Tower In Penrith, Cumbria
A beacon that when lit would warn the neighbouring villages of an impending attack!
If you have ever seen Lord Of The Rings (and if you haven't then prepare yourself for 12 hours of orc-filled madness), then you will know that a pivotal scene is when Gondor lights the beacons to ask for help from neighbouring lands.
But did you know that there is a similar setup in Penrith? Sitting on the aptly named Beacon Hill the Penrith Beacon is 286m above sea level and can be seen from miles around. It is part of a chain of beacons that runs down the Eden Valley and could communicate with other neighbouring beacons at Orton Scar to the south and Kirkoswald to the north.
So if anyone had a whiff of an invading force, usually from Scotland, then the beacons would be lit so the locals could grab their livestock and take cover.
The beacon itself is actually a monument built in 1719 on a place where one of the original beacons would have been. Beacons have been present in this area as far back as 1296!
It's around a 1km climb uphill, but there are wonderful views from the top over the Lake District hills.
The beacon was last lit during the Jacobite Rebellion in 1745 and there also a recorded “flashing” during the Napoleonic Wars in 1804.
Source and more information over on Explore Penrith.
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Head up to Beacon Edge, cross the road and then look for a finger post pointing into the woods. Zig-zag your way up and in around 15 mins you will arrive at the Beacon.
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We parked on Lowther Street which, but there are other nearby streets you can ditch your car. Just be respectful of people's houses.
Contributed by Simon Hawkins
Thanks for checking out this place on the Fabulous North! I do enjoy a wander out in to the countryside trying to find hidden gems that not many people know about. You can't beat a rogue Pele tower up a remote hill or a mysterious stone circle or a stunning waterfall secluded in a forest.
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