In this week in history 25 YEARS AGO — 1994 PENRITH

Date: Tuesday 12th March 2019

Penrith Chamber of Trade president Ken Elliott this week leapt to the defence of the town after it was described in a new guidebook as one of the North West’s least attractive towns. “The Rough Guide to England” claims: “The sprawling interwar estates on the outskirts of the town are a suitable introduction to one of the region’s least appealing towns.” Traders’ president Mr. Elliott was far from impressed when he heard about the book, saying: “Penrith is a lovely little town. The Devonshire Arcade and Angel Square are lovely shopping areas.”

Penrith Chamber of Trade president Ken Elliott this week leapt to the defence of the town after it was described in a new guidebook as one of the North West’s least attractive towns. “The Rough Guide to England” claims: “The sprawling interwar estates on the outskirts of the town are a suitable introduction to one of the region’s least appealing towns.” Traders’ president Mr. Elliott was far from impressed when he heard about the book, saying: “Penrith is a lovely little town. The Devonshire Arcade and Angel Square are lovely shopping areas.”

A radical plan for the total pedestrianisation of Penrith town centre was revealed this week. Faced with problems of of congestion and pollution as vehicle numbers increase, Cumbria County Council revealed the plans to a meeting in the town on Tuesday and sought the views of a “full house” of townsfolk. Under the scheme, traffic would be banned from Devonshire Street, Corn Market, Market Square and King Street.

APPLEBY

After sixty-three years as Express Foods, the Appleby-based food company is changing its name to the Cheese Company. The new name was officially adopted on Friday and will help to emphasise the company’s position as Britain’s largest independent manufacturer of cheese.

Scottish supermarket chain Shoprite are due to move into a new store in Penrith within a few months. The discount retail chain are planning to open their doors at a new store being built on Ullswater Road.

NENTHEAD

Cumbria County Council chairman Bob Strike will on Monday officially open the first phase of a transformation scheme for the council-owned lead mining area at Nenthead. The work will start with the creation of a £250,000 business and visitor centre on the site of the old Rampgill Mine buildings, where Mr Strike will be met by Graham Coggins, chairman of the North Pennines Heritage Trust, which is managing the project.

SHAP

An Eden hotel is looking forward to welcoming big game hunters in search of a wild beast after reports of a large animal stalking nearby woodland. Two men working in RMC’s Shap quarry claim to have seen a large black animal — possibly a panther or a puma. However, David Metcalfe, of the Shap Wells Hotel, laughed at the idea. He said: “I’ve never heard about it before and I don’t think it will put people off coming. You never know, it might even attract game hunters in search of the thing.”

ALSTON

Cumbria’s Tory and Liberal Democrat councillors united to fight closure plans for Alston Magistrates Court. The court at Alston sat for just 26 hours last year and dealt with only ninety defendants, and the county council had been asked for their comment on proposals to axe the court and transfer business to Penrith. The ruling Labour group were defeated at the county’s policy general purposes sub-committee when they proposed the closure plans.

KESWICK

Keswick could hold their heads high after their brave performance in the quarter-finals of the Pilkington Shield — the biggest game in the club’s history. Despite their extra-time defeat by Kidderminster — who play in a comparatively higher league — the Davidson Park side gave everything they had and delighted the 1,800-strong crowd with exciting rugby.

50 YEARS AGO — 1969

MURTON

At the annual meeting of Murton and Hilton Village Institute, held in Thwaites School, Murton, on Friday, a decision was taken to rebuild the institute, which was destroyed by fire in November. The chairman, Mr. E. Hinchcliffe, said arrangements had been made for the demolition of the remains of the building and the clearing of the site. The insurance claim had been settled satisfactorily, and the committee now had an available reserve of £2,000.

LANGWATHBY

Far-reaching ideas for the future reorganisation of primary education in some Eden Valley and East Fellside villages, which could involve the amalgamation of eight village schools and concentration of the children on the existing school at Langwathby, were explained to teachers and managers of the schools concerned at a meeting held in Langwathby Village Hall on Tuesday evening. Schools involved in the discussion, in addition to Langwathby, were Hunsonby, Skirwith, Maughanby, Melmerby, Culgaith, Gamblesby and Ousby.

100 YEARS AGO — 1919

ASKHAM

An experiment in co-operation between the Church of England and Wesleyans is taking place at Askham, where they are to conduct a temporary amalgamation between the Sunday Schools. This situation was brought about after Mr. Pearson, the mainstay of the Wesleyan cause in the village, had to relinquish his duties due to ill-health, and there was not another teacher to carry on his work.

APPLEBY

The Appleby Military Hospital at Red House has been formally closed and the 25 patients discharged. The hospital, which has been run by Appleby Voluntary Aid Detachment in premises lent by Lord Hothfield, was opened in May, 1917, and since that time 361 sick and wounded have passed through its wards. The hospital has been generously supported by the people of the town and district, and though many serious cases have been dealt with, not one death has occurred.