CLEATOR MOOR TOWN COUNCIL
Cleator Moor is a historic mining town nestled on the edge of the Western Lake District, close to the Cumbrian coast just a few miles from the old port of Whitehaven.
The town is surrounded by open countryside and fells, offering wonderful views and provides a bustling shopping and business centre.
The town is closely associated both by geography and the business community with the newly named “Britain’s Energy Coast” being the centre of excellence in low carbon and renewable energy.
In the Market Square built in the late 1800s are three sculptures by Conrad Atkinson, an artist of international repute who was born in Cleator Moor in 1940. They are a memorial to the once thriving mining industry. The three sculptures represent the Miner, the Phoenix and the Hand.
Outside the library is a blue plaque reminding us that the artist L.S. Lowry often stayed in Cleator Moor. He had a long standing friendship with Geoffrey Bennett (1902-1991), who was manager of the Cleator Moor Westminster Bank. Lowry often visited his friends in Cleator Moor and painted several pictures of buildings, including the Old Co-op building, Cowles fish and chip shop opposite the library, the former Westminster Bank and Wath Brow Church. Some of Lowry’s local landscapes were also inspired by his trips into the hills at Ennerdale.
Since the 12th century, residents and Monks from the nearby St Bees monastery have mined the area and the village experienced its economic boom in the 1840s. Mining had declined with the depletion of supplies of high grade ore by the early 1900s.
Cleator Moor and all the villages around it – Frizington, Rowrah, Keekle, Bigrigg – were a maze of railways and mines which produced the materials for iron works in Cleator Moor and Workington. Early in the 20th Century supplies began to decline. Some of the materials mined in the area were exported from the port at Whitehaven.
Limestone quarrying in addition to water powered flax mills were also major industries for the town’s residents and, as was common after the mines closed down, agriculture then again became the major industry, with good land for sheep and cattle.
NE Copeland has a strong sporting heritage producing nationally renowned sportsmen in the fields of football, rugby league and cricket. The area also hosts traditional lakeland sports including hound trailing and fell running – with the 23 mile annual Ennerdale Horseshoe race attracting only the most fearless local runners!