Abbeytown - A nearby hamlet, Abbey Cowper, was once called Cowbier after the cows kept there by the monks. South of the Abbey, Swinsty (now a private farm) served as a piggery for the monks. Many of the village buildings were constructed from the Abbey's stones when it fell into ruin after the dissolution of the monasteries in 1536. But the abbey's church remained to serve as a refuge for the people during border raids. Abbeytown is near the Solway Coast and Moricambe Bay. The Cumbria Coastal Way passes nearby. The land also provided excellent pasture for horses and cattle, and a weekly market and two fairs a year traded in the livestock. Sheep were grazed for the lucrative wool trade, and salt was mined from the sea. Walkers will enjoy ambling along the River Waver and watching for wildlife. It was in Abbeytown that The Solway Junction Railway joined the Carlisle and Silloth Bay Railway before leaving it again at Kirkbride Junction.
Bowness-on-Solway lies within the Solway Coast Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty. Solway’s name may originate from the Norse: sul (pillar) and vath (ford). The ford refers to the low tide crossing of the estuary here. The name of the Bowness-on-Solway may originate from the Anglo-Saxon word baelg, a swellng, and ness, a nose of land as it sits on a rounded peninsula. It is an ancient crossing point of the estuary, and guides used to conduct people across to Scotland. There is a legend that a battle took place on the sands between the two countries. In 1845 land was reclaimed from the sea to use for agricultural purposes, but, at high tide, some of the roads and land flood. It was at Bowness that the The Solway Junction Railway left England accross the Solway Viaduct to arrive in Scotland at Annan. Bowness-on-Solway Station was situated just before pier on the other side of the coast road.
Bromfield - The small hamlet of Bromfield sits on agricultural land between Crummock beck and Langrigg beck. Its name means ‘broom-covered land.’ Bromfield’s history is tied in with that of Holme Cultram abbey. In the village is St Mungo (another name for St Kentigern) church, having the distinction of once allowing cockfighting in its churchyard. The site was a place of worship in pagan times and continued through Roman and pre-Norman days. The present church, built on the site of three earlier churches, is part Norman. It was restored in the 1860s. Bromfield’s position mid-way between the towns of Wigton and Aspatria provides Lakeland mountain views to the south. To the north are the hills of Scotland and the Solway Firth. The station at Bromfield had a siding for Fielding & Company and was 1¾ from Brayton Junction. The station today is a private house.
Kirkbride - In Roman times the Kirkbride fort was situated a few miles to the south of the later fort at Bowness on Solway. The fort was likely founded by Agricola and probably re-built during the mid/late Trajanic period as part of the Stanegate frontier. It is possible that the Kirkbride fort, built on the River Wampool beside the natural sheltered harbour offered by the Moricambe mud-flats, represents the Portus Trucculensis mentioned by Tacitus (Agricola XXXVII.iv) but as yet unidentified. Kirkbride airfield first opened in 1939 and remained open for use by the RAF until May 1960. Its primary function was as a care & maintenance base (no 12) to keep aircraft being delivered from factories until they could be accepted to full time active squadrons, the idea that aircraft were being kept as far as practical from the action until needed. All types of aircraft were seen inc, Avro Tutors, Magisters, Fairy Battles, Spitfires, Hurricanes, Avro Lancasters, Halifaxes and Liberators. Last official aircraft to be flown out from the airfield was a mk14 Gloster Meteor in 1960. Today Kirkbride is still a huge site with private flying taking place off the remaining main runway and all the main hangers still intact and being used for various things,sadly none of them aviation related. Carlisle and Silloth Bay Railway ran through Kirkbride which had its own station and it was on the outskirts of Kirkbride that the solway Junction Railway branched off at Kirkbride Junction in the direction of Whitrigg and on to Bowness-on-Solway and the viaduct.