By Tim Lambert
1630 Sir Christopher Lowther purchases an estate at Whitehaven and decides to use the place for exporting coal from the Cumbrian coalfield
1634 He builds a stone pier where ships can load and unload cargoes
1640s Chapel Street and King Street are built
1660 The Lord of the Manor grants the right to hold a weekly market and an annual fair in Whitehaven. The community flourishes and grows rapidly.
1670s Tobacco from Virginia is imported into Whitehaven
1685 Until this year Whitehaven is officially part of the port of Carlisle. It now becomes independent.
1693 The Church of St Nicholas is built in Whitehaven
1700 The population of Whitehaven is now about 3,000, making it a fair sized town
c. 1730 Large amounts of rum and sugar are imported in Whitehaven
1735 Sugar Tongue Quay in Whitehaven
1743 A scavenger is appointed to clean the streets of Whitehaven
1753 St James’s Church is built in Queen Street
1754 Lime Quay is built
1762 A survey shows Whitehaven has a population of 9,063, making it a large and important town
1778 The Americans attack Whitehaven
1781 Whitehaven is the 6th most important port in England. The streets are lit with oil lamps.
1830 The streets of Whitehaven are lit with gas
1838 West Pier is built
1841 North Pier is built
1847 The railway arrives in Whitehaven
1852 A piped water supply is created
1876 Queens Dock is built
1880 A new Market Hall is built
1888 The first public library in Whitehaven opens
1893 The streets of Whitehaven are lit with electricity
1901 The population of Whitehaven in about 19,000
1957-64 West Cumberland Hospital is built
1993 A company is formed to refurbish Whitehaven Harbour
1996 The Beacon opens
1999 The first Maritime Festival is held.
2000 Rum Story opens
2001 Whitehaven has a population of 25,500