THE OLD TOLL HOUSE WATERHEAD.
This toll gate at Waterhead at the junction with the main Ambleside Rd and the low road to the town must have ceased to fulfil it's purpose between 1874 and 1890. The toll cottage was mostly demolished to make way for the rather ugly Victorian building which is now the shop on the corner. The original windows still appear to be incorporated in the newer building.
The story goes that the carters became so annoyed with having to pay the tolls that one day they hitched their horses to the gates and pulled them off, and that signalled the end of the tolls, but I cannot vouch for this story, it seems like a tale made up for telling.
We also have a copy of the auction of the toll gates to be let on the Ambleside turnpike road. There were five gates between Kendal and Grasmere and as they produced an annual income of £1000 in 1873 they must have provided a very valuable source of income.
The new house became The County Bell's Coaching Hotel. In the 30's it was the County Cafe and then in the 1950's it was turned into flats. At the present time, 2005 It is a shop on the ground floor and student accommodation above.