Thursday, 26 December 2019

The Helvellyn Mountain Cross Shelter history.

The nations favourite 'must do' mountain walk has long been known to be the ascent of Helvellyn, which rises high above the Lake District valleys, creating a high division between Ullswater and Thirlmere. The ascent is equally popular from both valleys, the Glenridding ascent takes in the famous Greenside mine, where lead and silver were extracted from the valley, before the high elevation of Red Tarn is achieved. 

Red Tarn with Helvellyn as the backdrop.

The view from Helvellyn, looking to Ullswater with Swirral Edge to the left.

Striding Edge, with Red Tarn just in view on the left.
From here a decision can be made to either take the famous route of Striding Edge, to the south of the tarn, or Swirral Edge to the north of it. The Striding Edge route is another 'must do' feature of this fell for many walkers, and is famed for the tragic death of Charles Gough in April 1805; the two are usually combined as a horseshoe walk.

 The Thirlmere route, on the west side of the mountain, is an initially steeper yet safer route to the top, levelling off to a more gentle incline after Browncove Craggs is passed.  Either route takes you to the third highest peak in England, standing at 951m above sea level. The view across the bowl of Red Tarn, created by the packed ice turning as a giant ball and scouring out the bowl many thousands of years ago, is a sight to behold, the view expanding beyond towards Glenridding and Ullswater; hence it's popularity as a walk. Many have taken on the ascent only to find they are misted by cloud on the summit, making orientation difficult; many have become benighted in these conditions. Ad-hoc horseshoe shelters are common on lakeland summits, built by either farmers for livestock, or by walkers to create a break from the high arduous conditions; such a one exists on that other lofty peak of Skiddaw, towering above the town of Keswick. These are limited by their orientation and provide little or no shelter when the wind is howling into the opening, usually facing to the east. A biting winter Siberian gale, coming from the east, is perhaps the worst of all. In such conditions the Helvellyn cross shelter is a godsend to the stranded walker. 

The Cross Shelter on Helvellyn summit.
The mountain itself is also famed as the first plane landing on a mountain top, and a plaque denotes this feat of daring do, not too far south of the cross cairn shelter; this story adding to the mountain's allure.

As far back as June 1828 accounts were written where ardent walkers informed the readers, 'How sublime an elevation! How glorious the panorama! What mighty assemblage of mountains! What an infinite diversity of landscape! Water - in all its variety, from the little tarn collected in the hollows of the mountains and the streamlet that trickles down their sides, to the spreading lake, the far-winding river, the broad estuary and the the unlimited sea. .....' In the same account it led on to the walkers stating: 'the high and keen wind drove us to take shelter beneath the pile of stones which stands on Helvellyn Man.' It therefor gives reference to there being some form of shelter on the mountain, but not the cross itself, merely a mound of stones, no doubt a large cairn. Earlier in February of that year a group, including ladies, demolished their flask of brandy while hidden behind the same cairn for half an hour, before descending the mountain to escape the winter wind. Accounts of walkers sheltering behind a mere 'cairn of stones' were still being given through 1860's.
The popularity of the adventure to the summit was to cause discussion on a better shelter to serve any walkers caught out by the unrelenting and harsh fell top conditions. The English Lake District Association came into existence following a meeting at The Queen Hotel, Ambleside on 5th November 1877. It was formed to promote the Lake District as a tourist destination and to advertise it across the nation, particularly now that rail travel could bring those tourists direct to the towns of Windermere and Keswick. It had originally been suggested by Messrs. Cook and Son, tourist agents, in September 1876 following the death of the Silversmith Edward Barnard.

 Cook's had suggested finger-posts but the cost and who was to pay for them was questioned. Cook's stated that an association, like the Black Forest Association, made up of local hoteliers of that area, should be similarly formed in the Lake District. Those association members paid for such posts as they gained large profits from the tourism. Messrs. Cook and Son stated that they were members and if one was similarly formed in the Lake District, they would pay their share.

A similar stone built 'refuge' had been proposed for Skiddaw and was reported as being agreed to by the Skiddaw owner, Lord Leconfield. It had been urged due to the tourists that were now making their way to the summit with great regularity. At the Lake District Association meeting of Tuesday 3rd February 1885 it was stated that, 'During the summer a substantial shelter was erected on the summit of Skiddaw at a cost of about £9.' This had been built by a W. Wilson of Keswick, at committee member of the association, at his own expense. It was also reported that the shelter had been damaged by the wind within one month and by November was in a useless condition. 
On Wednesday 17th March 1886 at The Prince of Wales Hotel, Grasmere, the Association's meeting touched on a range of topics and improvements to the area. On the subject of Helvellyn consideration was given to a shelter on or near the summit, similar to the Keswick summit one, as well as placing a stone indicator on the summit of Grisdale Pass. At the meeting of Tuesday 8th June 1886 at Riggs Hotel, Windermere, the chairman, Mr. Harrison, reported that agreement had been reached for the erection of the shelter and indicators. Although no specific information is available for the actual date of construction and who the builder was, by the first week of September 1886 the celebrated guide, Johnny Mackereth, who led many celebrated parties out from The Prince of Wales Lake Hotel, Grasmere, was reporting it being a great boon and well resorted to. A further meeting was held at The Queen's Hotel, Ambleside, on Wednesday 22nd September where the cost of the construction was given as £8. It was also stated that the Skiddaw shelter repair had been deferred, 'on account of  the difficulty getting water for cement, for which snow had to be used.' On Tuesday 14th December that same year, it was reported at the Association meeting again at Riggs Hotel, that the Skiddaw repair had now been conducted. On 27th June 1891 the Refreshment Hut at the breast of Skiddaw was advertised to be let. This draws a different and distinctive description between the summit hut/shelter to the known hut part way up Skiddaw Breast, from the car park at Latrigg. 

Skiddaw Hut, on Skiddaw Breast

The remaining foundations of the first Skiddaw Hut (next to the fence-line).

The 30th September Association meeting in 1891 saw a proposal for a shelter 'similar to those on Helvellyn and Skiddaw, to be erected on Scawfell. At the the meeting of February 1893 it was stated that there were now shelters on Helvellyn, Skiddaw, Scawfell and Esk Hause. However, an article in the June edition of the Carlisle Journal stated that it would be a blessing if a similar cross shelter were on Skiddaw to provide the same shelter from the wind as that on Helvellyn. This suggests that the Skiddaw summit hut or shelter was now gone. Perhaps that cement required for the earlier repair had been for a base and the shelter was wooden, like the one on the breast route up from Latrigg. It seems to have disappeared quickly, yet the Helvellyn one stands to this day, and unblemished; a permanent structure.

**The research of the Skiddaw huts/shelters, becomes confusing. In 1880 accounts were written where walkers with Mr. Baddeley (Windermere) and Mr. Jenkinson (Keswick - see page bottom for the Jenkinson story) stopped for refreshments at the first of two huts, which was part way up the hill after Latrigg, only to find whilst they had beverages that the higher hut was now closed. (This is a clear indicator of an even earlier higher hut on Skiddaw.) This lower white hut on Skiddaw Breast was reported as still there in the summer of 1936 at least. I have checked the route up to Skiddaw from Latrigg and there is no remnants of any hut or shelter higher than the foundations photograph, nor on the summit, but something was clearly there. It may be that it was located at the site large horseshoe cairn. It is next to the trig point summit and seems unnaturally 'flattened'. There is also a drilled feature in a nearby rock that seems unexplained, and I would be interested in any explanation any reader is aware of. It has to be left to the interpretation of the reader AND I will keep on researching.

The drilled feature, in relation to the trig point.

The flattened area of the horseshoe cairn. Could this have been the location of the summit hut?
To this day the Helvellyn cross shelter has improved the comfort of many a Helvellyn walker, able to eat food in its protection, no matter what direction the wind came howling from; I myself had felt that relief under its protection. I have been thankful for the Skiddaw horseshoe also, but it in no way measures up to that afforded by the Helvellyn shelter. 


Wednesday, 18 December 2019

The First Coniston Steamer - The Princess Royal

When you hear discussions related to the Coniston steamer, the conversation invariably refers to the Steam Yacht Gondola that is now owned by The National Trust. It had commenced a service as far back as November 1859 and was retired in 1936. Following a period as a 'house boat' she eventually slipped into a sorry state, which led to her being purposefully sunk onto the lake bed. When she was raised, a rebuild was necessary, assisted by local fundraising and industrial support. She once again sailed the lake, with a new superstructure and hull, in 1980. However, she was not the first  attempt to place a steamer to conduct a tourist passenger service on Coniston Water.

Coniston taken from the Hawkshead road.
James Sladen was an engineer originally from Calderbrook, near Littleborough, Rochdale. He was married in 1845 at the age of 20 years to Ester Holt, both were illiterate. His father Thomas was a Navigator and his father-in-law was a Waterman, so both would work the canals. James was still an engineer in 1851 aged 26, living in the Littleborough area. 
At some stage in the early 1850's James began a business of hiring boats on Hollingworth Lake, Littleborough, having sought permission from the Rochdale Canal Company. These were rowing, or sailing boats, although there was at some stage a number of steamers used by James.
An advert dated 14th April 1855 for the Lancashire and Yorkshire Railway Company excursions had added Hollingworth Lake to the itinerary where: '... steamer or pleasure boats are always to be had.' This suggested some continuance of these boats over a period of time previously.
In the Coniston area it was announced on 21st July 1855 that a small steamer had just been put on Coniston Water. It was reported to be similar in design, long and narrow, to those that once ran between Preston and Kendal prior to the railway. It was said that it was a screw thread propulsion, although the engine was not large and had latterly been plying a trade on a body of water in the Rochdale area and was owned by a person from there. The Kendal Mercury of 21st July announced that there was now 'Steam on Coniston Lake'.  The boat was called 'Princess Royal', most likely named after the first daughter of Queen Victoria, herself named Victoria, 1840 - 1901.

The Princess Royal - Victoria
On Monday 16th July the vessel had began plying a trade of tourism.

Kendal Mercury 21st July 1855
Another article referred to it as 'The Queen of the Lake', but it looked fair to begin a passenger service on this Lancastrian water under the proprietor Mr. James Sladen. It was an iron built screw driven steamer, with a boiler and engine of 4 horse-power, built on 'the railway principle'. It had been removed from Littleborough to Coniston as a whole unit and was capable of carrying 60 passengers. The service was to be both first class at one shilling and sixpence (1s 6d), and second class at one shilling. Any child under 12 years old was to travel at half price and any passenger not completing a return journey was still to be charged the same fare.
  Sadly it was not to be. By 2nd August the service was discontinued and the vessel was up for sale by private treaty; there had not been the expected uptake of business for the service to be profitable. It was advertised as capable of being moved whole by train, having originally travelled 100 miles by that technique from Littleborough. Details were to be obtained from James Slidin(Sladen) of Hare Hill Mill, Littleborough. There is no account of who bought the vessel, yet at Hollingworth Lake steamers again plied a trade in 1856 of tourist excursions; it may be that the vessel returned to that body of water. By 1859 he had at least two steamers and over twenty pleasure boats on Hollingworth Lake.

Ester died in the 2nd quarter of 1859 aged 34 years and James remarried Sarah Hudson, the daughter of Ely Hudson, an innkeeper. On the marriage certificate James was then a 'boat proprietor'.

In the 1861 census he was shown as an engineer at Hollingworth. By 1871 he was then listed as a Beer Seller and Refreshment House Keeper. His son Uriah had the next premise and was a joiner and Refreshment Room Keeper; that premise was also under the Sladen name. James died on 31st August 1876, aged 51 years, at The Beach Hotel, Hollingworth; his probate showed him leaving effects under £5,000. Uriah then took over the family boat business.

One would have expected James to have re-visited Coniston and travel on The Gondola. If he did, he must have wondered what might have been, had the uptake of his excursions been better supported. The risk and cost to his fledgling business must have been substantial, but he had seen a potential opportunity and at least tried. 


Wednesday, 11 December 2019

The Enterprise, the first Ullswater Steam Boat

The two largest lakes of the English Lake District were Windermere and Ullswater. Boats had been used on them over the centuries to provide goods and carry cargos down their lengths and to the remote communities on their shores. With the development of a burgeoning tourist industry, enhanced through steam engines and rail development, Windermere was at the forefront of pleasure cruising on an inland water.
Ullswater itself was a lake used to enable pig lead, that had been extracted from the mined ore, to be transported from the lead mines nearer the head of the valley. As early as 1836 the mining company had resolved to put a steamer on the lake for this purpose, to increase the business efficiency of the company. Such a steamer would take the mined product down the lake and return with coal, required for the smelting operations. Such a vessel would no doubt assist in other articles or persons being in need of transport, at a cost. It is unknown if this resolution ever actually came to fruition, but that kernel of an idea had begun.  It was suggested at this time that the day could not be far away when tourism pleasure boats would steam the length of the larger lakes, such as Windermere which was 13 miles in length, and Ullswater, at 9 miles length.
Windermere was the biggest at just over 11 miles, but in the opinion of some, not the most dramatic, being surrounded by rolling low level fells, with the high peaks giving a distant backdrop. Ullswater however was over 7 miles in length, and was arced at the head by these imposing high peaks, with Place Fell dropping deep into the lake on its southern shore. There was a recognition in October 1858 for an opportunity of tourism development for the water, with Penrith being only a few miles east of the lake. That year a Steam Coal Company was formed and quickly amassed 8/10ths of the finances needed for a steam boat. It was even mooted that a railway branch line could be built to the village of Pooley Bridge itself.
On Christmas Eve that year the first tender was placed in the Carlisle Journal for the building of a steam boat for the lake.

 A second tender was also placed in January 1859 with an altered specification of 18 horsepower, 70 feet in length with a 14 feet beam, drawing now only 2ft 6ins of water; tenders now to be submitted by 29th January. In March, the positions of Captain, Engine Driver, and General Assistant were advertised, for a proposed launch date around mid June. In mid-May the vessel was by then stored at the rail station and was expected to be transported in a few days time, although the contractor believed the launch date to now appear overly optimistic. Within a week the boat was at the lake, transported in sections and rivetted together on the east shore. It was then reported to be 80 feet in length and 16 horsepower. It was fitted with both a ladies and gentlemen's saloon, each 20 feet in length, with washing room and every convenience attached. It was built by H. M. Lawrence & Co. of Liverpool. A 90 feet long Quay was to be constructed a little north of the river and after some initial problems, landings were secured at Howtown Bay, a further landing at Patterdale Bridge, at the end of the property of W. H. Askew Esq., a staunch steamer supporter from the start. Mr. Howard also seemed amenable to a landing at Lyulph's Tower at Gowbarrow. The date of 20th June was still advertised and the vessel name was expected then to be The Dalemain, a tribute to the Lord of the Manor.
Mr. R. Brownrigg of The Sun Inn, at Pooley Bridge, was quick to see a clear business opportunity and advertised an omnibus to travel between Pooley Bridge and Penrith Train Station, to meet the three afternoon arrival trains and two in the evening; this omnibus was to commence on 1st June. Clearly tourism was about to dramatically expand.
The original launch date passed and was now set for July. The directors of the Lancaster and Carlisle Railway were open to the idea of a temporary station at Yanwath to use during the summer season for any parties wishing to visit the lake. 
The initial launch took place at 2pm on Saturday 16th July to huge crowds which had gathered on the lake shore to see the spectacle. The chocks were all removed but one, as Mrs. Slee of Tyrrel dashed a customary bottle of wine against her bow, naming her, 'The Enterprise'; a change from the original idea of 'The Dalemain'. The boat itself was incomplete with the engine still to be delivered and the fitting of internal features still to be added. It was expected to conduct trials at 12 noon on Saturday 28th, so this was set as the firm date. Special trains from Kendal and Carlisle were arranged with a large banquet organised for 4pm at Mr. Brownrigg's Sun Hotel. Sadly, despite getting a head of steam, the boat did not move due to a failure of part of the machinery, which was a great disappointment to all.  Finally, on Saturday 6th August she was handed over from the contractors to the Directors. However, things never go smoothly and after some confusion that lasted from 11am to 2pm, it was realised that the contractor, Mr. Lawrence would be needed to actually sail the vessel, which he then did. 
Her first journey down the length of the lake, took 50 minutes to land at Glenridding Point. Enroute the heavens had opened and continued throughout the afternoon. At Glenridding a serious accident nearly occurred when the rope was thrown to be tied, but the catcher tried to hold the boat with brute strength and was scooped off his feet. An omnibus had been arranged by the White Lion at Patterdale, which was an hour's excursion from the boat. When the boat returned to Pooley Bridge a cautious landing had to take place with great dexterity, as the landing stage was still not built. Then, like now, on journey's end, the weather immediately cleared and glorious sunshine ensued!
From that point it could then begin to ply a daily trade of cheap and reliable passenger transport and after the inauspicious start she then had a very successful first fortnight, making three daily trips up and down the lake, with greater than anticipated passenger numbers enjoying her delights. She would leave Pooley Bridge at 9am, 1pm, and 4:15pm, taking 30 mins to arrive at Howtown and then 45 mins to travel further to Patterdale. The return journeys were at 10:30am, 2:30pm and 5:35pm. Coaches supplemented the journey between Penrith and Pooley Bridge.
The new season for 1860 was to commence in mid June and new internal fittings were now added for improved passenger comfort. Like any new venture the boat was not without controversy and that same month Mr. Marshall was in dispute with the steam boat owners. A case was then commenced in the court of Queen's Bench, against the Ullswater Steam Navigation Company for the illegal erection of a jetty on his land and the spoiling of the fisheries, by the discarding of cinders from the boat; he was seeking £100 compensation. This resulted in an extraordinary General Meeting on 29th June, at the Sun Inn, Pooley Bridge, where it was unanimously resolved to defend the action. The case was listed to be before Westmorland Assizes on 3rd August, but on the day it was withdrawn.
The more well off members of the local societies were philanthropic by nature towards their less fortunate fellow men, and their children. On Thursday 9th August 1860 a day trip to the lake was organised for the benefit of the workhouse children of Penrith and their teachers. Mr. Brownrigg supplied the coach for transport to the lake and on arrival in the steam boat at Patterdale the children were treated to an abundant supply of cake. they were then allowed to make their own 'bent' and re-assembled at the boat at 4:30pm for travelling back to Pooley Bridge, where they again were treated to refreshments. The Steam Company and Mr. Brownrigg charged only minimal fees and the £2 surplus from the fund was to be used to buy the children a harmonium. The 1860 season was due to end on or near 5th October and was regarded as a very successful one. The new 1861 season would begin again on 3rd June.
The dispute with Mr. Marshall had not ended and was again before the courts on 6th and 7th August 1861, and came to be known as 'The Great Ullswater Case.' The spoiling of the fishing was not upheld, but who was the owner of the soil on the lake bed became the issue, for that was what the pier was driven into. The issues argumented over to reach a verdict are perhaps too complicated and intricate to enter into in depth at this stage, but the decision went with Mr. Mounsey and against Mr. Marshall. The half yearly report in October noted that the season had been a good one of passenger numbers, but the case had affected the profitability of the company.
The case continued into 1862 where it was before the court of Queens Bench on 21st and 24th November. The issue of ownership of the soil of a lake bed had implications of national importance. The cases that were stated were of rivers, for clear comparisons to be drawn, even the case of the Mississippi river was quoted. Here, after legal argument, the case was adjourned for the bench to consider its verdict. The decision was announced on Saturday 21st February 1863 and the judgement was for the plaintiff, Mr. Marshall, in that the law as it stood must be discharged. The Lord Chief Justice however, went on to say that if he were sitting in a court if appeal, he would hesitate, for he did not acquiesce in the law as laid down. Notice of an appeal was then given by the Ullswater Steam Navigation Company against the decision of the Court of Queens Bench.
The half yearly meeting of the company was held at The Sun Hotel, Pooley Bridge, on 11th May where a motion was put that all action against Mr. Marshall be suspended. However, an amendment was then put forward that action should continue to obtain a reversal of the courts decision; that amendment was carried, 13 votes for, and two against. On 13th May 1865, at The Exchequer Chamber, the judgement of the court of Queens Bench was affirmed and the case was finally concluded in Mr. Marshall's favour. It is understood that a rent then had to be paid to him.
Following this the steam boat settled down to ply its annual trade of tourism for the lake visitors. In July of 1873 the boat had undergone a refit and a new and stronger boiler was installed, with new plates being fitted to the bottom of the boat. A trial trip showed her powers to be greatly increased.
 It also assisted in conducting local events such as the Dacre, Stainton and Newbiggin school children trips in the summer of that year, being one such example. 123 children took the opportunity to sail and take refreshments aboard The Enterprise, as they journeyed to Patterdale and back.
The Enterprise was still plying its trade in the 1876 season, doing four trips down the length of the lake. By the December of that year however, a new twin screw steam yacht, was tendered and the company who were to build it was Messrs T. B. Seath & Co., Glasgow. The architect was the eminent Mr. Hebson of Liverpool, although he was a native of Penrith itself. In June 1877 The Lady of the Lake, capable of 12 knots, was launched and no further reference then exists for the old Enterprise. What her fate was is unknown, but checks with local sub-aqua groups indicate there is no evidence of any vessel lying in the 60m depth of Ullswater. She was a paddle steamer, and not outdated, so was most likely broken up with important parts and fittings reclaimed.

Now a new and more modern boat would take the company forward as it continued to progress the tourism trade on the most dramatic lake of Ullswater. 

Saturday, 7 December 2019

The Hallin Fell 'Obelisk'

There are a number of small peaks scattered within the high fells of Lakeland that afford the less adventurous tourist a reasonable amount of exercise, yet rewarding them with no less dramatic views of the valley and lake where they are situated. Buttermere has Rannerdale Knotts, Ennerdale is gifted with Angler's Crag, Borrowdale is bounteously graced with Castle Head, Latrigg, and Castle Crag, Rydal and Grasmere with Loughrigg Fell, and Windermere with Gummer's How. Ullswater is not without such a hill, and is blessed with the stunning views of Hallin Fell, which is anchored partway on the southern side of the lake. 

Hallin Fell and the view to Pooley Bridge, Bonscale to the right with Howtown below.
The lake itself is headed at its Eastern end by Pooley Bridge, with Glenridding at the Western end, which affords access to the Helvellyn range and Patterdale. This lake has two 'doglegs', the first when heading west bends sharply from a south westerly line of travel, arching more to the west only, then at Glencoyne it bends to a pure southerly direction. The lake is just over 7 miles long and a Hallin fell the views the tourist are of the lake curving round the base of the fell into Howtown, where the ferry docks on its plying of the lake, affording more viewing opportunities for tourists. It is this view from the fell that draws visitors to this far side of the lake, with the dead end road to Boredale cresting on the hause, just east of Howtown; upon this hause also sits St. Peter's Church. It is from here that the less adventurous walker can scale the fell, having driven to the church and already at a height of 230m, with only another 160 to scale to the top. When they do, they find the 'obelisk' marked on the Ordnance Survey View-ranger map.

 This feature is sometimes referred to as a pillar or cairn, yet it stands out as being far more than just a marker. It is so dramatic a feature that one cannot help stopping admiring the beautiful views, arcing around the fell, and being drawn to the obelisk itself and wondering, why was such a dramatic monument built? It seems to do more than just mark a good viewing point of the lake, yet no information seems to exist of its origins.

The Hallin Fell Obelisk
From the research I have been able to conduct the question can now be answered. Lord Brougham, 1778 to 1868, was born Henry P. Brougham, the son of Henry Brougham, of Brougham, Westmorland. He qualified as a barrister and was called to the bar in 1808. He was one of a number of young men that launched the Edinburgh Review in 1802, and wrote for the magazine for 40 years, along with other national newsprints. He took to politics and was a mover towards the abolition of slavery, which this led to his defeat of his hope of being the Whig Member of Parliament for Liverpool in 1812, although he had first entered it in 1810 for the 'Rotten Borough' of Camelford.

In June of 1810 he had carried through the House of Commons an address to the King, both direct and diplomatic, for the suppression of the slave trade. It was a marker for the country of his skills as an orator and bode well for him being marked for greatness. He was successful in 1811 with his bill for the punishment of individuals in the participation of the slave trade, which passed without opposition (The Slave Trade Felony Act). This carried sentences of either 5 years imprisonment or 14 years transportation, and he was supported in this by others, including William Wilberforce. This bill brought about a huge reduction in the traffic of slaves but did not eliminate it altogether. In 1815 he gained the Whig seat for Winchilsea and was to go on to become the Lord Chancellor (1830 to 1834) and raised to the peerage of Baron Brougham and Vaux.  He was instrumental in the passing of the Great Reform Act of 1832, which progressively changed the electoral system. 

In 1823 The Anti-Slavery Society was formed; three of its members were William Wilberforce, Thomas Clarkson, and Lord Brougham, Wilberforce himself used to holiday in the Lake District at Rayrigg, Windermere, with accounts showing him there as early as 1784. 
In 1824 Henry Brougham carried a further Act through parliament which now made the sentence a capital one; no-one now dared to breach this law, at pain of death. 
In 1831 there was a large-scale revolt in Jamaica that resulted in a large loss of life. This caused two inquiries by parliament. In 1832 The Reform Act swept away ‘rotten borough seats’ in parliament, where plantation owners had used these to adversely influence the decisions of the government on slavery matters. This then allowed the passing of the Slavery Abolition Act of 1833; both these acts brought about by Henry Brougham.

 After 1841 he associated himself with the conservative party, but remained out of party politics, but continued to campaign on particular issues. He supported moves for mass education, adult further education, through the mechanics institutes, and also helped to establish University College, London.

Lord Brougham
In mid September 1864, approaching the age of 86 years, he left his home at Brougham Hall, just outside Penrith and went to York to preside over a Social Science meeting on 22nd. Joseph Wilkinson was a veteran Politian and lived at Bonscale, near Howtown. He had assisted Lord Brougham in his Westmorland contests. It was he that had the 12 feet high Obelisk erected and with the aid of 'a good glass' it could be seen from Cross Fell. It was a monument to Lord Brougham to commemorate his 86th birthday on 19th September. On that day a celebration was held on the fell, although the weather was inclement. Still, a number of people were in attendance and drank his health. The toast was given and it was said that Lord Brougham was, '... one who had done most to promote the happiness of his fellow creatures, regardless of country, colour, or creed, than any man living or dead.' No doubt that was in reference to his work on slavery and education, and he sounds like a man who rightly should be remembered for his positive addition to the morals of our society. The monument was previously known as 'The Brougham Pillar', but that name has now been lost in its use, with the naming of it on the Ordnance Survey maps as 'Obelisk', which has since superseded the original name. I am happy to return that information into knowledge of the public so that Lord Brougham's memory and contribution lives on.

Also, while in the area, it is well worth visiting St. Peter's Church where you most likely parked up. Another little known piece of Cumbrian (and WWII) history is within it: