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Westward

WESTWARD, a parish, in the union of Wigton, Allerdale ward below Derwent, W. division of Cumberland, 2¾ miles (S. E. by S.) from Wigton; containing, with the townships of Brocklebank, Stoneraise, Rosley, and Woodside, 1311 inhabitants. This place derives its name from its situation in the great forest of Inglewood, of which it formed the western ward, under the charge of the forester. The parish is bounded on the east by the Wampool river, and on the south by the branches of the river Waver; and comprises by measurement 1176 acres, of which nearly 300 are woodland, 180 in roads and waste, and the remainder chiefly arable. It abounds with limestone, red-freestone, and slate, all of excellent quality, of which there are extensive quarries, affording employment to many of the labouring class; and several seams of cannel and other coal have been found. The living is a perpetual curacy, net income, £120; patrons and appropriators, the Dean and Chapter of Carlisle: the tithes were commuted for land in 1811. The church is situated on an eminence in the township of Stoneraise. An additional church was erected by subscription in 1840, a neat structure in the later English style. In Stoneraise, about a mile and a half north of the church, and on the Roman road from Lugovallum (Carlisle) to Volantium or Virosidum (Ellenborough), are the remains of Old Carlisle, a considerable Roman city, which Horsley supposes to have been the Olenacum of the Notitia, where the Ala Herculea and Ala Augusta were posted. Antiquaries, however, differ with respect to the right name of this important station, which, with its appendages, occupied many acres of ground; its site is still overspread with the ruins and foundations of numerous buildings, with fragments of altars, equestrian statues, images, inscriptions, and many other relics. The walls inclosed a quadrilateral area, 170 yards long and 120 yards broad, with obtuse angles, and an entrance on each side; and were surrounded by a double ditch. Near a place called the Heights, in another part of the parish, vestiges of several square and circular intrenchments may be traced, though many of them, since the inclosure of the lands, have been levelled with the ground. Ilekirk Hall, in Stoneraise, anciently called Hildkirk, from a hermitage dedicated to St. Hilda, which was granted by John, in the 16th of his reign, to the abbey of Holme-Cultram, is now a farmhouse. It was for some time the residence of Richard Barwise, a man of extraordinary stature and prodigious strength.

Transcribed from A Topographical Dictionary of England, by Samuel Lewis, seventh edition, published 1858.