Windermere, England's largest lake, over 10 miles in length which was created when the glaciers retreated about ten thousand years ago. The Romans used Lake Windermere for transporting men and supplies. They built Fort Galava at Waterhead and a house on Long Holme (now Belle Isle). Viking farmers settled round the lake in the 10th century. The name Windermere is derived from ‘Vinand’s lake’ the name of a Viking chieftain. The Vikings also introduced Char fish to the lake and Herdwick sheep to the fields and fells from Scandinavia.
Storrs derived its name from a Norman family who moved to Windermere after the Norman conquest. The lands around the lake at one time became the property of Furness Abbey, and the monks controlled the fishing rights. There have been a ferry services on the lake for over 500 years. In 1870 the ferry service changed from a rowing boat to a steam powered chain ferry.
Storrs estate covering about one thousand acres. Storrs Hall was enlarged in the 1790s for Sir John Legard who made his fortune trading rum and slaves in the West Indies. The Hall was later acquired by John Bolton, a Liverpool businessman in the same trade.
In 1890 George Henry Pattinson bought Storrs Park Estate (but not the Hall), and started building elegant private homes on his estate.