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placename:- Aira Force
site name:- Aira Beck
locality:- Gowbarrow Park
locality:- Aira
parish Matterdale parish, once in Cumberland
county:- Cumbria
waterfall
coordinates:- NY39952048
10Km square:- NY32

1Km square NY3920

photograph

Aira Force -- Aira Beck -- Gowbarrow Park -- Aira -- Matterdale -- Cumbria / -- 28.2.2011
photograph

Aira Force -- Aira Beck -- Gowbarrow Park -- Aira -- Matterdale -- Cumbria / -- 28.2.2011

old print:- Bemrose 1881

thumbnail BEM125, button to large image
Print, uncoloured, Airey Force, Matterdale, Cumberland, published by Bemrose and Sons, 23 Old Bailey, London and Derby, by A B Moss, Carlisle, Cumberland, and by T Wilson, Kendal, Westmorland, about 1881.
On p.85 of a Handy Guide to the English Lakes and Shap Spa.
printed at bottom:-
AIREY FORCE.

placename:- Airey Force
date:- 1881
period:- 19th century, late

old photograph:- Bell 1880s-1940s

thumbnail HB0763, button to large image
Photograph, black and white, Aira Force, Matterdale, Cumberland, by Herbert Bell, photographer, Ambleside, Westmorland, 1890s.
internegative at lower left:-
H. Bell
stamped at reverse:-
HERBERT BELL / Photographer / AMBLESIDE
date:- 1890=1899
period:- 19th century, late

source:- Martineau 1855

Guide book, A Complete Guide to the English Lakes, by Harriet Martineau, published by John Garnett, Windermere, Westmorland, and by Whittaker and Co, London, 1855; published 1855-71.
Frontispiece:-
thumbnail MNU101, button to large image
Print, engraving, Ara Force, drawn by L Aspland, engraved by W Banks, Edinburgh, published by John Garnett, Windermere, Westmorland, and by Whittaker and Co, London, 1855.
L Aspland Delt. / W Banks Sc Edinr. / ARA FORCE.

placename:- Ara Force
person:- artist : Aspland, T L
person:- engraver : Banks, W
person:- publisher : Garnett, John
date:- 1855
period:- 19th century, late; 1850s

source:- Martineau 1855

Guide book, A Complete Guide to the English Lakes, by Harriet Martineau, published by John Garnett, Windermere, Westmorland, and by Whittaker and Co, London, 1855; published 1855-71.
Page 38:-
... strangers who come to find out Ara Force by following the sound of the fall. Our tourist must take a guide to this waterfall from the tower.
He will be led over the open grass to the ravine, and then along its wooded sides on a pathway above the brawling stream, till he comes to a bridge, which will bring him in full view of the fall. As he sits in the cool damp nook at the bottom of the chasm, where the
Page 39:-
echo of dashing and gurgling water never dies, and the ferns, long grasses and ash sprays wave and quiver everlastingly in the pulsing air; and as, looking up, he sees the slender line of bridge spanning the upper fall, he ought to know of the mournful legend which belongs to this place, and which Wordsworth has preserved:- In the olden times, a knight who loved a lady, and courted her in her father's tower here, at Greystoke, went forth to win glory. He won great glory: and at first his lady rejoiced fully in it: but he was so long in returning, and she heard so much of his deeds in behalf of distressed ladies, that doubts at length stole upon her heart as to whether he still loved her. These doubts disturbed her mind in sleep: and she began to walk in her dreams, directing her steps towards the waterfall where she and her lover used to meet. Under a holly tree beside the fall they had plighted their vows, and this was the limit of her dreaming walks. The knight at length returned to claim her. Arriving in the night, he went to the ravine to rest under the holly until the morning should permit him to knock at the gate of the tower: but he saw a gliding white figure among the trees: and this figure reached the holly before him, and plucked twigs from the tree, and threw them into the stream. Was it the ghost of his lady love? or was it herself? She stood in a dangerous place: he put out his hand to uphold her: the touch awakened her. In her terror and confusion she fell from his grasp into the torrent, and was carried down the ravine. He followed and rescued her; but she died upon the bank; not, however, without having fully
Page 40:-
understood that her lover was true, and had come to claim her. The knight devoted the rest of his days to mourn her: he built himself a cell upon the spot, and became a hermit for her sake.
The visitor should ascend the steps and pathway from the bottom of the fall, and stand on the bridge that spans the leap. It is a grand thing to look down.

placename:- Ara Force
person:- : Wordsworth, William
date:- 1855
period:- 19th century, late; 1850s

source:- Martineau 1855

Guide book, A Complete Guide to the English Lakes, by Harriet Martineau, published by John Garnett, Windermere, Westmorland, and by Whittaker and Co, London, 1855; published 1855-71.
Page 180:-
WATERFALLS.
No. : Names and Situations of Falls. : Counties : Feet in Height.
8 : Ara Force, West Side of Ullswater : Cumberland : 80

placename:- Ara Force
date:- 1855
period:- 19th century, late; 1850s

old map:- Garnett 1850s-60s H

Map of the English Lakes, scale about 3.5 miles to 1 inch, published by John Garnett, Windermere, Westmorland, 1850s-60s.
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Airey Force
two lines across a stream, waterfall

placename:- Airey Force
date:- 1850=1869
period:- 19th century, late; 1850s; 1860s

descriptive text:- Ford 1839 (3rd edn 1843)

Description of Scenery in the Lake District, by William Ford, published by Charles Thurnham, London, et al, 1839; published 1839-52.
Page 146:-
...
The explorer of nature's hidden charms must here leave the road, and follow up the gill above named, till he arrives at Airey Force, where the stream falls eighty feet between two rugged cheeks of rock,
A wooden bridge crosses the top of the fall. After it has rested for a moment in the basin that receives it, making a bend, it rushes down a lower
Page 147:-
steep, at the foot of which another romantic bridge is thrown over the agitated waters. Altogether the scene is incomparably grand. ... at Dockwray, through which hamlet, after springing out of Dowthwaite Head, runs the stream that, in its progress through Gowbarrow Park, forms the noble fall of Airey Force. ...
Page 179:-
WATERFALLS.

placename:- Airey Force
date:- 1839
period:- 19th century, early; 1830s

descriptive text:- Otley 1823 (5th edn 1834)

Guidebook, Concise Description of the English Lakes, later A Description of the English Lakes, by Jonathan Otley, published by the author, Keswick, Cumberland, by J Richardson, London, and by Arthur Foster, Kirky Lonsdale, Cumbria, 1823 onwards.
image OT01P009, button   goto source.
Page 9:-
... Airey Force may be seen by application to the keeper who resides here [at Lyulph's Tower]. ...
image OT01P043, button   goto source.
Page 43:-
AIREY FORCE, on Ullswater, is concealed by ancient trees, in a deep glen in Gowbarrow Park. The water, compressed between two cheeks of rock, rushes forth with great violence: and dashing from
image OT01P044, button   goto source.
Page 44:-
rock to rock, forms a spray, which, with the sun in a favourable direction, exhibits all the colours of the rainbow.

placename:- Airey Force
date:- 1823
period:- 19th century, early; 1820s

old map:- Otley 1818

New Map of the District of the Lakes, in Westmorland, Cumberland, and Lancashire, scale about 4 miles to 1 inch, by Jonathan Otley, engraved by J and G Menzies, Edinburgh, Lothian, Scotland, published by J Otley, Keswick, Cumberland now Cumbria, 1818; pblished 1818 to 1850s.
image OT02NY32, button   goto source.
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Marked by three chevrons across the stream.
waterfall

old text:- Clarke 1787

Guide book, A Survey of the Lakes of Cumberland, Westmorland, and Lancashire, by James Clarke, Penrith, Cumberland, and in London etc, 1787 and 1789; and Plans of the Lakes ... 1793.
Page 27:-
...
From Lyulph's Tower ... at the distance of about 400 yards is a truly astonishing Cataract, called Airey Force: Here a considerable stream of water falls near 40 yards perpendicular, with a most tremendous noise, over a rough
Page 28:-
craggy rock; and by the violence of its fall raises a vapour or mist that reflects the suns rays into the most vivid prismatic colours.
A road from Lyulph's Tower conducts us over a little bridge, then passing through a gate, a little foot-path branches off to the right, and leads to the Cascade.
In order to view it to advantage, the traveller should descend pretty low into the dark vale through which the water flows; but as this requires both courage and agility, many decline the attempt: the oblique rays of an evening sun, and the swelling of the waters by rain, likewise contribute not a little to the terrible beauties of this place. If, however, the spectator can summon up resolution to descend, he will see such a scene as will amply repay the terrors of the attempt. A clear pellucid stream is seen to issue from the mouth of a seeming cave, (for the rock is worn down by the long-continued violence of the waters, and shrubs and plants form a gloomy arcade over the channel,) the torrent then leaves the rock, and falls near 20 yards, forming an arch of liquid chrystal: it then seems to return to the rock, when it is dashed into foam and vapour, with prodigious noise. In this state it flows about twelve yards, when it again collects and plunges precipitately into a dismal abyss, (impervious to the eye,) where it is heard roaring and howling for a passage. In this darksome cavern it runs some small distance, when it again peeps out, and then quietly proceeds in an obscure channel to the Lake. The bason into which this cataract pours itself is very deep, and seems to have been worn by the continual force of the water exerted during so many ages.

placename:- Airey Force
date:- 1787
period:- 18th century, late; 1780s

old map:- Crosthwaite 1783-94 (Ull)

Series of maps, An Accurate Map of the Matchless Lake of Derwent, of the Grand Lake of Windermere, of the Beautiful Lake of Ullswater, of Broadwater or Bassenthwaite Lake, of Coniston Lake, of Buttermere, Crummock and Loweswater Lakes, and Pocklington's Island, by Peter Crosthwaite, Kendal, Cumberland now Cumbria, 1783 to 1794.
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Ara Force or Cataract / 80 Feet Fall.

placename:- Ara Force
other name:- Ara Cataract
waterfall
date:- 1783=1794
period:- 18th century, late; 1780s; 1790s

old print:- Goodwin 1887 (edn 1890)

Set of prints, etchings? 56 views in Westmorland, Cumberland, etc, by Harry Goodwin, published by Swan Sonnenschein and Co, Paternoster Square, London, 1890.
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Print, etching? Aira Force, Matterdale, Cumberland, by Harry Goodwin, published by Swan Sonnenschein and Co, Paternoster Square, London, 1890.
Tipped in opposite p.148 of Through the Wordsworth Country, by William Knight.
printed at lower right:-
Aira Force

placename:- Aira Force
date:- 1886
period:- 19th century, late

old print:- Sylvan 1847

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Print, engraving, Airey Force, Matterdale, Cumberland, drawn by GHM, engraved by Thomas Gilks, published by John Johnstone, Paternoster Row, London, et al, 1847.
On p.235 of Sylvan's Pictorial Guide to the English Lakes.
printed at bottom right, centre:-
DHM / [T GILKS Sc] / AIREY FORCE.

placename:- Airey Force
date:- 1847
period:- 19th century, early

old print:- Robertson 1911

Wordsworthshire, by Eric Robertson, Windermere, Westmorland, illustrated by Arthur Tucker, published by Chatto and Windus, London, 1911.
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Print, lithograph? Airey Force, Ullswater, from a watercolour by Arthur Tucker, published by Chatto and Windus, London, 1911.
Tipped in opposite p.288 of Wordsworthshire by Eric Robertson.
printed at bottom:-
AIREY FORCE, ULLSWATER
signed at painting lower left:-
Arthur Tucker

placename:- Airey Force
date:- 1911
period:- 1910s

old print:- Philip/Wilson 1890s

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AIRA FORCE.
date:- 1895
period:- 19th century, late; 1890s

old print:- Martineau 1855

Guide book, A Complete Guide to the English Lakes, by Harriet Martineau, published by John Garnett, Windermere, Westmorland, and by Whittaker and Co, London, 1855; published 1855-71.
thumbnail MNU101, button to large image
Print, engraving, Ara Force, drawn by L Aspland, engraved by W Banks, Edinburgh, published by John Garnett, Windermere, Westmorland, and by Whittaker and Co, London, 1855.
Frontispiece to A Complete Guide to the English Lakes, by Harriet Martineau.
printed at bottom left, right, centre:-
L Aspland Delt. / W Banks Sc Edinr. / ARA FORCE.

placename:- Ara Force
date:- 1855
period:- 19th century, late

old print:- Garnett 1850s-60s F

Set of prints, engravings, Views of the English Lakes or Views in the English Lake District, published by John Garnett, Windermere, Westmorland, 1850s-60s?
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Print, uncoloured engraving, Ara Force, Cumberland, drawn by L Aspland, engraved by William Banks, Edinburgh, published by John Garnett, Windermere, Westmorland, 1850s-60s?
Found with Views of the English Lakes.
printed at bottom:-
L. Aspland Delt. / ARA FORCE. / W. Banks Sc. Edinr.

placename:- Ara Force
date:- 1850=1869
period:- 19th century, late

old print:- Harwood 1842

Set of prints, uncoloured engravings bound in a booklet, Harwood's Views of the Lakes, drawn by John and Frederick Harwood, 26 Fenchurch Street, London, about 1842.
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Print, uncoloured engraving, Aray Force, Gowbarow Park, Cumberland, engraved and published by John Harwood, 26 Fenchurch Street, London, 1849.
printed at bottom left, right, centre:-
London, J. Harwood, 26, Fenchurch Street. / No.772 July 18th. 1849. / Aray Force, Gowbarow Park. / NEAR ULLSWATER.

placename:- Aray Force
date:- 1842
period:- 19th century, early

old print:- Rose 1832-35 (vol.1 no.38)

Engravings - Westmorland, Cumberland, Durham and Northumberland Illustrated; from drawings by Thomas Allom, George Pickering, and H Gastineau, described by Thomas Rose, published by H Fisher, R Fisher, and P Jackson, Newgate Street, London, 1832-35.
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Print, uncoloured engraving, Airey Force, Cumberland, drawn by Thomas Allom, engraved by J C Bentley, published by Fisher, Son and Co, London, 1833.
vol.1 pl.38 in the set of prints, Westmorland, Cumberland, Durham and Northumberland Illustrated.
printed at bottom left, right, centre:-
T. Allom. / J. C. Bentley. / AIREY FORCE, CUMBERLAND. / FISHER, SON & CO. LONDON, 1833.

placename:- Airey Force
date:- 1833
period:- 19th century, early

old print:-
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Print, uncoloured engraving, Airey Force, Matterdale, Cumberland, by ?B Foster, engraved by E Evans, 1850s-60s?
printed at bottom left, right, centre:-
[B] Foster / E. EVANS SC. / AIREY FORCE

placename:- Airey Force
date:- 1850=1869
period:- 19th century, late

old print:-
thumbnail PR0507, button to large image
Print, hand coloured engraving? Aira Force, Matterdale, Cumberland, late 19th century?
printed at bottom centre:-
AIRA FORCE

placename:- Aira Force
date:- 1880=1899
period:- 19th century, late

old print:- Bogg 1898

Book, Lakeland and Ribblesdale, OR A Thousand Miles of Wandering along the Roman Wall, the Old Border Region, Lakeland, and Ribblesdale, by Edmund Bogg, publishd by Edmund Bogg, 3 Woodhouse Lane, and James Miles, Guildford Street, Leeds, Yorkshire, 1898.
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Print, engraving, Airey Force, Matterdale, Cumberland, by Owen Bowen, published by Edmund Bogg, 3 Woodhouse Lane, and James Miles, Guildford Street, Leeds, Yorkshire, 1898.
Included on p.143 of Lakeland and Ribblesdale, by Edmund Bogg.

placename:- Airey Force
date:-
period:- 19th century, late

old print:-
thumbnail PR0133, button to large image
Print, colour lithograph? Airey Force, Cumberland, probably published by John Walker and Co, Farringdon Street, London, late 19th century.

placename:- Airey Force
date:- 1880=1899
period:- 19th century, late

old print:- Britton and Brayley 1802

Book, with prints, The Beauties of England and Wales, by John Britton and Edward Wedlake Brayley published by Vernor and Hood, at al, London, 1802; published to 1847?
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Print, hand coloured engraving, Ara Force, Matterdale, Cumberland, drawn by W M Craig, engraved by J Bonnor, published by Vernor and Hood, Poultry, London, 1805.
Included in the Beauties of England and Wales, by John Britton and Edward W Brayley.
printed at bottom left, right, centre:-
Engraved by J. Bonnor from a Drawing by W. M. Craig. / for the Beauties of England & Wales. / ARA FORCE, / in Gowbarrow Park, Westmoreland, the Seat of his Grace / The Duke of Norfolk. / London. Publish'd by Vernor & Hood. Poultry, July 1st. 1805.

placename:- Ara Force
date:- 1805
period:- 19th century, early

photographs
tiny photograph, 
button to large Aira Force -- Aira Beck -- Gowbarrow Park -- Aira -- Matterdale -- Cumbria / -- 5.12.2005
tiny photograph, 
button to large Aira Force -- Aira Beck -- Gowbarrow Park -- Aira -- Matterdale -- Cumbria / -- The bridge at the top. -- 28.2.2011
tiny photograph, 
button to large Aira Force -- Aira Beck -- Gowbarrow Park -- Aira -- Matterdale -- Cumbria / -- Plaque on the bridge:- -- 'THIS BRIDGE WAS BUILT BY FRIENDS / IN MEMORY OF / STEPHEN EDWARD SPRING RICE C.B. / 1856-1902. / HE WOULD HAVE LIKED HIS BROTHER GERALD WHO 14 YEARS AFTER HIM / ALSO GAVE HIS LIFE FOR HIS COUNTRY TO BE COMMEMORATED ON THIS SPOT.' -- 28.2.2011
tiny photograph, 
button to large Aira Force -- Aira Beck -- Gowbarrow Park -- Aira -- Matterdale -- Cumbria / -- Looking down. -- 28.2.2011

story Emma, betrothed to Sir Eglamore, walked in her sleep. One night Sir Eglamore found her by the force, touched her, she slipped and fell to her death. The heartbroken knight built a cell by the fall and lived there for many years after.
William Wordsworth wrote about this in The Somnambulist:-

William Wordsworth wrote, here, Airey Force Valley:-
Not a breath of air ruffled the bosom of this leafy glen ...

story Thomas de Quincey related the story of Elizabeth Smith who got stuck on the rocks here, unable to go up or down. Her sister appeared out of the mist and guided her to safety - but her sister was at home, and hadn't left all day.

hearsay The bridge at the top of the waterfall was built in memory of Stephen Edward Spring Rice, and that the bottom a memorial to Sir Cecil Spring Rice..

Old Cumbria Gazetteer - JandMN: 2013

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