27
Apr
09

Grange-Over-Sands – Sun, Sand and You

It’s where the highway men once stood waiting for unsuspecting travelers who decided to take a short cut from Hest Bank to Lancaster in the 1500s. Today, Grange-over-Sands, in Cumbria attracts tourists seven miles south of Lake Windermere. On the south stretch the sands go up to Morecambe Bay.

Then, came the abbeys and in 1904, original cast iron seats were built along a mile-long walkway for pilgrims. The promenade is now lush with flowers and shrubs. It was in the early 1500s when Cartmel Priory used the town as a grain storage area. Today, the town also wows visitors with one of the tallest Christmas trees in all of British Isles – the 100-ft Wellingtonia!

Gray limestone homes and hotels with Victorian architecture circle the seafront. The Park Road Gardens are the spot for the ever-popular concerts in summer. Yewbarrow Terrace is the shopping mall with Higginsons’ butcher shop, which has won the ‘Best Butcher in Britain prize.

Grange-over-Sands was also known as the ‘Riviera of Cumbria’ and got its own railroad in 1857. That was when Grange-over-Sands was swamped by tourists who came to enjoy the sun and sand. Every year in June, there is an Edwardian festival you cannot miss. There are hundreds of smalls selling handicraft items, food and more. The local residents, including the stall-owners dress up in Edwardian clothes.

And, if you’re out on a stroll you cannot miss the St Paul’s parish Church dating back to 1852. The local St Bee’s clock tower dates back to 1913 while the Hampsfell Hospice, a small stone tower, set upon a hill above the town was built in 1834. You will love the half-hour walk through limestone woods to the top. From there you can see the Black Combe, the Langdale Pikes, Scawfell, and Bowfell.

Possibly this site was involved in military activities during the battle between the King of Cumbria and the King of the Saxons in AD 946 and later when the Jacobite rebels came in 1745.

Holker Hall has several museums and hosts the Garden Festival every year. For those who love to hike, the Cross Bay Walk offers an eight-mile stretch that takes them to nearby villages. Grange-over-Sands are reachable via the M6, train, cross-country roads, and by flights to Manchester airport to enjoy the mild weather, countryside and period charm.

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