New Collections

Important and interesting records continue to arrive in our Archive Centres. We catalogue these and previously unlisted material, and make available these catalogues on CASCAT. Detailed lists are available for new additions to CASCAT during recent months for Barrow, Carlisle, Kendal and Whitehaven Archive Centres (PDF, 0.5MB-3MB). Here are some of the highlights from recent additions to the collections of Cumbria Archive Service.


J F Curwen of Kendal, architect and antiquary

The collection relates to Kendal and the historic county of Westmorland. Highlights include nineteenth century playbills and posters for Kendal theatres; nineteenth century election posters; a conveyance of the White Lion, Stricklandgate, dated 1698; photographs; newspaper cuttings (18th-20th centuries); family papers (17th-20th centuries.); and miscellaneous documents relating to Kendal including a poster for Kendal races from 1821 and subscriptions for inoculating poor persons' children for the small pox in Kendal, 1772
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Burlington Slate Company, Kirkby-in-Furness

Burlington began as a company in 1843 under the ownership of William Cavendish, the second Earl of Burlington and later to become the 7th Duke of Devonshire. The company is stilled owned by descendants of the Cavendish family. During the late 1970s and early 1980s the company acquired two more slate operations, the Lakeland and Broughton Moor Green Slate companies, these brought five more quarries into the group. The collection contains financial, production and staff records and was used extensively in the book Burlington Blue-Grey, by R Stanley Geddes, 1975 which provides essential background reading.
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Cumbria-Cumberland Federation of Women’s Institutes

Carlisle Archive Centre holds an extensive collection of records for the Cumbria-Cumberland Federation of Women’s Institutes (CCFWI) which was formed in 1920 and celebrated its centenary this year. The collection contains several series of records, which reflect the development of the Women’s Institute movement nationally and showcase its scope. The WI movement is based on the four ideals of Friendship, Truth, Tolerance and Justice and aims to promote social, educational and campaigning opportunities for women. For many years, the WI was primarily a rural organisation and became a social lifeline for women in isolated communities, however the modern WI has adapted to changes in society and institutes are now found in both rural and urban communities. An important part of the modern WI is political engagement, lobbying government and working with partner organisations to further both women’s issues and those affecting wider society. The CCFWI collection mirrors the national scene; there are records the Federation’s contribution to national events, alongside those of the range of activities held locally. Highlights of the collection include, the WI Produce Guild records of wartime fruit preservation, photographs chronicling the life of the Federation, covering the period 1924-2012 and a beautiful 9 panel stained glass window, created for the Federation’s 80th Anniversary and for the Millennium by Christine Boyce, local stained glass artist. There have been several deposits of CCFWI records and the collection has grown since the initial deposit in 1995. The most recent addition is that of the WI Markets (series reference: DSO 157/16). This comprises of minute books, committee and Annual General meetings, publications, correspondence and financial records and relates to markets held in, Aspatria, Brampton, Carlisle and Cockermouth. Some of the markets did not stand the test of time and the whole markets structure became a separate entity from the WI. The demise of the markets coincided with the rise of supermarket shopping but in recent years, there has been a revival of interest in local produce. The WI market material provides useful context for this modern development.
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Workington Borough Council

This collection, 1815-1974, includes the records of the Local Board, the Health Authority and the Smallpox Hospital as well as the minutes of the Overseers of the Poor. Recent acquisitions comprise of material relating to the town's libraries, Book Club, plans and stage licences for Carnegie Hall, and photographs and Local Studies records, including pictures of the royal visit by King George V and Queen Mary to the Steelworks in 1917. Alongside this, there are series of planning applications and other Surveyor's records and reports and returns of the Medical Officer of Health.
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