By historian Roger Bingham of Ackenthwaite:

COLTON Church, according to Pevsner’s architectural guide to Cumbria, is of medieval origin.

It is situated apart from any village ‘high up, where pastures give way to moorland’.

Originally, it belonged to Cartmel Priory and, unfortunately, its medieval records were lost during the Dissolution of the Monasteries.

Even so, its eighteenth-century records of churchwardens' expenses convey snippets of social and religious history.

Hence: 1758, wine for sacrament and carriage, 8s 4d. Bread, corks and sugar, 2s 6d. New stocks (ladders) for painting, 17s. Five foxes killed, £1 5s 6d.

1768, travellers allowed, 6s 4d.

1769, skin for church Bible etc, 2s.

1775, mending bell, 15s 7d. Two carts of peats, 3s.

1777, midwife, 5s.

1778, (rough) casting steeple, 15s.

1779, meal for poor house, £7 16s. Umbrella, 19s. Journey from Kendal, 5s. Dressing and cleaning church, 7s 6d.

1780, wool and meats for poor house, 7s 6d. Shaving poor, 7s 6d. Wool and meats for poor house - two years - £23 2s 6d. Boss (kneeler) for altar, 9d. Dog whipper, 5s.

Whether the latter official was employed just to keep canines in order during services or was also responsible for rounding up strays in the parish is not specified.