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Local History

Dovenby Village

Dovenby is on the A594 road and is 2 miles northwest of the town of Cockermouth.  The most attractive part of the village is off the main road down a quiet road which has the advantage of not being a through road.

Dovenby village outside Lime Tree House

Dovenby Hall is an imposing Grade II listed building with a varied history. It has served as a private residence (1154 - 1930), a mental institution (19301997), and, most recently, as the headquarters for M-Sport - Ford Motor Company's World Rally Championship team.

The entrance to M Sport's complex

 

There is information on the history of Dovenby Hall available on the M Sport website

here


Dovenby Hall   Images copyright M Sport

On the main A594 road is a pub,The Dovenby Ship, which serves meals.


A variety of accommodation is available in Cockermouth.

The Dovenby Ship on the main A594 road

 

Dovenby Hall has some ancient sections. The pele tower is probably Norman, and it is said that it was built of stone taken from the nearby Roman road.

Historically the house and estate were owned and occupied by the Ballantyne Dykes family. It is said that a ghost named the Grey Lady still occupies the premises. She is said to be a girl who many years ago lived at the hall and wished to marry someone who was considered unsuitable. She committed suicide when this was forbidden, and still appears to haunt the place.

The house and estate were sold by Colonel Hubert Trechville Ballantyne Dykes in 1928, and became a home for the mentally handicapped, which closed in 1997. The estate was bought by Malcolm Wilson, of rally sport fame, and converted into premises for M-Sport.

Dovenby village had a post office and shop run by Mr and Mrs Benn which closed some time ago. There was also a blacksmith's shop last run by Mr Jonty Carr.

As in the other villages there has been considerable new house building in in the village during the last few decades.

More information on the history of Dovenby Hall is available on the M-Sport website here

There are bus services, which run several times per weekday in each direction along the main A594 road and stop at the Dovenby Ship pub.

Bus services are being reviewed at present so some published timetables cannot be relied on. More information is available here
 

A possible alternative is Rural Wheels click here

For impartial and comprehensive information about public transport please contact 
Traveline on 0871 200 22 33.
Lines are open daily from 07:00am to 08:00pm
(Calls from BT landlines cost 10p/min plus network extras. Costs of other providers may vary)

 

Parish Council Contact  - clerk@bridekirkparish.org.uk
Website contact -
webmaster@bridekirkparish.org.uk
Bridekirk Parish Council, Cumbria