Place:Alston with Garrigill, Cumberland, England

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NameAlston with Garrigill
Alt namesAlstonsource: town in parish
Garrigillsource: village in parish
Aldenbysource: Dictionary of British Place Names (1994) p 13
Aldenestonsource: Dictionary of British Place Names (1994) p 13
TypeParish (ancient), Civil parish
Coordinates54.817°N 2.433°W
Located inCumberland, England     ( - 1974)
Also located inCumbria, England     (1974 - )
See alsoAlston with Garrigill Rural, Cumberland, Englandrural district 1894-1974
source: Getty Thesaurus of Geographic Names
source: Family History Library Catalog


the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Alston is a small town in Cumbria, England on the River South Tyne. It is the highest market town in England, at about 1,000 feet (300 m) above sea level. Despite being at such an altitude and in remote location the town is easily accessible via the many roads which link the town to Weardale valley, Hartside Pass (and towns in Cumbria such as Penrith) as well as the Tyne valley. Historically part of Cumberland, Alston lies within the North Pennines, a designated Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and is surrounded by beautiful views of the surrounding fells and the South Tyne Valley.

Garrigill, Cumbria is a small village in the North Pennine region of the UK situated on the banks and close to the source of the River South Tyne. (Wikipedi)

Contents

History

the text in this section is copied from an article in Wikipedia

Early settlements

The earliest evidence of population in the area comes from pottery fragments, a gold basket-earring and flint tools found in one of two barrows excavated in 1935 (2 miles or 3 kilometres NNW of Alston at Kirkhaugh), these were dated between 2000 BC and 1700 BC.

Evidence of Roman activity in the area comes from the earth remains of Whitley Castle, thought to be the Roman fort (Castra) of Epiacum built and rebuilt by the Sixth and Twentieth Legions between the 2nd and 3rd centuries. The fort lies on the Maiden Way Roman road which runs north from Kirkby Thore (Bravoniacum) to Carvoran (Magnae) on Hadrian's Wall. Whitley Castle would have guarded this central supply route to Hadrian's Wall, and may also have helped protect lead and silver deposits in the upper reaches of the south Tyne valley.

The name of the town is recorded in 1164–71 as Aldeneby and in 1209 as Aldeneston, and seems to mean "the settlement or farmstead belonging to [a Viking man named] Halfdan".

Sovereignty

In the 10th century, Alston Moor was part of The Liberty of Tynedale, which was an estate of the Scottish Kings within England, a situation that resulted in many years of confusion over the sovereignty of the area.

In 1085, the Barons de Veteriponte became the first recorded Lords of the Manor; they held the moor on behalf of the kings of Scotland while the kings of England retained the mineral rights. This was confirmed in a hearing during 1279 that concluded that the miners of the area were distinct from the local population, thus paying their dues to the English crown instead of to Scotland. As a result the miners lived in their own self-regulated communities under English protection.

In 1269 John de Balliol, the king of Scotland, invaded the north of England; as a result Edward I moved to reclaim the Scottish estates and Tynedale, which included Alston Moor, was taken under direct control of the English crown where it remains.

Despite the town being on the Tyne and being historically part of Tynedale, the area has never been part of either Hexhamshire or Northumberland but part of Cumberland and later Cumbria. This was probably because the mines in the area were at one time administered from Carlisle.

Mining

Historically the area has been mined for lead, silver, zinc, coal and fluorspar. The nearby Roman fort of Whitley Castle (Epiacum) may in part have been sited to control and protect the lead mines there.

In the 13th century, the area was known as the silver mines of Carlisle—silver was found in a high proportion (up to 40 troy ounces per long ton or 1.2 g/kg of smelted lead) and was used to create coinage in the Royal Mint established in Carlisle for the purpose. Most mining was very small scale until the mid-18th century,

The biggest mine owner in the area was the London Lead Company; this Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) organisation with enlightened employment policies established an interest in the area during the early 18th century. In 1745, it began construction of a school, a library, a sanitary house, a surgeon's house, a market hall with clock tower, a laundry and a 'ready-money' shop in Nenthead, four miles away.

Many of the last mines closed in the 1950s. A small drift coal mine (Ayle colliery) was still active in 2013.

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