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placename:- Penrith Beacon
other name:- Beacon Tower
site name:- Beacon Hill
locality:- Penrith
parish Penrith town, once in Cumberland
county:- Cumbria
hill; beacon; viewpoint; station
coordinates:- NY52123138
10Km square:- NY53

1Km square NY5231

photograph

Penrith Beacon -- Beacon Hill -- Penrith -- Penrith -- Cumbria / -- Depicted on the innsign of the Board and Elbow, Penrith. -- 12.5.2006

old map:- Ford 1839 map

Map of the Lake District, published in A Description of Scenery in the Lake District, by William Ford, published by Charles Thurnham, London, 1839.
thumbnail FD02NY53, button to large image
Beacon
Tower, on the hill N of Penrith.
county:- Cumberland
date:- 1839
period:- 19th century, early; 1830s

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 132:-
...
... Above the race-course, on the point of a wood-embowered hill, stands the Beacon, which the traveller may visit for the purpose of seeing from a moderate elevation the country lying around, and thus forming a correct idea of the relative situation of places of interest. ...

placename:- Beacon, The
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 OT01P083, button   goto source.
Page 83:-
... The Beacon, standing in the centre of a large plantation on Penrith fell, is a more modern erection of hewn stone, and commands extensive views of the country. ...
date:- 1823
period:- 19th century, early; 1820s

descriptive text:- Baker 1802

Perspective road map with sections in Lancashire, Westmorland, and Cumberland through Kendal and Penrith ending at Carlisle, by J Baker, London 1802.
pp.25-26:-
...
Penrith is situated beneath some verdurous heights that stretch from it towards the east; one point of which is decorated with a fancy building, commonly called the Beacon. From this spot is a most interesting view if the adjacent country, and hereon are the annual races of the town. ...

placename:- Beacon, The
date:- 1802
period:- 19th century, early; 1800s

old map:- Baker 1802

Perspective road map with sections in Lancashire, Westmorland, and Cumberland through Kendal and Penrith ending at Carlisle, by J Baker, London 1802.
thumbnail Bk03Vg04, button to large image
date:- 1802
period:- 19th century, early; 1800s

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 22:-
...
... this places [Bishop's Flatts] serves to stop, and breath a little, before we ascend the steep hill on which the beacon stands. The journey is laborious, though a fine green path renders it more pleasing; but when we arrive at the beacon, the beautiful and extensive prospect makes ample amends for all difficulties. If the day be clear, you see Cumberland spread like an immense map under you. Nor is your view limited to that alone, Criffell, Cheviot, and Queensbery-Hill in Scotland, are visible towards the N.E. though 80 miles distant. On the South, the mountains from Stainmoor in Westmorland, to Ingleborough in Yorkshire, rise in various tints of blue and purple. In the West, Helveylin and St Sunday's Cragg rear their rugged heads, whilst Ulswater is seen extended like an azure mirror at their feet; and towards the East, that immense ridge of mountains called Cross-Fell, extends itself no less than 30 miles in length; which, when covered with its Helm, exhibits a surprising and singular spectacle. From hence likewise may be distinctly seen, even with the naked eye, (provided the day be clear,) Carlisle, the white house at Gretna Green and Solway Firth; whilst all the nearer parts of the country offer themselves to the eye, so beautifully bespotted with villages, woods, heaths, forests, ruins, and elegant seats, that it must be seen, and not described, in order to convey away an idea of the grandeur of this prospect. To assist my reader as much as possible, I have, in the annexed Plate, drawn lines of direction to the several objects; let him therefore find one of them, (Ulswater, for instance,) and lay the Plan with the proper line of direction pointing to it; the Plan will then explain the country round, much better than the generality of guides will be able to do.
date:- 1787
period:- 18th century, late; 1780s

old print:- 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.
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Penrith Beacon
topograph view centred on Helvellyn

placename:- Penrith Beacon
date:- 1787
period:- 18th century, late; 1780s

old text:- Gilpin 1786

Guide book, Observations, Relative Chiefly to Picturesque Beauty, Made in the Year 1772, on Several Parts of England, Particularly the Mountains, and Lakes of Cumberland Westmoreland, by Rev William Gilpin, 1772-74; published 1786-1808.
vol.2 p.85
In the offskip, beyond the castle, arose a hill, in shadow likewise; on the top of which stood a lonely beacon. The windows answering each other, we could just discern the glowing horizon through them - a circumstance, which however trivial in description, has a beautiful effect in landscape.
The beacon is a monument of those tumultuous times, which preceded the union; and the only monument of the kind now remaining in these parts; though such beacons were stationed over the whole country;
vol.2 p.86
and could spread intelligence, in a few seconds, from one end of it to the other.
At this later day these castles and posts of alarm, adorning the country, they once defended, raise pleasing reflections on a comparison of present times with the past - those turbulent times, when no man could sleep in safety unless secured by a fortress. In war he feared the invasion of an open enemy: and in peace a mischief still more formidable, the ravages of banditti; with whom the country was always at that time infested. These wretches were composed of the outlaws from both nations; and inhabiting the fastnesses of the bogs, and mountains, used to sally out, and plunder in all directions.
...
date:- 1786
period:- 18th century, late; 1780s

old map:- Jefferys 1770 (Wmd)

Map, The County of Westmoreland, scale about 1 inch to 1 mile, surveyed by J Ainslie and perhaps T Donald, engraved and published by Thomas Jefferys, London, 1770.
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Penrith Beacon
tower

placename:- Penrith Beacon
county:- Cumberland
date:- 1770
period:- 18th century, late; 1770s

old map:- Morden 1695 (Cmd)

Maps, Westmorland, scale about 2.5 miles to 1 inch, and Cumberland, scale about 3 miles to 1 inch, by Robert Morden, 1695.
image MD12NY53, button   goto source.
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Small tower on a hillock.
county:- Cumberland
date:- 1695
period:- 17th century, late; 1690s

old map:- Morden 1695 (Wmd)

Maps, Westmorland, scale about 2.5 miles to 1 inch, and Cumberland, scale about 3 miles to 1 inch, by Robert Morden, 1695.
image MD10NY53, button   goto source.
thumbnail MD10NY53, button to large image
Penrith Beacon
On a hillock, post, ladder and cresset?.

placename:- Penrith Beacon
county:- Cumberland
date:- 1695
period:- 17th century, late; 1690s

old map:- Speed 1611 (Wmd)

Maps, The Countie Westmorland and Kendale the Cheif Towne, scale about 3.5 miles to 1 inch, and Cumberland and the Ancient Citie Carlile, scale about 4 miles to 1 inch, by John Speed, London, 1611; published 1611-1770.
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tower on a hillock
date:- 1611
period:- 17th century, early; 1610s

old map:- Saxton 1579

image Sax9NY53, button   goto source.
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Tower on hillock.
county:- Cumberlandia
beacon
date:- 1576
period:- 16th century, late; 1570s

database:- Listed Buildings 2010

Listed Buildings 2010

courtesy of English Heritage
BEACON TOWER / / BEACON ROAD / PENRITH / EDEN / CUMBRIA / I / 72779 / NY5212931377
courtesy of English Heritage
1719 on site of earlier beacons. Repaired 1780, red sandstone, low square tower with pyramid stone roof. Round-arched opening each side with keystones and wrought iron grilles, and small loops to north and south. Round-headed doorway on east. On top of hill, about 930 ft elevation, very prominent landmark.

placename:- Beacon Tower
district:- Eden
listed building
coordinates:- NY52123137
date:- 2010
period:- 2010s

source:- Gents Mag (1746) (pp.233-235, 300-302)

The Gentleman's Magazine or Monthly Intelligencer, published by Edward Cave under the pseudonym Sylvanus Urban, and by other publishers, London, monthly from 1731 to 1914.
Carlisle Attack'd by the Rebels, 1745
...
Penrith beacon was fir'd as a signal of distress, and the whole country thereupon flock'd southward to its relief. A party of about 120 rebels, which had been driven from Kendal before the rest came up, were intercepted in their flight, and pursued into Orton craigs; ...
date:- 1745
period:- 18th century, early; 1740s
event:- rebellion : 1745 Rebellion

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? Yanwath Hall, Penrith, and Penrith Beacon, from a watercolour by Arthur Tucker, published by Chatto and Windus, London, 1911.
Tipped in opposite p.12 of Wordsworthshire by Eric Robertson.
printed at bottom:-
YANWATH, PENRITH, AND PENRITH BEACON / (seen from Sockbridge)
signed at painting lower left:-
Arthur Tucker

placename:- Penrith Beacon
date:- 1911
period:- 1910s

hearsay The beacon was lit, falsely, to warn of a Napoleonic invasion, 1805. Sir Walter Scott, who was touring he Lakes, immediately returned to his regiment in Dalkeith at this scare.

button   trig point, NY5212831376

Old Cumbria Gazetteer - JandMN: 2013

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