Local Area

Milnthorpe

A small but lively market town in South Cumbria.
(Market day is every Friday - The Farmers Market is every second Friday of the month.)

Milnthorpe is a small market town on the southern border of Cumbria, 7 miles south of Kendal, once part of the township of Heversham-with-Milnthorpe. Now spared of heavy traffic, it is an ancient village of limestone buildings, arranged in nooks and crannies and along narrow lanes.

The Market Square is bordered on three sides by pretty cottages and inviting shops. The fourth side opens out on to green lawns and trees leading up to an imposing and very attractive 19th century church of St Thomas.

Milnthorpe was a medieval market town and, apart from Kendal, was the most important community in the area.

Arnside & Silverdale

The historic villages of Arnside and Silverdale sit snugly on the coastline of Morecambe Bay in a spot that’s been designated an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty thanks to its rich diversity of habitats and wildlife. Its deciduous woodlands, limestone grasslands and coastal salt marshes are enclosed by low limestone hills creating a perfect environment for rare butterflies and marshland birds.

You can discover the rich birdlife on a visit to RSPB Leighton Moss in Silverdale, where the largest reed bed in the north-west attracts more than 100 species of bird, including breeding bitterns, bearded tits and marsh harriers. Spring is the best time of year to spot colourful butterflies flitting along the reserve trails. There’s a shop and cosy tea room serving delicious slabs of cake and home-cooked meals where you can warm up afterwards. 

The quaint village of Arnside is a tempting spot with a pretty Victorian parade of shops along the promenade and a choice of pubs from which to enjoy the spectacular sunset overlooking the Bay. There are plenty of easy walks in the surrounding woodland. Why not head up to Arnside Knott to enjoy the sweeping sea views?

Beetham

Beetham is a village of grey limestone cottages and cobbled forecourts in south Cumbria, just north of the border with Lancashire. It was once the centre of the ancient parish of Beetham. It is within the Silverdale and Arnside designated area of outstanding natural beauty.

Heron Corn Mill, dating from about 1740, on the banks of the river Bela, is one of the few working mills in the area. The fourteen-foor high waterwheel powers all the machinery.

From the village a path climbs to Beetham fell and leads to the 'Fairy Steps'. The second of two flights of stone steps is so named because of a legend. Supposedly, if you climb the steps without touching the limestone sides of the narrow gully, the fairies will grant your wish.

On the same path between Arnside and Beetham are the ruins of Hazelslack tower, a 14th century fortified building beside a farmhouse.

The plant centre in the village, Beetham Nurseries, won a much coveted gold medal at the Tatton RHS show 2004. 

Kendal

Kendal, overlooked by the ruins of a 12th century castle and situated on the banks of the River Kent, is well worth a visit. Settlement in the beautiful valley of the River Kent is known at least as far back as Roman times. Kendal is the largest town in South Lakeland and, being stone built, has the nick name of the "Auld Grey Town".

The town, once an important centre for the wool trade, now offers a great range of shops and cafés as well as the vibrant Brewery Arts Centre and other cultural centres like the  Waterside Art Gallery and the Abbot Hall Art Gallery.

With beautiful surrounding countryside and its close proximity to the Lake District National Park, Kendal is a great base for a holiday or day trip.

Cycling routes are available for touring in and around the town. For cycling routes, have a look at "Cycling around Kendal" .

A market is held in Kendal on Wednesdays and Saturdays, with a farmers market on the last Friday of the month.