IRTON, Cumberland - Extract from National Gazetteer, 1868
"IRTON, a parish in the ward of Allerdale-above-Derwent, county Cumberland, 15 miles from Whitehaven, its post town, and 4 from the Drigg station on the Whitehaven and Furness line of railway. It is situated on the river Irt, from which it derives its name, and contains the townships of Irton and Saunton with Melthwaite. The parish is generally hilly, and in some parts mountainous. The soil is various, being fertile in some parts and in others peat and bog, which last is used for fuel. The parish was in the possession of the Irton family prior to the Norman Conquest. The land is chiefly arable, with about 1,000 acres of woodland. Granite of several varieties is extensively quarried. A stream called the Mite flows through the lower grounds. The living is a perpetual curacy in the diocese of Carlisle, value £96. The church, dedicated to St. Paul, is a modern edifice built on the site of the old one. It has a square embattled tower containing two bells. In the interior are a stone font, several stained-glass windows, a carved oak pulpit and reading desk, and monuments to the Irton family, also one to Vice-Admiral Hodgson. In the church-yard is an ancient stone cross about 10 feet high, formerly richly carved, but now much disfigured. The charities produce about £16 per annum. The Wesleyans have a place of worship, and there is a commodious school erected at the cost of T. Brocklebank, Esq. The Hall is an ancient edifice, with a quadrangular tower, situated on a hill and commanding extensive views." "MELTHWAITE WITH SANTON, a township in the parish of Irton, ward of Allerdale-above-Derwent, county Cumberland, 5 miles N.E. of Ravenglass. It is situated near Wast Water." "SANTON, a township in the parish of Irton, ward of Allerdale-above-Derwent, county Cumberland, 5 miles N.E. of Ravenglass. It is situated on the river Mite, and is said to derive its name from the drifting sands which have covered most of the adjoining lands. The nursery-grounds here are noted for rare and valuable plants. The village, which had once an Austin priory, founded by King Stephen, is built on the site of a Roman station, where coins, urns, furnaces, and a large brass cross have been found. The inhabitants are wholly engaged in agriculture. The township includes the hamlet of Melthwaite."
[Description(s) from The National Gazetteer of
Great Britain and Ireland (1868)
Transcribed by Colin Hinson ©2003]