Chapelry and township in Barton parish, West ward, Westmorland.


8,024 [3,247 ha]. Part of commons (1,403 acres [568 ha], including 103 acres [42 ha] of open field) were enclosed 1824 but extensive unenclosed fells of Martindale Common (4,182 acres [1,691 ha]) remain open.


rising from 165 in 1801 to peak of 208 in 1851; then falling to c.120-130 across first half of 20th century; further decline to stand at 49 in 2001.


Martindale was hunting forest, renowned for red deer, and descended with manor of Barton (q.v.).


hill farming. Fulling mill at Howtown re-used as bobbin mill 1820s to 1850s. Deer-stalking in Martindale deer forest from 19th century: shooting lodge (The Bungalow) built 1910 by earl of Lonsdale for visit of Kaiser Wilhelm II. Tourism increasingly important from later 20th century. Outward Bound centre at Howtown opened 2008.

Places of worship:

chapel of St Martin in Howgrane valley; recorded from 13th century; rebuilt c.1633; repaired 1833. Replaced by St Peter’s church, built 1880-2; St Martin’s remains in occasional use. Wesleyan Methodist chapel, dated 1924; now converted to holiday cottage. ‘Chapel in the Hause’ (foundations visible at Boredale Hause) is of uncertain origin and function.

Schools and other institutions:

school endowed 1657; in mid-19th century schoolmaster lived and taught at Cotehow. National school built nearby 1834; closed 1940s. Reading room built near school 1913; converted to residential use. Former bobbin mill at Howtown leased by parish from 1930s; restored as community centre 1982.