After the ending of the '45, Jacobitism all but died in England.

William Sidney Gibson

This new interest in the local Jacobites was given a boost by the publication of William Sidney Gibson's book, 'Dilston Hall', in 1850.

Countess Amelia

On 28 September 1868 an apparently respectable Victorian gentlewoman left her house at Blaydon and, with two burly henchmen, moved into the ruined tower at Dilston.

A Squatter at Dilston

In order to prove that she was entitled to the old Radcliffe lands, Amelia had to do two things.

Amelia's Claim

Did Amelia really have a claim to the Radcliffe lands? Was she really descended from the Earl of Derwentwater?

The Derwentwater Monument

The magnificently named Cadwallader Bates was the leading Northumbrian historian of his day and in 1883 he bought Langley Castle.

The Northumbrian Jacobites Today

Since the publication of Gibson's 'Dilston Hall' in 1850, there has been continuous interest in the Northumbrian Jacobites.


After the ending of the '45, Jacobitism all but died in England. Occasional prosecutions for Jacobite activities continued into the early 1760s but both sides knew that the cause was effectively finished.

In Northumberland, the drinking of Jacobite toasts and the occasional meetings of those who kept the old loyalty alive would have continued for a few years but as the generation that had participated in the '15 died out, the cause died out too. By 1770 there were probably no active Jacobites left in Northumberland.

Remembrance in Song and Story

However, the people of Northumberland retained their strongly independent attitudes and their tradition of recording important local events in poems and ballads. The most famous of these is Lord Derwentwater's Farewell, but there were many others. Many songs and poems written to commemorate the Jacobites have survived. The earliest of these were written by anonymous Northumbrian farmers within a generation of the events recorded. Many were collected by James Hogg, the Ettrick Shepherd, in his 'Reliques of Jacobite Poetry'. Lord Derwentwater's Lament was passed off as a genuine ballad written by Derwentwater himself on the night before his execution, but in fact it was written by Robert Surtees of Durham in 1807.

He had sent it to Sir Walter Scott for inclusion in 'Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border', and Scott seems to have believed it was genuine. The work of Scott and Hogg mark a new interest in the Jacobites in the early years of the nineteenth century. Their treatment of Jacobitism played down its political side and the failings of its leaders, and concentrated instead on its 'romantic' aspects.

The publication of Scott's work created a group of locals who were keen to find out more about the romantic Jacobite past of Northumberland. Surtees was not the only person to write poems and songs remembering the Rising and purporting to have been composed by the Jacobites, but usually the real authors were honest enough to admit they had written the material themselves. Some of them had a genuine connection with the Rising, such as the poet Algernon Swinburne whose relatives had been out in the '15. His Jacobite Exile's Lament is a wonderful evocation of the Northumbrian landscape rather than a record of the Rising.