.
Against the chancel of the parish church of Dalston, on the outside, is a monument to the memory of the Nicolson family (fn. n20), of Hawkesdale.
The deaths of some of the Bishops of Carlisle are recorded in the parish register. Dr. John Maye, Bishop of Carlisle, who died Feb. 15th 1597-8, at eight in the morning, is said to have been buried at eight the same evening, in the cathedral at Carlisle, and his obsequies celebrated the following day at Dalston. Bishop Robinson, who died about three in the afternoon on the 19th of June, 1616, is said to have been buried in Carlisle cathedral about eleven the same night. The burial of Bishop Senhouse, "May 7th 1626," is thus entered, "Richardus Senhouse, Episcopus Carliolensis;" yet it is said that he was buried at Carlisle. "Dr. Edward Rainbow, Bishop of Carlisle, who died at 11 o'clock at night on the 27th of March, 1684, was buried in the church-yard at Dalston at four in the afternoon on the 1st of April."
The great tithes of Dalston are appropriated to the Bishop of Carlisle. The moors, &c. within the parish of Dalston, have been inclosed under an act of parliament, passed in 1803, by which allotments of land were given to the bishop as rector, and to the vicar. The commons in the townships of Raughton and Gateskell, and Ivegill, were inclosed under the act for inclosing the forest of Inglewood.
The bishop is patron of the vicarage. The late celebrated Dr. Paley was vicar of Dalston from 1774 to 1793; he added a good parlour to the vicarage house, and rebuilt the stables. After the Restoration, this vicarage was augmented with an annual payment of 31l. 8d. charged on the great tithes, and Bishop Smith gave the sum of 300l. which has been laid out in lands near the vicarage.
About the year 1343 a forty days indulgence was granted by Bishop Kirkby, to all such as should be benefactors to the chapel of St. Wynomaus, the bishop, in the parish of Dalston, or to the support of Hugh de Lilford, an hermit there; there are no remains of this chapel, nor any tradition respecting it. About a mile from the parish church is a field called the Chapel-Flat, which probably was its site.
There is a school at Dalston, endowed with a stock of 110l. and a tenement at Hawkesdale, given by Bishop Smith, now let for 36l. per annum. Under the act of 1803, there was an allotment for the purpose of erecting a workhouse and school-house, and a dwelling-house for the master.
At Dalston are two large cotton mills occupied by Messrs. Waldies and Dugdales; and another, a very extensive concern, near to Bishops-Forge, the property of Messrs. Hobson and Forster. The iron and plating forge now belongs to Mr. Thomas Watson; the spades manufactured here are held in much esteem, and sent to many parts of Scotland. The different manufactories are supposed to employ about 600 persons.
DEAN, in the ward of Allerdale above Derwent, lies about nine miles from Whitehaven, about five from Workington, and about the same distance from Cockermouth, which is the post-office town. It comprises the townships of Dean, Branthwaite, and Ullock, containing altogether in 1811, 157 houses, and 752 inhabitants.
Dean was one of the five towns given by William de Meschines to Waldieve; having passed by descent to the families of Lucy and Percy, it was given by Henry, Earl of Northumberland, to King Henry VIII. granted to the Whartons, purchased by the Duke of Somerset, and from him descended to the Earl of Egremont, who is the present proprietor.
The manor of Branthwaite was given by Alan, son of Waldieve, in marriage with one of his relations, to a person who took the name of Branthwaite; the heiress of this family married Sir Richard Skelton, whose posterity continued in possession for many generations. Gen. Skelton, who died in 1757, devised this manor to Captain Jones, whose son, Arnoldus Jones, took the name of Skelton, and died in 1793. The manor of Branthwaite is now the property of John Christian Curwen, of Workington, Esq.
The church is a rectory in the diocese of Chester, the archdeaconry of Richmond, and deanery of Copeland; the advowson was formerly annexed to the manor. The Rev. Henry Sill, is the present rector and patron. Dr. John Dalton, born at Dean in 1709, being son of John Dalton, then rector, adapted Milton's Comus for the stage (fn. n21), and published some poems and sermons. His brother, the late Mr. Richard Dalton, for many years held the office of surveyor of His Majesty's pictures, &c.
In the seventeenth century the Quakers were very numerous in this parish. George Fox, their founder, in his journal, speaks of two general meetings held at Pardsey Crag in 1657 and 1663. (fn. n22)
There is a free grammar school at Dean endowed in 1596, by John Fox, goldsmith, with a rent charge of 10l. per annum; the inhabitants recommend, and the goldsmiths company appoint the master: there was a benefaction also given to this school by the family of Fearon, but part of it having been lost, it produces now only 17s. 6d. per annum.
Dearham, or Deerham
DEARHAM, or DEERHAM, in the ward of Allerdale below Derwent, two miles and a half from Maryport, and six miles and a half from Workington. It comprises the townships of Dearham, Ellenborough, and Unerigg, containing together in 1811, 120 houses, and 1081 inhabitants.
A moiety of the manor of Dearham was given by Alan, Lord of Allerdale, to Simon Sheftling, whose posterity took the name of Deerham. The heiress of this family brought it to Barwis; the sister and heir of Richard Barwis, Esq. of Ilekirk, married a Lamplugh, whose son, Richard Lamplugh, Esq. sold this estate in 1722, to Sir James Lowther, Bart. ancestor of William Earl of Lonsdale, the present proprietor. The other moiety, which belonged to the Multons, has been enfranchised.
The manor of Ewanrigg, or Unerigg, in the fourteenth century belonged to the Multons; in 1638 it was conveyed by Richard Barwis, Esq. to Ewan Christian, Esq. of Milntown, in the Isle of Man, Deemster of that island; it is now the property and seat of John Christian Esq. eldest son of John Christian Curwen, Esq. of Workington Hall. The old house, "built castlewise (fn. n23)," spoken of by Nicolson, has been taken down, and a modern mansion, which commands a fine sea view, built on the site.
The manor of Ellenborough, comprising Netherhall, in the parish of Cross-Canonby and the township of Ellenborough, in this parish, belongs to Humphrey Senhouse, Esq. of Netherhall. (fn. n24)
In the parish church are some ancient and curious grave-stones already spoken of; a monument for the family of Christian of Unerigg (1719, &c.) and that of William and Ann Bowman, who lived 64 years together as man and wife, and died in 1800, he aged 87, she 91.
The church of Dearham was given by Alice de Romely, daughter of William Fitz-Duncan, to the church of St. Mary at Gisborne, to which the great tithes were appropriated; they are now vested in the Earl of Lonsdale, John Christian Curwen, Esq. is patron of the vicarage (fn. n25), which has been augmented by Queen Anne's bounty, aided by a benefaction of 200l. given by the Countess Dowager Gower.
There is a school at Dearham, endowed in 1715 by Ewan Christian, Esq. with a rent-charge of 9l. 18s. 5d. issuing out of lands in the township of Flimby. At Unerigg is a school, to which Mrs. Bowman, who died in 1800, gave a benefaction of 400l. The whole income is about 30l. per annum.
The manor of Over-Denton, which was anciently parcel of the barony of Gilsland, was conveyed in the reign of Edward I. by Richard Stonland to John Witherington, in whose family it continued several generations. Mr. T. Denton says, that it was conveyed by that family to Lord William Howard, but Nicolson and Burn make the Tweedales to have been intermediate proprietors. It now belongs to the Earl of Carlisle, in whose family it has been for a considerable time.
The church is said to have been formerly in the diocese of Durham; it was given by the Vaux family to Lanercost priory, to which the tithes were appropriated; they now belong to the Earl of Carlisle, the benefice being a perpetual curacy in his gift.
NETHER-DENTON, in Eskdale ward, lies five miles from Brampton, which is the post-office town. The manor was given by Eustace de Vallibus, to a family who assumed the name of Denton; the heiress of Sir Richard Denton, married Copley of Yorkshire, and the heiress of Copley, in the third generation, married Adam de Hall (fn. n26), who took the name of Denton, and had from his father-in-law a grant of the arms of his maternal great grandfather Sir Richard Denton (fn. n27). In the reign of Henry VII. John Denton exchanged this manor for Warnell-hall with Lord Dacre, from whom it has descended to the Earl of Carlisle. Denton-hall has long been occupied as a farm-house. There are no traces of the tower mentioned in Hutchinson's history.
Robert, son of Bueth, who possessed both the Dentons, gave the church to the monks of Wetheral; it was afterwards given to the priory of Lanercost, which caused a law suit between those monasteries, who eventually compromised the matter, and shared the profits between them, viz. certain payments out of the rectory. In 1266 the monastery of Wetheral released their share, two marks and a half, to the bishop. The rectory is in the bishop's gift; it has been augmented by Queen Anne's bounty, aided by a benefaction of 200l. from the Countess Dowager Gower.
The Rev. William Reay, a native of this parish, of which his father was rector from 1718 to 1736, published, when curate to Dr. Church at Battersea, in Surrey, a volume of sermons, which are held in much esteem, and sell for a high price; they were published by subscription to assist their author, when laboring under a severe illness, of which he died in 1756.
Distington, or Dissington
The manor of Distington belonged to Gilbert de Dundraw, who lived in the reigns of Richard I. and King John; his daughters and co-heiresses divided the manor; after this it continued some time in severalties, which all appear to have centered by purchase or otherwise in the Moresby family, and to have passed by marriage to the Fletchers (fn. n28). After the death of the last of the Fletchers, it was sold under a decree of chancery in 1720. John Brougham, Esq. of Scales, who was then the purchaser, conveyed it in 1737 to Sir James Lowther, Bart. It is now the property of William Earl of Lonsdale. Nicolson and Burn speak of the Dykes family as possessing the manor, and presenting to the rectory from the year 1484 to 1558.
Hay, or Hayes-castle, of which there are some remains in that part of the parish which adjoins to Harrington, is supposed to have been the manerial site and the seat of the Moresby family, who possessed a moiety of the manor as early as the reign of Edward III. (fn. n29); it is now the property of Thomas Hartley, Esq. whose father, Mr. John Hartley, purchased it of Anthony Dickenson. The Earl of Lonsdale is patron of the rectory, which is in the diocese of Chester, archdeaconry of Richmond, and deanery of Copeland. In the church-yard are some monuments of the Blakeney family. The school at this place has no endowment, except three acres of land taken out of the common when the school-house was built.
The manor belonged in the reign of Henry II. to the Estotevills, and passed with the heiress of that family to Baldwin, Lord Wake. At a later period the Harringtons appear to have held the whole or part of the manor under the Lords Wake; the heiress of Harrington married Curwen, and in the reign of James I. Sir Nicholas Curwen sold an estate described as the manor and advowson of Drigg, to Sir William Pennington, from whom they passed by inheritance to Lord Muncaster, the present proprietor. The Earl of Egremont is Lord Paramount of the whole, and a considerable part of the parish is held immediately under his barony of Egremont. Sir William Pennington, the first baronet, made a horse course on the sands at Drigg, in the reign of Charles II. where a plate of the value of 10l. was run for annually in the month of May.
The church of Drigg was appropriated to the priory of Conishead; the benefice is a perpetual curacy in the gift of Lord Muncaster; it is in the diocese of Chester, archdeaconry of Richmond, and deanery of Copeland.
The school at Drigg was founded and endowed in 1723, by Joseph Walker. There is now belonging to this school the sum of 260l. in the hands of the late Lord Muncaster's trustees, being chiefly if not wholly its original endowment.