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Dungeon Ghyll memories

Here are memories of Dungeon Ghyll and the local area. You can start now: Add your own Memory of Dungeon Ghyll or a Dungeon Ghyll photo.

The Past

My aunt and uncle used to own the Langdales Hotel, Mr and Mrs Bob Smith, until 1957. The hotel is now called the Wainright. All holidays I stopped there with my mum and dad.
There were busses called Mallinsons from Windermere which stopped at the hotel for afternoon tea, and when they left to go to Dungeon, Gill my cousin and I went on the bus and picked brambles, on the way back the driver dropped us off at the hotel and the cook made fantastic pies with them. There are all sorts of memories, good ones at the hotel, but unfortunately you can't bring back the past (oh how I wish).

Memories of Cumbria


During the Second World War my family lived in Liverpool. My parents decided it was much too dangerous for me so I was evacuated to a small school being run in an old house called Kelbarrow overlooking the lake. My best friend there was a girl called Eva. I loved every minute there. We went walks on the fell behind the house, and around the village. Because it was wartime there were no tourists coming to the village and it was quiet and peaceful.
We went to church every Sunday, and always sat in the pews underneath the pulpit,which we didn't like as the vicar sprayed us with spittle when he got excited during the sermon!! I remember one Palm Sunday sitting on the church wall with other village children waving palms
Whenever I am in the Lake District I am tempted to go back and visit Grasmere but am always dissapointed by the crowds and traffic. However a visit to the gingerbread shop to buy a good stock... Read more

Is That Lotus?

Waterhead 1926, Ambleside
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Well I wasn't around in 1926 and it was certainly much busier by the 70's when I worked on the launches. You'd never see an empty prom then, at any time of year. One thing unchanged seems to be that launch. I'm sure it is Lotus, she was a beauty very graceful, fast and a joy to drive. Not much dry space for passengers when it rained though. On the other hand glorious in sunny weather! Where is she now though? I bet she's still going strong.

My Family

My paternal family owned the nursery/market garden in Ambleside prior to and after the war, their house is now the Glava Restaurant. My maternal family owned High Wray Bank on the other side of the Lake. I was bought up with so many tales, especially of my late father John Milligan and the antics that he and his brother Tony would get up to. One tale being how the two of them would row across the lake to Wray Bay and meet up with my mother and her sister (whom they did end up marrying) and if a row boat was not available they would swim it! My own memories are of long hot summer days playing on the lake using a tractor tyre as a huge rubber ring, and then long snow covered winters sledging down the hills. The joy of the mobile shop that came once a week and I would be bought a bar of chocolate as long as I had been good all week, and the... Read more

An Idyllic Childhood

I moved to Boot in 1952 when I was one. My father, John Heap, was the manager of the Burnmoor Inn, which was owned in partnership by his mother, Ruth Hargreaves, and Sid Cross. They also owned The Old Dungeon Ghyll in Langdale. I attended Eskdale High School with my brothers William & Timothy. Jean Hodgson was the school teacher. She lived in The Hill, near Millom, and stayed from Monday to Friday at Brook House which was owned by the Sim family. Billie Sim also ran the local bus service which went to Whitehaven every Thursday.

The Post Office was run by Mary Nolan, who appeared as a guest on one of the early This is Your Life shows. In the next door farm were Arthur and Florrie Irving and her mother Rosa Dugdale.

Cyril Porter used to deliver bread and cakes, Tom Parker delivered meat, Jack Roberts delivered the milk and Jack Woodall was the local grocer. I used to travel with Tom when he went... Read more

Sketch of This Church in 1881

Wasdale Church c1880, Wasdale Head
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In a sketch I have dated October 1881 there is a cord hanging down from the bell down the outside wall with a hand pull. The name on the sketch it is Wasldale church. Possibly by Beatrix Potter or E Rawnsley.

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