Around twenty miles up the coast from Ravenglass, some fine Georgian houses mark out the centre of WHITEHAVEN – one of the few grid-planned towns in England and easily the most interesting destination on Cumbria’s west coast. Whitehaven had long had a trade in coal, but its rapid economic expansion was largely due to the booming slave trade – the town spent a brief period during the eighteenth century as one of Britain’s busiest ports, importing sugar, rum, spices, tea, timber and tobacco.

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