Townships: Upper Allithwaite

A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 8. Originally published by Victoria County History, London, 1914.

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'Townships: Upper Allithwaite', in A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 8, ed. William Farrer, J Brownbill( London, 1914), British History Online [accessed 18 July 2024].

'Townships: Upper Allithwaite', in A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 8. Edited by William Farrer, J Brownbill( London, 1914), British History Online, accessed July 18, 2024,

"Townships: Upper Allithwaite". A History of the County of Lancaster: Volume 8. Ed. William Farrer, J Brownbill(London, 1914), , British History Online. Web. 18 July 2024.

In this section


This township occupies 2,675 acres (fn. 1) of the southern end of Cartmel Fell. Judging from its name, the boundaries may at one time have been so arranged that it was adjacent to Lower Allithwaite, the Grange district, afterwards in Broughton, belonging to it; but the connexion may have been due simply to common lordship in early times, as suggested below.

While the main part of the surface is hilly, rising to over 700 ft. above sea level, there is a comparatively low and level strip on the eastern boundary between the foot of the fell and the Winster. The village of Newton lies near the centre of the township in the hollow between two hills; Lindale is on the lower slopes at the south end, with Castlehead to the southeast of it on a little bluff above the Winster. In 1901 there was a population of 763.

From Lindale roads go south to Grange, north to Newton and Cartmel Fell, and north-east to Levens. (fn. 2) At Newton the road from Lindale divides, the chief branch going north-west to Newby Bridge, and a minor one going north to Height, and passing the old meeting-house there. Another road from Newton crosses the Winster into Witherslack by Blea Crag Bridge (rebuilt 1816), adjoining which is a knoll called Gallows Hill, a murderer having been hanged there in 1576. (fn. 3)

Castlehead is supposed to be haunted.

Township affairs are administered by a parish council of six members.


It seems probable that this township received its name from having been at one time under the same lords as Lower Allithwaite, among those lords being the Flemings. NEWTON has already been recorded as one of the manors of Earl Tostig in 1066. John le Fleming granted lands in Newton and Allithwaite to Richard de Copeland at a rent of two pairs of gloves, and gave other lands in Newton in Cartmel which John Celer formerly held, at the rent of 1 lb. of cummin. (fn. 4) William son of William de Asmunderlaw gave his estate to Richard de Copeland. (fn. 5) The Copelands have already been shown to have been owners in Lower Allithwaite. Richard de Copeland in the second quarter of the 1 3 th century granted to his son Peter land in Newton and in Allithwaite, (fn. 6) and Peter gave land in the hamlet of Newton and the piece called Flemingfield to Cartmel Priory in 1245. (fn. 7) About thirty years later the prior and canons acknowledged that they held lands in Newton and those called Flemingfield in Allithwaite of Sir Alan de Copeland. (fn. 8) After this Newton does not seem to have been regarded as a separate manor, and the Cartmel rental of 1508–9 shows a considerable number of small tenements there. (fn. 9)

LINDALE (fn. 10) was granted to the Knights of St. John of Jerusalem by Reyner le Fleming, (fn. 11) and was held by them, as a member of the Preceptory of Newland in Yorkshire in 1292, (fn. 12) and down to the suppression of the order in England by Henry VIII. It was again restored to them by Queen Mary, (fn. 13) .but lost on the accession of Elizabeth. (fn. 14) The manor was sold by James I in 1611 to John Eldred and another, (fn. 15) who transferred to Robert Dalton of Thurnham and another, and these in 1622 sold to William Thornburgh. Not long afterwards, in 1636, it was purchased from him by Robert Curwen and Robert Rawlinson, and descended with Cark Hall (fn. 16) until 1860, when on partition it was allotted as part of a third of a moiety to Millicent Ann (Moore), widow of T. F. Johnson, whose representative is the present lord of the manor. (fn. 17)

Atterpile Castle, now Castlehead, was sold in 1611, (fn. 18) and became the property of the Thornburghs of Hampsfield. (fn. 19) It was afterwards held by the Turner family of Grange, and about 1765 was purchased by John Wilkinson, the great ironmaster, who built himself a house there, and was buried in the garden in 1808. On the estate being sold in 1828 the body was reinterred in the church. (fn. 20) Castlehead has had several owners in the last eighty years, and is now occupied as a junior school of studies by a religious community, the Holy Ghost Fathers, who are devoted to foreign missions. It is called St. Mary's.

John de Lancaster, about 1300, granted the canons of Cartmel a free fishery on Helton Tarn and leave to use a boat anywhere upon it, either on the Witherslack side or on their own Cartmel side. (fn. 21)

There are a few other references to the township in pleadings (fn. 22) and inquisitions, (fn. 23) but they are of little interest.


A chapel at Lindale probably existed before the Reformation, but nothing certain is known. (fn. 24) Lawrence Newton was 'reader' there in 1627. (fn. 25) In 1650 it had 'neither minister nor maintenance, though the same be a place of great necessity for both.' (fn. 26) In 1717 the income was £5 8s., partly from interest on benefactions and partly by an ancient levy made by the inhabitants on themselves. There was then a chapelwarden. (fn. 27) A report made to the Bishop of Chester in 1708 shows that the chapel was almost destitute of books and furniture. There was nothing belonging to the communion, because it was never administered there; the table was not railed in, nor was there a surplice. The reader was a man of sober life and conversation who read 'prayers and some pious and profitable discourses of some approved divine of the Church of England,' and did what else was thought 'sufficient for such a reader to do.' (fn. 28) The register of baptisms dates from 1734. In 1770 a brief was obtained for the rebuilding of the chapel, but nothing more than repairs was effected. The rebuilding took place in 1828, and the present church is called St. Paul's. Further endowments have been secured from time to time, and the net value is now £298 a year. (fn. 29) Since 1867 the Bishop of Carlisle appoints the perpetual curates. The following have been in charge (fn. 30) :—

1810 William Jackson
1817 Anthony Barrow
1834 James Statter, B.A. (T.C.D.)
1844 James Pollitt
1844 James Young, M.A.
1859 John Henry Ransome, M.A. (Trinity Coll.,Camb.)
1877 William Robinson Morris (fn. 31)
1896 Thomas Henry Irving, M.A. (St. John's Coll.,Camb.)
1909 Francis Ernest Dewick, M.A. (St. Edmund Hall, Oxf.)

The Plymouth Brethren have a meeting-place at Lindale.

The Friends' meeting-house at Height in Newton was built in 1677, George Fox having found some of his earliest disciples in this part of Cartmel. (fn. 32) It is still used once a month. Over the doorway is a stone inscribed—


  • 1. The Census Rep. 1901 gives 3,438 acres, including 22 of inland water.
  • 2. The turnpike road from Levens to Lindale, Newton and Newby Bridge was formed in 1820; Trans. Cumb. and Westmld. Antiq. Soc. vii, 2.
  • 3. Stockdale, Annals of Cartmel, 551.
  • 4. Kuerden MSS. iii, K 7, no. 86–7.
  • 5. Ibid. no. 88.
  • 6. Duchy of Lanc. Anct. D. (P.R.O.), L 559. Peter was to do the forinsec service pertaining to 6 oxgangs of land in the vill of Newton, and in addition to render to Richard and his heirs two pairs of gloves. Peter also received the Asmunderlaw land in Newton at a rent of 1 lb. of cummin or 2d. The seal has the legend + s' ricardi filii alani.
  • 7. Ibid. L 560. From Flemingfield 2 marks a year was to be paid to Conishead Priory. The seal bears a kneeling figure and the legend s'. petri . de . covpland.
  • 8. Ibid. L 561. Rents of 1 lb. of cummin and two pairs of gloves were due to Alan. The seal shows two bars and a canton, with a bend. The legend runs: + sig. alani . de covpland.
  • 9. Duchy of Lanc. Rentals and Surv. bdle. 4, no. 9. The first entry will suffice as a specimen: 'Robert Bell took a tenement lately held by Robert Barra at a farm at [each] term of 2od.; services 16½d.; ingress 2s. 1d.; tithes of hay 3d.; two fowls and a half; tithes of sheaves 10 bushels oats and 9 pecks of barley.' Thus tithes were paid with the rent. Other surnames were Stanes, Pepper, Shaw, Hodgson, Fell, Turner, Mokelt, Thornes, Archer, Breten, Ireland, &c. The field-names include Calfclose, Horseclose and Gorstilyeat. The customs of Newton were in dispute in a plea in 1594 by James Thornes of London, holding a messuage there of the queen as of her manor of Cartmel. It had always been the custom that no tenant within the lordship should divide his holding or alienate any part of it, which custom was intended for the preservation of the queen's service on the sea coast towards the Piel of Fowdray and 'to prevent the impoverishment of her majesty's tenants which daily groweth by division of tenements and increase of cottages.' Christopher Turner, the defendant, claimed in right of his mother Mabel wife of Roland Turner and daughter of Richard Barray, the former possessor; Duchy of Lanc. Plead. Eliz. clxvii, T 4.
  • 10. Lindale, 1191.
  • 11. This appears from a charter dated 1191 now at Hornby Chapel, by which Brother Alan, preceptor of the Hospitallers in England, confirmed to Lambert Corviser the sixth part of Lindale and the sixth part of their land between Brethegate and Lindale Beck, which they had had of the gift of Reyner le Fleming. Lambert was to pay 3s. 1d. rent to the Hospitallers and 16d. to Reyner; at his death a third part of his goods was to be given to the Hospitallers; and so for his heirs.
  • 12. Plac. de Quo Warr. (Rec. Com.), 375.
  • 13. Pat. 4 & 5 Phil, and Mary, pt. xiv.
  • 14. In 1588 the queen granted to Edward Turner the water mill of Lindale, lately of the Preceptory of Newland and occupied by William Thornburgh; Pat. 30 Eliz. pt. xv.
  • 15. Ibid. 9 Jas. I, pt. vi. James Harrington, who died in 1606, held a messuage in 'Lindeth' in Cartmel of the king in socage as of the priory of St. John of Jerusalem; Chan. Inq. p.m. 515–148.
  • 16. Stockdale, Annals of Cartmel, 475; 'endorsed upon the purchase deed of 1636 are the signatures of eighteen of the freeholders and tenants of the manor, not one of whom seems to have been able to write his name, but each has signed with a different and distinctive mark.'
  • 17. See the account of Upper Holker and Roper's Churches, Castles, &c., of North Lancs. i, 51.
  • 18. It is named in a grant of Lindale Manor to Sir Richard Hussey; Pat. 9 James I, pt. ix. Possibly it was the Castle House in Allithwaite demised to Edward Downing, &c., in 1588; ibid. 30 Eliz.
  • 19. Stockdale, op. cit. 112 (1678).
  • 20. Ibid. 203, 220–4. He is said to have lost his life by the overwhelming in a quicksand of the coach in which he was travelling in the passage over Kent sands and to have lain buried for some time in the sands. He is reputed to have made cannon balls for the French army during the Peninsular War, and to have made the first iron boat, which was for many years in the bed of the Winster. An obelisk which he made lay for a long time by the river and now stands at the bottom of the village of Lindale by the Grange Road.
  • 21. Duchy of Lanc. Anct. D. (P.R.O.), L 289. The prior had claimed this fishery as a right in 1292; Assize R. 408, m. 6 d. Helton Tarn was described as in Broughton. For an agreement as to the Kent fishery in 1208 see Final Conc. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 39.
  • 22. Lindale occurs as a surname. In 1350 Hugh son of Thomas son of Robert son of Hugh de Lindale claimed a messuage and land in Allithwaite against Margery widow of William de Hampsfell; De Banco R. 362, m. 136. William son of Roger Waleys gave land in Lindale in Cartmel to Alexander de Kirkby; KuerdenMSS. ii, fol. 211. In 1491–2 Richard Preston claimed a tenement in Lindale against Nicholas Preston, who called John kinsman and heir of John Kellet to warrant him, but this heir was a minor; Pal. of Lanc. Writs Prothon. 7 Hen. VII. In 1497 Richard Preston of Maulds Meaburn claimed the third part of some land in Lindale against Nicholas (son of Anne) Harrington. The claim was based on a grant by the Abbot of Furness (probably as trustee) to Robert Preston, father of Richard father of plaintiff; Final Conc. iii, 147.
  • 23. Katherine Radcliffe, widow, daughter of Sir Robert Bellingham, died in 1572 holding with Poulton near Lancaster certain lands in Flookburgh, Lindale and elsewhere; there was no separate tenure for these; Duchy of Lanc. Inq. p.m. xiii, no. 3. James Anderton of Clayton died in 1630 holding as part of his Bardsea estate two messuages, &c., in Lindale and Cartmel of the king as of his manor of Cartmel; ibid, xxvii, no. 56. The same estate was held by James Anderton in 1674; Pal. of Lanc. Feet of F. bdle. 192, m. 82.
  • 24. The old chapel seems to have been of Tudor date.
  • 25. Cartmel Reg.
  • 26. Commonw. Ch. Surv. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), 142. In 1646 it had been ordered that £40 a year should be paid to a minister out of Thomas Preston's sequestrated estate; Plund. Mins. Accts. (Rec. Soc. Lancs. and Ches.), i, 19.
  • 27. Gastrell, Notitia Cestr. (Chet. Soc), ii, 504.
  • 28. Chapelwarden's presentments. The reader probably taught school, a schoolmaster being named in the visitation returns of 1674, &c.
  • 29. Carlisle Dioc. Cal.
  • 30. Rural Deanery of Cartmel, 73.
  • 31. The benefice was under sequestration for almost the whole of Mr. Morris's tenure.
  • 32. In 1652 Fox went to James Taylor's at Newton, and on the Sunday attempted to speak in the Fell chapel after 'priest Camelford' had done. This led to a disturbance, Camelford becoming enraged, but one adherent was secured, John Braithwaite, afterwards a Quaker minister. In the afternoon he went to 'a steeplehouse or chapel called Lindale,' where 'after the priest had done' he spoke to the congregation, and in spite of some opposition appears to have been welcomed; Journ, (ed. 1765), 70. He paid James Taylor another visit in 1663; ibid. 351. The Height and James Harrison's house at Collingfiled in Cartmel Fell were in 1689 licensed for meetings of the Quakers; Hist. MSS. Com. Rep. xiv, App. iv, 231.