Many Lake District families took in evacuees from cities in the North West.
During the war students from the Royal College of Art were evacuated to Ambleside and billeted in every available boarding house, barn and outbuilding. Train loads of evacuees from London included curators from the Tate Gallery and the famous paintings in their care, such as Gainsborough’s ‘Blue Boy’ who spent the war at Muncaster Castle (opens in new window).
Blackwell near Windermere was inherited by Edward Holt in 1928, however he had no children and used it less and less as a holiday home. During WW2 he was happy to allow it to be occupied by Huyton College which was evacuated from Liverpool. The house never returned to domestic use after the war but was established as Blackwell School, a girl's preparatory school which later passed into private ownership. This was closed in 1976 and subsequently the property was sold again. Miss Murphy’s room contains photographs and details telling the story of the school during war time - find out more by visiting Blackwell Historic House (opens in new window).
We've created several World War II-related activities:
Created with support from the Heritage Lottery Fund