|This article needs additional citations for verification. (June 2009)|
Rydal Road, Ambleside town centre
Ambleside shown within Cumbria
|OS grid reference|
|Sovereign state||United Kingdom|
|EU Parliament||North West England|
|UK Parliament||Westmorland and Lonsdale|
Ambleside is a town in Cumbria, in North West England. Historically within the county of Westmorland, it is situated at the head of Windermere, England's largest lake. The town is within the Lake District National Park.
The Armitt Library and Museum provides a source of local history with a collection which represents many of the local artists and writers of the past.
Steamers (in reality diesel-powered ferries) run to Bowness-on-Windermere and Lakeside offering fine views of the lake and surrounding mountains. Ambleside is a base for hiking, mountaineering and mountain biking. It has a number of hotels, guest houses, pubs and restaurants as well as shops. In particular, there are a number of shops selling equipment for walkers and climbers in the town.
The town's name is derived from Old Norse Á-mel-sǽtr = "river – sandbank – summer pasture".
In 1650 the town was granted a charter to hold a market and later, in the reign of James II, another charter was granted for the town to collect tolls. The town's Market Place became the commercial centre for agriculture and the wool trade. The old packhorse trail between Ambleside and Grasmere was the main route between the two towns before the new turnpike road was completed in 1770. Smithy Brow at the end of the trail was where packponies were re-shod after their journey. With the coming of the turnpikes, the packhorse trains were superseded by horse-drawn stagecoaches, which regularly travelled between Keswick and Kendal via Ambleside.
Bridge House was built over Stock Ghyll more than 300 years ago probably as a summer house and apple store for Ambleside Hall. It was purchased by local people in 1926 and given to the National Trust. It is now used as an information centre for the National Trust, and is part of the Trust's Windermere and Troutbeck property.
The building was depicted by the Victorian landscapist Lewis Pinhorn Wood (1848-1918) in his late 19th century work The Cobbler's Shop on the Bridge.
Ambleside has a relatively large number of pubs for its size with some ten pubs and bars within a quarter-mile radius. They are supported by the tourist industry, so essential to the town, as well as the student population associated with the University of Cumbria.
University of Cumbria
The Ambleside campus of the University of Cumbria, formerly St. Martin's College and Charlotte Mason College, can be found at the northern end of the town; courses held at the campus include teacher training, leisure and outdoor studies. In 2010 the University moved the teaching courses away from Ambleside to Lancaster, and the Charlotte Mason Building became the home of the outdoor studies lectures in Ambleside.
The town maintains one of the busiest volunteer mountain rescue teams in Great Britain: The Langdale & Ambleside MRT.
- http://www.visitcumbria.com/amb/galava.htm Retrieved on 7 February 2008
- Ambleside OnLine – a local history
- "History of Ambleside". Golakes. Retrieved 24 June 2010.
- Bridge House – Information from a notice at Bridge House.
- Littlemore, Sue (16 December 1999). "Computers create 'children's underclass'". BBC News. Retrieved 8 August 2009.
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Ambleside, Cumbria.|
- Windermere and Troutbeck (including Bridge House) information at the National Trust
- Ambleside Photographs On the Ambleside, Cumbria website.
- The Windermere Way – a walking route that goes right around the lake.