|The 350 years of Roman
occupation were relatively stable times. These were followed by six
centuries of continual raids and conflict between Britons, Scots and Saxons.
The Normans arrived in
Cumberland in 1092 and the land was divided into large baronial estates. The
manor (which is now Westward) was forest ground in Allerdale and it was
given by Alan, second lord of Allerdale to Henry II who annexed it to his
Royal Forest of Inglewood, as it formed the western ward of the forest it
received the name Westward. It continued to be held by the Crown until 1344
when Edward II granted it to Thomas Lucy on his marriage to the King?s
cousin. It subsequently passed to the Earls of Northumberland (the Percy
family) and descended through to the Earls of Egremont.
The centuries following
the Norman Conquest were marked by frequent border raids and wars as
successive Scots and English kings laid claim to the border lands. It was
not until after the Jacobite rebellion was finally put down in the late 18th
century that times became more settled.
Before the Enclosure Acts of the early 1800?s there
were only small areas of enclosed land around the settlements at Rosley,
Curthwaite, Brackenthwaite, Craggs, Woodside and the Heights, the rest was
open common land with tracks between settlements. The Enclosure Acts
the look of the landscape to the layout of the fields much as we see them
The Second World War Comes to Rosley
Rosley, had a satellite landing ground at
Wath Head. There was grass landing strip which was created by the
removal of hedges and the land of the fields being compacted with the aid of
three steam rollers pulled up and down by a caterpillar tractor. As
the land continued to be used sheep had to be removed from the landing strip
before a plane could land. Once the planes had safely landed they were
towed into Spain wood, so called because its shape resembles a map of Spain,
and covered in camouflage nets so that they would not easily be seen.
The strong wires holding these nets could still be seen some forty years
after the last plane had been hidden in the wood.