Grange in Borrowdale
Grid Ref : NY 252175
The village of Grange is situated at the entrance to the ‘Jaws of Borrowdale‘, where the valley squeezes between Grange Fell and Castle Crag. The impressive double-arched bridge over the River Derwent was built in 1675, but the hamlet’s origins are much earlier; in medieval times the monks of Furness Abbey, owner of this part of the valley, built an outlying farm, or grange, here.
Whitewashed walls bring a bright gleam to the interior of Holy Trinity Church, built in 1861 with a bell tower. The curved interior roof is decorated with imitation Norman dogtooth decoration. A tiny Methodist Church of local green stone was constructed in 1878.
A road leads from Keswick past Derwentwater, to Grange bridge, then through the other Borrowdale villages of Rosthwaite and Seatoller, over Honister Pass and on to the smaller lakes of Buttermere, Crummock Water, and Loweswater.
Grange is equidistant between England’s highest mountain, Scarfell pike and England’s third highest mountain Skiddaw, with England’s second highest mountain Helvellyn lying half an hour away.
Princess Louise, daughter of Queen Victoria, and brother of King Edward VII, wanted to make a gift in memory of the King, when he died in 1910. Grange Fell was purchased, which included the Bowder Stone, and a memorial stone to King Edward was placed on the fell (grid ref 90: NY 258167). Eight years earlier Princess Louise had performed the opening ceremony at nearby Brandlehow Wood, the first Lake District’s first aquisition.
The author Hugh Walpole lived at Brackenburn, about a mile out of Grange, from 1924 until his death in 1941. His grave in is the grounds of St John’s Church, Keswick. The Keswick Museum houses some of his manuscripts.
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