Carlisle is the only city and also the county town of Cumbria. It is the nearest English city to Scotland and sits on the River Eden.
It has excellent road and rail links to London, Newcastle and Glasgow.
The current population is 104,000.
A town and fort were built by the Romans on the site of present day Carlisle, when they invaded Britain in 43AD. This town and fort were then called Luguvallium.
Hadrian’s Wall was built from nearby Carlisle to Newcastle.
In the 4th century the Roman Empire declined, soldiers left Hadrian’s Wall and the troops left England in 407AD. Carlisle’s Roman buildings collapsed and the town, although not completely abandoned, was demised.
The Celts arrived and gave the town the name of Caer Luel, the origins of the current name.
The town changed hands again when the Saxons captured it in the 10th Century. .
The middle ages saw Carlisle develop into a small town and a reasonably sized market was up and running. A priory was built and was made the seat of a bishop.
The town was granted a charter in 1158 and new industries started up, including, wool, leather and wine importing from France.
Henry VIII being king saw the priories closed down and the castle greatly improved.
In the Civil War the city was avidly Royalist but was eventually starved into submission by the Parliamentarians who went on to cause much destruction to the cathedral. Soon after the plague arrived causing more suffering.
After being captured by Scot, Bonnie Prince Charlie, in 1745 for only a short while, the city which was still relatively poor, began to flourish because of the Industrial Revolution. 19th century the population grew to 25000 in 1851 Railways also arrived with connections to Newcastle, Maryport and Lancaster.
The 20th century saw the city develop in the same way as most cities with infrastructure, shopping centres and civic buildings being improved and constructed.
The 21st century witnessed severe flooding in 2005 in the city centre, causing millions of pounds of damage. However, the population grew to 104,000.
Things to do:
Cathedral:- Carlisle Priory was converted to a cathedral by Henry II in 1132. It is built of red sandstone and much of the nave was destroyed by the Scots in the 17th century and was generally restored in 1853-57.
The features to look out for are the great East window, a magnificent stained glass example, the oak misericords and the Bishop’s Throne. Other buildings, including the Deanery with its 14th century Priory Tower, are also worth looking at. A café and gift shop is available for visitors.
A feature of the city for nine centuries the castle has been renovated and restored through its history. Of interest are Captain’s Tower and the Warden’s Apartments with replica furniture. It is also home of King’s Own Royal Regiment museum. A gift shop completes the tour.
An interesting museum, with interactive activities, and an art gallery situated in the centre of the city.
World in Miniature Museum:
Based in Houghton Hall Garden Centre this display contains fifty room settings showing every day furniture and things in daily use made to a scale of 1:12. Their motto is “You won’t believe your eyes”.
At the gift shop are a range of related goods to purchase.
Carlisle is well located for a visit to the Lake District.
Hadrian’s Wall and other Roman artefacts can be found in the area.
Across the border, in Scotland, lies Gretna Green and its famous blacksmiths where couples who were underage in England would elope to so that they could marry legally.
Solway Aviation Museum is based at Carlisle Airport and has much to be seen from Britain’s aviation history. Included are a Canberra bomber, Gloster Meteor, a Lightning Interceptor and a Vulcan bomber.
South Tynedale Railway is England’s highest narrow gauge railway and runs from Alston, in Cumbria, to Lintley, in Northumbria. The train journey gives fantastic views of South Tynedale which is located in the heart of North Pennines Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.
Being a compact city the nightlife of the city can be covered on foot, therefore without the expense of taxis. The centre of bars and clubs is in the Botchergate area (near railway station) with other venues in Fisher Street and Lowther Street. Pubs are spread throughout the city.
Botchergate is also the location of the Vue Cinema.
The Sands Centre close to the Eden Bridge, is the major centre for all types of popular music and classical concerts, theatre and stand up comedy. It also has a health and fitness studio.
West Walls Theatre also stages a good variety of drama productions.
There are over 190 eateries throughout the city with good quality British and International food on offer.
There are a couple of good American themed restaurants plus Indian, Chinese, Malaysian etc., together with a fair sprinkling of European cuisine.
Pubs, as in most cities, offer good value food.
With pedestrianised streets and The Lanes shopping centre retail therapy is a pleasant experience in the city. Two major department stores and a host of chain and independent shops, together with an indoor market, will suit everyone’s requirements.
Over forty hotels, which includes international and national chains, can be found in the city and surrounding area. A number of them are also conveniently located near the railway station. There is also a good selection of guest houses, hostels and self catering cottages.
Whilst it would appear to be quite isolated from the rest of England and Wales, the city has, in reality, good access.
The M6 leads south through Lancashire and on to the Midlands then splits with motorways continuing to London and the South West. Heading north the same motorway takes you on to Glasgow and the rest of Scotland.
The A69 takes you to Newcastle-on-Tyne via Hexham.
Similarly, the railways serve Carlisle in the same way as the major road system with connections to the rest of the country via the West Coast railway and the Carlisle/Newcastle line and the Cumbrian Coast line to Barrow-in-Furness..
Newcastle International Airport lies 60 miles to the east of the city and Carlisle itself has an airport which caters for private aircraft.
An extensive bus service is run throughout the city and Cumbria by Stagecoach. Timetables are available on Cumbria County Council website.
Three companies run taxi services in the city.
Stadium: Brunton Park, Warwick Road, Carlisle, CA1 1LL
Joined League: 1928
Chairman: Andrew Jenkins
Current League: League 2
Phone number: 01228 526 327
Email address: [email protected]
In May 1904 the members of Shaddongate United met and agreed to change their name to Carlisle United and that their games would be played at Milhome Bank. Their home moved to Devonshire Park and finally Brunton Park. After Durham City left the League in 1928 Carlisle United were elected to replace them in Division 3 North. In their first match in that League they beat Accrington Stanley 3-2.
In 1949 the club gave the great Bill Shankly, who had played sixteen games for United in season 1932/33, his first manager position. He stayed as manager for two years before moving to Grimsby Town, Workington, Huddersfield Town and then of course Liverpool.
From joining the League in 1928, the Blues remained in Division 3 North until 1958, when the League structure changed and they played in the new Division 4.
United then gained quick promotions in the early 1960’s and established themselves in the second level. Then in 1974, the big one, they were promoted to the top flight for the first time. Although they did the double over Everton and beat the eventual champions, Derby County, at home, they were relegated after just one season of glory.
By 1987 the club was back in Division 4 and in 1992, rock bottom, United were propping up the whole of the Football League. Then a stroke of luck. With the League expanded by two clubs, together with the demise of Aldershot, no clubs were relegated to the Conference.
After a few promotions and relegations and more flirting with the bottom of the bottom level, the club were finally sent down to the Conference in 2004. They thus became the first club ever to have played in the top five levels of English football. (Oxford United and Luton Town have since suffered the same fate).
Good news, after just one season Carlisle United won promotion back into the League in the 2004/05 season. They then got promoted again the next season. They continued to play in League 1 until they were relegated back to league 2 in 2014, where they currently play.
All tickets can be bought in advance, which are £3 cheaper, or on the day, by both Home and Away fans.
The Ticket Office (0844 391 921) is open 10am to 5pm for both phone and visits to office on weekdays and from 10am on match days. After 2.30pm tickets will only be sold for that current day match at the main ticket office and from 1.30pm from other ticket outlets around the outside of the stadium. These match day sales are cash only but a cash point is available at the Post Office across the road from east stand entrance.
Visitors from the opposition can purchase tickets from their own club or on match days at the away end ticket office, cash only.
Telephone the ticket office for all other queries.
Being an original football stadium Brunton Park lies close enough to walk to from the city centre, being just 0.8 miles from the Lanes Shopping Centre.
However, away fans will inevitably arrive by various forms of transport.
Car parking at the stadium is basically for season ticket holders and home fans. Mini buses can be parked at the ground for £15 payable on arrival.
If arriving from the south travel up the M6 and leave at junction 43 and then take the A69 east. This will take you to the stadium which is just 1.1 miles away.
If arriving from the east of Carlisle you will use the A69 and will find the stadium lying adjacent to the road.
Carlisle Station lies on the main London Euston to Glasgow, West Coast line. This gives an excellent service from the rest of England and Wales to and from the south. This service is operated by Virgin Trains. Trains from Newcastle to the east are run by Northern Trains.
The Cumbrian Coast line, also operated by Northern, runs to Barrow-in-Furness, via Workington and Whitehaven.
The station is just 1.2 miles away from Brunton Park. If required, taxis can be picked up from a rank outside of the station.
The number 76 bus is obtainable from the city centre and the nearest stop is at Lake Land Gate Inn. From the stop walk back down Warwick Road to the ground which is on your right.
Brunton Park football ground was built in 1909 and is the largest football stadium in England that is not all seater.
In 1953 the main wooden grandstand burnt down after an electrical fault started a fire. The sale of player Geoff Twentyman to Liverpool, for £12,500, meant the stand could be rebuilt.
The stadium is currently formed from the following stands.
The main stand is Paddock/West Stand. To the south is the Warwick Road End, then the East Stand and finally the Peverill End. Away fans are housed in the uncovered Peverill End or the north section of the East Stand.
The current capacity is 18202 and all the concourses have bars for food and drinks.
Outside, along Warwick Road is a very good variety of pubs, cafes and restaurants for fans to use.
The club have a fans shop, called Blues Store, which contains all usual football merchandise and is open every day, except Wednesdays.