Who claimed that the Lake District was overcrowded? Take a leisurely drive up the dead-end road from Bampton Grange to Haweswater, and you’ll discover an immediate remedy to the bustling crowds of the central lakes.

Today, Haweswater is one long reservoir – four miles long, half a mile wide, and 198 feet deep.

In fact, Haweswater is actually the largest reservoir in the northwest and one of the largest in England.

Hawewater supplies a quarter of the region’s drinking water – a staggering 400 million litres every day. It flows all the way to Manchester (and lots of other places in between) via a 60-mile aqueduct.

This artificial lake was created at the end of the 1930s by damming two natural lakes – High Water and Low Water.

The lake was built to supply water to the Greater Manchester area. The water quality here is one of the cleanest sources of water in the country.

At its head stood the attractive village of Mardale, with a renowned in called the Dun Bull.

In 1940, the Manchester Corporation Waterworks stepped in and spent £5 million on building a 120-foot-high-dam.

The two villages of Measand and Mardale were flooded by the new reservoir and lost under the water.

Access to Haweswater is only accessible by car. Usually, visitors have the lake all to themselves.

During times of drought, walls, and ruins of the drowned village of Mardale can be seen.

A very rare fish can be found here too called the schelly. The only other places it is found is in Ullswater and Red Tarn on Helvellyn.

The RSPB has been involved in the Haweswater area for a long time. When golden eagles returned to the lake District to breed in 1969 it was Haweswater they chose.

Haweswater is a haven for wildlife and for visitors who appreciate seclusion.


For walkers, there is an 8.7-mile trail around the lake from the Marsdale Green car park situated at the far end of the lake.

For serious hikers, you can head west from the same car park, passing Small Water to get up to the top of High Street.

Closer to the shore is a wild secluded corner of eastern Lake District National Park.

The RSPB is now looking after Naddle Farm in this eastern part of the Lake District.

They’re doing this to safeguard an old forest area.

Here, hikers can come and see birds like pied flycatchers, ring ouzels, peregrine falcons, and merlins.

The reserve also has a mix of habitats in the uplands. You can see fell ponies grazing there, as well as the Haweswater reservoir itself.

Celebration Wood is a beautiful, peaceful place for quiet reflection and communion with nature. It is home to red squirrels, badgers, and a host of other birds.

Haweswater’s woodlands teem with life.

Travel time to Mardale Green car park is approximately 1 hour by car from Lothlorien Holiday Cottage in Kents Bank.

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June 3rd
(4 nights)

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