Highway Boards

Highway Districts were created by the Highways Act of 1862 to take over the responsibility of maintaining the highways from individual parish vestries. The districts only applied to rural areas and were abolished when the newly created Rural District Councils assumed their responsibilities in 1894. The Highways and Locomotives Amendment Act of 1878 created Main roads from former Turnpike Trusts and responsibility for these passed to the newly created County Councils in 1889.  The Local Government Act of 1929 transferred responsibility for all roads to the County Councils.

Given their short duration few records relating to Highway Districts have survived and can be found in a variety of sources. Although not in anyway descended from Poor Law Unions, some highway district records have been deposited as part of poor law union collections. These include Alston, Bootle, Brampton and Ulverston Unions. Some records can also be found in solicitor collections, namely Hart Jackson, solicitors. In a few cases records will be found in statutory highway board classes including Cartmel and Hawkshead. Surviving records include minutes, parochial and district accounts and rate books.

Links to online catalogues of holdings:

Alston Highway Board and Rural Sanitary Authority

Bootle Highway Board

Cartmel Highway Board

Hawkshead Highway Board

High Furness Highway Board

Leath Ward Highway Board

Low Furness Highway Board

Ulverston Rural Sanitary Authority and Highway Board

Whitehaven Rural Sanitary Authority and Highway Board