Businesses in Gosforth Towns and Villages of Cumbria


Gosforth by John LordGosforth welcomes the traveller to Wasdale. The village's scattered buildings are an interesting mix of the old and new, with the oldest building still standing dating to 1628. It's now a town hall and houses the library.

The village's name comes from the word goose and the Celtic word for a ford, fordd. Names in the area-the fells, farms, and the river Bleng-reflect past Viking influence. Originally an agricultural area, Gosforth still holds a themed show in August. It was once a staging post on the way to Whitehaven.

Gosforth Hall Inn courtesy of Gosforth Hall InnThe seat of the Copley family, Gosforth Hall (now a hotel) was built in 1658 of local sandstone and contains an original fireplace and roof beams. Uneven floors, low doorways and a stone spiral staircase attest to its age. A priest's hole leads from the bar fireplace up to Room 11, and it is said a ghostly figure calls it home. There are reports of many other strange sightings and goings-on in the Hall. Nearby was a holy well on which was built a chapel.

Gosforth St Marys Church by John LordSt Mary's Church in the village dates to Norman times (note the south doorway and columns) but was rebuilt in 1896-9. In the churchyard is the 10th century Gosforth Cross, a slender red sandstone, 14 ft high, cross set in a stepped stone base. At the top, where a cross sits within a circle, carvings represent a mix of Viking and Christian symbols. Among the symbols are the crucifixion and a pagan god, Loki. It is the tallest ancient cross in England and is considered of great importance in that it shows the transition from pagan to Christian beliefs. Gosforth cross by AndrewA cork tree, planted in 1833 in the grounds is thought to bethe country's most northern. A tool shed built of carved stones is a listed building.

Inside the church look for the Green Man head and the Chinese Bell, captured in a foray on the Canton River led by Sir Humphrey Senhouse in 1841. The church also contains a notable collection of Norse stones, one with carvings of a boat and fishermen and two hogback tombs.

Gosforth village store by Barbara BallardGosforth, at the head of the Forest of Copeland, is a pleasant small town with many amenities for its residents.

The Gosforth & District Art Society holds its annual art exhibition on August Bank Holiday for 4 days every year.

Photos by Barbara Ballard and courtesy of , Gosforth Hall Inn , John Lord , Andrew.

Gosforth is 5 miles northwest of Ravenglass at the A595 turnoff.

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