Chapelry and township in St Bees parish, Allerdale above Derwent ward, Cumberland, including hamlet of Mockerkin.
9,415 acres [3,810 ha] including extensive commons on Loweswater fells (5,871 acres [2,376 ha]), enclosed 1865.
294 in 1801, rising to 454 in 1831, when lead mines were active; then declining slowly to 174 in 1961; recovered slightly to 209 in 2001. Landownership: manor of Loweswater separated from barony of Egremont 1230 and known in 14th century as manor of ‘Balnes’ (i.e. Bowness, from manor house and park beside Crummock Water). Granted to Alice de Lucy wife of Alan de Multon in 1230 partition and descended with Lucy share of honour of Cockermouth (q.v.) to earls of Northumberland. Mockerkin and Sosgill descended with honour of Cockermouth but manor of Loweswater (including Thackthwaite) sold by Crown to Richard Robinson 1546. Passed via Thomas Stanley to Anthony Patrickson between 1583 and 1593, who sold to Sir Wilfrid Lawson of Isel 1624, in whose family it remained until purchased by John Marshall of Leeds 1814; sold to The National Trust and Balliol College 1937.
predominantly agricultural; sheep fair held in September by mid-19th century. Woollen industry (fulling mills recorded from 14th century). Iron forge recorded 1305, perhaps near Scale Force where small-scale iron mining in 19th century. Lead mining at several locations in 19th century, including Nether Close (opened 1829; closed 1841) and Whiteoak (from 1860s to c.1891). Tourism of growing importance since late 18th century.
Places of worship:
chapel of ease recorded c.1125; raised to parochial status 1281; dedicated to St Batholemew; rebuilt 1827-9; altered 1884.
Schools and other institutions:
school taught by curate in mid-18th century. School on Mockerkin common built and endowed 1782; closed c.1890. School at Loweswater built 1780; replaced 1839 by larger school on new site given by lord of manor; closed 1948, becoming village hall.