exciting new project investigating what it means to be Cumbrian.
3. Youre not from round here, are you?
Listen to the
programme online »
not from round here......
what's it like to move to Cumbria?
incomers get an open armed welcome with warm cups of tea? Or is
it all cold hard stares and finger pointing?
spoke to incomers of all varieties to get the low down on the welcome
that the county gives....
Viking, and not a horny helmet in sight!
first incomers to Cumbria were... well who knows? Certainly one
of the first groups of people to come in large numbers were the
vikings and place names such as fell or thwaite shows the influence
of the be-helmetted Scandinavians.
McKay talking about the
history of incomers into Cumbria »
incomers weren't just the burning and pilaging kind. Later on a
much more refined form of incomer arrived - inspired by the images
of the county created by the romantic writers, and of course that
most Cumbrian of romantics - Wordsworth.
Prelude Book First
Introduction - Childhood and Schooltime
"OH there is blessing in this gentle breeze,
A visitant that while it fans my cheek
Doth seem half-conscious of the joy it brings
From the green fields, and from yon azure sky.
Whate'er its mission, the soft breeze can come
To none more grateful than to me; escaped
From the vast city, where I long had pined
A discontented sojourner: now free,
Free as a bird to settle where I will."
the 19th century it was Barrow which became the focus of incomers
- as people flocked to the town to find work. But though Barrow
is mostly known for it's ship buiding that wasn't what first brought
at Barrow ship yard
Trescatheric from the Barrow
Dock museum says "It's a common misunderstanding that
Barrow is a shipbuilding town, which is has been for the last century,
but it's actually here mainly because of the iron and steel industry."
As you can probably guess by his name, Bryn himself is descended
from Cornish miners who came to the town in the 1870s.
Trescatheric explaining what Barrow
has in common with the American wild west »
came from many different places to Barrow to work - so much so that
around 150 years ago the town resembled a 'New York' style cultural
people claim this is where the term "offcomer"
developed from - people literally came in off the sands.
what brings people into the county today? The scenery of course
is one of the biggest factors. David Bassett and his wife Samantha
now run "The Kirkstyle Inn" at Slaggyford near Alston.
But tending bar in one of the most remote parts of the county is
a far cry from his previous job - pounding the beat in London as
a Metropolitain police officer. It's quite a change, but it's this
difference which made him want to move in the first place...
decided that we wanted to get out of London and come and live in
the country with our dogs.... it's great here. You get up in the
morning and look out of the window and all you see is a couple of
sheep and possibly a farmer and that's about it, really."
Basset saying that he was treated
with some suspicion when he first came »
moving from London is just a small step compared to the trip that
Paula Mart made to come to the county - she left her home in Barbados
over 20 years ago to come to the UK and has made her home in Penrith
ever since. In many ways, the move was fulfilling a childhood dream.
at the Keswick pencil factory
I was about 5 years old my mum gave me a tin of lakeland pencils
from the Cumberland Pencil company... and I always wanted to find
out what the English Lake District looked like"
the lack of Carribean sunshine Paula says she feels totally at home
in Penrith - but perhaps that's not surprising as the area of Barbados
she was brought up in is actually called "Lakes" after
the Cumbrian landscape.
Mart talking about how she
fitted in to life in Penrith »
says she could never imagine moving away from Penrith now... although
she's still not sure if she considers herself Cumbrian.
how long does it take before you can safely adopt the 'Cumbrian'
tag? Some say 10 years while others say it takes three generations....
the answer - there are some incomers who do get accepted.
mountaineer Chris Bonington is considered by many to be one of the
county's favourite sons (he's even included in BBC
Cumbria's greatest Cumbrian list!) - but he was born in
London. Chris and his family have lived in the county since the
1960s and he says he's always felt at home here - "there's
never a them and us situation" according to him.
Bonington describing how he
first came to the Lake District »