Appleby St Michael


"The parish of St Michael... goes commonly by the name of Bongate parish. Bongate, properly so called, is the street where the villani or bondmen inhabited, who were attendent upon the castle to execute the servile and laborious offices. This parish is bounded on the east by the parishes of Romaldkirk and Warcop; on the south, by the parishes of Warcop and St. Laurence Appleby; on the west, by the parishes of Kirkby Thore and Marton; and on the north, by the parishes of Kirkby Thore, Marton, and Dufton; and contains in the whole about 145 families [in 1777], all of the church of England.

[Nicolson and Burn: The history and antiquities of the counties of Westmorland and Cumberland. 1777. Transcribed by Anne Nichols]


St Michael Bongate is one of Appleby's 2 parishes with St Lawrence.
The parish of St. Michael also covers Crackenthorp... Helton Bacon... Murton... Langton.



M.I.s for Appleby St Michael were transcribed in Monumental Inscriptions of Westmorland by E. Bellasis 1888-89 and are available on Westmorland Papers.



No returns survive for the 'census' of 1787 apart from the constablewicks of Hilton and Murton. These are held at the Kendal Record Office of Cumbria Archives Service. The Record Office reference is WQ/SP/C. They are transcribed in Vital Statistics published by Curwen Archives Trust.

Census returns are available from the usual sources for 1841-1911.

Transcript and index for 1851 has been published by the Cumbria Family History Society and also in 'North Westmorland - An Index to the 1851 Census' compiled by David Lowis and Barbara Slack.


Church History



St Michael Church
Early English and Decorated Gothic in appearance, though contains a Saxon hogback gravestone as a lintel over the North doorway. It was restored by Lady Anne Clifford in the C17th. The North tower is C19th.
Historical and architectural notes on National Heritage List
More details and maps in Genuki Westmorland Church Database



Murton-cum-Hilton chapel
More details and maps in Genuki Westmorland Church Database


Church Records

Parish Registers and Bishop's Transcripts are held by Cumbria Archives :
originals at Kendal RO and microfilm copies at Carlisle RO.

 St Michael BongateMurton -cum-Hilton
Baptism registers1582-1975 
Marriage registers1582-19751863-1967
Banns registers1754-19731863-1967
Burial registers1582-19641901-1979
Bishops transcripts1665-1870 

See the CASCAT online calogue for WPR29 for information on these and other parish records..

For searching on LDS familysearch.org see IGI batch numbers (compiled by Jake Prescott)
or use the batch number search site (by Hugh Wallis).


Description & Travel

You can see pictures of Appleby St Michael which are provided by:





The Later Records relating to North Westmorland by John F. Curwen (1932) available on British History Online

Cumbria County History Trust has published a "Jubilee Digest" for the township of Murton and Crackenthorpe

Magna Britannica et Hibernia.Volume 6: Westmorland by Thomas Cox (Vicar of Bromfield, Essex) 45 pages, printed in 1731.Transcription by Sarah Reveley, Joan Fisher and Lisl Schoenwald. (Rootsweb Westmorland Listmembers) (c) 2003

"Crakanthorp, a Village famous for its Hall, or Manor-House and Moor. The Hall is a pleasant Seat, situate on the East-side of the Town, where the Family of Machels, who are Lords of the Manor and have long been Men of good Note in this Country, have had their Residence from the Conquest downwards to this Day, and perhaps some Years before, if we had any Records to enlighten us in the Things of the preceding Ages. It may seem a little Strange, that Gentlemen of so antient a Family should not be found in the Catalogue of Knights of the Shire for this County' but if we consider that 'tis probably they were of a Saxon Descent, 'tis no Wonder that the Norman Kings would not trust any of such Descent, supposing them to be irreconcilable Enemies. 2. The Moors over which the Roman military Way passeth, called, the Maiden-way, and on which there are observable several wonderful Camps, near which other Antiquities have been discovered. To these Things we may add, that the Family of Crakanthorps, which hath produced several Persons of Note, may be justly thought to take their Name from this Place, seeing they are every where in our Histories said to be Natives of this County, but not of what Place certainly, and seem to be more eminent than the Machels; for John de Crakenthorp was one of the Knights for this Shire, 9 Rich. II. And the 13th of the same King; William de Crakanthorp was in the same Office, 15, 18, and 21 of the same King, which John and William held the same Place 1 (?) 3 Hen. IV. And Robert Crakanthorp was chosen into the same Post 1 and 3 Hen. III. 5 Hen. VI. Which shews, that the Family was in great Credit in those Kings Reigns. In later Time Richard Crakenthorp brought a Reputation to this Family by his singular Virtues and Learning, for which he was made the King's Chaplain, and preferred by Sir John Leveson to the Rectory of Black-Notley near Braintree in Essex, but far short of his Deserts, as all that knew him believed; for he was replenished with all Kinds of Virtue and Learning, being a great Philosopher, a profound Divine, a subtle Canonist, and so well versed in the Fathers, Councils, and Schoolmen, that non in his Time went beyond him, as his Writings sufficiently prove. K. James I. used to say, he ought to have been a Bishop, but he never made him one; so that he died Rector of Black-Notley, and was buried in the Chancel there Nov. 25. 1624. This Manor is placed among the Estates, of which Roger Lord Clifford 4th died possessed 13 Rich. II. And left to his Heir Thomas, which how it is consistent with what is said before from Cambden, its hard to reconcile.

Helton-Bacon, the Estate of Roger Lord Clifford, of which he died seized 15 Rich. II. As above, as he did also of Helton-Fletham Langton, the Lordship of Roger Lord Clifford 4th, who died possessed of it, and divers other Lordships and Estates 13 Rich. II. And left them to his Heir Thomas, etc."

See the history for the town.



You can see maps centred on OS grid reference NY737222 (Lat/Lon: 54.594442, -2.407787), Appleby St Michael which are provided by:





Hearth Tax records for 1674 Appleby Bongate transcribed on Edenlinks.
Hearth Tax records for 1674 Burrels (Appleby) transcribed on Edenlinks.
Hearth Tax records for 1674 Crackenthorpe (Appleby) transcribed on Edenlinks.
Hearth Tax records for 1674 Hilton Bacon (Appleby) transcribed on Edenlinks.

Hearth Tax records for 1674 Murton (Appleby) transcribed on Edenlinks.
Window Tax records for 1777 Murton (Bongate) transcribed on Edenlinks.
Window Tax records for 1777 Bongate transcribed on Edenlinks.
Window Tax records for 1777 Hilton transcribed on Edenlinks.
Window Tax records for 1777 Crackenthorpe transcribed on Edenlinks.