25 10, 2019

Life and death in Lamplugh – 1658 to 1663

For unexplained deaths today, we have autopsies and coroner’s reports, but back in the 17th century all sorts of weird and wonderful reasons were given to explain a death.  In the Parish Registers of Lamplugh in Cumbria, a remarkable document has survived.  It lists the deaths of 112 individuals between 1658 and 1663, of which [...]

9 10, 2019

Connecting with Lake District landscapes

Many thanks to Friends of the Lake District for organising a fascinating exercise about connecting with Lake District landscapes.  We were asked to identify the various elements of a landscape and to consider their effect on us.  What were the dominant features?  How did the landscape made us feel?  What issues might threaten that landscape?  [...]

6 10, 2019

Life on the Lake at Windermere Jetty

A wet day in the Lakes generally invites indoor exploration for a Blue Badge Tourist Guide - so it was a perfect time to consider life on the Lake at Windermere Jetty!  My destination was the newly re-vamped former Steamboat Museum.   It holds a large array of craft that once plied the waters on Windermere [...]

3 10, 2019

Coniston’s power-house – now and in the future

High on the flanks of Coniston Old Man is a little-known yet important industrial archaeological site - Coniston's power-house. Historically, Coniston was known for two main industries: copper and slate.  Copper was worked from the mid-1500s up to the 1890s; its presence given away by the reddish-coloured spoil heaps that dot the landscape in the [...]

17 06, 2019

Burnswark – an example of Roman military tactics

Have you ever heard of Burnswark?  This prominent hill once supported a sizeable Iron Age fort.  At the base of the hill are two Roman camps - one to the north; one to the south.  It is thought the Romans pincered the fort in order to mount an attack on the Iron Age tribe living on top of [...]