Solway Plain - past and present by the Holme St Cuthbert History Group

The Longcakes are  a long established farming family who lived for over a hundred years at Pelutho.

John Longcake  married Mary Wise and they had one child John Wise Longcake. Tragically young John died aged seventeen from whooping cough in 1850.  A plaque in Holme St Cuthbert Church dedicated to his memory reads:-
"In memory of John Wise Longcake of Pelutho House who died on the 22nd of May 1850 aged 17 years.  His promising talents, high principle, and kind heart were like a flower, untimely blasted:  but his spirit will richly bloom again in a more genial world; having died a zealous Christian".

Sketch of Holme St Cuthbert Church
Holme St Cuthbert Church

When John Longcake senior died in 1873 he left instructions in his will to set up the Longcake Charity, which is still going today.

In his will he requested that the interest on the sum of £600 should be divided among the poor of Holme St. Cuthbert parish each Christmas and the residue of his estate should be invested and the interest used for the promotion of religion and education in the parishes of Holme Abbey, Holme Low and Holme St. Cuthbert. He also left £1,000 to Cumberland Infirmary and smaller amounts of money to several churches.

He wanted the annual sum of £40 for three years to be given to:- "any clever boy attending the Elementary School in that parish (Holme St Cuthbert) towards obtaining a higher education to enable him to follow a learned profession or a superior class of business".

He left similar scholarships of £10 to Aldoth School, £20 to Silloth School and £20 to Abbey school. By 1887, the Trustees had made all the scholarships the same value at £25 and girls were included.

In more recent times, the family became important local business people.

The advert on the right appeared in a guide to Silloth during the 1950s. The family's Ice Cream van was a familiar sight on all the beaches in the area.

The advert below appeared in Joseph Wood's guide to the town published in 1870.
Advert for Longcake's Ice Cream
Advert for Longcakes Clothing Store

George Langcake (the spelling varied) was a saddler in Carlisle. In 1705, his son, another George moved to Holland where the family name became Lengkeek.

Mr Lengkeek at Abbeytown churchyard
Adrianus Cornelis among the gravestones
at Abbeytown

George’s descendant, Adrianus Cornelis Lengkeek, born 28 November 1879 in The Hague, Holland, traced his family history. In 1947, he made a pilgrimage to the Holme Cultram area, seeking his roots and the graves of his ancestors.

Art Lengkeek
Art Lengkeek in Carlisle at the corner of Longcake's
Lane most of which has now vanished below a
modern shopping centre.

His grandson, Art Lengkeek, lives in Canada. In 2006, together with his wife Hanna, he made a similar journey, stopping off at Carlisle and at Mawbray where they told their fascinating story to the members of the Holme St Cuthbert History Group.

At the group’s request, Art has written a full and detailed history of the Longcake/Langcake families of the Solway Plain which can be downloaded through the link below.

Art Lengkeek's history is available here in word processed format to save or print

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The Longcake Family