8 interesting facts about Hawkshead

PUBLISHED: 00:00 13 April 2015

Flag Street in all its floral glory

Flag Street in all its floral glory


You may not know that the Hawkshead name has nothing do to with birds of prey

1. Hawkshead gets its name for the Norse word Houksete. The Houk comes from the Norse settler called Haukur and Saetr means settlement.

2. Hawkshead was set up by the monks at Furness Abbey as a centre for the medieval wool trade. It was granted its own market charter by James I. However there’s evidence of a Norse settlement dating back to the ninth century.

3. Hawkshead Courthouse is owned by the National Trust but one often overlooked by visitors. It’s on the edge of the village and although it’s free admission you need to get the key from the National Trust shop in The Square to gain access.

4. William Wordsworth’s famous poem The Prelude is partly based on his life in Hawkshead, where he was sent to following the death of his mother.

5. Wray Castle is a few miles away from Hawkshead. It was the Potter family’s first holiday home in the Lakes.

6. Hawkshead Agricultural Show is a popular event for both locals and tourists. This year the all-day event is usually held each August.

7. Edwin Sandys lived in Hawkshead Hall and went on to found the grammar school in 1585. He was made Archbishop of York; the tombs of his parents can be seen in the parish church.

8. Hawkshead Whigs are traditional breads flavoured with caraway seeds which are usually made at Easter.

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