Topics > Civil Parishes in Cumbria > Shap Civil Parish

Shap Civil Parish

Parish boundaries may have changed - for the latest map see the Parish Council or Cumbria County Council.

About the Parish

Main Settlements:

Shap (village), Keld


1,264  (2011 Census)

1,221  (2001 Census)

Area: 8.42 km2
Parish Council: Shap Parish Council - a joint council also covering Shap Rural Civil Parish
District Council: Eden District Council
County Council: Cumbria County Council


Ancient Parish:

Shap Parish  (St Michael)

This ancient parish covered a wider geographical area compared to the current civil parish. As well as Shap, it included the chapelry of Swindale, and part of Mardale.

Ancient parishes refer to the parishes before the split between ecclesiastical (church) and civil parishes in the 19th century. They had a parish church and often were composed of multiple townships and chapelries. In many cases, townships and parishes were originally based on the territory of manors from the feudal system during medieval times. Civil parishes were created following the Poor Law Amendment Act 1866, in which Church of England parishes, extra-parochial areas, townships and chapelries, became "civil parishes" which could set their own poor rate (tax). Then the reforms of Local Government Act 1894 established elected civil parish councils (or parish meetings for parishes with less than 300 residents) and created urban and rural districts. Boundaries of parishes and civil parishes may have changed over time.

Ancient District:

West (ward)

Poor Law Union:

West Ward Poor Law Union, formed in 1836.

West Ward Union Workhouse was located on Home Lane in Shap, built in 1877 to house up to 60 inmates. This replaced an earlier workhouse at Eamont Bridge.

Under the Poor Law Amendment Act of 1834 parishes were grouped into Unions, each of which had to build a workhouse if they did not already have one. It ended the old system of locally provided poor relief which had come under strain as numbers out of work grew, following increasing mechanisation of agriculture and the economic downturn after the Napoleonic Wars, along with changing social attitudes. The workhouse provided those unable to support themselves financially with accommodation and work. Inmates were generally segregated into men, women, boys and girls. 

The workhouse system was abolished by the Local Government Act 1929, but many workhouses lived on as ‘Public Assistance Institutions’ until the National Assistance Act 1948.


Westmorland, until 1974, then:

Cumbria, which was created on the 1st of April 1974, following the Local Government Act 1972. The new county absorbed  Cumberland and Westmorland, and added some parts of Lancashire and the West Riding of Yorkshire.

District Council:

Shap Urban District (1905 - 1935)

North Westmorland Rural District (1935 - 1974). This absorbed Shap UD and West Ward RD.

Eden District (1974 - )

See also:  Historic Buildings and Monuments in Shap Civil Parish. Note: listed buildings are generally the responsibility of the county council / district council, rather than the parish council.

Civil Parishes in Cumbria Shap Historic Buildings and Monuments in Shap Civil Parish Shap Parish, 1848
Shap Parish Council
- "...Shap Parish Council administers the Parishes of SHAP and SHAP RURAL There are TEN elected councillors, SEVEN councillors represent Shap Parish and THREE represent Shap Rural Parish...."

Added by
Peter Smith
  Co-Curate Page
- Overview About Shap Map Street View   Shap is a linear village and civil parish located among fells and isolated dales in Eden district, Cumbria, England. The village lies along …


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Co-Curate is a project which brings together online collections, museums, universities, schools and community groups to make and re-make stories and images from North East England and Cumbria. Co-Curate is a trans-disciplinary project that will open up 'official' museum and 'un-officia'l co-created community-based collections and archives through innovative collaborative approaches using social media and open archives/data.