COCKERMOUTH’S INDUSTRIAL PAST - PART4 In previous articles, we have

covered the industrial past

based around the River Derwent and Cocker. We will now look at the various other industries, which were scattered around the town.

remaining intact in Banks’ Court at the foot of Castlegate. What had been the long garden of a large house facing on to Market Place was used for woollen manufacture, a mill being built down one side of the garden and cottages down the other, a small piece of land remaining at the far end for drying cloth.

The Parson and White directory of 1829, showed how the town was developing rapidly. The chief trades mentioned in this directory where five Tanners, four Curriers and Leather Cutters, four Sadlers and Trunk makers, Four Hat Manufacturers, Two Linen manufacturers, five Cotton Manufacturers,

four Woollen

Manufacturers, two Dyers and three Flax Spinners and Sewing Thread Manufacturers.

Thomas Armstrong’s wood yard, now Wilkinson’s store and car park, dated 1968

William Stamper had weaving shops, which were demolished to make way for Christ Church (built 1863-5) on the corner of South Street and what was then known as Sullart Went. Sullart Went was also the site of early weaving shops that were pre- 1700AD and the tithe map of 1841 shows three weaving shops there. The row known as Teetotal Lane between Main Street and Waterloo Street was weaver’s property. The weaving shops had an additional row of windows close to those on the first floor, to give additional light to the looms kept on the upper floor. In the town, a practice developed of having large craft shops or mills with workers cottages adjacent. There is still an excellent example

There were also in 1829 seven attorneys, two auctioneers, five bakers and flour dealers, eight blacksmiths, thirteen boot and shoe makers, three brazier’s, plumbers and tin plate workers,

three brick and tile makers, seven coopers, turners and chair makers, five corn millers, two brewers, four maltsters, five nail makers and a millwright. The prosperity of the town in the first half of this century is shown by the population figures, which doubled from 2,865 in 1801 to 5,775 in 1851.

A further industry, which arose in the town because of its position in the centre of the agricultural area, was tanning. Hides from the district were supplemented by imports from Ireland. There was a plentiful supply of water and the town had two other essentials of the industry lime and bark. All tanning in the town has now ceased but there were tanneries around the town until well into the 20th


“My gym will only allow me to cancel my membership in person. This is written in the contract but I’ve since moved away from the area. What can I do?”

To end your gym membership, you will need to follow the terms of the contract. However, it’s also possible to challenge any terms which cause unnecessary hassle, or are designed to keep you tied into the contract.

For this reason, you could try to challenge the term which states you need to end the contract in person.

Start by writing a letter or email explaining you want to end your membership and why you can’t do so in person. If writing a letter, it’s best to use recorded delivery so you have proof that the letter arrived.

If the gym won’t accept your written cancellation, ask if they have a complaints


Our congregation are moving to All Saints’ School, while essential plastering work and heating improvements take place. We expect to be away from the church building for 10 weeks from 14th January until mid-March.

At the school, our services will start at the slightly later time of 10.00am, following the normal pattern of first and third Sundays Morning Worship and second and fourth Sundays Holy Communion. As ever, refreshments will available.

We would like to extend a big Welcome to all and for those having travel problems, there will be transport available and parking. Come along and join in!


procedure in place which you can follow. If not, then send another letter giving them a final chance to end the contract.

If they still won’t agree to cancelling your contract, get in touch with an alternative dispute resolution (ADR) scheme - an independent complaints body which settles disputes. The gym may belong to one already, or should provide details of an approved scheme and say whether they’d be prepared to work with it.

For further help, contact Citizens Advice Allerdale, Town Hall, Oxford Street, Workington on 01900 604735, or visit us at

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century. The tanning industry had many allied trades. Curriers prepared leather for different purposes; Cordwainers used the dressed leather to make breeches, gloves, shoes and the boots. Sadlers and harness-makers catered for horses. The industry had leather searches and they ensured there was no cheating, checking the poor leather was not made to look like higher quality.

One of the largest companies was at one time in the heart of the town and this was Thomas Armstrong Limited. The first Thomas Armstrong started as a joiner, cabinetmaker at 18 Main Street. An 1885 advert described the firm as sawmillers, timber and saw merchants, explosives agents and undertakers. The company was now situated in South Street. They continued the timber business in South Street until the late1980s, when they moved to Flimby. Wilkinson’s now occupies this site. The company also had premises on the old station site on Low Road and on the corner of Horseman Street. These were moved at the same time as South Street was vacated.

The above is only a small portion of the town’s vast industrial heritage. The group are always interested in any memories, photographs of working in the various industries in the town and any queries you may have of the town’s past.

Finally, the members of the group send

compliments of the season to all the Post Readers. Eric Cass

Telephone: 01900 823966

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