St Bees

The route in and out of Egremont has been a bit of a saga. First the Wood End link involved four separate land agreements, and a new bridge over the main road, and still the final link into town has to be pushed through unsupportive developers. Egremont itself is an interesting market town. The Vikings built a fort here and its Norman name it thought to derive from their town of Aigremont. Robert the Bruce sacked Egremont in 1322, resulting in a huge death toll. Lowes Court Gallery, on the main street, is the Tourist Information Centre and has a constantly changing exhibition programme. Stock up here on food and supplies for the last swing down to Ravenglass.

Places of interest

Lifted above the town ‘like the Ark in the wilderness’ the Norman Castle has fine herringbone stonework and views across the town, to Dent Fell and across to Florence Mine, which was the last deep iron ore mine in Europe. Clintz Quarry Nature Reserve has such a remarkable and unusual diversity of habitats, ranging from bare rock to limestone woodland, that it became a Site of Special Scientific Interest 40 years ago. This status was awarded because of its plant life although the geology at the quarry would almost certainly qualify in its own right.