Fancy a wander around the old Cumbrian town of Ulverston on market day with time for a ‘wander’. We then travel to nearby Conishead Priory, and after a tour of the Priory we get the rare opportunity to see the Buddhist Temple before enjoying a Cream Tea in the beautiful surroundings of the Priory, with maybe time for a stroll down to appreciate the sea views.
Conishead Priory is a well known visitor attraction in south Cumbria and each year welcomes thousands of visitors who appreciate the historic building and peaceful atmosphere. Described by English Heritage as “…a very important Gothic revival country house with few peers in the north west; the distinctive two towers of the front elevation are an important local landmark.”
The Priory has played an important role in the life of the local community; formerly as a hydropathic spa and a convalescent home for miners and for the past twenty five years it has been home to an international college for Buddhist studies. When the Buddhist community moved into Conishead Priory it had lain empty for 4 years and was entirely derelict and close to collapse. Over the past three decades Manjushri Buddhist Centre has raised almost £1,000,000 and invested thousands of hours of voluntary labour to eradicate dry rot, and bring the building back into use. The Buddhist Community has rescued and restored Conishead Priory and has secured the future of this locally important historic building.
There’s always things to do in in Ulverston, the festival town of South Lakeland, whether it’s Flag Fortnight, the Lantern Procession or the Dickensian Festival. An outdoor market is held every Thursday and Saturday, when the town crier is in town.
Special events combine with independent shops, cosy pubs, traditional markets and cultural hotspots. Add in the colourfully rendered houses, cobbled streets and inviting side alleys and you’ll find enough in Ulverston to keep you enthralled for days. It also has its own leisure centre where you can enjoy a whole range of sports and activities!
Ulverston is the birthplace of Stan Laurel and to celebrate this, the town houses the world’s only Laurel and Hardy Museum. There’s also a Laurel and Hardy statue in County Square, outside the Coronation Hall, a fine theatre which presents a variety of plays, concerts and events. You’ll also find a cinema in Ulverston town centre.
The Sir John Barrow Monument stands on Hoad Hill overlooking Ulverston and Morecambe Bay. It was erected in 1850 as a tribute to Sir John Barrow, a naval administrator and traveller born in Ulverston. This distinctive landmark, modelled on an earlier version of the Eddystone Lighthouse, is now open to the public whenever the flag is flying on top of the Hill. Climb up and enjoy the view!
Conishead Priory, just outside Ulverston, is home to one of the largest Buddhist Communities in Europe. The Buddhist Temple and historic mansion are set in 70 acres of woodlands and gardens on the shores of Morecambe Bay. Another nearby attraction is Gleaston Water Mill, an 18th Century water corn mill with original wooden gearing and milling artefacts.
Ford Park is a perfect place for families, with a playground, restored Victorian kitchen garden, cafe and bistro to enjoy.
If you are looking for day excursions Preston, check out AvaTravel for a great selection.