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COCKERMOUTH HOTEL'S MYSTERY FIREPLACE
We all know that tourists flock to Cumbria for our spectacular scenery, but perhaps less well appreciated is our rich history and heritage. And for one local hotel the historical connections are literally right on their doorstep. In fact any guests staying in Room 208 at the Allerdale Court Hotel in Market Place, Cockermouth, will find themselves party to something of a centuries-old mystery.
Taller guests will realise there's something a bit unusual when they have to lower their heads slightly when they enter the bedroom. That's because the entrance passes through a unique feature - an old stone archway stretching almost the whole width of the room. While looking very much like an inglenook fireplace, there's no chimney and the edifice seems to serve no useful purpose other than as an attractive and highly unusual feature. Not surprisingly it's also a big talking point amongst guests.
Why is it there and where did it come from? No-one knows for sure, but there's an intriguing clue. Towards one end of the arch the initials 'PF' are carved boldly into the masonry. Local historians say that the building that is now the Allerdale Court dates back to the 18th century and it was once owned by Mr Paul Fletcher, one of the Fletcher family who wielded considerable power and influence in the area at that time. So it seems likely that 'PF' was the same Paul Fletcher.
Of course Cockermouth has strong connections with another famous Fletcher - the HMS Bounty mutineer Fletcher Christian who was born at Moorland Close Farm on the outskirts of the town in 1764. His first name came from his grandmother, also one of the same Fletcher family.
May we respectfully remind our guests that all of our bedrooms are non-smoking.
Barbara has worked in every department at the Allerdale Court Hotel and is therefore well equipped for her position as Assistant Manager.
Sarah has worked at the Allerdale Court for over two years on a part-time basis. She is responsible for looking after guests in the bistro.
Tracey has worked at the Allerdale Court Hotel for the past 8 years and is the head receptionist and the person you are more than likely to chat to when you call!
Ioan Mica has joined our team almost a year ago and is currently looking after the Bar & Bistro. He has worked and traveled within the Hotel Industry for over 12 years all over and has been a great addition and support to our team.
Kay bought the Allerdale Court Hotel 13 years ago and has multi-tasked ever since. Having overall responsibility for everything.
The Allerdale Court Hotel is situated in the newly redesigned Market Place in Cockermouth, gateway to the Western English Lakes, on the edge of the Lake District National Park. The hotel is just a few minutes drive from some of Lakelands hidden treasures. With 25 well appointed bedrooms some modern and some traditional, it's your choice! With one restaurant, the hotel offers an excellent range of food. The Allerdale Court provides cosiness, security and pure relaxation for; those who truly deserve it from the ever busy business traveller to those who fancy a well deserved break
The Hotel is owned and run by Kay Carlin with the help of a fantastic team. We have been here over 13 years.
Kay's husband John sadly passed away in January 2010 following the stress of the November 2009 floods and the temporary closure of the business.
John had a wealth of hospitality experience and prior to buying the Allerdale Court Hotel, he was General Manager at the Santiago Hotel in Tenerife for 2 years, Spent 12 years at the Atlantic Hotel, Banjul, The Gambia, 2 years at The Serena Beach Hotel, Mombasa and 5 years at the Coral Strand Hotel, Mahe, Seychelles.
Kay has enjoyed a varied career in numerous countries over the years including Tour Rep, Accountant, Visa Applications in High Commissions, Secretarial, and had her own children's party and catering company - Bingo the Clown and Friends! - and now............. .