Local Quaker Sites
Brigflatts lies at the heart of the events of 1652 and many of the sites associated with the earliest period of Quaker history lie nearby. Here, in approximate order of distance, are a few of them:
(distances are in road miles)
Borrat Farm (0.5 mile)
Home of Gervase Benson, one of the leaders of the Westmorland Seekers, a JP and sometime Mayor of Kendal. The farm still straddles the A683 between Brigflatts and Sedbergh.
St Andrews, Sedbergh (1mile)
Fox preached in the churchyard of St Andrews church in Sedbergh during Whitsun week 1652. At Brigflatts there is still a piece of the yew tree under which he reputedly preached.
Drawell Cottage (3.1 miles)
Home of John Blaykling, another of the Westmorland Seekers, on the edge of the Howgills. The barn adjoining the cottage was the scene of the Wilkinson-Storey debate and the so called ‘Uninterrupted Meeting’. Now a privately owned holiday cottage. http://www.drawellcottage.co.uk
Cross Keys Inn at Cautley (6 miles)
Also the home of Gervase Benson. Now a National Trust owned but Quaker run ‘temperance inn’ on the road to Kirkby Stephen. http://www.cautleyspout.co.uk/index.htm
Fox’s Pulpit (3.7 miles)
The site where the great meeting of the Seekers took place on June 13th 1652 and where Fox spoke to the assembled crowd. That occasion being widely seen as the start of the Quaker movement. Each year a Meeting for Worship is held there on the Sunday closest to the anniversary of this event. See Firbank Fell
Preston Patrick Meeting House (10 miles)
Built in 1691and originally quite similar to Brigflatts in appearance but greatly altered in the mid 19th century, Preston Patrick was the home of some of the key leaders in the early movement such as John and Mabel Camm and John and Ann Audland.
Kendal Meeting House (11 miles)
The original Meeting House was acquired in 1688, heavily modified on the following years and then demolished and rebuilt entirely in 1816. The Meeting House is now also the home to the Quaker Tapestry and Cafe. http://www.quaker-tapestry.co.uk
Swarthmoor Hall (37 miles)
Swarthmoor Hall is known as the ‘Cradle of Quakerism’ because in the mid-17th Century it was the home of Judge Thomas Fell and his wife Margaret, who provided protection and hospitality for Fox and others in the fledgling movement. The Hall became the principal headquarters for the Quaker movement during those early years. After Judge Fell died, Margaret married George Fox and together they came to Brigflatts shortlt after the Meeting House was built. https://www.quaker.org.uk/contact-us/swarthmoorhall