25 years ago — 1995
The world’s oldest established herd of Fell ponies was broken up on Friday with the sale of some 100 animals from the Heltondale stud.
A record crowd of about 1,500 bidders and spectators surrounded the ring at Penrith mart for the dispersal of the herd, which belonged to veteran breeders Sarge and Greta Noble, High House, Butterwick.
Mr. Noble, now aged 72, said: “We can trace the herd back 200 years and it might well have existed before that.”
A proposal to commission a “major piece of public art”, to be situated on the outskirts of Penrith at a cost of £150,000, has been thrown out by Eden councillors and branded “a waste of money”.
Members of the works and leisure committee would have been built near the Skirsgill interchange in visual arts year next year.
John Moffat, Penruddock, proposed that the committee should “dump” the idea.
He said: “We are being told that money has never been easier to find. You tell that to the couple who have been thrown out of their house because they can’t pay the mortgage or the farmers on the fells.”
A royal visitor proved a real traffic-stopper when she made an unscheduled call in Penrith on Tuesday to satisfy her curiosity and her tastebuds, The Duchess of Kent, on a two-day visit to Cumbria, called without warning at the Toffee Shop, in Brunswick Road, to see just how her favourite fudge is made.
“She gets fudge from here from time to time and she just thought she would like to see where and how it is made,” said an assistant at the shop, which is run by Neil Boustead.
Years of campaigning by residents of Sandford, near Warcop, to stop the pumping of raw sewage into the River Eden have paid off with the announcement by North West Water that a new treatment plant is to be built to serve the village.
Work on the £160,000 facility is to start in January and completion is due in the spring.
The announcement followed the threat of legal action by a private environmental consultant representing farmers David and Brian White, Sandford Hall, across whose land the old sewage pipe passes.
Eden has a pair of national champions in the world of motorcycle racing.
Malcolm Watson and Robin Ferguson, both of Alston, have just clinched the British sidecar championship after winning everything the sport had to offer this season.
They went into the last meeting of the season at Southport 19 points ahead of the competition and secured the title comfortably on their 1100 Suzuki Wasp.
Former Crosby Ravensworth couple Jim and Agnes Hunter died in Penrith hospital within a few days of each other.
Mr. Hunter, who was 94, died last week and his 87-year-old wife, who had been ill for a few months, died on Sunday.
For many years Mr. Hunter ran a successful cattle and livestock haulage business, based at his home at Wellhead, Crosby Ravensworth.
50 years ago — 1970
A capital contribution “not in excess of £25,000 from the County Council towards Penrith’s proposed new swimming baths was proposed by the Finance and General Purposes Sub-Committee to Cumberland Education Committee at Thursday’s meeting in Carlisle.
The grant is to be met from funds already approved for extensions to the Penrith Tynefield and Ullswater Secondary Modern Schools.
The 34-mile stretch of the M6 motorway between Thrimby, at the southern end of the Penrith by-pass, and Carnforth is to be opened, completing 161 continuous miles of motorway between Penrith and Great Barr, near Birmingham.
The new length of motorway will replace the notorious A6 route over Shap Fell, often blocked by snow in winter.
By the end of the year, water from Ullswater could be flowing into Manchester via the almost completed pumping works — a huge and impressive underground scheme which is virtually a £1,000,000 against water shortage.
Dozens of workmen are preparing the station under the surface of a green field above Gayle Bay on the Eastern side of the lake for testing of the vast array of equipment operated by remote control from Watchgate, near Kendal, twenty miles away, and a solitary man will remain at the Ullswater end.
Nearly three years after it was almost completely demolished, Alston’s ancient Market Cross, a landmark dating back over 200 years, has been re-built at a cost of £2,000, and the scaffolding should be coming off this week.
Work began in June and the “new” Cross is an exact reconstruction of the old one, some of the materials having been salvaged from the wreckage which remained after the accident in January, 1968, when a runaway lorry demolished the whole erection.
100 years ago — 1920
According to old custom, the Court Baron and Court Leet was held at the Manor House, Alston, and presided over by the Steward, Mr. J. J. Stokes.
The chief business was the appointment of a new jury and the following were sworn: Messrs. G. Armstrong (foreman), R. Dickinson, J. Renwick, J. Bramwell, H. Kearton, T. Bright, J. Johnston, A. Anderson, J. Storey, J. Peart, J. Shield and J. Kirsopp.
More subscriptions are needed for the John Simpson Memorial Hall, which is to be erected in Rosthwaite.
The sum of £2,000 is required and at present the fund stands at a little over half that amount.
The death has taken place at The Cottage, Warcop, of Mr. Francis Wybergh, known as one of the best shots in the neighbourhood, aged 50.
Mr. Wybergh entered the village church choir as a boy and was later choirmaster.
150 years ago — 1870
The village of Armathwaite has been the scene of outrageous turmoil, riots, fight and drunkenness, culminating in wounds and bruising and, in one case, death.
The new Settle to Carlisle Railway, which is in the course of construction, crosses the valley at Armathwaite and many labourers have been housed in a long row of huts a few hundred yards from the New Inn.
Among the men are a considerable number of Irishmen, though the great majority are English, and there has been a great variety of opinion on politics, religion and other topics.