Bromfield, Cumberland

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Sandraw, near Aspatria - - 66153.jpg
Main road near Bromfield
Grid reference: NY175469
Location: 54°48’39"N, 3°17’3"W
Population: 510  (2011)
Post town: Wigton
Postcode: CA7
Dialling code: 01697
Local Government
Council: Allerdale

Bromfield is a village in northern Cumberland, about five miles north-east of Aspatria. At the 2001 census, the parish had a recorded population of 510.

Bromfield has two farms, a parish church, St Mungo's, and a pub.


According to one source the origins of the name of Bromfield comes through the Middle English Brounefeld, from the old English meaning 'brown field', or possibly from the broom plant, so 'broom field'.[1]

The manor

The old ecclesiastic parish of Bromfield, consisted of twelve villages or hamlets, Allonby, Westnewton, Mealrigg, Langrigg, Crookdake, Scales, Bromfield, Blencogo, Wheyrigg, Dundraw, Moor Row and Kelsick.

The locality is steeped in history, dating back to early times. The manor of the village itself was granted by the first Lord of Allerdale to Melbeth, his physician whose posterity took the name of De Brumfield. The family ceased to be Lords of the Manor at some time around 1300.[2] In the early Middle Ages the patronage of the church was reserved and granted to the St Mary's Abbey, York. In 1434 the Abbey leased these lands for a term of six years to William Osmotherley. Holme Cultram Abbey also possessed land here. Prior to the Dissolution of the Monasteries the monks were not only cultivating the land but also leasing it to tenant farmers.

Shortly after the Dissolution of the Monasteries under King Henry VIII, in 1543, William Hutton is recorded as holding Bromfield for the King. Later, King Edward VI exchanged the manor with Henry Thompson for a hospital in Dover. Successive owners of the estate were the Porters of Weary Hall, and the families of Osmotherley and Barwise.[3]

The railway

The Maryport and Carlisle Railway intersects the southern portion of the parish. In 1859 a railway was laid through the village of Bromfield connecting the Maryport and Carlisle railway with the North British line from Silloth to Carlisle. A station, Bromfield Station, was opened on 8 August 1870 and was of great benefit to farmers who could move their livestock along the Solway Junction Railway to the cattle market in Annan in Dumfriesshire, on a line passing through Bowness-on-Solway and across the now demolished viaduct over the Solway Firth.[4] Passenger services were finally withdrawn in 1921 and the line south of Annan over the Solway Viaduct was closed completely. The line remained open to through traffic until 14 February 1933; the track was lifted and sold as scrap in 1937.[5]

The school

In 1612, Richard Osmotherley, a merchant of London and native of the parish, bequeathed £10 a year, to be paid by the Worshipful Company of Merchant Taylors out of his estates in St Botolph's parish, Aldergate, London, to the Clergymen and Churchwardens of Bromfield, in trust for the education of fifteen poor children belonging to Bromfield and Langrigg. According to the stipulation, the occupants of Langrigg Hall chose the children. It is said that the inhabitants built the school shortly after this. In 1741 the Rev. Dr Thomlinson gave a dwelling house, with outbuildings. In 1757 the Thomlinson gave £100 with which two fields were purchased, one in Bromfield the other in Blencogo. The family also built two rooms for the use of the schoolmaster, who was also curate of the parish. In 1770 a sum of £80 was collected by voluntary subscription, which generated £3 20p in annual interest. In 1805 a Mr. Thomlinson of New Bern, North Carolina gave £1,400 to be equally divided between the schools of Bromfield, Wigton, Uldale and Thursby. During this time numerous masters taught the children to read, write and figure accounts, while several learned Latin. The Education Act of 1870 considerably modifies the constitution of the church and subsequent Acts brought it into line with other schools in the area.[6]

The church

St Mungo's Church is an active parish church in the Diocese of Carlisle. It is a Grade I listed building.[7]

The church dates from the 12th century with additions and alterations during the next two centuries. Restorations were carried out in 1861–62, 1893–94 and 1926.[7]

Outside links

("Wikimedia Commons" has material
about Bromfield, Cumberland)


  1. Mills page 57
  2. Bulmer pages 159–163
  3. Hodgson pages 9–11
  4. Hodgson page 10-11
  5. Edgar and Sinton pages 49–58
  6. Hodgson pages 26–27
  7. 7.0 7.1 National Heritage List England no. 1235049: Church of St Mungo, Bromfield (Historic England)


  • Rev. William Slater Calverley; W. G. Collingwood M.A. (1899). Early Sculptured Crosses, Shrines and Monuments in the Present Diocese of Carlisle. Kendal: Titus Wilson. 
  • A. D. Mills (1998). Oxford Dictionary of Place-Names. Oxford: Oxford. 
  • Sarah Hodgson (1960). A History of the Parish of Bromfield. Carlisle: Author. 
  • T. Bulmer (1901). History and Directory of Cumberland. Preston: T. Bulmer & Co. Hesperus Press Ltd. 
  • J. Rose; M. Dunglinson (1987). Aspatria. Chichester: Phillimore. 
  • Stuart Edgar; John M Sinton (1990). The Solway Junction Railway. Oxford: Oakwood Press.