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The story of a Cumberland parish

David Wilcock


Dalston: the Story of a Cumberland Parish traces the history of a parish in north-west England from the Norman Conquest of the 20th century.

Dalston was a Norman barony. From 1230 to the 1840s the bishops of Carlisle were lords of the manor. Rose Castle, the bishops’ home, only 7 miles from Hadrian’s Wall, was subject to repeated attacks from Scotland throughout the Middle Ages. In the 16th and 17th centuries, Dalston’s clergy, gentry and impoverished tenantry were caught up in three significant movements against the monarchy: the Pilgrimage of Grace, the Revolt of the Northern Earls and the Civil Wars. In the following century a yeoman class of increasingly prosperous farmers emerged, as the fortunes of manorial lords declined. The poet, Susanna Blamire, and the philosopher, William Paley lived in Dalston. The parish’s population reached its all-time high in the 19th century when cotton manufacturing expanded using water power from the Caldew. Enclosure and the reform of tithes transformed agriculture. William Blamire, a Dalston man, led much of this revolution, both locally and nationally. Poverty, however, was a persistent problem.





Publication Date:

2018 May


Paperback; 210 x 148mm


Black and white photographs throughout

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