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Lake District Towns and Villages

Buttermere in the Lake District National Park

Buttermere village lies in the flat, gentle farming land between Buttermere Lake and Crummock Water. The village consists of only of a few farms, two well known hotels, the Bridge Hotel and the Fish Hotel, a number of stone built houses, a tiny church, and an old, small school house, now used as a village hall. There is also a youth hostel, situated about a quarter of a mile from the village and overlooking the lake.

The tiny church of St. James stands on a rocky outcrop above the village. It was built in 1840, and contains a memorial to Alfred Wainwright on the sill of one of its windows. Haystacks, Wainwright's favourite mountain overlooks Buttermere, and many people climb it just to pay homage to the writer, whose ashes were strewn here.

The Bridge Hotel, offers accommodation and a bar and restaurant. The Fish Hotel, also offering the same, became an early tourist attraction after the story of Mary Robinson, known as the maid of Buttermere and daughter of the inn keeper was described in 1795 by J.Budsworth in A Fortnight' Ramble in the Lakes. The story of the famous beauty has been retold by Melvyn Bragg, author and broadcaster.

The two lakes have a contrasting beauty that bring back obsessive fell walkers again and again. They are seperated by only a half mile strip of meadowland and were probably once joined up. Butteremere is the smaller and better known, ringed by craigs and peaks of haystacks, fleetwood pike and others. The 4 mile stroll around the lake is a stunning one with impressive views in all directions.

Crummock Water, quite abit larger, has a path which runs all along it's western shore, joining up with the road that runs down the eastern shore. It's main attraction is Scale Force which at 172ft is probably the longest waterfall in the Lakes. It boasts the soaring slopes of Grasmoor on its north shore. The road links Lorton Vale to the north of Buttermere to the steep and dramatic Honister Pass to the east and continues on to Borrowdale.

There is plenty of parking in the village itself, which is the best starting point for many of the local walks.

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