Newbiggin Reading Room

Newbiggin Reading Room is available to hire by local residents for non-commercial purposes.
The premises were completely renovated and modernised in 2016 to make an attractive venue that is warm, dry, and cosy.
It comprises a meeting room, well equipped kitchen, toilet and lobby all on the ground floor with disabled access to the front door.  Parking along the village green is nearby.
The meeting room has comfortable seating for up to 20 people, with six square tables.
Room hire rates in 2016 for a morning, afternoon or evening session are just £10.
For more details, availability and bookings please contact Mrs Annette Hall on 017683 62654 or by email

Newbiggin Ladies

We meet the first Thursday of the month except January and August, in the Newbiggin Reading Room. A speaker on a subject of interest or an event is arranged by members of the group, who share the organisation of the meetings. December is our Christmas dinner and in June we usually have a walk. Often in July we join up with Temple Sowerby Ladies Supper Club, for an evening outing at the theatre. It is a very relaxed and informal group that has been running over 50 years now. If you would like to know more contact Deborah by clicking here.

Newbiggin History

Newbiggin, Temple Sowerby, is a small hamlet with 40 properties in the Parish, mainly of Sandstone and Slate construction.  It has a long history shaped by agriculture, the railway and mining. Today there are three working farms in the Parish, Newbiggin Hall Farm, Williamsgill Farm and Black Leases Farm. A fourth, Town End Farm, in the centre of the village, is now a private house and the adjoining barns have been converted into dwellings, or developed into new houses. A fifth, Moorlands Head Farm is now owned and operated as a cattery and kennels by Eden Animal Rescue.

Newbiggin Hall Farm was previously part of the Newbiggin Hall estate. The Hall entrance stands at the village crossroads which connects Temple Sowerby to Milburn and Culgaith to Kirkby Thore. The Hall has its origins as a Pele tower built in the 13th century, which has been much extended since with extensive gardens and outbuildings, – originally being a coach house, stables and grooms quarters.  Also within the portals of The Hall stands St Edmunds church, a Norman church rebuilt and with a fine carved screen from the 14th century. The graveyard hosts a spectacular display of snowdrops in Spring.

Opposite The Hall is an attractive village green with adjoining properties that date back to the 17th century, including a former hunting lodge and farm worker cottages.  Also near the crossroad is Newbiggin Reading Room, attached to Corner House.  This was formerly the village school room which closed over fifty years ago and has since been used informally as the village hall.  The freehold was purchased in 2015 by the Newbiggin Recreation on behalf of residents and was totally refurbished a year later.  For many years Newbiggin Recreation has organised social events in the village and today also manage and hire the Reading Room as a community hall.

Beyond the Church, a bridge over Crowdundle Beck marks the northern boundary of the village. It was formerly the division between the counties of Cumberland and Westmorland, Newbiggin being in Westmorland.  A very attractive footpath downstream along the beck leads to Acorn Bank House, Mill and Gardens.  Upstream of the bridge Newbiggin Mill, once a flour mill, is now a private house.

The Settle to Carlisle railway line runs along the opposite edge of the village.  The station at Newbiggin was closed in 1970 but when opened in 1876 was very busy as evidenced by Railway Cottages that were built to accommodate porters fetching people and goods to the station, including stone from Culgaith quarry. Today, the Station and Station Master’s House are private dwellings as are the four Railway Cottages. Beyond the railway line Newbiggin mine has now closed and been re-landscaped back to pastureland.  It was one of several Gypsum mines in the area, with underground tunnels leading to Kirkby Thore.