The Dun Bull Hotel



Above the Dun Bull taken in 1921, most views of this building were taken from the opposite angle facing the front door, the farm which came attached can be seen on the left of the complex, the middle section was added during the rein of John Lamley landlord at the time of this picture, also the rear of the Holme residence can be seen, with its off shooting annex's at its rear, on the far right are buildings belonging to Grove Brae farm



 Above shows the Dun Bull Hotel with the tennis court opposite, Mr Bob Daffurn ran the Hotel together with the attached farm and a thousand sheep, which provided an extra income when times were slow during the winter months, the Hotel and adjoining property, once the dwelling of the Holmes family had sixteen bedrooms, three kitchens, two bars, three servants quarters, three WC's, in all a very nice property indeed, which would command a tidy price on the property market today.



Above shows the Dun Bull ruins in 1976 with the tennis court opposite, old Mardale road running across the bottom of shot.



 Above shows a cool Autumn day, chimneys are smoking, everyone is inside in front of the roaring fire, below shows the rear of the Hotel.




 The Dun Bull stood on a site where other inns had before it for over 500 years, it also stood on a point where several main by ways converged and was particularly famous throughout eastern Lakeland, as a favourite amongst ramblers and climbers alike who often visited  the valley during the summer months, the Mardale hunt was a very busy time for Bob Daffurn and his staff, in both kitchens going non stop, Gentleman would arrive on Friday morning and some would lodge until Tuesday, we had them sleeping in the windows, on the floor on rugs, even in the bathroom and in the stables, anywhere we could get them, we only had sixteen rooms to let, which were all gone by lunch time.


On Friday night we would get to bed around 2.0 clock and Saturday and Sunday, we wouldn't get to bed at all, it was quite a different matter during the winter months though, things were so tight, we would have to put a penny or two into the till and wouldn't turn the tap unless we wanted a drink ourselves, thanks for the farm and the 1000 sheep to tide us by.



Many a home comforts were on offer here, in 1927 several hundred shepherds gathered for a festival which lasted for over a week, sheep were returned to their rightful owners, and those left unclaimed were kept and fed for a year before being sold off, the hotel also ran the summer fate, where Cumberland and Westmoreland wrestling was a favourite, seen above are the Mardale Hunt Pack, the very last from the hotel.




The scene above shows an earlier hunt gathering possibly before the turn of the twentieth century, notice the pot pint mug held by the shepherd in the middle of shot, its just like the one below, which measured exactly one pint when filled up to the rim on the outside edge, it was rescued from the Dun Bull cellar before the flooding of the valley.