Snakes Of The Derwent Valley

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  1. Ian Topham says:

    Derwentwater’s Lights
    According to the Carlisle Journal, October 1874, the remains of Francis, 1st Earl of Derwentwater who died in 1696 aged 72; Edward 2nd Earl, died 1705 aged 50; Francis Radcliffe who died in 1704 aged 48; Barbara Radcliffe who died in 1696; and Lady Mary, daughter of the 1st Earl who died in 1726 were removed from the Dilston Chapel vaults infront of a large crowd of onlookers and later re-interred in the Catholic Church burial ground in Hexham. But “the remains of the unfortunate James, 3rd Earl of Derwentwater, who was beheaded in 1716 aged 27, being removed by rail to Thorndon, Essex, there to be re-interred in the family vault of Lord Petre”.

    According to his entry in the Dictionary of National Biography “On the scaffold, Derwentwater regretted having pleaded guilty, declared his adherence to Roman Catholicism and said that he had never owned any other but James III (his cousin) as his rightful king, whom he loved… and whom he had desired to serve since infancy.”

    “A display of the aurora borealis coincided with the arrival in Co Durham of the hearse bearing his body for interment at Dilston; the phenomenon was thereafter known locally as Derwentwater’s Lights.”