Penrith Remembers Launches

Programme of Events



Penrith Remembers has now collated all the local events for the coming year which commemorates the beginning of the First World War. It will be launched at Dalemain on 8 April 2014. This will be attended by Brigadier Chris Coles.  At the launch there will be an opportunity to see Dalemain’s own collection of photos and memorabilia dating from 1914.

The programme has now been compiled and we are grateful to all the people who have contributed material for the programme. It looks like being an exciting year and there is lots for the people of Eden to do as part of the commemoration.

Robert Hasell-McCosh is the owner of Dalemain. He said: “The Great War changed the lives of everyone alive in the United Kingdom at the time and it is most important to remember something of what happened a hundred years ago, partly to refresh in our minds the enormous contribution a whole generation made to retain our freedom but also to tell the story to recent generations who now have no immediate family connection with those events.

“The launch of the Remember 1914 programme for Penrith and Eden District at Dalemain on April 8 by Brigadier Coles will feature an exhibition of photographs illustrating the changes which occurred as a result of the Great War on life in a Country House with specific reference to Dalemain as well as the Westmorland and Cumberland Yeomanry collection both of which will continue on show until October.

There is great interest now into ‘Who do we think we are’ family history which, with a little research can bring alive members of a family who often have remained unremembered or forgotten.   There is now so much information available that it is relatively straightforward to access.   Suddenly real people emerge from the past who are often only three or four generations back but are colourful and interesting characters.  We all want to know who we actually are and part of the Remember 1914 programme is to encourage young people to find out about their forbears of 100 years ago.”


For further information including the full programme of events  please contact Mike Head on 07963 904925.

Above is a picture from the Dalemain collection. Others available are at

penrith_remembers_pic-3 penrith_remembers_pic-4

Brig Coles is a former commanding officer of the Queen’s Royal Hussars leading his Challenger 2 tank regiment during its final deployment in IRAQ. He has served in the army for 28 years much of the time in Germany.
He is originally from Worcestershire, his father was a solicitor, he was a cadet at school, and he is a keen fisherman.
He succeeds Brig Nick Fitzgerald who had taken up a new post in Afghanistan.
He is married to Alison and has two teenage children.



Penrith Remembers 1914-1918 is the name of a group of voluntary organisations, churches, businesses and individuals who are working together as an informal consortium to commemorate and honour what happened to the people of Penrith and its surrounding area during the Great War of 1914-1918. We are a properly constituted group with our own bank account, Strategy group, Constitution and Officers. We have support from Eden District Council and our President is Rory Stewart OBE Member of Parliament for Penrith and the Border.


Red Cross nurses at Lowther


Our aim is to provide, a Season of Remembrance in 2014. We will recall those who served in the Armed Forces, many of whom gave their lives in the conflict. Our group has also begun to research and describe what happened at home and how families and individuals kept up the routine of daily living whilst supporting the troops.

Farming families continued to produce food in conditions of increasing difficulty as young family members and labourers enlisted and later were conscripted into the Forces.


Our season of events, exhibitions and publications will begin at Easter 2014 and will carry on until Christmas 2014.

The Penrith Remembers printed programme will be available in early 2014.


We ask those who read this newsletter to search for memorabilia from those dreadful times. We need photographs, letters, medals, official documents. Will you consider whether you would be prepared to lend them for a while to the Penrith and Eden Museum in Middlegate, Penrith to display in a new lockable glass cabinet (from August 2014).

Please contact the Curators, Sydney Chapman or Christine Smith, on 01768 865105 or


We also need help from a few people who are prepared to conduct interviews and/or go through records and archives. Some have already been searching through old copies of the Herald and the minute books of their Church or Society to find out what happened during 1914-1918. It is amazing what these old documents reveal. Searching for the War Years through the records and archives of your business or Society has never been done locally on this scale before and is already bringing forth very interesting stories not widely known until now.

Please contact Ann Risman 017684 83906 or if you can give a little help in this important local history and heritage work. NB – You can keep in touch with us on Facebook and Twitter from 1st November2013.


Our book of stories from World War 1 is well underway but we still must cast the net for those that have never been revealed. Did a female ancestor of yours volunteer for nursing duties or ambulance driving or farm work or instance and have you got the photographs? Have you a story of what happened to your family which has been passed down through three generations? Were your horses taken for war work? If your relatives returned safely did they manage to find work? Did any of them emigrate, if so to where?

If you have a story to share would you please contact Ian Forrest our Editor on 01768 483526 or by email

The intention to commemorate the outbreak of World War 1 next year will be nationwide and national themes such as the planting of trees and poppies, the renovation and restoration of memorials will be taking place everywhere.
In Penrith and Eden we too hope to leave on record our respectful awareness of the sacrifices made on the battlefields and the way in which those at home met the various challenges of keeping the home fires burning.