Concentrated in Cumberland

Although several Wannops are recorded in parish registers in London in the 1600ʼs and others were in York in the 1500ʼs, they were overwhelmingly confined to the English Borders up to the 21st century, excluding the diaspora overseas and particularly in North America. Research by University College London ( confirms that at 1998 the British Wannops remained strongly concentrated in Cumberland, although some dispersion had occurred since the 1881 Census. In 1998, pockets of Wannops showed up in Durham, East Yorkshire and Merseyside.

The concentration of Wannops in Cumberland eroded significantly only from the later 19th. Century. Lack of local opportunities led to branches of the family migrating to farm in Staffordshire, the Isle of Wight or North America. The dispersion of the Arthur Robson Wannop line may be typical of a trend amongst traditional farming families throughout Britain.

Arthur and his sister Isabella departed Little Blencow Farm at the time of the First World War, initially to university in Liverpool before going on to professional careers elsewhere in the country. Remaining in Cumberland were only Adam, the older brother, who succeeded to the farm and Molly, the younger daughter, who remained with her mother, working in the dairy, rearing the poultry and making butter and other produce to sell at market in Penrith. The women also fed the farm servants living in their quarters above the farm kitchen up to the 1940ʼs. Although some relatives in the past had gone into the church or moved into business in Cumber-land or Liverpool, social and agricultural change in the 20th. Century accentuated the familyʼs shift away from its farming roots.

Like farming families elsewhere, the containment of Arthur Robson Wannopʼs family in Cumberland and its marriages into other very local families continued until the 20th. Century. Although Arthur Robson Wannop travelled professionally to New Zealand, the United States and the Falkland Islands, his father Thomas maynever have visited London or travelled further than stock sales in southern Scotland or, perhaps, to Liverpool.

Arthur Robson Wannopʼs few months in the army after reaching the age of 18 in August 1918 involved posting to a camp in Hampshire, perhaps as far from Cumberland as any of the immediate family line had travelled before then.