Some will have it that Barrow-in-Furness is located at the end of the longest cul-de-sac in England, but that’s rubbish. As a cruise ship passenger, you should not listen to it. The fact is that, from a cruise perspective, the location of this industrial town in the northwest of England could not be better. That is, if you plan on visiting the renowned Lake District, which has attracted and inspired writers and poets for hundreds of years.
Situated at the tip of the Furness peninsula, Barrow-in-Furness has been referred to as the gateway to the Lake District, which is less than an hour away by coach or car. It is probably one of the most well-known regions in the entire U.K. Writers and poets such as Samuel Taylor Coleridge, Robert Southey and, of course, William Wordsworth will forever be associated with the area – as will some of their works (perhaps the best-known of which is Wordsworth’s I Wandered Lonely As A Cloud, with its daffodil reference).
For modern day visitors, it’s not difficult to understand why these poets became so fond of the Lake District. The area nowadays constitutes the largest National Park in England (and the second-largest in the U.K.).
Some of the most beautiful lakes in the country are to be found here, such as Lake Windermere and Ullswater. Nearby is England’s highest mountain: Scafell Pike, 3,209 feet/978 meters high. There are several other peaks in the region. Although they are of rather modest dimensions, they are high enough to be visible from the islands off the coast of southernmost Scotland.
There is one more author who is very much associated with the Lake District – in a highly visible way. Beatrix Potter’s literary character Peter Rabbit can be found in each and every storefront in the region. One of Beatrix Potter’s houses is located in Near Sawrey and is a charming destination for excursions.
William Wordsworth’s birthplace, Dove Cottage at Cockermouth, is another highlight in the region, as is Rydal Mount – the poet’s final home (where the Wordsworth Museum is to be found).
Barrow-in-Furness itself is also an interesting destination. Situated some 43 miles/70 kilometers north of Liverpool, the city is home to some 59,000 inhabitants. It traces its roots to the Middle Ages and the Cistercian monks of the Abbey of St. Mary of Furness.
More recently, in the 19th and 20th centuries, Barrow-in-Furness has been ain important center for shipbuilding.
The town once prospered due to industry, mining and shipbuilding. Now Barrow-in-Furness is seeing a revitalization with new development, which includes the 60-acre Waterfront Business Park in the dockside area.
Barrow-in-Furness can trace its roots to the Middle Ages. In 1123, King Stephen of England founded the Abbey of St Mary of Furness, known as Furness Abbey. The monks at the Abbey discovered iron ore deposits. Because of some monk ingenuity, the abbey prospered and became the second richest Cistercian abbey in England.
Speculator and iron dealer H.W. Schneider gets credit for discovering large deposits of haematite, the mineral form of iron, in 1850. Schneider and other key investors helped establish the infrastructure to support the transport of iron via rail and sea. Before long, Schneider built the largest steelworks in the world.
The Port of Barrow, the largest deep-water port between Liverpool and Scotland, refers to the enclosed dock system within the town of Barrow-in-Furness.
Cruise ships will berth in Ramsden Dock Basin. Passengers will debark approximately 1.4 miles from town center. There are complimentary shuttle buses to assist with transport to the center of town.
Cruise passengers may make arrangements to visit attractions in town or nearby. Popular excursions allow exploration of nearby towns in the Furness peninsula area including outings to the nearby English Lakes District.