Places of interest

Starting point

Arnside Jetty

The second section of the Fair Trade Way ends at the beautifully picturesque stone jetty at Arnside. This solid pier offers  stunning views across the Kent estuary making it very popular with locals and visitors alike. It was built by the Ulverston and Lancaster Railway Company to enable ships to unload at Arnside after construction of the railway viaduct caused the estuary to silt up, thereby preventing passage to Milnthorpe. It replaced an earlier wooden structure and was later sold to the town for the sum of £100.


Arnside village lies beside the estuary of the River Kent on the north eastern corner of Morecambe Bay. The railway line to West Cumbria passes over the River Kent via the Arnside viaduct. Up to the 19th century, the village had been used as a local port, but the building of the viaduct caused the estuary to silt up. Arnside Tower is by far the oldest building in the parish.

En Route


The medieval market town of Milnthorpe was once second only to Kendal as the most important community in the region. In 1334 King Edward III granted the Charter permitting a weekly market on Wednesdays and the Petertide Fair on St Peter’s Day 29th June. The Cattle Fair (held on the 12th May) and a ‘back to fair’ (held in the autumn) later replaced the Petertide Fair and weekly market days were changed to Fridays. Spring and autumn fun fairs can still be held today although the cattle fairs ended many years ago.

Milnthorpe is not yet a Fairtrade Town despite the fact that Fairtrade items are readily available in the delightful and tranquil Market Square.

St Mary’s Well in Heversham

The beautiful Cumbrian village of Heversham contains many historic sites including St. Peter’s church, the oldest in Westmorland (former county), dating from the 8th century. St. Mary’s Well (named after the abbey) lies next to the churchyard and provided a source of water for the inhabitants of Heversham for over 1000 years before the arrival of piped water in 1907. The well played a major role in decreasing the incidence of Typhoid in the surrounding population.

The water was raised by an Appleby pump and could also be diverted to a nearby trough, for use by horses and cattle. With the advent of steam power the water began to be used for vehicles, severely depleting the amount available to local people, until this was prohibited in 1905.

As well as providing clean drinking water Heversham is also known for its educational prowess. In one corner of the St. Peter’s churchyard is the old grammar school, founded in 1613 and famous for schooling Ephraim Chambers who compiled Chambers Cyclopedia. The grammar school amalgamated with Milnthorpe Modern School in 1984 to form Dallam School which in keeping with the progressive thinking within Heversham now has its own Fairtrade Group.

Levens Hall and Park

The Elizabethan mansion house of Levens Hall was built around a 13th century Pele (Peel) Tower and is now home to a fine collection of Jacobean furniture, ornate plasterwork and oak panelling, not to mention the traction engine Bertha that runs at full steam every Sunday during the season. Guillaume Beaumont (former gardener to James II) planted the magnificent topiary gardens that have remained unaltered since they were laid out in 1689. Around the same time Beaumont restructured the surrounding park area with its oak avenue, ancient yew trees and views of the river. The contrasting designs for the gardens and the park are of historical interest to landscape gardeners everywhere as they marked the change in fashion from a love of formality to an appreciation of nature in all its moods – something which William Wordsworth was to explore a century later.

Levens Park was originally a medieval deer park and now appropriately is home to a small herd of Norwegian black fallow deer and many Bagot Goats, a rare breed originally brought to this country at the time of Richard the Lion Heart.

Force Falls Salmon Gate

As you pass under the A591 road bridge you will come across the salmon leap at Force Falls Salmon Gate. The river Kent is tidal as far as Levens Bridge, bringing sea-trout and salmon in season. The salmon are best viewed in the month of October, particularly when a period of dry weather is followed by heavy rain and the river is in full spate. This part of the river Kent passes through an area of limestone that creates a series of rapids and the power of the river was used near here for the manufacture of gunpowder from 1764-1935.

Low Sizergh Barn

The Park family took on the tenancy of Low Sizergh Farm from The National Trust in 1980 and in response to the introduction of milk quotas they decided to diversify by opening a Pick Your Own Strawberry business. This soon developed into the working farm and tourist attraction we see today.  The 18th Century stone barn contains a tea room and farm shop selling locally produced Cumbrian speciality foods along side some Fairtrade products. You can watch the cows being milked daily around 3.15pm from the tearoom’s viewing window while sampling local treats from the tearoom menu and then take the Sizergh Farm trail through the surrounding countryside.

Disused Canal

In 1948, the British Transport Commission took over the Lancaster Canal and in 1955, due to leaks, the 5.75 miles north of Stainton Crossing Bridge was drained and for the last two miles from Natland to Kendal the channel was also infilled. The Fair Trade Way joins the former canal where the original bridge still spans the dry channel and follows this fascinating feature for 2km.


Within Cumbria only Carlisle and Barrow are greater in size than Kendal with its population of over 27,000. Originally a part of Yorkshire Kendal is listed in the Domesday Book as Cherchbi and became Kirkbie Strickland when a Norman castle was built to the west of the settlement. It was later called Kirkbie Kendal, meaning “village with a church in the valley of the River Kent” before being known as Kirkby in Kendal or Kirkby Kendal and then finally just Kendal. The town now has the nickname the Auld Grey Town due to its many local grey limestone buildings.

Kendal is predominantly a tourist centre famous for its Kendal Mint cake, pipe tobacco and snuff. The opaque Kendal Mint cake was accidently discovered by Joseph Wiper when attempting to make a clear glacier mint. It is now popular with mountaineers and hill walkers as an energy food and has been used on expeditions to the summits of Mount Everest and K2 as well as originally supplied to Ernest Shackleton on his journey across the Arctic from 1914 – 1917. Now that Kendal has become a Fairtrade Town perhaps the time is right to see the manufacture of Fairtrade Kendal Mint Cake?

End point

Kendal Quaker Meeting House, Stramongate
At the end of the third walking day you will be able to enjoy a nice cup of Fairtrade tea or coffee in the Kendal Meeting House tea rooms, providing you get there before it closes at 4.30pm. Two meetings for worship are held each week in this Friends (Quaker) meeting House; on a Sunday from 10.30 to 11.30 and on a Friday from 12.30 to 1.00 when people will often stay and have lunch together.

This Georgian building near the centre of Kendal is also the home of the Quaker Tapestry that came into being as a result of a chance remark by an eleven-year-old boy attending the children’s class of a small Quaker Meeting in the South West of England in 1981. Through his teacher, Anne Wynn-Wilson the schoolboy inspired more than 4,000 men, women and children in 15 countries to create the Quaker Tapestry, which was eventually finished in 1996. This international community project is a celebration of over 350 years of Quaker insights and experiences embroidered in narrative crewel work on 77 panels of specially woven wool cloth. Each panel measures 25″ (635mm) wide by 21″ (533mm) deep.

The Fair Trade Way takes you through ‘1652 country’ where the Religious Society of Friends (Quakers) was founded by George Fox. Following his vision on Pendle Hill that moved him to gather “a great people”, George Fox preached for three hours to 1,000 ‘Seekers’ on Firbank Fell in June of that year. Quakers were at the forefront of the industrial revolution, of developments in science and medicine, and were amongst the first to raise awareness of ecology. They moved into chocolate manufacturing in the 19th Century as a reaction against the misery and deprivation caused by alcohol and famous names such as Elizabeth Fry, Joseph Rowntree and George Cadbury pioneered social reform and welfare for factory workers. Quakers led the field in adult education while organisations such as Friends Provident were amongst the early insurance companies.