8 historic places to stay in and around the Lake District
PUBLISHED: 11:27 09 September 2014 | UPDATED: 10:48 12 February 2015
Lakeland Life takes a look at some of the most interesting places to stay in and around the Lake District
Have you ever dreamed of spending a night in a castle? How about staying in a hotel where rebellious Jacobites lodged during their invasion of England? As well as having some of Europe’s best hotels, the Lake District and surrounding area also has some of the most fascinating. We asked our writers to recommend places not necessarily for their luxury or their gourmet cuisine, but because they provide guests with a unique experience.
Spend the night in a 12th century Grade One listed pele tower. Askham Hall combines history with cutting edge comfort and some seriously good cooking.
This striking building – inside and out - has been home to members of the Lowther family for generation but Charles and his artistic wide Juno have turned it into a relaxed fascinating place to stay.
Askham Hall, Askham, near Penrith, CA10 2PF. 01931 712350
This three bedroom B&B, on the outskirts of Ambleside, was occupied by Thomas de Quincey between 1820 and 1825 and it is thought he wrote much of Confessions of an English Opium Eater while here. The Grade Two listed building dates from the 17th century and Foxghyll’s internal architecture has remained unchanged little since renovation by a politician in 1870.
Foxghyll, Under Loughrigg, Ambleside, LA22 9LL. 015394 33292
In 1745, Bonnie Prince Charlie lodged here when he stopped off on his way south in an attempt to regain the throne for the Stuarts and he is thought to have addressed his troops from the balcony in the ballroom. Today wood panelling, old oak beams and antique furniture help create a unique atmosphere at this landmark hostelry.
The George, Devonshire Street, Penrith, CA11 7SU. 01768 862696
This fairytale castle was built in the mid 19th century as a gentleman’s country residence. However, Augill Castle had fallen into disrepair until the Temple-Bennett family arrived and turned it into an award-winning hotel that attracts guests from around the world. It hasn’t been without its moment - so much so that the owner turned their story into an amusing book.
Augill Castle, Leacetts Lane, Kirkby Stephen, CA17 4DE. 017683 41937.
Lindeth Howe was built in 1879 for a Lancashire cotton baron but a later owner rented it out to the Potter family and Beatrix illustrated Timmy Tiptoes and Pigling Bland while staying here. She later bought it for her mother and some of her correspondence is on show in what is now a well run hotel with top quality food.
Lindeth Howe, Longtail Hill, Bowness. LA23 3JF. 015394 45759
One guest was so determined to get his regular pint during the terrible 2009 floods that he canoed to The Pheasant. Earlier customers at this 17th century inn include the famous huntsman John Peel. This really is an authentic coaching inn with beams, panelling, good service and some excellent fine dining in the restaurant and the more informal bistro.
The Pheasant, Bassenthwaite Lake, near Cockermouth. CA13 9YE. 017687 76234
With lawns running down to Coniston Water, the Waterhead has been a hotel for many years. In its early days, the Victorian artist and social critic John Ruskin was a guest as was Charles Darwin. During World War II the hotel became a school for evacuees, including Sir Robin Day. Nearby is the village of Coniston which has a strong association with Donald Campbell.
Waterhead Hotel, Hawkshead Road, Coniston LA21 8AJ.015394 41244
The Fish Inn
This old inn was the scene of an infamous act of treachery when the landlord’s daughter, Mary Robinson, married bigamist and all round bad egg, John Hatfield, in 1802. It started off as a romantic tale and ended with the miscreant being hanged. Melvyn Bragg’s novel, The Maid of Buttermere, tells the story. Today, it is a comfortable, informal place to stay.
The Fish Inn, Buttermere, near Cockermouth, CA13 9XA. 017687 70253