Saturday, June 9, 2018

Corpse roads in Cumbria showcased with new book

Authors Alan Cleaver and Lesley Park have compiled the routes, history and legends surrounding the county's ancient corpse roads which date back to medieval times.
The roads were used to transport the dead from remote parishes to the 'mother' church.
Mr Cleaver, 58, said: "There are few written records about the corpse roads but we have included what records do exist alongside the oral tradition, legends and half-remembered tales that still survive.
Criss-crossing the Cumbrian landscape are many trods, paths, lonnings and other ancient trackways. Included among these are several corpse roads. The enigmatic name hints at their curious origins. These paths were used until the 18th Century to transport coffins from the remote villages to the 'mother' church. Eventually villagers petitioned for their own churches and burial rights but the corpse roads remained. A few are still marked on Ordnance Survey maps and are even signposted. But others are just a dim memory or half-remembered legend. Alan Cleaver and Lesley Park have researched these ancient paths preserving their route for future generations and sharing them in this book for those who want to explore them further.

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