Millom (formerly known as Holborn Hill) grew rapidly in size once high-grade iron ore deposits were found in the vicinity, creating a distinctive Victorian town of terraced houses and a strong community spirit. The landscapes and hardships of daily life in an industrial community were evocatively penned by Norman Nicholson, the internationally acclaimed poet and writer who spent virtually his whole life in the town.
The ruins of Millom Castle back onto Holy Trinity Church and now incorporate a 16th century farm house. In the centre of the castle the Pele Tower once stood four storeys high but the castle was badly damaged in 1648 during the English Civil War. This site stands to the north of the town, about 15 to 20 minutes walk from the station, but is not normally open to the public.
The town may have an industrial heart, but the natural world is never far away. Acres of salt marshes along the Duddon estuary, miles of golden sands on the seaward side, the heather-clad bulk of Black Combe and the broad-bottomed Whicham Valley all await exploration.
The former mining complex at Hodbarrow, now the largest coastal lagoon in the northwest of England, attracts thousands of overwintering and migratory birds and has a bird viewing hide. This is now the Hodbarrow RSPB Nature Reserve and is 2.4 km/1.5 miles from the town. The former Millom Ironworks site is now a local nature reserve and is only about 1 km/0.63 miles from the station.
The station is home to the Millom Discovery Centre. Here passengers can also buy rail tickets as well as teas and coffees .
The line just north of the station passes close to the cricket ground and then runs between the village of Haverigg, with its sandy beaches, and the slopes of Black Combe.
Close to Millom is the Cumbrian Heavy Horse Centre and this equestrian centre is unique in using Clydesdales and Shires for riding.
To the north-west of Millom are the small villages of Bootle and Waberthwaite and the scattered farming community that makes up Corney. The villages of Silecroft and Kirksanton lie at the southern end of the Whicham valley. Haverigg and Silecroft are the main holiday villages on this part of the coast, whilst to the north are the rural hamlets of The Hill, The Green and Hallthwaites.
The summit of Black Combe at 600 metres/2,000 ft. provides stunning views across Scotland, Ireland, Wales and the Isle of Man. A well-defined footpath leads to the top from the southern end of Whicham Valley.
A booklet describing local walks is available from Millom Tourist Information Centre. Car parking is provided at the station.
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