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placename:- Workington Hall
locality:- Curwen Park
locality:- Workington
parish Workington borough, once in Cumberland
county:- Cumbria
building/s; castle
coordinates:- NY00742879
10Km square:- NY02

1Km square NY0028


Workington Hall -- Curwen Park -- Workington -- Workington -- Cumbria / -- 22.10.2008

Workington Hall -- Curwen Park -- Workington -- Workington -- Cumbria / -- 22.10.2008

old map:- OS County Series (Cmd 53 11)

County Series maps of Great Britain, scales 6 and 25 inches to 1 mile, published by the Ordnance Survey, Southampton, Hampshire, from about 1863 to 1948.

placename:- Workington Hall
date:- 1890=1899
period:- 19th century, late; 1890s

descriptive text:- Ford 1839 (3rd edn 1843)

Description of Scenery in the Lake District, by William Ford, published by Charles Thurnham, London, et al, 1839; published 1839-52.
Page 173:-
... On the east side of the town is Workington Hall, the manor-house of the ancient family of Curwen, finely situated on an elevated position above the river. It is remarkable as having afforded an asylum to the unfortunate and persecuted Mary Queen of Scots, when she landed at Workington. ...

placename:- Workington Hall
person:- : Curwen Family
person:- : Mary, Queen of Scots
date:- 1839
period:- 19th century, early; 1830s

road book:- Cary 1798 (2nd edn 1802)

Road book, Cary's New Itinerary, by John Cary, published by G and J Cary, 86 St James's Street, London, 1798-1828.
thumbnail C38317, button to large image
page 317-318
At Workington, Workington Hall, John Christian Curwen, Esq.
thumbnail C38557, button to large image
page 557-558
At Workington are Workington Hall, John Christian Curwen, Esq.

placename:- Workington Hall
person:- : Curwen, John Christian
date:- 1802
period:- 19th century, early; 1800s

old text:- Camden 1789 (Gough Additions)

Britannia, or A Chorographical Description of the Flourishing Kingdoms of England, Scotland, and Ireland, by William Camden, 1586, translated from the 1607 Latin edition by Richard Gough, published London, 1789.
Page 184:-
The Curwen family is a very antient and respectable one. Their principal residence has long been at Workington hall in the county of Cumberland, where they had large possessions in landed property and coal mines. The last gentleman of that name and family was Henry Curwen, esq.; late member for the county. It was chiefly by his interest that sir James Lowther, now earl of Lonsdale, lost his parliamentary interest in the famous contested election for Cumberland in the year 1768, when Henry Fletcher, esq; now a baronet, first obtained a seat in the House of Commons in conjunction with Mr. Curwen, who sat in the preceding parliament for the city of Carlisle. He left an only daughter, heiress to all his large possessions, who was married about three years ago, very young, to her paternal first cousin John Christian, esq; of Unerigg hall in the same county. It is remarkable of this lady, that she was the last and only living child of a great number, her mother, the late Mrs. Curwen, formerly Miss Gale, of Whitehaven, having had fifteen or more children, previous to the present lady, all either still born or that died within a few minutes after their birth.
On a pillar at the south-east end of the minster at Lincoln is fixed a small square marble slab with this inscription:
Arms in a lozenge, Arg. Frettè G a chief Az. Crest on a torse a horse passant.
The mansion-house is a large quadrangular building, which still bears marks of great antiquity, notwithstanding various alterations and improvements, which have been made duting the last thirty years. The walls are so remarkably thick, that they were able, a few years since, in making some improvements to excavate a passage sufficiently wide lengthways through one of the walls, leaving a proper thickness on each side of the passage to answer every purpose of strength.
It was within a very short distance of this house where the river Darwent empties itself into the sea that the unhappy Mary queen of Scots landed in 1568, after her escape from the castle of Dunbar, and subsequent defeat. She took refuge at this house, and was hospitably entertained by sir Henry Curwen, till the pleasure of Elizabeth was known; when she was removed first to Cockermouth castle and then to Carlisle. The chamber in which she slept at Workington hall is still called the Queen's chamber.
We have before seen that Horsley removes ARBEIA to Moresby, which others had placed at Workington on no better authority than the Burrough walls, about a mile from the town, which are still standing, though no more than one of those old towers so common in the north, and sometimes called Burgh or Brugh; but it has no other evidences of its having been a Roman station.
The rectory of Workington, worth 400£. per ann. is held by Mr. William Thomas Addison, who married a sister of Mr. Curwen, his patron, and has a son in the East-Indies.

placename:- Workington Hall
person:- : Curwen Family
person:- : Curwen, Henry
person:- : Lowther, James, Sir
person:- : Fletcher, Henry
person:- : Curwen, Anne
person:- : Mary, Queen of Scots
person:- : Addison, William Thomas
date:- 1789
period:- 18th century, late; 1780s

old text:- Clarke 1787

Guide book, A Survey of the Lakes of Cumberland, Westmorland, and Lancashire, by James Clarke, Penrith, Cumberland, and in London etc, 1787 and 1789; and Plans of the Lakes ... 1793.
Page 105:-
I do not find any ancient authors mention a castle here [Castlerigg], Speed, who speaks of twenty-five in Cumberland, hath found out every one I ever heard or knew of, except Kirkoswald; how that has escaped him I cannot tell. I shall here put down their names, and, as well as I can, their most ancient owners, and supposed founders.
Page 106:-
23. WORKINGTON. The Culwens, now Curwens, no place there now called Castle.
Page 138:-
... miss Curwen of Workington-Hall in the county of Cumberland, being the last of that name there.
Of this ancient family Mr Cambden says he himself descended by the mother's side, and who, according to that author, "fetch their descent from Gospatrick Earl of Northumberland; and they took their surname from Culwen, a family in Galloway in Scotland, the heir whereof they had married." It is very likely they were of Scottish extraction, for Mary Queen of Scots fled hither. They are the most ancient family in Cumberland that I know of; always residing there, and always having male-heirs till now. ...

placename:- Workington Castle
person:- : Curwen Family; Culwen Family
person:- : Gospatrick; Northumberland, Earl of
person:- : Camden, William
person:- : Mary, Queen of Scots
date:- 1787
period:- 18th century, late; 1780s

old text:- Mackenzie 1776

Charts, and sailing directions, Nautical Descriptions of the West Coast of Great Britain, Bristol Channel to Cape Wrath, by Murdoch Mackenzie, published London, 1776.
Pages 23-24:-
... ...
Workington Bank ... On the W. end of this shoal, St. Bee's Head bears S. by W. 1/2 W. Workington Hall S.S.E. and in a line with Winsgil's (which is the north-most of three small clumps of wood that may be seen on the top of a rising ground, about three miles S. of Workington), and Mary-Port E. by S. ...

placename:- Workington Hall
sea mark
date:- 1776
period:- 18th century, late; 1770s

database:- Listed Buildings 2010

Listed Buildings 2010

courtesy of English Heritage
courtesy of English Heritage
Fortified tower house with various additions, now in ruins. Mid C14 with C15 and C16 alterations and additions; late 1783-1789 additions by John Carr for the Curwen family. Mixed large blocks of red and calciferous sandstone with additions of similar rubble stone, all without roofs; oldest parts on chamfered plinth. Rectangular 3-storey tower with adjoining L-shaped medieval wing reduced to single-storey and rebuilt as 3 storeys by Carr; also adjoined by C15 hall range of 2 storeys, 5 bays, all enclosing courtyard on 2 sides, the quadrangle completed by a medieval gatehouse tower and wing by Carr. Tower was extensively renovated by Carr but retains some original loops, internal spiral staircase and mural chambers. Late C18 round and flat-headed windows, all unglazed. Wing has projecting 3-storey garderobe turret and ground-floor loops; large first-floor late C18 round-headed window openings, those above in ruins. Late C18 canted bay window to left. Further right-angled kitchen range of similar details, with angle turret. Hall range has blocked windows and doorways of various dates; 2 ground-floor early C16 2-light windows and upper-floor C15 window. Inner wall has C15 doorways and blocked early C16 multi-light windows. 3-storey gatehouse has flanking guardrooms with angle turret to right, showing a number of small original chamfered-surround windows; the round-headed through archway and windows are late C18 alterations. Adjoining late C18 wing has similar flat-headed window openings. Ancestral home of the Curwen family who obtained a licence to crenellate in 1380 (the foundation stone for the tower is said to have been laid 8 May 1362) and owned by them until sold to the local council mid C20. After vandalisation the council reduced the building to a controlled ruin. See Tom Clare, Report on the Fortified Buildings of Cumbria, Cumbria County Council, 1983 (unpublished), appendix 3; Transactions Cumberland Westmorland Antiquarian & Archaeological Society, old series, xvi, 1-15; J.F. Curwen, Castles & Towers, 1913, 244-7.

placename:- Workington Hall
district:- Allerdale
listed building
coordinates:- NY00782881
date:- 2010
period:- 2010s

database:- Listed Buildings 2010

Listed Buildings 2010

courtesy of English Heritage
courtesy of English Heritage
Gate piers for Workington Hall. Late C18 for the Curwen family. Calciferous sandstone ashlar. Square piers surmounted by armorial carved stone unicorn heads (crests of the Curwen family). Flanking wall is rebuilt and not of interest. Listed for G.V. with Workington Hall.
district:- Allerdale
listed building -- gate piers
coordinates:- NY00862860
date:- 2010
period:- 2010s

old print:- Jollie 1811

Guide book, Jollie's Cumberland Guide and Directory, published by Francis Jollie and Sons, Carlisle, Cumberland, 1811.
thumbnail JL09Vgn1, button to large image
thumbnail JL09Vgn2, button to large image

placename:- Hall, The
date:- 1811
period:- 19th century, early; 1810s

old print:-
thumbnail PR1424, button to large image
Print, coloured, John Christian Curwen of Workington Hall, Cumberland, by Joseph W Simpson, 1934.
John Christian Curwen standing in front of Workington Hall.
signed at bottom right on print:-
thumbnail PR1425, button to large image
person:- : Curwen, John Christian
period:- 1930s

tiny photograph, 
button to large Workington Hall -- Curwen Park -- Workington -- Workington -- Cumbria / -- 22.10.2008

hearsay After Mary Queen of Scots escaped from Lochleven Castle, 2 May 1568, she went with Lord Seton to Niddry Castle. From there she went to Hamilton and raised an army of about 6000. The Earl of Moray, then in Glasgow, raised his own force, smaller but more experienced, and defeated Mary at the Battle of Langside.
After the defeat, Lord Herries led Mary Queen of Scots, disguised as a man, on an uncomfortable journey through the passes of the Glenkens. Having rested at Terregles Castle, Mary decided to go to England to seek help from her sister, Elizabeth I. She left Scotland in a fishing boat from Abbey Burn Foot and crosses the Solway Firth, landing at Workington. As she landed from the boat, she stumbled, believed to be a good omen. She was invited to stay at Workington Hall, home of the Curwen Family.
The next morning the Deputy Governor of Carlisle arrived with an escort of of several hundred horsemen to take her off to Carlisle Castle where she was imprisoned.

notes tower, hall, curtain wall, gateway, all in ruins
Perriam, D R & Robinson, J: 1998: Medieval Fortified Buildings of Cumbria: CWAAS:: ISBN 1 873124 23 6; plan and illustrations

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Old Cumbria Gazetteer - JandMN: 2013

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