Northern Lake District

Mirehouse Historic House

Mirehouse Historic House copyright Mirehouse

Mirehouse has been a family home since 1688 when its original owner, the Earl of Derby, sold it to his local agent. It was once smaller, but has been added to over the centuries. Wordsworth and other famous poets were regular guests here. The Spedding family still live in the house which they inherited in 1802, and is open to visitors - details on website (opens in new window).

Location: Grid ref NY232283. On A591, 5 kilometres (3 miles) north of Keswick.

Featured in our Houses, huts and history leaflet (PDF)

Aughertree Fell settlement

There are three farmsteads here which date from Roman times, but reflect an older, local way of life. Each farm contains hut circles and animal pens, enclosed by parallel banks and a ditch. Outside lies a sprawling complex of fields of various shapes and sizes. Some of the boundaries are obvious, but the full extent of plots and connecting tracks can be seen only through aerial photography.

Location: Grid reference NY264381. Near minor road between Uldale and B5299. Roadside parking 2 kilometres (1.2 miles) north east of village, then short walk on bridleway.

Featured in our Talking to the past leaflet (PDF)

For more in depth information see Aughertree Fell Settlement Historic Environment Record (opens in new window)

Aughertree Fell settlement copyright LDNPA

Howk Bobbin Mill

Howk Bobbin Mill copyright LDNPA

These imposing ruins are the remains of a nineteenth century bobbin mill, built to help meet the huge demand from Lancashire’s textile industry. The mill closed in 1924 and the buildings began to deteriorate. We have recently carried out structural repairs to conserve this important piece of industrial history and make the site safe for visitors. Managed by the Lake District National Park Authority.

Location: Grid reference NY319397.Caldbeck, 11 kilometres (6.8 miles) south east of Wigton. Parking in village, then short walk west along beck.

Featured in our Talking to the past leaflet (PDF)

For more in depth information see Howk Bobbin Mill Historic Environment Record (opens in new window)

Force Crag mine

Force Crag Mine copyright National Trust

Lead was mined in the dramatic Coledale valley in Elizabethan times, but large-scale mining began in 1839. Zinc and barytes, originally by-products, were later the main focus. Ore was brought down from adits high up the fellside, to be processed in mills on the valley floor. One of these is still largely intact, and shows a century of development. Force Crag was the area’s last working metal mine when it closed in 1991. Managed by the National Trust (opens in new window). Entry to buildings by bookable tour only.

Location: Grid ref NY199216. 7.5 kilometres (4.7 miles) south west of Keswick. Parking in Braithwaite, then 4 kilometres (2.5 miles) footpath up Coledale Valley.

Featured in our Working the landscape leaflet (PDF)

For more in depth information see Force Crag mine Historic Environment Record (opens in new window)

Castlerigg Stone Circle

Castlerigg Stone Circle

This is a famous monument in a dramatic location, surrounded by mountains. The main circle has 38 large stones, some standing 3 metres (10 feet) high. The entrance seems to line up with the midwinter sunset. It’s one of Britain’s earliest stone circles, about 5,000 years old, and has been officially protected since 1883. However it gets so many visitors that conservation is an everpresent concern! Managed by the National Trust and English Heritage.

Location: Grid ref NY291236. 2.5 kilometres (1.6 miles) south east of Keswick off the A591. Limited parking near site.

Featured in our Stories in stone leaflet (PDF)

For more in depth information see Castlerigg Stone Circle Historic Environment Record (opens in new window)

Threlkeld Settlement

Threlkeld settlement copyright LDNPA

This was a substantial farmstead, with seven circular stone huts, a well, livestock pens, fields and two trackways linking it all together. At the edge of the fields are about 50 cairns, probably the result of preparing the land for farming. People may have lived here from the late Bronze Age right through to Roman times, with little change in their way of life.

Location: Grid ref NY327239. 1.5 kilometres (0.9 miles) south of Threlkeld. Car park at Birkett Mire, just off B5322. Permitted footpath along old railway track to bridge. Follow road up to gate and take path around east side of Threlkeld quarry.

Featured in our Stories in stone leaflet (PDF)

For more in depth information see Threlkeld Settlement Historic Environment Record (opens in new window)

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Created with support from the Heritage Lottery Fund