Charming lanes are fun to roam

Fork Fest Kirkby Lonsdale'Snowball from Greenlands Farm Vilage Carnforth with Tilly, Ellie and Georgie Mackereth from Whitington.
Fork Fest Kirkby Lonsdale'Snowball from Greenlands Farm Vilage Carnforth with Tilly, Ellie and Georgie Mackereth from Whitington.

Kirkby Lonsdale is undoubtedly one of the most attractive towns in the North West as it has been so lovingly preserved over the centuries.

It’s impossible to resist the pull of Kirkby Lonsdale’s winding streets, diminutive yet striking stone buildings, its historic market square, high quality independent shops and businesses, glorious riverside walks, glamorous bistros, fashionable coffee shops and restaurants offering delicious Cumbrian food.

Thriving local businesses include women’s clothes shops, gift shops, antiques shops, ironmongers, outdoor clothing shops, butchers, bakers and speciality sweet shops.

And at just half an hour’s drive from Lancaster, Kirkby Lonsdale is easily accessible for a shopping trip, a meal out, a day of walking or a visit to one of the area’s attractions.

Nestling next to the River Lune, this ancient settlement was included in the Domesday Book of 1086. The Romans, Saxons, Normans and Danes all lived there at one time.

Kirkby Lonsdale’s evocative street names are also of great interest to visitors. As you explore the town you will come across thoroughfares such as Salt Pie Lane, Jingling Lane and the Horse Market.

Take a walk past the Sun Inn to St Mary’s churchyard and you will find a sublime view over the River Lune. This view was made famous when the artist Turner painted it and art critic John Ruskin wrote: “I do not know in all my own country, still less in France or Italy, a place more naturally divine”. It is now known across the world as ‘Ruskin’s View’. A short walk or drive from the town centre is Devil’s Bridge – an imposing three-arched structure which was probably built in the 12th or 13th Century. This magnificent bridge is now a scheduled ancient monument and is a popular place for families, walkers, divers and bikers to visit. In the warmer months it’s the perfect place for a picnic or a swim. Legend has it that the devil appeared to an old woman promising to build a bridge in exchange for the first soul that passed across it. The story goes that when the bridge was erected the woman threw bread over it and her dog chased after it. In this way she outwitted the devil.

Kirkby Lonsdale is also known for its excellent schools, its annual festivals and its warmth of welcome. Once you’ve been there you’ll want to return again and again.