Families of South Low

The following history of families who have occupied South Low was researched and compiled by Hartley Trotter
whose efforts are gratefully acknowledged.

Originally a small farm built on the long house style.  The first known occupant, John Harrison, was recorded as the inhabitant in 1587.  The farmhouse had been built on raised ground so as to be free from flooding and was also close to the old road connecting Crosthwaite and Witherslack, with easy access to the river Gilpin for a supply of animal drinking water.  The Townson family owned the property for 200 years, 1666 – 1861 and in this time added to the size of the house by building extensions.  They also erected a new barn, a necessity due to the extra acreage received during the Heversham Award allocation (see The Heversham Award on the Parish web site). 

1871 Census - James Trotter and his wife Anne (nee Anne Hartley) were the next to farm South Low where they raised a family, one of whom was Hartley Trotter, grandfather of John Hartley Trotter.  Mrs Anne Trotter died at an early age and their son Daniel married Bessie Jackson of Row Farm and they took over the tenancy.  They vacated the farm to farm at Oxenholme Farm near Kendal.


1881 British Census

James Trotter

Age 45

Farmer of 43 acres

Sarah Trotter

Age 13

Daughter of James

Daniel Trotter

Age 11

Son of James (scholar)

Hannah Trotter

Age 8

Daughter of James (scholar)

Hartley Trotter

Age 6

Son of James (scholar)

Bella Trotter

Age 5

Daughter of James (scholar)


Saturday, 13 June 1894 new burial ground at Crosthwaite Church consecrated by the Bishop.  James Trotter of South Low contributed 10s. 0d. towards the cost of draining the burial ground. 

In 1908 - Gazette report – an accident at Trotter’s hill (South Low) when a motor vehicle ran into a horse and cart belonging to Thomas Strickland.  The horse sustained a broken leg and had to be shot.  James Inman and James Inman junior of Draw Well gave evidence – they had been working near the scene - and stated that the vehicle was travelling at 30 miles per hour.  Grandfather told John Hartley Trotter about when his father’s horse developed lameness he resorted to digging over an entire field next to the toll road with a spade – quite a task. 


South Low - Owners and Tenants



Tenant John Harrison


Leonard Townson purchased South Low Farm from Myles Rowlandson 20 acres for £294 (eight shillings and four pence per year due to the Lord of the Manor


Leonard Townson and his wife Jenett died and left South Low to their younger son Thomas who was 20yrs old and apprenticed to a glove maker at Beckhead Witherslack


Thomas had an illegitimate child by Anne Cartmell


Thomas Townson allocated seating in the Chappel


Thomas Townson of South Low fined five shillings for disturbing the bracken mowers (bracken was burnt in kilns for potash essential for soap making and the wool trade evidence of a kiln at the bottom of Thorny orchard)


17th August Thomas Townson married Agnes Garnett, Daughter of Wm Garnett. They had 2 children Agnes baptised 7th Feb 1672 and William baptised 11th October 1676 


Hearth tax had gone from 2 hearths to 3 (indicating that extensions to the house had been carried out)


Thomas Townson leased for £8 10s. 0d per year a neighbouring farm (probably Christopher Partners Tenement indicating that there could have been three farms in the cluster at the Low)


Thomas Townson died


Agnes Townson (wife of Thomas) passed South Low farm to her son William (1676 – 1745) where he farmed all his life


William married Margaret Barrow of Broadoak Crosthwaite.  They had 10 children


Margaret Townson (Wife of William ) died 


William Townson died left 21 Beasts 4 Workhorses and some sheep


William Townson left South Low to his son Thomas


Thomas Townson died (unmarried) 


Leonard Townson (1727 – 1790) married Mary Dickinson at Cartmel Priory (they had seven children) and moved into South Low farm


Thomas Townson (son of Leonard) married Elizabeth Dickinson and lived in the Row.  They had 2 children, Robert February 1786 and Ellen December 1786.
Thomas farmed with his father Leonard at South Low


Leonard Townson died aged 63


Thomas Townson died aged 35.  In his will his son Robert was to inherit South Low Farm at the age of 21.


Robert  Townson his sister Ellen and Mother Betty (Elizabeth) moved into South Low.   George Bennett aged 23 came to manage the farm


George Bennett married Betty Townson 11th December.  They had two children daughter Isabella 7 January 1798 and son George 23 November 1802.
George continued to farm at South Low until 1815. Betty died 1835


Robert Townson (son of Thomas and Betty Townson) married Mary Wilson 13 May 1819, daughter of John and Elizabeth of Low Farm. They moved into South Low and had 5 children. Robert was granted 3 fields (10 acres ) under the Heversham Award making the farm 35 acres.


Census Robert and Mary Townson South Low Farm


Robert Townson sold South Low Farm to Mr Argles


(Census) Robert and Mary Townson farming South Low


(Census) James and Ann Trotter, farming 43 acres


(Census) James Trotter and five children (wife deceased)


(Census) Daniel Trotter aged 31 and Bessie Trotter (formerly Bessie Jackson of Row Farm) farming at Low Farm.


Joe Park married Margaret Martindale.  They had 2 sons and 2 daughters – Dennis, Edgar, Clara and Betty


Joe Park purchased South Low Farm, 35 acres, from Argles for £1,660.  Previously rent had been £88


M B Hodgson sale of 41 cattle, horses and implements for Joe Park


Edgar Park farmer


Mrs Joe Park died, funeral 30 April 1964


Joe Park died


Annie Park died


Edgar Park died.
He willed a barn and adjacent field and “thorny” orchard to Lynda Smith, a second orchard and 2 adjacent meadows to Colin Park


12 May - Kendal Town Hall - Michael C L Hodgson offered South Low farmhouse and orchard for sale.  Bid to £200,000 – not sold.  Later sold privately to Mr & Mrs John Sceal


Field  at Toll Bar road end, 3.92 acres, sold to Ann Wilson for £12,000


Swan Nest, 6.14 acres, sold to Mr Gibson for £18,000


Nabs, 6.32 acres, sold to Mr J Hewitson for £18,000


Tunnel lot, 4.67 acres, sold to Mr Edmondson for £13,500


Mr & Mrs John Sceal purchased South Low