The PENNINES /ˈpɛnaɪnz/ , also known as the PENNINE CHAIN or
PENNINE HILLS, are a range of mountains and hills in Northern England
North West England
Often described as the "backbone of England", the Pennine Hills
form a more-or-less continuous range stretching northwards from the
The region is widely considered to be one of the most scenic areas of
the United Kingdom. The
The Cheviot Hills, separated by the Tyne Gap and the
* 1 Name
* 2 Geography and geology
* 2.1 Elevation * 2.2 Drainage * 2.3 Climate * 2.4 Character areas
* 3 History * 4 Demography * 5 Economy * 6 Transport * 7 National Parks and AONBs * 8 Language * 9 Folklore and customs * 10 Flora * 11 Fauna * 12 See also * 13 References * 14 External links
Various etymologies have been proposed treating "Pennine" as though
it were a native Brittonic /Modern Welsh name related to _pen-_
("head") . In fact, it did not become a common name until the 18th
century and almost certainly derives from modern comparisons with the
Following an 1853 article by
Arthur Hussey , it has become a common
belief that the name derives from a passage in _The Description of
Britain _ (Latin : _De Situ Britanniæ_), an infamous historical
forgery concocted by
Charles Bertram in the 1740s and accepted as
genuine until the 1840s. In 2004, George Redmonds reassessed this,
finding that numerous respected writers passed over the origin of the
mountains' name in silence even in works dedicated to the topological
Various towns and geographical features within the
Celtic names, including Penrith , the fell
Pen-y-ghent , the River
Eden , and the area of
GEOGRAPHY AND GEOLOGY
The northern Pennine range is bordered by the Eden Valley , foothills
Most of the Pennine landscape is characterised by upland areas of
high moorland indented by more fertile river valleys, although the
landscape varies in different areas. The
Rising less than 3,000 feet, the
Pennines are often referred to as
fells. The highest is Cross
Fell in eastern Cumbria, at 2,930 feet
(893 m), while other principal peaks at the
Kinder Downfall , a waterfall on Kinder Scout, Dark Peak
For much of their length the Pennines form the main watershed in northern England, dividing east and west. The rivers Eden , Ribble , Dane and tributaries of the Mersey (including the Irwell , Tame and Goyt ) flow westwards towards the Irish Sea . On the eastern side of the watershed, the rivers Tyne , Tees , Wear , Swale , Ure , Nidd , Wharfe , Aire , Calder and Don rise in the region and flow eastwards to the North Sea . The River Trent , however, rises on the western side of the Pennines before flowing around the southern end of the range and up the eastern side; together with its tributaries (principally the Dove and Derwent ) it thus drains both east and west sides of the southern end to the North Sea.
Map of British Isles climatic zones. The Pennines are classified as zones 7 and 8, with 8 being milder areas and 7 being colder areas.
The Pennine climate is generally temperate like that of the rest of England, but the hills have more precipitation, stronger winds and colder weather than the surrounding areas. Some areas could be described as Oceanic climate verging on Subarctic climate and a small area in Teesdale is classified as subarctic. More snow falls on the Pennines than on surrounding lowland areas due to the elevation and distance from the coast; unlike lowland areas of England, the Pennines can have quite severe winters.
The northwest is amongst the wettest regions of England and much of the rain falls on the Pennines. The eastern side is drier than the west—the rain shadow shields northeast England from rainfall that would otherwise fall there.
Precipitation is important for the area's biodiversity and human population. Many towns and cities are located along rivers flowing from the hills and in northwest England the lack of natural aquifers is compensated for by reservoirs.
Water has carved out gorges, caves and limestone landscapes in the
The Pennines are in climate zones 7 and 8: zone 8 is common throughout most of the UK and zone 7 is the UK's coldest climatic zone. The Pennines, Scottish Highlands , Southern Uplands and Snowdonia are the only areas of the UK in zone 7.
CLIMATE DATA FOR GREAT DUN FELL, NORTH PENNINES (848 M) 1981–2010
MONTH JAN FEB MAR APR MAY JUN JUL AUG SEP OCT NOV DEC YEAR
AVERAGE HIGH °C (°F) 1.5 (34.7) 0.8 (33.4) 2.2 (36) 4.2 (39.6) 7.9 (46.2) 10.5 (50.9) 12.4 (54.3) 12.1 (53.8) 9.7 (49.5) 6.6 (43.9) 3.8 (38.8) 1.9 (35.4) 6.13 (43.04)
AVERAGE LOW °C (°F) −2.6 (27.3) −2.9 (26.8) −1.9 (28.6) −0.4 (31.3) 2.3 (36.1) 5.1 (41.2) 7.3 (45.1) 7.3 (45.1) 5.2 (41.4) 2.6 (36.7) −0.1 (31.8) −2.3 (27.9) 1.63 (34.94)
Source: Met Office
Pennine National Character Areas
England has been divided into areas of similar landscape character. Originally called joint character areas, the national character areas are a widely recognised national spatial framework, but their boundaries are not precise and should be considered as broad zones of transition.
National character areas are:
* Border Moors and Forests
* Tyne Gap and Hadrian\'s Wall
Croasdale Fell , Forest of Bowland.
A prehistoric settlement on Harkerside Moor in Swaledale .
The Pennines were controlled by the tribal federation of the Brigantes , made up of mainly small tribes who inhabited the area and cooperated on defence and external affairs. The Brigantes evolved an early form of kingdom. During Roman times , the Brigantes were dominated by the Romans who exploited the Pennines for their natural resources including the wild animals found there.
The Pennines were a major obstacle for Anglo-Saxon expansion westwards, although it appears the Anglo-Saxons travelled through the valleys. During the Dark Ages the Pennines were controlled by Celtic and Anglo-Saxon kingdoms. It is believed that the north Pennines were under the control of the kingdom of Rheged .
During Norse times the
Pennines were settled by
Viking Danes in the
east and Norwegian Vikings in the west. The Vikings influenced place
names, culture and genetics. When England was unified the Pennines
were incorporated into it. Their mixture of Celtic,
Viking heritage resembled much of the rest of northern England and its
culture developed alongside its lowland neighbours in northwest and
northeast England. The
Pennines were not a distinct political polity ,
but were divided between neighbouring counties in northeast and
northwest England; a major part was in the West Riding of
The Pennine region is sparsely populated by English standards. Larger
population centres adjoin the southern Pennine range and the Peak
District, such as
Chesterfield , Halifax ,
Huddersfield , Macclesfield
Rochdale , but most of the northern Pennine range is
thinly populated. The cities of
Leeds , Manchester
The main economic activities include sheep farming , quarrying , finance and tourism .
The Pennines are traversed by several passes, mostly aligned with major rivers.
Gaps that allow west–east communication across the
the Tyne Gap between the
Pennines and the Cheviots, through which the
A69 road and Tyne Valley railway link Carlisle and Newcastle upon Tyne
A66 road , its summit at 1,450 feet (440 m), follows the course
of a Roman road from
Scotch Corner to Penrith through the Stainmore
Gap between the Eden Valley in
Further south the
A58 road traverses the
Calder Valley between West
Three trans-Pennine canals built during the Industrial Revolution cross the range:
* The Huddersfield Narrow Canal connects Huddersfield in the east with Manchester in the west. When it reaches Marsden , it passes underneath the hills through the Standedge Tunnel to Diggle . Fortnightly during the summer season, one can pass through the tunnel on a public narrowboat. * The Rochdale Canal crosses the Pennines via Rochdale , connecting the market town of Sowerby Bridge with Manchester. * The Leeds and Liverpool Canal , the longest and most northerly of the three, crosses the Pennines via Skipton , Burnley, Chorley and Wigan connecting Leeds in the east with Liverpool in the west.
The eastern portal of Woodhead 3 shortly before opening in 1954 A train in British Rail blue about to enter the western portal of Woodhead 3, shortly before closure in 1981 Photograph from 1953, showing the western portals of Woodhead 1 it was the first of several trans-Pennine tunnels including the Standedge and Totley tunnels, which are only slightly longer.
The first two tunnels were replaced by Woodhead 3, which was longer than the other two at 3 miles 66 yards (4860m). It was bored purposely for the overhead electrification of the route and completed in 1953. The tunnel was opened by the then transport minister Alan Lennox-Boyd on 3 June 1954. It was designed by Sir William Halcrow "> The National Parks of England and Wales; three include areas of the Pennines, those marked as 9, 7 and 1
Considerable areas of Pennine landscape are protected as UK national
Areas of Outstanding Natural Beauty
The language used in pre-Roman and Roman times was British . During the Early Middle Ages , the Cumbric language developed. Little evidence of Cumbric remains, so it is difficult to ascertain whether or not it was distinct from Old Welsh . The extent of the region in which Cumbric was spoken is also unknown.
During Anglo-Saxon times the area was settled by Anglian peoples of Mercia and Northumbria , rather than the Saxon people of Southern England . Celtic speech remained in most areas of the Pennines longer than it did in the surrounding areas of England. Eventually, the Celtic tongue of the Pennines was replaced by early English as Anglo-Saxons and Vikings settled the area and assimilated the Celts.
In Norse times,
Viking settlers brought their languages of Old Norse,
Old Danish (mainly in the
FOLKLORE AND CUSTOMS
The folklore and customs are mostly based on Celtic , Anglo-Saxon and Viking customs and folklore. Many customs and stories have their origin in Christianised pagan traditions. In the Peak District, a notable custom is well dressing , which has its origin in pagan traditions that became Christianised.
Flora in the Pennines is adapted to moorland and subarctic landscapes and climates. The flora found there can be found in other areas of moorland in Northern Europe and some species are also found in areas of tundra .
In the Pennine millstone grit areas above an altitude of 900 feet (270 m) the topsoil is so acidic, pH 2 to 4, that it can grow only bracken , heather , sphagnum , and coarse grasses such as cottongrass , purple moor grass and heath rush .
As the Ice age glacial sheets retreated c. 11,500 BC trees returned and archaeological palynology can identify their species. The first trees to settle were willow, birch and juniper, followed later by alder and pine. By 6500 BC temperatures were warmer and woodlands covered 90% of the dales with mostly pine, elm, lime and oak. On the limestone soils the oak was slower to colonize and pine and birch predominated. Around 3000 BC a noticeable decline in tree pollen indicates that neolithic farmers were clearing woodland to increase grazing for domestic livestock, and studies at Linton Mires and Eshton Tarn find an increase in grassland species.
On poorly drained impermeable areas of millstone grit, shale or clays the topsoil gets waterlogged in winter and spring. Here tree suppression combined with the heavier rainfall results in blanket bog up to 7 ft (2 m) thick. The erosion of peat still exposes stumps of ancient trees.
"In digging it away they frequently find vast fir trees, perfectly sound, and some oaks ..." — Arthur Young , _A Six Months' Tour of the North of England_ (1771)
Shooting of red grouse is an economically important activity in the Pennines.
Fauna in the
Pennines is similar to the rest of England and Wales ,
but the area hosts some specialised species. Deer are found throughout
Pennines and some species of animals that are rare elsewhere in
England can be found here. Arctic hares , which were common in Britain
during the Ice Age and retreated to the cooler, more tundra-like
uplands once the climate warmed up, were introduced to the Dark Peak
area of the
Large areas of heather moorland in the Pennines are managed for driven shooting of wild red grouse . The related and declining black grouse is still found in northern parts of the Pennines. Other birds whose English breeding strongholds are in the Pennines include golden plover , snipe , curlew , dunlin , merlin , short-eared owl , ring ouzel and twite , though many of these are at the southern limit of their distributions and are more common in Scotland.
* ^ "What are the landforms of England?". Project Britain.
Retrieved 25 July 2016.
* ^ Poucher, W.A. (1946). "The Backbone of England. A photographic
and descriptive guide to the Pennine range from
* ^ Route VII: "... This province is divided into two equal parts
by a chain of mountains called the Pennine Alps, which rising on the
confines of the
Iceni and Carnabii, near the River Trivona , extend
towards the north in a continued series of fifty miles ..."
Skipton , Camden said, was "hidden and enclosed among steep
Hilles to Latium in Italie, which Varro supposeth to have been called
because it lyeth close under the Apennine and the Alps". He went on to
describe how "the North part ... riseth up and swelleth somewhat
mountainous, with moores and hilles, but of no bignesse, which
beginning here runs like as Apennine doth in Italie, through the
middest of England ... even as far as Scotland, although oftentimes
they change their name."
Livy , _History of Rome_, Book V, §35.
Livy , _History of Rome_, Book XXXI, §38.
* ^ Falileyev, Alexander, ed. (2007). "Summus P(o)eninus" (pdf).
_Dictionary of Continental Celtic Place-Names_. Aberystwyth
University. Retrieved 2 May 2009.
* ^ Lewis, Charlton T.; Short, Charles (1879). "Apenninus". _A
Latin Dictionary_. Oxford; Medford: Clarendon Press; Perseus Digital
Library. Retrieved 23 October 2013.
* ^ Deecke 1904 , p. 23
* ^ "unknown".
* ^ R. Matasović (2009): _Etymological Dictionary of
Proto-Celtic_. Leiden-Boston: Brill. ISBN 978-90-04-17336-1
* ^ Gunn, Peter (1984). _The