Chapelry and township in Windermere parish, Kendal ward, Westmorland. CP enlarged by absorbing part of Windermere CP 1935.
Acreage: 5,807 acres [2,350 ha] before boundary change. Extensive fell commons, enclosed 1842, were previously divided into three ‘hundreds’, each carrying a stint of a ‘long hundred’ (i.e. 120) cattlegates. Wansfell (270 acres [109 ha]) remains registered common land.
Population: populous village, described by Thomas Machell 1692 as ‘long, rambling disorderly village but with some good houses in it’. Population rose from 310 in 1801 to 523 in 1891; stood at 456 in 1971 (last census year for which separate figure available).
Landownership: part of manor of Windermere (q.v.).
Economy: pastoral farming. Slate quarrying (extensive quarry at Troutbeck Park from 1750s to early 20th century). Paper mill recorded 1692. Tourism increasingly important from 19th century: lakeside villas at Briery Close (built 1839; enlarged 1910-12), Brockhole (built 1897-1902; National Park visitor centre from 1969), and Langdale Chase (built c.1889; now hotel). High Cross Youth Hostel built 1935. Town End (Browne family farmhouse) acquired by The National Trust 1948. Limefitt Holiday Park (across township boundary in Applethwaite) established 1980s.
Places of worship: said to have been medieval chapel, dedicated to St Catherine; replaced by chapel of ease (consecrated as Jesus chapel, 1562, and given parochial rights); rebuilt 1736; now dedicated to St James. Church of St Andrew at Ecclerigg in 20th century.
Schools and other institutions: endowed school at east end of chapel built 1637 or 1639; rebuilt 1853; closed 1975; building converted to hostel accommodation 1977. Troutbeck Institute, with library attached, built by subscription 1873; still in use as village hall.