Beetham is a village of grey limestone cottages and cobbled forecourts in south Cumbria, just north of the border with Lancashire. It was once the centre of the ancient parish of Beetham.
It is within the Silverdale and Arnside designated area of outstanding natural beauty, and located only fifteen minutes from the Lake District.
St Michael’s Church is an antique Gothic edifice, consisting of nave, chancel, and side aisles, with a tower, in which are three bells. The tower dates from the late 12th century, and a stained glass window, thought to date from the 15th century, depicts King Charles I flanked by St Oswald and St Alban.
Heron Corn Mill, dating from about 1740, on the banks of the river Bela, is one of the few working mills in the area. The fourteen-foor high waterwheel powers all the machinery.
Beetham Hall, now a farm house, was once a large fortified mansion with a spacious park, where the remains of a lodge may still be seen.
From the village a path climbs to Beetham fell and leads to the ‘Fairy Steps’. The second of two flights of stone steps is so named because of a legend. Supposedly, if you climb the steps without touching the limestone sides of the narrow gully, the fairies will grant your wish.
On the same path between Arnside and Beetham are the ruins of Hazelslack tower, a 14th century fortified building beside a farmhouse.
In the village is the historic Wheatsheaf Inn.
The Heron Theatre in Stanley Street is a small theatre housed in a listed building. It was originally one of the old two-room Grammar schools of the 18th century. The attractive heron sculpture is the work of local artist, Paul Woodmass and the theatre was officially opened by H.R.H Princess Alexandra in July 2001.
The plant centre in the village, Beetham Nurseries, (photo above) won a much coveted gold medal at the Tatton RHS show 2004.
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Grid Ref : SD 497796
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