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Lorton, Cumberland

Historical Description

Lorton, a township comprising the villages of High and Low Lorton, and an ecclesiastical parish in Cumberland. The village of Low Lorton stands on the Cocker river, in Lorton Vale, 4 miles SSE of Cockermouth railway station. There is a post and money order office at High Lorton; telegraph office, Cockermouth. Acreage of township, 5501 acres; population, 377. It has a parish council composed of eight members. The ecclesiastical parish contains also the townships of Brackenthwaite and Whinfell, and was constituted in 1883. Population, 492. Lord Leconfield is lord of the manor. Lorton Hall, Lorton Park, Fairfield, Oakhill, and Kirkfell House are chief residences. Lorton Vale extends from Cram-mock Water to the N boundary of the parish; is flanked on the W by Low Fell and Whin Fell; on the E by Whiteside, Whinlatter, Lorton, and Wythop Fells; is well-wooded and beautifully picturesque; and contained till recently a famous old yew tree, sung as follows by Wordsworth:-" There is a yew tree, pride of Lorton Vale, Which to this day stands single, in the midst Of its own darkness, as it stood of yore. Of vast circumference and gloom profound This solitary tree! a living thing, Produced too slowly ever to decay; Of form and aspect too magnificent To he destroyed."

The living is a vicarage in the diocese of Carlisle; net value, £140 with residence. Patron, the Bishop. The church is a plain stone edifice in the Transition style, consisting of chancel, nave, baptistry, and an embattled tower. There is a parochial school, with a small endowment; also a Wesleyan chapel at High Lorton.

Transcribed from The Comprehensive Gazetteer of England & Wales, 1894-5


The following is a list of the administrative units in which this place was either wholly or partly included.

Ancient CountyCumberland 
Ecclesiastical parishLorton St. Cuthbert 
Poor Law unionCockermouth 
WardAllerdale above Derwent 

Any dates in this table should be used as a guide only.

Directories & Gazetteers

We have transcribed the entry for Lorton from the following:

Land and Property

The Return of Owners of Land in 1873 for Cumberland is available to browse.

Villages, Hamlets, &c

Swinside (Lorton)

Visitations Heraldic

The Visitation of Cumberland, 1615 is available on the Heraldry page.