Temple Sowerby


"SOWERBY (TEMPLE), a chapelry in the parish of KIRKBY-THORE, EAST ward, county of WESTMORLAND, 7 miles (N. W.) from Appleby, containing 371 inhabitants. The living is a perpetual curacy, in the archdeaconry and diocese of Carlisle, endowed with £ 500 private benefaction, and £400 royal bounty, and in the patronage of the Earl of Thanet. The chapel, dedicated to St. James, is a handsome structure of red freestone, with a square tower and portico, rebuilt and enlarged, in 1770 at the expense of the late Sir William Dalston. There is a place of worship for Independents. The village, situated on the river Eden, which is crossed by a bridge rebuilt in 1748, is considered to be the neatest in the county: it consists of two spacious streets of well-built houses, with several commodious inns, and near it are many handsome villas inhabited by genteel families."

[From Samuel Lewis A Topographical Dictionary of England (1831) - copyright Mel Lockie 2016]


Temple Sowerby was a chapelry until 1753 in the parish of Kirkby Thore in East Ward in the North of the county.
It is adjacent to Cliburn, Brougham, Morland, Milburn and Cumberland.



Returns survive for the 'census' of 1787 and 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 1992. ISBN 1897590008.

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 James
The church is of 1754 but with an aisle of 1770, a W tower of 1807-8
and chancel and arcade of 1873.Photograph(s) and description on VisitCumbria.
Access and contact details on Church of England site.
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.

Baptism registers1670-1881
Marriage registers1669-1871
Banns registers1755-1980
Burial registers1669-1931
Bishops transcripts1774-1891

See the CASCAT online calogue for WPR81 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 Temple Sowerby which are provided by:



The details for the parish from the Parson & White's Directory for 1829 are transcribed on Edenlinks site.




Historical Geography

You can see the administrative areas in which Temple Sowerby has been placed at times in the past. Select one to see a link to a map of that particular area.



Cumbria County History Trust has published a "Jubilee Digest" for the township of Temple Sowerby

Magna Britannica et Hibernia.Volume 6: Westmorland by Thomas Cox 45 pages, printed in 1731.

"Temple Sowreby, the Lordship of Robert Lord Clifford, who being slain at the fatal Battle of Bannock-moor, 7 Edw. II. his Widow, Maud, one of the Heirs of Thomas de Clare, had a Moiety of this Lordship, and some other of his estates in Dower, which returned at her Death to Roger her Son; but she was then the Wife of Robert de Welle, a great Baron in Lincolnshire."



You can see maps centred on OS grid reference NY616267 (Lat/Lon: 54.634266, -2.597151), Temple Sowerby which are provided by:




Probate Records

The manorial court for Temple Sowerby exercised probate jurisdiction - it was a "peculiar".
Original records and inventories for 1580-1816 will be at Carlisle . And presumably also regular wills etc since about 1858.

There is a transcript of the index of the peculiar wills by Susan Langley Thomas.